La Saison des Tournesols

"Exaggerate the essential and leave the obvious vague."  van Gogh (1853-1890) 3sunflowerAnd as the summer wanes these sun worshippers, which van Gogh painted, turn their heads toward the sun to catch the last of summer's light.

Outside my writing studio, in the fields, the lavender has been cut down by the local farmers and taken to the distillery to be condensed down into its essential oil.  The distillery is down the road and the balmy warm wind from Provence brings the essence of lavender to me in the early morning air. But I have no time to linger.

I'm in the middle of the second draft of "The Drummer's Widow" and, taking van Gogh's advice to heart, I am exaggerating the essential and leaving the obvious vague as I revise chapters and cut, cut, cut!

I expect to harvest my 96,163 words by the autumnal equinox but time is going by too fast!  And that is why I've had no time to blog. And won't again until I finish the manuscript early next year.

By the way if you ever want to read an awe-inspiring book on the life of an artist check out "Dear Theo: The Autobiography of Vincent van Gogh."  Not only was van Gogh an exceptional artist he was a really good writer.

Tour de France Races thru la Drôme

8472146-13268192-thumbnail kangaroobikerwithtongueToday I'm letting the Big Boys take over on the bike trail.  After riding already for sixteen days these guys are not slowing down as they pass nearby on their way up into the Alps going over 25 miles per hour.  Three days from now they will reach Alpe d'Huez (6000 feet), which is 370 miles from here.  How about that for fortitude! kate and I wavingI'll be watching them on television this year as we are having a bit of winter weather and it is not conducive to picnics on the grass.  These pictures were taken two years ago when I last watched them whiz through la Drôme with my sister Kate Hudson.