Living a Dream – Day 19

If you’re living a dream, is it supposed to storm? With no lightning, just thunder that goes on for so long you wonder if Thor’s record got stuck? And rain clouds you’ve been keeping an eye on sneak down off the Luberon Mountains when you’re not looking and cause a deluge.

And then bang! There’s the forked lightning with so many amps it lights up the day sky and then the thunder gets really nasty and shakes the wine glasses in your 18th century solid stone house.

Nothing can be done but to stay home and write. It’s raining on my desk on the terrace and the shadow of the olive tree is taking up all the space.

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So I put on my loose pyjamas – I’m grateful for the reminder to get back into them, Sue – and light the fire.


That’s where you would have found me this morning. Writing longhand in my notebook in front of the fire about whatever comes up. Collecting the bed of detail I may or may not need for my novel. Following any thought that wanders by. I have the time here to write and dream. There’s no pressure to ‘produce’ anything. I work by writer James Baldwin’s quote,

One writes out of only one thing – one’s own experience. Everything depends on how relentlessly one forces from this experience the last drop, sweet or bitter, it can possibly give.

Today in the late morning something changed. For the first time I wanted to go to the computer and write a scene that has been hanging around in my pages, solidifying for a week. The urge was as strong as the need for a birthing mother to push.

So I went to the computer and wrote. Another scene demanded to be written so I wrote that, too. There’s a joy to writing this way I haven’t experienced for a long time. It comes from abandoning yourself to your writing, listening to and following your instinct.

If there’s one thing I will take away from this time in Menerbes, it’s this.

How will the dream fit in my real day-to-day life? Ah, there’s a challenge!

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17 Responses to Living a Dream – Day 19

  1. justinfenech says:

    Amazing the relationship between weather and Muse. Well done!

  2. anne54 says:

    The musing time has been working its magic. How wonderful that you have the time to let your mind meander and then time to sit and write the scenes that have to come out.

  3. dianathrelfo says:

    Your dream, Karen is crystallising into a fabulous reality far beyond the wonders of three weeks in Provence. If anyone is up to the challenge of incorporating the dream into their ‘real life’, it has to be you. Long may those scenes demand to be written.

    • My dream has certainly thrown up some surprising and unexpected revelations, Di! It has been much more extraordinary than I could have hoped. Thank you for your confidence I will be able to incorporate my dream into ‘real life.’ Here goes!

  4. margaret jackson says:

    Yes Karen I agree with Diana wholeheartedly and I want to add how beautiful is your writing on this blog – your descriptions, your turn of phrase – I could go on and on.. I am enjoying the writing itself as much as the stories and photos you give us. I am so very pleased with your new writing journey. Can’t wait for the novel to be published. It sounds like this trip was planned at the beginning of your life, and meant to truly awaken your writing talent. .

    • Thank you so much for your lovely comments, Marg! This trip has been an incredible experience in so many ways I’m only starting to unravel them. It is a new writing journey I’m on and it’s very exciting. Sadly, it’s our last full day here and I have a lot of nothing to cram into it.

  5. suemasens65 says:

    Don’t worry Karen it will fit, nestling in your treasure trove of memories where a few weeks will seem like a year for the richness of this time. For what are we really, but the some total of our experiences.

    • You’re right about these few weeks seeming longer for their richness, Sue. This trip has been a remarkable experience, and I’ve had the time to do as James Baldwin suggests and tried to get every last drop out of them. Thanks for your thoughts.

  6. Ruth Robertson says:

    Karen, do not despair, the dream will follow you for the rest of your life nobody or anything can take that away from you. Thank you for allowing me to come on this journey with you.

    • Thank you so much for coming with me, Ruth. This has been a wonderful time, and you’re right – the dream will follow me for the rest of my life. And some of the things I’ve discovered here will walk along with me into my ‘real’ life.

  7. Maree Gallop says:

    Wow, I love James Baldwin’s quote! How true! Maybe it’s that depth of thought and perspective, in search of the true meaning to experiences that gives layers to our writing. I’m going to write that quote in my journal, I love it.

  8. I haven’t visited your blog for a few weeks so am suddenly finding myself in France (woohoo! – and I’ll be in Brittany in a few weeks’ time!)

    So pleased you have the mental, physical and creative space to explore your words and experiences, and put them together into something which, I’m quite sure, will be remarkable. 🙂

    • It was a truly remarkable experience, Joanna.
      Oh Brittany! You’re so lucky to be be able to pop over the stream to this incredible country in such a short time. Have a wonderful trip!

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