"There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on Treasure Island." - Walt Disney

Saturday, July 31, 2021

UPDATED: Blue Origin, Wally Funk, and More Interviews

In my last post, I wrote about the Apollo anniversary, Virgin Space, and the Moon Interviews my friend is conducting.

Since then, Jeff Bezos joined the space race accomplishments when his Blue Origin launched soon after the previous post. This Amazon shuttle launch could have easily been overshadowed by the previous forays to space from Tesla and Virgin. However, it had one claim on my excitement that the previous launches had not. Wally Funk was aboard. 

For those who don't understand the significance of Blue Origin sending Wally Funk to space: she was one of the original Mercury 13 (April 1959), a group of women in an experimental, privately-funded program who underwent the same physiological training as male NASA astronauts, to see if they could handle it (spoiler, they could). These women were not NASA astronauts, and none of them ever flew.

Funk scored higher than John Glenn on many of the tests. Glenn even said women shouldn't go to space and once said "The fact that women are not in this field is a fact of our social order." But now, Funk fulfilled her lifelong dream. She flew to space, and she stole the record of becoming the oldest person in space right out from under John Glenn's feet.

I love that her dream finally came true. This is further proof that we are never too old to dream, or to accomplish our goals.

For those of you asking for more information about joining in on the interviews, or watching the ones I mentioned last time: http://www.countdowntothemoon.org/

Please take some time to watch at least a few. There are interviews here with those who are excited about the modern day the space race, some who are ambivalent, and some who still do not believe any of it is real - very interesting variety of views available in 10 - 90 minute increments. You can also see my husband and I talking with him on the 52nd anniversary of the first man on the moon at: https://www.countdowntothemoon.org/2021/07/21/1258-bill-and-sylvia/

All of this was very exciting to me and put me in the mood to read some Jules Verne, H.G. Wells, and Andy Weir. 

How about you? Are you interested in participating in an interview? What has surprised you most about reaching for the stars? What are you most looking forward to in the future?

Monday, July 12, 2021

Apollo 11 Anniversary, Virgin Space, and an Interview a Day

Two years ago I shared an article on this blog: Apollo 11 Anniversary and the Lunar Library  I wrote about the 50th anniversary, Elon Musk and his space Tesla, and the new lunar archives. I also mentioned the (then) recently discovered black hole, and other space related events.

It's only been a couple of years since then, separated by a global pandemic, and yet our planet has only continued to reach for the stars.

In case you missed it, on Sunday, Richard Branson and the crew of Virgin Galactic successfully completed their first space flight. Branson hopes to make commercial flights s common possibility. His work and investments to that end have excited thousands. If you missed it, check out:

Curious what veteran space explorers thought? Check out:

Since December of 2019, a friend of mine (Nathan Price) has been on a personal mission to interview a person a day about our obsession with the moon. He plans to continue through the end of 2024. His goal: to discuss the moon and keep video thoughts on what humans were thinking about the reach for space leading up to our return to the moon. His subjects include people who feel the whole thing is a hoax - Neil Armstrong never went to the moon, professional scientists, teachers, stay-at-home moms, and everyone in between. If you'd like to know more, view his interviews, or even participate in one yourself: Countdown to the Moon Interviews and His Daily Query

Interested in fiction inspired by the moon? Check out Andy Weir's Artemis.

How about you? Are you inspired by the human grasp for space? What has surprised you most about reaching for the stars? What are you most looking forward to in the future?

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

IWSG: Why Would You Quit Writing?

It’s time for another group posting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! founded by Alex J. Cavanaugh. Time to release our fears to the world – or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic. If you’d like to join us, click on the tab above and sign up. We post the first Wednesday of every month. Your words might be the encouragement someone needs. You can also join us on twitter using the hashtag #IWSG, or on the Facebook page.

Now, IWSG hosts have changed up the format in an effort to make it more fun and interactive. Every month, they will announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Don’t forget to visit others that day to see their answers. Want to join, or learn more? Visit our - Sign-up List.

The awesome co-hosts for the July 7 posting of the IWSG are Pat Garcia, Victoria Marie Lees, and Louise – Fundy Blue! Be sure to stop by and say hi to them!

What would make you quit writing?

MY ANSWER - When the joy and drive are gone. For instance, this past year has been particularly stressful and I have not written nearly as much as previous years. I can't just blame the pandemic, although a lot of it does relate to that in some way. In the first few months of the pandemic, I actually increased my writing productivity because I was working from home (even though it wasn't much) and our family and financial situation was pretty well fixed heading into the Spring of 2020. However, our family experienced a lot of changes heading into the 20-21 school year. Both of my jobs changed their approaches drastically. Online teaching was the norm for my college classes, but the high school classes remained 90% in person. Teachers were asked to make a lot of changes this year, and the stress levels were high for parents and administrators, often increasing it for teachers as well. Other situations in our family life changed drastically, including hurricanes, moving, and unprecedented freezes. Our immediate family fared decently, but the emotional toll of all of these changes, as well as the inability to see much of our family (siblings, some parents, etc.) for the past year has left us feeling a whole in our lives. I haven't seen my Dad, or siblings since November of 2019, and I miss them. Needless to say, all of these highly emotional situations have often left me feeling numb and motivation just has not been present. I went through a similar dry spell in 2013 when three of my grandmothers all died that year. When joy and drive are missing, or they have to be redirected into survival mode, the motivation to write can be difficult to chase. I hope I never give up completely, and I am hoping as things head back to "normal" I am able to reconnect with the pleasure and passion the craft has often brought me.

How about you? What would make you quit writing? Have you ever been tempted to do so, and for how long?

Thursday, July 1, 2021

Independence Day - Happy Fourth of July!

Independence Day is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the Declaration of Independence of the United States, on July 4, 1776.

This weekend the United States of America celebrates our Independence Day.

This is my dad at 18. We have a family full of men who have served in various branches of the military.

Thank you to all of the men and women who have served our country in ANY way. You are appreciated more than you think.

I'm spending some time being lazy and celebrating with family and friends. I hope you are all able to do the same.

Are you reading any great books this week?