Tag Archives: Hobbies

When I’m not writing, I…

A well rounded person is one who loves to learn, find new fun things to do, and questions everything!

I kinda think I’m a well rounded person.

It’s no secret that I love to write. When I’m putting together a new story, I’m never happier. But, just like man can’t live by bread alone, she can’t do just one thing in life either.

When I’m not writing I’m usually either cooking, painting, or restoring some old piece of furniture.

I lovelovelove to cook. Anyone who knows me or who has read my blog knows this. And I’m an equal opportunity cook, which includes baking. Some people are really good bakers, while their cooking skills leave a lot of be desired. For the others, the opposite is true. They can put together a six course meal, complete with meat and fish courses, but ask them to bake cupcakes and they start to sweat and foam at the mouth. I love to do both!

My passion for painting started in my 40’s when I watched a PBS piece about Donna Dewberry. Donna was just like me – a woman of a certain age, who wanted to learn something new, so she invented a new art form and way of painting. She made it look so easy on her documentary, that I purchased a starter kit and was hooked from the first piece I ever made! Any one who has ever attended one of my book signings know how much I like to paint, evidenced by the hand painted bags I give them with the purchase of a book! This is the Donna Dewberry, One Stoke Method at its finest!

Refurbishing and rehabbing old furniture and steamer trucks has been a passion of mine fore several years. This is one of the most recent trunks that I finished.

Great as gifts, great as storage.

I’ll be brutally honest and tell you I can’t do any sports to save my life. Sometimes, I can’t even walk properly! But in a world where doing creative stuff is a great way to keep motivated, energized, and mentally sharp, I’m a  pro!
Let’s see what some of the other authors in this hop do when they aren’t writing. MFRWauthors Blog Challenge

And, as always, when I’m not writing, painting, cooking or rehabbing, you can find me here:

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Did you know I’m crafty….#MFRWauthors

 

and that I bake? A lot? More about those things in a bit….

Today’s topic is what I do to recharge. By definition, recharge means: to regain one’s strength and energy by resting and relaxing for a time; or return to a normal state of mind or strength after a period of physical or mental exertion.

By virtue of those definitions, something must be done for a person to need to break away from to rest and regain their momentum.

yeah…not me. I’ve said this multiple, ad nauseum times: Writing is my oxygen. Without doing it, like without breathing, I would die. So I really have never come to a place in my life where I felt the need or desire to walk away from it for a while to reenergize my brain.

What I do, in essence, though, is take breaks during the day for the other things that I love to do: cooking is one. Making things is another.  Let me ‘splain.

I love to bake. Thankfully, my husband likes to eat the things I bake. Most days, items like this sit under domed glass on my kitchen counter, waiting for him to snack on: 

Those are my banana walnut muffins. The picture doesn’t do them justice about how big they are. Trust me: for the normal person they would not be a snack but a meal. For hubby though, who likes to graze, they are a snack. When I get stuck on dialogue or a plot point isn’t moving along the way I want it to, I go from my office to the kitchen and bake for an hour or so. Usually, that time away from the laptop, consciously writing, commands my unconscious brain to deal with the problem. Problem gets solved and I’ve got baked goods as the outcome.

Win-Win!

The other things I do are along the crafty spectrum. I love to decoupage and restore old “things.” The things I love to restore the most are old trunks and steamer trunks. Here’s a project I did last year:

If you look super close you will see the cover of my first book SKATER’s WALTZ on there! Yeah, I”m not too conceited! ( sarcasm added). I also have my second and third book covers  There’s No Place like Home,  First Impressions )on the other side of the trunk!  Yeah… I know.

I also paint. I’m not great at it, but it is very relaxing. One of the newest things I’ve been painting are those canvass produce bags you are now required to bring to most supermarkets to cut down on the throwaway plastic bags filling our landfills for the next 10,000 years. Since I’ve been writing a new food series — WILL COOK FOR LOVE — it seemed appropriate to give these away at book signings to people who want the books. Clever marketing tool meets relaxing hobby.

Win-Win, again!

Now, I realize that my way of de-stressing isn’t exactly what other authors do. Let’s be honest, what I do sounds more like work to some people!!! Visit some of these authors to find out what they do to re-charge, energize, and how they cope with the stressors of life when they aren’t writing.

 

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Filed under #Mfrwauthors, Author, Contemporary Romance, Cooking, Food lover, Foodie, Kensington Publishers, Life challenges, Lyrical Author, Romance, Romance Books, Strong Women, The Wild Rose Press

The benefit of having hobbies…

Some people I know who shall forever and always remain nameless, still consider my writing a hobby.

Yeah…I know. I’m surprised they’re still breathing, too.

Anyway. Writing, as you know, is like oxygen to me. I need to write in order to live, much the way I need oxygen in order to survive. It’s not a hobby, but a necessary facet of my life. A hobby, on the other hand, is nice, but I don’t need to have one to live.

awriter

This got me to thinking, though, that having a hobby is a…good thing, to quote Martha Stewart. Hobbies distract us from the mundane aspects of our work lives; they bring us a little fun in a day that can be fun-less and soul-sucking. Hobbies can clear our minds of the detritus and negative energy our work can bring, and focus us instead on something positive and enriching.

hobbies

Now, my writing gives me all those positive things I just mentioned. But it’s still not a hobby. Nor, is it in reality, work. Not for me. Writing is as necessary to me as water is to the balance of nature and all living things. Writing centers me; keeps my mind sharp, my memory intact. Writing makes me smile and laugh. Of course, when I’m writing something sad it can also make me weep and wail. Well, maybe not wail…but you get the premise. A hobby doesn’t do that. A hobby doesn’t make you sweat and toil, worry and wallow when you aren’t getting the thought you want just right, or the dialogue as tight as you can and still convey the essence of the words. A hobby doesn’t make you bleed emotions and rip your heart into shreds. A hobby doesn’t make you feel immortal or powerful or omnipotent.

So, don’t call my writing a hobby, because it’s not. It’s a…vocation; a calling; a mission. But  it’s not a hobby.

 

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Valentine’s Day is chocolatier Chloe San Valentino’s favorite day of the year. Not only is it the busiest day in her candy shop, Caramelle de Chloe, but it’s also her birthday. Chloe’s got a birthday wish list for the perfect man she pulls out every year: he’d fall in love with her in a heartbeat, he’d be someone who cares about people, and he’d have one blue eye and one green eye, just like her. So far, Chloe’s fantasy man hasn’t materialized, despite the matchmaking efforts of her big, close-knit Italian family. But this year for her 30th birthday, she just might get her three wishes.

Get it here: Amazon //  The Wild Rose Press // Nook//  Kobo //

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Hobbies…

By know you all know I love to write. I actually live to write and you can guess that by the tagline of this blog: Writing is my oxygen... But writing isn’t the only thing that gives me  undiluted pleasure. I also love to paint and cook. In fact, my entry into this year’s Harlequin’s So You Think You Can Write contest, Cooking with Kandy,  is about a chef-lebrity. Many of the recipes my heroine references in the book are actually my tried and true recipes.  My pitch to an agent recently about this book was : “Cooking and Romance. Who doesn’t crave good food and everlasting love?”

I also paint. For several  years I did it as  sideline to make money. I did craft painting and sold my wares at local craft shows and fundraiser events. I painted anything that was stationery including stationary! Boxes for gifts, note cards, oil and vinegar bottles, even wooden boxes to put wine bottles in for gifts. I also did canvas work and sold a good many of those as well. I did pretty well at it, monetarily, even though it was just a hobby. One of the characters in another of my romance novels was an artist and a sculptor.

I’m a very sensual person. And by that I don’t mean I’m sitting around in my Vickie’s Secrets lingerie eating bonbons and watching lady porn. It means I like using my five senses as much as possible. Tasting and smelling and seeing the food I’ve cooked brings me pleasure. The Sitting back and gazing at a painting I’m in the middle of, seeps joys into my system. I like listening to music – all kinds – and the feel of fresh dough as I roll it between my fingers to make pasta or bread, is mind blowing.

This got me to thinking about today’s blog entry, hobbies. Have you ever crafted a character and given him/her your hobbies? Do you even gift your characters with hobbies, things they do aside from their normal everyday jobs?  I can’t imagine a world with me in it where I just exist. I need to do other things. Things that fascinate me; things that infuse me with euphoria: things that teach me, challenge me, defy me as a person.

A well rounded character, just like a well rounded human being, needs to do more than just exist.

So, what hobbies do you and your characters have?

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