The Writer in Me – A Journal of Survival

A few weeks ago I had a conversation with Oris George,  the back roads of yesterday guy who writes about mules and such stuff as comes about on those back roads where real folks rarely wonder. He mentioned something I’d written and said, “It’s really good. You ought to sell that.”

I went off half-cocked and wrote a query letter to a popular editor/publisher and ended up with a contract to… uh… sell that. What I’d actually written was little more than a title and a few paragraphs of plot, which could go many directions, but I chose to send it down the road of mystery/suspense where I rarely ever go. Not that there’s anything wrong with sitting on the edge of your chair turning pages one after another to get to the end of the book and find out if your hero survives, I just never wrote that stuff before.

So, sitting on my desk, in front of my face on any given morning is an acceptance of a story genre I’ve never written before. Thus far, I’ve gotten about 4500 words and it’s due in a few months, along with several other projects, jobs, and items of work type nature… In fact, the book is due on or about the same date as my third grandchild.

But that reference has nothing what-so-ever to do with the book, just a general concept of I’d better hurry, because I don’t want a looming deadline arriving with a baby due any minute. Babies don’t wait, and looming deadlines must be met.

And yet, here I sit stumbling over the words of the suspenseful novel, waiting inspiration beyond – it was a dark and gloomy night. It’s rather over used, droll, and… Sorry Ava, but… Rather Ava Betz-ish. It has been, often, one of her favorite comments when we start writing those suspenseful pieces in writer’s group, because she knows I’m going to dream up a thunderstorm. “The thunder rolls…” is one of my favorite starting lines for just about anything, because once I get the thunder rolling out of my way, I can get down to writing something of value.

It’s my white page, black-out. You know, those words that settle onto the page first, to remove the fear of white page addiction, which has been known to cause writer’s block in the fairest of writers. Once we’re addicted to the white page, we lack the sensibility to add words and get beyond our addiction. It’s a disease that has stumped many writer’s next books and prevented many Wurlitzer Prize winners from accomplishing their goals.

The psychosis of writing is much the same as the psychotic mania that spurs my hero into action in the thriller I’m currently writing. The desire to accomplish that which is irregular or unusual, while making a statement for humanity drives a strong pulse to continue. Where does the need to stop insanity come from in a sane world? Isn’t it normal to have moments of ridiculous tumultuous experience and a sense of crisis in each day of living?

So, what is so different from putting those thoughts and feelings into a book and calling it suspense and mystery? The doom and gloom of daily living is surely enough suspense to carry us through a thriller crime story filled to the brim with mayhem and chaos, right?

And yet… In a very literary sense, the book must go on.

After an intense conversation with my daughter (who has an incredible sense of knowledge about profiling) I found my weakness in writing to be at least half as great as the profile required to create a psychotic killer in my book. With that knowledge and at least five Sydney Sheldon’s sitting on the shelf, I’ve determined that I can do this. I will write this book, fulfill this contract and beat down the demons that keep saying that I can’t write this book. I can, I will and they can’t stop me!


The Branding Iron

As winter comes on, I’m reminded of the years I spent branding cattle. There weren’t many, but there were a few and those years stand out in my mind as treasures where we gathered to brand, cut cattle, and have a celebration of the end of winter. I loved the gathering and the identification of time, people, and purpose.

Today, the branding iron has a different meaning, but still just as fulfilling and driven by purpose. Article Marketing is not my life, but it fulfills my livelihood and my directives. It gives me resources and drives my business while allowing me to move my own values forward. Often, article marketing gives me an ability to reinforce the message I believe should be presented.

Your Brand identifies you like a branding iron. Using article marketing to make your brand popular often means you can make your brand identifiable and still promote information other than the primary topic of your site.

Collision Course with Futility

Looking back, I know there could have been a different outcome, but finality comes with the shadow of death. There’s no turning back, only looking back, and trying from this point forward to hear the sound of grace as human kindness take hold and bring about the changes of progress for the future. I’m sorry, probably doesn’t cut it, when the right thing can’t be done because it’s too late.

But, the wrong thing… nobody knew.

We can’t see the future. If we could, there would be many actions taken that would make a difference. That difference would sing, raising choruses to heaven, but we’re not designed for forward vision. We can only see what is now, and what is past.

Today’s lesson in living is to take that chance, on the outside opportunity that the relationship you may save will be your own, and tell the other side (that person who has appeared to be in conflict with you) that you’d like to know them better. The worst that can happen, if you reach out and make the attempt, is that you’ll get burned a bit by the temper of a person who isn’t willing to let you get to know them better. But, alternatively, the best that can happen is that you make a new friend.

Without intending to do so… I judged someone unfairly. I accepted a version of the truth and without intending to make judgment, allowed it to happen, accepting ‘defeat’ before I made the effort to make a friend. The cost is greater than any cost I’ve known before in my life, and  yet, I understand that God allows these lessons in life for a reason. I know the best of God’s love is yet to come, and I understand that He gives more knowledge to those He believes are ready.

Wisdom often comes from bad choices.

I pray I’m worthy of the wisdom I’ve received today…

I just thank God for bringing me a new friend and a different perspective. Life isn’t always the way we see it, sometimes there’s a different view. I must remember that and speak out when I question a seeming reality.

Each time I learn a lesson I realize I’ve been on a collision course with futility. The reality of God’s love is a tender wisdom that comes from the lessons we learn, a knowing that brings understanding to the hills we die upon. If we’d never known a failure, or lost a battle, we’d never know the value of success, the power to win, or the consequences of not listening to the still small voice of God. The perspective we view often gives us a vision that is less than perfect, only through listening to God’s still small voice can we hear the sound of grace or know the life of loving that brings with it the grateful glory of a God who sees all things and is all knowing.

As futile as this may be in this moment of time, I look back and know — I’ve heard God’s voice, and often ignored it. I pray in earnest, Lord… Speak louder next time. Amen