Gone Fiction-ing

I’ve had me a girl-interrupted turn these last few months. When your life comes to a full stop for a considerable period of time it’s hard to pick up the threads of the life you had before, as they seem to have drifted off in the wind somewhere. This is both liberating and disorientating.

winding_riverWe tend to run on habit and routine, losing that can mean a loss of our sense of self and security; but there’s also the opportunity to “start fresh” because you are so far gone bailing on any commitments you may have made. You are faced with deciding to do things because they really matter to you, for who you are right now, not who you were months or years ago when you first fell into that routine.

For me, this time, I am finding this more a refinement than the drastic course corrections I did in my 20′s (and even 30′s) whenever I got derailed. I must be getting closer to figuring out who I am and what I’m about in this world if I’m not tacking all over the course any more.

So, what’s changed? What stays the same? I definitely still suffer from All The Things, so now more than ever I am putting an: interesting, but letting it go on a bunch of stuff. I’m still deeply curious about the What It’s All About, and spend a lot of time thinking about suffering, vulnerability, relationships and interdependence, but I’ve grown all quiet inside again and want to approach that obliquely. It just feels like anything really worth saying on the subject needs to be said with something other than words. More doing, less thinking.

The words I do feel like writing right now aren’t mine, rather the stories of characters who explore the world on their own terms with their own struggles and insights. I feel drawn to writing fiction more now than I ever have before, and because this girl has only got so much brain I’m stepping back a bit from the care and feeding of my website. I’ll still be checking comments and may even drop in once in a while for updates, or insights, or just some utter bloody silliness.

In the meantime, if it’s quiet on here, I’m still around, I’ve just gone fiction-ing.

Ready…. Set…. GO!

printed bookmarkAlright kiddies! If you haven’t picked up your copy of the Tao Te Ching yet, get yourself down to Shelf Life Books this weekend. You’re also welcome to use whatever translation you’ve already got on your bookshelf, or grab the ebook if that’s more your style.

Starting this weekend, you can read chapter 1, add your comments (or comment on other people’s comments – you know how I dig layers of conversation). If you read one or two chapters a week you will catch up to fresh postings soon enough, PLUS have fellow readers / commenters following along at about the same pace.

Be sure to subscribe to my website (or RSS) so you know when new posts are up, and when you comment there’s an option to be notified of comments on your comments. You’ll probably enjoy popping back to see what people are saying about what you had to say.

I will continue to add a chapter every week or two (will keep the pace slow ’til everybody is caught up). Please do me a solid and jump ahead to my new posts when they are up to share your thoughts; the chapters aren’t really linear so following the order isn’t crucial, and I don’t want to be posting to the sound of crickets…

We’ll gather in meatspace once everyone has read the first twenty chapters – so let me know when you get there!

So open your books and your laptops… ready… set…. GO!

Tao Te Ching Project – now with more Awesome!

shelf life closecropI am delighted to announce a partnership with Shelf Life Books and my Tao of V project. They will be offering you bookclub discounts on copies of Stephen Mitchell’s translation of the Tao Te Ching, as well as a place for you Calgary readers to gather for events to discuss the latest chapters posted on here.

I am super jazzed to be bringing my online community together with the local literary scene here in Calgary. What I love about this website is the capacity for people to comment and talk not just to me but to each other. I’m hoping that with a copy of the book in your hand as well as what I post in my commentary we can get a really lively conversation going online about what the ideas in each chapter mean to us; as well as some fun gatherings in meatspace while we laugh and share our real world struggles with trying to be more in the Tao. I personally thought I’d let go of a lot of obsessive tendencies and WAS living in the Tao… until I got a new cell phone and lost a whole weekend to making everything perfect …sigh, I still have some work to do too.

Tao Te Ching by Stephen MitchellComment below if you’d like to pick up a book - they’ve got a bunch on order already, I just want to make sure it’s enough. Swing by Self Life sometime next week 1302 4ST SW and tell them you’re part of my Tao Te Ching project. When everybody’s got their copy, I’ll give you a Ready, Set, GO and you can start from the beginning, reading and commenting on each post. I’ll follow along with your conversation as well as adding another post every week or so until we’ve done all 81 chapters. Every few months we’ll gather and chat at the very excellent Shelf Life Books.

Building community in multiple dimensions. How cool is that? Lao Tzu would be amused.

Feeling Suicidal?

Suffering is character building, I talked about that a lot in the Storm Chasers post, we grow as human beings with what we are forced to go through. But sometimes the suffering, whatever the source, is too much to bear. Too much to live through, quite frankly. If you are pushing at the boundaries of what you can bear (or left that line behind long ago) I have three very important things to tell you, so listen up… Continue reading