Happy October~!

It is officialy October, which means it’s time for another goal post and recap! To see how I did last month, check out my September Goal Post!

If you’re new to my blog, a little recap: every month I set myself 10 or more goals to accomplish within those weeks. I am for 80% completion rate, and if I succeed I get myself a little treat. It can be anything from a new book to a favorite Starbucks drink or even just a day of uninterrupted reading. If I fail, then all you guys get to know about it and tell me to do better next month! This is a system I adopted from Jenna Moreci when I was watching her goal videos and realized I get more done when I have clear goals. I chose monthly goals because I’m a chronic procrastinator and any more time than 4 weeks will mean I get zero things done.

So, now that you’re all caught up, let’s get onto October’s goal list! I have a lot of travel in October, so I’m keeping it light this month~

1. Get a new office job. Because a writer has to eat!

2. Read 2 books

3. Make 5 blog posts

4. Make NaNo notes/outline/plans. Who else plans to do NaNo in November?!

5. Write my Samhain (Halloween) ritual

6. Have a photoshoot in a cemetery. By which I mean, go to a cemetery and indulge in some photography.

7. Yoga twice a week. My old goal was three times a week, but that seemed to be a little ambitious for me as I kept failing it.

8. Write 5 poems

9. Reach rank 11 in Hearthstone

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Brigid Bright

Across the pond, in the UK and Ireland, it’s apparently National Poetry Day. One of the deities I follow is Brigid, an Irish goddess of poetry, smithcraft, and healing. I thought it would be appropriate to share one of my favorite poems here today in Her honor, and to celebrate National Poetry Day~

~*~

Beloved Brighid of the triple flame, 
Daughter of the Dagda, 
Guardian of the sacred springs 
Whose voice is the soul of the harp 
We call on Thee. 
Teach our hands to heal and our hearts to sing. 
We entrust out life’s progress to your care 
and ask that you shape us, 
bending and turning our hearts on your bright anvil of flame 
till we are made perfect jewels 
fit to be set in the Eye of your timeless harp 
to play for the soul of the people in times of sorrow 
and times of celebration. 
We thank you for your gifts to us of Poetry and Music 
of laughter and tears, 
and for the healing balm of your Wisdom. 
May we always remember to meditate 
on the gift of your sacred waters, 
which surround us at birth 
and sail us to our destiny. 
Our hearts are open to receive your blessings. 
Midwife of our souls, rain on us, 
shower your inspiration in curtains of song 
from sacred waterfalls in the realm where you dwell. 
Come to us as Virgin with the soft smell of flowers. 
Come to us as Mother and feed us your fruits. 
Come to us as the Wise Woman in the stark blasts of Winter. 
Help us to see your Mystery in all creation, 
that we may know gratitude and reverence. 
Our hearts sing to you with love. 
Teach us to change like the revolving seasons. 
Teach us to grow like the green corn that feeds the people. 
Teach us to fashion beauty like the stillness of the forest pool 
and the roar of the ocean wave. 
Teach us to heal like the soothing gem which cools the eyes and restores the limbs. 
With humility and bright expectation 
We invoke Thee this hour!

–From A Druid’s Herbal, by Ellen Evert Hopman

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One of my FAVORITE images of Brigid. I have no idea who the artist is. Please let me know if you do!

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An Open Letter To Myself

Dear Self,

Grab a cub of coffee or mead because you need to sit and learn a lesson. Remember years ago when you wished you’d studied tarot but thought it would take too long so didn’t? Then you had the revelation that whether you studied tarot or not the same amount of time was going to pass and you could either get off your ass and actually learn the thing you wanted to or you could just let time pass and still be wishing. You took action, you studied the tarot a bit, and now you’re happy you did. You accomplished the thing you wanted to.

Now you need to learn that lesson with writing.

I, your brain, know you have a million stories you want to write. I also know that we feel guilty for working on one project instead of the other thing and so let that guilt paralyze us into not writing anything at all. But here’s the thing. Not writing those stories doesn’t accomplish anything. You aren’t working on Through The Mists or Someone Like You or that Selkie story you started over 5 years ago. They are all just sitting there, and you are once again stuck wishing. Stop wishing and start doing. It’s the only way those stories will get told. No one can tell them but you so start telling them!

Please listen to me. I know what I’m talking about. You won’t regret trusting me.

Love Always,

Me

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Blessed Autumn Equinox~!

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I probably mention this every year, but I can’t help it. This is my absolute, hands down, without a doubt, favorite holiday of the year. The air is crisp, leaves are starting to turn as Mother Nature shows us Her masterpiece(s), apple cider is at the ready, and everything has a pumpkin flavor to it. Autumn has officially arrived. Where I live it actually arrived a few weeks ago, but this is the day we celebrate it’s arrival. This is the day I celebrate my favorite season in all it’s glory.

Most of today is going to be spent outside enjoy the season I adore so much. But first, I wanted to share this poem with you in celebration~

In all her radiance she comes
Bringing oranges and yellows and reds
Everywhere she walks, everywhere she treads
Turns fiery, alive. And that’s when you know
Lady Autumn, in all her glory, has arrived.

I hope everyone has a great day and an amazing Autumn~!

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Creative Roots

Today was my late grandfather’s birthday. He would have been 89 today, but he passed on unexpectedly when I was 13. I’ll never forget that night, how my mom asked me if I wanted to go to the hospital in the middle of the night (I barely registered what she said, answered no, and turned over and went back to sleep), the call the next day (I was home alone and so upset it took everything in me not to grab the plate beside me and throw it as hard as I could at the wall before I crumbled into a sobbing ball on the floor), or the ride with a family friend to the hospital that soon followed. I’ll never forget the utter pain and heartbreak that came over me. He was my special Buddy, and more of a dad to me than my biological dad ever was.

I can’t even articulate how much I miss him or wish I could talk to him. He had a deep baritone voice when he sang. His favorite fish was salmon. His favorite color was red. He loved to play tennis, and when he needed a moment to himself he’d go down by the airport and watch the planes take off and land. He was an excellent business man, forever patient with my grandmother, a wonderful father to his kids, and the best grandpa a girl could ever wish for. He used to draw me pictures whenever I asked him to. I distinctly remember asking him to draw me a rabbit several times. He made amazing wood carvings that I hope my mom still has somewhere back in Indiana. I wanted to bring them to New Jersey with me when I moved here, but was so afraid they’d break, and I’d be absolutely crushed if something happened to them. They are some of the last remaining pieces of him that I have aside from memories. Whatever artistic talent I have I know came from him (unfortunately I also inherited his migraines).

The first birthday after he passed was my Freshman year of High school. My mom drove me to school that morning as she always did, but I couldn’t go in. I couldn’t face people. I couldn’t stop crying. All day long I just cried and cried. I can’t say I haven’t shed a few tears today as I do every year on this day.

~*~

I wrote that last year on Facebook. It came up in my memories, and I couldn’t help moving it and sharing it here, too.

My grandfather had such a profound impact on me as a child, and even now to this day. I’ve been doodling a lot lately (if you follow me on Instagram then you’ve seen several of them~); he was very artistic, doing everything from drawing to wood carvings. He was never a writer, but he (and my grandmother) would read to me whenever I asked them to. It’s because of them that I have such a love of being creative and such a drive to do it.

My grandmother had surgery today. She is 89 and broke her arm a few days ago. They had to do surgery to repair the broken bones. She came through just fine and I’m told is already back to being her spunky self. But I couldn’t let the day go by without noting their influence in my life, especially my creative and literary life.

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Pardon the quality. It’s a picture of an old picture. On the right is my grandfather (aka Buddy), and his dad is on the left~

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Writing Rituals Tag!

This has been going around Youtube and it looked fun so thought I would bring it over into a text based format. If you think this would be fun, join in and do it as well!

1. When do you write? (What time of day/week)

I don’t really have one set time. I try to write a little bit every day, and usually just whenever I can get a few minutes to myself to do it. Sometimes it’s in the morning, sometimes it’s just before bed. I tend to work better when I allow myself to be flexible instead of holding myself to a strict schedule.

2. How do you seclude yourself from the outside world?

Headphones are my best friend. My partner and I have our computers (writing stations) in the same room, so headphones work great for blocking out other noises. As far as the internet goes, I allow myself to go on Twitter and that’s about it. There really is no escaping the distraction of a cute cat though.

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3. How do you review what you wrote the day before?

Skim it. I don’t do anything in depth. I just quickly read through whatever I wrote the day before just as a refresher. Sometimes I don’t even do that. If I know exactly what I want and need to write next I’ll just jump straight into it.

4. What is your go-to song when you’re feeling uninspired?

I don’t actually have a go-to song. I guess if I had to name one it would be Fight Song, but really I just put on whatever music I feel like listening to.

5. What do you always do when you find yourself struggling with writer’s block?

A few things. I’ll either read a novel by my favorite author, talk about my issue with a friend or two, or try working on something else for a short time. The last of those can be a bad idea sometimes though as it’s very easy for me to get sidetracked with a new Shiny.

6. What tools do you use when writing?

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Lately I’ve been handwriting everything. So my notebook and my fave pens are essential. When editing then highlighters are necessary as well.

7. What’s the one thing you can’t write without?

Music/headphones. I can’t write in total silence, and with anime or Youtube videos I wind up wanting to actually watch them. Also a lot of my inspiration comes from songs (I’ve gotten entire novel ideas from one song before), so listening to music while writing is just very beneficial to me.

8. How do you fuel yourself while writing?

COFFEE!! Seriously. I drink so much coffee it’s kind of ridiculous. I…might have a problem. If I need a snack then chocolate or pop chips are my go to.

9. How do you know when you’re done writing?

I usually go into a writing session having an idea of what I want to write. Once that has been written, then I’m done writing for the day. Sometimes more ideas will come to me while I’m writing and I simply have to get them down right then, but otherwise I typically stop after I write what I intended to that day.

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Welcome September~!

It is officially September! This is my second favorite month of the year (the first being 29308230221_7ac2758df9_zOctober, of course~) and I can already feel Autumn in the air. I’ve even already had a pumpkin spice coffee! You’re not surprised, I know.

Anyway, being that it’s September 1st that means it’s time to do a goal check! To see what I managed to accomplish in August check my August goal post. For what I’m going to be working on September, keep reading.

1. Write Autumn Equinox ritual. I really can’t tell you how excited I am for this holy day. The Autumnal Equinox has so much personal meaning for me (it was the first of the Pagan holidays that I ever celebrated for one~!) and is always an important time in my year.

2. Yoga 3 times a week. I’ve been trying to get on the ball with this, and I’ve recently found an instructor that I adore. So I’m making strides in this!

3. Make 5 blog posts.

4. Get a new job.

5. Write a Samhain story. I am so pump(kin)ed for this!

6. Post petsitting flyers around. If you watched my goal videos you saw me mention this a few times. Back then it was a thing that would have been nice to do. Now it’s a must.

7. Read at least one book. Normally I say two books, but since I am focusing mostly on job hunt and the Equinox I’m reducing it by one.

8. Write 5 poems.

9. Reach rank 11 in Hearthstone. Last month I got up to 12! I want to see if I can do one better.

10. Start playing Shadow of Mordor. I’m such a huge LOTR fan that I should play the actual game, too! 😀

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