Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Healing through Writing


Have you had a traumatic background? Have you been to therapist but rarely feel any better than when you began? Have you taken medication and still find no healing with the mental anguish that you’ve had to go through growing up in a dysfunctional life? I’m here to suggest something. Healing through Writing!

We all, each and every one of us, hold our mental instability hidden within us until eventually we blow, unable to handle the stress bearing down on us, like a claustrophobic climbing under the bed. We seek an outlet where we can release the pain and anguish inside, hoping one day to find healing.

Healing without some form of transformation leaves the door open for major setbacks. We might not find a true leap in the right direction away from our negative fixations that bind us to the past. We’re opening ourselves up to reliving it over and over again.

Have you ever heard of the story of two wolves?

Two Wolves: A Native American grandfather is talking to his grandson about how he feels about a tragedy in their village. "I feel as if I have two wolves fighting in my heart. One wolf is the vengeful, angry, violent one. The other wolf is the loving, compassionate one." The grandson asks, "Grandfather, which wolf will win the fight in your heart?" The grandfather places his hand on his heart and replies, "The one I feed."

The pain that you don’t feed is going to come back and bite you unless you take it by the ears and rip into it like a feeding wolf. My point is this, if you write about your pain a lot of times you get the emotional healing you need. Through journaling I’ve seen many people find a healing place and went on to become strong upstanding people instead of the victim.

How do you begin the emotional process of revealing your deepest pain?

1) WRITE ABOUT IT – Take a step back, and in your writing, have someone observing a painful scene in your past. Have them tell the story as they see it. This person doesn’t have to have been there, but through them telling the scene, you will gain a different perspective from someone else observing the event you endured.

2) MAKE A LIST – We have positive and negative things that happened in our life. If we can take a traumatic event, list the negatives and counter them with a positive affect. This is a tough one but this will help us see no matter how bad something was in our lives, something positive came from it.

3) JOURNAL – Writing in a journal on a daily basis helps keep the things in the now, in perspective. Using our list from above we can see how much we grow through painful situations.

4) OBSERVANCE – Observe the way you do things today. Do you still hold onto negative thoughts and feelings? Have you tried to wipe them off like snow on your shoulder? Or have you kept them tightly wrapped around you like a warm blanket and carry the negative ions with you in every relationship/situation you have, thus making the circle of pain continue on and on?

5) START ANEW – Many of you know much of the things I’ve endured and recently I took my own advice (rare, huh?) and I stepped back from a negative situation and replaced each aspect with a positive. When I was ignored, I outstretched my hand. When they treated me like a prisoner, I broke free. When they tried to tie me down, I wrote and soared.

The story Rapunzel that I wrote is a perfect example of exactly what I’m saying here. I had a painful experience try to wipe me out in a negative fashion, with negative people rubbing their hands together in pleasure while trying to see me squirm, and this time instead, I smiled through each day, prayed daily for those folks, and made it through a difficult situation, proving my heart and soul had come to a healing place.

Writing is what got me through. For years I’ve used writing as my healing place, but this time the action I took was in a positive motion, and the outcome was my sweet reward. Turning a negative into a positive takes a lot of practice, sometimes years, but the benefits are worth it.

Find your healing place through writing.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Quotation Saturday

 The Light of the World

“We must become so alone, so utterly alone, that we withdraw into our innermost self. It is a way of bitter suffering. But then our solitude is overcome, we are no longer alone, for we find that our innermost self is the spirit, that it is God, the indivisible. And suddenly we find ourselves in the midst of the world, yet undisturbed by its multiplicity, for our innermost soul we know ourselves to be one with all being.”
~ Hermann Hesse

My religion consists of a humble admiration of the illimitable superior spirit who reveals himself in the slight details we are able to perceive with our frail and feeble mind.”
~Albert Einstein

 “I consider myself a stained-glass window. And this is how I live my life. Closing no doors and covering no windows; I am the multi-colored glass with light filtering through me, in many different shades. Allowing light to shed and fall into many many hues. My job is not to direct anything, but only to filter into many colors. My answer is destiny and my guide is joy. And there you have me.”
~ C. JoyBell C.

Taking Christ out of Christmas

In recent years I’ve noticed more and more people taking Christ OUT of their lives than they are putting Him IN their lives. I can almost understand people saying it is ‘offensive’ to them when I wish them a ‘Merry Christmas’ when they don’t believe in Christ, and I’m not about offending. “Merry Day”, I’ll say, because isn’t holiday really saying Merry HOLYday? So we better not offend if no one thinks of it as a holy day.

Lam. 3: 44 Thou hast covered thyself with a cloud, that our prayer should not pass through.

But you know what, you don’t care about offending me with your ‘happy thoughts’ and ‘wishes’  and ‘good luck’ malarkey, are you? When a person is asking for PRAYER they want and NEED prayer, not happy thoughts, luck and positive thoughts, sent your way. They believe in prayer and it is disrespectful to them when you send them ‘positive thoughts’. Do you care? Of course not, as long as you’re firm in your happy thoughts and positive thinking, you’re good.

Job 22: 27 Thou shalt make thy prayer unto him, and he shall hear thee, and thou shalt pay thy vows.

I even see Christian friends, treading on egg shells when it comes to saying the words, “I’ll pray for you,” or “sending prayers and positive thoughts to you” Is that too hard? Do you fear, FEAR sending someone prayer? I would think that sending prayer to the non- believer would be impertinent to your faith, sending prayer has been done since the beginning of time.

Job 15:4 Yea, thou castest off fear, and restrainest prayer before God.

“Do not allow yourself to be blinded by fear and anger. Everything is only as it is.”
~ Yuki Urushibara

Then there is the ‘Darkened Thursday’ leading into ‘Black Friday’, it’s as if we just want to be done with THANKSgiving altogether, and run right into the shopping buying spree of the X-mas holiday. I say X-mas, because I’m saddened to see Christmas turn into a sham of a Holyday!

“There is a light in this world, a healing spirit more powerful than any darkness we may encounter. We sometimes lose sight of this force when there is suffering, too much pain. Then suddenly, the spirit will emerge through the lives of ordinary people who hear a call and answer in extraordinary ways.”
~ Mother Teresa

I’ve been hearing a lot about 12-21-12 here lately. Had to look that one up and see what all the non-pray-ers and happy thought people were in a tissy-fit for. I see that is the day that the Mayan Calendar is coming to an end. So what does that mean? It means to me that Satan is at work distracting us once again. Quite a few have mistaken the true meaning, and are all in a chaotic state of believing the world will end. But hold on to your horses, the world will NOT end, just because an ancient Mayan Calendar ends.

Ps. 22 :27 All the ends of the world shall remember and turn unto the LORD: and all the kindreds of the nations shall worship before thee.

If you did any research into the Mayan calendar, you’d see that it just meant that there would be a spiritual renewal, not much unlike the Holy Bible teaches throughout time. No man will know when the end time will come, so please don’t throw yourself into the belief that the world is going to end on December 21, 2012. To some, it is just the beginning, of a new era, a new dawn, and a new spiritual awareness. You might feel it, I might feel it and anyone who is consciously aware of the spirit, Holy Spirit, anything spiritual, might FEEL it. (*might- not set in stone)

Those who believe in nothing will FEEL nothing. (my opinion, which I’m entitled to.)

I am so thankful sometimes I smile outloud, and as hard and long as you might try you could not break my spirit.”
~ Nirrimi Joy Hakanson

“The first peace, which is the most important, is that which comes within the souls of people when they realize their relationship, their oneness with the universe and all its powers, and when they realize at the center of the universe dwells the Great Spirit, and that its center is really everywhere, it is within each of us.”
~ Black Elk

“A man’s spirit is free, but his pride binds him with chains of suffocation in a prison of his own insecurities”
~ Jeremy Aldana

“I live for those who love me, for those who know me true; for the heaven that smiles above me and awaits my spirit too. For the cause that lacks assistance, for the wrong that needs resistance, for the future in the distance, and the good that I can do.”
~ George Linnaeus Banks

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Taken from FaceBook
This is Thanksgiving in America, the day we celebrate with family and give thanks for our blessings throughout the year. While this year I am spending it alone with Adam, no turkey, no hubbub, no family, I still find I am thankful for many things.

Some corporations, while always thinking about money and not family, have made workers work on this day. It’s always about the almighty dollar; and we wonder why God wants to end this world?

This will be my first ever Thanksgiving alone. A time for family is going to be spent with Adam and I preparing for Christmas. The nation commercializes Halloween to the hilt with adult costumes (that should be reserved for the intimacy of a bedroom, I might add) candy, gore, and the celebration of the evil; while Thanksgiving gets overlooked and we segue right into Christmas. (note: Christmas music begins playing in stores the day after Halloween.)

While back home my mother and father will venture off to my brothers, my sister and her husband will go to my brothers also, my niece will go to her mother in laws, and my other brother will relish the time surrounded by his family. Two of my brothers are alone this day.

Stevens family will gather together and celebrate with the turkey and all the trimmings but most of all, each other. I can almost savor the aroma coming from their houses as laughter and chit chat erupts about how great or bad this year has been. Turkey and dressing, pumpkin pies and cranberry sauce; the heat from the oven making many peek outside to feel some kind of breeze and coolness. Ahh, it must be nice to feel a part of a family.

And me, I’ll work my little butt off, with Adam running errands of up and down the stairs, to bring Christmas to life for us. Adam doesn’t mind not having Thanksgiving today, he’s almost 17 and his joy is being home from school. We did have a thrown together turkey meal on Sunday as our thanksgiving, but it just wasn’t the same. No homemade dressing, no mashed potatoes from REAL potatoes, carrots from a CAN, can you believe THAT? But we were together and that is what mattered.

I knew this was going to be a long week, since the almighty dollar calls to the big corporations and franchises. BUT, I am thankful for a great year that has passed by, it seems, quicker than a meteor whizzing through the sky.

As I try not to get depressed over being alone this day, I have to remind myself what a great year this has been and be Thankful for all the blessings God has given us.

The year began with the healing of the infection that was making my body inoperable, by May I was almost myself and the Blessings of my Church family did not go unnoticed!

While Steven, after being blind for three years, had his sight restored in Oct. 2011, some time in March, he had an infection. Many backbreaking trips to Omaha, a tire blowout; we again were delivered blessings in way of new tires, and the healing of the infection.

In July, Steven had his driver’s license back in his hand. Limited to a 40-mile radius, it could have saddened us, but instead we looked up and the blessing was that he found a job within the forty-mile radius. He cannot drive at night (another restriction) but the place he works for is willing to work around that. (they’re open 24 hrs. a day, so this was good)

While I sit here today, feeling sorry for myself, I’m reminded of all the blessings we’ve had this year, and my spirits lift and I’m Grateful to my God for everything. This is why I’ll skip right over Thanksgiving and head into a celebration of Christmas. I’m also reminded that every Day I’m Thankful, and need no one day set aside to celebrate it. Now the whole family thing is over rated and my being alone with no family this day hurts. BUT I am THANKFUL they are alive and healthy, somewhat healthy, but they are alive to celebrate this day and give THANKS!

More to be thankful for this day, from my FaithWriters family:

Lord we lift up Joni to you.
We have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, We do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in our prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might.  Ephesians 1:15-19
We pray for great blessing, wisdom and protection for Joni and a sense of your overwhelming presence and love. That they would know for certain in their hearts that they have been forgiven and released from any shame and guilt. Help Joni to see who they are in Christ. Place a strong desire in Joni to know more about you and a hunger for your Word. Open the doors for Joni that lead to you and close the doors that lead away. In Jesus mighty name we pray.


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Being the Voice Among Many

One Voice among many
Gibbon, Nebraska

Yesterday we talked about being unique; today I want to talk to you about being a Voice. You say you’re popular among your writing friends. They swoon at your feet and are a welcome relief in the struggle to get to the top of your writing journey. That’s all well and good, but what does your voice sound like to strangers who’ve never met you.

Say a publisher is reading your work. They don’t know you from Adam so they are not in the popular crowd that you’re so used to having lifting you up and stroking your ego. They are strangers and theirs are the eyes that will read/publish your cherished work.

Like I had said, being popular is all well and good in your little clique of writers, but it isn’t going to help you among total strangers who are going to take a chance on you. Without a voice, you will get nowhere.

1) Query – Your query letter is going to be your voice to someone outside the familiar territory of your group of friends. Read the guidelines and follow them. They don’t want to know how to throw pies at someone, or hear your favorite joke, they want to hear about your story, and that is it!

2) Presentation – The way you present yourself is going to be the step you stand on. This isn’t the time to put on your funny hat and think that a magazine publisher/editor is your bud. Be professional. I tried to teach this to students and they pointed out quickly that the classroom is for fun and silly. I just wanted them to be prepared for the seriousness of writing and submitting. By practicing being a professional, maybe you’ll carry that with you when you need it the most. Point taken: classroom = fun and silly learning, Professionalism for the real world.

3) Reasons for wanting your work – You’ll give them the reason they are going to want to publish your work. Save your life story for the novel. This is not the place to think you are rubbing elbows. If you haven’t found your voice by now, this is not the place to begin looking for it. Give them a heartfelt, down to earth, PROFESSIONAL reason. What? You didn’t learn how to be professional? Should have listened to me the first time.

4) Waiting – This is the hardest part, even harder than the submitting of your work. The waiting is where you’ll more than likely cast self-doubt and second-guess, look at your work again and find fault, see errors and a ton of other negative things. Don’t do it. As hard as it may seem, don’t fret over your submission and being accepted. It may take months before you hear from someone, so take this time to write new material.

5)  Rejection – Oh dear, I mentioned the most horrendous word to a writer, the dreaded rejection letter. Hey, it happens more times than not, but that is not any reason to give up. This is the very reason you send out simultaneous submissions (sim subs); when all ten come back with rejection letters, refine your search and send them to ten more prospective mags/pubs/editors.

Now your voice is being read AND heard, so what are you waiting for?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Be a UNIQUE Writer

Moody Gardens- Houston Texas

In writing, there are things that will separate your own writing from the millions of others out there in this business of writing and that is your uniqueness. If we jump into a pool of swimming sharks and swim and feed like them, we are only going to become shark bait.

Now if you grab hold of the idea in your head, swim differently, create your personality, find your voice, and relay it to the world, all the other fish will swim over and want to read of the Eighth Wonder of the World and that is YOU and your writing.

What is going to make you stand out from all of the others? Your personality and the ability to put yourself into words. If you’re popular among your friends in the writing community, more than likely it is an online course or workshop that you’ve become familiar with and have conveyed to them a likable personality.

Not everyone with a thriving personality trait is a writer, but more times than not, they are good writers who stand out in a crowd of so-so writers. Why? Because they have made a presentation of themselves via words, and people are drawn like bees to honey, to a positive personality.

Negative begets negative and positive begets positive. I have seen some negatively influential folk in my day who wear a mask of positive but underneath lurks the venom of a snake. I wonder why they are not published authors by now? Hmm… negative is drawn to negative.

Being unique means more than looking good to other people. A mask can always be seen through, and pity is not a form working towards drawing in a positive. Me, I try to steer clear and treat the negative folks as if they have the plague, so as not to bring me down. In doing such, I’ve lost quite a few ‘so-called’ friends, but in turn, as I turned my world into a positive influx generated by the human psyche, I drew in some positive influences into my life, and wouldn’t change things for the world.

As a writer, you need to define what draws you to other writers. I prefer Tolkien and Koontz as well as Stephen King along with Shirley Jackson. What draws me to those writers is their style. Their writing style speaks volumes as to their personality.

A lot of times when you pick up a book, read a chapter and put it down, a writers personality has leaked through and you felt that the rest of the book was just a washout. This is not the case all of the time, but most of the time.

A unique personality does not mean you’re going to win a popularity contest when one comes around, but a unique voice among the crowd will be a standout and just might be the key for you to go from being a writer, to becoming a published author.

1)     Be yourself – the most important aspect of writing
2)     Be your own person – Don’t try to mimic others.
3)     Frown upon the negative – Do away with the negative people, and you’ll visually capture change.
4)     Accentuate the positive – Befriending the positive nature, will bring about a positive outcome.
5)     BE UNIQUE among the mundane – There are so many out there trying to be like someone else. Be unique among the hum drum, savor the taste of being YOU!

Book Bites:
The Writer's Rules: The Power Of Positive Prose--howTo Create It And Get It Published – Helen G. Brown

Monday, November 19, 2012

Why is writing NOT easy?

 ^ Concordia, Ks. Convent ^

Why do people wrongly think that becoming a writer will be easy? Writing is hard work!

In this strange chaotic world, there are so many writers out there trying to break out of the writing world into the published author world. Many think they can just join a writing site and instantly become a writer and that no effort is needed to becoming a published author.

They are sadly mistaken. I’ve seen over the years people who just think they can become a writer by either retiring or giving up their job in say, in the military, doctors who felt the writing bug all their lives, nurses who on the side embark on the writing bug journey all the way down to the stay at home mom who needs time to kill so they use writing as an outlet.

I know quite a few who have succeeded and many who have failed and left the writing world behind to sit on the Social Networks or in chat rooms to feel as if they are still connected to writers in some way, any way. I even know a few who write, just for the love of writing, no monetary gain in sight, they just love writing.

Another misconception is that they are going to become a writer making mega-bucks and are soon slapped upside the head with the reality, that writing is WORK, not a walk in the park leisure stroll where you write, publish, make tons of money, and treat the family to trips to Disney World.

I’m going to lay out some tips for you as a writer, on becoming a writer and achieving the goal you’ve set for yourself. Always remember, writing is WORK, treat it as such and only then will you reap any rewards.

1) PLAN – For starters, you have to set a realistic plan. You’ll be writing for thousands of hours and you need to be willing to accept that it is going to take years and years before there is a payoff. (Sometimes sooner if you WORK at it.)

2) STRATEGY – You have to have a strategy. Like your plan, you have to be willing to have a strategy that will make those thousands of hours payoff in the end. I’ve seen success stories, so I know it can be done.

3) SET GOALS – You’ve made your mind up that you want to be a writer, now what? Set an achievable goal. One you can reach. Don’t write a novel and give up on offering it to a publisher. I’ve seen many who pays hundreds of dollars to self-publish thinking their work is THAT good, and when it fails, they too feel like a failure as a writer. Although, I’ve seen some who self-publish and keep on doing it because even one copy of their sold novel is better than a sitting-in-the-drawer novel. Whatever your goal – achieve it!

4) FINISH WHAT YOU STARTED – Writing is all well and good, but unfinished novels are worthless. They sit collecting dust, hanging by a thread on the blanket you’ve never finished knitting. Do you want a blanket that’s only half way completed? No warmth there, is it?

5) SUBMIT -- Send your work out on a consistent basis, each week, each month, whatever you’re comfortable with. Follow the guidelines! One word over the wordcount can get you tossed out, so remember, you’re no exception to their rules. They make the rules, you follow them, strictly!

6) KEEP TRACK – You’ll need to keep a folder of all the markets and publishers you’ve sent your work to. Keep it organized so you know where just to look when they come accepting! Make sure you tell them it is a sim. sub., meaning simultaneous submission, and notify each when it has been accepted.

7) MARKET YOURSELF – Whether on Facebook or Twitter, you need a marketing strategy as well. Sell your personality by telling friends, neighbors, loved ones, and fellow writers that you’ve submitted and await their response. This will get evryone excited for you, even if you get rejected, they’ll be your support to keep you going full steam ahead.

8) PROMOTE – Promote yourself, not just to writers because that to me is like Pespi selling Coke. Promoting to fellow writers is good, but they, most of the time are not your targeted buyers. Promote yourself to targeted buyers. Now if you’ve written a book to aide writers, then by all means, promote to the writing community. But a sci-fi novel is not going to be swallowed up by the writing community in which you’ve been a part of for years.

9) WRITE – Continue writing, (not over-editing) even if you’re getting no reward as in money. If you don’t keep pushing the pen, or keys on the keyboard, you will surely dry up and become a frozen lizard stuck to a pane of glass. All dried up with nowhere to go.

10) BREATHE – Take time to breathe, drinking in your reality as you pursue your dream. This is where you’ll continue to find the inspiration you need to keep on going. To become a writer, you need to WORK at becoming a writer. Nothing else will suffice in this dog-eat-dog-world.

So what are you waiting for? GET WRITING!!!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Poetry Sunday ~ I'm Thankful...

Pss. 19:8 The precepts of the LORD are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the LORD are radiant, giving light to the eyes. 
I’m thankful….

I’m thankful for that one warm ray,
That shines on me to lighten my day.
I’m thankful for the dewy grass
That tickles my toes as I pass.
I’m thankful for the fragrant air,
That wafts on by without a care.
I’m thankful for the torrents of rain
That soaks my skin; releases my pain.
I’m thankful for the budding flower.
That blooms in glory, a scented shower.
I’m thankful for every timeless season,
new bark; new bough with endless reason.
I’m thankful for all the joyful bliss,
that graces my cheek as a gentle kiss.
I’m thankful for being allowed too touch,
that one lost soul whom needs so much.
I’m thankful for every little thing,
that has no worth, but smiles they bring.
I’m thankful for the minuscule,
for that is where my soul can rule.
I’m thankful for all my eyes can see,
breathless beauty from God to me.
I’m thankful for all of this and more,
The love of life, the chance to soar!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Quotation Saturday ~ Thankfulness

“Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens.”
~ J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

“God will not look you over for medals, degrees or diplomas but for scars.”
~ Elbert Hubbard

“Faith is not the belief that God will do what you want. It is the belief that God will do what is right.”
~ Max Lucado, He Still Moves Stones

“The function of prayer is not to influence God, but rather to change the nature of the one who prays.”
~ Søren Kierkegaard

“The reason birds can fly and we can't is simply because they have perfect faith, for to have faith is to have wings.”
~ J.M. Barrie, The Little White Bird

“True happiness is to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future, not to amuse ourselves with either hopes or fears but to rest satisfied with what we have, which is sufficient, for he that is so wants nothing. The greatest blessings of mankind are within us and within our reach. A wise man is content with his lot, whatever it may be, without wishing for what he has not.”
~ Seneca

“Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.”
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.”
~ Epicurus

“Let gratitude be the pillow upon which you kneel to say your nightly prayer. And let faith be the bridge you build to overcome evil and welcome good.”
~ Maya Angelou


“Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.”
~ Holy Bible: King James Version

“The unthankful heart discovers no mercies; but the thankful heart will find, in every hour, some heavenly blessings.”
~ Henry Ward Beecher

“The gift was not large as money goes, and my need was not great, but the spirit of the gift is beyond price and leaves me blessed and in debt.”
~ Robert Fulghum

“I've started to look at life differently. When you're thanking God for every little you - every meal, every time you wake up, every time you take a sip of water - you can't help but be more thankful for life itself, for the unlikely and miraculous fact that you exist at all.”
~ A.J. Jacobs

May every day you sit down together as a family be a day of Thanksgiving. Don’t allow one day a year to define your THANKFULNESS.
~ Joni Zipp

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Poetry Sunday ~ This Day...

This day…

A day set aside for honoring Vets,
So no one lives and ever forgets.
We mourn the dead and the living,
those that served with endless giving.

Thunderclaps sound the heavens speaking,
A choir sings out, their voices leaking.
All sit perched looking down on us,
Wondering why humans cause such a fuss.

We go to war where blood is shed,
pride ourselves in who we left dead.
We fill with anger when it’s one of our own,
taking for granted this Earth on loan.

In war you’re bound to win or lose,
human souls allowed to choose.
The world is full of hate in layers
among us fight the innocent players.

We lay them out like falling leaves
Left behind are all who grieves.
Bitterness held by a storms eruption
Ego’s lifted by political corruption.

Bound are we by God’s own plan
Quickly we judge, His dose on man.
He is in all and all is in me.
Do you abandon or do you see?

We’re living zombies in our own illusion,
our God is not master of confusion.
Never forget all the ones that you love,
We’re intimately formed from the One above.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Quotation Saturday


“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,

A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.”
~ J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

“Every heart sings a song, incomplete, until another heart whispers back. Those who wish to sing always find a song. At the touch of a lover, everyone becomes a poet.”
~ Plato

“Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt, and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen.”
~ Leonardo da Vinci

“Poetry might be defined as the clear expression of mixed feelings.”
~ W.H. Auden, New Year Letter


“A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.”
~ George Bernard Shaw

“A painter should begin every canvas with a wash of black, because all things in nature are dark except where exposed by the light.”
~ Leonardo da Vinci

“I am an excitable person who only understands life lyrically, musically, in whom feelings are much stronger as reason. I am so thirsty for the marvelous that only the marvelous has power over me. Anything I can not transform into something marvelous, I let go. Reality doesn't impress me. I only believe in intoxication, in ecstasy, and when ordinary life shackles me, I escape, one way or another. No more walls.”
~ Anaïs Nin

“It is good to love many things, for therein lies the true strength, and whosoever loves much performs much, and can accomplish much, and what is done in love is well done.”
~ Vincent van Gogh
“Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.”
~ Pablo Picasso


“When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different. You know that your name is safe in their mouth.”
~ Jess C. Scott, The Intern

“As if you were on fire from within.
The moon lives in the lining of your skin.”
~ Pablo Neruda

“Passion has little to do with euphoria and everything to do with patience. It is not about feeling good. It is about endurance. Like patience, passion comes from the same Latin root: pati. It does not mean to flow with exuberance. It means to suffer.”
~ Mark Z. Danielewski, House of Leaves

“There is scarcely any passion without struggle.”
~ Albert Camus


“You are lucky to be one of those people who wishes to build sand castles with words, who is willing to create a place where your imagination can wander. We build this place with the sand of memories; these castles are our memories and inventiveness made tangible. So part of us believes that when the tide starts coming in, we won't really have lost anything, because actually only a symbol of it was there in the sand. Another part of us thinks we'll figure out a way to divert the ocean. This is what separates artists from ordinary people: the belief, deep in our hearts, that if we build our castles well enough, somehow the ocean won't wash them away. I think this is a wonderful kind of person to be.”
~ Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life

“He was a writer and words were his weapons.”
~ Christopher Moore, Bloodsucking Fiends

When you write about what you dream, you become a writer.

When you dream about what you write, you become haunted by a curse.”

~ A. Saleh, Poetry Eyes

“Literature always anticipates life. It doesn't copy it but moulds it to it's purpose.”
~ Oscar Wilde

Thursday, November 08, 2012

How to Help a Writer

 Our Pumpkins from our Garden

In my many years of mentoring writers I’ve learned what it takes to really help a writer. I’m here to give you some tips on a writer helping writers.

1) Encourage: This one should be a given, but there are some writers out there who think it is their task to bombard a writer with malicious critique. Which only disillusions a writer and makes them run for the door. My mother always told me, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, then don’t say it at all.” I think my mother, along with many others are right on this one.

2) Support: This is also a given. A writer that doesn’t have the support she needs to get through writing say her novel or short story, may never make it through 500 words nevertheless 50,000 words.  Stand by the writer in the family, group, or friend who only needs your support to get them through.

3) Critique: This is one where you tread lightly. While all of us love an honest critique, I have never met a writer who welcomed harsh critique. That goes against a writer helping a writer.

4) Be nice: What? You need ME to tell you to be nice? That’s sad. But I have ran into quite a few mean-spirited people in my day who want to claim to be a writer, but they go against EVERYTHING in this list of how-to’s, who target one writer, and tries everything in their power to take a person down. Shame on you! And you call yourself a writer?

5) Befriend: Befriending a writer is a good thing. If you surround yourself with like-minded folk, then it can only benefit your journey and keep you moving forward instead of backward.

6) Respect: Respect others opinion and take it with a grain of salt. That has helped me the most in writing. Not all people are going to be positive but even the negative, when turned into a positive, can be beneficial.

7) Network: Yes sir, you’re going to need a network of writers to help you especially when it comes promotion time of your work.

8) Gentle criticism: This is needed for all writers. Yes we want to hear our work is good but we also might need assistance in the grammar department or punctuation rules. Be gentle in offering assistance. Don’t throw your hands up in the air when someone misses a comma, or has lousy punctuation skills! Be gentle with your words. You KNOW the affect words have on people.

9) Motivate: Motivating a writer is essential. When you see someone not getting the encouragement he or she needs, they lose their ability to be motivated in continuing their writing journey. A lot of times writers block will set in and it is hard to get out of that slump. With the proper motivation, they can be led back to their writing, thus fulfilling their desired destiny.

10) Be there: Be there to see them through all ten of these steps. You do realize that it is you that is going to make or break this writer. I never met a writer who did not benefit from all of what I’m saying.

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

I Voted for Christ

Titus 3:1-6  Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work,To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, shewing all meekness unto all men. For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another.
 But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared,
 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour;
Today I woke up with a song in my heart, ‘How Great Though Art’. Why, you might ask? Because I took a stance in this great world we live in, I voted for Christ.

After a bitter year of campaigning, name-calling, dividedness, hate and ignorance; and that's just among Christians for starters, I decided to cast my vote and that was for Christ. I had told a friend recently that I don’t swim upstream with all the other fishes; I swim downstream to see what everyone is running from. It couldn’t have been truer than when it came time to vote.

If I hear one more time, “Get the Muslim out of the White House”, “My God is greater than his God”, “He’s going to abandon us like he did Benghazi”. I mean really? Has voting come down to this?

I was born and raised Catholic, but I am not a Catholic. Again, I chose Christ and became a Christian. I didn’t choose a Religion, I chose a FAITH, a faith that has taught me to love my neighbor, even if he is different from me. I can’t say the same for my fellow Christians this morning because instead of understanding what God has placed before us, they sit judging the colors of the rainbow.

I saw before me bickering and biting over money, race, religion. I never saw people actually wanting a leader, they wanted someone who could either give them more money, or put religion in the White House, get race out of there, and let us move on.

My faith also taught me something about sacrifice. I’ve always been one to sacrifice riches for humility. I always embraced the poor, wretched of society, without bragging rights. I do everything in humble adoration and repeat over and over again, How Great Thou Art!

I know our economy isn’t great, but with sacrifice comes the light you were searching for. I wonder, how many people are without jobs, and are ANGERED because they have to accept less money than they did in prior years? How many are NOT willing to make less, and sit at home complaining because all the jobs making good money are a thing of the past?

I remember my mother once telling me, “Well that kind of money isn’t going to put food on your plate, pay your rent, etc. etc.” But you know what? My faith taught me:

Matt. 6: 25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?

And guess what? I have never gone hungry, never been without shelter, and never NOT had clothes on my back and shoes on my feet. No, I don’t wear the BEST shoes money can buy, I don’t have the fancy clothes to show everyone “Hey, look what I bought at Macy’s”. No, my clothes are oftentimes bought at the Goodwill, a place where I can get $70 dollar jeans for $8 bucks. My clothes are often from the WalMart $3 seasonal rack.  Ashamed? No, humbled yes. I live for Christ and all that that entails.

Jesus was not rich with money. His ministry did not work on campaigning and tossing out money to people. He actually FED the poor and hungry, and his shoes never wore out, and he was well fed, without the riches money can buy. Jesus was NOT about monetary wealth. He was not about Religion. He was about faith and love! Spiritual wealth is worth more than you could EVER imagine. And yes, this day and age, we must ALL come to realize that, and quit judging! I didn't vote a 'white man' into office or a 'black  man', I voted for JESUS!

So as I boldly went to the voting booth with every intention of voting, where it said OTHER, I cast my vote for Jesus CHRIST! Hate me, judge me, burn me at the stake, because as I die, my last words will be, “How Great Thou Art”!

Sunday, November 04, 2012

Poetry Sunday ~ Mighty Oak

Mighty Oak

They tried their best to take me down
with nails like claws they wore a frown.
Gnashing, taunting, pawing at me
why won’t they just let me be?

With all my might I stood strong
like the Oak who has lived so long.
Weathering any kind of storm
branching out for new life’s form.

The tree goes through a dormant season
fulfilling life with rhyme and reason.
Bursting forth with fancy flair,
the mighty Oak's still standing there.

They tried so hard with no success,
they now are lost in worthlessness.
Karma goes round the weak and cruel
like a pattern fired with fuel.

Be kind to one who is tried and true
Blessings will come back to you.
But do not seek to weaken the oak,
You’ll soon find out, it’s you who choke!

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Quotation Saturday


“You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is like an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.”
― Mahatma Gandhi

“If you're reading this...
Congratulations, you're alive.
If that's not something to smile about,
then I don't know what is.”
― Chad Sugg

“You can talk with someone for years, everyday, and still, it won't mean as much as what you can have when you sit in front of someone, not saying a word, yet you feel that person with your heart, you feel like you have known the person for forever.... connections are made with the heart, not the tongue.”
― C. JoyBell C.

“I have no faith in human perfectibility. I think that human exertion will have no appreciable effect upon humanity. Man is now only more active - not more happy - nor more wise, than he was 6000 years ago.”
― Edgar Allan Poe


“And on the subject of burning books: I want to congratulate librarians, not famous for their physical strength or their powerful political connections or their great wealth, who, all over this country, have staunchly resisted anti-democratic bullies who have tried to remove certain books from their shelves, and have refused to reveal to thought police the names of persons who have checked out those titles.

So the America I loved still exists, if not in the White House or the Supreme Court or the Senate or the House of Representatives or the media. The America I love still exists at the front desks of our public libraries.”

― Kurt Vonnegut, A Man Without a Country

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
― Theodore Roosevelt

“Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.”
― Groucho Marx


“It's really a wonder that I haven't dropped all my ideals, because they seem so absurd and impossible to carry out. Yet I keep them, because in spite of everything, I still believe that people are really good at heart.”
― Anne Frank, The Diary of a Young Girl

“Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops at all.”
― Emily Dickinson

“The world is indeed full of peril and in it there are many dark places.
But still there is much that is fair. And though in all lands, love is now
mingled with grief, it still grows, perhaps, the greater.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

“I like the night. Without the dark, we'd never see the stars.”
― Stephenie Meyer
Note: Stephenie Myers is quoted as saying this, when Martin Luther King, Jr. said it many moons BEFORE her.

“Only in the darkness can you see the stars.”
― Martin Luther King Jr.


“Yes: I am a dreamer. For a dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world.”
― Oscar Wilde

“Stories of imagination tend to upset those without one.”
― Terry Pratchett

 “Reality leaves a lot to the imagination.”
― John Lennon

“There are painters who transform the sun to a yellow spot, but there are others who with the help of their art and their intelligence, transform a yellow spot into sun”
― Pablo Picasso

Friday, November 02, 2012

Rapunzel ~ A new spin

As I stated earlier, I wrote a story called Rapunzel. While it sits idle in an empty room, I thought I’d share this tale with you, grammatical errors and all. A good flash fiction piece if I do say so myself.  I will take this down after it goes through editing.

Thanks for reading!

Wc: 986

Her bare feet press into the moist soil as she steps ever so closely to the heart of where the sounds of laughter are bellowing. Looking ahead she sees them all playing, in a circle with balloons of smiley faces bouncing from one to another. She approaches in a whisper of wind, no one paying her any mind as one step becomes lighter than the other.

Her long white silken gown blows in the breeze appearing to be a mighty wave on the ocean. She nears the commotion to see many standing and playing ball, all with a smiley face on them. This must be a dream. All dreams will come alive here in this village of laughter and fun. She’s cautious with her approach.

“STOP!” a voice cries out, “you don’t belong here!”

The circle takes notice of her and all come to her side exclaiming in a joyful tone, “You’re here, Z!”

Z is the pleasant nickname they’ve bestowed upon Rapunzel. Her arms raise to embrace the ones who are welcoming and her eyes are not unaware that off to her left in the midst of the trees, there sits awaiting dark looming creatures with snarling mouths, claws on their fingers waiting to gouge the bark off the trees.

No words spill from her mouth as in a sudden quake of lucidity, she realizes they are all staring at her. The mist in the forest thickens as she begins to turn and walk away, but not before the cold clammy hand reaches her shoulder. “You’re coming with me,” he mutters in a raspy hoarse voice.

His hand feels like an arctic glacier that causes a shudder throughout her now chilled body; his eyes are as piercing as a daggers blade of fire. His body towering over her shadowing her in darkness, running is not an option as the minions that seek to lead her away from the happy circle outnumber her.

Her long flowing hair is full of the mist that surrounds her, her feet are damp from the soil as she walks with them to the shrouded castle. The aroma of a foul marsh assaults her nose. Her insides are turned like churning butter as she wonders what fate has dealt her this time. The laughter and joy that bled to tears and angst is off in the distance as the woods encircle her and she is led deeper into the cauldron of naysayers.

“To the tower,” he bursts out in fleshy tone, “away with you, until we see fit to release you.”

Rapunzel uttered not a word as she knew her punishment and hatred was unwarranted. The dark force holds no power over her, and fear is certainly not of her being; she walks on, knowing that this is not the end.

She waits in the tower until those below decide what to do with this deemed atrocity. She listens intently as the echoes filter up the spiral stairs into the one tiny room with a window that she has been locked in.

From the depths below, calamities of voices are sounding out.

“She doesn’t belong here, she’s nothing but trouble.”

“Little miss drama queen, what is she going to drum up next?”

“I fear she’ll ruin this place of unity that we’ve built.”

“SILENCE!” comes from the leader of the pack, “remember, she has helped in building this place, she was essential and vital to its growth. I can’t bear to feed her to you as you all obviously wish from me.”

Silence now holds the echoes of chains and celebratory clinking glasses and bouncing hungry voices. The silence deafens, as a harmonic song is lifted in the tower. Rapunzel sings a soft song as they all turn their weary heads. The argumentative stance is now loosened as they move closer and closer to the steps, leading to the tower.

“My one true voice, I shall find
among the sighted not the blind”

Her voice is as fleecy as a feather, floating weightlessly down the stairs melting like wax in the ears of those who are listening.

“To all of those who wish to bind
Will never know me and my kind.”

Her voice is fading ever so gently into the distance it rides…

“I am me, only one of my kind
You’ll never steal
the dreams in my mind.”

“RUBBISH!” one angry voice spits out.

A hush stirs the room to silence. So quiet, the mouse in the corner stops his search for a crumb, awaiting them to spot him at any moment. As a pin drops it belts out a thundering slam to the floor.

The minions all push and shove to get to the top of the stairs. One trips and is crumbled beneath the boot of the Master; another falls to the side as an army of hatred pushes her there. They reach the top with bated breath; swing open the door to find… the room is empty.

On an eagles wings Rapunzel can be seen soaring atop the circle of laughter and cheers below, through the thick forest trees, swerving in and out as if to carry her to a lighter path, one which she is all to familiar with, peace.

“Look, she left this,” claims one of the seeds of trivial hate, “but how…” the voice softens. A tear climbs over her eye as she realizes the wrong done to Rapunzel. They begin to lament as a brewing storm portends to wreak havoc on the forest and the fire that was in their weak minds erupts in a calamity of destruction, leaving them forever trapped in the infernal tower that they alone created.

The note says, “Alone, one voice is nothing. Together they become a choir. One voice to tell the world. Two voices will bind them. I have hope to see in the dark, and all at once I’ll find them.”