More years ago than I care to contemplate, I very sheepishly sent a column in fully expecting it would be rejected. Lo and behold, it appeared shortly thereafter and for almost twenty years now I have written these biweekly columns, first under the heading of “The Timely Writer” for The Freemans Journal and, for the last several years as “Up on Hawthorn Hill” with the Cooperstown Crier.
As is the case with many of life’s adventures, there comes a time to call it a day and move on to other things. After a while, no matter the pleasures that come with writing, usually after working through bouts of insecurity and wrestling with ever present procrastination demons, the piece comes together, gets the okay from the in-house editor, and off it goes. The wonderful comments of readers over the years have always displaced rather quickly whatever feelings of ineptitude I have felt. I suspect that anybody who writes experiences the same feelings.
At any rate, from here on in I will not write with any schedule in mind, but when something does strike me as worth sharing, I will send it in. Meanwhile, things are not idle up here on the hill. I continue to write and hope to have a second book of essays ready for publication sometime next year. Outside work, travel, and family keep us pretty busy as well.
My very first essay ended with a comment about my beloved Sheltie Gabby. She passed on two Augusts ago. Every morning when I walk down the hill to get the paper and check the place out I pass her memorial tree. It is only fitting that I close by saying that she is still very much with us in spirit. A day does not go by that I do not think of her in some happy and thankful way. When she felt pure joy in her own way she would run in ever widening concentric circles. Her joyful spirit buoys us still.