For those of us who live in California coastal regions, this time of year is known as June Gloom. While other parts of the country are enjoying the first blush of summer with its dreamy warmth and slower pace, we often awaken to a heavy marine layer that keeps the landscape wrapped in a blanket for the first few hours of the day.
It’s not nearly as “gloomy” as it sounds. After all, “sunny California” gets plenty of bright days. This may sound perverse—maybe it’s my Celtic roots—but I sometimes reach a point of finding the succession of unchangingly sunny days oppressive, and begin to long for rain. And rain tends to be in short supply outside of our actual rainy season.
On June days that start with gloom, I feel a secret joy that I have an extra portion of quiet time, as though the world doesn’t really get started until the sun is out in force. Before that happens, I can sit bundled against the chill in my roof garden, reading something contemplative and inspiring; I can get in an extra hour of writing before the world starts to interrupt; I can hike the favorite canyon trail before it gets crowded with fellow hikers and their conversations.
This special extra hour or two seem to exist outside of time, suspended between sleep and workday, undiscovered by the clock-master that seems to crack his whip during the rest of the ticking minutes, beyond the tyranny of to-do lists, unreported to day-planners. And that makes these minutes and hours magical, endowed with special powers I can borrow, and then share.
The more I think about it, the more my Milford-Haven Novels are all about this magical, unreported pocket in space-time. If the idea of these special moments can exist at all, it can exist any time and any place. Why? Because it’s an idea. Ideas, unfettered by material circumstances, create their own openings. All we have to do is commit to the idea: the idea that there is a special time and place for us, where our authentic selves can show up, where we can hear what our heart knows, where we can remember our true purpose and carry it forward into our busy days, weeks, months, and years.
That’s the real conversation taking place in Women’s Fiction. That’s what my novel series is all about—escaping to that space, and staying there just long enough to hear the song of the soul. So when the blanket of gloom shows up, no matter where or when, grab it by the corner and snuggle under it. The gloom will give you magical moments, then burn away into a bright day of the soul.
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