Archive for the ‘Dreams’ Category
I would like to introduce Joei Carlton, an amazing woman I met through the BC Association of Travel Writers. I know you will find what she has to say fascinating.
1.This blog is about following your dreams. Can you tell us about a dream or two you had as a young girl. Has this dream(s) come true for you?
I have never been a believer in “The Bucket List.” As soon as I wanted something I would work towards that goal. As a child I dreamed of running away to exotic lands. When I finished high school and worked to earn money I left home. At 18 the only two places my parents allowed me to move to were either Florida (where I had an aunt and uncle) or California (where my sister Mona – five years older than I lived). I moved to California. Can you imagine living in Hollywood during the 60’s. What fun.
Another dream was working in law enforcement. I spent 3 years working as a private investigator in various jobs from undercover work, store detective, divorce or child custody cases, and then Wackenhut where I was put on the airlines as an undercover agent. From 1968 to 1970 I was on the LA Police Department.
When I returned to Canada I went from office worker to sales (my favorite) to owning my own very successful Wool and Needlecraft shop. I definitely lived my own dream. I loved being in charge of my own life.
2. What were some of your favourite books as a child?
I came by my love of adventure in the all the books I read as a child. I read every Nancy Drew Mystery and Hardy Boys book I could get my hands on. My love of horror books came from reading every horror comic book even if they gave me the most horrible nightmares.
3. When did you start writing and what motivated you to write.
My writing career was born out of the saddest part of my life. It had been my husband dream to go traveling. Willing to follow the love of my life anywhere he chose, we sold our home, sold my business while Paul quit his job and embarked on a life of adventure. We spent 2-1/2 years in a motorhome traveling through Great Britain, most of Europe, parts of northern Africa and continuing our adventure in the U.S and Canada. On the 26th of June, 1992 Paul had a heart attack in a German campground and died before ever leaving the campground. I was devastated but decided almost immediately to visit all the places we had planned together.
The year after he died I spent my summer working on 3 archaeological digs in England and a year later I spent 5 months overseas – a month in England selling my motorhome, 3 months in turkey traveling from Side in the south to Istanbul in the north and inland as far as Cappadoccia…..loving every minute of it.
When I returned home it was to a pile of mail – and on top was a magazine called Modern Maturity – from AARP. The back of the magazine asked “Have you been someplace where the sun is always shining and the phone never rings.” I set up my Smith Corona typewriter and pounded out a 3 page story that I sent off to the magazine. Needless to say I heard nothing back and eventually showed the story to my neighbor. She gushed over it – told me that the local newspaper called The Pelican Press would love it – so I repacked it and sent it. The rest is history. My first story became a 2-page spread with 3 pictures in an award winning newspaper published 2 days before my 51st birthday on February 9, 1995. They even spelled my name right.
4. Your books are hilarious, have you always had such a great sense of humour?
I have to say “yes.” I have learned that “sense of humor” runs in families and almost everyone in my family cracks me up. I have also maintained that you can’t live the way I do – 22 years as a solo RVer and 13 years as a full-time RVer – without seeing the funny side of life.
5. You are a woman of many talents, besides keeping everyone amused with your books, you make exquisite bookmarks, spiders and tree of life pendants. What prompted you to start creating these items?
I feel that my beading is a “guilty” pleasure. My mother spent many hard years of her life working in a factory in Montreal beading hats for pennies. I do it mostly for pleasure and it occupies a different part of my creative brain. I love the feel and the shapes and the various sizes and especially the colors – it satisfies every part of my creative mind. Not a day goes by that I don’t feel grateful that my eyes are in good shape and my hands are very steady.
6. What would you say has been a defining moment in your life?
Interesting question: What is my defining moment? I never thought of any part of my life in defining moments. I try anything that looks interesting and fun. I’m not a daredevil at all so I would immediately dismiss anything where I might get hurt physically or mentally but, as I approach my 70th birthday I’m starting to make different decisions about my travels and my writing and my career…….I’ll announce more when I know more…..but changes are acomin’.
7. You are a woman who travels solo, what advice would you give a woman who is contemplating travelling on her own?
What advice would I give a woman just starting out – your instincts will tell you when things are not right – leave when you don’t feel safe and never drive after dark. Find other travelers like yourself and don’t take yourself too seriously. A lot of fun to be found out here.
8. What are you reading right now?
For reading pleasure purposes I still love mysteries or family sagas or real-life adventure but what I’m reading now involves marketing my new e-books. I spent all summer long converting all but one of my adventure-travel books to e-books. Everyone’s Dream Everyone’s Nightmare is being updated and re-edited and will become a memoir rather than a travel-adventure and will be converted to an e-book in 2014 or 2015. It’s my favorite and I want to keep it going.
9. What advice would you give a young person with their entire life before them?
Don’t concentrate so hard on what’s going on around you that you miss something coming at you out of the corner of your eye. Passions change and always do something that you’re passionate about.
10. Any parting words?
I think I’ve said it all. Thanks for listening.
Sorry, WordPress won’t let me add pictures for some reason. Check out Joei’s website to see what she looks like.
This weekend I attended an art display featuring the work of Lea Price and her students. I have known Lea for over fifteen years and have always been impressed with her dedication to her art. She is seldom without a paint brush in her hand or an easel under her arm. She is another person whom I admire for not only following her dream, but sharing what she has learned with others. Lea has been a huge supporter and encourager of me and my creative efforts over the years.
This is her bio from her website where you can view more of her art http://www.leapriceartist.com/
Lea grew up in the United States, moving from the east coast to the west coast in mid 60’s. As an only child and being raised in an era of “children should be seen and not heard”, crayons, paper and pencils became her silent companions. Encouraged by both parents and teachers at school, she continued on her goal to become a productive, accomplished artist. Art Center College of Art and Design in Los Angeles attracted her based on its fine reputation and she majored in advertising illustration. After completing 3 years of study, Lea earned a Bachelor of Fine Art and headed north to Vancouver, BC, a place which she had visited during a holiday between semesters. Lea began working as a freelance illustrator and photographer mainly with advertising agencies and some notable personal clients including BC Forest Products and the UBC Botanical Gardens.
In the late eighties, Lea had the opportunity to further her studies and undertook three years at the Emily Carr College of Art and Design, completing a Diploma of Fine Art with a concentration in ceramics, three dimensional work and mixed media. It also gave her the confidence to begin to let go of the commercial art field and move more towards fine art, sculpting and painting. Lea also began working and curating in galleries in Vancouver, Delta and White Rock, amercing herself totally in the art world and observing the styles and techniques of other artists.
Today she is painting full time in-between teaching children and adults in both group and private lessons. She also volunteers with the South Delta Artists Guild, helping to strengthen the art community.
A few more pictures from the current exhibition at the Tsawwassen Longhouse Gallery which runs until September 29.
Lea is an avid gardener and an animal lover. Be sure to check out the “Friends” gallery on her website to see her whimsical animal portraits.
Her students are lucky to be able to learn from her and I consider myself fortunate to call this talented woman my friend.
I was invited to guest blog on Donna Martin’s On The Write Track site. Every Wednesday her theme is Writerly Wisdom. Today I wrote about not giving up on your dream to be a published writer. I hope you enjoy it.
Never Too Late To Become A Writer
A goal without a plan is just a dream.
Many of us dream of being a writer. After all we have tons of ideas. We spend years talking about it, fantasize signing our books, and envision people saying, “I read your book and loved it.” But there is always an excuse. We are too busy working, raising kids, keeping a house, volunteering, looking after grandchildren or aging parents; the list goes on. Then one day there is a bit more time and we say, “Now I’m too old to write a book. If only I had started years ago. It’s too late.” I have heard this many times.
I was one of those people. I had so many excuses for not sitting down and writing a book. I took writing courses and attended seminars, wrote a few short stories and submitted to the occasional contest, but the idea of writing a book was too daunting and I often felt I left it too late.
“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” – C. S. Lewis
Flat Ruthie and I had an amazing time this weekend. We attended Cirque du Soleil with my dear husband on Saturday evening. It was amazing. From the moment we saw the big tent we got excited. The performance was incredible, the costumes remarkable and the music astounding. We were transported into another world, one of magic, suspense, colour and incredible acts of human talent.
The performance we saw was Amaluna, based on Shakespeare’s The Tempest. To see some video clips, visit the website http://www.cirquedusoleil.com/en/shows/amaluna/tickets/vancouver.aspx This will give you a glimpse of what we experienced.
The entire evening was a lot of fun. We took the sky train downtown and then walked to the site. After the show we walked back to the station. Lady Gaga was in town for a performance and the streets were full of Gaga fans all dressed up. It was wonderful to be amongst them and to feel the energy. I stopped to compliment a couple of young girls dressed for the show. We picked up fish and chips on the way home to complete the evening. The tickets were a Christmas gift from me to my husband. It turned out to be a perfect gift as he thoroughly enjoyed the performance as well as the company of me and Flat Ruthie!
We don’t do things like this very often so it made it very special.
Is there anything you do once in a while that is extra special?
A wonderful blogging friend of mine, Chris King over at Bridges Burning has featured me in her Friday FITFS post and I feel so honoured. Check out her blog and see what she has to say about little old me and many other things. Her posts are always interesting and fun to read.
by Chris King
“Never let a day go by without a dream” Darlene Foster
My favorite series is the FITFS – that is Following in the FootSteps of my blogging heroes. These are all people I admire and in some way or really in many ways and would like to emulate them.
Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to a Supermegawoman at least according to her grandson -”My grandson calls me “super-mega-woman-supreme” and finding out just a little about this amazing lady confirms the moniker is accurate. Read the rest…. http://bridgesburning.wordpress.com/2013/01/04/fitfs-following-in-the-footsteps-of-darlene-foster-supermegawoman/
What a wonderful world of blogging this is. Thanks so much Chris!
Happy New Year to all my readers. Thank you so much for your readership, likes, comments and most of all, your friendship. You have been so encouraging over the past year, I could not have done it without you.
We celebrated the New Year by attending a dinner party at a friend’s house. Flat Ruthie came with us and had a great time. She was the life of the party. She enjoyed the appetizers a lot!
As it is the end of another year, it is time to see how I did with the goals I set last year at this time. I posted them for all to see on my blog http://darlenefoster.wordpress.com/2012/01/03/a-new-year-a-new-list/
1.Finish writing Amanda in England-The Missing Novel for publication this summer by writing a chapter a week for the next three months.
Check. I finished the book and it was published in August!
2.Find ways to make more money with my writing by setting up readings, writing magazine articles and entering contests.
Check. I did do some readings and wrote magazine articles as well as entered contests. I would like to do more of this though.
3.Blog at least once a week and double my subscribers
Check. I wrote 72 posts this year and went from 30 to 130 subscribers!! I had 10,000 views from 107 different countries. I am very happy with this result.
4.Learn to manage my social networking by improving technical skills
Check. I have learned some new things about social networking but would like to learn more.
5.Reduce the clutter in my house, computer and mind
Fail. I have not only failed to reduce clutter I have added more.
6.Spend as much time with Mom as possible in person and on the phone
Check. I call Mom at least twice a week and went to visit her in Alberta three times in one year.
7.Find a reasonable cleaning service
Check. I had to break my ankle to get a cleaning service but I now have one.
8.Meet other authors to share knowledge and support
Check. I have become active in a couple of local writer’s groups and met some amazing authors, three of whom have become mentors. I have also met many wonderful authors through my blog and other social networking sites. It is all good!
9.Take a trip to Europe
Check. Had took trip of the lifetime which included in Spain, Germany, Austria and Hungary as well as scenes along the Danube River.
10.Take time to breathe
Check. I was forced to take time to breath as I recovered from my broken ankle.
All in all, I am very pleased with how I met my goals from last year. OK, now for 2013 goals:
1. Reduce the clutter. I will take a page from Lorna at Tea Room Delights where she has decided to get rid of one thing a day for the entire year, for a total of 365 things. This may help me get this done! Today I got rid of the old calendars.
2. Complete Amanda in Alberta-The Writing on the Stone and have it published before the end of the year.
3. Take a trip to Alberta to do research for Amanda in Alberta with my eleven year old grandson.
4.Ensure my foot returns to normal.
5.Continue to look for more outlets for my writing.
6. Write more travel articles.
7.Contact schools to do readings.
8. Consider working part-time in order to spend more time on my writing.
9. Take a nice holiday with Paul (without injuring myself)
10. Practice kindness with everyone I meet, no matter how my day is going.
We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year’s Day.”
– Edith Lovejoy Pierce
I wish all of you a wonderful New Year with many accomplishments no matter how small. Just getting up in the morning or smiling at a stranger is considered an accomplishment in my book.
In my last post I shared some interesting (or not) facts about me. I happened to mention that I was a Jane Austen groupie and dressed up as Jane Austen for Halloween sometimes. Here I am dressed as one of my favourite people.
I also recently had an article published in travelsthruhistory about a time when I visited Jane Austen’s house in Chawton. Another one of my dreams come true.
VISITING JANE AUSTEN ON A MOTORBIKE
By Darlene Foster
Our delightful visit to England included Yorkshire and North Wales. Viewing the countryside with its stone hedges and ancient castles was made even more enjoyable as we hurtled down narrow roads on a motorcycle.
We had one thing left to do before flying back to Canada; deliver the motorbike to its new owner in London. We travelled down from York, stopped for lunch at a pub in Cambridge overlooking the Thames and watched the rowers practice. As we rode towards London, I was puzzled when we didn’t turn off the M1 taking us into Guildford, but turned east. Soon I recognized signs for Alton, Strawberry Hill, Steventon and Chawton. We were on our way to visit my hero, Jane Austen! My dear husband had planned this as a surprise for me.
Here is a question often asked at job interviews: If you could have lunch with anyone, alive or not, who would that be? I would answer Jane Austen of course. What would your answer be?
More to come!
A good blogging friend, Laura Best, recently posted an article about why potential writers don’t write the novel they always wanted to write. Since I am all about following your dreams, I thought it was worth sharing.
5 Reasons For Not Writing That Novel
by Laura Best
Some dreams are fleeting fancies, as wistful as pink cotton candy — “Oh, wouldn’t it be nice to write a book?” These dreams don’t really count because they really don’t come from the heart. They come from an idea that might have popped into our heads one day as we stood in the bookstore musing over the bestseller’s list thinking it would be super cool to see our name there. I’ve known people who thought they’d be able to whip up a story, no problem, but ended up discouraged after their first few tries.
Other dreams are of the niggling kind, they stick to us like grease, and no matter what they never go away. If we’re lucky we may be able to keep them at bay for a time, by allowing life’s distractions to keep us from taking action, because one of the scariest things in the world to do is to follow our dreams. I mean, what if we fall flat on our faces? Maybe even scarier—What if we succeed?
So here we go…..5 Reasons For Not Writing That Novel
1. I’ll start writing that novel when he kids are a bit older— A facebook buddy cited this one awhile back. It sounds like a good excuse. It’s up there with “the house won’t be messy as soon as the kids move out.” Hmmm, I believed that illusion for years, but now that the kids have moved that theory’s been shot to pieces. When my kids were small I knew that I had to have something in my life for me, something that defined me in some other way other than a mommy. Not everyone feels this way and I get that. But remember when those kids finally do move out you may end up asking yourself what am I going to do now? If you’re already writing, for whatever time you can allow, you won’t be asking that question. The answer will already be there.
2. I’ll start writing that novel once I retire…Many people say this, but here’s my theory, if we couldn’t find the time to start writing in the first 65 years of our lives it’s unlikely we’ll find oodles of time once we retire. Retired people are some of the busiest people I know. They just never slow down. They’re off vacationing and camping and having a grand old time.
3. I’ll start writing that novel when I have the money to take a writing course right now I’m barely making ends meet. Okay, I get the money thing. Years ago when we were first married there was barely enough money to pay the bills let alone dare to dream about spending money on something so frivolous. Here’s the thing… While writing courses are wonderful, not everyone has access to them. Here’s the other thing…You don’t need a writing course to get started. Think of all the great writers out there who wrote their books during a time when writing courses did not exist. It’s not impossible.
4.I’ll write that novel as soon I broaden my vocabulary because we all know that writers need to know the meaning of every word especially those twelve letter ones. When I first started writing I thought I had to wow everyone with my use of the English language—Wrong. Writing that is simple and easy to understand will resonate with many readers, your storytelling ability is far more important than twelve letter words. Learn to tell a good story.
5. I’ll start writing that novel as soon as I’ve experienced more of life so that I will have plenty to write about. Well, guess what? My two-year-old granddaughter is starting to tell bunny stories. They may only be a paragraph long, but she’s only two. Now if a two year old can come up with something, I’m willing to bet you’re selling yourself short if you think you need more life experience. People mistakenly believe that in order to write you have to have travelled and experienced the world, but some of the loveliest stories I’ve ever read were based on very simple themes.
There you have 5 reasons why would-be writers are not out there writing. A few of them worked for me in the past until I finally determined that nothing would stop me. The truth is there will always be things out there that will take up our time, but if you’re really meant to be doing something (and it doesn’t just have to be writing) by letting your dream fizzle away you’re not being true to the person that counts the most.The happiest people I know are the ones who work toward making their dreams come true. Be that person!
What reason do you have for not writing that novel?
Today I am participating in a month long blog hop called Self as Child promoting an exciting new concept called YouthTube!
What sparks a child’s dreams? Who encourages those dreams?
My grandmother gave me a colouring book filled with pictures of children from around the world dressed in traditional garments. I loved that book and dreamt of visiting those fascinating places one day as I coloured each page. Growing up on a farm in the Canadian prairies, we didn’t venture very far. My grade three teacher taught us about exotic places like Mexico. She gave us Mexican names, brought sombreros and serapes into the classroom, played Mexican music and served Chilli Con Carne. This further wet my appetite for travel. Miss Roll also discovered my vivid imagination and encouraged me to write my stories down.
Life truly does happen while you are making other plans. I got married, had children, worked full time, took correspondence courses, attended the occasional workshop and dabbled in writing. I filled a number of scribblers with short stories and ramblings over the years. The thought of being published was a distant and almost impossible dream. It didn’t look like I was going to see much of the world either.
But the dreams that were planted remained. I boarded a plane for the first time when my second husband took me to England to visit his family. You can imagine my excitement when I finally found myself in another country. Over the years we traveled back to England a number of times as well as to other fascinating destinations, includingMexico. With every trip, I became as excited as the child who held that international children’s colouring book in her hands.
Ten years ago a friend took a job in the United Arab Emirates and invited me for a visit. I jumped at the chance. What an amazing experience. I discovered a totally different culture, unique scenery and so much history. I fell in love with the place and the people. Returning home, I had many stories to tell. Although I felt compelled to write these stories down, they just didn’t portray the excitement and feelings I had while there.
Then one sleepless night I started writing the story from the eyes of a twelve-year-old. I based it on my experiences and added some colourful characters and an adventure. It was fun to spin my story in a way that kids would enjoy at the same time as learning about another country. My hope was that it would entice them to travel to other countries some day. Amanda in Arabia-The Perfume Flask was born and eventually published. My dream of being published came true.
Still pinching myself to believe I am a published author after all these years, I am so glad I followed my dream of travel, which led to a writing career. I will forever be grateful to my grandmother and Miss Roll for planting the seeds, and for all the other people in my life who encouraged me to nurture and grow those dreams. As adults, we must all support the young people in our lives to follow their dreams and encourage their creativity.
Youth-Tube is a new enterprise of Plum Tree Books for children 12 & under, that encourages early literacy and children’s creativity. We are offering a safe and constructive environment for children to share art, stories, favourite books, music, etc. This is a great opportunity for children’s artwork to be showcased. All the relevant info can be found HERE with details of submission guidelines. The submissions deadline has been extended past the original date of 15th May. So get your creative children or grandchildren on board!
Check out some of the other amazing blogs that have been taking part in the blog hop promoting Self as Child throughout the month of May.
Tues 1st May: launch on the event page:http://www.facebook.com/events/314596525276392/
Wed. 2nd – http://passionfind.wordpress.com Tonia Harris
Thurs. 3rd – http://thefairytaleasylum.wordpress.com/ Marta Pelrine-Bacon
Fri. 4th – http://www.shevata-cccole.blogspot.com C.C.Cole
Sat. 5th http://hiddenearthseries.blogspot.co.uk/ janet Young Beasley
Sun. 6th – http://thebumpyroadtopublishing.blogspot.com – Deb Hockenberry
Mon. 7th -http://ontheplumtree.wordpress.com – Niamh Clune
Tues. 8th – http://sooziebird.blogspot.com/ – Susie Bertie
Fri: 11th http://girlseeksplace.wordpress.com/2012/05/07/on-being-a-writer Brianna Soloski
Sat:12th http://optymyst.wordpress.com – JanCan / @OptyMyst – Not Quite Dead Yet
Mon. 14th – http://lorhainneeckhart.wordpress.com/ – Lorhainne Eckhart (The Choice of Giving)
Tues. 15th -http://www.Heartspoken.com -Elizabeth Cottrell
Wed 16th -http://loraneleavy.blogspot.co.uk/ Lorane Leavy
Thurs: 17th: http://thiskidreviewsbooks.com/ This Kid Reviews Books
Friday: May 18th http://aprilthomasbooks.wordpress.com April Thomas
Sat. 19th -www.jontybabe.blogspot.com Jonty-Babe
Sun: 20th: http://darlenefoster.wordpress.com/ Darlene Foster
Mon 21st – http://steepedinbooks.blogspot.com Georgia Saunders
Tues 22 http://marthamoravec.com/2012/05/too-fat-to-live/ Martha Moravec
I am very happy to be part of Plum Tree Books and the YouthTube initiative. Thanks Niamh Clune!