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Showing posts from August, 2018

Using Scene Cards to Plot a Story

Writing for publication isn’t as easy as one thinks.   Some of us are naturals at this, but nothing about my learning process has ever come easily, still I love to learn and write. When someone suggested I write a blog, I did my homework.   It was similar to a weekly column I wrote for three years, so I thought it would force me to keep deadlines and exercise my “voice.”   It’s been mildly successful. I wrote two children’s stories and they both placed in the top ten in a national contest, so that gave me some encouragement. I dusted off a book I wrote that a publishing house rejected ten years ago, so I spent a year fixing it and pitched it again; this time to an agent. She not only rejected it; she trashed it. It sits in my office licking its wounds. Two other books are going through their fourth or fifth rewrites. I’ve lost count. Most of my writer friends write straight into their laptops, no notes, no outlines.   They let “their characters lead the way.” They’re called p

Those Who Can’t Teach

“He who can, does. He who cannot, teaches .”  (George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman) Thanks, Bernard. What exactly were you saying with that? That anyone not good enough for any other job or profession, can always turn to the profession of teaching? If one cannot function in the real world, the teaching profession is always so dire for help, it will take all and any rejects? “Those who can, do; those who can’t, teach.” (Woody Allen, Annie Hall) Those who can’t what? Get a job anywhere else? Cannot face a job that demands long hours? Demands a persistent attitude working with a resistant client? Does not want to work under a stressful deadline? Let’s try teaching!   They work short hours, have weekends and summers off, paid holidays.   They teach kids.   How hard can that be? Whee!   Well, let me tell you, Bernie and Woody, teaching is a PROFESSION, one that demands more than any other job.   That 8 to 5, paid summers and holidays myth is a lie, and your cutesy, funny quot


HoneyBunch and I come from families who do not believe in throwing away  food, ergo, The Leftover is sacred in our homes. Any little scrap of food goes into plastic containers with tight fitting lids or gets wrapped in plastic with the same reverence as an Egyptian mummy. It shows up at the next meal either in its original form or under a clever disguise.   Handfuls of leftover vegetables get thrown into stews or soups; old fries get scrambled into eggs, and though not much can be done for a leftover enchilada, smothering it with soupy beans can make it edible. When my own kids were young, I “forced” a weekly clean-out-the-refrigerator buffet on them but gave them fair warning.   They knew when I called them to the table, they’d better hurry because it was first come, first served. The last one to the table ended up making do with The Leftover Leftover , usually something doubly unrecognizable and inedible. HB is really big on not wasting food, but I do set limits.   In its or

My Favorite Twelve Verses From Bible Study

One year ago, I was finishing a year’s study of the Holy Bible.   Month after month, we trekked our way from Old to New Testament. I underlined one favorite verse in each chapter as I worked my way through each book, and from those verses, I chose the following twelve as my most favorite, one for each month. Because of this study, I developed a better understanding of God’s connection and the promise he made to his people. You probably have your own favorites but here are mine.   # 1. The Lord is my strength and my might, and he has become my salvation; this is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him.   The Lord is a warrior; the Lord is his name.   Exodus 15: 2-3 #2. The Lord bless you and keep you.” Numbers 6:24 #3. You are the Lord, you alone; you have made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all this is in them.   To all of the them you give life, and the host of heaven worships