You Had Me At Bourbon!

Dearies,

After years of cooking family meals, I am having no problem letting my husband cook for me. I won’t deny that my step back from the kitchen began years ago after working as a cafeteria lady. The massive amounts of cooking daily burned me out. This is how I know a chef is not my calling.

One of the many signs and symptoms of being a writer? I dabble. Knowing very little about a lot of things but able to research and uncover information is fun, it doesn’t always mean you become an expert at much but is a handy tool for a writer. That includes cooking.

That meal my hub made me was delicious. Consisting of a twice baked potato we shared, a nice fresh salad and the chop! What a chop, a peppercorn-bourbon marinated grilled chop served covered with a stuffing of toasted bread, garlic, onion and celery sautéed in wine. Hmm, it was good enough to curl my toes. All the while my man was cooking away, my fingers were hitting the keyboard catching up the blog. (Still one blog left to catchup and they will all be on track again.)

Feeding the body to feed the mind so creativity will flourish. Gotta love that man of mine.

Ah! Maybe a nap is now in order.

Just,
Me

 

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Self Study Course

Dearies,

Attempting to write a fantasy fiction young adult story has been taking years now. Pushed off the task for this or that reason. I am once again working on the rough draft. While doing so, I am also reading some favored fantasy authors my family enjoys. From the books making up the Enchanted Forest by Patricia Wrede series to stories by R. A. Salvatore, I am reading and studying how to write action scenes as well as pacing and story development. Getting way to technical on the writing part, I know full well about using details to procrastinate.

Attention to what works in a story and why when reading is helpful. Then looking at my story and considering whether or not my telling flows with the same feeling as it does in my head. What perspective and voice will be the best telling? When to purposely slow the consumption of words so that the reader pays close attention to detail, and devours them hungrily when the action needs to move quickly.

I know my writing will need revision, but any pointers I can find through reading better writers and looking at my work objectively to see where it fails is a huge help – as long as I don’t get caught up in self judgement and doubt. (Did I hear a cosmic amen?)

IF you have a suggestion for this genre, please tell me in the comments. And thanks in advance for the help.

Just,

Me

Remodeling

Dearies,

This project started years ago and was sidetracked by many events. Decisions were made, and remade. This caused the estimate to be readjusted since it was first begun. We’ve now been given the opportunity to move further in the project and are taking it. The project? Bathroom make-over!

One thing I learned in all this, things change, so don’t fret on decisions, cause they can be redivided. Choices that allow for tweaking and have wiggle room tend to be better and more adaptable to change. Whether the change is a little or a lot we have no way of knowing, so when we make those hard and permanent choices- adopting to them can be next to impossible. There are products now on the market that weren’t as readily available five years ago when we first made the decision we to remodel.

It has also taught me patience, the kind that goes beyond the moment of excitement with an idea, and broadened into a universal application of perspective and attitude. (This could be fleeting, but I hope not.) Hoping it will grow and can be applied in more circumstances than remodeling the house, to include writing stories as well. That dreaded editing process is specifically on my mind.

Sigh. Oh, well. A nice thought.

Just,
Me.

I Got Plans!

Dearies,

A feed from The Atlantic (http://bulletjournal.com) on the Bullet Journal caught my eye.

It reminds me of my steno pad/date/day planner only it hadn’t dawned on me to index it. (Ryder that idea is genus.)

Talking with my husband and a friend, I found we have been doing something similar, just not as evolved. Some of the many artists on the ‘pinned board of things’ have really been inspired by this neat journal/planning concept. The idea that a less formulated structure was far more productive allowed for me to be, well, me; a concept lost on me until now.

For someone who seems to be all over the place at once, the structure of most planners frustrated me to no end. The open unstructured page of even just a steno pad (no center ring to fight with my hand when writing) gave me comfort and flexibility. I glued and taped things like a calendar and schedules on the inside cover. Back then I hadn’t been exposed to moleskin, and the big box bookstores weren’t in my little town. We went to combo local franchised stores that sold books, cards, and gifts, so a plain jane steno pad required me to hand date every page (and I did), leaving very little room for those notes creative people seem to amass (especially writers of all kinds, we will even use TT in a fix).

Finding a way to keep track of myself, my projects and allowing for the multitude of notes to self became overwhelming with formatted planners, and even my self dated steno. When I read the article and checked out the website, was the light at the end of the tunnel. I didn’t live life compartmentalized, why should my planner? Room for everything in the course of a day and not have bits of this here and that idea there, slips of paper and sticky notes peeping and slipping out from between pages sounded ideal. There’s room ideas, scenes, character development and doodles for that picture book. Right there in the middle of the pages between today and tomorrow – that is if you don’t decided ahead of time how many pages should be devoted to one day.

It is something more than a glorified personal journal, because it can be carried around every day. Retain information, projects, whatever and won’t rely on electricity or a gadget. So maybe it isn’t high tech, or up to speed, it does satisfy the tactile need in me to be grounded and in control of something, even if it is just pen, ink and paper.

I think I am going to like bringing back my steno pad/date book/planner/journal, because it will mean keeping track of what I am, will be doing, as well some of what I need to be, want to be, especially when a writing idea hits. I might even incorporate some of Ryder’s tweaks (thanks for the tweaks).

Just,

Me.

Disconnect

Dearies,

So this is a problem. The difference between pieces I write for myself and those written for public consumption. Review reading had made this realization a priority several years ago. This, disconnect between the two writing audiences.

Sitting down to write for you, an armor of disconnect is the aura around me. Its every word for itself— have you ever tried to write a rough draft, edit and rewrite in one stroke of the pen or punch of a key? That’s what I am talking about. It makes the words come in sputters and spits.

When I write, just to write for me, I don’t go through that process. I just think a thought and before it is complete in my mind, it has already moved on down into my arm and out my fingers onto/in the format at hand to exist visually as words. This process makes me rush to get the word down and the flow of thoughts roll out like raging river – the rhythm of reading run so smooth. I don’t worry about what you will think or judge.

The difference in the two types of writing are vast. Trying to find a happy medium between the two is or become more comfortable struggle. I suppose it is a part of the “figuring out how I write” stage of a young writer. (I am amused by that coined category– young writer. I am over fifty flipping years old! But, I see the truth in that term.)

There are many things I have yet to learn about being a writer. Being a late bloomer has advantages as well as drawbacks. This disconnect and resolution of it is one of mine.

Just,
Me

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