Category Archives: jobs

MERRY CHRISTMAS

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I know it isn’t Christmas Eve yet but I have to work tomorrow (the hospital doesn’t close for holidays.  People still need our help.) I want to wish all of the kind people who follow me a very, Merry Christmas.  I hope your day is everything you every wanted it to be and that you have a successful New Year.

I’ll be back in a few days with more post but in the mean time please spend time with your family and friends and be thankful for all you have.  I hope to hear from you again in the New Year.  God bless.

 

 

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I HAVE A NOVEL IN MY MIND

    

     I recently read an article that talked about writing being work and I have to agree one-hundred percent.  If you think writing a novel is easy then I would think you haven’t written a novel then had to rewrite it and then rewrite it again.  Writing is not a hobby or play.  It is a job just like any other career.  If you want to be successful you must take it seriously.  I must confess that I have not taken it as sincerely as I should.  I have been just plain lazy and I have no excuses that are acceptable.

     So you say “I have this great novel in my mind if I could just find time to put it on paper.”  Well, so do I and probably over a thousand others.  I know one thing for certain; as long as it stays in your mind it will never become a bestseller.  We will never “just find time” we must make time.  Remember we all get the same amount of hours in a day the difference is what we do with those hours.  How do we manage our time and why can’t we find time to write.  I can’t speak for you that is something you will have to do some soul-searching and answer for yourself.

     First, I believe that God should always come first in our life.  He should have the first and best part of our day.  Then we schedule other activities.

     I can find all kinds of endeavors to do instead of writing.  I say I love to write but now I must search myself and see if that is true.  If it is true then why don’t I make more time for it? 

  • One reason could be fear of being rejected.  If I don’t finish the novel it won’t be turned down.
  • Fear of being ridiculed; if this has ever happened to you about something you wrote whether as a child or adult then that fear is real.  You never want to subject yourself to it again.
  • Fear of not being the best.  Not everyone can be perfect and there are a lot of novels out there that lack perfection.
  • Fear of failure.  You tried writing before and your manuscripts were not accepted by a publisher.  Well you finished it didn’t you?  So you aren’t failing maybe you just need to try a different hook.
  • Pure honest to goodness laziness.  I really don’t believe this applies to many or any of us.  There is always an underlying reason for our lack of production.

            If we really and truly want to write we simply must sit down and put words on paper and forget all the other bunk.  So what if others laugh?  They ridiculed Noah and look what he did (we’re still talking about it today.)  If you must have perfection then keep writing until you achieve it.  If your fear is failure well so long as you are putting words on paper you are not failing. There are as many reasons for not writing as there are people who want to write.  Each of us must decide which apply to us and do our best to overcome whatever it is.  No one can or will do this for us it is up to us to write or not to write.  The road to being an author is not an easy one.  We hit some huge bumps along the way but we must persevere and overcome those obstacles.

     Thanks for stopping by, until next time keep writing and before you know it that novel you had in your mind will be a completed manuscript on paper.

 God bless.

 

ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY YEARS

         One of the things I’ve come across in my writing career is the impatience of other people; usually our loved ones (spouse, children, siblings.)  Often when we talk to them they want to know if we are still writing, where we are in the process and how much longer do we think it will take us.  This is unnecessary pressure.  It can bring our creative juices to a quick halt, or I know it can mine.  The one thing an author doesn’t need is more pressure.  However, these well-meaning souls usually have no idea what we go through.  They think we sit down at the computer and the words just flow from our fingers. Oh, if it was that easy, right?  They have no idea how we struggle to show and not tell a scene, to listen to our characters and speak through their voices not our own and so on and so on… Some have even asked “Why don’t you get a real job?”  Writing isn’t a real job?  Hello!

     When I want to tell them to back off I have to think of Noah.  Can you imagine the pressure he went through when he was building the Ark?   I’m sure that his family, like ours, wanted to know when he would finish and what he was really working on.  Maybe they accused him of wasting time.  We might take a year or so to write a novel, probably less once we get rolling, but it took him 120 years to build the ark!  To put up with people ridiculing you for 120 years had to take some strength.  Yes, of course I know that God gives us the strength to do whatever He asks us to do but that doesn’t shield us from the people who are just looking for and hoping we will fail.  Yes, He also gives us the strength and knowledge to deal with them in a way that He approves.

     Now I know that I’m no Noah but I do believe my love for writing and my God-given talent is for writing, so I have to believe that God will give me the strength to persevere and finish the novels I have started.  I need to “Trust in God with all my heart and lean not on my own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5)  This means I have to turn my writing career over to Him.  I really do try to do this.  One thing I have found that helps me is to say a prayer before my writing sessions to ask Him to write the story through me and after the session to thank Him for His help.

     Maybe you aren’t a believer in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, if not praying won’t help you with your career.  But it is so easy to become a child of God. All it takes is faith alone in our Lord Jesus Christ alone.  Remember God knows your heart so all you have to do is tell Him you do believe that Jesus came to earth and died as a substitute for our sins.  Sounds easy?  It is.  

     I know God gives each of us a talent to make our living but He leaves it up to us to find that talent and develop it and become successful.  God takes good care of His children but He will never give us more than we are capable of dealing with whether troubles or blessings.

     Thanks for stopping by.  Until next time keep praying and asking God what He wants you to write and keep believing.  Remember what He did for the people during Biblical times He will do for us today if we believe.  Oh the stories that I could share but I’ll save them for another time.

God bless.

BUILD YOUR WORD REPERTOIRE

     Recently my 67-year-old sister-in-law shocked her oldest daughter by telling her that she liked RAP music (for lack of a better word though it hardly qualifies as music.)  We all got a good laugh out of that because we’re almost sure she doesn’t even know what RAP is. Or she might really shock us by knowing what it is.  But it is highly doubtful.  This is a woman who does not use swear words nor does she want them said around her.  She is a true Southern Lady.

     I thought about it and I decided I might like some RAP if they didn’t cuss so much.  As I was growing up, and trust me that was many moons ago, we were taught that a person uses cuss words because they have a limited vocabulary.  So the author of RAP just like any other writer should strive to develop a repertoire of words even though they might never use them in any of their work.  We know that as writers we should tell the story (or song) in the most precise terms.  A reader or listener does not want to struggle through fifty dollar words when ten-cent words will get the point across.

     There are a number of ways to build our collection of words; Scrabble, learning a new word every day, reading and so on and on.  I prefer the reading method.  I like having the knowledge when and if I ever need it but like every one else I attempt to make my manuscripts an easy, enjoyable read.  Our readers want to be entertained not impressed by our large vocabularies but on the other hand I feel they don’t want every other word to be a cuss word.

     Will I listen to RAP?  I have in the past when my sons and I were sharing a car.  I didn’t really like it then but I did enjoy sharing the moment with which ever son was driving me to and from work that particular day.  They were also kind enough to listen to my Country Music on rare, very rare, occasions.  Today if you get in my car and turn on the CD player you will probably hear something like “The Wheels on The Bus Go Round and Round.”  Why?  Because that is the kind of music my two-year old grandson enjoys and we are sharing moments and building happy memories.

     I like most music but not all of any genre. Music is part of life and wouldn’t the world be colorless without it?

     Thanks for stopping by.  Until next time settle back in a comfort chair and listen to RAP… or not.   God bless.

DOES GOD CARE ABOUT OUR WRITING CAREER

     I’m feeling better but still a little weak.  I tell you that was one bad virus.  Once it grabs you it just doesn’t want to let go.  But God is stronger and I will heal one place or the other. Being sick I just haven’t felt like putting any effort in my writing.  I know I need to sit myself down and work on finishing the Southern Drama and Suspense novels that I’ve been working on forever.  Then there is the Southern Drama that I need to rewrite and a new one that is playing around in my head with faint sketches on paper.  So I certainly don’t have Writer’s Block what I have is lazy block.  And the only cure for that is to get over it period; which I absolutely plan to do.

    Some of my blogs will be about writing and some about my life and some about God and His wonderful love for us. 

     Today I would like to talk about Hebrews chapter 11.  The people in Hebrews 11 show a strong faith.  This is the kind of faith we Christians should experience.  Like a weak muscle we must exercise our faith so it becomes strong.  When we have faith and see God do the little things we ask we began to ask for bigger things.  This is how we build strong trust in God.  We know He can and will but we must teach ourselves not only is He will or able but He HAS done what we seek.  That is the kind of faith we need to practice. When we come asking our Father for something we need to go away knowing it has been done.  It is a done deal so we thank Him for it.  God is so good and He wants us to build a strong fellowship with Him.

     I know God answers prayers today.  Is it wrong to pray about our writing careers?  I don’t think so.  God gave us this desire and talent to write.  I fully believe He wants us to talk to Him about what we write.  We need to make sure we are writing what He wants us to write and the only way to do that is to talk to Him and give Him a chance to talk back to us.  I also like to say a prayer before each writing session and ask God and the Holy Spirit to write the story through me.  At the end of the session I like to thank God for showing me how and what to write.  Does God care about our writing career?  My answer to that is ABSOLUTELY!  God cares about everything in our lives.

     Thanks for stopping by.  Try talking to God about your writing and see what He says.  No… you won’t hear a booming voice because God speaks softly to our hearts and spirits. God bless and keep you.

Feet of Clay

 

     I’ve told you about my Daddy so I should tell you about my Momma.  She was wonderful!  But then again, don’t we all think our moms are great?  We put them up on pedestals and fail to see their feet of clay.  We refuse to believe they are anything less than perfect.  And if you are a mom, aren’t you glad?

     Momma gave birth to ten children, all single births.  She loved each and every one of us and accepted us as we were.  She never tried to force us in to a mold.  She knew our strengths and weaknesses and encouraged the assets and forgave the flaws.  She and Daddy worked hard and believed every one else should do the same.  Momma thought everybody should have at least one job.

     As I said before, my Daddy was buried on my fourteenth birthday.  All the other children except me and Betty Jean were grown and married.  Now Momma had us to finish raising by herself.  She got a social security check for each of us but it wasn’t anything to write home about.  When we got old enough to get a job, (at that time I believe you could work at sixteen, anyway) she found us a job.

     It was in the spring and one of the local factories (I guess you’d call it that for lack of any other name), Roddenberry’s Pickle Plant hired temporary workers for what they called “The Green Season.”  What that amounted to was the time of year that the fresh cucumbers were coming in.  The plant was huge and open.  There was no air conditioning only enormous fans that blew hot air around.  Rows of women stood at wooden bins on each side of a conveyor belt.  In the corner of the bin you would put a dozen jars, open end up, that you got from the boxes stacked beside you.  They dumped the pickles in the other part of the bin.  Your job was to pack the pickles in the jars and place them in a certain way so the customers could see how pretty they were.  You had to put so many in a jar.  And you had to pack so many dozen jars an hour.  Sometimes as you were packing you fingers would slip and the pickle would go under your nail and hurt like the dickens.  Once the jars were full you put them on the conveyor belt to have the vinegar put in, the lids screwed on, labels posted and then back in boxes to be shipped.  If a jar broke in the bin it had to be completely cleaned out and every pickle thrown away so no one would get glass when they went to eat the end product.  Needless to say breakage was frowned up on.  We worked any where from 10 to 12 hours a day for minimum wage. And when you left there you smelled like a pickle.  I hated that job!! 

     Toward the end of season they started laying people off, usually on Friday which was pay-day.  Every Friday I prayed that I would get laid off.  Momma would never have allowed me to quit.  You just did not quit a job around Momma. Thank God the Friday finally came when they let me go!  I tried to hide my joy because it would not have been polite to show how happy I was at their decision.  I couldn’t wait to get home to tell Momma and Betty Jean.  But my pleasure was short-lived.

     Momma just said, “that’s okay, Sugar, we knew it was coming sooner or later.  Tomorrow morning I’ll take you down to the Okra House and you can work their green season.”

     She was talking about Campbell Soup Company but everybody around Cairo called  it the Okra House because that’s what they worked in.

     Sure, enough early the next morning I heard, “Wake up, Sugar, yore coffee’s ready.” 

     Momma spoiled Betty Jean and me that way; every morning she’d have us a steaming cup of coffee beside the bed when she woke us up.

     Soon my older married sister arrived to drive us to the Okra House; we couldn’t afford a car of our own.

     Momma had worked there for years when she was physically able but now she had health problems and could no longer stand for ten to fourteen hours a day.  But she still knew the people so she walked me right up to the man in charge.  I forget his name but it really isn’t important so I’ll just call him Frank.

     She said. “Frank, this here is my youngest daughter and she needs a job.”

     He quit what he was doing and looked at us.  “Does she have a knife and a hairnet?”

     She nodded.  “Has my old knife.”  They used a special kind of knife.

     “Then take’er to the office and tell’em I said sign’er up and give’er a badge and hairnet. And have’er back here at twelve to start.”

     Yippee!  So much for my unemployment. 

     That place was almost the same as the Pickle Plant.  At Campbell’s the women stood at medal bins on each side facing a conveyor belt .  They dumped okra in your bin and you had to trim the ends off and put the okra in another bin.  Once it was full they pulled a switch and dumped it onto a belt and you started all over.  You had to fill so many bins an hour to make production to keep your job.

     We started at noon because the farmers in the area cut the okra in the morning and delivered it to the plant in the afternoon.  The later in the night it got one could hear the women asking anyone who walked through from where they unloaded the trucks.  “How many trucks left out there?” They knew about how much longer they had to work by the number of trucks left in line.

     We worked until one or two o’clock in the morning.  When we got off I had to walk two miles home.  I was fine until I got to this one place on the hike.  There was a saw-mill with a small stream of water and woods beside it in the valley between two hills.  That place scared me to death.  So I’d get about half way down the hill then I’d start running and ran until half way up on the other side.  If someone had been waiting to harm me I sure made enough noise to let them know I was coming.

     Momma was always waiting up when I got home.

     Again, I was happy when I got laid off and again my joy was short-lived.

     This time Momma said.  “Okay, we knew it was coming.  They’ve started a new sewing factory in town so tomorrow morning I’ll take you there to see about a job.”

     “Momma, I can’t sew!”  I cried.

     “Well you ain’t too ignorant to learn are you?”  Was her reply.

     I got the job but had to work three weeks without pay while I was trained.   Momma said.  “That’s okay we’ll manage ‘til you start getting paid.”  My Momma could sure manage money.  Maybe we’d be better off if she was alive today and could manage the country’s economy.

     I turned my paycheck over to her and never questioned why.  I just knew it was needed.

     I worked that job for about four years until I got married and moved  to Florida with my husband.

     I was truly blessed because God gave me two loving parents.  Our home wasn’t rich but it was overflowing with love.

     Thanks for stopping by and listening to my memories.  Until next time if you have a job appreciate it; there are those who wish they were physically able to work.  God bless.