Whew, it’s been a long time since I posted here about what’s going on with me. Here it is March and I’m just finally feeling recovered from the holidays. I always think I’m not making enough progress in this endeavor of writing and advocacy–until I put down what I’ve been up to.
The next big thing coming up on my schedule is the American Adoption Congress Conference, where I’ll be moderating a panel discussion with my adoptee sisters from Lost Daughters on March 28. Ten of us will talk about diverse narratives within the collective adoptee voice. Early-bird registration rates have been extended, so there’s still time to make your plans to meet us in Boston. We’ll also have copies of our anthology on hand and our signing pens ready!
At the end of January, I launched a new website I’ve been working on for some time, called Adoptee Reading Resource. My goal with the site is twofold: to catalog every book written by an adoptee that I can identify and to also list adoption books authored by non-adoptees that adoptees recommend. In other words, it’s an adoptee-centric book site, to enable adoptees–and everyone else–to discover adoptee-centric books. (Yes, I can work in the word “adoptee” a few more times if you’d like.) Now that it’s live, I’m excited to see how it grows.
Underneath all of this, I’m still drafting my memoir. I say underneath everything else because even when I’m not sitting at my desk physically typing new words into the manuscript, I’m turning over in my mind what I’ve already written, what I’m in the process of writing, and what remains to be unearthed. I know where the end will be, but I don’t yet know exactly how I’ll get there. I’m more than two-thirds of the way through now. Some of what I’ve written feels just right. Some of what I’ve written feels choppy or stilted or too shallow or too deep. I know I’ll need to revise and then revise again. But the task at hand is just to get it all out.
As the end of 2014 approached, I hit a major roadblock in this drafting process and I had to stop for a while. Writing a memoir is this way, I think. It dredges up stuff and then you have to figure out where to put it all. The only way I’ve found to get through is to sit down every day and write. Even though I didn’t make my original goal of completing the draft by the end of the year, I’m satisfied with the progress I’ve made. I’ve decided to quit setting arbitrary deadlines for myself. It only matters that I put in the honest effort each day. The book will be done when it’s done–and then I’ll begin writing the next thing.