I have been writing furiously. You wouldn't know it from the looks around here, though. I have nine chapters and a half chapters drafted for the book, and once I've written the final chapter, I'll finish up footnotes, revisions, and the discussion questions the publisher has asked for. (Yes, I'm ending that sentence with a preposition. So there.)
I'm feeling grateful to be this far along in the process with a little more than a month to go until my deadline. Unlike other people who do their best creative work under pressure, I have to put elapsed time between me and what I write. My writing is like sediment as it settles. I don't ever immediately know what will stay or what will go of what I've written: only time tells me that, and I'd be a fool to procrastinate. And have I mentioned that it's officially summer here, and our house is restored to its hived state of activity? I knew that once school ended, I'd be snatching elusive hours in the early morning before anyone was awake and anywhere else I'd be lucky enough to find them. I had to have as much finished as possible on the book before the
monkeys children were home.
It's summer now and you won't find me often in these parts, but I did want to let you know about some upcoming changes around here on the blog. No, rest assured, I won't be blogging any less that I am. (Can you blog less than almost never?)
But the changes do involve both good and bad news. I'll give you the good first.
The good news is, I've found my pulse.
The bad news is, I'm not going to be looking for it anymore.
Finding my pulse was the name I chose for my blog almost two years ago now. And can I just tell you that naming your blog is a bit like naming your baby? Someone's always going to hate the name you pick. (Especially if you're Kim Kardashian, and you name your baby, "North." I mean, really?) My husband, Ryan has never really loved the name for this blog. Ok, so he's actually mocked it openly. And I'll admit, there's definitely a cheese factor in the name. May I simply say that finding my pulse was SIGNIFICANTLY better than other names I'd entertained? If I took less care for my dignity, I'd tell you one of them.
But I do. And I won't.
I can say that I named my blog without my usual hand-wringing perfectionism. Back then, I just knew I needed to write. And I have been writing ever since. In this way, blogging has been good to me. Finding my pulse became the space where I could challenge my fears of writing personally and writing publicly. It forced me into the discipline of writing regularly. There's no doubt that without this blog, I wouldn't be publishing a book. I don't mean this because I've garnered a huge audience here (I haven't). But it's almost impossible not to improve upon a skill you deliberately choose to practice nearly every day.
So here's to you, finding my pulse: I say thanks.
But as we know, all good things must come to an end. For the record, blogs with cheesy names expire quicker than the rest of God's benevolent gifts.
What's more, since I have a book coming out with InterVarsity next summer, I figure it's probably time for me to do an author page. Straight up professional. No cheesy moniker. Just Jen Pollock Michel. (P.S., I use the Pollock, not because I've recently gone feminist on you, but because it's a tip of the hat to my father and writing mentor, Michael Pollock.)
I don't love the idea of having a public face or a website named after me. In fact, the notion of a book with my name on it can make me want to disappear into the icecaps of Nunavut. (You don't even know where that is? My point exactly.)
I can't promise you that I won't someday obey that impulse. But if I do, you can always find me at www.jenpollockmichel.com, and expect there the same content you're used to finding here - with the same disturbing infrequency.
There will be also be a picture of me on the home page. This will have me wondering who else notices that my neck is getting fatter as I age.
Those hesitations aside, the boat is launched, and I'll see you on the other side!