Here are pictures of my garden last year (in September):
We grew things that we didn't think were possible in the not-so-great Colorado soil of our backyard. Pumpkins, corn, and WATERMELONS!
As you might notice, the garden got a little out of control. The pumpkin vines went absolutely crazy, and it was hard to pick weeds when there was so much leafy ground cover to sift through. There's a beauty in it for sure, and eating watermelon from our own backyard was extremely satisfying...but it was basically a crapshoot. We had no idea in May if we'd end up with anything at all.
Here we are, so far, this year:
Climbing beans, climbing peas, carrots, spinach, onions, and cucumbers (left to right). We’ve got trellises and drip irrigation, water walls for the tomatoes (not shown)…all in all, we are determined to make things GROW. We want a good product and are being proactive about. Not that we absolutely know what we’re doing—it’s kind of all a game, and the seductive power of gardening items at Home Depot has quite possibly set us up for disappointment. That said, we’re trying in a different way. A more organized way.
I feel like my writing approach has evolved as well. I feel more invested in doing the prep and follow-up work to create a better product—I’m trying, at least. Nearly three years from the time I first penned my first novel (a post-pregnancy-induced chick lit novel that I now realize was really just a love letter to food journalism, cooking shows, and Gilmore Girls), I finally feel like I’m learning how to craft a novel—how to go back after first drafts and add nuances that make for a richer harvest o’ story.
And my product is getting better for it. I'm all for experimenting, but it's become more important to me to really have an end-product that I think is query-worthy. I don't want to waste months on a random idea plucked out of the sky, without evaluating how it might fit into the marketplace, etc.
Now, of course I still love the idea of a little wildness...so I decided to sneak in a few pumpkin vines and herbs in a separate area to get my experimental fix in:
|Sage and mint (both of which grown like fragrant weeds)|
|Pumpkins in the making|
Has your approach to novel writing changed over your journey? Do you find yourself using the same methods with each project, or do you experiment with new approaches?