Getting Mocked by Alfred Adler

Over five years of blogging, and at least 50% of it has been whinging on about writing – doing it, not doing it, determined to do it, failing to do it. I’ve pitched to agents at a conference and not followed through.  I’ve been given the time, opportunity, and space to do it. I’ve set and promptly passed deadlines. I’ve made note cards, scribbled on white boards, discussed it ad nauseam with friends. I have skeletal novels and unfinished stories and poetry done badly. I have made myself feel physically ill, have… Read More

It’s the End of the World as I Know It and I Feel Fine

The Green Study’s Positively Happy Nice Story Contest is off and running. I saw a wonderful post by Cate that is exactly the sort of thing that would be a contender. The deadline is October 1st October 3rd. See here for details. It started with a simple request.  I was invited to participate in a podcast. The podcast is a relatively new app that was launched to facilitate conversations on a variety of topics. One of my posts caught their eye. It’s out of my bailiwick, something I’ve never done before, so… Read More

For What It’s Worth

I’ve been as guilty this political season of thinking in hyperbole and polarity as anyone else. Conversations trail off into head-shaking and agreeing to disagree and at times, feeling a level of hatred that I know is unhealthy and unwise. What to do? It’s easy to become addicted to outrage. Social media and commentary sections of news articles make one realize how easy it is to take sides, to devolve into name-calling and to become someone of whom no one should feel proud. Anger is addictive as well. And exhausting. For months,… Read More

The Green Study Grumps It Up

Lately, I’ve been writing a lot of introspective posts. It’s winter and churning in my own neuroses seems to be the sport of choice. With no lift fees. But I’m irritable and when I’m irritable, I remember every single little thing that has ever irritated me since the beginning of time. I’m going to let it all out here. And then I’m dragging my ass to the gym, because those endorphins aren’t going to manufacture themselves. Wait. Whatever – you know what I mean. Song Lyrics that Irritate Me Ever since I… Read More

How to Lose Friends and Ignore People: A Dealer’s Fable

It was 1975, the year Squeaky Fromme attempted to assassinate President Ford. It was a volatile year. Charlie Chaplin got knighted and the Watergate gang was convicted. In local news, a crime wave was hitting the grocery store a block from where I lived. A thief was lurking among Safeway’s aisles – dressed like a seven-year old girl. Sometimes in a Girl Scout uniform. I prowled the aisles, shifty-eyed and indiscriminate in my larcenous hunger. Some days it was the candy near the checkout lanes, but other days, I’d be emboldened by… Read More

When You Become Your Mother

It’s an odd little thing in our family. All the women, were they men, would be suspected of bomb-plotting or weird porn habits or at least highly awkward social skills. The highly awkward social skills is an actual genetic trait in our family, apparently. A distaste for technology, reclusive living, books or dogs as best friends – classic signs that you will be my mother. Add in a British accent, a predilection for salacious crime novels, a subtle, disapproving pursing of the lips and you will be my grandmother. For years, I… Read More

Being Fiction, Instead of Writing It

Over the last few years, I’ve written blog post after blog post about making changes with a mind towards writing. I quit paid work. I quit volunteering. I set up my study, surrounded by books, many of them about writing. I am supported by the people in my life. I talk about writing. I read about writing. I write about writing. On occasion, I even write things that aren’t about writing. The only person in my life who doesn’t take me seriously as a writer is me. The door is open wide… Read More

That’s Knot Whet Eye Sad: The Sprains of Spring

The Green Study will be returning on June 1st, 2015. After severely spraining one wrist and slightly spraining the other while hauling large bags of garden soil, weeding and tilling, typing has become a rather painful enterprise. Mentally, I need to recharge. Physically, my body needs to go into the shop for a complete overhaul and some after-market upgrades. With that in mind, I’m taking time off to rest and yell at my computer while training the speech recognition software. I love workarounds and learning how to work differently. Adaptability is a… Read More

Notes from Distracted Ground

I’m currently slogging my way through Dostoevsky’s Notes from Underground. I could tell immediately that I picked this up too quickly after reading Joyce’s Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man. Reading classics where most of the action occurs in the narrator’s head can be exhausting. I took a break and started reading Anthony Doerr’s All the Light We Cannot See. The writing is breathtaking, enviable in its sparse economy of words, while rich in detail. I’ve been thinking a lot about details. There are writers I know who are working… Read More

Brain Blurts on the Treadmill

One of my favorite workout songs is the Foo Fighters “Walk”. It’s a nice warmup piece, starting with motivational lines like Getting good at starting over… and I believe I’ve waited long enough… What I like most about this song is that it makes me laugh every single time I hear it. It’s the singer’s crescendo to a primal yell of “I never want to die!” that does it. When I’m running on a treadmill at the Y, sweating along with a young, old, multi-gendered, multiracial, differing needs crowd, it seems like… Read More