Do You Deal In Conflict?

Life is messy. People are warped and messed up and we are living in a backwards, far from utopian world. How you choose to move through life, though, determines a lot.  As Eve in Serendipity says: ” Life’s a mess, Sara. It’s… it’s chaos personified.”  Life is a mess and when you mix in people’s opinions, emotions and beliefs with relationships, chaos can be a big part of it.

And as we go along in life, how we interact with people says a lot, at least I think so. How you deal with an argument determines your level of maturity, or lack thereof. We all have our childish moments. We all through some sort of tantrum, even as adults. We want our way. We want to win the argument. We aren’t willing to say the other person might be right. It’s human nature.

And we make mistakes.

Right now I am in an argument, if you can call it an argument through emails only, with Boris.  What it’s about is unimportant. But it got me thinking about maturity levels and whether or not a person is willing to fight for a relationship, or just say “fine, I’m not winning so I’m going to walk away without trying to make this work.” There are two kinds of people; those that try to find a solution even by means of an argument, and those that just walk away.

Where do your characters in your novel fall into place? Do you even think about how your character will deal with conflict?

While I would rather not be in an argument, it is a life lesson, if not just for myself, but just to view a specific type of relationship.  I’m actually using it in some ways to write about my character, Phaedra. She is in a relationship with a country singer who is going to be on the road. There is going to be conflict. Something is going to happen where Phae has the choice to walk away, or to fight for what she wants.  Does she walk away from the singer? Or does she stand her ground and demand for her say; her rights?  Do you make your character a pushover? Or do you give them strength? And how much is enough.

This is where living life gives you that experience to write. As children, we can’t evaluate situations and really understand  or learn from them. But each interaction we have with people helps shape and mold our writing experience.  You have to be a part of the world and pay attention.

Now, having had this experience. I’m rethinking how much of a pushover I want Phae. See, I’m usually a bit of a cream puff. I will argue with my family, but in public, I don’t cause conflict. I’ve never been in an actual argument with past boyfriends. Either they backed down, or I did. We never went at it. I’m not saying going at it is healthy, but if you are a passionate person, shouldn’t your responses be passionate?  I think so.  So, Phae is a passionate person about her life. She’s a photographer that sees things that others don’t. She lives life to the fullest.  So, she’s not going to just back down in life. That doesn’t mean she’s going to go out swinging, but she might land a well placed kick here or there.

So, do your characters have conflict? How do they deal? And would you change them if you could?

Just something to think about this Sunday. Hey, it’s Sunday, you might have some time to work on your WIP and rethink your characters.

Kate

 

Telling Fortunes

Published in the US - 1895, US Playing Card Co...

Published in the US – 1895, US Playing Card Company (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m not someone that believes in the occult, nor do I go for all that mystical thing or fortunes or tarot…. I am honestly a Christian.  But I am still fascinated by things like fortunes or tarot.  Just because. I can’t explain it. And even in the Bible, games/lots were thrown. It technically wasn’t biblical, and it doesn’t follow along with trusting God.

But again, it still interests me.

Someone in my life is frustrating the heck out of me and I just found out today I don’t rate as high in his life as he does in mine.  It’s rather depressing and I’ve been trying to mentally deal with that.  A few years ago I found this fun way of determining who you will end up with using playing cards.  Yes, I suppose it is rather ridiculous in the scope of things, but I decided to play with it today.

Here is the original link.  How to tell if he likes you, and other sleepover occult games

So, I just ran my cards, picking the main person, someone new and a possibility, someone who I don’t consider but like talking to, and then someone I can’t stand.

The results….. Um, I ended up with the one I wanted, and it was relatively decent in the scope of things.  I suppose if one believed in this, it would be hopeful…..

But I don’t believe in tarot………. Do I?

Christmastime Rewind A La Charlie Brown

charlie brown christmasIt’s the second of December and tonight A Charlie Brown Christmas will be playing.  I’ve yet to watch It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!  I feel like I am horribly behind with these Charlie Brown’s. I think he’d be proud.

I seem to be quite behind with certain things. I haven’t watched the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade….. Yes, I dvr’d it. This seems to be my MO for a lot of holiday things. I record them then get back to them when I can.

Sometimes I wish life was like this. I wish I could record something or put something on hold till I had time to get to it.  Pause a part of my life so I could skip forward to what I want to do or need to do.  Rewind if I make a mistake. Fast forward when I really want to get out of the icky parts.  Not that I’ve had a ton of ick, but you know, sometimes it happens.

Life hurries by to quickly, but then not fast enough sometimes. I’d like to be able to stop and savor or fast forward at will.  For instance. I’m a 32 year old woman who lives at home and is waiting on Mr. Right.  (I am not willing to settle for Mr. Right Now) Years ago, this would be okay, but by societies standards, it’s not.  Yes, I run the family business with Mrs. B, since Mr. B can’t, but still, I am a 32 year old woman living at home.  My parents would like me gone, but at the same time they tell everyone they couldn’t do it without me.  They tell me I can go at any time, but they also are getting up there with health issues that I am not ready to help manage.  I feel like I can’t even manage myself.  Heck, I can’t even find a guy who will take me. (that sounds really weird when I write that out….)tumblr_luwdgfhdkp1qb9pa3o1_500

I’d like to fast forward this part of my life.  I want to speed by and get to the point of where I meet Mr. Right (if that ever happens)

But then if I were to do that, I’d miss all the other things in life. It’s the unknown that get’s to you.

And if I could I wish I could rewind to moments in my life when it was really good. So that I could go back and savor.

But then, you are living in the past, before you knew what you know now. Was it really better?  Probably not. We think life would be easier if we were kids again, but that only works if you don’t know anything that you know now. If I were a kid knowing what I know now, I’d go insane.  Ignorance is bliss, and that is so true.  Yet, saying that, I don’t want to be ignorant. I want to know as much as I can and keep learning….

And all of this because of Charlie Brown. (This was not where this post was going at all. I was going to talk about Christmas music. Another time, I guess) But a rather morose post. Sorry, dearies.  But on a brighter note, this is my 400th post. Whoo Hoo!

Signing off

Kate

Not Writing, But Not Not Writing Either

fd1d578ef06d256d79cc4cab1edb6eb3I’m sitting here writing a book review….. Okay, I’m not doing so good since this is not a book review.  Gwyneth Paltrow’s “Just My Imagination” is playing over the new sound system… Which is just connecting the larger computer speakers to a longer cord in Mr. B’s laptop.

I really don’t want to write this review…. not because I didn’t like the book, but because I don’t want to have to think about the complexities of writing a review.  In all reality I cringe when I have to write one. That’s usually twice a month! And part of this is coming from the fact that my write hand (not a typo) is in a brace. I somehow re-injured something and the wrist is acting up. I just had to take it off (a no no) to type faster than a henpeck speed, but I’m going to be sorry. Typing does not help it one bit. Maybe if I tilt the keyboard up….  A little better

I met a man today who is a writer himself, and we were talking about sometimes not writing. You know, where you step back from say I can’t focus on my Work in Progress (WIP for those who do not know the acronym)  The none writing. The flash fiction moments.  I’m starting to get more of those. My focus has been horrible as of late. Maybe because I have sewing projects on my brain and Christmas, and Thanksgiving, and winter, and Boris….I always have Boris on my mind

I actually have this story I’m working that came from a dream. Vampires, Disneyland, castles, sexy vampire hunters… The Disneyland part will not be included. That was just my weird mind, but the rest is actually turning into something fun. If I get the first part fleshed out, I will post it soon.

So I am writing, just not blogging. That’s why the Bookshelf has been so spare. My Saturday Inspires and Sunday quotes are pretty much it.  I’m inspired to write, just not a whole lot of blogging.

Sometimes though, you can enjoy life in the non writing moments.  It is never bad to step back from writing. Experience life. Look at life a bit differently.  Listen to music that touches the heart.  Right now the music has shifted to the Cairo Time Suite. (if you have not heard it, AMAZING)

Think about real life.  I was thinking about what it would be like to write a piece from the perspective of the person that has to clean up the synagogue in Israel after the horrific murders of the rabbis. What would it be like to see the blood smeared and then have to be scrubbing it away. Because it’s not just paint. It’s not just blood. It was a human life. It was someone of importance.  You have the mop and you are trying to remove the red.  The harsh metallic smell of iron or bleach, burning out your sense of smell. But at the same time you don’t want to forget, but you can’t block it from your mind.

That part is so emotional. I was affected by the images of seeing the blood smears on the tile floors on the news the other day.  Sometimes you just have to look at the bad in life. Because it is life. That is what makes life. Yes, I can talk how I love the happy ending, but to get to the happy ending you have to have angst.

So, I am writing.  And there will be a review tonight because I want to get a new book. I think.

 

Signing off

Kate

Agent Simmons – S.H.I.E.L.D.

I posted the other day about wanting a soundtrack to play in my life like Agent Gemma Simmons from Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. in episode 2×03.  Watch above and see what you think.  I just think it’s perfect and I love the song so much.

And I hope to have a book review posted as well later in the day.

Happy Tuesday, dearies. (that is courtesy of Rumpelstiltskin from Once Upon a Time)

Signing off

Kate

Accomplishments

Despite the month of August being a smoke filled month (say hello to California wildfires and forest mismanagement) and the constant fill of farming and watering and working more than I care to think about, I was able to accomplish some pretty nice things this month and I thought I would share them.  So drum-roll…… Well, you can add that in if you want. I’m doing it in my head….

 

  1. I started running again.  Okay, so that might not sound like a lot, but I had to give it up for all of July because it was so hot I could not stand being out in the dark running. I just had to put it on hold until the evenings were cooler and not so intense. I do not do well in the 90’s.
  2. I ran three miles. Whoo Hoo! This is huge! I rarely can run more than a mile, mile and a half at at time.  Last week I ran three miles, and two of those miles I ran in straight mile stretches. I hope that makes sense.  What I mean is, most of the time I can only run a quarter to a half mile before I have to walk a while before completing the mile. Miles 2 and 3 were an entire mile before stopping.  Again, this is huge. Granted, I hurt like crazy and my knees weren’t too happy, or my shoulders, but it felt so amazing. The endorphins high I got was incredible.  And last night I did 2 1/2 miles pretty easy.
  3. I can fit into my size two Ann Taylor sheath dress.  An LBD in some ways. Now, I’m not a size 2, but Ann Taylor dresses must have been invented with smaller sizes to give women a boost. Because I can say I wear a size two. Which is funny since my previous post was about not being a size two…..
  4. I wrote a short story that is semi flash fiction, but my parents love it! It was all inspired by Boris and his trip to Atlanta and I teased him about taking his xs-214 double barreled ray gun. The fact that this story has potential is just exciting. I’m going to need a couple beta readers, so if anyone is interested, drop me a comment with a valid email.  I only need a couple readers since it’s so short. Just over 600 words, but it’s periodical/literary magazine worthy, I think.
  5. I finally solved the yeast infection in my dachshund’s ear after 11 years! Who knew that just plain povidone iodine swabbed daily could clear it up? I didn’t. My vet never said to do this. I gotta tell the vet. This has been something that has driven me nuts for years. My dog hasn’t enjoyed it too much either.

 

Okay, so maybe those are small accomplishments, but small doesn’t mean inferior or not important. It’s the little things in life that count, right? I have to take little things and enjoy or savor them. The running is huge. The short story is huge. So, I’ll go with it.

Anyone else have some accomplishments that made them want to dance around?

Signing off

Kate

Hiatus

Due to a really horribly nasty obnoxious virus, Kate’s Bookshelf….I.E. Me, is taking a hiatus until said editor, writer, publisher, agent, and all around owner of this blog, is well again.  When you have a virus so bad that you are losing your voice and animals start to run from you when you cough, you know it’s bad.  Weekly posts and Word of the Day posts are on hold until I can at least feel like I’m not going to cough hard enough to blow my laptop off my lap.

I will try and get a book review up this week so that I finally have it up… It’s taken me a while to write the darn thing.

 

So for all you readers out there, stay away from this so called Spring Fever. It just might get you.

 

Signing off

Kate

Truer Words Couldn’t Be Spoken

 Photo by Kevin Winter – © 2014 Getty Images – Image courtesy gettyimages.com

Photo by Kevin Winter – © 2014 Getty Images – Image courtesy gettyimages.com

The mind of a writer can be a truly terrifying thing. Isolated, neurotic, caffeine addled, crippled by procrastination, and consumed by feelings of panic, self-loathing, and soul crushing inadequacy. And that’s on a good day.  ~Robert DeNiro via the 86th Academy Awards teleprompter

Now, the really question is, how many good days are there for a writer? I caught this marvelous quote right way the other night while watching the Oscars, and I’m not the only other person who latched onto this statement. Type it into Bing and you will get several blog post pop up with this same quote used as the topic of Monday’s posts. It is a truly powerful statement in regards to writers.

In fact this statement is so true that you know only a writer wrote it for Robert DeNiro to say.  My mother stared at me and at the television, her jaw dropping  because it is so true in regards to me. I have actually been mulling over a post regarding the real issue of being a writer is because of our own fears. So this is apropos. What keeps us from writing are those moments of procrastination, panic, and self-loathing. We drink coffee or tea like fiends , and often we don’t have good days.

Unless you are talking to another writer, you definitely feel complete and utter isolation. Desolation. Non-writers do not understand what is going through our heads and there is no point in trying to explain. Non-writers stare at you, a blank expression on their face, and that’s when you know you are neurotic because obviously it only makes sense to us.

We fail to send in our manuscripts and query letters because we are ‘crippled by procrastination’ and dealing with ‘soul crushing inadequacy.’  “I’ll never be able to write like ____________[FILL IN THE BLANK].

Then there we are at two in the morning pounding out this idea that CANNOT wait till daylight, our eyes heavy and dark. WE wake to circles under the eyes from lack of sleep, staggering to the coffee pot before we are even lucid, only to look over what we had written in the dark and think to ourselves, ‘Utter crap!’

Rewriting over and over, tweaking even after it’s ‘done’ and ready to be sent off to editors, agents, or publishers. It will never be perfect. Twenty years in print and we will still want to change something that everyone else is perfectly fine with. We are never satisfied.

Even this post will be tweaked before the “publish” button is clicked, and three days from now I will want to change something.  (I wrote this yesterday in ink; I’m typing it now; and I’ve already changed a couple things)

The mind of a writer is a terrifying thing. What is going on in there leads to nightmares and moments when you space out trying to solve some plot twist. Random scraps of notes that are all gibberish to the ordinary person, but are pure gold to the author, frequent our lives and flat surfaces. We fill our notebooks with random odd sayings and pieces of conversation that we just might use someday, in some book that has yet to be written. We hoard our dictionaries and thesauruses. We keep books for varies pieces we like that we might include in a passage here or there.

And those are the good days.

Bad days are more frequent, in my opinion, and lead to giving up saying you’ll never write again. Days you want to rip up every typed page or shut down your blog because, hey, you’ll never write again. Depression where you are in such a funk that every living thing avoids you. The bad days feel like the depths of despair and there is no light at the end of the tunnels.

Oh, but we are writers, and it’s a wondrous thing.

Signing off

~Kate