The Writing Zone

Sketch on bookstore wall - Virginia Wold(Reminder: This is Hildy’s personal blog. If you are looking for Creating the Future’s blogs, you’ll find them here.)

Writing Sabbatical: words that make me weak with anticipation.

In 2010, I decided in July that I would take the month of August to write and explore. I put an auto-respond on my email, a message on the phone, and had no idea what to expect.

That month didn’t really result in much writing. It did, however, result in deep exploration – thinking that has become the Continuum of Readiness that I hope to soon turn into a series of classes for Creating the Future’s immersion course graduates.

The experience that first year was so meaningful in every way that last year, I extended my sabbatical time into September a bit. In that time, I did considerably more writing than the first year. I was able to brain-dump a rough initial outline for the sequel to The Pollyanna Principles (the main object of this year’s sabbatical). And I finished a first draft of a more-or-less scholarly article on Community Impact Planning that I am still hoping to get published.

And then there was even more exploration, this time into neuroscience and the psychology of behavioral change, some of which made its way into my TEDx talk this past fall.

And now it is 2012. With the ability to plan a year ahead, I’ve added a lot more time to this year’s sabbatical – beginning July 1, ending September 15. With my plate filled with writing assignments, I’m going to do my best to discourage any significant exploration into new thinking. No promises on that one, but I’m hoping it will be easier than it might have been in years past, due entirely to a habit I developed last summer – spending almost every 6am-8am exploring and reading and thinking at Crave, the coffee shop that is to be credited with every seemingly smart thing I’ve said in the past year.

And so it begins. I will be using this space to share insights that arise, to share art projects and craft projects and garden projects that allow my brain to play, and especially to share the agony and the ecstasy of the writing process, including my attempts to see through the eyes of my readers rather than my own.

If you’d like to support me in this adventure, please send happy thoughts, wonderful photos, beautiful poems. Or link with me on Facebook or Twitter, where I will be playing when I need distraction.  And if you want to make me giddy as a kid at Christmas, I’ve finally created a wish list at Amazon (some new, some replacing copies I’ve lent out, never to see again – all of which I am lamenting not having at my fingertips as I write…). I love surprises more than almost anything, and so any of these little gifts will be completely awesome.

Mostly, just keep me company. Comment when I find a moment to post here. Or send me a note, telling me what you wish I would write. Nothing gets my juices flowing like knowing what you feel is missing in your efforts to make your community amazing.

In return, I promise to keep you posted on this journey, and to share what I learn. Because if there is one thing I know about writing, it’s that I always learn a ton in the process.

Thanks, everyone, for always being so supportive of my work, and the work that is now Creating the Future’s work. I can’t wait to share what I find!

6 Responses to The Writing Zone

  1. Happy writing Hildy. In celebration of connections and writing milestones, Kim, Trae and I will raise a glass to you, together, this evening from my back yard!

  2. Thanks, Elizabeth – and I’m excited you 3 will be together tonight. Please raise a glass to Kim for me, on her own writing milestone!!

  3. May this summer be as amazing as any you have ever had! Just wanted to mention that I took a look at your reading wish list and while I’m sure the book The Soul of Money that you have listed is great, the one that I had read and mentioned to you is the one by Lynne Twist. Maybe you will be able to read both and let us know what each one brings to the table!

  4. Gail – thanks for the well wishes. And it’s the same book – for whatever reason, Teresa Barker (contributor) comes up as the author on the Wish List – but if you click through, that’s the one. It has been on my list for years, I just never actually made an Amazon Wish List before. If you click through and that is NOT the book you’re thinking of, send me the link to the one you recommend and I’ll add it. (Or just send the book – tee hee 🙂 )

  5. Love the posting, Hildy – and your thought process! “Attempting to see through the eyes of your readers rather than your own” – now isn’t that often incredibly challenging?! We are writing a book at Vantage Point currently too – and much of what you say resonates for us… We will keep you company – with surprises. And we will send you a personal invitation to join us on our journey, too.

    Happy Thinking. Happy Writing. Happy Summer.