by Kassandra Lamb
As a follow-up to a recent post, When Your Garden Tries to Kill You, I had promised to tell the rest of the story of how my garden tried to kill (or at least maim) me and why I’m thankful I’m a clumsy gardener.
This month marks the 9-year anniversary of the beginning of my writing career. And it got started, for real, because of my poor gardening skills.
I’d been futzing around for decades, rewriting the same first five chapters of my Great American Novel, and telling myself that someday, when I was retired and had more time, I would get serious about my writing.
Well, five years of semi-retirement came and went, and I still wasn’t getting serious.
Then one day, I was gardening.
Not my fave thing to do and definitely not my best skill set.
But we’d inherited all these areas of plants and flowers, installed by the previous owner of our house, and I was valiantly trying to maintain them. (I’ve since pulled up most of the railroad ties that divided them from the lawn and told our lawn guy to mow right to the fence!)
That day, I had bought several bags of mulch, dragged them around to the backyard, and I was pulling weeds and then spreading fresh mulch around the plants.
When the pile of mulch bags was down to one bag, I looked at it and thought, Gotta be careful. I might trip over that.
Sure enough, not more than five minutes later, I stepped back to admire my now weed-free garden and tripped over the blinkety-blank bag of mulch. My body twisted and so did my foot, right under me.
The good news was, I didn’t break it.
The bad news was, I might have been better off if I had. I sprained my ankle, badly, and the foot itself…suffice it to say that multiple things tore loose that are supposed to be attached to one’s skeletal system.
A visit to the ER resulted in my obtaining a new possession—a lovely pair of crutches. I was told to put minimal weight on it, elevating it as much as possible for the next several weeks.
No longer able to walk all that well, much less garden, I found myself with time on my hands. And one day I got an idea for yet another change to the opening of my novel.
I sat down at my computer, thinking it might take me maybe 15 minutes to capture this new idea for the first chapter.
Well, with not much else to distract me other than hobbling to the bathroom on my crutches, the first draft of Multiple Motives was done six weeks later.
And this is why I’m thankful I’m a clumsy gardener.
Now, the month of November reminds me of both the worst injury I’ve ever had (I know, I’m counting that as a blessing too!), but also of the best thing ever. My dream of being an author finally happened!
Have you ever had a bad thing happen that ended up being the catalyst for a good thing?
P.S. I’m also extremely grateful for the many friendships that have evolved from my writing career, including the one with Barb Taub, whose fun post inspired both this post and the previous one.
Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone!!!
Psst, I have a new boxed set out, the first five books in the Kate Huntington Series.
Posted by Kassandra Lamb. Kassandra is a retired psychotherapist turned mystery writer. She is the author of the Kate Huntington psychological mysteries, set in her native Maryland, and the cozy series, the Marcia Banks and Buddy mysteries, set in Central Florida.
We blog here at misterio press about twice a month, usually on Tuesdays. Sometimes we talk about serious topics, and sometimes we just have some fun.
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