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Blog Takeover: Writing About Life

C_avatarHi there!

I’m Carolyn, a friend of Lisa’s, and I’m here as a self-invited guest blogger.

Lisa and I spend a lot of virtual time together. We discuss almost everything. How tired we are. How cold our feet have been this winter. How much I want to eat cookies and cupcakes. How much she loves to watch NCIS. We lift each other up. We complain to each other. We celebrate together.

For a few weeks we’ve been discussing blogging (amidst the cupcakes and the weather gripes). I recently had a blog makeover and upgraded my space. That motivation along with a few snow days that popped up during January and I think I’ve got my blog clicking along nicely. I scheduled a few posts, had ideas for a few more, and generally enjoy writing. I like blogging. In my line of work as a librarian I like to think that someone is reading it and getting at least one small idea from what I have to share.

On the other hand (as I confess for Lisa), her blog is not something she really enjoys. She likes the blog, but doesn’t love doing the actual blogging. Occasionally she has a post she mentions that she enjoys writing, but that hasn’t happened recently. When I ask her what she blogs about she says, “love and marriage.”

Oh boy.

It’s not that I object to love and marriage!

But when Lisa and I talk most days we discuss other things she is interested in. Did you know Lisa is a scrapbooker? That she’s knitted something for just about everyone she knows? I don’t know how she keeps up with her crafty nature along with her day job and her writing job.

And recently Lisa has a new puppy!! Which she is going to post a picture of right here…

photo (1)

See! Precious! Penny is adorable and Lisa is like any new puppy-mamma and has news to share!

I read a lot of blogs and Twitter and what I love about blogs is when the genuine nature of a person comes through. I don’t read a large quantity of author blogs, but I read a few. My favorite author blogger writes some about writing when it is a thought she has to share that she is passionate about. She also blogs dialogue her toddler twin nieces are saying when they are being silly, and shares about her experiences while taking trapeze lessons! What I love about my favorite authors on Twitter is when they post about their obsessions with bacon or how they’re surviving this chilly snowy winter and aren’t sure they can be around their school-aged kids one snow-day longer!

I don’t follow because they are writing about the same things their books are about. Maybe I’m the only one…but I doubt it.

I follow authors on blogs and Twitter because they are authentic about sharing whatever real moments in their lives they feel comfortable sharing in ‘public.’

I think Lisa has felt like her blog space here is an obligation as a writer. That she’s required to share wisdom and experiences directly related to writing or to her writing focus which is love and marriage.

Except…as writers the things we do outside of writing influence our writing the most. Otherwise writers would all be writing about writing. But instead writers are writing about life. About the little things that come together to make life exciting and meaningful. I’ve challenged Lisa to keep her blog updated but to avoid the pressure of writing about the same things she writes about professionally. Instead I want Lisa to have more fun writing about the little things that make life meaningful.

Like puppies!

Cheers!
Carolyn

Lisa here: Umm, so my blog was taken over by one of my all-time favorite people on the planet. Carolyn and I met online over 12 years ago when we bonded over a mutual interest. She read my first novel when it was still in the newbie writer stage…and we’re still friends. Man, that was some awful writing. 

In most realms Carolyn is an elementary school librarian who blogs at www.Risking-Failure.com and tweets at @carolynvibbert. But that’s all just an act because the real Carolyn reads a lot of YA lit, fluffy romance, and Christian fiction. She also whines about cold feet in the winter, and eats too many cookies no matter the season.

Your Turn: What are your favorite things to do, other than anything book related?

Lisa Jordan
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Freedom to Change

DowntonAbbeyI started watching the first season of Downton Abbey on Netflix. If you’re not familiar with the show, you can read more about it here: Downton Abbey.

While watching a scene with Mr. Carson and Mrs. Hughes, I paused to write down something Mr. Carson told Mrs. Hughes. He said, “What would be the point of living if we didn’t let life change us?”

His words of wisdom struck a cord with me, especially since I marked 2013 as my Year of Freedom

Let’s face it–all of us have faced life-changing events in our lives. Whether it’s changing our relationship status, losing or gaining family members, new employment, or even dreams coming true. Those events prevent us from remaining stagnant.

Imagine if life didn’t change. Imagine if we woke up at the same time every morning, wore the same outfit, ate the same breakfast, styled our hair the same way, went to the same job…yawn, just writing that sentence is boring.

Change is so necessary to embrace the blessings God has in store for us.

I have friends who are resistent to change. One hesitates to try new foods. Another resists visiting new places.

Often, fear is a reason why many are afraid of change–fear of the unknown. And I totally get that.

Before Thanksgiving, I did some devotional reading and came across a verse in Psalms 112:7-8 that reads, “He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord. His heart is secure, he will have no fear; in the end he will look in triumph on his foes.” 

That verse struck a cord. You see, I struggle with bad news, especially when things are going so well. I guess you can say I can be an optimistic pessimist at times. When things are going so well, a tiny thought in the back of my mind wonders when the good will come to an end. 

I can’t live my life in a bubble, hoping and praying nothing bad happens. 

All of our life events–even the bad ones–change and shape us into the people we are today. God can use those dark times to shine His Light. When our hearts are steadfast and we put our trust in Him, He will guide us during those life-changing events. 

After all, life happens with or without our consent. I encourage you to find freedom in living–freedom to face the future with boldness and courage, freedom to trust, freedom to embrace God’s blessings without fear, freedom to change.

Your Turn: Are you a Downton Abbey fan? Do you have a favorite character? How has life changed you? How do you face the future?

Lisa Jordan
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