The Meaning of All These Eggs

“The egg is widely used as a symbol of the start of new life, just as new life emerges from an egg when the chick hatches out.”

Okay, so that’s straight from Wikipedia, and pretty much what I was thinking I’d find if I looked up what an egg symbolizes.

Found some more tiny eggs today. I don’t know why I keep posting them. I’m hoping there is some significance in this–other than the fact that it’s spring. I’m a bit of a Pollyanna if you haven’t noticed. So I’m going to enjoy all these newfound treasures and pretend there is some greater meaning to it all cause this is my blog and I’m allowed to dream. Right?

A close up picture. The eggs are actually quite tiny.

The nest was at the base of a very small fir tree.

If you look closely you'll see the eggs. What a great hiding place.

“Faith is putting all your eggs in God’s basket, then counting your blessings before they hatch.” ~~Ramona C. Carroll

A Second Life

My son recently sent me this picture in an email.. He said, “JWD Books on Barrington Street has thousands of books. Look which one I came across.”

It’s kind of nice to know that Bitter, Sweet will now be read by someone else. Kind of like getting a second life.

New Discoveries

A quick check yesterday on the robin’s nest left me feeling a bit sad. The nest was empty. Not an egg or baby bird in sight. I had hopes of getting a photo of the babies but it wasn’t meant to be.

As a consolation I’m posting eggs from a partridge nest we discovered today, and another nest that might possibly belong to an English sparrow but we’re not sure. I’m hoping these two mamas have better luck than mother robin especially since both nests are on the ground. Still, undoubtedly, there are survivors each year. I’ll be hoping. Unfortunately, I probably won’t have the opportunity to find out for sure. I don’t expect to be back in that area again for quite a few months. Perhaps it is just as well.

A partridge nest nestled beneath a fir tree.

Possibly an English sparrow nest.

I’ve also discovered some older writing files recently with stories I abandoned a number of years ago. I’m in the process of reading the stories and deciding if I want to start working at them again. One of the stories I stopped working on because someone made a remark that discouraged me at the time. The person who made the remark wasn’t trying to be cruel. It really had nothing to do with the story. The person was my mum. She was worried that the story would one day be published and she didn’t like a few of the words spoken by one character in the story.

Looking back now, I never should have let her read my WIP. It wasn’t fair of me to ask her opinion. I was expecting an unbiased opinion and I now realize she wouldn’t have been able to give it to me. Today, those same remarks wouldn’t have discouraged me from continuing. I’ve also discovered that I’ve gained much more confidence in my writing. It took some time for me to get to this point, but I now know that nothing anyone can say will stop me from working on a story that I feel is worth working on.

Have you made any new discoveries recently?

Don’t Let Crappy Keep You Down

We’ve had a bit of a crappy spring here in Nova Scotia, and of course we’ve been grumbling. There have been scarcely had any sunny days in May, and April wasn’t much better. Still, we have to count ourselves fortunate that we haven’t been plagued with floods, fires, tornadoes or earthquakes. Really, what right have we to grumble with all that’s going on in the world around us? There is so much for us to be grateful for.

Last week I won two books by entering online contests. Our son also graduated from university on Friday. Then too, I won on the lottery! That’s right, a whopping 5 bucks, but a win no less. There is a lot in my life to feel grateful for.

Today, as I wandered around outside, I also felt gratitude for all the new spring flowers and blossoms that are opening up. Just think, in spite of our crappy cold damp weather, they still recognize that it is spring. They’re out there doing their part without complaint.

The same could be said for us. In life, we are often plagued with difficulties. Things don’t turn out the way we want them to. We have to work harder than we’d hoped to achieve our desires, and we become disappointed when failure smacks us upside the head again. Why can’t things go along smoothly? Why can’t we get the things we want in life?

Still, there is usually something for us to look toward with gratitude. It doesn’t have to be something huge. It doesn’t have to be something as remarkable as having one of your kids graduate from university. What’s wrong with winning a book or even five dollars? What’s wrong with the sight of spring blossoms, their sweet aroma filling the air around us?

When discouragement sets in, and we’re ready to give up, don’t forget to acknowledge the good that is already there. When rejection comes my way, it’s so easy for me to forget about all the times an editor sent word that my work has been accepted. Remember that one disappointment should not take away from all the positive things that have come our way. Yet, I will admit, it is easy to forget when we’re down there in the pit of despair.

Sometimes we just have to dig our heels in further and keep on going once we’ve tried our disappointment on for size. Got to remember that it’s okay to try on the ugly things just to see what it looks like, but no way are we going to take that ugly thing home with us to keep.

So, here are a few blossoms for you and for me. A reminder that, even though things may be crappy, life goes on. We’ll still get where we want to go eventually. The apple blossoms don’t seem to realize that the weather’s been cold and dismal here in Nova Scotia. They’re still willing to show up regardless of the weather. So, how about you?

Robin’s Nest

Just wanted to share something I found today.

This is why I never get tired of nature.

Have You Got Trouble?

“Every writer I know has trouble writing.”
Joseph Heller

Found this quote today. I nodded. Feels true– some days more than others. Okay, so writing doesn’t always feel like you’re being dragged through a knothole backwards. Sometimes the words flow smoothly and ideas jump onto the page, but there are times when you come upon those brick walls. Ouch! Those brick walls kind of hurt.

Last year I hit a brick wall. I was working on a new young adult novel. Things got off to a great start and I was totally into the story. Then one day I looked at what I was writing and became quite bored by it all. I couldn’t even be sure if what I’d written was complete drivel or not.

Sometimes boredom strikes me quite suddenly when I’m working on a story. It’s as if I can’t muster up the enthusiasm to keep going. Maybe I don’t know my characters well enough, maybe the plot feels stale, or maybe it’s just me being cranky and hard to get along with. Doubt starts drifting in. Is there any point in continuing? Does my writing suck? Are my characters one-dimensional? At that point I either decide to give myself a break from the story or else trudge on through.

Not every idea pans out but we can we give up too easily. You know, when the going gets tough…. And it’s likely to get tough at some point. It if doesn’t then you’re one lucky writer.

Sometimes we make it a bit too easy to back away from challenges. We don’t want to do what it takes to see our story through to the end. We abandon it, sometimes forever.

Luckily, the little break I took last year from my novel was exactly what I needed. Did I stop writing during that time? Not at all. I’ve got plenty of stories on the go, ones I like to work on in between times, and if all else fails I have some work that can use revising.

Sometimes taking a bit of a break is the right thing to do. We return to that stale piece of fiction with renewed enthusiasm.

A few months later, I returned to my WIP. I looked at what I’d previously written and decided I wanted to continue with it. I really liked my main character. I just had a lot of hard work ahead of me. Mind you, it still took some time for me to decide just how I was going to tell that story. I had to try different things to see which ones worked and which ones didn’t. Even after the story was written I couldn’t decide it the POV was just right.

Did I have trouble writing it? Oh yeah. I’m happy to say that I finally made it through to the end. Not only did I make it through to the end, I made it through with that same enthusiasm I had when I first started. Yay me!

Do you agree with Joseph Heller that every writer has trouble writing? What do you do when you’re experiencing trouble writing, do you trudge though your first draft or do you take a break?

New Blogger on the Block

Remember when you first started your blog and didn’t know a single blogger? I sure do. It was a bit of a scary undertaking, not to mention a bit lonely as you wonder if anyone is ever going to read your posts. Every time I hit “Publish” I felt a bit nervous.

I don’t usually do this, maybe because I’ve never thought to do it, but allow me to direct your attention over to a new blog Steve Vernon just started today. Friday the 13th ? Oh yeah. Steve’s a writer of of horror and ghost stories, so Friday the 13th sounds like a good time for beginning a new blog, don’t you think?

Recently Steve has penned a young adult novel titled “Sinking Deeper: Or My Questionable (Possibly Heroic) Decision to Invent a Sea Monster ”

I’ve read it and it’s great!

So head on over to SteveVernonStoryTeller and say hi! I bet he’ll appreciate it, being new to the blogging world and all.

Waiting on the What Ifs

One author I know openly admits to being nosey. She likes to get down to the bottom of things, find out just why people do the things they do, exactly what motives them. I love it that she admits to this (not everyone would). I’m sure it’s the spark that helps to ignite her imagination each time she sits down to write.

I usually think of myself as a live-and-let-live kind of person. I don’t often find that my curiousity has me asking, for example, why my neighbour is out digging in the ground during the middle of the night (okay to be honest, that one might have me wondering. I have my limits, but you get the picture.) I often see things that don’t make me question the why of it, but that’s just me. Where as, my friend says she constantly wants to know why.

I have come to understand, over the years, that most things do have a viable explanation we just don’t know what explanation is. In fact, we might never know and that’s something we have to accept.

I consider myself more of a “what if” kind of writer. I like to think of a situation and then sprinkle it with a magic dusting of “what if.” Life throws us plenty of curves that I like to think of as the “what ifs” in life. Say—we have a trip all planned to go to the zoo, but what if a bunch of animals suddenly broke out and started roaming around the city? What if they headed toward our house? What if we were the only one left on the planet capable of rounding up all the stray animals? What if there was one animal in the bunch who was devious and calculating?

See what I mean? For a writer, the “what ifs” are endless. I like to think it’s those very “what ifs” that make our stories, and our lives interesting. Seems just when we have everything planned out something comes along that we hadn’t expected. Hopefully, that “what if” is something we look at as positive, something so wonderful that we couldn’t even imagine it happening even in our wildest dreams. I think you’ll agree that those are the best “what ifs.” Showing up to totally delight us in a way that surpasses anything we might have planned.

At the moment I’m in the process of trying out a whole bunch of “what ifs” in my WIP. I know my characters well, know their basic situation, I’m just waiting for a storm of “what ifs” to rain down upon me. Then I’ll start sorting through them, deciding which “what if” makes for the most interesting situation. It’s a great place to be at the moment because I sure do I love those “what ifs.”

Do you often find yourself asking why when you see something unusual? Or do you accept things you don’t understand? If you’re a writer do you find yourself more often asking “what if” or “why” or is it a little bit of both?

Have any interesting and wonderful “what if” showed up in your life recently?

A Hopeful Sign

I’m just letting you all know about a new online magazine being launched today called, “A Hopeful Sign.”The idea of the site is to help spread hope, and I think most of you will agree that this is something we can all use more of in our lives.

Editor, Gary Doi, recently retired Superintendent of Schools in British Columbia, says he created –A Hopeful Sign- “Out of a deep desire and commitment to spread hopefulness to a wider community.”

Here is what Gary has to say about the magazine:

To the late actor, director and activist Christopher Reeve, hopefulness meant empowerment. “Once you choose hope,” he said, “anything’s possible.” We couldn’t agree more. In fact, we like to say: where’s there’s hope, there’s fire! Fire in the belly, that is. …The fire to muster up the courage, energy and determination to do what’s right and good. To persevere despite the odds. That’s why, as an all-volunteer group, we created “A Hopeful Sign”–a magazine blog for those who choose hope.” For those who want to live-learn-lead. For those who want to make a difference in the lives of others.

The magazine is filled with contributors from all over, including yours truly.

For those of you interested in checking out the site I’ve added the link –> A Hopeful Sign. I’d also ask that if you’d like to do your part in spreading hope, please share this link with anyone you think might be interested.

Personality

Whenever I look at this picture I see a pair of out-stretched arms bent at the elbows. Wild apples trees seem to have so much personality, their limbs are often gnarled and twisted, their gray bark dotted with holes. Seems these days I look at things differently, seeing the little bits and pieces of personality along the way, instead of always looking at the bigger picture.

It makes me smile to think of a large dark object my son and I once saw in a tree lot that we thought resembled a sasquach. It was, of course, only a tree that had blown over and uprooted. Not that we thought we were actually looking at bigfoot, mind you, but it was kind of fun to make-believe. Once we got a closer look, and was able to see it more closely, it no longer resembled a sasquash even from a distance. Go figure!

I love the way we can take something and dream it into being something altogether different. We all did that as kids each time we looked into the clouds and watched them shift and change.

The difference between someone who writes ,and someone who doesn’t is a writer takes every day life, twists and gnarls it together, adds little bits and pieces of personality, and then records it all. As writers, we come from many different walks of life, some of us are highly educated while others are not. Yet beneath it we are all just people, living, loving, and laughing like the rest of the world, and recording life as we go.. I suspect the rest of the world adds all those bits and pieces of personality to everyday life as well, they just don’t choose to write any of it down.

Whether or not you record all the places your imagination takes you, here’s hoping you all have a great Mother’s Day weekend! Oh and Happy Birthday to my baby who celebrates his birthday on Mother’s Day this year. Best Mother’s Day present ever!

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