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Archive for September, 2008

Why do we write?

As I lay in bed tonight, I thought about the title given this blog:  A Reason to Write.  Why do I need a reason?  I thought.  Well, that’s simple.  Because without a reason, I wouldn’t write.  Why do I even want to write?  What is it about writing that calls to many of us?  26 symbols that make up letters, another dozen or so more that constitute punctuation, and yet something outside of the mathematics and the symbolism calls to us.  Why do we write?

Perhaps we write because writing is something that makes us human.  Perhaps it is that ability to express ourselves that truly makes us feel as if we have something to say.  Unlike the spoken word, writing’s enduring presence seems to call to us, as if we yearn for a permanence we fear we never will receive.  Or, perhaps, in writing, we feel that we have accomplished more than in speaking, for there is something physical left behind.

Writing seems to call to us at many levels.  From the email full of incomplete sentences to the well written, college worthy paper…it seems to fulfill a need within us.  And so we write.  Millions of volumes of text have been published, and millions more exist unpublished in forms of journals, or, dare I say, blogs.  Poems are studied in the classrooms, while millions of others lie concealed in boxes of memories.

Even if no one is listening, we write.  And at the cathartic moment where our minds are freed from the fetters of perfectionism and we stop worrying about the audience we may or may not have, we achieve something.  For just that brief moment we have grasped a hold of ourselves and acknowledged the transcendence that is within, allowing ourselves to truly be whole, to be authentic, to be free.

And so we write.  We write for a freedom we all wish to know.  We write for ourselves and allow others to come and what remains of our release.  We write because no one is listening and at the same time, someone just might be.  And, we write to come to know that something inside of us.  For that little piece of our soul that, perhaps, waits for us to confide in the music of the written word.

And so, we write.

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Little Men and Jo’s Boys by Louisa May Alcott

For those of you who many not be familiar with Alcott, Little Men and Jo’s Boys are the sequels to the beloved Little Women.   Telling the story of Jo’s life after her marriage to Professor Bhear, Little Men introduces us to Plumfield School where boys, and girls, are taught not only the important lessons learned from books, but the important lessons of life as well.  Jo’s Boys takes the chronicles of the students to new heights, as the students reach adulthood and choose their future paths, allowing the lessons of the past blossom.

My favorite character is Dan.  Dan is first introduced to us in Little Men as a wayward orphaned teenager who rough exterior and brusque and seemingly callous manor not only steals his way in to Jo’s heart, but manages to survive a good deal of trouble.  He grows and changes and appears again in Jo’s Boys, now a rugged man of the Western Frontier.  His character is perhaps one of the most complex in Alcott’s pantheon and truly deserves a paper of study all his own (which I may someday write).  Through Dan, Alcott discusses issues of race, class, nature vs. nurture, and the ever important Transcendentalist questions of sin and redemption.  Many have argued and will argue that Dan is a failed character, perhaps even tragic in that his one great flaw holds rigidly to his heart and leads to his destruction.  I however would argue that Dan’s only flaw makes him a tragic hero.  His flaw is not one that would mock the sanctity of life.  Instead, Dan’s true flaw is that he loves too deeply.  And, there, one must ask, can one love too deeply?  Is that truly a flaw?  What sort of actions are justified  when one adheres to friendship so completely?

I won’t say anymore.  Go read the books.  Then, if you disagree…we’ll chat.  I’d love that.  And, maybe someday I’ll write my study of Dan and we’ll look a little more in to an all encompassing love a little more.

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Testing, testing…

Anita?  Are you there?  Did this work?  How do you see the “who’s posting this” part? 

WordPress is complicated.

Whiny commentary ceasing.  Intellectually stimulating, beautifully & artfully crafted, witty (and if we’re lucky, hunorous) material coming shortly.  Like, 20 years from now when the kids are grown.

How nice to have a place I can use the word “humorous” instead of “funny.”  Ah, I sigh with relief.  Not intellectually stimulating, I know, but it’s a start.  😉

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Funny stories…

So as my first official post, I shall share a discovery I made this evening.  Fitting, it is, to mention it here, as it is another reason to write. 

http://borrowedlight.blogspot.com/2008/08/blog-book.html

http://www.nierecovery.com/

It’s got me thinking of all the funny experiences I have to write about.  Most of them are the make-you-cringe, I’m-so-glad-I-didn’t-have-to-deal-with-that-mess, mommy stories.  Most of them are probably a lot better if you were there to watch them happen… But that’s the problem of the author, and can usually be resolved by some quality-writing.

Be patient with me, dear public, as I learn wordpress.  Looks like it’ll be an uphill battle, as I can’t figure out the first step:  How to post as someone other than Zenobia.  😉

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Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr. and John Archambault

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom (CCBB) is a great little story that my daughter cannot seem to get enough of.  Essentially an alphabet book, it is unique in its approach to the ABCs.  Taking the ABCs away from the a is for apple, CCBB is exciting and unique.

An infectious rhyme and skat-like rhythm meet you on every page and you can’t help but feel the beat as you read about the adventures of the letters.

Although reading it multiple times a day, as we are, may be a bit much, CCBB belongs in every young child’s library.  This one is a keeper.

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Book Review: The Host

The Host by Stephenie Meyer

Written for adults, The Host is a fascinating novel written by the Stephenie Meyer, author of the Twilight series.  Not only is The Host and engaging read, but the book asks and addresses basic questions about the definition of life and the rights of living creatures.

Technically part of the Sci-fi/Fantasy genre, the book hardly deserves that home.  Although it deals with a future earth and an invasion by alien life forms, these act only as elements used to tell the story rather than the story itself.

Instead, the story is focused on emotion and communication and asks the reader to consider basic beliefs, while adding humor, tragedy and a little romance.

I loved The Host and would recommend it to anyone looking for a good, swift read and especially to any adult fans of Stephenie Meyer.

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