"...IF YOU FOLLOW YOUR BLISS, DOORS WILL OPEN FOR YOU THAT WOULDN'T HAVE OPENED FOR ANYONE ELSE." - Joseph Campbell

"SOMETIMES ON THE WAY TO YOUR DREAM, YOU GET LOST AND FIND A BETTER ONE." - Unknown (as seen on River's blog, "Drifting Through Life")

"IT IS POSSIBLE AT ANY AGE TO DISCOVER A LIFELONG DESIRE YOU NEVER KNEW YOU HAD." - Robert Brault


"IT'S NEVER TOO LATE TO BE WHO YOU MIGHT HAVE BEEN." - George Eliot

"WE DID NOT CHANGE AS WE GREW OLDER. WE JUST BECAME MORE CLEARLY OURSELVES." - Lynn Hall

"GO CONFIDENTLY IN THE DIRECTION OF YOUR DREAMS! LIVE THE LIFE YOU HAVE IMAGED." - Henry David Thoreau



Thursday, June 30, 2011

If It's Thursday, I'm Really Mixed Up

Being mixed up should not come as a surprise to those of you who know me. I just composed and posted my Friday, "I WONDER", blog post. I even began with the sentence, "Can it possibly be Friday again, already?" Hmmm... Apparently not! So, that little bit of clever and witty info is waiting patiently in the Edit section.

Whew! Do I feel better! I thought I lost a day somewhere. Oh well, at least I already have tomorrow's post ready to go. Just hope I remember.

This morning, I'm enjoying the beautiful sunny sky, the chirping of birds, the leaves fluttering in the trees, hearing the easy-listening music on my cable tv, my cup of coffee, and the desire to write today!
So, it's tah-tah for now!


Welcome to my newest follower: Miss GOP (Good on Paper)  I hope you'll stop by often and always enjoy what you read and see! Thank you!

"I've forgotten many things but the most embarrassing by far was when I forgot to meet a friend for lunch. I was having a very lazy morning, still in my pj's, when my phone rang at 11:45am. The minute I saw her name on Caller ID, I remembered!" -- Becky Povich

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

* All Things Writerly *

I attended my Coffee & Critique group again today. Most of the time I don't have anything to read, but I always get so much from listening to others read, and then the critiques given as we go around the table. Two of the writers are currently working on stories to submit to Chicken Soup for the Soul, which made me think to remind everyone about all their Calls For Submission. Right now they have 12 books they need stories for. (There are various deadlines.) If they accept yours, you receive $200.00, plus 10 free books! Give it try. You've got nothing to lose!

Then I remembered Thin Threads and the stories they're currently looking for. They pay $100.00 for an accepted story. (Different deadlines here as well.) Wonderful blogger friend, Susan, of Writing Straight from the Heart, recently had TWO stories accepted and published in two different Thin Threads anthologies. Congratulations, Susan!!

And please don't forget about the Joplin, Missouri anthology, Storm Country. This one does not pay its contributors because all money raised will go to Joplin's school libraries to purchase books damaged or destroyed in the horrible May tornado. *Although you won't receive any money if your story is accepted, this is a wonderful opportunity for a beginner to be published in a printed publication, if your story is well written, of course. Be sure and read all the requirements....must be a weather related story. Deadline is July 15th.

A brand new journal I just came across, Adanna Literary Journal is having a love poem contest. There's a $10.00 entry fee and 1st Prize is $100.00

I'm not promoting any particular anthology, website, journal, contest, etc. I just like to let people know some of the things I come across... when I remember them! ☺

Welcome to my newest follower: Claudia Schlottman!   I hope you'll stop by often and always enjoy what you read and see! Thank you!


"Nothing is impossible, the word itself says 'I'm possible'!" -- Audrey Hepburn

Sunday, June 26, 2011

* Nostalgic Sundays *

I'm a nostalgic gal. I love old TV shows like The Andy Griffith Show (only the B&W episodes, ya know!) I'm particularly drawn to the lovely citizens of Mayberry because this fictional town reminds me so much of the real-life hometown of my parents and grandparents: Greenfield, Iowa.

When I was a little girl we went to Greenfield every summer for vacation. It was a magical time. The late 1950s, life was slow and easy, we young kids could walk or ride bikes all over town. I have such fabulous memories of those days, some of which will be included in my memoir.

Today I thought of trying to begin another weekly post and call it Nostalgic Sundays. I'm not really sure what I'll post or if I can even come up with something every Sunday, but I'm going to try. And if any readers decide to post something nostalgic on their blogs on Sundays, let me know and I'll be sure to stop by!

That's it for this Sunday, and surprisingly I've already thought of topics for at least two more Sundays.

"There is a lovely warmness about feelings of nostalgia as though in one's head one is putting on a pair of comfy old slippers and curling up in front of a fire."  - William E. Geist

Saturday, June 25, 2011

* Saturday Centus *

It's been a long time since I participated in Jenny Matlock's Saturday Centus. I'm not sure why, but hopefully I'll get back into the swing of things.


In a nutshell, Jenny Matlock gives us a prompt from either herself or a guest submitter and then we have to write 100 (although this week is only 60) words or less related to the prompt (the prompt doesn't count toward the 100 words) Then link it up to her blog. It's open until the following Saturday, so that means you have all week to participate by either reading or writing. The prompt this week is Dear John


Mary was ecstatic her fiance', Rodney, was coming home. No, she was not one who wrote a Dear John letter to a man she proclaimed to love. How cruel that would be! Why couldn't a woman wait for her lover to come back home? And, in fact, it wasn't even wartime. He'd just gone to the corner store to buy lottery tickets.  (exactly 60 words, not counting the prompt)

Also, I welcome my newest follower, Julie Fedderson. I hope you'll stop by often and always enjoy what you read and see! Thank you!

Friday, June 24, 2011

* I WONDER *

It's time for another Friday, "I Wonder" communique'.

I wonder: I wonder when I'll ever get caught up reading and commenting on all the blogs I love! (This is one of my goals for the weekend.) If I haven't stopped by your blog in awhile, it's nothing personal. Same goes for if I owe you an e-mail. In fact, if I do owe you an e-mail, please let me know!



AND, speaking of this weekend, all you members (and visitors) of Saturday Writers, we're having a fantastic guest speaker at tomorrow's meeting! Check here to see who it is and find out more information.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Friend in Need - Friend indeed

Yesterday, a very wise and dear "non-writer" friend wrote some extremely profound words to me. She knew all about my "adventure" during my get-away, because she was in fact part of it. This is what she wrote:

"Your book is something you are doing for you. If nothing ever becomes of it or it becomes a “Best Seller” it was for your own personal satisfaction of writing and that comes when it comes. You can’t schedule a week-end & say ……OK now I’m gonna get inspired and spew forth “writing”. You know that sometimes it comes easy & others not so much. I think that is life in general…………if it came easy we wouldn’t appreciate the effort put into things."

Pretty powerful stuff, huh?! Even though I know all those things, it's always good to hear them again, and from someone looking at my situation from a different view.

Last night I decided to pursue other interests for awhile. For some reason, I remembered a cross-stitch sampler I started years ago. I think I bought it to have something to do while riding in a long car trip. Surprisingly, I actually know where I stored it, so I'll be able to grab it and work on it whenever the mood hits. This in turn, reminded me of another very sweet memory. When I was pregnant with Mark, I was on a cross-stitching frenzy! I worked on them at home while watching TV. I sewed on them at work when I was at lunch or an afternoon break. I have no idea why, but it was like an addiction. I made two large samplers, framed them, and hung them in our living room. I know where they are stored, too, and might just dig them out and hang them upstairs in our loft.

Oh...and that was stamped cross-stitch, NOT counted! You know that math and I don't get along, right? Who knows what words I would've stitched if I had to count the spaces!! Probably words like the verification ones we get on Blogger!


Ahhh....and as always, one memory leads to another, and might eventually find a place in my memoir.

Two quotes today because I love them both.

“The pages are still blank, but there is a miraculous feeling of the words being there, written in invisible ink and clamoring to become visible.” – Vladimir Nabokov


“I think it is all a matter of love: the more you love a memory, the stronger and stranger it is.” – Vladimir Nabokov

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Best Laid Plans.....

I arrived back home yesterday afternoon from my writer's get-away. All I can say is, although the condo was wonderful and the view was spectacular....I didn't get any writing accomplished. The reasons are varied, of which I won't go into. As life sometimes goes, our best laid plans take major detours without our consent.
It wasn't a total washout. I spent a few hours with two of my favorite "cousins", a friend of theirs, and a beautiful black lab. That alone made the trip worthwhile! And although I didn't accomplish what I intended, I had quite an adventure, and learned some things about myself, too.

What matters most is that we learn from living.”Doris Lessing

Friday, June 17, 2011

* I WONDER *

It's time for another Friday, "I Wonder" communique'.

(graphic courtesy Rose Petals from Heaven)

1)  I wonder why some people have the kind of  mathematical brain that makes it easy (and fun) for them to work on those never-ending, xyz kind of problems......

(photo taken by Becky at Parks College 2009)

.....and then there's people like me, who run screaming at the sight of any "math" equation that contains letters and other funny-looking signs. I.just.don't.get.it.

And that would most likely explain why I'm a writer!

Part of my adventure yesterday was driving my son, Mark over to Cahokia, Illinois (not to be confused with Cahokia Mounds. Two totally different places!) Cahokia is a small town just across the Mississippi River from St. Louis. Cahokia Mounds is a state park in Collinsville, Illinois, approximately 10 miles northeast of the town of Cahokia. Very confusing for some people.

Long story short: My dad was first a student and then a professor at Parks Air College, which was located there for many years. HE definitely had the math brain. He taught kinetics, which I'd never heard of and had to look it up in the dictionary. Hmm...well, it's some kind of math dealing with forces and motion, etc....has to do with planes and pilots!

(photo taken by The Ronald at Parks College 2009)
(I'm pointing at a photo of my dad that I supplied)

First we had lunch at Oliver's which is located at St. Louis Downtown Airport. (Another confusing name! It's NOT in St. Louis, nor is it DOWNTOWN!) Check out their website. The food was really good and we saw small planes land and take off. I just noticed on their site that they have some sort of helicopter dinner tours! Sounds fun! 

Anyway...for some reason, it had never occurred to me to show Mark the house I lived in as a little girl, my old grade school, church, etc. We also drove past the old location of Parks. Then it was on to the SLU (St. Louis University) campus on Lindell Street in St. Louis, which has been home to Parks for a few years. (That's probably more info than anyone cared to know!)

Although I've felt various emotions over the years concerning my dad, I'm still always proud of him for his Parks College years and the family life we had way back then. It was truly a wonderful life.

"Failure is not an option." -- Gene Kranz 1954 Parks College graduate. Portrayed by Ed Harris in the movie, "Apollo 13"

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Adventures & Remedies

I'm off to a very special adventure today with my son, Mark. I'll most likely blog about some of it, but I already have plans for it to be included in my book, too. (And hey, all of my writer buddies in the C&C Group... this trip was originally planned for Tuesday, and that's why I didn't attend, but it rained that morning and we rescheduled for today.)
I think I've mentioned, once or twice, my various notes of all sizes, scribbled in the moment a thought or memory came to me. A tiny piece of blank paper ripped from a newspaper, the front or back of a receipt, in note pads found in any room of the house, my purse, and/or my car, and of course the old reliable napkin, or paper towel. They would eventually wind up in a pile on my desk, getting spread all over and not to be seen or thought about until I finally decided it was time to de-clutter AGAIN.

This went on for months...years(?) Then one day I read a simple solution to my problem. I wish I remembered where I saw it, and who wrote the article, because I would definitely give them credit. I ran right out and purchased the very inexpensive remedy, which is pictured below:

See that small, single binder ring?? THAT is the answer! I gather my little scribbles every few days, punch a hole in them if necessary, and voile'!

I go through them when I'm working on my book. If I find something I decide to write about that day, I tear it off and throw it away.....making room for more and more notes. You can bet I'm taking it with me on my writer get-away...along with tons of other writerly things!

Hello & Welcome to my two newest followers: Allison and Keair! I hope you always enjoy what you read and see here and come back whenever you can. Thanks so much!

"You should always know when you're shifting gears in life. You should leave your era; it should never leave you." -- Leontyne Price

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

* This 'n That on a Wednesday *

After a huge thunder and lightening storm that blew through our area last night, today is sunny, breezy, not too hot or humid..... perfect!  Oh Happy Day!

Since I'm leaving sometime on Friday for my writer's get-away, I'll post my "I Wonder" segment either very late tomorrow, or early Friday a.m. AND I have my very own, exclusively created graphic for "I Wonder"....made by none other than the immensely talented Mo, from Rose Petals from Heaven. Thank you, Mo! It is awesome! I love it!

(Property of Rose Petals from Heaven
and Becky Povich)

 I added another photo of Vern on the right hand column. Scroll down a little and see him in action!

If you haven't read my interview with Michael Lee West (yesterday), please do. It really is worth the few minutes it will take. I learned so much!

Hello & Welcome to my newest follower: Morpho Marigold! I hope you'll stop by often and always enjoy what you read and see. Thank you so much!

* I forgot to add that I'm in the middle of switching my e-mail addresses from AOL to Gmail, BUT you can still send mail to all of my AOL addresses, and they are being forwarded. My computer guru son, Scott, worked on my laptop the past 2 days and I'm still trying to get used to it. (Psst! ...I don't like some of it! ) I've only had AOL all these years. The e-mail showing on my Profile page is the new one.

"Everywhere I go I'm asked if I think the university stifles writers. My opinion is that they don't stifle enough of them. There's many a best-seller that could have been prevented by a good teacher."
Flannery O'Connor

 


 

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

* Michael Lee West Interview *

Today, I'm thrilled and honored to post my blog interview with Michael Lee West, who is the author of seven books, the latest being, "Gone With a Handsomer Man." I truly enjoyed learning more about Michael Lee; not only about her writing and thoughts on publishing, but she also gives us a glimpse into her personal life as well. I know y'all with enjoy reading it as much as I did!
(photo: Michael Lee's blog)
1) When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
My mother read to me; and when her voice gave out, she bought fairy tales on record albums. I would stretch out in the living room and write stories in my heads. Years later, I put words to paper. I began writing during a childhood illness (got sick at Girl Scout camp) and my doctor put me on bed rest for the summer. My mother brought home stacks of books from the library; later, when I was ambulatory, I went to the library with her and slipped The Carpetbaggers and Intern by Dr. X into her stack. A neighbor, who was working on her MA in English, introduced me to Louisa may Alcott, along with high fantasy (The Hobbit). I started writing my own stories on Big Chief pads from my father's dime store. I kept writing, writing, writing. And never stopped, except to get a B.S. in Nursing (Mother thought I needed something to "fall back on" in case I got married and my husband died, a common belief in that era).

2) Did you receive encouragement from any teachers? Other mentors?
No, despite my fascination with words, I wasn't a child prodigy. My family thought I was trying to be artsy, and foolish. I earned "B's" in college creative writing classes.

3) I see that your first book was your memoir(My Oops!
Crazy Ladies
    (courtesy amazon.com)

Actually, Crazy Ladies was my first book (fiction). The memoir, Consuming Passions, was fourth.

What made you decide to write it?
Consuming Passions
(courtesy amazon.com)
I can't explain this without a long-winded answer. I descended from a long line of Southern cooks, and this shaped my world view. Food is a branch of the family, and its members are sweet, sour, bitter, soothing. Both sides of my family are fabulous cooks, men and women. Me, I never cooked a holiday meal--they were served at my mother's house, and she wouldn't let anyone help. She was--and is--a Southern gourmet cook, but while she was willing to discuss food, she couldn't teach anyone how to cook. She'd get flustered.

I was a typical Baby Boomer, raised in a fast food nation. I was always too busy to cook (but never too busy to eat), so I had about two dozen recipes; basic stuff like spaghetti, chicken casserole, macaroni and cheese. Whenever I was working on a book, I always felt so guilty. I just couldn't juggle writing, raise a family, take care of a house, and put decent food on the table. Around my fortieth birthday, I decided to get serious about cooking. By this time, my mother had developed the knack of explaining certain techniques, such as how to make a roux or the best way to fry chicken. I went on a quest, a Foodie quest. Unfortunately, the grocery in my small town carried basic items. I couldn't find saffron or bow tie pasta (or a decent brand of mayonnaise).

Whenever my publisher sent me on a book tour (actually it's Book Tour to many authors, minus the "a" or "the," but I digress), I had plenty of free time, and the media escorts took me to large grocery stores and Foodie places. My favorite place is Southern Season in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. I came home, my suitcase loaded with bow tie pasta, cookbooks, specialty jams, rice flour, Ethiopian coffee beans, etc. One time four ladies in Charlotte, NC drove me from one event to the next, and we talked about mayonnaise (Dukes is the best brand, we decided). By this time, I'd started writing about food in a journal, keeping progress of my culinary skills. The entries became essays. I sent a few to my agent, and she sold them to my publisher.
Gone With a Handsomer Man
(courtesy amazon.com)
4) When did you decide to write fiction?
It wasn't a conscious decision. That's just what came out of my pen. Publication was a long, weedy road. I belonged to a writing group when I was a student at East Tennessee State (I might add that I was a college drop-out; I went back to school later and earned my B.S. in Nursing).

I received an avalanche of rejection notes. I knew so little about the writing business and considered the rejections to be badges of honor. I pinned them to my wall; and when I ran out of wall space, I put them in a drawer. In the mid-1980s, I started receiving "good" rejection letters--personal notes from editors. Now and then stories and poems were accepted. I wrote two unpublishable novels (didn't show them to anyone--I just knew they were awful. But I also knew that I had to get from point A to B with "practice writing" My first novel, the aforementioned Crazy Ladies, hit the shelves in 1990. I wish I could say, "And it was happily ever after." Nope. I work harder now than I did in the 1980s. Why? The industry has changed. It's harder to find an agent. Independent bookstores are closing.

Mermaids in the Basement
(courtesy amazon.com)
5) How do you juggle your obviously extremely busy life? Your home is beautifully decorated, you're an amazing cook, you maintain a beautiful blog, you're married and live on a farm, And oh, did I mention you're a fabulous writer?!
I'm always behind, always swamped, always leaving something undone--but never the writing. If I start a book, I finish it, even if it's horrible and I hide it in a shopping bag. I have lots and lots of bulging shopping bags in my attic. Writing is a priority. I clean the house when I can, but it's a challenge. I have so many obligations right now, I had to make difficult choices. My husband feeds the chickens and mends broken fences. I cook when I'm hungry, and blog when I have the energy. I stopped taking photos of food (only bloggers know the time and energy that it takes to photograph a house, garden, or food); I discovered royalty free photography and purchase the appropriate license to use on my blogs--not a typo. I now have three blogs, and one discusses the challenges of writing. Here are two essays:
http://acquaintedwiththenightbypipermaitland.blogspot.com/2011/06/rules-of-water.html

http://acquaintedwiththenightbypipermaitland.blogspot.com/2011/05/nesting-instinct-or-why-writers-do-what.html

She Flew the Coop
(courtesy amazon.com)
6) Is there an average length of time it takes you to write a book? How about from the first draft(s) to the finished product?
I don't have a time frame. A book takes as long as it takes. Mad Girls took 4 years. I've been working on A Teeny Bit of Trouble (the second Teeny Templeton novel) for 16 months, and I'm still working on it. Interruptions (read the essays I attached for more information) take a toll. Last summer was filled with family illnesses and household breakdowns--leaky roof, shattered windows, etc. When life is calm, I write faster and end up doing less revision. But life is messy and loud; finding solitude is a challenge. Little things can pull a writer out of a work-in-progress, so it's essential to be disciplined.


7) You've mentioned eating Twizzlers when you write. Do you crave certain foods and beverages when you write?

No, I will eat anything. Twizzlers and Cheeze-Its are quick, and most writers will opt for the quick.

Do you keep a stash at your desk?

I don't keep any food around me. I've got too many papers strewn around, and a spill would be horrid.

8) Do you have a set writing schedule?
Yes. I write from 9 am until 9 pm--longer if the work is flowing. What about when life gets in the way? I try to be very zen-like, but it's a challenge. Mainly I have learned that anything can jerk me out of a book. So I am protective of my writing time.

9) You once told me that all writers get "the heebie-jeebies". How do you handle it when you get them?

If you love to write, nothing will discourage you. But it takes more than love. You must develop your craft and your nerve. You have to write through the fear of failure. Many writers consider our work to be a calling. Look at my essay "The Writing Instinct or Why Writers Do What They Do" or

http://acquaintedwiththenightbypipermaitland.blogspot.com/2011/05/three-writing-secrets.html

10) What are your thoughts on how the publishing industry has changed since your first book?

The Internet has impacted the publishing industry. Bookstores are closing, and ebooks are on the rise. Years ago, publishers didn't worry about sales. They believed it took time to develop a career. Now, those days have ended. What's good and/or bad about it right now? Writers must now be social media experts. That takes time, and most of us aren't good at Tweeting or tooting our own horns. Book tours are now virtual. How do you see the future of it all?I don't have a clue. It will be interesting to watch.

Thank you so much, Michael Lee! I really appreciate the time you took to answer my questions. You're truly a Southern Lady!

*Note added June 15, 10:30am. I inserted more of Michael Lee's book covers into this post. I also highly recommend reading the essays on the links provided. They are wonderful!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Thanking Others For Their Kindness

Blogger Joyce Lansky wrote a nice review about the book she won from me: "Gone With a Handsomer Man" by Michael Lee West. You can read it here: Book Review. Thank you, Joyce! That was very kind of you.

Another Blogger friend, Patricia Preston replied to one of my comments and mentioned she was drinking her iced tea from a pretty goblet, as a little treat for herself that day. I thought that sounded wonderful and so I'm doing the same thing tonight! Thanks, Patricia! I'm using the goblet I recently took photos of, with shadows and light. I may have shown them before, too. I bought them at Goodwill a few months ago, grabbing every single one they had, (nine) in the same pattern, of course! They were only 50¢ a piece!

The newest Searchlights & Signal Flares is online at Tiny Lights. I've mentioned this wonderful site before. The editor, Susan Bono, is a very talented writer, teacher, editor and just plain great friend! Please check out this site. It's your chance to be published online, no fees, no fuss! (and yes, No Payment, but I believe that when you're a new writer, or even an experienced one, having something published and getting your name "out there" is sometimes a very good thing, even if once in a while you don't receive a payment for it.) Susan's printed and online journal is a class act. Check out all the details there. Susan is also presently looking for stories for her quarterly Flash in the Pan, 500 words or less. Check that out, too!

Oh! One more thing.You know how I've been searching for a quiet, out of the way place, for a personal writer's retreat?? A fabulous, very generous relative is permitting me to stay in her condo at no charge, although I offered approximately four times, to pay her something for it! Isn't that wonderful? I'm not going to divulge any other info. Just know that I'll be writing, writing, writing...and hopefully come back home with a much-closer-to-being-completed-book!

"Because I am a woman, I must make unusual efforts to succeed. If I fail, no one will say, "She doesn't have what it takes." They will say, "Women don't have what it takes." -- Clare Boothe Luce

Friday, June 10, 2011

* I WONDER *

I've mentioned before that I love to listen to music, especially when I'm cleaning....usually '70s Rock, Oldies, Country...doesn't matter, as long as it's not Easy Listening. Oh, I like that kind of music, too, Just not when I need to do physical work! I gotta be Movin' & Groovin'!

I turned on the kitchen radio this morning while I made coffee and unloaded the dishwasher. (Yes, we finally got a cheapie one quite a long time ago!) I tuned in to one of our local independent radio stations. They play a wide mix of music genres, depending on what day it is and the time of day. As I listened to some really great music and vocals, it occurred to me that musicians and writers are so much alike. The Big Name Record companies only want to stay with the tried and true singers....just like the Big Name Publishers want to stay with their best selling authors. And this is understandable.....BUT....every now and then, that singer with the fabulous voice appears out of nowhere and is the new sensation. The same goes for writers. It can happen. It's possible. We've seen it happen to others.

I Wonder: What will the future bring for us Unknown Writers?
(The Unknown Comic from The Gong Show)

I Wonder: Will we emerge from obscurity after our self-publishing or small press publishing? If we're talented enough, if we write a book worth reading (to at least thousands) then I say a resounding, "Yes!"

(I found so many great quotes for today's post...I chose to post three of them!)


“Your chances of success in any undertaking can always be measured by your belief in yourself.” -- Robert Collier


“Laugh at yourself, but don't ever aim your doubt at yourself. Be bold. When you embark for strange places, don't leave any of yourself safely on shore. Have the nerve to go into unexplored territory.” -- Alan Alda


Too many people overvalue what they are not and undervalue what they are.” -- Malcolm S. Forbes

Thursday, June 9, 2011

I'm Goin' Wacky, Along with the Sun

Hey Everyone. I've been really busy with my writing & editing.....Yay!... plus other projects. Every day I say to myself that later tonight I will stop by and comment on many of your blogs! It just isn't happening, though. If I haven't been by in a while, please don't think I've forgotten about you or any other negative reason! Sometimes I stop to read a little, but just don't leave a comment.

Until later, hope you're having.... Hot Fun in the Summertime!

Also, Hello & Welcome to my newest follower: Val Thevictorian! I hope you'll stop by often....unless you don't have time! ☺... and always enjoy what you read and see! Thank you so much!


"I think of life itself now as a wonderful play that I've written for myself, and so my purpose is to have the utmost fun playing my part." -- Shirley MacLaine

Monday, June 6, 2011

Hot Fun in the Summertime

My blog friend, Carol, at Under the Tiki Hut (which is an awesome blog, by the way!) is looking for guest bloggers this summer. I asked to be included, and Carol graciously said "yes." Please check out her post with the specifics and maybe YOU can be a Guest Blogger, too! (I'd like to be under a tiki hut somewhere right now!)

Speaking of something as lovely as a tiki hut, I'd like to share a little weather tidbit, since it's been such a Wacky Weather Year so far. We've been having record breaking, or near record breaking high temperatures here the past few days. I swore I would not complain about the heat and humidity, once it got here, after all the cold, yucky, rainy, dreary, cloudy, dark, disgusting, depressing weather we had for so long....AND I'M NOT! At least not out loud, anyway!!

One more thing about summertime and hot weather: I've changed my Play List to one of my Summer lists. Enjoy!

"Ah, summer, what power you have to make us suffer and like it." ~ Russel Baker

Sunday, June 5, 2011

* If It's Sunday, I'm Mixed Up...Again *

I totally forgot about my "I Wonder" post on Friday. I'm blaming it on the fact that last Monday was Memorial Day and I've been all discombobulated since! I'll just wait until next Friday now, and hope I remember. Hmmm....time for another Post-It stuck to my forehead?!

You know how I love those "Twilight Zoney" moments I experience from time to time? I asked for comments a while back, for different, better names. Blogger friend, Daisy, had a really good one and of course now that I'm trying to find it, I can't. I either wasn't listing labels at the time, or forgot. She called it "Cosmic-Something-Or-Other." So, Daisy if you read this, let me know if YOU remember!

So, here's my "Cosmic Twilight Zoney" ♫ ♪♫ moment: Just a day ago, I jotted a note to myself to blog about those Misunderstood Song Lyrics we've all heard over the years! Way back in 1968, Herb Alpert recorded and released a song called, "This Guy's In Love With You." It was a ballad, a love song. My oldest sister, Jo Ann, always thought he was singing, "the sky's in love with you" and she said that just didn't make any sense! Too Funny! WELL.....here's the Twilight Zoney part. Today, on one of the few TV shows I tape on my DVR, CBS Sunday Morning, who do you think one of their interviews was with? Herb Alpert! Isn't that wild? He is such an intelligent, multi-talented, philanthropic,very un-celebrity-like man. And on top of that, he and his wife have been married for something like 40 years! Very rare!

What about you? Have you ever misunderstood some song lyrics??

"It takes no time to fall in love, but it takes you years to know what love is.” -- Jason Mraz  (this is one of many favorite lyrics from Jason Mraz)

Saturday, June 4, 2011

* Suffering from Wanderlust *

Have I mentioned lately that I've never felt such a desire, in my entire life, TO GO SOMEWHERE! Just about anywhere! This powerful force grabbed me a few days ago and hasn't lessened its grip, even a smidgen. I could go on and on as to the whys and wherefores, but I know for sure that my desire to get away and to WRITE is a huge part of it. (Oh, is it coming through loud and clear that I want to go alone?! Although I would take Vern if it was possible!)

Sweet Vern napping on his bed by the fireplace.

Part of me would love to go to a darling, beach side cottage, where the ocean waves would lull me to sleep at night, after a long, glorious day of research and writing.

Part of me yearns to visit the small town in Iowa that I love so dearly. It was the home of my grandparents and parents, long before I came along.

Right now I'd settle for a little 2 or 3 day get-away. Less than 50 miles away if that's all I could have. I just want to get OUTTA HERE


Does anyone have any suggestions for me? Got any luxurious time-share places I could visit? ☺

“He who returns from a journey is not the same as he who left” -Chinese proverb

Thursday, June 2, 2011

* A Wonderful, Writerly Day *

Yesterday was a really productive day, again! If this keeps up much longer I'll believe I'm actually a New Woman. One who is getting organized and accomplishing minor tasks around the house. And I'm writing so much more. And yes, it's still a struggle most times, and yes, it's hard work. But I've learned from a favorite blogger and very intelligent woman, C. Hope Clark, to keep at it. To make your writing your Number One priority.

I've had quite a hard time fighting off self-sabotage, like so many writers do, but Hope and others like her, have taught me to keep at it. Just...Keep...Writing! I'd like to share part of Hope's blog of May 24th:

"Every day you make choices what to accomplish and what to put off. Chances are, your writing is in the latter category. Simply swap it with another task. Neglect something else.

One day you'll look back. You'll see all those precious moments spent dusting, watching American Idol, and eating seconds. The times you gossipped too long, cleaned unnecessarily, and Facebooked beyond reason. And you'll wish you'd written."

Amen, Sister! I think I finally have the resolve, the determination, and the tenacity to complete my book before the end of summer. Please send well wishes and good karma my way! ☺

I'll have more writerly news tomorrow, so please check back then.

I'd like to say a special Thank You to Mo at Rose Petals from Heaven. She is so happy and excited with her winning prizes from my 200th Follower Contest, she wrote an entire post about it. Please stop by and say hello to her!

Hello & Welcome to Ali, Antiques and Teacups, prettylace4me, and Michelle Ridgway.. my four newest followers! I hope you'll stop by often and always enjoy what you read and see! Thank you so much!

"Everybody walks past a thousand story ideas every day. The good writers are the ones who see five or six of them. Most people don't see any." - Orson Scott Card