Monday, September 6, 2021

 

Self-Conversation 

I sat in the waiting room wishing I had brought my book. Other times I had been there, I never had time to even open my book, so I left it at home. As I looked around the room for something of interest I spotted a thin circle of plastic sitting in the middle of the area rug on the waiting room floor. I studied it for a few moments wondering how it could sit in middle of the floor without anyone noticing it.

Pick up that piece of trash,” said a voice in my head.

No!” I responded. “It’s probably full of germs!” My voice warned.

Voice one: “Do the right thing, be a good citizen. Pick it up!”

I noticed a box of Kleenex on the receptionist’s counter.

You can use a piece of Kleenex to keep from touching it.” Said Voice one.

Voice two replied. “That person across from me will think I’m NUTS!”

Voice one:  Who cares what anyone thinks. Do the right thing! 

I looked at the receptionist’s counter and noted the LARGE container of hand sanitizer.

Voice one: You’ve seen the sanitizer. No more excuses! Pick up the trash, throw it away and USE the sanitizer for Pete’s sake!

I picked up the trash, threw it in the can, used the sanitizer and returned to my seat. The person sitting across the room never once looked up from his phone.

THAT started my reflection. Why am I so worried about what others think? Why not just jump in and do what’s right? Take chances? Make a difference, even if it is something as miniscule as picking up trash that the rest of the world ignores.

How can I apply this to writing?

1.    Whether it is big or small, do the thing that makes you uncomfortable, because it is the right thing.

2.    Have a little faith in yourself. Step out there, do the work of writing and research.

3.    Don’t expect easy. Writing isn’t easy. It takes dedication and hard work.

4.    Don’t just sit there thinking about it, do it!

5.    Start and success will follow.

Saturday, August 7, 2021

 

Dog Days of Summer

Until this year I have never given the Dog Days of Summer much thought. That is because although I grew up in a sunny hot climate, I never experienced a true Dog Day. I was a child when air conditioning was rare and certainly not used in our family.

My mother provided cooling by opening all curtains and windows after the sun slipped below the western horizon. In those days, no one locked their houses at night or any time. We would have laughed at the thought of locking the door. We lived in a quiet village of friendly people. Though we were an hour or more from the ocean, we were blessed by breezes coming off the Pacific, which cooled our homes every night. At times we had thick fog that watered redwoods that grew nearby. The fog dissipated as the sun warmed the earth and brilliant blue skies reigned through spring, summer and fall. Our seasonal creek dried up as summer progressed, but not before we had watched pollywogs become frogs and played in the creek to our heart’s content.

Global warming was unheard of in those days. My whole world seemed safe and friendly. It seems that a lot has dried up since that time, the forest, woods, lush fields, unlocked doors. I don’t know about you, but I don’t feel as safe or content as I did back then. What I DO feel is a sense of urgency to turn this Global Warming around. What can we do individually to make a difference for us all? There are many things we can do to reduce our carbon footprint. Here are three to start.

1.      1.  Consider reducing red meat and dairy in your diet. Red meat has the largest environmental impact. A plant based diet has positive health benefits.

2.     2.  Eat locally produced seasonal fruits and veggies. This saves on transportation cost and fuel.

3.     3. Fly less Zoom meetings are the smart way to save money and still get important work done, with less cost, fatigue and travel frustration. It’s a win/win!

There are many simple things we can do. If you have ideas, please share them. Together we can make a difference.

Wednesday, July 14, 2021


 

A Step Into Marketing

Independent writers must figure a way to get the word out about their books. My first stab at marketing was to tell all my friends. I know that I need more than friends to make this book a success. Hence my venture into marketing to other venues. I took a few baby steps last week.

I began by contacting two museums in Wallace, Idaho where the Big Burn occurred in 1910. I made appointments by phone with the directors of the Wallace Mining Museum and the Northern Pacific Railroad Depot Museum. When I arrived I had success with the director of the mining museum. She kept 12 of my books and said she would contact me if she wanted me to collect them, if she felt they were unsuitable. I have not had any messages from her to come get them. So I assume she likes what she read.

The director of the railroad museum was not in so I will check back with them. I left a book for them to review. I plan to contact them next week. So the adventure continues.

The picture above shows how far my book has traveled this summer. This was taken by my son on Chincoteague Island, Virginia, a great place for a summer read.

If you have marketing ideas to share, I'm listening!

 I'd be interested to see where the book has traveled. So if you’ve traveled and happened to take Into the FIRE! along for the ride, please let me know.

 Keep following your dreams!

Saturday, June 19, 2021

FOR FATHER'S DAY

As I sit here listening to old hymns, played in country style, I am reminded of how much I miss my father. His kindness, humor, sensitivity, and his music.

He had a wonderful talent for country music, and played the guitar with ease. He sang, and after extended begging, yodeled occasionally for us. At that time, I did not know my mother didn’t care for country music. Oh to hear him play those tunes again! He also played the harmonica and the electric guitar Hawaiian style. I watched as he moved the metal bar up and down the frets making such magical sounds. We children wanted him to play on and on.

My father was a country boy stuck in Detroit. My aunt said that on summer evenings he would come to her house, sit on the porch, play his guitar and sing. The whole family came outside to enjoy his music.

There are many questions I wish I had asked. Questions about his boyhood, his youth, his dreams and goals. Questions about his World War II experiences. How he met my mother.

Sometimes I wish I could time travel, see him and ask my adult questions. It is a shame that my younger self wasn’t that interested or curious. When you are young, you think nothing is ever going to change. It does! 

I’ve learned that if you want to know something, you have to ask. When you take the time and have the interest to ask, oh the joy! You create connections of caring.

He and I had a special relationship, I was his only daughter. We shared a sense of humor, and a delight in reading. We enjoyed being together. It was hilarious to play board or card games with him. He cheated so badly, and we laughed ‘til we cried. I can still hear his laugh.

He did not put pen to paper often, in my whole life I received one card and one letter from him. They are treasures I love.

If you still have your father, it is a great time to let him know how much he is loved.

Happy Father's Day

 

 


Tuesday, June 1, 2021

June Beginnings . . .

 Welcome to my brand new blog!

Thank you for dropping by. You'll find information about my writing to answer that burning question -- What's next? -- and an occasional poem or story about whatever my passion for writing brings me.

This wonderful picture of the Sawtooth Mountains in Idaho (shown in my banner above) comes from Jacob Nordby at Pixabay. Thank you, Jacob.




May this summer bring you joy!