Happy Friday!

I have been waiting for the weekend since, well, since Monday. Maybe since before Monday.

I think a little dancing,

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reading,

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and baking might be in order. (Yes, I made that bread…last week…and I’m ready to make more.) ūüôā


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What are your plans to celebrate?

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Yes, Twice

We arrived early and scored an amazing parking space. I was floating on air, with anticipation the only possibility of bringing me back to my seat while reminders to silence cell phones played across a large screen.

I thought back to my experience reading the trilogy. The books spoke to me more than most books I have read and enjoyed–helping me see past fear and focus on the power of relationships, values, and choice.

Of course, I could hardly wait for the film’s opening night.

I purchased my tickets two weeks early. (I can’t remember the last time I’ve done that…if ever.)

The moment arrived, and the credits began to take their places on the screen in front of us.

When the film ended, though, I felt heavy and exhausted. I bemoaned the fact that I promised to bring two of my kiddos (who also read and enjoyed the books) to watch it. I wasn’t sure I wanted to sit through it again. I processed what reasoning I could find for my feelings…but was at a loss. ūüė¶

I spent the next day heavily in thought, wondering if the changes from book format to film adaptation were bothering me. I considered other books-made-into-films that I had seen as an adult, but I couldn’t shake the let down I felt from this weekend.

Finally, on my return trip to the theater the next evening, I put some pieces together. I was looking for an intimate experience, one of connection with characters, one which reminded me of the triumph of human spirit I recognized within myself as I read of their struggles cuddled in a blanket on my couch. I didn’t get that through my first theater experience.

I approached my second viewing more analytically. I felt much more closure and was able to process what I actually liked or didn’t like regarding the adaptation to film–and I can honestly say that I enjoyed the experience.

Yes, watching the film was so different from reading the book (isn’t it always?), but seeing the setting and characters take shape while experiencing highlights of the story again filled me with a greater appreciation for writers and those who direct and adapt to the screen. What an amazing process!

Overall, I would see Divergent again. Want to come with me?

Love…True Love

I remember laughing so hard my insides hurt when I first watched Peter Cook recite these famous lines:

I laughed even more when a dear friend of mine, who I dare say captured the essence of Peter Cook’s delivery of those lines, along with her own comedic flair, would recite those beloved lines.

“Wuv…troo wuv….”

Well, I am writing today because I have been considering “The Thing Called Love” (which, incidentally, was a movie I enjoyed back in the day but haven’t revisited for years). Before you go “blame it on your lyin’, cheatin’, cold, dead-beatin’, two-timin’, double-dealin’, mean, mistreatin’, lovin’ heart,” you might want to consider LOVE for a little while, too…and more specifically the opportunity or possibility for an eternal or timeless love….

I am not a big Twilight fan.¬† I haven’t read any of the books; I never waited in line or paid for a ticket to see any of the films.¬† I did, however, out of respect for cultural literacy, decide (maybe¬†at about the time New Moon was released) that I would probably ClearPlay most of the films by the end of the series.¬† As of last night, I have completed watching the films (mainly due to one of my children’s unlikely fascination with the franchise)…and as I have pondered what I have learned and the attraction of the story, I have some thoughts to share.

I believe in eternal love.  I believe that relationships exist beyond this life, and that we can be with our loved ones again who are currently separated from us because of death.  I also believe in the immortality of the soul.  I do not, however, believe in the reality of vampires (no matter what history might say about Abraham Lincoln hunting them) :).  Still, I think the medium of vampire culture serves a purpose to paint a picture of a loving, supportive family, with couples who honor vows to one another.

Could our disposable society learn anything from these messages?¬† (Here I would like to insert my belief that I do support the option of divorce in particular circumstances…but I think people often¬†throw away relationships that could be saved with effort and work much like they throw away their fast food wrappers and paper plates after dinner….)

I am also captivated by the story found in The Time Traveler’s Wife.¬† While I found the abundant profanity in the book offensive and skimmed over¬†some graphic sex scenes, I felt compelled to finish the book.¬† As I read,¬†the power of a committed relationship that did not bend to time taught me again and again.¬† Now, I do not believe in time travel (though I do find the¬†Back to the Future movies highly entertaining).¬† What draws me to this¬†story is the decision two people made to be together, to grow together, to live through challenges together, and to love each other fiercely.

I have heard that any two people committed to each other and committed to God can make a marriage work.¬† Not to say that some people aren’t more well-suited to each other…some are.¬† Still, committment is key in making a relationship work.¬† And, every day¬†anyone in a relationship wakes up each morning and makes a decision to stay with that person (or not).¬† This decision may not be consciously made, but it is made nonetheless.¬† And the decision is yours to make your love…[a] true love that will stand the test of time (and maybe even eternity).

Relief and Writing

As many of you may well know, I completed my goal to write 50,000 words of a novel in thirty days¬†for NaNoWriMo last November.¬† And, up until this week, I had edited about 20 pages of my (so far) 198 page manuscript.¬† I have been devoting more time to working on it as of late…and I am continually reminded of what I learned last November 30.

I DON’T KNOW HOW TO END A NOVEL.

Thank goodness I have plenty of editing to do before I get to revisit that ending endeavor I performed¬†toward¬†the end of last year.¬† As NaNoWriMo is a purely creative effort, I have found that minor characters have different names throughout the text as I reread it, and I’ve found some continuity issues with which I am dealing…and some character development…and so on…and so forth.¬† ūüôā¬† But, as I work on it, I am reminded of the energy I feel when I am writing as well as the happiness I feel when I am typing away at my screen, figuratively painting words onto a page…sillouhettes of lives and stories.

Also, I would like to say HUZZAH as I think I have made it through the enormous stress bubbles which have been clouding my vision and invading my ability to see clearly (and I am BEYOND THANKFUL).¬† I want to give each of you a shout-out for all your support and help through these past couple months (which have been anything but easy for me).¬† After some events and visitors this past weekend, I came home from errands Monday morning, cuddled with my preschooler on the couch, and we slept for a glorious two hours.¬† Upon waking, my head was clear, my vision was focused, and my energy was tangible.¬† As I have continued through this week, I am still feeling happy (mostly) and satisfied.¬† My perspective has enlarged, and I am moving forward (after a quite stagnant several weeks).¬† I am feeling relief!¬† And I am writing!¬† And…guess what?¬† I am oh-so-happy!!!!

ūüôā

The Product of NaNoWriMo 2012

As promised, I am recording for posterity (and my lovely blog readers) the lessons I have learned over the past weeks since I made a spontaneous decision to enter NaNoWriMo 2012.¬†¬†(I was serious blogging about whether or not to do it…having done no outlining or¬†anything…and just did it on a whim thanks to the encouragement¬†of a few lovely voices!…& I thank you sincerely Marissa¬†and Darcy!)¬† Here we go, in no particular order…:

  • Prayer works.¬† (Not that I didn’t know this prior to Nov. 1, 2012; it was just reaffirmed to me….)
  • Productivity produces energy.
  • Support from those you love is vital for success!
  • Goals can be accomplished…(and a lot more, too!).
  • I CAN WRITE!!!!!
  • Being purely creative is energizing.
  • My family, friends (& I) love me!
  • Even with road blocks (scheduling, sickness, holidays, etc.)~keep moving forward….! (See Meet the Robinsons for more info on this topic.)
  • God is aware of me and loves me!
  • I HAVE A VOICE (and an important one, at that)!
  • I can cultivate creativity…and a writing mood.
  • Breaks are important.¬† (I took every Sunday off…and a few other¬†Thursdays sprinkled in the month, as well.)
  • When all else fails, have a dance party with¬†the kiddos (…or with friends…or by yourself…)!
  • Have munchies around always.¬† (I had a Swiss Cake Roll emergency…luckily for me, I did have some left-over Double Stuf Oreos which satisfied the chocolate/creamy craving.)¬† ūüôā
  • Buy back your kids’ Halloween candy and use it for NaNoWriMo¬†snacks…and to last until NaNoWriMo is over and you start making¬†Christmas candy.
  • Spotify created great mood music when I needed it…and was a great resource for the karaoke scene I wrote.
  • You can always edit later.

In the past few days, I have listened to some of the songs on Alicia Keys’ new album–and the chorus and several lines¬†of this song¬†resonate with me.¬† I do feel like a “Brand New Me.”

The only time I recently felt this kind of growth and accomplishment is when I worked and trained for (& completed) a half-marathon with a dear friend of mine…something about measurable success.¬† Hopefully, though,¬†I will write more novels than the number of races I’ve run…! ūüôā

Hugs!

Goodbye, November…& NaNoWriMo

I just have one picture to post today…and I will work on my recap (to post sometime next week) of the past month’s adventures!

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I did it!!!!! ūüôā

Thank you for all your words of encouragement, likes, and support!

Hope you have checked out the Facebook page, and know you are always welcome to follow me on Twitter!

Hope you have a glorious weekend…I will be walking on clouds until who knows when…!¬† ūüôā

Do You NaNoWriMo?

As November’s end is fast approaching, I am behind a bit on my word count (last week brought to our home some illness as well as the holiday that many of you also celebrated).¬† As of this moment, word count weighs in at 42,644, which, on my word processing program, equates to 153 pages.¬† Over dinner a week or so ago with some friends, he joked, “Why don’t you just go back to school and use it as a dissertation?”¬† Some day….

By the end of yesterday, the magic number according to 1,667 words per day would be 43,342…and at the close of today, the goal is 45,009.¬† Since I had several 800 (maybe) word days during the holidays, and I know I can pull a 4,000 word day (I have already once this month), I’m feeling the energy (even though I’m still below goal) of the magnitude of finishing this amazing feat.¬† I’m¬†compiling a list of lessons learned this month, which I hope to post at the conclusion of November.

And, I’m wondering how I am going to celebrate….

And I want to give you a shout-out to keep writing!¬† Your words have a powerful effect on your soul and the lives of others…even if you think you are writing in a private journal or blogging in your own little corner of cyberspace or¬†publishing books–YOUR WORDS ARE IMPORTANT.¬† Continue to develop your voice and use it–and share it with the world.¬† You have value beyond measure.¬† Feel that power and write with it!

Here is one of my favorite “raise your voice” songs:

Strip Me – Natasha Bedingfield