Ideas of the Shipwrecked

These are the only genuine ideas, the ideas of the shipwrecked. All the rest is rhetoric, posturing, farce.” –Jose Ortega y Gasset   Breakage BY MARY OLIVER I go down to the edge of the sea. How everything shines in the morning light! The cusp of the whelk, the broken cupboard of the clam, the opened, blue mussels, moon snails, pale pink and barnacle scarred— and nothing at all whole or shut, but tattered, split, dropped by the gulls onto the gray rocks and all the moisture gone. It’s like a schoolhouse of little words, thousands of words. First you … Continue reading

The In-Between of Life (and Writing), by guest blogger Christie Gause-Bemus

  When my writing Sherpa (Julie) said to me, “you want to consider this rewriting, not editing.”  My heart sank at what my head inevitably knew all along.  A novel that I “finished” several Aprils ago, was not finished…until it was finished. I had gotten caught up with the end goal, to be a published author, and all the perceived joys that go with it.  The accolades, the riches, the interviews on Oprah, the recognition, the book readings, the seeing my words in one complete package of the hardbound book in the hands of others.  These end gains had become more important, and … Continue reading

Heeding The Call

Rule of thumb: The more important a call or action is to our soul’s evolution, the more Resistance we will feel toward pursuing it.  -Steven Pressfield,  The War of Art If you begin a spiritual, creative, or inner journey and don’t go all the way with where it wants to take you, then you may end up worse than when you began. We, writers and spiritual seekers often encounter adversity and resistance along the way, and somewhere in the middle of our effort it can become quite a challenge to stay with the journey. We are enthused or motivated in the beginning, and then something happens. It gets … Continue reading

Just Another Day (Not)

Dear Writerly Readers,  Some rare days for me are entirely “off the page.”  Today is such a day. Much to do (about something), so no time to write a blog. Here is a repost of a recent blog. Until next week,  Julie A Call To Action (And the Democracy of Love) Buddhist teachings reveal how distraction from the moment, and the reality of the moment, leads to confusion, apathy and misinterpretation of reality. But too many pasttimes are just that – built in to distract us. One of the great distractions is television, now extended to the screens of our computers and phones. Advertisements … Continue reading

Discover What Is Truly Possible

My father was a traveling salesman throughout most of my childhood. He sold packaging products to small local cheese factories throughout Wisconsin and the Midwest. This was a face-to-face affair. There were no scams or virtual exchanges in the mix. And he loved the sale. The “wealth” for him was in making the contact and in a successful sale. He did well and at some point expanded into his own company where he had others working for him. Even then he kept traveling to sell his products face-to-face. This made him a weekend father at best, which was typical back then for many working parents. My … Continue reading

When Nothing Changes

When nothing and everything changes One has made room for the God of Mysteries To arrive and take Her place in our heart to let us see what has always been true.   If you are fighting your life You are the walking dead.   If you harbor resentment You are the jailer.   If you want from another That round, golden gift Unwrap the one inside your own soul   Let what’s dead decompose Into the earth Beneath your feet.   There really is only love Which comes in through the door Of letting go.   JTJ, 8/15/17   … Continue reading

Planting Lotuses In the Fire: On and off the Page.

Today’s blog is taken from one of the lessons in my on-line class: The Initiated Writer. I am still offering the entire series to you, my blog readers, for $65.00. This includes some one to one consultation with me! Planting Lotuses In the Fire: On and off the Page. For me the most remarkable part of writing is that I can make meaning from any circumstance or condition. On the page I can express any view, explore any idea, become any character, and not only travel into places I have never been, but create worlds. I first tend to plant my … Continue reading

Join The Noise

There is a community of the spirit. Join it, and feel the delight of walking in the noisy street, and being the noise. –Rumi, A Community of The Spirit Each year at Write-By-The-Lake I work with 15 other writers to help them bring their world into word. I understand my main role is to help them translate their meaningful experiences into captivating stories that become meaningful to their readers. Fortunately, there are many points of success for us writers (or we would give up too soon). Success comes in getting our ideas and stories down in our journals. Success comes … Continue reading

The Initiated Writer

Dear Writers!  I have been offering this on-line class, THE INITIATED WRITER, for the past 5 years. I would like to offer it to you at a (ridiculously) reduced fee of $65.00 for all the lessons, which includes me reading some of your work (regular fee is $250.00). I will send you all the lessons at once, and you can go through them at your own pace. However, you will have till September 15th to send me any pages related to the lessons! Consider it a summer course. Here is the description and invite to this initiatory experience: The Initiated Writer: An online … Continue reading

A Call To Action (And the Democracy of Love)

“Want some fries with that? Buddhist teachings reveal how distraction from the moment, and the reality of the moment, leads to confusion, apathy and misinterpretation of reality. But too many pasttimes are just that – built in to distract us. One of the great distractions is television, now extended to the screens of our computers and phones. Advertisements brag how we can watch our favorite shows any where, any time. Why wait in line in silence, or in conversation with those around you, when you can watch the little screen on your phone? I remember when going on a road trip meant we … Continue reading