Greatness: something you’re born with, or something you achieve?

Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.

– Mark Twain 

I was so inspired by this post on the blog ‘Of Undisputed Origin‘ that I just had to comment on it further here. It discusses what makes people great. Is it a trait some people are born with, or something we can all work to achieve?  Continue reading

January Questions

I found the image below on Pinterest and it linked through to a website about journalling and had a year’s worth of questions (click here to visit website). I thought I’d answer the January ones as I way of sharing bit more about myself. It’s a helpful writing prompt if anyone is interested. I’d love to know your answers.

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Those are the questions, and here are my answers: Continue reading

My Reading Challenge

Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counsellors, and the most patient of teachers.

– Charles William Eliot

Reading is a way to broaden your living experience, to travel to a new place, to meet a person from the past or the future, someone like you to empathise with, someone different from you to learn from. So this year I’m focussing on broadening my reading experience as much as possible and thought setting myself a reading challenge would be a fun way to do it. Anyone keen to join me? Continue reading

Why do you write?

In her book ‘Negotiating with the dead, a writer on writing’, Margaret Atwood pens all the reasons she can find for why writers write. It’s a rather extensive list. I wonder if your reasons are in there … many of mine are! Continue reading

Two-toned gift wrapping

Well Christmas season is over and we are straight into birthdays in my house. It’s mum’s birthday this week so I’ve been making plans. She is a crazy-obsessed Luther fan so I bought her the dvd box sets. At the moment she has them all on record on the tv and basically, it’s taking up valuable recording space for more important things … like the shows I watch.

Tip 1: Always a good idea to buy presents for selfish reasons 🙂 Continue reading

A year of possibility

“When you throw everything up in the air anything becomes possible.” 

― Salman Rushdie

I entered the new year much as the same as everyone else: I cheered, I drank, and I considered all the things I was going to do with this bright, shiny, clean year ahead – namely all the things I didn’t do last year. Continue reading

Perfectionism

Perfectionism is just fear in really good shoes.

– Elizabeth Gilbert

Watch Elizabeth Gilbert discuss her thoughts on perfectionism on Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday below: Continue reading

The Rights of the Reader

English cartoonist, illustrator and children’s writer, Sir Quentin Blake, best known for illustrating Roald Dahl’s books, turns 83 today! To celebrate this wonderful artist’s work, I’d thought I’d share ‘The Rights of the Reader’ – 10 rules every book-lover should live by! Continue reading

The interval between failure and success

Because no one is able to produce a great work of art without experience, nor achieve a worldly position immediately, nor be a great lover at the first attempt; and in the interval between initial failure and subsequent success, in the gap between who we wish one day to be and who we are at present, must come pain, anxiety, envy and humiliation. We suffer because we cannot spontaneously master the ingredients of fulfillment.

– Alain de Botton

Minimalism: more than owning less stuff

We really must understand that the lust for affluence in contemporary society is psychotic. It is psychotic because it has completely lost touch with reality. We crave things we neither need nor enjoy.

 – Richard Foster

Our souls are not hungry for fame, comfort, wealth, or power. Our souls are hungry for meaning, for the sense that we have figured out how to live so that our lives matter.  

– Harold Kushner

Having few desires, feeling satisfied with what you have, is very vital: satisfaction with just enough food, clothing, and shelter to protect yourself from the elements.  

– The Dalai Lama

For me, minimalism is about getting back to the essentials of life, the core of living. It’s about having and consuming only what I need.

I focus on the core of what I want to achieve. I want to be a writer, so I get a pen and a piece of paper and I write. I don’t spend time emailing or tweeting that I #amwriting. That’s extra. That’s more than the work. The minimum action I need to perform in order to be a writer is to write.
Continue reading