In Search of Motivation

Some days when I wake up I feel the urge to drown myself back into my covers and pretend the day isn’t beckoning me. I think about how wonderful it would feel to forget all my responsibilities and play hookey for a day. To just close my eyes again and let my imagination and thoughts abduct me from reality. Then I try to remember if I took my anti-depressant the night before.

The truth is, motivation is sometimes really hard for me to find.

But then I remember the real world is going to be there whether I get out of bed or hide beneath the covers. And if I don’t stumble out of bed, eventually all my responsibilities will just pile up for when I actually do crawl out among the living. And I remember how it’s so much harder if I put it off.

I’ve realized over the years that I need a morning ritual to prompt my butt out of bed. And no, not like some goat-offering-to-the-gods kind of ritual. Like silent-sniffing-of-my-full-coffee-cup-in-my-hands sort of ritual. So, I guess, coffee ignites my motivation.

Then once I’m sipping from my favorite mug I sit in the quiet of my office for at least ten minutes. I’ve made this quiet morning time an absolute must on my daily schedule. It seems to invite some calm into my entire day or, at least, makes the chaos of the day seem manageable.

Finally, I sit at my desk and start writing. A few weeks ago I began scheduling specific days of the week for specific types of writing. So far, I think this has helped me finish more projects and keep me on track with others.

So, for this writer, my daily schedule – and my coffee – and my quiet time – help keep my motivation up while keeping me goal-oriented on my writing projects.

What keeps you motivated in your day-to-day?

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Little Celebrations

So, it’s official. I’ve submitted a short story to a reputable writing contest.

scared-childI’m extremely nervous whether or not they’ll enjoy my story as much as I do, but I’ve decided to jump in (even if that includes me hiding in anxious solitude until the results come in). It’s empowering to know I’m taking the chance and putting some of my best work out there to be criticized.

If it actually places everyone in the entire world will hear about it, of course. (Billboards, television & radio commercials, and bumper stickers are all possible ways I’m considering sharing my success.) I’ll probably start off with a happy-dance with my family and then move on to screaming about it indefinitely, so hopefully everyone will not tire of my daily vocalized celebrations.

happy-dance
wineIf I don’t place in the contest, I will cry I will still share that here, but probably won’t be screaming it aloud all over town. I’m certain I will learn something from this experience either way, so here’s to learning! *insert clinking wine glasses for my toast* (It’s almost noon and I’m of legal age, so I’m allowed a glass of wine – don’t judge me.)

Gay Pride Flag is Prettiest

rainbow ring

Jewelry of a rainbow-lovin’, gay-rights supportin’ Mom.

My son gave me a rainbow-colored ring recently as an I-love-you,-Mom gift. It’s beautiful and I love wearing it!

 

An older woman pointed it out when she noticed it at a small diner I was having lunch at with my friend.

“That’s pretty, dear, but you don’t want people to assume your one of those gays.”

brian jaw drop

To clarify, Stewie represents my friend. I’m the dog eating the larger ice cream.

I’m sure my jaw smacking the table prompted her quick departure after that. I simply didn’t have a polite reply for her ignorance.

 

I have a difficult time with some people’s closed-mindedness. This woman looked like Florence Henderson’s twin but without her grace and amazing sense of humor. I think she truly thought she was doing me a favor by bringing to my attention the impending judgement from others.

Let me be absolutely clear how much I love rainbows. If I belonged to a minority group of any kind and needed a flag to wave in support of my beliefs, I would have chosen a rainbow too. It’s the prettiest flag out there. The supportive meaning behind that rainbow flag is just a bonus as far as I’m concerned.

As a writer I’m open to criticism as long as it’s constructive or helpful in some way. I also believe everyone has a right to their own opinion (Go USA!). I guess I just need to figure out how to express my own thoughts without falling into a full-blown rant. Most days I think I pretend to live in a happy little world where everyone is accepting of everyone else. That would be so amazing!

Damn, those rose-colored glasses of mine! Maybe I just need

rose color glasses

Life is prettier with these on.

to spend all my money on rose-colored glasses for the rest of the world. One can dream…

 

So I really need to find a few words for people like this. Nothing crass. Just something polite enough to say in public but bold enough to make the point that opinions such as hers are unwelcome and ignorant.

gay pride flag

Prettiest Flag in the World

Maybe I should have just stated, “Just because someone different than you created the best-looking flag out there doesn’t mean you should hold a grudge. Gays are a peaceful people whose only character flaw is that they want to help the rest of us look as good as they do at any given moment.” But then again, the poor ignorant woman might have tripped on her own jaw after it hit the floor.

 

Any suggestions? How do you react to unwanted opinion/advice?

George R. R. Martin, This is NOT a Book Review

Game of Thrones

This is definitely NOT a book review of the Game of Thrones series. This is more of a book rant, I mean, recommendation.

*** Spoilers galore! *** If you don’t want to know any details about Game of Thrones, stop reading! ***

George RR MartinGeorge R. R. Martin, you drive me crazy but I’m in love with your imagination!

How can an author kill off some of our favorite characters, introduce some of us to some abhorrent behavior, and still keep us as such devout readers?

So, when’s the next in the series coming out? ;D

I’m not a big fan of series in any genre. I mean, it’s just too much commitment for someone who has a seven-foot stack of books next to her bed leering at her every night and every morning reminding her they need to be read yet. But because my bestie is fantabulous, I caved to her pleading and picked up the first book in the series, Game of Thrones.

Game of Thrones BooksMy first issue with the series was that there were so many characters with such strange and similar names. I mean, I can barely remember all my own kids’ names on a daily basis. It took me a few chapters before I decided I was going to at least stick it out and finish the first book. (Like I said before, so much commitment and such a mountainous to-read pile.) Some where between the end of the first book and the beginning of the second, A Clash of Kings, I was hooked.

The characters are definitely the fuel for this story. So much so that when the supposed main character in the first book, Lord Eddard Stark, was beheaded, I almost threw my Kindle across the room. (But, of course, I didn’t. Otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to finish the series in my favorite format.)

Eddard StarkMartin’s world building is fantastic but his character development is what I love most about these books. At the same time I was furious that Lord Eddard died, I wanted to keep reading and find out who was going to be next on the chopping block. I mean, if an author has the guts to kill off a main character, who’s next? Personally, I’ve been keeping my fingers crossed that the manipulative Cersei Lannister would join the many fallen in this series. It was only a slight consolation when her royal brat, Joffrey, perished in such a humiliating way.

So I’ve read seven books now in this Game of Thrones series. Seven! And I still don’t know the ending of this story!

What’s happened to Catlyn Stark? You know, the now-dead woman who used to be married to who we thought was the main character until he was brutally killed off by Stark Family TreeMartin in the very first book of the series.

And what about Jon Snow? Please tell me he isn’t actually dead.

Now all the Stark kids are grown and living their own adventuresome lives (except Robb, of course). I just want them to all live happily ever after – is that too much to ask? Well, and I want to see Cersei Lannister’s head on a spike eventually.

I can only assume that because of the confidence Mr. Martin expresses when killing off so many wonderful characters (good ones, bad ones, and non-human ones) that the story is on the verge of some monumental climax that we, as readers, will love him even more for in the end.

So, please, please, PLEASE!, Mr. Martin, please give us the next book in your series. This waiting is driving me mad.

What did you think of Game of Thrones?

Dictionary.com

dictionaryI love learning new words! I know, I’m crazy. But after discovering words that I’d never seen before in all the books I’ve been devouring, I decided to be more proactive with my vocabulary. I found a great app from Dictionary.com for my phone. Every day it sends me a new word to learn its meaning, pronunciation, origin, and even synonyms and antonyms for it. I have to admit that so far most of these new-to-me words haven’t been found in any of the books I’ve been reading, but I have found some utilized in a Stephen King novel and even the Game of Thrones book series.

mary poppinsPlus, there are some words too amazing to think I might have deprived myself of ever knowing their existence. Like “floccinaucinihilipilification.” The first moment I saw this word, I thought of Mary Poppins’ “supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.” Of course, Mary’s million-dollar-word was completely imagined. “Floccinaucinihilipilification” is actually a real word – not that anyone ever uses it that I can find. It’s a noun Latin in origin and means the estimation of something as valueless. But even if you understand its definition, you’re more likely to use it “as an example of one of the longest words in the English language” according to Dictionary.com’s app. The best part of this particular new vocab word is listening to the app pronounce it for you. It sounds more like a medical diagnosis than a word that refers to something as valueless.

I enjoy experimenting with new vocabulary. Of course to add a ton of 20-letter words just for the sake of it adds nothing to my writing and only confuses the reader. But I do like adding one or two uncommon words to challenge my readers.

Sometimes I find that I like a word just because it sounds funny. “Bumper” sounds very funny to me when you repeat it. “Blubber” and “shrubbery” also make me grin. There is too many favorites for me to list without simply boring you all to death. So just don’t be lackadaisical.

Do you have any favorites?