The first draft of part one of my autobiography is finished. The narrative begins with my maternal great, great grandfather’s arrival in 19th Century Minnesota and continues until I finished graduate school in 1981. It is a good place to end winter writing as my focus turns to the garden. Caesura.
I’m not finished with the narrative. I sent part one to a reader, and may send it to one or two more. I needed a break from the writing.
I identified as a writer after returning from military service. It persisted. I diligently worked at writing during the first year of our marriage. I felt the urge to do more to earn money and support our small family, and found a new job by March of year two. The birth of our child in year three changed everything. I found outlets for writing through the years yet it wasn’t until 2007, when our child left Iowa, and I started a blog, that I began to find a consistent voice.
Much research and sorting remains. On Saturday I spent several hours reviewing digital files. I deleted so many, One Drive sent me an email asking if I was sure I wanted to delete them. There were some useful passages and many more hours of this lie ahead.
That’s not to mention the artifacts laying around in boxes. All of it needs review. Yet there is a garden to plant and tend to. I’ll work things out in the pre-dawn hours of each day.
The next chapters will be more challenging, as by the time of our marriage, life had gotten complicated. A spouse, a new job, a child, and the challenges of working in the Reagan era all created demands. I met them as well as I was able.
I wrote the outline for part two and have about 60,000 words. As I find relevant writing and subjects, I can copy and paste them there. Once the garden is in, hopefully by Memorial Day, I can take another look at what I have.
In the meanwhile, I had no idea what a big task this would be. As long as my health remains good, I’ll continue to write and edit until this work is done. There is so much invested in it, I can’t abandon it now.
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