This year I took on the 52 Lists project. For more than 8 months I wrote my lists almost every week, although occasionally I missed one and did it the following week. By the end of the year I had missed a LOT and had to play catch up. Here are my lists. They are not complete. I could probably add to them forever. But here’s my snapshot in time for 2016 in list form.
Every time I think about art, I know that deep in my soul I have the yearning to be artistic. I also know that at the surface, I face doubts, and comparison monsters (much thanks to Jani Franck for the brilliant name for them!), and… well, more doubts! I start thinking that I’m not good at art, and that I don’t have anything to create art about, and that even if I had a subject I could never do it justice.
Today I stumbled across Shaun Tan’s book The Bird King: An Artist’s Notebook and read the following quote in the Introduction:
I’m often wary of using the term “inspiration” to introduce my work — it sounds too much like a sun shower from the heavens, absorbed by a passive individual enjoying an especially receptive moment. While that may be the case on rare occasions when an idea pops into my head for no discernible reason, the reality is usually far more prosaic. Staring at a blank piece of paper, I can’t think of anything original. I feel utterly uninspired an unreceptive. It’s the familiar malaise of “artist’s block” and in such circumstances there is only one thing to do: just start drawing.
I have heard the same thing said of writing. There are tons of quotes from writers who have spoken (or written) of the dubious merits of a blank page. Ultimately, the only way through writer’s block is to write. In fact, when I look at some of my favorite quotes from writers about writing, I can relate to them all because they all have a common theme, which I know very well: writing can come naturally, but it’s still difficult. See for yourself:
“This is how you do it: you sit down at the keyboard and you put one word after another until it is done. It’s that easy, and that hard.” – Neil Gaiman
“There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.” – Ernest Hemingway
“The first draft of anything is shit.” – Ernest Hemingway
“Writing is like driving at night in the fog. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.” – E.L. Doctorow
“Writing is a delicious agony.” – Gwendolyn Brooks
It’s important to remind myself that even the most renowned writers struggle with writing. And I imagine that even the most renowned artists struggle with creating art. So then struggling to create is a natural part of the creation process, and I should welcome it as a sign that I am part of the club. Nike has the right idea, just do it!
For more of my favorite inspirational/writing quotes, check out this old post.
Clearing out my Facebook wall, and here are lots of random things I want to delete from there, but keep for myself.
The Tarot Garden has an awesome feature on the site where anyone with an account can make a wishlist, and you can look at mine if you want Christmas ideas. Just enter in my wishlist number (5029) to see what Tarot decks I want.
Post via Christine Kane – “Stop gathering, start making” is my new mantra. This post is right on target for my life.
1995 version of “From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler” which is one of the best books of all time. Actually thought the girl cast as Claudia was magnificent, exactly how I pictured her when I read it as a kid.
I totally want one of these some day… (esp. the Poppy Lithograph)
Coming into wholeness as a woman isn’t so much about discovering who you are, but about taking back the parts of yourself that you gave away. ~Barbara DeAngelis, Ph.D.
Newest favorite quote from a children’s book: “He spoke with a slight panda accent.” – Zen Shorts, by Jon Muth
Reminder to self: “Know you can choose your feelings. Joy is an option. Gratitude is a possibility. Love is all around you.” – Leonie Dawson
“My rule of thumb is I will only listen to people’s advice if they are happier than me, and if that advice makes me happy. Otherwise, I’m usually the happiest one, so I WIN! Wooo!” – Leonie Dawson
Mondo: “Stakes are high… I don’t even like steak.” Chris: “That’s deep, Mondo.” ♥ Project Runway
“Money is the root of all evil, and yet it is such a useful root that we cannot get on without it any more than we can without potatoes.” -Louisa May Alcott, author of Little Women and a girl after my own stomach. I mean heart.
“The world can’t end today, because it’s already tomorrow in Australia.” -Charles M. Schultz
If I write a children’s book, can I get Julie Paschkis to illustrate it? Please? http://www.juliepaschkis.com/books.html
Love this, especially the part where the tall guy doesn’t know that the Guinness Book of World Records comes out every year. “There’s a new Hairy Woman!”
Krissy and Mom and I saw this live, but I missed getting video. Luckily someone else got it for us!!! 🙂
Freaking LOVE this video. Much thanks to the beautiful Goddess Leonie Allan for sharing it on GoddessGuidebook.com
Don’t you ever interrupt me while I’m reading a book!!!! ♥ link
TAROT AND STUFF LIKE THAT
Someone is doing an in-depth numerology report for me for my birthday: “I’m curious…did you and your husband meet naturally or through some type of dating service? I ask because your birthdays seem so compatible like you and he are soul mates.”
“Aries is the child of the zodiac. And you have to remember that. When you’re eighty years old, you’ll still be four and a half… So what does a child do? A child is fascinated by something, and explores it and plays with it, and then when he gets bored he throws it away, and moves on to something else.” -John Ballantrae (Tarot Today radio show, 8/3/10)
from Tarot Dame: “Michelle: (The Sun & King of Cups) The King insisted on being pulled up with the Sun, as though they were attached! Look for (and celebrate) the positive in a situation with a male loved one. He seems to really need this sunshine!” — I think we can all agree, this totally makes sense for me. I ♥ my King of Cups hubby!
Tarot reader Velvet Angel gave me a free three card reading on her blog. Check out the reading to find out if she sees a pregnancy in my future!
Just got the exact same card when asking my Magical Mermaids and Dolphins deck for advice for my sister, then shuffled three times and asked for myself. We both got “You are Being Helped.” Awesome. The best part is, I didn’t look at my card at first. I shuffled and was trying to be cute, so I lifted it for her to see first. And she burst out laughing and I turned it and saw that it was the same one she just got. It was amazing. I think it means we are helping each other, in many ways. I have really connected with this deck.
BOOKS AND LIBRARY
Best patron of the day: a girl who is going into 6th grade asking me for “Lord of the Fireflies” — I get the feeling that would be a much happier book!
Just finished reading “Before I Fall” by Lauren Oliver. Left me in tears, in a good way. Wow, what an amazing book! Kind of like… Gossip Girl meets Groundhog Day. (July 10 2010)
Boy going into 6th grade: Did you pass college? Me: Yes. Boy: Oh, well did you pass 6th grade? Me: You have to pass 6th grade before you can even go to college, so yeah, I passed 6th grade. Boy: Oh, well I just want some advice. Like, is 6th grade a lot harder? (This was such a cute conversation, I love it.)
Finished reading The Mermaid’s Mirror by L.K. Madigan (which I loved SO much) and I was so sad it was over… until I read the Acknowledgments and saw something about a sequel. I hope Nix is in the sequel! (Sept 5 2010) ***update: sad to say, the author passed away before she had even started the sequel. RIP L.K. Madigan.***
“My head’s a little crowded. Dead people and angry parents are not a good combination for me. I need to chill.” -Elijah, Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson (I’m about halfway through this one right now) (Sept 7 2010)
I can’t say hominins too well. Reading a book that uses that word a lot, and that in-my-head reading voice keeps saying homonyms instead… once an English major, always an English major! (This book is making me get better at it- that word is, by necessity, on almost every page. Fat Cat by Robin Brande) (Sept 12 2010)
Currently reading: The Oracle Rebounds by Allison Van Diepen courtesy of NetGalley… the first book in the series is out! The Oracle of Dating, published by Harlequin Teen, was a great, fast read and I’m absolutely tearing through the sequel. Now if you don’t mind… Brandy from teenmoi is so catty, I have to find out if Kayla gets back at her somehow… so, shh! (Sept 19 2010)
REALLY want to finish this book (The Extraordinary Secrets of April, May and June by Robin Benway) but it’s almost midnight and I have 66 pages to go… so tomorrow I’ll finish and move on to Three Quarters Dead by Richard Peck. (Sept 27 2010)
Wow. You KNOW it’s a good book when every page has ten things that are so funny you want to read them out loud to the person next to you… who is, erm, trying to get work done. Okay, I’ll be quiet now. Except for the chuckles and giggles that slip out. (reading “A Tale Dark & Grimm” by Adam Gidwitz, advanced copy) (Oct 4 2010)
Currently reading: Delirium by Lauren Oliver (courtesy of NetGalley). Favorite sentences so far: “I want banana for speedboat. Give my wet shoe to your blistering cupcake.” It’s an example of Mad Libs. (Oct 22 2010)
“Huh?” I have such a way with words. I should write epic poetry or jingles for cat food commercials. -Anna and the French Kiss
Girl Scouts didn’t teach me what to do with emotionally unstable drunk boys. -Anna and the French Kiss
OTHER RANDOM THINGS
Austin Scarlet just said the word “smock” and now I have a vague remembering of wearing a smock for art when I was a wee little tot…
After airing out my huge gash for a few hours (seriously, it’s just REALLY fun to be dramatic, it’s nothing to worry about), it’s time for some more Neosporin and a bandage, then bedtime. Or else it’s time for Neosporin and a bandage and then reading a few more chapters of Delirium (by Lauren Oliver ♥) and THEN bedtime. Yeah, that sounds better. (Oct 25 2010)
Finding everything on the ILL holds list is like reaching the Holy Grail – today I am immortal.
I wasn’t home sixty seconds before putting on my new fluffy pink bathrobe. Thanks Secret Santa Jenell! 🙂 (Dec 21 2010)
My awesome sister won tickets from the radio station to see Mary Poppins on Broadway tonight… and I get to go with her!!! 🙂 Good thing I work across the street from the train station. We are meeting up at Grand Central when her train comes in at 6:20 (mine comes in 6:07), finding dinner, and the show starts at 8. (Sep 16 2010)
This is from Marianne Williamson’s A Return to Love:
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
“Life is like photography – you use the negative to develop.” -Swami Beyondananda (alter ego of humorist Steve Bhaerman, of the website WakeUpLaughing.com)