The Lost Art of Letter Writing

Over the past month or so I have really been slacking on my letter writing. Sure, the internet and e-mailing is a quicker and more efficient way to do things, but it is not nearly as personal or special as a hand written letter.

My brother’s birthday was May 6th and it took until June 9th to get a card his way. A mother’s day card went out today as well. Does the saying “better late than never” fit here or am I using it as an excuse to be lazy?

I have definitely not been lazy about writing, just about correspondence. In my book, that is no excuse to ignore friends old and new. So last night, I sat down (more like laid down on the living room floor) and wrote letters until well beyond my hand hurt. I got most of them written.

I have four letter’s remaining. Two of them are extra special. One is a new friend, and we have instantly connected. She is bright and funny and isn’t afraid to write a lot. The other is a newish friend (we’ve been corresponding since February). She took the time to write me an 11 paged letter. That’s rare in our current day and age. With her, I want to take the time to write her a proper letter back, she deserves it. The other two are just as special, but not as long. I basically couldn’t write anymore last night! These four letters are part of my agenda this week. I hope to write one letter a day and have all letters posted to the mail by Friday.

I remember the luster of e-mail when I had my first computer. Now, I use it to get billing receipts from paying for things online. It is also a house for all the junk mail. At least this is easier to delete. I hope to never lose touch with Snail Mailing my friends. It’s a lost art and it is time to bring it back to life!

~Kaysnail-mail-email-explained

It’s a Love/Hate Relationship

Free Write
10 Minutes
“No substitutions, exchanges, or refunds” -Genie of the Lamp (Aladdin)

 

Days like this I would write about my day and what I will be doing, but I feel I need to address a much larger issue. Netflix! The best and worst thing that could ever happen to all of us. Definitely me. Here’s the thing; Netflix has lots of great points but there are some major downfalls as well. We may not see them at first, but they are there, and the bad parts sneak up on us often.

What I love about Netflix:

  • Easily have my favorite TV shows streaming online (to catch up on all the seasons I’ve missed).
  • The ability to pick and choose what dvd or bluray you would like to see with a click of a button.
  • The vast amount of choices and sometimes odd movies you never thought you would see.

There are other things on this list but remember, I only have ten minutes to express this.

What I hate about Netflix:

  • Spend hours of my day watching one show (recently it was Psych) and wasting away my life
  • Not all the time are the videos in good condition when they are mailed to you. (Last one we received skipped a lot).
  • YOU HAVE TO WAIT AN ENTIRE YEAR BEFORE THE NEXT SEASON IS LOADED!!!

Okay, that last one is my biggest pet peeve however, I get around that by using Hulu Plus. I do have some issues with that as well. For example; after I finished watching all 7 seasons of Psych (I will refrain from telling you how… short it took me as I would be quite embarrassed), I needed to start on the 8th season. Well luckily Hulu had the 8th season but when I went to pull it up on my smart TV it said it would not work with that system which meant I HAD to use my computer. I wished I could’ve just watched it on the tv rather than routing it through my computer as a second monitor. Oh well, I still got to watch season 8 and I am all caught up now.

There you have it folks; the love/hate relationship with Netflix that I am sure most of you can agree with me on. I do feel the good ways out the bad so I will be sticking with them… for now.

-Jay

 

Confessional

I would like to clear up an assumption that has been made about me. I have been told by several people that I just have the drive to write and that writing comes very easy to me.

I wish this was the case. Each and everyday I write, I fight with myself tooth and nail to actually meet my goals. There are days where writing 100 words seems impossible, let alone 500.

Inspiration does not come pouring down from the heavens. My novel does not write itself. When I was younger, I always heard people say that writing is 2% inspiration and 98% work. I did not know how true this statement was until the month of May when I really buckled down and started to write. Not only did I learn that, but I learned how important having an outline is when novel writing. It is SO easy to get off track.

With my monthly challenges, I am doing it less for the writing goal and the end result. I am doing these challenges to discipline myself into writing every single day. I want to write for a living, why wouldn’t I practice my craft any chance I got? The question became: “Is writing what I really want to do?”

For me, the answer was yes. That yes is what drives me to write first before anything else in the day. That yes has no time for my excuses. That yes is what keeps me going. I want my daily writing to be so ingrained in me that I think of it as a necessity to surviving life, much like sleep and breathing.

Some days 500 words takes me 10 minutes and other days it takes me 5 hours. Both are perfectly natural and fine, as long as I am writing everyday. I think too much of myself to succumb to excuses and eventual defeat. I will fight on, I will write on.

~Kay

Snacks Galore

Free Write
NO RULES
10 minutes

 

My go to snack is usually Potato chips, or something of the sort, but lately I have been trying to cut back on junk food snack and move on to something healthier. It is never easy to find something that is sweet or salty that is good for you, so I tend to look at fruit!  I love fruit! It is a natural sweetener and it calms my cravings for sugar. My favorites are Banana chips, however I am not a big fan of the really think ones that can break your tooth just looking at them. When I was in Nashville with Kay, we went to this cute little market that had these banana chips that were paper thin and had not a single bit of extra sugar coating on them. I was soooo happy! I could snack healthy. I do wish I would’ve bought a couple more boxes and brought them with me.

The other snack I really like is the bags of Crispy Apple Chips. Although these are a healthy snack hidden behind artificial flavors and sugars, I still really like them. The caramel flavored tantalize my tongue and making it long for another. It’s like the slogan “You can’t eat just one!” I honestly could make my own dried fruit snacks. My husband bought me a new dehydrator for Christmas last year so I could do just that, but I have yet to use it. When you dry bananas you want to make sure to get slightly green bananas. The firmer they are the thinner you can slice them. When you dehydrate them they come out a little chewy rather than crunchy. They are still good.

My mother-in-law used to make fruit leather. This is something I have yet to do, but I would like to make some before we go to Disneyland so we can have them as snacks in the park

That reminds me… only 31 days till our huge family vacation! I am so excited about seeing my kids again, along with the rest of my family. It has been too long. I’ll be counting down the days from now on!  Maybe I will countdown by having a bag of Seneca Carmel Apple Chips everyday.  A bit much?

-Jay

A Writers Place

Free Write
10 MinutesNo editing, no corrections, JUST WRITE!

 

I have always struggled as a writer trying to find the best place for me to not be distracted and just write. It’s not easy. At home, even when the TV is off, my mind wanders to what shows I could be watching. I have an addiction for some of them. If I go to the library, although there is very little distraction, the seats are uncomfortable and they keep the air conditioning on even during the dead of winter. Then there is the coffee store in Barnes and Noble. This is usually my go to place but I don’t get to come out here very often. I live 20 minutes away so when I do come here it is cause i have another errand to run out here as well. Today was one of those days however I have not had much luck getting away from distractions.

There was an extremely cute baby boy in a high chair sitting right in front of me. He would stare at me and when I’d smile or make a silly face he would start giggling. It was hard to concentrate. I was also choosing to watch him rather than pay attention to my work. I chatted with Kay for awhile as well, which help cause she kept encouraging me to FOCUS!  Once the baby and his mom left it became a little easier. One thing I deal with here is the amount of people that show up. Some are really quite but today they have all seemed to be a bit on the loud side. That’s okay though. I was listening to music so that helped drown them out.

Although I like writing here in the coffee shop, the seats are very uncomfortable and makes it hard to sit for a long period of time. This is why I feel home is my favorite place. It would be nice to have a separate desk specifically for writing. I could write at my main computer, however I enjoy writing my novel on my laptop. Not sure of the reasons. Maybe its because I can take it with me anywhere. I know I could put the files on a USB drive and just switch them back and forth, but with my lap top I can sit on the couch with my feet up and just write.

Just recently have I realized the importance of JUST WRITING! Part of the problem I had with writing my novel the first couple times is I would write a couple chapters that go back and edit them. Kay reminded me to just write it! No editing! A lot like my free writes, except not as crazy and go with my book outline. When I started to engrave that in my head, the words seem to flow a little easier and I wasn’t nearly as worried about how it sounded. I know a lot of it is probably terrible, but when the book is finished.. and I mean that… FINISHED… when the words THE END are finally typed out, then I will go back and do some fine tuning. Wished I could do that here!

-Jay

Blunder of Moments

10 minutes starts…..
NOW!

It has been a pretty eventful day. I got less then 3 hours of sleep last night and still woke up at 7:30. What was I thinking? There is no way I should still be awake right now. I splurged a little and got a redbull, partially because I forgot to bring my XS energy drink with me while on the road. I meant to grab it, honestly!

My husband and I are on a weekend excursion in Nashua, NH. What’s there in Nashua you may ask? Not much really, but my graduation ceremony is tomorrow and it will be held in Manchester, which is only a half hour drive from here. Better than driving and hour and forty five minutes, plus we get a weekend to ourselves.

For a good portion of the day it was just me. I checked into the hotel, walked around the mall, and took a look around guitar center. I found a strap I want to get for my guitar! It has the union jack flag all over it!  Yippee! I also was able to find a sound interface for my computer that I can use a better mic and plug my guitar directly into my computer. This is a bit more than I’d like, but it’s something I can put on my “would like” list.

It’s been weird not having school right now. I took on Kay’s idea about a writing goal and did one myself as well. I also would like to work on sewing some of the patterns I have. Jon said that I can’t get anymore patterns until I use the ones I have. That’s okay though. I have lots I can use.

Oh wait a minute, forgot to tell you about the rest of the day.

After I finished window shopping (only got me a pair of shoes) I picked up my husband from work and we ate at the “British Beer Company”. I had an awesome bit of Fish & Chips. When they say FISH… the mean… ONE HUGE FRIED SLAB OF FISH!!  It was amazing. After dinner we came back to the hotel.

Tomorrow morning is Graduation. Excited?  Nervous? Anxious?  Let’s just say I’m all of the above!

-Jay

Dilemma, I Think Not

Free Write
10 minutes
GO!

 

It’s been a crazy day today. I had an appointment with an ear, nose, and throat specialist (ENT), and also had to finish a baby shower cake. I say it’s been crazy cause my emotions have been all over the place. I know it is not good to worry about something that has not happened, however, it is harder to do than it is to say. Let me explain a little. I have had some terrible pains in the left side of my face, ear, neck, and top of my head. It started about 2 months ago (beginning of March). I had been to 3 different doctors to find out what was wrong. The urgent care doctor just saw a swollen ear canal and gave me ear drops. I took the ear drops for 4 weeks. When I realized they were not helping I went to a minute clinic. The doctor there took a half an hour to really look things over. She diagnosed me with a sinus infection, prescribed me some antibiotics and sent me on my way. I had hope that this was it, and it would work. FAIL! I finished all of the medication and the pain came back, full fledged and even a bit worse then before. When I came back from Tennessee I decided I was done with this and went to the ER. The doctor there couldn’t see anything wrong from his view point but sent me to the ENT.

Recap, it’s been two months since this whole thing started and no real answers. The ENT was of no help either, however, he did say that it could be a nerve issue or a brain issue. With that he made me an appointment to see a Neurologist and get another cat scan since apparently the one that was done at the ER was not entirely the greatest. So cat scan is next week and neurology appointment is the 20th of this month. Dilemma??  Well in my head all I was thinking was how irritated I was without answers. I just want to know what’s wrong and stop the pain permanently. With the help and advice from some amazing friends (Kay), I am not going to worry about it. It will not be a dilemma!

KEEP MOVING FORWARD…. NO WORRIES!!!

-Jay