Posts Tagged ‘santa fe writers group’

Improv Storytelling & Creative Writing Workshop in Santa Fe

Friday, February 21st, 2014
My Saturday Improv Storytelling & Creative Writing Workshop in Santa Fe has filled up!
 
Now we are adding a Sunday workshop 3/16/2014- who is game? Contact me at b mayfield media at gmail dot com and I will send you the PDF with all details. Space is limited. Hope to see you in Santa Fe soon for this epic adventure.
 
And Peggy Pfeiffer of BadDog Design has 3 excellent social media workshops coming up. I’ve taken them. They are great.
Here is the link:
http://e2.ma/webview/qy7xh/95de554579c92f665f71f8de9183b629
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The Dwelling Prompt

Friday, April 12th, 2013

Hi Gang,

We just finished up Writers Group and today was my turn to bring the Prompt. So we Skyped me in and here it is:

Location and dwellings can be important characters in a story.

Before looking at the list, choose a number from 1 to 10. Then look at your number and let that dwelling style inspire a new story or a new bit for the book you are working on. This prompt yielded fantastic writings today. Deb says she will post her piece very soon.

Ok, below this photo is the list. GO!

Casita by the River, mixed media dwelling painting by Barbara Mayfield. 2013

Casita by the River, mixed media dwelling painting by Barbara Mayfield. 2013

 

  1. cave
  2. teepee
  3. airstream mobile home
  4. treehouse
  5. gazebo
  6. yurt
  7. seashore bungalow
  8. condo
  9. palace
  10. apartment in Paris

Write a story we won’t forget.

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Two thousand miles east

Tuesday, March 19th, 2013
Giganto yard sale was just part of the dismantling.

Giganto yard sale was just part of the dismantling.

This essay was written in response to Nadine’s most recent prompt: Treasures We Cannot Let Go:

Recently, I moved. Packed up and drove across Interstate 40, two thousand miles to the east.

I dismantled twenty years and twenty-two hundred square feet of house and belongings. Hint: I love my stuff. I do not have any Zen bones in my body. But for this move, I had to seriously let go of a lot of goods.

I sold two refrigerators, two wood stoves, an oven, a front-loading Sears washing machine that they don’t make anymore. Beds, cupboards and bookshelves, a vintage yellow kitchen table given to me by an old friend who had taste. Many rustic outdoor items – a Mexican table, an antique food warmer contraption, a heavy blue bench that has been in my studio since 1981. Four solid oak schoolroom chairs – antiques! -given to me by an old boyfriend in 1985.

I sold half-full gallon cans of my favorite colors of house paint – the colors in my adobe house in the Ponderosa woods, perched on the upward slope of the second largest mesa on earth.

I trimmed my holiday decorations from ten large boxes to six, and let go of my extra Christmas tree stand. Someday, I know I will need it because I have been wanting to have two trees for years. I sorted through my collection of rubberstamps and out of five thousand of them, I found twenty-five I didn’t need or want anymore.

I sold a blender and a juicer, and all my old sets of dishes and two tea kettles, and my five teapots.

I sold my 16’ ladder, my orange wheelbarrow, all my hoes and rakes – even the ones I’d painted in stripes and colors….and five boxes of tiles for mosaic-making. AAARRRGGHHH.

I sold off all my artist stretcher bars! My easel made in Italy that I bought in 1983 when I graduated from the Academy. I gave away and sold off oil paintings I’d done early in my career, that showed my first apartments and gardens, and paintings that featured my first tableware as a married woman. I have a thing for beautiful tableware.

I had a professional closet-raider come in. I traded her a vintage fiesta skirt that never fit me but was given to me by my dearest friend, who lives far away now. Ms. Closet-Raider insisted I consign and give away easily one-third to one-half of my clothing and about a dozen pairs of shoes I wish I’d kept to make shrines out of. And the hats! So many hats – feathers, straw, velvet  – from so many places I’ve been, and I look great in hats, and I looked really good in all of them.

The professional made me go through my cedar chest with the lifetime memory clothes in it, and this is where I drew the line in my own sandy mind. I pretended to agree with her advice and made piles to give away or sell. The satin maternity top my mother made me using a fabric printed with images of Chinese courtesans. All my cowgirl dresses –  small, flowery prints, long to the ankle –  that I bought when I first arrived in Santa Fe from the East. They haven’t fit me since 1997, so, of course, it would be best to let them go – what’s the point? My senior prom dress! White organza, made for me with hand-stitched pearls on the hem and the empire waistline, by a high school mentor (long story). My pink velvet junior prom dress! What’s the point of holding on to these things? They are not even costumes. They don’t fit now and they won’t ever fit me again!! She was so right.

Then we came to The Dress. The most important dress in the world, my world. The dress that is the color of the sea in Bora Bora. The dress I spent the most money on that I had spent on a garment, ever. The dress I bought in Italy, in Venice.

I would not even lie to the professional closet person about it. This dress stays with me. It fit me once; does not fit now; not likely that it will fit me ever again…I do not care!!

I was traveling alone in Europe and I had never travelled alone. I was there on the scholarship money I’d won upon graduation from the well-endowed Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. The only string on that prize was that I had to travel for ten weeks anywhere in the world I wanted to go. Everybody should be granted in this way, at least once in a lifetime.

At the time, I was the 31-year-old mother of two young sons. I dropped the boys off at their dad’s house on my way to the airport heading to Paris, first.

I was three weeks into my trip when I spotted the Aqua Dream in a tiny shop on Piazza San Marcos, Venezia, Italia. An angora knit, it fit me like a glove. Long sleeves, a double skirt just to the knees. So incredibly classy, sexy, Italian.

That I bought that dress – and I knew I would buy it the moment I saw it – so beautiful, so expensive, so sensuous – after years of shopping the racks at Goodwill Industries and “don’t be silly” and “where will you wear it” and “what do you need that for” and “later, later, maybe someday”…….. it was a turning point, a landmark.

I’ve worn it a few times. Mostly in the house alone. A few times with a lover. A few times out into the world when I felt very glad to be alive.  If I live long enough to get very frail and I die in one piece, perhaps I can be buried in it.

After the Closet Person left, I waited 3 days, then put all the other life memory clothes back into the cedar chest and the two strong mover guys easily carried it into the truck.

——end——-                                        Copyright 2012  Barbara Mayfield  All rights reserved.

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Writer’s Questionaire: Jill Koenigsdorf

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013
Phoebe and the Ghost of Chagall, by Jill Konigsdorf

Phoebe and the Ghost of Chagall, by Jill Koenigsdorf

SFWG REVIEW  “I just finished it. It was great fun to spend time with Phoebe and Chagall. I especially enjoyed biking through the Provence countryside and meeting Bernadette and the Bion sisters. I agree with Nadine that reading this book is like taking a trip to France.” —-Catherine Coulter, author, member Santa Fe Writers Group

 Jill Koenigsdorf , author of Phoebe and the Ghost of Chagall, answers the tough questions:

SFWG: Oliver Stone once said the secret to completing a script was “ass-meets-chair.” How do you get your a-s in a chair?

JK: I had a teacher who once said: even if you write only fifteen minutes each day, you get to feel good all day. That feeling of self-loathing when I DON”T write is a great motivator!

 

SFWG: Is there a food you write by?

JK: Lots of tea.

 

SFWG: Do you have a favorite writing spot?

JK: Wherever my desk is, I have to be able to look out a window. If there is a bird feeder in view, even better.

 

SFWG: People say there are two kinds of writers, those who outline and those who wing it.  What’s your process?

JK: Hmmm: I do a very loose outline if I am working on a novel. But most of my short stories and longer stuff springs from and image or a character. I usually have a dozen chards of paper with ideas/images that I scribbled down in the middle of the night surrounding my keyboard at all times.

 

SFWG: The best thing you can do for any writing project is…

JK: Turn the light on in the middle of the night and write down that idea. No, you won’t remember it in the morning.

 

SFWG: What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?

JK: I owned a flower shop for 24 years in Berkeley and that is my other love. It is important for me to do something physical that earns a wage. Too much sitting and I get whacky.

 

SFWG: What is your favorite word?

JK: Murmur

 

SFWG: What is your least favorite word?

JK: Fraction

 

SFWG: My favorite thrill is….

JK: …snorkeling and making out in cars.

 

SFWG: What’s your favorite shower song?

JK: La Vie En Rose, Cabaret, and You Don’t Know Me by Ray Charles.

 

SFWG: I wish I understood why…

JK: …..the banks are not getting into trouble for how they have screwed homeowners.

 

SFWG: I need to learn how to…
JK: …give the good stuff way more weight than the bad

 

SFWG: I’m often puzzled by…

JK: …the opposite sex

______Thanks, Jill!!_________

MacAdam Cage Publishers

AMAZON

Barnes & Noble

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Letters Written, Not Sent

Friday, February 8th, 2013
Prudy about to smack Oscar

Prudy about to smack Oscar

Am Skyping into Writers Group right now, and secretly posting because I have finished writing my piece and am avoiding starting another one.

Hope has brought the Prompt and snacks today. Because of the Skype thing, I do not know what the snacks are, but here is the Prompt:

“Have your character write a letter (or email!!!) they would never send; or they write one not intending to send it, but it is sent. OR a letter that was intended to be sent, but was somehow waylaid and never received.”

Have we not all done that dangerous thing and vented into an email and somehow the send button is pushed??!!! Agony!!! And movies have been made about letters never received.

In my piece today, Prudy has written a letter she will not send to her dad, while sitting in the school cousleor’s office after she smacked Oscar in the head.

Ok. Write your letter now.

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First Person Story Museum

Friday, January 25th, 2013
The Glory of Green Glass

The Glory of Green Glass

Barbara here. I live in Philadelphia now, so I like to give my writer pals in Santa Fe a head’s up about my next prompt. Plus I am bursting with excitement about it:

The First Person Story Museum is here in Philly. It is an aspect of the dynamic First Person Arts organization. They believe in stories like we do, except bigger.

For our next prompt, we will go to the First Person Museum website, find out what type of object is the story prompt that week, each write a flash piece on it, and then submit it to the museum for exhibition on the website right then and there.

You can go right now to the site and read wonderful short -short stories inspired by personal objects. And/or you could write and submit a story about this week’s Featured Type of Object: “From the Kitchen”.

How great is this! And I am not even making it up.

 

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Spare Time

Friday, January 25th, 2013
Kitchen shelf at my friend Hillary's house. She is so into china.

Kitchen shelf at my friend Hillary’s house. She is so into china figurines.

Susan’s recent prompt at writing group was “SPARE TIME”. So I wrote a list of my characters in the Mrs. Iptweet book and what I imagine are their favorite spare time activities. I think Mrs. Smithee writes letters to her relatives to be opened upon her death.

Now I share one of my very own personal Spare Time things: I love to take pictures of any oddball thing I see. Somehow noticing the quirkiness that happens during the course of an “ordinary” day – as if such a thing existed – reminds me there is no such thing as an ordinary day.

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Carl Sagan and book magic

Wednesday, May 16th, 2012
Oh this is so heartening to me.   Carl Sagan on the magic of books

Carl Sagan on the magic of books

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Word-Lovin’ Gal

Friday, March 23rd, 2012

Does everybody know about  Wordsmith.org? The word today is

“pug

PRONUNCIATION:

(puhg) 
MEANING:
verb tr.: 1. To knead clay with water.
2. To fill with clay or mortar.
3. To make soundproof by packing with clay, sawdust, or mortar.
4. To track by following footprints.
noun: 5. A footprint, especially of a wild animal; a pugmark.
6. A boxer.
7. A dog of a breed having a snub nose, short hair, wrinkled face, and curled tail.

ETYMOLOGY:

For 1-3: Origin unknown. Earliest documented use: early 1800s.
For 4-5: From Hindi pag (foot, step), from Sanskrit pad (foot). Earliest documented use: 1851.
For 6: Short for pugilist (boxer), from pugnus (fist). Earliest documented use: 1858.
For 7: Of unknown origin. Earliest documented use: 1702.
USAGE:
“For wheel-throwing, once the clay is pugged and wedged, it can be centred on the wheel.”
Edwin Wong; Going Potty Over Handmade Dinnerware; New Straits Times (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia); Sep 25, 2010.”There is the oddly delicate track of a leopard and the just-plain-scary pugs of a male lion.”
Mike Leggett; Tales of Life in the Wild; Austin American-Statesman (Texas); Aug 12, 2010.

“Sporting comebacks used to be associated with desperate pugs risking their final brain cells for a cheque desperately needed to pay off a bookie or a bar tab.”
Richard Hinds; Thorpe Brave to Meddle With Golden Legacy; The Age (Melbourne, Australia); Feb 5, 2011.”

Who knew?
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