Taking Time To Stand And Stare

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Max asleep on my shoulder.

Max asleep on my shoulder.

On July 1st the developmental edit of my memoir was done. Now I’ll take time to reread it once again, make minor changes if necessary, and then send it off for a copyedit.

I loved working with my editor, Annie Tucker, and will miss our phone conversations every other week. I’ve learned a lot from her, but life moves on and we will be in touch again during the final edit. If I ever write another book, it’ll be Annie I’ll look to for the editing. I remember how overwhelmed I felt last summer as I kept revising without the help of an editor. It was not fun and I spent more time being stressed out and worrying that I’d never be done.

As a reward for moving to the next level, I’m going to give myself a little summer break. But I won’t be lying around on the beach doing nothing. While slowing my pace, I’ll still be at work. Tomorrow my new computer will arrive and I’ll take some time to get to know her. To be honest with you, computers scare the heck out of me. I’m not good at technology and feel I need more time to figure things out than others. But I have a great teacher who’ll be helping me out whenever I run into trouble.

I also hope to get some blog posts written ahead of time and to work on a surprise that I’m planning to launch in the fall. I’ll do some reading, rest, and watch the hummingbirds flit through my garden.

This will be my last post until July 28th.

I hope you are all having a wonderful summer. Don’t forget to take some time out to relax.

A poor life this if, full of care,
We have not time to stand and stare.
William Henry Davies


  1. Joan — I love the photo of you with Max curled up on your shoulder. And GREAT for you that you’re shifting into neutral and cruising for a little while! I look forward to seeing you again after July 28.

    • Thanks, Laurie. It is nice to shift into neutral and take time for some other things. And Mr. Max is such a sweetie. My granddaughter took that photo this past weekend.

  2. I’m glad you are taking some time to celebrate a milestone in the editing process. Kudos to you for advancing this far, Joan. I believe one of your watch words for 2015 is “forward” and your advancing so far this year show you’re in the right gear.

    Here’s an addition to your quiver of quotes from a John Milton sonnet: “They also serve who only stand and wait” – waiting not necessarily meaning doing nothing, but allowing things to unfold just the way they should.

    I’m thinking of reducing my blogging from two to one post a week. As I say, I’m thinking about it, so I can get further with my memoir writing. Hmmm . . .

    • Marian, Thanks for the kudos. I still can’t quite believe it’s done but I’m very happy with the book and excited about the next steps.

      Good luck deciding whether to cut your blog posts to once a week. I post on mine only once a week and can’t imagine doing it twice a week. It takes a lot of time away from other things that need doing.

  3. Joan, congratulations! I’ve yet to send off to an editor; still finishing up those last few pages and self-edits. Are you using Annie for both the developmental and the copy edits? I’m still deciding if working by phone is the best way to go. When you return from your R&R time, I’d love to hear from you as to how you found Annie and chose her and the phone method.

    Enjoy your summer leave doing things you love to do and refreshing your self.

    • Sherrey, Yes, Annie will be doing the copy edit as well. Working by phone turned out to be a great experience. And if I had questions she always got back to me promptly by email. I found Annie through She Writes Press and wasn’t required to go with them because I used her. It turns out I will publish with them, though. I’ll write another post about it after my break.

  4. Joan, I’m so happy you are giving yourself this well-deserved break. You’ve worked long and hard to reach this momentous milestone, Like Sherrey, I’d love to hear about why your editor worked so well for you. That is such a crucial part of the process and I’m certain your experience will enlighten us all. Happy resting reflecting and enjoying your respite!

    • Kathy,thanks. I’ll probably write a post about the process and publish it once I’m back to blogging. It was a great experience and can only hope that every writer can find the editor for them.

  5. Hi Joan, I too am happy for you. Both for the huge milestone you have achieved, but also for your choice to take a break as you need. I’m reminded of that old saying, “I’m a human being; not a human doing.” Happy staring.

    • Thanks, Janet. I think I’ll still be doing, but it will be other things. I think one of the first things I’ll do is sleep in a bit! I’m so happy that your reading went well. You are an inspiration.

  6. Enjoy your break. It sounds like you’ve earned it. 🙂

  7. Thank you, Linda. I shall enjoy it.

  8. Kudos all the way around, Joan. I’m eager to hear what your new surprise will be in the fall, but in the meantime, forget about us and enjoy this summer. I always feel sad when July 15 comes and the summer is more than half over. If you can give yourself a few weeks without blog writing, you add a few days to your summer.


  9. Joan, Enjoy your summertime lull with the hummingbirds. A well-deserved break. Working with an editor is very stimulating . . . I’ve worked with editors and I’m an editor too. I love both roles. Glad you had a great experience with your editor. Onward and upward! When is your memoir coming out?