Scott and I made an incredible trip to Missouri this month. I loved it. He’s still recovering. The poor boy. We drove. That was my first mistake. We left the world of mountains and headed east, across Wyoming and Nebraska. Long in miles and leaving his mountains behind. I feared I’d need to conduct a wake. Iowa was a breeze. And then, we dropped into Missouri. The abundance of her dense woods. I wore a smile all the way. The destitute of Utah, (you can feel the dry desert air when you say the word) was forgotten. I was home and he was ready to board a plane. The darling man was truly out of his element. No mountains… how do you know your directions? Puzzled, he asked my sister, “why do they allowed the trees to grow down to the roads?” Cindy asked him, “Jealous much?” We drove back through Kansas and Colorado. Scott smiled all the way home. Crossing the Utah border, I asked him, “So, how do you feel about moving to Missouri?” Yeah, that was my second mistake. I’ve lived here for 40 odd years. What’s my hurry, right? Especially since my Dad and brother live in Las Vegas, Nevada. Where the word ‘chill’ rarely exists and dense refers to, well…
Get out and see the world. Stop in Seattle and find out why people whine about the rain. Compare the California and Florida beaches. Believe me, Cocoa Beach is nothing like Ventura, California’s. If you’ve never been there, Mustang Beach is really neat. Make a trip through all the eastern history museums. That is something I want to do. “Bucket List.” And every night, remember… JOURNAL. Grab the day. The sites, fill your senses and get them posted. You’ll be glad you did.
I fell down a rabbit’s hole, and I climb back up with a bruised….ego
I read a couple of pages of my new manuscript to the husband hoping for an opinion. And holy egg shattering, yoke spreading reality, did I get knocked into the frying pan. His words, “I don’t like it, Did you hear yourself?” struck me pre-scrambled. Wow, was he right. I need to learn to tighten up my way word writing.
My fuzzy wuzzy bunny sounded like a cat fight. Stunk like the actual skunk beneath bunny’s disguise. So, I turned my despicable woes to Annie Oortman of Annieedits.com and read her website. I jotted solutions down and applied them to my first two pages. Reread them and realized that tightening and using action verbs plays a key role in writing. Everyone’s writing.
So, it wasn’t a dark and dreary night… but… The moonless night…
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.
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.
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.
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.