Behind the Narrative

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“Don’t be pushed by your problems, be led by your dreams.”  ~ Unknown

I sat on my friend’s couch one day a few years ago, so very discouraged.

“My computer is not cooperating, I’ve got writers block  so I can’t seem to get this chapter right, I can’t get the pictures I need for the book since they are in Vermont……” on and on I went, stating a litany of challenges I faced with my publishing project.

“Why would you do something like that, Sue, leave behind pictures you knew you needed for a book ?” my friend asked.

“Because I didn’t know then what I know now. Who would have ever thunk, I was going to follow my “someday” dreams and write a memoir when I moved to Colorado!” I said in a grumpy tone.

“Why are you bothering  to do it  then if  it’s stressing you? I could never do that -write about my life!” my friend stated with conviction.

“Sure you could, if you felt strongly enough that you wanted to share it.” I said

At this point I was nearly bashing my head on the hard wooden walls that surrounded her living room. She was not telling me what I wanted to hear. I needed someone to assure me that  “Everything will be alright. It will all come together.”

I was beginning to think I ought to give up my pie-in-the-sky idea as I went through the list of obstacles that I was facing that week in writing and publishing my memoir.

If you are wondering why my need to write a memoir was so strong, this song by Nat King Cole explains it. It’s the basis of what’s behind  the narrative.  I’d had the making of the book  inside of me my whole life. It was dying to get it out.

This blog brought to you by the award-winning author Sue Batton Leonard. For more information on the EVVY award winning book Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected, please follow this link.

Protecting against the Elements


“Every day may not be good, but there’s some thing good in every day.”   ~Author Unknown

It was inevitable. After months of watching 320+ inches of snow fall from the sky and fulfill it’s need to coat everything from roads to houses, to mountaintops, to cars, to animals, to trees, to rivers and every other surface within its reach, including me, I have begun to see only what can be described as disparate shades of white. I have forgotten what shades of glorious green, fun-loving fuchsia, perky periwinkle, luscious lemon yellow, outrageous orange and lady-like lavender even look like. Not even a hue of  tawny-tan is in sight. Pitiful! 

Every time I go to my computer and pull up a new Word Document to begin to compose my blog of the day all I see is white, white and more white! What is a blogger to do? All the colors of my life have gone into hiding, my creativity has vanished. There is no hope for beautiful, rhythmic prose for this day. Can’t even think of a single metaphor for how I am feeling. As I start to read what I have written, the alliteration seems to be all wrong.  I could try using a little hyperbole to get me started but I can’t even think what that is. There is not even an oxymoron in sight to help me out.  

All I see is a world devoid of color – just more white. Thirty-five years of living in snow country gets to me, big time, by this time of year. It happens by the end of February, when winter is at war with my psyche. It becomes a real sad state of affairs. It is the only time I wish my life away with thoughts of retiring to tropical climates where all the colors of the rainbow can be seen in beautiful flowers, birds and oceans filled with aquas, ultra-marines, royal blues and indigos to carry me away. 

I can’t let the winter doldrums get me down! I am going to rebel, and take charge of my own situation. Music is said to open up our unconscious mind. There has got to be beautiful images and words of color somewhere back there in the recesses of my mind. Perhaps if I open up my musical first aid kit the images will spring forth and shake me from the winter writing blues. Some swear by Mozart for his arrangement of musical notes, other writers attest to the powers of writing to light jazz. Classical movie scores are always fun or a little boogie-woogie might add some light-heartedness to my day. I’m staying away from country cowboys singing of broken hearts and stolen love, I’ll tell you that right now. That will only make things worse!  

I can take no more white anything! I don’t care that each snowflake has it’s own unique shape, one more beautiful than the next! March is just around the corner, so I’ll gladly accept no more snow! And no more white Word Document pages and no more white sound! I’ve got to keep telling myself that all things vanilla will pass – they always do.

Whew – I feel better. That took a lot of effort – for someone who didn’t have a thing to say this day – somehow, 536 words spewed forth.

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