#WeekendCoffeeShare. Staying Afloat

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at https://eclecticali.wordpress.com/  I like completing this challenge weekly, if at all possible.  It helps me to check the gauge somewhat, and process where I am in my writing and life journey.  I apologize for the stressed tone in the first few paragraphs; there is relief if you read through, I promise!

I am sad to say I didn’t write much this week, except for a flash fiction at the start of the week based on a photo prompt.  What came out was sad and maybe a little bit touching.  You may find it here: Flawed Magic Men You know, it’s disillusioning when the faults of a a person you look up to as a small child become revealed little by little.   I’ll have a cheerful story another week!  Other than that, I’ve been so busy I can’t write, and I’ve only been able to read a little bit but not every night.  Still, a manuscript of mine is in the hands of a beta-reader, so my words are making progress!  I’ll be happy for that.

The aforementioned state of being busy was due to work, of course.  I’ve grumbled about the state of education already as of late, but I’ll just say I had a suggestion on how to do things.  I tried to plan it to make it work, and my plans were great, but I ended up working until 6:20 one day.  Getting home at 7 p.m. is just no good.  Seriously, I go to bed at 10 p.m.!  I still brought paperwork home and dealt with some of that while eating dinner.  Yikes!  It was quite frustrating.  I felt so behind on the paperwork because I took a day off Wednesday.  That day was great, in the morning.  I did a lot of social media and planning for my author strategy.  Rarely do I get to do that.  However, the afternoon was spent at the dentist, which gets my shoulders in a knot.  Never a good thing.

So, my mother sent me today to go to a flotation tank type spa.  Escape!  My body gets very tense with the events of my day and week.  Letting the words flow when I get home is great for my mind, but still may overuse the wrist, arm, bicep, etc.  My lifestyle is demanding in this way.  Though I have to remember to skip coffee next time, I did lose track of time and my body loved floating.  I felt like a mermaid!  I definitely came out of there with much less tension in my joints or worry on my mind.  I will certainly go again, just to see what it’s like with the door closed!  Baby steps….

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So, the moral of today’s post, is “I shall rise.”  Have a great weekend, everyone!

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#WeekendCoffeeShare. Pep Talk or Planned Timeout? #letterstomyself #amwriting

Morning, Coffee, Cup, Drink, Table

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Allison at https://eclecticali.wordpress.com/ wherein I debate whether I really need a pep talk or a planned timeout this weekend.

Yeah, you may have guessed; I’m tired.  I work for an organization that educates children but seems to test them more than we educate them.  I don’t believe in the way we do things, but I follow directions well.  Testing season is upon us.  I will not dwell on it anymore, but I will add that there are many days I love to be in that room with that sea of facing, many of them smiling because they love being silly, and a few of them are even laughing or responding to my jokes.  🙂

On the bright side, I made it to yoga this week for a class that was very relaxing, yet energizing. We got a great stretch.  This is great because I woke up so sore that morning.  Today I will likely take a walk with the dog.  I also carved out two hours in the evenings to work on editing my upcoming sequel to Detours in Time.    It is good that I have that on the side, and I’m working hard to always have the energy to fit the writing in,  because I don’t have the energy to stay up past 10 p.m. these days.  It is highly possible that the time change will bring more energy and ability to extend my schedule; it seemed to work last year.  For today, I promise myself a walk with the dog, whether long or short, and a hot bath.  I also know I need to go to the bank, but that is not a treat, just a necessity.  There will also be reading time.  If two hours this week sounds too scarce for the writing/editing, maybe it is.  My day job is just so demanding lately, but I will do this.  I still think I can get this book out over the summer, which is my plan, since I will be off and have time to promote it, contact bloggers and reviewers, write guest posts, etc.

At any rate, there are lots of times I give myself a pep talk.  A writer friend named Jonas posted an idea called Letters to Myself a month or so ago.  I joined in.  Below is an extension of a Facebook challenge:  what two words would you say to your younger self.  My words are, “You Can.”  It is also a #lettertomyself, and it still rings true today.  I write because I can.

You can……. Oh yes, you can. Girl, get on up there and show ’em you can. You can say what you mean. You are allowed an opinion and it doesn’t have to agree with all the others.  You can do what you set your mind to. You can do things because YOU want to and you will still be loved even if you slip up. You can. Paint those walls. Run those bases and skin your knees. Dance that dance and fall on your butt and get back up because they will still love you and be proud of you. And if they don’t, you love yourself and one day, someone else will love you for that. Love yourself because you can. Do something silly. You will still be loved and you will love doing it. Do it because you can.

I’ll end my Weekend Coffee Share on that note.  I hope that you all have a great week!  Visit the Weekend Coffee Share to read others’ posts and/or enter yours by clicking the blue Inlinkz button at https://eclecticali.wordpress.com/2018/01/26/weekendcoffeeshare-empty-weekend/

Weekend Coffee Share. “What I Can Plan and What I Can’t.” 1/20

Coffee, Pen, Notebook, Work, Book

Photo via Pixabay.

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at https://eclecticali.wordpress.com/

Oh, I’m feeling a little tired today.  Last night I got a message that my beta-reader’s notes and suggestions were done, but I didn’t have time to view it yet.  I am giving myself the weekend.  I have one more beta reader who should be available the end of this month, and then I’ll revise, edit, and send to a professional editor the draft for my sequel to Detours in Time.  This is hard work, and my full-time work isn’t getting easier.  That’s okay, I’ve given myself the right to only publish one book this year if that is all that gets done.  Meanwhile, I have other ideas hopping in my head that I’ve outlined or just typed into summary form to flesh out later.  After years of giggling at my own ideas and losing them an hour later because all I could do was dream, I decided to start putting those dreams on paper.  Thank God I did!  This is such a wonderful mind exercise.

As I said, the editing/revising process is hard work, and it at times requires a good amount of sequestering.  I found beta-readers in writing groups and plan to find an editor online who can give me a good turn around time.  I’d like to get this book out over the summer when I have time off, so I can give it the nurturing it needs to grow a readership.  Still, I like the sociability of blogging, so, right now I am tending to do one Weekend Coffee Share or reflection and one Flash Fiction challenge a week.  We share them in one central place as well as on our blog so that we can see each other’s work and comment.  There are frequent posters whom I know by name and I like to keep up with news from their parts of the world or see what sort of fiction they spit out based on the photo prompt.  That is the sociability that keeps me writing when those reading my book won’t leave reviews and when I have a slow book week.  It happens.  I am in the acorn stage.  Maybe one day I’ll be a tree.  🙂

The home front is not too bad, I must say; my son is working steadily and has been for 7 months.  He had a few troubles last year.  The biggest one, the alcohol issue, seems to be resolved.  His moods are light.  I see him smile at the dog and play with him, whereas he wouldn’t do that before.  I don’t feel like such a caretaker where he is concerned; it feels like he is now an adult who gladly gives me a portion of his paychecks.  Albeit, one who lives at home and can’t afford to move.  After what we went through, I like having him close by for now.  As I was thinking such positive things, my mother texted me last night that she fell near the doorstep and a friend took her to the E.R.  Her arm is broken; she had broken the other one last year.  I met her at the E.R. last night.  She’s hurting.  I hate to see this.  I know it’s part of getting older.  Everything I see in her is me in twenty some years.  I myself deal with muscle pains when I get up in the morning.  Yesterday I joked about suiting up with Ben Gay under my layers. (Yes, it has been in the 20’s and 30’s in Jacksonville, Florida several mornings this week).  I feel like I am getting a ‘poor me’ tone here, and I hate that.  We survived the E.R. though, and no one seems to have caught the flu.  Visions of Sheldon in the hospital episode kept dancing through my head.  I did abstain from restroom use while there.  She and I talked about exercises that strengthen the bones.  “Weight-lifting,” she said.  I do yoga, and that involves lifting your own body weight, but really, not often enough.

Time to add a ten minute arm weight routine to my morning stretches.  The challenge is just beginning.  I shall greet each new year with humor and laughter, just as my mother has on her best days.  Why, she even cracked a joke last night about not being able to drink wine. 🙂

Join the Weekend Coffee Share at https://eclecticali.wordpress.com/2018/01/19/weekendcoffeeshare-sushi-cheese-and-being-brave/ by reading others’ posts and/or adding yours by clicking on the blue InLinkz button.

Have a great week!  -Pam

 

 

 

 

My Go-To. #WeekendCoffeeShare

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Bixby contemplates my morning coffee.  What is so magical about it, and what will she do if I sneak a few sips?  

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Allison athttps://eclecticali.wordpress.com.   I am trying to keep it short, but just to forewarn you, I have the attention span of a gnat this weekend.  Work was frustrating yesterday, and I am so tired of the national news dividing our nation even more.

At any rate, I have done my stretches this morning, and I plan to get a walk soon.  This is all part of my intention for this year to help me stay healthy and of a positive mindset.

My writing has been coming in spurts this week, unplanned, by the seat of my pants.  A pantser, that I am, at times.  I’m working on a new idea that is a spin-off of a character in my sequel that is in beta-reading mode, also known as waiting mode.  I also wrote a flash- fiction piece in one of the blog challenges this week.  It is a nice escape based on characters who got away from their daily grind to live in a luxurious, non-stop vacation world.  Only, they have to somehow afford that life.  Interested?  Read it here:  Swindled, 1/07/18. #flashfiction

Sometimes writing is a great escape for me and nothing but.  It is its own means to an end.  It would be great if I made enough money from it to take grand vacations, but it doesn’t matter.  I love what writing does for my mind. This brings me another of the key factors in my focus on seeking or harnessing energy in this new year: music.  My mind can race at times with thoughts, ideas, negation of my ideas, lack of ideas,  ruminations of my day, etc., etc.  It starts when I wake.  I have to calm it or tame the run-away train when I need to focus on getting one thing done (writing, cleaning…) or focus on getting myself ready for work and out the door on a workday morning.  Music helps.  It can also inspire me to get some writing done.  Here is my latest discovery that I am dying to share, and I hope you will go check out the video, Taro by alt-J.

 

The video visuals and the music together are just divine perfection, a comment on the human experience, our beautiful world, an understanding of those around us.  I found out this is a tribute to a war-time photographer named Taro, and all of the footage here is of peaceful images.  I found this when searching another song by alt-j with psychedelic undertones, because I love them; they take me away, and so does this song and its video.  Sometimes I need an escape from my mental chatter.  Writing can do that, my favorite out-of-this-world, creepy shows or movies do that (Haven, Haven) , books do that, and music does that, some music more than others.  Please enjoy this video.  It will surely provide a brief escape for your weekend.

Visit other coffee shares or add yours at https://eclecticali.wordpress.com/2018/01/12/weekendcoffeeshare-birthday-weekend/ by clicking the blue InLinkz button!  Have a great week!

 

 

Weekend Coffee Share. “Generating Heat” #amwriting

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Happy Saturday, everyone, and welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at  https://eclecticali.wordpress.com  I haven’t done one of these in a while, in fact, the last time I did one my coffee was iced.  Of course, that normally wouldn’t mean anything since I am in Florida, but this past week, we’ve been going through a cold spell.  I’ve been indoors a lot, writing very little since my desk is by a drafty window.  I’ve been reading and watching Netflix, though.  I’ve been wearing layers and layers every time I step out.  We got down to the upper 20’s one night, even!  No snow here, but they did get some flurries in Tallahassee.  However, we got our share of ice.  Hence, my title, “Generating Heat.”

To generate heat, one must burn calories.  Funny, to do so also generates energy, so it all fits with my word for the New Year!  I’ve decided, instead of making a New Year’s resolution, I will focus on a keyword for the New Year:  Energy.  While I’ve had very little writing focus due to my drafty window (and the holidays) this last week, I wrote a post on my New Year’s focus word that you may view and read here, if interested: A Word for My Intentions

During the week, I attempted to visit a senior woman from church that I visit regularly.  She is in a nursing home.  Since social interaction is so beneficial, they don’t keep their patients holed up in their rooms, which is great.  However, there had been a few patients with flu symptoms, and visitors were not allowed for a few days. These things happen, I suppose.  Flu has been going around.  I can only imagine how rough that would be for elderly patients who aren’t completely mobile.  I was able to get out to get together for dinner one night with my work buddies.  It was fun, and the Italian food was excellent.  Other than that, I was indoors a lot this last week.

At any rate, in the spirit of generating energy so that I can be positive toward others, I’ve been going to more challenging yoga classes.  I haven’t even fallen down, but I sure do modify in every class.  You see, my ‘Energy’ goal will hopefully bring about better health, and even mental health, as far as positive mindset.  Positive thinking generates positive results, right?  Yes, I believe it does.  I also, having time on my hands this Winter Break, have to force myself off the couch or chair with upbeat music.  Monday, my choice was Sister’s of Mercy “This Corrosion” and then  “Danza Kuduro.”  “Danza” speaks for itself.  It is used in Zumba classes across the world, I am sure.  I used to do Zumba, and it was great exercise.  I get aches and pains these days and focus on low-impact yoga, but a 10-12 minute interlude at home is a good break in my day.  It is so upbeat, and I even remember a few of the moves from Zumba class.  Now, “This Corrosion” may not be anything you’ve ever heard of.  The Sisters of Mercy is alternative and may be even considered Gothic/Industrial, but this song was on the soundtrack for The Restaurant at the World’s End,  a funny, yet dark movie with Simon Pegg and a bunch of alien androids and a few other humans.  That’s what brought the song back to my memory.  Pegg’s character was my favorite of the humans, such a troubled, yet adventurous soul. His character even wears a Sister’s of Mercy t-shirt through much of the movie.  Anyhow, I used to dance to this sort of music, as well as 80’s New Wave, in my youth.  So, when I dance to it, I flail like an idiot, because who can remember how they danced 20-30 years ago?  I also reach down to get my dog to dance with me.  He barks the first time, then puts his feet up the next time I reach down.  It is glorious fun, such an energy builder, and thank God no one can see me!  But the dog…he may be secretly filming with a hidden camera… Oh, who cares!  It is all for the sake of being silly, and laughter burns calories too!

Music will definitely be my go-to source of energy.  I have made a pact with myself to do things that feed my energy.  My hope is the results will be a renewed energy in my job and focus/energy for writing.  My writing certainly needs to be more focused.  I don’t know how I ever got Detours in Time published in 2017, but I did.  I had a lot of help, and that is the way a professional does it.  I have written a sequel, and it is going through revision and beta-reading now.  In fact, I fleshed it out from 45,000 to 61,000 words this November.  That was my NANOWRIMO accomplishment on a small scale.  It definitely will be published in 2018, but I will need to keep my energy and focus going!  Most of what I have written lately has been flash-fiction, one of my first loves in writing.  However, one day I had thoughts running through my head about a character in the sequel whose life and goings-on I want to follow, whose story I want to tell.  He is young, a survivor, and still learning who he is.  I spent a few hours on the day of New Year’s Eve getting some of his story in writing.  We don’t control these ideas, do we? I already have a 4th installment in Norrie’s story from Made for Me, but I haven’t touched it after writing 4,000 words three months ago.  She will come to me later with more of her story.  I really sometimes believe that is the way it happens!  Writers, I am not alone in this feeling, am I?  I’d love to be more organized, but, I’ll have to go with what works for my brain.

It feels like I’m meandering here, but besides some of the brief writing “possession” and lack of focus I’ve experienced, I’ve been enjoying Netflix and went to two movies over Winter Break.  This is a big deal; I hadn’t been to a movie since Wonder Woman or Dr. Strange.  Not sure which, I may have my order mixed up; it was whichever came out last summer.  I didn’t even get out to see the new Bladerunner, and I am such a rabid fan.  I know I was busy writing in November.  No worry though, it comes out for Netflix in January and I already have it on order!  I took my mom to see Thor:  Ragnorok last week, and she loved it for the brawny Thor character and the powerful women it depicted.  She didn’t get the mythology and back-story, but I loved it all.  On New Year’s Eve, my sweetheart and I saw Star Wars: The Last Jedi.  It was a great movie!  We were in a theater with reclining seats, and I had drank a hot toddy with dinner; that may have been a mistake, but anyway, I got the gist of the movie, and I enjoyed it.  On the homefront, I have had time for Netflix and my ongoing obsession with Haven.  Audrey has come back again!  Seriously, I love this show, but my favorite was when everyone in town thought it was Christmas in July all brought about by a snow globe.  That one definitely had a Stephen King feel to it.  I’ve also already seen all of Season 2 of Glitch.  There seem to be plot holes galore, maybe because they’re saving things for the next season,  but the setting and the whole idea of second chances is quite intriguing.  I also hear there are more Black Mirror episodes.  That one really makes me think.  I have to be ready when I watch it.

Truly, I do look forward to warmer weather.  My dog can’t even enjoy his walks these days.  He does his business, then turns back toward the house.  I owe him a dog park visit come warmer weather!  Being indoors a lot, I am reading too:  still reading Outlander, the Fiery Cross, alternating between Kindle and Audiobook.  It is so long.   I’m over halfway done though, and I’ll feel very accomplished when I finish! Sometimes I take a break to read one of many books on Indie publishing, marketing, or writing.  Perhaps my word for 2019 will be Focus!  Nah, too soon to decide that.

Thanks for visiting my Weekend Coffee Share!  You may read other coffee shares and/or submit your own at https://eclecticali.wordpress.com/2018/01/05/weekendcoffeeshare-the-library-was-loud-and-this-weekend-will-be-quiet/   clicking the blue frog icon to enter yours.

That’s the gist of my week.  How was your week?

 

Weekend Coffee Share…Of Walter Dean Myers, bucket lists, baby goats, and writing goals.

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Welcome to the Weekend Coffee Share!  Please don’t hate me because I live in Florida, and it will be close to 80 degrees today.  At least my iced coffee is pumpkin spice flavor!  😉

First, I’d like to ask, which rings true for you?  Here are two alternate skits:

Child:  Grandpa, why are we here?

Grandfather:  To love one another and care for this great Earth.

Alternate:

Child:  Grandpa, why are we here?

Grandfather:  To compete with each other, destroy our enemies, and turn a profit.

I will not deny that this may seem a little political.  I have a hard time verbalizing such things.  I love people regardless of their political beliefs.  But I am having such a hard time lately dealing with recent policy changes, seeing the earth pilfered, people hurt, and families torn apart.  I may seem like a pipe dreamer, but I have long ago realized that was my place on this Earth.  If we all saw things in black and red (monetarily and us vs. them), it would be an ugly world indeed.  I’ve also accepted that, if I were alive in the Middle Ages, I would have been an artisan, poor indeed, but I would make people smile or cry, and they’d throw me enough crumbs to keep me alive.  I’d also be least likely to get beheaded.  I obviously would dress for comfort and not to impress some king into putting jewels on my head.  I’m perfectly fine with my place in life.  If I should ever make it big as an author, I’ll wear what the heck I want to book signings, just like Stephen King.

Now, off of my soapbox.  I have not participated in Weekend Coffee Share in a while!  Part of that is due to neglecting to blog more than once a week.  I’ve been doing the flash fiction entries since it’s tickles my fancy, but only once a week.  It’s good to be back, even if for once in a blue moon.  I love my writers’ community, and I’m glad you all are still here in this space!

Work has kept me busy, busy, while I try to promote my published books.  I’m not writing a book for NANOWRIMO, but I am fleshing out and revising the one I wrote last November.  It is a sequel to my time travel novel, Detours in Time .  This sequel has gone from 45,000 words to 56,000 when I last checked, so I am making progress.  Still, some nights, I get home from work and just want to read and relax.  It may not be completely revised at the end of November, and that’s okay.  I get achy in my hands and arms at times, either due to arthritis or the way I manage stress (internalizing).  So, I’m not pushing it.  All will happen in due time.  I don’t see myself quitting the job to just write until I most likely legitimately retire from teaching.

The workplace has given me more challenges than last year, I believe.  My family life is calmer, but I come home from work good and tired.  I won’t complain about the job; there are good days and bad days.  Sometimes, you can know just what to say to tell a student you’ve “got their number,” and it may work.  Other days, it’s quite overwhelming and you just wonder why they have to be manipulated or pleaded with to do the right thing?  Ah, the nature of middle-schoolers.  They don’t always know who they are.

At least I get to teach one of my favorite books again:  Bad Boy by Walter Dean Myers.  Talk about a struggle for identity.  This book is about his life, and he sure went through some hard times regarding: poverty, race, identity, growing up in Harlem, family issues, and adolescence in general.  I know I mentioned this last week in my Stream of Consciousness post.  This book stays with me.  We are starting to study author’s point of view in a memoir.  I’m hoping I have enough artistic kids, because what I’d like to do is have posters of his head opening like a box with a hinge, and his thoughts on paper strips coming out.  Truly, isn’t that what a writer does?  We open it up for others to see what is inside.  Usually, there is an end goal.  He obviously wants to inspire kids of today to stop making excuses and go for their dreams.  I know Myers inspires me.

Well, Thanksgiving, my favorite holiday, is coming soon.  We’re going to NC to see my brother and sister-in-law.  The cooler weather will be nice.  I think I’ll gain weight.  I do yoga once or twice a week, but my cardio is faltering.  I blame it on weather fluctuations and writing goals.  I just have to do enough to make sure my clothes still fit.  Buying a whole new wardrobe doesn’t appeal to me like it used to.  I guess I’m getting more practical as I move toward fifty.  It’s gonna be awesome.  I will make it awesome.  I’ve added beer yoga, baby-goat yoga, trying helium beer with my high-school best friend, and still have sky-diving on my bucket list.  Wish me luck in these endeavors!      (Seriously, find a video of baby goat yoga.  They jump all over the place and look so light-weight.  It just seems like a joyful, laughter-filled experience I’d love to try.  Watch it and feel your blood pressure drop)!

-Pamela

#WeekendCoffeeShare is now hosted at https://eclecticali.wordpress.com/ Please visit the blog to view other weekend coffee shares and to enter your own.

How was your week?  What’s going on in your life and your artistic/ blogging endeavors?

#WeekendCoffeeShare. Turn off the News! #poetry

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Welcome to the Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Diana at parttimemonsterblog.com. If we were having coffee today, on August 18, I’d tell you I’m glad for a new school year in a job that I love, but I’m tired. I dream about distant shores, maybe since I didn’t travel much this summer, and my writing projects are on hold until I have the energy.
I’d tell you to stay safe during the upcoming eclipse, but to enjoy this natural phenomenon, because nature is the greatest thing in this world, and we should all appreciate it much more.
I’d also tell you I’m terribly sad for our world, and I am praying for peace while I avoid the news today. I just can’t take anymore of it today. I penned a poem expressing my frustration.

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(c) Pamela Schloesser Canepa, 2017.

On that note, I am signing off to spend some time with a loved one, enjoy some play with my dog, and hopefully have time for reading and appreciating nature! I suggest you all do something today that makes you appreciate this world.
Does anyone have a different hobby that gets them away from reality?
Have a great weekend, and check out the other coffee shares at parttimemonsterblog.com! You may even want to add your own.

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