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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Lifeguard On Duty?

When it comes to maintaining the creative flow and writing an authentic scene, I love to use photographs for inspiration. The pictures allow me to visually tap into the plethora of senses that my characters are experiencing and the story usually benefits in so many ways. Many writers live inside their own heads, always spinning ideas around and around. We need to attack life, taste the flavors, and smell the sensuality to guard against becoming social shut-ins. When I am lacking for a real life muse or needing to explore the unknown, I love to snap pictures to jump start the process.

The visual stimulation for today is this alert seagull, keeping watch while the lifeguard on duty apparently takes a break. We’ve all had moments when we felt like the lifeguard stand in our own lives was empty but perhaps those are the times when we need to overcome fear and just jump right into the water. Having faith in the magic of a blank page is a lot like swimming in uncharted waters….hope you brought your bathing suit!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Welcome Home

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” – Anais Nin


       Moving is the worst. All the packing and cleaning and unpacking and organizing…. I mean, moving is the absolute worst! But moving also means moving forward, moving on, moving up and that is always a little bit terrifying no matter how excited one is over the prospect of something new.
        Luckily the laws of balance have a system in place to ensure that we don’t remain stagnant for too long. The key is to never stop asking the big questions because when we’ve grown as much as possible in one area, the Universe has a way of making sure we become painfully aware that we no long fit. They don’t call them growing pains for nothing, right?
        When we keep bumping up against oppositional forces - perhaps trying to steamroll through the brick wall is not the right answer. Sometimes moving is the only solution and as much of a hassle it is to realize you’ve erroneously pick the wrong paint color…creating a home figures to take a bit of trial an error.
        A house, like a soul, is a work in progress and I will not be satisfied until I find the perfect color that says, “welcome home.”

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Romancing the Words

“They're all just slaves to the gods they made,” – James Blunt
Okay, I admit it; I am in love with words. Big words, little words, get inside of your head and annoy you the rest of the day words. I like to play with words, discover new ones, and find  inventive ways to implement them. At the risk of sounding like a hopeless book worm, I vehemently relish banter between creative minds. Unfortunately, most people look at me like I have twelve heads when I pop off with one of my newly discovered verbal gems. So where are “my” people hiding? While I have never been one to lose sleep over what people think about me, it would be nice to not have to dumb myself down just to participate in daily conversation.
Try as I might to downplay it, I am quite proud of the extensive vocabulary that I have developed and I relish any chance to flex my linguistic muscles. You can imagine this does not bode well for me in today’s idiotic society of texting abbreviations, misspelling improper utilizations, and the ever dreaded emoticon. Everyone loves a good slang term or pop culture vernacular but today’s society is being driven by uneducated reality stars with all the social etiquette of water rats. Need we wonder why educators are helpless against the dumbing down of America? The disease has gone viral and it’s spreading.
Well, I will not participate in this degradation. I will not contribute to the ignorance that has fueled this process. Being self-righteously proper has nothing to do with it, my road rage mouth has more venom than the Bronx cobra but people need to make some sort of effort to elevate their consciousnesses or we all are certainly doomed.
When I am feeling judgmental about this I return to the words and rekindle my longstanding romance. I know that if we stop romancing the words, we will eventually just find ourselves rambling to an unreceptive audience. The danger in this is that people have an innate need to be heard, understood and know that they are active contributors to something bigger than the confines of conversation. And while communication methods have certainly changed, providing unprecedented access, the power of words should not be taken for granted, ignored or left to the paid product placements of some celebrity’s vacant Twitter account. The way we speak is a direct reflection of the way we think and ultimately the way we live. Make sure your thoughts, your words, and your actions are your own.
(....dismounting soap box)

Friday, January 7, 2011

Writing the Magic

I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember but I have not always considered myself a writer. Growing up, I always used the words as survival tools but never thought past the process. First, it was all just merely therapeutic scribbling heartbreaks that decorated the pages of my pre-teen, pretty, pink diary. Then, during high school, it occurred to me that I could use that raw emotion to create my very own fiction. So I began writing silly stories in which my friends and I had everything we could ever dream of and it was quite gratifying. That’s the thing about writing, it sort creeps in there until you can’t breathe without writing the magic down.
Sure, it’s not all magic. We see things we never want to remember and we have experiences that we would rather die than share with anyone else…but that is the real beauty in aspiring to create something people can relate to. Life doesn’t always have the words or give us the endings we desire so we seek to create them in characters, settings, and by twisting plots until they make sense, make meaning. Even in the most convoluted of stories, writers stand before their readers naked and exposed every time they explore the “what ifs” and “why nots” of life.
Some fiction is actually so personal that it becomes the truth in one way or another. After all, the reader swims in the sea of reality that the writer provides and we all form our own opinions as a result of how the bikini fits.