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Back to Reality

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I don't think we need to go to apocalyptic thinking, but sometimes the headlines lead us in that direction. Here's a painting my sister recently did that may reflect that underlying fear we all have.

After returning to civilization following my month long writing retreat, I've found myself strangely unconcerned by the rather horrible state of our economy. Mind you, I am a real estate agent and my phone has virtually stopped ringing. By all rights, I should be worried. The money I put away while real estate was crazy hot has now lost a good deal of its value, but soon I'll have to sell stock to have cash to live on while the market remains quiet. My partner is in banking, and though her bank is one of the safest in terms of its overall stability, it's still banking - a pretty vulnerable place to be. As a couple, we are a ground zero of the new economy.

Why am I not worried? I really have no idea. I still am doing some transactions and there will be some closings along the way. I'm staying on top of what's going on in the business, staying in touch with my clients, and ready to be there for them when things pick up again. And in the meantime, I'm writing. Maybe that's why I'm not worried. I have something else I care passionately about and I can devote myself to that with the time I now have. When real estate picks up, I'll flip flop the ratio of time I spend on each. I guess I feel that somehow I'm being taken care of - not necessarily monetarily, but in a broader sense. Things are happening as they are supposed to, and I'm going to make the most of the situation as it exists. This coming year will be a challenge to my bank account, but if I can get another book written, how much richer am I? Richer in spirit, I mean. I don't see myself writing a best seller with the next one.

But you never know.

I was recently interviewed at an on-line lesbian fiction site called Kissed by Venus (kissedbyvenus.ca). The editor of the site is Alexandra Wolfe, who lives in Quebec City but is a woman of the world. It's a great web site and I encourage you to visit it. My interview can be read here. Alexandra also published a story of mine on the site, Thirty Days Has September, which can be read here. The story is about a woman who is bottoming out on alcohol, and the reaction to it has been so interesting. Recovering alcoholics who read it can instantly relate to the cluelessness of the narrator. Non-alcoholics who read it are amazed at the cluelessness of the narrator, but it's my hope they have a little more understanding of the power of denial, and the power of addiction, after they read the story. I recently heard from someone who took the story into a woman's prison where she does service work. Her group of recovering women read the story and had quite a lively discussion about it. That's the best feedback I've ever gotten.

Have a wonderful holiday season.

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