Wednesday, June 17, 2009


As you can gather from some of my recent blogs, I've been in serious need of distractions lately. I've considered blogging about the complexities of grief and the insanity of dysfunctional families, but I think I (and anyone who might stumble upon this blog) would be better off saving those musings for my next YA novel. Of course as a writer, just about any life experience, no matter how big or small, is fodder for some masterpiece in the making.

Consider my latest MOD (mode of distraction)—backyard birding. Yes, I could sit for hours watching the intricate ecosystem that is our backyard, if it weren't for the 105ยบ heat. However, even with the scorching summer sun, I spend a lot of time in the lawn chair with Ghost Hunk's 2-ton camera in my lap while I meditate on life's crap and watch the birds. It's amazing the personality you can find out there. These are just a few interesting fellows who gather in the yard regularly:

There is so much chatter in my yard that I have to wonder what they talk about. Are they griping about their passive/aggressive maniacal sisters who seem bound to make life absolute hell? Are they gossiping about the neighbors and who's cheating on whom? Or is the greatest concern on their little minds how fast the bird seed seems to be disappearing from the plastic tube this crazy woman with the funky machine in her lap has hung on the wrought iron hook next to the tree?

And then I wonder...

Do they know how rich and welcome their songs are at the first light of day? Do they realize how much I love to watch them go through their day, chattering away in the trees about who-knows-what? Do they ever see themselves as little saviors who guard my sanity?


They should.


  1. I can so relate to this. As the baby trees in our back yard have matured, the bird population has exploded! Lots and lots of chatter. Mockingbirds built a nest in the shrubs next to our deck, and as you know, they quite aggressively defend their young. It's been trying. BTW, I love the picture of the cardinal.

  2. Thanks, Susan! It is amazing how bold those mockingbirds are, isn't it? That cardinal is a hoot! He is a little shy and usually takes off if he sees me. But this time his curiosity got the better of him.

  3. Oh my word! 105 degrees?!?!?!?!

    I love watching birds, too. Actually, I love watching my hubby and son watch birds. We have a lot of robins in our backyard, but if we're patient we might see some hummingbirds, cardinals, bluejays and little yellow birds.

  4. Love this post. I can't tell you how many times, I've been stuck on a tricky passage- glanced over, become distracted by the birds or squirrels- and oops! its time to pick up the kids and my hour of writing wasted away.

    I put a lot of nature in my writing though, so I still see it as a win.

    BTW- I wandered over her from Elena Roth's twitter post. I tweet as susiebj


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