Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Secrets to Get the Writing Done

I know...I know...I've been gone for a while.

But I have a good reason. I've gotten back into the habit of writing. It took a while, but I've done it! I've started a new project and have reached the two-thirds mark. (YES!!! *lots of jumping for joy and eating caramels*)

How did I do it? Well, there is a little secret to get the writing done, and I'm going to share it with you.

Here it is. Are you ready?

Just do it. 


Okay, it's a little harder than that. There are a few other tricks of writing that's helped me. For instance:

1. You have to have the desire to write. Writing is a hard business (trust me...with all the time, critiquing, rejections...need I say more?)

2. If you are serious about writing, you really should treat it like a job. Have deadlines, goals, and a lunch break (you know how I like to snack).

3. This is the most important for me: SCHEDULE TIME TO WRITE! If I don't have a time blocked out on my calendar, other things will get in my way (I'm looking at you laundry). It has made all the difference.

So, that's how I tackle the writing. What about you? Any good secrets to get your writing done?

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

He Has to Go!

What was that I saw out of the corner of my eye?  It happened so fast.  Was it even real?  It was just a brown streak.  Could it have been…?  No.  Probably not.  I think my eyes were playing tricks on me.

We haven’t seen a mouse in our house in a long time.  We have those plug-in things. Still, it’s awfully cold outside.  A mouse could have wandered in out of the weather. Snuck in, I mean.  And who could blame him.  It’s freezing out there.
I’m not really afraid of mice.  Not really.  I think I’ll stay over here, though just in case.   I’m not really afraid.  

Oh.  There he is.  Of all the nerve.  Who does he think he is? He’s looking around.   It is a mouse.  A fat mouse.  He’s in my kitchen.   My kitchen!  He ran under the fridge.  I know it’s cold outside, but why did he have to pick my house?
I’ll just stay over here.  I’m not afraid.  I’m just a little uncomfortable.

There he is again.  He ran under the sink.  Under the sink.  Yuck.  He must be scared.  He knows he shouldn’t be in my house.  I'll bet he knows.   I'm sure he knows.
Cartoon mice are cute, in books and things.  Artists make them look cute.  Remember Cinderella?  Real mice are not cute.  This mouse in my kitchen is not cute. 

He has to go. 
What if it’s a she?  What if she’s a mother?

A mother?  

Oh, no.  She has to go.  She is not bringing her babies in here.

There she goes again.  He? She? It.   

I’m feeling very brave, actually.  I’m not afraid .  I’ll just stay over here.  I like it here, actually.  Besides, it’s not even close to dinner time. 
Do those plug-in things wear out?

That mouse is very brave too.  He’s running all over my kitchen.  Scampering, sashaying.  He’s not a bit scared. He might as well be dancing.  Any minute he’ll do the do-si-do. 

It’s so cold outside, and I'm definitely not scared.  Maybe I should let him (shudder) spend the night. 
Absolutely not.  It's my house.  I was here first.  He has to go.  He positively has to go.

I’m sending Friend-husband to the store to buy more of those plug-in things. 

Stay warm.

Linda Garner



Friday, January 25, 2013

Short Term Goals lead to long term dream fulfillment

The man who moved the mountain began by carrying away small stones. A Chinese proverb
January is the time we all set goals. Sometimes we set lofty goals, but don’t ever get around to matching shorter daily goals to our long term goals. To reach our lofty ideals, we must work toward them every day.
Sometimes I don’t take time to plan. I just make a quick mental list in the morning, and I think that will suffice. But then I don’t get around to everything I’ve thought about.  I can get distracted so easily. To reach my goals, I need to plan, plan, plan.
Our grandson is just home from a two year mission in Argentina. He had a long term goal to improve his piano playing while he was there. Every chance he got, he played for church meetings, and when he had extra time, he practiced.
He came home with several new pieces memorized, and is very happy he accomplished his goal.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Maggie Would Love It

At age 14, Maggie Nawyn is already a concert pianist.  This is amazing in itself, but there’s more.  Maggie has a dream.  She wants to perform with other kids.  She wants a youth symphony in the quiet town of Brigham City, Utah.

There is a wonderful old building in Brigham City called the Christensen Academy of Music and Dancing.  It was once home to a thriving dance company.   The city wants to restore the building,  but lack the funds.  Maggie has joined forces with the city and local businesses.  She needs to raise $1,000,000.  The city and other donors will match her efforts.
Maggie had a fundraiser last August, a concert with lots of Utah talent.  It was a start.  The next concert, a celebration of the Academy’s 110th anniversary and a tribute to the Christensen brothers is planned for June 22, 2013 at 7:00 p.m.
What are you doing on June 22?  Can I interest you in some concert tickets?
For more information, or to make a donation, contact the Academy Square Foundation:
Roger Manning, President (435) 734-9366,  email:

 You could make a difference, and Maggie would love it.

Linda Garner

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Where's the Logic?

Spent time in sunny California, with some of the grandkids over Christmas.  We had a great time. 

We spent an afternoon at the beach.  The temp was in the low sixties but it felt warm compared to home.  The kids wore their swimsuits and challenged the waves.  The temperature didn't hold them back at all.  They scampered into the sea again and again and got thoroughly soaked.

I, on the other hand, took off my shoes and socks and padded around in the sand.  I dipped my toes in the icy water once or twice.  I didn't even got my ankles wet.

The children were fine.  We toweled them off, wrapped them in their damp towels, and headed for our hotel, making a junk food stop at some fast food place along the way.  Nary a sniffle.  I got a salad, by the way.

I was fine at the beach, but in the car I realized that I was chilled to the bone, and I felt a little sick before we put our key card in the door slot of our temporary home.  I was sick all three days at Disneyland and still have a fine cough more than three weeks later.  Thanks to the miracle of vitamin C, I still had a great time at Disneyland. 

Don't get me wrong.  I'm really glad it wasn't the kids who got sick.  That would have been far more difficult to manage, and would definitely have dampened more spirits.  Still...did it have to be me?

I take really good care of myself.  I exercise and eat healthy.  I drink lots of water. I aim for 8 hours of sleep.  I eat my veggies. I have never believed that you get sick from being cold, so what went wrong? 

And...if getting cold has anything at all to do with catching a cold...where's the logic?

Linda Garner

Monday, January 14, 2013

Where Are The Christians

Ponder if you will the state of our world; and in particular the condition of America. Although one can easily
argue the United States is still the greatest nation in the world and a country so many desire to come to—
even risk their lives to enter into—there is no denying America’s social, moral and spiritual fabric continues to
deteriorate at an accelerated pace. For many this is an alarming and discouraging trend.

Now consider the fact that 76% of Americans claim to be Christian, making the United States one of the highest
per-capita Christian nations in the world. A nation full of Christians in a deteriorating society? If this indeed be
the case then WHERE ARE THE CHRISTIANS? To solve this conundrum author Eric Shuster gives us a book that
bears this question as its title with the promise of answers and a unique journey for readers.

Where are the Christians? uses the classic format of who, what, where and how to explore Christianity and the
dynamics that unite and divide the religion into the unrealized potential it suffers from today (thus the subtitle of
the book—the Unrealized Potential of a Divided Religion). The book enlightens readers as to who the Christians
are from a historical perspective; what a Christian is from a spiritual perspective; where the Christians are from a
behavioral perspective; and how Christianity can be strengthened and more united from a societal perspective.
Where are the Christians? examines hundreds of Biblical and scholarly sources, analyzing data from a multitude
of studies leading to unique perspectives and solutions to the challenges facing Christianity in the modern era.

Where are the Christians? contains 17 chapters arranged into four sections:

SECTION 1: WHO ARE THE CHRISTIANS?—a history: 4 chapters providing a concise history of
Christianity spread across four distinct periods: Evangelization and Formation, Legitimacy and
Codification, Corruption and Division, and Reform and Denominational Proliferation.

SECTION 2: WHAT IS A CHRISTIAN?—a definition: 4 chapters examining the definition of a Christian
from the perspectives of the world, the Bible, landmark religious studies, and what Shuster refers to as
Modern Day Pharisees.

SECTION 3: WHERE ARE THE CHRISTIANS?—a categorization: 5 chapters profiling the five types of
modern Christians including a unique and enlightening exercise to help readers understand what type of
Christian they are among the five.

SECTION 4 – HOW IS CHRISTIANITY TO UNITE?—a vision: 4 chapters describing the ways Christians in
America can unite into a force for good by focusing on individuals, families, churches and communities.

To watch the book trailer, take a survey to find out what type of Christian you are, and to pre-order the book go

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Happy New Year

Thanks Photobucket
I love New Years. 

I always see it as a new beginning. 

This year I'm going to finish that book, run on treadmill (until the weather's good and I can go back outside) and get my laundry done (at least find the floor)! 

It's so exciting!

So how about you? What are your plans for 2013? 

Monday, January 7, 2013

Goal Setting

Each January I like to set goals for the weeks, months and year. Writing goals are tricky for me because my aspiration is to get a new book contract by the end of the year. But there are many aspects that are not under my control, so I have to establish my objectives differently.
For instance, I can set goals to attend writing workshops of my choice, read and study books on writing, attend critique groups and pen so many pages a week. 
What about you? What are your writing goals? I’d love your ideas and feedback.
I find sharing my ambitions with those around me helps keep me on task. It makes my commitment greater. I also like feedback from others. It helps me stay focused.
Here are some quotes I like to read often.
 “Man is a goal seeking animal. His life only has meaning if he is reaching out and striving for his goals.” Aristotle
We are shaped by our thoughts. We become what we think. Buddha
(I think a lot about writing.)
Goals that are not written down are just wishes. Unknown
 People with goals succeed because they know where they’re going. Earl Nightengale

How have you set goals in the past? What do you like about the way you set them?  What would you like to change?