Monthly Archive: December 2013

On Being a Writer 0

On Being a Writer

Jane Yolen in Take Joy: A Writer’s Guide to Loving the Craft (p.59) defines writer several ways but believes the best to be ‘one who writes’.

At first that sounds silly, but, after thinking about it, she makes perfect sense. For myself, writing is a compulsive act. I become anxious when I’m away from writing more than a day or two. Since, for me, stories come full blown. My fingers itch to set down characters, events and details as a part of my life. Are they good? Sometimes but usually after I work with them, go to critique groups and repeatedly edit them. I wish the definfition of a writer said,’one who writes well most of the time”. Then I’d feel better about what makes it to the page. Maybe next year!

The Winter Sky 3

The Winter Sky

Last night at midnight I stepped outside to see the sky. I’ve often done this in the summer, but wintertime skies are seldom clear where I live. The deck felt cool under my slippers but not icy as I walked to a place where the trees give way to the sky and looked up. I visually lost my balance. The stars were foreign to my summer sky. The dipper hung overhead instead of northwest of my location. One lone sattelite passed overhead. New lines of stars, curls of unknown constellations and pulsing planets spread across the sky. It was as...

Treat the Eye: Improve Your Observation Techniques 0

Treat the Eye: Improve Your Observation Techniques

We use our sight every day but often only see the common place: trees, roads, houses, children, dogs. If we are to see the world more clearly, we need to pay closer attention. What kind of trees? What does the bark feel like? Are there cones or berries or blossoms? Is the road newly paved or rutted? Are the while side lines worn? How about the center lines: did the painter keep them straight, leave any residue or streaks? Are the houses row houses? two-story? brick? wood? well-maintained? in need of sprucing up? Are the children playing on their way...

Setting Seasons 1

Setting Seasons

Seasons need not be spelled out obviously. Get creative, visual and active!  Try writing them with seasonal nouns and random verbs. For example:           The rain clouds blew in, washing the daffodil petals,  pulling them free and dropping them to the soil. The Christmas tree leaned toward the window as if to say, back away! She shook the sand from her sandals, kicked them off and stepped onto the cooling tile floor in the entry.            It was a still morning with frost dripping from the abandoned clothesline. Published authors also use...