Welcome to whatever is on my mind!

Some people use the term "nonsense" but I prefer to use the phrase "uncommonly sensed" because it's more reflective of creative types.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Guidelines for Thanksgiving Dinner Conversations

In order to make the family holiday go a little more smoothly, I've created a list of acceptable and unacceptable topics of conversation for the Thanksgiving dinner table. Some of these are specific to my family, but these lists may serve as a guide for you to create your own handouts for the holiday.

Acceptable topics of conversation at Thanksgiving:

1. The weather. 
2. Amy’s new shoes. 
3. The awesomeness of John Lennon and Freddie Mercury (but only if Amy has had less than three drinks).
4. The parade.
5. Gargoyles

Taboo Topics for Thanksgiving Dinner

1. Your last doctor’s appointment (some of us will be eating, you know).

2. Any stories related to having your tires rotated (Dad — thanks, but we’ve got these memorized).

3. School grades. Anyone caught bragging about his or her grades will be publicly forced to eat the gizzards.

4. People who have not set the house on fire are not allowed to discuss the times those of us did so. However, people who have set the house on fire may discuss their respective events with one another at their own discretion.

5. Lucky Charms. Some of us were emotionally scarred by this cereal as a child.

6. The awesomeness of John Lennon and Freddie Mercury (but only if Amy has had more than three drinks — because then she’ll cry that they’re gone and nobody wants to deal with a weeping drunk sobbing face down in her mashed potatoes).

7. Politics.
I also welcome suggestions for additions. Please post your recommendations in the comments below. Thank you.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Poetry Thursday - Falling

Today, I have decided, should be a reflective day. And so here is a piece for you to read on this Poetry Thursday. Enjoy and reflect upon it accordingly.



if i die


out of a plane,

i hope the sky

is a deep autumn orange


i look

good in orange

and i want

my last moments

to be beautiful.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Writing Chronologically

One of the first mistakes a lot of new writers make is thinking that a book has to be written from the beginning to the end. It certainly needs to read well that way when you finish it, but that’s not always the best way to write it.  I work with words similar to the way I paint: I  block in broad sections with ideas and then begin developing the details.

I don’t always start writing my books at the beginning because sometimes you don’t know how something should start until you know exactly how it’s going to end. I always start with a concept. That concept is the center of the book and I work from there. That doesn’t mean that there isn’t a chronological order to the plot: it simply means that I work outside of it when I’m structuring the story.

John Irving always writes the last sentence first. Those finals words are like a beacon that he steers toward with his writing. This is a great way to work because the final words can leave a lasting impression and if you write towards them effectively, then you can maximize the impression on the reader when they walk away from the book.

You live your life one day at a time and your book has to be written one day at a time, but you don’t have to write it in that order. Stepping outside of chronology may give you more perspective and strengthen your writing.