Stella Leventoyannis Harvey


“We have all known the long loneliness, and we have found that the answer is community.” Dorothy Day, activist

It’s the third week of January and I’m still a little wobbly. Yes, we’ve had lots of snow this year. But I’m not talking about the slippery conditions. I’m talking about my inability to find my organizational footing, some routine. My days at the moment are disjointed. I do what I can, but I’m feeling disorganized and overwhelmed.

The New Year brings with it new beginnings and a myriad of things I put off until January. And now January is here, three weeks in fact are gone and still so much to initiate. There’s a new writing project, another writers festival to organize along with another writer in residence program and another author in schools program. There are grants to write, invitations to be sent out, and plans to put together for communication, website enhancements and corporate sponsorship. It makes me want to run and hide. I’ve thought of doing just that, likely every day since the 1st.

 Instead, I’ve decided to get a grip. I’m not alone. I am part of a community that supports me. The work ahead will be tackled.

So on that note, I want to take this opportunity to thank my critique group for all they’ve done and will continue to do for my writing: Sue Oakey Baker, Rebecca Wood Barrett, Katherine Fawcett, Sara Leach, Mary MacDonald, and Libby McKeever. I hope I’ve been able to give to them even a small fraction of what they’ve given to me. I’m looking forward to our retreat at the end of the month.

These women have also helped with organizing the festival, the writer in residence program and the authors in school program. They will again provide their sage advice when we meet next weekend. In addition, there will be the support of Nancy Routley, Ruth Barrow, Claire Piech, Stephen Vogler, Ira Pettle, Brandon Barrett, Leslie Anthony, Feet Banks and countless other volunteers. Some won’t be able to help as much as they have in the past, but they will give what they can because in the end we are a community that care about one another. How lucky are we?

When I think of it this way, I know everything will fall into place as it’s supposed to. And besides, February is just around the corner.

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