Poem: My Evil Twin, Doubt

Meet my evil twin
I call her, Doubt
she second guesses
Things I’ve figured out

She makes me weak
When I take a stand
Kicks me down
And takes command

Invites her friends:
Anxiety and Depression
Inside I’m roiling:
I’ve made a bad impression

Anxiety whispers to Doubt and
Depression behind my back
They’re making fun of me!
There’s nothing that I lack

I am Beautiful and Strong
Creative and Inspired
My evil twin, Doubt
Is not even desired

She’s shallow and she’s needy
her friends are much worse
Dripping black negativity
Tucking extra in her purse

She’ll swagger up the street
People spring out of the way
Heels clicking, eyes like daggers
With nothing great to say

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All The Happy Little Trees

I am appreciating the outdoors today and the sunshine, even though it’s pretty cold outside! It’s as if Bob Ross were here painting all his happy little trees…

Mike took this picture on our walk today. This up and down weather is taking its toll on the small streams and canals in the area. There’s been some flooding from blockages from ice floes.

I somehow caught pink-eye over the weekend; and the handle to my driver’s side door snapped off when I tried to open my frozen car door last night, but I am choosing to remain positive. Was actually a great triumph for me to laugh about it, instead of let my anxiety take over.

Plus, I’m inside and warm, and that always helps, too. Hope everyone has a great Sunday and keep safe out there!

Happy Writing all!

Here I am Trying to Stay Motivated

I have this story that I’ve been trying to write a draft for. But after working all day sitting at a desk for 8 hours, do I want to come home and sit at my desk to write? No. It’s so frustrating. My notes/drafts/brainstorms are all on my computer, so it’s just so much easier to type out my draft for my story. Buut…I’ve been doing everything else tonight.

Here’s some things I’ve been trying to keep motivated:

Listening to Music ~ This has been doing a great job in keeping me relaxed, and I’ve switched to the Pop/Hip Hop workout station on Pandora, which makes me want to get up and dance, of course.

Stumbleupon.com ~ Mike’s really the reason why I know about www.stumbleupon.com. You basically create an account, edit your interests and click stumble. Next thing you know you’re surfing the web based on your interests. Can be very inspiring for writers.

Looked at Vacation destinations ~ This is really because Mike and I are shopping around for a place to go this coming summer, but this might be a good way to trigger a location for a story.

Also came upon this ~ 33 Ways to Stay Motivated. This was a stumbleupon result.

I’m jamming away, relaxed (now maybe a little sleepier) and trying to get that passion for writing. So funny how when writing becomes work, I suddenly am not inspired at all. Except when it’s like 10PM on a Sunday, and then suddenly all hell breaks loose. So typical.

What are you guys up to tonight? How do you stay motivated? Any tips?

Happy Writing!

5 New Year’s Resolutions for 2018

Happy New Year!!! Got any New Year’s Resolutions this year?

This New Year’s was kind of pathetic for Mike and I. It was too cold to go anywhere, so we just hung out with a friend, watched the ball drop and then went to bed. We didn’t even drink!! How lame.

Anyway, it was nice and relaxing, though. And it was kind of fun to see all the announcers on ABC, (people who we don’t really like that much anyway) freeze their asses off in the New York weather. Bahahaha!

I think New Year’s Resolutions are kind of hokey, but it is basically a list here like any other; and for us anxious types, lists are great for organizing thoughts, chores, goals, work, etc.

Here are my New Year’s Resolutions for 2018:

1. Write More

This goes without saying, really. If I’m going to get something published, I need to write. Even when I am feeling down and tired from work. No, note to self: YOU SHOULD WRITE when you are tired from work. This is where I find my purpose. When I feel like I am truly doing what I’m supposed to be doing.

2. Read More, especially some new books!

I have several books on my bookcase that I haven’t read. And yet, I will still buy something new at the bookstore. I can’t seem to help myself. I will let books fill my life until I am drowning in them. I will breathe in the pages and choke on the words and I will never be satisfied that it is enough, even when they’re piled around me and I get anxiety about deciding what to read next. Huh…do I have a problem? Maybe. Just maybe.

3. Exercise, Eat Healthy, Take Care of Yourself

Tomorrow it’ll be in the negatives. No, I will not be going outside for a jog. But still, I need to remember to drink TONS of water, I never drink enough when it’s cold outside. I’ll also bundle up like a burrito in front of the TV. But I don’t need to eat cookies every night. Even though I want them…and they want me.

4. Make New Friends

It’s hard to put yourself out there when you spend all day being customer-servicey and you just want to shut yourself away from the world for a while after work. I need to find a writer’s group.

5. Find Writer’s Group

This isn’t the last because it’s the least important. Really it’s the last because I just thought of it…but this could be what I need to keep motivated, make new friends, AND get some writing done. So, really this is an essential part of getting a few things on this list done. I think I could be brave enough? Eee…baby steps! I know I can. This would be a good thing for me.

Anyway, that’s it…what about yours? Got any New Year’s Resolutions of your own that you want to share?

Happy Writing!

Poem Rerun: SAD, and A Little Pep-talk

This one is a re-run, a poem I wrote last year in December, but definitely fits tonight! It’s sooo cold here. 7 degrees when I woke up this morning, thank you, and I could live without it. In fact, I think I would live better without it. The cold wears me down, dries out my skin and makes me eat more. (Although, the holidays haven’t helped the waistline, either.)

For those of you who are struggling with SAD like me, hang in there. The longer days are coming. Get plenty of sleep, drink TONS of water, and quit eating crap that’s not good for you. (Really this is just a reminder to myself.) And remember to take care of yourself, especially on days when you’re really down. You’re not going to get anything done if you’re in a funk. And it’s much harder to get out of one, once you’re already there. Don’t do it to yourself. Just don’t. Oh yeah, the poem. (Psst. Write more! Especially when you’re feeling down. It does help!)

SAD – Seasonal Affective Disorder 

Age twenty-nine

Feels like ninety-two

Tired and achy

Like I’ve got the flu

One step forward

Two steps back

With joints that ache

And bones that crack

With blurry eyes

And pounding head

“I want to sleep!”

“Sleep when you’re dead!”

Poem: Saying Goodbye

About a week ago, Mike and I had to say goodbye to his dog, Marley. He had Lyme disease that went to his kidneys and after a few trips to the vet we were saying goodbye sooner than we ever thought possible.

Although he wasn’t mine, I loved him. He was our family and now he’s gone. We are dealing with it as best we can. But it’s never easy saying goodbye.

Saying Goodbye

I didn’t want to say the words, “put down”
Like he was some shiny toy
We had picked up and lost interest

too cold to think of leaving
Such a treasure behind
to think of all the tail wags, the last sniffs in the snow

the moment before the final moment the worst
a deep sleep that hurts
One final pin-prick, back leg trembles.

I couldn’t find the words to say
I’ll help you
I’m right here
I’m sorry

Then, sobbing in the car like I’d lost something I’ll never find again

Tail wags, brown, liquid eyes full of courage
You’re hurt and you’re dying and all you have to say is: I love you

How Was your NaNoWriMo?

Hi Everyone – I’ve been a bit MIA on this blog as of late…and I don’t know why.

It could be because I started a full-time job this fall, and I just don’t feel inspired after a long day of sitting typing at a computer. Also, about mid-November I was sick for like a week with a cold, and that about wasted my November.

On the positive side, though, I have been writing more as of late. I think it all started after watching Outlander one Sunday. I was curious about the books and I went on Diana Gabaldon’s website, and something I read of hers inspired me.

It was what she said about the first book of Outlander. She said she wrote it because she wanted to see if she could write a novel, and Outlander was just a trial, a for-fun novel.

Well, several books later and a successful TV Show and she is still writing. I guess it made me realize that you shouldn’t doubt yourself. It might not be as awful as you think it is, and if it is awful…who cares? It was meant to be a draft, right?

If Diana Gabaldon can do it, well then so can I. Plus, my writing process seems to be a bit similar to hers. I tend to just wing it…I’ll have a rough outline, but otherwise I tend to be at the whim of my characters: “alright, guys, where do you want to go next?”

How was your NaNoWriMo? Any words of wisdom for the rest of us?

(Also, my NaNoWriMo wasn’t all that successful, but I got some more useful scenes written for my novel-in-progress and that’s something!)

NaNoWriMo Day 8 Update: How’s It Going Guys?

Hi Everyone! How’s NaNoWriMo going?

I haven’t got so much of a word count in, but I have been plugging away at 30 days of world building, which I found on this blog here.

Basically you spend each day working on the different aspects of creating your world. So far, I’ve created a climate, created a rough sketch of map, and selected what races will be in my world and how they will interact, etc.

The planning is so detailed and it’s been a lot of fun so far. Some of the stuff I’ve already come up on my own, but before I started doing the exercises I hadn’t even thought as far as climate and how weather (like a bad storm) could help drive a plot point.

Kind of neat! I think tonight I will do my world building exercise, (Economy and Politics!) and get down to some actual writing for once. I tend to not want to sit at my desk, because I sit at one for work all day long, so here I am propped up in bed and it is working so far.

How is everyone doing? How do you keep yourself motivated to keep writing?

Happy Writing Everyone!

Outlander Season 3 Episode 8 Review: First Wife

I liked this episode a lot more than the last few we’ve had. There’s a lot of truth to this episode, and I don’t just mean Jamie finally coming clean about things he’s left in the dark. There’s truth for Claire, too. In that she finally seems to admit to herself that maybe this was all a mistake.

I think it goes without saying, really… beware, spoilers ahead!

Photo credit: Starz.

Jamie and Claire return to Lallybroch with young Ian. However, things aren’t at all like they used to be. Jenny and Ian’s children are grown with children of their own and Jenny is not willing to welcome Claire back with open arms.

Jamie is just about to tell Claire about his marriage to Laoghaire, when the woman of discussion barges into the room with her daughters in tow and calls Claire a whore and all these terrible things. Naturally, Claire is devastated because she had no idea Jamie was married.

She packs to leave, but Jamie stops her and the fight that ensues between them is very passionate and packed with emotion. Jamie seems almost mad that she had left him, and she is equally heartbroken: he’d told her too! He accuses her of not knowing what it is to live half a life and she fires right back at him. He didn’t really think that life with Frank was happy, did he?!

She goes to leave, and Jamie stops her once again and tries to force affection on her. She slaps him in the face. They grapple on the floor, and then their fight turns to passion and they are wrestling out of each other’s clothes and having sex on the floor. Jenny comes in and throws a bucket of water on them, and tells them to stop it because they are upsetting the rest of the household.

Claire wishes they could tell Jenny the truth about her disappearance but Jamie claims she won’t understand. The next day, Claire has packed and is going to leave, but Laoghaire shows up and threatens to shoot her. Jamie steps in the way, and gets shot instead.

Claire performs excellent surgery on him, and young Ian stands back and watches, completely in awe. Claire notes with some affection that he is the only one who calls her auntie. After Claire has him sewed up, Jamie tells her about what happened with Laoghaire. Claire gives him a shot of penicillin, because Jamie is burning up. She also asks Jenny to give her a second chance. She can’t tell her everything, but she does still love her. Jenny seems to slightly warm up to this.

Claire reunites with Ned Gowan, and he advises them both on what can be done about Laoghaire. He says that technically Claire and Jamie’s marriage is the one that is valid, because it happened first. Laoghaire wants alimony in exchange for not taking Jamie to court. Jamie comes up with a plan to get the Jewels from Silkie’s Island that he had found while in prison.

Young Ian volunteers to fetch them, because Jamie is still hurt. Claire confesses to Jamie that she thinks coming back might have been a mistake. She had a life, a career and friends. Jamie says that they are mated for life. She still seems uncertain, but they are forced to throw their uncertainties to the side when they realize that young Ian is in trouble. He is intercepted on the island and taken away on a ship.

Well, what worked?

  • I want a relationship as passionate as Jamie and Claire’s. Their fight was packed with emotion and very much-needed!
  • Young Ian’s infatuation with Claire is very sweet.
  • We love Jamie’s sister because she is a strong woman; stubborn, independent and intelligent. It is for this reason, she doesn’t accept that Claire would just disappear for twenty years and not come looking for her brother.

What didn’t work?

  • It makes sense that Jenny is suspicious about Claire’s absence. And I wish they can tell her and Ian the truth.
  • Claire and Jamie’s relationship seems on such tenterhooks. Even though the bond between them is still there, there is still so much hurt. Have they really resolved anything?

Will they be able to move on from this? I hope so! Although, it’d be very awesome if Jamie could follow her into the future. Just a thought.

What did you guys think?  Happy Sunday!

Outlander Season 3 Episode 7 Review: Creme De Menthe

Soo…this latest Outlander episode kind of irritated me, but if you thought otherwise, or you had similar feelings, let me know below!

If you have not watched the newest episode of Outlander, beware, spoilers ahead!

Photo credit: Starz

I’m having a hard time trying to find the positive in Claire going back to 18th century Scotland, but even in spite of Sam Heughan’s muscular bod, it’s a difficult thing.

The episode starts off where episode 6 left us at a cliffhanger. A stranger is rifling through Jamie’s things, and attacks Claire. She uses a knife to defend to herself, but in evading it, the stranger trips and sustains a head injury.

Well, naturally Claire has to help him, even if he did threaten to kill her. Jamie doesn’t understand why she doesn’t just let him die, and Claire tells him it’s because she’s a doctor now, and has spent years trying to save lives. Claire runs to the apothecary to get supplies, while Jamie is trying not to get caught by Sir Percival for smuggling some extra casks of whiskey and bourbon, and creme de menthe, (of the latter, they have loads of, because Scots don’t drink creme de menthe.)

Fergus and young Ian manage to sell off the smuggled goods at a fair price, and Fergus gives Young Ian advice on how to make love to the pretty tavern maid. Yi Tien Cho helps Claire with the surgery, but her patient dies, which she is fairly upset about. She also discovers that Jamie lies to Ian and Jenny about where their son runs away to.

The dead man gets stowed away in the creme de menthe, and Claire has another patient to attend to: a man named Campbell, whose sister is mentally ill. Once again Claire gets another taste of the backward 18th century, which doesn’t really have any experience in treating such ailments, except to keep them silenced.

Meanwhile, Ian gets lucky in the back of Uncle Jamie’s print shop, only to be interrupted by a man hired by Sir Percival, who is looking for the stuff that Jamie smuggled. They fight and Sir Percival’s man discovers Jamie’s flyers, which proves that Jamie is a traitor to the crown.

During the struggle, the shop is set on fire. There is a harrowing moment where Jamie goes in to rescue him, and Claire is afraid for both of their lives. Jamie says they will return young Ian to Lallybroch, and Fergus is shocked that Claire doesn’t know about Jamie’s other wife. His what?!

My thoughts?

This whole episode just irritated me. I suppose there will be bumps along the road, (I mean, if there wasn’t, there wouldn’t be a story.) But c’mon Jamie?!

“Oh, by the way, Claire, my love…I’m already married?” Sigh. Double sigh. Why do men do such stupid things sometimes?!

The good parts of the episode?

  • Well, seeing Claire doing her awesome healing thing is always kind of nice.
  • Having Fergus back into the scene is nice, too. I suppose…and Young Ian. He looked so happy with the tavern maid.

But…sigh. What did you guys think? Think Jamie and Claire will finally work it out?

We shall see! Happy Monday everyone!