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These are a Few of My Favorite Posts from 2011

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Myth of the Lone Ranger Author Rachelle Gardner's Blog who just happens to be my very awesome agent. :)

How I do It Live Intentionally but with Breathing Space My agency mate, Jody Hedlund.

The Difference Between Trying and Doing  Michael Hyatt shares the wisdom of Yoda.

Silencing Your Inner Critic  Kathryn Lilley at The Killzone.

From Romance to Corpses by Tess Gerritsen.

A Kiss Is Just A Kiss  by the awesome Julie Lessman. Okay I cheated. This blog post is from 2010, BUT heard Julie and Ruth Axtell Morren present it at The ACFW Conference in St. Louis this year.

Stuck in a Corner Martha Carr, agency mate, talks about writers block at The WordServe Water Cooler.

No Fear, No Envy, No Meanness by a mentor who knows how to make writing fun, the amazing James Scott Bell.

The Adjustable Publishing Dream  by friend and agency mate Rosslyn Elliott.

The Fine Art of Choosing a Pen Name  by moi. :) I thought this was probably the best post I wrote this year and because of it's nature wanted to share it with you here.

Well that's ten of my favorites. I didn't choose any of my worthy blog mates here at Just the Write Charisma because I didn't want to have to choose. That would be way too hard. It's been an awesome year and I look forward to sharing with you all and our visitors in 2012.

What's one of your favorite blog posts from this year?

The Games Afoot

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

What is it about Sherlock Holmes that is so enduring? I've been in love with Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's beloved Sherlock and Watson since I was about ten years old. This past week I went to see the latest Sherlock movie, A Game of Shadows and I loved it. I would have liked more romance to balance out the action, but it was still great and I'm coming around to like Robert Downey, Jr. as a different type of Sherlock, I had trouble with that in the first one with Downey, but he seems to have captured Sherlock's intellect and shrewdness in this one and I like it. Jude Law is great as ever as Watson.

Professor Moriarity played by Jared Harris is an excellent villain.

Here's a link about Doyle's Biography A paragraph on this site reveals a lot and so much I didn't know: " The young medical student met a number of future authors who were also attending the university, such as for instance James Barrie and Robert Louis Stevenson. But the man who most impressed and influenced him, was without a doubt, one of his teachers, Dr. Joseph Bell. The good doctor was a master at observation, logic, deduction, and diagnosis. All these qualities were later to be found in the persona of the celebrated detective Sherlock Holmes."

Also, I think he solved a dilemma that many of us struggle with. I wish it was this easy for me. He had a serious bout with the flu that nearly killed him. "When his health improved, he came to realize how foolish he had been trying to combine a medical career with a literary one. "With a wild rush of joy," he decided to abandon his medical career. He added, "I remember in my delight taking the handkerchief which lay upon the coverlet in my enfeebled hand, and tossing it up to the ceiling in my exultation. I should at last be my own master."

I love a great mystery. Is this what makes the team of Sherlock and Watson so enduring and endearing? This team goes on and on . . . why is that? 

My very favorite Sherlock Holmes book and movie was and is, The Hound of the Baskervilles. Do you have a favorite? 

What Will Your Verse Be?

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

 How many of you remember Dead Poets Society? Look familiar?  If you've never seen it, I highly recommend you watch it sometime. I was using a clip from it for one of the classes I teach at the college where I'm employed and had a whole new appreciation for the movie and for Robin Williams character. I'm going to watch the whole thing again, but be warned, it's not a comedy although there are some great lines.

As we wrap up another year, prepare to celebrate Christmas, and then kick of a New Year I'm seriously wondering about life and death and what I'll do with whatever time I have left here on this planet. Don't mean to be too serious but I have a friend who is fighting breast cancer, and a young friend who is dying in hospice from ovarian cancer. Such things make me stop and think about what I want to accomplish with the rest of my life and I  know that without a doubt I want to continue to write, and I want to continue to counsel in my day job and more than anything I want to make my God proud as we celebrate the birth of Jesus and as I continue my journey.. I think my verse, my life, is and will continue to be one of encouragement.

In this clip, John Keating asks, "And the powerful play goes on. What will your verse be? "

So if I haven't gone too deep on you this close to Christmas I'm wondering, What will your verse be? Got a favorite poet? Favorite poem? Do you write poetry?

Cocooning-A Self Improvement Project

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

I've been thinking a lot lately about self-improvement. Maybe it's because we are less than a month away from the New Year and resolution making and breaking. I've also been involved in a Bible study called The Truth Project.
This past week we watched Part IV and the leader talked about growing in our walk with God and changing and learning, etc. It was a lot deeper than that but he used the analogy of being in a cocoon and emerging and then entering another cocoon. And the process continues. This also made me think about growing in my spiritual life as one form of self-improvement. Again I considered how far I've come in my walk with God but what a continual process it is. I enjoy the idea of spiritual growth from cocoon to cocoon. Each year assessing where I've been and where I hope to grow.
A couple of my friends and I have been talking about some issues and challenges we face and have decided to do our own personal The Happiness Project. Of course Gretchen Rubin is the Author of the book. I was exercising today and started reading the book. "They say that people teach what they need to learn."  Gretchen states this as she discusses how she got started with her own project in the beginning of the book.

This made me think about my writing. I write Christian Fiction because it helps me stay in the Word. I explore personal issues as I write fiction. For instance, in my first novel, Secrets of the Heart, I'm really exploring 

2 Timothy 1:7...
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
 I learn and grow as I write and share my characters and stories. And then I get lost in the creative process and it's fun. Or I get stuck and it's painful. But just like growing in my faith walk, or my own little self-improvement journey, I see how I cocoon (emerge and then enter the next cocoon).

If you ever wanted to work on you there's also a fun book out there from the humorous Kathi Lipp titled, The Me Project 21 Days to Living the Life You've Always Wanted. The first chapter asks that all important question that has passed many of our lips, Is This All There Is?

There's lots of things I want to accomplish this next year; a lot of things I want to explore. Maybe I'll share some of those in January as we enter the New Year and I gain another birthday. :)

Right now I think I'm very much ensconced in my cocoon. Growing quite a bit and hoping to emerge again soon, show off my wings for awhile and then cocoon again. So where are you and what are you thinking about? Are you in a cocoon right now? Or have you just emerged with fresh insight that you are eager to share? If so, please let us know what you're discovering that might help the rest of us.