Monday, March 13, 2017

Off to the The Land of the Midnight Sun

It's official. As soon as we're able to find a home to rent, my daughter Darice, granddaughter Molly, and I will be returning to Alaska. I say returning because prior to moving to Tennessee, we lived on Elmendorf Air Force Base in Anchorage for four years. So we're familiar with the area and will be returning to our old stomping grounds. Although she has no recollection of it, Molly was born there and lived the first eleven months of her life in Alaska. Darice is a licensed veterinary technician and was offered a wonderful job in Anchorage, so we'll be moving in about six weeks. What does this mean and why is it important enough to use valuable blog post space talking about it? Because it's just one more example of life stepping in to mess up our schedules.

Here I am, looking about five years old,
getting ready to drive to Alaska. Wait!
That's not right. We're flying, not driving,
to Alaska. Silly me. (And that's not me,
by the way, but that's not important.)
Last month I talked about life getting in the way of our plans and how frustrating it can be for a writer (although this applies to anyone) to be interrupted by life when we least expect it. And yes, a move to Alaska from Tennessee could be called an interruption without stretching the imagination even the teeniest bit. Although we had talked about a move back to the Last Frontier at some future date, it was always just a pipe dream until the job was offered. But despite having foreknowledge of our eventual intent, when it really happened it took us by surprise.

I immediately wondered how this huge move would affect my writing. It didn't take long to realize it wouldn't, at least not after the frustrations of the move itself. Years ago, it would've been a problem. Let's face it, Alaska isn't the center of the writing world (with apologies to Alaskan writers, one of which I'm about to become), most huge national conferences aren't held there, and it wouldn't have been as easy to send out manuscripts with the long distances involved. But these days it poses no problem whatsoever.

Granted, a lot of conferences aren't held in Alaska, but that also can be said about Hawaii or any other difficult to reach area. Most writers, presenters, publishers, editors, and agents have to travel some distance to get to one. With the means of travel available these days, it's only a matter of hours before one can reach just about anywhere in the country. Submissions are a breeze with email whether it's to a publishing house or an agent. Even writing groups can remain intact while members live hundreds or even thousands of miles apart with Skype and emails. My point is that writers will write, no matter the circumstances, location, time zone, or distance from other writers. In today's technologically advanced world (and believe me, I'm the first one to criticize the very thing I'm praising), we can do so much more no matter where we live and work than we could even ten years ago.

The only downside I can see about this move to Alaska, aside from the obvious one of not being able to see my family and friends as often, is that I can't use it to complain about not having the time to write. 

Time to step up to the plate, Deb, and stop bellyaching. 

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