Friday, January 9, 2009


You know how I can tell this New Beginning & Self-Love attitude is working? I look out our living room window and think: What a beautiful scene, instead of my standard, "Yikes, I hate winter!"

The thing changing your life is it doesn't happen overnight. I've recently exchanged chapters with a writer I just recently met on a writer's list. I submitted the first chapter of manuscript number six. If you're a writer, you know what a big deal it is to show off your baby. It can open you up to all sorts of emotion turmoil. After doing this for 15 years, you'd think I'd be an old pro. I'm not. I still get butterflies. And while I'm waiting for feedback? Oh dear.

This time was different. Before I sent off the chapter I changed my internal monologue to Joylene, you know you can write. You also know you can't please everyone. You also need feedback before you go much further.

As a writer, being objective is tough. That's why God created critiques. He knew we'd need help. And as it turns out, my reader was very helpful. Not only did she see the potential, but she pointed out something I already knew, I tend to ramble in my first drafts. Too much descriptions. Too slow getting started. Okay, it did bug me that I've yet to write a perfect first draft (lol), but what was overdone or undone was was fixable. More importantly, what was right was my prose. And that's exciting because there was a time when my grammar would have been full of errors and my sentence structure all over the place. Sometimes I use too much backstory. But -- I've come a long way, baby.

Health-wise, I've also taken a big step: I've quit weighing myself. That may not seem like a huge accomplishment, but I did the nasty deed every single day for probably the last 15 years. Sure I missed a few days but we're talking maybe 7 out of 365. Does the word compulsive ring a bell? To go an entire week without weighing and more importantly not be freaked about it, is indeed a major life change. Whooray!

It's a slow process turning your life around, but I'm here to say it can be done. Every time a discriminating thought about myself enters my head, I vaporized it. I remind myself that I'm a survivor, I have a successful first novel, a wonderful family, the best friends in the world and an ole bod that is still kicking. What more could I ask for?

Okay, an interview on Larry King would be nice.


  1. I agree. I thank my body everyday for getting me this far in one piece. I even tell it I'm grateful for my legs, arms, feet, eyes, the sense of touch. I'm thankful I can hear. I'm grateful my healthy is above average. I seem to have a good immune system. All this makes for a very content middle-ager

  2. I agree. I abused my ears in the 60s, my back in the 70s, and my stomach in the 80s. Yet my body forgave me and today is going strong. Of course, I've done my bit by giving up cigarettes, coffee and white bread. I think you have to do your part if you want to enjoy life.

    I, for one, don't want to live 100 years, or even 80, if it means I'll be hooked up to machines. I owe it to my family not to leave them with that responsibility.

  3. Good points. I don't want my children burdened because I didn't have enough sense to take care of myself. I think that means my mental health too.

    Thanks for dropping by, Robin and Anonymous.

  4. Beautiful photos, Joylene! Our weather is back to more typical south coast rain and the snow is rapidly melting. It's harder to feel uplifted on a wet, soggy day but I still count my blessings regularly and they always outnumber the problems. Well, almost always. Glad to hear things are looking up for you.

  5. Thank you, Careann. It seemed to have something to do with my inner eye.

    Have a wonderful weekend.

  6. Hmm. Maybe I'll blow up one of those incredible pictures and tape it to the window on gray days. Beautiful winter pictures, Joylene.


  7. They must remind you of Vermont, Keith. I think there and here are similar.

    You download anytime!

  8. Yes, they immediately reminded me of northern Vermont in January. I loved Vermont in January.

  9. I love these photos you have on your Blogger. Beautiful.

  10. Hi Cherley. What a nice surprise. Thanks for stopping by. Yes, isn't it beautiful when the snow freezes on the trees. Not so this week. Lots of sun, which means muck.


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