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10 Ways Writing Books is JUST Like Motherhood

First, we hop in bed one night and the next thing we know, we wake up the next morning with a story stuck (in our case) in our head.

We carry around this story for months and months....waiting, hoping, praying to give birth to a healthy story.

So, we worry and fret, about this, that and the other. How should I tell this story? Or, should I tell it!?

One thing for sure, one way or another, this story must come out.

Realizing this we reach out for advice; be it directly, or indirectly. Informal tips and tricks suffice as well as the heady been there, and are there professional support.

Eventually THE DAY finally arrives, when the story comes out...

...for some of us prematurely, for others right on time. And then there are those of us whose story is LoooooonnnG Overdue!

But we’re happy, and SHUCKS all-be-doggonit, relieved to finally breathe.

Mistakes, blemishes, oops and bloops (if any) aside, we are all too grateful, elated and proud for the esoteric magnificence our Story enfolds.

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Stuff Writers Understand

A popular question writers get asked, is why in all things grounded, sane, fun and profitable would anyone volunteer to put themselves through the grueling task of writing a book? Pluralize book and, well, it will in all likelihood be assumed that writer has one screw very loose.

Fact is, there are many drivers that keep writers, writing.

Contraire to a common belief, largely due to many artists, myself included, associating pain with creating art... be it Mahalia belting out soul stirring llyrics from her sternum, or Van Gogh painting masterpieces with one ear, or like a pair of writers I laughed at describing what they looked like during long episodes drafting their stories, writing largely is a pleasurable exercise. Seriously, while anyone can have ‘a moment’, most people will pass on the liver pot pie for a slice a pizza every time.

The single prevalent complaint that drive most writers NUTS, is not writing, but rather the inability to write... and for whatever reason. Distractio…

Damned If You Do, Damned If You Don’t

Before I get gowin... let me get this disclaimer out there. This post roots for the ‘so-called’ Overthinkers in the World. Therefore, I ask other readers not to overthink this one.

One word. Surveys. I like to believe surveys are conducted to help the surveyor improve its service or product. This is even pointed out in most instructions as the reason for conducting surveys.

Now, when I complete a survey, I like to be as accurate as possible, otherwise, what is the point? Why even bother? Why waste OUR time?

...Thus, here’s where ‘overthinking’ can occur. The damned if you do, damned if you don’t syndrome. Back in the day, I was a shrugger. I shrugged off lots of stuff, walking around with the worst case of ‘so what... I don’t care... doing my thing, my way, marching to the beat of my own drum’ ...umm, something like today, only tweaked for perfection, perhaps.

I got scolded a lot. You shouldn’t waste your life. You should do this and do that, stuff that...ahem... speaking of not wast…

How Inspiration ‘Sometimes’ Works

My head is not up in the clouds or buried in sand, unrelenting in the pursuit of ignoring highly regarded and obvious literature all around me. Not with the way I scour to read moving stories. Only the foolish could carry such a reading torch and be so recalcitrant.

It, therefore, must’ve been one of my...umm... dozens of robust grainy moods that explains how one itty-bitty poetry book eluded me. At least twice I missed this one; so obviously the first time when I bought the book, and the other time, right before it ended up on my DNF shelf.

At any rate, Spotted It...Read it and Enjoyed it. In rhythm and rhyme with National Poetry Month this post is inspired by Nikki Giovanni’s ‘Blues For All The Changes’.

True Story.

Doting on the occasion is memory of the time I found a poem I'd been searching for, for years. Going back to elementary school, thus I’m talking a dinosaur of years ago, I read a lovely poem I lost track of. I committed (most of it) to memory, for I so adored this p…

“Missing the Point”

More times than necessary to stress about, it happens often. Missing the point. Don’t matter how slow you speak, how clear you write, or how quiet you remain hearing words pouring like a torrent from made up minds, points get missed on both sides of supposition.

Funny though, there was one blogger who tickled me plenty when I realized he (or she) was crafting optimized SEO headlines to heightened proportions by slipping in rifts, all to see which readers missed the point.

In other words, the headline would read something like: Polar Bears Are Big Dumb Creatures. Now...for the reader who only read the headline, which often was me (haha), or for readers who read the related article poorly and commented under the headline, thus revealing the fact, well... we’d all be the Big Dumb mockeries used for everyone else’s amusement and entertainment purposes.

At any rate, and moving iffy humor onward, I’ve come up with other easy ways to miss the point while ‘so-called’ reading.  

Obviously, N…

Nature, Nurturing and Natural Women Taking Credit and Owning It.

This post was inspired after being asked, “why do mother’s take credit for raising the children,” and in part after reading ‘Listen to the Squawking Chicken’ by Elaine Lui. (Thoughts on the memoir here).

There are many distinctive female aspects to acclaim. Personally, I like the feminine side of women. Being physically softer; having less facial, chest and or back hair to contend with is a happy plus. I also like painting my nails different colors and spending hours styling my hair. The curves are another bonus, and what girl doesn’t enjoy a healthy wardrobe selection? Skirts, dresses, heels, scarves and the likes make shopping exciting.

Largely however, what I love most about women is the distinctive and prevailing strength that not only blesses them with the ability to be vessels of life, but be a major reckoning force being that vessel of life.

While not the absolute rule, generally the natural role of women and men raising offspring reminds me of how I recall watching lions and …

Speaking for Myself, ...a Mild Confession

In view of National Women’s Month, and inspired by Aung San Suu Kyi's 'Letters from Burma', it wouldn’t be noble if I didn’t reconcile all this expending so much energy critiquing the work others, in lieu of assessing my own. (Thoughts on Letters from Burma).

Honest to goodness, as if clarifying such a promise is even possible, but yes I did, heedlessly and sublimely embarked on a writing pursuit that to my airtight surprise built a brand I’ve yet to find any other quite like it. In that vein, looking back... and now kind of laughing out loud... here are a few entertaining features I hadn’t thought about until well after-the-fact.

First there is my pen name, which I still do not consider a pen name. RYCJ are my initials, actually created by someone who agreed with me, my name spelled out across books, or anything for that matter, was entirely too long.

Funny albeit, it wasn’t until after publishing a series of books, at least 10, that come to find out most writers wrote i…