Environment, proximity, and effect


There’s a gopher, or mole, in my vegetable garden, rooting up the soil, and in one case, killing a dill plant. I have no idea what to do–only that I don’t want to kill the animal, despite commentary pushing death as the better option. I’ve looked up alternative ways to repel the animals–castor oil granules and this ultrasonic sound-emitting stake (the “gopher-it” or “mole mover”) being mentioned most. When I let my dogs out into the garden, one runs straight back into the house after taking a look at all the dirt (he doesnt like getting dirty) and the other one runs straight to the hole…and then…starts eating the gopher/mole dirt.

I have this odd feeling that the gopher/mole will prevail, and that my vegetables will…not. But so goes the circle of life.

It is strangely exhilarating to feel that there is life under my feet in that garden. Roots like carrots, beets, and radishes…and an animal also living its subterranean life. So regardless of the outcome of this battle, I will have succeeded in celebrating life with this garden.

Not feeling well this morning. Queasy, headache, reminiscent of a hangover. But I did not drink. What was the cause? Ugh. Am I sick?

Nova wrote a post about her new job in publishing–it was so energizing to read! To experience that passion for the written word while at work!

I work in an industry far away from writing (unless we are to categorize “writing code” as writing which, despite the debate about its potential for creativity, has little to do with story writing). There have been times in my life where I have yearned to work in publishing or anywhere closer to the written word. It’s stifling to work somewhere so far from my writing–what does this work have to do with my stories? How can I be inspired? I can understand why so many writers choose careers close to the word, whether it be teaching composition or writing or editing.

But I do love the industry in which I work–the culture in high tech has a whimsy that thumbs its nose at the traditional “corporate” model…and I really feel like I belong in that space. I love the people, and I feel passionate about the products. Hell, I’ve worked in this space for well over a decade!

Ultimately, that I work far away from the written word has helped my writing, for good and for bad.

Still, I do wonder what it would be like, to work in a job that has me surrounded by writing all day. I stood in the office of a friend who works at a publishing company once–it was incredible to know I was surrounded by books in progress, and that I was somewhere near that process. I took a deep breath just to breathe it in.

It made me feel small, it made me feel honored. All in the span of a few seconds.



Filed under Abstract Thoughts, Life, Writing

6 responses to “Environment, proximity, and effect

  1. I think there are plants whose smell (or something) repel moles and so on. Or maybe that’s deer. Hmm. Well, I think you can find a solution that doesn’t kill the animals, either through the sound-emitting stakes, or by using underground fencing around your bed. It might take longer though.
    In any case, it’s so nice to read your positive thoughts.

  2. ultrasonic sound-emitting stake That sounds like a good solution.

    I’m surrounded by books all day long at the library but it’s starting to be a drag. I give too much of my time and don’t have the energy to write after finishing grants.

    That’s when the books on the library’s shelves begin to mock me…

  3. Thanks, Jade. I do think working so close to books, and especially staring so hard at words all day, isn’t always the best of things for my writing. At the end of the day my brain is often mush. Or is that just what any job will do?

    Hope you feel better…

  4. w

    Ooh, feel better, lady!

    I love reading/hearing about how people get excited by their jobs. This reminds me that I really must take better advantage of my position at my press—I’m not in editorial, so I don’t need to focus on schmoozing and sales and nutty writers’ egos and proving myself to the nth degree; being behind the scenes allows me more privacy and time to write. A friend was telling me, though, that if one is not passionate about one’s work, then the soul dies. I’m trying not to take her too literally (or else I’ll be terrified and won’t be able to sleep), but now and then I find myself wondering how much of the soul—literal or figurative—is dying, or shrinking perhaps, because of the negative way one views one’s job. So seeing/hearing others’ passion and drive for their profession is so helpful for me. Thanks for this.

  5. Yeah, I think there is a flip side to working near books. Writing teachers get tired of reading other people’s work and not their own – same for editors (in my experience), and I imagine for publishers. In some ways, it’s probably good that you work in a non-related sector, so you are eager to get home at night (or in the morning, or whenever) and write.

  6. Pingback: more time lapse photos of the vegetable garden « Writing Under a Pseudonym

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