Journaling and Other Writing Pursuits

English: Headshot of Louisa May Alcott (Novemb...

As I’ve shared before, I’m an avid reader.  This evening, I just finished the book Note to Self : On Keeping a Journal and Other Dangerous Pursuits by Samara O’Shea.  Absolutely loved it!  The author is blatantly honest and the book is written like she’s conversing with a close friend, the reader, as she shares many of her own intimate journal entries.  There are numerous sample journal entries throughout the book, including several historic examples as far back in time as 1665.  I was delighted to learn the famous author Louisa May Alcott journaled throughout her life.

Journals can be an excellent way to closer examine our lives.  The author makes suggestions for some topics you may want to write about in a journal.  Journaling could be as simple as recording your daily activities, documenting a dream, or even divulging inner thoughts you would never say aloud.  No matter what you choose to journal about, I do agree with the author’s sentiment that one of the most important people we should be honest with are ourselves.

My writing progress as of late has been a little slow on the end of writing which may bring in financial benefits, but I’ve been writing.  Journaling has by far been my favorite means of writing as of late, since there are some things in my life I’ve been working through.  I’ve actually looked forward to journaling and sought out my journal more often since I gave myself freedom to write in it as I want rather than a required daily entry.

* Enough about journaling, now a little side note about my other writing escapades.  To borrow a phrase from my teen daughter, Camp Nanowrimo was an “Epic Fail” for me and I did not accomplish the goal.  On the positive side, it did inspire me to attempt writing fiction and I wrote a whopping 6,127 words thus far on my novel for the month of June.  Not bad, considering I was devoting a lot of time to several other projects, including gardening.  I will hopefully finish writing it one day, as I am interested in the story. If you’d like to try it, there is another camp coming up in August.  Besides my novel, I’ve also continued writing poetry and worked on adding to the memoir I’m writing.

Melt Away

 Poem based on Monday Melting Prompt (week 21) from Rosemary Mint blog :

Breathe deep and release tensions away
Gentle stretching…learning to slow down
Yoga eases mind from the chaos of days
Taking in the music, soul soothing sounds
Child’s pose…melt as head touches the ground

English: Balasana pose in Hatha yoga, commonly...

Never Stop Writing

“Rejection”, the dreaded word for many writers.  Simply put, whatever the piece of writing, it is not wanted by whomever it was sent to for publication.  It could be for any reason from poorly written to not right for this publication at this time.  I’ve been fortunate and so far only received nicely worded rejection letters.  I have read some writers have, at times, received much less than kind rejection letters.  Rejection is part of being a writer.  At least if I’m being rejected, it means I’m trying and trying takes a certain amount of courage.

I like to think I’m not too thin skinned.  I don’t go running for the covers and crying upon receiving a rejection letter.  I don’t stop writing.  I don’t stop trying to submit my writing, but I do find I slow down.  Maybe I shouldn’t, but it’s like I find myself wanting to know that at least one thing I have written and sent out into the world will be accepted before I continue sending more forth.  So far I have received 6 rejections and still have 8 pieces of my writing I’m waiting to hear back on.

Sometimes it’s funny how many coincidences happen on days I’m thinking about something.  Yesterday was just a down day.  I needed a little encouragement and motivation.  While reading my email, I just happened onto a couple of things that encouraged me as a writer.  I thought I’d share them with you just encase you need to add to your supply of motivation.  (Much lower calorie way to do it than the dark chocolate bundt cake with dark chocolate icing I made yesterday afternoon, but boy was it tasty.)

One was a post by a freelance writer named Connor Rickett I read yesterday.  He shared a story of how one of his short stories was rejected, but it led to him getting a paid assignment.  Goes to show sometimes rejection can lead to good things.  In the same blog post he also shares a video of another writer, Neil Gaiman, giving an encouraging commencement address to a group of students.  Mr. Gaiman shared about his aspirations of being a writer and striving towards your dreams.  All of this can be found on Connor’s blog – Cities of the Mind.

The other bit of writing encouragement I ran across was on BubbleCow.  It was a post titled Famous Writers Who Were Rejected Before Making It Big.  It contained a list of 11 famous authors who faced rejection.  Yes, the failures of others does make me feel better.  It reassures me that many writers whose works are quite well known today faced rejection, often in record numbers of rejection slips, before their book or other piece of writing was accepted.  This knowledge helps me to continue to try, even in the face of rejection.

Life continues on.  I keep striving to improve my writing and learn more about the craft of writing.  Yesterday also made me think of the song Tomorrow, which Little Orphan Annie sang in the movie.  I like the hopeful part of the song, “The sun’ll come out tomorrow…”  I’ll keep hoping and not give up.  I can’t.  I’ve found I like writing too much.  If you’re a writer at heart, no matter if you’ve had something published or not, never stop writing.


Mrs. Sparkly’s Ten Commandments Award

Now to catch up on giving thanks for blog awards.  I would like to give a big thank you to Liz of the little box of books blog.  Pop over and enjoy a visit to her blog.  She nominated this blog for the Mrs. Sparkly’s Ten Commandments Award today.

For Mrs. Sparkly’s Ten Commandments Award…


I need to answer some questions about myself, and here we go…

*Describe yourself in 7 words: caring, loving, gentle, thoughtful, friendly, creative, diligent

*What keeps you up at night? once in a while, it’s thinking about things too much (usually sound sleeper)

*Whom would you like to be? close to who I am, but be less stressed and more at peace

*What am I wearing right now? khaki capris and a lavender v-neck shirt

*What scares you? too many things; superficially it would be mice and spiders

*What are the best and worst things about blogging? best things about blogging are being able to share with others and feeling a great sense of community; worst things about blogging are feeling pressure to blog enough and thinking of things to blog about

*If I could change one thing about myself, what would it be? stop worrying so much, I’m a worrier

*Slankets, yes or no? don’t have a clue what slankets is or are either…

*Tell us something about the person who nominated you.  Liz is thoughtful, kind, and her blog inspires me to think of things in a new light quite often.

Lastly I need to nominate 15 blogs for the Inspiring Blog Award.  The order of blogs are not in any rhyme or reason, but I enjoy them all.  : – Linneann – Rosemary Mint – The Doodle House – Baker on the Rise – Honesty – Soulsby Farm – Darla Cooks – CookieMomma’s Blog – On Becoming A Wordsmith – The View Outside – Already Not Published – Distraction no. 99 – Sewing Dork – Story Circle Network – One Writer’s Journey


The maze of Longleat House

The maze of Longleat House (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Moments of absolute bliss
Moments of deep deep sadness
Heart seeking balance
Lost in the in between

Moments of deep faith
Moments of just hanging on
Trying to find the way back
Lost in the in between

Moments I know who I am
Moments I haven’t a clue
Trouble uncovering who
Lost in the in between

Moments life has purpose
Moments wish didn’t exist
Looking for a reason
Lost in the in between

In this limbo I remain
Lost in the in between

Loved this…thought beautifully worded post about aspirations on becoming a writer.

Taking Chances

Poem based on Monday Melting prompt (week 20) from Rosemary Mint blog :

Lines of character upon her face
Feminine flair with ribbons and lace
Warrior spirit out of hiding
No longer silently residing
Hungry for a chance to live life
Conquering sorrows and denying strife
Willing to risk for just one chance
Tasting sweet love, a true romance

Lace hem of a half slip

Camp NaNoWrimo . . . Novel Writing!

Life has been busy, so I’ve not had as much time to blog as I would like.  Holding my breath and thinking things are slowing down.  At least the dust appears to be settling.  Still waiting to hear back on submissions I have sent out into the world.  Still managing to continue to journal and actually enjoying it since I’ve freed myself of thinking I must do it every single day.  And of course, of course, I am reading!

As if I don’t have enough to do, I’ve decided to try Camp NaNoWriMo.  I’m in a cabin, have settled in, and attempting to write my first fiction novel.  Only have a little over 2,300 words so far, but it’s early in the month.  I’m normally a non-fiction and poetry type gal, but thought it would be fun to give fiction a try.  You never know if you like something, unless you try.

Camp NaNoWrimo

Camp NaNoWrimo

This is the first time I’ve ever tried anything NaNoWriMo.  The big month is in November, but I’ll see how this goes first.  I didn’t even know what NaNoWriMo stood for until a few months ago.  In case you are as clueless as I was, it stands for National Novel Writing Month.  The goal is to begin something new, not an old project, and write at least 50,000 words.

The novel I am working on is a romance fantasy novel.  I thought it would be good for my first attempt as much of the advice I’ve read about writing novels is to write the type of novel you enjoy reading.  I love to read historical romance, but am not too good at history, hence the fantasy.

I got in a creative spurt yesterday and even had a little fun!  Yes, the kind of creative fun you can remember from art class in school.  Using markers and crayons, I created a map of the kingdom and surrounding areas the companions in my novel will be traveling through as they embark upon their quest.  Now I have an inspiring poster to kind of help keep me on track.

Hopefully this week will be calmer and productive.  It can be both can’t it?  I’ll hope so anyway.  Happy writing…