Quote of the Day: I don’t think any day is worth living without thinking about you’re going to eat next at all times. Nora Ephron, and I look out the window and I see the lights and the skyline and the people on the street rushing around looking for action, love, and the world’s greatest chocolate chip cookie, and my heart does a little dance. Here’s a dozen for you, Nora Ephron!
Here we are at the first Wednesday of the month, once again. This is when many, many bloggers who are members of the Insecure Writers Support Group post about their insecurities and offer support and encouragement to one another. If you’d like to read more posts on this subject, or join, please visit their website, or the site of the founder Alex J. Cavanaugh.
I missed last month because my dad was having triple bypass surgery. Here is a picture of all his kids in the waiting room, hanging out with mom and being her support while we waited together. It’s rare that all six of us are in the same place at the same time. Dad’s recovering slowly. Your good vibes, thoughts, and prayers are appreciated.
The IWSG is holding a contest for a short story anthology. We could submit any type of story as long as it was alternate history or parallel universe. This is not my usual style. I didn’t think I’d participate. I felt distracted and a little worried, and not sure what to do, so I baked chocolate chip cookies. While I was mixing and smelling all that sugar, and tasting a few cookies with a glass of milk, I remembered when I wrote a story for a Highlights contest called Roller-Coaster to the Moon. The odds are crazy to get selected by Highlights. Thousands of people enter, only three get selected. My story was not selected. I had fun writing the story, though, asking my boys for input (maybe I was baking cookies back then, too). That story is lost in the innards of my ancient computer, so I decided to rewrite the story using the same title. I worked on it for about a week, and decided “What the heck” and sent it in to the contest. It helped that one of my students is a writer, and she read the first two pages and said, “It ended?” meaning, she wanted to read the rest of the story, which meant I had to write it! I could have used a little more time to work the ending, but a deadline is a deadline.
If you’re feeling insecure, and like “That’s not my thing,” maybe that’s your cue to stretch your creative muscle and try a new genre or writing style. Picture your friends and family gathered in a waiting room to support you, and do your best to come through for them. And, if the creative juices just aren’t flowing, try baking a batch of cookies. Your friends and family will enjoy those, too!
Picture that I found on Pinterest that sparked the memory of my roller-coaster story, and inspired me to write another one. Doesn’t it look like it could be a roller-coaster to the moon?
Go. Create. Inspire!
Journaling Prompt: What’s your favorite cookie? And, who would you share them with?
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Nice post. I try to make each new book force me into a new creative challenge. The last book was my first attempt at a child’s POV. My current work in progress is my first attempt at mainstream fiction rather than genre. Keep pushing your personal envelope!
Excellent work, Sean. You’re an inspiration.
Oh my, you are a woman after my own heart with all this talk of chocolate chip cookies! Good on you with submitting story to Highlights and great words of encouragement.
Thanks. They’re still warm. Do you need a glass of milk?
I wonder if Nora Ephron has cats and said that to them?
I’m such a perfectionist that I won’t enter a contest if the story isn’t exactly right. But then, what is right? A week later I’ll look at the same story an cringe. I applaud anyone who can just go with it.
Sending cheese and prayers for you dad!
Great advice! And I love that Nora Ephron quote. I’m sad she’s gone.
I may have an opportunity to submit a short story, which I don’t exactly do. Like you, I thought back to a piece I’d written a few years back, and how it didn’t work as a novel, but it might for a shorter format. It’s going to be a challenge for me, but I think I’m up for it.
Go for it, Stephanie!
Glad your dad is recovering! And oh gosh, Highlights. That takes me back to my childhood. Goofus and Gallant!
Congrats on your submission. I’m sure you’ll do great.
But what I really want to know is where is my cookie? 😛
Anna from Elements of Writing
Ooh, chocolate chip cookies! Yum!
I’m also working on a short story right now, which isn’t my thing usually, so I’m taking an idea I had for part of a novel and using that as the basis of the short story.
Good luck on your submission–and I hope your dad is doing well.
Thanks, Michelle! Good luck with your short story, as well.
“…stretch your creative muscle and try a new genre…”
Mmm. I did this last year, when I wrote an urban fantasy story for an anthology. At the time, I wasn’t even aware that it was called urban fantasy. LOL But I was REALLY nervous.
I’ve been reading lots of horror lately… does this mean I’ll try a horror story next? *shivers*
No, I think that would be pushing it——–
I’m thinking, do I need to sign up for Pinterest?
I’m keen to give it a go.
As it is, I’m just about managing the other social media platforms. But I like the idea of collecting pictures because I love to write from picture prompts… works well for me…
Decisions. Decisions. Decisions.
Happy IWSG Day, Mary!
Pinterest is fun because of the pictures. And, as you can see, it inspired me! I also look for ideas for art journals, and quotes. It’s fun. Give it a try!
Glad you submitted! Sometimes we have to stretch.
Continued prayers for your father.
Now, please pass the cookies.
Here’s a whole dozen for you, Alex, for all you do. And, thanks for the prayers.
Great post Mary. Thank you for sharing and inspiring us to try new things. I’ve done that recently and to be honest, I was really relaxed and was pleased with the end result. It’s taking a rest for the moment and then I’ll re-visit to see if I feel the same. Wishing you a November filled with blessings.
Thanks, Nicola. And, good job on trying something new!
Working on trying to write a bunch of short stories for NaNo. Will see how that goes. Best of luck with yours.
Juneta Writer’s Gambit
Good luck, Juneta!
Glad to hear your dad is doing well. It’s definitely good to stretch ourselves as we might just find something that suits us well. Rising to a challenge is always an inspiring thing to do, too.
I agree, Nick. And, thanks.
Hi Mary! Thanks for visiting my blog! My favourite cookie? Hmm. Well, sticky date and caramel comes close! I hope your dad makes a spectacular recovery from his surgery.
Thank you for offering to read my novella. I will get it to you as soon as the IWSG craziness is over!
Denise Covey November co-host IWSG
Great. And, those cookies sound delish, too!
I submitted to the contest too. It was the first fiction I’ve written in ages. Fingers crossed for both of us!
Cannot believe I’m eating chocolate chip cookies reading this. Thank goodness because I’d be real hungry for them if I wasn’t:)
Funny, Doreen, enjoy your cookies! My sister was wondering where hers went. Ha. I’ll have to bake more. Good luck on the contest, too!
I have so many “didn’t get accepted” stories and books, it’s sad. But I always remember the saying, “You miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take,” so take them all! Prayers for your dad.
Sounds like a great contest, Mary. I hope you enter and win. 🙂
I am so glad to hear Dad is recovering. And what a wonderful family. It is such togetherness that helps us get through the tough times. Happy for Mom to have you guys all around.
I can’t believe I missed this post, Mary! Sorry to hear about your dad – I hope he’s doing better now.
And good luck with the IWSG contest. I wasn’t going to submit anything either, but then I got what I thought was a great idea – at least, it resonated with me – and I went for it. I hope we both make it into the anthology!