Friday, October 26, 2012

The Adventures of Monsieur Smooshcheese & Senior Poofcakes (cont'd)

Keep up with the adventures of Monsieur Smooshcheese & Senior Poofcakes at their designated blog 

Marie King & Vickie Vuong, 2012 ©

Bloomberg on 'Europe's Unfinished Currency'

Thomas Mayer is one of the many authors I have the pleasure of working with at my publishing house. Not only is he a brilliant man with an excellent resumé, but he's also incredibly kind. He is currently doing an international tour that I was able to help coordinate and Bloomberg was one of his stops in NYC. Check out the interview above and buy his book- it's fantastic!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012


When you come to a crossroads at your life, how do you decide which way to go? 
And why does the choice weigh on your heart like a million pounds?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

God Bless Our Troops!

Bombers are my favorite warbirds to check out. The pilots from WWII always have the most fascinating stories.

This was one of those 'right place, right time' photos.
The men were posing for some other photographer, so I snuck in and took my own. 

My deepest gratitude to our armed forces! 

Friday, October 19, 2012

The Warmth of the Law

My great-great grandfather helped build the capitol building in Madison, Wisconsin. 
I may be biased, but I think it's one of the most beautiful capitol buildings in the country. 

A beautiful building for a beautiful city. 

If you have a chance, you should travel up there in the summer. It's really well kept up and when you're done touring the building, you can visit one of my favorite farmers markets that wraps around it. 

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

To Set the World on Fire

Where my cottage is, there is a strip of road that is one of the most beautiful Michigan highways to drive along in fall. The fiery trees engulf the road in a tunnel of flame.
 I imagine there is no sweeter way to burn. 


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Pale Ground

Today was my birthday. 10/11/12. 

Today I am a year older. 

I hope this year is a good one. 
I hope it's better than the last. 


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Forest Floor

I've really enjoyed taking photos every day with my camera instead of my phone.

A DSLR is irreplaceable and this month's project has really been a joy.

Happy Picture-a-Day Month!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Never Let Me Go

"I come here and imagine that this is the spot where everything I've lost since my childhood is washed out. I tell myself, if that were true, and I waited long enough then a tiny figure would appear on the horizon across the field and gradually get larger until I'd see it was Tommy. He'd wave. And maybe call. I don't know if the fantasy go beyond that, I can't let it. I remind myself I was lucky to have had any time with him at all. 

What I'm not sure about, is if our lives have been so different from the lives of the people we save. We all complete. Maybe none of us really understand what we've lived through, or feel we've had enough time."

Never Let Me Go

To Conquer The World

Some days I miss Alaska so much I feel like giving up everything I'm doing and hopping on the next jet up north. I don't think I've ever enjoyed being some place quite so much or been surrounded by such nice people. They were my kind of folks up there, it was my kind of land. 

But for me Alaska is the destination, not the journey. It is home, and I'm still on the road... with many miles still to go. 

Love from the northern stream, 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Bonne Nuit!

My mind is tired, my eyes are sleepy and my body is worn 
down from a wonderful weekend. 

Tomorrow will be a day for words. 
For now- bonne nuit mes amis! 


Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Right Words

I just wrote several paragraphs about words and writing but they were not simple and so I've deleted them.
I'll let Kerouac speak for me tonight. 


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Flipping through the pages...

The Hardcover

I just received a copy of The Enchanted Forest Chronicles. The opening line seems promising: 

"Linderwall was a large kingdom, just east of the Mountains of Morning, where philosophers were highly respected and the number five was fashionable"

My book list keeps piling up and because they're all electronic books, I find it hard to figure out what to read first. You can't peruse through your Kindle books the same way you can through the hard copies; you can't look for interesting chapters or take a one-second peek at the end to gage what you're getting yourself in for. I find it hard to decide which book to read without my computer present to make pro-and-con lists.

And so the pile keeps building but I haven't been reading. 

I love my Kindle, god knows I do. I love highlighting my favorite passages and having all my favorite books with me everywhere I go. I love the e-ink technology and the instant dictionary. But it feels so limiting when all I want to do when I finish a book is go flip through the pages and re-read all my favorite parts. Clicking through your bookmarks just isn't the same. 

So today this old, used, library-version of some highly-rated, young adult stories has made it's way to me and I can't do anything but read it, because this book in my hands- the feel, the smell, the weight-
 it feels like home.  

Someday, they will perfect the ebook, they will simulate everything I love about real books and that will be the end to this debate, but until that day a hardcover will always take all. 

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

30 Days

A Picture-A-Day

As I mentioned earlier, my friend and I are doing a picture-a-day challenge this October. We were inspired by an older TED talk by Matt Cutts titled appropriately, "Try Something New For 30 Days." You do something, or take something away, for 30 days- like write a novel, stop eatting sugar, etc. If you've always wanted to learn to sew, well choose to sew every day for the next 30 days. 

Along the same vein, I recently read an article on Life Hacker titled, "How Seinfeld’s Productivity Secret Fixed My Procrastination Problem." it suggests you spend some amount of time doing a desired activity every day. Instead of putting off cleaning your house, decide to spend 15 minutes each day cleaning something and before you know it, you're house will be clean and more importantly- it will stay that way. 

What both the video and the article have in common is that you're taking a big problem/desire/goal and breaking it down into a bunch of little problems/tasks. Micromanagement. 

You've always wanted to learn French. Well if you're like me, you'll buy a big textbook on Amazon and be really excited for a week, spending an hour or two each day studying it. And then, never pick it up again. I've taken on too much and I burn out. But how about learning a word a day instead? 

As I mentioned before, I've been hoping to create more content instead of consume it. Well doing a big art project every day is hardly sustainable. But a photo-a-day? Whether I take the time to go to a forrest preserve with my handy-dandy DSLR like I did today or I stay at home and take an iPhone pic with my dog- well that sounds reasonable. I can do it and I will do it and when it's all over, I'm going to be a bit closer to my goal of creating more content. 

Furthermore, as Matt Cutts mentions in his mini-lecture, instead of time passing by in a blur, these little projects give you an anchor, a goal that keeps you grounded. I will know exactly where I was and how I felt when I look at the picture above. Perhaps that is the greatest reward of all.