October is my favorite month and has been for as long as I can remember. Like my friend and fellow historical writer, Ann Shorey said to me recently, “I endure summer so I can get to fall.” Amen.

Why do I love this month? It’s the cool mornings when I turn on the gas fireplace, just for a few minutes to take the edge off the chill. It’s the cloud cover and rain showers after such a long ‘severe clear’ summer. It’s the colors too. My favorites. Rusty reds, ochres and oranges and yellows, and every shade of brown. And still that splash of verdure as our summer-scorched lawn greens up around the edges where the sprinklers never quite reached. There are piles of pumpkins on hay bales, cornfields with stalks dried golden brown, and all the lovely harvested produce. And candles. Did I mention candles? I love spicy, fall-scented candles that make the room smell like cinnamon and apples and maple and every good thing baking in the oven. And the leaves–what a glorious finish to their short life cycle. I pray my own finish will be as colorful.

I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:13-14

This month I’m endeavoring to really buckle down and write with all my heart and strength, and if possible, finish the first draft of The Quiet In The Land (Willa). I’ve reached the final chapters, the final turns of plot that culminate in the end of these characters’ journeys. It’s totally absorbing me now… even though a wholly new set of characters has already begun nudging at the door of my heart. But I can’t open that door until I’ve allowed Willa and Neil and Joseph to finish their party in the front parlor, clean up, and head home.

It’s harvest time all around, and here at my computer as well, as I gather in all the story threads I’ve spun across an 18th century frontier landscape, and bring them all to a hopefully satisfying end before the first snow flies.

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