Writer In The Palm of Your Hand

Writing is a delicate, vulnerable, risky vocation.  We need to hold our writer self like these young birds. These birds had the instinctual knowing to push through the dark inner world of the shell. They were then cared for and fed. Then they were kicked out of a tree by mama bird. All fine and good had my Jack Russel Terrier not been a threat. Each of us must write through the dark. We may wake up in the comfort and safety of a nest where we are wholly dependent upon others. We all get pushed out of the nest. … Continue reading

Keep Us From Destroying Ourselves

“The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.” – Albert Camus There’s a Native American story that goes something like this: The Creator was about to destroy humanity because we were causing so much harm. At that same time Eagle had been called to a ceremony. In the ceremony the people thanked the Earth for Her abundance and announced their citizenship. Eagle heard their prayers. She then flew up to the Creator and asked for mercy for humanity. So the Creator gave Eagle the responsibility to check-in on us, and if one person was still doing ceremony, … Continue reading

I Made Wonder Woman Cry

I made my writing partner, Wonder Woman, cry. The last time I blogged about writing my novel I shared how my writing partner said it was time for me to take out all the backstory. I had a lot of backstory, especially in the beginning chapters. I read through my manuscript and discovered how backstory can be “resistance showing up on the page.” Because I believed I couldn’t write about this particular topic (at least well) I slipped it in as backstory. I convinced myself I didn’t’ have the skills to get this scene and story onto the page in … Continue reading

A Liberating Discovery

“I live life from my side.” This is the zero point agreement. This means we take responsibility for our life and experiences. This of course is the theme of my book with the same title. When we succeed at living life from our side, we flourish at life. One practice (not found in the book) that accelerates the satisfaction quotient in our life is to explore a dynamic. (Exploring a dynamic is a practice we do in the Zero Point Circles I hold in Madison and Prairie du Sac.) This “attitude of exploration,” along with consciousness around a particular dynamic … Continue reading

Something Missing?

Something missing in your writing experience or writing project? Are you finding it difficult to stay with an idea or to follow-through on a project? Do you sense an internal divide? Are you experiencing a lack of intimacy with the world around you? I am. I fear our attachment to the web creates a bigger divide between us and the natural world, each other, and to our creative potential. The internet can be an impressive tool for research, communication, and getting news. For the writer the internet can be an optimal way to research books, ideas, find publishers, as well … Continue reading


Winter     Someone you trusted let you down. Someone broke your heart or forgot you. Winter has set in and we search for things to warm us. Why expect anything else? Your poem–or painting–superior to most, is overlooked. Now neglected by you. Or, that sharp edge of resistance won out so you gave up. Or, a tree fell on your roof before you had time to cut her down. She long shaded the kitchen window. Maybe bad-luck and missed opportunities seamed your days, while that ache in your side disabled you for weeks. You stared at the wall,­–wondered about what had gone … Continue reading

The Physics of Opportunity

When in life is there not opportunity? Of course we experience times when possibilities are not so abundant–or, is that our perception that limits us? Perhaps the way to frame this is: In every moment there is potentiality to perceive and create opportunity. An analogy for this is when we discuss feeling “disconnected to someone,” or feel alone and separate from others. When are we not connected? We may feel separated and isolated but in truth we are intimately connected and part of the activity of life, all the time. Inherent in each experience are a multitude of possibilities and potentialities. … Continue reading

Game Without Losers

“We have met the enemy and he is us.” Pogo A holiday tradition at our house is to bring out all the board games and play! Some favorites are Quiddler, Apples to Apples, Clue, Ruckus and Rumino. In every one of these games there are winners and losers. Just like writing a good story or article–readers expect tension, conflict, a protagonist they can identify with, and a villain. You know, bad news sells. We are set up in our stories and games to pick sides, to have winners and losers. What if, instead of the game or story being about … Continue reading

How Einstein Did It: Idea to Discovery

These two capacities—to analyze and to remain focused— are essential to seeing yourself as you really are. –His Holiness the Dalai Lama, “How to See Yourself as You Really Are” Einstein is often quoted when it comes to analytical meditation because this type of concentration is believed to have led to his theory of relativity and other discoveries. Inquiry meditation has the potentiality of transforming our minds and lives in truly profound and lasting ways. This is a core practice of a meaning maker as it helps us discover truth and meaning for ourself while still borrowing from the wisdom … Continue reading

Right Words, Thank You Claudia Schmidt

You can’t pray for light and curse the dark, they’ve been lovers for a long, long time. – “Bend In the River” by Claudia Schmidt The right words at the right time can change the course of a life. This has been true for me. But it is not just great teachers like His Holiness the Dalai Lama who helped me “turn my craft around” at times I needed a redirect. Lyrics, set to a melody, have been the tap on the shoulder (or whack to the head) that have made all the difference. When I lived in Minneapolis (1982 … Continue reading