We went to sleep with rain on the sloping metal roof above our heads and we awoke to the sound of thunder rolling over the river. The lights flickered off and on as I brushed my teeth and when I came downstairs, I gathered some candles just in case.
I realized a week ago that I barely made it through the summer and now here we are, on the cusp of the autumn equinox. I know I will look back on these few years as some beautifully disorienting and reorienting of my life. Within two years we have gutted and renovated our home, mostly taken back our land from wild grapevines and invasive plants climbing over the trees, I have written a book and now published it; Nate has worked remotely for over two years now. I am halfway through my graduate program and am now beginning work on the next book. Nate described this summer for me as “burning the candle from both ends,” but really, it’s felt like that since summer of 2020.
Autumn is always a time of revisiting habits and schedules for me. I am not a good finisher but I love a good start. After two years of my desk being stowed away in our loft as Nate’s workspace, I bargained for it back again. It wouldn’t fit down our narrow staircase, so we leaned a ladder against our porch and I fed it through one of the loft windows to Nate, and then ran down and met him at the foot of the ladder, my arms outstretched for the desk. It is at home, now, in the corner of the sunroom with a half-moon of books stretching its length. A spot for to-be-reads, a space for research, and a nook for school books.
After the space was set up, I set up an ideal day calendar for myself. I am still juggling more than I like to, but less than I was juggling in the summer. Perhaps back to just burning a candle from one end now. I find it difficult to multitask and I always have, but it has felt impossible to not in the past few years. Some seasons are just like that, I suppose.
. . .
If you have been here on my substack or have been a reader of Sayable.net in the past, you may be noticing a bit of moving and shaking around. I’ve tried to keep it as dust-free for you all as I can, but I’ve been migrating away from Squarespace, where Sayable.net was hosted, and now toward Substack, where lorewilbert.com is hosted. This might not matter to many of you at all, but I think it’s nice to at least mention it for those of you who have been longtime readers.
As technology changes, I want to use what it is most helpful for me as I do my job, which means less finagling around with technology and more actual writing. For a time, Livejournal was the host of choice, then Blogger, then Wordpress, then Squarespace, but now here we are! Substack is the easiest platform for a writer these days. Its interface is beautiful, its ease of use is simple, and it is bringing blogging back to my little blogging loving heart. (I never believed those who said blogging was dead and Sayable.net is proof of that!)
All this means for you is mostly nothing except that I will no longer be posting at Sayable.net and only be posting here. If you’re reading this in your inbox, you don’t have to do a single thing. However, some of my posts will be free to read here and some won’t. If you’d like to read what you were accustomed to reading on Sayable.net, keep reading here for free. But there will be occasional paid-reader only posts here and I’d love to have you gain access to them too. Folks might object to having to pay suddenly when the milk has always been free, but the milk was never free for me to make, so.
Become a paid OR free reader. Your choice!
. . .
Shall I share a few things I’ve enjoyed lately?
First, we gave the new Rings of Power a once over a few weeks ago and didn’t love it, but after a few friends said, “Try again,” we did. And now we like it. Maybe you would too.
I’ve been rereading The Overstory by Richard Powers, Pulitzer Prize winner from a few years back, and loving it again. It’s a great book to read on the edge of autumn.
My friend Philip and I went hiking in a nearby old growth forest a week ago and now all I want to do is find old growth forests and tread very, very lightly.
I also reread Mary Oliver’s Upstream last week and loved it again. There’s something about reading some of the last words penned by a great poet that feels sobering.
It is almost perfect apple season up here, but we got a bushel of galas from a nearby farm stand that were close to perfect. Paired with some sharp cheddar cheese from a local dairy, it’s been a lovely lunch.
In the next few months you’ll start hearing more about the trip to Israel I’m leading in November of 2023, but now would be a good time to start saving your pennies (and to register to hold your spot!). I answer some questions you had here. And here is the brochure and registration form.
I’ve had some lovely conversations with some folks recently on all sorts of topics. I’m not the most articulate talker but I’ve been grateful for their patience with my meandering and marbling around some things I really care about.
Here’s one from Kendall Vanderslice’s new podcast, Kitchen Meditations
And here’s one from Untangled Faith with Amy Fritz
And here’s one from the fine folks at The Holy Post
Look for more podcasts soon from folks like Makers and Mystics, Culture Matters, Amy Julia Becker, Ashley Hales, Sue Donaldson, Mark Combs, and more. (If you host a podcast and would like to book me, email email@example.com to request a copy of A Curious Faith and schedule a recording date!)
Also, I should mention this too, I do very few speaking engagements because I’m probably a hermit or at the very least travel-adverse, but if you’d like to have a conversation about the possibility, you can start it here. If you’ll be at Hutchmoot in Nashville, I’ll be doing a session there with a few friends on art and doubt. And if you’re in New York, I’ll be speaking at Seasons Northeast on October 28.
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Also available: Handle With Care: How Jesus Redeems the Power of Touch in Life and Ministry
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I so resonate with burning the candle at both ends. I hope this is a slower season and you find fruit and rest in your new desk space.
Love to see what you’re watching, reading, etc.! We weren’t thrilled with the first episode of Rings either, but it has gotten better. I gave up on The Overstory after the second or third story. If you’re reading it a second time, perhaps I gave up too soon? :/