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Talk With Tina

Fall: More is Turning Than Just Leaves

The fall proves to be a busy time for me as a writer and a book coach. On the horizon are two opportunities to take advantage of in November. Both will be at a lovely, restful retreat center on the Ohio River just east of Cincinnati.

On November 4, Annette Wick and myself will offer writers the finer craft points to develop your best work in a retreat we call: The Confluence of Craft. Then on November 11, I will lead a spiritual journal writing retreat, giving individuals time and space to find new perspectives both in writing and developing a new sense of self.

Since so many people have asked, also in the works is an 8-week series for writers of memoir and fiction to have a place to develop stories with craft lessons and critique in the Cincinnati area. More information to follow. Until then, please enjoy this photo of the retreat house that looks out on calm waters of the Ohio River.

Three months since I published a newsletter and I could say I've been on hiatus, lounging on a beach somewhere, cabana boys delivering drinks, but that is far from the truth.

This summer, I tackled Substack, a platform for writers to put their work out, possibly for direct payment from patrons. I write about renovating homes, a passionate hobby. I am the old dog who needed to learn new tricks in order to understand the effectiveness of writing on Substack along with my tried and true newsletter format, which I love when I think about the people who read it. I'll continue to document the renovation work on Substack. Its a fun departure from my other work.

I took up a practice in Pilates since publishing my newsletter. It has been a game-changer on so many levels. There's a strength that comes with confidence. Since I began working with Patricia LaRosa at Studio P, I've gotten in touch with deep-seated issues around confidence. I've discovered that so much of my lack of 'can-do' attitude has been buried in my belly. Now, igniting and exercising muscles I don't think I ever recognized before, has helped me to walk a little taller, strike out on balance, make clearer judgements.

So as I work my way through repetitiously counting eight breathes in and eight equal breathes out, relishing in a strong, pain-free body, getting in touch with the dancer I once thought I could be, I am awakening to new possibilities in all aspects of life and how I move about in the world.

The Written Word

Gugel Alley Writers meets every Wednesday morning at Roebling Books & Coffee in Newport, We are a cadre of writers in various pursuits but always coming to generate work and thoughts about writing. I can't imagine Wednesdays without this group now.

Work continues on a project about a couple who fell in love in 1950 across the divides of geography, religion, and culture. The latest iteration brings the two characters into first-person point of view and allows me to dive deep into the psyche of each character, their motivations, struggles, issues of letting go. In the end, their love sustains them only for a brief time. While the project is loosely based on my parents' story, I am taking license with that story to get into the heads of the characters.

Recently, I took part in a discussion of C. Jeanette Jacksons historical fiction: Hunting Wildflower at the Carnegie Center in Columbia Tusculum. The book has been out for more than a year now, but I helped the author birth this beautiful story set in the Depression in Goshen, Ohio.

Ms. Jackson says: "Understanding our history as a society, and our own ancestry, helps us understand ourselves. Lessons from the past give us the ability become better citizens. Listen to our elders before memory fades. Speak about your experiences to the young. They are listening. Preserve our past for future generations at home and within

our community."

The novel is a work of love between Ms. Jackson and her 104-year-old aunt capturing the culture of a bygone era through memories and letters written to her great grandfather by a woman who loved him.

Working with clients in the book/writing coaching arena continues to be a point of enrichment for me. I've met many interesting people with truly great stories to tell, like Jeanette's project.

Summer Fun

Cincinnati summers of the past are fraught with humidity, rain, and temperatures in the eighties and low nineties. I ordered up some cheese from my favorite monger the other day and we got to talking about this short few days of high 90 degree weather. We both agreed that this has been a typical summer, remembered in my youth as sleeping in an attic, no insulation, one window, one fan, one sheet to cover me.

We've been grateful for a summer when the struggle over John, my husband's health has been set aside for weekend ventures along the Ohio, porch ponderings with Eloise, and a new patio with gardens refreshed like our souls have been.

Until next time...


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