So far I can’t recommend enough the Writers Digest book “Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook”. Its goal, though not stated as such, is to provide texture to your fiction. It already has helped me to think of my protagonist in ways I hadn’t thought of before, by asking excellent questions and “making” me do exercises around these questions. I don’t have any affiliate status or anything else, just want to help other writers here. Take a look!
Archive for February, 2008
Ok, I am truly serious about this one. Does anyone else struggle with blogging when they’d rather be doing, or should be doing, something else? Like right now for instance. I’ve decided to start a novel (I bought about 5 how to books but the bottom line is you have to start writing, duh!). I’ve had a neat plot idea for years but never stuck with it.
Now, since blogging, my love of writing has re-surfaced with a vengeance and my creative ideas are spilling all over the place and I’m thinking why not? To get a novel published is a lifelong dream of mine. Plus many of the short things I write on here could easily be made into full articles for a magazine. But I cannot start my day without checking in on my baby here…and feeding her some words for the day! Though as I think about it, the stats and comments are very rewarding, and I am also proud of my baby…oh well…off I go to my how to books (its the structure of the novel that has always gotten me down before…I get an idea but I don’t know where to go with it).
Anyway, it is one of the few goals in life I have not attained, other than a Ph.D – which will never happen due to the time and cost involved at my age, as well as my health issues. But honestly, if I had to pick, I would rather have a book published than a doctorate. Wish me luck, friends! Off I go, then…
Codependence is a dysfunctional pattern of living and problem solving learned and absorbed during childhood. It happens due to growing up in a family where there is a great deal of chronic emotional pain or trauma and unhealthy boundaries. Examples of these are families where there was: unskillful parenting, a critical or non-nurturing environment, domestic violence, physical, sexual or emotional abuse, substance abuse or addiction, or chronic mental or physical illness. However, just like individual people, not all families can be so neatly categorized. Codependence can happen in any family where parents are trying their best, but learned unhealthy patterns of relating.
In these families there are no appropriate boundaries for the child to experience or learn. Some grow up with no personal boundaries at all. They take in all the negativity of others’ fears, attacks, anger, and criticism. Everything gets in and overwhelms them resulting in no clear sense of identity. Others grow up with rigid boundaries, never allowing anything positive inside, like love, admiration, compliments, and nurturing.
To be emotionally healthy , and have healthy relationships, we need to develop permeable boundaries: to have a selective filter that keeps out the negative but lets in the positive. This results in a person with healthy self esteem.
A good book to help you with this issues is Codependent No More by Melodie Beattie.
“If we want our daughters to live out their hopes and dreams for the future, we can live out our own dreams.” Sally Gelardin from her book The Mother-Daughter Relationship.
I came across this resource which looks really great (I found it, of course, on www.butyoudontlooksick.com ) It’s called Blogborygmi described as “the weekly rotating carnival of the best of the medical blogosphere”. I have not had time to fully explore it, but if anyone wants to check it out and get back to us, that would be great. I feel very comfortable posting the link considering its source. Enjoy!
I see so many women in their 20’s and 30’s struggling with the time management of careers, relationships, friends and family. And so often when we look at their stress, it becomes apparent that they are spending what little free time they do have with people they no longer have anything in common except fond memories of the past.
Often there is conflict between the friends. One may want more frequency in the time spent together. Or they have chosen to follow very different paths in life and can no longer understand where the other is coming from….or where she’s going… And I can see that way too much negative energy is going into this relationship.
It reminds me of an old saying, or was it a song, that “its better to part while we’re still friends”. I do believe that sometimes friends do need to break up, sometimes for a while, sometimes permanently….. What do you think?
“Don’t compromise yourself.” Janis Joplin
“We’ll never have children together,” I said to the man who used to be my lover. “We’ll always be lovers.”
“We’ll hve it all,” he agreed. “Satin sheets and negligees. Candle light and romance.”
“Yours and mine.”
“They’ll grow together.”
“Learn from each other.”
“A ready made family.”
“No two a.m. feedings.”
“You’ll never be too tired for me,” he growled, biting my neck.
“Never,” I purred, wriggling sensuously.
In small doses, we brought them together. A weekend here. An overnight there. Museums and picnics. Sleigh rides and swimming.
The two older ones went off together. The two little ones played together. The two grown ups snuck off for afternoon “naps”.
Congratulating ourselves, we married…
The second thing to go, after the grape juice splattered satin sheets, is the sexy negiligee.
“What if one of the children comes in?” I protest, clutching my faded cotton night gown to my neck.
“Nonsense!” he decrees, lunging for me.
A knock on the door knocks the moment beyond recall.
“Are there anymore potato chips? one of the big ones wants to know. It is exactly two a.m.
Both the little ones wet their beds. Every night.
“Must be we both have colds in our stomachs,” mine suggests to his.
“Must be that air conditioner making us cold,” his suggests to mine.
They become great friends, having this shared problem. My man and I glower at each other as we each take turns washing stinky sheets.
As for dinner…. “I don’t eat chicken.”
“I don’t eat dark meat.”
“I’m not hungry now.” (Later, when my feet are up with a good book ,this one will want a three course meal.)
“Does anyone want the last piece?” All four do. Every time. A slippery ear of buttered corn lands in my man’s lap as he tries to break it four ways. A man looks different with butter and corn kernels dripping down his pants…
The three boys share one large room.
“Like a dorm, ” we tell them. “Like a camp.”
Like occupied territory. There are boundary lines. There are zones. I find one asleep on the living room couch.
“They won’t let me walk through their part to get to my part, ” he blithely explains. Even he, the vanquished, accepts the schoolboy logic of this.
“He won’t pick up his filthy clothes off the floor!” the other shrieks, less blithely.
His, like their father, are neat.
Mine, like me, are slobs.
“You really should try to teach them better habits,” my lover who has become someone’s father says through clenched teeth.
“So what’s the big deal – a few clothes on the floor?” hisses mother hen who used to be a pussy cat.
The hottest moment in months comes when we find his little boy in the upstairs closet with my little girl.
“Well it was her idea to pull our pants down,” he gallantly explains.
“But he wanted to. He liked it!” my baby vamp protests.
A long lost twinkle sparkles in my husbands eyes. We make a date for later. Upstairs in the closet.
Copyright 2008 Psychscribe
Usually women remember this far more easily than men do….Mine was gross. I was 12. Twelve year olds were so innocent in those days…A boy a couple of years older walked me home and gave me a disgustingly wet face washing. Its amazing I ever let another boy kiss me again! Talk about an almost tragic defining moment! But I did, thank goodness! Do you remember yours? Tell us, please!
“I call up my names: Woman who has been born in the arms of a woman and welcomed home. I shout truth teller, silence breaker, life embracer, death no longer fearing, woman reunited with her child self. I sing woman who is daughter, sister, lover and mother to herself. I hum woman planter, gatherer, healer. I drum woman, warrior, siren, woman who stands firmly on her feet, woman who reaches inward to her center and outward to stars. I am woman who is child no longer, woman who is making herself sane, whole. ” Andrea R. Canaan
I heard today about a pedophile priest, who admitted to using many child prostitutes. If that isn’t SOUL MURDER I don’t know what is. He was sentenced to 5 years. FIVE years.
Bad enough he used these poor children, working either as slaves, or to make a living on the streets, or to feed their parents, but he also passed up an opportunity to RESCUE them from their plight.
SOUL MURDER . And for that he got five years.
This news article raises serious questions about both the mental health system and the legal system. Mental health? Obviously unconscionably poor record keeping which, had all the facts been included, might have kept the man inpatient until he was stabilized. A patient’s prior history is always included in the decision making. But some psychiatric disorders statistically include non-compliance with medications and one can’t legally hold someone based upon statistics. Which also merges with other legal issues. Way back when (the 70’s?) the mentally ill were released in droves from insitutions to the streets in the name of patients’ rights…unfortunately they were left with no rights to shelter, aftercare, or treatment. Which actually merges with economic issues in terms of provider decision making…who’s paying for care, and how much is being paid?
Just passing along a book review I read which sounds good. I hope it helps someone. Here is the link:
“Much Madness is divinest Sense-
To a discerning eye-
Much Sense-the starkest Madness-
‘Tis the Majority
In this, as All, prevail-
Assent-and you are sane-
Demur-and you’re straightaway dangerous-
And handled with a Chain-“
No matter how much your partner criticizes or complains about his or her extended family, don’t chime in. If you do, your partner will turn on you like a wolf foaming at the mouth. We can’t help it. Its our nature to defend our blood kin. Must be some kind of evolutionary thing for safety. Better to wait for another time to tactfully complain about a particular behavior to the person who bothers you. That way you keep your partner out of a nasty triangle which cannot do your relationships any good at all.
Copyright 2008 by Psychscribe
Well this is the second time this mornng that my friend amberfireinus has inspired a post for me. She posted her favorite uplifting YouTube. Here is mine. Its wonderfully uplifting for anyone who has a serious health condition of any kind. Melissa's is cancer.
amberfireinus‘s sympathetic response to my most recent post about the NY therapist murder prompted me to write a post on an issue which has always infuriated me, rather than commenting on her comment as we bloggers do…
In most of these United States, for some reason a “crime of passion” gets less legal consequences than one which is premeditated. The legal system drops the heinous act of taking someone’s life down a few degrees .So apparently if someone goes ballistic with jealous rage its more ok…understandable legally …. than someone who commits cold blooded, pre-meditated murder. And I’m sorry but that is usually a male who commits the crime of passion, so I can’t help but wonder about the sympathy of the predominately male legal system which makes these laws…(Did you know that police officers have one of the highest rates of perpetrating domestic violence?)
A “crime of passion” usually translates into someone walking in on their loved one in bed with somebody else and killing her and the lover. I don’t know, call me nuts, but people are still dead, aren’t they? And ragers usually have had rage problems long before they kill in “passion”. Did anyone ever hear of …uh…dare I say therapy….or anger management????
This is the man being held for second degree murder of that therapist in recent news . (Hello????? He allegedly butchered her with a cleaver? Second degree??????) It now appears he may not have been her patient. I am comforted by this, though I am still getting a panic button for my office. Ugh…this whole thing has shaken me to the core….and such sorrow for her family…
I just read that John Grisham had his first novel rejected 15 times before he had it published. Last year he made 9 million dollars….so why am I sitting her blogging when I should be going for MY dream of writing a book? Actually, I have published articles, but that was years ago. I recently bought all the how to books again, and they say you should query with recently published clips. Yeah,, right, I think my last one was 15-20 years ago! But this has inspired me to get my butt moving. Ciao everyone! Enjoy your day!
I just read an article in Live Science which really comes as no surprise…researchers have concluded that beautiful people (10’s) tend to date people of equal beauty…and less attractive people, say 5’s, tend to date other 5’s. Actually, if you look around at couples you know, you can see that this is true, can’t you? My husband and I entertained ourselves one boring car trip by thinking of couples we knew and invariably they were of equal attractivenss on the 0-10 scale. (Look, I know this is superficial, but its kinda fun to think about, isn’t it?) The one couple that did mystify me, and subsequently broke up, were not exactly in our social circle. Julia Roberts was dating (married?) that guy with the weird hair sticking up all over the place and please forgive me, but a face only a mother could love…
Why? I really am curious about this….they’re not particularly responsive….I mean, its not like they greet you at the door a the end of a hard day…
Intro: I’ve decided to periodically give some very brief tips which may seem obvious to some, but not so to others who are embroiled in a battleground relationship…or at the other end of the spectrum, frozen solid….
Never try to talk your partner out of his or her feelings. Just last night for the umpteenth time a spouse in my office said “But you really shouldn’t feel that way!” This never works because it is logic speaking to emotion. Totally different languages. You may think what you think, but feelings are feelings and the person has a right to them. No one ever talked a person out of how they feel. They may succumb to your logic out of sheer weariness, but trust me the emotion that follows will probably be worse than the one that is now stuffed. Better to try to understand, and express empathy. Your partner will love you for it, and love is what this is supposed to be all about, isn’t it?
Copyright 2008 by Psychscribe
A lovely little something for all of you for the V day. Though I was disappointed that Scarlett and Rhett weren’t included…must be an age thing….