M E Fuller

43. Hinge Arts residency, Fergus Falls, MN

I arrived in Fergus Falls yesterday morning to begin a 2-week residency through the Hinge Arts residency program sponsored by Springboard for the Arts. As I wind down the Greyhairs Rising year-long blog series, I find myself in new territory that I cannot write about from a rear-view mirror perspective.

In the 2-1/2 years that I have been retired and chasing down a new career as artist and author, I’ve taken in a lot of learning. I’ve taken advantage of a lot of opportunities to show art and to submit writing to competitions and to agents and publishers. I have to say, I’m thoroughly tired. It’s time to take yet another look at the moving parts of this career in development.

I jumped into this with the energy and glee of a woman freed from a life sentence of hard labor. And what did I do with that freedom? I sentenced myself to two years of more hard labor.  What began as a life-affirming enterprise, took on a life of its own and overwhelmed me at times. But I pushed on. I was so hungry to learn and anxious to succeed that I forgot I simply don’t have the oomph of a 20, 30, even 50-year old now.

I have to take this down a notch. I have to dial back.  Here’s what I plan for the upcoming year. I wonder if my plan will hold?

Keep writing. Turns out, I love writing books. I love it.

Keep painting. I love sketching and color play and painting as much as I love writing books. Art runs a close second, anyway.

Keep building a local writing community. I have learned so much from my local writing buddies, but most of us are getting up there in years. I want personally, to hear from all writers of all ages in my community. They build new-to-me worlds to discover.

That’s about it. No art shows – maybe one. No story submissions. There will be work around getting books published and artwork promotions, but these activities will take a lesser role – not a third of my time – in the days ahead.

While I’m in Fergus, for two weeks I get to discover what it feels like to have nothing to do but read and write. Oh, and buy a toothbrush. I always forget something!


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  1. M E Fuller (Post author)

    The people at Springboard for the Arts are supportive and invigorating. I expect a long and mutually beneficial relationship to blossom, especially with the Brainerd Writers Alliance. So much to tell and I’m only in 4 days! And thank you, Sue, for your EVEREADY encouragement. YOU the rock star!

  2. Sue Ready

    You are a rock star!!! I admire you for your determination and diligence/persistence to improve your craft of writing. Two weeks to read and write sounds like a dream with or without a toothbrush:)

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