Poems from My Editing Journal

Carol A. Hand

Editing a 400-page book manuscript is proving to be a rollercoaster ride through topics and emotions. I began keeping a journal to record the journey. It allows me the space I need to process thoughts and feelings in the morning before I begin or during breaks. I’ve realized it’s unhealthy to be too disciplined and obsessed with an end-product at the expense of simply taking time to be present in the moment.

I’m posting a few lighthearted poems from my journal.

Editing Journal Day Five – 2/16/2017

Morning Reflection

Winter 2017
Winter 2017

I greet the morning with gratitude that life has led me here
to a little old house on the working-class side of a city
poised on the southwestern tip of Lake Superior
I think of the oceans, rivers, and streams I’ve visited
the forests, prairies and mountain plateaus I’ve called home
I now have the peaceful space to reflect
and a simple but energizing purpose
to share what I have seen and learned
from the vantage point of compassion
for those whose journey is just beginning
May you too find deeper meaning and gratitude
for the chance to look back and know
that despite uncertainty and suffering, laughter and tears,
Life has given you priceless gifts and memories


Lunch time

The scent of frozen carrots thawing
always reminds me of the summer sun
Green beans simmering with the essence
of verdant gardens growing
Solace during February, an assurance
that spring will someday come

Carrots and Green Beans - September 22, 2016
Carrots and Green Beans – September 22, 2016


Transition Day to work on class 2/17/2017

Morning view of the waning moon
inching west to whirring city-traffic’s tune
a lone crow calling in the distance

Waning Morning Moon - February 17, 2017
Waning Morning Moon – February 17, 2017


36 thoughts on “Poems from My Editing Journal

    1. Thank you so much for your kind and lovely comments, Lorna. I plan to email you in a little while just to check-in. I have made progress and feel a sense of excitement about continuing. But life sometimes intervenes to interrupt the best of plans. I need to graciously put editing aside for the rest of this week to be a grandmother. It’s school vacation time for my granddaughter so she’ll be staying with me for the week. I’m deeply grateful for the time I can spend with her. Perhaps she would even enjoy listening to selected parts of the manuscript, but that will need to be her decision…

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    1. Thank you for your thoughtful, lovely comments, Helen. Editing brought to mind the pressure I felt when I participated in NaNoWriMo – to make daily word counts. The experience was intense, but the exercise did motivate me to finish something I might not otherwise have even begun. Now, I feel the need to take the time to make words count – “compassionate, constructive, healing and true” — and interesting enough to keep readers engaged. 🙂

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      1. I did write the manuscript for what became “bumble’s book” during NaNoWriMo in 2013, and the same is true for my current manuscript – the one that is still totally unedited. Also, if I remember correctly, today is your big birthday! I hope your day is wonderful – Happy Birthday, Carol ❤

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  1. Carol, I so enjoyed these. I was reminded of a few that I found in my journal some time ago. You have inspired me to read them again. Not sure they are ready for my blog…and I won’t know until I return to them. Thank you for sharing your journey through this process. I wish you well as you traverse this territory once again as you work through tour previously written journey.

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  2. “May you too find deeper meaning and gratitude
    for the chance to look back and know
    that despite uncertainty and suffering, laughter and tears,
    Life has given you priceless gifts and memories”

    Your wish was granted for me today, Carol!

    A close friend of 44 years (we went to college and performed in bands together) took me to the doctor’s office today. And afterwords, we stopped and got coffee and talked for over two hours. Usually, our conversations tend toward the more serious, but today, we reminisced about college, music, the bands we played in; what was our life at that time and what might have been.

    And at the end of our time together, as we were getting ready to leave, I told my friend that too often I reflect on the negative parts of my life, but that today, he had helped me to remember the joy and magic that once was, when we were both young and the adventure of life as musicians lay ahead of us. And it came to me, at that moment, that if I had it to do all over again, except for a change here and there, I would take the same path again. Over all, I really have no regrets, is what came to me this afternoon.

    So see, Carol, your wish for us, which I hadn’t read until now, was at work giving me one on the best afternoons I have had in quite a while!

    Thank you, Carol!

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  3. Morming reflection is so beautiful dear Carol!. I think it echoes somehow the introductory words (or viceversa!)…. You are so right as to the importance of appreciating little things, not taking anything for granted and enjoying life and the creative processes. ⭐ Wishing you best of luck with your writing!. 😀

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  4. (long sigh),,,beautiful….again, I am sounding like a broken record..you are not only a great story teller but a wonderful poet:-) you capture with words all the senses:-) You paint with words….truly gifted you are:-)

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