Day 103-IBMC#5- Not So Quite Quote

Ok, its time for challenge number 5 in the Incredible Blogger Marathon Challenge and

this one may be a tough one but I’m game. img_3617 Here’s the rules: There are five quotes given to you. No! The challenge is not to describe any one quote, you need to use all five quotes to stitch a story.

quote 1

I am confused at times. Should I sound? Should I echo?

quote 2

You need not answer all the questions! You can just laugh and laugh again.

Quote 3

Thoughts-they do what we don’t ask for.

Quote 4

I knew it! That I don’t know!

Quote 5

At times, we pretend to think on one and actually think everything else.

Here’s my story:

“B-9”, the bingo caller said, loudly and clearly for all the players in the cafeteria to hear. It was game day at the Sunnyvale Nursing home and as Thelma struggled to hear the caller, she looked at fellow gamer Mildred and said “I’m confused at times, did I Bingo? Should I sound?” Mildred said she did indeed and so Thelma said, “Should I echo?” and then shouted “BINGO!” The caller then announced it true after everyone checked their cards. Later, as they continued the next set, a volunteer stopped by who was conducting a short survey for a school project. She sat down at Mildred and Thelma’s table and asked, to either of the ladies, “Do y’all mind if I ask you a few questions today ladies?” Thelma stared at her rather blankly and Mildred replied, “You need not answer all the questions, just humor her and you can laugh and laugh again.” Thelma gave Mildred a wink and turned to the volunteer. “What kind of things are you going to ask?” to which the volunteer replied, “Oh, just random things, like what your first day here at Sunnyvale was like.” Thelma considered carefully before stating her reply, “Thoughts-they do what we don’t ask for.” It was then the volunteer’s turn to stare back blankly at Thelma and Mildred said, “I knew it! You really don’t remember do you?” Thelma looked confused for a moment and said “I remember meeting you honey but that I don’t know!” Mildred replied, “I remember the first day they brought you in to meet me. You became my best friend the instant I saw you!” The volunteer stared in amazement at the exchange between the two women and stated prophetically, “At times we pretend to think on one and actually think on everything else.” At that, the two best buddies began to laugh and laugh and the volunteer rose from the table in embarrassment to go harass someone else.

 

 

Day 98-Free Days-How I'm Making NaNoWriMo Work For Me

If you are a writer, you’ve most likely heard that this is the month for NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writer’s Month.

My personal page showing my word count before today
My personal page showing my word count before today

As I’ve expressed here on my blog before, I’ve joined the challenge again this year as a Rebel, someone doing the challenge for word count only. I am also doing it to increase my speed and in the process, learn a bit more about story telling.

I’m proud of my word count so far, even though I am consumed by thoughts of what I should be doing to increase my word count all the time, to the point my dear hubby is probably annoyed with me. It is hard not to though, I have to write 50,000 words by the end of the month and this is my strategy:

  1. Using my blog
  2. Writing my daily post for 100 Naked Words on Medium
  3. Writing a story every week for submission to The Weekly Knob on  Medium
  4. Writing notes while working on a class I’m taking from Shaunta Grimes called How to Develop and Test a Story Idea
  5. Writing articles or essays for paid publications (in hopes of getting paid, lol)

Yes, it would be nice to get paid eventually for some of my writing, that is one thing I aim to accomplish after a year (or have I been writing for two?) of being on this journey. I’m learning a lot, and anything I write can be counted as part of my word total for NaNoWriMo. I’m sure that some people count everything, comments they make on other people’s posts, lists they make, whatever. Not me, just the above mentioned and anything else lengthy-even a long email.

If I’m doing it wrong, no one has pointed it out yet-and this challenge is based on an honesty policy, you don’t cheat anyone but yourself if you lie about your word count. So I’m shorting myself, if anything, by not including every single word I write. For me, it’s not about that, I want to hone my skills as a blogger, storyteller, writer of all forms and that is why I’ve taken the challenge again this year.

I was already doing the 365 day project on this here blog, so it’s a given that I would add my blog posts every day. The new writing I’m doing on Medium for various publications and the daily one, add even more. Then I discovered that I could learn some valuable lessons in storytelling from Shaunta’s class and up my word count in the process. Then, on Tuesdays-my designated writing day, I can really turn on the burners and do all of that and try to make money writing for paid publications. It all adds up, rather quickly in fact. So wish me luck and join in on the fun yourself, if you’re up to the challenge.

I wonder how many of you are doing the challenge, in secret, or in public- I don’t hear of as many bloggers, as I do people who write in other areas on other platforms. If you are, tell me about it in the comments as well as sharing your thoughts on my strategy. Do you hole yourself up in a room for hours or days at a time? Are you also driving your family nuts with what you call “this writing thing” as I am? Do you feel verified as a writer? I want to know. I sometimes feel like my family and friends don’t understand the passion I feel, or how important it is to me to make it as a writer. It isn’t a hobby to me. It’s becoming a true love.

 

Day 93- Help Me Help You-Writing With A Purpose

How my dogs can tell time is a mystery to me, yet, there was Whiskey, licking me in the face at exactly 7am this morning-the time I try to be up on my off day, the day I have earmarked for writing. To which I rolled over, glanced at my IPad, saw the time and leaped out of bed, because, of course I have that and a million other things to do on my “off” day.

I needed to take my “new” car in to the dealership, since there were existing issues from the moment we got it. The good news is, my husband purchased on a lease agreement, therefore, the dealership was prompt with service and a loaner-I simply took it in, and drove out with my exact replica loaner vehicle! No muss or fuss, I didn’t even have to sign any paperwork. He even had the radio tuned to my favorite sirius/xm station-Octane! What a super guy!!

Next on the list of course, is all of my writing assignments, which I have decided I need to figure out the best way to allocate time for. But first, there was laundry to start, dogs to feed, wait-I haven’t even fed myself, but there was coffee! Yes, that was first out of the starting gate! Anyway, I have taken on quite a bit more than I ever have, so now I need to create a schedule of sorts, to be able to fit it all in. I started with the simple list, what they are and how often they need to be written. Now, I have to set a schedule to get them all done.

The other thing that has been on my mind is, how I can make my blog better for my audience/followers, and that means, how can I be of service to you? I need to know what you want to read about, or what problems I can solve- in other words- I feel like my blog needs more purpose. I’ve been trying to market myself as an expert on alternative health, yet my blog has become more of a place to simply hang out with you guys, share my day, post my updates on our renovations, tell you about my family, and every once in a while, I’ve stuck in tidbits here and there about my Paleo lifestyle. The question is, what do you all want to see more of, or, what is there that I can write about that would interest you more? I don’t want to be another blogger that writes about writing-they are everywhere. I read stuff from lots of them, which is where I get my inspiration, and instructions on how and what to write. I have to admit though, this also creates confusion and chaos in my mind, what is my purpose?

Like I wrote in my piece for 100 Naked Words on Medium last night, I started out wanting a way to make money when I began my career as a writer over a year ago. The fact that I have not made a penny is not lost on me. My writing has improved, as well as the speed that I write, and those are huge improvements on accomplishing my goal, however, my true aim is to help people, which is why I picked the niche I did. Truth is, I am not sure I have been doing that, so now, I need to hear from you all. Another thing I’ve discovered since starting my journey as a writer is that I like the creative side of writing and that is why I’ve taken on more assignments. I want to learn more about the storytelling aspect of writing, this can also be a huge help if I ever really get into copywriting, which is what my goal was in the first place. (and to help people in the process)

To wrap all this up, I will ask you all to help me help you. Wish me luck in attaining my goal to fulfill my daily writing assignments, as well as my weekly ones, and please, tell me what I can do to be of service to you. If you want information, I can write more posts relating to my paleo lifestyle or something else you want to know more about. If you want entertainment, I could write about the music I am so passionate about, or my favorite TV shows I am convinced I can’t miss, lol. I could write about crafts, plants, whatever-the list is endless, but what do y’all want to read more about?  Yes, the goal right now is to write for 365 days consecutively, but I feel like I should be doing all that and more. When I write articles for magazines in the hopes of earning money, I write to inform, educate and hopefully help someone live a healthier life. When I write for publications like Medium, it is more of a creative outlet, a place to hone my storytelling skills. If I take on the NaNoWriMo challenge, it is a place to achieve the goal of writing 50,000 words in a month. Yes, that’s a lot of writing, however, if I ever hope to make a living from my writing, I need to be able to meet deadlines, so all of this writing is practice for me. Ok, I realize I am rambling now. Your turn, tell me what you want to see, and I will do my best to make it happen. I value my relationship with you and don’t want to lose you, so feel free to comment below with your suggestions, advice, and words of wisdom! I’m off to finally eat some breakfast, which will probably be something fast and easy like an omelet-in-a-mug, since my kitchen is in shambles! See you all tomorrow on the patio 😉

Day 76-Free Days-Happy News!

I am very exited to share something with you guys today! It’s a baby step in my creative  writing efforts, yet a step in the “write” direction (hehe)! I have been writing on the platform Medium for a few weeks and they have a publication called The Weekly Knob.  Every Monday, they give you a new prompt and you then craft a story featuring that prompt. Last week’s prompt was “broom” and my story-That Witchy Season was published today!! Yea! I love this platform because you also get “recommends” instead of “likes”, and creative feedback, support and love from the Medium writing community. I know the story could have been better, I probably could have changed the title as well, however, I feel validated that my story was accepted and then published and I just wanted to share this news. I also could spend hours reading all the other wonderful stories featured by an extremely talented pool of writers, if I didn’t have so much else to do. Maybe I can read more of them tonight, and I encourage all of you to check them out as well.  Just go to medium.com/theweeklyknob/ ThatWitchySeason on Medium,  if you’d like to read my story. There’s even a Medium app, which makes it all so much easier to navigate.

In other news, we layed more of the flooring today and now have the hallway and laundry room finished!

Hallway to the master bedroom
Hallway to the master bedroom
At the halfway point in the laundry room
At the halfway point in the laundry room

Tomorrow, we’ll install the doors and trim and then we will be one step closer to (horror of all horrors) the kitchen. Shudder! I am not exited about my kitchen being destroyed so close to the holidays!!! It has to be done though, if we expect to have floors by Thanksgiving. I’m so proud of my husband and his handiwork! (I get credit for the layout) I’m his helper, cleanup girl and designer, and we make a great team!

I have also started to make a little progress on the baby blanket I’m crocheting for Taylor’s soon-to-be-born little one. Did I tell y’all the theme for the nursery is Nightmare Before Christmas? I thought it sounded odd until I went on Pinterest and literally found hundreds of pins with the decor and all sorts of other great ideas with the theme. The colors are black, white, lavender and lime green. Although I picked a very basic pattern, I’m proud of how it’s coming along so far. I’ll post a pic when I get to the halfway point.

So that’s it, plus I have three upcoming birthdays to think about and prepare for and of course the holidays are creeping ever closer. Just a few of the things on my mind (and plate) but nothing I can’t handle. I realize this time of year is busy and stressful for everyone, the way I handle it is one bite at a time, somehow it all comes together. Just try to relax and breathe! 😉

 

 

 

 

 

Day 57- What If…. Week-

Today I decided to turn back to creative writing this week because of a seemingly brilliant idea that came to me just as I was falling asleep last night, I thought of having a week of scenario type stories focusing on What if…..

I had a lovely story almost written in my mind, then I fell asleep-and you know what they say. That is a disaster, now I can’t recall the particular story except the very beginning, or what my point was, or the direction it was supposed to go. Lesson here, always keep a notepad by the bed to jot these ideas down, but what if my husband is asleep? I don’t want to wake him once the light is off, so some ideas that I had to remedy this was to use a lighted pen, or a small flashlight, or at the very least, I could get up and take my iPad into the other room.

Why I can’t fall asleep on Sunday nights is a mystery to me, maybe because the weekend is over and I know I’m working Monday, so I start mentally preparing myself with to-do lists or writing projects come unbidden into my head. I had 3-4 of these such projects back to back racing in my mind last night, now I can only recall bits and pieces.

But now I have an idea.

After reading the word prompt on Medium for this week’s edition of The Weekly Knob, I am inspired to write a little on the subject of  Light up Medium, Light up the World. The word prompt is “candle”,  while I can’t write the same story in the both places, I can write a “what if” story. So here goes:

What if we, as a nation, lit a candle every day at a certain time in solidarity to end the madness and bring some positivity and light into the world? What do you think it would change? Would we be so busy lighting candles and thinking of our individual reasons for doing so that we would forget the hate and negativity going on in all the dark corners of the world today? Would we for once, get caught up in the action of doing something as a group to bring happiness and peace to the world that we ignore all the ignorant and inane things in the mainstream media today? What if we also said a prayer for peace and unity every time we lit that candle? Would the nation be healed? Maybe not, maybe so, I bet we’d have more of a fighting chance by coming together in this action than not. I say we try it for a week. I say, if the nation lit a candle and prayed everyday for a week, say, at 7:11, the healing would begin. What if we shared the news we were doing it, like we do every other insignificant thing we plaster all over Facebook and Instagram and Twitter? Spread the news, make it happen. Don’t you want the madness to stop? All the shootings, the press about the shootings, the riots, the protests. Light. It. Up. Light the candle, say a prayer and spread the word. I’m going to, because I really do. I want it to end and light to come back into the world. The light of Jesus. The light of God. The light of peace. I pray you do too.

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