Labour Day has come and gone. The first school bell of the year has rung. And quiet has descended upon my home. Goodbye summer vacation!
While I love the lazy days with the kids and frequent trips to the beach, a return to routine is a welcome thing. This week has been about housekeeping; invoicing, dentist and doctor appointments. I have a mental list of people to contact to kick my oomph back into gear and perhaps scare up a new client or two. I even plan to clean off my desk and see if I can reorganize my cluttered home office to make it more efficient and attractive, thereby hopefully inspiring poignant or poetic words to flow.
Today though, it is hot. My a/c died weeks ago, but the scorching temperatures just keep coming—it feels like 43°C outside with the humidex, and inside, the fan is blithely blowing around 29°C air. Not exactly helping me to produce expansive articles for clients, nor scintillating stories for me. My brain is melting…
I give. There are 1½ hours until the school bell lets my equally wilted children out from their un-air conditioned school. I think I need to grab our bathing suits and take them over to my favourite escape—my aunt’s pool.
The minutes are counting down on the week of summer camp for the girls. They have sweated through a hot one, as temperatures have been in the 30s most days, with the humidex topping out at 46°C this afternoon.
Coming home has been no help though, as the a/c died at my house. Inside temperatures have climbed to a balmy 29°C despite a fan blowing the hot air around in the living room.
Despite the insipid heat, I have done my best to get as much done as possible while the girls have been away. I ticked off personal items from the to-do list—haircut, oil change, brakes—and kept up with work-related items as well. Social media never quits in this day and age, no matter the weather! I even fit in a business lunch with a client who is going to be retiring at the end of the year, but is looking to shake things up for herself in the new year. You might see some new posts about her upcoming play later this year!
Really though, I am done with this heat. Open windows do nothing to cool the house off overnight and everyone and everything is wilted. I don’t know how I came up with the energy to write, but the week is now done and rain is supposed to wash some of the humidity away this weekend. I think that deserves a toast.
I claim to be a freelance writer, and I am, yet far too many days I find myself scouring other people’s words to share with others. It is called content curation. And as I understand the power of social media and how to wield it, people turn to me for help in that avenue.
Content curation is about sharing, but not necessarily always your own content; you can share any interesting articles, pictures, videos, graphs, or anything that relates to your brand. As it takes skill, creativity, and time to create new content, sometimes it is easier to share what other people or companies have already put out there. Finding it can take valuable resources though—again, that precious commodity time—which many small businesses have in short demand.
While I don’t have any more hours in the day than anyone else does, what I do have is the know-how of how social media works. I take the time to find content which fits with a company’s image and consider when best to share it. I spend enough hours on Facebook, Twitter and Google+, not to mention Pinterest and LinkedIn, to know what kinds of content is popular and what isn’t.
At least I do my best. People have been known to surprise me though.
I have to admit though that some days, I feel like a liar when I say I am a writer. Today I wrote up invoices. Not exactly fine literature, but it pays my bills (once my clients pay theirs). I spent most of the day either scouring for articles to share with clients or editing old blog posts to ensure links aren’t broken and images still exist. I took a break to collect a library book my daughter left at a friend’s house and stopped at the grocery store to pick up buns for dinner. No short stories were written or started. I didn’t dash off any witty poetry or even a haiku to stun the Twitterverse.
Not very writerly. BUT, it is summertime! School is out and the children are home daily. Some days I spend in front of the computer all day, but many more are spent with friends and family doing whatever fun things come along. We have camped, swam, gone to the theatre, drive-in, and beach. Festivals have filled plenty of days and campfires have lit many nights. So what if reams of writing hasn’t chained me to my desk? Sometimes there is more in the living, than there is in the imagination.
Perhaps tomorrow we will set sail on a new adventure to spur creativity later. I think that sounds like the perfect plan.
Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing
~ Benjamin Franklin
It’s summertime. I could lie to you and tell you that I’m writing up a storm, but I’m not. I am off doing stuff; fishing, camping, swimming, etc. I am making memories and bonding with my children while they are still excited to spend time with me. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.
If I am lucky, perhaps a story or two will come of our road trips, long summer nights, giggles with friends and family by fireside, or the quiet moments when we just lose ourselves in a book. That’s what I’m hoping, but I am perfectly content with just going with the flow. I keep up with client work and jot down a few lines here and there when I can, but some days it is just more important to do. Stories are born out of experience and that is what summer is for me.
So I take in theatre, attend summer festivals, and plan beach days for the hottest days of the week. But sitting in front of the computer and writing just doesn’t hold much appeal when life is outside my door.
After I am done ‘doing’, I will write the stories that come…