My reawakening

by Jessie K on April 25, 2014

image copyApologies for the absence, dear readers. I’ve been taking a few days off (more like the entire month of April) from the blog to give me a chance to regroup and think about what’s ahead for me both personally and professionally.

I didn’t think having a second child would be such a huge transition for me, but it’s been major — I feel like my world has been turned upside down, I’m not complaining, but still! — and I’m still trying to figure out what my new working schedule should look like in the coming months. Let’s see, do I clean the toilet before or after scouring the refrigerator? Har, har. Seriously, I’ve mentioned I’m not in a big hurry to hustle Katie off to childcare (especially since I’m between publishing gigs right now; it just doesn’t make sense to hire a sitter if I don’t absolutely need one) but that’s also meant my days have become a lot more constricted. During the few hours of “down time” available to me while Katie naps,  I found I was expending all my writing energy crafting blog posts, rather than working full steam ahead on a new book project that’s been percolating inside of me for years. By the time I was ready to switch over to the book — wahhhh!!! — Katie was guaranteed to wake up from her nap, ending my writing time for the day. So I had to choose: Do I blog? Or do I work on the book? And, friends, I have to go with the latter course because it feels like more of a real job (barely).

It’s so funny writing a blog. It becomes an addiction. A compulsion. I can’t NOT blog. It’s somewhat of a perfect vehicle for me except for the uncomfortable fact that there’s barely any money in it (for me). I know of many others who make a killing writing a blog but I’ve recently had to admit I’ll never be one of them. C’est la vie, baby. (Although I still have fantasies about plastering coffee mugs with Rurally Screwed’s unofficial motto: “Don’t beat the baby in front of the dogs.” Would you buy a coffee mug or tee shirt that said that? For the low, low price of $12.95? I live by this pearl of wisdom everyday.)

Anyway, so this new book I’ve been working on, I am ferociously pumped about. I write pages in a fever, in a frenzy, which is a feeling I love and cherish more than anything in this world, and I know that when I feel this way, I have to get it all down before it goes bye-bye or I start drinking heavily. [Quick aside: I just glanced out my living room window and saw three wild turkeys strutting across my front yard. It’s some kind of omen, right?] It’s a story I’ve wanted to tell forever but could never quite figure out how to pull it off. Until I had Katie and found myself spending long hours at home alone with her NOT staring at a computer screen. I was also doing a lot of reading of good books during that time and it is that slow, solitary, bleating downtime where fresh ideas generate. So over the course of a few days, I outlined the entire book. Nothing is set in stone. I understand things change during the writing process, but I wanted to write with a clear end in sight so I can maintain that feverish energy and momentum throughout. I’m writing a page turner, in other words, the kind of book you can’t help but read to the absolute end even if you kind of hate it. You know the kind of book I’m talking about?  Yeah, that’s what I’m shooting for.

So that’s where I’m at. Blog posts will be fewer and farther between for the next couple months or so, and I fully realize I’ll lose a bunch of readers in the process, but it’s a sacrifice I have to make in my march toward world domination. (Oh please, oh please, oh please, get me on the Live with Kelly and Michael show.)  The Solha setback was a huge bummer but it’s because of that failure I’ve found a new way forward.

Back to the book…

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Debi April 25, 2014 at 4:10 pm


I would definitely buy that t-shirt.

Yikes, don’t give up blogging completely. The name “Rurally Screwed” is just too good.


Ellen H. April 25, 2014 at 6:19 pm


Good luck with the new book! Can’t wait to read it.

Bob F. April 25, 2014 at 6:50 pm


Life is always full choices and making decisions – just go with your instincts and what is practicable. Do what you love and love what you do – if you can get someone to pay you for having fun, you will never work again for the rest of your life.

Janelle April 25, 2014 at 11:24 pm


Wait. You don’t have time?!?! I don’t understand. You just bought a house, you just had a baby, you have a 2yo, and you don’t have time? Really? Can’t be!

And what a FABULOUS photo of you and June!

Molly O April 26, 2014 at 2:23 am


Well when you describe the book like that, how can we blame you for working on the book over the blog? You’ll still pop up in my blog feed no matter how few and far between your posts are. :)

Deb April 26, 2014 at 7:43 am


Good for you—and beautiful picture!

Sheila April 26, 2014 at 12:10 pm


What a cutie Katie is — of course, mom is no slouch, either! So now you can relax, blog when you feel like it, work on that next wonderful book, and maybe relax a LITTLE…but first…when does Katie get to join you, Jake, June, Solha, and the chickens on your “title” page?

Janice Hodges-Polk April 26, 2014 at 12:46 pm


Just a hint about the book–please? Fiction? Non-fiction
I don’t understand the motto, but I’d definately wear it!

Annette April 26, 2014 at 7:50 pm


I only follow two blogs and yours is one of them, so I would definitely miss yours. I also own your book and will buy your next one. Good luck with working everything out and with the balancing act that is always involved in parenting and marriage.

Jen d April 26, 2014 at 9:13 pm


I am glad to hear you found a balance that you are happy with. I will continue to check in no matter how few and far between. I look forward to your new book. Happy writing!

Brenda April 27, 2014 at 9:17 pm


I’ll still read whenever they come (I get a notify in my email). Still have your book to purchase and read (when I come up for air) and old blogs, too, since I didn’t start until last year, or maybe it was 2012. Anyway, you’ve made the right decision because it’s what’s best for you.

Eva April 28, 2014 at 2:35 pm


Hi Jesse,
I’m a big fan of your writing. I read your blog every day. I’ll keep reading even if you don’t post every day.
In The Happiness Project, Gretchen Ruben recomended becoming a fan of something. It’s hard trying to be happy in this modern world that pushes you in a million directions you don’t want to go in. Well I like to read light hearted books with happily ever afters at the end– I love Linda Lael Miller cowboy romances. I also like urban farming and dreaming about moving to the country. So that’s why Rurally Screwed caught my eye at the library. I liked it so much I googled you and found your blog, which is excellent. I emailed Bananas Hollindaise to my husband and we talk about it all the time.
I’m glad you’re going to write a new book and you’re doing what needs to be done to prioritize it.
I just read the post about the Solha setback– that was before I started reading your blog, and I didn’t know about it. So I wanted to say two things. One is that I just read a mime on facebook, “Anyone who knows how to dance knows that taking a step backward is bad, it’s a cha cha.” or something like that. I took a step backwards recently with a job and was able to take a steps forward in other areas because of it.
The second thing I wanted to tell you is that I would like to buy the Solha book. I think you can get my email from this post. I would happily send you $20 in exchange for a pdf of your unfinished manuscript. Seriously, if you email me I’ll buy it. Make it available to all your blog readers. You don’t have to publish on amazon- just email it to people or set up a quick page with Square or Etsy.

cindy April 29, 2014 at 7:30 am


By all means, work on the book! I can’t wait to read it!

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