Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Creative Writing

Little notes left about the house by little writers.

Yes, Light "Bobs" are very "fragele"

To see more pics from Wordless Wednesday, go here.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

On Determination

I watched Piers Morgan interview Mark Cuban last night. One phrase Cuban mentioned about his own success struck me.

"The only thing you can control is your own effort." 

Don't you think that is so true? When we strive for a goal of any kind, there are so many variables and unknowns. But we can ultimately control our own efforts and how much time we spend going for a goal. This applies to writing one-hundred fold. So many writers labor and whine about how hard it is to write a novel. To get that first draft written. And then, of course, there are all the downer messages about the state of publishing today and how difficult it is. It's challenging to write that first draft and even more challenging to navigate the business of seeking publication. But isn't it good to remember that in the really important ways, it really is up to you, the writer, to put that effort forward?

Take Gus, for example (in the video below). That dog knows what self effort is all about!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Save Some Time To Dream

Like every writer I know, I've been dreaming for a long time. By God's grace, I'm about to have a huge dream come true. I can tell you more next week. For today, I'd like to share this song that always inspires me in hopes it will encourage you, too. It's titled Save Some Time To Dream by John Mellencamp.

Save some time to dream
Save some time for yourself
Don’t let your time slip away
Or be stolen by somebody else
Save some time for those you love
For they’ll remember what you gave
Save some time for the songs you sing
And the music that you’ve made

Could it be that this is all there is?
Could it be there’s nothing more at all?
Save some time to dream
‘Cause your dream could save us all

Save some time for sorrow
Cause it will surely come your way
Prepare yourself for failure
It will give you strength some day 
Try to keep your mind open
And accept your mistakes
Save some time for living
And always question your faith

Could it be that this is all there is?
Could it be there’s nothing more at all?
Save some time to dream
‘Cause your dream might save us all

Cast your eyes up to heaven
Oh what does that mean to you
Try not to be too judgmental
So others will not judge you
Save some time to think
Oh before you speak your mind
Many will not understand
And to them you must to be kind

Could it be that this is all there is?
Could it be there’s nothing more at all?
Save some time to dream
‘Cause your dream might save us all

Oh yeah
Your dream might save us all

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Teaser Tuesday: Agoraphobics In Love

"What do you believe is beautiful? And how do you feel about witnessing its destruction?" Agoraphobics In Love by Lisa Tucker


This is an enjoyable, poignant short story by author Lisa Tucker featuring a couple who "meet" in an on-line support group. (And it's only .99 cents on Kindle!)

   Product Description from Amazon

After the accidental death of her parents, Emily retreated to their home. Continue reading.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Teaser Tuesday: The Storm At The Door

"There is the house in the wilderness.. The house, Echo Cottage, with  the lake spread before it,  a quivering lattice of light in the late afternoon." - p. 1, THE STORM AT THE DOOR by Stefan Merrill Block

From the book jacket: The past is not past for Katharine Merrill. Even after two decades of volatile marriage, Katharine still believes she can have the life she felt promised to her by those first exhilarating days with her husband, Frederick. Read more.

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading. Anyone can play. 

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Day At The Beach

My dad as a boy in Martha's Vineyard, circa 1940's.

Noting the interesting detail on the sand pail. What characters might these be? Anyone know?

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Teaser Tuesday: The Summer I Learned To Fly

"For some people it's the smell of sunblock." p. 1 (This is the line that tugged at me in the bookstore because I will forever associate the smell of sunblock with my little girls.) 
"That night I went up to bed in a silent house, safe in my role of the girl who doesn't break the rules, who doesn't upset the natural order and demand explanations from the adults around her. I slept late and then I went to work." p. 59

The Summer I Learned To Fly by Dana Reinhardt

From the book jacket: Drew's a bit of a loner. She has a pet rat, her dead dad's Book of Lists, an encyclopedic knowledge of cheese from working at her mom's cheese shop, and a crush on Nick, the surf bum who works behind the counter.

It's the summer before eighth grade and Drew's days seem like business as usual, until one night after closing time, when she meets a strange boy in the alley named Emmett Crane. Who he is, why he's there, where the cut on his cheek came from, and his bottomless knowledge of rats are all mysteries Drew will untangle as they are drawn closer together, and Drew enters into the first true friendship, and adventure, of her life. 

Visit the author's website:

For more Teaser Tuesday selections, go here.

Monday, August 8, 2011

The Mom Files: Little girls and their bulletin boards

I love watching how my girls' bulletin boards change over time. Take the following for example. Would you ever think a passion for all things dinosaurs and The Biebs would go together? Only in the heart of a little girl!


Maybe this is a good chart for the life of a growing human being. At first, they put up family photos and some of their drawings. Next, they personalized them with some of their awards and cards from teachers. And in recent months, they reflect more of their own growing interests. What will the next phases bring? Photos of their own friends? Accomplishments? Pictures of boyfriends and dances? Shhh, don't tell them, but I plan on sneaking into their rooms and photographing these as they grow.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Sunday Salon: Shakespeare as you've never seen

Happy Sunday to you all. I haven't done a Sunday Salon post in ages. I've been writing and, well, missing out on all the summer blogging fun. Plus, it's mind-sappingly HOT here in Texas. I've curled up with more than a few glasses of peach tea and a nice stack of books with my girls this summer. In fact, if the measure of a good book is one that you are still thinking about a week later, then it must be said INCENDIARY by Chris Cleave is a good book. Great, in fact. The main character (an unnamed woman reeling from the bombing death of her husband and son by Osama Bin Laden's henchman) is so raw and emotional that I won't soon forget her. Plus, the book is written in epistolary style - one long letter from the woman to Osama himself.

Have you read this novel? Did you like it?

On a lighter note, this is MUST SEE funny, short video featuring impressionist Jim Meskimen performing a speech from Shakespeare's RICHARD III in more than a dozen famous voices.

Read more Sunday Salon posts here.

Friday, August 5, 2011

YouTubesday: Life In A Day

This discovery is inspiring.

The film was directed by Oscar-winning Kevin Macdonald, who took over 80,000 submissions and 4,500 hours of footage from 192 countries and created a feature-length documentary reflecting people’s lives on the 24th of July, 2010.

Read more here.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

“In a gentle way, you can shake the world.” - Gandhi
Photo taken by my father during his senior year (1953).
For more Wordless Wednesday posts, go here.