To Post or Not To Post?

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The Harvest Writer by John O’Nolan

When I was a child, I kept a daily diary (as most young girls are wont to do) and scribbled important thoughts and recorded important events (everything felt important to me as a child) in pages I believed were kept safe by a shoddy lock. I had an active imagination and a curious disposition which often got me into trouble with my evangelical relatives, so putting those words in a private book helped me keep them from opinionated adults and cousins with a proclivity to snitch on the girl they believed needed saving.

Having a personal blog is a lot like keeping a diary, and while the format is conducive to confession and can act as a form of therapy, you remove the lock when you hit publish. Anyone is free to read and judge, and even if you have a private blog open only to approved readers, or you moderate or close comments on a public blog, nothing is ever truly private on the internet. And not everyone is going to read your words with kind eyes.

I’m really tired of feeling the need to edit or remove posts…

So after years of blog-hopping and making friends with others on similar creative paths, I’ve continued to keep a web presence so agents would be able to see who I was if a query from me ever landed in their inbox. My obsessive need to share with the blogging public has waned with the advent of Twitter. Posting regularly here has become more difficult when I’m not actively promoting a release or announcing news. I already dish about my daily life with friends on Facebook and Twitter and rehashing it here simply for the sake of having content feels futile. Trying to continually “keep it real” feels more like “keeping it depressing”. Life is hard, y’all! And if my updates can’t offer a positive break from difficult intricacies, I’ve decided I’d rather not post.

Luckily, I can offer you a brief, positive update: I’m actively participating in a private (and incredibly supportive) writing community online, and I’m actively working on an adult mystery/suspense novel with series potential. I’m just not actively posting here, and I’m okay with that. I hope you are, too.

Until we meet again, I wish all of you a happy spring.

May we all be renewed and ready for what lies ahead.

Don’t Go Gentle

I could let the next few days slide quietly into the New Year with words inside me bottled up and broken, unwritten to all and unspoken. I could, but I won’t.

I wasted this year on worry and fear instead of spending it on words. I am not proud of this, but I will not claim that 2013 was non-productive because of multiple events that occurred outside of my control. There were many of those, but the truth is that I did not control the things I could have, and that’s on me.

I am going to own my four-letter-word stuff.

I will report that I wrapped up a fun, three-year run as Assistant Editor for Book End Babes this month. The website will retire in a few days, but the Facebook and Twitter pages will continue to offer good read recommendations.

My writing plans for January will remain mum for now. I’ve decided to only share news on finished work this coming year. I’m going to write for my eyes only and behind a closed door. I will share my sanctuary with a space heater during the cold months, though.

His name is Holmes.

Holmes. Spreader of heat. Hoarder of secrets.

Holmes. Spreader of heat. Hoarder of secrets.

I’m sad to say that I lost three Betta fish this year. THREE! A small, silly sadness to some, but Klaus lived more than two years. He was my constant. I upgraded his tank, and then he tanked. No name #2 lived less than a week, and Vladamir died earlier today. I don’t want to be responsible for yet another aquatic death, so I will be delivering the cursed Betta bowl to the trash tomorrow.

I hope all of you are happy with your year in review. If not, no worries. Let it go. Move on.

Make 2014 awesome one day and one word at a time.

Planning with Purpose

I recently purchased a Day-Timer® FamilyPlus ™ purple planner for 2014. My 2013 planner was pink, but sadly forgotten once we received news of my husband’s job loss in January. I know it’s only November, but I’m prepping for the New Year now. No do-overs for the year allowed, I know, so I’m striving for a DO BETTER instead.

I’m a wife and mother first, a writer second. Planning is not optional.

Raising a family is no easy task, especially when my cognitive function isn’t cooperating with my intentions, but it’s the most important job I have, and as my oldest is a teen and my other two are tweens, I’m running out of time before my work becomes their own.

I’m not trying to imply writing is easy, but mistakes on the page can be corrected with editing. Kids? Not so much.

I chose this particular planner because of the six separate slots for planning the week. I use five for each member of my family (including me), and the sixth for my writing. Time slips away if I don’t force myself to focus, so staying organized is imperative. The results of 2013 are proof of how plans don’t prosper when I fail to keep my lists in sight.

I’ve yet to embrace using electronic reminders as my master list, but I’m learning to lessen my aversion to digital dependence and use Calendar, Reminders, and Notes on my iPhone as backup.

My intent for now is to be mindful: mindful of my family, my goals, my time. Jon Kabat-Zinn defines mindfulness as paying attention on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally. I must do my part by being aware of what needs to be done. I can’t expect to be an active, contributing participant of life if I ignore or obsess.

How do you organize your life?

Permafrost Heart

The memories materialize

in flashes of light,

like flames from a bonfire

losing control.

 

Bright sparks blinding,

they ignite longing

and stir up sadness.

 

Yet there is no recapturing,

only the cold.

 

The celebration

ended

long ago.

 

You left

before the dark came.

 

No one comes

after dark

now.

-Heather Dearly

Something Scary This Way Comes

Follow the #AllHallowsRead hashtag on Twitter to celebrate and share scary goodness.

The above and other #AllHallowsRead posters (free to download!) available here.

Click the image above to learn more about All Hallow’s Read.

Oopsie Daisy

If you read the previous version of this post, I’m sorry. If not, you are welcome to read any other post. All are welcome. All are welcome.

Forget Me Not(s) by wwarby

Tomorrow is the first day of my favorite month, October.

A new leaf to turn. Hopefully it will be a lovely shade of gold.

Summer Madness

My previous blog post was penned and posted the morning of the May 20th storm that devastated Moore, Oklahoma.

I stood in circulating rain that afternoon as sirens blared in my city, moments before the funnel formed in Newcastle and gained size and steam through Moore. I was beyond scared, but managed to gather all of my children into one school building before lock-down occurred. The following Friday (the 24th) found my family (to include the dog and cat) driving south to avoid the largest tornado in recorded history.

We have a storm cellar now.

Today is July 1st, and I’m focusing on releasing our rental home to property management at the end of the month. I’m also participating in a writing camp this month, as my June writing schedule was readjusted thanks to Mother Nature.

If I’ve learned anything, it’s that life sends obstacles in relentless fashion when I’m close to reaching my goals, whatever those goals may be. True to form, last night was spent in an emergency room with my better half, but today I write.

“Writing is a form of therapy; sometimes I wonder how all those who do not write, compose or paint can manage to escape the madness, melancholia, the panic and fear which is inherent in a human situation.”

-Graham Greene

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