Welcome to Following the Whispers blog

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.

“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf

“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Insecure Writers Support Group - December

First of all, I can't really believe it's December. Where did the year go? It is just flying by the older I get. Kinda scary.

Once again, thank you Alex J. Cavanaugh www.alexjcavanaugh.blogspot.com, for creating this group and for making it such a success. It a real blessing in my life.

So, where am I in my writing life? The Wishing Steps is out there doing it's thing. I'm not paying any attention to what it's doing. That's not my business.

I am writing a series on my blog about the journey towards publishing the book - all the wisdom I received during the six years it took to complete the book. I have no idea if that series is resonating with anyone. I can only hope that my process will be helpful to someone else. Just like writing a book. We can only hope that the story that means something to us will mean something to someone else.

I am filled with gratitude these days because something in me has shifted. I no longer take things personally that people say to me - things that used to cause deep wounds. I can speak up and say something makes me uncomfortable or ask questions to clarify rather than assume they mean something they don't. It's been interesting. Lots of conversations about communication and how important it is to communicate clearly. We can think we're saying something completely innocuous yet it could have a negative impact on the person hearing it. It makes me understand why the world is in such an awful state. If we have so much trouble communicating clearly with friends and family, imagine the problem our leaders have communicating with their staff and with other countries.

I am niggling with the thought of beginning work on a novel I wrote the first few chapters of over 20 years ago. Not sure if I want to tackle writing another book at this point in my life. I'm turning 67 in April and it's been nice actually being retired and not feeling driven by the need to work on my book.
But the truth is I'm a writer. In every fiber of my being, I have the need to find the words to express what is in my heart and put them down on paper in a way that makes sense and helps me make sense of me and my world. So, stay tuned...

Blessings,
Karen

38 comments:

Deborah Osborne said...

Happy IWSG day.
I'm glad you're writing a series on how you published you novel. I'm going to check that out next ad it's something I hope to tackle I'm the next few years.
I'm shocked it's December too. Where has the year gone?

Samantha Dunaway Bryant said...

"We can only hope that the story that means something to us will mean something to someone else."

Well said! It can be easy to get too focused on the sales end, but that often doesn't go well because you're writing what you think people want to read instead of what you need to write.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Karen - it's great you've worked out where you are .. and accept you're doing pretty well in life. Your novel resting quietly ... may well be a good way to start writing again ... there's no deadline, but as you say you are a writer - cheers Hilary

TBM said...

I love hearing about how others got from point A to published. Looking forward to the series.

Liza said...

I bet after a respite you'll be working away on that book. As you say, you are a writer!

Nick Wilford said...

Good luck working on that old story idea; after that length of time I wonder how well you'll recognise your style. Could be fun. Just goes to show that there are some stories that won't go away until we've told them!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Even when we speak the same language, we're not understand one another. You're right, no wonder this world is in such a mess.

Karen Walker said...

Hi Deborah, the series I was thinking about was more about the wisdom I received about the story and my life, not necessarily how I published, but there will be some of that as well.
Samantha, they'd have to lock me up if I paid attention to sales, LOL.
Hilary, life is the only deadline.
TBM, thanks
Liza, I'm procrastinating for the first time in my life re that novel.
Nick, I think what I've already written will have to be completely re-written, but the story idea is still a good one.

Julie Flanders said...

What a year this has been for you with the amazing Wishing Steps going out into the world. I hope you will decide to return to the story idea from your past.

Karen Walker said...

Diane, yes, even speaking the same language is problematic. Good communication is a real art.
Julie, yes, it's been quite the year. I'm still recovering. Hey that's better than calling it procrastinating, right?

Nicola said...

I love reading about your journey, Karen and somehow it shone through in The Wishing Steps. The thing I like about getting older is that we learn more and more - and have hopefully made our biggest blunders. I don't much care for the creaking knees though :)I do hope you get the urge to write your second novel. Wishing you a lovely December.

Chrys Fey said...

It can be hard to see what a book is doing after its out but it is a good idea to check every one in a while what it's doing. You're the writer, it is your business. :D

If you have another book in you write it. Even just for yourself, write it. :)

Chrys Fey said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Karen Walker said...

Nicola, thank you. I guess I have to let go with my blog about whether it's resonating with people or not and just share the parts of my journey that helped me the post. Thank you.
Chrys, you're right of course, I am the writer and it is my business, but at my age, it's not a career, so I guess I cut myself some slack there.

Stephen Tremp said...

Karen, best wishes with your new writing endeavour and here's to a smashing success!

Karen Walker said...

Hey, thanks, Stephen. You, too!

Tamara Narayan said...

Communication is a tough business. It's so interesting to listen to my daughter, who is in middle school, talk about how she does/does not communicate at school. I was so shy in those days, I hardly sad a word. As I got older, I thought I was past worrying about what other people think, but I'm not sure that is actually true. Harsh words and criticism do sting when it comes to things I care about.

Crystal Collier said...

Confidence is a hard won thing, but I'm glad you've landed in this place. It's great to feel solid. Depending on my sleep deprivation, I usually stand with you. Today I'm a little on the sleepy/wavering side.

Arlee Bird said...

Go on and write whatever moves you. You're a writer and you need to write. Age shouldn't even be a factor. If you've got books inside of you--and I'm sure you have plenty--go for it!

Now maybe I need to take my own advice.

Arlee Bird
Tossing It Out

Ryan Carty said...

I love that last paragraph. It speaks to me. As for writing another novel, if that is what drives your writing, go for it. If not, if it feels like a burden, don't. Write what speaks to you, whether it is a few sentences, a paragraph, a short fiction or autobiography. You already know this, I'm sure, but it was fun to say. Be well.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

You know how I feel about writing those stories from long ago. I say go for it.

Karen Walker said...

Tamara, yes, yes. if only we could learn to be kinder to one another.
Crystal, oh yeah, sleep makes a huge difference in how I deal with things.
Lee, your last line made me crack up - yes, you need to write what's inside YOU.
Ryan, thanks. Already wrote the memoir, so no need go there.But more nonfiction? Probably. Another novel? We'll see...
Alex, yup, I do know how you feel. We'll see if those niggles grow into something bigger.

Jennifer Hawes said...

The more I am in this business of writing, the thicker skin I have;) I love it when I grab an idea from the past and start writing.

Olivia Rose said...

All the best with your book. You are the writer and of course you will be checking how it is doing out there among readers.

Karen Walker said...

Jennifer, yeah, I think I love it too
Olivia, thank you. I know I need to pay attention - it's just really hard

emaginette said...

Don't let anything stop you from writing if you are following your heart. :-)

Anna from Elements of Writing

Loni Townsend said...

Glad to hear things are positive for you! I hope that continues going that way.

Karen Walker said...

Emaginette, don't worry, I won't.
Lori, thanks, same right back at you.

authorcgcoppola.com said...

I say go for it. If you're truly a writer, you need to write.

Simple as that.

Scribbles From Jenn said...

I think you should go for it! In my opinion, any story that's still in your head after 20 years needs to be told.

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

I like that you're just letting your book 'do its thing' without over-monitoring it!

Glad you're considering working on the story--I know it's tough to let a book take over our lives! But it can be so rewarding, too, as you know.

Karen Walker said...

cg, we'll see if the niggles grow into something more compelling.
Jenn, yeah, there's something to be said for that.
Elizabeth, thanks, your the only one who seems to understand this attitude. And yes, I do know how rewarding it is to let the book in, so to speak. It's just so nice having this freedom...

Stephanie Faris said...

Negativity is a disease...it's all about finding the ability within ourselves to shut out what other people say/think. The ONLY important thing is what we think of ourselves.

Diane Burton said...

The great thing about retirement is you can choose where/how to spend your time. Do what works best for you, what makes you happy. Good luck!

Karen Walker said...

Stephanie, you are so right.
Diane, yes, I love that freedom.

Bish Denham said...

I'm so happy that something in you has shifted. I sure you will be a happier person for it! We spend way too much time taking things personally. If each of us really understood that only "I" am responsible for "my" reactions, the world would be in a much better place. As long as we put the blame for our feelings/emotions on others there will be suffering in the world.

Misha Gericke said...

It's nice in theory to rest from writing, but it's harder to do in practice. :-D

Doreen McGettigan said...

I look forward to reading your series and wish you the best of luck with that book! This is a great time to write a book:)