#weekendcoffeeshare – 5/5/18

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I want to welcome all of you to #weekendcoffeeshare! If you were having coffee with me, I would ask you to please pull up a chair. I have a selection of coffees for you, from a traditional breakfast mix to more exotic coffees. Try my hot cinnamon spice tea or just plain black or green tea if you wish. I’m very glad you’re here!

If you were having coffee with me, I would ask how your week has been? Has your weather been as crazy as ours here in the Ohio Valley in the U.S.? It seems like we went from the dead of winter to July within the space of a few days! We had a freeze one night and within a couple of days, it was 88 degrees. There were no green leaves on the trees and everything burst out in buds and leaves all at once. I’m sure the plants don’t quite know what’s going on. One of my tasks for today, in between rain showers, is to take a look at my flower bed and see what made it through our very long, cold, and snowy winter. It snowed more here than in the city less than 100 miles west of us.

If you were having coffee with me, I would tell you that today is the Kentucky Derby, the most famous horse race of them all. Those of us here in Kentucky really enjoy it and I usually keep up with the horses. This year, life has gotten in the way and I’m not as schooled on the horses as usual. I will still enjoy the race and hope to get up-to-date before the race begins in the late afternoon.

If you were having coffee with me, I would tell you that I have started writing on my novel again after a long break and I’m really enjoying it. I gained some perspective about it during my break after doing some reading and thinking. I’m changing some things, improving other things, and I’m more satisfied with the direction it’s taking now. I hope your writing is going well.

If you were having coffee with me, I would tell you that my exciting news is that I’m waiting on my new puppy. I won’t yet have he/she when I write the next #weekendcoffeeshare, but two weeks from now, he/she should be home with me and will be about 10 or 11 weeks old. I’m very excited!

Thanks for having coffee with me and I look forward to seeing you next weekend!

#weekendcoffeeshare – 04/29/2018

Please, grab a cup of coffee or tea and sit with me. I have been out of things for awhile and I only just learned that eclecticali has taken over #weekendcoffeeshare and I want to say a big thank you! I’ve always enjoyed writing and reading these posts and have missed it!

If we were having coffee, I would try to catch you up on my writing and my life while asking about you. I feel that I’ve gotten to know so many of you and this is the forum where we could always share and catch up with each other. As for me, it has been a tough winter here in the Ohio Valley in the U.S. A long winter that started in November and hasn’t ended yet since it frosted last night. Very cold, snowy. Spring is trying to come, but it’s a very late spring since in two days, it will be May!

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I took a rather long writing break during the winter. I was in the middle of my novel and for those of you who have written a book, you know that the middle is the hardest part. I put it down and have just now picked it back up again. I feel like I’ve now gotten some perspective on it and can continue to write. Sometimes, you have to get some distance. The distance helped me and I think, now, I can write with a vengeance.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I have been without a dog for over nine months now. That’s the longest I’ve ever been without a canine companion in my life. I had a dog during this time, but she was a fear biter so that didn’t work out. I’m waiting on a puppy! I’m excited about that and hope that this works out. Anything can happen with puppies, so right now I’m just keeping my fingers crossed.  I should know in about two weeks about the puppy, so be hopeful for me!

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I don’t do well without a dog in my life. I’ve always had a special relationship with them.

If we were having coffee, I would share with you that my husband is waiting to see a neurosurgeon. He has a back issue that is painful and somewhat disabling. We are both worried and hope that he can try physical therapy first. We don’t intend to jump into surgery.

If we were having coffee, I would ask you to tell me how you have been and what is going on with your writing and your life. I’ve missed hearing your stories! I’d also like to know if there is a badge or image that we should put on our #weekendcoffeeshare posts? Thanks!

Thanks to electicali for hosting #weekendcoffeeshare

#weekendcoffeeshare 09/30/2017

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It’s been a long time, months, I think, since I’ve welcomed everyone for a #weekendcoffeeshare. I’m glad to welcome you now, into our coffee shop. The owner has a nice setup for us. Several kinds of coffee and tea this morning. Danish and other pastries. Please pick your pleasure and join us. I’m so glad to see all of you!

If we were having coffee, my only excuse for not being here recently is that I’ve spent the summer writing. Writing a novel and recently starting another long-form fiction piece that, I think, is going to be a novella. There is a growing market for novellas now. I’m excited about them both.

Other things have been going on as well. The last time we spoke, I think I had lost my dog, a wonderful companion. A Cavalier King Charles Spaniel named Betsy. I lost her, at only four years old, to a terrible genetic illness afflicting only a few breeds. Since I don’t “do” life very well without a dog, I picked out a puppy soon after Betsy’s death. I still mourn her and always will. Now I have Hanna, who is the wildest, craziest puppy I’ve ever had. She was 3.5 months old when I got her and had spent much of her life in a crate. She is now 6.5 months old and is terribly well-adjusted for the most part. Hanna is a “designer” dog or a dog bred like a Goldendoodle, a mix of two breeds. She is half Havanese and half Lowchen and it seems to be a good mix. She’s beautiful, funny, smart, and healthy. If I can live through her puppyhood (a challenge), she will make a wonderful companion. Here is just a head shot and I’m sure you can see what I mean:

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We are currently working hard on obedience training!

My summer has been completely filled with training and raising Hanna and writing up to 12 hours per day.

Now that October is almost here, I am getting ready to go to my little home in Florida for the winter. No idea yet when I will go. Hurricane Irma devastated Florida and did a lot of damage to the island where I live. I had some damage at my own home. Hurricane season doesn’t end in the U.S. until November 30, but usually hurricanes subside during November. This year, the Atlantic Ocean temperatures are still very warm. I won’t go to Florida until the ocean temperatures cool and until I’m sure that the infrastructure has been restored on my island. It makes it hard to know when to hire a housesitter! I hope to spend Thanksgiving there, but who knows? Everything is uncertain this year. The hurricane damage to Puerto Rico and the Florida Keys is unbelievably awful.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that’s all that’s been going on with me. I’d love to hear what’s been going on with all of you!

#SoCS – 9/9/2017 – Motive

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What a bad time for me to write a stream of consciousness blog post! There is only one thing streaming through my consciousness and that is the situation in Florida and the Caribbean islands due to #HurricaneIrma. I suppose my motive for writing this post at all is a bit of catharsis. You see, the hurricane is about to come roaring up through the Florida peninsula, clinging to the Gulf Coast, and I own property on a barrier island off the Gulf Coast. Chances are, nothing will be left after being touched by a Category 5 hurricane.

My own property isn’t my only motive in writing this blog post. I also want to call attention to the 5.6 million people who have had to be evacuated out of Florida. That is a huge number of evacuees for me to wrap my mind around. There is going to be massive property damage in Florida and many of these people may not be able to go home for a while. Just like the people of the U.S. have helped the people of Houston after Hurricane Harvey, please help the displaced people of Florida who are victims of Hurricane Irma.

Now to continue to sit, wait, and watch the Weather Channel (and the weather online). It’s a bit like watching a train wreck and not being able to look away.

#weekendcoffeeshare 8/12/2017

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Good morning to everyone! If we were having coffee this morning, I’d ask you to meet me at our local coffee shop. It has a wonderful patio area and the owner sets up a wonderful buffet for the #weekendcoffeeshare people. Today’s offerings are the best blueberry muffins I’ve ever tasted and banana bread that I’m going to taste. He is also going to offer us bread pudding! Yes, bread pudding for breakfast which is very decadent!

There is a nice selection of tea, including a wonderful raspberry tea, along with a selection of green tea and two black teas including one called “Paris.” Coffee this morning is a regular coffee along with expresso and a nice cafe latte.

Let’s all sit down and talk! I would love to hear how each and every one of you are doing. It’s been sort of an odd weather week where I live here in Kentucky, U.S.A. It’s still rather hot during the day, but one can tell that fall is coming. The summer flowers are definitely fading. The nights are getting cool. We’ve had so much rain this summer. We’re way above our average. There is a feeling of fall in the air. September and October really dry out if it is a usual weather year. There is nothing about 2017 that has been normal about the weather here. Have you experienced the same where you live?

How has your blogging and writing been going this week? I haven’t been blogging as much as usual. That’s because I’ve been trying to finish one part of the novel I’m writing. I did finish it, but it just means I’ve now started on the next part that is the actual “meat” of the book. I hope to finish this part before I go to Florida for the winter. I’ll leave here for Florida in early November. The part of the novel I’m working on now requires about 60,000 – 70,000 words. That’s what I’m facing between now and early November! I won’t be blogging as much as usual!

The other really important thing I’m doing between now and when I leave for Florida is training my little dog, Hanna. When she came to me, she was a blank slate. No one had done anything with her. Hanna is now five months old and doesn’t even know how to walk on a leash. I’ve trained dogs before, but when they were much younger and amenable to training than Hanna. So I’m employing professional help! Hanna starts private obedience training classes on Tuesday with a very good dog trainer in my area. She will learn the basics like how to walk on a leash and socialization skills. She is so very shy. She was clearly not around people at all until she came to me. She will have as many private lessons as she needs. Then, she and I will join a puppy obedience class for more socialization and to learn the basic obedience commands. After that, if there is time, she will join an adult obedience class.

Hanna and I have work to do!

As you can see, I’m going to be busy between now and when I leave for Florida in early November.

Tell me what’s going on with all of you in the comments. You’re my friends and colleagues!

The King’s Legend

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“Ian, I’ve always loved the coast of Brittany,” she said as the sailed along in their boat. There was no wind at that time. They were in a deck chair, relaxing, as the Captain they had hired took care of the boat. She was in Ian’s arms and had never been happier. The sea, the bay, and Ian.

“Can we stop and see the Merlin and King Arthur sites?” she asked.

“Of course,” he replied, as he directed the Captain.

Ian and the girl met up with a tour group going to the forest of Painpont, all that’s left of King Arthur’s Forest. A mystical, magical place. A small group was going to the Merlin site, where the wizard was imprisoned by Viviane in a stone. What they found was a shrine to Merlin and a feeling that seemed spiritual.

The group of five felt drawn to the stone. They reached out and touched it. When they did, there was a curl of smoke and they were all gone.

169 words

Photo credit to The Storyteller’s Abode

 

#weekendcoffeeshare – 05/27/2017

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Good morning, everyone! I’m so glad you’ve decided to come for my #weekendcoffeeshare today. It has been such a rainy, stormy week that I was afraid some of you wouldn’t be able to make it. There is even a forecast of storms today! Jenn is with us today and we have some goodies for you.

I found the most wonderful cinnamon buns in a bakery in Lexington, so I brought them home just for this #weekendcoffeeshare. Please help yourself and I’d love to know how you like them. As for coffee, I have a wonderful breakfast mix in addition to a more robust mix. I also have half caff and decaf. There is cream, sugar, and even some of that evil sweetener we aren’t supposed to have! As for tea, I have a wonderful hot cinnamon green tea, along with the hot cinnamon black tea, and a tea from Paris I hope you enjoy. I have a special surprise – an oolong tea that I don’t usually have, but it is from India and is awfully good. Enjoy and come to my writing studio whenever you want.

Just take a seat anywhere here in the studio. I’ll have to warn you that I have a one-track mind today. For several weeks, I have done very little except work on my novel. I have gotten a lot of words written, but I’ve read as much about novel writing as I’ve written. There is one thing I know for sure. It is hard! If you haven’t been schooled on the intricacies of writing a novel, school yourselves! I’ve been reading about structuring the plot, writing characterizations, and even things like what makes a good villain and writing good settings for the story.

I’ve found out that it isn’t as simple as writing your story down on the computer screen or on a piece of paper. You have to write about the feelings of the characters and know how to convey those feelings to your reading audience. You have to make your characters likeable so your readers will keep on reading. If you have a villain, you have to make that villian unlikeable.

You have to develop subplots that pull the reader away from the plot, but then take them back in. Everything must tie in together, which is quite a feat.

Can you tell that my novel is all that has been on my mind? I have been blogging less because of it, but that is going to change. I’ve found out that blogging a little gives my mind a rest from the intensity of writing the novel.

As many of you know, we have a teeny little home in Florida. I just wrote a blog post about an event that is happening near where we live there, although I turned it into fiction. It is for a flash fiction challenge.

I try to catch some news every day. I always want to hear the science and environmental news. It seems that the U.S. political news is overwhelming everything. Then, of course, there was the terrible terrorist attack in Manchester, England last week. The terrorists have to sink to killing little girls. It’s so disgusting I can hardly watch the coverage.

I hope all of you are doing well personally and that your writing is going well. I read the stuff of writers on WordPress all the time. It astounds me at how the quality of the writing is so high! Thank you for coming to my #weekendcoffeeshare! May the muse be with you!

#weekendcoffeeshare – 01/08/2017

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“Hello, Jenn! Come in quickly! It’s so terribly cold!” Jenn is joining me today for our #weekendcoffeeshare. It’s only 6F degrees this morning and I can hardly believe anyone at all will get out and trek to my house for coffee and tea!

“My car doors were almost frozen shut,” Jenn said, “but I was able to get them open. I don’t think this kind of cold is supposed to last very long.”

Where Jenn and I live, in the Ohio Valley in Kentucky, this kind of cold in winter is not particularly common. We usually have some of it but not a lot.

Jenn and I went about the business of preparing a limited coffee bar as we didn’t expect many people this morning. We set up a couple of kinds of coffee and tea, including a wonderful Indian Chai tea I had happened to find, hot chocolate, and some fine apple cider I had heating on the stove. I was gratified that some people did come by and just hoped they weren’t frostbitten. We all convened in my writing studio with our hot beverages. Most seemed interested in the hot cider this cold morning.

One person spoke up about her heat going off during the night. She is staying elsewhere until the HVAC people show up and is terribly worried about her pipes freezing, with good reason. Another person said his car wouldn’t start and caught a ride with someone else. All the problems associated with bitterly cold weather. Some of the reasons I have such a fervent desire to move to a warmer climate. I truly dread leaving my friends and what little family I have left here, but the benefits of moving are starting to outweigh the costs for me.

I’m going to have at least two realtors take a look at my house and give me their opinion on a selling price as that will determine whether I can move or not. I hope I have time to accomplish that reasonably soon. I will also look at homes in my desired destination as, of course, real estate prices there play another role. If I can move, it will be almost 1000 miles away, so it is a big move and I have to be sure. It’s a move I feel I need to make if I can get it to financially make sense. Given the political situation in the U.S., things are changing, including interest rates, so many factors have to be considered. My house was renovated last year. That is another consideration. Lots to think about!

On top of the cold weather, we had a big snow yesterday and, on the mountain where I live, we got more snow than in the valley below. Several inches. I detest snow and cold which means for four months or so each year, I’m miserable. Not a good thing, particularly at this time in my life. I guess the good news is that I get a lot of writing done! Writers need experiences, however, and I would certainly have the opportunity for more experiences if I moved. I hope there are many novels to write in my future.

I hope all of you have recovered from your holiday celebrations and that you really enjoyed the holidays with your families and friends! Now I hope you’re getting back to the business of being normal without too much adjustment.

That’s about it for today’s #weekendcoffeeshare. I have to get busy here as I have lots to do. I appreciate your stopping by. See you next week!

 

 

#weekendcoffeeshare 12/24/2016

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Good morning, Merry Christmas, and Happy Hanukkah, to all of you! Please come right in and join me for our Christmas Eve special #weekendcoffeeshare. I have several types of coffee for you. I have just about every type of tea as I am a tea aficionado. Blackberry and other herbals. Russian and other bold teas. Lighter green teas. Even white tea which is a treat to try. My favorite Hot Cinnamon Black Tea. I also have, as a holiday treat, scones and muffins. So load up your plates and let’s talk!

The Holiday Season is here. It isn’t especially my time of year but so many people love it. I’ve been around some friends this year who really get into Christmas and it’s almost been a new experience. I haven’t celebrated Christmas in a big way in a lot of years. Watching my friends prepare for their holiday has been amazing and overwhelming. I don’t see how they do it! Those days are gone for me but I have enjoyed watching them.

Since we’re all writers, I want to report on some writer stuff. I got my Brother laser printer hooked up this week. It is WiFi-enabled and it was terribly easy to hook up. It is handling two different computer with ease – an iPad and a Windows laptop. I’m impressed. I’d forgotten how easy a laser printer is since I have used an inkjet for many years. Here’s the good part. This laser printer was no more expensive than an inkjet. I can remember when they cost $700. Check out Amazon if you need a printer. You will be pleasantly surprised.

I probably would not have thought of a laser printer had it not been for another writer who recommended it. I don’t know how many of you are familiar with Chuck Wendig. He is a well-known horror writer in the U.K. and increasingly in the U.S. I love his website and reading his writings. He is amazingly talented and gives great tips to other writers. He also hosts the occasional challenge which are indeed challenging. I would recommend signing up to receive his blog. One caveat: It is at least R-rated so if bad language offends you, don’t do it. Trust me, the information you will gain as a writer is more than worth it. His site is terribleminds.com. You don’t have to write in his genre to take advantage of the information he passes on.

Speaking of gear for writers, my new keyboard for my iPad arrives today. I will report next time on it. Take a look. You can find it at querky.com.

So that takes care of Christmas presents for writers!

I’ve had a productive writing week and hope all of you have too. I am making good progress on my novel which has morphed from a romance novel into a psychological thriller. If that sounds weird to you, believe me, it was weird to me too. Now that I have let the story flow naturally and become what it was meant to be, the writing is easy. I have some free time over the next couple of weeks and I am shooting for maybe 20,000 more words.

I’m taking a trip! Soon, my husband and I are taking our RV and going to Florida to escape Kentucky’s cold weather. I’m just about over having four seasons and am ready for one season – a warm one! We’re spending several weeks there and I was lucky enough to find a house sitter. We will be in my favorite area of Florida most of the time, the Gulf Coast along the peninsula but will spend a week or more along the panhandle as well. I hope to get lots of good pictures and have many experiences that I will share with all of you.

I will blog the entire time I’m gone and I also have a consulting project I will probablly have to work on. But only for a few hours each day.

That wraps it up for this Christmas Eve edition of #weekendcoffeeshare for me. I would love to hear your plans for the holidays! Leave a note for me and tell us about them in the comments! Next time we talk, it will be New Year’s Eve, the dawn of 2017. #amwriting #amblogging #writing #Christmas #Florida

Thanks to Diana and Parttimemonsterblog.com