And the Awards Go to …

This week, I’m interrupting my regularly-scheduled post to both thank a few bloggers and to pass my appreciation forward to a few more. I’ll be back next week with the kind of heartfelt rant you’ve come to expect from me on some aspect of the human condition.

And now, without further ado …

Every time I’ve been about to leave town for the past two months, my blog has been nominated for an award by my fellow writers from the blogging community. It’s lovely and touching to be recognized—as I’m sure these bloggers know—for a job that often feels like shouting into the void. You might start a blog for this or that reason—perhaps as a step toward book publication—but somewhere along the way it becomes a labor of love. Your name is on it. Your soul is in it.

When I was an angsty teenager, I wrote a poem with the line I was born with a voice in a world with no ears. I’m still angsty. I still have a voice. But now I know there are ears out there.

So today, I set aside suitcases, laundry, and pack lists, to say THANK YOU for reminding me of that Cammie Adams at Silent Screamer who nominated me for the One Lovely Blog Award; and Cindy Kolbe at Struggling With Serendipity who did the same for the Sunshine Blogger Award.

You ladies rock!

The One Lovely Blog Award                        

The Rules:                                                             

  1. Thank the person who nominated you.
  2. Share 7 facts about yourself.
  3. Nominate 15 bloggers and inform them of the nomination.

Okay, here goes.

Seven Facts about Me:

1) I hate talking on the phone. The whole disembodiment of it drives me nuts and strangely renders me tongue-tied with people I’ve known forever. If I can’t talk to friends face-to-face, preferably over a glass of Italian red, then I’d rather “chat” by e-mail.

Copyright 2018 The Doorpost Blog

2) I date my fierce attachment to social justice to a nursery school incident. At three, I was a year younger than everyone else in the class, and having no siblings (yet) I was used to dealing only with adults who, though they could be strict and demanding, were rarely capriciously unfair. In short, I was not prepared for bullies. So when John R. swooped down and grabbed the train I was playing with, announcing “You can’t play with this!”, I was gobsmacked. And furious. I seethed in silence behind a chair for the rest of that morning and many days after. I’ve never forgotten the burn of feeling helpless in the face of tyranny. It made me a fighter for fairness.

3) I come across as fairly gregarious, and I’m skilled at getting conversations going among people at parties, but I’m actually quite shy. That said, I’m wildly interested in people—what they do, why they do what they do, how they choose to present themselves publicly.

4) Related to #3, I’m forever making up stories about people I see in coffee shops, on the street, in the park. I practically imagined an entire novel once from the seeming tension I felt between two men sitting at different tables in a London Soho breakfast place. By the time I paid my bill, I had them planning a major terrorist op, waiting only for final instructions on their linked cellphones. I must admit, I felt a little jumpy walking out of that café and down the street even though I knew I’d made up the entire plot. My husband thinks this is endlessly funny.

5) I used to teach first grade. A wonderful age group. When you announce, “It’s time for math,” they actually cheer. Try that in fifth grade.

6) I make a marvelous lemon pie, but I’ve never been able to master getting the meringue topping to seal at the edges. I always have this sad little gap between the crust and the meringue after an hour.

7) I would define grace as a state of being where you can breathe normally through any crisis, no matter how difficult the situation or how long it lasts, while continuing your work and never giving up hope. I haven’t achieved that state yet, and maybe I’ll die trying, but it is what I strive for. 

My Nominees for The One Lovely Blog Award:

Cindy Kolbe:  Struggling with Serendipity

Lori Knutson:  LoriKnutson.com 

Neil Scheinin: Yeah, Another Blogger

Lauren Greene: Lauren Greene Writes

Leslie Kluchin: lesleykluchin.wordpress.com

Cyndi Pauwels: CL Pauwels At Large

Max Powers: Maxpower’s Blog 

Susan Ekins: Women Making Strides

Susan Roberts: Susan’s Musings

Rohit Byahut: BeBloggerOfficial 

Clarissa Gosling: My Musings About the World

Shan:  Getoutoftherecliner

Nina Romano: ninaromano.com

Kyrian Lyndon: Kyrian Lyndon, Novelist & Poet 

Davy D: Inside the Mind of Davy D

The Sunshine Blogger Award

And I quote: “The Sunshine Blogger Award is given BY bloggers TO bloggers who inspire positivity and creativity in the blogging community.”

The Rules:

1. Thank the blogger who nominated you and link back to their blog.
2. Answer the 11 questions the blogger asked you.
3. Nominate 11 bloggers to receive this award, and write 11 new questions.
4. List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your blog.

11 Questions for Me:

Q: What corner of the world are you from?

A: LOL, I never thought of the Great Lakes as a corner. I was born in Cincinnati actually, but grew up a mile from Lake Michigan before I escaped to the East Coast. The day I arrived in Boston, I went down to the North End and dipped my hand in the Atlantic. I had made it out. I had arrived in the place of my dreams. Now, I’ve been here longer than I was “there.”

Q: How long have you been blogging?

A: Almost three years now. My first post went out at the end of August 2015. Right after I built my website—talk about learning curves. Whewheee!

Q:Why are you blogging?

A: Like many bloggers, I have a book I’m seeking representation for. Though I had a good response on my initial query, several agents mentioned the lack of social media presence and specifically, the lack of a blog. So, I researched several dozen blogs, looking for a template of some kind. What did I like? What didn’t I like? I found my ideal in author Michael Gruber’s blog—a monthly essay of some real thought and merit.

Q: What do you like best about blogging?

A: What I mentioned in the intro to this post—a platform to speak in this world about things I consider important. Which is basically the human condition circa now. Blogging takes tremendous time away from writing fiction, it’s true, but I’ve realized over the past three years that it also strengthens me as a writer—of anything, everything. Watching the news on MSNBC, my husband often jokes that I need a “box” like each guest on the panel has. For now, my blog is my box. I don’t subscribe to the idea that authors should never speak up for fear of offending potential readers. Not speaking out when it matters is what allowed seven million people—Jews, Communists, Poles, gays—to be murdered in Hitler’s Germany. From where I sit, you don’t throw people under the bus to get ahead. And you don’t remain silent in the face of atrocities.

Q: Where would you like to travel?

A: My husband and I love to travel. All our spare (ha-ha) money goes into roaming the world. We always stop in London for some part of each trip because London is the home of my heart. Theater, bookstores, museums, galleries, parks, pubs—it has everything, and the people are lovely. We’re also very fond of Italy, the south of France, Paris, and Greece. That said, I would really like to spend time in Denmark, Ireland, and India. I mean, who wouldn’t want to visit a place called Pondicherry?

Q: What would you do if there was no chance of failing?

A: Ride a motorcycle. I’ve tried. I had a little Honda Rebel bike and a learner’s permit and all that, but I went to sleep each night imagining a dog suddenly running out into the road, the lurch and skid of the bike as I slammed on the brakes. So if I was guaranteed I would never have a motorcycle accident, and be splatted all over the road, I’d definitely be biking.

Q: Favorite season?

A: I’m summer baby all the way. Any day in a tank top and flip flops is a GOOD day.

Q: Favorite food?

A: Tough question. Probably some kind of veggie stir fry with shrimp or scallops in it–Chinese or Indian spiced. I eat yogurt every morning with half a sliced banana, a sprinkling of almonds, raisins, and sunflower seeds, topped off with blueberries and raspberries. I never tire of it.

Q: Favorite music?

A: I came of age with the Beatles. They were an amazing creative force. Their music defined a generation. As for a single song, I’m not sure you can improve on Bruce Springsteen’s “Born to Run.” And I have a decidedly soft spot for Mozart.

 

Q: Favorite book?

A: Wow, out of the thousands I’ve read, it would be hard to pick one. I don’t think you can express the power of longing to shape us, drive us, any more forcefully and succinctly and hauntingly than F. Scott Fitzgerald does in The Great Gatsby. That green light at the end of the dock—what it means—who doesn’t understand that? Who could forget it?

But if you want to talk writers, I still think Will Shakespeare sits at the head of the table. More than 400 years later, he still speaks to us. His plays have inspired countless retellings from West Side Story to Jane Smiley’s A Thousand Acres. Shakespeare catalogued with rare perception—and this is important, with mercy—the universal human experiences of jealousy, greed, fear, love, ambition. Who has done the depths of moral confusion better than the “To be or not to be” soliloquy in Hamlet?

Q: Favorite quote?

A:

“Keep walking though there’s no place to get to.

Don’t try to see through the distances,

That’s not for human beings. Move within,

but don’t move the way fear makes you move.”

(Rumi)

It sits in the place of honor above my desk. I try to learn from it every day.

My Nominations for the Sunshine Blogger Award:

Cammie Adams: Silent Screamer

Marion Ann Berry: My Name is Marion Ann

Lori Knutson: LoriKnutson.com

Lauren Greene: Lauren Greene, Author

Leslie Kluchin: lesleykluchin.wordpress.com

Cyndi Pauwels: CL Pauwels At Large

Susan Roberts: Susan’s Musings

Kyrian Lyndon: Kyrian Lyndon, Novelist & Poet

Neil Scheinin: Yeah, Another Blogger

Grant Leishman: grantleishman.com

Robin Lyons: Robin’s Research Blog

11 Questions for my Sunshine Blogger Award Nominees:

  1. What is one thing you have learned about life this past year?

2. What was your first paying job?

3. Who was your favorite teacher in elementary school, and why?

4. If you write fiction, which genre(s) do you work in? OR if you don’t write fiction, which genre(s) do you most enjoy reading?

5. If you were going to a costume party this weekend, who or what would you like to dress up as?

6. If you were to start a charity, what would be its purpose?

7. Which TV series do you feel has the best writing?

Bianca Sparacino

8. If you could be an animal for a day, which animal would you be and why?

9. Name three of your all-time favorite films.

10. What is one of the kindest things anyone has ever done for you?

11. What is one of the kindest things you feel you have ever done for someone else?

That’s a Wrap, Folks

There are many great bloggers out there, but everyone mentioned here is something special. To all my award nominees, I say: Keep blogging. Keep raising the voice that is uniquely yours because, as it turns out, the world does have ears.

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20 thoughts on “And the Awards Go to …

  1. I enjoyed this one a lot. I’m a fan of provocative questions and their responses. A great way to enliven a group when the conversation is flagging.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Michael, glad to hear from you. It’s been too long. Yes, provocative questions are good. I don’t want to know about favorite colors. I want to know about your motives, your 3 a.m. traumas, your SOUL!😄

      Like

  2. Hi Amy. I’m flattered. And I appreciate it.

    You’re one of my favorite people in the blogosphere, so please don’t be offended that I can’t follow through with the awards process. I did the awards follow-through a couple of years ago, and found that it took far more time than I expected. Because of that, I’ve had to decline the awards nominations that have come my way since then.
    I’m a slow writer. I need to use my writing time for my blog stories. (I mention this at the bottom of my About page).
    I hope you understand. Like I said, I appreciate your thinking of me. Thanks.

    Neil

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy to be one of your fave folks in the blogosphere, and I get the time issue. I didn’t rush out to complete the process with the first award–was going on a writers retreat, trying to get a post out, trying to finish a largish section of my WIP, get a garden in, etc. But the second award broke through my guilt barrier–it’s a thin barrier (got to fix that one of these lifetimes). Anyway, I promise you won’t burn in hell. Now, go write something!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Amy, you ARE The Sunshine Blogger! Yours is the ONLY blog I follow. I follow your blog because of the heartwarming rays of Sunshine of your keen insight and analysis of the issues of perpetual presence in our lives.

    I frown at the administrators of The Sunshine Blogger award. They have managed to create an assignment on top of a chain letter scheme for all of us. Perhaps I could just forward your fantastic blog about Time Poverty back to the administrators and ask THEM to answer my eleven questions about why they are creating such an onerous time sink for the members of the community when they could just give you the prize. Then you could turn right around and thank all of the inspirational bloggers you mention, and seeing your recommendations, we can all click on their blogs when life allows.

    I love the many blogs so true
    Yet lack the time to read all through
    So I listen to you is who
    Sunshine Blogger You!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for choosing me out of all the Blogosphere to follow. I am touched. And yes, it was a LOT of work to put all this together–the links alone, oy vey!–but as I explained to Neil (above), the second award broke through my guilt barrier, and there are some fellow bloggers I wanted to recognize, fully aware they might go, “Oh crap, now I’m expected to stop and deal with this?!”😄

      Like

    1. Yes, answering the questions was definitely my favorite part. The thing I really like about the writing community–and these awards (both the giving and receiving) reminded me of it–is how strongly we support one another.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Thanks, Amy, for nominating me for the blog award. I enjoyed reading this post and getting to know you a bit better. Plus, you took my boring questions and came up with engaging and humorous answers. I love your writing style!

    Like

    1. Thanks, Cindy. I had fun with your questions and was very happy to nominate you for the One Lovely Blog Award. Always good to share the blogosphere with you.

      Like

  5. I enjoyed reading your answers…and your questions even more! It was great to see you—though too briefly—this weekend. And wasn’t Fordham lovely?

    Ciao!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Glad you had fun with this post even though you’re not a blogger. Fordham was great–fun to put faces to some of the names Ed talks about. I so wanted to have more time to chat with you, but then you went and sat at the wrong table😄

      Like

  6. Thanks for nominating me, Amy! I loved reading your answers to the questions. I’m going to start working on my answers to post on my blog. It may not be today, but some time in the future. Your blog always inspires me. You are such a fantastic writer, and I’ve glad we’ve “met.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re very welcome, Lauren. I’m glad we’ve “met”, too. As for preparing your post in response to these awards, take comfort from the fact that it took me a “while” to put it all together. And trust that there isn’t a writer/blogger out there who doesn’t understand the word “timecrunch.”😉

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Thank you, Amy. I am going to try to do this. I’m so behind with my blogging because I’m working on another book, but I will give it my best shot! I wish I wasn’t so slow. LOL Yes, I am unbelievably slow with all writing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re welcome, Kyrian. You certainly deserve the award. As for “slow at writing,” I’m hearing that from so many writers. I’ve always felt that way myself, but lately I’ve been wondering if “slow” isn’t how most quality writing goes. Perhaps we’ve all been too influenced by those indie authors who write 3 books a years. As I said in my last post “everything takes as long as it takes.”

      Like

  8. Amy, Thank you for nominating Women Making Strides for the One Lovely Blog award. I feel honored and am grateful for your support. For me, the best part of awards is getting to know other bloggers like you. I enjoyed reading your responses to both awards.

    Liked by 1 person

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