Permission to Rest

Permission to

The plan was to start writing the first draft of a novel this summer. I’d write hard and fast so that, by fall, I’d be able to get to editing. I felt the stress and pressure of needing to get going on this book, due March 1.

The plan was to go full boar.

But here I am, summer nearly spent, and I’ve not written more than a chapter of the book.

You know what? I’m okay with that. I feel good about that.

In these months of rest I’ve had the leisure to spend long afternoons reading with my kids. I’ve had luxurious jaunts through the sprinkler and rides on the swings. Time has been free and easy, just right for spontaneous get togethers with friends or long conversations with my daughter. We’ve enjoyed swims in the lake and  fireworks and baseball games.

And I’ve not been the slightest bit rushed to get back to the writing. I’ve not been in a hurry. I’ve not felt anxious.

I’ve given myself permission to rest.

In just a few weeks I’ll get back to writing (once the kids are in school). On September 6 I’ll get up early (yowch), drop the kids off at school (sigh), and find a quiet place to tap away on A Song of Home, the last novel in the Pearl Spence series. I’ll work hard, hard, hard to get the story down and right and to do it justice. I’ll have to say “no” a lot and ignore social media a little. I’ll be all in.

But not now. Now is a time for me to breathe easy, to let this story grow in my dreams and my heart before it gets hurled on the page.

Now is a time of rest.

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How about you? When have you had a time of rest? What is it you do to relax and breathe? I’d love to hear from you. It’s been so long! Seven months have flown by without a Susie blog here. Thank you for allowing me time to let this field lay fallow. I told myself that I wouldn’t start blogging again until I missed it. Well, here we are. I’ll be blogging here on Mondays and will start posting video blogs on YouTube soon. 



19 Comments on “Permission to Rest

  1. Great to hear from you. I’ve missed you. Have you gotten anything new out since the 3 books I purchased when I met you? I’ve only read “A Cup of Dust” and loved it. Will get to the others when things calm down a little.Can’t wait for your new one.


    • Hi, Susan! You just made me smile.

      Well, A Trail of Crumbs releases in the spring and A Song of Home next winter (I believe) They’re both the continuation of Pearl’s story from A Cup of Dust.


  2. Good to see you back, Susie! I was just starting to wonder if I had to resubscribe because I hadn’t seen anything in my inbox for a while. Glad you’ve taken time to rest and I hope all goes well when you start getting those words on the page! (I hope you’re going to take a break and go to Breathe in October)


    • Robyn! Thanks for being patient with me. I needed the time to refocus. I feel like I’ve taken a really great nap. 🙂

      YES! I’ll be at Breathe! I wouldn’t miss it!


  3. I was just talking this morning to my friends at yoga about getting more white space into my life. The “pages” have filled with print! Even Jesus got on a boat and sailed away when he felt pressed. Keeping those margins has been a lifelong journey for me that is not over. We’re headed for Lake Powell in a couple weeks. It’s so remote that there is no cell service. All that fills our time is water, sky, and red, red, cliffs. There are three gourmet meals a day that require my undivided attention as well. The trick is to insert Lake Powell into my everyday life.

    Welcome back, btw.


    • You know, Patti, after the difficulty I had writing A Trail of Crumbs I realized I hadn’t given myself enough space before I started writing. I’m learning to allow rest, even if it is a steep learning curve.

      So glad you get to take some time. Enjoy those meals. Sounds heavenly!


  4. SO glad you got to rest!!!! It is so deeply important! And YOUTUBE?!?!?!? I can’t wait for that! 🙂 Enjoy your last couple weeks of summer! Love you!! Maybe we could squeeze in coffee one last time before school… but if not, we will sometime again! 🙂


  5. Susie, you have your priorities in the right order. Your children will grow up before you know it. Life moves so swiftly. I think it’s wonderful that you know when to step back and do the things in life that truly matter. Of course, we want more books with your signature on them, but continue to put your family first. You’ll never regret that. Love you!


  6. I love this so much, Sooze. Or Suze? Blast, I never remember!!

    Anyway. You’re really wise. Would you mind if I ask you some questions for Free to Lean? Like a short email interview? I can’t resist asking you because this blog post is so spot on!!


    • Either works, Joc! My mom, though, spells it “Sooze”, so that’s what I usually go with. 🙂

      Absolutely! You know you can always ask me questions whenever you need. I don’t know that I’m all that wise, but I like to help!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I am SO glad you are back to blogging, and even MORE glad you gave yourself permission to rest! I set fairly modest goals for writing for myself this summer (an hour of work on a picture book in SOME form a week) and I may have “made it” once or twice this whole summer. I’ll bet if I had given myself a break, I would have gotten just as much done – with NO guilt! You are a wise lady 🙂 I may need the reminder around June of next year, though 😉


    • Joanne, this break was a LONG time coming. I’ve been writing fast and without rest for almost 10 years. That’s not so good for anybody.

      I think it’s great that you met your goal once or twice! That’s something! No guilt!!!! Know that I’m proud of you. 🙂


  8. My books are comprised of short stories so I cannot imagine the focused time necessary to write awesome novels such as yours. …and blogging in the summer? It takes snow and cold to drive me inside to do that. Glad for your “restful” dedication to tat which is truly important, mom.


  9. I’m proud of you Susie! Your kids are only young once and the time goes extremely fast! I loved this, especially when you said, swinging, and long talks with your daughter! You will never regret that, and now is the time to do that. You will work hard after school begins and I have no doubt that you will work hard and get it done and get it done well. I’ve loved all your books and look forward to the next.


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