Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Borrowing Fire Now Available Through Amazon

Here is the link to Amazon. Borrowing Fire: Rewriting the Eulogy for a Boy Named Wolf 

I also wanted to let you know that if you are in need of The Niederbipp Trilogy books for gifts for Christmas, they can be picked up here at my studio or at nearly every Costco in Utah or on Amazon.com.

I hope to see you this weekend at the open house here at the studio.  1150 East 800 South in SLC. I have been busy making stuff for the show. Come and see.


Great First Open House, Two More To Go!

Saturday was a zoo—a marvelous, crazy, wonderful zoo. Our house was filled with people and there a was a line up the stairs in the studio to get books and pots. Some people were discouraged by the line and went back into the house to see if Lynnette would ring them up.  It was not my intention to have a long line and I'm sorry one formed and continued most of the day. It was a great success. I sold about 500 copies of the new book and lots of pots.
The open house will continue this Saturday and next (December 8, 15) from 10am -5pm at 1150 East 800 South in SLC. Tell your friends and come and take a tour of Niederbipp!
We wondered if anyone would be interested in touring the house since so many people have come through on the past two open houses in May and last December, but we had more people come through on Saturday than we have ever had before. Apparently people are telling their friends. Thank you. The more the merrier. If, however, you wan to avoid the crowd, the studio will be open all week. I had a dozen people stop by today and many more will be coming tomorrow. Just give me a call and come on over. 801-883-0146. IF you want to see the house, Lynnette says come on Saturday. She is busy making more candy after selling out in the first hour on Saturday.
I hope to see you sooner rather than later. You are going to love the new book, Borrowing Fire, and I think the heart rocks are holding out. I spent the summer collecting them in anticipation of these open houses. Every book purchased during the month of December from my studio will receive a free heart rock with the book. Come and get em, they're going fast.
I have been up late making pots to try and fill in the holes left after Saturday's open house. I hope to see you soon.
Cheers,  Ben

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Bookends--Announcing "Borrowing Fire!"

Two years ago when I began writing this new book, the first funeral I attended as part of my research was for a 36 year-old classmate. The funeral was held at a huge church, and the crowd that filled it was even bigger. Over the next two years, I attended 57 other funerals and today I attended my 59th funeral. This one was for another classmate, a kid I grew up with, Brian Condie. He was actually two years younger than me, only 36 years old, the victim of colon cancer. He leaves behind a beautiful wife and two charming little girls. But boy, did he know how to live! In his short 36 years, he got it right. He knew how to laugh and how to love, and he knew how to live. The messages shared by his family and his clergy were inspiring. I laughed and I cried, knowing I would never see him again in mortality. The church was filled beyond capacity, and it just so happens that it was held at the same church where my research began two years ago. In the two years since I started all this, I have never been back to this church until today.

Just as I was leaving the church, I got a phone call. It was my printer. The cover of the book needed to be approved for printing. Some may see all of this as coincidental. I can't. Somewhere, there is a grand plan for all of this. I am grateful to be a player in this vast game of life.
So, we are on schedule for the new book to be delivered in time for the December 1st open house, here at the studio. I will write more about the open house later, but it will be held the first three Saturday's in December—December 1, 8, 15 from 10-5 each Saturday, at 1150 East 800 South in Salt Lake City. We will also be opening our home again for the home tour on those Saturdays. If those dates don't work for you, the studio will be open through Dec 21, everyday except Sunday. Pots and all of my books will be available for purchase, until I run out. You can call me to make sure I am around if you are coming outside of the scheduled open houses. 801-883-0146. The home tour will unfortunately only be available on the Saturdays. Last year we had more than a thousand people go through our home. If you want to avoid the crowd and are not interested in seeing our home, come during the week to get your pots and books.

Like the books in the Niederbipp Trilogy, "Borrowing Fire" is a book filled with hope. There is humor and elements of spirituality and philosophy, but it is a fun read. I was reading it to my kids the other night and after about a half hour, my son Isaac said, "Dad, this book is way better than your first one." I think everyone who has read this new book have enjoyed it at least as well as the Niederbipp books and many have said they liked this one even better.

Beginning next week, Borrowing Fire will be available for pre-order on Amazon.com. I will post a link as soon as it is available. During the holiday season and for the foreseeable future, the book will only be available from my studio and Amazon. Don't ask me why. I am trying to think up something smart, but nothing is coming to me.

So that's it for tonight, I will posting more soon. I need to finish my newsletter so it can get out by next week. If you would like to receive a copy via email, please click here, benbehunin@comcast.net and say "add me to your list."

I can't wait to share the new book with you. You're going to love it!

Cheers,  Ben

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Book Signings Begin Again on Friday

Well, I feel like I am getting ready to get back in the saddle. Costco has invited me to do four book signings this month, the first of which is on Friday, October 12, at the Murray Costco from 2-5pm.
 Next week on October 18th, I will be at the SLC Costco from 2-5pm and October 19th at the Bountiful Costco from 2-5. October 26th, I will be a the Sandy Costco from 2-5.
I will not have my new book with me at that time as layout and design for Borrowing Fire has begun, but the book will not be complete and available until Dec 1. These book signings are only for the first three books in the Niederbipp Trilogy. If you need an extra copy for gifts for Christmas, come to Costco. Or if you just want to stop by and graze on the free samples, I would be happy to see you.
I came out to studio a two weeks ago and started my work in the clay again after some weeks of spending all my time writing. For several weeks I had been thinking about what I thought would be my next book, but on the day I began working in the studio again, another idea for a book opened in my head and I had to get a notebook and write down the new ideas that came to me. After trying to avoid it because of the work I need to get done in the the studio, I am beginning today with my the new book. The title will likely be "The Ten Jewels." I won't say what it is about or when to expect it, but today will be the first day to work on it. I hope after Christmas to be able to dedicate a lot of time to the project.
I am working on developing more faith. I am trying to remember to consider the lilies. Looking back on my life, I see the hand of God over and over again as answers have come and my needs and wants have been provided for. But sometimes, at the crossroads, it is hard for me to let go and believe. I have learned again and again that God rarely wants what we're naturally willing to give Him. He wants our best—the best of who and what we are. He doesn't want our weaknesses; He wants our strengths, our talents, our desires, our very best. It would be so much easier to give Him something other than my talent and time with pottery. Pottery, after all, has been my passion. It has provided for me and my family for more than seventeen years. It is the best of who I am and what I have chosen to do with my time. It is hard to imagine giving up that passion when it's what I know the best, especially when I am making the best work of my life. But I know I cannot dedicate my time to writing the books I feel compelled to write and continue to make pottery like I have in the past and like I have been trying very recently to do again. I have so many ideas I may never get to in pottery. I will likely lose all sorts of potential sales to galleries and individuals—I suppose I already have, but somehow it will be worth it. I have been reminded that I need to leave my nets and do something more. And when I remember the lilies, I know I have nothing to fear. God has always taken care of my and my family, even when I couldn't see how it would happen. Sorry about the personal thoughts, but I didn't know where else to write it and it needed to come out somewhere where I would be accountable for it.
I will write again soon. For now, I need to get writing.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Design Begins Tonight

After a long month of editing and making artwork for the book, the layout and design is finally starting. My buddy, Bert Compton, who designed my other books is working on this one as well. The new book is called,
Borrowing Fire: 
Rewriting the Eulogy For a Boy Named Wolf. 

If all goes as we plan, it will be available on December 1.
I am excited about this one. Everyone who has read it likes this one even more than the Niederbipp Trilogy. I am really happy about that. It is hard to start something new after so many of you have expressed strong feelings about the Isaac books. It is nice to be moving on to the next story, and I have already begun working on the next book after this one. This is hard for me to believe as I never in a million years imagined I would write even one book. I will be writing more about it in the coming months as we prepare for its release, but it is exciting to be moving on to the next step.
I should mention that I received word last week that Costco will be selling the Niederbipp Trilogy again starting this month in Utah. I am not sure if they will be in all of the stores, but I know for sure at the Bountiful, Murray, Sandy and Lehi stores. I will be signing a few times this month and next and will post those dates tomorrow or the next day. If you want to spread Niederbipp this Christmas season, you are always welcome to come and pick them up from me at the studio, or if it's more convenient, your local Costco might have them too. Anyway, thanks for reading and I hope to see you on or after Dec 1 to show off the next book!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Borrowing Fire: Rewriting the Eulogy for a Boy Named Wolf

Well, after two years of intermittent writing and research sending me to 58 funerals for strangers, I have finished the writing portion of this project and am knee deep in editing with plans to begin layout and design on or before October 1 to have the book ready for my December 1, 2012 open house and studio sale.

This book has been a lot of fun. I have shared it with a few close friends and they all like it even better than the Niederbipp trilogy, which is humbling and exciting. I will be posting more in the coming weeks as we continue to make progress, but I just wanted to send this out and say we are getting very close now and I am really excited to share this with you. It has been an inspiring experience to write this book and I think this will be a book you will want to share with everyone you know and love. It would be a great Christmas Gift, but a fine gift for all occasions, filled with lessons of life, hope, love and grace.

Look for more information coming soon, but plan on attending the book launch, December 1, 8 and 15th.  Each of these dates will correspond with my annual Christmas Studio Sale and , back by popular demand, our house tour, where we will open our home to anyone who wants to see what we have done. We remodeled last year, adding on to our home and finishing it with 500 square feet of hand made tiles.  Most of this was completed last year, but I am still working on projects and hope to have it all wrapped up in the next two months.

Thanks for you patience.
Electric Boat on Lake Windemere, July 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Sometimes it's hard to share a river...

Happy Independence Day! I hope it was swell for you.
We spent the morning at a pancake breakfast at the church, which, for the past 10 years has been followed by a water fight. It is kind of an unusual water fight as the line is generally drawn between my self and my posse of two or three brave souls who wield our water-filled fire extinguishers against the rest of the kids in the neighborhood who are all poor-sports and gang up on the kids who look more like adults—namely us. It was awesome. There is something utterly refreshing about a water fight, especially in July, and today was all that.
We spent the afternoon with family on the Weber River, floating on anything that floats from Hennefer to Taggart, or about 7 miles as the crow flies. For the most part, it was also a refreshing experience, but for the first time in my life, I found myself feeling that it is hard to share a river. It was a strange mix of folks on the river today. Most of them were under thirty, had at least one visible tattoo, had at least one visible piercing, had at least one visible beer in their hand and were very visibly drunk. I found myself wondering if it was a frat party as at least 80% of the folks on the river fit this description.  Am I getting old?  Is it wrong for me to be offended by the exercise of free speech that leaves my children and myself feeling violated, like we were recreating in a polluted river. And lets face it, it was polluted heavily today. With the majority of the folks drinking beer as they floated down the river, I didn't see even one person carrying a tote bag for their empty cans. Instead, those cans went into the river I love.
I have floated this river a few times before, and in those cases, I had the river mostly to myself. It was beautiful. Birds of prey were soaring overhead, deer danced on the banks, trout played in the water. But when you have a gazillion people on the river, the magic of that place cannot be seen. It's hard to share a river with those who don't appreciate it the same way I do. I missed the solitude. I missed the silence. I missed the magic. We had a wonderful time despite the distractions, and we will certainly go again, but next time, I hope those who share the river with me might be more sober, more considerate, more thoughtful.
Have you ever come across a Sprite can or a Coke can in the wilderness? I haven't. But since the time I was a child, I have picked up and packed out hundreds of beer cans left by insensitive travelers who must have been enjoying themselves so much that they forgot that we share the wilderness with everyone, and most of us like not finding other people's garbage in the places we love the most.
I know it's not my river. I know people have every right to dress the way they do and express themselves the way they want, but tonight I am appalled by the growing disrespect and degradation of society. It is hard to share a river with those who don't care for it and love it and respect it enough to leave it better than they found it.

I don't know, maybe I have been reading too much Terry Tempest Williams.

On a positive note, I have been writing—abundantly—and I plan to have the next book done in December, just in time for Christmas.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Niederbipp Goes Full Circle

I received an interesting phone call from Tiengen, Germany last week. My friend Irene Meier, the woman with whom I apprenticed for four months 17 years ago was on the line to tell me that a woman had come into her pottery shop that day with my book in her hand, asking if she knew me.  For those of you who may not be aware, the town I describe as Niederbipp is actually the town of Tiengen, Germany. Niederbipp just had a better name. This woman had been in my shop a few weeks ago, visiting from Seattle and told me she was on her way to Switzerland and was planning on stopping by the real Niederbipp. I suggested she would have more fun going to Tiengen. Anyway, she spent the evening with Irene and her husband Sven. They had dinner together, walked around the town and Irene even took her to the crying tree on the banks of the Rhein.  It is a beautiful place and I would highly recommend visiting it if you are in the Switzerland/Southern Germany area. Stop by the pottery on Zubergasse and you will meet Irene. She may offer you some tea and you can sit down and talk about life and art. It was fun to see that the world is still flat, and not very big.
 I am writing, or pretending to, but I am busy trying to get ready for the Utah Arts Festival which begins on the 21st. I have a lot to do between now and then--many, many pots to fire. I had to rebuild the kiln door after Mother's Day--it got a little too hot and melted, but the kiln is firing well again and I am happy to report there will be lots of new pots and designs at the festival--if all goes as planned. Wish me luck.  Maybe I will see you there.  June 21-24 at Library Square, downtown SLC

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

You can't write a novel in an afternoon!

I've told myself that a few dozen times over the past year, and yet I still want to believe it. You can read a novel in an afternoon--either a short novel or a long afternoon, but writing takes time. It takes sweat and tears and a whole lot of effort. I used to joke that GoodReads, the website where everyone and their dog can review a book and give their two bits should really be called, "Disgruntled English Majors." I seems everyone who doesn't write has fairly strong opinions about those who do, especially those who write something that gets published. I guess I cant really claim to have gotten anything published since I self-published, but the difficulties in writing can be no less real, regardless of how the book comes to be.

I was excited to get back to writing as soon as the Mother's Day Open House was over. We had nearly a thousand people go through out home over the weekend and I was bushed after that. My kiln had some problems during the final firing before the open house which resulted in part of the door melting and leaving it very difficult to open. I spent a day and a half making the necessary repairs and then dedicated the rest of the week to writing.  Or so I thought. Writing, at least for me requires several consecutive hours of relative silence. Sometimes that is difficult to find. Okay, so maybe that is always difficult to find. I realized I am out of practice and the magic doesn't always happen exactly when I want or need it to happen. I made some progress, but it was slow. It is a little better this week, but if I am not distracted by people dropping by or phone calls, I am distracted by the fact that I have an art festival coming up in a month and I need to replenish my supply of pots. I am behind on orders, too. And I don't care that I'm behind on orders which is both liberating and disappointing. I am distracted--maybe that is the best way to put it. Distracted, feeling like I have returned to my nets after knowing I am supposed to be doing something else. Faith is tough, at least for me, and patience is even harder.

That being said, I am more excited about this story than I have ever been. I know all writers draw on their personal experiences, but I am a little surprised by how autobiographical this book is becoming. Some of it involves dark pieces of history from my younger years and family drama that is still going on. It has made me pensive and moody and somedays has made me want to avoid delving deeper. And yet I know I need to plow on. I feel strongly that this book will help others, offer hope and grace and love, and give people courage to plow forward. I am still hoping to have the book ready for Christmas, but if I don't make some substantial progress in the next few months, I will have to postpone it again.  I hate to do that.

I am not sure why other people write, but I will tell you honestly that I write because I have to--because the voices won't leave me alone--because the story haunts me until I let it out. It is never easy. It seems to always be expensive, and it takes way longer than I think it should.

So, I am off to write. I fed my fears by making pots this morning. Now I can feed my faith, by writing.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Mother's Day Open House This Weekend

It's hard to believe I haven't been here to update the blog in over a month. I should have done this sooner and I am sorry if you missed it because of my lack of communication, but tomorrow begins my

Mother's Day Studio Open House and Home Tour

May 10-12

10am-5pm each day

1150 East 800 South

Salt Lake City, Utah

We have been busy getting the house ready and I have been crazy busy making pots. I just finished my fifth firing of the week and I am bushed. Because of the requests, we are opening our home again for a tour. We refinished our home last year, moving back in just before the holidays. Projects have continued since then and will continue after this open house too. Come and see the 500 square feet of handmade tile scattered throughout our home and take a piece of pottery home for the mom in your life. I will also have the books available and a lot of forget-me-not ware. I hope to see you soon.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Virtual Home Tour

Ben Behunin, Potter / Author, The House That Built Me

A friend of mine came over the other day to film the house and I thought I would pass it on to all of you who aren't in the area. For those of you who are in the Salt Lake City area, we will be having another studio sale/ home tour on May 10, 11, 12. Put it on your calendar. More info will follow soon, but I thought this might be of some interest. Cheers, Ben

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

I don't know what to say...

...so I may ramble a bit for a while until I figure it out. The writing was going very well there for about a week and then I realized how far behind I was in my preparations for Art and Soup, which takes place next week at the Sheridan down town. I also have a one man show opening at the Loge Gallery at the Pioneer Memorial Theater on the U of U campus starting at the end of the month. I am running far behind for everything, so needless to say, the book will not be done in time for Mother's Day this year, but I believe I can complete it by this fall.
That makes me sad to admit that. In some ways, I feel like I have failed, not in any personal goal sense, but in that I know this book will have some power to help lift and inspire, and those that may need it now will have to wait. I don't like that.
I received a phone call this morning from a woman who asked me to come and speak to a youth group in June. I speak to youth groups regularly. She felt like my message might offer hope to the youth of her community who have seen two of their peers end their lives with suicide in the past two weeks. I am saddened by that. I am saddened to think what might cause a young person to put such a permanent end to a likely temporary problem. This woman was the third person in as many days who has spoken to me about loved ones who have recently committed suicide. What a tragic way to deal with the trials of life. I believe the lessons of this book will help those who struggle with such challenges and I know I have to write it, I know I have to push on. I know that sometimes all we need is glimmer of hope to turn our lives around and face the sun.
Three women stopped by today to purchase a gift for a mutual friend of theirs whose twenty-two year old son recently ended his life. They were looking for a journey jar and found one, but when I showed them some of my latest work for the Loge Gallery show, they fell in love with a beautiful bowl and had to take that too. There is a bright sun in the middle and then written around the sun, it says, "Let us pause in Life's trials to stop and face the sun which is always shining for those with open eyes--look, search, discover.
Years ago, while traveling in an airplane, I was struck with the truth that above the clouds, the sun is always shining, and that if we will open our eyes and rise above the clouds, life is always bright and exciting. Depression is a powerful force that seems to use fear to hold us down and suffocate us. I am reminded of one of my favorite scriptures, 2 Timothy 1:7 For God hath not given us the spirit of Fear, but of power and love and of a sound mind." Fear has no place in the things of God. If we could all turn to love and embrace it and spread it around, I am convinced our world would be a gentler place and fear and the darkness surrounding it would lose its power. So, maybe that what this post is all about, that I needed to remind myself to embrace that which is good and true and light, and let the rest fall by the wayside.
Press on.
PS, Save the date for the Mother's Day open house/ home tour May 10-12 10 am-5pm each day, here at the studio.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Another Day, Another Funeral

So, this was a good week on the writing front. I set aside more time to get through some of the hard things to write and I feel like I made some progress. It is so hard to spend hours on one paragraph and then end up scrapping it because it doesn't end up working for where it is supposed to go. There have been many times in the past months that I feel like I am wasting time, spinning my wheels and not making any progress, but I feel like I have been given this story and though it would be far easier to give up and just make pottery, I know I am not supposed to. I know I couldn't be happy if I did.
I had a couple of random visitors this week who just dropped by while I was writing. I feel like the universe sent them to help me realize I need to write this book, that people need it. It was a humbling experience to see that the very thing we were talking about was the thing I had been writing about. I am convinced that we are all connected. We are all trying the best we can to make it through this life, bumping along the road, trying to make sense of it all. I am glad to be a writer and in the coming weeks, hope to make much more progress. Thanks for your encouraging words. They keep me going when I don't feel like it. They give me perspective. Thank you.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Slow, but steady.

I think I am beginning to understand why it took me eleven years to write my first book when the second and third took only 9 months each. It takes a huge amount of time to lay the foundation for a book, especially one that requires research. That, and overcoming new fears. I think I have written about this before on previous blogs, but after seeing how people have loved the Niederbipp Trilogy, I find myself feeling very careful and sensitive to realities that people have an expectation of me and my writing. I don't want to let anyone down. I don't think I will with this next one, but I recognize how careful I have to be. To be honest, I am not sure why anyone writes. I have spoken of this several times in the book clubs I speak to, but when I write, I am bearing part of my soul. These books are my babies, and none of us like to be told we have ugly babies. I worry about how things will be taken and understood and how it will reflect on how I am viewed as a writer. It is kind of like standing naked in the middle of a sports arena, and singing the national anthem. And so, with this in mind, I am moving forward, trying to keep the distractions at bay, and realizing it is rather unlikely that I will complete this book by May as I originally hoped, but it will be this year sometime, and I think you will like it.
I have also been thinking a lot about my work as a potter. It is my first love, working with clay, getting my hands dirty, making stuff that people like. It has been a wonderful life, but more and more, I am feeling a need to write more. I currently have six books that I have outlined, that I think about nearly every day and I find myself wondering how I will ever get them written if I spend all my days making pottery. For the longest time, I believed my calling in life was to be an artist and make the world a more beautiful place, but since writing the Niederbipp Trilogy and witnessing how the written word has the ability to make the world a more beautiful place by inspiring the minds of people to make it so, I find myself facing the reality that maybe there is more than one art form that I need to pursue. It's too bad that life is so short and that my mind is weak and my body tires and needs to rest. I look forward to a time when such silly things will not bog me down and have power over my body.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Mom Gets Kicked Out of Summer Camp

Strange headline, I know, but that's almost exactly what happened. She was not my mom and in actuality, it was not summer camp. She is Lynnette's mom, my mother-in-law and on Thursday we received a call from the Neighborhood House letting us know that after requiring three staff members to assist her in getting out of the bathroom, she is no longer welcome.

Eleven years ago, my mother-in-law as diagnosed with dementia. This is a little bit like that radio program I used to stay up late on Sunday nights and listen to--Doctor Demento, but really there are very few similarities. That was eleven years ago. She is now 70 years old and is in the severe stages of Alzheimer's. My father-in-law is still working a few days a week, so the Neighborhood House recently became the summer camp we needed and began relying on for life to carry on in some semblance of normal. But lately, finding the right balance of medication is proving to be very difficult. She is either very sleepy or very agitated, bordering on aggressive. Sometimes that border is non-existant. What a tragedy. This has got to be the most cruel ways to die--for all who are involved. Lynnette is amazing with her. I find that I normally have to walk away. It is kind of like dealing with a belligerent 180 pound toddler without the ability to reason and still enough muscles to throw her weight around when she gets upset. I know she is without control of this situation, but the thing I really hate about it is that we are, too. We can try different things, but few of them have any effect. I like to fix things--recognize problems and do all I can to try and come up with a remedy. There does not seem to be one here that is acceptable to all involved parties. It is heartbreaking and frustrating and cruel. Our children are already starting to be afraid of her and she has brought both of them to tears with her outbursts. We know this is beyond her control to control herself, but it barely lessens the reality of the sting.

My father-in-law is not interested in assisted living. He wants to keep her out of that for as long as possible, which means as long as he is breathing. And there really isn't money available even if such an option were allowed. Many of those facilities charge upwards of $200/day. That is a good way to go broke fast. So, we try to do what we can. Lynnette has cared for her mom several days in the past few weeks. It makes it difficult to get anything done around the house. I guess my emotions range from sadness to frustration to helplessness. It just seems like we should have a few more good years with her mom--as a mom, than who knows how long with someone who looks like her mom, but really isn’t. Life is never fair, but we are doing our best to keep our chins up and smile and learn what we can, and take one step at a time. Any suggestions?

In the meantime, I am still plowing on with the next book. I had a minor breakthrough this week with the story after a couple of weeks of spinning my wheels without gaining traction. I am feeling a lot of self-imposed pressure. I know those of you who have read my other books have some expectation as well. I hope to be able to make some good progress in the coming week. Wish me luck. I need it.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Happy New Year!

I guess I can still say that, right? I would like to report that writing has been going well, that I have made awesome progress and that I will have the book done next week. But I can't . This has been a difficult book to write. I would think I am about 1oo pages into it. I would be going faster, but I have been distracted by work in the studio and a flaring case of ADD that usually hits me this time of year as I think about shows and pottery and all the crazy things that life is. I have tried to make pottery in the mornings and write in the afternoons, but that has not worked well because just as I am getting into the groove, the kids come home. I have also been working through a series of self-doubts. Nothing serious, just the same old thing where I find myself wondering what in the world I am going to be when I grow up. And maybe it doesn't matter. That is a long way off. I guess I just feel like a slacker, which is really weird because I am working my tail off, staying up late, getting up and to work early, but I can never seem to accomplish all that I need to, no matter how hard I try. I have a hard time sleeping during episodes like this because the crazy dreams come, and so I wake up having not really slept and the madness become deeper. The weather has left me gloomy and the pottery has been a distraction--there is always something.
At this time, I am still hoping to have my next book out in May, though this is subject to change depending on how the next few weeks go. Most days are over before I can turn around and take notice and it is always depressing for me to realize that it takes me a month to write what you can read in an afternoon. Maybe I need to narrow down my distractions. Maybe I need to get some noise canceling headphones. Maybe I need to lock the door to my studio and forget that I just bought two tons of fresh clay that is begging to be turned into something amazing. Maybe I should run away to a cabin somewhere where I can concentrate and stop being distracted by emails and kiln firings and kids making ramen noodles. Maybe I won't be done with the book by May, and if I'm not, maybe I'll have come up with a really original excuse for my lack of accomplishment. Wish me luck. This is going to be a good year, I can feel it.
Cheers to 2012