• Great Reads,  Life,  Process,  Reviews,  Writing

    Foolsgold…. {Great Reads}

    After reading poemcrazy by Susan Goldsmith Wooldridge, I couldn’t wait to read Foolsgold, another visit into Ms. Wooldridge’s wordpool and its impact on others (and herself). Ordered while still in the earliest chapters of poemcrazy, I anticipated more delicious conversation by an approachable author whose love of collecting, love of words, and love of collecting words all fit neatly into my own life perspective. Disclosure:  I chose to ignore reviews in which readers mentioned a different tone in Foolsgold and references to the author’s personal struggles as they related to the book. Turns out, her struggles are the heart of the book. The ‘nothing’ she refers to in the subtitle felt like the overarching feeling coming through in her words, her voice wavering between sadness, depression, melancholy, and…

  • Great Reads,  Poetry,  Writing

    poemcrazy…. {Great Reads}

    Dear Susan Goldsmith Wooldridge, You had me at, “I’m a collector of many things.” Proudly stated in the opening chapter of her book, Wooldridge’s lead-in to her collection of words starts by revealing she’s a collector of a great many things. Hmmmm….. feels familiar….. Add her thoughts on the writing style of e.e. cummings (irreverent, playing with words while breaking all the rules), and I was pretty sure I had stumbled on to a kindred spirit, one whose love of wordplay matches my own. 🙂 I don’t remember reading the classics in high school, probably because we moved a lot and I’d miss that unit of study every year – or I just completely tuned it out, chalking it up to a…

  • Great Reads,  Life,  Writing

    Eating Bull …. {Great Reads}

    I admit (as I did to author and fellow blogger, Dr. Carrie Rubin), I’m not a fiction reader. However, on the rare occasion that I take the time to find a good story and I’m hooked, I want to share it! So, here goes…. How often do we reach for quick, convenient food? We take that right turn into the drive-thru or order the pizza, hot and fresh, delivered in a few short minutes. Easy, right? But deadly, too? Maybe. Carrie Rubin’s page-turning thriller suggests so. At once – Eating Bull is educational, entertaining, factual, foreboding, grisly, and a wake-up call – taking the reader into the tangled lives of Jeremy,…

  • Creativity,  Great Reads,  Humor,  Life,  Poetry,  Process,  Reviews

    Rusty Butt….

    It’s Friday and my brain has been buzzing all week… with all sorts of things. Wanted to share one this morning, before I head out the door for the ‘day gig.’   🙂 I say that with affection… I love what I do! I recently finished reading fellow blogger, medical doctor, and author Carrie Rubin’s novel, Eating Bull. It, along with a post she recently shared, along with my own food and image issues, have all been on my mind. I look forward to sharing my review of her book (highly recommend) with a little of my own story (real life) thrown in for perspective. Until then, though, thought I’d throw a…

  • Great Reads,  Lists,  Writing

    Six To Consider: Writing Books Worth a Look

    I’ve always got a stack of things to read, don’t you? My stack’s typically related to my latest interest or project. I’m a nonfiction reader, my current stack a mish-mash of art techniques and inspiration, small business ownership, and the craft of writing. When writing evaded me over the past year, I figured I’d read about writing until my own writing mojo found its way back! And my dear husband, who reads mostly on his iPad or iPhone (BIG screen) feeds my wish to have books near me… Christmas 2014 found a stack of Writing books and Writing magazine subscriptions under the tree…. a welcome diversion in a year that was often silent. Here are a…

  • Art,  Great Reads,  Humor,  Life,  Process,  Writing

    Polish, Postmortem?

      Who thinks about toenails, and more specifically, toenail polish, postmortem? Admittedly (0ddly!), I do. What?!? I can see your face, that quizzical look taking over. Let me explain…. About twenty-five years ago, while taking an A & P class in college, I was invited to participate in a visit to the local chiropractic college, where we’d have the opportunity to examine cadavers. First thought: Ugh!  Second thought: Fascinating! Count me in. Entering tentatively, I remember the smells of preservatives (formaldehyde?) filling my nose as draped bodies lay lifeless, an experience that stays sharp in my mind, in my otherwise sketchy memories. It was, at once, fascinating and unnerving.     As we examined the cadavers, I remember noticing small things that stuck with…

  • Great Reads,  Life,  Process,  Writing

    Put Down Your F*^%$* Phone…. As Shared by Chuck Wendig

    If you know Chuck Wendig, the novelist, you know his use of …… ummmmmm …..colorful language and straightforward talk. If you don’t know Mr. Wendig, I highly recommend his Writing How-To books. Haven’t personally read his novels, but I am totally down with his How-To books… and find his style & language – in your face, colorful, call it what you will … real. I shared my thoughts about one of his books, 30 Days in the Word Mines [here], last fall.   His is the language I don’t use online, but admittedly, *may or may not* use in my offline world. When his latest post landed in my e-mail inbox, I saw the title (in…

  • Great Reads,  Humor,  Quotes,  Writing

    Take Those Underpants Off Your Head…! {Great Reads}

    Now that we’ve got THAT out of the way….. Such sage advice from author Chuck Wendig is what you’ll get in his writer’s how-to books.  Don’t worry ~ you’ll soon see the connection between underpants and writing…. I promise. I stumbled on to Chuck’s 250 Things You Should Know About Writing a few years ago and immediately loved the content and especially, his voice. Recently, I read 30 Days in the Word Mines, his how-to for 30 days of writing, which, he says, may or may not be associated with National Novel Writing Month. Nearing the end of National Blog Post Month with @BlogHer, I’ve had the pleasure of discovering what happens when you commit to writing every day…

  • Classroom Life,  Great Reads,  Instruction,  Process,  Training

    Tell Us About Yourself: Sending an Introvert Into a Tailspin

    Freaked out at the thought of having to introduce yourself to strangers?   Several months ago I blogged about my BIG discovery {here}, after reading Susan Cain’s, Quiet: The Power of Introverts, last December.  What a great read!  In it, she discusses introverts in our society and society’s response to them.  She writes, “The bias against introversion leads to a colossal waste of talent, energy, and happiness.”       You can see her TED Talk here: If you’re an introvert, you know she’s singing the gospel… Now, if everyone would just get quiet and listen….!! Right? What was particularly enlightening to me ~ other than discovering I’m really an introvert camouflaged in an extrovert’s…

  • Great Reads,  Writing

    How to Write Short: a Must-Read! {Great Reads}

    Quick:   How many words was your last blog post or article?  Under 100? 500? 1,000?  Did you get your message across? How do you know? Could you have said it in fewer words without losing its essence? What would have been the benefit of doing so? These are just a few of the questions addressed in Dr. Roy Peter Clark’s How to Write Short: Word Craft for Fast Times, publication 2013. “A writer who teaches and a teacher who writes…,” Clark shares many historical and contemporary examples, annotated to help the reader see the value in and purpose for, short-form communication.  Grace Notes help put ideas into (approachable) practice. Both the title and…

  • Great Reads,  Process,  Writing

    Innie or Outie? Quiet: The Power of Introverts {Great Reads}

    Are you in introvert or an extrovert? Or are you both? I’ve always considered myself an extrovert. Those who know me would agree. I strike up conversations in public. I strike up conversations with teenagers I’ve never met, on my campus, nearly every day.  They sometimes (okay, often!) look at me like I’m crazy, but usually chat back and end up with a big smile.  In my family, we call it the “Mary Lee Legacy,” after my dear grandmother who’s never met a stranger in her life. She taught me well.  🙂 Loud. Outgoing. Convivial. Socialable. Gregarious. Unrestrained. All fit. Other days, I don’t want to be bothered. Quiet. Aloof. Serene. Solitary. Peaceful. Reclusive.…

  • Great Reads,  Writing

    The Art of Saying Much…with Little {Great Reads}

    Backstory:  I first shared this post in April 2010, a fact reflected in certain (outdated) references – Borders and BlackBerry – and behaviors (tweeting, still new to me at the time).  Times have changed and so has my writing. I’m pleased to share a much-abbreviated post, shortened by 200+ words, with the same goal:  a Great Read recommendation! Original Post, remixed:  Do you tweet? You know. That thing people do online and on their phones, sending frivolous messages to one another about ‘absolutely nothing’ in 140 or fewer characters.  Only kids tweet, right?  Not really. It’s a fad, right? I’m rethinking my viewpoint on that, too. I began tweeting last summer, having little idea of what I was…