The Pressure's Rising

You know, I expected to feel a lot less pressure than I'm feeling right about now. I knew this week and next week would be kind of busy.  Actually, I knew most of June would be kind of busy.  But there's been a few unexpected surprises (a couple of "special projects" from my old workplace, which I've agreed to do, and then the realization that I've promised book reviews on two books next week, neither of which I've read yet) which have combined to send me into a tiny bit of a tither.

But no more than a tiny bit.  Because I know this spate of stuff is short lived, and that come July 1, I will have free time galore.

Yeah, right.  And I  know of some swampland in Florida I can sell you on the cheap.  Really. I do.

I had a meeting tonight with my friend Pat, the (now retired) teacher I worked with for many years when I was accompanying full time.  She's running a week long musical theater camp for middle schoolers next week (yes, I'm accompanying). In the fall, she's starting a theater group which will be based at the church where she's now musical director.

Last week, she celebrated her 70th birthday. But she continues to think about new things to do, new ways to provide great opportunities for kids and adults in her community, new ways to help her church grow its membership, new ways to have a fulfilling life. She's extra excited about the camp next week because her 13 year old granddaughter will coming in from out of town to attend the camp and stay with her grandma for the whole week.

I love working with Pat - as extroverted as she is, she's also an only child like me, and she gets the whole only child thing about needing time and space, and being in control of one's life. She works harder at getting herself "out there" than I've ever been able to do.  But she inspires me all the time.

So in many ways, it's Pat I'm channeling when I do things like sign up for online courses in writing creative nonfiction.  I'm in the midst of my first one of those right was offered by a blogger friend whose writing and philosophy of life I admire, so it seemed like the perfect way to get my feet wet in terms of taking my writing practice to another level.

This was our first week of "class," and so there were reading and writing assignments to add into my already busy schedule.  But I'm excited about working with Andi, and also about meeting more people who are interested in expanding their writing horizons. It's already been fun and challenging and inspiring.

I've set up a separate page here at the Byline where I will post my "writing assignments" for that class, should you be interested in seeing what we're all about.

So, how about you? Is your summer starting out with high pressure, or are things more low key? And which do you prefer?