Addictive Inspiration

Those who follow this site know that my Sunday posts are reserved for quotes pertaining to writing and life  reflections appropriate to events that have happened in my own little world  and the events that affected today’s choices for Sunday Quotes had me shopping around for quips on both addiction and inspiration.

It seems as though I’m the recent recipient of not one, but two fine blog awards from my peers, Julie Luek, who runs a fantastic site over at A Thought Grows, and Gus Sanchez, from Out Where The Buses Don’t Run, an exemplary blog in its own right. These are two of my favorite bloggers, so I’m extremely humbled to receive from Julie:

The Addictive Blog Award

“When you share your work, and you have the opportunity of seeing people you like doing what they do best, and you also interchange socially with them, it’s very addictive.” – Jacqueline Bisset

I was ecstatic to find this quote to use for The Addictive Blog Award, because it’s exactly what we do around here: share our work, watch people doing what they love and do best, and interchange socially, sometimes at an addictive level.

In other words, we visit  a LOT — but through those exchanges come new ideas and opportunities for growth (although I wonder what quoting Jacqueline Bisset says about my growth; she wasn’t exactly known for her brain, or at least not what I remember from her bikini-clad role in The Deep).

I’m quite honored to receive The Addictive Blog Award, and would like to thank Julie for jonesing over my heroin-laced site enough to pass it along and pay off the pusher. If you’ve never been, make sure to check out A Thought Grows — it’s not just your typical blog in Blogdom. Her warm personality and viewpoints on everything-under-the-sun really welcome and enlighten a soul, and it’s humbling to know that she thinks so highly of my place that she has become dependent on it. My plan, just like the tobacco company’s, is working.

Of course there are guidelines to follow:

  1. Thank the person awarding you. (check)
  2. Share a little about why you blog and how the journey started. (below)
  3. Paste the blog award on your page. (above)
  4. Nominate other bloggers you feel deserve the award. (bottom)

Why I Blog and How It All Started

Plain and simply, I blog because, in typical egomaniacal fashion, I feel like there’s a great deal to say. Don’t all writers basically think this way  that we have stories yearning to be heard and ideas profound enough to be shouted across city skylines?

So in April of 2011, I began to blog about the joys of caring for my mother, who is living with me and in the early to mid-stages of Alzheimer’s disease. I made one entry and stalled. The man who always had a great deal to say was speechless. Actually, there were a couple of reasons for the stall:

  1. I didn’t know how to proceed because my blog concerned another person’s life whose privacy and dignity I wanted to respect. (the token answer I tell everybody)
  2. I didn’t have a freaking clue what I was doing. (the real reason)


For the next year-and-a-half, I soaked up information about the online writing world, studying up on blogging and the finer points of crafting memoirs, and in the process, dipped back into penning short fiction  something that had been sorely missed since my days in college.

Then, On October 8, 2012, M.L. Swift, Chasing Windmills debuted and, armed with my newly-instilled philosophy of Write, Blog, or Die, has been my kicking-and-screaming darling for the last three months.

This led to a couple of articles for The Alzheimer’s Reading Room, with more to come in the new year, but my caregiver’s blog, Treading Water in the Goldfish Bowl, still struggles as I try to find a balance between my writing, blogging, and caregiving time.

Oh…and in November, I wrote my first book, a young adult adventure called, Monty Tucker and the Lost Mine of Jacob Snively.

There might just be something to this Write, Blog, or Die philosophy after all.

Why do I blog? I think Prince (yes, the singer whose name was once a symbol) summed it up best when he said:

“I have a writing addiction.”

But remember how I said there were two awards? Yep. Not only do some folks think my blog is addictive, but some, namely Gus Sanchez, also think it’s an inspiration, of sorts:

The Very Inspiring Blogger Award

“I try to get my blogs, and even myself, to point to the positive and look at all the inspiring things that are happening.” 
– Daryl Hannah

Thank you, Gus, for this award … sit back while I continue with my post, and by the time you finish reading, you’ll have inspiration coming out the yang-hole. I promise.

Of course, more blog award rules, which are as follows:

  1. Display the Very Inspiring Blogger Award logo. (proudly)
  2. Link back to the person nominating me. (incessantly)
  3. State seven things about myself. (warily)
  4. Nominate other bloggers for this award. (happily)
  5. Notify those bloggers of said nomination. (hey…that sounds like work!)

Alas, nothing in life is free…not even a virtual badge. That’s okay, though, since I often frequent the blogs I’m nominating. Next time, when passing through I’ll say, “Oh, by the way, you’ve got an award on my desk.” And they better accept; it will already be in print   too late to stop the presses. They’re all quite deserving, believe me.

Seven Random Facts About Me

  1. I’m an insomniac. True. I only get a full night’s sleep if I take something, and I usually don’t, so I catch my winks in sporadic, two-hour bursts. 
  2. I’m a klutz. Another truth. I’ve had more broken arms than a stomped centipede  so many, I’ve actually lost count, but my last recollection is twelve or thirteen — probably due to a lack of sleep. My most recent break occurred during an unsuccessful attempt at rollerblading. I’m sooo not cool … in a cool kind of way.
  3. I’m in a movie. Called Weeds, with Nick Nolte as a prisoner who writes a novel. I’m a college student attending the Dean’s annual party and Nick’s character is an honored guest. You can catch a good shot of me  once the fat lady moves out of the way  wearing a rugby shirt in my college colors, maroon and orange. Dang if that woman didn’t block the camera for half my screen time; I didn’t think she’d ever budge! Oh, how I hungered for those fifteen minutes, even back then.
  4. I still hunger for the spotlight. During my “free” time, I continue to act in community and professional theatrical productions, sing in a southern gospel quartet, play various musical instruments, paint and sketch, and generally make a nuisance of myself.
  5. I have a double uvula. It’s that doohickey that hangs in the back of your throat. Mine’s split, like a snake’s tongue.


  6. I live with a constant ringing in my ears. It’s actually more like the sound of crickets and cicadas in a dark, thick forest, screaming with all the might their little legs can scrape together. A constant chirping  tinnitus, it’s called. One of these days I’ll drill it out, like the voices tell me to do.

    Which conveniently leads to the last one,

  7. I’m certifiable. This is speculative only … there are no clinical facts to support this theory.

Now, to introduce my final task of choosing other bloggers for these prestigious awards, an appropriate quote to end this Sunday:

“I think I find new idols everyday – someone that says something really inspiring, is successful, has character.” – Miranda Lambert

The Addictive Blog Award:

Bud Smith is an edgy, talented young writer from New York City who trains roaches and listens to the moon scrape over the buildings each night. Yes, I’m rubbing elbows with a yankee…my granddaddy would turn over in his grave. Check out his blog, Bud Smith Writes, and get ready for some chronic fiction!

Gus Sanchez gets a fourth link to his blog in this post  it’s that good. It’s as addictive as the Sex Viking micro-brew he drinks, so be sure to start following Out Where the Buses Don’t Run and become addicted yourself.

The Very Inspiring Blogger Award:

Demetria Foster Gray‘s site showcases human behavior in its purest form to unveil how we navigate through the waters of our daily existence. Shaken, But Not Stirred inspires us to remember that, although we may get shaken up by the struggles of life, we can still remain calm and tranquil.

Rob Akers is a retired military pilot-turned-writer who pens observations about writing, life, football  well, anything  from the viewpoint of a true American Patriot. Click on the link to get to his blog of the same name, Rob Akers.

And lastly,

Julie Luek needs no introduction to most folks who swing by here. She is probably one of the most inspiring people I know, and it’s no wonder that, after almost a year, her blog is receiving continuous recognition from her peers. Go read a few posts on A Thought Grows to see why.

Thanks again for the wonderful nods  I appreciate them immensely. May all your blog posts be addictively inspiring!


Cartoon Snake by internetsense, Creative Commons


    27 thoughts on “Addictive Inspiration

    1. I had no idea about your movie career.If I'd known, I'd have asked for your autograph and exploited our writing friendship. I also had no idea about the split uvula thing, which is OK. Really. Your writing is addictive and inspiring Thank you for thinking of me for the Inspiration Award– darn kind of you. I shall add it to my page with pride (it's cool looking). I'm glad you are blogging and glad you are finding a balance in life to write. I know you inspire and help many people at ARR. Thanks and keep on forging your path through this online world.

    2. Mike, I need to see "Weeds" because you're in it! Is it on DVD? And yes, Julie needs no introduction. We know her around here very well and her blog is just as awesome. Have a great New Year! 🙂

    3. Thanks Alex! You've been a true inspiration in my process, and had you not had both of these awards, would most surely have received one from me.It was a trip to meet Nick, although I didn't really care to sit near him during lunch. Food tends to fly when people chew with open mouths.

    4. Swimming pools, movie stars … stick with me, kid – the Oscars are next.How could I not think of you where inspiration is concerned? Your place is a welcome place for all to gather.

    5. Livia! Good to see you. Honestly, I have no idea about Weeds. I think I did that in '86 or '87. It was released on VHS at one time…never looked to see if it came out on DVD.Thanks for coming by! :o)

    6. A few comments:1. I read Fact #5 as "I have a double VULVA" at first. Not that there's anything wrong with that.2. I'm also a Yankee, born and raised, so your grandpappy's doing a double-turn as we speak.3. I could have sworn I've seen "Weeds" back in the day, back when Nick Nolte seemed to do about a film a week.Anyway, glad you've accepted this grand nomination. Your blog kicks ass, and it's been a pleasure so far to have gotten to know you

    7. Gus, you frikken crack me up. I'm rolling about the #5 misread. That's nothing…a friend of mine's "captcha" verification code one time was, "klitiest." Maybe there was a double uvula involved. Thank goodness I used a visual aid to clear the matter up.And now that you've been by, grab your Addictive badge and a copy of the questions. Glad I don't have to track you down!It's been a pleasure, as well, and I'll be visiting many times in the coming year.

    8. Congrats! And this is a great, informative, heartwarming and funny post. An enjoyable read. Wish you all the luck with that chirping. I had a ringing in my ear when I was in law school and overly stressed. I feel for you!

    9. I don't know what's more disturbing, the split uvula or quotes from Bisset, Hannah, and Lambert. You're an individual, that's for sure. With all your talents, I have no doubt a boatload more awards will be heading your way. (And even if you don't get that Oscar, I still think you're pretty cool… in a pretty cool sort of way.)

    10. Hey Nancy, and thanks for commenting!Yes, the chirping…it's maddening. Sometimes it softens, but never completely goes away. And sometimes it's so loud it practically blows everything else out of the water. That's when I wonder if there's really not an alien chip implanted in there. :o)

    11. I know! Why couldn't Dickens, Poe, or Wolfe said these things? But they were so what I was looking for. Well, out of the mouths of babes. ;o)You're pretty durn cool yourself, Erica. I try to limit blog awards to no more than five, and since I had two, split them up this time. I knew you had gotten the addictive one, and pretty much figure the other will be coming your way soon. Your blog is very inspiring!Looking forward to a new year tearing up the blogosphere.

    12. Eggie, Jules, Swifty and Big Joe (I know he lurks around,It has been a great pleasure to have watched you four grow as writers and to hopefully I am learning something as well. You guys are great and I feel as connected to you guys as anyone in the writing world. I do envision great things for all of you and I am inspired by you guys, and will be here for you in both the writing life and real life. Y’all are writing warriors and I only hope that I can achieve a measure of success, just as you guys have and will.Thanks for the shout-out. You are a wonderful man and very kind with your words. Happy New Year!

    13. Butting in on a blog that's not mine, because that's how I roll: I love that you just called me Jules– it's the name close friends call me and it always makes me feel good. I never suggest it, just wait for it to roll off the tongue naturally. Thanks Rob. 🙂

    14. Now you're going to throw my comment count to an odd number, Jules. You know how that messes with my OCD. ;o)Speaking of which, you didn't make such a big deal when I called you Jules for the first time. As a matter of fact, I thought I was overstepping my bounds. Sheesh. What's so special about Rob? :o) Oh yeah, he's a Very Inspiring Blogger!Rob – did you grab your badge and the requirements? I expect to see that hanging on your blog somewhere. You really are inspiring.And while on the subject of nicknames…Swifty has been a favorite moniker of mine since high school. I always wait for them to happen naturally, too.Thanks for the kind words.

    15. ML Swift. Jacqueline Bisset and Daryl Hannah on the same blog. Just add a quote from Phoebe Cates and you have the water-babe trifecta.I think all theater people of a certain age have seen Weeds. I loved it for that very reason. Nick Nolte actually got his start on the stage in Phoenix, though he wasn't here long enough to make a big splash. Guess he wanted to be a big fish in a bigger pond. Ew. Just had an image of Nick Nolte in a mermaid fin and a wet t-shirt. Now he's flopping out of the pool, walking toward the camera…he's wearing a red bikini top……you think you're certifiable…

    16. I didn't know Phoebe Cates could speak. :o) You must be referring to her Fast Times at Ridgemont High role – the fantasy pool scene. Yikes! Just flashed on an image of Judge Rhineholt in flagrantem. Shudder.And I thoroughly appreciate your sense of humor (you described the outtakes of the movie)!

    17. Thanks, Jenny, and for coming by and commenting. I'm just now cutting through the holiday haze and will be making my own rounds, soon.Hope you had a fantastic holiday…just the diamond type of coal. :o) Glad you were able to spend time with your daughter.

    18. It's always interesting to learn things about those we suspect may be certifiable. You'll end up with more than fifteen minutes in the spotlight, me thinks. Thanks for the birthday wishes, btw. You did good. Real good. 🙂

    19. Wow-ee-Wow! I've learned a lot of cool new stuff about you, Swifty. This blog post allows all your colorful layers to show. There is so much I want to comment on here, but I fear if I start rattling on it will get wayyyyyy too long. So let's just say, everytime I learn more about you, it thrills me to no end and makes me so glad to call you my friend. I LOVE people who are multi-layered with fascinating tales to tell. And you most definitely fit that bill. Congratulations on your awards. You are addictive and inspiring, so it's definitely well-deserved.Also thanks for the award nomination. I appreciate your generosity for including me in the Inspirational Blog hall of fame. :o) Although, my seven random facts won't be nearly as interesting as yours.Happy New Year!!!

    20. #2 & #7 – A lot of people are. :)#3 – Cool!#4 – LOL I'm a nurse, so I actually knew right away what it was. I bet your dental hygienist did a double-take. 😛 Sssss…

    21. Thanks, D! I'm humbled.Yes, I do have a lot of fascinating tales to tell…thus, the writing venture. There are stories that, just thinking back to them, are enough to curl your nose hairs.They'll all eventually come out in the open.Swifty is a nickname both my uncle and I share. I had a more unflattering one (but still cool, at the time) given to me in college – that one I shared with my dad. You'll have to figure that one out as we go along.Congrats on such an inspiring blog yourself!

    22. It freaks everyone out who takes a gander at it! For the most part, the two sides stick together and it hangs like a normal uvula. But when I breathe, it will part and hiss at you!Thanks for stopping by!

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