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CLAYTON RYE

By Staff | Jan 3, 2014

Imagine walking past a well and looking way down deep, but not seeing the bottom.

So you pick up a pebble and drop it into the well and then wait to hear the plunk when it hits bottom.

Now hold that thought.

It is year’s end and it is when we look back at the past year to recall those events that were memorable for whatever reason – happy, sad, a surprise – either good or bad, so we can take a last look at this year and look ahead to the coming year.

Some people make New Year’s resolutions to change something or themselves for the better. I don’t.

I know I have many things in need of improvement so why didn’t I do them last August or March?

Because I did not have the resolve to stick with what needed to be done.

So maybe I will make those improvements in the coming year, but probably not, if I am realistic.

My point is that there are certain things best suited for year end.

At the close of each year, I try to remember to thank everyone for taking time to read what I write each week. I appreciate the gift of your time and thoughts as I try to express my own thoughts.

Without a reader, a writer is incomplete. It is like a singer performing in an empty room.

Each week as my deadline approaches, I try to sit in a quiet place. For me, maximum productivity is about 3 a.m. sitting in my recliner in front of my laptop computer.

I’ve had a few hours of sleep. My mind is clear and then I wait for thoughts to arrive so they can be assembled.

The actual task of writing is a solitary event, free of distractions so once a thought is formed it can be followed through to the end.

The art of writing is to put these thoughts in a manner that the reader will understand and best of all, be pulled in to what the writer is trying to express.

Emotions are an important part and can range from happy to sad to even anger.

After I have finished, I try to allow enough time to walk away from what I have written and after a few hours return to read it again.

That is when sentences are deleted, paragraphs are re-arranged, and more detail added to better explain.

Once that is done, it is saved to my hard drive, put in an e-mail and I send it off. After that, very seldom do I look at it again.

A few days later, there it is in print and the following week, I do it again.

Then the best part happens. Maybe once or twice a month someone tells me how they like what I have written.

Remember that pebble dropped in the well to hear the plunk?

When someone pays me the compliment of telling me they enjoy what I write, that is my plunk.

Sitting in the dark and the silence at 3 a.m. produced results with someone I probably have never met and not only have they read my words, but were motivated to contact me.

Please do not misunderstand this as a request for praise.I am sure there are many who read and enjoy without responding and I don’t do this for any glory.

I am saying that when I receive compliments, they are sincerely appreciated and taken to heart.

I try to reply to all messages including people who disagree with me.

Agree or disagree, I am pleased that someone took the time to read and reply. I am also grateful.

So, at year’s end, thank you for allowing my thoughts to mingle with yours each week.

We will do it again next year. That sounds like a New Year’s resolution.

Rye is a Farm News staff writer and farmer from Hanlontown. Reach him by e-mail at crye@wctatel.net.

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