Category Archives: Writing

A Can of Worms

I know I’m opening a BIG one….
but here it is:

WHY I DON’T LIKE THE TWILIGHT SERIES

(ie: all the books beyond the 1st one)

I don’t mind the re-invention of the vampire & that they sparkle – hey, way to make it your own

I don’t mind that it’s “easy reading”

I don’t mind that it revolves around high school – hey I love YA, I read mainly YA, I write YA

I love the love story, the family ideals, and all that stuff

All the controversy about the anti-feminism whatever just makes me roll my eyes

All the controversy over how she got pregnant on the honeymoon makes me roll my eyes even more

I don’t care about any of that..

So, why does it make my stomach turn?

Because I can’t stand whiny heroines, number 1.

I spend an entire day listening to my children whine about one thing or another – and when I was in high school (because, I know, this is written for teens) I spent plenty of time listening to whiny peers – the last thing I want to do is escape into a book where I feel like slapping the main character upside the head and telling her to forget herself.

And number 2 – here is the big one – the number one clincher that made me hurl the book across the room and dent the wall with it (aside from not getting my big fight at the end – hey, I like me a big fight on occasion)

Bella doesn’t grow up, she doesn’t really change as a character and not only that, but she gets everything she wants with no sacrifice.

She gets her man.

She gets to transition to being a vampire with no problems at all.

Not only does she get one uber special vampire gift, she gets TWO!

Because the transition to the whole vampire thing is so easy, she doesn’t have to leave her family behind, she gets to live in a perfectly sculpted world that she doesn’t deserve – and yet I’m sure she’ll still find a way to whine about it.

I know it’s a book.

I know it’s not real life.

But there has to be a thread of reality – and I can’t suspend my belief that far.

Every good and great thing comes at a price or with a sacrifice – it has to, or we won’t cherish it.

Some sacrifice love for money or some money for love. You can have both, but there will be a sacrifice in that somewhere, somehow along the way. I have made many sacrifices for my love and family and they have made many for me.

So, why is it a big deal to me? It’s just a book….

Well, books teach, and I think we aren’t doing the rising generation any favors by encouraging them in the belief that they can have everything they want without any effort, toil, tears, or sacrifice. I think as authors we have an obligation to encourage our readers to grow and develop. We should create heroines and heroes that they want to emulate that have good, strong characteristics and are willing to forget themselves for the betterment of others.

Character flaws are essential in creating believable characters, but we need to give our heroes and heroines a way to learn from them, grow from them and conquer them. Bella had so many opportunities to change and improve herself, especially as she became a Mom (and I know she had phsyical sacrifice there to some extent) but even then she remained flat and rather self-centered.

Yes, I know plenty of people who exhibit the same traits as Bella, but they are not traits I want (or want my children) to aspire too – they are not traits befitting a heroine that one should aspire to be like. And even after she receives all she ever wanted I can’t help feeling that she doesn’t seem grateful at all – she simply seems to accept it as though that was the way it was supposed to be.

You may think that what we or our children read has little impact on us or them, but I think it does. Most won’t recognize the lessons one way or another, but the lessons are there for good or for ill. These lessons are taught and learned whether or not we choose to acknowledge or even recognize them. Some are wise enough to see them and avoid the pitfalls, but some won’t be.

I believe we have a moral obligation to  show how people can learn and better themselves – how our choices have consequences good and bad, how if we want something great – we must sacrifice something great.

If Bella had even had to struggle a bit with her vampire change, or realized that her incessant whining wasn’t cool, then I would have been able to see past the other many flaws. But, I can’t see past flaws that encourage a failing society to fail further.

So, I will continue to enjoy the first Twilight book (Bella’s not so bad in that book)- because I do, my copy is dog-eared and worn from late night escapes, but for me the series ends there, because then I can pretend she turned into the Bella I wanted her to be.

P.S. Feel free to discuss, but please don’t bash and if you are rude or use inappropriate language I will delete your comment.

9 Comments

Filed under Opinion, Writing

Missing You – 100 WCGU #63

 I finally got my act together and hopped in on

this one!  The prompt this time is:

“and winter will bring”

Should you like to read more entries or participate, you can click the picture above and it will take you to the list of stories, etc.

Missing You

The chilled air settles into my bones
and pinches my longing heart.
The once crisp orange-gold cloak
upon the ground has turned dead-brown.

It’s nearly winter,
and winter will bring
empty holidays with mere
echoes of your laughter
joining with ours.

And winter will bring
snow – a kiss of your angel breath
upon my cheeks;
and the rosied noses of children
will wink at me as they
make a row of angel Lizys
across the lawn,
and I’ll smile, though my heart falters,
wishing you were here.

And winter will bring
the hope of spring mingling
with my tears, making the
lilies grow.

5 Comments

Filed under Child loss, Lizy, Poetry, Writing

Just a Bit of Silliness

I love writing games. 

Of course, I love writing.

My favorite writing game is the one where you write a little bit and fold the paper covering everything but a one or two word lead in. The results can be absolutely hilarious.

Friday night Paul and I were on one of our famously fun dates.

Only, it wasn’t as famously fun as usual because we forgot to bring a card game with us.

We almost ALWAYS play a card game or something on dates – especially when we’re eating out –

but we’ve been known to play just about anywhere…

waiting for a movie to start…

waiting in a really long line for something…

waiting for contractions to kick in and get that baby outta there…

Just about anything that takes any amount of waiting requires a card game

which results in LOTS of LAUGHS

and strange looks from many people – which make us laugh even harder.

Only, Friday night we forgot the game.

BUT

I had a pad of paper and I found out that my Husby likes to make up stories – write stories

We’ve been married 14 years and I did not know this!

Shame on me.

(Apparantly he said he doesn’t mention it because he has no time to give it a whirl, so I’m not COMPLETELY lame – just partially lame)

Anyway, that got me thinking about my FAVORITE writing game…

and I remembered I had a pad of paper in my purse.

Well, of course I pulled out that pad of paper and we got to writing….

The resulting story had us laughing so hard we were in tears and I decided it HAD to be shared…

It’s very short (hey, the notebook has to be small enough to fit in my purse for crying out loud)

My part is in PINK with the lead in words in GREEN

Paul’s Part is in BLUE with the lead in words in GREEN

Remember, we don’t see anything that the other person has written except for the lead in words.

Alice stood on the porch railing trying to balance herself.  She grabbed the toothpick and broke it in two. Now he had nothing to poke into her nose to get the rock out. She pressed one nostril and blew. The stone flew across the grass and hit John square in the forehead. He laughed at the attempt to keep him restrained. Nothing could stop him now. His goal was in sight and she gasped in dismay. The love of her life disgraced forever. What could she do? He ran his fingers through her hair and realized it was too late to stop her. The deed was done. Forever would they live lives of love lost.

We decided that we had so much fun with that one we had to do another one. It turned out completely warped and rather funny too…

The sun was setting as Randy strode into the yard. He could not believe the luck he had. His bag burst open and twenty frogs escaped. Desperately he tied his donkey to the hitching post and headed for the house. His mind raced as he tried to think of the place where he had stabbed her big toe. The scar blazed white against her skin, marking her as an undesirable. She had now way to hide her deformity. She must never know the truth. Her life and that of their son depended on his ability to walk on lava. He would never succeed in breaking the curse and bringing equality to the land. He shook his head and took her back inside. As they entered the house he thought he heard a distant rifle shot. It might already be too late. Now she had no choice.

Personally, I just like the idea of John being restrained by a nostril flung pebble….

that’s just pure

AWESOMENESS

right there!

1 Comment

Filed under Humor, Love and Marriage, Writing

Dad 100 WCGU #59

This week we received a picture prompt. It reminded me immediately of my Dad (though he would never sit at the edge of a precipice like that). He loved the mountains and spent numerous summers living in lookout towers. He love to hike and instilled that love in his family. This post is dedicated to him.

To read other pieces or to participate, click on the logo. 🙂

Dad

The wind runs it’s tendril fingers through my hair

and presses it’s chilled lips upon my cheeks.

I close my eyes and pretend it’s him,

squeezing me tight and whispering

it’s going to be all right,

that I can make it through another day.

A single tear traces a

cool track down my face

and lands with a soft splotch.

The mountains are synonymous with him.

There was never one without the other.

I stand, dusting grainy dirt from

my jeans.

“Give her a hug for me,” I whisper

and know the words are carried to heaven

on the breeze.

7 Comments

Filed under Child loss, Memory, Miscellaneous, Nature, Poetry, Writing

A Bushel of Trouble – 100WCGU #58

This week’s prompt is “…as the apple fell…”

Feel free to click the 100WC icon to read other stories or participate.

 

Alice leaned against the side of the weathered stone bridge and peered into the creek. John loved to goad her into a temper. With a sigh, she turned, pulled an apple from her pocket and polished it on her sleeve. Gentle voices from the base of the bridge caught her attention. She looked over the side and spied John and Felicia, their fingers entwined.  Her hands slackened in shock. Time slowed as the apple fell and knocked  John on the head. Alice gasped, and dropped to the ground, pressing her back against the rough stones, but not before she met John’s startled, impish eyes.

10 Comments

Filed under 100 Word Challenge, Humor, Writing

Picking up the Pieces 100WCGU #57

The 100 word challenge is back!

Ok, well, it’s always been there, but I haven’t participated for quite a long time.

The prompt

“returning to the routine” – I did change it to “return” so it would fit better.

seems especially fitting for a multitude of reasons…

 

 

 

My heart lies shattered.  I feel like an eggshell full of tiny spider web cracks. The slightest disturbance could send me cascading to the floor in a myriad of pieces, too tiny to reassemble. I close my eyes against the pain and wish myself into an unfeeling blackness. A tiny hand pats my knee, young arms wrap about my neck, and tears soak into my shoulder. I kiss their soft cheeks and bury my face in their hair.  Responsibility nudges me – chores need doing and dinner needs making. The tears subside and the pain ebbs as I return to the routine of life.

 

 

 

Feel free to click on 100WC picture above to learn more, participate, and read other entries.

My daughters participate in the original 100WC (created for kids) – you can read their entries here: Three Bugs in a Rug

2 Comments

Filed under 100 Word Challenge, Child loss, Every Day Life, Writing

We Do Hard Things

One of the hardest things for me since Lizy passed away has been writing.

I love writing – I write middle grade and young adult books (no, I’m not published yet – maybe some day – I just love to write).

Lizy was one of my biggest writing fans.

She eagerly listened to all of my insane plots.

Begged me to read her my books

and became insanely upset when I told I was going to completely revamp my Belinda book

until I told her the new ideas.

On our mommy daughter date before her accident I had told her all about one of my books she hadn’t read and I was supposed to give her a copy to read in the next couple days.

And she always firmly believed I’d be published.

She also loved to write. She’d attend my writing groups and write short pieces of her own.

I strived to keep that love for writing alive in her and my other daughters.

But ever since she passed away I’ve avoided it.

At first it was because I was too distracted to concentrate.

And later I think it became too hard. I lost my desire to write and didn’t feel motivated to do it or encourage my girls in their writing.

So, today I made a decision.

I need to write, whether I want to or not.

For Lizy

for me

and for my two other girls

and the rest of my family.

It’s hard. I’m supposed to be editing my book tonight (editing counts as writing 🙂 ). I’m avoiding it.

I suppose it all comes in babysteps.

1 page today

2 tomorrow.

And before long I’ll be working on that Belinda book she loved so much.

I tell my kids all the time,

“We do hard things.”

Well, I figure I better get started. 🙂

8 Comments

Filed under Child loss, Writing