“Maybe it’s better to look stupid, but strong, than it is to look smart, but weak. I don’t know. I not sure that I want to believe that the world stage bears that strong a resemblance to high school.”
Jim Butcher in Turn Coat.
quote- the world is high school August 22, 2018
quote-attracting poets July 17, 2017
From The Colour Master by Aimee Bender:
…part of trying to attract those poet-men was to look a little like I had wandered onto campus by accident after having spent 10 years with the wolves behind some farm house, living off scraps and reveling in the pure air like a half-girl Mowgli, half-woman Thoreau.” p. 76
I found this quite amusing, as I had just come from the Honeymoon Bay Poetry Retreat and had spent some time with a few poet-men.
quote- creations June 15, 2017
“Creations are creatures, and they have lives of their own.”
Louise Penny. The Nature of the Beast.
I’m reading this Inspector Gamache novel, and Ruth made this comment about a play. The line after indicates that the play was the playwright. It seems both powerful and succinctly true. When we create something, it comes from us, often reflect deep truths about us, but it also becomes itself. It speaks to those who view/read/listen/watch with its own voice (filtered through or reflecting their voice). I am often fascinated to hear what readers have taken from my work. Sometimes they find things I put there, but often they find things that are completely different, and just as valid. Once the book or poem left my hands, it became its own entity. It’s an interesting experience. It reminds me of the first time an adult mentions they know your child- they’ve interacted with them in a way that is unconnected to you, and you realize they have their own independent lives. Children are creations, too. They’re equally part of us and completely themselves. Ah. Creation is a complex thing!
From a writing point of view, what a perfectly crafted sentence for this character. Ruth is a poet, and doesn’t the line sound like a poem? Louise Penny is my hero.
quote- home May 21, 2017
“Wherever you have friends, that’s your country.
Wherever you receive love, that’s your home.”
Tibetan proverb quoted by the Dalai Lama in The Book of Joy (I highly recommend this book!)
This quote brilliantly summarizes my experience of life with and as an exchange student. Half your heart has moved to a new location.
poem-appealing February 6, 2016
“a man in a kilt will always be more appealing than anyone in lederhosen.”
The appeal is likely the easier peeling?
quote-Ken Robinson on creative people July 15, 2015
Some of the most brilliant, creative people I know did not do well at school. Many of them didn’t really discover what they could do–and who they really were–until they’d left school and recovered from their education.
Sir Ken Robinson in The Element
I am doing my Masters in Education at the moment. Specifically, I’m on campus at University of British Columbia Okanagan taking two courses, each three hours a day, for three extremely intensive and exhausting weeks. As I write, I am exactly half way through my degree. In another week and a half I will have completed 6 of 9 courses. I am presently trying to determine what I will do for a project to reflect the research I do around my question which explores passion-based learning and teaching in a high school.
I come to this research because since I have fulfilled my passions as an author and poet, it has completely changed the way I teach. I am happier. I believe my students are happier because of it. I suspect they learn better because I bring my outside passions (as a writer) into my class room.
Unlike the people Robinson knew, I did do well in school, in the classes I loved like English, History, and Choral, at least. I didn’t do as well in math and sciences. I knew I wanted to be a writer even back in high school. I was in the yearbook (publishing a book each year!), newspaper (publishing a column each month!), as well as musical theatre (applause!). Back then, all three of those were extra-curricular activities. How great would it have been to have been earning English and art credits for all that learning? Our kids today do.
I was so jealous of Sue Hinton who’d written The Outsiders while she was in grade eleven! Consider: she failed English that year. What a travesty! Next year, I have 2 students who are planning to do Independent Directed Studies writing novels (or perhaps novellas) for credit. Sue Hinton would have loved English in my school.
I may have known my passion, but I didn’t leap in and start (well, finish) writing that novel in my head until 25 years after leaving high school. That’s a long time to have a fire smoored, awaiting the flash of flame and burning of achievement!
How about you? What’s your passion? Is it smoored or burning? Did formal school help or hinder development of your passion?
quote-happiness is within July 1, 2015
“The kind of wrapping you come in has nothing to do with it. As quickly as you realize that, contentment and peace come—from the heart. Happiness is within you.”
quote- insults June 13, 2015
Just came across this in my audio book today:
“An insult is like a drink, it affects one only if accepted.”
Robert A. Heinlein in Glory Road
How true is this!
The difference between being ‘thin-skinned’ and ‘thick-skinned’ lies in if you ‘accept’ the insult or not. If you do not, it rolls over you and you can remain jovial and calm. If you accept an insult, it can be toxic, taking bitter root and poisoning both you and others around you as you spread the toxicity.
This brings to mind that some need more gentleness than others.
While insult may be completely unintended, those who presume a negative intent will let their ‘acceptance’ of the insult fester. Their perception is their reality.
This is when one can either wait for the one presuming insult where none was intended or implied to either wake up or move on, or one can say “I’m sorry you felt that way, it was not the intent.”
I am prone to the former, with a shrug of shoulders. For those of us who ignore even intentional insults (some of us have taught junior high and therefore have a lot of practice) it can be hard to feel sorry for those who are so fragile or victimized that they see insult wherever they turn. They’re emotionally exhausting to be around.
I don’t drink either literally or figuratively. It seems like a sound way of avoiding trouble.
quote-Jim Butcher on magic May 31, 2015
Magic is all in your head, all about two things, imagination and will. You have to focus on your desired outcome and you have to have the will to make it happen.
~Jim Butcher in Dresden Files, Welcome to the Jungle
Sounds like hard work and passion is magic, doesn’t it? Hmm. He might be onto something here.
quote- magic of creation April 30, 2015
We all have magic, it’s all around us as well. We just don’t pay attention to it. Every time we make something out of nothing, that’s an act of magic. It doesn’t matter if it’s a painting or a garden, or an abuelo telling his grandchildren a tall tale. Every time we fix something that’s broken, whether it’s a car engine or a broken heart, that’s an act of magic.
And what makes it magic is that we choose to create or help, just as we can choose to harm. But it’s so easy to destroy and so much harder to make things better. That’s why doing the right thing makes you stronger.
If we can only remember what we are and what we can do, nobody can bind us or control us.
Charles de Lint The Mystery of Grace p. 235
I was reading this book tonight and was struck by this passage. I will share it with my Creative Writing class tomorrow. This is what it’s all about. The magic of creating something from nothing. It’s about crafting worlds from electrical charges firing in the brain, such sparks are magic in its purest form: undeniable..