Monday, June 1, 2020

People Part 2

Wow! The last two weeks blew right passed me. I forgot about doing this blog until Friday and I had crawled into bed. Sorry, I missed the last two week's post, but hopefully, we can move forward this week. I hope you made your list and you are ready to rock and roll.

This week, I want you to choose three of the people on your list and write a short scene about them. It might be considered a story, but just a short one. A snippet if you will of something you remember them doing or saying. Below is an example.

Uncle Johny
My Uncle Johny is my dad's youngest brother. He and I had a lot in common. We loved to read. My uncle received his doctorate through taking correspondence courses before they were popular. He joined the Navy when he was young and became a Navy Seal. According to family reports, he became sick when he was over in Korea and it grew into Crohn's Disease. He died about 15 years ago. He lived int he same town as my parents. When I would go up to visit them, I would always pop in to see him. We would exchange information on the latest books we were reading. I didn't know it at the time, but this particular visit would be the last time I saw him. He had a library just like I do. After we talked about books, he got on his ladder and was looking for a Louis Lamar book he wanted me to read. "I plan on getting on that New York Times Best Seller's List some day," I told him as I watched him climb the ladder. "Of course you will," he told me never missing a beat as his search continued. He didn't pause, didn't hesitate, didn't laugh at me like some of my other family members had done in the past when I mentioned it to them. His was a precise and definite affirmation.

When you're writing these small sketches, don't worry about grammar, spelling, or anything that can be cleaned up later. Just get the picture of the person and what happened in your head and write about it. I want you to be in the moment you were with the person.

Besides the short scene, I want you to list your persons' characteristics, what they looked like, what they believed in, what they stood for, and if you know or remember what they did for a living.

So, three people, one scene, list of descriptions, beliefs, what they did for a living each.

Next week, we'll continue on with our people study.

Best~
Deborah

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Those Pesky People

We are going to start these writing classes with the study of people, more commonly known as characterization. Why start here? Every story has characters, typically a main character and then supporting characters. Without characters, we don't have stories. Think about the stories you've read in the past. Think about the people in those stories. The characters that come most readily to my mind are Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, Hannibal Lecter in Silence of the Lambs, and Captain Ahab in Moby Dick. These characters are all so different, yet memorable. We remember them because we get to know them. They intrigue us. They interest us. They fascinate us in one way or another.

Just like the characters in a book, we know characters in real life. There are people who have crossed our paths maybe just once or twice, yet years later at the strangest time they cross our minds. We can remember the things they said, the cock of their head when they said it, the way they walked, the clothes they wore, and the way they parted their hair. Then there are those people who we have had in our lives for years, the ones we see everyday, the ones we identify with, the ones whose character and personality we know. How many times when you hear a story about one of these "characters", your first reaction is, "that sounds just like him."

It is because of characterization that writers study people. It's the reason why writers ask questions of other people, try to get to know them better. It's the reason why writers sit on park benches or in malls and watch people. They are studying them, trying to learn more about them and what makes them tick. That's what we're going to start doing this week.

As a writer, you have to know people. When you choose a character for your story, you have to know what makes him do the things he does, why he would do one thing and maybe not another. You have to know him backwards, forwards, up and down. You have to get in his skin, know what he would do in any given circumstance and why he would do it. You don't want your characters doing anything "out-of-character".

But before we get to our imaginary characters, we're going to deal with some real life characters.

I hope you have your spiral notebooks ready. We are going to be using those and they are going to be our lifelines as we work through this series of exercises. So, if you're ready, let's get started.

For the next week, I want you to make a list of all the people you know, past and present. They can be friends, relatives, coworkers, classmates, adults, children, acquaintances, or neighbors. The only rules are, you must know their names and you must have spoken to them a handful of times.

You will probably start off with a great list and then your thoughts and memories will slow down. Keep your notebook handy because when you least expect it, someone new, maybe someone you haven't spoken to or seen in years will suddenly pop into your mind. That person will probably lead you to an entirely new section of people to add to your list. That's fine. Just keep adding them.

Don't be rigid with yourself. Just relax and start with the people in your immediate circle. There is no magic number. For now, you are just making a list. Keep this list in your notebook. We will be adding to and working with this list in the coming weeks.

Email me if you have questions. I am always available at deborah@deborahbouziden.com.

Best~
Deborah

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Change

I read a quote recently. "Change is inevitable. Growth is optional." Over the last few months, we have all had to grow and change. It was this change I have been thinking about for quite some time. What did I want out of my career? What did I want out of life? What did I want out of my writing and this blog?

I had started making changes to my career back in January, tweaking my life here and there, and expanding my writing dossier, but this blog was a little more challenging. I don't know why I thought it was that way. It is mine. It is a platform, one I could mold and shape into anything I wanted. Over the years, I have used it as a tool to share what I was doing. That became old and boring. Look back through several of my posts and you will see a writer's life can be...somewhat boring. Why do you think we make stories up?

But I digress.

I've been thinking about how to change this blog's focus for a while. I've been wanting to get back into teaching. I've also been wanting to build my blog readership. I was getting ready for my night job, when it dawned on me.

"Teach your writing classes through your blog." Well, duh!

With that, I began building a frame work and next week will be the first class of this instructional blog. I'm going to call it "Writing 101" and then there will be different subtitles each week. We will cover characterization, setting, point-of-view, plot points, and more. We will take writing, break it down, write, edit, and even look at marketing along the way. I want this blog to be a step-by-step how-to manual to get you to writing yes, but also to help you get published.

So for now, for this week, I want you to gather your writing tools. You will need a notebook, preferably spiral, a writing pen that feels comfortable in your hand, post-it notes, and a calendar to write down and remind yourself to check next week's blog on Monday.

Through this process, know I will always be available for questions and if you would like me to look at your work, I will post the link to my editing/proofreading site below. In the meantime, if you are really interested in writing and want to take your writing to the next level, gather your tools and meet me back here in a week. We'll get started.

Hope to see you then.

As Always,
Deborah

Proofread and Copy Edit Plus






Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Trust Yourself

Everybody has dreams. Maybe yours is getting published, being on the bestseller's list, being financially set for life, perhaps winning the lottery. I have a lot of dreams and goals. On occasion, I have purchased lottery tickets. I usually pick my own numbers. I have a little system I learned from a friend of mine who has won $20,000 at least three times in the nine years I have known her.

Recently, I ran across another guy who, according to reports, has won the lottery (I'm talking big money) seven or eight times. He has a system too. I haven't done too badly on my choice of numbers, but thought I'd give his system a try. I did and after not getting even one number from his picks, I said, "that's it. I'm done." It was then I heard a little voice in my head. "Trust yourself."

At first, I laughed. I had heard that voice before. I had even used similar words when I was talking to a friend about a circumstance I was going through. "As long as I have control of the situations in my life and don't hand that control over to someone else, I can accomplish anything I set my mind to," I said. "I just trust myself and things happen."

Throughout my life, in certain "circumstances" I have given that control away. That has always gotten me into trouble. I have learned if I set goals for myself and other people "hold the puppet strings", they are the ones in control of my life. Just like those lottery ticket numbers. I was playing, but someone else had all the power because I was using his numbers, not my own.

The next day, I used my own numbers and won back my original investment. It wasn't a lot, but it was enough to make a point and that was trusting myself is where my power truly lies.

I feel this philosophy should carry over in all areas of our lives, publishing included. Many years ago, I was in a private writing class. I had written a story and took it to class to be critiqued. My classmates chewed that story up and spit it out. They told me it would never get published because for one, it was too personal. There were other reasons, but I felt it was a good story, so I cleaned it up and sent it out. On my third submission, Lady's Circle bought the piece and by fall, the story was in print.

So, if you want to write a book, write it. If you feel inclined to write an article and you feel it's worthy, submit it. Don't let anybody tell you not to or let them control the direction you want your project to go. Trust yourself. The payoff in the end may be bigger than you could possibly imagine.

Until Next Time~
Deborah

Sunday, April 19, 2020

What Do You Desire?

I'll admit, there are a few television programs I enjoy watching. Lucifer on Netflix is one. I always get a kick out of the times Lucifer corners people and ask them, "what is it that you truly desire?"
I always chuckle at how shocked they are that he would ask, but because he is the devil, they have to give him an answer. While it wasn't the devil who asked me, I was just as surprised when I was asked that question. It wasn't that I didn't know what I desired. I just didn't know if I could get it.

It's been a rough three-and-a-half years. I finished school, got my degree and certification, but that didn't matter. It didn't get me any further ahead. The administration department where I worked didn't care that I had spent the last four years of my life getting a degree and certification. As a matter-of-fact, I was snubbed and passed over for promotion of a job I was qualified for by said administration without even a backward glance by them.

To make matters worse, during that time, I was also betrayed by family members. I was at an all time low. I didn't know how to go on. I thought I had figured my life out, but nothing was going as planned. I was lost, wondering around in a desert I didn't know how to get out of. Finally, I sought professional help.

The first few weeks were tough. There were things I knew to be true, I just didn't want to face them. I remember after pouring my heart out in one particular session, my therapist told me, "that's your story. That's not who you are." When I left that day, I was given the task to answer the question 'who was I?' In my current situation, I had lost my way. I didn't know who I was anymore. I had given my power away to people who didn't deserve it and didn't have my best interest at heart. I remember telling my therapist, "when I was able to set goals and I was the one in control, I could do anything."

"Take that control back," he told me. "You need to find your way back to who you are. Decide what you really want from life and what it is you truly desire."

I spent several months doing just that. I made lists, wrote in my journal, listened to motivational speakers, meditated, took long walks by myself, and spent hours contemplating who I really was and what I wanted. After several more months of therapy, when my therapist asked me again, I knew exactly what I wanted and I told him.

It seemed when I spoke it out to the universe, the universe started conspiring to make and shape my life into what I had always wanted. Big changes have come and a lot more are coming. I tell people I have come full circle.

I have learned a lot over the last three/four years. People who I thought did not have my best interest at heart, did, and those I trusted, were the people who betrayed me. I learned that even though I got lost, I could find my way back. I learned that no matter what happens, always follow and believe in yourself and never allow people to control the essence of who you are and take away your drive, your heart and your soul.

Even though we are in the midst of the corona-virus pandemic, I believe something good can come from this. I am looking to the future. I have plans for my life and they are my plans. I control the outcome. I am now asking each one of you to look at your life and in this time of contemplation ask yourself, "what is it you truly desire?" I know if you look, truly look, you will find it.

Until next time, keep writing~
Deborah


Friday, January 17, 2020

Wow! I can't believe it has been so long since I posted. I finished school, received my degree, and have my Registered Health Information Technology, RHIT, certification. Then, in the last year and a half, I have learned more about life and people than I think I have learned in all my years before. It has been a rough year and a half by all intents and purposes. Promises were made and broken, betrayals from unexpected places, and health issues I am recovering from little by little.

I have found some wonderful teachers like Joe Dispenza, Jake Ducey, and Bruce Lipton. I have reacquainted myself with Stuart Wilde and wished I had paid more attention to his love and attention to Taos, New Mexico, when I had visited. Meditation, writing, research, and yoga are all a big part of my life these days.

My goal is to get much more active, not only on my blog, but in the "word" world. After all my wanderings, in the end, I have found it is where I belong. There's no replacing it and no substitution for it.

As always keep writing,
Deborah


Friday, May 10, 2019

Beginning Again

Wow! I have been on a wild journey for the last five years. In 2011, I started working at a small hospital in the town where I live. In 2014, I went back to school. In 2018, I got my Associates Degree in Science and a Registered Health Information Technology (RHIT) certification.

Now, it's time to get back to my writing.

Over the next few months, I will be sharing not only my educational journey, but my life journey. I've met a lot of incredible people, kept some people in my life, and have had to let others go. I have learned about people, who to trust and who not to trust, who is worth keeping in my life and who isn't, and I've learned it's okay to move on from those who don't value and respect me.

But mostly, I've learned about myself. What I want, what I don't want. I've been delving into my dreams with a dream expert, rewriting the program of my subconscious mind, and planning how I want to move forward. One thing is for sure, writing is and will be my main focus.

I'm ready for the next wild ride. I hope you will come along.

Welcome to the next part of my adventure.

Deborah