Writing My Life

Now and Then


Helicopter Children

You may be familiar with the term “helicopter parents” – those “who pay extremely close attention to [their] child’s … experiences and problems … whether they need them or not.”  But do you know about helicopter children?

In mid-October, Mom woke up with a back ache that changed her life.  An MRI revealed a compressed fracture, bulging discs, and worsening arthritis. Now robbed her of independence, she watched my sister and me morph into hovering daughters. Never far away, we swoop in to make sure she eats, takes her medication, and fights through chronic pain.

Mom is patient with our hovering, and we are soooooooooooooooo grateful for her!

Cute Mom and her two HELI-DAUGHTERS!



Results of the Second Writing Contest I’ve EVER Entered

I even wished upon a falling star but still wasn’t numbered among five winners of a writing contest I entered.  But unlike my first competition in junior high, the news didn’t make feel like a total loser.

Failure to win the “My Mother is the World’s Best” in-50-to-100-words-or-less contest back in the day convinced me I was a poor writer and a pathetic daughter. This time around, however, I not only learned from preparing my entry, I also benefited from reading  the winning efforts.

I’ll do better next time.

And I still think I have the world’s best mother!

I still remember the story behind the story of this essay, but I just couldn't tell it in 97 words!

Hmmm. I think I thought bringing God into the content would increase my chances even though I could only eek out 85 words.

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Keep Your Vampire Lovers, I’ll Take THE VIRGINIAN Any Day

The Virginian?” you ask.

This 1902 novel by Owen Wister, “almost single-handedly established the cowboy archetype” (Recorded Books Classic Library).

While today’s readers may be disappointed that scenes of hanging and shooting don’t occur until three-quarters in, some might appreciate the story’s deep philosophical character study. BUT what female can resist the romantic hero? Why the cowpuncher’s three-year courtship of high-spirited Molly Wood of Vermont is more tender than even Jane Austen could have imagined.

Interestingly, Wister’s description of the handsome hero did not make me envision Gary Cooper or James Drury, but rather my great-grandfather, a once-living ringer for the fictional character.

Great Grandmother Elizabeth's brand of beauty may not have been considered adequate for the screen role of Miss Molly Wood, but in reality, she was a perfect match for the school teacher.

Yes, Great-Grandpa Henry's photo fits Wister's description of the nameless cowpuncher perfectly.

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the eating corner (and what I wrote today)

I have many favorite people in this world, and Ms. Ann E. Cannon is one. She is a new friend as I met her face to face only two years ago. I don’t know Ann well enough to jog with her (like I would), but we’ve worked together so I can drop her name AND call upon her for writing advice. So I did. While eating at the Mazza Cafe, Ms. Ann shared this advice:

  • Establishing the setting and the problem is still a good way to start a story.
  • Chapters don’t HAVE to include “action” scenes to build suspense.

A Favorite Photo of a Favorite Person

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Life in 100 Words or Less: Writing Less More Often

I’ve missed blogging. A lot. And since life hasn’t quieted much, I don’t see that I’ll have any more time to post than I’ve had the past few months.

Inspired by information about Grant Faulkner, the new executive director of NaNoWriMo,  I think I’ve come upon a solution. It seems that Mr. Faulkner runs an online literary journal – 100 Word Story – and thus launched MY epiphany: I can limit my entries to 100 words or less, AND I will post at least one or two times a week.

I don’t have enough words left to say anything else, and captions don’t count!


EPIPHANY: When you realize your future isn't mixed in with noodles.