Read. Write. Read. There’s no writing without reading.
Some thought it difficult to select but here I share as Writers chimed in to Penguin Publishers’ public forum question:
If you could read only one author for the rest of your life, who would it be?
- Stephen King
- Don DeLillo
- J. K. Rowling
- Jane Austen
- Agatha Christie
- Margate Atwood
- William Shakespeare
- J.R.R. Tolkien
- Virginia Woolf
- Toni Morrison
- Paulo Coelho
- The Bible
- John Green
- Alice Munro
- C.S. Lewis
- Ernest Hemmingway
- James Baldwin
If you had to choose, who would it be? Do share. We would love to hear!
Reading. The Thrill. The New York Times released its list of 17 New Books To Watch For. From the list I like 5. Here I share:
- Coventry: Essays,’ by Rachel Cusk
Care to share those you like? Whichever you choose, Happy Reading!
Waves splashing. Seas rough. Birds chirping. Softly. Quietly. Then louder as if composing a song. As if complaining … oh why so rough?
Now they fly. They soar. They meander. Still chirping high above beneath the sky. The white clouds embrace.
Waves calm down. Storm’s afloat. Passes by the outskirts as if to say, I’ll stop by next time…whenever that is. Behind it leaves weeds on the shore. Washed up. All aghast.
She Reads By The Sea
Book in hand she reads by the sea. Listening. Listening to the sounds of the waves. The birds. People shouting indistinctly in the distance. Soaking up the sun. Then softly covered by the clouds. Be still my soul.
Trees. Palm trees sway softly. Tenderly. Hear the birds call. The sun shines brightly against the afternoon’s wave.
The Right Time To Write
‘Tis the right time to write. To pray. To listen to the still small voice. Speak. Help me listen. Help me hear you. Don’t let me miss what you must say.
Spending time alone is one of my absolute pleasures. I’m sure I’m not alone. You may also like to do that as well. A few years ago I shared that I had some planning to do and decided on a whim to jump into my car and drive to the beach. A few hours later, I had mapped out plans for my top goals for the rest of the year! yea! I left feeling totally satisfied to get things done! What seemed like an drilling exercise turned out to be quite productive, in a serene atmosphere.
Jo Chunyan shared a list of things do alone. I decided to pull my top 15 to share.
- Journal. Write up a list of things you would love to do. Declare your dreams and intentions or simply empty out all your thoughts into your notebook.
- Spend a day at a museum or art gallery
- Meditate – sit. Be still and devote time to listen to your spiritual thoughts. Breathe.
- Have dinner on your own in a nice restaurant – take time to really enjoy the food
- Go for a walk and enjoy breathing the fresh air
- See a film at a cinema on your own
- Rearrange your wardrobe and discover old clothes again.
- Donate old clothes, books and furniture. Make room for the new by clearing out the old.
- Go somewhere in the city where you have never been
- Give yourself a mini retreat weekend…eat healthy food, go for a massage, spoil yourself and really relax!
- Sip a cup of tea and look out the window
- Be Athletic. Go for a jog or walk on the beach. Breathe in the salty sea breeze and watch the waves lick the shore.
- Study. Sign up for an online course in any topic you have an interest in and learn something new
- Take a photo to depict each hour of your day
- Travel on your own. Learn something new about yourself.
Can you add any? Do share!
Register now to attend Writers Retreat and boost your writing project
I write because there’s something in me that needs to come out. I am at peace when I write. Writers write for many different reasons. Some personal, experiential, or environmental. Christine Caldalzo created a pictogram of 10 reasons writers write. Here I share 10:
10 Reasons Writers Write
- They love to write
- To express their thoughts
- To communicate
- To share experiences
- To tell about events
- To share their feelings
- To persuade
- To teach
- To Ask Questions
- They want something
Does any of the above resonate with your reason(s) to write? Any missing that you would like to add? Do share. We would love to hear.
Register Now to attend Writers Retreat
Who are you fooling? Can you write a book in 2 days? Absolutely! But only if you are inspired with the words just flowing like milk and honey from what’s deep down inside. It might be an experience that tugs at your heart through inspiration, trauma, dreams or more. No edits, just letting the words flow.
The Stress To Write
I was chatting with a fellow author at a recent book festival and he shared that he does not write under stress or duress but by inspiration. Me too! I write best from inspiration and not under the stress-to-write. I share that because at the upcoming 2 Days to Write Retreat, you will find the space to getaway! A mini retreat. This will be more about sharing your writing project with a group of like-minded writers where you can receive feedback on your writing project. After all, your work will be shared by the mass and not just for you only (though some choose to go the me-only route).
Participants are encouraged to challenge themselves to a writing project that can be shared at the event. It might be a cadre of poems, short-stories or excerpts of a longer writing book project. Share. Get critiqued. Append. Share again. It will be well worth your writing project as you push through your goal.
So Register now for early bird rates and book your place to join us on this 2 days to write small group retreat.
Inspired. Informed. Educated. An iconic life exceptionally captured in one piece by author and educator Tiffani Knowles.
Excerpt cited. Read Tiffani’s full piece here
It was 1965, after splitting from Harold, when she began her career as an editor at Random House where she was instrumental in publishing American writers and luminaries such as Angela Davis, Henry Dumas and Muhammad Ali.
Yet, she knew there was a story that still needed to be told, one she hadn’t read or seen before.
At first, she was private about her own writing and would do so as a pastime very early in the morning before her boys would wake.
“I remember reading the ‘Bluest Eye’ and thought it was wonderful,” said Robert Gottlieb, a Random House colleague and the chief editor of the Alfred Knopf sub-division.
When Random House got wind of the fact that she was publishing, they wanted to keep her work in house and so, with the exception of one book, Gottlieb got to edit all of her books while they were published through Knopf.
Her first book, as Morrison claimed, intentionally eliminated the white gaze without “codes or notes explaining things to white people,” as she decided to put the entire plot on the first page.
“Quiet as it’s kept, there were no marigolds in the fall of 1941. We thought, at the time, that it was because Pecola was having her father’s baby that the marigolds did not grow.”
It was 1970 and “The Bluest Eye” boasted a story inspired by a conversation Morrison had had with an elementary schoolmate in Lorain many years before.
Her friend told her she had been asking God to give her blue eyes and he never did.
“How painful … can you imagine that kind of pain?” Morrison recounted for filmmaker Timothy Greenfield-Sanders in the “The Pieces I Am” documentary. “So, I wanted to say, this kind of racism hurts. This is not lynchings and murders and drownings. This is interior pain. It’s so deep to know that an 11 year old would think that if only she had some characteristic of the white world, she would be OK.”
Where does a writer derive the inspiration to write?
That was the question a new writer asked on a public forum. Here I share as experienced veteran writers excitedly chimed in.
- The desire to be heard
- From within
- Life experiences
- Observations and creativity
- From being disciplined
- Desire to entertain. Seen housands of movies and read countless books.
- Inserting imagination into current events.
- Nature. Walking around the beach, rivers, forests. Observing the moon and the stars
- Sitting and watching people walk around
- Learning something cool and new
- My imagination – lot of times from photos of places and people
- The need to share what I know
- Jesus Christ
- Life experiences – history read
- Love, hate inferences. Sit in a pub or hotel and watch. Watch as a woman looks at a man with love or fear. See how children clutch at their parents hands
- When a writer is least expecting it. Always be prepared and keep a notebook and pen on hand
- Life and in happiness and hardship
- Book, people, family, friends. Anything seen, heard, tasted, felt, imagined, think, love. Things that cause joy and things that cause pain
- From others out there that you might commiserate with. Write a note in a bottle. Send it out and hold your breath that it will come back to you in time
- Get people to tell your their life story
- Previous mistakes, perennial failures
Does any of these writers thoughts resonate with you? Is there anything you would like to add? Do share! We would love to hear.