Tuesday, September 28, 2010


She signed with a major record label when she was a teenager. Her debut album climbed the Billboard charts, went certified platinum within months, and she earned more than half-a-dozen Grammy nominations.
As her success grew, she became "known for the love in her music that has inspired and motivated people worldwide."*
But then she virtually disappeared from the music scene. Why?
Singer/songwriter India Arie looked back recently, saying that she had "gone so far off the path of my own vision, I didn't even know what that was anymore . . . [but] I've been rebuilding. I prayed my power back into my body. And ... I started just making the music I love, following the guidance of spirit to a tee. I didn't censor or second-guess...
"And while I've never said anything I didn't want to say [in my music], I've never said some of the most important things I do want to say. About acceptance versus tolerance, and the oneness of all people... But now I have.
"I finally reached the fork in the road, and I chose the path of authenticity. I don't know what's going to happen. But I feel good!"**
This woman inspires me. With her philosophy, her love, and spirituality, with her authenticity.
India Arie's story stirs my faith. It tells me that we can refine our intentions and our wants, we can seize authenticity, and we can be all the better for it--even when we don't know our fate.
Watch one of India Arie's lovely videos.
Career stats found at Wikipedia; photo from examiner.com.
*India Arie on MySpace
**O Magazine, October 2010

Friday, September 24, 2010

RQ #13

What do you do when you believed your path was laid and lit-up for you, and you embraced it with everything, but suddenly a new one appears--and it captures all your excitement, attention and desire?

Which path do you take?

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Set Out On Foot

We live at a lake. A big, beautiful, wet and peaceful lake. It is nestled by rural things; acreage and farms, gravel roads and cow-dotted fields.
If you walk up the field behind our house, away from the water, you pass a couple small cabins, vacation cabins. You follow a path, beaten down by so many feet, and tires, to one of our big towers of gray metal, rising high, marking our cove.
Last Friday I journeyed that direction, my dog my only companion. The day was beautiful, and I wanted to be in it.
The wind blew around me, soft and friendly. I heard a mower off on one hill; a tractor on another. I lay down beneath the tower, looking at its belly before closing my eyes. A fly buzzed, bzzzzzz; something small and jumpy landed on my arm. And my head topsy-turvied, because I laid with my upside pointing down the incline.
It was the most peace I've felt in months, and I kept myself there a long while listening, thinking, open.
Neat to think it awaits me, just up the hill, anytime I seek it.
What will you find when you leave your house on foot?

Friday, September 17, 2010

Smile For the Camera

Today is school picture day for my girls.

We spent extra time matching the pieces of their outfits, and smoothing their hair, practicing smiles. I know their photos will turn out perfect, with their growing-up faces and excited little bodies.

And, too, the pictures will be perfect because they're about capturing an essence, and holding it for posterity.

This was the year, those little still shots will say to me.

The year my oldest wanted, more than anything, to be around other people. It's when she learned she could be friends with the kids she didn't understand before. When she discovered hey, she was really great at lots of things, a quick-learner, and that she could practice and progress without growing discouraged. It's when she loved her teacher, again, and her class, and wanted to go back five minutes after she'd returned home. When she first gathered friends' numbers, and made habit of long giggly phone calls. It's when she started taking seriously the role of big sister, guiding and loving and helping. It was the year she was even more beautiful, more free-spirited, than the last.

And it's the year my youngest had enthusiasm seeping from her bones, so excited about everything, especially school. The year she always came home filthy from this thing called recess, and ravenous for this thing called snack. When she was exhausted by Thursday of each week, because all-day kindergarten was something to get used to. When she decided Dora the Explorer wasn't so cool anymore, but she sure liked Littlest Pet Shop and LIV Girls and cowgirl boots and the idea of a diary. It was the year she discovered independence and art and music and really good friends. It was the year she was even more beautiful, more entertaining, than the last.

I'll look at today's pictures and remember, it was a really good year.

*Photo courtesy mikebudden.co.uk. The antique camera makes me think of my cousin Amy. Love you, girl.
*As always, you all are wonderful. Thanks for your comments on my last post.
*I've a new article up at Rose & Thorn Literary Journal. You can find it here.

Monday, September 13, 2010

I Need Your Thoughts

I'm curious.

When you come to Something She Wrote, what is it you expect? From me, from this place?

I've been struggling of late, with content and topics and whatever my voice has become or should be through this vehicle, and I thought if I asked you--bloggers and not, writers and not, old readers and new--what content you most like or come to see, it would point me in the right direction.

Do you like anecdotes? The fiction? Random questions, pictures of steak?

What doesn't seem to fit?

I've been so focused on novel revisions--that's good--and life, that blogging has fallen to what feels a chore--not good.

See, the more energy I put in here, the less I have for writing books--and vice versa--and those others articles and projects. I understand, I do, and my novel-writing has to take a certain priority. But SSW is still important to me, and I want it to be important to you, all my readers and supporters. I want it to be good for you.

This is me sorta laying it all on the table.

I feel like I need to revamp things, redefine my intention. Give this place a lift (not in look but in feel), and assess all that's working or not. And I just wanted to pick your brains, because I blog for you as much as I blog for me.

Until I find my way, decide what's what and find my stride, I may relax my M-W-F posting schedule. Because quality once- or twice-a-week posts are better than regular semi-satisfying ones, don't you think?

Talk to me, wise ones. I need your thoughts.

**Zoe C. Courtman, in a timely gifting, has awarded me the One Lovely Blog Award. (This makes me feel good, not quite so aimless or out-of-sorts.) Thank you, Zoe!

Friday, September 10, 2010

This One's For the Boys

Dear Manly Men,
I've noticed you. Oh yes, I have noticed you.
I see your thumbnail faces, strong-jawed and masculine in the follow me box, where I used to see only the flowing manes and bow lips of women.
Your presence surprises and pleases me all at once.
Usually I write about life and feelings and stuff. And not to say that those sorts of things don't reach you, but I've been most popular among the estrogen set.
Your presence surprises and pleases me all at once. Thank you.
Today, a post dedicated to you, the men of Something She Wrote.
And I think that about covers it.
Welcome, men!
Steak picture, How to Roll. Off-roading Jeep, my own picture. Football picture, sixthman.net. 50 Greatest Action movies, complex.com. Blocks picture, dailymail.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

RQ #12

What life lesson(s) have you recently learned?

Photo from flickr. All rights reserved by William Follett.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Three Things You Might Want to Know

(1) Last week's intruder (see Friday's post) has since come back and apologized.

(2) Mailmen and stalkers beware: I do have a hand gun, and I know how to use it.


(3) I'll be laboring through revisions today. How are you spending the holiday?

Friday, September 3, 2010

Scary? You Tell Me

This happened just yesterday, while no one was home but me...

The dye had been on my hair for nearly thirty minutes. Time to hop in the shower, time to rinse. I hope it's dark enough, I thought. I hope it's not too dark, I thought next.

As I pushed my head under the faucet, darkness splattered around me.

Lather lather.

Was pulled from that moment of concentration by KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK. Someone at the door.

I turned off my bathroom's light/fan combo, so loud that thing is, and the shower, too. Listened. KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK came again.

Over the thudthud of my heart, I heard the front door swing open. "Hello!" called a male voice.

My whole chest was beating then, because this just doesn't happen every day. I listened harder, heard the door close. No footsteps. No, nothing.

I had a suspicion, though. And after a few quiet, uneventful moments...

Like a dumb teenager from a horror movie, I flipped on the light. Turned the water back on, cranked it wide. Yeah, yeah, call me vain (stupid, even), but my hair had to be rinsed. And I wasn't going to go investigate. Duh.


Light/fan off. Water off.


I know what that is.

I won't lie. I hesitated. But I told myself to be calm and--while listening for anyone or anything on the staircase, because my hunch could be wrong--finished my shower.


And when I was done I listened again. Wrapped myself in a towel, tiptoed to my balcony to look down on the living room, and the front door. There was my proof.

Nine cases of postal shipping supplies my husband ordered, delivered courtesy USPS. The intruder had been our mailman, threatening as a puny grandpa, who'd thought to put everything indoors, away from the rain.

Kind of a nice consideration, actually.

Next time I lock the doors.

What would you have done?

ETA: I feel like I should add: We live in a small, private community, where everyone's friendly, and we've seen no crime in the 4.5 years we've been here. Changes the factors just a bit, I think.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Just Some Things

A fused and cohesive post they do not make, but here are the random thoughts on my mind today.



* It's dreary here this morning, and after I do today's WIP revisions, I may have to take a nap.

* Speaking of revisions, I found my stride again. I'm learning: It's about trusting myself and the process of writing.

* I just finished reading a grand book by Elizabeth Flock. Her writing is wonderful, and I found it inspiring! She's been added to my sidebar of favorite authors.

* I passed my business card to a complete stranger yesterday. She's just opened a new business, and I told her I'm a writer, that I could maybe help with such-and-such, and she could contact me if she wanted. My friends (who were witnesses) said it wasn't awkward, though it felt like my insides were exploding with awkwardness. Next time, I'll pull it off even better.

* There are two pieces of chicken bacon ranch pizza leftover, and they may have to be my lunch. Might steam some broccoli, for some added nutrients.

* I bought an old wood-framed screen door thing at an antiques store yesterday, and hung it on my living room wall. Sounds odd, but I actually like it a lot. (Maybe I'll work a blog picture in somewhere down the line.)

* I keep getting side-swiped by humility. I think it's a good thing.

* Why is it that the more balanced I feel, the more Things To Do I have waiting in the wings?

* I checked out the Sony eReaders at a store display yesterday, and the screens were much smaller than that of my Kindle. Made me glad for the Kindle.

* Today I MUST scrub both my shower and my girls' tub. MUST. And maybe make an apple pie.

What are your random thoughts today?