Friday, December 12, 2008

Thank you to all that reach out

Have you ever thought about how much we all need each other?

Oh, we spend a Lot of time denying it, rejecting it, decrying it, but I don’t think we are meant to be alone all the time. Yes, I think we all need to take time for self-reflection, for musings, to do things that make us who we are. But there is still the underlying need to have a hug, at least here and there, verbally as well as physically. Is there anyone that doesn’t need to hear they are doing good, are needed, are appreciated? I’ve found so often that what we might think is not always the case. Watching a stranger stride along confident and together-looking, and following my impulse to tell her how nice she looks, even though feeling obviously she already knows that already. And probably gets told that a lot. And having them turn and about break into tears in a public place because she needed to hear something good so badly. Don’t be afraid to follow your intuition, your impulse, as long as it’s not going to be detrimental or harmful to you or to someone else, you never know what is going on in someone else’s life that they need to hear a cheering word of some kind. Or just have a smile from someone.

What is the worst that can happen? They think you a fool? Like That hasn’t happened before. ;)

And might happen again. You might be rebuffed when you reach out. Don’t let that stop you. Their loss, not yours. Do not let it be yours. Do not let it become your loss.

Reach out to someone, even if it’s just a smile. Who knows when the reverse will come about and there will be someone there to reach out to you when you really need it.

And if you believe in something or someone, tell them. I do believe in myself. Mostly. Most of the time. But sometimes it is a constant watch to keep the demons of doubt at bay, to keep them from slavering all over me like some overeager dog dripping icky saliva all over the place.

And if you believe in an organization, tell them, and do more than tell, reach out a hand. You might not be able to have money in that hand to give them but that hand can do something. Whether you are a professional or an amateur dabbler at something, you do have something to offer. That empty hand can be filled with an envelope to stuff, a stamp to put on, or a myriad other things that will help, and in whatever time can be given. Even if you only have a few minutes here and there that might help with research, or a phone call, or a contact.

We are all so much more talented than we realize. So much more blessed than we realize. So much more interconnected than we realize.

I realize I owe a lot of who I am as a writer to James River Writers. To all the people involved in it. Being able to connect with other people, ones that don’t look at you like you are an alien and speaking some kind of language they don’t understand, and don’t want to understand, is immeasurable in itself. But also being able to meet and talk with such wonderful writers, that are such wonderful people. From the wonderful people that are brought into Writing Shows and Conferences, Adriana Trigiani, Diane Mott Davidson, Kirk Ellis at the recent Conference, to Tiffany Trent, Jeff Sypeck, Maggie Stiefvater at recent Writing Shows, to the local writers that show up to mingle around at Writers Wednesdays, Emyl Jenkins, Lee Gimpel, David Robbins, and all the fledging writers in the same working process that I am.

To all that offer me a kind smile and a kind word, Thank you.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Yikes, December Already!!!

I can't believe it's December already! Yikes! And not only December but already barrelling into December's first week. Just sliding right on in, even without any of the slippery white stuff of snow. Which in Richmond, Virginia, doesn't usually come around until January. Which is really good for those of us that have to travel for the holidays. Especially those of us that are already frazzled when it comes around to time to travel. Is there anyone out there that isn't frazzled this time of year?? How do you do it?

Ah well, I keep trying to find the balance of the decorating, the gift shopping, baking, cooking, etc..etc... with the real reason of the season. Peace on Earth, Good Will Toward Men.
And really taking the time to feel that.
May all of you find it also.
And if I have a little more difficulty finding that balance this year maybe I should go ahead and wish everyone a blessed holiday season and the happiest of NewYears!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving to all

May we all have a moment to remember all we have to be thankful for.
No matter how big, no matter how small, the fact that we are thankful unleashes more for us to be thankful for.

Ironically, Thanksgiving Day often has the least amount of time available for us to acknowledge, really acknowledge that we are thankful, and have so much to be thankful for.

May we all have much to be thankful for.

A peaceful heart, answers for our questions, love and support when we need it.

May the beginning of this holiday season find us all with much to be thankful for.
And may we find time to appreciate and be thankful for everything we are blessed with. Even more than and beyond this Thanksgiving Day.

Monday, November 24, 2008

NaNo Lobotomy

Does NaNo cause lobotomies?

I mean really! Yes I understand that the real lobotomies NaNo can cause come from whacking your head too many times on your keyboard.

But I’m beginning to think NaNo can sure cause mental lobotomies! Or excuse me I am sure thinking it can. No contractions for NaNo after all.

But it sure does seem to make your brain go really dead at times.

Or maybe that’s just mine. Pthhhhhtttt. Contraction again. The bane of my NaNo.

Not to mention all the brain leakage that’s going on. Maybe that was the warning signs!!! OH NO!!!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Snow and Leaves!

It’s been snowing today! Can you believe it? Before Thanksgiving! In Richmond, Virginia.
Snowflakes were just lazily drifting down like crazy outside my window. Thank God it wasn’t inside! Then there’d Really be a problem.
But even outside it was disconcerting, especially when the wind was blowing. Snowflakes were all mixed up in with all the leaves blowing around.
At least the snowflakes weren’t as big as the leaves! And didn’t stick as much.
I’m not ready for all the cold and snow. I feel like I’ve not even had an autumn yet! You know, the warm days followed by cool nights. Or even sunny brisk days that still make a jacket enough to wear for warmth.
I feel cheated!
As I do by all the non-NaNo that I’ve not managed to get ahead on.
Ah well, soldiering on. Which according to all the advice we get at the Writing Shows and James River Writers Conferences is what a lot of this writing life is all about anyway.
Does anyone hear a tune being whistled?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Bemused at Time Passing

Where does all the time go? I turn around and it's been forever since I've posted anything. What is with all that?! Sure doesn't seem that long, that's for sure!
I'm certainly bemused by that!
Bemused Writer sitting bemused by life at the moment. All the unexpected things that come at you.

According to definition I found Bemused is 1) to make confused : Puzzle, Bewilder 2) to occupy the attention of : Distract, Absorb.

Which all apply right now. I’m Bewildered that I am a writer to begin with, how did I come to find myself in this place? Sometimes I’m bewildered by all the wonderful writers I know and have come in contact with. Which I do know is because of James River Writers in Richmond, Virginia.
And 2) I am distracted by all those musings etc.. from working on my books.

Okay, so part of that is maybe partly excuse. Writing is Really hard work! Or at least it is for me! As one of my writing group members, Dragon Queen, and I were talking, it’s like having brilliant flashes of a few brilliant words strewn with a few-to-bunch of words of mediocrity. Not what I’m aiming for! But I’m trying to learn to live with some of it just to get the story out of my head onto the paper [or screen, since my husband has pushed me from the writing on paper to the writing on computer. For the most part.] As everyone keeps saying, especially all those currently in the mid-throes of NaNo writing right now, you can’t edit a blank page. Which if you don’t know about NaNo and all that, do check it out. November is NaNo month, after all.


Is writing easy for Anyone?

And do I want to know? Really want to know?

Well, I Think I’d like to know what they do that makes it easier for them to write.

If there is such an answer.

I’ll have to see if anyone’s ever done a poll of writers and asked them that – Is writing easy or hard for them?

But I guess I should wait to do that until I get back to the task of writing myself.

Since I really do want to get the book I’m currently working on done so I can get back to some of the other books I have waiting on the back burner ready to simmer forth.

So for this November NaNo time, or just any writer in the midst of writing, I wish you Happy Writing!
Or at least an easier time, if like me you find it really hard work.

And if you have ideas for what makes it easier for you Please Post!!!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Loss and Knowing authors?

What is it about books and authors that bring us in and make us feel we know a person, and know them well enough to be sad at their passing?

What is the connection that doesn’t seem to transcend into other mediums as well? At least not for me. I can enjoy a great piece of art or sculpture, without ever feeling the tinge of sadness that the originator is no longer around to produce more.

But with authors and books it is different. From Robert Jordan’s passing earlier this year with his to-be-completed final novel left behind, to the recent passing of Tony Hillerman, author of the southwest Indian mysteries with the characters Jim Chee and Joe Leaphorn.
Whether I have read the person’s work or not there always seems to be a loss in the world somehow.
That the world is somehow an emptier place without them.
A world a little less rich.
A little less varied.
A little less interesting.

Maybe it’s not knowing the author so much as the characters?

And feeling their loss?

There is only so much time to read and so many books to read nowdays, and there is a sense of loss when you pick up a book, especially if you really like the book and the characters, of knowing there won’t be anymore. No new frontiers and ages for the characters to transcend, no new growth or possible changes for the author to come into, and spread on to us. As a writer I mourn that possibility. As a reader I mourn.

Friday, October 17, 2008


A friend gave me a most lovely birthday card recently that I had to share -
"If a little dreaming is dangerous,
the cure for it is not to dream less
but to dream more, to dream all the time." - Marcel Proust

Hold fast to your dreams...

This reminded me of some of my favorite quotes:

"I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." - Maya Angelou

"History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage, need not be lived again." - Maya Angelou

"There are only two ways to Live Your Life.
One is as though nothing is a miracle.
The other is as though everything is a Miracle." - Albert Einstein

"Remember, a journey is not measured by the amount of breaths you take, but the things that take your breath away!"

And inspiration comes from all sorts of places if you allow it.
For those that have not yet discovered the Wonderful whimsical jewelry of the Kirks Folly Family I would highly recommend checking them out. I have a wonderful collection of their unique pieces that I have accumulated over the years and they always make your heart sing in some way. Whether from just looking at the lovely things they do and create, or just the thought of's all good, as one of my fellow writers says.
And while you are over on the Kirks Folly site, be sure to sign up for Jenniefer Kirk's newsletter - the Fairy Godmother newsletter, as she always has a great quote in it. Which is where most of the ones listed here have come from. And she had a quote in one of her newsletters about the choices we make, and what we choose to believe and choose to think. I must find it again sometime as it was an incredible thought.
But in the meantime I will use the ending of one of her newsletters -
I leave you with this: Your Thoughts Become Your Destiny

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Wisdom and Advice

Wisdom and Advice
We sure had a lot of great advice and wisdom from all our wonderful speakers at the James River Writers Conference this past weekend.
From Kirk Ellis, coming off his Emmy win for John Adams, telling us to never take no.
He was fantastic to talk to, with all the interesting projects he’s working on.
To Adriana Trigiani with all her wonderful advice, and what she considered her best - ‘Finish your damn book.’
To her recommendations of her favorite books that she believes everyone should read – which I put in a previous entry, directly from her email.

And then there is the lovely and gracious Diane Mott Davidson, of the Goldy the caterer culinary mystery series fame.
I don’t think I’ve ever met a more gracious person than Diane, and that’s saying a lot considering the world around here also holds the lovely gracious writer Emyl Jenkins. But then Emyl also taught Diane and takes credit for her writing career. ;) So maybe there were other things that transferred in there too. ;)

Diane was also interested in the books Adriana talked about and counted some of Adriana’s favorites as her favorites too.

Diane said that Napoleon Hill's THINK AND GROW RICH, which Adriana emphatically recommended – go buy it! - is an old favorite of hers.

As it is of Adriana’s also since Adriana said she bought another copy on her way to the airport.

Hmmmm, both successful authors, wonderful people, really liking this book – I think I need to take a look at that!

Diane mentioned that she wasn’t familiar with some of the other books that Adriana mentioned so she headed to a bookstore to remedy that.

And since I was lucky enough to have Diane tell me some of her favorite recommended books also, I will share them here with you -

The first recommendation Diane has and her favorite she said is Henri Nouwen ----

“I'd list the Nouwen first, and that would include my favorite Nouwen, The Art of the Beloved, which is also a FABULOUS audio, if you can get the one that Nouwen reads himself. I noticed the Henri Nouwen Society had reissued it for very little $.“

Diane also recommends Nouwen's SPIRITUAL DIRECTION

Then she lists - Norman Vincent Peale's THE POWER OF POSITIVE THINKING … “I also have an audio of Norman Vincent Peale reading The Power of Positive Thinking and it's super.”

And Louise Hay's YOU CAN HEAL YOUR LIFE, comes in on the list.

Diane did mention she had a bit of trouble finding the books as Adriana listed them in Adriana’s session at the Conference, but found books that she thought might be what Adriana was thinking of – THE MAGIC OF BELIEVING which Diane said was all she could find. And “The other book Adriana recommended that I didn't have is THE POWER OF YOUR SUBCONSCIOUS MIND, by a fellow named Doctor Murphy. “

So there you have it as I have it.
And now I need to go find some books.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

James River Writers Conference 2008

If you missed this year's James River Writers Conference you missed a good one.
Although they all are good ones I think. ;) This was the 6th year for the Conference, and I have been fortunate enough to attend all of them. And even more fortunate enough to be able to be a real part of the last two of them.
Each Conference is different in its scope and direction, probably due a lot to having different chairs/co-chairs each year that put their touches of personalities as well as reading and writing styles as a part of it. So each Conference offers different insights and advice to the attendee writers.
We all hope it is Good and Useful advice. As well as the opportunity to mingle with people that at least somewhat understand what it's like to struggle in this writing-wonderland. As my writing group member, Katharine with an 'a' of the blog 'Eat Cookies Be Quiet' listed at side, likes to put it - it's like visiting a planet where you actually fit in and aren't the alien. I'm sure she would put it a bit differently since even though we all are writers, we bring our own uniqueness to our stories, as well as our lives.
So if you're a writer, especially a serious one, or wanting to get serious about it, come visit our Conference-planet next year. We mostly all speak the same language ;-D. Or at least the vowels are the same. ;-D

Gotta run. More on the Conference later.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

James River Writers Conference Questions/Answers

I thought I'd do a few posts on the James River Writers Conference from this this past weekend.
And while I'd like to say it was brilliant thinking on my part to come up with this ;-p
it was actually more Adriana Trigiana's idea than mine.
What can I say but the woman is amazing! ;)

But hopefully there will be posts that will be helpful to any that stumble across this blog.

This post was brought to mind by a question posed by someone in the audience at the session I had with Adriana.
Not that I remember what the person's question was actually, more of her statement that people of ethnic minorities, such as Latinos, can't get published.
I do remember Adriana's reaction to that. After it looked like she had reigned herself in a bit she forcefully declared, "Write a good book and the publishers will publish it!"

The woman came up to the stage to talk to Adriana after the session and I asked the woman if she had been at last year's, 2007, James River Writers Conference, and met Marcela Landres.
She replied that she hadn't.
I told her to go to Marcela's site for all kinds of great information as Marcela is a Big advocate of getting writers published, and Especially interested in the Latino marketplace and stories, and getting them published.

Google is a Wondrous thing my friends!

Especially for writers, and writers on their way to being published. [nice spin that, don't you think? Instead of newbie writers or beginning writers....

But for those that don't Google, for some strange unearthly reason that I cannot even imagine - I did a quick Google to get to Marcela for you.

Marcela Landres. Helping writers get published. If you write, I created this web site for you. In the seven years I worked as an editor at Simon & Schuster,

Latina Experience: Marcela Landres
A couple of years ago I had the pleasure of attending an intriguing publishing workshop hosted by Marcela Landres. To our surprise, we found out that

So there. I give you two entries, go forth and read.
There is work involved in all this writing and getting published stuff that involves more than just writing the book guys!

Marcela is actually a real sweetie too. Good thing, since she's so blasted attractive I don't want to stand very close to her.
James River Writers were actually fortunate to have her here for two of our Conferences, 2006 and 2007 I think.

Not to mention she edited my favorite Feng Shui book when she was still an editor at Simon and Schuster -
Move Your Stuff, Change Your Life: How to Use Feng Shui to Get Love, Money, Respect, and Happiness - by Karen Rauch Carter

There are so many opportunities of all kinds available now, from being able to use Google to find and research -- although it is helpful to remember that all you find out there is not exactly accurate -- to being to find publishing opportunities online as well as in print.
One of things I appreciated so much about Marcela, she not only tells you what you need to do to build a career as a writer, she tells you how to go about it!
And how many of us have sat in sessions and read articles in magazines that talk all about what you should be doing to move into and along in a writing career, such as doing magazine articles etc... But feeling so frustrated because they don't even give you an inkling of how to actually go about doing Any of it!

Which brings me back to the James River Writers Conferences. And all the great opportunites offered when you attend them. From just mingling with other writers that are in various stages of work and careers so you are sure to find someone with similarities to talk with, to also being able to talk to well-known established writers and being able to actually talk with and learn from them.
Truly a wonderful opportunity.
So even though you missed this year's, 2008, James River Writers Conference, make plans to invest in yourself, invest in your writing career and come mingle with us for the 2009 Conference to be held October 9th and 10th. Also be sure to check the link to the JRW site I've listed at the side for all the monthly chances to mingle, such as the great Writing Shows each month.
Come, smile, and say hello!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Adriana Trigiani

This wonderful vibrant woman is a true force of nature! And I've never seen someone draw people to themselves like she does. Bees to honey, or just some kind of beautifully packaged magnet, she draws people to her like no one I've Ever seen!
As soon as people see her they seem to be drawn in and flock around her.
But with her vibrance and wonderful generous giving personality, I was happy to hover in the outer rings of that orbit.

I had the great privilege to talk with her [not sure there's such a thing as interviewing Adriana in person ;) ] it just happened to be on the stage at the James River Writers Conference this past weekend.

I couldn't even write fast enough to copy down the answers to my questions and all the great advice she was giving.

So for those that missed the great Adriana Trigiani and her great advice - I asked her to send me the names of the books she recommended so I could put them here.
[and it also makes me pull this weedy neglected blog up to give it a bit of attention after long neglect.]

So here it is ---

Here are the books: Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill (go out and buy it right now!) The Magic of Belief and The Power of your Subconscious Mind by Joseph Murphy-

And for those that did manage to attend the session [the Conference sold out this year! So better start planning for next year's James River Writers Conference for October 9, and 10, 2009] their understanding of what all she said will grow when they read her books. She gave some really good advice and insight into how she writes and creates her stories. And how they can also.
For those that didn't attend the session - first of all, you Really missed it!!!! - but I'll be posting some of the other advice and such as I can.

Since her last and she considered her Best advice to all us writers around her --

So guess I need to get back to work on my own book now. ;) Thanks Adriana. ;) ;)

Friday, September 19, 2008

Run-by Blogging

This is a run-by blogging.

Since I don't have time - or maybe just the inclination right now, to do more.

Oh I had such good intentions when I started this thing --- okay so a lot of it had to do with peer pressure, my Writing Group all had neat blogs....

But somehow Life has a way of getting in the way. Not to mention all the Other writing I should be doing on the books I have in various stages of completion, or incompletion, or just incomprehension maybe.

As witnessed by last night's Writing Group session. Everybody's life has pretty much gotten in the way of their writing, well, except for Bill [the Wildcat] who is obviously a Lot more disciplined than the rest of us? Or a lot more excited about his writing? He's the only one that had 'real' pages to submit anyway. So smart savvy Katharine - with an 'a' of the Eat Cookies Be Quiet blog fame - suggested rather than lose what discipline we have ;-D ! of our meeting once a month, that we should bring first pages. Also to honor the very popular First Pages session of the annual James River Writers Conference [coming up October 10 and 11 for those that need to go check it out now - ].

So there was a mix of our own first pages and favorite published book first pages. My own were dredged up from abandoned writing of Years ago, which obviously need a lot more work and thought if they are ever rattled forth again.

But I brought one of my favorite books for a first page also, that I bought in hardcover long ago no less!, that reminds me of what a good first page is, and a good mystery book is, for me anyway. Fast Forward was from what I understand Judy Mercer's first book. And even though I read the rest of the series they just never had what this first book had. Evidently I wasn't the only one that thought so, since when I went looking to see if she'd changed and done something recently, I couldn't find her. Did find a recent review of someone else that re-discovered her book Fast Forward and liked it as much as I did. But no website or other info' listed.

But since I was searching I went searching again for one of my Favorite authors, Jeanne M. Dams and discovered her site - that would let me actually use it! All previous times her site seemed to be continually stuck on the first page! Even though I didn't take her book, The Body in the Transept, to read for first page, it is one of my all time favorite books! That I read over and over. And especially each year at holiday time.
And I was irritated that I could only get it in paperback when I finally went searching to buy it, and I had to even special order that!

And to explain that I guess I should mention that I am a writer. Which also means, for me anyway, that I am a voracious reader. I would rather read than write. Which might account for the fact I am as yet an unpublished writer.
And given I am a voracious reader and an unpublished writer, I usually hit the library for my reading. Or mostly buy paperbacks [see above notes about being an unpublished writer]. But I like Jeanne M. Dams' Dorothy Martin series so much that I have snatched up as many as I can in hardcover. And am still on the lookout for The Body in the Transept in hardcover. So if you are ever in my vicinity when I spy one, Especially for a good price [see above note about being an unpublished writer], do not get in my way please.

So this is my homage to good --- no, should be Great first pages..... to good books, good reading. And hopefully Published writing and books some day so I can get more books!

Happy Reading.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Summer breath

Do you feel it? As you move through the summer heat and bright sun.
Moving slowly so not to overexert and bring on more heat than one can bear
Shielding eyes and hair and skin from too harsh rays bearing upon them
Even as they glory in the days,
the flowers, the trees, the rays
they grow tired and begin to droop
they have fought well all through the heat
to stay upright and strong and vital
but now they have begun to leak their color
little by little
the vibrant of spring green gave way to deep of summer warmth
but as if the struggle has grown too much
the green has begun to slowly fade its color
little by little
day by day
it seems to grow a little more tired
Do you feel it? As you move slowly through heat and sun.
Do you feel it hovering near?
Autumn’s breath misting upon the neck

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Spiritual Beings Living an Earthly Life?

Perhaps it is the role of any great spiritual leader, especially one based here on earth, from pastors, popes, or Dalai Lamas, to not be so much spiritual beings but earthly beings showing all of us in day to day earthly grinds how to be spiritual in the midst of it.

And how can they do that without living in the midst of it With us?

Not on some spiritual plane somewhere while someone else tends to their 'earthly' needs - wouldn't a lot of people like that, or think they would - but an honest earthly existence like everyone one here is working at, while still maintaining a spiritual life.

Just a thought for anyone considering themselves 'spiritual?'

Friday, August 8, 2008

Bemused Writer Musings Or How I Learned to Clean Better

It’s interesting the things we carry inside us. Hidden in crevasses buried deep in dark secret places, that we’ve never even known existed, let alone excavated. Things we never knew existed at all. Until they come out in inexplicable ways, at strange times. Sometimes not the happening at all, just the catalyst. But just like our houses need spring cleaning so do our souls. No matter what the season. And once we face whatever it is we are carrying inside, it no longer has the power to control us. Still might affect us here and there until we get used to not letting it. As we shine and polish our possessions, which is easier than cleaning and polishing and letting our souls shine, maybe we can let the mundane task [or even hated task] become a more introspective time to let our spirits speak to us.
And vacuuming can be a very zen thing – I saw on a board somewhere that a vacuum cleaner expert said most people really don’t vacuum effectively. Most people run a vacuum cleaner back and forth across the floor as if racing those dust bunnies to the corners.
According to the expert, the vacuuming needs to be done much more slowly, giving the machine time to suck up all the stuff agitated up to the top by the beater bar.
Made sense to me. So I began to try to go more slowly and vacuum better. [and hopefully suck up more dust mites into oblivion! Have you seen what those things Look like!!!]
And I discovered as I moved more slowly it became a more relaxing way to clean. Okay, still not my favorite thing I want to do, or run to do. But better. A bit.
So I say why not try it. Not only helps your environment, your house, and maybe your allergies. But also maybe a help for your soul. To bring body, soul, and spirit, and even environment, more into alignment.
And as a friend and fellow writing group member says – with a wave of her hand, ‘it’s all good.’

But at least we can make it better. Sometimes just by thinking we can. Or at least trying something to help the thinking along. ;)

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Strange things, in the air

Trying to work with an aircraft hovering nearby banging at the windows is a bit difficult.

That it’s a legged kind not a metallic one is somehow not a lot of consolation. A bit, of course, but still, the thing is huge! Even for some kind of flying bug!

At first there was just scrabbling noises at the windows. Which I took to be the strange squirrel that sometimes decides to launch himself at our picture window in some kind of effort to….
Well, I’m not exactly sure what he’s trying to do. Wonder if he is some kind of relation to the psychotic squirrels our friends on north side of Richmond have.

But when the scrabbling noise changed to another window – one Much higher on house, it went from being annoying to concerning. Did I mention our friends on north side of Richmond have really psychotic squirrels?

I wasn’t sure whether to be relieved or not when I found the cause.
No squirrel, but the biggest flying bug type object I’ve ever seen! And worse – on the Inside of the window!

I think it might be a wasp of some kind. It has taken to buzzing and banging against all the windows in front and back of house, and moved over to window at side of house which is right beside me.
So I have had more time than I care, to have seen it, and its size, as it has zoomed around my space more than a few times. More than a bit unnerving. Which why I have ended up writing this than working on my neglected novel. Easier to do quick get away from.

I’ve debated about searching the house for some kind of gargantuan gaping hole where the ‘thing’ got in. But decided against it, for now.
Don’t particularly want to run into it if it decides to try to get back out that way. Or run into any of its minions if it decides it really likes it here and wants them to come by for a visit, or more. Besides, it’s August, in Virginia. If there was a big gaping hole somewhere I’d surely feel it. The hot humid air alone would be enough to send me keeling over my keyboard in fatigue. [Not to mention sweat.]

No, I think I’ll leave it alone – if it leaves me alone. At least till my husband gets home.
Hopefully I won’t have been carted off somewhere before he does. Psychotic squirrels don’t employ flying minions do they?

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Living Abundantly

We live abundant lives not by the things we surround ourselves with. Or buy, or accumulate, or any of those Things.
We live abundantly by our thoughts and beliefs, of our world around us, and of us.
We are told we create our world, our lives with our thoughts.
Are we told enough that our thoughts create us?

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Ages of time

The awkwardness of youth gives way
to the sway of illusion
That we know who and what we are
And have our selves together
The awkwardness of youth passes by the glibness of age
Until we enter that stage again.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Bemused Musings

What do we tell ourselves
when there’s no one else around
What do we believe of ourselves
when there’s no encouragement to be found
Where do we turn
when the turnings seem aground
Where do we find ourselves
when the lost want to be found
[sgchris 2008]

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Ode to the Storyteller within

Stories tell us
where we’ve been
Who we are
And sometimes where we are going

Your life is a story, always evolving and changing
How are you going to tell it?

How are you going to sell it
And still have value for yourself

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Questions, questions, questions

As a writer it seems I always have questions, and always want to really ask most of them. Hopefully not being too annoying about it, but I have boundless curiosity and really want to know, well, a lot of things. But as I saw recently it’s not just about questions, it’s about asking the right questions. Not just to get answers for my own benefit but to get people to answer questions for themselves. Most people don’t want to be told anything, not really. Even just trying to caution or warn can get very tricky, since from what I’ve seen it seems most people really have their minds made up anyway. But if you can ask them questions, the right questions, they can figure things out for themselves. Which is as it should be, since they probably aren’t really listening to you anyway, they are only hearing what they want to hear. But from a young age we are taught to answer questions, whether aloud or just to ourselves. So if we ask the right questions hopefully they’ll be answered. If only for ourselves.

So, what questions should I be asking you?

Friday, May 23, 2008

Are writers normally socially inept?

I’m a writer, doesn’t that give me a license to be socially challenged? Okay, so not a card-carrying-member excuse, but at least an excuse?

As a writer, I spend inordinate amounts of time locked up in my own head struggling with characters over what they will and will not say, not to mention will/will not do. Makes me wary with real people that I have absolutely no control over. Not that I have control over my characters, come to think of it. Not sure that even killing them off is a real threat to some of them, since think they would come back to haunt me. Oh, not in my own plotting perhaps, but why do I get the feeling they’d find a way to show up in my writing group’s fantasy driven stories? And why am I not surprised much by this. Hmmm, maybe I should go investigate my storehouse of characters and do a line-up now.

Oh, and if you see me out and about please say ‘Hi’ and smile first. Yeah, I know most of you won’t know who I am at all. That’s okay, ‘cause I’m sure most of the people you come across today could use a smile and a ‘Hi’ to brighten their day, even a little. After all, you don’t know what kind of line-ups they’ve been involved with.

Writers as Readers

I have heard, and I tend to agree, that to be a successful writer you must be an avid reader. Most all the writers I know are readers, especially the accomplished writers.

It’s interesting that writers are such readers. It wouldn’t seem to be just because they are reading to see what their competition is putting out, is it?

Do we read to find others in worse shape than we are, or to find answers to the conflicts we have ourselves? Do we read to find ourselves another world, one richer and more vibrant than our humdrum everyday sameness life? I, for one, would rather read about the excitement of the hero/heroine than be one myself. But perhaps we all are heroes and heroines in our own lives, in some small way, and perhaps to only one or two. But isn’t that what really matters when we come back to our own small little world? The grace and vibrancy that we breathe into everyday life. Isn’t that what defines who we truly are?

Who are you today? What are you reading? Why do you read?

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Ode to allergy sufferers everywhere

Been out about, too tired to think let alone write. But to not leave this space so blank I put out this little tribute, silly as it is, for allergy sufferers everywhere.

Spring has sprung,
It’s begun to run.
Should be thankful it’s not the pipes.
It’s just the nose, please pass the wipes.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Bemused at writing

I am a bemused writer.

Often just bemused because I am a writer.

And now a bemused blogger too [thanks, or no thanks, to my writing group].

How has this all come about? And from a person that really doesn’t like to write! That has been known to declare emphatically that I hate it!

I’ve come around, at least somewhat, and no longer use that word to describe my feelings about writing. I still will probably never use the word love to describe it, as I’ve heard from other writers. But I’ve come to realize that hate really is too strong a statement, or so complex an issue I’ve not really written even to myself. Since I’ve always written in some form, usually little poems or thoughts I call snippets [which I might include some day]. It’s always just been a part of what I do, scribbling on whatever surface is handy at the time to get the thought down, having learned from Hard experience if I don’t get the brilliance down right when it comes it often never shines so brightly again. I’ve discovered just as those that haunt the physical finds of yesteryear that most times all the polishing in the world will never restore it to what it was originally.

Perhaps I have come to more of an acceptance of the pain and frustration that is a part of writing. A part of the pain and frustration of writing that is the racking of brains, and sometimes the dictionaries and whoever/whatever is handy, for the perfect words to perfectly convey what those yammering characters are trying to get me to write down for them. Or just adequately get out, depending on the ever growing skills I hope I am accumulating as a writer. And trying to master the skill of the imagination truce with all the varied and loud, insistent characters always roaming and clopping through my imagination at all times. Or maybe they have just all worn me down enough to do their bidding, at least on the page. And caused me to begin to accept my fate in life as a writer.

Oh I know people have wondered about my reluctance as a writer. Bemused people for a bemused writer. Perhaps things will all become clear for all of us someday. Or at least clearer.

[So, what are you bemused by? And what are you waiting to see clearer? Are they one and the same?

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Peer pressure an insidious thing.

Peer pressure is an insidious thing, which according to my dictionary, insidious can mean treacherous or seductive. So peer pressure can possibly be a good thing inspiring us to be more, do more, or it can be a bad thing, taking us out of and away from who we really are for reasons that have nothing to do with the real us.
You’d even think peer pressure would peter out at some age in life. That it’s only for the unsure gawky teenager trying to find themselves and where they fit.
But apparently not, given that’s how this blog got started in the first place. Oh, I’d thought about a ‘web presence’ and needing one and all that, at least according to people advising writers about the ‘new’ age of writing and publishing.
I just figured I’d think about all that stuff later. When I had time to really think about it and really witty things to say of course.

Well, I can’t say I have any witty things to say yet but with all my writing group putting such witty things on their blogs and with all the laughing and talking about them, I was feeling decidedly left out. Which is obviously where the seductive insidiousness came in. And why I am sitting here and trying to figure something amusing or ingeniously clever in conception or execution to write. [I had to foray over to the dictionary again to avoid the overuse of ‘witty.’ Too much?]

So since witty words, or even amusing or ingeniously clever ones, aren’t rolling off my fingers right now I figure I should give it up. For now anyway, and wait for the peer pressure to wind its treacherous and seductive way from their blogs. Or brilliant enlightenment. Whichever comes first.

[So what has peer pressure caused you do? Buy something you didn't really need, or maybe even like? Do something others would disapprove of? Or just do things - like start blogs.... come-on' it'll be our secret... ;-)

Monday, May 19, 2008

Yes, I actually have a Blog

At least it looks like I do. Sortta.

Although it doesn't look anything like the funny, attractive, interesting blogs of my Writing Group. From Bill's, The Wildcat's Lair with his very funny and irreverent 'cat' Frank, and Bill's wife Sheri, with her own Dragon Queen Chronicles, to Katharine with-an-A 's Eat Cookies Be Quiet.

This quiet rendition of a blog has no-where-no-way near the pizzazz of theirs. But as we have all discovered in our time together as a writing group, we all have our own unique style, talent, and writing voice.

Maybe like the books I'm trying to pull into final shape with my writing. Perhaps I can pull this into shape along with my books.

Or maybe I'll just go over to theirs and bug them for awhile. ;-D

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Bemused Writer

How I've come to find myself sitting here writing this is a journey still going on....

Want to come along?