Spinning Thoughts & Tales ~

Archive for the ‘it’s books, reading, & writing’ Category

Writing connections ….

Or…connections writing as in meeting wonderful people while taking creative writing classes or a workshop or a conference or an on-line course or a podcast.   On Tuesday, I had lunch with one of my all time favorite instructors, Stephanie, and a core group of great writers.   Stephanie, funny, full of life, she encourages, cajoles, she’s a  poet, writer and inspiring teacher.  (more…)

In the writing sandbox, a postcard story…

My blog has been sorely neglected of late.  As promised here is my postcard story, but first….  A classroom exercise morphed into the back story for a small mid-western town full of characters on the cusp of decline or a push towards prosperity.  Of course, the townspeople are in conflict and a body is found, stopping the new highway construction.  Our little writing group  each submitted a postcard story.  This is mine…

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Very tardy, but I’m writing…

Where have I been for over a month? Right here.  Busy with life.  Last week I finished another eight weeks of Creative Writing at UBC.  Again, with my favourite instructor Stephanie and a group of wonderful women writers.  Alas, no men writers joined us.  We missed them.  They add to our little group as well as entertain us.  Two new writers added to the group of seven.  We had fun writing, reading each others’ submissions, critiquing, brain storming and, of course, eating tasty treats at coffee break.  I will post my postcard story in a few days.  As Stephanie said, “this is chapter one of a novel.”  Hmm….that will be the start of  third novel.  Unfortunately novel #1 and novel #2 are not finished.  I did submit the first chapter of novel #2, a re-write of the first chapter and an opening scene for chapter two.  Very well received and excellent comments.

If only I were independently wealthy, I could write all day and hire someone else to do my job.  Ah, dream on dreamer.  Stay safe and warm.

It feels like cheating….

I confess, I broke down and bought an e-reader.  I’m running out of space.  The shelves are packed.  Full.  The storage boxes jammed.  And still I buy more.  Now I’m cheating on my books.  The poor things are languishing  while I gleefully read from my electronic library of books.  (more…)

Joy in the writing sandbox…

I have found joy in writing.  It takes me off the current roller coaster ride which is my life this year.  I have taken the same creative writing course over and over at UBC.  I love my instructor and many of my classmates have become writing friends as well as being great writers.  Every Thursday afternoon for two months I play in the writing sandbox.    It is joyous.  It is music to my soul.  It is inspiring.   And, I forget my troubles for two and half hours.

This session, I submitted a personal essay, “How I Write” and a series of “Letters to my Siblings and God” and a poem.  I love my “found”  poem.  It was short and sensual without being clichéd.   (more…)

Long weekend with books…

Everyone needs a little time away so we took to the train to Portland or P-Town.  I’m not sure the fine people of Portland call their city “P-Town” but  we heard it a few times.  Great place to visit for a long weekend plus there is no sales tax and the dollar is slightly in our favour.   The food is very delicious.  There was music.  And the book store.  You must go to Powell’s Book Store on Burnside.  Also, known as the biggest bookstore west of the Mississippi.  It is bookstore heaven.  New, used, and rare books on four levels stretching one city block.  Across the street is the sciences bookstore.  There is something for everyone.   Every price point.   I spent hours every day, e-v-e-r-y day wandering the aisles.  Used books, new books and baby books for three little people.  I found a  Robert McKee’s STORY, a rare used copy of Georgette Heyer, three research books, a couple of Brennan Manning, and a  Nouwen, Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor’s book, My Stroke of Insight, wonderful baby books, two novels by  favourite authors, and a lovely little book on the art of the personal letter.    Book. Heaven.   Now to make time to read and write after work.

Book Store Heaven

Stay safe and loved.

Making time to write…

Last month I received feedback on my WIP.  The “can’t-wait-to-read-more” and the “you must make time to write every day” after the wise and thoughtful comments were the best part.  I have a wonderful writing and critique group who are great writers and tough reviewers.  I really like them. I’ve developed an appreciation for critiques and my hide is thicker.  Slings and arrow bounce off, not wounding me, much…  (more…)

Another writing class, again…

Back to feeding my spirit in the Creative Writing Center at UBC.   New classmates and old classmates, now friends, get to play in the writing sandbox.  The instructor always starts the class with a writing exercise, much to the chagrin of some.  Not me.  It is playtime… (more…)

Stories for Stormy

Storytelling.   It is weaving words into a tale of great adventures or a scary ghost story around the fire pit or a fairy tale of happy ever after to a rapt audience.   Truly the best time of the day is tucked under the duvet with cold feet on the husband, reading a good book lit by a tiny book light.   (more…)

Friends & literary offerings…

Good times and food, what more could you want.  Friday evening, I had a wonderful time with my fellow  creative writing classmates and our fabulous instructor, Stephanie.  Richard, Tamsin, Dell, Hilary, and a new writer, Michele and I, had a delicious  meal, prepared by the lovely Judith, Richard’s wife.  Dell and Hilary’s husbands joined us.  Sadly, the Big Guy had to work, again.  Story of my married life. 

Richard had been reading Feathers, a short story by Raymond Carver.  It was the impetus for our dinner.  We each shared a literary offering  after dessert. 

Hilary wrote a poem about pinot gris,” Baccus and I.”   You could taste the wine.   Michele wrote a short memoir about a little friend, so funny.  Tamsin wrote as only Tamsin can, a poem, from her leather bound journal, part of  her kitchen series.  We had Tamsin read it twice as there is so much depth to her work.  Stephanie read from her book of poems.  Fabulous.  It was about poets finding something in everything to write about.  Dell, our tap dancing retired teacher, a feather boa wrapped around her neck, read her poem in honour of the evening, very witty.    Richard wrote a short story about three sisters, an earthquake and a computer.  There is always a twist.  And me, well, I read my two little offerings in the “Choose Your Weapon” mini scene from the Cherry Forums.   I believe the comment was; “It is always the quiet ones.”   

What?  You don’t think I am quiet?  Hah! I can be.

I’ve registered for the winter session next February.  How could I not with such great writer friends as these.  Dell had a poem published in the Ontario Society of Poets 2010 book.  Her copy arrived on Friday, just in time, to share the exciting news with us.  

I am still smiling, it was so much fun.

Stay warm, loved and safe on this blustery night.