Tuesday, February 27, 2018

3 Steps to Becoming a Writer

3 Steps to Becoming a Writer:

1. Write. Every day. 

2. Find your people. Make google your friend. Try searching for women’s writing groups, local workshops, classes, even festivals. There are tons of groups on Meet-up, one at my local library and several at the local bookstore. If you can’t find a writing group that suits you, create one. It is inspiring to be around other wordmongers. You will write more when you find people who you can relate to, people who “get” you, and people who won’t judge you because your mind is always on your story. They are out there, hiding in their pajamas behind their laptops or under their full spiral notebook. I began a local writing group by putting an ‘ad’ out on a phone app called Nextdoor. I called out to women writers in my neighborhood. They peeked out from the bushes, climbed down from the trees, dropped down from the sky—they came!  We are a dozen strong with four of five hardcore participators. We still don’t have an official name, but we meet bimonthly, once during the day at a coffee shop and once at night when one of us get brave enough to host at our house. There is no format or goal, just a gathering of writers desperate to evade the solitude of our practice. 

3. Always begin at #1. 

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Fall, My Teacher

Fall is my teacher.

Leaves scatter across the roadway.
Fall, "Learn to let go."

Winds shift direction.
Fall, "Change is swift, exciting."

Leafless trees shake off the unnecessary and slow down.
Fall, "Pay attention."

Colors warm as temperatures drop.
Fall, "Beautiful inconsistency."

Rain, a daily companion.
Wet hem on jeans, a jolt.
Raindrops on the window...
Fall, "Fresh views." 

Hot tea, cinnamon, steaming soup.
Fall, "Sunshine is inside."

No razor, warm tights, blankets, knit caps, pretty scarves, boots, cushy socks, winter coats, fires... comfort, a creation.
Fall, "A lesson in self-care."

Yellow, orange, brown, diverse, electric charge, Fall waltzes in, unreserved extrovert, and declares, "Be yourself with abandon!"

Fall, my favorite teacher.

Monday, November 6, 2017

When Winter Comes

When Winter Comes

When Winter comes
I will
open my arms and pull her into my embrace
blue lips
white hair
the twinkle in her eye
We will
giggle together over warm tea
admire each other through the window
My frosted friend
has been away too long
We will
catch up on the sled down the hill
mingle before the fire
When Winter comes
I will greet her
With Glee
We are family ❆ Winter and me

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Words I Love

Words I love

Popped into my head
You can pop a cap
Pop a bubble in a bath
Pop a lid on it
Pop one off
Pop over to see a friend
Pop your ears
Pop music
Pop goes the weasel
Pop star infusion
Pop a pill
Pop an illusion
Pop in, pop out
Popcorn, Hop on Pop
I like pop.
I can even drink it.

Monday, November 2, 2015

10 Quotes by Children's Authors on Writing

10 Brilliant Quotes by Children's Authors on Writing:

10. So the writer that breeds more words than he needs is making a chore for the reader who reads.  - Dr. Seuss

9. If writers wrote as carelessly as some people talk, then adhasdh asdglaseuyt[bn[ pasdlgkhasdfasdf.  - Lemony Snicket, Horseradish

8. A person is a fool to become a writer. His only compensation is absolute freedom. He has no master except his own soul, and that, I am sure, is why he does it.  - Roald Dahl

7. …I’d write about places I knew something of and people that spoke everyday English… - Gilbert Blythe (Anne: The Sequel)

6. Don’t write about Man; write about a man. - E. B. White, Charlotte’s Web

5. I don’t necessarily start with the beginning of the book. I just start with the part of the story that’s most vivid in my imagination and work forward and backward from there. - Beverly Cleary

4. I do my best to simplify and refine, to be logical and harmonious. But I also try to keep an open mind, to listen to my intuition and allow for the unexpected, the coincidental, even the quirky to enter into my work.  - Eric Carle

3. The best books come from inside. You don’t write because you want to, but because you have to. - Judy Blume

2. You have to write the book that wants to be written. And if the book will be too difficult for grown-ups, then you write it for children.  - Madeleine L’Engle

1. Reading is important because, if you can read, you can learn anything about everything and everything about anything. - Tomie Depaola

Bonus: There’s always room for a story that can transport people to another place.  - J.K. Rowling

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Say it, "Suicide."


In encourage you to watch the Upworthy video with Mariel Hemingway.  One of my favorite quotes from the video:

"As a community the more we talk about it the more we address it, the more we deal with it in our everyday lives the more healing we can offer everybody... it is about reaching out and that is the message I want to give everybody, keep talking about it."

I've written a novel where one of my main characters deals with depression and suicide.  It's a weighty issue that needs to be brought more into the light.  There are ways to connect, ways to help bring this subject to the forefront.

I met an author recently who really speaks to the heart of mental illness and is great at creating a community of similar people around this topic and more:
Check out on twitter:  @JulieBipolar
or at JulieFast.com
Her Blog:   BipolarHappens.com/bhblog

Also, "Out of the Darkness" are community walks that help fund raise for suicide prevention.  Not as popular as the "fun run" or the "color run" or the "beer run"... but a great cause.  I plan on walking this year and hope that you all can find one near you to lend your support to.


One last thing:

If you are in crisis, call 
1-800-273-TALK (8255) 
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Go Time.

Go time.  

I've written my entire life:  journals (aka diary), essays (aka college assignments), poetry, novella's, Nano-Wrimo... I've edited, revised and polished... then done it again.  I've taken college courses to the point where I've debated a second master's degree, I've attended hours of meetings with Willamette Writer's, PDX Writer's, Portland Women's Writers... I've saturated my life as much as I can to achieve those 10,000 hours.  I've written stories upon stories upon stories... only two complete novels and I love them both and I'm ready to pitch.  (That was a run-on and I know it- but it belonged together and I like breaking rules). 

The Willamette Writer's Conference is happening the first weekend in August.  I'm ready.  I'm pitching my Women's Contemporary Lit/Romance - beta readers opinion vary on where it lies - the title is "Twisted Disposition".  It’s about a teacher who creates chaos when she has to care for her psychotic best friend and then finds herself falling in love with a successful man who has a history of mental illness.  It’s like a mental health happy hour.  Everyone’s having a breakdown and everyone likes to talk about it.  Like my book club.  

It answers the age old questions of:

So you’re crazy, now what? 
What to expect when you’re expecting a break down. 
Can mental health or lack thereof, be funny? 
What does it mean when you begin craving 5150?
What’s it like to witness someone lose their mind?
How would it feel to be totally responsible for that person?  What would you do?

And the all-encompassing question: What’s it like when the person you know best in the world – the one you are most comfortable with – begins to have a twisted disposition?

I'm pitching to three agents - chosen after much deliberation on my part.  First, I checked what they were looking for - what genre.  Then, I looked at their agent pages and made sure they would be a good fit for my story.  Okay, I also stalked their goodreads pages, facebook, twitter and any blogs that mentioned them.  All that's left is meeting them at the conference and giving the best synopsis of my novel (which I'm hoping writing poetry helped me with - it's all about word essence - less is more).   

Why do I feel I need to take a Xanax?   

**** foot note:
       *best* hobby ever!

Thursday, October 31, 2013


I've done it!  I've signed up for the monthly writing race to 50k words.  I have to admit... I've written way more than that, but I'm a re-worder, edit-crazed, self-doubting author.  It will be a great challenge to begin a story and not stop till I'm 50k words in.  Looking forward to the write-in's... hoping to meet some kindred spirits or at least a few people that are writing group worthy.  Now to go choose a genre, and begin my outline.  Let the journey begin!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Summer Dreams

Dreaming of Summer Already

When summer comes floating in 

She’ll bring her carpet bag brimming with a hodge-podge of seasonal honeyed medicines

The light of yellow sun will pop out first to shine upon our faces

To shine upon problems, those that were stuck in shady places

And if I can’t handle the enlightenment she will disperse

An umbrella is stashed in her sunlit purse

She’s got lotion to soothe and protect me

Wind tucked in a pocket to whip-up energy

Hot sand for a warm place to ground myself, or warm up with a friend

Summer is my mother

She comes to tend

Friday, January 18, 2013

Writing to Evoke Emotion

~ Writing to Evoke Emotion ~

Hand hovers, hesitates, a shadow on the pale paper below

Then dives, a reckless raven into hidden holes, hollows


ink congealing into creation

Words turn into serrated black claws ripping their way across the white page

dark moments

exhausting the pen

black blood of emotion

I should be afraid to write them - but my will is to pull

your heart out and show you it beating, dripping, in my pale palm

So you may see it

feel it

perceive the pain

that I write

My only real fear is that you won't.