Take Advantage of a Difficult Shut-In in Many Creative and Good Ways

window seat with books and pillows

As we huddle in our homes, there are so many things we can do, whether we live alone or are with our family members. Here are some ideas I thought about and wanted to share.

During a time of trials and hardships, there is always light that shines in the darkness. Always a sprinkle of blessings throughout the struggle and sadness of isolation and a sense of loss of freedom.

But it is for both our health and our neighbors.

So, here’s some activities I have for our homebound selves:

READ

Fragonard painting of woman reading

Now is your chance to catch up on your reading. I have a stack of books on my nightstand and also online fellow writers’ works that I’m reading, a little at a time. Help out authors, like me (ahem), in buying and reading our books. My book is in the processing step of publishing. Its publication date is May 4, 2020.

In the coming weeks, I’ll be sharing my book cover and a book video trailer. Please be on the lookout!

HOBBIES

knitting skeins

If you like to do jigsaw puzzles, write stories, draw, paint, cook, knit, or whatever it is your hobby, you have so much time for it now. Catch up on all those things that give you comfort and joy.

MOVIES

up on poppy hill

You can binge watch, if you haven’t been doing it already, all the movies you’ve missed, or watch your favorites again.

WATCH LIVE STREAMING RELIGIOUS VIDEOS — If you are a person of faith, catch up on your church’s, temple’s, synagogues’, mosques’ worships, if they are being live streamed, to connect with those holy and edifying services.

NATURE WALKS

walking trail with woman

Walking is always a good way to exercise, clear your mind, and find peace in your natural surroundings. It does the brain, heart, body, and soul good.

FACETIME OR ZOOM WITH FRIENDS — This morning, I connected with my dear friends from church in a quick zoom video to prepare them for continuing my women’s bible study on Zoom Tuesday evenings. It was so wonderful seeing their faces and talking to them. You might want to do the same. Set up a time to chat with your friends on one of the platforms that allows for multiple people to chat, like Zoom, or maybe catch up with a good friend via FaceTime.

REST

woman resting 2

If your life has been too busy and exhausting, now is the time to rest, maybe even get in a few naps you’ve needed but never were able to take before.

BOARD GAMES AND VIDEO GAMES WITH FAMILY

family playing board game

You can spend a lot of time with family, if you are still living with them, or your children are still in the house with you. Pull out those old board games and play them. Or get out a fun family video game like Mario Kart or Mario Golf or whatever you prefer, and play with your family. Family time, to me, seems to have been lessened in the past few decades. But this is an opportunity to bond and reconnect.

CUDDLE WITH YOUR FUR BABIES

Jewel and I 12:5:08

(Old picture of my dog, Jewel (RIP) and I from 2008)

They’re always a comfort to you, and you can be one to them more than ever. Smother them with pets, strokes, and hugs.

CHERISH THE TIME TOGETHER WITH THOSE YOU LOVE — As was mentioned, reconnect with family, show them love, and include your pets.

 

Hopefully, this pandemic will dissipate in a few months. In the meantime, God be with you all, stay healthy, and love to you all.

 

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Numerous Projects Make an Author Blissfully Happy

this is good

Writers, are you in the midst of typing up/penning a novel? A short story? Have you finished the first draft? Or have you gotten so far as to have your book published already? Do you have any other books lined up for revisions, or a fresh story in the wings?

Please tell me you don’t have writer’s block. Tell me you have ideas blossoming in your mind like daffodils in the springtime.

I mean, what’s better than having a plethora of writing projects to dive into each day?

You put one story aside after its latest revisions, and grab another one waiting to be revised. And then a third one you’re in the midst of writing that is as fresh as washed linens drying on a clothesline on a warm, sunny day?

This week, I’ve gotten extremely positive feedback from fellow writers/critiquers on the ending of my novel, What She Didn’t Know. Overall complete positive feedback on this story. They helped clean up this story.

I’ll put What She Didn’t Know aside after this week and concentrate on my novella, Mourning Dove, coming up next in the queue.

Then I’ll go back to What She Didn’t Know and clean/revise the Word doc to match the changes I made in the critique queue.

So excited!

Oh, and today is the publisher’s meeting to look over and discuss my novel, Passage of Promise’s proposal. I will see in about a week’s time if they accept it.

I think What She Didn’t Know is my strongest story and could be my breakout novel. I’m thrilled I have so many projects to keep me busy and I’m not having writer’s block right now!

If only I could revise and write faster. Haha!

Happy writing, my friends!

 

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The Importance of Positive Feedback

you can do it

Doesn’t it feel great when you get awesome, positive feedback from fellow writers reading and critiquing your stories?

I’ve gotten many on the three works I ran through the critique queue: my novel, Passage of Promise, my novella, Mourning Dove, and my novel, What She Didn’t Know.

Whenever you feel down or unsure about your story or even your ability to write, that changes when you get wonderful comments after constructive feedback from your fellow writers.

For example, one of my fellow writers commented on my scene descriptions (scenic surroundings) in my novel, Passage of Promise, as “second to none”. That really made my day.

A couple of days ago, I received a lovely comment on three of the chapters submitted last week from my novel, What She Didn’t Know, saying, “Powerful chapters. You are doing a great job of capturing the impact of family secrets and poor communication.” And a couple of weeks ago, with two prior chapters before those, another critiquer said, “No reader would ever be bored with this story. A more zest soap opera than one could find on the boob tube. Lots of engaging characters and snappy dialogue, and a narrator telling us about the human condition.” These remarks truly boosted my confidence and brought me joy. My characters are coming through so well, and that’s vital to me.

I mentioned in a former blog post how important critique partners are. I’m reiterating it here, showing the beautiful rewards you get, in addition to helpful suggestions. You get encouragement and praise at times. And every writer needs that.

 

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