I don’t think I’ve told…

I don't think I've told you guys about the dawns here yet.

I wake up around 5:30 usually -- sometimes a little earlier, sometimes later. This is about an hour before my Bay Area wake-up time...I hope I can keep it up when I go home. Mornings are when I write.

At 5-ish in Seattle, from my window, you look out over a cityscape of bright beaconed buildings. The sky has just gotten a little light, but the main illumination is still coming from the buildings. On the horizon are two large buildings -- one square in front of me that looks rather like a state capitol building; one off to the far left that looks sort of church-ish. Sharply silhouetted.

Pink streaks across the sky at first, then golden, then orange. This process lasts about half an hour, and is the time when I'm puttering around, making the bed, showering and brushing teeth, straightening my desk and preparing to work. By the time the first gold edge of sun pushes up over the edge of the city, my room is neat, and I'm staring at either the papers on my desk or my computer.

These have been my mornings, for the most part, over the last six weeks. I'm going to miss them.

This last week has been a little unusual -- Alex ran out of breakfast cereal, and we've been leaving around 6ish to go work at Cafe Paradiso. We've done that occasionally before, but it's been rather a regular thing this week. Another thing to miss. They know our names at Paradiso now, and what we're likely to order. (Alex gets an iced latte or orange juice and onion bagel with cream cheese. I get a hot chocolate or an orange juice or chai. Sometimes a bread product later. I can't eat first thing in the morning.) We read and crit and talk more than we should. His company has immeasurably brightened this Clarion for me. He'll likely either be staying in New York or moving back to England -- both too far away.

There are others I will miss. This is what is on all of our minds now. I am very glad to have gotten to know Naomi again. Rick and Nancy are two of the sanest people I know. There is definitely something to be said for not being in your twenties anymore. :-) Therese is beautiful, both in herself and her writing. (I look at her and I think 'yes! everyone should wear earth tones' -- and then I realize it's not the earth tones, it's her.) Kate...I don't know how to explain Kate. I want her in S.F. I'm trying to persuade her.

There are more, but I can't describe these people. Ceej does a better job of it. Each and every one of them has touched me. They can all write. As I get to the end of this it becomes utterly apparent how rare such an experience is. To be in the company of seventeen kindred souls, people who care deeply about character and voice and story and words, about the heart of who you are and what you believe in -- this is a richness I never expected. I undertook Clarion so lightly. I was told it would be good networking. I thought I might learn something (and I have. Gods, yes). I didn't know I would learn to love so many, so quickly.

This has been a great gift.

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