Progress Report: Autumn and Maya and the Book of Everything

As we Mainers might put it, this fall has been wicked weird. Last Friday, the town’s thermometer read 80 degrees, and in the evening Clif and I had drinks and supper on the patio. (We thought those days were long gone.) In short, this fall has been warm, and as with anything, there are pluses and minuses. On the plus side…we have had to use very little heat, and in a state like Maine, where it is cold for at least eight months of the year, this is a real blessing. The cost of heating is a real issue for many Mainers. On the other hand, this unnaturally warm weather is yet another reminder of climate change, and while northern New England might enjoy the milder weather, it’s not so great for the rest of the world.

However, this October Monday is seasonably cool and very windy. A good day for hanging fleeces on the line. The sky is bright blue, and the trees are ablaze with color. Maine is glorious in October, and if there is a finer place to be, then I don’t know where it is.

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The gardens have their own beauty in autumn. The flowers are gone, and I miss them. However, the foliage has turned red and yellow and the seed pods add visual interest. This year, as Jason from the blog Garden in a City has suggested, I’m not going to cut back the perennials until spring. I’ve never done this before, and I have decided to give it a try. Not only will the uncut garden provide a place for beneficial insects to winter over, but it will also decrease the amount of work I must do this fall.

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This, of course, brings me to my upcoming YA novel, Maya and the Book of Everything. I have been working like a crazy person getting the manuscript ready for the November publication. Clif and I have learned a lot with this first book, and for the second book in the series, Library Lost, we will have a much different time line.

But the major editing is done for Maya and the Book of Everything, and yesterday, a rainy fall day, I felt like a wet noodle. I spent most of the day on the couch, where I napped and read the current issue of The New Yorker. (I believe George Bernard Shaw called it a boiled sweet kind of day, where all you feel like doing is sitting in a corner and sucking on boiled sweets. ) I have found that an occasional day of rest is a good thing, necessary even, to recharge the batteries.

Today, I do indeed feel refreshed, ready to tackle the next set of chores for Maya.

Onward and upward.

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20 thoughts on “Progress Report: Autumn and Maya and the Book of Everything”

  1. Parallel lives, ‘Cuz. I spent yesterday reading and relaxing, too. Rainy days are good for that. I had sheets on the line today and the sunlight and air were so bracing. I turned the furnace heat on for the first time today – I think Oct. 10 is the record. (However, we have had a fire or two downstairs to take the chill off.)
    I spent the afternoon doing fall chores and like deja vu, cutting all the vase-worthy annuals as frost is likely tonight. It’s gotta come sooner or later, I suppose.

    1. Should have qualified. There is cold and there is deep cold. We have deep cold for about four months. But often we turn on the heat in October and sometimes must use it even in June. However, those were the old days. In this new climate reality, things have changed, and lately June has been so warm that no heat is needed.

  2. Ha. When you mentioned hanging fleeces on the line, I expected to see sheep fleeces (I have one to prepare for spinning). With this warm weather, I am still harvesting lots of vegetables from the garden. We haven’t come close to a frost yet on our hillside. And, yes, I agree, there is no place I’d rather be than right here, right now. Fall in Maine is magical. Good luck on finishing the book and make sure to take those rest days when needed. Although I’d substitute wine and chocolate for boiled sweets.

    1. Oh, too funny! But I certainly understand why you made that connection. Thanks for the kind words, and I agree that chocolate sounds more appealing than boiled sweets πŸ˜‰

  3. In the 70’s we would vacation in Maine (from South Jersey) every summer. I so remember one old Mainer saying “It’s a hot one!” on a beautiful 70 degree day. That’s what we would have said if it was 95 in NJ. Your climate was WAY different than ours back then – Now it is sounding really similar. : (

    1. Jodie, you are exactly right. Big changes in the Maine climate. And those of us who have lived here a long time can certainly see them.

    1. Thanks, Sam. Maya will be out Mid-November. You can be sure I’ll keep everyone posted πŸ˜‰ And, yes, a very beautiful fall.

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