Monday, May 12, 2014

Shifting perspective - Why I write




I am frowning at the back of my camera. Remi, who has already passed ahead on the trail, stops, sees my expression and asks, "What is it?" I blow out my lips in frustration, horse-like. "Well...it's just that...sometimes I just can't get it. I can't capture what I see." "Show me." I do. Three pinecones lolling from skinny branches. "Do you want the background to be blurry?" That's it. "It doesn't look like anything if everything is in focus," I whine. "I want them to float." "Well, then you need to work on your depth of field," he responds. I practically slap my forehead with the my palm. I always forget. Photographing in manual is interesting because you get to choose. I can shift the focus. 



I am often asked about the title of this blog, usually half-jokingly, half-hoping, "You aren't really lost, right?" I get a lot of comments about being "found" too. But the truth is, when I launched into this particular form of writing coming up on four years ago, I really needed to find my way. I was coming off the most difficult year of my life - my Dad had died, we had to sell our beloved home and gallery due to the financial crisis - one that had crumbled the French press and left me without work as a travel writer. I was truly floundering at sea and floating in pain and worry, without direction.


I give all credit where credit is due. Remi, my wonderful companion, the man who knows what I am feeling from the next room even when I haven't said a word, floated out the suggestion that I start a blog. I will admit it again as I have before that I scoffed outright. At the time, I felt that bloggers were simply folks who couldn't cut their teeth in the professional world of the press where I had come from - similar to the ridiculous expression, one that makes my blood boil now, "Those who can't do teach." But he insisted, gently. And one day, a good a day as any, I heard him and realized that I could type with my inactive hands and by doing so, I could change things for myself by simply being creative.



Writing has it's tides and the irony isn't lost on me that I was asked to participate in a blog tour by my friend, the truly lovely Jeanne Henriques at Collage of Life during a time when the waves are far from the shore. "Rien dans ce monde n'arrive par hasard." So I have been taking steps back, quiet ones, all the better to get a better picture of how the machine works. I have already had the distinction of being interviewed by another friend, Judith Ross, about my process as a blogger for an article Talking Writing Magazine. What is interesting to me is to see how that too has shape-shifted as of late and even better, to pass on that baton to three incredible women.

So on to the blog tours standard questions:


What am I working on?

Whew, that is a knee-slapper. What am I not working on? I realize that this question is meant to be answered in terms of "projects" - a word that makes me press my mouth together in a flat line of consternation - but why not answer honestly: "on rebuilding my self-confidence" "on sharpening my eye" "on trusting"...true, I would eventually like to build a book out of Lost in Arles but it is a slow process. I have nothing but great admiration for those who have already done so. This chapter of my life in Arles is nearing to a close, so I think that the right moment to culminate my random pieces into something whole might be at hand. I love the idea of having something solid to hold in my hands, especially as I have been struggling with the ephemeral nature of the internet as of late. 



How does my writing/work differ from others in its genre?


If you have read this far, you have probably already gotten a taste that I don't sugar-coat what I share. Yes, this is Provence and I am so proud to be able to celebrate its beauty but my life is not perfect, no one's is. I would rather be honest about that or not write at all.

I am also a stickler for only creating my own content, visually and verbally. There aren't that many of us out there that do that these days. Lately, I have gone back to something that I used to enjoy a lot - which is weaving the texts and images together so that it becomes - well, hopefully - a joyful interplay.


Why do I write what I do?

I was taking tea with Vicki Archer - one of the smartest women that I have the privilege to know - and she told me, as she had a year previously, "You really need to know why you are doing this." "I do it for me," I responded immediately, also for the second time. Remi has been instrumental in reminding me to stay true to my own interests from the beginning. "Don't try and please others," he insists. It took about a year for that to sink in without my reacting defensively and now it is my Modus Operandi. The moment when I sit down to write is a glorious one for me, one of the moments that I feel the most "me" in my life and I never take that freedom for granted.


How does my writing process work?

I remember one of the questions that surprised me in Judith's interview was, "Do you ever feel that your photographs are a crutch?" I wasn't quite sure what to think of that at the time but currently, my photography - or more importantly, the act of seeing so as to take them - usually leads the way. I mentioned earlier that I have been at a loss for words as of late but I am never at a loss for photos. They sit in files on my desktop, grouped into subjects. Often when I am working on them, an idea might spark of how I could use them, preferably not literally but sometimes that is just what needs to happen. I will prepare them the day before I sit down to write and then will clear my head while taking the dogs on their morning walk. I write really, really quickly once I have my launching off point. As Jeanne touched upon while introducing me, music is madly important to me. Today, I have been listening to London Grammar at high volume - the headphones in my ears to focus the sound and to give Remi a visual cue that I am "not here." Usually I will listen to one song constantly on repeat - lately it has been "Wasting My Young Years" by the same group. I edit, reread what I have until I am just on the verge of getting sick of it, then hit "publish" before I do so. But all of this is a fast process, always on the same day. I know that each blogger has their own workings and the "why" of mine serves me as fuel.


And now, the good stuff. 

The writers that came to my mind have all been mentioned here in one form or another. And while their stories, efforts and lives are all quite different, they are linked - for me - with one word: authenticity. Suze is one of my soul sisters, I feel linked to her even though we have never met. She constantly opens the doors in my heart and does so with such ease and grace. Loree is the shy poet who doesn't yet consider herself a writer and yet once you grasp on to her evocative prose, you might beg to differ. And then there is Nancy-Kate, who regularly makes me bark out loud with gales of laughter that are spot-on and yet never mean-spirited. I know from when I was acting that, "Dying is easy, comedy is hard." There is an effortlessness in all of these women's writing that is a joy to take in and that can most certainly be said about my host, Jeanne. You can't help but want to be her friend, to want to spend time in her world. She is deeply loved in the blogging community and her generosity of spirit, charm and wit are only a few of the reasons why.


Suze is sitting in front of a winking cursor wondering what the heck to write about herself. She has experience as a copy editor, columnist, educator, wife and mother and finds writing about herself in third person kinda fun. She's listening to Soft Cell's 'Tainted Love' on Sirius and her plus-size tortoiseshell cat just made a strangely self-satisfied sound as she yawned. Suze recently accepted an offer of representation from John Cusick of Greenhouse Literary Agency for her humorous contemporary Middle Grade novel, KYLE CONSTANTINI FINDS A WAY, and fully expects soul-numbingly wonderful things ahead.



Lorna Dykstra (or Loree as she is known to her circle of friends) is a  pharmacist by profession. By day she works in a multi-national pharmaceutical company and by night you will find her at her desk doing what she loves best - writing. Home is the island of Malta, right in the middle of the Mediterranean sea, where she lives with her American husband and eight-going-on-eighteen year old son. She describes herself as a wife, a mother, a daughter, a dreamer, a hopeless romantic, an endless contradiction. Lorna loves the NW wind, grey skies and rough seas, golden sunsets and ancient, winding streets.  She also loves chocolate: the dark and bitter kind. Her other passions are reading, photography and baking. A bit of a gypsy at heart, she is always on the look-out for the next adventure that will take her beyond the shores of the small island on which she lives. One of her dreams is to visit all the capital cities of Europe and the fifty American States. Lorna writes more or less weekly on her blog Stories & Scribbles and occasionally on her second blog Snapshots of an Island.


Nancy Kate Ryder is a Tennessee girl who managed to find her way to Grenoble via New Zealand and Australia.  Now she is happily (most of the time) installed in France with her French husband and writing about all of her various and sundry cultural mishaps on her blog Bread is Pain.  She is also in the midst of editing her first novel, a comic romance, which is a task she looks upon with both loathing and affection.  In addition, she has a passion for eating cooking and occasionally throws a new recipe up on a food blog: Bread is Pain Food…apparently she has been unable to come up with more than one blog title.  She loves long walks on the beach, drinks at sunset, and self-deprecating humor. 


And now for my host. Jeanne, I am truly honored that you asked me to participate in this tour. It is a great, great compliment coming from such an amazing woman as yourself.


Jeanne Henriques is wife to a nomadic husband, mother to four independent children, one well-travelled dog and is the writer behind the blogs, Collage of Life and Expat Diary Viet Nam. Over the past 26 years, her family has packed up and moved between America, Australia, New Zealand, UK and Vietnam. She has some ideas of when and where the Expat Express will go next but can never be certain. Jeanne recently added “empty nester” to her repertoire with her four children now living between America and Australia. She looks to the years ahead as an opportunity to explore new horizons. She hangs her hat and camera part of the year at Chateau Mango in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam and the other half at Tahilla Farm in the foothills of the Monadnock mountain range in New Hampshire. She writes to tell the tale. You can follow her adventures on her blogs, Collage of Life, and Expat Diary Viet Nam. Jeanne can also be found chatting on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.



And there we have it! I will now pass the baton on to the three lovely ladies and they will nominate three writers in kind (Suze the rebel has more that she is going to ask!) while responding to the blog hop questionnaire. Thank you for reading, thank you for being here and I hope you enjoy discovering these wonderful worlds of words...

With my Very Best from Arles,
Heather

69 comments:

  1. Oh Heather…I knew I was going to love this post even before opening it! Thank you so much for participating, I am so so glad you did. Like me, you probably had a few "good thinks" about these questions. Seemed easy enough at first glance but when you start digging deep you have to ask yourself a lot of questions,possibly ones you have been avoiding for some time. I have since added to my journal collection ( I love doing that) and promised to write everyday..whatever and whenever I feel like it. I am going inside and outside the journal and highly recommend it if you still need to sift through thoughts.

    I did as advised and made myself a Vietnamese coffee to slowly take in your post. I love your honesty Heather…it is what drew me to you in the first place and keeps me coming back. Thank you. The music..is perfection. As for wise Vicki…we have had a similar chat. She has a way of "snapping' you out of those little corners we go into. I love her clarity and purpose and happily follow her advice..even though it can take a year or two to get my act together.

    Long message..but a post that deserves it. Thank you for sharing Heather…as always, I love your style. With my last sip, I sign off from Tahilla Farm. A place I hope you will be able to one day spend time looking out to the mountain with a pen in hand ( or keyboard).

    Sending you warm wishes from Tahilla...Jeanne xx

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    1. Thank you so much Jeanne. For your post, for asking me to do this, for your lovely response here...Yes, I know that those questions have been nagging at me since I accepted. I kept pushing them away but knew that they were turning under the surface. And with some of the things that have been going on in my life I have wondered if I should keep going, which brought me back to those questions and to Vicki's solid statement. I had to smile, you put it perfectly - a "snap" back to my senses! And we shall see how long it will take me to get "my" act together!

      You know, I am not travelling like I used to but I truly have the wish in my heart to make it Tahilla Farm. And as much as I know that we will have so much to talk about, I can equally picture us walking down that lovely brook that runs through it without saying a word.
      Gros, gros bisous,
      H.
      PS. I have been writing in a journal again for the first time in years...

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    2. A lovely thought Heather, to walk alongside the brook with you. There is a spot, where two could easily sit and write, while listening to the water flow by. I know you would love it too...xxx

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  2. Wow - what a beautiful, beautiful post! As I re-skimmed your article before responding (as I had some interruptions), I noted the, "and now the good stuff" line - no offense to the wonderful bloggers you mentioned, but what lay before is no chopped liver! So much: beautiful photographs (love the water beads in the leaf that look like peas in a pod) and so much insight into your process and your life. It's funny, the ideas of your photographs as a "crutch" or "creating your own content" - to me it's obvious that you're a "double threat" (to use musical theater language of being a triple threat) - an amazing photographer AND writer!!! That's why your blog is SO wonderful - we get to enjoy the total artistry of both your writing and your photographs. And I love the part about how you feel when you sit down to write; I used to say that I got "high" from songwriting, so I can appreciate that, plus I feel SO HAPPY that you have found something that makes you SO HAPPY!!

    One more thought I had is how proud Dad would be; that he was such a good writer and would have loved to have seen your beautiful art. I hope that didn't make you sad! Perhaps the pain translates into opening your heart (I think it does), so he is a little bit in this - your open heart gives us these treasures.

    And to the idea of a book, I say, "hear, hear!!!!!" And your mentioning of your time in Arles coming to a close I couldn't help but wonder: will you still call your blog, "Lost In Arles"??? Speaking of lost/found - the ending line to an Irving Berlin song just came into my head: "I got lost in his arms...but look what I found"!

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    1. Sister, of course your mentioning Dad made me melt into big crocodile tears. I feel that his memory is often near, especially when I am being creative.
      There is so much to respond to here, beautiful Sister but I will just say thank you and look forward, so much, to being with you in...nearly two weeks time!
      I love you!

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    2. Ooopsie, Heather........ the idiom "Crocodile tears" is used to describe a deliberate, quite consciously hypocritical, public display of sorrow/grief (crocodiles were once thought to weep copiously in order to attract their prey....recall Anne Rice's child/little-girl vampire in "Interview with the Vampire"). The concept also appears in at least two Shakespeare plays (Othello" and "Anthony & Cleopatra"); I never could get students to accept that the phrase meant the exact opposite of what they thought it meant (anymore than I could ever convince them that they actually COULDN'T care less while they kept declaring that they really "could care less"). It was invariably like trying to tell them that, by using the word "irregardless" (which isn't, technically, a word at all, although it should be), they were saying the opposite of what they meant.

      In any case, I'm going to assume that yours weren't/aren't "crocodile tears".

      Interestingly enough?.....as I also recall, "Crocodile tears" is also used to describe a syndrome (I can't remember the name, and all the doctors I'm related or married to are unavailable at this hour of the morning) which prompts folks to cry whenever they eat. No kidding. It results from a faulty regeneration of facial nerves....usually, these days, as a result of sloppy, cosmetic plastic surgery or car accidents. Howz that for Interesting-but-Useful (particularly if you're writing mean restaurant reviews) Fact #2948576?????

      Advsiedly yours as ever,

      Uncle David

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    3. P.S. I forgot to mention......
      .....what a really lovely posting.

      Thank you,

      David Terry

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    4. Oh hooray! I was just thinking of sending you an email as I was missing you. Here you are! And by all means, correct away. I should most certainly know better having studied both of those plays and acted in one of them. It is just the sound of the phrase that is pleasing. :)
      Glad to see you here and I hope that all of your works sold well...?

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    7. Stay safe, my friend. And please send on the same wishes to Herve also. This is very scary indeed.And makes me quite sad to read as well. You will both be in my thoughts.

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  3. How beautiful and soulful, Heather - which is also a description of you, my friend. Thanks so much for letting us take a peek into your process and what is going on in your lovely mind. I, for one, am so thankful that Remi (wise man) suggested you start a blog, since that was the first step in our wonderful blog-friendship, which I treasure.

    You know, don't you, that I am going to be one of your biggest cheerleaders (and perhaps nags) when I comes to a book. Boy, would I like to hold that in my hands. I do think you have it in you, and what a tough, but wonderful, journey it would take you on!

    Have a beautiful week, friend! XOXO

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    1. And to you, friend. Jeanne, I am so happy that we met and realised right away that we had so much in common. We both were coming at our blogs from our professional outlook in the beginning and have been finding our way ever since. I really feel that your work - both in your gorgeous paintings and in your writing - is taking flight!
      Will take that in about the book...your "cheerleading" is a powerful incentive!
      xo
      Beautiful week to you too...
      H

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  4. wasting your young years......I don't think so.. rather you did everything Appropriate your feelings. You learned a lot from Remy in photography ...so wonderful your pictures ...and your personal style of writing , so talented . ...and I hope after 1o years ?in France you don't get lost anymore and can call it your home.

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    1. Merci Mumbai but France is still not my home even though I certainly did not waste my young years! I have had an amazing life so far and I know how fortunate I am for that...I just like the song. :) Thank you as well for all of the kind compliments!

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  5. Hello Heather,

    A special magic for us with your blog posts has always been the interplay of words and images to create a most beautiful and satisfying whole. You have such a great eye for composition, drawing those of us who can only take snapshots into your world by making us focus on the detail and leading us to the core of your message. This post is a brilliant example of this.

    And, it is clear that you write from the heart. Your personality shines through, your hopes and dreams are laid before us, your triumphs and sorrows have been shared. We, your devoted readers, feel privileged to be in the presence of a highly creative and sensitive individual. Our lives are richer for knowing you. And, if one day we can hold 'you' in our hands and keep you close by on a bookshelf, what fun that will be!

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    1. I am deeply humbled by your response. Thank you. As patrons of the arts, your point of view is...well, I am just speechless. And as well, your generosity has created a standard in much of the expat blog world...I am not even sure that you know of this! I will explain in an email. As you can see I am all in a kerfuffle! But I will think on what you have written.
      Gros Bisous,
      H.

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  6. Loree! Sorry, that's a new picture of her and I feel like I'm looking on the face of a dear friend for the first time because I've only ever seen her--for years--at an angle with shades on! Oh, Heather, I love this post. I love that you 'want them to float.' I love your images (girl, they remind me of Jason and make me feel even closer to you) and I'm so happy to be paired up with Loree here. Now, I need to go check out Nancy to meet who rounds out your choices. H., I'm honored to be your friend. You view the world through such an impeccably-honed lens. I raise my glass to your health and happiness, sweet one! (Even if you're not one to sugarcoat. :))

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    1. I know! I felt the same, Suze. Loree! The real Loree. So lovely inside and out - both of you.

      Ok, that you said that these remind you of Jason made me well up for the second time today (see my Sis above). No, I am so far from that but wow did I and do care for him (ps to Remi, he is fictional, Suze wrote him). So thank you for yet another gift that you have given to me, subtedly. But frankly, just our friendship is more than enough.

      I am grateful as well for the toast and will in turn raise my glass, literally, to the whole of you - glowing bright, glowing brighter, may that shine grow like the sun and give back, Suzemosis!

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    2. PS. I knew that "subtedly" is not a word but still! With "Subtlety" looks odd, doesn't it?

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    3. For me, Jason was someone who had a very particular--very passionate--relationship on both a macro- and microscale with the natural world, but I'd actually say you go beyond that. There's also the element of time in your work, Heather. It's pictorial storytelling. Truly, your eye is inspired, my friend.

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    4. Also, I narrowed it down to asking five authors. Felt a little overwhelmed by my initial ambition!

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    5. Thank you so very, very much Suze. Really, that means the world to me. It really does. I have a good teacher.

      And I updated your number of authors too. :)

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  7. I really loved reading this Heather and I am honoured to have been chosen by you. Your photos are impeccable and they fit in perfectly with your words. Haha, Suze's comment about my photo made me laugh because so many of my photos are in shades that I had a hard time finding one where half my face isn't hidden. You are right - I do not consider myself to be a writer, or at least, not a real writer. But I will tell you more about all that next week.

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    1. I can't wait to read it, Loree. And I know so many wonderfully talented - even published! - writers that don't consider themselves "real" writers.

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  8. Lovely, lovely Heather... brilliant introductions... and I look forward to discovering these wonderful writers...
    Thank you for the mention... :)
    xxv

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    1. I hope that it did not come off as name-dropping but you have and are really a very positive guiding force to so many of us...

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    2. AND I made the suggestion way back when you two should meet and you did!
      LOVE THAT!

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  9. GORGEOUS........LOve how REMI put this whole idea in your head!
    I haven't received the post yet saw you on another blog roll and clicked.Lets hope it arrives soon or I will be pissed!
    XXX

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    1. Yep, it is part of his way in looking out for me...

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  13. Fine post: you have an original and strong voice and reading your blog is a true pleasure.

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    1. Thank you for this truly fine compliment, Mr. Laoch.

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  18. A joy to read, Heather. I love the way you weave text and image together and the text and images in this post are particularly fine.

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  19. Thank you again for a wonderful post! Everything on your blog is honestly you, which is the reason why you are one of my favourite bloggers, THE favourite of the foreign ones I follow. You always have something meaningful to say and I love your photos accenting your message without fail. It is a rare thing to find such a lovely high-quality blog that nourishes both your mind and senses, completely relying on the blogger's own content. You are my idol!

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    1. Hooray!!! Oh my goodness, I will reread this response on a day when I am dragging. Thank you so very much! I have been determined to feature my content only from the beginning and I am glad to have stuck to it.

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  20. I received it!MAIL CHIMP did its duty........I just get it a day later but then I get to read all the WONDERFUL comments!
    XOXO

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    1. Whew! Yes, it comes out the morning after. I might try and fix it but I am so freaked out by anything techie that I am afraid of "breaking" it!

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  21. I just received this post today here in the states (just so you know!). And I'm so thrilled and grateful that you mentioned the piece about me -- but also a wee bit defensive about my use of the word "crutch," which was rooted in genuine curiosity about the balance and interplay between words and photos, which I have struggled with. If any one were to ask me, I'd say that your words and photographs are each strong enough to stand on their own. A beautiful post as always, Heather. And I look forward to the book!

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    1. The piece BY me -- no wonder I've thrown up my hands at my own blog lately....

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    2. hehehe That made me giggle! And I have been missing your blog, Judith. Plus, I thought the question was a good one. All of your questions were.

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  22. The allure of you is that you stay true to yourself. No fluff & puff. Just Heather being Heather.
    And, for me, this is perfection.

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    1. A little fluff and puff sounds pretty good right about now!! ;) But sincerely, thank you lovely lady. You have been so instrumental in my keeping going...
      xoxox

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  23. This is such a rich, thoughtful, and loving post, Heather. (Among other things, you introduce us to some writers we may not otherwise know.) You touch on so many themes I know I will need to read and re-read: the many reasons that writers write, the nature of being lost in some ways (and found in others), what has occurred in recent years to those of us who once made (some sort of) a living with our words, the evolution of our writing, and so much more.

    One of the reasons we come here is for this quality of reflection. Some days we enter it through language, and on others, through your images. Most of the time, both make a harmonious and welcoming blend where we find a little piece of something, so we find ourselves that much less "lost."

    xo

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    1. I am so glad to hear that my friend. You help so many people all over the world, everyday. If I can do something - even a tiny version of that - well, then that is more than I could have ever hoped for in doing this.
      Gros Bisous,
      H

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  24. Of late, your posts sound more and more like you get closer to a turning point, just before a marker. Not only physically in Arles. The reflection of your work, remembering certain incidents, introducing other writers.
    ( I remember I was very impressed by your post "passing", one of those posts where words and images were so intense, minimal but impressing)

    Beautiful, floating photography in todays post! I love the red leaves. They look volatile, not from this world.
    So good, Remi and you have each other. I may be allowed to mention this because I know myself how wonderful it is to be understood and felt with "from the next room"


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    1. And you are! I was happy to see that for you too. :) Silke, I think that no one understands my little work here better than you do. Sometimes I think that you understand it better than myself! :) And you are most certainly right. I am not sure what is ahead that will be different but I do feel a desire to shift internally that is gaining momentum.

      I am so very, very grateful to know you and for all of your support and ideas! Thank you...

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    2. Oh Heather, no I would never say I knew your work better than you yourself. No, I am just looking at it from a different perspective and also with a different perception.

      I only hope my comments don't confuse or irritate too much for I know that creativity can be at times a fragile construction worth of protection. Sometimes we need to change the method to keep up the flow.

      And hey, its me/us who has/have to thank you pour mettre à disposition ton oevre ici! (:

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    3. Thank you Silke. And you don't ever confuse or irritate me...again, I am just grateful.

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  25. Individually we have different reasons for writing a blog or a journal and writing opens a new window for expression. You and the others write about daily discoveries, new experiences that seem familiar to the places where you live but with new meanings because you are looking with fresh eyes and seeing.

    Writing is a task. You mentioned your editing and thoughtful deliberation on how to complement words and photos with each other.

    You express the idea of inspiring and nurturing each other’s work, a common thread in all of your tapestry.

    A joy: “discovering these wonderful worlds of words” of yours. A comfort that I can dip my pen in your well of ideas.

    Thank you Heather.

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    1. Merci, Edgar. I get so much from your searching and writing as well. And don't forget that we have Jeanne to thank for making our worlds cross!
      With my Best Wishes,
      H.

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  26. The deeply thoughtful and considered responses are testimony, and a reflection of, your own deeply considered observations of where you find yourself in life..a beautiful match of readers to words (and images, dare I forget to add!).

    Your heart and soul shine through in every post…some are sad, some are happy, but always there is beauty.

    I too sense a very large turning point in your life…why should your writing not reflect this? I feel so very privileged to have you as a friend…for despite the oceans between you and a lot of your readers, there is a connection which transcends time and place, a connection of the very finest elements of the human heart.

    oh - and just to add a book is of course the obvious thing to do! vavoom - it's the elephant in the room!

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    1. It is most certainly the elephant in the room! That made me smile. Why oh why do we live so apart?? Glad to know that you are there for...whatever is beyond the turning point! Thank you for all of this, my extremely talented, kind-hearted and lovely friend.

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  27. Hello! Popping over from Suze's blog - I enjoyed this post so much. Especially the sentiment:"I could change things for myself by simply being creative." I believe every writer (or artist for that matter), struggles with the question: "Why am I doing this?" But I think there must be something innate in us humans that propels us to create on some level.
    Beautiful words and images...

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    1. Thank you so much Kim and bienvenue! I am also delighted to have found your blog as well...I do know that I would really not be an even remotely happy person if I couldn't be creative in any way shape or form...it is my lifeblood! I know that sounds really crazily dramatic but in typing that out, I realize that I mean it...

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  28. Whenever I read another writer writing about why they write, I have to ask myself the same questions, and I always come away renewed and inspired. Thank you for what you do and what you write XXXX G

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    1. And I extend the same sentiment to you, Mr. Snyder! Merci...

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  29. I enjoyed reading this. It is interesting to see another writers habits, and to see my own reflected back. I'm looking forward to reading more of the posts in this series.

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    1. Sarah, I was thrilled to a part of it!! Everyone's answers are so illuminating.

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