Monthly Archives: September 2017

Re-Awoken

I love stumbling into places that awaken the imagination. Mine has felt so sleepy lately — caught up in everyday life and planning for the future.

One of those moments happened during a day trip over the weekend.

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At first, this place felt like it belonged in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. One of the statues should be here, waiting to reward my hard work with another heart or some stamina.

But then I wondered what it would be like in the world I’ve spent most of my life creating. What would those people do in a place that mixes the beauty of nature and architecture, like this?

The dormant itch to work on those stories has re-awoken. It’s about time.

What places have you visited that have inspired your stories or inspired you to restart work on a long-term project?

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Happy (Belated) Hobbit Day!

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Friday came and went faster than expected. While I didn’t get to my annual Hobbit Day post, that doesn’t mean that we didn’t celebrate!

Most years, Hobbit Day (Bilbo and Frodo’s birthday) is filled with everything Hobbit-related that you can imagine. This year was more subdued, thanks to the hurricane. In some ways, though, it felt very much like a typical Hobbit’s day.

I’m currently on a Hobbit’s eating schedule… and sometimes I feel like I have the appetite of one too. I understand why they prefer to spread their calorie intake out over six meals, though. It allows for plenty of variety throughout the day. The only downside: I think I need a bigger lunchbox to take on campus. Oh, and it confuses the cat when I’m home. Sorry, little guy, but you don’t get lunch at 9:30…

I added to my vegetable garden. Since it’s time for fall planting, could there be a more perfect day to spend some time in patches of freshly tilled earth?

Did you celebrate Hobbit Day? If so, what did you do?


The Heart of a Hurricane

It took many long hours for the hurricane to make its trek over us. I’m thankful to say that we made it out unscathed (though we were without power for a while). Things are finally starting to return to normal, though it will still be a while for some. As the hours dragged, I wondered how I would capture this experience. As a writer, all that came to mind are words. So here are some snippets of what it was like in the heart of a hurricane. 

Hysteria reverberates through the air.
Shelves and gas pumps empty, fueling fear.
People grow desperate as the eye draws near.
My gas tank and pantry are full.
Should I be more worried?

Covered in a mix of sawdust and mud,
we bolt plywood to the windows
and hope for the best. Tapcons screech,
forcing themselves deep into strong concrete.
Even the baby inside me is restless.
The cat cowers under the bed.
Cold rain pours as we work.
The storm isn’t even here yet.

Darkness.
I reach for the safety of the lantern.
The light brings some comfort as wind
rattles boards and rain pummels exposed windows.
We listen to each gust, breathless. I search
for the cat beneath the table. I want to know
where he is, just in case. I remind
all of us that it’s going to be okay.
Another gust. How fast was that one?
How  many more hours before it passes?

Light finally breaks through the speeding clouds
and we venture outside. The world is surreal.
Leaves blown from bent plants, branches everywhere,
dark spots where shingles should have been,
a lost piece of gutter laying on the sidewalk.
A mangled tree whispers destruction, others lay
where the wind left them. But we are all safe,
and that is what really matters.

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Hello, Hurricane (Irma)

Well, here we are again, sitting on the edge of another hurricane. Needless to say, it’s been a long week and not good for posting schedules.

So as we brace for an enormous storm, here’s the song that’s been on repeat in my head. We saw Switchfoot (one of my favorite bands) a few years ago, and when we did, they said that they wrote this song with my area in mind. For good reason, considering our hurricane track record.

If you don’t hear from me for a little while, it’s just because power/Internet is out. See you on the other side!


Reading the Inklings: Dorothy Sayers

Well, it took the whole summer, but I’m one step closer to my goal of reading something by all of the Inklings.

Robert Harvard, a medical doctor, was first on the list. The only entry I would really appreciate was in CS Lewis’ The Problem of Pain, so that’s what I read. As interesting as medical journals might be, I think that some of it may have been lost on me.

Fortunately, Dorothy Sayers writes fiction so there were plenty of options to choose from. Since I opted to borrow a book digitally from the library, I picked Lord Peter Views the Body.

It’s just one part of the Lord Peter Wimsey series, and it shows. While the stories are all vignettes, some do make clear references to prior stories. Nothing that makes it difficult to keep up with because she does give enough context for me to appreciate the characters and situations, but I still know that I’m missing something.

The stories make me think of Sherlock Holmes as far as their length and style go. Sometimes, there’s a possibility that I could have figured out the mystery. Other times, relevant information just isn’t presented, so the ending comes as a surprise. In any case, though, I enjoyed them and again admired the complexities of writing mysteries.

Much like Holmes, Lord Peter Wimsey (who is much younger than I originally imagined with such a grandiose name) has a sidekick: Bunter. Unlike Watson, he’s not in every story and he doesn’t always narrate, but he fulfills a similar function in the story.

Overall, it was definitely a fun read, and I’ll likely go back and check out some of her other works.

For now, though, it’s time to move on to new things. There’s a short story I promised a friend I would read, and then it’s time to pick the next Inkling!

Have you ever read anything by Dorothy Sayers? Do you like mysteries? If so, who are your favorite mystery authors?