Sunday, August 16, 2015

This Week's Writerly Tarot: The Ten of Swords

Let's get one thing straight -- nobody's gonna literally take ten literal swords in the back. Probably not anyway. The Swords are known for their sharpness, their double-edged efficiency, their ability to -- pun absolutely intended -- get to the point. But they hardly ever foretell a stabbing.

Regardless, we may feel as if we've got ten of them in the back. What to do?

First of all, take a deep breath (well, as deep as you can with a symbolically punctured lung). Due to the dual and often dramatic nature of the Swords, this card comes with a plethora of potentialities. Depending on the context, it can signal finality, betrayal, martyrdom, and/or overkill.

But there is one thing it writes large, no matter the context:


This week, look around your creative space for something that is over, or in the stages of becoming over. This process might not be an easy one -- in fact, this Ten suggests that it isn't -- but it's happening. In my case, my editor just sent me her final notes for my current work in progress, and yes, it feels like ten blades skewering the corpus of my magnum opus. It's not, of course. I know this. And maybe tomorrow I'll be able to rouse myself off the beach of self pity, pluck the blades from my back, and move forward with the revision like the Big Girl I Am. Toward my very own THE END moment (which will be sweet, so very sweet, and worthy of champagne).

Because -- and this is the key to surviving a Ten of Swords moment -- there's a slice of gold on the horizon. Is it the setting sun, finally going down on a challenging episode in your life? Is it the rising sun, promising a fresh new start? It's both, of course. The sun goes neither up nor down -- we just circle it, our perspective ever-changing.

Today blades and rocks. Tomorrow the good work. This is the promise. Roll up your sleeves and stride out to meet it.

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