That’s quite a word, isn’t it? Meanings can vary depending on what situation you are looking at. And it has more weight or less weight, as well, depending on how you’re looking at it.

When I read Jim Belshaw’s opinion piece“Writer Given Gift of Freedom yesterday in the ABQjournal, the word freedom was used in a way quite meaningful to me.

I’m both happy and raging ass jealous to read about a lady named Summer who gets to live my ultimate dream. My personal definition of freedom. Congratulations to Summer who is the winner of this year’s A Room of Her Own Foundation $50,000 Gift of Freedom award.

Until today I was unfamiliar with A Room of Her Own, but I’ve now fallen in love with them based on this snip from their mission statement on their webpage, “… bridging the often fatal gap between a woman’s economic reality and her artistic creation.”

Which seems to be based on the Virginia Woolf quote in the middle of the page, “A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write.”

Brings tears to my eyes, really.

But back to Summer. She lives in San Cristobal and believes she can make this $50,000 grant last her for two years, giving her a chance to take a break from her regular hardworking job and allowing her to write for a living.

From the article: “The obstacle of having to make a living while you’re trying to write a novel or finish your short stories is gone,” she said.

Damn. It’s truly my deepest and fondest dream. To no longer be bound by gray cubicled walls, incessant emails, and the political bureaucracy. To break the bounds and let being creative be “what I do for a living.”

I have a currently unfinished book that still swarms in my head. The characters live there, keeping residence until I finish telling their story, tenacious little buggars that they are. This is my fourth novel so I’m familiar with the drill. I will be haunted by the characters, without respite, until I type the words “The End”. With that they will finally give me peace.

Taking two years off, and having the funds to do so. Ah. Yes. A little slice of heaven in my book.

So lots of props to Summer. It can’t have been easy to win this grant. I’m sure competition was steep. It makes me smile to see a writer doing it, making it work, taking the time to let the Muse be the only boss she answers to.

$50,000 wouldn’t run two years where I live but I’d sure love to have a go at it. Maybe in 2009? I see they’ve posted the application….hmmmmmm…..

Pardon me, I’ve got some dreaming to do on a no-wanna-work Friday.

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One Comment

  • -s

    I too joined up with that organization, although I’m hardly a writer… I like what they’re doing and what they stand for a lot.

    Dreamy Friday eh?
    I feel like such a dork, I’ve never stopped by to say hi, or have taken the time to say hi…

    Now, that I know you’re a Canon buff.. you just might be seeing a lot more of me!

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