the power of objects: the anti-Black Friday

057When I studied fiction in graduate school at Columbia College Chicago, we focused heavily on objects. When brainstorming or warming up for writing exercises in our four-hour evening classes, after long days at work and home and caring for families and tending to our lives, we were asked to visualize what objects were in a given space that we wanted to write about.

This is how I came to see the power of objects in fiction and life.

Disclaimer: I am not one who saves things. I am the one who always smacks myself in the head three days after pitching something I realize I needed. When I was young, my mother gave me objects to show her affection. It was her way. A Virgin Mary statue that she made in ceramics. A coffee cup with my name on it and a different adjective for each letter in my name (still have that one). Bookmarks. We had a difficult relationship. I came to see objects and gifts as something to be wary of.

Continue reading “the power of objects: the anti-Black Friday”

Simplify your words. Simplify your life.

Do you ever feel like life has just gotten way too complicated? Between juggling 98 work projects, 5 conference calls daily, piano lessons, soccer practices and games, carpool, birthday parties, lunches and dinners for a family of four 7 days a week, dog groomings/shots/weird emergencies (MOM! The dog ate the nail clippers!! Again!!), kid emergencies (middle of the night throwing up, strange rashes, best friend drama, teen drama, crushes), homework assignments, permission slips, parent-teacher conferences, 400 email passwords, and 4 email inboxes bursting at the seams…let me just tell you that a ‘simple’ trip down the laundry detergent aisle of my local grocery store with 17 different detergent options made me recently abandon my shopping cart (there were no cold products in it, I’m happy to say) and walk out to my car and just put my head down on my steering wheel for five full minutes.

Continue reading “Simplify your words. Simplify your life.”