Thursday, November 23, 2006

Giving Thanks

It's Thanksgiving morning, and I'm having a nice cup of homemade mocha in a coffee mug that was a gift from a dear friend while we were in Florida together last week. The mug is from a coffee shop near the beachhouse we rented to hang out and do some writing. The coffee shop was rather like the Cheers bar, but with better pastries. The locals were friendly and laid back, and for someone like me, someone always in a "hair on fire" kind of hurry, it appeals to me on a level so basic, so amazing, that I almost can't fathom it.

Now, reflections of last week make especially good sense right now, since it's a day when we reflect what we're thankful for, when we consider why we're happy to be alive. There are some books and some music that make me truly happy, but more than anything, I am human, and there is that connection to other human beings that is paramount to living a sweet life.


So here's a list of the things I'm thankful for:

1. good health
2. Mom & Dad
3. my brothers, nieces, nephews
4. having the money to travel to the beach with my friends
5. the ocean
6. Dock of the Bay and other amazing songs by Beth Hart, Macy Gray, Van Morrison, and Pink
7. dark chocolate
8. places that amaze and inspire...the Seine, sidewalk cafes, Lake Lucerne, the West Highlands of Scotland
9. images that strike a chord...like those by Amy Brown, Kate Dawidziak, and my Changeling cover artists
10. the color orange...as seen in Florence, Italy and in Gulf Coast sunsets
11. BBC America, Biography & Sci Fi shows...Horatio Hornblower, Night Detective, Hex, Firefly, Battlestar Gallactica
12. tactile sensations...like a guy's breath in my ear or the feel of warm, solid muscles under my fingertips
13. vivid colors... red hair, red lips, red paint, blue eyes, green eyes, lemon and lime slices
14. the quiet of my world at 3:30 am
15. novels, too many to mention, and memoirs...like Mary Karr's The Liar's Club
16. best friends...Maddy & Gavin

Have a safe & happy Thanksgiving Day.

2 Comments:

At Monday, November 27, 2006 , Blogger Gavin said...

I am very, very thankful for you, too.

Gavin

 
At Sunday, December 10, 2006 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello. Prompt how to get acquainted with the girl it to me to like. But does not know about it
I have read through one history
Each of you has your personal story; it is your history. Keeping a diary or writing your feelings in a special notebook is a wonderful way to learn how to think and write about who you are -- to develop your own identity and voice.

People of all ages are able to do this. Your own history is special because of your circumstances: your cultural, racial, religious or ethnic background. Your story is also part of human history, a part of the story of the dignity and worth of all human beings. By putting opinions and thoughts into words, you, too, can give voice to your inner self and strivings.

A long entry by Anne Frank on April 5, 1944, written after more than a year and a half of hiding from the Nazis, describes the range of emotions 14-year-old Anne is experiencing:

". . . but the moment I was alone I knew I was going to cry my eyes out. I slid to the floor in my nightgown and began by saying my prayers, very fervently. Then I drew my knees to my chest, lay my head on my arms and cried, all huddled up on the bare floor. A loud sob brought me back down to earth, and I choked back my tears, since I didn't want anyone next door to hear me . . .

"And now it's really over. I finally realized that I must do my school work to keep from being ignorant, to get on in life, to become a journalist, because that's what I want! I know I can write. A few of my stories are good, my descriptions of the Secret Annex are humorous, much of my diary is vivid and alive, but . . . it remains to be seen whether I really have talent . . .

"When I write I can shake off all my cares. My sorrow disappears, my spirits are revived! But, and that's a big question, will I ever be able to write something great, will I ever become a journalist or a writer? I hope so, oh, I hope so very much, because writing allows me to record everything, all my thoughts, ideals and fantasies.

"I haven't worked on Cady's Life for ages. In my mind I've worked out exactly what happens next, but the story doesn't seem to be coming along very well. I might never finish it, and it'll wind up in the wastepaper basket or the stove. That's a horrible thought, but then I say to myself, "At the age of 14 and with so little experience, you can't write about philosophy.' So onward and upward, with renewed spirits. It'll all work out, because I'm determined to write! Yours, Anne M. Frank

For those of you interested in reading some of Anne Frank's first stories and essays, including a version of Cady's Life, see Tales From the Secret Annex (Doubleday, 1996). Next: Reviewing and revising your writing

 

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