Growing Forwards

There were people and then there weren’t

The land a stripped wound

Left by their passage

Some things return and

Some things don’t

We still grow

We breathe

In the sun

The taste of

Joy

IMG_1975Joy is brilliant and fiercely fought

Damage is not destroyed but incorporated into the life that follows.


For more joy and growth from damage, my fantasy novel, The Guests of Honor, is available here. Its sequel, With Honor Intact, can be found here.

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A Thing of Joy and Beauty

I love the moment when I’m reading and I forget to breathe. There is nothing like being so caught up in the beauty of the interior world that is being shared that I forget about the rest of my physical packaging.

While I speak often about things that I enjoy and don’t enjoy about stories, make no mistake that there are few things that bring me greater pleasure than a good book.

I still remember the first time I read “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” by T.S. Eliot and sucked in my breath with each consecutive image. The closing lines were:

 We have lingered in the chambers of the sea
By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown              
Till human voices wake us, and we drown

I was twelve years old and I didn’t understand everything in the poem.

But when I put the book down and closed my eyes, I knew that I wanted to read stories that made me feel the way those lines made me feel.

It’s not just imagery of course that can pull the breath from my body. Characters that make me care, plot lines where the resolution is both brilliant and inevitable can hold me so close that I look up only to realize that the day around me has passed me by.

There are few stories that can maintain that kind of moment forever.

But those perfect, beautiful moments that create a world stronger than the one around me?

Those are the moments I read for.

My breath is precious.

A story that can steal it is valuable beyond words.

IMG_0993Some moments and images are perfect in themselves, whole and complete

I love reading. I love the imagery and stories that overwhelm me with their beauty.


I am always working towards creating perfect moments within my own writing. If you would like to see my attempts, my fantasy novel,  The Guests of Honor, is available here.

In Defense of Fluff

Sometimes, in the world that is not the internet, I talk to writers.

While I thoroughly enjoy most of these discussions,  every once in awhile I have a conversation that sits like a burr at the back of my head.

I have been thinking over a few of these conversations for the last while.

One common theme I hear from writers is a strange fear of being seen to write “fluff”.

No one really defines what “fluff” is but they are all terribly afraid of writing it.

I assume that much like the infamous definition of pornography, it is something that they know when they see it.

Me?

I have no such fears.

Now, this is partly because although I write funny stories, they often have fairly dark undertones. However, it’s also because I’m not convinced that writing fluff is a bad thing.

Life can be a hard box to inhabit.

There is a reason we think of entertainment as ‘escapism’.

Everyday, I see the small and great tragedies play out in front of me and sometimes I just want to see a world where things work.

Why are we so afraid of joy?

Why are we so uncomfortable with admitting that we enjoy reading about success and happiness and a buoyant sense of wonder?

Why is it so much easier to count tragedy as the work worthy of our praise than the works that can help us rise out of the trenches of our own daily misfortune?

I cannot answer these questions, but I can think of myself, heart-sore and exhausted, standing in a field and watching the cottonwood fluff blow into the air.

As I watched them rise into the heat and disappear, I fiercely envied their buoyancy, their ability to grasp the currents and rise.

Some days that’s what I want to read.

Maybe you do too.

IMG_0673Even when it comes to ground, the fluff never forgets the time it flew

I like all types and genres of stories and sometimes I like to think about why some of them work for me and some of them don’t.


My own fluff and not-fluff can be found in my fantasy novel, The Guests of Honor. It is available here.

Fuzzfest- Things I Like

I like the morning.

I like the moment between the darkness and the first faint breath of light.

I like realizing that I’ve woken up one more time.

I like the fresh face of another day.

I like writing.

I like the translation of the inside of my head to a story to share.

I like the moment where the words paint a picture no image ever could.

I like the community of words and people I gain through sharing my own words.

I like living.

I like who and what I am and the life I’ve chosen.

I like being happy.

I hope you do too.

IMG_0569I like food, but not as much as my very fuzzy kitty

This week is Fuzzfest! Pull up a chair and a warm blanket and bask in my version of light cheer! Tomorrow will be a Very Special Post in celebration of my 100th blog post, so stay tuned!


For other things I like my fantasy novel, The Guests of Honor, is available here.

Fuzzfest- Dreamed a Little Dream

On good nights, the inside of my head is like a warm blanket.

A warm blanket made of writhing carnivorous eggplants, mind you, but comfortingly familiar all the same.

While I tend to the lucid dreaming end of the spectrum, even my sharpest, most uncomfortable visions have a peaceful acceptance that makes all the edges lovely and fuzzy.

I may be being chased by a large paintbrush who wants to use me for wallpaper, but I will not be at all surprised to discover that I have suddenly found a lake full of turpentine to foil my pursuer.

Maybe I should stop using myself as an example.

I love the inability to disbelieve in dreams.

I love the complete acceptance of the impossible mechanics of the worlds I inhabit, that moment my heart catches in my throat with a wonder that is almost impossible to duplicate in the real world.

I have no desire to become a Lotus Eater and waste away in visions.

But the knowledge of the unending boundaries that are tragic, funny, delightful inside my head, grants me a joy that sits warmly at the center of my identity.

Sometimes the familiar can be grinding.

There is a joy in not knowing where the next step will take you.

In finding the fuzzy borders of the world inside your head and stepping breathlessly into the unknown.

IMG_0070Almost as fuzzy as two cats and some warm blankets

This week is Fuzzfest! Pull up a chair and a warm blanket and bask in my version of light cheer!


For more dreams, fluffy or otherwise, my fantasy novel, The Guests of Honor, is available here.

The Eternal Question

Why are you trying to take my picture

When I am trying so hard

To love you?

IMG_0165This is why I’m not a wildlife photographer

We had the brain-benders last week, this week is fluff. Literally.


If you want more cats, fluffy or otherwise, my fantasy novel, The Guests of Honor, is available here.

We Sing the Morning

Some days are too beautiful to passively live through.

On those days, rich and clear, the world changes.

Everything stretches upwards, reaching.

I could mention turgor pressure and light-tracking, but-

I prefer to think of it as music-

Bone-deep and insistent.

When I write I think of that rhythm under the surface-

Pulsing joyfully towards a never-ending sky.

IMG_0813We’re always singing, can you hear it?


If you want to hear some other non-musical songs, I have also written a fantasy novel, The Guests of Honor. It is available here.

 

A Joyous Day

We are not born afraid.

Life teaches us fear, often of the new and unfamiliar.

Writing is transmutation.

When I write, that fear shifts in front of me to the joy of discovery, of the magic that exists just out of the corner of my eye.

I cannot remove that fear from the world or even from myself.

But through my fingers, I can rise above the gravity of uncertainty that holds our feet so firmly to the ground.

I can reach upwards and fly towards the warmth, the world above me.

You can come with me.

All readers can come with me.

We can live, for a moment or an hour or a day in a place of joy.

I want to create, one day after the other, a day without fear.

A joyous day.

IMG_5063A joyous day