Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Stitching a Story

This week is spring break for the university where I teach. I decided to take a break from my other part time job as well so I could indulge in some of my hobbies and get some things done. So yesterday I spent the morning with the quilting group at church and for the rest of this week I am in a very quiet room on campus, along with a dozen other professors, writing. The university regularly sponsors writing retreats for faculty members, providing us with food, beverages and a distraction-free environment. I have two WIPs to work on, including my Winter NaNo project, and some guest blog posts to finish.  The director told us this morning we were to report at the end of the week how many words we wrote in three days. I'm hoping my numbers will be near the top!
Yesterday, as I was sewing quilts, I thought about the stories I'm trying to write (yeah, I tend to try and do several things at the same time—once a mom, always a mom) so that I would be able to get more writing done today. I'm planning a series of stories about a group of women with the same passion for creating beautiful quilts. Each story will be tied to a quilt pattern. So I've got five plots in various stages of planning. I need to come up with names, character sketches and conflicts for each woman in the group. And I need to find a way to tie all the stories together. It's quite a task. Hope I'm up to it!
I just have to make sure that each story is unique, like the quilts our group sews. Each one is different, even when we use the same pattern, because the choice of fabrics affects the overall look. Each quilt is going to a different home, for a different reason. Some are given to people who have lost a loved one and are grieving. Some are given to people who are very ill and need comfort. And some are simply lonely. In the same way, the stories I write may affect different people in different ways. But since the type of stories I write always end with a "happily ever after," my aim is to provide a pleasant time reading.
I guess I'd better get to work. Here is a picture of the quilts our group got done this week.

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