This has been a summer packed with family gatherings and concerns, writing-related SCBWI business (which brought together 6 of our One Potato...Ten spuds), and the realization of a dream. Although I didn't manage much actual writing time, other than revising my first picture book manuscript, I did finally move into my long-awaited writing cabin.
The construction began last winter and continued sporadically through spring and into mid-summer. We hired a team of good-humored men to build the frame of what they teasingly called my "play house."
Then my husband did all of the interior finishing work. (I helped paint :>)
The exterior staining of the wood and painting of the door is still to come before winter sets in, and the bookcase may end up being my Christmas present, but the essence of my "querencia" is here for me to savor.
Just this past week, I traveled to North Carolina for four school visits. At Jacobs Fork Middle School (near Hickory), I led the students through a writing exercise in which they wrote about their querencias. I was amazed at some of the results after only a short 15-minute writing time!
In Spanish, querencia describes a place where one feels safe, a place from which one's strength of character is drawn, a place where one feels at home, where "whenever you return to it, your soul releases an inner sigh of recognition and relaxation."
This is mine.
Where is yours?