Are you a wild rose kind of writer? Or would your rose take first place at a flower show? If you’re lucky, you’re both. I tend toward the wild side of writing, at least in my dreams. And yet, I spend countless hours ensconced in my comfortable writing room chair—the one covered with the star quilt Gram made me when I was a kid in Iowa—rewriting and perfecting manuscripts. The thing is, perfection is more of a dream (read impossible) than choosing the wild rose way. What do you think? Click here to read “Call of the Wild Rose” and comment, if you so choose. I’d love to read your thoughts.
“My So-Called Crazy Life” will capture your heart and set you to thinking about how our society treats people who suffer from mental illness. Traci Barr puts you right into the shoes of a person with a bipolar diagnosis. Her essay is real because she was diagnosed with the illness 36 years ago. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Greenville Chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness. (NAMI). Please “like” and “share” her work and register on our site if you would like to comment. Ms. Barr deserves to be heard.
I hear voices in my head.
Really, all the time. They have very distinct accents and vocabulary, and each has a different tone, melodic or husky, a unique style, slow and confident or abrupt and nervous. Each voice changes very slightly depending upon which of the other voices it is speaking with at the time.
That’s right. The voices in my head speak to each other, not to me. That would just be silly.
It is a very rare voice which does not change depending on its audience. Most do. When speaking to a lover, a rival, a mentor or a sibling, don’t our tones and vocabulary differ a bit? Don’t we tense our consonants around some people, while relaxing our vowels around others? We even express ourselves differently based upon the age of our audience.
Writing dialogue is an exercise in sociology, maybe even a psychological experiment. We as authors must know not only how our character feels about a topic, but also how he feels about the person he is conversing with about the topic. How much can any character truly reveal about her opinion in this situation? Has an opinion even really been solidified?
The voices in my head are fantastic companions, with a wide range of personalities. I exist to place them in situations which are beyond their comfort zones, and among people who test their beliefs and understanding of their worlds, so that they come to know their own true selves to the extent that it is ever possible to do so. And perhaps as I am doing that, I am learning something about my own voice as well.
What is Moo of Writing? It’s a method of beckoning the muse that works. Best of all, new scientific research confirms connections between relaxation and creativity. Topics for a handbook, Moo of Writing: How to Milk your Potential, burst into my consciousness years ago on a road trip. I created a first draft, and my sister-in-law Cynthia Morgan DeKett drew delightful cartoon cows to illustrate the concept. Now that I’ve retired from a job as a newspaper reporter, I’ve completed the manuscript and am looking for an agent and publisher. Meanwhile, writers who’ve read the manuscript and thoughtfully advised me on improvements, also have been clamoring for it in their hands. I hope you find this article on a few of its concepts helpful to your writing practice. Please register on our site if you haven’t already and comment in the space at the end of the article. Please share how you use relaxation to tap into creativity. Would you like to see the 100-page handbook in print? Thank you and happy writing! Here it is: what is moo of writing?
We bring to you today poems by JD, a retired Montessori teacher, a great-grandmother, and an elder whose wisdom I respect. This is the first time JD has shared her poems with the public. She writes of making words and of making bread and of God roaring in the morning, Ever a strong woman, JD writes of Lilith. In one Biblical account of creation, God creates men and women at the same time. Jewish legend names her Lilith who demanded equality with Adam. For those interested in Lilith, I recommend The Lilith Question. JD tells me she would love to see your comments on her work, so please register with our site if you haven’t yet, and comment. Here are links to her poems: november 26, 2012, july, after reading annie dillard, lilith.
If you want to be inspired on a daily basis, marry a photographer, or at least hang out with one. You’ll get lots of practice truly observing what’s in front of you (and behind you and all around you). Because that’s what photographers do. And hanging out with a photographer provides plenty of time for contemplation (while they are sliding down into a bog to shoot a lovely little green snake and you are sitting on a footbridge, or they are setting up a tripod to shoot Joe Pye Weed and then waiting, waiting, waiting for a lull in the breeze so the photo will be in focus, or they are standing by Lake Placid at Greenville’s beautiful Paris Mountain State Park while you count the ducks). I hope you enjoy Ron DeKett’s photo of a yellow swallowtail and my poem, born of contemplating time, “Dance of the Swallowtails.” Please register on our site if you haven’t already and comment—when do you find contemplation time? Happy writing!