Michille: Chakra Yoga for Creativity

Chakras_mapFor the second year in a row, I’ve taken a seven-week sunrise chakra yoga class (6 a.m. – this morning, it truly was sunrise). Each week focuses on a different chakra, starting at the root and ending at the crown. We work through each one, trying to find it, connect with it, and make it function better to enhance overall health, well-being, and for me, creativity.

Here are the seven chakras with their associated body positions: attributes: color: and element.

  • Sahasrara: Crown: Spirituality, Universe: Violet: Thought, Ether
  • Ajna: Third Eye: Awareness, Intuition: Indigo: Light
  • Vishuddha: Throat: Communication, Articulation: Blue: Sound
  • Anahata: Heart: Love, Healing: Green: Air
  • Manipura: Solar Plexus: Wisdom, Power: Yellow: Fire
  • Svadhisthana: Sacral: Sexuality, Creativity: Orange: Water
  • Muladhara: Root: Grounding, Basic Trust: Red: Earth

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Michille: Rom-Coms Making a Comeback

Ayesha at LastIn August of 2018, the New York Post published an article making the case for the rom-com to make a comeback, specifically referring to movies. It was the weekend after “Crazy Rich Asians” hit the big screen and not long after “Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again” came out. The author’s theory is the change in dating practices to one that is more digital than face-to-face. Millenials are more likely to sit at home watching Netflix and eating ice cream rather than going out and doing something social.

In July, 2019, the Houston Chronicle posted an article about the new age of romantic comedies (saw this on Jenny Crusie’s blog). The new age referred to here is about rom-com novels (and some movies) that are much more diverse than in the past. I haven’t read Ayesha at Last or The Wedding Date but I have read The Hating Game and The Kiss Quotient. Continue reading

Michille: Preparing to Attend a Writer’s Conference

RWA2019_FINALLOGORWA National Conference is fast approaching. So it’s time to start prepping for it. Well, for many of our readers, anyway. Unfortunately, this is not my year to attend (sigh). But for those of you who are, now is the time to get the conference schedule, a top priority, and deciding which sessions to go to or which to avoid. If you’re pitching this year, add ‘preparing the pitch’ to your to-do list. I suck at elevator pitches and tag/log line type descriptions so creating those is torture. In order to make sure I’m not forgetting anything, I googled to find some internet advise. Continue reading

Michille: The Courage to Write

The Courage to WriteOne of the things that several of us 8L have said over the last months is that we won’t buy anymore craft books/take anymore craft classes until we have finished what we already have. In that vein, I did eeny-meeny on my craft bookshelf and chose The Courage to Write: How Writers Transcend Fear by Ralph Keyes, almost at random (because I have too many to choose from). The very first chapter is called Elements of Courage. It made me feel strong just reading that. There are some funny sections throughout the book like Page Fright, That Naked Feeling, Counterphobia, and Draft Dodgers. Continue reading

Michille: The ‘It’ Books of Summer

The Wedding Party

‘Tis the season for guilty pleasures. The summer read. The blockbuster movie. Maybe it’s just me because my day job is in the education field (although I’m one of those dreaded administrators who work all year instead having the summer off [i.e., reserved for various therapies to recover from teaching]). But. I pulled my head out of my current grant deadlines and looked ahead to summer fun.

The New York Times recently published an article about The ‘It Books’ of Summers Past. I’m embarrassed to say that I’ve only read one of them. Ever. And it was the 2013 ‘It’ book Crazy Rich Asians, which I read in 2019 and found very entertaining, but as we are all story wonks of varying levels, not particularly well written in a strictly fiction craft sense. Of course, we’ve also discussed all the ways writers can ignore craft rules and still tell a wonderful story. I did see the Primary Colors movie, and of course, Love Story (which I will never watch again or read – it’s just too sad, because, spoiler alert – she dies [no HEA]). Continue reading

Michille: Beach Reads 2019 (and before)

The Kiss QuotientWith the holiday weekend approaching, lots of folks in my area and around the country are heading to the beach. For our non-US friends, Memorial Day in the US is a federal holiday for remembering and honoring people who have died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. It is currently observed on the last Monday of May, which means a lot of Americans have the day off (and head out of town or have a cookout). With beaches on the mind, I was thinking about beach reads for this summer. I’m not heading out this weekend but will probably have some time to put my nose in a book. I’m looking forward to the second in Kevin Kwan’s series, China Rich Girlfriend. I read the first, Crazy Rich Asians, recently and, while not particularly well written, it was entertaining so it might be that one next.

Some of my recent reads that I can recommend are: Continue reading

Michille: A Pill for Writer’s Block

pills istock-168763163Seriously. There’s a pill. I heard an interview with Robert Anthony Siegel on NPR Radio in which he discussed a one-man open-label placebo trial he’d undertaken with John Kelley. Siegel is a writer and Kelley is a psychology professor at Endicott College and the deputy director of Harvard’s Program in Placebo Studies and Therapeutic Encounter, a program devoted to the interdisciplinary study of the placebo effect. The goal was to get rid of Siegel’s writer’s block, and the panic attacks and insomnia that went hand-in-hand with the writer’s block. The interview was a discussion about the research and subsequent article in the Smithsonian Magazine – “Why I Take Fake Pills: Surprising new research shows that placebos still work even when you know they’re not real.” Continue reading