A place where I can share interesting ideas and maybe get a few things off my chest

Archive for the ‘writing’ Category

Oldsmar Library Cafe’

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I have a couple of nice writing spots at home – my closed sewing machine cabinet/desk in the bedroom and the antique secretary in the den – plus the travel trailer when I need to have quiet on the weekends, but sometimes I just want to get away from the house. I had heard that our library had a little cafe’ space so last week I decided to check it out.

I had already had my morning writing session at Nosh!, so I just stepped in to take a few pictures before heading into the library proper. There was one other person there studying, but I thought it would be rude to interrupt her or take her picture without asking, which is why you don’t see her in these photos.

There’s a vending machine:

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and free reading material:

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a few tables and lots of natural light:

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and you can even get buy a bottle of water to help support the library!

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They said they’d like to attract a vendor to have an actual cafe’ there, but it might be hard for them to compete with the local Starbucks. Although, come to think of it, it is a lot easier to get to and has a lot more parking. Even without scones and cappuccino, though, it looks like it might be a good place for a quiet writing session.

Camp NaNoWriMo – July 2013 Edition

I’ve still got my mug from last year.

And I’ve just ordered my t-shirt!

What’s Camp NaNoWriMo, you ask? According to the website, it’s “an idyllic writer’s retreat, smack dab in the middle of your crazy life.” The summer version of November’s National Novel Writing Month, it allows those of us who are more solar-powered to participate in a writing frenzy that coincides with being fully charged, not to mention having a full extra day and not competing with Thanksgiving.
I have a title, a mere kernal of an idea, but no plot to speak of, which, according to the founder of NaNoWriMo, Chris Baty, is actually no problem at all. We’ll see, anyway.

The goal is to write a minimum of 50,000 words during the course of the month, with the idea that 50,000 words is the size of some fine short novels, and of a size to be revised into something that might actually turn into a real thing. In NaNoWriMos past, I have gotten as far along as about 22,000 words. Anyone who reaches the 50,000 word mark “wins”. I am planning on being in the winners’ campfire circle at next month’s Camp.

When you see me in July, be sure and ask me how the novel is coming. And don’t accept any hemming or hawing or lame excuses. I need the social pressure and fear of public ridicule to keep me from kicking back and eating s’mores while watching the endless supply of Big Bang Theory re-runs on our DVR. My sincerest thanks in advance, even if I don’t seem particularly appreciative at that time.


10 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer (poster)

10 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer
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I went to an unusual writing workshop yesterday. It was given by Janet Conner, author of Writing Down Your Soul: How to Activate and Listen to the Extraordinary Voice Within  and presented at the Unity Church of Palm Harbor. She gave a short talk at both the morning services and then had the workshop there after a light lunch for attendees.

I had borrowed her book from the library a few weeks ago, after reading a small piece she wrote for the Unity daily meditation magazine “The Daily Word”.  She talks about using a form of journaling as a prayerful, meditative practice, carrying on a dialogue with God, something along the lines of Neale Donald Walsch’s “Conversations With God”.

As I had already read her book, and had actually started the meditative, interactive journaling she describes and promotes, I was a few steps ahead of some of the other participants.  We listened to music designed to put us into a meditative brain-wave state, and what kept popping into my head during our writing session was that I needed to start writing, and specifically that I needed to start blogging again.  I haven’t written much of anything here since moving to Tampa, but it looks like I will be soon.

First Week in Tampa

For those of you who are not already aware – I’ve moved to Tampa, Florida! Steve finally won the “Move to Tampa/Move to Kerrville” debate, since his better-paying job coupled with still-teenaged son argument pretty much trumped the Kerrville is prettier argument.

So, here I am, alone in the apartment, ostensibly conducting a jobsearch (I HAVE sent out resumes!), and updating this blog that I haven’t touched in several weeks.

Mom is currently staying with my niece in Kerrville, and we have the move set up for the end of the month, after Mother and I go to Dallas for my granddaughter’s 2nd birthday. How did that baby get so big so quickly???

So many things have happened since the last blog, that it’s difficult to even know where to begin, so I may not even try to recap. Suffice it to say that I’m really happy, and while Mother is not exactly excited about the move, she does like Steve, and doesn’t seem to be overly fearful with the process.

While the last 17 months in Kerrville have been safe and restful and recuperative, I am so glad to be returning to a metropolitan area. It was nice to not have traffic and noise; it was REALLY nice to be able to see all the stars at night, and way fun to have deer feeding in our yard on a daily basis, but I have so missed having basic goods and services readily available, not to mention the availability of interesting community activities. Tampa has a very active drumming community, so I may actually be able to have a place to go to play on/with my little doumbek.

The area Steve’s apartment is in is not the area we will be househunting, so things like getting a library card and finding the closest whatevers will have to wait until I know just what area we’ll be settling in, but I should be able to start looking around for a writer’s group, at least.

We picked up the Sunday paper for the employment ads, and one of the first things I see is a section with all these headshots of individuals who have been laid off for extended amounts of time, coupled with the salaries they USED to make. Put a little bit of a damper on my job-search enthusiasm, but not too much. There are still quite a few jobs posted in the newspaper that seem quite promising, and I have sent out several e-mails with resumes attached already.

Perhaps during the downtime amidst jobsearching, I will commit myself to writing something each day. Well, something besides e-mail. Something that might eventually turn into something a publisher might want to buy. I was reading a book about writing by the guy who co-wrote the “Left Behind” series (Jenkins, maybe?). I had to turn it into the Kerrville library before I was finished with it, but I really liked it and plan on finishing it at some point in time. One of the things he said that I have said about myself (in variation) for years, is that no one really enjoys writing, but enjoys having written. He said that putting one’s butt in the chair and producing quality writing is hard work and not fun. Satisfying, when it’s done, but not fun whilst being done. And this is my problem. It’s difficult for me to stick with things that are tedious and Not Fun. *sigh*

But, I remind myself that anyone who was able to get her BA on the 17-year plan has the gift/skill/fortitude of perseverance, and should be able to accomplish anything she truly sets her mind to. Now, I just have to get to the productive butt-in-the chair part.

Jumping right in, I guess

I have essentially been a vagabond for the past year or so, and moved way too many times in the 3 years prior as well. After many months without my own home, my own space, even my own bed, I have finally landed in a rented duplex in Kerrville, Texas. My computer is up and running, I have high-speed internet access, and evidently some kind of twisted need to share my thoughts with as many strangers and friends as I can lure here.

I joined myspace a few years ago in an attempt to keep tabs on my children. I’m sure they had other accounts, but at least I got to see some of the stuff they posted, and I began blogging now and again. As a bit of background, and perhaps oversharing, here is the link to the things that have fallen out of my head and into the keyboard.

http://www.myspace.com/soapboxbykay

I’m also trying to find an acceptable photo to post on here. Wish me luck on that….

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