National Poetry Month 2017

April is here which means not only is it spring, but it’s time to celebrate National Poetry Month!  I particularly enjoy this month because of the nostalgia that poetry brings to me.  As a teenager and into my college years instead of doodling on the margins of my lectures notes I was busy writing poems.  These lines of poetic texts were for my eyes only to see.  You can imagine my embarrassment when someone asked to copy my lecture notes… Now that I consider it selfish to keep my work a secret I get to share my words with you.

I’ve recently been inspired by poets getting recognized through social media.  These “Instapoets” as they’re called craft short poems, sometimes no longer than a single line.  I find myself with my hand over my chest because their words have pierced my heart through and through.  Such poets like:

a r asher

rupi kaur

atticus

Aww, how words can affect me so…  🙂  As a result, I’ve decided to celebrate this month by writing my own one-line poetry to share with you.  Beginning tomorrow I will be posting my own poetic words, and I challenge you to share your poems with me!  I look forward to reading them in the comments below.  Happy National Poetry Month!

 

Until next post,

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7 Reasons You’re Not Pursuing Your Dreams

One of my favorite conversations with people is centered on pursuing our dreams.  I find myself awestruck to hear people’s hidden passions and talents.  Most often I hear people describing dreams of turning their hobbies into full-time careers.  Meanwhile they’re working a job they hate.  Back and forth our conversation goes, and in the end, it remains just that — a conversation.  Here are 7 reasons why you’re not pursuing that dream of yours.

  1. What Dream?

Okay so you may think I’m speaking a foreign language when I talk about “pursuing your dream.”  If that’s the case, I urge you to take time (literally set aside time) and have a dream session.  A dream session is where you allow yourself to answer the following questions:

– What do I enjoy most in life?

– What am I passionate about?

– What am I naturally gifted at?

– If money weren’t an issue how would I spend my life?

Be selfish (which it’s not!) and take some time to discover yourself.  Got a dream?  Great!  But before you embark on the journey of pursuing your dream there’s something else you need to have — a plan.

  1. Lack of Planning

Before you give your 2 weeks’ notice and sell all your possessions you must have a plan on how you’re going to pursue your dreams.  Does this mean planning every little detail?  Absolutely not.  However, consider the following as you make your plan:

– Do I need more education/training?

– How will I fund my needs as I pursue my dream?

– What routine should I be following?

Admittedly, I have neglected sticking to my schedule for writing but that’s a topic for a later blog post.  Practice and take at least 15 minutes a day to fulfill your dream.  You’ll be amazed at how accomplished you feel.  Chances are life will get in your way and you’ll get distracted at times which brings me to my next point.

  1. Being in Solitude.

Having your dream fulfilled won’t happen without the help of others.  You’ll need support while you go through the ups and downs of pursuing your dream.  Having someone ask, “Hey how are things going with (insert your dream here),” can help you be accountable to obtaining your goals.  It also allows you to vent about your process.  So find support from your loves ones.  Join a community (online or in person) with people who share similar dreams.  You’ll be inspired and challenged.

  1. Comparing Yourself to Others.

I cannot emphasize how much I compare my writing to what I read.  Not a day goes by where I don’t read something and think, Why didn’t I think of that?! I often get bogged down by the feeling of inadequacy.  I’ll read a piece so beautifully written that my first instinct is to put down my pen and give up writing forever.  However, my heart reminds me of how I love writing and that this is what I was born to do.  I’m attempting to appreciate others’ work without it dimming the light of my dream.  When I walk down the aisles of the bookstore I need to remember if these people can do it so can I.

  1. Ol’ Ye, of Little Faith.

Perhaps you have had your dreams for as long as you can remember, but in the end, you have accepted your dreams as just that — dreams.  You may feel that reality and your dreams cannot coincide.  Do yourself a favor and correct this negative thinking IMMEDIATELY!  Tell yourself that you can do this.  You need to become your own number one fan because you are the only one who can make your dreams a reality.

  1. Fear.

The most crippling reason is fear of failure.  Too often we believe we will fail at the pursuit of our dreams, so why bother?  When I meet people I don’t readily mention I’m a writer or an author because I’m afraid of the question, “So how many books have you published?”  I don’t even identify myself as a blogger because I think I don’t publish enough blog posts or have enough followers.  Yet here you are reading my blog at this moment.  What a silly notion for me to carry right?!  We often underestimate how fear can stall the pursuit of our dreams.  Fear also disguises itself well.

  1. Excuses, excuses, excuses.

Your life is busy.  You are pulled in different directions every minute of your life.  Believe me, between having a family, being self employed, and tending to our homestead, it seems like I will never have the time and energy to be a successful writer.  Sound familiar?  Yet I’ve realized there will always be something that comes up.  For reasons such as fear or little faith in myself I’ve come up with a hundred and one (and still counting) reasons why I haven’t accomplished my dream of being a published author.  And guess what?  I know you are great at coming up with excuses too.  We all are.

 

Perhaps it will take time and more resources before we make our dreams a reality.  Don’t let the delay halt you from pursuing your dreams.  I have fallen victim to every one of the above-listed reasons.  Every. Single. One.

So ask yourself:  What am I going to do today to bring myself one step closer to making my dream a reality?

As for me, expect to see an increase in blog posts.  =)

Which reasons do you fall victim to?  Tell me about your dream and how you’re pursuing it in the comments below!  Let’s make these dreams a reality.

Until next post,

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Image Credit:  Sigurd Decroos at http://www.freeimages.com/photo/sign-success-failure-1055756

Behind the Book – with Derek A Kamal

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Getting a new book is always exciting for me.  The cover art (amazing right?!) alone drew me to this adventure.  When I heard the story was based off a roleplaying game, I was even more excited and needed to know more about this book.  I had the opportunity to sit down with Derek A Kamal to discuss his newly self-published book, Homes.

Inspired by The Hobbit and Dwarf Fortress, Kamal created a fantasy story set where we find Gram, a grumpy dwarf, who finds himself at the crux of a yearlong exile from his homeland. Just as Gram begins his year of banishment, he learns that The Homes is threatened by enemies.  Kamal describes Homes as a story of self discovery, findings your roots, and establishing one’s identify.

What sets Homes apart from other fantasy stories is that it’s not as serious or lengthy but instead filled with whimsy and the art of ancient storytelling.  And plenty of taverns and drinking.  I’m already several chapters in and enjoying Gram’s adventures.  So if you’re looking for a lighthearted fantasy look no further than Homes.  To my fellow gamers, if you fall in love with the story (which you will), be sure to check out The Dig: A Roleplaying Game, set in the world of The Homes.

You can follow Kamal and his works at www.shorelessskies.com.

Kamal is a teacher in Georgia who lives with his wife and two daughters.  In addition to writing, Kamal enjoys cooking, roleplaying games, listening to metal, and applying spiritual perspective into various forms of art.  He is currently working on two roleplaying games, as well as writing more poetry.

Check back with me soon to read my full review on Homes.

 

Until next post,

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