Tuesday, September 1, 2015

I've moved...

Yep. Again.

I went home again, you see, to an old friend.

I'd love to see you again at Jen Chandler was Here. I'll be there bright and early tomorrow for the September Insecure Writers Support Group.

Love,

Jen

Friday, May 8, 2015

A-Z Reflections Post

This was my third year participating in the A-Z Challenge. I wasn't able to last year and I missed being a part of all the crazy fun.

I really enjoyed the Challenge this year. My topic allowed me to give back to a lot of people who have inspired me, something that I've always wanted to do but never made the time for it. That's the sad truth. Why wait for a blog challenge to tell people how much they inspire you? Still, thanks to the A-Z Challenge creators for giving me the opportunity to do something really fun for a lot of really terrific people!

Things I really liked about the Challenge this year: I appreciated the leaders stopping by. It means a lot to me that someone who has SO MUCH on their schedule to stop by, read a little post, and comment. I know you guys had a TON of blogs to visit so Thank YOU!!

I always love the new visitors, the new comments and the waves from familiar "faces". A great big HELLO to those who stopped by, even for just one post!

Things that didn't work out so well this year: Really there's only ONE thing and it is completely my fault. I wasn't able to make the rounds reading. Many factors combined to make it really difficult form me to carve out the time to sit down and enjoy reading the posts of the many, MANY participants. Bottom line, this is nobody's fault but mine, regardless of whether or not it could be helped. This is my ONLY complaint for the challenge!

The A-Z Challenge introduced me to so many people over the years. Several of these bloggers were highlighted in my posts. I love the blogging community I've come to know and I HATE how my time has slipped away and how I don't have the time to spend on blogging like I used to. I MISS strolling through blogs and getting to know people through their words. Years ago, when I first started blogging, I was able to read up to 20 blogs a day. I'm now at a time in my life where that is just not possible. But I know this will change. One day life will shift again and I'll have time again to enjoy blogging as it should be done.

All I ask is that you guys continue to forgive my absences and I thank you for your patience. You guys are awesome - every last one of you. I treasure every comment, every email notification I get. I'm getting the hang of this move finally and writing is slowly (slowly) coming back to the forefront of my attention.

I look forward to "seeing" you all here and around the blogsphere! Oh, and I've already got an inkling of next year's Challenge theme. Crazy? Yes! But, if I can figure out how to make it work, it proves to be a whole lot of fun!!

Cheers and thanks again to ALL the A-Z Challenge creators, leaders and co-leaders!


Wednesday, May 6, 2015

IWSG May 2015 - Give Yourself Permission

Wow. It's the first Wednesday of a new month already. Last IWSG found me hoping to just get my A-Z Challenge posts up and going! I plan on posting my Reflections post tomorrow.

There were so many AMAZING themes this year and, more than that, there were so many AMAZING people out there, visiting and commenting and making the rounds. My insecurity this month is the same as it has been for years: do I really have what it takes in this world of blogging and social media? Do I really have what is necessary to build this "platform" that all "those in the know" tell me that I "must" have before anything I write will be taken seriously?

I just don't know.

When I started blogging eight years ago I had a desk job. I sat in front of a computer for 40 hours every week. There was ample time between tasks and phones ringing to check blog post updates and keep up with the social media sphere. I was pretty on top of things for about 3 years.

Then I went back to school...and worked on my feet all day...and moved. I LOVE writing. Story is my life's blood. Ask my husband and he'll tell you I spend more money on books, magazines and notebooks than just about anything else. Time, as is usual, is the major constraint.

Time and chronic illness and the feeling I must do EVERYTHING ALL the time. I've spent way too much time trying to do too many things that I haven't focused on what was important to ME. I've always been worried about what "seemed" to be important to everyone else.

And you know what?

That's just dumb.

So maybe I can't (and wasn't able to) read twenty blogs a day. That is in no way a reflection of my respect and profound awe at my fellow bloggers. Maybe I'm not able to come home after 8 hours on my feet and power write for several hours. Maybe some days I'm not able to do much of anything at all. Come take a peek at my counter tops and you'll see that's true more often than not!

That's OK.

I can't do X,Y, and Z and hope to ever become proficient in A, B or C. I certainly can't write all the ideas I have for stories and novels and essays while, at the same time, pursuing other ideas in This, That, or The Other. Sure, I've heard it all: you've got to go after what you want! Yes. You DO. But you must first decide what it is you REALLY want!

There's a quote written on the wall in the office where I work. It's a quote by Oprah that says, "You CAN have it all...just not all at the same time." That's been my problem. I've wanted it ALL, right now.

Again, that's just plain dumb.

So, here you go Blogverse. I hereby give myself permission...

...to fail.

To confess that I suck at a lot of things. But also to realize that I EXCEL at a lot of things also. I give myself permission to put aside some of the dreams and ideas that I've had for YEARS in favor of going after that one, ever-present THING that will simply NOT leave me alone.

WRITING.

I give myself permission

to write.

To write bold. To write badly. To SUCK. To burn pages and read aloud awful scenes. To laugh at my mistakes and my run-on sentences and my recent re-adoption of the Oxford comma.

I give myself permission to not be the most proficient blogger out there. I also give up my apologies to those who I have shamefully neglected in terms of blogs and reading and commenting and visiting.

This Insecure Writer's Support Group meeting I ask you to give YOURSELF permission to just write. To breathe deep of ink and paper, of keyboards and motherboards. Give yourself permission to write badly and boldly; to create AWFUL first drafts and forge AMAZING final drafts. Give yourself permission to BE the most AMAZING writer YOU can be.

There are stories in you that only you can tell.

So tell them.


Thursday, April 30, 2015

The Letter Z

ZIP

ZERO

ZILCH!!

Yep, that's the number of posts we have left in the 2015 A-Z Challenge. We made it kids!! Congratulations to EVERYONE who participated and made it to the very end. And a HUGE congrats to those who actually had the chance to read other blogs and get to know other bloggers.

Unfortunately, that wasn't in the cards for me this year, but I feel pretty accomplished having posted for 26 days straight.

And THAT, dear friends, is very inspiring indeed!

I hope you've enjoyed my little romp through the blog-verse. I hope you've met some new people who can inspire YOU to live a more lovely life, a more beautiful life. People who can encourage you to step out and do what YOU believe you're on this earth to do.

Have a wonderful night, lovelies! I'll be offline the next few days. Here's to a wonderful summer blogging, living, and enjoying life!

Cheers,

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

The Letter Y

The Letter Y. Really? This month has seemed to fly by...but it also feels like FOREVER. How is that possible? Hmmm, maybe I could get funding to research that phenomenon...

The Letter Y is devoted to Rachel Branthen, aka [Y]oga Girl. She is a kind, beautiful, wonderfully inspiring soul. Her message is peace both inside and out. She is so very giving and all of her posts on Instagram inspire me to be a better person. They also push me to practice yoga, something I've had an on again, off again relationship with for the past 20 years!

Of course, I'd probably be more inclined to practice if I lived on a tropical island. But, I digress :D

Check out Yoga Girl! Be inspired, if not by her philosophy, cheerfulness in spite of personal struggles, or encouragement to practice yoga then by the BEAUTIFUL locations behind her amazing yoga poses!

Happy A-Z-ing kids! Pssst...we're almost DONE!


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

The Letter X

Well, this post is up late! BUT it's up and that, my friends, is what matters :)

Oh, and I should warn you, this post is a TOTAL cop-out but it was the ONLY thing I could think to do with the letter X.

X is notoriously hard. EVERYONE doing the A-Z must meet this bugbear head-on and there are some very, very creative ways of doing so. Because, let's face it: this letter is HARD to find a word for that actually fits a topic!

Unless of course you're doing musical instruments or pharmaceuticals...

When I was in high school, the X-Files was in full swing. I LOVED that show and would watch it every week with my dad. The X in the title, of course, suggested the unexplained and the inexplicable. Things that were beyond human understanding. There are MANY authors out there who tackle the unexplained in their writing. Ghosts and goblins, graveyards and aliens, worlds behind panels in the wall - these are just some of the topics writers of Science Fiction and Fantasy enjoy perusing.

I could have chosen anyone but I chose Neil Gaiman. Why? Because he's NEIL GAIMAN that's why!! Not only is he an amazingly talented writer, he's a humble, kind, beautiful soul. You've all heard of him; you've all probably read something he's written. He inspires me to be myself, to write my heart out, and to not shy away from the unexplained and the strange and the beautiful.

Happy A-Z...and please forgive this cop-out post!
Cheers!

Monday, April 27, 2015

The Letter W

We're coming down to the finish line! These next four days see us all racing forward, four posts to go, until we can claim our SURVIVAL status in the 2015 A-Z Challenge! Congratulations to everyone who's still in it to win it!!

***

Today I get to highlight another blogger whom you all probably already know. I began reading Michelle {W}allace's blog several years ago and she has become one of my favorite people in the blog-verse. Her personal blog is called "Writer in Transit" and she always, ALWAYS has something positive and encouraging posted!! Not only that, Michelle is one of the amazing forces of nature that keep our Insecure Writer's Support Group up and running month after month. You can read her encouraging words on that website as well!!

Michelle has always had something uplifting to say about my writing. Whenever I'm brave enough to post something creative or something deeply personal, Michelle is the first person to tell me it's amazing and great! She always knows how to keep me writing, especially when I'm feeling more than my fair share of insecure.

MICHELLE! THANK YOU FOR BEING AN ENCOURAGEMENT TO THIS INSECURE WRITER TO KEEP PUTTING PEN TO PAPER AND FINGERS TO KEYBOARD. I SINCERELY APPRECIATE EVERY KIND COMMENT AND EVERY CHEER YOU'VE SENT MY WAY. THANK YOU FOR WORKING TIRELESSLY FOR ALL OF US AT THE INSECURE WRITER'S SUPPORT GROUP SITE! HUGS!!

You know the drill, kids! Get on over to her blog and enjoy!!

Cheers,