The irony of making a living as a freelance writer can be that you end up having so little time for your own creative writing projects…maybe even less time than when you did something else for a living. That’s why I have an “art first” policy, which means that I try to get up early on weekdays and spend my first waking hour on a personal writing or art project. The next half-hour is reserved for meditation combined with exercise, preferably outdoors. This time of making stuff, meditation, motion, and marveling (have the yellows ever been this brilliant in October?) – provides the fuel for the day.
Sometimes I hurry through a busy day and realize I did not experience a single moment of true present-moment awareness. But fall colors have a way of reminding me to look, and not just to look, but to really see. And drawing what I see takes me even more deeply into the moment. I drew this tree a year ago but I still can feel the warm October sun on my back and see those deep shadows in front of me.