Finding Time to Write – An Author’s Confession

     It seems like there is a bunch of craziness flying around in our every day lives. I hardly have time to put makeup on in the morning let alone carve out time for myself. But, as a writer, there is one problem when you don’t find the time to write. You literally start to feel your head hurt from all the ideas in your head.

     I went a month without writing because I started a teaching credential and there just wasn’t much time for anything else. But then the ideas for my current novel just kept replaying and building up until I literally couldn’t sleep well at night. I knew what would cure me, but I wanted to get as much school work done as possible. Writing wasn’t paying the bills like I wanted so it must not be that important.

     I am here to say that it’s vital for an author to live by setting time aside to write. If I don’t write, I start getting a little cranky since I have characters and voices in my head trying to get out, but I won’t let them. So the best thing for me is to sit down and write something even if it only five minutes a day. Not only is this a good habit to actually finish books, but it’s a good time to spend on you.

     If you are anything like me, your books go along with how your life is going, and, if you don’t let those thoughts and passions out, they will just eat you up. What do I mean? Say something bad happens to you and your character is supposed to have something happen to them that might not be in their favor. I find that having my characters go through things similar to me helps me process the world around me. So if I don’t sit down and process the bad things that happen to me, they just build and build until I explode. That is not helpful to anyone around me or myself.

     But, if I take the time to write, that happens a lot less often. So I would encourage all my writing buddies out there to put writing as a true priority when life gets busy. Because it is the way our minds work, and we we need to keep our minds sharp for all the dangers we must dodge as we trudge our way through this adventure and life as we know it. Only until we reach the diamond of success with the sword of determination will we know the victory over the our evil adversary – the schedule.

     Sorry. I just had to add some of my own flare in there.

      What will you write today?

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Why I Like to Write

   People ask me all the time why I think writing is fun. What isn’t fun about it? You get to the be the boss! You kind of get to play God with these characters you create in your head and the lives you give them. Reading a writer’s work will actually give you an idea into their soul.

   I know some my stuff from my teen years will never see the light of day again, but it is an insight to see how I saw the world back then. I can see how I felt about love, authority, respect, good vs. evil and many other things. Now somethings haven’t changed and I still write those things in, but many things have changed as I have gotten older and have more of an understanding of how the world works.

   But right now I will admit that the main reason I write is to escape. I want to go to a place that I have in my head and put it on paper to be able to go back to again and again. Or I escape in a way that I want to get the thoughts out and never see them again. I write them down and throw them in the trash. This practice was really easy when I was a kid, but I have noticed the older I get the more tempting it is to pull those thoughts out and look at them again. Why? I have no idea because they are not good for anyone read. So I crumple them back up. Of course now I have a shredder and it has made that problem easier to avoid since I am too lazy to search through the pieces of paper and tape them back together. I would rather just forget them.

   But it’s not all bad like I said before. Writing helps with creativity, problem solving and writing very soppy “forgive me” notes. All in all, I just love writing and take real joy in it. It is really cool to watch a blank page become this world that was only in your head. You get to share a little bit of your self with every word you write. So give it a try. Write something today and see where it takes you.

   Where did it take me? Check out my author page! Have a great day!

Want a Book Review?

I am now offering a service where you can request me to read a book you wrote and then leave an honest review on Amazon. I give fully HONEST reviews. If I didn’t like the book then you will know or you will know if I loved it. the plus side is that I don’t give anything under 3 stars because there is so much effort that goes into a book. Trust me, I know. So take a look at my guidelines and I look forward to reading your book.

How it works: With the form below, fill out your information and put the Book’s Amazon URL in the comment section, and submit the form requesting a review. I will then email you a link to pay for the review. I will then go and buy your ebook to be a verified purchase on Amazon.

I will email you once I have received the book. Give me 6-8 weeks to get the review up on Amazon and then I will contact you to see you would like to have an author interview sheet sent to you.

If you prefer to email me your book, then feel free to email a .PDF version to gracelynswritingcorner@gmail.com.

What does it cost?: I request $35 per review. To cover my time and the cost of actually purchasing your ebook in support of your writing career.

What do you get in return?: A fully honest review on Amazon and my blog. I also give the option to have a free author interview after I finish reading and reviewing the book.

Genres I don’t accept: Horror, Murder, Suspense, Bondage/S&M, and would prefer limited cussing. Otherwise, the genre is at my discretion.

Are you ready to be reviewed? Fill out the form and I will get to reading your master piece.

Do I Really Need Facebook?

Checking your Facebook every fifteen minutes? Feel like you never put your phone down? Yeah, that was me. I was realizing that I was on my phone all the time when I wasn’t taking care of my daughter. It was rather pathetic. Not only that but I was also getting angry at all the political stuff going on in America before and after the election. I’ll jut say that I am not a part of the protesting group so I get pretty annoyed. So I decided that I was going take a break from social media apps and see how it will affect my life. That means I only can be on Facebook when I am on a computer.

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I have done it for one day and I can say that it has already enhanced my life. My daughter is happier already because  I am not on my phone and we actually watched a whole movie together. My husband likes it since I wasn’t all pissed off yesterday at things that I really can’t change. And I was happier since my family was happy.

Is social media really enhancing your life or just adding stress to it? Why don’t you join me and not be on it so much and see how our lives are better for everyone. I’ll keep you updated on how it’s going for me 🙂

I Am a Goat and a Sheep

I had a funny thought today. I saw on Facebook that people are sheep and just follow whatever someone says. Well, I was raised to have critical thinking skills so in that case I don’t usually go with something just because someone told me to. I think about the situation and come with a reaction based on my own opinion shaped by information I am given. In that case I am a goat. But the Bible says that I am a sheep, and I am. How can I be both? Let me explain how it is possible.

See, we people are sheep because we walk around not really knowing what is going on. Ok, for all you of who have never seen a sheep, the reason why people are called sheep is because sheep are stupid. They have no ability really of taking care of themselves. I had growing up a couple of sheep and the analogy finally made sense. Our sheep were so dumb that they would run away when we threw the hay over the fence and, if the goats didn’t eat it, the sheep would have probably starved because they didn’t have the common sense to come see what we fed them. They needed leadership to know what to do, and that is how Christians are supposed to be. We are read God’s Word and live by Him in order to know how to live our lives.

But there is a switch that happens when it comes to people who go against the grain in the world whether or not they are Christians and they are called goats. How to explain a goat? I would say smart, intelligent, troublesome, loud, and bold. They are awesome animals really. I like them personally more than sheep since they do have a mind in their head. But they are very hard to herd. If a goat wants to go one direction, guess what, it will only go in that direction no matter how much grain or hay you shake in their face. That is why in the Christian terms, unsaved people are called goats. They think they can do it on their own and more than like they will be eaten because they didn’t listen to the goat herder.

But where does that leave me? I am a Christian but I go against almost all of the culture around me both locally and on a wide spread scale. I don’t participate in local logic like the way city dwellers treat the world around them, and I don’t like the widespread issues like abortion. My Facebook wall shows that I am right winged and hate it when entitled people whine and complain when they don’t get their way, but the world around me says that I should hate white people, cry because my presidential candidate didn’t win, have so much debt to keep up with the Jones’ I should be drowning and should be ashamed to be an American. Most people just go with the flow and live their whole without having a single individual thought in their lives.

You have heard the analogy of the five monkeys right? five monkeys are put in a room with a banana on top of a ladder, but whenever a monkey goes up he is sprayed with water as are the rest of the monkeys. So whenever a monkey goes up, the rest start to attack him because they don’t want to be sprayed with water. Then slowly all the monkeys are replaced and each time a new monkey comes in, they rest attack them. When the experiment was at the end all five new monkeys wouldn’t climb the ladder but none of the monkeys really knew why. It was always done that way. That is how our culture has been formed in the last fifty years. We have strayed from the roots because someone like me decided to climb the ladder anyway and find out that the banana was worth it.

So what am I? I am a rebel and a follower. I am both!

I am a sheep because when it comes to life I need the direction of Jesus to show me how to live and love on people which then turns me into a goat because it is the opposite of what the culture around me says. How’s that for a mind bender? Never thought you could be two animals at once, huh? What would I be called then? A sheot? A geep? A goeep? I don’t know, but it is a very interesting animal. I can lead and follow, I can talk and listen, I can make decisions by thinking through but being open to other people’s ideas. I think being a sheot isn’t so bad. Are you with me? 🙂

Why Amazon? Why?

So I just took a look at my book on Amazon and it appears that they have deleted one of my 5 star reviews. Not sure why since it was a review I paid for and it was a verified read review. Needless to say that I am not very happy. So I paid for the review, but the reviewer read my book and said in the small print that they were true opinions and not just a review mill. I guess I am hoping that it was Amazon that deleted because, if the reviewer did, I am going to be pissed.

But I guess it’s time to just pull up my boot straps and try to get better reviews. Not sure what else to do to encourage those have read my book. I’ll just be patient, keep tweeting and blogging, and hope things turns around.

A Horse’s Love

My husband and I have been watching “Heartland”lately and it has made me miss my the horse I had as a kid. His name was Tersk and he was a beautiful bay Arabian with an attitude all his own. He was spicy yet very caring but could spook at a rock and jump three feet sideways. Here is our story.

I met Tersk when I was nine years old and he was a dream come true since I had been begging my parents for riding lessons since I was three years old. My mom drove me to this ranch that had so many horses I couldn’t count all of them. She introduced me to the lady who was going to teach me to ride and then her husband brought Tersk up out of the the pen. He was beautiful and huge in the eyes of a nine year old. He was 15 hands tall (that would be his back was just about five feet tall) with brown hair and a black mane and tail. The thing though that I loved the most was the little star on his forehead and his three white socks on his hocks.

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Here is us at our first lesson

Our first lesson went well and I was hooked on riding from then on. The only thing was that Tersk was my lesson horse which meant that he had to stay at the ranch. Then one day a horse trailer appeared at my parents property and Tersk was unloaded. I couldn’t believe it! Here was my dream horse and he was being handed to me because his owner was giving him to me under a free lease. See she had too many horses and she saw the connection between us at our lessons. So she decided that I would be a good home for him.

That was the real start to our journey together. From there we went on to be in horse shows, trail guiding, and endurance riding. There seemed to be nothing that Tersk and I didn’t do. And when we entered something we always placed in the top three with many first place ribbons in our collection. But no matter what, Tersk’s favorite thing was being on the trail.

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Tersk and I trail guiding

Showing is fun but there is something about being out on the trail with you and your horse. The freedom it gives you and the true connection it provides.

This post is called A Horse’s Love and I am getting to that because it is the most precious thing in the world. There is nothing better than waking up in the morning and hearing your horse calling for you because he is hungry. Then the time spent cleaning up after him isn’t just a chore but it is a great time to talk about what’s going on in your life. There isn’t a better listener than a horse. They can tell when you are upset and nuzzle up to you to help you feel better, but they can tell when are happy a celebrate with you. But the best part of a horse’s love is when you and your horse are on the trail and a flat open space appears and your horse can read your mind. He gains himself up and waits for the que of your heels against his sides. You lean forward and let him have his head before kicking him on and grip him with your legs as he takes off at a dead gallop.

The wind whips at your face and you realized you are holding your breath as you and your horse are running close to 35 mph down the trail. You close your eyes and you can feel like you are flying with the strength of your horse keeping you in the air. You can hear his own breathing as his powerful lungs inhale and exhale in rhythm with his thundering hooves as they dig into the earth to keep moving you both going forward.

I miss that feeling of having a horse to talk to and take care of. What happened to my wonderful horse? He passed away when I was seventeen. He was 24 years old and had just completed his last endurance ride a couple months prior. I just woke up one day and it appeared something had happened to his mind and there just wasn’t anyone home anymore. It was the most painful day of my life. I had to say good bye to my best friend of eight years and part of me didn’t want to say good bye. I wanted him to go on another ride with me. I wanted us to gallop again, but I could see that our time together was done. I couldn’t let him live in the state he was in. I would have my memories even though I wouldn’t have my friend.

So that day was hard but it didn’t out number the good days. It just reminds me of the love that only a horse can give. One day maybe I will get to experience that feeling again. If I do, it will be great and maybe my daughter will experience the same thing someday. Until then I will enjoy my memories and the love we shared.