Welcome again to the next step in the AtoZ Challenge! The month is going quickly…hard to believe we’re on letter T! To all my fellow participants, good luck! We’re in the home stretch.
I wanted to take a photo of perfectly trellised raspberries, but I can’t. I didn’t get it done, not yet. Right now my raspberries are flopped over, waiting patiently for my attention. It will happen, hopefully today, but by the weekend at the latest.
I wanted to take a photo of perfectly trellised raspberries because I don’t like to admit my moments of sloppiness and inattention. I am not a perfect gardener. I am human.
Perhaps, more than that, these raspberries, untrellised, tell you something about me…about my difficulty receiving support.
We writers can be fragile folk. We don’t have the sturdiness of a leek or the prickliness of a rose. We’re more like vines, wanting to grow tall, seeking the sunlight, but not always able to support ourselves.
We need trellises.
A trellis, for a writer, could be a trusted friend, a spouse, or even a writing book. I like to read about the challenges other authors have overcome, or the insecurities they have. This information brings me comfort when I go through my own challenges.
Writing conferences or workshops can be trellises. We find each other. We talk shop. We find recognition for who we are and what we love as well as what upsets or consumes us.
Another trellis is the community of online writers, many of whom I’ve never met, who share their experiences. Last fall I met one of them in Wales, of all places. When we met in person, it was as if we had known each other face to face for years.
Then there are our editors. When we find one we’re happy with, our work blossoms. We see aspects of our stories we couldn’t before. We fill in the holes, add compost, replant, water, rearrange…and our craft improves in the process.
With support, we can climb higher than we ever imagined. The more we can trellis, the better our work will be. We humans often reject the idea of support, thinking we should be able to go it alone.
Yet the raspberries never reject their trellis. They just reach out, take hold, and climb.
Maybe we could do the same.