Thursday, August 1, 2013

The Evolution of Style and Voice

     My writing is simple.  Way too simple.  I am not daring enough, and I don't always use my own voice, which I find did not change much over the summer.  I think that it
my writing has changed , but I believe what might be holding me back is a fear of opening up too much raw pain in my writing.  in the past all of my writing has been journal writing which my husband hopes I burn before I die.  There was a lot of angst in those journals and not a lot of joy.  I believe I used them as a tool to survive being a young mother without a lot of money or love in my life.  I spend a lot of time angry at my husband for the situation I found myself in.  There were pure moments of joy, but more often sadness.  I believe that the writing that we were asked to do this summer was based on wonderful exercises and prompts, but I feel that I may have holding back because I didn't want to let go.
     My style is in it's infancy and I need to make it grow up, I note that I have a terrible time with making sure that I am using consistent tense.  This is odd since I spend a lot of time instructing students in how to avoid confusing tenses in their writing.  As far as conventions of writing go, I don't have a hard time with spelling or vocabulary, but I do flounder a bit with grammar and that is very embarrassing for a teacher to admit. 
     Words just fly right out of me, but when I stop to look at what I have written it's disappointing and I judge myself harshly.
     I am going to make a huge effort to continue writing and blogging and getting over these issues.

Writing That Scrapes the Heart

Writing That Scrapes the Heart

     Dark outside, raining, dinner finished and the phone rings.  My daughter, on the phone, informs me that she is in Lebanon at the hospital with a baby that she doesn't know what to do with.
     My daughter is a sophomore at Miami University and should be in her dorm studying or something.
     "What baby?" I ask. "And why are you at the hospital?"
     "Belinda went balistic and overdosed on crack and I am at the hospital with the baby and the social worker is talking at me about what to do with Savannah" said my torqued up daughter.
     "Ok, who is Belinda for starters?"  I quickly ask.
     "I have been travelling back and forth to Lebanon since I ran into her in a Subway there ?  She doesn't have any money, or a house, she's a crackhead, and she has a baby.  I just help her with the baby and get her food now and then."  is her breathless response.
     "But, you don't have any money either." I reply.
     "Could you just get Dad and come over here and help me?" she cried.
     "On the way."
     Driving over to the hospital my husband told me in no uncertain terms that we were not going to take a baby home.  As if that was my intention.
      At the hospital we were greeted by a desperate looking Alison holding a baby, Savannah.  With authority we asked to see the social worker that had spoken with Alison about the baby.
     A youngish woman with brown hair appeared and explained to us that Belinda had quite a history and they were going to have to go to trial and try to have Savannah removed from her care.  When I asked her why she had questioned Alison, she said that they just needed to get as much information about the events of the evening as they could.
      That evening I saw a side of my daughter that every mother of teen girls hopes to one day see.  She was caring and kind to the baby and Belinda and respectful to the social worker.  She had grown up.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Inside Me

                                                       Inside Me

Inside me is Mother Nature's friend
   who struggles with making good environmental choices.
Inside me is a vegetarian
   who loves a great cheeseburger.
Inside me is an animal lover
   who doesn't think twice about killing a spider.
Inside me is a  bird lover
   who thinks starlings should be shot.
Inside me is a recycling genius
   who has been known to use paper plates for parties.
Inside me is an organic gardener
   who will treat roses with systemic insecticide.
Inside me is an opponent of genetic modification
   who loves her golden doodle.
Inside me is a person who wants to do right
   who is really just a human struggling with choices.

Where I Am From

Where I Am From
                 Deb Covey

I am from my grandmother's lap and my grandfather's alcoholism.

I am from having a brain that questioned the rules of a small conservative town that was diverse-less.

I am from a very generous, caring  family that thought I was a weirdo hippy.

I am from a high school where freshman initiation was applauded and included debasement.

I am from a town of girls that thought having a boyfriend was more important than academics.

I am from a college that embraced me, even when I turned my back on it to have too much fun.

I am from the school where I met the guy who changed my life.

I am from young love and yearning that went too far.

I am from young motherhood and marriage where I learned to "deal with it".

I am from a marriage with a husband that works too late and loves too little.

I am from children who paid attention and had good manners and loved their mother with all of their hearts.

I am from the heartbreak of children moving away to the big city.

I am from the worry of the mother of a gay child.

I am from reinvention in my later years.

I am from a father who empowered me by his love and left me to die.

I am from all of the women before me who made me who I am.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Memoir Writing

     Preparation for the trip was enough to jar me senseless.  Why is it that there is always twice as much work to do prior and post travel for work.  Considering I am a fairly organized person I should be able to get this easily.   Maybe it was the excitement of the chase, or the vision of freedom from dull work-a-day business at hand.  Fear might be a factor as well.  I pulled up my bootstraps and got ready to embark on a mission that five years prior I would have never imagined for myself.
     The plane smelled awful, the seats were tight, and the lady next to me was a clown.  Really, she was a clown. She had her trunk packed and ready to go to her own convention in New York City. Unaccustomed to wearing suits here to fore I wasn’t quite sure what to do with the jacket while on the plane.  Never in my life time did I imagine that I would be travelling to New York, alone, for the world’s largest book convention, Book Expo.  The trip was a short two hours, that clown was interesting!  We were served lasagna, yes that was when they served you meals on planes and your luggage got to ride for free. When we weren’t talking, I looked around the plane to enjoy a little people watching, I love to watch people.  Although this was only 15 years ago it was before we had to check out all of our “plane neighbors” to be sure they didn’t intend to send our plane into a tower or oblivion.  It was a simpler time.  As we began our descent I began to get really anxious, ok, I got to the airport and got on the plane, but now how would I ever find a taxi and get to the hotel?  And where on earth was the hotel, I began to pull my little map out so that I could feel somewhat in charge of my travel.
     Leaving the plane I noticed a stream of people walking toward something quickly, maybe baggage or food, I decided to follow because I didn’t know what else I would do.  We did end up in Baggage Claim so all was well.  Having grown up in a very small town, I don’t know a stranger, so instead of walking around and searching the huge, gray airport to look for a taxi, I just asked someone.
     Entering the cab I felt like I was stepping into someone from Ghana’s home.  The air was tinged with the smell of a forward incense and decorations abounded.  Please take me to Chelsea I said, here is the address.  The smile that met my request was so sweet and open that I felt at ease immediately.  “Are you here for a vacation?” my driver asked. “No, I’m here for a business trip.” I returned, as I felt little shivers all over me.  Was I excited or nervous, or both I asked myself.  Who would have dreamed that my love of books could have brought me to this moment?  Sure, I felt trepidation also I was very proud of my accomplishments.
     My bio might have read; first decade - small town girl meets boy and after graduation gets married, has three children, and becomes a crazy-stay-at home mom; second decade- kids want to go to college mom has to work, what will I do with myself?  I love reading so how about working in a bookstore? Great, applied for a job, was hired, had a good work ethic and gift for matching the right book with the right person.  Rather surprisingly in six months I became the buyer of half of the books for a 50K title store.  I loved it.
     Settled in to my hotel I decided it was time to hit the streets and find the Javits Center and Book Mecca.  Walking was my choice of transport because I wanted to see everything, and do everything.  At the Javits, on the escalator looking down on the publishers wares and the hundreds of other book people I thought, wow you really made it.  I have to confess to a little Mary Tyler Moore moment there.  I surprised myself and everyone who knew me as the quiet stay-at-home mom from a small town.
     Decade three: Amazon kills the books business and I again have to reinvent myself by asking myself what I loved most about being an executive.  Was it the money, the travel, or the suits?  Was it free dinners, conventions, free books?  No, I am, and always have been driven by a love for reading.  A few zillion courses and I will soon have my reading licensure and my Masters of Literacy and I couldn’t be more proud.

Monday, June 10, 2013


caring, stubborn, tenacious, positive
wife and mother who deeply loves her family
lover of big people, little people and dogs of all sizes
who feels happy, sometimes sad and mostly calm
who fears death, cancer, and highway driving
proud to have accomplished a major career change
who would like to visit France, Italy and England
resided in Springboro, Ohio

Thursday, June 6, 2013