Sued51's Blog

{May 19, 2014}   Virtual Blog Tour

My current morning pages notebook

My current morning pages notebook

My friend and incredible photographer, Susan Licht, recently invited me to take part in a virtual blog tour. I first “met” Susan by discovering her beautiful blog and then discovered we had a mutual friend on Facebook! (Despite the massive size of the Internet, it’s still a small world!) We have many interests in common including literature, gardening, music, nature and photography. We could have met each other years ago through our mutual friend, and sometimes I wish we had.

So…my thanks to Susan for asking me to be part of this blog tour and involving me in this slightly different way of learning about other bloggers’ creative processes, of finding some new blogs recommended by people I respect, and of being able to introduce some of the bloggers I enjoy and give them a little extra support.

The “work” part of this blog tour involves answering the following questions about your creative process, so here goes:

1) What am I working on?

Too many things! Recently I had been trying to send out some of my poetry to publications. The last time I had poems “officially” published was in the 90s, though I do support a local poets community and go to open mike events. Although I publish some poems on this blog, I “keep” what I consider the best ones, seeking a more prestigious home for them than my blog. 🙂 I will probably end up self-publishing…sending work out seems to be too much like a dating service. I have also joined some photography groups, hoping for an inexpensive way to learn Photoshop. I take pictures almost every day for Last Train to QVille, though I don’t post every day. I tend to walk in the same area so it is a challenge to find new ways of looking at the same scenery.

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre?

Anyone who reads positive self-development blogs and books has probably read over and over that we are all unique. I still struggle with the answer to that question. The easy answer is that I was an only girl growing up amongst 6 boys! But beyond that I suppose part of my uniqueness is that I am interested in so many unrelated things…I have held a lot of different jobs in my life: from working at a movie theater (doing everything from selling tickets to popping corn and cleaning the theater) to working in offices. I worked in the garden dept at Home Depot; I’ve been an usher supervisor for concert venues, a legal secretary, an editor, and now I am working in the wine industry and as a part-time hostess at a restaurant…totally unrelated things. This translates into meeting people from all walks of life, which is a great thing for someone who likes to write.

3) Why do I write/create what i do?

Well, bottom line is that I love to create and I live to create. When I’m not creating, I’m miserable. My creativity most often takes the form of  poems because I have been expressing my feelings that way for over 35 years and it is second nature to me. It is an integral part of the way I process my life and connect with others. And I love beauty and nature, so I take pictures to capture and remember moments in time and the beauty I see daily.

4) How does my creative process work?

I have many different notebooks that I jot down ideas in. I journal every day. I read other people’s blogs and see which directions their work sends me. I write about whatever strikes me on any given day.

NOW comes the best part of this post: my recommendations for other blogs to check out. Another reflection of my eclectic job history and interests, the blogs I read regularly are very different, but all great.

Louisa May Alcatt takes her name from the author of Little Women; her “pub” writes interesting posts about women in history at her blog: Suffragette kitty

Peter S, former ad man chronicles his life as a stay-at-home dad through the antics and eyes of his son, Mr. C.

Queenie, as her name might suggest, is from the U.K., a former dance teacher with a bucket list, a camera and a good sense of humor.

Not sure if any of them will be following through on this tour, though. 😦  I know it is a time commitment that we can’t all manage.

Finally, I’m adding this on my own, one of the bloggers I wanted to recommend had participated in a blog tour right before I could ask her! So I’m throwing in a link to her post for good measure. Meet Beeblu!

Happy reading everyone!

{February 10, 2014}   One Lucky Cat…That’s Me

calico cat

I got a wonderful gift yesterday; I felt like my cat Zoee, all warm and happy.

The author of one of my favorite web sites: The Creative Cat held a giveaway for her blogging anniversary and I won! I’m very excited about it and wanted to share it with all of you. If I could reblog it, I would, but not sure how so I will just link to it here.

If you aren’t familiar with The Creative Cat and you love cats, check it out. Bernadette is a cat rescuer, artist, photographer and poet. I have the utmost admiration for her and enjoy her daily blogs of sketches, pictures and stories of her cats, so this is a wonderful gift for me.

It definitely made my week!

{September 6, 2013}   The Versatile Blogger Award

Versatile Blogger Award

Versatile Blogger Award

I started this post 3(?) weeks ago…

Well, I figured it was time I caught up with a couple of Award Nominations. I know I posted the “Tequila Award” saying I can’t accept too many, but I really like the bloggers who just nominated me  so…here we go! A big thank you to: Michael McGuireIn Her Words Avenue, and Sofie’s Diary ( A while ago and I can’t find the link…if you are reading this…post a comment and I will update).

Here are the rules for the Versatile Blogger Award:

Display the Award Certificate on your blog.  OKAY.
Announce your win with a post. Make sure you post a link back to me as a ‘thank you’
for the nomination. SO THIS IS IT.
Leave them a comment to let them know after you have linked them to a post. OK
Post seven interesting things about yourself. I MIGHT HAVE MENTIONED SOME OF THESE IN PREVIOUS POSTS, BUT HERE GOES…

1) I grew up with 6 brothers and 0 sisters.

2) When I was young I used to love to climb trees…now that I am grown up, I’m afraid of heights!

3) I appeared (for a few seconds) in a local TV station video singing about the New England Patriots.

4) I collected rocks when I was a child and was one of the only people I knew who dreamed of a “Rock Tumbler” for Christmas.

5) I created 3 holes of miniature golf in my backyard as a child.

6) My first published poem was in the sports editorial section of the Boston Globe when I was 15.

7) I won the “Voice of America” contest at my high school, writing and reciting an essay about what it means to be an American citizen.

So here are some of the new blogs I have discovered that I like: : wonderful pictures, many of his autistic son : I don’t think accepts awards, but don’t miss these gorgeous photos of Spain : some great anecdotes and storytelling in the old tradition : Funny guy blogger award

I was telling my mother (currently my best friend) about my last post on different kinds of friends. My mother said, “Well I can’t read it because I don’t have a computer.” Fair enough…I understand that and I don’t hold it against her.

I have been told by some friends: “I don’t have time to read blogs…sorry.” I also understand that and I don’t get angry; many of them work a lot of hours, and we all have our priorities and different ways of relaxing. I don’t go to some peoples’ “events” because I don’t have time or it doesn’t fit my lifestyle, but I am choosing NOT to make it a priority. It doesn’t mean I don’t care about them, but I know I am missing out on getting to know them better and sharing an experience that is part of their life. It IS a choice that I am making and I have to “man up” about that.

But acknowledging and understanding these responses as choices doesn’t stop me from thinking that because my friends and family don’t read what I write, they don’t know me as well as bloggers from across the globe who’ve never met me! What’s up with that?! Of course our blogging personas are different than our “real life” personas, but they are surely an aspect of who we are.

That got me curious…fellow bloggers…Do your friends and family read your blog?

Just for fun, fill out this quick poll and let’s see what we find out!

{April 2, 2013}   Facebook Fatigue

Yesterday’s Daily Prompt Topic was about Social MediaDo you feel like you “get” social media, or do you just use it because that’s where all your friends and family are?

This topic was timely for me (although I’m not timely with the topic..heh-heh). I have recently developed a severe case of Facebook Fatigue. I “get” it, but I don’t “get” it.

I first joined Facebook to keep up with my nieces’ and nephews’ lives and see their pictures. In the beginning I posted some old photos I thought they would enjoy and occasionally I would post about an event or activity in my life. But that didn’t last long; I “friended” more people. I started to feel that my life could not compete and I started to post less and less. Everyone else’s life seemed more “impressive” than mine; I became almost completely a lurker, a liker, and a stealth user. I wasn’t optimizing my experience, but I was still enjoying some of other’s posts.

Then it happened…almost everyone I know is no longer sharing ANYTHING REAL. It has become almost exclusively the realm of the superficial and the self-promoters. I now find going on Facebook is like watching a channel that is completely made up of commercials and infomercials!  I know people need to advertise their causes, their businesses, their projects…but does almost every post have to be that? Every once in a while throw me a bone! Something with substance.

I don’t want to unfriend people (that can cause a permanent rift) and …if I were to use “hide” to cut back on things…well, I’d be hiding just about EVERYONE! It seems it has become the complete domain of the sales pitch, whether personal or professional.

One frustrating day I wrote this poem:

Facebook Fatigue

Your actions say I’m a fan, not a friend;

I’m not a stand-alone, I just blend in,

lost in a bramble of “likes”

where you don’t venture.

To separate us all is too much to do

and your “real work” needs you

more than you need me.

My need is irrelevant.

At least bloggers have etiquette. I have found most of them to be appreciative of their readers and audience; it is a community. Facebook seems to me to be one HUGE talking head, and to be honest, I’m tired of listening.

{February 28, 2013}   A Poem on Poet’s Corner

Yesterday I had a poem posted on Poet’s Corner (click here to read it).

If you haven’t checked out the blog before, you should! They post a poem daily; many different poetic styles are featured. It’s a great way to discover some creative bloggers!

For some reason, I made 100 the number — the number of followers I wanted for my blog this year. Why?

It seemed like a round number; it seemed like an accomplishment (maybe not for others –but for me –yes). I thought WordPress would give me a star, some fireworks…(hmm, it could have been the earthquake day 🙂 ) It came and went and I didn’t notice until now.

I thought it would make me happy, but it makes me feel…responsible. I can’t give up; I must find time to write and find time to visit and comment on other’s blogs. I must find time to complete posts for awards that I was blessed with weeks ago.

Should I set a new goal? Another random number? I don’t think so.

I am grateful to my followers for giving me some fun, some encouragement, something to look forward to and a reason to keep going, TRULY…but today, I just feel tired.

Despite that, I say to my followers, “Party On, all You Fabulous Bloggers!”

My alphabet of music will be ending this week, and I’ve got to find the next hill to climb…I love to see you all climbing beside me!

{September 29, 2012}   The Sunshine Award on a Cloudy Day

Two weeks ago, I was nominated for the Sunshine Award, by Sofacents. (Although I still have two more letters of the alphabet, I don’t think I would have gotten through my music series, A Fan’s History of 80’s Boston Bands, without his comments!) My sincere and grateful thanks to him! It has taken me two weeks to get to it because I have been working extra hours recently and hurt my back, making sitting at the computer a little difficult, but better late than never!

This blog has been quite an experience for me. I started it when I was unemployed and dispirited to keep myself writing and busy. In the beginning I had only stealth readers who never commented, so it felt like I was writing in a vacuum (which was fine, but I already do that in my journals at home). Every once in a while someone would tell me in person or on the phone that they read my blog and enjoyed it, but there was nothing in writing that said that; WordPress wasn’t giving us stats then.

I finally got so discouraged I was going to give it up; I wondered why I was doing it. I decided to start a new blog, Last Train to Qville, without a plan of how to end this one. I panicked and decided to keep this one going as well. I’m glad I did as readers have finally found me, and now I have an award!

Part 1 is to answer some questions about myself.

1 – What is your favorite Christmas movie?

Hmm…Sofacents mentioned “The Sound of Music” and I do love that one, but I don’t think of it as a Christmas movie, even though it has a Christmas scene. There’s a modern one I love that isn’t a Christmas movie, but has Christmas scenes called “Love Actually” that I like a lot. It tells several stories simultaneously with a fabulous cast. It has some sad parts though. On a lighter note, I LOVE the cartoon “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer.” Great music!

2 – What’s Your Favorite Flower?

I can’t give an absolute answer to this one. I love to garden, and I love so many different flowers. I guess I will choose two very different flowers: lilies and sunflowers: formal and everyday.

3 – Favorite Non-Alcoholic Beverage

That’s an easy one for me; I’ve been drinking tea since I was a child.

4 – What is your passion?

That’s a tie between reading and writing. I could happily spend all my hours doing both. In second place is my love for animals, especially cats.

5 – Favorite Time of Year?

That’s a tie between spring and fall. I love spring because it is such a relief after winter. Green is my favorite color, and I love to garden. Spring means a new gardening season. I also love fall because I love the fall colors, fall food like apples and squashes. Spring might have the edge only because my allergies are worse in the fall.

6 – Favorite Time of Day ?

Another easy one, I am definitely a morning person. I look forward to my quiet morning time drinking my tea, reading a book, or doing some writing in my journal. A day not started that way is not usually a good one for me. If I don’t get something done by 1:00, it often doesn’t happen.

7 – Favorite Physical Activity ?

Walking. I could walk and walk and walk, as long as I have good sneakers.

8 – Favorite Vacation ?

That’s another tough one. Due to economic conditions, my husband and I have not been on a vacation in YEARS. When we had full-time high paying jobs we liked to go to Mexico to Iberostar resorts in what is called the “Mexican Riviera” near Playa del Carmen. But I wouldn’t necessarily say that was my favorite vacation. I think my husband and I differ on this one. I like going to a new city and seeing and doing touristy things.

Part 2 is to nominate other blogs for this award. Here’s a few I discovered recently that I like: great photos very creative and witty writing great photos


The other two I wanted to note were called Images & Words and A Little Box of  Light, but I am having trouble locating the links. I’ll get back to that!


{December 30, 2010}   Happy Anniversary…to Me

It was a year ago yesterday that I started my blog; I had noted it in my 10-year journal.  Just days from now, I will write my assessment of my year for all areas of my life and my goals for next year in a special area of my journal, but it seemed appropriate to assess my blogging effort here and now.

I’ll start with the disappointments (so I can end the blog on a positive note).  I never developed a rhythm; I never picked a particular day to post and stuck with it.  I never found one overwhelming subject I wanted to write about or became an “expert” at anything.  Consequently, I never developed a wider following other than my dear, dear friends (although I did have 60 readers for one blog and 40 for another).  Hmmm…seems pretty discouraging, but…

I actually kept at it and averaged more than one blog a week (except for the last few weeks as I dealt with the serious illness and death of my father).  Ironically, the flip side of one of my disappointments (not finding one particular focus) was also something I felt good about: I found many different things to write about because I was trying to write for others; I was less one-dimensional in my writing.  Before creating my blog, I was only writing in my journal, and very rarely in recent years, writing some poetry.  Put that one in the “pro” column: kudos for writing more than I had in the last five years (more writing, more often).

So what goals do I want to set for next year?  When I sit down to write, I don’t want it to be a rushed, last-minute activity.  I want to stay ahead and write several blog entries at a time. (In 2010 I kept a notebook with ideas, many of which I never had the opportunity to develop.)  This practice should allow me to pick a particular day to post and STICK WITH IT!  That goal is good enough for me…if I can accomplish that for myself, I won’t have to worry about the audience.  Like in “Field of Dreams” if I build it, they will come.

et cetera
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