When stories nest

A pair of blackbirds is building nest after nest in our garden, then give it up. Too drafty, too many cats, squirrels and humans, too noisy – who knows. Or maybe they just enjoy building, though I doubt it. Yet, when they have finished one, perfect, inviting and pretty, there seems to be an almost human gleam of satisfaction in their eyes.
It is as with writing stories. We enjoy the effort and process of crafting them and take pride in the finished work, even if it sits abandoned in our desk drawer, sleeps in some publisher’s slush pile or collects dust in print on the shelves of some bookstore. And promptly we begin again. A story always has potential. The nest could be filled with eggs that give life to chicks who eventually stretch their wings to join in the greatest story of all. Our stories could find readers out there, delight someone we will never hear of. If not – well, they give us writers the ultimate freedom, the chance to imagine us into a life different from ours for the time it takes to plait it into words, sentence by sentence, as the blackbird adds twig by twig, breaking into song in between.
No matter what time of year, in a way it is always spring when a story is begun.



  1. Great post, Patricia! What a beautiful analogy!

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