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Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Ten Things to be Grateful For

It seems this time of year always brings out all the things to be grateful for.

So, I decided to find 10 things to be grateful for.
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1. SPELL-CHECK. It keeps me from spelling grateful as "greatful".
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2. SUNNY WEATHER. It won't be long before the winter clouds gather.
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3. CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS. Everything looks so pretty and shiny.
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4. SMILES.Sometimes they are hard to come by in this busy season, but when they show up.                                  fabulous.
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5. CANDY. Candy is always a treat, but Christmas brings out the best: fudge, peanut butter balls, and                     candy canes. Did I mention chocolate covered cherries? No? Well, now I have.

I decided to keep this short, so you will have to read it twice to get my 10 things I am grateful for. I know there could be more: Jesus, the reason, family and friends, and love.  But all of those things are here.

Here is to a blessed Christmas and lots of candy. You can diet after the first of the year

Friday, July 17, 2015

Why do you Write?

I have rarely waited for the muse to strike. I try to just write. It usually happens that I don't feel like it. I want to play. I want to run. I want to run for the hills and forget this dang writing thing. Then...
I can't resist any longer. I have to write something even if it is only...

                             Image result for listsand it doesn't even have to be a grocery list.

 It may be a list of reasons not to write. And number one on that list is: I don't feel like it.
. Well, I clean toilets when I don't feel like it, because it has to be done. So, I do it. It could get ugly in the house if I don't.

How does it get when I don't write? Ugly. My temper gets short, shorter than usual. I get to where I don't like anything, and I pick at everything.

Please know, that I am not a paid writer. So, money can not be the reason for writing. If it isn't worth money, is it worth anything? If you can't make money to help with the bills or just to have fun, what good is it? If you can't put a story down, what good is it?

It can be good because it makes me want to join the human race again. Love my hubby more. Not pick on the kids.

It makes me ME. No matter how long it has been, when I pick up the pen or keyboard, again, I am ME.

How about you? Why do you write? Is money the only thing? How about publishing? Is that a primary goal?
Writing a book does not appeal to me. At least not right now. If you cannot think of a reason to write, why write?

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Writing is a Frustrating Art

I sometimes feel frustrated beyond belief.
 I want to write. I want to share.
 I don't want to write. I don't want to share.
I want a subject to appear with ideas around it, so that all I have to do is rearrange the words and the blog post will be complete and beautiful. To every one. Including me.
Do you feel that way? Are the rats in the attic just scurrying around and scuffling with each other?

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Does your mind feel like this? Mine does.

Then I sit down and stare at a blank page and wonder where all the rats went. Surely they left behind something for me to chew on. A biscuit. A crumb.

A crumb.

 There is always something left behind that can fuel your imagination. You just have to let it. You cannot force the words. You need to let them scurry from place to place and finally, one will scurry into the corner and you can capture it. Then all you have to do is capture another one. Some days, you have to let them all go and start over.

My friends, here is to crumbs. Come back and see which ones I have found and what kind of mixture I made with it.
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Thursday, June 4, 2015

Experience for the Writer

Catchy title, right?

What are experiences for the writer? All of them. Now, you have to decide how to write about them. Experience is not the only thing you need. You need to feel the experiences and know how they change you so you can take that knowledge to the page and make it interesting to the reader.

It is more than, "I went to the store". What did you do there? Who did you see? What was said? Who said it? When you ask these questions, you have to answer them. You are not the only one that can learn from you did, said and who you did it with.

A good story has more than a beginning, middle and an end. You need specifics. You need love and laughter.

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For all of this you need experience. Experience life and all its light and shadows, and then show us about it.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015



The next word in our tools is 'observe'. There is a lot that can be said about observing. Some of us do it well and casually, some of us need road signs.Image result for road signs
I need road signs.
My husband gave me a stained glass window for my birthday one year. It fit in a transom window over the door of our house. Our bedroom door was right beside it. You went by one to get to the other. He put the window in while I was gone one evening. I returned and went into the bedroom. Came out and watched tv and then later, went to bed.
My birthday was the next day.
I came out of our room and saw this long white paper banner that said "Happy Birthday" hanging from the top of the door. I thought it was pretty. He came home for lunch.
"Did you see your present?"
"Yes. I love the banner."
He then jerked the banner down to reveal my REAL present. You can hide my gifts in plain sight.
As writers, we should be way more observant than that.
Notice the bug on the leaf. See how he moves from one spot to the next. It may come in handy for a story about someone lost in the woods.
Image result for describeAfter your observation describe it in words and maybe even, a sketch. The better you understand it the better you can write about it.
Image result for drawLearn to observe.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Write, Right?

Image result for writingWriting can feel like this. As though there are cement blocks under the keys of the computer or you are pushing a dull pencil.
No matter. You need to do it. Push on the keys consistently and those blocks become sand and then are worn completely away. Then pushing is easy and the words appear on the page as if by magic.
That's a good day...
                                Then... Image result for writingthis happens. And you are back to the cement blocks. You just need to write.
Write a poem. A story. An event. Seventeen 'e's or do nothing in your chair but sleep. Time is going to pass and you need to know what you want left at the end of the day. Words on the screen or excuses. And we can come up with some good ones.
My favorite is the one Calvin uses. Waiting for inspiration. Now, sometimes it seems as though we are inspired and sometimes not, but you have to WRITE. Inspiration or no, words need to come through. A free write is a good way to get into the habit of writing and sometimes among all those ugly pieces of cement and rocks there is a diamond you can polish. So, go chip some cement and polish those stones.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Make it Grow

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 The four tools that writers can use to make their writing grow are:




We touched on them all in the last post, and I thought we could dig deeper in following posts and so, today, it is READ.
When you read, you should read what you like. Now, not just the genre you like, but a book that when you pick it up and read a few pages speaks to you.
I have a problem reading non-fiction. It always is dull, to me. I have read some and enjoyed them and when I stopped to figure out why, I discovered that they were written like good fiction.
Books about writing fall in the non-fiction category, and I have read several. One that I love, and I know I am not alone in this, is Stephen King's "On Writing". Even if you don't like his subject matter in his books, he gets this right.
A good thing to do when reading these books on writing is to read other books, or at least one, by the same author to see how he puts his advice into action.
Someone I have followed, through her newsletters and blogs, is C. Hope Clark. She has just recently published four fiction books that I have enjoyed. Her web site is here: She gives good advice and information on funds for writers. Her site has been on Writer's Digest best 101 sites for Writers for the last 15 years.
A young man that has helped me with my writing is Jeff Goins. He started a daily challenge a year ago that has helped me with making sure I write often, daily, in fact. He has a blog has also written several books, the latest is The Art of Work. I have enjoyed it.It is about living the life you want, not the one everyone expects of you.
So, read about writing and read, read, read. Try one of the links here and see what is up with them.


Saturday, May 2, 2015

Grow, dammit!

I saw that sign in a garden store the other day and thought how cool it was.
I feel like that after we plant our tomato plants. I love tomatoes.

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 Especially the little ones you can just pick off the vine and pop them in your mouth. So, I really want my tomatoes to grow quickly.
This saying applies to our writing career as well. Most of us don't want to think of it as a career, but that is what it is. Whether you publish a bestseller or best of the cellar, or a blog that may only be for family and friends.
 It is a career and we want it to grow.
 We want to grow as writers, as people, as friends.
So, how do we do that?
Let's have a look at the steps we need to take to grow a plant and a writer.

 Image result for growing plantsWell, when you want a plant, you plant a seed. You look for a good place for it to grow. A place where it will receive water and light. You choose good soil, and fertilize it to feed it.

Well you have to do the same when you become a writer. Let's look at some of the tools you can use to become a writer.    
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 1. Read/Plant
Planting for a writer is reading. You need to read. About writing, the world, people and what interests you.

2. Write/Water
Writing is essential for a writer. Not just a sometime thing, but an all the time thing. You need to write while standing in line, waiting in a waiting room, or just sitting. It may not be the great American novel you write, but it may be the seed for the great American novel. Keep pad and pencil handy or what ever electronic baby you carry to do that with.

This can be done anywhere, anytime and for as long as you like, then write down some of those observations down in your handy dandy notebook for reference when you sit down to some serious writing time. Set aside time to write and guard it religiously, because if you don't, it won't happen.

4. Experience New Things/Fertilize
We all experience things everyday. We need to add new things, but we also need to add a new way to look at the old everyday things.

You need to get your writing to light or it will just sit there and bear no fruit. A blog is a good place to start or even writing letters to the editor of your newspaper. To make you a better writer you need feedback.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Now What?

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Now that the A to Z challenge has come to an end, what do I do about blogging? It seems that my past performance on my blog has been catch as catch can. I want to change that, so, now, what? Way too many commas in that last sentence, but that's the way it is.
In the time ahead I will talk about aging and writing. And writing as I age.And probably anything else that pops into my mind.

Hang on and come see what we do.