Overlapping the Arts

Art travels well with its different venues: writing and music, painting and sculpting,  photography and design. Creative brains find innumerable ways to express themselves.

I like to sing and dance and draw, in the last couple of weeks I’ve dug out my guitar and plink away, seeking the place of my last departure. I photograph nature and study others’ photographs. I read every time I get a chance. I love to tell stories and use props to act out the drama.

But my first passion is to write a good story …

Are these other activities a distraction, or do they feed my creativity?

My first three stories were written in relative silence. My characters led me down their paths of adventure and I happily followed, enjoying their exploits with them.

I find a variety of music inspiring and I can follow a line of inspiration for two or three minutes, but suddenly, I find myself on an entirely different, often opposing, sound track and I lose the muse. Where’d she go?

So, who practices a craft with music? Do you pick music that matches the piece you are working on (lest you be working with love and violence slips in from the shadows?) Do you replay the same sound track over and over, to maintain theme and atmosphere? Or, with practice, have you learned to ignore the change and run with the muse?

Share if you dare. I am curious.

Demons & Peeves

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We all have demons and peeves. We battle them continually. Reading and writing are unique ways, or tools we use, to wage our war. Naming our demons reduces their power. Sharing our tactics and encouraging one another are also tools.

One of my demons is depression. (Did you know that depression is becoming a national epidemic?) Recovery programs have been amazing tools for me. Today I signed up to become a facilitator for a Depression Recovery Program for my area.

Our battles are never won, but we can hold our ground when we have the skills we need to fight. Why would we not share our tactics and tools in the battle we wage? There is strength in numbers … but only if there is acceptance and sharing among us.

The names may vary – depression, alcoholism, codependence, drugs, (plug in your demon here) – but the enemies are judgment, ignorance and isolation.

We are not alone. If we pull together, in recognition and grace, we can rise above the darkness that threatens to suck us under … and hold the ground we have won.

Never give up.

Ani

Mother’s Day

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I never understood my mum’s love until I held my own little bundle of potential in my arms. As I looked down at that precious little soul, I didn’t doubt for a minute that I would love him forever. I marveled at the newfound depth of love I had for this little creature and decided, no matter what he did, he would always be precious.

I marveled, then and now, that maybe … this is how God feels about us ….

Write on,

Ani

Write for the Brand

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Ride for the brand.”

This saying rings of a strength and loyalty that have fallen by the wayside, along with the popularity of Louis L’Amour and western writers.

What does this have to do with me and my writing? I have recently learned that writers need brands! How cool is that? Being a country girl, who has participated in branding, and designed a few of her own, this is right down my alley! (Especially since it is minus the smell and the bawling.)

How fun. And I love a good play on words. Since I write about strong women with hearts of gold, it is an honor to write for the brand.

Stay tuned for my design ….  ( To all you creative souls out there, I’m open to suggestions!)

Write on!

Ani

First Pony Encounter

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It was a November full moon. The snow was shin deep. I talked two of my little brothers into going outside to play with me after supper. They happily bundled up, thinking snowball fights, or moon shadow-tag, or some such little kid game. I was thinking … there are ponies in the pasture ….

We played in the snow for a while, but it was too cold to pack and too deep to run in. Finally, we ducked under the single strand, electric wire into the horse pasture.

There was a big horse, a black momma pony, and a white baby pony. The adults evaded me like professionals. The baby was curious, happy to be social but petting her was small consolation for the ride I had hoped to get on that beautiful night. (Though I’d never ridden, I watched plenty of westerns in my nine years. I was pretty confident I knew what I was doing.)

Since I couldn’t ride, I thought one of my brothers might as well.  “Hey, Lee. want to ride her?” He was the older of the two, so he had first dibs.
“No. I just want to pet her. She’s nice.” Typical first grader.
“Come on. It’ll be fun.” One of us was going to enjoy a ride on this sparkly night. I don’t know how long it took me to talk him into it. After I did, I didn’t realize what a chunk he’d be to hoist up onto that hairy little back.

In hindsight, it’s amazing the filly let us wallow around on her like she did. As soon as his legs clamped around her little sides, however, she took off like a shot; bucking and running.

Lance and I watched in amazement. Huh. Who’d’a thunk?

Lee stuck on for a couple of bucks and jumps before neatly sliding off, poofing in the snow. The filly kept on going, bucking and running. When she reached her herd, all three disappeared into the woods in a cloud of white dust.

I picked Lee up out of the snow, brushing him off. I had to get him to quit crying before we got back to the house.

Sloggin Along …

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The learning curve for writing continues.  I hope the the menu I’ve been working on (all afternoon) makes it easier to access your areas of interest! Let me know (if you decide to check it out), eh?

Is there some endeavor that you are undertaking, and you wonder: “Will I ever get this?” I’d love to hear about it.

Persevere.

Write on!

Ani

Famous Last Words

My critique group tells me I am not to use cliches in my writing. sigh.

I come from a long line of quoters and familial wisdom. There is a comfort in the commonality of canned sayings, just as there is in canned foods and home cooked meals.

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These old adages have been spoon fed to me for sixty years. I have a taste for them!

Memories are attached to many of them. They bring a shared experience to the story that saves the writer from having to explain (and the reader from having to read unnecessary explanations). When I read a familiar quote in someone else’s writing, I bring my own experience to whatever it is the writer speaks of and I feel connected.

If the quote is not familiar, and I like it, it becomes mine.

There is much wisdom packed into one concise sentence. Tropes are great summarizers!

Do you have one you like to use? If so, please share.

Write on,

Ani