This photo seems fitting today as I continue revising my middle-grade novel based on a critique partner’s (CP) comments.
House Finches + Goldfinch. May 23, 2020.
Her insights are helping me ground each character in key scenes. This CP excels at noting the many moving pieces in my story, reminding me to take into account each character’s perspective. Revision is a dream when I’m equipped with such a good map. Much gratitude to Marcia.
(Another CP is reading the same version Marcia received and I’m beaming thoughts to the universe that his feedback aligns with hers because otherwise, yikes. What will I do with a whole new map? Breathe, Tracy. Breathe.)
Common Grackle. Grand Island, NE. June 2, 2020.
Birds are the most accomplished aeronauts the world has ever seen. They fly high and low, at great speed, and very slowly. And always with extraordinary precision and control. ~ David Attenborough
Bunny checking out the vinca. June 28, 2020.
There are many rabbits in our neighborhood this year. As I take my daily walk, I see them hopping across streets and lounging on lawns. They sit beneath parked vehicles and nap in shrubbery. On yesterday’s walk Zippy suddenly asked, “What do you think you’re doing?” and I was momentarily confused. I mean, wasn’t it clear? I was walking.
And then I realized my partner’s question was directed to a rabbit lying a couple feet away from us, smack dab in the middle of the street, ears tucked back, as if that somehow camouflaged it. Which I guess it did, seeing as I hadn’t even seen it. (I’ll add that Emma, our short-legged doggo who’s in a much better position to notice things on the ground, was equally clueless about the rabbit’s presence). That bunny was completely chill. Not at all concerned it might get trampled by two humans and a dog. Or run over by a car. Or eaten by a coyote from the nearby open space.
Actually, I’m starting to think maybe I should adopt that bunny’s attitude.
Dayliles make me happy. They’re cheery and vibrant. They intrigue from every angle.
Daylilies in my front yard. July 3, 2020.
Also? They’re a very low maintenance perennial. What’s not to love?
Portal, Arizona. May 15, 2019.
So extraordinary is Nature with her choicest treasures, spending plant beauty as she spends sunshine, pouring it forth into land and sea, garden and desert. ~John Muir
Square Top Lakes hike. August 28, 2019.
A lifetime ago
laughing, talking on the trails
little did we know
I stayed in a KOA cabin in Grand Island, Nebraska, earlier this month. The cabin was cute and cozy, but the highlight was the Barn Swallow presence.
June 4, 2020
June 4, 2020
They’d built a nest on the beam above the front porch and were very active. I was so focused on photographing this pair I didn’t realize I was getting eaten alive by mosquitoes. I shudder to think how many bites I would’ve gotten if those swallows weren’t there to catch and eat mosquitoes on the wing. I’m definitely on #TeamSwallow when it comes to biting insects.
I didn’t leave my house today, not even for my daily walk around the neighborhood. In fact, I didn’t get exercise of any kind, unless I include snuggling with my cats and dog.
I did, however, sit in front of my computer most of the day, revising the final chapter of my novel. I’m not thrilled with the results.
Young scrub jay. June 21, 2020.
I did also photograph a young scrub jay as it preened its wet feathers. In fact, I took about 50 photos of that scrub jay and this one is probably the best. (I can’t say for sure as I tired of looking at/deleting them and somewhat randomly selected this one).
Am I satisfied with this Sunday?
Does it matter at this point?
It is what it is and was what it was.
Neighbor’s ash tree. May 29, 2020.
Partially clad limbs
but mostly naked branches
too many cold snaps
Common Grackle, June 2, 2020. Grand Island, NE
Name change is needed
this Grackle isn’t Common
note regal plumage
Those are the same stars, and that is the same moon, that look down upon your brothers and sisters, and which they see as they look up to them, though they are ever so far away from us, and each other. ~ Sojourner Truth
Denver from my front yard. May 27, 2020.
Property is intended to serve life, and no matter how much we surround it with rights and respect, it has no personal being. It is part of the earth man walks on. It is not man.
~ Martin Luther King, Jr.
May 29, 2020.
Storm clouds gathering
unrest above and below
we shall overcome
May 14, 2018.
Mood: Unfocused and less-than-amused.
Whiskered Screech-Owl. Cave Creek Canyon. May 14, 2019
Eyes closed to the world
moment of calm solitude
a truly wise owl
ONE: I was worried I wouldn’t have iris blooms this year, but here’s the first to flower. The dependable purple comes through yet again!
Iris bloom on May 13, 2020.
TWO: Yesterday’s writing session was angsty and difficult as I flailed about, trying to find my way through the revision. I brainstormed last night before going to sleep and then instructed my brain to help me find the best path forward. I woke this morning with the answer (which wasn’t even on the list). Today, working on my book was a joy.
Today is not an easy writing day. I received positive feedback on my four opening chapters, including suggestions for increasing tension between my two main characters. As always, it’s valuable input from my Writing Roosters critique partners for which I am exceedingly grateful. However, I’m struggling to stay focused as I try to figure out which changes to tackle first. Each foray into the manuscript distracts me with “oh yeah, then I’ll also need to fix this and this and . . .”
October 12, 2016.
For some reason, this gathering of raucous grackles seems an appropriate image for the day.
I had poppy-envy yesterday as I walked the neighborhood. One yard was filled with happy orange poppies, bouncing in the breeze. Why hadn’t mine bloomed yet?
This morning, I looked out the window and saw two bursts of orange! And when I got closer with my camera, I saw the bees were also celebrating those cheery blooms.
Front yard. May 16, 2020.
Such a nice way to begin my weekend. Wishing everyone a blooming-good day!
Kapok Park. April 1, 2019.
Stealthy limpkin prowls
tasty snails hiding on stalks
one long wading game
Allium blooming on slope. May 13, 2020.
One of my favorite aspects of spring is being surprised by what pokes through the soil. Years ago, my mother-in-law gifted me some allium and I’d forgotten all about it, possibly because it didn’t come up last year.
This year, though, I’m blessed with these lovely and intricate orbs. Bees love them, I love them.
I like light, color, luminosity. I like things full of color and vibrant.
~ Oscar de la Renta
Bunny visit to front yard. July 28, 2017.
(Psst… I think Vibrant Bunny is a great name for a band. Feel free to use it.)
Black-billed Magpie. April 1, 2020.
springtime branches budding out
brushstrokes against sky
April 25, 2016.
I’m really, really hoping my iris bloom this year despite the various snowstorms and freezes. I really, really need the boost. Until then, I will bask in the glory of these beauties from nearly four years ago.
Come on iris, please do your thing!