From a journal entry—


Last night I went to bed and before falling asleep asked to be shown how to write the book, what the book would be about, in my dream. Basically, how do I join all these ideas together? What is the core of it, the key to unstucking myself? And I dreamt about Mary Oliver. I dreamt about someone else, too, I think, maybe Maya Angelou. IDK the particulars but remember being told (shown?) to write from the heart. The thing must have life, it must be real, not just shiny, and if it's real and living enough in the center of it, then the flourishes don't matter. It can be rough, amateur, as long as it is alive and sincere. That is the thing I heard in my dream. Then I woke up, tried to make sense of this directive—again, the question being *how* do I do this?—and proceeded to go to Book Passage as I do. To read, research, do some lazy writing. I was reading A Field Guide to Getting Lost by Rebecca Solnit when it hit me: the book is about listening. It's about listening. My book is a book about listening. Then it all flooded in.