10 Writing Exercises I Can’t Live Without (via Locked Out)

For the 10 days of the New Year! Try these!

10 Writing Exercises I Can't Live Without I've written before that I think we all have our own methods for writing – that is, we all have a "creative zone" or a way of doing things that just works for us. And, of course, if that's not working for you, it might be time to change things! Personally, I really love writing exercises. They can be funny, enlightening, and extremely effective for keeping my brain on the up-and-up. It's easy for our brains to get lazy and having to think in term … Read More

via Locked Out


A New Classic: Egg Nog Cake with Vintage Bourbon Cream Frosting (via Life in the Garden)

I think I’ll just cook this one up for New Years Day and stop worrying about being “traditionally built” forever! (traditionally built from Alexander McCall Smith’s “number one ladies detective agency”.

A New Classic:  Egg Nog Cake with Vintage Bourbon Cream Frosting Firstie was wanting an Egg Nog cake for his special December day.  Not finding a recipe for "egg nog cake" anywhere on the web, I did the only thing that a girl can do in that situation:  I panicked. Then my creative brain kicked in and reminded me that cake making was pretty straight forward in its formula; just give it the appropriate seasonal flair and … Read More

via Life in the Garden

Tibetan Buddhist Yoga on Remembering Dreams

Love this website, this idea.

Current Inspirations for writing

Coffee shops are loaded with people and their stories, two things I love most in life. Monkabeans on Main Street,  Hopkins, MN is a current favorite of mine (see photos below). It is populated by a diverse group of people including but not limited to: high energy high school students from the nearby Main Street School of Performing Arts , ex- marine veterans from the Vietnam War, crafty grandmothers, and best of all, ghosts from Monka’s somewhat steamy past.  I love doing the research for my screenplay (fictional) based on this  delightful establishment and the people who frequent it (also love the great cups of coffee first thing every day).

Help! The old lady’s getting fat, mean, and ugly!

Dear Abby,

Yes, you heard me right. What does a person do when the old lady is still singing but she’s also putting on lots of weight and she’s getting kind of mean, down and dirty.  It seems like she’s pissed off all the time.


Looking in the mirror


Dear looking in the mirror,

It has been said that the Eskimos would leave their old and frail out in the blizzards to expire.  How old is she?



Dear Abby,

She’s turning sixty next year so I’m afraid she has many, many years left, at least a decade, and if I left her in the blizzard (I’m from Minnesota), she’d likely survive, so that’s not a good idea.  Got anything else up your sleeve.

Looking in the mirror


Dear Looking in the mirror,

Yeah, sixty is a little young to be thinking about doing her in, though in some cultures that is considered a long life.  Unfortunately, for America that is, for the most part, not true.  Thus, your dilemna.

As far as her size, I would leave that one alone.  That problem will eventually solve itself  (if you get my drift).

Meanness and anger are both a natural part of the aging process.  There’s a quote circulating out there, “aging isn’t for sissies.” I think my mother (the former Dear Abby) may have likely coined it, though I haven’t received any of the residuals that would be due to me.  I think you will just need to stay out of her way as best you can. Help her realize some of her goals: a cruise to the Bahamas,  perhaps an affair with a younger man, or give her that home on Maui that she’s always longed for.  It may cost a little more than you have, but then again, she gave you life plus changed your diapers ten millions times or so.  What’s a little financial solvency worth compared to that?

Happy Holidays,


Screenplay: Monkabeans

I am using Celtx (free, on-line script writing program) index cards and Blake Snyder’s Beat Sheet (from “Save the Cat! Goes to the Movies) to do the outline for my next screenplay.  I am also creating characters from the Mana Me website (if I can find it again) for my screenplay. Nanowrite month for screenplays is in April and I want to be ready.

MaryLou, Main Character in Monkabeans


Monkabeans is the title of  my new screenplay which I started writing last week.  I have created visualizations of the characters first using a free facebook tool.  I will attempt to upload the current main cast, a love triangle of senior citizens cause they fall in love, too.

After reading Alexander McCall Smith’s #1  Ladies Detective Agency, however, I must add some crimes cases to solve.

I am captivated by the idea of approaching life as a  series of crimes to be solved(rather than a romance to ignite, or perhaps both).  It makes the many problems that life throws at you so much more fun.

Most of the time, my life is either a soap opera or a sitcom.  That would be the default genre if you hadn’t chosen any others.  I wouldn’t mind “elevating” mine to a good Sherlock Holmes story.

I also have a ghost in my story.  Which Sherlock Holmes case involved a ghost?  

One of the top ten blizzards of all time

Six foot tall post shrunk to three feel.

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