Tuesday, January 28, 2014

"F" fact or fiction

            It is a fact that rarely seen sleet//snow  are falling in Southeast Texas. I know this is a fact because I just returned from walking my dog, Sassie, and we were crunching on sleet underfoot while white wet stuff was spotting my umbrella.
           My mentor, writer and speaker DiAnn Mills, first introduced me to using facts to create fiction. Writers are admonished to "write what you know". Is what you know a fact? Can you turn it into fiction?
           A fact is something that can be verified. There is historical record or undisputed evidence.
Theory is often presented as fact but is, in fact, a speculation or supposition that has not or cannot be proven.
           Fiction writing therefore is inventive or creative use of the imagination. The most believable fiction contains enough factual information to make the fictional characters seem like real persons, and the plot or setting seem possible. 

I believe that Genesis 1:1 statement that God created the heavens and earth is fact.
Psalms 19:1 says "the heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky proclaims the work of His hands."  My photo of the moonrise is enough proof for me that creation is fact.

 If I had any doubt that God's hand was instrumental in creation, mountains and waterfalls leave no doubt that earth didn't happen by accident.
Even under the earth we see God's handiwork. This is the entrance to Carlsbad Caverns.

Did the beauty and intricacy of the flowstone just happen? Is it just by accident that rain water peculates through limestone and slowly drips through the cave's ceiling to form colossal  stalagmites and stalactites?  I know for a fact that the growth of these formations do not take millions of years. I've witnessed the growth of stalactites that have formed in a limestone caves in Texas that regrew in a few short years.
Returning to the fact that I've experienced sleet/snow, I will take pictures tomorrow (hopefully) and blog using the photos as proof.
Challenge: Writers, choose a fact, historical or otherwise, and create a fictional character that interacts with the factual information.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

"E" Exercise with Purpose

The newsstand is crowded with magazine covers that entice you to try fool proof diet plans,  have illustrated exercise instructions, and then entice you with new mouthwatering recipes. Specific exercises and related gadgets for cardio, strength training, balance, toning, and weight control are geared to the young in age with time (and money) to spare. Why not walk?

I've always been active. I walk my collie, Sassie, 1-2 miles a day, workout at a gym 3 days a week and try to limit sitting in front of the computer. But had never been competitive.

Motivation came from a challenge by my daughter after she completed her first full marathon in Disney World. She said to find a 5k walk/run and make entering a goal. So I did. Sassie and I took longer walk/jogs and I began to walk/jog on a tread mill daily. I didn't enter to set any records but just complete the walk.

 My first 5k was for Alzheimer's awareness. It was a hot day in September. The crowd was way out in front, but I finished!

Last November I joined thousands in the Fight Breast Cancer 5K.

Today I joined others in a Walk for Life. Notice the lady in front wearing pink shirt and a baby pack.

Walk for a purpose. Search for a local 5K awareness or fundraiser. Set a goal to increase your walk/jog so that you can comfortably complete 3 miles without huffing and puffing.

You will enjoy your stronger body, be proud of meeting a healthy goal, and supporting a cause.

Writers. Carry your camera/phone and a digital recorder. Interview other walkers. Take notes. You may discover an idea for an article.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

"D" Decisions

New Years Day has passed. Have you made New Years' Resolutions? Have you already failed to keep them? Instead of resolutions, I'm trying to make new and better decisions. To make a resolution is to make a promise to yourself, ie. I will diet and exercise and lose weight. I make this resolution every year. Sometimes with some success. In order to do this, I daily have to make decisions on what to put into my mouth.

This year I had to make a decision. I had to decide whether or not to continue as Merit Badge counselor for the Boy Scout Winter Camp. As much as I disagree with the new policy to admit gay boys into Scouting, after much prayer, I decided to volunteer as I have in the past because boys in Scouting would suffer without Christian leadership.

My belief is that if a boy cannot honestly pledge (Boy Scout Oath) to be "morally straight. To be a person of strong character..... be honest and open", and honor the Boy Scout Law which includes being clean ("keeps his body and mind fit and clean. He chooses the company of those who live by high standards) and reverent "toward God", then the boy should choose a different organization, not Scouting..

In my many years as Assistant Scout Master and Merit Badge Counselor, I've repeatedly taken training in Safe Scouting which includes always having two deep leadership to discourage any inappropriate behavior between leaders and youth.

However, with gay scouts being recognized, and gay men's attraction to youth organizations, I fear that our training and awareness will not continue to protect your sons and my grandsons.

This new year we all have decisions to make. May we Pray about those decisions and make the morally correct ones.