Starting Over

A while back, I received a guitar as a gift and decided I would learn to play it.  I jumped right into it, using online lessons and a simple beginner’s book the same way I learned to play the harmonica and ukulele.  But I found that it was much more difficult than I expected.  Also, since the guitar has many similarities to the ukulele, songs … Continue reading Starting Over

Indiana Farm

Never Stop Exploring

They say familiarity breeds contempt, and I know that the longer I stay in a place, the more I take it for granted.  In fact, many people I know (myself included) have spent much of their lives near many historic and beautiful locations and never gone to check them out.  I’ve been living on the gorgeous Japanese island of Okinawa for over five years now, … Continue reading Never Stop Exploring


It’s beginning to look a lot like Saturnalia

Nowadays, I have a really difficult time getting into the Christmas spirit.  Maybe it’s because of how commercialism demands that Christmas carols play on the radio and in the stores before Halloween is over so people will blow more money.  I’m a firm believer in only celebrating one holiday at a time, and by the time Christmas arrives, I am completely burned out on the … Continue reading It’s beginning to look a lot like Saturnalia

Writing Tips

NaNoWriMo Week Two–The Worst Week

If you’re participating in NaNoWriMo this year, then you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about.  About two weeks ago, before this all started, we were all filled with both excitement and dread.  We were all going to write our own novels and reach that goal of 50,000 words.  We didn’t know how, and many of us secretly doubted that we could do it.  Then week … Continue reading NaNoWriMo Week Two–The Worst Week

Why Aspiring Authors Shouldn’t Major in English

This article was originally posted on Insatiable Booksluts. Do you want to be a writer when you grow up?  I know I do.  When I was in high school trying to decide on a college and a major, English seemed like the perfect subject to study.  After all, English is the language I would be writing in, right?  Looking back, I think I made a … Continue reading Why Aspiring Authors Shouldn’t Major in English

Writing Tips

NaNoWriMo Prep

I mentioned in my most recent metablog that I’m getting ready for NaNoWriMo, which starts in just a few days.  I never realized it before, but there is a pretty big community of writers who are participating.  Several of my friends, my blogger/Twitter buddies, and even a few of my coworkers are planning to participate.  The closer November gets, the more excited I am about … Continue reading NaNoWriMo Prep

Drink and Tweet

Unusual Hobbies: Drinkalongs on Twitter

Some of my favorite things to do include watching campy movies, hanging out with friends, Tweeting, and drinking.  My brilliant friend SJ figured out a way to do all of them at once when she invented the Drinkalong. It all started with Puttin’ the Blog in Balrog when SJ started a group to join her in reading The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.  … Continue reading Unusual Hobbies: Drinkalongs on Twitter

Writing Tips

Unusual Hobbies: Writing Novels

When I was in high school and college, I always talked about how some day I was going to write a novel.  It’s been nearly ten years now since I graduated from a creative writing program, and I have yet to get a book published.  But things are changing for me.  I have gone from hardly writing at all over the past several years to … Continue reading Unusual Hobbies: Writing Novels

Unusual hobbies: Ukulele Essentials

This is a followup to Unusual Hobbies: Teach Yourself Ukulele. If you read the original article and you followed the advice I gave, then you have a ukulele, and you can probably play quite a few chords with a variety of strumming techniques.  You probably also know a few songs.  Congratulations on learning to play a fun, quirky, and beautiful instrument! Here’s where we up … Continue reading Unusual hobbies: Ukulele Essentials