CENTER OF CONFUSION

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Lost ConfidenceI wish this look could swipe over me. A form of utter calm and no worries. Have you ever been so overwhelmed that you want to throw the dishes in the garbage, the radio along with the dishes, the television hit with a baseball bat (if you have one), and the computer hidden and you can’t remember where? I’m sure we have all had these days, even weeks, and why? I don’t know about you, but I want things done and not have to wait until later. After all my years on the Planet Earth, I should be able to shrug and let pieces fall where they want. But, this is wishful thinking and you know what–I’m glad. It means I am still around and kicking. No make that writing.

Do you ever feel like things hit you dead center at the most inopportune time? My computer started hanging up. Nothing would work, except alt control delete or OFF. And this was right when new scenes were flying through my head for another book. Yes, pen and paper were handy, but my writing is not the best in the world. Since the computer, I’ve even forgotten how to make the writing legible. Any way, I tried and could not read my own handwriting. So, I waited a day and tried again. Nada.

Another idea hit…a tape recorder. Somewhere, I had put an old-fashioned one and knew how to operate this. Now where? A search of almost every drawer in my home became the focus point, and search I did. Until, the one drawer became evident. You know the one that catches everything. There it was hidden under scads of odds and ends and it worked when I turned it on.

Not to let the words escape me, I began recording what I could remember for the new book. It was like my fingers running over the keyboard, but instead my voice hitting the airwaves of the recorder. Then, squawk, squeak, screech, and nothing. Guess batteries don’t last forever. So, excuse me, as I need to get to the store and pick up a couple. No, wait a minute, look I am hitting the keys and my computer has returned to normal.

Yes, we all have our good and bad days. We all have interruptions. We all have intrusions in our lives, but this tells us we are alive and kicking. We do have time to get things done and complete our novel.

Head to your favorite writing corner, put on your coat of armor, and let the words fall out whichever way they can: paper, pen, napkins, tissue paper. You’ve got the words to use and this is what we are all about…writing.

Happy You. Happy Writing.

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CHANGES – NO NOT AGAIN

Lost ConfidenceYes, you read the title right. How many times do we make changes in our daily lives? No, forget about the little things that drive us crazy, but major hurdles to climb or jump over. Deadlines are changed and never forward, always yesterday. If you are writing, you know the ones where the edits were due and you still have one more chapter to go through.

What about passwords?  I could write a book on passwords and their strengths, but who remembers all the letters, caps, numbers, the %%% and then the &&&, and then the oops, forgot to lock the number key. Yes, we all have to make certain our lives and our work is secure. Yet, there are days I feel like a machine that is half-broken and can’t remember where I was or where I need to start. Hey, maybe I finished and…

Yet, one thing I learned, there is so much more to be learned. Learning is one part of life that never stops and this also involves change or changes. Ya, gotta learn to roll with the ball and go around corners, curves, cut your own way, and yes have fun. I took a good look at the picture and decided PUG would be his name, gotta love that tie. You can’t tell if he is disgusted about wearing the tie, or just in one of those “so what moods.”

Moods are indicators of changes we hit along life’s highway. Angry does not get us to the next mile post. Impatience has a tendency to increase the anger, if we can’t get something like now. Do some of these things come to you through your characters? Here we are writing and need to give our protagonist or antagonist something to bring a surprise into our scene. Well, here is your chance to bring out all of your ideas on change and changes. Try them on your characters and see how they fit.

Before long, you will laugh at some of the things you are asking of your characters in trying to put them through so many loop holes. Yet, we do the same things to ourselves every day. Why be serious all the time. Laugh, Have Fun. Pretend. Give yourselves day off from all the changes. Then go back and you can change your characters’ personalities. Let them have fun too. Lighten the atmosphere. If they want to be eccentric, maybe that is just the point you need to make in this scene.

Changes will happen every day, several times a day, but you do not always have to make them. Changes are possibilities arising out of complications. Make sure you need to change, want to change, and give yourselves time to make changes, even give this time to your characters. Maybe the ARC is not happening for them or you. Don’t push the scene. Instead be like PUG, just stretch out and watch what happens, with or without the tie.

Happy Changes.  Happy Contemplations.  Happy Writing.

EXERCISE IS FUN

Yes, this should be about fun, parties, and everything that goes along with the Holiday Season, but it is. The exercise I’m talking about comes with the fabulous group of Silver Sneakers I have the honor of being their instructor.

Yes, we work hard every time we come into class. We stretch and stretch with the Yoga Stretch classes. We learn how to balance so our bodies can experience new poses and the stress of the day, time, month slide off the top. Then we learn how to combine the workout to strengthen our muscles, and put the balance to work as we squat, and squat, and squat. Never, do we go overboard. We work hard to make our muscles work for us. Like lifting weights and the ugh bicep curls. We use these muscles every day: picking up groceries, putting the clothes in the washer, shaking them into the dryer, and the important one – picking up the grand-kids.

We also work on the Cardio end of the scale to give our hearts the ability to help us each day. The rule is to do what you can and not push yourselves over your limit. Cardio can be doing a little more than we thought we could, but never over the limit.

We have a great room to workout in and welcome everyone; newbies, seasoned, and always have some oldies come back and surprise us with visits. We also combine fun with our exercises and our program. You never know what will pop up and give all of us a great laugh.

We do know how to party and express our new-found energy with different avenues. This is a set-up for the following pictures – our Holiday Luncheon. If you are new to Atlanta, been afraid to venture out to a ‘gym,’ fear not. We will welcome you, add you to our group, and begin exercising and having fun. You can find us at AGX, in the Blee Shopping Center in Chamblee, Georgia. No special clothes, just come and be with us as we go forward in to the new year.

Here are the pics to show our fun at the Hudson Grille in Brookhaven. I am fortunate, no Blessed, to have all the group at our SS program. Come be part of our group and learn how to exercise and have fun.

No, this is not my usual writing theme, but what stories can be written by the successes of our group.

Happy Holidays and see you in 2015 for your Good Health.

Patricia

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STUCK IN THE BLACK HOLE?

Two friends“Here we go again, Ethel. What does she know about black holes? Aren’t they the things that will gobble up the earth?”

“I’m sure she won’t let us fall into nothingness. And no matter what, we will still be together. But, before we get excited, let’s check this out.” Ethel smiled. “She has something to share, I think.”

Aristotle said, “We are what we repeatedly do.” If you believe this then you will never get out of the black hole. But, Aristotle did not go far enough and let you know how to break this chain. I call it a chain, as it has a way of hand-cuffing us to our present lives. Why? Because it is comfortable. What would happen if we decided to change our habits, our lives, our minds? Yes, a lot of chaos would happen, and it could be the change we need to pull us up from the BLACK HOLE.
Stop and think for just a moment and ask yourselves, “What do I do over and over each day that I could change?” Here are some things I thought about:
1. Checking email over and over.
2. Re-organizing files, which don’t need it, but might look neater.
3. Checking online banking balances.
These are daily moves we make without thinking. Just something we’ve done forever and have not made a move to change. No, we can check email twice a day and still not miss anything. Why reorganize the files in the middle of the year. The New Year may make changes for us and then we can decide what to do. If you have an idea of your bank balances and there has been no HUGE expenditure, why look every day.
If you always start out your day with the same chore, do something different. Does your floors need vacuuming every day? Not unless you are a day care center for foster animals. Besides, dust bunnies are company and can inspire your writing. Okay, take the time and watch them hide on a cloudy day and spring to life as the sun shines.
Do you always have to cook a big dinner at night? What about breakfast at dinner? Kids would love this and sometimes I think scrambled eggs or an omelet taste better in the evening than the first thing I see in the morning. Or, what about cleaning out the fridge with the left-over food, mix and match, and surprise even Aristotle.
Okay you do have writing and research to do, but always at the same time? If you need to do research, hit the internet and get most of this done. Don’t flip-flop from research to writing. Do one or the other with concentration and persistence. You’ll accomplish more and feel less overwhelmed.
Switch day for chores. If you always do laundry on Monday, switch to another day. If you get groceries on Wednesday, when the prices change and new ads are printed, why fight the crowds. Go on Thursday when there is fewer people, shorter lines, and more parking. Saturday and Sunday are so different for everyone. Still, experience these two days as usual, and see what you do over and over that you could change.
Have you ever walked through your home, looked at your small book library, and shook your head. “No, I can’t stop and read. My writing comes first.” What if you changed this to, “I think that new book would be a jump-start on my writing,” and sit down and read a few chapters right smack in the middle of the day. You get involved with the characters and feel energized.What happened? You relaxed, enjoyed reading, and now your fingers are ready to hit the keyboard with gusto.

What about the BLACK HOLE? If you make small changes and do something different each and every day, it will fill up with your excitement, your new choices, and disappear.
Happy Changes. Happy Surprises. Happy Writing.

THE DAY AFTER THANKSGIVING

BlogI am a little late in wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving, but what is wrong with the day after? All the hard work is done, like shopping, menu planning, guest lists. The only thing left are the leftovers and memories.

Thanksgiving used to be a simple day, a gathering for family, friends, and strangers. Yes, strangers. Thanksgiving was a day of celebration of the fruits of the harvest and preparations for winter.

Now, we start celebrating our Thanksgivings slid in between the Spirits of Halloween and the Christmas Stockings. Every year, I notice the orange and black colors of Halloween, the red and green colors of Christmas, overshadowing the Pilgrims and turkeys get hidden somewhere down another aisle.

We worry about the menu, the space, and maybe something new. What’s wrong with all of the old stand-by items? Do you realize, we are still celebrating with most of the same menu the Indians had? Let’s take a look, and sorry if  miss one or two: turkeys, wild caught and cooked over a fire, not in one. Potatoes and turnips, grown and dug up just before the big day. Corn on the cob, fresh corn in the bread, later known as cornbread, tomatoes, onions, and pumpkins ready to roast. There was no worry about matching silverware, or even silverware for that matter. Fingers worked great. Dishes may have included woven mats piled high from the open fire. Seating arrangements included the Chief and the rest all squashed in beside him, legs crossed, and the singing or chants to assure blessings today and for future crops.

Now, we sit and wiggle. We try to make the correct choice of fork, spoon and try not to dribble on the linen table-cloth. Instead of being quiet and sharing our thoughts and ideas, we hurry up, and head to the living room, den, or which ever room holds the television. Football is the thrill of the day. Oh, wait! The stores have opened and if we do not dive into the crowds, we will miss the best bargain of the season.

Then, we realize we feel empty, no not in the stomach area, but in the heart and soul. I wish you to have a full heart, a contented soul, and a feeling of gratefulness with all of your families, friends, and acquaintances.

Yes, I am home the day of Thanksgiving and enjoy my friends. I’ve talked to my son and his wife, heard all of the laughter of their family, and still feel as though I am there. Better yet, I am home the day AFTER Thanksgiving and satisfied to be quiet. There is always tomorrow, and I’d rather hit it full of energy, blessings, and not bruises from outlandish shoppers.

I pray that all of you are happy, relaxed, satisfied, and ready to tackle December. We only have one more month to clean up our acts of 2014 and prepare the way for 2015. Let’s do this in high style.

 

Thanks to all of my followers and letting me spew out a few feelings.  Blessings to all of you and your families. May you gather strength and knowledge and share this with everyone.

Happy Writing. Happy Stories. Happy Lives.

Patricia

 

 

 

 

86,400 WHAT?

YouFirst question, is this money? Maybe mileage on an airline pass? Or a collection of items in a hobby? You have scratched the surface of your life. This is TIME, the amount of seconds you have every day of your life.

Now that you know you have 86,400 seconds each day of your life, how will you use them? As writers, the answer would be writing, but we cannot write every second of every day. Our well would run dry. Our fingers on the keyboard would not be efficient. Ideas would soon become a jumble and certain thoughts drained out of our heads. So what can we do with this precious gift given to us EACH day?

There are quite a few seconds we need to sleep and rejuvenate our mind and body with good healthy practices. Then we would need seconds to feed our family, like cooking, and getting groceries. We would need seconds to run errands and, of course, check the media part of our lives. We would need seconds to visit friends, go to meetings, and share our thoughts with other people/writers. There would be seconds needed to read for pleasure and research.

Now, this gives you something fun to do and see how many things you can consider. Yeah, you hear the word list and this is a great place to start. Analyze your life for one day, or 86,400 seconds and see where you spend your time. Do you spend time or waste time? Do you give your time to someone else and watch transformations on the other person’s face. Do you volunteer and help others?

These 86,400 seconds are worth more than if there were a ‘$” sign in front. Money comes. Money goes. But the seconds are there each and every day. This is a bank that never runs dry. Yet, living a full life, happiness runs all over the place, and time does have a way of racing by quicker than we think.

When you get up each morning, decide how you will spend your 86,400 seconds. Live Life.  Love well. Stay Happy. Your writing will flourish, your friends become many, and the opportunities you may have overlooked, become plentiful. Have fun with your 86,400.

Until next visit,

Happy Writing.

A Different Blog

See what happens when you are having fun.  Our SilverSneakers group is all for the 3 F’s – Fitness, Friends, Fun. This is our Fall Festival at the 57th Fighters Group. Yeah, I know we were to sit out on the patio, enjoy the cool weather, and watch the planes touch down and take off. But, none of us had control over the weather; so we did the next best thing…We took over the bar area and had a blast. The windows look out onto the runways and we could see the planes come in and take off. Of course, we were much too busy laughing, stuffing our faces with great food, and getting to know each other in a social atmosphere. No, I did not require any exercise at this time. I was going to upload this pic into a huge form, and decided to let everyone try to pic themselves out of the photo.  SS 57th FIGHTER 10-15-2014 001

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Now for a glimpse of my wild side. I attended our Georgia Romance Writers Conference, Moonlight & Magnolias for a whole weekend. So many great authors and writers there and the programs were the best ever. We had so many options and classes to take, you just closed your eyes and pointed. I lucked out and shared a room with my birthday friend. Yep, we met several years ago and found out we have the same birthday, but not the same year.  As we went through all of our material, we chose classes a little different and took great notes. Then we shared everything and came up with new ideas and new strategies for our writing.

Then on Saturday night, we had the Maggie’s Award Banquet. All the published authors had entered their stories and now down to the finalists. But, we still had the HUNKS, this year just the HUNK. They are guys that pose for the covers of Romance Writers Books, usually quite down to the buff. And this HUNK, was dressed to the nines and still took time to pose with the writers around him. Just like this:20141011_190852 20141011_190756-1me and Diane. It was great fun and a lot to share with others and have good laughs. Yes our wine glasses are full. He also escorted the Maggie contestants to the stage and then off the stage . This was before the DJ and the dancing started.

Now, to make plans for next year.

I’ll get back on the blog portion by tomorrow night. Just wanted to share this with you since my website took a dive.

 

Happy Writing. Live Life. Enjoy LIfe. Write More.

 

Comments are welcome.