Writing & Writers

Inspire is a Verb – The Liebster Award

The Liebster Award is a blogger to fellow blogger award; an invitation to spread the word about blogs offering great content. It’s a forum to meet and greet and share the wealth of inspiration.

My darling daring Liebster Award nominees, you are the most vital part of this post, so your names are going first.  I hereby dub thee infinitely inspiring and bravely blogalicious.  I choose you for reasons beyond the power of your blog.  You wield social media with love, to create powerful interactions through literature, music, and movement.  You are:

Alyson Grauer of Dreams to Become – engaging people via literature a’la On The Isle of Sound and Wonder, letting us laugh through commedia dell’arte and the ukulele.
AE Shapera of Phoole – encouraging us to get our groove on as a DJ at Ideal Clubworld Radio, teaching folks how to Make It Worth It in your book Easy Street.
Lisa Gedney Harris of Fashion Meets Poetry – bringing every woman’s personal brand of beautiful to the forefront in your upcoming book Unveiled Beauty.
Judy Victor of Leap Events – instilling empowerment, building community, and sparking unstoppable joy via lively events for women.
Rebecca Jo Malmstrom of Duckie Uglings – making the most of recycled goods and taking us beyond words into the cute-overload world of “Awe!”

My Inspiration Ninjas, here is your badge of honor. Wear it with pride and please keep writing, grooving, and moving. When we interact with you, we win. Read more →

Self-Respect or Sit n’ Spin – 100 Day Challenge Diary

When I was a kid, I loved my Sit n’ Spin. I would sit on it. And spin. And spin and spin and spin and spin AND SPIN. One Thanksgiving, I spun around so much that I missed supper. You know why. Sitting in one place and doing nothing but staring at one’s navel is dizzying at best. And you don’t get anywhere fast.

This is the diary of my 100 Day Challenge of Self-Respect. I’m sick of sitting and spinning when I should be making a beeline for the finish line. My journey is inspired by Matthew Trinetti. Here is his diary; he’s worth a follow. For transparency’s sake, here’s my progress in the categories of “fitnessy” and “writerly“:

Read more →

Published! #47ThingsILearned

What propels me?  Timely Truths, Amusing Musings, and Fun Profundities.

#47ThingsILearned is published!  It is available through Amazon in both a paperback and Kindle version.  I have one of each, but must own up to preferring paper.  I like to dog-ear, notate, scribble in, doodle over, and chew on books.

Publishing has been a marathon, a quest with an International Standard Book Number at the finish line.  It took me 47 years to get it, and I freely admit to scrawling my “race number” (aka ISBN) on my arm with a sharpie, proudly, and going to the gym for several hours to burn off the adrenaline of authorship.  I have also danced like Snoopy from Peanuts.  And celebrated with PIE!

I like #47ThingsILearned, and I hope you do too.  I’m going back in.  Watch for #47LearningsForLeaders.  Soon!


Keep Calm and Ninja On

Editing a book is a roller coaster of love.  Some days are lofty and divine, each word floating into place with a satisfying series of keyboard clicks.  Some days there is a plunging feeling, sotto-voce screaming, and tossing bombastic words overboard like ballast.

My mantra?  Keep Calm and Ninja On.

Writing The Ninja Network is an HONOR I take to heart, because it is from my heart.  Thanks for hanging in there with me, while I get it good enough for Mighty & Awesome YOU!

Here is a bit from the most recent text:

Ninjas are the result of in-person collisions I call “nuclear proaction”:  
the sparks of life that ensue when you throw yourself wholeheartedly into the midst of community, making connection points and transitioning to new ways of being.

Proactive Proof of Nuclear Ninja Kapow!
Image capture, Ryan Haro.

Flexing our Lexicon – The NaNoNinjas

My boss is one of my besties. Attendant with that territory is her right to be occasionally bossy, which she is in the nicest possible way. Frankly, someone had to put a foot down. Folks had been after me for ages to put the pedal to the metal and get words on pages.

Text message. Late. 11:58:
“I signed you up for this. You have 30 days to write a book. Starting tomorrow. Go.”

I jolted awake and clicked the link. Uh oh. NaNo.

NaNoWriMo to be clear. National Novel Writing Month. That once-a-year get wound up and write it all down free-for-all. 30 days. 50,000 words. 300,000 writers. That’s a lot of words.

The Alot help us smooth the rough edges
we get gritting our teeth over grammar errors.

Kudos to Kris.  Due to her I discovered the wonders of writing with abandon in 2007. I lost track of time, lost interest in the laundry, lost taste for food except – inexplicably – popcorn and Gummi Bears. Most importantly I lost my ruthless and unforgiving internal editor, the muttering curmudgeon who whispers “not good enough” in the ears of aspiring authors.

NaNoWriMo is the gateway to unabashed imperfection and the truth that our ceaseless spiel of self-correction is sometimes better left unsaid. Write all the words. Be brilliant and boldly inclined to make great sweeping grammatical errors while purging onto the page what just might be a bestselling novel.

What I think I look like when I write.

I didn’t finish my first novel in 2007. Or my second in 2008. In the end, 50,000 words weren’t enough to tell either story. A bit heartbroken, I set them aside, wondering what would happen to my characters. Still, I found myself drawn to writing. New words crept into my regular vernacular. I discovered an abiding affection for annoying my friends with arcane definitions. In 2009 I started hammering out a business book. In 2010 I became hypnotized by the dizzying pace of 30-minute literature. In 2011 I admitted – I’m a sprinter – a storyteller in bite-sized bits. The Ninja Network took shape, one story at a time, and I time-stamped a completed first draft a few months ago.

What I really look like when I write.

Late in October, at the cusp of NaNoWriMo 2012, I was good to go. Not to write a novel, or something from scratch, but to edit and tie up the loose ends of my manuscript prior to publication. I registered, made a donation, and waited.

And waited.

And came to terms with the condition that had left me flat in previous years: writing alone can be lonely business.

So this year I’ve set about the business of kicking that bad habit. This year I’m a NaNoNinja.

NaNoNinjas enthuse while I write,
will meet for coffee,
and remind me that I need to take a shower
at least twice a week during NaNoWriMo.

We are the NaNoNinjas and we are devoted.  Some will abandon ourselves to NaNoWriMo “the good old fashioned way”, by carving out an average of 1667 words a day. Some will tell our story verbally, speaking our minds, dictating as we commute and then translating to the printed page. Some will build the tower of our tale with poetical phrase, others as a picture with pigmented layers; a tale in tincture. Some will sprint 30 short stories. Some will edit and expound upon existing text. Some will cheer from a distance. Together we will create in community.

We gathered, each with our unique prose or poetical peculiarity. While NaNoWriMo is primarily pointed at provoking the novelist, I’m here for the literary nudge and because I RELY on community. It makes me a better woman, a smarter writer, a kinder editor, and a lot less lonely when I’m wordsmithing in the middle of the night. Because I’m not the only one burning the midnight oil.

P.S. If you’re a writer, up in the middle of the night and wigged out over word count or discombobulated by writer’s block consider this:

Inspiration is everywhere. Now… pick up your pen and MOVE IT!