About Compulsive Writer

I am a compulsive writer. I get an idea in my head and I have to get it on paper at that moment. I cannot wait a second. I have to write it down. I write without reservations. I write for God. It is my mission. I write from my humanity and imperfection. I am simply doing my utmost to follow His will for my life. I write what comes into my head without the advantage or disadvantage of censorship. So take it for what it is worth. If I write something you find worthy of comment, let me know. If you agree or not, tell me anyway. I want to know the reaction my writing gives you, the reader. I am God’s unique creation and I am smart, outgoing, happy, loveable, cute, dependable, creative, kind, full of crap sometimes, and I can keep you guessing about what kind of crazy stunt I am going to pull next! I count blessings, use my imagination, keep confidences, seek wisdom, value truth, accept differences, forgive, love truly, keep an open mind, pray without ceasing, write obsessively and read every book I can get my hands on. God is my compass, inspiration, constant, foundation on which all things in my life are placed. He is the ink in my well, the pages on which I write the words in my soul. This is who I am; an imperfect human called by God to write…I am a writer.

Why I Threw out my TBR List…Sort of….

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FullSizeRenderA librarian without a To Be Read list full of books is unheard of where I live. A bibliophile without a stack of TBR books and a list of recommendations of well over one hundred books is a myth. That person exists where the unicorns live.

I have a TBR list of about 265 books. I also have four stacks of books on the floor of my home library, two small stacks in the living room and a medium size stack on my nightstand. I will die before I read all my TBR books in all those locations.

I thought about the fact that every day I add to my list or a buy more books. I felt more and more insane at the thought of how I would possibly read all the books I own, much less manage to read through the list I have too. I guess I could weed the list. Maybe cut it down to manageable chunks of books. I could even categorize them and tackle the most loved and desired first. The amount of the time and work this would take was a daunting thought.

Then it hit me, just get rid of the list and read the first thing that I grab. Read what speaks to me at that moment in that moment. So I was looking at the list. Staring it down like one does a spider you are about to smack with a shoe. It was glaring back with its catchy titles, best seller snobbery and award-winning charmers. As I went to delete the list, I could not do it. I was thinking, what if a person recommends a book and I remember it is on my list. I may need the list to jog my memory. Do I own it? Is it at the library? What was that title? Was it the one with the blue cover? Deleting the list would not work for me. I think I actually saw my list give a smug smile of victory.

I came to the conclusion that I would not be a slave to the TBR list. I will use it for inspiration, but not as a dictator that will force me to read things I may change my mind about reading. My list did not own me, so I consciously changed my thoughts about my TBR list.

As a result, I feel free to read things I pick up at random. I don’t have to check the list to get permission to read it. I do not feel compelled to check the reviews before I read it. I just pick it up buy it or check it out from the library. Then I unapologetically read the book.  I do not feel obligated to write down every title someone passionately suggest even if they say I must read the latest book they can’t stop talking about. If it sounds interesting and I see it, I can pick it up or not. I am not obligated to consult the authority of the list. I am no longer a captive of the TBR list.

I am a free reader.

 

Delicious! by Ruth Reichl

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I absolutely adored this book. It is layers of romance with a side of yummy topped with a sprinkle of mystery. Billie Breslin leaves her family, moves to New York for a career as an assistant to the editor of Delicious a long standing well loved food magazine. She is swept up in the Greenwich Village food community. A deli proprietor and his family accept her as one of their own. When the magazine ceases publication she is retained to answer complaint letters by maintaining the magazine’s satisfaction guarantee. That is every recipe a success or you get a refund. Being in the building alone, after the other staff members have left, she stumbles on a hidden library and discovers a series of letters between a previous Chef contributor employed by the magazine and a 12-year-old girl during World War II. Normally I’m not fond of books in which part of the story takes place in letters, but  I found the letters from Lulu to James Beard to be charming. Billie falls in love with the story of the girl and she falls in love with an architect historian who is hired to appraise the magazine’s office building that is actually an old federal mansion.

There is so much more to this story that I feel I can’t share for fear of ruining it for you, dear reader. Please do not listen to the negative reviews of this book and read it. I almost missed this sweet story because of reviews I read. I am thankful I took a chance and experienced the deliciousness of it all for myself.

 

 

Example of Answered Prayer

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Anyone who knows me knows I am a pray-er. I pray for everything. Big things like the health of my friends and  little things like God please let me make it home safe. I pray all the time. When I am asked how do I know God hears? or How do I know he answers? Most of the time I say, I just do. I try to remember a specific example and sometimes it is hard to find one that I think is significant enough to make a point. Now I have an example that is clear and obvious. I know some will say it is just coincidence but I know that it is not. It is a direct answer to my prayer.

Two months ago I prayed for God to show me what path I should take in my life. There was a position at my library that would be better money but not what I really wanted to do. Like a lot of people, I have student loan debt that I really need help paying. I am not destitute but could use the extra money. I prayed about it and not receiving a clear answer from God, I applied anyway.

One day shortly after I applied a co-worker and friend asks me if I saw a posting for a job at a different library. I said no but I would look at it later. I didn’t think about it the rest of the day as I was busy working. It had just posted that day, so I thought I had plenty of time. When I got home my step dad had the newspaper with the same posting in it. He made my mom call me to tell me about it. OK, God, I am listening. I looked at the posting, prayed  and decided to apply. Still unsure.

A few days after the posting closed, the other library called me for an interview. I felt that I did alright but not my best interview. I found out that someone with significantly more experience applied and possibly interviewed too. That’s it, I stand no chance for the job, I thought. I told God I can’t worry about this… here, you take it and I went about my day as always. The position at my library came up for interview and I still didn’t feel right about it. I agreed to interview for it anyway.

That very day I was called by the other library director and offered the job. I felt sudden and immediate peace. I knew without a doubt that call was an answer to my prayer. It was sudden and unlikely, but it happened. I was offered the job and I took it on the spot.

That is how God works. He lets you exercise your free will while saying, I have this, listen to me, trust me. He is clear with answers. When the answers come your soul knows it is from God. Sometimes the answer is no and sometimes the answer is not what you expected. Either way, you know.

I started my new job this week. I am happier than I have been in my career in a long time and the frosting on the cupcake, the salary is more than my old job and that other one that I applied for. My new coworkers are like a big family and in that family I have discovered other prayer warriors too.  Yes I miss my coworkers from my old job, but I am still in contact with my friends. I still pray for them. My life is in God’s hands. I trusted Him and I have been fully blessed. I see His plan for me at my new library. There is potential for touching lives in big ways as a serve my new community.

Prayer works. Try it. I dare you.

Choose Your Battles 

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I am not sure who made this graphic but it’s spot on. I have tried to be as transparent as I can. What you see here on this blog and on my Facbook page is my digital fingerprint. I am who I am. I am not much of a mystery. What you see is what you get. I am not a fighter or drama queen. You won’t see me degrading someone in a comment section of any social media outlet. Even if I totally disagree with the opinion. I will try to express the truth in the situation without confrontation. There is so much negativity in the world these days and I am doing my best to keep it away from me.

I have decided to focus more on my inner being than looking at what is happening on the outside. I am writing everyday, which is challenging. There is this thing called life that gets in the way all the time. Oh and I have this other thing called a job that is necessary for other things like food and a roof.

I think that the battles we choose speak to who we are in our soul. What we fight for and about is what we value. If we value people we fight for them. If we value money we will fight for that. If we value love we will fight for it too.

The question is how to balance what we value in our souls to what we need in our life to survive. Sometimes those two things do not match and are not compatible. I think peace is found when we make the important stuff in our being and the needed stuff for our survival the same.

Something to think about during this time of year when the focus is on material things.

 

Blessed Beyond Measure

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We all have things that come up in our life that put us in a state of temporary anxiety. Any life changing event can send us in to turmoil. We have bills and no money to pay them. We argue with our spouse or significant other. Our teenager gets arrested or our daughter comes home pregnant. Our elderly parent falls breaks a hip. The triggers are not always negative. We get married. Buy a new dream house. Have kids or become grandparents. All if these things can disrupt our lives. These life things can always send us in to a tailspin of what ifs and whys.

We need to remember when life slams us with significant stress that we are blessed. The simple act of listing our blessings out in back and white can ground us and stop the anxiety from taking over. Sometimes it helps just to say, “I can’t handle this alone any more.” and tell some one. Acknowledge that there is this thing happening but here are the blessings despite the thing.

In the vain of practice what you preach. I will share with you that I am in a similar crazy phase in my life right now. I know that God is in control and I know that whatever the outcome it is His will and His chosen path for my life that I will take. The voices in my head, negativity, doubt, anxiety, want me to worry and look to the what could go wrong. To combat that here is my list of blessings.

I have a husband who loves me, a daughter who is successfully raising grandchildren who are little pillars in their community and parents who are proud of me.

This daughter is a strong independent, smart beautiful and compassionate girl.

I have grand parents, aunts, uncles,cousins, nieces and nephews who love me.

I have friends who are there to listen to me whine when life gets tough and celebrate with me when success comes.

I have a roof over my head, food in the kitchen, heat for the cold nights and a reliable car to get me around.

I have a job and a possibility for a better job. Both filled with wonderful people whom I respect and love.

I have an almost complete novel that I could not have written without the grace of God guiding me through it.

I have sweet fur children who love me unconditionally.

I have a church full of family who pray with me and are there when I need them.

I am in good health and improving everyday.

If you have any of the things in the list above you are blessed. If your list looks like mine you are blessed beyond measure. How inconsiderate of us to let the bumps in the road of life to distract us from the truth.

We are loved, blessed and important to God and other humans. Why do we worry?

 

 

 

 

The Escape by David Baldacci

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I finally got to finish this wonderful read. It was as good as the first two in the series. In the Escape we learn why Robert is in prison. We learn more about John Puller and his relationship with his family. This is a must read if you read Zero Day and The Forgotten. You have to finish the story.

This biggest lesson of this book, things are not always as they seem and trust is a fragile thing.

There really isn’t a whole lot more I can say other than READ IT!

:)

 

The Sameness of Life

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Today is a normal Saturday. I woke up and did the normal things I do. I sat down and wrote about 2.5K words on my novel. Then I started laundry and took something out of the freezer for dinner. As I was going through the motions of life I came to realize that the more life has changed for me, it is really the same as it has always been.

I live in a different house than I did ten years ago. I have a different job than I had just three years ago. I still do laundry, go shopping and cook for my family, though my daughter has moved away. Now my everyday family consists of my husband and our furry children. I still have to decide what to wear, what to do with my spare time and plan for the holidays.I still pay bills, go to church, make my bed and do chores.  My next thought was man, this is so dull and boring. I am no different from my parents or grandparents. I didn’t become something special like they said I could.Well, maybe I am special, just not famous like I thought I would be when I was ten and singing into my hairbrush.  I am just living not much differently than they did all those years before me.  Life is the same.

Oh, sure I do things a bit different. I order birthday gifts online. Where as my mom and grandmother would stroll the aisles of Gayfers,Dillards or some other retail conglomerate for hours until they found the perfect gift. I get my news from my cell phone. My dad and grandpa got it from Tom Brokaw at the 5 pm news hour after telling me to get up and push the channel buttons. When I was a teenager I used to talk on the kitchen phone with the twenty-five foot cord attached as I sat on top of the fridge snacking on Ziggers and drinking Dr. Pepper. Yes, on top of the refrigerator. I can’t tell you why. I just sat on the fridge. Now kids text, instagram and video chat.

Though we do things in different ways we still do the same things our parents and grandparents did. We work and take care of life. We function as we should in a normal day-to-day way. I find this ebb and flow of everyday life comforting. Yes crisis come and go but for the most part we find our way back to the sameness of life. Doing what we have to do in ways that are what they are for our time and our place in history.

As I chunk the last load of laundry in the dryer, I think about what my grandkids may be doing twenty years from now.  Maybe they will be special and famous like I tell them they will. I hope they find  peace in the simple things of life like laundry as I do.