Welcome to the unpolished, earthy leg of the Blog Tour happening right now in my neck of the woods. No hiking gear required though we might need a mower (and strapping hired hand) to get us out of the weeds. More on that later.
Karen is a wife, mother, business owner and writer who inspires me daily with words of wisdom about raising a family, overcoming obstacles and doing so with love and grace. She is self-compassionate, kind and an inspiration to anyone who reads her. She writes from the heart–a Heart Teller–and she felt like an old friend the moment we connected several months ago. All of her prose is beautiful, but Buzz is my favorite. Thank you again, Karen, for including me among many other talented writers and friends.
So, here’s how this works. I’ve been charged to answer four questions and then invite three others to answer the same. Are you ready to get lost in the woods with me? I promise to leave the chainsaw at home (maybe).
What am I working on?
You mean in addition to getting myself out the door, dressed and appendages intact? In no particular order of importance, here’s what I’m chopping away at:
- World Peace
- An empty laundry basket
- Training an unruly (but cute) husband
- Hugs and kisses for my kids
- Maintaining three different blog sites, guest writing for Christy plus a “real” job that’s completely opposite of writing
What can I say? Even an earthy girl likes shiny objects.
Most of you are familiar with my main MamaMick site which is intended to be a positive share space for life’s mishaps, serendipities and sweet surprises. What began as intent to share silly mistakes soon became about something else. Now that “something else” is all about building a community of people who love their families, are looking for others who have made similar mistakes and aren’t afraid of being imperfect. Laughing and crying are encouraged…often in the same conversation.
My second space, Ps and Qs, is a collection of photography and favorite poems. The photos are mine and sometimes the poetry is, too. I use this space to hoard snapshots because there’s not enough space on my iPhone. I’ve been on a break from this page most of the summer, but expect to ramp that up again when the world becomes white and I’m longing to see the 1,009 photos of the same rose I took earlier this summer.
The third space is less publicized and I’m content to let it stay nestled among the trees. I share a nest with two of my blogger besties (Christy and Jennie) at the Hidden Hummingbird Diaries. This blog is specifically for fiction and poetry and gives us a workshop to try new genres or stretch the boundaries on articles that wouldn’t fit within our traditional blogs. We also use the platform to enter writing contests, prompt challenges and gain valuable feedback on technique and tone. You are more than welcome to visit–if you can find it!
How does my work differ from others in my genre?
I have a genre???! Who knew? I thought it was a birthmark 🙂
When writing non-fiction, it’s all about the people I love and the simple things that make life richer. You won’t see any heavy poetry or political pontification here. I try to weave in a positive dose of humor and light-heartedness–even around more serious topics. Humor and comedic timing is something that naturally occurs in conversation, so when people read my stuff, I want them to feel like they are talking to me or laughing/crying with their best friend.
I’m a real newbie in the poetry/fiction space. Like white tennis shoes and clean laces kind of newbie. Even though writing fiction is what I want to do when I grow up, I’m still learning and have a long way to go. The editors at Yeah Write put on a fantastic summer series and I’ve been working with them, too.
Why do I write/create what I do?
Because I can’t NOT write.
Even the act of putting a pen to paper is therapeutic for me…as evidenced by the pile of journals with random thoughts and pretend poetry scribbled everywhere. The same can be said for gardening, running and photography. I’m ingrained in each of these hobbies and they feed my stories.
Most Both of my fictional pieces use flowers or the garden as an anchor for setting and my non-fiction pieces are peppered with favorite photos. Writer’s block is often cured with a quick run or session at Title Boxing.
How does my writing/creative process work?
There are two distinct sides to my brain and they tend to work against each other. Lucky me!
Left brain keeps a posting calendar and a daily writing 5:30 a.m. alarm clock. Left brain also directs me toward systematic, evening reading of anything I can get my hands on. I have a written process to make sure I keep up with all of my favorite authors and bloggers.
Right brain throws a wrench in that system at least weekly.
The “easy flow” stories (Dirt, Still, Lucy, Tannaland) are those that were written in a short period time (20-40 minutes dependent on length) and require very little editing. They were written from the heart without filters and are just meant to be.
Then there are stories that I fight with and beat to the ground with an editing bat until I’m frustrated (Flyover States, Hometown Merry-Go-Round). It took me over two weeks to write each of these stories. It’s at those moments that I have to walk away and sleep on it. Once started, the story is never far from my brain and typically it’s a paragraph change that comes to me while I’m running or gardening that gets me going again.
Okay, this is waaaay enough about me.
On to the best part of the tour where I direct you to other talented bloggers. Since there are so many great bloggers to choose from, I tried to find three with different styles, forms and purpose to round out the tour.
Like Karen, Diana is a Heart Teller. I’ve followed her from the beginning and am drawn to her unconventional writing style and honesty–she reminds me a bit of e.e. cummings 🙂 In addition to taking care of four busy boys, she draws, writes poetry and posts almost every day. I have no idea when she sleeps! My favorite post: Undeniably Meant to Be
I just met Meg recently through the writing challenges at Yeah Write. She is kind, giving and a supreme story spinner. Her fictional scenes are vivid and her characters speak to you like old friends…or enemies. I love her ability to write on diverse subjects and draw the reader in immediately. Read her Freshly Pressed Post: What We Do for the Dead
Like Meg, I met Nate via Yeah Write. His gift is creative fiction with minimum words and maximum output. I love how he always finds a way to bring a different perspective and angle to whatever writing prompt he’s working on. He’s also a fantastic editor and provides kind, relevant and thoughtful feedback on other posts he reads. My favorite post: Erosion
I’d be remiss if I didn’t at least mention this next gentlemen.
First of all, I’m taking this space to gratuitously repay Ned back for publishing this little ditty in February. All I can say is that there was a police report, some rumblings in Congress and an equally questionable photo of me with a lawnmower.
And while he’s not officially on the tour, Ned Hickson at Ned’s Blog has been a huge help, supporter and patient teacher as I’ve gotten my bloggy legs going. He’s a syndicated writer for the Siuslaw News and his book, Humor at the Speed of Life, sits on my shelf (or in the bathroom for obvious reasons). He writes an every Friday feature called Ned’s Nickel’s Worth on Writing and I encourage you to check it out for advice on all things writing…and life.
Thank you Karen for letting me join in on this little piece of the blogosphere. Special thanks to anyone reading this–any post with the predominant words me, myself and I make me squirmy and uncomfortable. Kinda like that wedgy one gets when sitting for too long.
**slips off heels and wanders to the woods