These short message were sent to subscribers by email october 9th.
[october 9th] up early, some writing, then headed out for a walk feeling a little agitated (for no real reason). figured i’d walk until something soothed in me. ended up at the train station, unplanned. i knew they had a Pret a Manger in there, though, so i figured i’d get coffee … so i head in and what i find, instead, is a big space filled with opportunity and possibility. i’ve been in this station many times, but today it was new. the way the autumn light comes in at just the right angle through the glass ceiling, shining on the passengers waiting, eyes up at the boards to see which track, couples saying good-bye like someone’s going to war instead of away for a week. the longest line-up of people with big bags, i walk over, where are they going, is it exciting? the brightly lit panel says they’re going to Nice. so yes, it IS exciting because it’s WARMER there. and there’s a beach. (now, to be fair, it’s a beach of rocks, not a beach of sand, so it’s not PERFECT but where is this perfect place we seek.) I get a shitty coffee and an even shittier croissant and i stand there. in the sunshine. in the building where everyone is going somewhere. i realize that i can use this in the sober fiction writing (the train station). i even see some work tables set up with USB and power outlets, for people who have to wait for connecting trains i guess. and i think maybe i could come here and write sometime.
what i come away with is a feeling of possibility. a train station is like a library. all the places you can go. all the things you can read to learn, experience, see. all the little towns you can check out, eat their bad sandwiches, find the enormously great sushi place in Nice (might be worth going back just for improved weather and sushi). i might return to the train station tomorrow. things feel ‘possible’ there. though it’s probably, in actuality, dirty and filled with noise and homeless people finding shelter under the glass ceilings. but on a sunny day, it feels like a church. the kind of church that can take you places. like being sober. takes you places.
from my inbox:
Lars (day 297): “Much like quitting drinking, I can’t look at the entire future [to do with changing jobs], I have to just do it one day at a time. Yes to external motivation! I tend to get lost with my own goals, but I am trying to be more organized in this sense. I like to think of it as if I’m creating a school for myself, and each day I need to spend x amount of time doing x,y,z. Of course there are off days, but getting into the habit of spending x amount of time each day learning, working, or being inspired seems paramount. My goal is to be out of job #1 within a year. There, external motivation! I’ve said this before, though, much like quitting drinking. 😉 I do think that goal of a year is possible, especially if I stick to my goal of doing shit 5 out of 7 days a week. I CAN DO THIS!!! And I get so excited thinking about all the doors that will open once I decide to take a chance on myself.”
me: yes, there is no future (!) 🙂 there is just today. stay here. there are just the actions we take today. if your goal is to be out in a year, then what 15 minute progress can you make towards that today? then you do it again tomorrow. not hours and hours a day, but bits. and sometimes you’ll feel inspired and do more, and if you just do 15 minutes that’s enough. keep incrementally advancing towards the thing.
Lars: “Thank you, Belle. I’m saving this. Going to scribble it down. Read it. Remember it. It’s lumped into the Shit Belle Says, and it’s so true and yet so easily forgotten.” [update: she’s on day 472 today]
J: “Hi! Love you and our story shares but I’d like to receive an email only about 1-2x per week and right now I’m receiving two per day or so I didn’t want to hit unsubscribe because that is entirely what I want. I was hoping when it said *email preferences* that it would give me the option to chose; hence I chose to write you instead. thank you again.”
me: hi there, the only thing I can suggest is that you just delete every second message. Without reading it. I have some subscribers who press refresh waiting for new messages. I generally limit to two emails a day, but in times when things are stressful like now, it could be more. If it’s not for you, I’d just delete some of the messages. Of course then you might miss a lovely bit of support 🙂 hugs from me
if booze is an elevator that only goes down, then you get off now and you stay off. and sometimes the sign is in french, and you need a translation.