Saturday, April 4, 2020

Find a Cornfield

I saw something adorable yesterday. 

As I was pulling out of a parking place at my Chiropractor’s office, a teen-aged girl was getting into her car carrying what looked like a baby lamb.

I couldn’t resist, I drove over as the mother was spraying her daughter’s shoes with disinfectant as she lifted one foot then the other. I commented on how cute they were, and the girl stepped back out and showed me her baby goat. 

It made my day.

The baby was 8 weeks old, and the girl said her name was Shadow because she followed her everywhere.

The mother said, with no school, now the girl has a goat. How creative. She has time to take care of a baby, bond, have fun.

If you have never experienced a goat, you have missed tremendous fun. A goat is somewhat like a dog in that goats will follow you, go on walks with you, like being around you, and, unlike a dog, they will mow down the brush for you. They are not messy, as they poop pellets like deer. They do like to climb, though.

Baby Darling on Wilbur with Orville looking on, Oregon

Baby Darling and Ra, Hawaii

One might say that little goat was the girl’s cornfield.

What am I talking about?

“Blame it on my high school teacher,” wrote Martha Beck. Her high school teacher, Mrs. Jensen she called her, was married at 17, bore her first child at 19 and was a farmwife and mother of four by age 22. When she felt overwhelmed, she’d retreat to a field of corn and hide, listening to her children search for her. When she heard a genuine cry for help or felt ready to reconnect, she would go back. 
Everybody needs their cornfield.

Perhaps that doesn’t apply to you if you live alone. Now with this quarantine, you feel isolated and in need of some diversion and socialization, but if you are cramped into a house with a large family, you might need a cornfield. That girl needed a baby goat.

You need someplace to hide where you can recharge your batteries. As I have mentioned, my truck (my office on wheels) is my cornfield, although I didn’t call it that until I read of Mrs. Jensen. Sometimes, I need to get out, but I still want to work, so I take my materials, my dog, and I drive and park someplace green and beautiful, and while the dog sleeps, I center myself.

I feel that we, as an earth-people, have just experienced a factory reset.

Things will never be the same, but I hope we will emerge more enlightened people. I hope we take some stock while in that cornfield to evaluate what’s important. Perhaps work will change. Companies might decide that much of their work-- via computer-- can be done outside the cubicle. Maybe we will touch the beauty that is our own soul, and become happier. Perhaps we will see that this factory reset allowed nature to take a breath.

I’m impressed with the restaurants in town offering take-out and grocery stores providing delivery. The Olive Garden has it down to a science, with a tent outside for clerks to take orders, send you in your car to a parking place, and wait for your food to be delivered. Someone came up with the glass or plastic shields in front of cash registers. Human ingenuity, I love it. These are the ones that drive evolution in a positive direction.

I’m ready to get back to interaction, however, and please folks let’s not develop a fear of each other.

We, at-home workers, haven’t experienced much change. I work at home, but don’t make a living at it. (In my dreams, and bless Husband Dear.) I have, however, spent the past week on my upcoming novel. I am suffering the “Holy cow, what it, nobody likes it, reads it, and I make a fool out of myself,” syndrome. My shitty first draft should be long gone, but now comes the finishing touches.
Some people like to read about work-in-progress, some don’t. I do. I love to see houses before they are finished, artists painting of sculpting or whatever their medium is, and here I’m talking about a book in process.

One woman explained with self-publishing that she had carefully formatted everything, She had it ready for the press, then discovered she had left out the page numbers. Luckily she found it before press.

What I’m afraid of is that I will find my errors after it is printed. I’ll look like a fool and fall flat on my face. But as Robinhood said, “Faint hearts never won fair ladies.” so I am plunging ahead.

I spent an entire day on the cover. I had a front cover laid out, but then I realized that if I have a print book—my daughter wants at least one hard copy—that I need a back cover, a description, and a barcode. I wanted the background to wrap around from front to back, but where would the book bend, and how large would the spine be (that area where the title is listed vertically)? And the background I choose is limited in size, perhaps it won’t be long enough to cover edge to edge with the front cover laid out the way I want it. I know the book will be cut, and they have what’s called a bleed where the color extends past the cut edges. So, I dinked and experimented and wanted the bird on the front to be in a particular spot.

The Frog’s Song Publishing LLC. is official.

I have two ISBN’s, one for softcover, one for an ebook.

My nom d’ plume will be jewell d.

And I’m waiting for the Library of Congress to give me an official number.

And that’s not even talking about what’s inside. That’s the fun part.

You see, I’m hoping to have Where The Bird’s of Eden Sing out soon. The ebook will be reasonably priced, $2.99, and available while people have time to read, are perhaps tired of Netflix, and can take my book to their cornfield.