How much Time do you Devote to Writing?

First let’s check the clichés:

 To Fill the bill—to suit a purpose, to satisfy requirements. This originally came from 19th century American stage. Poster announced a program, listing star attractions and then added lesser-known entertainers to complete the show (or fill out the bill). By mid-century, the term had been transferred to other areas—it acquired a primary sense of providing what was needed. Harper’s Magazine in 1890: “they filled the bill according to their lights.”

Mind the Store (to)—Take charge in someone’s absence. Dates from about 1900. It originally meant literally taking over the business of a store when the owner was temporarily away. Later it expanded to more general usage.

Broke Ground (to break ground)—To be innovative; to start a new project. Dates from 16th century. Literally meant to break up land with a plow. Figuratively used by late 17th cent. by the poet John Dryden and others. In 1830, De Quincey described Jeremy Bentham as “…who first broke ground as a pioneer…,” – this expression was already headed toward clichédom.

So, how many did you find?

I heard someone say if you don’t write at least two hours a day, you aren’t a writer.

I’m going to put my foot down and disagree. Lots of time I may not be actually writing (by hand or typing on computer), but I’m thinking about my story, getting ideas for either a story or characters. Sometimes I’m even going over my story in my head, figuring out more scenes.

There are all types of “writing” and ways to do it. My writing keeps my body and soul together. Makes me happy. I don’t write for money or fame—it would be nice, though. I just love to tell stories and, hopefully, entertain others.

I also believe the pen is mightier than the sword, so all of you who write, keep writing. You can either entertain others with stories, essays, poetry, etc., and/or you can impart knowledge. I pray that I do a bit of both.

Some writers commit to a certain amount of pages per day rather than the time. Stephen King, at one point in his career, committed to 10 pages a day. Some do five pages a day. Of course, it all depends on the writer how much time or how many pages one does in one sitting.

My time writing per day varies each day. Some days I’m writing all day, some a couple of hours, some, not even one sentence or word written.

Even if you only write ten minutes a day—you are a writer!

Enjoy, and

Keep Writing,



Your Write Time

What’s Your Responsibility as a Writer

Finding Time to Write

Speaking about how, why, what you Write

On Monday, September 11, 2017, I spoke to a group of church ladies at a luncheon about my writing.

But first,…

Last Clichés:

Quiet as a Mouse—Means subdued or hushed. This dates from the 16th century and probably refers to the behavior o a mouse that stops dead in its tracks at the approach of a cat. The mouse remains as quiet as possible—to avoid notice. Also used as still as a mouse—it’s been repeated over and over, outliving the still older version quiet as a lamb (14th Cent.)

Knock on Wood—Hope for good luck and/or avoid misfortune. In Great Britain used as touch wood. This phrase is based on superstition that rapping or touching on anything wooden will avoid a disaster, especially after a person has boasted. “Touch wood, it’s sure to come good,” is the proverbial saying. Might have an ancient religious significance, maybe from time of Druids, who regarded certain trees as sacred, however the exact meaning has been forgotten.

Blaze a Trail, to—To begin a new enterprise or find a new path. Comes from the practice of marking a forest trail by making blazes—spots or marks on trees made by notching or chipping away pieces of the bark. First used in 18th century America by scouts who marked new trails for the soldiers behind them. Used figuratively from the late 19th Cent. on.

All For Naught—All done has been in vain. A poetic word for “nothing.” Naught formerly meant “worthless” or “morally bad.” See King James version of the first Book of Kings (2:19): “The water is naught and the ground barren.”

A Mixed Bag—A haphazard collection of people, categories, or objects. Dates from the 1st half of the 1900s. A Behrend, Samurai Affair, 1973: “Representatives of the press, a mixed bag in age, but not in sex.” Means—journalists of different ages but all either male or female.

So, how many did you find?

Well, this week I put together a panel of four local women writers to speak at our church ladies’ luncheon. The program was 20 minutes, so to fill the bill, each lady had 5 minutes to tell how, why, what they write, and if religion has any effect on their writing. I had to mind the store and do the introductions for the panelists, even though I was one.

I write psychological thrillers; Bonnie Willemssen writes humorous essays and a column for the local newspaper, as well as working on a book about her adoption and how she met her birth family, and is writing a cozy mystery; Mary Maas writes pictorial history books from Nebraska, freelance articles, poetry and homespun essays, plus she published Sisterhood of the Wounded Breast,a collection of stories written by survivors of breast cancer; and Bonnie Papenfuss writes book reviews for the local paper and poetry.

After giving a brief bio of each speaker, I broke ground and told my story. What is my story? Check out my About Page. But I also told the luncheon that I have always made up stories. I was shy and quiet, so writing was my main way of communicating. That’s how I ended up with my first boyfriend in high school– a writing assignment in study hall where I sent a fictional account of me to a very cute boy. He liked it so well, we became friends. My first husband and I used to argue, but my arguments were always written on paper.

I wrote poetry (for myself only), and started writing mystery children’s stories for my son. I published a couple in magazines. But then, he grew up, so I started writing what I thought were adult mysteries. However, my editor says they are psychological thrillers, and I have an alter ego that she would not want to meet in an alleyway.

I took correspondence classes, joined writer’s groups and joined an on-line critique group while I lived in Baja Mexico during the winter months for 25 years. When I returned to the States, my writer’s group encouraged me to self-publish my novel Night Terror, which I begin in 1989 and finally published in 2013.

Anyway, when I finished my story, the other ladies told their stories. All of us have different backgrounds and write different genres, but our passion from writing shown through. Hopefully, we encouraged some of the women in the audience to start writing. I know we inspired a few, because they wanted to join our critique group in town.

So I say, until next time,

Keep Writing!


Back to Blogging

Sorry I’ve been away, but now I have my blog site reset and back in business.


Last Clichés:

Drum (something) into one’s Head—To force an idea on someone by means of persistent repetition. This has been used since the early 19th century. It’s compared to drumbeats over and over. John Stuart Mills used it in his Political Economy (1848).

Let’s Be your Own Person—To be in charge of your own actions or affairs. This expression is very old. Chaucer – who often portrayed strong women—used it in Troilus and Criseyde, c. 1374.

Sign on the Dotted Line—To indicate one’s full acceptance of terms being offered. The dotted line reers to where you put your signature on an official document. Dates from early 1900s. P. G. Wodehouse used it in Indiscretions of Archie, 1921.

Tear Your Hair Out—Show extreme grief, anger, or frustration. In ancient times it was customary to show grief by literally pulling at your hair. Practice was referred to by Homer in the Iliad, with reference to Agamemnon, and shows up in other ancient writings. Shakespeare used it in Troilus and Cressida (4:2), and Thackeray in The Rose and the Ring, (1855). Now, we use it for anger or vexation, and entirely figuratively.

So, how many did you find from last post?

Unfortunately, for over half the year, I’ve been quiet as a mouse on this blog post. I’ve been traveling, dealing with family issues, and other business disasters. Hopefully, knock on wood, all are in the past, and I can get back to my writing.

I’m going to try and blaze a trail and start, not only writing on my novels, but blogging and working on social media. I don’t believe my writing is all for naught, and as you know, I include clichés in my blog post. I hope you enjoy finding them and then learning about them in the next post. I will continue to do this and will try to impart writing knowledge, also. So, I will try and write once a week and give you a mixed bag of writing information.

Until next time, check out my novels, Night Terror, and Vanity Killed on Amazon, and above all else,

Keep Writing.