Posted in Canadian Writers, Creative Life, Creative Writing, Creativity, Novelists, Novels, Travel Writing, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Inspiration, writing prompts

Writing Prompts: What I Go To

pickyFor a quick insight into my own process when the fire has died, I offer you this;

  1. The newspaper. Yes. Paper. Go buy a print copy and flip to the editorials and opinion sections. Browse the arts and see what other fearless creatives are doing. Write about your thoughts.
  2. Daily meditation. I used Goddess 365. Sometimes I’m faithful, and other times she waits a week or two before I give her any attention. Ah, but she is faithful and patient. Read, give some kind of offering even if it’s a silent tribute of gratitude or visualization. If you need altar supplies, I suggest Wonderworks.
  3. An oldie, but a goodie, especially for sensual writer-types; Fruit Flesh

Don’t forget to carry a notebook. Take yourself for a walk without being plugged in to a playlist or a podcast. Let your mind relax and wander all on its own. But most importantly, put pen to paper. Doodle at first if you must, but don’t give up.

Posted in Advice for Writers, andshelaughs writing, Art, Art of LIving, Art Therapy, Artists, Buddhist Writers, Canadian Poets, Canadian Writers, Creative Writing, Inspiration, Letter Writing, Poets, Professional Writers, Songwriters, The Art of STorytelling, Travel Writers, Travel Writing, Uncategorized, Writers, Writing, Writing Inspiration

Inspiration: As Far As You Can Carry It

Artists know that inspiration comes in waves; sometimes in the gentle, steady rhythm of a lake waking up to the sunrise, and other times overwhelming, crashing into you like the Pacific coast tide.

The thing about inspiration is it’s only as good as how far you can carry it. After all, we can only balance so much. The mundane tasks of everydayness often take up both hands.

In her book, Big Magic, Elizabeth Gilbert talked about inspiration as a living thing, that moved on if it wasn’t nurtured in our care.  What she had to say as a professional writer resonated with me, and made me feel a bit better. Careless with inspiration, but at least not the only one.

As a full-time working, single mom, my second novel kind of bit the dust. But I’m nothing if not resourcesful, and optimistic too. Instead of trying to twist it into some kind of tome, I’m going to use what I have and craft a short story. I’m also hoping that by doing this, the inspiration my be wooed back, and stick around for the long haul required of a novel. I know if that does happen, that the success or failure of the project will depend on me; on my dedication, devotion and prioritizing.

Either way it will be fine. The inspiration will be freed; to move on, or to take up residence in the pages of my creation.

Inspiration comes my darling friends, but how long it stays with us depends entirely upon how long we are able to carry it.

One in a while we have to reassess what’s weighing us down in favour of what lifts us up.

Posted in Advice for Writers, andshelaughs writing, Buddhist Writers, Canadian Writers, Creative Life, Creative Writing, Creativity, Girl Stuff, Guy Stuff, Lean In Girl Stuff, Letter Writing, Life, Life at Starbucks, Life Lessons, Life With Cats, Meaning of Life, Professional Writers, Songwriters, Toronto Life, Travel Writers, Travel Writing, Uncategorized, Writers, Writing, Writing Inspiration

Snow Days & Simple Things

My blogs are generally my writing warm-up. Some writers paint, pray, meditate or cook. I write.

This morning as I pulled open the blinds to let  the blue light of morning into our little home, I was grateful to be inside where it was warm. My writing coach, Willy Nelson, blinked as he stretched awake from the warm folds of his new, fleece blanket, and Dinger, our in-house mad-man sat up from his lolling on the living room rug.

As I dug through the laundry pile to find my favourite slippers, I decided that today, I would share with you some very simple things that bring me great joy. Let me clarify; this will not be a deep, meaningful post. It will truly be about little things, such as Willie Nelson leaving the comfort of his snuggly blanket to keep me company at my desk.

My hope is that my writing warm-up, will warm up your spirit on this dreary, icy, cold and wet winter day. My wish for you is that  you are able to rest in the gratitude of simple things.

10 Simple Things I’m Thankful For Today

  1. My Snoozies skinny slippers (also the skinniest thing about me). Seriously, best, most cozy couture for your tootsies.


2. Vanilla flavoured President’s Choice Coffee. De-freaking-licious, especially on a morning when the snow and ice make going to Starbucks seem about as sensible as taking a trip to Mars for a margarita.


3. My internet connection. Seriously! I can stay in touch with friends, research and feel connected all from the solitude of home without having to if I choose not to. Email, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram…

4. Well designed, super-sized coffee and tea mugs. Not the ones with wide brims, that any science amateur knows will cool down before you get to the last drop. By well designed, I mean they actually keep your coffee or tea  hot while you swill down a bucket sized portion.


5. A great story. Too often people gravitate toward the obvious and logical as we age. Stories stir our creativity and open our minds.  I will indulge in one today; The Witches of New York by Ami Mckay.


6. Beautiful lotion to make my skin feel less like a cold-blooded reptile during the dry, winter months. I’ve fallen in love with Lush’s Charity Pot.


7. A view of nature. Laugh if you must, but it’s rare in the city. Even though I have a small space, the green space that is right outside my window is soul-soothing.


8. Little knick-knacks that remind me of special people and places.


9.  Silence. Yes. Silence is so necessary. I promised this wouldn’t be a deep, meaningful post, so I’ll leave it at that.


10. Bookshelves filled with writing from great authors like M. Scott Peck, Maya Angelou, Pema Chodron, Caroline Myss, Charles Bukowski, Leonard Cohen, Atul Gawande, Margaret Atwood, Haruki Murakami, Rupi Kaur, Diana Gabaldon, Simon Sinek, Carl Jung, Thomas Moore…and being able to dream about having a library at home one day.


Posted in Creative Writing, Economics, Entertainment, Girl Stuff, Health, Life, Men's Issues, Poetry, Relationships, Singles, Spirituality, Travel, Women's Issues, Writing

Past the Expiration Date

Photo found on Pinterest
I do not own rights to this photo – found on Pinterest

This life I’m living is past the expiration date.

This life with my feet on the ground and my head tethered just below the clouds like a helium balloon tied to a fencepost.

It all just feels old, stale, and it’s really kinda stinky.

I’ve reinvented myself a thousand and one times, and each time the shedding of the old skin makes me feel vibrant, and energized. It’s time for a thousand and two.

As the Mumster says, “My body is here, but my spirit is out there waiting for it to catch up.” And so it is…

I’m craving the sea. Wide porches and roads that know slumber and speed limits. Trees whose branches whisper stories of grandmothers as the breeze meets the morning.

I’m craving wild hair and sleep to the rhythm of my own whims, in a bed with an endless landscape of white linens, clouds of duvets and pillows you can wrap your arms around.

I want to listen to blues music and sweet, sweet southern jazz with the windows wide open, with nothing on but a champagne flute balanced between my fingertips, filled to brimming.

I see an old desk and coffee-stained papers strewn across it; the encrypted sign of a life lived passionately, freely, and without regret.

There is a harvest table with the remnants of a rustic dinner, bones sucked clean,  wine stains deep in the wood and sputtering candle flames.

Quiet, quiet nights that beg for another kiss, and still one more; for the remembering and the forgetting.



Posted in Creative Writing, Entertainment, Girl Stuff, Humor, Humour, Life, Men's Issues, Poetry, Uncategorized, Women's Issues, Writing

Happy Monday!

I NEED this mug!

There are so many deadlines looming I’m drawing straws

to see which one goes to the bottom of the list this morning.

Happy Monday to you.

My wish for you is a week full of met deadlines,

flowers on your desk,

and happy customers!

what deadline


Posted in Creative Writing, Entertainment, Health, Humor, Humour, Life, Men's Issues, Music, Poetry, Relationships, Sexuality, Singles, Spirituality, Travel, Women's Issues

A Quieted Mind

rest your mindThis morning I woke completely relaxed and unfettered by worries about what was on my to-do list.

I know exactly what I need to help shake off the skin of every-day-working-and-doing-it-all, and yesterday I got exactly what I needed.

Yesterday  it was tequila in the form of margaritas (slurpies for adults), and the resulting shenanigans that helped me unwind from my ever busy self.

Lately I’ve been busier than I have in a long time. I’ve neglected my Creative Self, and it’s starting to pull at my conscience. It’s little voice is whispering, “I’m still here, and I’m not going anywhere until you feed me“.

Thank you Creative Self for being so insistent and relentless in your will to survive. I need you.

When my mind is quiet, when I wake relaxed, and take my morning coffee on the patio in the still morning, that is when I hear my heart whisper. That is when my intuition finds its footing, and gathers strength.

I am a woman who fully trusts her intuition, and nurtures her creative spirit, even if it takes a little misbehaving and fermented agave a la frozen concoction maker.

Looking forward to the celebrations that will mark my 40th birthday, I’ve decided to listen to the whispers of my heart, and snuggle up with what makes me happy.

My wish for you on this Sunday, and every day, is that you find some quiet time to listen for those beautifully, bittersweet murmurs of your heart.  I hope that you hear what they tell you, and aren’t afraid to act on them.

If you need some courage, may I suggest  a little bit of  tequila and some Jimmy Buffett….