Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Changes and Movings and Daddies

My dad is still doing okay, getting stronger I think, but I sense a bit of depression in him about where he is at now, in the rehab center. I keep poking him to eat more so he can be sprung from the joint. Meanwhile, I've been sorting my spare bedroom (aka the junk and craft room) into a semi-permanent place for Dad. We're all going to have be watched a little closer; and that's just as well, I need someone to cook supper for and he needs someone to eat with. We'll see how it goes.

As if the sorting and moving and cleansing of the "craft" room isn't enough, I've been rerouted at work into a new location, which has been stressful for me, mostly because I take it personally that I'm being shoved out of one spot and being shoved into another, where I'm not really wanted either. My allies say I'm being punished; my supervisors say there was no other options available to them; and I keep looking on the job postings site because this is nothing if not a motivation to get the hell out of here. Today's Wednesday--I should pick up a paper.

I love books--so having to pare down my books because after moving them last weekend, I was very adamant that I was going to pare the damned things down to "KEEPERS" (and possibly the TBR pile). Those previously shelved "keepers" which I deemed unlikely to read again, et al, were ruthlessly tossed into boxes. I hope someone loves the stories as much as I did, but stories are meant to be shared. Don't worry, plenty of books remain...and I'm sure any shelf space I got back will be taken back over. Although yesterday, I bought three Kindle books because a) they were cheaper and b) I didn't have to find them a shelf. I don't see myself ever being a sole Kindle librarian (no paper at all), but I see myself getting more and more into it.

Lastly, my best friend, the one I've known the longest and best, her daddy died last Friday. He was a Johnny Cash of a man: big, bold, rumbling, and protective. He was funny and a merrymaker; he wasn't a complainer about work or his health--maybe the occasional politician, but who isn't? He was ornery as hell--and he loved being known for it. He loved bluegrass and fixing cars and singing and gardening and cooking...and just being a daddy. He was a daddy to those of us who already had daddies but watched us when our daddies weren't here to watch over us. He could be aggravating--as everyone can be--but he was a man you couldn't help but love and respect, and we did. We love and respect that man to heaven and back. I'm going to miss like hell him calling me "Red" and giving me shit about my driving. The world is less without him.

So much has happened in this past week, so much change and sadness. Hug everyone a little tighter, tell them you love them, listen to their stories because you never know when you may not get to again. The deaths of Robin Williams and Lauren Bacall also have affected me deeply--as well as the death of James Garner a few weeks previous. So many wonderful, bright and shining lights.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

What Disney Taught Me About Being a Real Writer

I went to the RWA 2014 conference this year. Please read PJ's blogs on The Romance Dish--because that woman can certainly sum up an experience. I'm sure I'll write my version later, but I wanted to share something I learned at the conference.

The conference was filled with all day, on the hour sessions about writing, publishing, thriving, branding, marketing, and anything a writer/author needs to refresh themselves for another year of doing this. One of the sessions I chose to go to was GETTING INTO THE SPACE OF YOUR MUSE. Actually this was a two-hour class and I only stayed for one because this class overlapped with another class I wanted, but let's just say the second hour was MEDITATING and I've had classes about that already.

That arrogance of mine aside, there was something the presenters kept saying at this workshop--and it was about how there are two core beliefs we operate from as humans: fear and love. Most of the time, we operate out of fear. I totally believe this. I wrote a fantastic paper about it in college once for an exam and my teacher loved it. (Again, neither here nor there. Just saying, I've always believed this to be true. We operate out of love or fear, but never both at the same time. They're just opposite sides of a coin.) So much of the reason we're not writing, not pursuing our dreams, is out of fear. It's certainly not out of love.

We fear rejection. We fear failure. We fear success. We fear never being able to repeat a success. We fear. We fear. We fear. Fear is useful, perhaps, when it comes to outrunning snakes--I mean, those little bastards are dangerous and creepy. Not so useful in creating our best life.

So say you're a writer...or an artist...or a scientist even. You're born and you seem to have a special talent for something. You're a bit like Pinocchio, a wooden boy with real potential, that the Creator made to do exactly what you have the real potential for. You only need to practice those things, those talents, to become your best self, a real boy. But we end up running with the wrong crowd (FEAR)--the Fearmonger, the Procrastinator, the You Suck gang--and like Pinocchio, while we thought we were real, suddenly we're not, we're really not, and we tell lies to ourselves, like it doesn't matter if we don't do the things we love most, it wouldn't work out anyway, we shouldn't disappoint our families--and our nose grows. And we're very miserable. And a lot of the time, if we let it go on too long, we behave likes asses. We're wooden, we're fake, we're frauds, and we're unlovable. These are the things we tell ourselves.

But say we finally come home to the place we always belonged, to the place we were happiest, and started living the life we always imagined, like Pinocchio did. He comes home; the Creator welcomes him back; and the fairy godmother (LOVE) comes in the night and turns him into a real boy. When we come to the thing that truly makes us happy, love shows us that we are real writers...and painters and scientists.

That's what I feel like: like a wooden fraud who lies to herself all day and isn't doing THE THING she most wants because she's afraid of something, most likely everything. That's what the class taught me. Operate from a place of love instead. I was always a real writer. I just didn't believe it.