Wednesday, June 3, 2015

IWSG: June 3, 2015 ~ What's Going On?

It's the first Wednesday 
of the month ~ 
the day when members of the
Insecure Writer's Support Group
share their writing struggles
and offer their encouragement
and support to other members.

To visit the IWSG website, click here.

To become a member of the IWSG, click here.

Our wonderful co-hosts who are stepping up to help 
IWSG founder Alex J. Cavanaugh today are:  M. Pax, 
Tracy Jo, Patricia Lynne, Rachna Chhabria,
Feather Stone, and Randi Lee.

Visit them and thank them for co-hosting.
I'm sure they would appreciate an encouraging comment!

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Last month's IWSG Day was so freeing!
I was discouraged because I was battling distractions,
and I felt guilty because I was neglecting my memoir.

That IWSG Day started with a frustrated "Arrggghhhh!!!!!
Yet another day without writing.

Then I started reading May's blogs and comments.
I'm so glad that I made that choice.
It caused me to really think about
what I have been doing and why.

"Kids in the way?  Dog want to play?  
Cat having its say?  Pffft and enjoy the day," 
said Pat Hatt. 

I'm driven, so that's hard, but I tried it.
Saying "Pffft" eased my frustration and guilt.
I was letting Have-to-Dos overwhelm me 
and discolor the fun in my life.
Thanks, Pat!  source

May co-host Melanie Schultz commented,
"Life is in the distractions."
It is, and I appreciated the reminder!
Good thing too, 
because May was full of life's distractions!
I can get so busy Doing 
that I neglect important people in my life.
Thanks, Stephanie.  blog

Then I read Alex Cavanaugh's IWSG post.

His desire to support and encourage other writers
was proving more important to him
than writing that next science fiction novel.

That caused me to realize that working hard
on my writing and photography to craft good
blogging posts was truly important to me.
For me, blogging is writing.
That was a huge revelation!
Thanks, Alex!  source

So how did May go for me?
I embraced spontaneous fun with less guilt.
I cut the frustration when life called.
I acknowledged that writing my memoir 
is not my only important writing goal.

Hadn't Scheduled This!

I realized that publishing my Northern posts every Friday
help me write my memoir and keep me from giving up.  latest

My Father Writing and His Indian Students, 1960

I addressed some worrisome household tasks.
I tamed that on-line gaming beast.
I took some great photos.
I published blog posts that fulfilled me creatively.
I hunted down and organized decades of manuscripts.
I faced my study and began tackling my memoir.

U.S. Air Force Pilots in Their Thunderbird Jets

Funny thing was I accomplished more memoir writing.
I'm feeling encouraged and hopeful, rather than 
discouraged, frustrated, guilty, and overwhelmed.
I'm making progress.
I'll get there.

It was a good month!
Happy IWSG Day, Everyone!


  1. I always enjoy your posts and photos, and I think you are a very talented author! I wrote a short story recently which MAY be published, not sure yet, but I submitted the story to someone who was looking for stories for his new upcoming book. If it gets published I will definitely share the news on my blog. I have been told that I am very good at expressing myself (verbally), but when it comes to writing I feel that I fall short, so if my story gets published I will be surprised...happily so, of course. :)

    1. What exciting possibilities, Linda! I once had a short story published in the "Antigonish Review", a literary journal published by St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia. I have never forgotten the thrill of opening that acceptance letter. I do hope your story get published, but whether it does or not, I think you should keep writing! I belong to a great writers' support group! Winkers!!! Have a lovely day!

  2. I remember your last post (that I read) about your frustration. Isn't it funny how a sideways 'attack' gets good results. Ten years of manuscripts organized, and the 'gaming beast' tamed! Great job!

    1. It is funny, Diana! I have to remember that struggling with things head on doesn't always lead to a better result, just grumpiness and frustration! Breaking the gaming habit I fell into really helped! Have a good one!

  3. There you go! Focus on what is important and calls to you the most. Don't feel guilt you can't do it all.
    Glad you are in a better place.
    Now Pffft to everything else!

    1. Thanks for the kind words, Alex! I am in a much better place! Enjoy your day!

  4. Your blog writing is what I enjoy so much, you add to every photo, and your family letters, you add to them too. Insecure??? I wouldn't think so in a million minutes. When forcing yourself to write, that takes the fun and inspiration away so fast, I cannot imagine it if I told myself " You have to write every day from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. " but then I am the greatest procrastinator of all times!!!

    1. LOL, Nancy! Every time I try to lock myself into a schedule, live contrives to shred it! So I guess I shall just have to accept my jerky jerky progress! You might be surprised at how shy and insecure I am, unless I'm riled by the injustice of something. Then my inner velociraptor comes out. Have a lovely new day!

  5. I've never seen the Thunderbird Jets in person, but I like the paint colors on the Blue Angels better

    1. I do like the look of the Blue Angels, Adam. They are striking to see in the sky. I was thrilled when I saw the bottoms of the Thunderbirds and saw those blue mythical birds reaching for the heavens. I am amazed at the abilities of all the pilots who fly demonstration jets, not to mention jets in combat. There are a lot of courageous people doing difficult jobs that make my life easy and safe. Have a good one!

  6. haha a pfffting you can go and a much less stress is given a go

    1. I will be forever grateful for "Pffft," Pat! You are so unorthodox, so unique! You inspire me every day because you love to shake things up and because you question why we do what we do and point out human absurdities! Much less stress is a good thing!

  7. No one can do it all. On IWSG days I do write, on peoples blogs. My father-in-law flew B-17's in WWII, I guess out dated compared to the Thunderbird Jets. Enjoy your days...

    1. Thanks, Cathrina! I keep trying to bite off more than I can chew; you think I'd learn. LOL People at last weekend's Rocky Mountain Airshow were thrilled by the Thunderbird demonstration; but let me tell you, they loved the old planes and they oohed and awed over the fly-bys and the amazing aerobatics their pilots performed The Thunderbird pilots are phenomenal , but I think that all pilots are so, from the bush pilots of my youth, to those brave pilots who fought in various wars, to those who fly passengers all around the world. Have a good one!

  8. Sounds like you rocked May. Hooray! Keep up the great work and keep writing. =)

    ~Patricia Lynne aka Patricia Josephine~
    Story Dam
    Patricia Lynne, Indie Author

    1. Thank you, for your encouragement, Patricia Lynne! May was a great month! And the best parts were the spontaneous fun spots! Maybe an older dog can learn new tricks! Happy Thursday!

  9. This post made me smile. It's nice to get that kind of encouragement.

    1. Thanks, Lynda! This is why I am so grateful that I stumbled into the IWSG. I could never replicate what the IWSG does in a face-to-face group here in Aurora, so much expertise, caring, and sharing. Happy writing, and thank you for all you do to help writers in the IWSG!

  10. Having fun is important! Keep it up! :)

    1. Thanks for the reminder, Tyrean! For much of my adult life I was locked into a tight, tight schedule with a lot of responsibility, and it's taken almost three years of retirement for me to decompress and back away from being so duty-bound. I am learning that I really can go play on the spur of the moment, and it won't make things even harder for me when I come back. Happy Thursday!

  11. Glad you are making progress in your memoir writing.

    Rachna Chhabria
    Co-host IWSG
    Rachna's Scriptorium

  12. I get stuck in certain goals, and when I find distractions taking over, I (slowly) realize it might be reason to change something up. Say, brainstorm a new project or read for fun for a few days. Usually by then I'm refreshed enough to return to working.

    I network with a lot of writers, and some of them are Write Every Day With a Daily Wordcount type writers (which I am not) and I try to keep up. For me, I write a handful of days a week and spent longer chunks of time doing that. Re-evaluating this every so often seems to keep me focused, And if no focus, hey it's summer. Go outside and play :)

    1. Thanks for sharing your process and the thoughtful comment, Stephanie! I really appreciate it! I am most definitely not a so-many-words-per-day writer. My brain cannot function that way. I love to go outside and play, especially with my camera. I hope that you are having a fun weekend!

  13. Life is the journey, isn't it? Can't say I have ever had a routine. Probably never will. My life is organized chaos. But I write as much as I can. Just about the time I see a chunk of time ahead strictly for writing...something jumps in there. Just the way life rolls.

    I'd like to say I'm one of those structured-nothing-gets-in-the-way-of-my-writing type of gal, but I'd fall out of my chair laughing. A friend calls at the last moment and wants to have lunch...I'm out the door. And don't regret it. Hey, I might pick up some good writing material:)

    Seize the moment...whatever that moment may be...

    1. LOL, Terry! I appreciated your thoughtful comment! I try to be structured, but it usually falls apart by 8:00 a.m. I couldn't stick to a schedule even when I was a third grade teacher, although I always hit the Must Dos. Yesterday, the big schedule-wrecker was multiple tornado warnings, a flash flood warning, and dangerous hail. Fortunately we avoided the worst of it. We got pea-sized hail, but others got ping pong ball-sized hail. One area in Denver got a couple of feet of hail which half buried cars. Possible writing material there for sure! Have a good weekend!

  14. I think the hardest thing for writers to do is be happy where we are now. You're so right about enjoying the process. I'm always feeling like I can't get enough done and my efforts are going to turn out to be a failure some how.

    This posts makes me want to celebrate my small victories again. Thanks for sharing!

    Congrats on making progress on your memoir writing. I find memoir is particularly hard to write. It's such an emotional commitment.

    1. Hi Adrienne! Thanks for your kind words! Since I have a lot more small victories than big ones, I'm much happier if I focus on the small. That way I have lots to celebrate! But I never feel like I accomplish anywhere near what I hope to. I'm wildly optimistic and unrealistic about what I can do!

      Our school nurse in the large elementary school I taught in once told me that she was hugely frustrated in her complex job ~ until she forced herself to make one goal for the day and be happy if she achieved that. Anything else was icing on the cake. I try to remember that, but it doesn't seem to work as well for me as it did for her! LOL

      It is the emotional commitment of memoir writing that is so hard, especially if you have to tread your way through things that were tragic and/or traumatic, but also filled with so much good. What to put in. What to leave out. How far down in the muskeg do you really want to burrow. At least 3/4s of my memoir writing time has been spent just dealing with the emotional turmoil it prompted.

      I hope you are enjoying a great weekend!

  15. Funny picture there. The door looks like it's about to collapse by itself, though. :) Thank you very much for sharing your thoughts. I think they fit me just right and I needed to read them. Enjoy life and keep writing!

    1. Thanks for your encouraging comment! That door cracked me up, too, Al. But the jail cell itself is much stronger than that rusted door.

      On March 18, 1871 the local Republicans had a huge gathering of 300-400 upstairs to nominate candidates for several Central City offices. Everyone was crowded around the ballot box for the counting of the ballots for City Treasurer. Just as they finished the count, the floor collapsed under them, like the trapdoor of a gallows and at least two hundred fell into the bottom story. Miraculously no one was severely injured, and they were able to extinguish the two fires caused by lamps that fell too. The prisoners in the jail cell were just fine because their section of the roof didn't collapse.

      It's always fun to learn the stories that old buildings have to tell, and Washington Hall in Central City, Colorado has a rich history.
      Happy writing!

  16. Glad you are feeling less frustrated and enjoying more out of life. That is the best way to live.

    1. Spot on, Sheena-kay! I hope that you are enjoying your weekend!


Thank you for your comments! I appreciate them very much.