Guest Bloggers

The mind can’t tell the difference . . .

Today’s guest blogger is the extraordinary Brad Yates, Emotional Freedom Technique Tapping (EFT) instructor. Reposted from his 8/19/2019 Email. Reviewing the Past In spite of all the encouragement to live in the present or focus on the future, most of us are likely to still spend a fair amount of time reviewing the past. And, more often than not, the moments we dwell on are not necessarily the highlights. It’s normal … but it isn’t without cost. Because the mind can’t tell the difference between something that is real and something that is imagined, just thinking about past troubles triggers the same chemical reactions and the same uncomfortable feelings. Given that we create our reality based on what we are feeling, you can see where this could be problematic. Each time we go through those unpleasant experiences, we hardwire those memories and feelings more firmly, making it more likely we’ll keep…

Guest Bloggers

Cross new thresholds into being creative.

Today’s Guest Blogger, Creativity Coach, Suzanne Murray, asks: DO YOU RESIST ENGAGING YOUR CREATIVITY? Suzanne’s thoughtful answer: Recently I got a note from one of my writing students saying that she was really enjoying writing when she managed to find the time. The three top reasons that people give for not being able to fully show up, move forward or change some area of their life are, “I don’t have enough time, I don’t have enough money or my health isn’t good enough.” On the surface these excuses appear valid and hard to argue with. In truth they always cover up some deeper resistance. When we really want to do something and commit to it we can always manage to find the time, the resources and a way to work around any physical limitations. Robert Olen Butler who won the Pulitzer Prize for his collection of short stories A Good Scent from…

Guest Bloggers

Tap into your wellspring . . .

Today’s Guest Bloggers Georgia James and Deborah Parrish write about: Tap into Your Wellspring of Inspiration: Get Off Your Butt and Write Want to know how to get the writer’s juices flowing? It’s simple—get moving. And your mind, body and spirit will be all the happier for it. Heaven knows our imaginations can sometimes feel a bit stale if we don’t avail ourselves to new or different surroundings and experiences. We were reminded of this after reading a recent article in the Press Democrat, The Sonoma County Bucket List: Everything you need to do in Sonoma County before you die (or move away), This fertile material provided us with new fodder on where to write, especially when we want to feel inspired in our own backyard.   One of our favorite things to do is to sit in a crowd of people we don’t know and make up stories about…

Guest Bloggers

Guest Blogger Suzanne Murray and the power of commitment.

Today’s blog post is by Suzanne Murray. THE POWER OF COMMITMENT Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love. It will not lead you astray. – Rumi   I’ve been thinking about the difference between trying and doing and how it applies to our creative lives.   Consider how it feels to say “I’m going to try to write a book versus I am going to write book.” The word try brings with it a lot of resistance and a sense of effort, whereas I am going to do it carries the sense “I can do this.”   Perhaps the most well-known line in the Star Wars movies is when Yoda says to Luke Skywalker “do or do not, there is no try.”   Yoda is encouraging Luke to commit fully because he know that if Luke is uncertain that he can achieve the goal,…

Guest Bloggers

Guest Blogger Frances Lefkowitz

Today’s guest blogger, Frances Lefkowitz, writes about the importance of family stories and keeping memories alive. Telling stories ‘round the table, can increase well-being, reduce anxiety and depression, reinforce feelings of closeness among family members, and build resilience for navigating life’s normal ups and downs. Stories about something good coming from something bad are particularly therapeutic. When something bad happens, but you find a way to use it to your advantage, you redeem (and transform) the negative experience. The tales need to be structured, with a beginning, a middle, and — most crucial — an end, a conclusion that makes sense of the situation and gives it meaning. Tips for getting the storytelling started: 1. Share photos: Albums, yearbooks, holiday photos, loose photos in shoeboxes. 2. Start and continue traditions. Rituals contribute to stories. 3. Share stories during mealtimes. Frances Lefkowitz has spent over twenty years writing and publishing. The…

Guest Bloggers

Submit. Yay or nay?

Excerpt from “Submission Control” article about submitting your writing to publications, in the March/April 2019 issue of Writers Digest magazine, by Dinty W. Moore. Sending your work to literary magazines puts you at the whim of editors—but there’s more in your power than you may realize. Every few months, ask yourself why you’re doing this [writing]. If writing, waiting, and facing rejection make you truly miserable, maybe you should stop. But if you don’t want to stop, if writing is necessary, like breathing, then change your way of thinking. The long wait, the long odds, the sometimes inscrutable aesthetic taste of the editorial staff: You have to put all of that aside and write new poems, essays and stories. And that’s a good thing. Because the more you write, the better you get. Dinty W. Moore is the author of the memoir Between Panic & Desire, the writing guide Crafting…

Guest Bloggers

Revision Is Your Friend. Really.

Guest Blogger Rachael Herron writes about one of my favorite topics: Revision: I’m in the middle of revision of a book, and I’m swimming in the water I love. What I adore about revision is this: I know the world. I invented it, after all! When I open the document, I’m right in the middle of something I understand. It’s much easier, for me, to drop in for hours and rest on the page. It’s also easier to come out of, to shake off. First drafts remain torture for me. Many writers love first drafts, and I can admit that sometimes, the writing of new words is glorious. You surprise yourself with a turn of phrase that you’re pretty sure is genius and has probably never been said before. The plot bends and a tree you wrote about comes to life and points a branched finger in a direction you…

Guest Bloggers

Send It!

Today’s post is by guest blogger, Guy Biederman      For years I wrote without sending my work out for publication. Publishing, and rejection, seemed rather beside the point. I wrote because I was a writer. Felt the pull, found the chair. Occasionally I’d send out a story. Some were published. I won a few contests. But mostly I was content with writing and teaching. I created a literary magazine, Bust Out Stories, and published books by others. One student called me a story midwife.      Two years ago, for whatever reason, I decided it was time to send out my work in earnest. I created a stable of revised stories and poems that felt ready to go and began to research and read — a lot. It was fun. I embarked on my own maniacal sending binge, sending out work every day, or at least several times a week.     …

Guest Bloggers

Activating Your Creative Goals

Creating The Impossible Today’s Guest Blogger is Bella Mahaya Carter. I have enjoyed her blog posts. I hope you do, too. Here is one of her inspirational stories. When I was a film student in the eighties, my then-boyfriend and now-husband, Jim, and I borrowed a professional ¾-inch video camera from school and spent a long, magical afternoon taping an interview with his beloved grandmother. When we finished we had two-and-a-half hours of raw footage that required editing, but we didn’t have the equipment. One day we’ll get around to this, we thought. A few years later, after we’d married and after his grandmother had died, we wanted to keep her legacy alive by sharing the footage we took of her with the family. We agreed it would make a great holiday gift for Jim’s siblings, aunts, uncles, and cousins. We had it transferred to VHS, but when we viewed it,…

Guest Bloggers

You can be your own genie.

What is it about your life that isn’t satisfying right now? Can you change that? Brad Yates, one of the top teachers of Emotional Freedom Techniques® (EFT), is today’s guest blogger. He wrote about “Granting Wishes Incrementally” in his November 2017 free monthly newsletter. Brad: Just for a moment, close your eyes, and imagine walking along a beach.  Imagine that you come across a lamp in the sand, and as you brush the sand off it, a puff of smoke emits from the opening, eventually growing and taking the form of a genie. “I will grant you any wish you desire. What is your command?” the genie says. So… if you could have a wish granted in this way, what would you ask for?  A huge sum of money?  A killer body? A dream vacation? Give it some thought.  Is that what you really want? Now consider this . . . Would…