Daily Word Prompt, Inspiration, Writing Tips

Day of Rest – Not Really

It’s another beautiful day in the world!  Luckily, I don’t have to drive to the office for a couple of hours but that also means it’s the weekend and I have a whole new list of things to do. Is there ever really a day off? Do you ever go into the weekend filled with energy and  excited to embrace the days doing incredibly productive activities and chores? Yeah, I can’t say that I do. When I use so much energy all week long I’m just wiped out by Friday night. Depleted. Gone. Nada. So I need to recharge.

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Such a beautiful Spring day!! Finally!!

I don’t have any specific way to recharge. I try to sleep in but sometimes I have to work early Saturday mornings. I have dogs who need to go out and be fed. I have a 4 year old who wakes up happy and excited for the day at seven no matter what day it is. And I have deadlines, typically Sunday. So, yeah, sleeping in doesn’t do it for me.

How do you recharge? Do you have a spa day? Date night? Girl/Guy time? From time to time I grab a book and carve an ounce of serenity out of my day. Otherwise, I go out to the backyard and work in my garden. Since Spring is just showing its true face, I’ve got a few sprouts popping up from seeds I’ve been waiting on, and I love it. Seeing nature at work is so peaceful to me. I also really love a freshly mowed lawn, so I’m especially happy if the hubby has gone out and done the dirty work that weekend. I also take the kid and the dogs on walks through our neighborhood. They all love it and my arms get an extra workout because they aren’t well trained and like to pull and walk all over each other. Double win.

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Not my dog, but check out that smile!!

Most importantly, I try not to totally deplete my energy. I try to save some because I don’t really have the kind of time that lets me just relax. That’s a special occasion. And rare. Really rare. So I make sure the kid goes to bed on time and the dogs are fed and relaxing on schedule. Keeping the world around me on a normal routine actually makes life easier for me and makes my nightly writing a relaxing experience and nothing like work.

Tell me in the comments how you refill after your energy is completely depleted. What do you do for you? If anything… Sports? Nail time? Sleep? I’m curious.

Inspiration, Uncategorized

Awakening Outside and In

Today’s daily post talks about awakening.  They talk about their favorite seasons, Fall in South Carolina and Spring in the colder northern states. And I absolutely love that. I love the Fall for many of the same reasons as she listed – it’s cooler here in the South and you can enjoy the outdoors, the garden and the coming holidays. I also really love the Spring the the budding flowers and vegetables poking out of the ground. The feeling of renewal and a new lease on life are so strong as the weather gets warmer and you get that lovely breeze through your open windows. Yep, I love the outdoors.

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Mine are just starting to get to this point. Not ready for the big garden but they’re growing!

But her post also struck me as I’m going through a different kind of awakening. I’m allowing myself to dream. And I’m working toward that dream. And I’m realizing that I can 100% achieve that dream. Isn’t that a funny thing? In the past, I wouldn’t have told myself that I could write copy for an amazing running company or that I could write research papers for mental health providers. Why not? Why couldn’t I? Because I didn’t give myself the room to do it.

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Give it a try! You might surprise yourself.

For whatever reason, I’m allowing myself the opportunity to do this at this point in my life. I love to write. I love to read. I love to research. Sounds like a good fit, huh? And it is. I’m going to roll with it. I’m going to keep sending in my papers and signing clients. I’m going to see how far this amazing awakening takes me. Because I’m worth it. I deserve to enjoy how I spend my time.

What awakenings strike your imagination? Are you in the middle of one right now? Have you gone through something similar?  Are you “woke”?  That last one’s a joke. But you should be. If you want to be. Talk to me. Let me know your thoughts in the comments. Have a beautiful day!

books, Inspiration

Trusting the Process…

I decided in November 2017 that I was going to finally put words to paper, or computer screen, and I was going to become an author. And I did. I published my first word search. Not quite a literary masterpiece, but it has had a great reception since it’s very irreverent, curses, talks about sex and teaches new insults. It’s definitely “Not Your Grandma’s Word Search.”

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Yep, that word is in there.  A few times.

Then I got a little crazy and started finalizing a memoir I’ve been working on for about ten years now, Don’t Move, Don’t Breathe. This book is the ripping of my soul and my memories and sharing it for the world. I edited and edited, reread and rewrote passages. This book scared the crap out of me. If I’m honest, it still does. I FINALLY shared it with my sisters and held my breath. That was the 1st time I’d ever told some of my stories to any living soul. It was frightening and sickening. I was a hot mess. While yes, I had a few things to fix as I had switched from 3rd person to 1st person and I hadn’t caught all of my errors yet, they were 100% on board and loved it! The relief was palpable. I still had a lot of fixes to put in and it wasn’t ready to publish yet but that was a start.

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I was terrified. Telling your story is empowering, yes. But also one of the scarier things you’ll ever do.

In December, while working on the memoir, I put together a collection of poetry and short stories as a companion to Don’t Move, Don’t Breathe. At the same time I was going through some strong emotions because I was reliving everything I was reading. Yes, money was tight & holidays are always a difficult time for me. I won’t lie. It was hard. Really hard. And I was not in a good place. But I pushed through and got Memories & Snapshots published and completed the other book within the next couple weeks.

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Sometimes sitting and looking at nature helps when the world is just too much. Serenity. Peace. Solitude.

The big book, as I’ve come to call it, came out in January. The reviews are so amazing and supportive. I had no idea what to expect. Why would anyone care about my story? I wasn’t sure but I had a really strong need to get it out and shared with the world. I’m so pleased when I’m told that someone couldn’t put it down, that it spoke to them and they loved it. It warms me from the inside.

Now that the deep stuff is out, I’m able to focus on my other writing. I put out the 2nd edition of Not Your Grandma’s Word Search in February & followed it up with Not Your Kindergarten’s Word Search in March. This series is so much fun. I love to think outside the box and make people laugh. I started working on my YA Fiction novel in February and it’s about halfway done. I had a lovely dream this morning that sparked a great twist to the story line I’ll be flushing out once I’m finished here.  I hope to share that in May or June at the latest.

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How else can we look forward to the future if we don’t embrace the start of something new?

I’ve even amped up my copywriting business. I’ve completed a few articles and a research piece this week. It’s a great feeling to use your mind to generate an income rather than driving through traffic, putting in 40 hours and repeating week after week. I’ve been able to research very interesting, very different topics and it doesn’t even feel like work.

For me, that means trusting the process is actually working. The jobs are coming. The books are printing and being well received. My efforts are not in vain. Do you have a similar story? Do you have a dream that’s been nagging at you but you haven’t taken those first steps yet?

Inspiration, Uncategorized

Spring is Here – Almost

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You guys! Spring is here! Well, according to the calendar, it is. According to the weather, it’s bipolar and undecided. Here in North Carolina, we have seen 80 degree weather and 40 degree weather, within 24 hours. We have had a few 70+ degree days and might be seeing some snow on Saturday. I mean, really. The hardest part of this for me is that I LOVE to be outside. I would live outside if it was possible and there was a bathroom.

I have put my little garden seeds into the tiny pots, filled them with dirt, and have been watering them. In return, I’m starting to see some adorable little sprouts of green beans, cucumber, broccoli, cauliflower, and peas. BUT, if it freezes again, all of that will be for naught. I will be sad because I’m ready for Mother Nature to pull it together and let go of Winter already. He’s tired. He wants a rest. He wants to go off to his hibernation while his sisters Spring and Summer have their fun. And I 100% support that. Get out of here already!

But, with Spring comes pollen. That lovely greenish-yellow that covers our cars if they’re outside for more than 20 seconds.  That beautiful layer of tree crap that covers our yards and driveways in an attempt to create new beautiful, giant oaks and maples and firs. Yeah, I’m talking about that junk that makes your eyes run, your nose snot and your entire body sneeze constantly until you finally get some blessed rain. Yeah, pollen. My nemesis.

I don’t care though. I want Spring. I want that lovely, perfect temperature where you can run or dig or paint without sweating non-stop. I want to open all my windows and get the lovely, fresh breeze that makes you take a deep breath and feel fantastic. I want that. Can we make that happen already, dear Mother Nature? Can we just relax and walk Old Man Winter into his comfy place? It would be such a treat and we would all really appreciate it.

What plans do you have for Spring? Will you be working on your house? yard? your sleep? Do you have plans? Are you a procrastinator? How does that work for you? Tell me below – in the comments. I’d love to chat.

Inspiration, Uncategorized

The Truth About Writing

This amazing writing gig, this passion of mine is, honestly, work. I enjoy it. I actually love it. But it is truly work. If I’m writing copy for a mailer, I’m doing tons of research on my audience and on the product itself before I even write a single word. If I’m writing on my current project, I’m developing an outline, making notes on the characters and building climaxes and flushing out relationships, all of which takes a load of time and editing and self-correction. This is work!

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This is actually a pretty cool idea – a huge blank page to chart or write important notes or draw hearts.

Now, it would be so easy to spend the entire day attached to the laptop, digging for more information and making notes, but I actually have a life as well. Yesterday, after a few hours of a different kind of work, I was forced into some front yard baseball, some driveway basketball, some backyard bubbles, and then some front porch paper airplanes. It’s a hard life but that was a few hours that I’m more than willing to sacrifice. We actually had a lot of fun. But hanging out with a 4 year old can be work, as well.

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He beat me.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, do what you love. Even if it feels like work sometimes. We, still, are so amazingly blessed to do what we love. Live out your passion. If it’s building model airplanes, dig out some time to do that. If it’s entertaining random children with bubbles, you may want to get parental consent, but still, find your niche. Love your life as much as you live it. We’re only here for so long. We might as well enjoy it!!

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The beach is my happy place and this is where I hope to spend some time “working” this summer. Anyone else game?