Monthly Archives: July 2014

From Missy Cheryl

I read an article this week that discussed how voracious readers develop what is called “theory of mind.” This is a condition in which a person can entertain opinions very different than their own without allowing it to change or affect their personal feelings on a subject.
This concept, along with the corresponding scientific studies that support it, is one of the strongest arguments I’ve found against banning books. After all, books are generally banned in fear that they will change the opinions of their readers to something undesirable. But these studies show that allowing children to read widely from a young age is the best defense against that outcome.
No matter what your personal beliefs are, you cannot shield yourself and your family from all opposing ideas forever. We live in the age of information. Therefore, it is absolutely vital to help your children develop this state of mind.
The best defense is a good offense, after all. Banning books is a defense.  Allowing them to develop theory of mind is going on the offense.
From Miss Brenda
Pantser or Plotter ? ? ?
I’ve always considered myself a Pantser.  In fact, I’ve been fairly devoted to it.  But right now, with a book of 211 pages that isn’t quite finished, I’m reconsidering.  Having been lost in the Muddled Middles, as I am wont to be, I’m taking a look at the 211 pages and analyzing what on them.  And, more importantly, what’s not.  It’s actually pretty fascinating: I’ve found too much inaction, thinking, considering, dreaming, and not enough gripping moments.  I’ve found too much in one or another character’s head, and not enough interaction with other characters.  I’ve found some characters who came in too late, others who were too “present” at the wrong moments.
So, Pantsers, just because we don’t write an outline, draw a map, use 5,000 Post-Its to show all our carefully chosen stepping stones, doesn’t mean we can’t go back and analyze what we do have at (or toward) the end.  We know some of the elements needed for a rip-snortin’ story.  Take a careful, a thorough look at what we have.  Mine for gold.  Find the buried treasure, and be sure it’s there, even though it may need a little polishing up!
from me
Hope those of you in Utah have a Happy Pioneer Day (the rest of you, too).

Hope you get to read and write and hug those you love.
Hope you have peace and  get to watch one great show. Or two.

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Filed under Exercises, three thing thursday

Kyra Leigh, Queen Bee

So we found a place up north. I’m so happy to be getting out of the county. Although I will miss being only a few minutes away from mom. Her and I need to do another brainstorming sesh. My ideas are falling flat and I’m not sure what to write about. I have some ideas…. But like I said, not great.

How do you guys get all your amazing writing ideas? What inspires your writing?


Filed under Kyra

The Ocean

Last week I went to the raging ocean.
The sand blew at my legs and my skirt flew up and I felt like I was in a novel.
Do you ever describe yourself in your head. As if someone were writing a novel about you right now?
Third person.
I think about it all the time. Grand sweeping descriptions we sometimes write, sometimes read, about a person. “She was overcome by children and middle age,” or “her once SOMETHING body, was now sagging and tired, her energy swept up with the legos and the ants that crawled across the kitchen floor.”
I always feel bad for myself that this is how I’m being described. Is this what people see? Is this their sentence when they interact with me, or observe me wrestling my kids? How dare they! They don’t know me. They don’t know what’s really happening, the hope and the joy and sadness and the fears. They are putting me in a sentence. A generalization.
I get all kinds of upset.
And then I realize no one has written this down about me except myself in my fake novel in my head.
And then I really feel sorry for myself.

Also, I read The Ocean at the End of Lane by Neil Gaiman. I’ve been wanting to read this for a long long time. It took me a day. Less than a day. And I keep thinking about it.

Listen to this podcast and see if you want to read it too.


Filed under Uncategorized

Monday What I Wants

* to get caught up

So I started this long list of what I wants and the truth is it all has to do with Getting Caught Up. Last May, some of you may remember, the girls and I moved three times in one month. I was so thrown, so overworked and so sad, I fell far behind in everything. That’s why the the rest of this summer is mine to do what I want. Like rest. And do what I need to feel like I have a chance to get my feet under me. (Will I ever be stable again?)

What are your wants?

Can you control them?

How’s the writing?

Let’s go to dinner at the beginning of August. Reading: 200 words. Of anything–what you are writing or what you have read that you love. Or hate.

Let’s have a theme.

I’m thinking right now.

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Filed under CLW, Depression