In a Time of Strange

I love my country. I've traveled to many other countries and to every United State, but South Dakota. I'm not too young, nor too old, to be tainted by too little, or too much, history. I don’t remember Vietnam or WWII, though I know a few of it’s soldiers. I don’t know social media all that well and I didn’t live my youth under a web of lights, camera and action.

I sit in the middle. A person who like to live her life through experience and experiment. I'm curious more than I am radical. I like to get my feet on the soil of this country and other countries to walk in the shoes, legs, hearts, minds of my fellow humans.

With every thing that I am, I love humanity.

I love that we are all different. That we smell different, feel different, act different, look different, think different and behave different. That we may not have the same color skin, vote for the same party, or fall in love with the same sex of people, we are so close in our experiences, curiosities and ways of thinking that we are brothers and sisters and husbands and wives. Our blending as profound as our separation. I need not prove this to a stranger. I don't need the masses behind me. Those I love and befriend know this and celebrate it with me. Yet, somehow there is a surging energy that I feel part of making me wonder if I have to do more, be more, express more, shout more, explode more, shake the tree, ruffle the feathers, issue my stances and do something, anything to better understand this strangeness.

Have I gone too quiet? Too isolated? Too into myself? Or out?

I believe in momentum. I believe that things don’t appear out of nowhere. Coincidence? No such thing. Coincidence means I wasn’t paying enough attention. I believe I am energy first. That I have this vibe that I need to manage because it is what sets my and the tone. If I feel off, off shit happens and keeps happening. If I feel happy, beautiful surprises present—like I’m in this state of ready for anything good. If I feel scared, worried, alarmed, freaked out, nothing goes right for me and my anxiety escalates. I’m not preaching here. If you don’t believe that, I respect that.

Believing I am energy above all, makes me feel liberated, which I cherish. I hate trapped. Emotionally, physically, spiritually. I cannot be caged. Who can? At this strange moment in time, I find this way of being essential because then I know, for sure, no matter what, that we are equal. Equality matters. It infuriates, and hurts, me to think that anyone thinks, sees, acts, or believes that they are more, or less, than another.

That is a story whose time has run out.

I’m carbon, You’re carbon. I’m hydrogen. You’re hydrogen. I’m cells. You’re cells. I’m potential energy. You’re potential energy. All of us the same stuff as dogs, cats, trees, dirt, oil, and anything else you break down and examine.

What sets us apart are our stories. Those choices we make along the way and let define us. None more right than wrong. Simply decisions. To decide is to live. You may hate me, condemn me, ridicule me, but that’s on you, not me. I don’t do that to anyone. The price is too high. When I attempt to destroy another, even in the smallest degree, I destroy me. Plain and simple: I am that which I chose to do.

So then what? Do I let go of my frustration and confusion and consternation over strange times devour me? Do I make a plan to rise? Do I shout and stir and wriggle and rattle out of utter disbelief that inequality on every level is the norm? Or do I let go of my knowing that lawlessness destroys a culture, a people, a way of American being that I am so uniquely proud of I cannot stand to see it crack, much less shatter?

I do not know.

So I listen.

For more.

For me to hear them more clearly.

To be open to the tone, to the energy.

What is to me corruption, to others, is negotiation.

What to me is stupidity, to others, genius.

What to me is separation, to others, is unity.

What to me is anger, heat, and hostility, to others, is expression, passion, and devotion.

What to me is a divide, to others, is a bridge.

What to me is not okay, to others, is perfection.

We are all different and we are all equal. I'm not about to do anything that might diminish that. Are you?

With love,

 

 

Wondering Where the Lemons Are

I was hot. Too hot. It's summer. I had been in the wildflowers and in the vegetable garden with the bugs and the thriving weeds. Sun crushing it on my precious, pasty skin. Welts bubbling on my wrists from the prickly stems of the squash and tomatoes.

Water.

Stat.

I should've had a glass a while ago. Maybe two.

Oh!

Wait!

Do I have a lemon?

A cold glass of water with a squeeze of lemon. Must.

I picked up my pace to the cottage where I live, thrive, sleep, eat, laugh, snuggle puppies and write, I feel like I bought a lemon when I was last at the market. I grew sure of it. This was good.

People either love lemon in their water or could care less, it seems. I don't think there's much of a middle spot there. Sure, I can drink water without it. I do it all the time. Lemons rarely make my shopping list. I simply see them and grab one. For my water.  As a special treat.

Beads of sweat run between my breasts, down my spine, leak from my pits and the sides of my face. Chugging a giant, wide-mouthed Mason jar of bright, thirst quenching water is all I can think about.

I kick off my calf-high rain/work boots, pull open the screen door, and head straight to the fridge.

I grab the blue picture of chilling water and peek around for the lemon. I don't put much in the crisper drawer. I tend to forget anything that goes into that vortex. And rots. I like to see all my stuff and get inspired from there. I'm an open refrigerator door lingerer. I like to scope out the choices and go from there.

The lemon should be here. It's a small fridge. I move shit around. Nothing. I dig through the drawer.

No lemon.

Shit.

I would have SWORN I bought a lemon. I'm almost positive. No. I did. For sure. That lemon is in here somewhere.

I poke around more.

I see no lemon. I dig again through the drawer.

I conclude there is no lemon for me.

I close the door with a shrug and an, "Oh well." Then pour the cold water and down it. So good. Would have been better with a lemon, but, all in all, working.

My day motors on. I finish up in the gardens. I listen to a little motivational material by Abraham-Hicks. I write. I do my day stuff. Stuff I love. Stuff that makes me dream and soar. I haven't pondered lemons in hours. I had a couple cups of tea, a lot more water, maybe even an espresso.

Then I want a snack. I head to the fridge. Maybe I went hunting for a little slice of banana bread my friend Ritika made me to go with an espresso? I don't remember.

Because.

Because the fucking lemon was FRONT AND FUCKING CENTER in my fridge.

Beautiful. Bright. Yellow. Sneaky Bastard.

That foil to the right of the lemon is the banana bread from Ritika.

That foil to the right of the lemon is the banana bread from Ritika.

 

I swear on all that I am that THAT LEMON was not there. No flipping way was that lemon there. On the middle shelf. In the direct center.

Was it magic? I wish! But maybe in a way it was. I tell writers I work with, and myself, all the time,  to LET THEM/LIFE CHASE YOU. Readers. Agents. Publishers. Producers. New connections. The One. The book deal. The prize. The new puppy. Whatever we want, if we chase, it runs away. Or hides. Or vaporizes from our line of sight. We can't see it, because we are too busy chasing it.

Did I want the lemon too much? I won't pretend to know for sure know why I prevented myself from seeing that flipping lemon. I only know I saw it.  I also know I was relaxed. I wasn't chasing it. I didn't NEED IT anymore. I was going about my day, happy and free. Some, including me, might say I was desperate to get to that lemon. I was desperate to get out of the heat. I was hot. I was irritated. And thirsty. I am prepared to admit that I may have been more desperate than I care to think about. Desperation is so unattractive. And it makes lemons disappear.

I find myself at a new place in life. A lot has changed. My home. My work. How I spent my time. Except for the good things: My dogs. My writing. My beautiful friends and family. I am paying attention like never before because for a while there, I wasn't.

I resisted writing this love letter to you about a lemon. Because it's a lemon. It's not powerful. It is mighty though. That lemon stuck with me. It got me. Right between the eyes! Because it was a moment where I was awake enough to see the difference in me. First try, chasing it. Second not-try try, relaxed, easy, no lemons necessary.

It's gone now, that lemon. I bought TWO LEMONS when I went to the market. Fool me once...

Everything I want is right there/here. Front and center in my fridge/life.

To you and I seeing that our everything is right here front and center, all day, everyday!

With BIG BIG BIG LEMON-Y LOVE!

xo adrea

 

P.S. Midway through writing this, whilst sipping lemon water, I opened the fridge to get something from the shelves built into the door. There was a big, full, bottle of lemon juice. Yep. Been there for months. Hilarious. Sending you my hugs and love, a

Less is More

Dear sweet loves,

Do you know this concept? Less is More? Have you said it? Heard it? Had it written in the margin of something you've written? It's a standard criticism that a writer is offered when/if they've succumb to babble and either, never reach their point, or keep repeating their point without realizing it. What can be done in a phrase has become forty pages. It is the "mountain out of a molehole" syndrome that devours us all and threatens our very beings to the core.

I used to get it ALL THE TIME as a writer. I love to over-commit to what I actually understand. I believe I know instead of questioning everything. That is, until I got the emotional shit kicked out of me. Thank goodness! I woke straight on up to this:

If I am searching for something, I will not find it.

My search cuts off any possibility for understanding or finding. And before now, this moment, right now, I would still be searching. Here is the catch, when I search, I assume something is lost. Or put more honestly, I believe I am lost.

I cannot be anywhere that I don't need to be ever. Because that is where I am.

It is simply impossible for me, or anyone, to be anywhere but where I need to be, because that is where I am, or they are.

And so, with this acceptance, a deep, profound, fresh love for LESS is MORE whooshed over me like a warm rushing waterfall. Why?

It is the rambling, the endless thinking and searching, that gets me off track. I fill in answers that I do not know. My moreness, my babble, hides the answers from me. I hide the answers from me.

Less answering, more letting

Less bullshit, more substance

Less coffee, more water

Less talking, more listening

Less out, more in

Less distracting, more writing

Less looking, more peace

Less blame, more awakening

Less chasing, more receiving

Less chattering, more being

Less them, more me

Less fear, more Love

Less doubt, more uncertainty

Less deciding, more inquiry

Less closed, more open

Less confusion, more clarity

I think you get the idea, as do I, that I could, or you could, perhaps go on and on. It is a rather fun thing to do. And even more, a fun way to BE.

As always, I send you big big love! If you feel like it, drop me a note. I always want to hear the good from you.

xo adrea

 

 

Writing is About Writing

My loves!

Does that sound too obvious? Writing is About Writing. It may, indeed, be a crappy title to this love letter, but it's on my mind because I've been hearing so much resistance lately from writers, and that means you, and me, that I thought it worthy of a little tender time.

I believe we are all writers. Every. Single. Being. We are the writers of our lives. We constantly tell our stories, in our heads, in our conversations, in our choices, in our energy, and in what we share with every. single. being.

Story is a powerful thing. Again, I am being obvious. And again, I remind you, and me, that I can't seem to say it enough to get my story going in the direction I want it to. Grr!

What we repeat, with our voice, is what we are.

What we repeat,

with our voice,

is what we are.

Our voice is usually only in our head. Sometimes it clicks on the keys of a computer. Or takes pen to paper. And, of course, it is what comes forth from our mouths.

We write ourselves every moment of everyday.

Is this hitting you like it is me? It seems so simple, but the power of it blows me off of my chair.

And makes me want to become an extraordinary writer.

I think it may be why so many people know that they "should write things down" or "write a book" or "tell my story". I get that. My words from my mouth are not the best ones, usually.

Pen to paper creates a sense of clarity.

But we don't slow down often enough to do it and when we do, it's hard to stay focused. Our minds race faster than our hands can write or type. And our energy? Oh it is far, far ahead so the only answer I can come up with is . . . We have to be diligent and write constantly. Like any author, we have to keep editing until we get it right. We cannot give up, even if it takes years, until the words sound how we intended them to sound.

But I have found some good news here in the mist. Story stays the exact same, every. single. time. Can you believe it? For all the stories out there in the world, literally trillions, the structure remains the same, at it's very base. This unites us, my loves. Thank goodness because sometimes we feel excruciatingly alone.

So here is how story is... in the simplest of terms...

  1. A Super Fast Vision for what will happen next.
  2. Background. The You of Yesterday that Triggered that Vision.
  3. A Chance to Change. An Offer. A Fight. An Upset. A Date. A Soundbite. A Sound. A Kiss.
  4. Resistance to that Change.
  5. Building Resilience--people, mindset, books, movies--to Make the Change You Want Stick.
  6. Break Through. Merging Yesterday You to New You.
  7. A Super Fast Vision of Who You have Become.

Can you see you there? In your stories? We can get a little too comfortable/stuck in Step 4. And we must vacillate between 4 and 5 until we are strong enough to reach Step 6. And then we celebrate for a triumphant blip before we start a new story and begin again.

How are your stories taking shape? Knowing this, can you find your way through to the middle by easing up on Resistance, fostering more Resilience, and making Break Throughs that free you? Oh, I hope we all do! Writing is about writing. In our head. With our fingers. And in our exchanges with every. single. being.

We have all we need to give voice to the stories worthy of repeating. My hope is that we will become the extraordinary writers of our lives. Tell me what happens in yours, will you?

With giddy love for each of you,




Transforming... Upgrading... Letting Go to Get Here.

Dear friends,

It's been a bit since I posted. Not because I don't think about all of you, or topics, I think might be worthy of our time together, but because I've been going through some inner-ass-kicking. And kind of losing. Then kind of winning. Then falling flat forward again. All because I had this strange feeling it was time . . .

To Upgrade My Website.

I thought that would be an absolute no-brainer. But instead, I freaked the eff out. IN. A. BIG. OLE. WAY.

"Why do I think I need a new website? This one's fine. No one cares anyway. I'm not really that important. Just forget it." Nice self talk, ey? You know I wouldn't let you get away with that.

We all know it was that bastard, growth-seeker FEAR.

I like facing my fears.

Except when it involves me, a photographer, and an "About Me" page.

Where I would have once held my breath and plowed, I paused to breathe. I have failed/learned enough to know that when I plow with fear in the lead, I hurt myself.

My self-worth is no longer negotiable.

My desire to share/promote would have to battling it out with my fear of fraudulence. This time, for once and for all. And it wasn't going to be pretty.

I sought help.

The collective answer was: We need to hear and see you more.

More?

When I launched my first personal website: I wrote for young children. I didn't have an agent. Or a plan for my writing career other than desperate for publication, voice and story be damned. I didn't value my knowledge and education in story and the written word. I didn't trust myself to write the way I wanted to. I had given up screenwriting. I rarely considered blogging. I didn't have anyone to ask for input. I didn't know what I stood for. I didn't feel I had to anything to offer.

Those truths had come undone.

It was time to embrace the new me.

When my marketing/branding lovebug, Amber Lilyestrom, asked me, "What do you love about what you do?" Creating story was my answer. And then proceeded to yammer for twenty minutes (okay, forty) on the structure of story being the way we live our lives. We are the stories we repeat, live, believe and create. "So you'll be offering what you know to other writers?" she asked.

I told my lovely, Literary Agent, Anjanette, about the idea of me helping writers. Without a pause, she said, "Beautiful." And suddenly I had a client. And then another. And then I was co-hosting a private group of emerging women writers with Anj and guess what? We had something. Her unending support and passion for women telling their stories and my practical, but impassioned, knowledge of how story works proved to be needed and sought after with equal passion.

A couple weeks later, a company, Storyteller Ink, was founded to support writers finish their book and know how to write another one, all the while having a meaningful time, feeling held and heard, and writing like they always knew they could, with purpose and with their own voice.

All this because I had this strange feeling it was time to upgrade my website because . . .

Adrea-Peters-87.JPG

My story for myself and how I was connecting with you wasn't true anymore. And I hated that.

and

I couldn't do it on my own. I simply didn't believe in myself enough yet. But I want that.

And intend to keep that promise to myself.

No. Matter. What.

Welcome to our new space. I wouldn't be here without you. I will do my best to make it feel like a home for us.  I'm open to suggestions, as always. They are the only way I get to where I need to go.

With BIG love,

xo a