Life intervenes so we're taking an extended coffee break. We're so grateful for those who drop by, read our posts, and share their thoughts. Thank you, thank you! We're not going away forever, just for awhile. Check back in November for updates and quite possibly a new format.
Be well, be happy, and drink lots of java (or something)!
Beth, Brenda, Barb/Elle, BJ/Aleena, Brandy, and Krys
2. an evil, unlawful, treacherous, or surreptitious plan formulated in secret by two or more persons; plot.
3. a combination of persons for a secret, unlawful, or evil purpose: He joined the conspiracy to overthrow the government.
Did Lee Harvey Oswald act alone in the assassination of President John F. Kennedy? Or were others involved? Some people think he couldn't have done it alone and that parties such as the CIA, KGB, FBI, Fidel Castro, the Mafia and many others were involved.
Was the Apollo moon landing real, or were the NASA pictures shot in a studio?
Was Princess Diana's car accident really an accident? Or was it some elaborate murder plan to prevent further scandal to the English throne?
Alien spaceship or top secret research balloon? What really crashed in Roswell in July of 1947? Were there aliens aboard? Did they survive?
Whether these events were conspiracies or not, they still make for great thought and discussion. I always find it interesting to read all the different conspiracies that people create. Some of them are very believable, and some of them not so much. I guess it's all a matter of opinion.
I just finished reading The Strain by Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan. Being a vampire story, I was compelled to buy it as soon as I saw it on the shelf. I really enjoyed the book even though it was not what I was expecting. My typical vampire reads have sexy men and hot steamy scenes. This was completely the opposite. In this story, the vampires are disgusting!!
The thing that bugged me about The Strain, is that I didn't realize it was part of a series. I guess I didn't pay enough attention to this inside cover. Half way through the book it hit me... great I'm gonna be left hanging again!
I have gotten way too interested in too many series! It drives me crazy waiting for the next story to come out. There is the Fever series - it's the one that has me most on edge. The Black Dagger Brotherhood always keeps me in suspense wondering who's story is next. I have many others that I am always waiting on. So great... I just added another!!
Does it drive you absolutely nuts waiting on the next part of a series? Do you like being left in suspense?
One's imagination is as unique as the body that holds it. I posted a stunning picture at Loud Whispers this weekend and asked people to just come up with a couple of sentences about it. What story did they see when they looked at it? What emotion did they feel?
The answers were amazing and some of the stories they came up with NEED to be told. I hope they will allow the picture to inspire them further.
I've decided to try it here. It doesn't matter if you're a reader, a writer, or just a fan of imagination. Don't hold back. Tell us a little about this picture:
I like to sing. I also like to think that I can carry a tune in the shower or sing along to the radio with the best of them, which most likely isn't true. Although the thought of it is appealing on the surface, the one thing I haven't done yet is sing in public in front of a crowd. Not even once. The closest I've ever come to it is singing "Happy Birthday" at parties along with everyone else that was there.
It's not because I've never had the chance. I've been to Karaoke with friends more than a few times, and hung out with Brenda and Elle for several years while they were performing and could have probably begged/bribed my way on stage. Not once did I take the plunge, although I did briefly run the sound and lights for a band, so in addition to not singing I had the distinct pleasure of trying my best not to make -them- sound bad.
The reason I've never done it is simple: I'm chicken. Stone cold stark raving chicken. There, I said it. As much as I like to sing and the thought of a room full of people clapping in approval for me is appealing, I just can't bring myself to do it. I get too nervous and don't think I sound that good. Maybe someday I'll get up the courage and go for it, but not likely.
What artistic/creative endeavor that you haven't tried would you most like to try? Why haven't you tried it yet?
Awesome writer and my good friend Mary Stella's newsest blog post inspired this post. She's reading The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Please hop over to Postcards from Paradise for her humorous and intersting post inspired by the word: gallimaufry.
I'm going to copy and paste my response to her because it raises a question I want to ask you.
That book and series are all the rage at my library. I figured I should read it since it's so 'great'. I downloaded sample chapters on my Kindle. Midway through the 1st chapter I decided it wasn't for me. I couldn't get into it at all. When I confessed this to people who'd read and loved it they said things like, "The first three chapters are the hardest to get through" and "The first half of the book is slow but then it really takes off" and "It's too detailed and bogged down in Swedish politics, but if you ignore all that..." and lastly, "It's translated poorly which makes for a clumsy read, but..."
Um. None of these things enticed me to give it another go. On another note, someone who read the book and saw the Swedish movie, told me the movie cut to the heart of the story and was great. I'm thinking maybe that's more my cup of tea...
Then again... that same person told me that there is a an act of sexual violence in the film that is quite brutal and goes on for some time. So I don't know that the film is for me either, although I could look away at that point. But I digress. My question for you is:
Have you ever started a book and, even though you didn't like it, slogged through anyway thinking it had to get better? If so, were you glad you pushed on? Or... if a book doesn't hold your interest do you ditch it and move on to the next read?
My days have been very busy lately. Smurfette is in volleyball four days a week. Two days of practice and two game days. She finally won a game, which was good for the team. They were starting to feel a little down about losing so many games. They practiced hard and the results were a very well played game.
Monster is having separation anxiety. She cries and clings to me when I take her to school. I have tried to walk away from her but she just runs after me. The school counselor has been very nice. He just pulls her away from me and as I walk away he walks with her to class. She stops crying as soon as I'm out of sight. It is heartbreaking to see her so upset about me leaving her. It makes me feel stressed for the rest of the day.
When I'm not dealing with my children, I'm working, cleaning house or doing laundry. I am in need of a vacation, of quiet time, of time in general. One of these days I am going to take a day for myself. A day where I do absolutely nothing, unless that nothing is something fun.
Do you ever feel that life gets in the way of, well, life?
It seems that many people around me are experiencing difficulty in one way or another in their lives. I sometimes wonder if it has something to do with the alignment of the planets, or some unseen or unknown force. I think I remember hearing once that your life goes through phases. Something like life is great for a number of years and then negative forces move in and you struggle for a few years. If I had more time this morning, I would do some research.
But instead, I just wanted to share some positive quotes and offer encouragement to those out there that need it...including myself.
When you come to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on. ~Franklin D. Roosevelt
The world is round and the place which may seem like the end may also be only the beginning. ~Ivy Baker Priest
It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves. ~Edmund Hillary
Adversity is like a strong wind. It tears away from us all but the things that cannot be torn, so that we see ourselves as we really are. ~Arthur Golden, Memoirs of a Geisha
It's not easy taking my problems one at a time when they refuse to get in line. ~Ashleigh Brilliant
The soul would have no rainbow had the eyes no tears. ~John Vance Cheney
Count the garden by the flowers, never by the leaves that fall. Count your life with smiles and not the tears that roll. ~Author Unknown
I have heard there are troubles of more than one kind. Some come from ahead and some come from behind. But I've bought a big bat. I'm all ready you see. Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me! ~Dr. Seuss
Here's to brighter days for all! Have an incredible Wednesday!
The new fall network television season is almost here, and there are several shows that I'm really looking forward to seeing. 'NCIS', 'House', 'Chuck', and 'The Mentalist' are at the top of my list. What's on your 'must see' list for this season?
There are many thrilling aspects to writing books. Perhaps one of the most rewarding is seeing your completed novel, the story you sweated over for months, maybe years... on a shelf in a bookstore. The first time, the first book, as you can imagine is the ultimate high. But even after after fourteen published novels I still feel a sense of wonder when I walk in a store and see a Beth Ciotta book on the shelf with so many other authors. Some of them my long time faves!
I also get a thrill when someone sends me a picture of my book on a shelf. Earlier this year SIS Brandy sent me a picture of OUT OF EDEN on the shelf at a department store! So cool! Recently, reader and friend, Sherry Tew sent me this awesome pic of INTO THE WILD at a Borders in Florida!
Your misson, should you decide to accept it, is to snap a shot of INTO THE WILD (if you happen to see it in your travels) and to send it to me so I can post it and also save in my photo scrapbook. Be sure to tell me where you saw it! That's half the thrill! Oh! And phone pics are fine! Send to firstname.lastname@example.org
Thoughts, both mundane and spiritual, have been written in my journal. I have just recently started to keep one. I find it a refreshing way to end my day. I pay attention to things around me more. I notice that there are messages to be heard, image's to be seen. These things might have slid by me in the past, but now that I write about the things that go on throughout my day, they seem to pop up everywhere.
Something someone might say to me could have deeper meaning. A spider on a web might be an image that can lead to a poem (or a very funny moment). A scent might transport be back in time and remind me of better times. What I experience throughout my day goes right into my journal. Some day, many years from now, someone might find my journal and be inspired by it. Through my journal and my poems, I will live forever. That is true immortality.
Do you keep a journal? SIS BJ aka Aleena Ravenwood
I am in search of a book. Not just any book. A book that I just can't put down. A book that I think about constantly when I'm done reading it.
I love mysteries. John Grisham is one of my favorite authors. I've read many of his books and really enjoyed them. Two of my all time favorite books are The Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons by Dan Brown. Those two books had me riveted from the get go.
I remember reading both of those Dan Brown books and taking breaks from them to go to the computer to look up things he was mentioning. I remember trying to decipher some of the puzzles.
I need a book that has nail-biting suspense and heart-pounding action. Anyone have a recommendation?
Yesterday, we went to visit Bobby. He lives in a very small town... if you can even call it that. There isn't even a gas station. On the way there, Pam warned me of the Labor Day festival that was going on. Lots of people and yard sales and games in town she says. She wasn't joking!
Every other home had a sale set up. There was people all over the place! Some were taking part in the festivities in town. There were game booths and food. A man sat up on the stage singing and playing his acoustic guitar. It was a pretty cool little festival.
Small town festivals always have a good feel to them. They may not be fancy or elaborate, but everyone is always having a good time. These festivals make me think of simpler times... simpler lives. Crafts, the dunk tank, relay races for the kids, homemade food, local talent, pie eating contests... ahhh sounds peaceful huh?
What local festivals do you like to go to? What is your favorite part?
The coffee's brewing. There's a storm outside. The sound of thunder woke me this morning as it rumbled past my window. Ahhh...It's a good day. Many don't care for a storm on a holiday, but I wouldn't be one of those. Today I'll cozy up on the chaise with a good book and then I'll do some writing of my own this afternoon.
Autumn is by far my favorite season, and here's why. I was born and have lived all my life in a city in central Florida, which pretty much has two seasons a year, spring and summer. This past winter was an exception to that, but it's pretty rare. Some of the leaves here do change color with the seasons, but they're still pretty dull. About the only real giveaway that Autumn has arrived is that it's less humid and the mosquitoes become less numerous. A few of the churches in this area have fall festivals, but they're pretty much just carnivals.
About 25 years ago my parents bought some land near Asheville, NC after we took a family vacation there to see some property that my sister and her husband owned in the area. Almost every year after that until very recently, we always went back in late October right around the time the leaves were changing. We would rent a cabin up in the mountains and over the years made many fond memories, from horseback riding and whitewater rafting to gem mining and craft fairs and fall festivals. Even though we went every year for several years, it never got old.
There's something magical about a small town autumn in the mountains. The brilliant yellow, orange and crimson leaves contrasted by the turquoise blue of the sky. The clean, crisp smell of the air mingled with the scent of damp earth and leaves. The bounty of the harvest and numerous handmade arts and crafts on display at the roadside markets and fall festivals. Sitting on the porch of a cabin in the mountains at night gazing up at the multitude of twinkling stars overhead, a cup of hot spiced cider in hand.
I seriously need to stop now before I get too nostalgic! What are your favorite memories relating to Autumn?
1) Write blog posts
2) Create and send promo newsletter to my subscribers
3) Work on new proposal until it's done...write, brainstorm, edit, write, edit.
#3 will take the majority of every hour over the next three-four days
If perchance I fnish early or if I severely need a break, I will watch one of the four movies I brought home from the library (hoping for inspirartion). Oh, and of course, I'll squeeze in eating and sleeping.
I don't mind being holed up in my writing room over the holiday.
1) Hurricane Earl is pushing up the coast. Not that we're expecting horrible fallout. But it is grey and gloomy and the forecast is heavy rain and wind. Who wants to be out in that?
2) The sooner I finish this proposal, the sooner my agent can submit it. Currently two editors/houses are waiting to see this particular proposal. Talk about incentive!
My husband and I were in the kitchen getting ready to wash the dishes. The girls were in their room fighting (they were supposed to be cleaning). Suddenly, Monster started to cry. She yelled for me and said something accidentally broke. I go upstairs to see what 'accidentally' broke. Monster, who had become angry with her sister Smurfette, threw a blanket onto her own bed and broke an arm made of plastic off of a solar system that hangs over her bed. The solar system that I had spent a whole day painting and putting together.
Monster was crying hysterically, saying that her solar system was ruined forever. I told her that I would try to fix it with duct tape. I took it downstairs, dug around for some duct tape, and wrapped some around the broken arm. That didn't work. The planets were too heavy. I looked at Monster's sad face and knew that I had to come up with a way to fix her solar system. She loves anything to do with outer space and would be devastated if it couldn't be fixed. Plus, she wanted me to buy her another one but I don't really have the money for that. (And I didn't want to spend another day working on it.)
Then it hit me. Dowel rods! Long wooded sticks that are used for many things, including crafts. I grabbed the center of the solar system where the plastic arms go into and hopped in the car in hopes that the store would still be open and I could find a dowel rod small enough to fit in the holes.
Lady luck shined upon me that day. Not only was the store open, I was able to find dowel rods that fit. I bought two of them and went home to fix that darn solar system. I sawed the dowel rods in half with a steak knife (don't laugh, it worked). I put the four sticks into the center and hung the planets in the correct order. (Yes, Monster made sure they were right.) When I was done hanging the planets I took the solar system upstairs and hung it over her bed.
After the solar was hung and her tears dried up, I had a talk with my little Monster. " No more throwing things when angry with sis and please fess up when you do something wrong." I told her that the solar system didn't accidentally break, she accidentally broke it.
That's one catastrophe averted. I'm sure there are many more to come. Have you had any near catastrophes lately?
The bills, the kids, work, car troubles, computer problems....The list goes on and on. I am so stressed right now, I could scream and scream and then scream some more. Usually they say, when it rains, it pours, but in my case.....it's a freakin' category 5 hurricane. I swear! Calgon....take me away!
Anywho....I just sort of had a melt down, so I slapped some leashes on my two best furry friends and out into the night we went. We had a very brisk walk and walked quite a long time. I'm not sure that I was able to get rid of all the stress, but it sure did help. When I'm done with this post, I should probably go out again and maybe this time run.... or maybe I'll just finish the glass of wine I have sitting next to me. That's a much better idea.
Normally, I am productive when I'm stressed. I boot up my laptop and start writing...ah, but as I mentioned...computer problems. My WIPs are on my laptop and it isn't working at the moment. Probably should make copies of those, huh?
So...instead of writing on my laptop, I'm in my son's room, trying to type very quietly as he sleeps. I don't think it's working. He seems to be stirring around a lot.
I know this isn't all that thought provoking, but I need to wrap things up before I wake up Happy. My question to you is...what do you do when you are stressed? (Somehow I think we have asked this question before here at SIS, but alas, I am old and my memory sucks!)
P.S. Someone help a SISter out...I can't even paste my pic because that's on my laptop too! :(
Who are we? Six creative souls (five sisters and an honorary brother) who lead double lives. Join SIS Beth, Brenda, Barb, Brandy, BJ, and BRO Krys as we explore the chaos and wonders of life in pursuit of our dreams. For more info, check out our pics and bios at SIS Scoop!
"Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, red wine in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming, "WOO HOO what a ride!"~~author unknown
Barb's Creative Chaos
Brandy's Creative Chaos
Brenda's Creative Chaos
BJ's Creative Chaos
Beth's Creative Chaos
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