Creative Minds Need More Than One Outlet

Yesterday I wrote one of the most emotional and info revealing scenes in my current book in progress. I’m always emotionally invested in my character driven stories, so writing this kind of scene always drains me emotionally and mentally. When I wrote the last word in the scene, I immediately sent the pages to my writing friend and mentor. Then I closed down the computer for a break.

This is when coloring comes into play for me. It is a stress reliever, a quiet change of pace to allow my brain to focus on a different kind of creativity. This is the coloring page I am working on. I still have to work on the gold portions of the sundial before continuing with the rest of the coloring. The colors I am using reflect the same colors I used in the opposite page which is the completed “flood of knowledge.” I like to use the same colors to make the completed book look harmonious.

Oh, and I received the feedback from my writing mentor. She told me I succeeded in showing the characters’ emotions and she liked it a lot! Whew! And the writing continues today with a fresh and rested mind.

The Well Pump and the Outhouse

I really love to write. When I was still in grade school, I enjoyed writing stories to entertain. What I didn’t understand then is how I was the one being entertained. I wrote funny things which made me laugh when the teacher asked me to read my story to the class.

My mother turned me on to the joy of escaping into stories when I was young. Growing up without my brother and sister created a longing in my heart for a different kind of life. I had a few friends but the “hollow” had less than ten families with children my age. Not all of them lived close enough for visits until we were in high school and had a little more freedom.

Books took me into different worlds and I began writing stories in my head. My friends and I didn’t have hobbies. We played outdoors, along the railroad tracks, in the woods, following the bank of the creek which meandered into eternity.

I was six when I began to weave stories making my friends be different characters and we would ad lib our parts. At that time I lived with my grandmother and grandfather and only saw my mother about once a year. There was always a mother and child. I insisted on being the child, wanting but not realizing I craved a normal family life.

When I was eight, I moved to the “hollow” and lived with my mother, my new father and new grandmother and grandfather. Life was different. There were more people, but it still wasn’t the kind of family I’d imagined. I envied my friends. So the story weaving continued.

Now in my golden years, I see stories in my childhood years. These are the stories I’m writing today as part of a legacy I want to leave to my children and grandchildren. While it isn’t fiction, it is a wonderful walk into the past. A past where I pumped water into a bucket and carried it into the house, where I was frightened to go to the outside bathroom where spiders lurked. It is truly writing from the heart. It’s a world they will never see, and it was the best of times and the worst of times.

Perhaps it will become a published book in time. For now my goal is to have it published in time for Christmas this year.

Writing in 3D

Coming soon!

My writing mentor and I have had discussions about “being in the zone.” This is a phrase I’ve heard often in writing circles. It’s that place where we are totally absorbed in the words we write, a feeling as if we are actually living out the scene. This morning I thought a better term for this phenomenon is writing in 3D. Up close and personal with the characters, the setting, the action, the emotions, and invested in every second.

Yesterday in writing a critical scene, one filled with emotion that tore at my heart, I was transported to that point of writing in 3D. The words just kept pouring out. I knew what my main character felt, what the secondary character felt, the tension, the pain, the unveiling of truth. I wrote until the emotions so overpowered me I needed to step away and breathe.

It’s a good place to stop even if it is in the middle of a major scene. Why? We need to distance ourselves for our own health! At least, I do. I need a break. The scene keeps fresh in my mind and I’m unable to let it go entirely. This allows me to step back into the scene, rested, and ready to move the story forward.

I understand many people love to read and often think they could write a book. Believe me it isn’t as easy they might think. Writing is hard work. Good writing reaches deep inside our soul and pulls at the pain stuffed into tightly sealed rooms and pours out into various scenes in a new way. It’s a relieving of some things we thought we had let go of long ago. So it’s true a reader will find pieces of the author in each of their books. Not that the same things have happened, but moments where those same feelings once existed and bleed into the story.

Yesterday I posted on my Facebook Author Page about needing a hug after I stepped away from the scene I’d been writing. If you aren’t connected yet to my Facebook Page “Books by Carol Ann,” I am inviting you to look me up and either follow or like to keep up with the latest news and book releases. Maybe you can even give me a hug there!

The Aged Candy Box

This is the box my mother gave me in 2005. Inside were three letters written in pencil on lined notebook paper. They were sent by my father when he was in the Navy and shortly before he was killed by a Kamikaze pilot in a battle in the Philippine Islands.

I know this must have been a box filled with candy that he gave her. Once I found her sitting on the floor with this box, holding a picture and crying. I was around 10 years old. She handed me a picture, which was also inside the box, and told me it was my dad. She said he was the love of her life.

This will be included in the book I’m writing this winter. As I dig into history, I’m finding more information about his family. I never really knew them. I also didn’t know my biological grandparents on my mother’s side, only her aunt and uncle who adopted her after their deaths. I loved my grandma and grandpa a lot. I’ll be including stories of growing up with them in the book as well. So many stories to be told. I don’t want the history to die with me as most of it did with my mother.

Lifting my cup of tea and thanking God for the gift of opening history for me and showing me glimpses of life in the past. Often I’ve thought of writing a fictional book about my parents, weaving a love story during World War II. Maybe, if God is willing, that will come to fruition.

Lifting my cup of tea and wishing you all a day to think about your history and if you have shared enough with your family to be passed down through generations. God is good!

Emotional Research, Writing, and Blessings

Researching history for the book I’m writing to leave for my family has been very emotionally draining. My father was killed during the Battle of Ormoc Bay when a kamikaze pilot struck the USS Liddle, the ship he was on. He was just a few weeks shy of his 20th birthday. Finding a picture of him standing on the ship with other seamen really stuck me deeply. I am very excited to know that one day I will meet him in heaven. Funny how I disliked history and geography when I was in school. Now it is very interesting to me. I’m looking forward to spending the colder winter months working on this project, God willing!

The day has finally chased the darkness at 8:10am. There is little happening outside my office window. All is calm. The porch lights are still on and the sky is not lit by the sun. Yet, God has given a new day and I’m grateful for life and all this day might bring. Lifting my cup of tea and offering a prayer for God to smile upon our country, bless His children, and heal us as only He can.