Reflecting on Gratitude

Friday, November 27th, 2015 | Gratitude, Reflections, The Writing Life | No Comments



I love this time of year. I love eating with friends and family, preparing to give presents, giving presents, making pies, eating with friends and family…wait…I already said that. But in the midst of the extra busyness that comes with the holidays, I find myself reflecting on my life, and on the many things I am grateful for. Aforementioned friends and family top the list, along with my work, the daily gifts of my life like my home, my waterfall, my car. And larger things, like my peace of mind. Some of these are given to me anew each day by the Universe, and some are hard won. But they all remind me that the path I have chosen, the path of an artist, is not always an easy road, but it is a blessed one. And I am grateful to be on it.

Happy Thanksgiving All!

Thursday, November 26th, 2015 | Gratitude | No Comments

I hope you all get a chance to eat some pie 🙂



Gratitude and Yard Critters

Wednesday, August 19th, 2015 | Gratitude | No Comments

Bitty Bunny

Gratitude has been alive in my heart lately. Seeing my latest series come to life has lit the fire of gratitude with the beautiful cover that Sourcebooks Casablanca has given me. As the Sourcebooks team works so hard with me to make the books the best we can, with two content editors and a slew of copy editors and proof readers going over every line, I feel humbled by the time and attention that others spend on the stories that are so close to my heart.

Also, it is summer, and there deep green of my home mirrors the joyful abundance I feel. The birds and rabbits and chipmunks are busy right outside my writing window, eating the bird seed I toss out for them. It does make me wonder how they know it’s there, as it blends into the grass, but the critter network is better than any internet we will ever devise. They know its there, and they chow down.

The waterfall behind my house keeps up a steady and constant flow of white noise which filters though the trees and into my home whenever it is cool enough to leave the windows open. And living in the mountains of Western NC, sometimes it is cool enough in the evenings, even in summer.

So as fall starts to come into the mountains, I’ll keep working on my books, grateful all the while for the opportunity to write the stories I love to tell.

Writing and What It Teaches

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015 | Gratitude, The Writing Life | No Comments

I haven’t spent a lot of time thinking about the role of writing in my life lately, because I’ve been under deadline. I don’t spend a lot of time ruminating when I am under the gun of the daily word count. Actually, I should be writing my next novella right now, but I wanted to stop for a moment and reflect on why I spend so many of my waking hours at this task, and why I love it so much.



I find that opening a blank page on my computer and asking my characters to tell me their story holds up a candle and a mirror to my own inner thoughts. I learn more about the things I value, like love and friendship and family, and I remember why those things are so important to me.

I remember why I like happy endings, and why joy is such a blessing and yet so hard to capture on the page.

I remember why I am in love with love, and how deep a part of me that love will always be. My love affair with love is something I came to accept about myself long ago, which is why I am still writing at all.

I remember the joy of discovery and how it happens on every page, in every scene. Characters I thought I knew surprise me, and I surprise myself. There is joy in that, too.

So as I swim down the river of yet another adventure, I want to thank the gods of inspiration and the gods of caffeine, all I have read and all I will read, all the things that go into the alchemy that is creation, and the ability to sit at the computer, day in and day out, and do it again.


Light As A Choice

Friday, December 21st, 2012 | Gratitude, Joy, Reflections | No Comments

First published on Mary Sharratt’s beautiful website, Viriditas.


“The planet does not need more successful people. The planet desperately needs more peacemakers, healers, restorers, storytellers, and lovers of all kinds.”

His Holiness, the Dalai Lama


We get to choose whether or not to be light bringers. In every moment, whatever actions we take, we can bring light or darkness. Of course, it is often easier to focus on ourselves, our petty problems, our losses, our defeats.


The shadows are distracting to the point that we think they’re all there is. But light makes shadow, even if the Source is unseen.


The Light that came into the world on the birth of Christ has always been with us, and will always be. Like the green, verdant, ever-living Viriditas that Hildegard von Bingen wrote of, this light fills the world. We carry it in our hearts, whatever our faith or lack thereof. We are a part of this river of light that is moving through the world, whether we know it or not.


In every moment of every day, we can choose to bring light to a situation, or not. In the quote above, I think His Holiness is asking us to think of our daily lives, and how we can do better in each moment. It is an imperfect world, and we are imperfect, but that does not change our responsibility, to ourselves or to each other.



In order to express this light in our lives, however, we must find it.


Every tradition has it own path into this river of light. Prayer, meditation, a walk in a green wood, facing the ocean, the desert, the sky. Any or all of these might work, or they might not.


Only you can discover your own path into the light that lives within you. Even to look is an act of faith. Even to look is to begin to find it.


Our breath is the simplest way to open ourselves to the possibility that this light exists, that it is not a fairy tale told by fools to quiet the masses. Our breath is an ever-moving river, a mirror of that divine grace that lives within us all. You might choose to sit, to let everything else go, and to follow it.



This perhaps is the hardest thing for us to do in this modern world, to simply sit and follow our breath wherever it leads. But know that this task was hard for every man and woman who did it before you. You are not alone in this. You are a link in a chain of seekers that leads from the beginning of time, to now, and onward into a unknown future that none of us living today will ever see.


So you might find a spot, indoors or out. You might choose to stand in place, or sit, and simply breathe. You will find that the breath is not simple, that the shadows are there as well, but keep following it. The light is there, too, behind this world, supporting it, nurturing it, waiting until we all decide that we want to come home.

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