"Whatever you are not changing, you are choosing." — Laurie Buchanan

WHO
You are cordially invited to attend

WHAT
The 27th annual Writers’ Institute — click on this LINK for registration and speaker information

WHEN
April 15-17, 2016

WHERE
UW-Madison

WHY

  • To improve your writing craft.
  • To pitch a book to a literary agent.
  • To meet other writers and find your writing community.
  • To learn publishing tips.
  • To have your work critiqued.

HOW
Any way you can!

join-me-with-url-2

One of the best writers conferences in the United States, the Writers’ Institute has something to offer each and every person who’s interested in writing. I’ve attended as a student and as a speaker — it’s wonderful no matter how you slice it!

This year I’m attending as a speaker and I’d love to see you at one the sessions I’m presenting. Click on this LINK for details.

Many Tuesdays With Laurie readers are writers. This week’s question for you is: Why do you write?

Many Tuesdays With Laurie readers are not writers. This week’s question for you is: What is your creative outlet?

 

© Laurie Buchanan

Find me on Twitter @TuesWithLaurie
Find me on Facebook

Bald is Beautiful

Living close to the Greenbelt along the Boise river we have tremendous opportunity to see a wide variety of wildlife. When we relocated to Idaho, one of the first tips we received was, “Look up!” Why? In Idaho, a large concentrations of bald eagles are found along Lake Coeur d’Alene, Lake Pend Oreille, and sections of the Snake, Salmon, and Boise Rivers.

We were thrilled to see not one, but two bald eagles on a recent jaunt along the Boise river. We heard them before we saw them. One—already majestically perched on a branch in the treetop—was calling to the other circling high overhead. Like greased lightning, he made a downward beeline, flaring his six-foot wingspan just before landing in the same tree as his mate.

I recently learned that in their first four years of life bald eagles are often mistaken for golden eagles because they sport mostly dark brown plumage with only small  amounts of white. Not until their fourth or fifth year does the bald eagle’s head and tail turn all white, indicating that it’s reached maturity.

When you “look up” in your neck of the woods, what are you likely to see?

 

© Laurie Buchanan

Find me on Twitter @TuesWithLaurie
Find me on Facebook

Pepé Le Pew

Living a stone’s throw from the Laura Moore Cunningham arboretum, we enjoy frequent off-lead romps with Willa. On a recent occasion, we saw our big girl—from a distance—preparing to stop, drop, and roll—not because her britches were on fire, but because she was getting ready for a liberal application of eau de skunk from the famous fragrance design house, Mother Nature:

  • Base notes: putrid, sulfur
  • Middle notes: lingering, burning rubber
  • Top notes: bitter, rotten eggs

We bolted and reached her in the nick of time, preventing what would have been an extremely smelly event. As it turns out, skunk urine is an eco-friendly deer repellent that keeps them from munching on the trees in the arboretum.

IMG_9428

I use a “repellent” too. A long time ago I discovered that positivity repels negativity. No need to roll in it, a little goes a long way. Positivity is a warm and delightful scent from the famous fragrance design house, Conscious Choice:

  • Base notes: happiness, encouragement, joy
  • Middle notes: gratitude, serenity, interest, hope
  • Top notes: inspiration, awe, loving kindness

What’s your favorite scent?

 

© Laurie Buchanan

Find me on Twitter @TuesWithLaurie
Find me on Facebook

Unleashed Imagination

Artists come in all sizes, shapes, colors, and age groups. They’re creative people who produce art: photographers, potters, painters, actors, chefs, fashion designers, writers, singers, illustrators, sculptors, musicians, and the list goes on…

Last year when I applied for a writer’s residency, I was asked for my artist statement. What?! I’d never given it a moment’s thought. They wanted to know the why behind my writing. So I got busy and crafted one:

Artist Statement — Laurie Buchanan

Writing to me, is what an empty box is to a child—a key that unlocks the imagination, transforming empty space into a race car or stage coach, fort or castle, spaceship or submarine. For me a blank page is transportation to a world of my own, one where anything is possible.

IMG_9441

Click to enlarge photo

Early on, the process of painting word pictures struck me as magical. Over the years that spellbinding practice led me from writing lyrics, to magazine articles, blogging, short stories, and finally to writing books.

A vehicle for transforming inner vision to outer reality, writing fills me with a sense of completion. Though I work quite deliberately, consciously employing my muse—brevity, concision—my unconscious is the one who holds the reins.

Never without a notebook or laptop, the concrete nature of writing—pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard—frees my imagination and provides opportunity for serendipity and grace to influence the finished product.

I didn’t set out to become a writing alchemist—an author whose words affect positive change—but as my portfolio developed and my reading audience grew, that description emerged.

One of the most wondrous aspects of writing is that each reader enjoys a different takeaway from the same word picture—therein lies the magic.

Have you had to craft an artist statement, mission statement, or perhaps a life statement?

 

© Laurie Buchanan

Find me on Twitter @TuesWithLaurie
Find me on Facebook

Alliance

Rather than make New Year’s resolutions, each year I select a single word to focus on in the upcoming year. In 2013 it was Peace. In 2014, Serendipity. Last year it was Flow. In 2016 my focus word is Alliance. That said, it’s time to unveil the secret I’ve been dangling…

MY BOOK IS BEING PUBLISHED THIS FALL!
Title and cover reveal coming soon
Stay tuned

Writing the book was the easy part. Since then I’ve learned that it really does “take a village” to birth a book. From publisher, to readers, and everyone in-between: manuscript critique, copyeditor, proofreaders, legal council, permissions, artwork, layout/design, book trailer, publicity, marketing, printer, distribution, bookstores, event planning, and author endorsements. I’m grateful to each person as they help me navigate literary waters.

Hands

An enthusiastic proponent of affirmations, this year’s positive supporting statement—I am in alliance with experienced people who have my book’s best interest at heart—targets my focus this year.

“It is probably not love that makes the world go around, but rather those mutually supportive alliances through which partners recognize their dependence on each other for the achievement of shared and private goals.” —Fred Allen

Do you have a focus word this year?

© Laurie Buchanan

Find me on Twitter @TuesWithLaurie
Find me on Facebook

Illumination

Last week we enjoyed an evening out with friends at the Egyptian Theater in downtown Boise where we attended the 10th annual Xtreme Holiday Xtravaganza.

This vibrant musical production raises funds for the Interfaith Sanctuarya collaboration of people who have joined together to shelter and serve individuals experiencing homelessness.

While waiting with the sold-out crowd for the doors to open, we enjoyed the myriad of LIGHT all around us, a reminder that even in the most challenging of times, so much good is possible in this world.

IMG_9341

Light is something each of us can be. Joined together, our combined light offers possibility, opportunity, and the promise of a better tomorrow.

I find it not-at-all coincidental that the word light is prominent within the word enLIGHTenment. There are probably as many definitions of enlightenment as there are people. Here’s mine:

“Enlightenment is recognizing that we’re all connected, then consciously living that realization—our thoughts, words, and actions an unshakable reflection of that understanding.”
—Laurie Buchanan

Do you let your light shine?

© Laurie Buchanan

Find me on Twitter @TuesWithLaurie
Find me on Facebook

Pennies from Heaven

The days bookended between Thanksgiving and Christmas were my mom’s favorite time of year. After the table had been cleared, the Thanksgiving leftovers put away, and the kitchen was set to rights, it was time to enter the “skoof” at the top of the stairs to retrieve the myriad of boxes containing mom’s precious ingredients for stringing lights and decorating the tree.

Walking toward the City Peanut Shop—one of our favorite stores in downtown Boise—I notice a penny on the sidewalk and smile. Not just an ordinary smile, but a gleeful smile of knowing.

IMG_9250

Many people who happen on a penny might think, “Someone has a hole in their pocket.” Perhaps others feel it points toward unexpected good fortune. Then there are those who believe that happening upon a penny is a sign from a loved one who’s no longer physically with us—Yes Laurie, I remember.

When was the last time you happened on a penny?

© Laurie Buchanan

Find me on Twitter @TuesWithLaurie
Find me on Facebook

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 7,840 other followers