Charity's views on writing, ramblings, and everything else that she decides to share.
Thanks for the amazing merit badges! You're all wonderful!
First, a disclaimer. There are other writers on this site who are devoted bloggers. They blog consistently. Some even do it daily. That's probably never going to be me, although, when I started doing this in 1999, I was a daily blogger all the way up to 2007 when I had my daughter. Suddenly, life changed and so did my priorities. Now I tend to blog in spurts and only when I feel like I have something relevant or important to say. I just don't have time for a lot of fluff.
Many bloggers have a theme or topic they write about. That's also likely to never be me. For starters my interests cover too many topics to write solely about one thing. That's why I have a total of three blogs currently, including this one. The two other blogs are:
My blogs have always served some kind of purpose. Sometimes my blogs are for business purposes, like the author blog that I typically have on my website. That's typically where I share all manner of publishing related news. It will be focused on announcements and news. As of January 2019, I'm in the process of figuring out how to build an easier to maintain blog. I've used Wordpress for many years and while I love it, the technical needs to maintain it are just too much. I need something I can build quickly and easily and then just post updates to it. I don't want a lot of muss and I don't have a lot of time. I'm sick of paying people to do it who ultimately screw it up.
This blog, however, will be more of a stream-of-consciousness journal, without a set topic. I might post some general ramblings or just whatever comes to mind. I'll use it to participate in the various activities around WDC, like the Blogging Circle of Friends and the 30 Day Blogging Challenge. I like to use it as a tool to talk directly to you, my friends, my visitors, my readers, my fans.
I laugh a little at the idea of actually having fans. Mainly because I cannot fathom for the life of me why I would. What am I to anyone else? Why would anyone like me? Those are concepts that are foreign and strange, larger than my mind can comprehend.
And yet, my writing does have fans. There are people who like and appreciate my writing, people who want to connect with me. That's a feeling I treasure and value more than you can ever know. As someone who grew up being told she was worthless and would never amount to anything, having someone ever respond to me favorably is like sweet nectar.
I suppose maybe it's because I make them feel connected with. At least, that's what I try to do. I want to reach out to you, shake your hand, smile at you and ask you, "Can we be friends? Can we get to know each other?" For me, life goes back always to that elementary school question of, "Will you be my friend?" I also think of Mr. Rogers and his wisdom about friendship. It really can be that simple. I think you can never have too many. So I am always open to having another. So, what do you think? Will you be my friend? Can I be yours? Feel free to share your thoughts with me and I'll do my best to do the same as I'm able.
One more disclaimer - My life is hectic pretty much always. It's not an excuse, it's just a fact. I'm a Realtor. I'm also a published author and working on a four book series currently called Understanding Libby: A Mother's Journey with Childhood Paranoid Schizophrenia. Once published in spring 2019, things are likely to get hectic as I work to promote the books. At some point in 2019, I may be returning to school full time to continue my Bachelor's degree in English and pursue my Master's degree in psychology. And then there are the daily things of taking care of two special needs kids and a disabled husband.
So if it takes me time to respond, please forgive me. I will at the first opportunity. I've been part of this community for almost a decade off and on. It helped launch my career and I want to give back to others with my experience and knowledge to help other writers grow. This blog is part of that. I hope you enjoy it and that we can be friends. If you want to be notified when I post, please be sure to fan this item so you'll be able to see when I post. Also, feel free to visit www.charitymarie.com to learn all about my publishing endeavors.
Where to Start?
May 21, 2019 at 8:39am
I'm struggling with a writing dilemma. I'm working on my three book series, Angel Deveron, and struggling to find my starting point. I've written a number of possibilities but they feel very slow. So do I start with the inciting event, in which a child dies, or do I build up to it first with some mundane but conflict-filled events? I'm torn and unsure which way is best. If I don't set up the characters, will the rest make sense? But if I do it the other way, will people care?... [Read more]
An Educational Dilemma
April 13, 2019 at 8:58am
So I started classes and then I realized something today. Why am I going back to school? I'm already a Realtor, a published author, and a certified paralegal. What's the point? I'm in real estate and have the education I need for that. Why am I throwing more money at my education? Not to mention, right now might not be the best time for it. I'm not able to really focus on it like I should be. I'd much rather use the time for writing or... here's a thought, relaxing after ... [Read more]
Where Will I Be?
March 18, 2019 at 8:04am
The thought entered my mind early this morning. More like appeared fully formed. Where will I be when I'm 50? What a thought, huh? I still feel 25 so suddenly I doubled in age. Whoa! Commence mind trip... I will have published at least 6 - 10 books in that time. Both of my children will turn 18 when I'm 45 so by then they'll be 20. Grown children but we plan for them to live near us or with us indefinitely as both are disabled. My husband will be nearing 60 at that point but I'... [Read more]
BCOF 2301: Better or Worse
March 8, 2019 at 7:48am
Do you believe things are better or worse for writers today versus ten years ago? Does it matter if you use a pseudonym versus your real name to be authentic to your craft? I like to think things are a little better for writers today. Certainly, we have more access and opportunities than ever before. The publishing revolution was long overdue and it's happening. There's still a long way to go because there's not a great way to spotlight good writing and bring it national atte... [Read more]
How Blogging Has Changed Me - 30DBC
March 9, 2019 at 7:26am
Two decades of blogging. You'd think a person would run out of things to say. But I haven't, as evidenced by my two blogs, which are regularly updated. I used to blog every day but now I just find as long as I blog weekly I'm happy. And I find my blog posts are always better if I have a topic in mind when I start. Blogging just to blog is not my style. I only blog when I have something worthwhile or important to say. Many thanks to for the great prompt and for the shout out fr... [Read more]
Lies, Abuse, & Trauma - The Michael Jackson Story
March 4, 2019 at 6:48am
I don't know the wisdom of posting this mainly because I'm trying to figure out how I feel about it all. But also it's a controversial topic that has alienated people in the past, specifically my sister who absolutely vilified me for even questioning the legitimacy of the accusations. I have done a ridiculous amount of research on this over the years, reading book after book of stories. Unlike with the Harvey Weinstein scandals and the Bill Cosby scandals, the stories about Michael... [Read more]
Muses about Submitting
March 9, 2019 at 7:26am
I've been doing a lot of submissions this year in an effort to get more updated publication credits and to generate income from my writing. For the first time, I'm focused on both fiction and nonfiction. So far the list of pieces I have either submitted or am submitted are as follows: Stop the World (Essay) Shadows of Darkness Liberty (Essay) Deuces Blue Lost Heritage Gone Nuts Metamorphosis of a Mom (Essay) Protecting Your Child's Mental Health (Essay)... [Read more]
Vacay a Bust
March 9, 2019 at 7:27am
I talked with Hubby and we determined this vacay is a bust. Fortunately my tickets to Lexington and the aquarium are good until the end of March so I'll make a day trip once I feel better. On top of it, I may end up not being able to see Libby for her birthday. We back tracked and think I possibly caught the nasty bug in HEB pharmacy when I went to pick up my RX for my anti-depressant (and if that's not an irony I don't know what is). So it's likely I would have gotten sick tha... [Read more]
BCOF 2292: The Fantasy World
March 9, 2019 at 7:27am
“Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, it’s a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope.” -Dr. Seuss Oh, the fantasy world! I learned about it years ago when reading The Black Stallion. Not a fantasy book but still fictional, I was quickly consumed and obsessive about the stories. I wrote book reports about each book in the series, unable to stop reading. I spent countless hours reading them, seeking a respite from the brutal realities of my own world. And for... [Read more]
Vacay Goes Sideways
February 27, 2019 at 8:44pm
Today would have seen me back home but the universe had other plans. I arrived on Monday and for some reason, was instantly sick. I thought it was allergies, initially. Then I thought maybe it was black mold in an AC unit. On Tuesday, when I developed a fever, I knew it was serious and headed to the local ER. Considering I was close to delirious from a 104 fever, it's no surprise my first attempt at an ER failed. Somehow, I wound up at a day surgery ER. I didn't even know there was a dif... [Read more]
Corpus Christi, Writing, and More
February 25, 2019 at 11:10pm
Today was an interesting day. I woke early, about 5:30, to pack for my trip to Corpus Christi. I was on the road by 6:30, and at the hotel at 11:30. I was eating lunch by 12:30 and 3:30 saw me on my way to the beach. To say I was unimpressed might be an understatement. Corpus Christi is an ugly, dirty, industrial port city that has been repeatedly battered by hurricanes. You can tell it in the chipped concrete and potholes, the buildings with new roofs but lacking a fresh paint job. I'm ... [Read more]
February 23, 2019 at 12:40pm
At the suggestion of , (thank you sweet friend for the idea!) I decided to take a little trip and get away. We're broke but thanks to selling our truck this past Sunday, I have a little money available to do this. I'm hopeful it will give my mind, spirit, and soul the desperate break it needs to get right again. So here's my get away plan! I'm headed to Corpus Christi on February 25-27th. I will spend two nights in a modest hotel that costs $59 a night. Included in this packa... [Read more]
Grand Overall Prize
February 22, 2019 at 8:35am
Aren't those three of the most delightful words? I think they are, especially after winning round five of the Second Time Around contest for on WDC. I'm totally thrilled and grateful for the honor. Now I have a beautiful awardicon on Blue and I'm preparing to submit it for publication. Fingers crossed and wish me luck as I send it out near and far! I'm hoping it'll get somewhere between $250 - $1,000 for publishing. Need a review? Submit a bitem link to Need somethi... [Read more]
February 17, 2019 at 8:53am
I received some fabulous feedback the last few days on my writing. I reworked the opening paragraph for to make it more powerful and really love the changes I made. Then I received feedback that Deuces could do well expanded and I thought, "Hmmm... novella?" and liked that idea. So now I'm working to expand it. I'm not sure exactly how yet but I'm working on it. So that brings me to two novellas, plus my short story series for Jazz Macintosh and eight novels. Ugh, I have go... [Read more]
Prayers and Periods
February 15, 2019 at 9:24am
I prayed this morning. It's not something I do often. It was more of a silent plea to the universe and anyone who might be listening. I'm not a big believer in the modern day versions of God. Humans get it wrong, that much I know. Our brains cannot comprehend God. The word God isn't even sufficient to explain it. I've read the bible cover to cover more than a dozen times. I've copied it word for word more times than I can count, thanks to my father's belief that writing s... [Read more]
Sometimes the Day Just Has to Suck
February 12, 2019 at 6:46pm
I debated seriously whether to post about this or not. Part of it was I didn't want people to worry or feel sorry for me. Crazy right? If anyone should be felt sorry for, I probably fall into that pool of candidates. But don't feel sorry for me. We'll get through because we always do. I won't have it any other way. It's probably the only thing I have left to cling to - that stubborn refusal to quit, give up, or admit defeat. I woke up this morning to our cell phones being ... [Read more]
MHWA Task 8 - Genetic Testing
February 9, 2019 at 11:18am
Research genetic testing as it relates to the mental illness of your choice and share information you find helpful/interesting. Tell us your thoughts about mental illness and genetic testing. Genetic testing is a pretty exciting part of medical science right now. I remember when scientists mastered DNA sequencing and how exciting it was. It seemed like humanity now held the keys to so many puzzles and the future would be brighter because of it. DNA sequencing definitely changed the criminal... [Read more]
BCOF 2273: My Will
February 9, 2019 at 9:31pm
Life has many ways of testing a person’s will, either by having nothing happen at all or by having everything happen all at once.”~ —Paulo Coelho That's the description of my life in a nutshell. For the last three years, it's been one crisis after another. I feel like I'm living life as a character in a novel and the author is tormenting me. I'm on a first name basis with most of the staff at our local ER. Directors shudder at the sound of my name at multiple mental ... [Read more]
Mental Health As Dating Criteria - MHWA Task
February 6, 2019 at 1:31am
I have proof that crazy people do not only live in America. Apparently, there's some pretty nutty people in Australia too, or at least one, as evidenced by a dating list she created and posted online. Among the list of criteria for the next man in her life was, "(I want) someone in good physical and mental health. I’m not your therapist. The relationship quickly becomes unsexy.” Oh, so many issues! It's very clear she has zero understanding of mental health. But what's e... [Read more]
Being a Positive Force - MHWA Topic
February 3, 2019 at 10:45am
Be a positive influence today. Make a difference. In what way did you or someone else accomplish this? Lately it's been really tough to be positive. A week ago I admitted my daughter again for mental health treatment (see here for updates on that ) which is something that never gets easier, no matter how many times I do it (13 so far). So for about five days I was in an ugly head-space full of anger, frustration, fear, despair, grief, and depression. It's taken days to get my head ... [Read more]
Age & Mental Illness - MHWA Topic
February 2, 2019 at 11:29pm
Task 4: Do you think or notice that getting older has an affect on mental illness? I've never really thought about this before but I would say there's an affect. As I get older, and the pressures of life accumulate, it gets harder and harder to bounce back from things. Being under the constant pressure of having four disabled people (yes, I'm one due to PTSD) under one roof wears on my resilience and inner strength. Five years ago I had none of that. I also notice as my husban... [Read more]
Support Groups for Mental Illness- MHWA Topic
February 3, 2019 at 11:56am
Task 2: Research online support group(s} that deal with one or more of your issues. Have you ever used an online support group before (aside from MHWA, of course)? For over a year now, I've been a member of Schizophrenia.com (http://www.schizophrenia.com), which deals with both family and caregivers and individuals with schizophrenia. I'm also a member of a Facebook group called Parents of Children with Schizophrenia (you'll have to search because it's private. Or send m... [Read more]
Crimes & the Mentally Ill - MHWA Task
February 2, 2019 at 2:47pm
How do you feel about crimes committed by the mentally ill? Do you blame them personally or feel sorry for them? When I was a younger woman, before I became a mother, the world was very black and white. Because I couldn't imagine committing a crime myself, I had little sympathy for criminals. But then I began experiencing chronic homelessness and the despair that goes with it. I began to be exposed to circumstances that would test my view and my morals in ways I never imagined. I... [Read more]
Values - MHWA Topic
February 1, 2019 at 7:35pm
Family (other than romantic relationships or parenting) This is a zero for me. I have no family, having disowned them years ago due to abuse, neglect, and abandonment. If they were a part of my life they would just harass me, tear me down, use me or create drama. No thanks. Romantic relationships (marriage, life partners, dating and so on) 10 - my husband is my rock and by best friend. If not for him, I don't know where I'd be in life right now. There's no one else... [Read more]
January 31, 2019 at 11:34am
I had a therapy session today and it was very helpful. We talked about the responses I had to Libby's re-hospitalization. It really set me back in ways I never expected. We discussed how I essentially shut down for a couple days and how that's not the unhealthy response I thought it was. I just needed a couple days to recover and get my head straight. My therapist said after extreme stress that's natural and it may even take longer than that. Each hospitalization is different. ... [Read more]