Grateful for the memories.

In American Fork Canyon, the mountainside is exquisite with the changing of the season. Bushes are splashes of color so brilliant it’s speechless. I love it here.

During the summer months, you can hike the 1 ½ mile incline to Mount Timpanogos Cave. There are guided tours that take about an hour to walk through the numerous caverns. It’s cool, literally and dark, so take a flashlight.

When I was a senior in high school, I walked up Tempee with my family. Mother, father, sister and my good friend visiting from Kansas City. Connie, Cindy and I had locked arms and marched up the hill singing “We’re off to see the wizard,” almost all the way to the top. It was exhilarating.

It was fun. There were a few stops along the way. You’d think it was for water, right? I wish! Have you ever run into a ground squirrel? Those little buggers are rather demanding. They will yell at you if you don’t give them a moment of your consideration. Oh, and that piece of nut (yes, you have them and specifically for the fuzzy little critters), wants you to drop it. Three girls not stop to watch the antics of a cute little animal, please?

My point in this blog is memories. The importance of them. Walking back down the hill, my sister and I couldn’t remember ever passing my parents. We never even met up with them in the cave. Finally, I gave in and asked a stranger if they’d seen our parents. After describing my mom, the gentleman laughed.

“I have seen her. In fact, I believe she’s the woman who’s entertaining a dozen squirrels at the entrance of the cave. She shoo’ed off the man she was with and stayed outside.”

Yep, that’s mom. She left us when she was only 56, way to early for us to have enough memories.

Doree

 

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It’s Holiday Time

Can I hear a Yeah!, Whoop!, Wow. great, whoopty do, big whoopee, yep, happens every year. Ah come on. It’s the big Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years Cheer! Not the grumpy gus, the Grinch gripees, or the bah humbugs. Need a nudge. Pick up a puppy, mush your face it its chubby little tummy and do 10 raspberries. Better now?

Okay, you’re right. We should all do it our way. And this year, I’ll do it my way. I’m celebrating it with seven other writer friends by doing a holiday cheer website exchange. Each specific day for eight days of December, a writer will write a blog and give a website with a chance for everyone reading their blog to put their name in for a chance to win $40.00 gift care. Six of the ten writers are also putting in one of their published books, up – autographed, as a raffle prize too. Happy holidays. http://www.marymartinez.com/winter-holiday-blog.html

Doree.     Say in Touch. Holiday Blog Button.jpg

#writerspersevere

Why do they have creative writing as a class in school? Not every student should been required to suffer through it. I have found through the years that ‘creative’ is an individual thing. The assignment was to write a short story. I did. And in the corner, in red marker, my English teacher had written, “Fiction writing isn’t in your future. Listen to the others as they read their stories.” I was devastated. I had been writing down stories since I was six. I had a notebook full of adventures. After that day, I quit. I decided that, since she taught writing and English, she knew what I didn’t. I lacked the creative talent it took to be a writer. So, I set my aspirations aside. Until I was asked to write an article for a company news letter. I panicked. How could my boss honestly ask me to put words together and make it understandable. Yet, I did. And, it wasn’t bad. When I stepped away from the day job,  I applied for a job at our local Valley News Journal. After a year with them, I sat down and wrote a book. I’ve ten finished now and loving it. Too bad that teacher has long passed, she’s missed a few good stories. Never give up because of obstacles outside of you, go with what you believe is true.

Doree Anderson

It’s Like Pulling Teeth

I recently had a crown removed from an implant, which I’ve learned  isn’t easy when one doesn’t wish to release.  Anyway, with my mouth open, I had a question lobbed my way and promptly executed an answer.  Reality alert… when the mouth if full, it complicates verbal communication. That’s right! Forming intelligent wording around foreign objects makes it difficult for the tongue to provide adequate pronunciation. Diction is poor and therefore, makes deciphering awkward for your listener.

My granddaughter overheard my garbled reply and giggled,  “That’s funny. It’s like pulling teeth, huh grandma?”

I pondered her statement, confused. And then the light bulb went off in my head.

On the way home I felt it time to gently correct the meaning of her statement.  “Cindy, what do you think “it’s like pulling teeth,’ means?”

“You mean like when you were making those funny noises cause they made you talk?”

“I made those funny noises because I couldn’t talk. I had a mouth full of fingers. See, that’s why people say not to talk with your mouth full. Because nobody can understand you. And that’s what happened. I tried to talk around his fingers, but I couldn’t. It’s like when you eat something, and your mouth is full of food, you try talking around it and you mumble, spitting out some in the process. It’s gross and extremely hard to hear.”

“So how come it’s not pulling teeth cause he pulled your teeth?”

“Well, the expression, “It’s like pulling teeth,” is misleading.  When you are trying to hold a conversation with someone, and you are having a hard time getting the other person to respond to you, or open up and answer your questions, the saying is, it’s like pulling teeth to get him to speak. Teeth don’t come out all that easily, and neither do his words.

Silence filled the car, which made me blessedly grateful, because I don’t think I’d explained it correctly. Actually, I felt like I was stimulating her brain cells, praying that she’d buy what I was selling. And so far, it was a big zero on the peso.

Makes one wonder what other sayings we have that say one thing and mean another? Maybe one day I’ll check into them. Or not.

Doree

Bleeding the Turnip

I’ve talked about this before. The monies requested to learn all there is to writing. How to writer an eye popping query! Sign up here for 199.00. An Open Hour For Agent Queries here for only 299.00. What’s a synopsis? Learn how to describe your book in one page, for 350.00 The Blank Page. When you can’t start the story of your dreams? We’ll help you for a one time payment of 299.00. Point of View and Character Building Workshop – 499.00. And my favorite: Where has all my writing time gone? 20 Week Course 599.00.

And then, one day, before, during or after your educational bonanza, they say, “For a more in-depth interview with your character, I suggest you purchase Randall Rhubarb’s book, Gestures and Jocularity.  18.99 at Baker’s Books.  Do you see my point? Everything has a price tag. A price tag that, since I’m not a pro, is out of my price range.

There are conferences that are costing up into the thousands, workshops that can empty your wallet for almost the same amount. Travel, hotels, meals, etc. And I would love to do it all. But I can’t.

I’m married and every time I bring it up I have a husband that says it’s a scam. This whole writing thing is a great way for people to make money. They sell a couple of books and all of a sudden they’re Professor English.

I guess I’ll just have to unpack all my 40 year old English Class papers. Everything should be the same, right. I’m sure that nothings changed. Well, at least I’ll be saving a hell of a lot of money when I do.

Here’s to writing,

Doree

 

Cliche you say?

Dead as a door nail. Stiff as a board. Up and died.

If I had a nickle for every time you’ve asked me that, I’d be rich. In for a penny, in for a pound. Money doesn’t grow on trees.

No rhyme, no reason. Say what! What you talkin’ about,…….?

Cat got your tongue? Look what the cat brought in. Dead dog serious.

And trillions more.

In writing, stay as far a way from using cliches as you can. Yeah, it’s easy to fall back into things we’re heard time and time again. Because they’re comfortable, right? But they’re tired, give ’em a break.

If the original writer can spring forth a good saying, shoot, so can you. The only reason the grass is greener on the other side is because you didn’t have to come up with it. Be the one to write your own cliches for your story. If I’ve read the same expression over and over again, I get board and tend to stop reading. Might forget who the author was as well.

So, if somebody has died, ” They took a detour and found the six-foot underbelly of this life.”. Not: Clocked out, or  Kicked the Bucket. Use something from your own imagination.  You know, the little guy inside your head that paints your pictures. Get him to find the tack in your sand pile.

The sweet side of success: we all want it, but to get it, it has to come from you. It’s your story, your name, say it your way! Not like in this blog, that’s chock full of cliches!

So, if a tree hasn’t jumped out in front of you and smacked you silly, give it your own take. I’m coloring within the edges of my brain just to write this. And I know I’ll come up with some cliches for my own story.

Doree L Anderson

 

K.I.S.S.

Do you recall the saying ‘keep it simple, stupid?’ Or k.i.s.s.?

I do. I don’t remember how many teachers, in English or Art class, that utilized this particular acronym, reminding us that the simpler we make our sentences or our masterpieces, the easier it is for others to understand or evaluate it. Make it hard or in need of dissection and some say ‘forget about it,’ and move on.

Okay, no problems there. I was raised on the great literature of Fun with Dick and Jane. I can’t remember how many times I was entertained with “See Spot run.” But that doesn’t mean I don’t love to sink my teeth into a great read from Tolstoy, Clancy, or King.

The other day, this sentence was brought forth on my facebook page: 

Mouthful, right? I read it twice and thought that whoever would put something like this in a book isn’t looking for me as a reader. I wouldn’t bother finishing this one, no way would I buy another one. I read for entertainment, not for brain stimulation. But, some people do, and if they want to read something with sentences like this in them, I say all power to you. It is a legitimate sentence. I would have given it the K.I.S.S. rule, but hey, that’s just the way Dick and Jane rolled.

Doree

They Can’t Do That

Her blue eyes rolled across the room.
The wall sat in front of the kitchen.
The clock read four-fifteen.

As I’m reading I sometimes wonder, “Gee, can they do that?”

In reality, no. In writing licensing, no. In other words –
Her blue eyes can’t roll anywhere without assistance from the owner of said eyes. Therefore, this should be written as “she rolled or scanned her eyes across the room.”
As for the wall, only in a haunted house can a wall sit. This is an inanimate object so place it in your description. They’d built a wall in front of the kitchen area. (I’m not saying the tables didn’t dance – you have a couple of vodkas on the rocks and you can hear the curtains sing, for all I know. But the reader can’t and since it’s not an everyday run of the mill set of curtains, don’t have them sing.
And my favorite… I love reading about clocks that can read. I’ve yet to hear this, but it would seem that several writers have experienced this phenomenon.

Experience an adventure, read a book today!

Doree L. Anderson (doree.anderson@gmail.com)