Tag Archives: writing and blogging

The Virtual Blog Tour: Visiting Dome Life Studios

I was invited by Mary, from Tales From The Back Road, to participate in the virtual blog tour this week. If you love dogs and travel and gorgeous photography be sure to check out all of Mary’s social media pages too. She has some wonderful wildlife pictures that she posts. You do not want to miss them! I am pretty excited about being in the tour because the people who have participated before me have all been so talented. I am sure there will be many more talented people posting after me too. It’s an exciting group to be a member of. I love connecting with creative people and I am sure I am going to make many new friends through this tour. I can’t wait!

The tour is like being on a train and as you walk through each train car, you get transported to a new life and a new adventure. What could be better than that, right?

On with the tour!

1. What am I working on?

 

The Virtual Blog Tour: Visiting Dome Life Studios
Home Sweet Home

I am still working on my little mixed media houses. I’m telling you…I cannot stop! I have the doodle, glue it bug bad this time.

The Virtual Blog Tour: Visiting Dome Life Studios

I am going to have a quite a collection of sweet little homes by the end of the month. I am sure my family will be happy when this obsession ends so they can get the dining room table back.

I also started making altered mail art. I am going to talk more about that later in the week, but here is a sneak peek at one of my envelopes:

The Blog Tour: Visiting Dome Life Studios
This is an envelope I am going to mail to someone. It’s not quite done yet.

 

2. How does my work differ from others of it’s genre?

The Virtual Blog Tour: Visiting Dome Life Studios
A little house mixed media piece in progress.

 

I think color is probably what people first notice about my work. I’m obsessed with strong, clear, vibrant colors. Especially Jewel tones. I am also quick to experiment in any media. I love to try new things. I think most artists tend to stick with one media or one subject. That’s actually probably a better business move in the art world, but for some reason I find that so boring. So I dabble in anything I can get my hands on and learn new techniques as often as possible and hope my love of color unifies my work in some way.

3. Why do I write/create what I do?

Art and writing are both ways to express myself. I’ve always been better expressing myself in writing than expressing myself verbally. My brain needs time to process and writing allows for that. I’ve been writing since I was a kid. I’m not sure I could stop even if I wanted to.

The Virtual blog Tour: Visiting Dome Life Studios

Painting and creating has always been a huge part of my life too. Art class was a refuge for me growing up. Art is my therapy, my joy, my solitude, my meditation, and my work. When I am creating I feel the most like myself. It’s a pure expression of who I am.

I have a lot of energy. Most people who meet me wouldn’t know it. I am often described as “calm” and “quiet” by other people, but I have a ton of ideas and my mind is always going. I love to think about things. Writing and art provide an outlet for all of that internal energy.

4. How does your writing/ creating process work?

Before I start a painting I’ve usually been thinking about it for a while in advance. Then I collect the materials I am going to need. I make sketches, lists, and plans. Usually once I actually start a painting it goes quickly because I have spent so much time in the planning stage.

Some projects, usually what I call my experiments, are more like the mixed media houses above. I just gather the basic materials I am going to need and dive right in without a plan and just see what happens. These projects are more about play, less about work, and are often where I learn the most about new techniques or new materials.

Let me say right now that a big part of my process includes making a lot of mistakes. I have half-finished paintings and half-destroyed paintings in stacks in my studio. I think failing and problem solving are a huge part of creativity. I’ve been very disappointed at times when a painting took a turn towards the dark side. I’ve tried new varnishing sprays that have ruined my pieces. I’ve tried painting things beyond my skill level that never came out right. It’s all part of the growth required to master something. We learn from our mistakes and failures so I always look at my painting disasters and think about all of the neural pathways I am creating in my brain. Even failure is a step forward!

You just can’t give up and have to keep trying. I hope you have a creative outlet in your life. It does wonders for the soul!

 

This is the end of my blog tour. I hope you enjoyed it! I have invited Kelly Debie from Debie Hive and Molly Field from Grass Oil to participate in the blog tour next Monday. Please stop by and say hello and read about their writing/ creative process. They both write about many topics, but Kelly is especially known for her posts on current events and news. Her background as a lawyer informs her posts and she helps us better understand the big issues of the day. Molly is especially known for her posts about delving into what it means to be human and the process of soul and psychological growth. Her writing will change you…and for the better.

Until next Monday, follow the tour backwards and learn about other creative people. Happy Monday!

 

BlogHer ’14 Here I Come

I’m going to BlogHer next month and I am so excited. It’s my first time. That’s right, I’m a newbie. I’m a novice. I’m a beginner.

I’m a little nervous.

It’s going to be a blast because I get to meet all of my blogging friends (well, almost all of them) in person and prove to Jim, once and for all, that they are not imaginary people. I’m nervous because I haven’t been to a conference in years and hope I remember how to behave at one. I hope I don’t break out singing, “I’m a little teacup…” at the worst possible moment or try to cut someone’s beef up for them at dinner. I’m really going to have to control myself.

I’m already in a panic about what to wear. Most of my “professional” clothes are pretty outdated, dusty, and a size too small. So, I am staring into my closet and saying a prayer and doing online window shopping like a desperate housewife, artist mom, who has paint on everything…even her shoes. Yeah, it’s that bad. Don’t even get me started on my hair. I’m not sure I can even make it look professional. It has a mind of its own and that mind is wild. My hair is like the bad-boys your mother warned you about.

I really wanted to wear Jeans and a T-Shirt. Or yoga pants. My blogging friends talked me out of that, “You need to dress nice. For the pictures. Do it for posterity’s sake.” Oh yeah, Tiny-Small doesn’t want to have to say, “My mom’s the one dressed like she’s going to a rock concert in 1985.” So, I am putting in some effort. I promise. Which is too bad really, because I made my own T-shirt and had plans to bring my own swag. You know, just in case nobody wants to give me any of theirs. I know my blog is small and lovely and not likely to attract people handing out Dyson vacuums. Which is fine with me because then I’d have to vacuum and who wants that? I’m not expecting to get the kind of prizes bloggers who have been featured on The Today Show get from the sponsors courting them to sell their wares. So, I was planning on coming prepared. You know, with my own prizes. Because you have to look successful to be successful, or whatever that business expert mumbo jumbo is.

BlogHer '14 here I come
I’d be known as “That Mermaid Lady” for life.

Instead, I’m just going to focus on looking like a grownup and bring my bag so I can carry around all the swag I might get. Plus, I plan on collecting all of the business cards I can. I’m pretty sure that alone will make me look successful.

I’m not just worrying about what to wear.  I am also worrying about what I am going to learn, and if my blog is going to get the improvements it needs, and if I am going to make some good connections, friends, aquaintances…will anyone even speak to me??? Will I find other artists there? Will they want to talk to me? Will I be cool enough to fit in? It’s taking me back to high school all over again. Luckily, I’m 39 years old, and not an insecure teenager anymore,  so those worries are short-lived. I know I’ll have fun and make the best of it, and learn all of the stuff I want to learn, and meet all of the cool, kind, funny people I want to meet. I have faith. I know it’s going to be all sorts of awesome. I guess I’m saying I am more excited than nervous. Which is a good thing, right? I’m also hoping there will be some art store sponsors that want to give me free paint. A girl can dream, can’t she?

Plus, I get to see The Bloggess speak so there is that.

Jim and Tiny-Small are coming with me. They are going to be hanging out by the pool, visiting children’s museums, and eating sushi all day long while I hobnob with some of the greatest minds of our times. There are some really talented bloggers out there. I’m pretty sure I’ll be star struck for three days straight. That is, when I recognize people.

Here it comes: My absolute biggest fear is that I won’t recognize all of the fantastic people. I mean, to be honest, I have a lot of trouble keeping track of who writes which blog. Even blogs that I read all the time. I am always asking my closest blogging friends, “Which blog does she write again?” Seriously. I thought I was just bad at remembering names when I met someone in person for the first time. It turns out I am just bad at names, faces, and blog titles. Gah! I don’t want to be rude. I may have to make some cheat-sheet notes so I don’t bug people like Quirky Chrissy the whole time I am there with questions like, “Who was that again?”  and “Do I know her?”

So, if you see a slightly befuddled woman with big hair and an even bigger smile, come say hi. I want to meet you. I want to read your blog. I want to party with you like it’s 1999. Literally. Mostly because then my clothes will still be in style.

Are you going to BlogHer 14? is it your first time? What worries do you have? What are your hopes and dreams? If you’ve been to the conference before, what is the best advice you can give me?

P.S. I’m also attending Path Finder Day and have signed up for “The Path To Visual Artist.” I hope to see you there!

 

 

My Writing Process

My writing process became the topic of a blog post because my friend over at Banana Wheels tagged me in her post How I Write to participate in a writing prompt about writing. Because the world wants to know about my writing process! At least I am pretending this is information people are dying to read. If I think it than it must be true, right? Banana Wheels is a known trouble maker. That’s probably why I adore her so much. If you haven’t read her blog you should. She’s hilarious and I wish we were neighbors. Mostly because I really want to get a peek at the bad haircuts she keeps writing about.

Anyway, this prompt has a series of questions I am supposed to answer so I am going to do the best I can.

1. What are you working on?

I am working on so many projects that will likely never see the light of day or completion or paragraph number two. I have this outline for a children’s book, or possibly young adult book series, about princess sisters that get separated at birth. Or maybe they will be identical cousins like on the Patty Duke Show, but set in medieval times. That sounds funny, right? They walk alike, they talk alike…. I also have another fiction piece I started writing that has some super-natural elements and possibly a unicorn. I am pretty sure these stories will die with me. I’m not sure I am a fiction writer, but I fantasize about being one. I’m really more of a memoir writer which is great because fact is often even weirder than fiction, but sadly, there are never any unicorns.

Most of the time I am working on blog posts. I spend a lot of time scribbling notes on paper because I have a lot of ideas. Then I lose the paper, forget about the paper, or think it’s a horrible idea and spend a lot of time staring at a blank screen. Or out the window. Or at the dishes I should be washing.

Today I am thinking about making a page listing all of my favorite blogs so people will know what I am reading and maybe creating a “press” page, you know, in case I ever get any.

2. How does my work differ from others in my genre?

Well, I guess my genre is blogging about my life so I am just going to call myself an autobiographer. Spell check says that’s a made up word which makes sense since it’s totally a made up title. The difference is other people have published books and giant audiences and were most likely famous at some point which makes their life interesting to the average reader. Someone else probably wrote their book for them and then they signed their name to it. I am self-published (that’s why you’ll find typos, suspect facts, exaggerations, and the occasional misuse of the words their, there, and they’re around here) and I have a small, awesome audience. Have I ever told you that my audience is smarter than average, better looking than average, and also really kind? That’s why my audience is so small. This blog is not for the masses. Only the best people in the world are here. They are not a dime a dozen people and they put up with my nonsense which really says a lot about them. All good. I swear.

3. Why do I write what I write?

I feel like writing helps me process things and understand the way the world works and even the way I work better.  I hope my openness will encourage other people to be more open too. Somehow, all of that sharing makes me feel less alone. Maybe it makes other people feel less alone too. That’s kind of empowering.

I also like to make people laugh. Sometimes the most frustrating moments are packed with humor. Writing within a humorous context really helps me change my own perspective on things. As someone who tends to over-think and over-worry, writing puts my mind at ease. Especially when it’s funny.

4. How does my writing process work?

I make notes on anything and everything. I ask myself questions. I jot down ideas and sentences. I make a lot of lists. When I am writing about something from an emotional stand point I tend to just vomit it all up onto the screen and then do a ton of editing. When I am writing about something less personal I tend to spend time doing research.

My Writing Process
I also make calendars and schedules that I never keep. I even have to add in eating and folding laundry so I don’t forget to do those things. I just realized I never added in any bathroom breaks.

When I find myself staring at a blank screen with nothing to say I just make myself write anything and hope it turns into something. When I find myself staring at a blank screen for days with nothing to say I know it’s a sign that I have been neglecting my life so I try to get out and have some experiences. If you don’t have a life, there is nothing to write about.

I also try to find the story in the little things.

 

My Writing Process

That’s it. That’s how I write. I don’t know who to tag for this prompt. So, if you want to answer these questions on your blog and play with us just let me know and I’ll add a link to your post at the end of this one.

Happy Writing!

Yay! Kerry B. from Be a Mummy Blogger (where she offers expert “how to blog” training to mom bloggers everywhere) is playing our writing game. She’ll be answering the questions above soon, in the meantime, if you have questions about blogging go check out her website for tips and advice.