Monday, October 1, 2012

One of Those Weeks

Once of those weeks; dog hurt, husband hurt back trying to help dog, house is completely torn apart in the midst of getting re-organized -- as is an acre of garden.

And yet, one part of the house is tidied; another part shows progress; the third is still a wreck, but you can see that work has been done. Same for the garden.

I've taken to a version ofsquare-meter (square-yard) gardening, subdividing the garden beds into smaller beds that are easily managed. I usually cannot spend hours working on a 10' x 12' garden bed -- or thereabouts, since very little in my garden is square.

However, when that bed is divided into six smaller beds, no problem. On a day where everything is going wacky, I can tend to one small bed and feel virtuous. If I manage a small bed or two a day, over the course of a year most of the garden looks like someone is giving it a go. (And because getting to town is problematic in the winter, I grow food year-round.)

Mel Bartholomew has set himself up as the originator and guru of square-foot gardening--although frankly, I remember my neighbors practicing the method decades before. Like my childhood neighbors, I am blessed with heavy clay soil that grows nothing easily: I’d have to bring in topsoil, not an option out here.

Lolo Houbein's philosophy is closer to mine -- I grow things mixed wildly in my garden squares-- my current favorite has curly kale, chard, broccoli, snapdragons and an errant nasturtium bubbling out of it.
OK, yes, all of the above reminds me of the script I'm working on -- chaos, but this scene works -- and this one almost works -- and the whole thing is rather pleasing to the eye if I skim over the half-written and half edited bits.

Bear with me while I apply my garden metaphor to the writing process, and I'll try not beat you silly with it --

--if you are the sort of gardener who likes straight rows, beautifully tilled soil and timed drip irrigation, then by all means, that's how you should garden;

--if you are rather haphazard like me, be haphazard;

--if you live in an urban area, join a community garden group (here's Seattle's version, the P-Patch) or grow plants in containers;

--if you can't grow a thing, and you want a garden, hire a gardener; or if gardening doesn't interest you, support local farmers -- take in the sights and sounds and smells at a farmer's market, join a CSA.

There is no one right writing process or editing process; do what works for you, keep going, celebrate any success, big or little. (Hooray! I put pen to paper today and wrote a grocery list!)

I can't it better than Ray Bradbury: we're supposed to be having fun.

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