Monthly Archives: July 2015

Imagination ~ Day 3 of 3-Day Quote Challenge


Music is story and story is music. Moreover, music is lyrical poetry.  

I often hear that readers imagine certain soundtracks to stories as they read, and use them as an anchor, a mental scaffold to connect.

Imagination is the golden-eyed monster that never sleeps. It must be fed; it cannot be ignored ~ Patricia A. McKillip

It’s easy to do this with movies, as the music is unmistakably there, but I think it could be just as easy with novels if the visual produced is so spectacular. So much so, we can almost hear the music.

Music is a world within itself. It is a language we all understand ~ Stevie Wonder

When I had the opportunity to do a reading for my book back in April — see above picture — I wanted to add music for my first time with an audience. Sure, it was for all the reasons listed, but also a way to deal with nerves.

So, I dragged my husband, his guitar and sound system to the bookstore.

When I hear music, I am invulnerable. I am related to the earliest times, and to the latest ~ David Thoreau

Music — background guitar strumming — helped settle the rhythm of my thoughts. It helped modulate my voice to certain tones, helped sense the emotion in ways that, hopefully, brought the story out in a more … musical way.

Music is timeless, it will never fade ~ Unknown

In the same way a story can be timeless and never fade.

After our performance at the bookstore, we received a request for an encore but … haven’t done it yet. Maybe soon.

Indifferent of the affairs of men, time runs out ~Erwin Silvanus

I want to thank my friend Gwynn for giving me reason for introspection — a most-valued exercise — and so much fun.

Imagination – Day 2 of 3-Day Quote Challenge


Inspiration has no limits.

We’re surrounded by stories, music, oceans, the patterns of fleeting water. The wind, the sun, art, people. Obstacles and victories.

Creativity, love and nature are all fuel for the soul ~ G Brian Benson.

Yet many times we feel empty. Can’t formulate one creative thought.


We had a dream. In fact, we had lots of them.

But then life happened. And worry crept into our life, sucking the creative energy out of us like a leech.


Now we feel flat.

Grey. Uninspired. Heavy.

And we don’t know how to turn on the light.

Sure, we want fireworks. We want inspiring stories and belly laughs. We want passion.

Heck, right now all we want is a tiny spark. The ability to pull the story out of the emotional depth inside us and write it down. One word at a time.

So, what to do?

What reignites the spark for one writer may fall flat for other. However, I will share what works for me … most times:

1. Read, read, and read some more. Or if you enjoy other creative endeavor do it, again and again. Creative work produces creativity.

2. Let nature hold us. Walking, hiking, any outdoor activity will do. Becoming one with nature works wonders for creativity.

3. Let out your inner child. Be silly. Hug harder. Laugh louder.


We know exercising helps creativity. Well, laughter does the same thing. It decreases anxiety, improves mood, enhances resilience, adds joy to life.

In the end, the forces that subdued the story can be the forces that bring it out.





Imagination ~ Three Day Quote Challenge

inspiration+murder mystery+novel

Everything you can imagine is real. ~ Pablo Picasso

My friend Gwynn, from Gwynn’s Grit and Grin, challenged me to the Three Day Quote Challenge.  Gwynn writes one of the most humorous and thoughtful blogs around, her quotes among the best. 

Since I often talk about stories, I see no better subject for my quote challenge than imagination/inspiration. 


A bird pecking at the window, sunlight filtering through the trees — inspiration comes from everywhere. Sometimes it’s immediate other times slow and I don’t realize the seed has been planted.  

So many things can activate the muse – shape shifting clouds, a memory awakened by smell, sounds, a spoken word. 

And how wonderful that artists see the world through different eyes. Where a writer or poet sees a wilted flower, a metaphor for all that is lost, a painter sees the varying colors, textures, and lines that make the flower beautiful; is captivated by its physical miracle and paints it as such.

There is something marvelous in all things nature ~ Aristotle

Inspiration is interesting that way. Inspiration is beautiful. Every day I’m grateful that I have it in my life. Not always as much as I would like, but inspiration is here nonetheless.

Random things, sights, smells, feelings — I welcome them, let them take shape. Mold them into a story, and try to free the story from the constraints of mind and heart when I release it into the world.

Imagination, of course, needs to be acted upon, because There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you ~ Maya Angelou.

Per tradition, and in no particular order, I challenge the following  friends to the Tree Day Quote Challenge:

Noelle from Saylingaway

Mary from Play off the Page

Sammy from Bemuzin



Coronado Island


Coronado Island, in San Diego, California, is blessed with scenic beauty that has the mind whirl joyful cartwheels of creativity, to paraphrase Jonathan L. Huie. 

It is also blessed with a rich history going back to the seventeenth century when Spanish explorer Sebastian Vizcaino caught sight of a group of islands seventeen miles off the coast of Southern California and named them Las Yslas Coronadas (Crown Islands).  Over the years, Coronado transformed into a place of affluence, the playground for celebrities such as Marilyn Monroe, Duke of Windsor, and many political figures.

Today, the island is a magnificent getaway with Victorian houses, old-style mansions, and beach bungalows. Although part of San Diego, it maintains a different personality and appearance, like that one family member whose style and characteristics are unlike the rest.

And so our trip began, over Coronado Bridge and into a different world, one of fun, a measure of sophistication, and utter relaxation. Quite the mix.


over the bridge                    walkway to famous Del Coronado hotel


Crown Manor, Tudor-style mansion, across from the beach


Del Coronado has its own vegetable garden


on the beach, hotel in the background                         sand castle


play time

As we played on the sand and roamed the narrow streets, all I could think about was the scene of a novel, for the island has it all — beauty and stories and secrets begging to be probed.

Stories about royalty, famous love affairs, and of course, the resident ghost: Kate Morgan, a young woman who checked into the hotel under an alias over the Thanksgiving weekend in 1892, stayed a few nights, and killed herself on the steps of the hotel leading to the ocean. Or so the story goes.


Kate Morgan

Destinations are novels, and many times I found myself drifting away from a conversation, imagining the possibilities. But stories, like good meals, must simmer in our minds before they are done.

Image: wikipedia;