Writing 101: What I Do When I Don’t Write #everydayinspiration


Today’s Writing 101 Prompt is:

What do you do when you’re not writing? How do you reset and return to the dashboard, refreshed? What do you need in your day-to-day life to maintain balance: Running? Yoga? Gardening? Painting? Cooking?


 

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I’ve let this prompt sit a few days. There is not to much I can tell you which isn’t on my About The Author page or on my Gravatar Profile on the side menu of my blog.

What I do the most when I’m not writing is read. I read other blogs, trying to stay up to date on other people’s writing and posts, making comments, and exploring new blogs.

I enjoy reading and looking at fashion magazines. Instyle is my favourite fashion magazine. Magazines are an interesting source of media as you can read it paper format and on your tablet, and receive varied information for each method of reading the magazine. I like how on the tablet you can go into all the websites of the various clothing, makeup, and accessories advertised or shown. I go on Pinterest and I pin interesting outfits I like. Often, the clothing is priced way out of my budget but finding similar pieces of clothing in my budget range is interesting to me.

I’m also into reading books when I’m in the mood. I read fast as I’ve said before so often, I’m waiting in-between book releases for the next book in the series to come out. Most of my library is now on IBooks but I do have some books on Kobo and Kindle. Every once in a while if it’s a classic book, I will read and buy the book in paperback.

Watching videos on YouTube on makeup and doing hair is also fascinating. I’m a girly girl and I like to stay on trend in makeup. I try different products out if I think I will use them.

Shortly, I plan to have a couple of makeup pieces out. One post on products I’m using having to do with eyes and another on products not associated with eye makeup. Additionally, I never knew how to put my hair up growing up so I figured a few years ago that it was time to learn. Now I know several styles and ways to put my hair up or half-up. I try to go for elegant in both hair and makeup. Not sure it always works.

I also watch a few of my favourite TV shows including Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, How To Get Away with Murder, The Catch, Grimm, The Vampire Diaries, Chicago Fire, and off and on The Big Bang Theory and The Blacklist. Sometimes I watch hockey and football. In addition, I watch movies and various TV series on Netflix and I love going to see movies in the theater.

The most cost effective way to see a movie with a friend or relative is to buy a movie pass at Costco (or other places you might now of) for either Landmark Cinemas or Cineplex Odeon where I live, and then you can buy two movie passes, two medium/large popcorns, and two drinks for about $25.00/pass. You save yourself $25.00 at least when you go to see a movie using a pass.

Whenever I have energy and often even when I don’t, I do yoga. It stretches sore muscles out and it gives your body flexibility. I live right next to a couple of parks so I also enjoy walking in and around the park area a few times a week.

When I have money to do it, I enjoy shopping in-store and online. It depends on what I am looking for as to whether I buy it online or in-store. Often, online shopping is cheaper but it isn’t cheaper if you end up with items you don’t wear or don’t use.

Once or twice a week I see a friend and we do something such as have wine, coffee, see a movie, go for dinner, etc. At times I go out to a coffee shop to write in a different setting on my own.

 I do stuff with my Mom as well and we have lunch, visit my Baba, go shopping, or go to an event such as The Women’s Show, or a Craft Show at the Agricom. I went to Make It Edmonton a couple of times this year and liked it a great deal.

Most of the time, I spend a lot of hours writing. For as long as I can concentrate, I write.


©Mandibelle16. (20106) All Rights Reserved

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Thoughts on May and Beyond


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Each month I try to give you guys a bit of an update on my life. It’s been a while since I have been able to sit down and think about things.

April was extremely busy, writing a poem a day for National Poetry Writing Month. As I wrote each day in accordance with the prompt provided on the website, I also tried to do various forms of poetry. This is continueous with the poetry journey I have been on this year, learning new types of poetry from Shadow Poetry.

 I found my first attempts at new kinds of poetry frustrating at times this month, because I was having to write poems using a prompt, and write on weekends too. I think I wrote the best poetry going back to types of poetry I had used before and had had the chance to refine over the months in 2015 and 2016. 

As much as I love April’s NaPoWriMo, I’m glad it is done and I can focus on some other aspects of writing. I was scraping the bottom, the last few poems I wrote for the challenge. Kudos to those of you who both did NaPoWriMo and the A to Z challenge. 

I think my biggest concern lately has been with weight put on from medications in the past, which I haven’t been able to lose. I had a good idea I would gain another ten pounds off last July’s medication switch. I don’t regret doing the changes in hospital, but I would really love it if I could even get my body weight down twenty-pounds. 

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A good friend of mine from university L, started on this new supplement program. It’s not only about losing weight but getting proper vitamins, having more energy, and feeling healthier all around. I’m careful where supplements are concerned because sometimes they react with medication. However, I brought an ingredients list to my pharmacist and he said it was fine. You would hope so, as all the ingredients are naturally sourced. 

Initially, I lost 5 lbs and 8.5 inches on what they call an 8 day detox. I was happy with this result, but once I started back on their day 9 to 30 diet, I gained back the weight. Now I find, I have also gained back inches and put on a couple pounds on the weightloss meal plan. I’m frustrated because I actually know many people including my friend, who over months kept losing weight on the weightloss plan and on these supplements.

My friend said try increasing your protein and I tried it last week but as I feared, the protein increase made me put on a couple pounds and inches. So, I went back to smaller amounts of protein except for the last meal of the day, so I remain full at night. I have issues with finding myself ravenously hungry at night. Right around 11:00 pm to 1:00 pm, my stomach thinks it needs food now. I guess, I will have to convince it otherwise. 

The weight issue is extremely discouraging when I’m doing the same plan as my good friend, but can’t lose the weight. I got into a bad habit after a month and half of trying to lose more weight. I began eating some delicious calorie loaded food because I was not losing weight anyways. But stepping on the scale a moment, changed my mind about continuing this trend.

On a good note, I have found a supplement I take called xyng, to be an extremely excellent product. It actually increases my energy. I take one pill in the morning and one in the afternoon. It is supposed to help with a person’s metabolism and appetite, but I haven’t noticed those effects. But I do notice I have much less energy without the xyng so I plan to keep taking it with a couple of other supplements from the product line I liked for the health benefits. I’m planning on carefully sticking to the meal plan for the next while, to see if it goes better. It may or may not.

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Between poetry writing, I have been going full-out trying to finish the first draft of How Was Last Night For You. I’m a chapter or two away from finishing the novel in first draft. Last week I became stuck at a pivotal point in one of the main character’s story. I’m going to think about it a bit before continuing on. The ending needs to be strong as well as set me up for book two in the series. Yes, there will be a second novel, I have been considering it for some time and once this one is mostly complete, I will begin planning book two. 

I have been researching and saving articles on publishing books and a generous blogger even provided me with information for a couple of fantastic editors. Right now I have a fellow writer looking my work over, it’s a huge job. When he said editing it  ‘line by line’ he meant it. I am hoping I’m able to provide him with the same quality of feedback with his writing projects. Having that feedback has helped me a great deal in regards to writing short pieces of flash fiction, especially with meaningful dialogue.

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I’m also participating in a challenge called #Maydays and the generous host K.L. Caley, provides a prompt each day. Thus far, I have chosen to write fiction, heavy on the dialogue as I am attempting to ‘show‘ verses ‘tell‘ in my writing and working on developing better dialogue. I’d be interested to hear what other writers think about these terms. Do you agree there should be more ‘showing‘ than ‘telling‘ in a work of fiction? 

Another aspect of my blog I would like to work on is having a couple of guest bloggers a month. I’m interested in people as a writers and I have some interview questions I can email to that effect. Why you write, how you started etc. If you would like to be a guest blogger/writer please comment on this post or go to the top of my blog page, to the contact me page.

As for the rest of life, I’m back to reading a lot again. I’ve forgotten how reading a great book can go quickly and find myself moving through different genres of books with speed. It’s not that I’m not absorbing the books information; I’ve always been a fast reader, when I’m feeling well and can concentrate. I will update you guys on some of the books I like sometimr in May. As well. I will have new beauty posts and some other posts unrelated to writing in the coming months. I’ve been unable to do these kinds of posts  lately, due to having to keep up with my novel writing.

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I spent a wonderful night out attempting to paint a picture and drinking wine with some friends at a small wine place downtown. It was a lot of fun despite not being able to make my painting look like the one the instructor had painted. I’ve never been an ‘exact’ painter, I go with the flow. 

Also, I saw the third movie in the Divergent Series of movies called Allegiant. I’m not entirely sure if this is part 1 or if there is a part 2? I thought they were breaking the third book Allegiant, into two parts for the movie but perhaps I’m wrong? If you know let me know 🙂 

I’m looking forward to Alice Through the Looking Glass, this summer in theatres, the new Captain America and Iron Man film, a new addition to The Pirates of the Caribbean movies with Orlando Bloom in it and the newest Harry Potter-like movie coming out in Fall, set in the 1920’s. 

As for TV, I’m anticipating a twisty finale for Scandal and hopefully, something big on Grey’s Anatomy since last season was not an exciting ending, more of a tying up of loose ends with McDreamy’s death a few episodes before the Finale. Also, I’m looking forward to watching Season 5 of Downton Abbey and Season 2 of The Fall on Netflix. 

As for other things, enjoying walking in the river valley in the warm spring weather. It’s not so hard now without a dog, I’ve grown used to it. Also, doing yoga as always. I think if you have trouble with exercise or are starting trying to be fitter, yoga or Pilates is excellent in keeping your body toned and flexible. Just start at an easy beginner level and repeat it until you can do the exercise pattern for longer or the moves become too easy. Then move up from there. If it is never easier add another beginner routine in for variety and remember even doing a small amount of exercise, you are lapping everyone on the couch!

Additiinally, a quick congrats to one of my besties Tara for becoming engaged in Hawaii last week. Also, since I probably didn’t mention her, congrats to one of my other besties Shannon for her engagement earlier this year! So excited for you both! 

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Thanks for reading!  

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©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.


A List Portrait Of Myself.


Thank You to La Duchesse D’erat for hosting this weeks list prompt. The list prompt for this week is a portrait of who you are.


Eating – For the most part a lot of protein and green vegetables. I am supposed to increase my protein because I’m not getting enough and am not losing weight because  I’m eating too little protein.

I’m not sure about this advice, but it is what my coach says from the supplement system I am on. I’ll have to check at the end of the week. Hopefully, I haven’t gained weight.

For protein I like greek yogurt, pecans, almonds, avocado, chicken breasts and thighs, occasionally pork or beef, and eggs.


Drinking – “Water, water everywhere but not a drop to drink.” – “Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner”

Kidding though. There is much water I’m supposed to drink. I have about five or six glasses of eight ounce each day, more if I can. Every few days I like a glass of milk or a Pepsi.


Watching – Scandal! It’s my favourite show and so exciting. Olivia can’t go anywhere near Jake and ruin her father’s plans of getting him into the Oval Office, or he’ll slit Jake’s throat. Olivia broke Jake’s heart so he wouldn’t die. All the candidates are being gathered for election for the new President after Fitz. It will be interesting who makes it into the Republican and Democratic leadership position on the show. Funny enough, there is a Donald Trump like character on the show.

Also love – Grey’s Anatomy, Vampire Diaries, Season 5 of Downton Abbey, and The Catch.


Going – Who knows at this point. I would like to take a small vacation somewhere. I’m thinking Vancouver at this moment.


Reading – The Shadow by Sylvain Reynard. Excellent writer. If you haven’t read the writer’s first series beginning with Gabriel’s Inferno, it’s awesome and has three books to it. This is the second book in his vampire series, which is connected to his first series. Yes, they are romance type books but have a lot of theology and paranormal aspects as well.


Texting – I’m kind of in a constant state of texting.


Playing – “Stairway to Heaven” by Led Zeppelin. A classic which never grows old.


Working – 1. On blogging and my different prompt challenges. This Month I’m doing #Mayday prompts from C.L. Kaley of new2blogging, please join in doing her prompts each day in May. Link to her page after each prompt.

2. Finishing How Was Last Night For You the last few chapters in first draft. I need to write the happy ending then, the first draft is done.

3. Working on editing in a major way, the first chapter of How Was Last Night For You. Going to be making sure, every sentence should be there for each chapter.


Listening – Well besides to my IPAD music, the Edmonton Global News is on. Bad fires in Ft. McMurray, Alberta. The entire city has had to evacuate. It’s awful!


Thanking – God, I don’t live in Ft. McMurray and praying for the people who have to leave their homes, probably to come back to nothing but scorched debris. I don’t think insurance covers this fire damage unless they find out it was arson. ‘Acts of God,’ aren’t covered by insurance. Prayers for them please!


Buying  – I paid my cellphone bill.


Planning – I want to finish my novel off in first draft. Then I need to edit and do more research on publishing. Also, need to figure out the vacation thing.And I need to spend a few days reading books, instead of writing them.


Visiting – My Grandma I hope for Mother’s Day. Also, my Great-Godmother sometime soon.


Wondering – Why is this list so long?


Feeling – Tired and frustrated. I’m trying to write and people keep talking to me all day long. I love the late hours when people are asleep and I can write in peace 🙂


©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.

 

A List of My Favourite Kiss Scenes Currently


1. Grey’s Anatomy Derek and Meredith — Too Many Good Kisses to Count. This video I found on YouTube has a bunch of kissing moments between the couple before Derek died.

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2. Scandal – I’m on Team Jake.  I think Olivia and Jake are much better together, no offence Fitz – here’s a steamy make out  scene when Olivia and Jake take off for an Island, to escape Washington. DC

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3. Gilmore Girls – Rory and Logan – First Kiss. Loved this show. Logan was my favourite. I hope in the upcoming Netflix series Rory ends up with Logan.

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4. 50 Shades of Grey Christian and Ana – First Kiss in the elevator, “F$&! the Paperwork.” 

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5. James Bond: Casino Royale James Bond and his Romance with his only love Vesper.

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Just a reminder if you can’t see an of these YouTube videos go into my blog to see them. Thanks

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Also thanks to La Duchesse D’erat for a prompt to do a list about our favourite kisses.


Comfort Zones


There was a quote I read last night on Pinterest that has stuck with me today: “Great things never came from comfort zones.” It was coincidental that I came across this quote when I did because I was thinking about my life and believing that I am a little to comfortable right now. Some of that is not by choice, I still struggle with the new medication my doctor put me on this summer. I struggle with sleep and with energy during the day such to the point some days I wake up and know I won’t be doing much that day. But also, I recognize that I have to push myself on those days because sometimes if I just get up and go out, I start to feel better. 

I believe removing ourselves from our comfort zones is truly a way to bring new and exciting things to our lives. If we don’t push the line a bit, we never see what could be on the other side. I have really hoped to make new friendships and meet new people in my life. The trouble is sometimes I can’t keep up with new commitments. It’s a balancing act that I seem to always be playing. But just the same through social media I have been meeting new people. 

It is difficult to explain my situation to new people. A lot of people can’t handle a person who can only be out for a few hours and only some of the time. It hurts when you want to be a dependable person but cannot be. It hurts when you are valuable for a night but not valuable enough for a relationship, be it romantically or just for a friendship. But I’m learning to deal and I know that the kind of people I want in my life are authentic kind people, understanding, and funny. 

Some of pushing my comfort zone has come in just dealing with bureaucracy. I have been taking this course on ‘Residential Furnishings.’ But I can’t attend the class so I need a note taker. Finding one has been difficult and a month of classes have gone by. I feel like I have missed so much already and hope I can catch up. The first exam is October 20th. The office that helped me out with this at the U of A are not very knowledgable or helpful. They tried to have me go through student loans and the courses I’m taking aren’t part of credit courses, it’s adult education. I went through a whole process of discovering that and still haven’t got a note taker. So, I’m frustrated but determined I’m going to do this course so I can get my certificate. 

Also, yeah new shows on TV. I love TGIT. Grey’s Anatomy, How to Get Away with Murder, and Scandal. I’m upset that Scandal doesn’t seem to be on any Canadian networks, it’s my favorite show. But I watched all last season of How to Get Away with Murder so I’m caught up for that show. Do you have any favorite TV shows? How do you try to stay out of your comfort zone?

Thanks for reading! 

Many Words


12-relationship-truthsIt it the brightest sunniest morning I can remember seeing in a long time. Snow sits lightly on the trees sparkling in the sunshine and the ground is about 5 inches deep with snow. It is cold outside, but not that cold for November in Edmonton and I can feel the burn of the wind against my cheek as I step outside to let my dog out and then wait for her by the door while she does her business.

Later, she is snuggled up to me on the couch, an old dilapidated couch that we’ve waited months for the new replacement to arrive, but it hasn’t arrived yet.  Nikki and my knitted blanket make me feel so cozy on the love seat and Nikki refused for a good 10 minutes to let me stop petting her. She is now what we call “tits up” turned into my legs on the seat of the couch and I am sitting here thinking that I just feel the urge to write but I’m not exactly sure what will develop out of my blog today.

I’m having a great day so far. I awoke with energy and slept enough and I was not too tired that I had to go back to bed like some mornings. The sunshine makes the biggest difference. It just hi-lights everything it touches and the sky is the deepest bright country blue I have ever seen. And there are no expectations on me today. I just have the opportunity to write to you, my readers, do some exercise, and if I wish, sort through some of the clothing in my taller dresser.

At the moment I am watching TV, talk shows: Marilyn Denise, Kelly & Michael, followed by The View. It is interesting to learn about the actors behind the movies and TV shows I have watched the night before and the week before. My new favorite show on Sunday’s is Betrayal.

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It’s about a 2 people, a man who works for a mob boss and is married to the mob bosses daughter and has 2 teenage kids, and a woman who is married to a public attorney with a little boy. The man and the woman meet at a party one night and subsequently start running into each other and end up having an affair. They love each other, but they also love their spouses and don’t know how their situation will ever work out. The man is a lawyer for the mob boss and was raised by him when his family was killed in a construction accident at one of the mob bosses sites. He was best friends with the mob bosses son TJ who is mentally disabled after a car accident.

TJ ends up accused of his Uncles murder after he is the last person seen with him. But the woman’s husband, the public attorney, even though he is pretty sure TJ did not murder his uncle, uses the event to go after the mob boss and his family and the man (Jack) is the mob bosses head guy at his business. There is a big competition going on between the lady’s public attorney husband and Jack and at the end of the last show he just figured out that his wife is having an affair, and with Jack, his nemesis.  I love it.

My other favorite show is Scandal by Shawnda Rimes but if you are looking for some other excellent TV shows  Grey’s Anatomy, The Vampire Diaries, The Blacklist, Chicago Fire, Once Upon a Time, Revenge, and Grimm are also excellent shows. But I used to never watch TV besides a couple of programs and some Oiler’s games. Now it seems since I require so much time to rest that I have lots of time to watch TV. I also read, but I also used to do that a ton more then I ever watched TV. Now I read, but I cannot do it for as long as I could read before so I guess I watch TV  more instead.

Otherwise, my boyfriend is up in Edmonton this week and I am really looking forward to seeing him so much. It has only been one week because he had a neck injury a week ago, since I have seen him. He is fine now but it’s a treat to see him again so soon.

I am anxious about our future now that we have charted a course for our relationship. Inside I wonder if maybe I am walking intoshutterstock_60504643-1024x682 something without checking out my other options first. But then I think I’ve got the best of all options right here. But I still can’t help thinking that I don’t know what else is out there because this my first real relationship. But then for about 10 years before that, all I found was the odd date or two with some mostly weird guys, A couple of times I found a connection between some guy but often some guy just wanted to mess around with my head.

My boyfriend doesn’t do that to me. We fit, so when I have second thoughts I remember that, the happiness he brings me, and I think there is no one else better out there than my man. But we have challenges ahead and those are what scare me. Every couple does but our challenges are unique across religion and culture. And I would really love it if he could just get along with my mom, dad, and brothers well. He has barely met them so that would really ease a lot of the feelings I am having if that could happen.

Weighing-Scales-1Also, embarking on a second stage in my health crusade, to find the physical reason why I have no energy and other symptoms gives me some sort of hope. And I believe I can be a healthier girlfriend and healthier person just so I can be more involved in my life and give more back to the world. My doctors appointment is the following week after this week for that and I am really hoping I have something such as hypothyroidism that we have just missed before and not Chronic Fatigue. It would be so much more hopeful if there is a way I can start to get better from a lack of energy. But if constant fatigue is what I must expect most of my life than I guess at least I know what I have. Anyways, I don’t want to write about too much health related stuff today. I think I maybe say too much about it.

Otherwise, I can’t wait to get paid, I have almost all my Christmas presents picked out to order. I have found some nice things at The Bay, Sephora, Anthropologie (for me), and I will have to pick something for Azdine maybe with him this weekend. Besides a visit to my favorite store DeVine Wines, then I should be done. I think since I bought a bunch of gift bags and Christmas cards last year I should be even pretty good for those. Well, maybe a few gift bags, tissue paper, and cards and I’ll be good.

Anyways, that’s what’s up. Sorry not too interesting I guess. But I can ramble on a long time no?