It is Saturday night, and as I sit down to write this post, I am being forcibly serenaded by the live band across the lake from me. I had originally come out onto our screened back porch to enjoy the cool, early summer twilight while I got a little writing done. My local RWA chapter, the fantastic Heart of Carolina Romance Writers, had our monthly meeting today and I was feeling inspired to take what I learned and write the best damn series the romance world had ever seen.
(That’s right – prepare yourselves. I will be massively famous and fabulous and you will all say you knew me when. Didn’t you know?)
I had no sooner parked myself on the couch and poised my eager fingers over the keyboard when the discordant sounds of tuning instruments began wafting towards me. My first thought?
Here I was, looking for a little peace and quiet to hash out my next great scene by, and suddenly, my concentration had gone the way of the dodo bird.
What was I saying? Oh yeah. Sorry, I got distracted by the jaunty remake of Stand By Me that the band just dove in to. Anyway, suffice it to say, I was a little peeved. So much for the heavy stillness of a southern night, the sweet sound of crickets and frogs, the gentle lap of water on the shore.
Instead, the unofficial Amateur Night on The Lake had commenced. Wonderful. I could clearly hear the joyous shouts of encouragement from the smattering of people dotting the opposite shoreline. Didn’t they know how well water carries sound?
I stared at my blank screen, willing my characters to break through the hoopla and start, well, doing something. Anything. Alas, they were mute.
So I flopped back in my seat, thwapped my laptop closed with more force than necessary, and crossed my arms like a petulant 12 year old.
And then something funny happened.
I heard another noise, this one much closer than the racket from across the way. I could see both dogs, and they were still curled into little hibernating balls of fur, so I knew the sound wasn’t coming from them. Looking around for a few seconds, I finally located the source: My foot was tapping. In time with the music.
My own body was betraying me? The nerve!
As I scowled at my treacherous foot, I suddenly realized that my point of view kept moving. Dag nab it! My head was bobbing. In time with the music.
Wait a second… what was that sound? Aw, crap, I was humming along.
Well, goodness. With a big sigh, I was surprised to realize my irritation was beginning to melt away. They were actually kind of good. With the ever present glow of the computer screen snuffed, and the lights low, I relaxed against the cushions and began to enjoy to smooth sounds of the band as they segued into jazz. The melodious run of the saxophone, the low beat of the bass, the steady thrum of the drum, it was actually kind of… wonderful.
Sometimes, interruptions pull us away from the task that we have set before us. It can be anything, even things like the *ping* of a new e-mail that throws us off. We can get our knickers in a bunch, or we can just go with it. Every now and then, I actually do the latter… and I usually end up being better for it. So next time you feel your irritation mount at some interruption or another, take a deep breath and see what happens if you just go with the flow. You may be surprised… it could turn out to be a something as lovely as a free night of entertainment from the comfort of your own back yard :)
Darlin, darlin, Stand. By me. O-oh, stand. By me….
And here is a little treat just for you, my beloved readers. I wasn’t planning to begin my icing series post until next Tuesday, but… what the hay. I am, after all, one mellow cat right about now (if not massively famous and fabulous). My gift to you: Keylime Frosting. Without a doubt, my absolute personal favorite. (okay, now do you get the title? The KEY to Life? eh? eh?)
What recipes would you like to see in the frosting series? Let me know, and I'll see what I can provide in the next few weeks. In the meantime... happy baking!
Key Lime Frosting:
1 pound of powdered sugar (about 4 cups)
1 stick softened butter
1/3 cup shortening
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 Tbsp Key lime juice
1 to 2 tsp finely chopped lemon zest (to taste)
1-2 Tbsp of milk only if needed.
Feel free to add more or less of the key lime juice and lemon zest based on your own preference!