This is a fiery sunset photo taken several years ago. Dense dark clouds hung low on the horizon, allowing the setting sun to illuminate so brightly as a backdrop giving the appearance of wildfires raging on the distant mountains.
If you’re writing essays based on this photo prompt, you probably won’t immediately associate it with the topic I’ve connected to today. But if you have the tendency, like me, to take on too many projects at once then you’ll know exactly why imagery of fire brings this saying to mind. “Too many irons in the fire”. I’m not sure of the original meaning of this phrase, but when I hear it I think of branding irons in a fire. If there’s too many of them piled on, then none of them will heat evenly and the branding of the cattle will be more chaotic because the irons become tangled in that pile.
To see what Random Nature Connection is all about, click here. You’re invited to write a nature blog post using my photos as prompts if you’d like. If you do it, leave a comment with your link so I can come take a look!
As it relates to my topic of musing for today, I have a tendency to get too many things going at once. And then all of the projects suffer because it’s not possible to allocate enough time to each all of the time. My tasks become jumbled like the piled on irons in the fire.
As it relates to nature, I think this is a uniquely human condition. I wonder how natural an occurrence among us it is? Does it only happen to a certain type of person, or is it random – afflicting everyone at some point? In my current state, I’ve taken a few irons out recently. You might have noticed I didn’t make one blog post this week except this one today. Instead of writing, I’ve been working on understanding income taxes and how to file them for a small business. The process of figuring out what needed to be done, which forms needed to be filed, and what expenses could be deducted, and on and on ad nauseum kept me so occupied that very few of the other irons in my fire received much attention. I’m almost done with the tax headache and we’ll still end up needing to bring them to an accountant. But at least I have a better understanding of how to keep better records this year because of the struggle I’ve undergone over the past few weeks.
Now that the most demanding iron is nearly out of the fire, I can add some of the other ones back in and rekindle the flames. This fire of mine is a creative one and each iron is a desire to create. To create an art of the imagination, whether in the form of words in a story or photos arranged as visual art or seed-planting or business-growing.
What desires do you have burning and are you plagued with having too many irons in the fire?
Predator and Prey, or the hunter and the hunted is a common theme throughout my fiction writing. No Qualms, one of my short stories (free at most retailers) is about about a predator/prey relationship. Symbiosis, my first finished novel, deals with predator/prey relationships and the balance of energy among life on earth, sometimes symbolic and often outright. Many of my flash fiction stories (I have twitterfiction and 100-word flash stories) are also dealing with this same dynamic. This is a strong theme that runs through most of my fiction and is strongly influenced by life in the wild Ozarks where we live. My first published novel, First Hunt, also has a predator and prey theme to it. I guess it's just part of my nature.
Wild Ozark is 160 acres of beautiful wild Ozark mountains. I call what I do "nature farming" because the land produces, all by itself, the shagbark hickory trees, ferns, moss, ground-fall botanicals, and the perfect habitats for growing and stewarding American ginseng. I'm co-creating with Nature - all of the things I use to make the Fairy Gardens and Forest Folk, the bark we harvest for Burnt Kettle's shagbark hickory syrup, are produced by nature without my input. This land is my muse for inspiration when it comes to my writing, drawing, and photography. It's truly a Nature Farm.
About the voice behind this blog, Madison Woods
I'm a creative old soul living way off the beaten path with my husband in the wild Ozark Mountains. Besides homesteading, growing plants & making crafty things and newsletters, I write books and stories. My rural fantasy fiction, written under the pen name, Ima Erthwitch, usually takes place in a much altered Ozarks.