Friday, December 26, 2008

One of My Favorite Christmas Gifts

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My oldest daughter has become passionate about ending modern day slavery. For Christmas she chose gifts for each of us that were all Fair Trade appproved. Many were from small, entreprenuership businesses. The gifts included a leather journal, Fair Trade coffee, a thumb piano made in Kenya, a small purse made by women in Guatemala and a soccer ball stamped with "Not For Sale". Most soccer balls are made by children, but not this one.

With each gift, my daughter included a note and a Bible verse that held a "clue" to the gift. The note she wrote for me is priceless. The best gift of all.

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1 John 1:4
"We write this to make our joy complete."

We write joy and tears. God, too, has written that in His book. His book has your name in it. He desires to create a hapy ending for you. Because he is the Author, He will.

This journal was made for Freedom. So was God's book. He wrote your name there because you are free from sin. Because Christ died for you.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Teaser Tuesdays

I just discovered a blog last night called Should Be Reading - wonderful blog! And she hosts Teaser Tuesdays.

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:

Grab your current read.
Let the book fall open to a random page.
Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
Please avoid spoilers!

Pipe dreams he thought to himself, even while he was telling her about his dream winnings. But oh, how wonderful, he though, if everthing you talked about could come true! - A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Betty Smith pg. 34

For more teasers, go here.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Writing Prompt - Shiny Things

I hope you had fun writing about Shiny Things. I did! If you've written and posted your poem on your blog, please leave the permalink in Mr. Linky. If you haven't written yet, go write and then come back to leave your permalink. It doesn't have to be today - I'll wait for you. I can't wait to read everyone's poems!

Update - I really need a Mr. Linky lesson! If someone out there could help me out, I would be very grateful.

Here are mine:

Sun glints on french horn
Christmas jingles beckoning
Coins dropped in pail


Pulled from rinse water
Tumbler glides from soapy hand
Scattered shards of glass


Miniscule balls
Gathered together form one
Mercury sphere

(I know this last one is missing a syllable in the last line, but I still thought it sounded good this way.)

Your turn!

Haiku Writing Prompt - Shiny Things

Shiny Things will be the first writing prompt on my blog. You can write haiku or other poetry. I am no expert in writing of any kind, but I love to play with it. Please play along!

Traditionally, haiku is made up of three lines (5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables). It's fun and kind of addictive to fit your idea into that form. Get out your Thesaurus and have at it!

I'll post a Mr. Linky on Thursday for you to link up your poem on your blog. This will be my first time to use Mr. Linky on my site, so bear with me!

Now, I'm off to write my own Shiny Things haiku! Don't forget to share your poems on Thursday (or any day after that)!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Open Letter to the Impatient Woman

Dear Impatient Woman,

I'm so sorry that you found yourself waiting behind my car on a busy Friday night only 13 days before Christmas. I know that you also were waiting to turn left onto a busy road and traffic was backing up. You must have had lots of shopping to get done. I understand that you got fed up with waiting on me to have enough space to pull out. I'm okay with you deciding to go around me and take another route.

But was it really necessary to "point 1 with your finger", as my six year old daughter saw you do? Really, did you have to use a vulgar gesture to express the fact that you had spent an extra sixty seconds in traffic?

For you, dear impatient woman, I wish all the joys of Christmas. I hope that you find peace and fulfillment and happiness. I pray your heart will overflow with love and joy. And when it does, please pass this love along to others. You have shown that your heart is in great need of the love that Christmas brings.

Please pass this love on, when God showers it on your heart. I'll pray that you won't be so hard hearted as to turn the love away when it is given.

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a patient, happy New Year,

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Dear Santa

Dear Santa,

It has been over 30 years since I last wrote to you. Please forgive me. Thank you for all the gifts you have given me and my loved ones in the past. The Christmas memories have been priceless.

This year I do have a request. Could you reach into your bag of magical gifts and turn me into a Morning Person? I want to be able to get up at 5:00am feeling energetic and refreshed from a full night's sleep. I want to be clear headed and able to concentrate on my writing.

And could you make it so that my getting up early does not rouse any of my children, for that is counter productive. I want this time alone, to read my Bible, pray and work on my writing.

If you can't turn me into a Morning Person, could you bestow on me energy that lasts fully until 11:00pm or even mid-night? I would like to be clear headed and focused late into the evening. Not just awake on the couch, vegging in front of the TV, but creative and productive.

You see, the daytime hours that are my best are also taken up with necessary daily tasks that demand my attention and concentration. So you can see how I need these extra hours of high energy time added to my day. And if I could have these hours without the risk of migraines that lack of sleep usually causes, that would be wonderful.

Thank you,


p.s. If you can't give me this request, could you please help me carve out writing time with my current limited hours in the day?

Friday, November 28, 2008

Another Nano Win!

I finished 50,000 words! I'm happy to say that by about 45,000 words I finally found the story I really wanted to write :-) That's what Nano is all about, right?

Happy Writing!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Haiku Prompt for Mama's Losin' It

This week's writing prompt at Mama's Losin' It included writing a haiku about what you see out your window. I can never resist haiku - love them!

puddles under swings
reflect dripping pewter skies
playtime chased inside

Just a short piece again this time, because most of my writing time is going to Nano.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Top 10 Pet Peeves

This is my first time to participate in Writer's Workshop at Mama's Losin' It. I chose to write for the Top 10 Pet Peeves prompt. I figured it was just a list and I'm in the middle of Nano (I'm on track with my word count at 8463 words)

Top 10 Pet Peeves

10. Trash that gets left on the floor next to the trashcan.
9. Repetitive music on video games
8. Smudged lenses on glasses
7. Chicken that doesn't get done in the time the recipe calls for
6. Walmart not carrying their brand of chocolate chips now that we're entering baking season
5. Bad directions (and getting lost as a result)
4. Broccoli crumbs in the bottom of the frozen broccoli bag
3. Telemarketer/credit card/political phone calls
2. Being interrupted while reading the end of a really good book
1. My own whining and complaining (For more on how I've tried to combat this read this)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Write on Wednesday - Marathon

This is my first Write on Wednesday post.

The question is:
So, how about you? If you’ve done NaNoWriMo, what was the experience like for you? If you’ve never done it, do you think you could? Do you have a novel residing in you somewhere, waiting to get out?

This will be my 5th Nano! It's hard to believe I've done it that many times and I've won each year I've participated. I love the mad-dash writing, the creative ideas that flow when I least expect it, the horribly bad sentences that make me laugh out loud, the thrill of finishing 50,000 words, the characters and story lines that not only entertain me for 30 days, but stick with me forever.

My first Nano novel was also the first time I'd ever tried writing fiction, unless you count the pathetic attempt in high school English class and I don't count that attempt because it was embarassing and frustrating! I spent the month of October coming up with some characters and a plot and note-carding possible scenes. I wrote each of those note card into scenes, plus added more to get to 50,000 words.

Story in a sentence: Working at the library while raising her younger sister after the death of their mother, Sharla befriends a lonely, old widower who gives her an amazing gift.

For my second Nano novel I did similar prep work, but a bit less than the first year.

Story in a sentence (or 2): In Everybody Eats at Mina's, Mina's restaurant has been closed for years, but she continued to feed people in the neighborhood until her building was threatened by new development. Helped by a local pastor, a young woman on her own and not long out of foster care and a recovering drug addict Mina works to re-open her restaurant and save the building where she works and lives.

My third Nano sent me into a mind block for ideas. I know that it is not advised to work on a story that you've been working on because you'll care too much about it to hack it up for Nano. Well, I ignored that advice a bit. I'd done a short story that I really thought I could turn into a novel and decided to do that for this Nano. I had mixed results. I still like the characters and still want to work it into a novel, but it also seems doomed. I've worked on it more than any other story but... it just won't gel for me yet.

Story in a sentence: Elvis Presley Walker has left her life in Bug Tussle, KY for Lexington and a new career, never mentioning to her friends or fiance what her life was like before, but when her mom calls to tell her Memaw is dying will Presley (as she's now known) go home and make peace with her past?

Last year was my fourth Nano. I forced myself to come up with characters and a plot idea just a few days before Nov. 1. It worked out and I liked the story.

Story in a sentence: Single mom, Marla loses the job that provides for her teenage son and herself and now faces homelessness, until Pastor Sparks defies his son's desire to put him in an assisted living facility and invites Marla and her son to move in with him and care for him. Can they all find a future together?

This year: I have no idea what I'm going to write about!! Time's a-wasting! I've got to go get me some characters and a problem or two for them.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Nano time again

Only 10 days left till Nano. I have no idea what I'm going to write about yet, but I will be writing. Nano is the challenge that started me writing in the first place. I love the thrill of the story that seems to come out of nowhere and the victory of finishing 50,000 by the end of November. It's a satisfying way to move into the end of the year.