Tuesday, September 7

Building a Fire in the Rain

Two summers ago, my friend Kelley
came with me and my dad to check cows. My dad was cowboss on a large cattle ranch, and we made a day of it, packing hotdogs and all the fixings for lunch.

It poured on us that day. But we're cowboys and cowgirls--we're tough.

We rode for hours.

Kelley said she wasn't looking forward to cold hotdogs.

"My dad can build a fire in a hurricane," I assured her.

She didn't argue, but she was skeptical, I could tell.

We tied the horses, we gathered twigs.

Dad got out his lighter.

Time and time again, the wind and the rain blew out his little fire.

Kelley was frustrated.

"Be patient," I said, "he can do it."

And, sure enough, just when Kelley opened her pack of cold hotdogs and was ready to bite into one, the fire took hold.

"Told you so," I gloated. "Dad can build a fire anywhere."

My writing is kind of like building a fire in the rain.

I get a little fire going, it goes out.

I try again. The fire flickers.

A cold wind kills it.

One more time, I try.

Rain comes down.

But, like my dad, I have faith I can build a fire in the rain.


  1. Nice. Mine is kinda like that hurricane, it comes in and blows away everything in it's path. Kinda frightening, but exhilarating too. I've learned quite quickly to batten down the hatches, hunker down, and pray I don't get caught up in the raging winds. Or maybe, hope I do?

  2. This is such an inspiring post, D'Ann! You have to have faith in yourself before anyone else will...keep that candle glowing, I have a feeling it'll be a roaring fire before long!

  3. Great analogy!

    This makes me think of writing prompts and the occasions when I have to write myself out of a corner.

  4. What keeps my fire burning? That's a loaded question. Stubbornness, determination, newbieism (is that a word--lol). I guess I haven't done this long enough to reach burnout yet. However when I was writing fan fiction (which was totally for fun), I did burnout. I stopped writing for a few months. Then I got back into it for a little while until I decided to strike out into the world of romance--that was a little over two years ago.

    During those months that I didn't write, I read. Basically, I think I just needed to get recharged...The creative juices flowing again. It worked.

  5. Avril, love, you are a hurricane! SO glad we met!

  6. Kristi,
    Thank you so much! You're headed toward a bonfire yourself, I think!

  7. Sara!
    I need to spend more time doing other things! Thanks so much for coming by!

  8. boy i like your dad. gotta love a man with stick-to-it-tiveness. =)

  9. Where do you think I got it, Carrie?

  10. kfwwriters@blogspot.comSeptember 9, 2010 at 2:04 PM

    What a lovely expression of love for your dad. He must have been your rock all through your childhood. I am sure he feels your love and faith in him everyday. And you should feel his love and support when you're trying to build that fire in your writing.

  11. Inspiring! Sometimes it is like lighting a fire in the rain.

  12. I so enjoyed this post.
    There are some days I can light that fire with no problem whether it's raining and blowing, but other days I just can't. And sometimes even if I do manage to light that fire, it goes out.