Old Words Revisited

I’ve been working from home almost exclusively since mid-march. For the last two months I’ve been logging in on my work laptop, sitting on my couch and sending emails, writing up documents, attending meetings on Zoom and Teams (muted of course, because I have a toddler who has no interest in letting me work without her input). When I worked onsite I feel like I rarely called or emailed IT for my own technical issues– I often sent in a ticket for other people, or for my office as a group, but I just don’t do a whole lot that needs troubleshooting.

Now that I’m at home, I am emailing them at least once a week to help me figure out why my computer is acting up AGAIN. The most recent issue arose when for some reason my documents weren’t syncing to OneDrive (anyone else using OneDrive for work? You know what I’m talking about). This had me suddenly obsessively looking at all my documents to see if they had synced or were still “pending”. I have hundreds of documents on my computer, many of them current, but certainly not all. As I was doing this obsessive search I found some of my own personal writings from many many years ago. I don’t know why they were even there, I think I just needed a spot to have them stashed until I could print them or email them to myself or put them on Google Drive where all the rest of my personal writing is. Continue reading

Writing for an Audience of One

Two years ago I discovered NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, and I was super stoked about it. I made an account on their website, filled out my profile, and prepared to write a whole novel in a month (NaNoWriMo is a challenge to write 50,000 words in 30 days). Before I began blogging, I used to spend a lot of my free time writing for myself– poetry, short stories, novels that I never really finished. I remember my parents had received this totally ancient PC from a friend and let me use it– it wasn’t connected to the internet, but it didn’t matter– and I would sit down in front of the computer, turn on some music (usually the Beatles or the Shins) and write for hours, creating alternate realities where kids had power and parents didn’t really exist and magic was everywhere (you know, kid stuff). As I got older I found livejournal and greatjournal (remember livejournal?!) and that really exposed me to the catharsis that can come with online journaling and blogging, but even then I still made time for something beyond my own experience, something creative and outside my own life. It was nice to be creative and fantastical, to write about anything I wanted, to have my characters do whatever I wanted them to, to play out what-ifs or if-onlys in Microsoft Word. I continued to write through high school and into college, but eventually I stopped devoting time to fiction and spent more time writing midterm papers and blogging.  Continue reading

Blocked: Writing Prayers That Don’t Suck

I’ve been having a bit of a hard time this week with a few things. Firstly, writing my own prayers has been more difficult than I anticipated. I think it’s because although I appreciate pre-written prayers (I think they’re beautiful), I’ve spent most of my life just saying prayers on the fly. As a child I would pray when I woke up, before meals, and before I went to bed, and most of them went something like this:

Hey God, thanks for being awesome. Thank you for all the good things in my life. Please don’t let me die in my sleep. Also, please keep all my family alive today because I really like them. Again, you’re awesome. Thank you. Amen.

I mean, it didn’t go exactly like that, but you get the general idea. Even our grace over meals was short and sweet: Continue reading