Work, Writing, It’s All The Same. It Merges

Photo by Alexandru STAVRICĂ on Unsplash

Every time I get home from work I have some new thing to write about or think about. The drama alone in the kitchen lends itself to a perpetual existence of creativity. Maybe it’s because I like writing, or maybe my life really has become interesting, but I want to write about everything. I have taken to having a ‘work’ journal, a notebook specific to just work related things. Yes, things there might end up in my regular journal, so long as they become personal related, but for the most part, it’s my way to document random things I feel I should write down. There are a couple months where I wasn’t writing but once here or there and I missed out on a lot of memories I could have had down. I’m more inclined to keep it up these days. It’s also where I can vent about work. And no, I do not ever let this book out of sight because oh man, I suppose it could get me into trouble if work people ever read it. It can be unflattering at times.

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Along with the actual non-fiction of life, I have been mentally working on a book of sorts for the kitchen. Be it fiction/romance, which is my plan, or maybe it becomes my memoir at one point or another, but I have started to write down little vignettes of sorts or just things that have happened. I have ideas of them being chapter starters. Written in 2nd person, I think I have been inspired by the book Sous Chef, written in the same style.

Here are some I just wrote down today.

Exhaustion. It hits and there is nothing you can do about it but paste on a smile when everyone is looking then drop it when eyes are no longer on you. You get off of work tears forming in your eyes as the adrenaline fades away. Too tired to eat. Nearly too tired to sleep. Each movement becomes forced. You are ready to snap. Crackle. Pop; and explode at the first insult tossed your way. You grip your knife in a death grip, ready to stab anyone that even thinks about crossing you. Then the chef tells you that you need to stay for overtime. . .

The bruises show up in random spots. A wrist, a bicep, the hipbone. Was it from something you ran into? Or did you lift something too heavy in your arms and the weight left a mark? But out of nowhere a purple hickey forms and you look like you’ve been in a fight. You actually have. Been in a fight, that is. A fight with pans and food, forcing it to be what you need it to be. Very few items are coaxed into becoming an edible masterpiece.

Envy. It forms when someone gets preferential treatment. Maybe a new knife, or a jacket, or even a word of compliment. Somewhere, someone received what you wanted. And you find yourself trying to find ways to collect something, some form of pleasure that comes from all the pain studded days. The wounds inflicted, by yourself(knife cuts, bruises), by others(insults, offhanded remarks). The envy that forms when something, or someone, you wanted doesn’t come to you and goes to someone else. Suddenly you find yourself averting your gaze at the mere mention of something. You can take the pain. But you need a reward afterward.

I suppose these are autobiographical, to an extent. I did find 10 bruises the other day after work. They were all over my body. I’m still trying to figure out the one on each arm and one on a wrist. The envy is there. Mostly with someone. But I can’t go there.  I do, but I shouldn’t. It hurts. A lot. Yeah, I avert my gaze a lot these days.

The exhaustion was at the beginning. Are there good days? Of course. But there are a lot of mediocre days as well. The work lends itself to writing though. I like to think that if I ever publish a poem or something, in my bio it will say, She spends her days as a chef (or something along those lines) but moonlights as a poet, crafting food like she crafts her words….. Oooh, I really like that, not to toot my own horn, but that’s kind of catchy.

Needless to say, my journal has been filled with a lot lately. Dreams have been crazy. Work, again, changed. But as tired and frustrated I am, I’m good. Ish. Are we ever good when tired? I’m never on tip top game.

I do have to extend a note of gratitude to my lovely writing ladies and hopefully occasional newest member Crystal (again, names have all been altered to protect the innocent) for giving me some very valuable support this last Saturday when I was at my wits end about personal aspects of the kitchen. A semi-broken heart, fortunately averted before I delved in too deep with someone, and just perpetual work drama lent itself to a teary moment which came from some absolutely beautiful and spot on poetry. Darlings, you are all rocks to me. I needed your support more than you will ever know. I forget to tell you all personally, but you are all wonderful ladies.

This week is a little less drama filled. A shorter week, and a hope that I can advance my career more next week. Things are a’changing. Ideas are floating around.

Hey, all you lovely readers, do you find your work enters into aspects of your writing? Do you find your writings as a way to vent about work? How does writing help you through your day to day life?

Kate

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NIV Holy Bible for Girls, Journal Edition – A Review

teal-niv-journal-bible-coverNIV Holy Bible for Girls, Journal Edition is a very pretty journaling Bible for girls, or young women, or any woman that likes pretty. Each page has the place to write your thoughts, verses, etc. down the length of the page. There is a nice elastic to keep the Bible closed, and a lovely bookmark that matches the cover. I chose the turquoise edition to review (a personal favorite color) and the cover is incredibly lovely. The cover doesn’t contain text so it’s nice to have sitting out.  The book is more compact and a bit ‘smaller’ than a lot of Bibles, so it would be nice to slip into a book bag for  a Bible study or to cart with you.  There is a nice dedication page and unlike most Bibles, no maps or reference pages.

A horrible web cam image, but it shows off the cover without the  cardboard holder

A horrible web cam image, but it shows off the cover without the cardboard holder

This is a very lovely Bible, and I love that every page has a place to jot down thoughts, but I found the text really small in comparison to other Bibles I’ve read.  And because of the layout of the lines for journaling, I find the text to be a little compacted on the page.  I wouldn’t say this would be a good Bible for anyone under say 14 or so because of it’s small size, but at the same point, I don’t think most girls will journal under that age. I think for a young woman in Bible study it would be a nice edition to be able to jot down your thoughts and prayers.

I really loved the color and feel of the book. My biggest complaint would be the size of the text. Overall, it’s a nice Bible and it would be a lovely gift for a young woman for baptism or some other special occasion.  I would give it probably a 3 out of 5 stars.

This bible was provided to me for my honest review from Harper Collin’s Christian Publishing and BookLookBloggers. I have in no way been compensated for my review.

Kate

Writing in the Car

innovative journal writing

 

I rarely write in the car due to motion-sickness. Ah the joy of looking down at print then suddenly you are swimming and ready to half pass out. Bleh. It happens more often than not, so I’ve grown quite used to just riding in the car and making sure I am staring straight out the window.

However, one thing that I’ve wanted to try for a while is jotting down the things I see as I am in the car and create a poem from it. Susan Wooldridge wrote a whole poem on it when she visited us up north from Chico. She wrote down our street names and what she saw along the road. I knew where she was because of what she had written up. In another poem from her Bathing With Ants, you know she is writing down things as she is driving a car full of vegetables somewhere, as the signs and places and feelings are there.

On a recent trip to Klamath Falls, I was fortunate enough to have my new pocket journal I splurged on for my birthday. It’s this gorgeous little leather cover with snazzy, expensive paper inside (I hacked it and made my own insert-able booklet so as not to go crazy spendy on paper) The picture above is me in the car, writing as I go.  Phrases to the poem that I’m writing, which I’ve yet to finish yet, are “Throw out the buttercups, there are cornflowers along the road, and the wallflower pops up its orange head, the milkweed’s about to burst……
Grass lake and falling snows and geese standing in dismay, a Phantom driving slowly…..

 

I love the Phantom line because we were following behind a semi truck with the name Phantom on it.  And fortunately I wasn’t driving. I could not have written anything had I been driving. That’s just too dangerous.  Anyways, I liked how I could capture what I was seeing, though as you drive 60+ mph, it’s hard to capture it all. I had to start just writing down snippets and hope for the best, all while watching amazing bird life and mountain snows fall, and strawberry fields all planted, and rain and rivers and lakes and pelicans flying by…. yes, pelicans, and I swear I saw cormorants as well…. Klamath Falls is stopping and breeding point for some ‘exotic’ birds.  I think it’s cool.

And Mrs. B was wondering why I was writing in the car, but I can’t turn off my brain. I haven’t been able to turn it off since April when I was writing every day, multiple poems and thinking about things differently.  No, I haven’t posted much here since april, but I have been crazy thinking and writing things down in other places. I have so much I’ve written that it’s crazy. And half the things I write, I don’t know what to do with them!

But I must ask, have you ever written in the car? While driving? At a stop sign? As the passenger?  Do you note things you see and write them down later?  I try and make this giant moving picture in my head, a film of sorts, but I can’t keep it all. I try to remember every detail but there is so much to see.

Kate

She Disappeared – Or, Now She’s Back

Hello dearies,

After Writer’s Digest’s Poem a Day (PAD) and sending in my five poems, I kind of crashed when it came to writing. I found it apropos that on the Wednesday following PAD, Robert Brewer posted the poem prompt, When Everything Stops. Literally, everything with writing kind of stopped, at least here.  I always find that I have that problem when I do a challenge that means writing every day. I get a little burned out and put everything on hold.

Now I didn’t actually stop everything. I was writing at my writing group, and I actually have a couple poems that came out of the last two Wednesday Prompts at Robert Brewer’s Poetic Asides.  I dabbled in a bit of flash fiction and wrote a Hazardous poem because of my misinterpretation of the one PAD prompt of haphazard. It was pretty fun though.

Now the early summer is here and my mind is off on several directions. Especially now that I received  six gorgeous new notebooks for my birthday. Oh the things to put in them! And I also splurged on this new leather journal, a pocket one, because of this offer I saw online. It is Renaissance Art Innovative Journaling and the offer was for a free Primer journal to see how they are. I paid just the shipping, which was $9.95, but I love it. It is just right for your purse or pocket. I can’t afford the paper choices they offer, though I would love to get the refills, so I made my own. But check out the free journal offer here —> Free Journal

So now I have several things to write in and ideas and such.  I have a project with the Friends of the Library, my local chapter, where I am going to be hunting for poetry lines or famous lines about the seasons or the months or such for a calendar that the Friends are going to make supposedly with a local photographer. I mean, it’s quotes. And writer things. I can do that.

So I’m still writing, just not as prolifically as I was a month ago. But it’s okay, now I can focus on a story I started in winter and trying to finish it.

How is everyone else writing along?

Kate

Glimpse At The Girly Journal – Day No. 11

My 3rd Journal inner cover IMG_7777

I rarely share a personal thing about myself, and by personal… because whoa some of my poetry would make a shrink just have a giddy time….. I mean snapshots of my inner me. I don’t talk about my life much in the day to day sense, or the inner thoughts all the time. So, today, here is a snapshot of the inside cover of my last journal. The current journal has not been ‘decorated’ with clippings. I’m taking my time to make sure I really know what I want inside. The margins have been fair game, but then they always are. People that don’t write in the margins just don’t know how much fun it really can be. And honestly, my journals are rather neat compared to what they could be. But the front inside always gets filled with things that inspire me.

Susan Wooldridge's journal display at Magna Carta on 2nd st. In Chico for Artoberfest

Susan Wooldridge’s journal display at Magna Carta on 2nd st. In Chico for Artoberfest

Susan Wooldridge is currently displaying her journals in Chico for Artoberfest, and I am so jealous of how free and open her journals are. She pastes petals and leaves, pictures, notes…. They are very, very her. I’m still stuck in the follow the lines and write semi neatly… Some day I’ll be a more artistic person. Maybe.

But as you can see by what I paste into my cover, I have a style. Girly is definitely something I would say I am. I love, love, love the girl standing in green with the Oscar Wilde quote. “You can never be overdressed or overeducated.”  12106772_1072375282781852_1360914271801965849_n It makes me think of what James M. Sama has posted on his Facebook page the other day.  I’ve had a couple people say that I intimidate guys because I’m smart and confident. (not sure about the confident part) but I think to myself, uh, why wouldn’t a guy want a smart girl? I mean, I think intelligent guys are sexy.

Anyways, this is a jumbled neurotic post, but it’s how I roll. And I think it’s girly enough to fit with Day 10. So…

Kate

Journal Me Journal You

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Mr. Statham’s caption : A lot on my mind, about time I write it down…

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I am  stealing borrowing the two above pictures from Mr. Statham (not the real Jason Statham, but a friend who I swear could be the Man and I mention him in a post from three years ago if you click the highlighted name).  He just posted these tonight on Facebook and I immediately fell in love with them and told him that I was going to use them for a blog post.  My only comment is, that journal is empty! and I think a fountain pen might be needed.  Just saying. But, then, does Jason Statham use a fountain pen? Probably not.

I have not met many men in my life that write in a journal.  Granted, I don’t know tons of men, and most of the ones I do, are old…. So I find it kind of cool and sexy  in a writer-esque sort of way to see that a guy is writing in a journal.  And the mood in the setting is just so very Poe and The Raven to me. (the candles and the moodiness of the look) I can’t explain why I find this so inspiring, but I do.

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My ‘midnight’ writing and guest (my dachshund). Not quite as cool, but I have my fountain pens and my Paris pictures and star light…

I am not one to have much of a ‘setting’ when I write.  I write when I get a moment, though as of late, my journaling is at midnight.  I do a lot of midnight entries.  Since the 19th of September, I have spent half my midnights writing in my journal.  Dealing with guy trouble and thoughts that are too big to write about in the day.  Generally more macabre at that time, but I’m more inclined to get to the heart of my troubles when I’m tired and it’s dark out.  I can ‘sob’ out my issues when no one is around.

Writing in my journal is so very private in a way. I know I wrote not long ago that I was inclined to take my journal with me wherever I went (read the post HERE), and while that’s true, I still like my thoughts private.  When something is really troubling me, I like to be along with my thoughts and not feel pressured to get my writing done.

Part of the reason for my midnight entries, which are dated that way as well, are because my life is hectic. I do not have much time in the day for sitting down to voice my thoughts.  I’d love to, but I rarely have time. The few times I do, it’s right after lunch when I have a cup of tea in hand and a few moments to spare.  But at night I stay up. I am such a night owl it’s scary sometimes. So I write. I also play on Tumblr and read emails, but I like to write then.

Adding to this slightly disjointed post, pardon, but it is after midnight. I never said my thoughts were clear at this point…..  It’s always interesting to see the journals people use.  Mr. Statham’s is clearly a guy’s journal.  Brown or black leather, smooth, simplistic, unlined pages, simple pen.  Totally masculine.

But then there’s me.  Right now my journal is a flowery composition book.  As will the next two journals after this one. I need lines because I write on a slope. I need composition books because they are big enough to get my point across without going through two journals a year.  I ramble so I need plenty of room to fit in everything.  And I have been using my fountain pens religiously to write with.

Fountain pens are kind of sexy.  Trust me.  Especially filled with the different inks.  Right now I’m in a Burgundy Mist and Sepia mode.  I just got through black and a unique mix of the Burgundy and black because I was too lazy to clean my pen before I filled it…  Colors reflect my mood.  Sepia is my conservative mood, while Burgundy….. well no boring thoughts were conceived when writing in a wine colored ink….. cue naughty wink

And now I have written a blog post, instead of writing in my journal like Mr. Statham. Now it’s late and I have sleep that is needed, so I shall close.  I’m curious about you dear reader.  If you are a man, do you keep a journal?  What do you write with?  What type of journal do you use?

Girls, what about you?  Tell me, do you like plain or fancy journals?  I’m curious too as to when you like to write.  Do you like writing in the morning when you wake up, thoughts fresh and clean, or do you like to get down and dirty at night?

And because well, I can’t resist, the lovely, handsome, every girl wants him…

Mr. Jason Statham (because I don’t feel I should post my friend’s picture without his consent. But trust me, he really, really looks like this guy)jason-statham12

Signing off

~Kate

If You Only Knew What I Put In My Journal

What I need to put on my journal

What I need to put on my journal

Lately I’ve taken to carrying my journal every where I go, whether I write in it or not. I just want it with me for that time when a thought strikes my head and I have to put it down or fear losing the idea.  However, along with having my personal ‘space’ with me and the convenience that comes from having it around, there is also the danger of someone reading something of mine that I would much rather keep private.

The only reason that came to mind, because most of the time I don’t even think of someone reading my journal, was because I came out of the store the other day and my bike (bicycle) was surrounded by a contingent of high school boys from one of the camps.  My journal lay neatly in the basket, ready for anyone to crack it open.  See?  I am quite unconcerned about where I lay my journal. It’s not wise.

Had anyone cracked it open they would think I have a very active love life.

” I was fantasizing about arriving unannounced at Stephen’s. Oh I would love to surprise him.”

“Owen… I have sexy ideas for him.”

“Tony has gained weight, but he still looks as sexy as ever… (and I won’t add in what else I said because it’s too hot for paper)”

And that was only the first 4 entries into the new journal.  Now, only one of these is actually real.  One is a character, and the other, well is just me appreciating male beauty.  Sue me, I’m a single gal with a lack of eligible men around.  A girl has got to have some fun.

I shudder to think of what those boys might have though had they flipped through the journal.  And I am sure I would shock the pants off most people with what is in my other journals that I’ve completed.  Heck, even some of them I turn bright red when I read it and go, uh wow, so that’s what I was thinking.  I go from innocuous to more graphic than I’d want anyone to ever know.  It’s my personal journal so I fill it with everything.  Literally, everything.

One time a friend of mine was talking about how she had her journal with her in her purse wherever she went, and because she liked Nancy Drew, she had taken an old cover of one of the books to use as the slip in cover of her journal.  She pulled the journal out of her purse and handed it to me to look at.  Unconsciously I started flipping through the pages before I was slammed with the knowledge that I was just flipping through someone’s private words.  I immediately slammed it shut, admired the cover and hoped that my friend hadn’t thought that I was reading her words.  I didn’t see a thing, M.  I promise!  But we sometimes forget how easy it is to look at someone else’s thoughts.  I had never thought of how vulnerable my personal thoughts were.

I still don’t think about it all that often. I much prefer dragging my journal with me wherever I go.  I just need to remember in the future that sometimes it’s more accessible than I might want.  I wonder if anyone else has felt that way.  That they like their thoughts close at hand, but if they were to ever fall into the wrong hands….. Whew, can you imagine what people might think of you?

As per the photo for this post.  Tumblr.  I adore Tumblr, on a side note, for fun pictures like this.  I like thinking that the things I write about people would be jealous and wish they had come up with the idea first.  Granted, I don’t think my ideas are all that spectacular, but hey, one can dream.  And besides, the statement on the book is accurate.  Some of my thoughts are things you just wish you might have come up with….. because they are so odd you could study me for science…. Ha ha ha.

Signing off

~Kate

Out of Commission Writing

I’ve been out of commission for the past few days.  The notebooks have practically been ignored.  Journals left forgotten.  Not due to lack of diligence, but just feeling like death warmed over.  It’s not very conducive to writing.  Who knew.

During that time, I have pulled out a bit of creativity and am working on a poem, but it’s still in a bit of the unknown stage.  It’s something I’ve had in my mind for a while geared just at girls and women, but it’s still taking some time to work out. 

I’m not great with free form verse yet. It is still hard for me to find the break and pause.  I enjoy to write it and at times it flows through me. (not often enough) But for some reason, rhyming has always been something easier. Not that it is easy, but it just strikes me as ‘real’ poetry. Personal opinion.  And it’s not that I don’t like free verse, I just find the rhythm easier with rhyme.

However, this thing I’m working on is free form, and it’s almost done. I’m going to attempt to work on it some more in the next day or so and hopefully I’ll have something usable.

Signing off

~ Kate