Playlist help?

Help me build a musical tears (songs that make me cry) playlist.

Criteria: male vocals only. No females. No instrumental. I realize not everyone is going to get that teary feeling at the same songs so throw them at me – all genres welcome.

Saturday, June 19, 2010|Categories: Random|Tags: |31 Comments

For BlogTalk Radio listeners – Father/Daughter poems

Here’s the link to all my blog posts about the poems about my dad that led me to finding the family I never knew I had.


Thank you again, to all the Webbs who have welcomed me with open arms, but most especially my brothers and my sister Lori!

Monday, June 14, 2010|Categories: Random|Tags: |2 Comments

Thankful Thursday

Today I’m thank for my wonderful husband.

Not only does he do all the cooking around the house, which means he also does all the grocery shopping, but he drives me all over the place (not just the South Bay) looking at things on craigslist. When we buy something, no matter how big, he always manages to fit it into our four-runner. He does all the moving and lifting and carrying and lets me supervise. He never complains, even when we drive a couple of hours for something we don’t buy.

Thank you, my dear.

Thursday, June 10, 2010|Categories: Random|Tags: |11 Comments

Five for Friday – A whole lot of pondering going on

Five things I’m pondering today:

1. Friends. I’m still thinking about the many sides of friendships and especially how they have changed with the advent of email, Facebook, Twitter, etc.  Why it is easier for some people to make and keep friends, what makes a friendship stick for the long term, how you outgrow some friends and not others.

2. Paint. I’m taking an online class with Julie Pritchard on painting layered backgrounds for my collage projects. I’ve checked all the local stores for Golden paints but none of them come close in price to what I can get them for at DickBlick so now I am waiting for them to come in. (Impatiently waiting.) I am also eyeing the wall you first see when you come in the house (long wall from living room to dining room for those who have been here) and thinking about painting it red. But the library is red which means you’d see red and then red and I can’t decide if that is good or if it will lessen the impact of the red library. So I’m pondering.

3. Heat. I’m wondering how long I will last before I turn on the AC. I’m thinking it might be this weekend. I SO don’t do heat.

4. Water. I’m addicted to water features in the yard and I’m trying to decide where I could put in "just one more".

5. My office. Wondering if this would be the weekend that it is finally clean. Note, clean is not the same as done as I am still looking for new bookcases and a few other things.

What are you pondering today?

Friday, June 4, 2010|Categories: Random|Tags: |12 Comments

Surprise vist by a Cooper's Hawk

Cooper’s Hawk, originally uploaded by susanwrites.

I walked out back with the video camera going to take pictures of the yard and was surprised by a Cooper’s Hawk heading for the bird bath. I moved the camera really fast and while you couldn’t see him much on the video, when I extracted them frame by frame, he was there.

You can click over to Flickr to see the frame by frame shots. Not the highest quality of pics but since we’re in the middle of the city, this makes me happy.

Flickr album here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/poppiness/sets/72157624184262960/

Tuesday, June 1, 2010|Categories: Random|Tags: |5 Comments

5 things I'm thinking about today

#1   What it means to be a friend.
#2   What it means to be a caretaker of the earth.
#3   What it means to be a poet.
#4   What it means to be a success.
#5   What it means to be me.

How about you? Pick one or all of the above and tell me what it means to YOU!

Friday, May 28, 2010|Categories: Random|Tags: |3 Comments

Five for Friday

1 – I am still processing all the emotions that have been stirred up as a result of writing my father poems last month and meeting so much new family. It’s all good, I mean even the bad is good because it’s real. But it’s also very intense which is exhausting.

2 – My father’s widow asked me a question that made me mad and I think that’s a good thing too. I don’t want to be the whiny, poor me kid of those poems forever so getting mad is the next step in healing. I think.

3 – I’m frustrated about a couple of things in my writing life but I don’t feel like I can blog about it because, well, who needs that kind of stuff out there forever and ever? So I’m biting my tongue but it’s hard. Maybe I should set up a small list of Livejournal friends who don’t mind listening to that kind of stuff  where I can lock all the posts?

4- I am writing essays in my head that I really need to get down on paper, or actually on the screen, about creativity and art and writing.

5 – Alas, said essays, like the Cassie posts about dogs and writing, are not likely to be marketable except to a select audience. Now I understand why many people are attracted by self and POD publishing.

Happy weekend everyone.

Friday, May 14, 2010|Categories: Random|Tags: |18 Comments

Friday Five – A Random Edition

Okay, I haven’t done a Friday 5 for a while so let’s give this a shot.

1. Today is the next to the last session with my group of incarcerated teen poets. I’m sorry I haven’t managed daily updates with the visits but I will do a few posts about them soon. Monday is the last day and there is so much to do (like typing in all their work so I have copies for the  exhibit)) before then. But today we paint. They collaged some canvases last week as backgrounds for the display and today we’ll do another layer with paint and textures. Fingers crossed that it’s another good art day. I have hot Cheetos in my backpack as a bribe reward.

2. I fell off the blogging wagon. I think part of it is the intensity of this teaching I am doing lately. It’s a lot of prep and a lot of recovery time for me. And part of it is adding new things to my life without letting go of any old things and come to find out, there really are only 24 hours in a day.

3. I haven’t even been reading blogs, just a quick scan of the feeds on Facebook which means I haven’t been commenting and I feel bad about that because so many people have been so supportive of my blog over the years. There are some exciting things going on with various people and I do cheer them on, I just don’t seem to be able to pause long enough to make an insightful comments.

4. I think about blogging a lot more than I have actually done it this month. I think, oh, I have ten minutes I could whip out a little blog post and then I think that everything I have to write about at that moment feels either too slight or too personal so I stare at the page for too long and finally decide that it is conceited of me to think that people want to read all that kind of stuff so I don’t post. What I think is happening is that I am having a shift of identity which is all good but it fits me differently and I need to figure out how it fits into the rest of my world. I did catch a great post by  that deals with this a little bit.

5. I’ve committed to writing an original poem a day (and blogging it) every day in April for National Poetry Month. Last year I posted a new haiku a day based on my native plant garden. I’m not sure what form or topic I will use this year but I do promise one new poem a day.

Happy Friday, all. I’m off to see my young poets.

Friday, March 19, 2010|Categories: Random|Tags: , |11 Comments

Just passing through

I can’t believe it’s been a week since an update. I missed this week’s Of Dog’s and Writing post. Sorry folks. I’m a little scattered lately.

I’ve been back working with my first group of incarcerated teens and had every intention of posting after each visit but like I said, I’m a little scattered lately. I hope to update more tomorrow.

Write on, right now.

Thursday, March 11, 2010|Categories: Random|Tags: |5 Comments

New page in my art journal

117, originally uploaded by susanwrites.

See the full album on Flickr.

Thursday, March 4, 2010|Categories: Random|Tags: , |15 Comments

looking for a poem and/or quote

I’m looking for a poem and maybe some quotes to give to my incarcerated teen boys for my last day on Wednesday. Ones about hope or overcoming tough times or staying on the right path. I have some of my favorites but wonder if anyone else has any suggestions?

Monday, February 8, 2010|Categories: Random|Tags: |8 Comments

Question of the day

What’s your favorite word? Why?

Tuesday, January 19, 2010|Categories: Random|Tags: |20 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Jo Knowles

For the last stop on the 31 Blogs in 31 Days trip I’d like to point out the blog of author Jo Knowles.Jo’s blog is the blog of a working writing with tidbits about revision and the crazy business we’re in. On Monday’s she offers up a writing prompt and it is always tied to some wonderful Jo story about life.

A couple of my favorite posts include this one,  Is it censorship?  and this one Daring to dream which seems like a wonderful way to end the year.

I hope you’ve enjoyed your visits to 31 blogs this month. The yellow icon will reside in the sidebar of my blog so you can dip back into them in the future.

Thursday, December 31, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |5 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Terri, wildlife rehabber/author

I love animals. A lot. But there’s no way I could do what wildlife rehabber (and children’s author) Terri does. I read her blog for the animal stories but I also read it for her writing journey. She often weaves the two together. A couple of my favorites are Of Deer and Men which talks about what to do if you come across an injured deer and If I had a Hammer in which Terri reminds us writers that we were all beginners once upon a time.

Thanks, Terri, for doing a tough job that many of us think we would love to do but probably couldn’t handle.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |1 Comment

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – L.K. Madigan

Some people can make you laugh one moment and catch your breath at the beauty in a photograph in the next. That’s the way it is with author L.K. Madigan. She has a fun feature called authorial intrusions which are “not your typical author interviews” but some of my favorite posts are the ones where she has Tim Gunn (from Project Runway) in her head while she is trying to write.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |2 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Miss Rumphius Effect

Tricia, at the Miss Rumphius Effect, blogs about a lot of things related to kidlit but I’m addicted to her Monday morning poetry stretches. I don’t always play (though it is my goal to participate more in 2010) but I always stop by to read. They’re great poetry prompts for all ages.Here are a couple of my favorites:  Childhood games  and What Isn’t There.

And since today is Monday, you might want to try stretching yourself while you’re there.

Monday, December 28, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |3 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Melissa Wiley

When I want to feel like I’ve been hugged, this is one of the blogs I head for, Here in the Bonny Glen. Author Melissa Wiley has created a warm and friendly place in the blogosphere that is about writing and raising kids and homeschooling and living green and being real, right here, right now. I’ll warn you, a lot of her posts will move you to tears, but they never leave me feeling sad. Often they leave me wishing I was a part of what sounds like a wonderful family.

The Boy with the Perfect Heart is a great example of a perfectly told tear-inducing story and this one which talks about how some of us have a tendency to have more “tearing up moments” than others.

Sunday, December 27, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |2 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Lisa Schroeder

‘m a writer and a poet so I am naturally drawn to blogs that connect to my writing life so well. One of my favorites belongs to Lisa Schroeder>.

She takes you into the life of a writer/poet and shows you the good, the bad, and the “this will probably make you cry” kind of stuff. This month she’s been running some reruns from her favorite posts from the past and I’ve loved reading all over again about the way her career has evolved.

A couple of favorites of mine are I’m not the only one where she compares American Idol to the writing business and this one where she talks about getting an agent at last.

Saturday, December 26, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |3 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Lyttie Poe & Melodye Shore

My Christmas gift to you is two blogs that hold a special spot in my heart – True Tales of Kindness and Stupidity and Front Pages. Both blogs are written by talented and creative woman who remind me that love is all around us, once we slow down long enough to really look. I love blogs that change my mood or my way of looking at something and these blogs both do that. They remind me that growth is always possible and that it doesn’t take much for us to make a change in someone’s life. Often we can do it just by pausing to sit with them for a while.

Over at True Tales of Kindness and Stupidity, a couple of my favorite posts are A Tale of Uncle Al and Two Dolls and A Fool of Myself.

At Front Pages I really enjoyed In my travels, two things and Creative Inspiration from the King of Pop. Melodye is also my Creative Art Journal buddy.

Friday, December 25, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |2 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – I.N.K. Interesting NonFiction for Kids

Over at I.N.K. (Interesting NonFicton for Kids) What a great idea for a blog – authors who write nonfiction for kids share tips about this genre of writing and talk about their favorite nonfiction children’s books (and what makes them work)

I am always fascinated by how other writers deal with the topic of research so I really enjoyed these two posts on the subject: Oh Wow Notes and Prehistoric Notes

Thursday, December 24, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |0 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Janni Lee Simner

Today”s visit on 31 Blog You Might Not Know is with Janni Lee Simner. Her posts vary from life to process to the occasional low-keyed rant. Her posts almost always make me pause and think for a while which makes it a good one for me first thing in the morning. I liked this recent post, The Stories Not Written and this one, But really, the _next_ next book will be different , which is just one of the many wonderful character conversations she blogs about fairly often. (If you’ve enjoyed reading my letters to characters, I got the idea from Janni.


Wednesday, December 23, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |6 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Hip Writer Mama

Do you know Vivian of Hip Writer Mama and ReaderGirlz fame? If not, you should. Why?

Because most of us writers have to balance our writing with a whole lot of other non-writing things, like raising kids and washing windows, and such. And sometimes it seems like there is never enough time to do what we want to do most of all – write! A visit with Hip Writer Mama reminds me that all things require balance and that some days we all have trouble balancing and that’s okay.

Right now Hip Writer Mama is closing in on the home stretch of her personal writing challenge to write every day for 30 days.

How’s she doing with that? You can read all the challenge posts here or a few of my favorites like  and Day 23: Mapping Out Writing Time: The Double-Edged Sword and Day 22: Mapping Out Writing Time: Do the UNEXPECTED .

For a bonus, there are writing prompts at the end of each post.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |2 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Loree Griffin Burns

Today I’d like to introduce you to scientist and children’s author Loree Griffin Burns.

She’s managed to combine two of my most favorite things, nature and writing, into wonderful books for children.

Trips to her blog are like little nature field trips. A couple of my favorites posts are Monarchs in Space and Seeing the Chrysalis, Finding the Spine.


Monday, December 21, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |6 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Shen's Books

For today’s visit on 31 Blogs you might not know I want to point you to Shen’s Books. Shen’s publishes beautiful books and has a blog/website full of multicultural book related info.

Recently, publisher Renee Ting started a new feature called the Multicultural Minute – short 1 minute videos connected to the multicultural kidlit world.

A couple of my favorites are Multicultural Minute on Food and The Multicultural Minute on Biracial Picture Books

Sunday, December 20, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |0 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – I'm here. I'm queer. What the hell do I read?

Today’s stop on 31 blogs you might not know is I’m here. I’m queer. What the hell do I read?Lee Wind has created a wonderful resource for gay teen books, gay culture, gay politics and more! Lee’s taking a couple of weeks off for the holidays but there are plenty of juicy posts over there for you to enjoy until he comes back in January.

A couple of my favorites are The GLBTQ Middle Grade Bookshelf! and The Power Of A Ten Year Old: A GSA Monday Inspiration

Saturday, December 19, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |1 Comment

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – A Year of Reading

A Year of Reading is a blog written by, in their own words, “two teachers who read. A lot.” I always feel like I am in the back of their classroom listening in as they turn kids on to reading and writing and poetry. So many of the lessons they share with their young students are just as important to this old student.

This blog is also the home of the great list, 100 Cool Teachers in Children’s Literature (they’re actually up to 128 now.)

A couple of my favorite posts are the current one Unit of Study on THEME (beginnings) and THEME (middle, part 2)

Friday, December 18, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |2 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Deaf Characters in Children's Literature

I came across this blog when I was looking for links to unusual book lists. What I found when I landed was this list on deaf characters in children’s literature. The blog covers adolescent books with deaf characters, websites, author interviews and book reviews, all related to the oft-neglected in literature, world of the deaf.
A couple of my favorite posts are this one about a Documentary about ASL Poetry, “The Heart of the Hydrogen Jukebox”and this interview with deaf playwrightWilly Conley.

Thursday, December 17, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |0 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Liz Garton Scanlon

Today I want to introduce you to author/poet Liz Garton Scanlon. Her book All the World was just named the year’s best picture book by the L.A.Times and a Best Kids’s Book of the Year by The Washington Post. Reading her blog is like sitting across the table from her chatting, one-on-one, about life and family and writing and poetry and so much more. I read Liz’s blog for the beauty of the language she uses and I read it because she is always so darn grateful for her life that I can’t help but walk away from her blog feeling better than I did when I first started to read.

Liz is also one of the Seven Poetry Princesses responsible for encouraging them to write their Thanksgiving Villanelles.

A couple of my favorite posts of hers are Thanksgiving in the Backcountry and Humility and Audacity.

Don’t rush your visit with Liz. Sit with her a while. You’ll be glad you did.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |3 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Peni Griffin

Today’s stop on 31 Blogs (you might not know) is The Idea Garage Sale , the virtual home of author Peni Griffin. I love Peni’s mind, the way it tunnels through things the rest of us might not notice and comes out the other side with a story, such as her latest book, 11,000 Years Lost which is in the Pleistocene age. Cool, huh?

Peni believes ideas are all around us, we just need to become more aware of them. She believes this so much that she is giving ideas away to all comers. Go on now, pick one up for yourself.

A couple of my favorite posts are Coolest Thing I Learned All Year and Projects.

Since Peni is a new blogger I hope some of you will head on over to say hello.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |6 Comments

31 Blogs You Might Not Know – Jenn Hubbard

If you love blogs about the writing process and writers who think deep thoughts and aren’t afraid to talk about, then you might want to check out Jenn Hubbard’s blog. Jenn’s first young adult novel, THE SECRET YEAR is coming out next month and I can’t wait.

A couple of my favorite posts are the ones Jenn did on writing the synopsis, in three different flavors and Revision in Action.

Give her a wave from me when you stop by.

Monday, December 14, 2009|Categories: Random|Tags: |8 Comments