A to Z April Challenge

During the month of April I will be doing a different spin on my memoir posts. It starts with a song. Each song will be followed by a brief essay that is evoked or inspired by that song. You might want to click on the YouTube link to hear the song as you read the piece I've written. Or you can listen to the song lyrics first and then read. Whichever way you choose, I mostly hope you'll read and leave a comment with your thoughts about my post. Thank you for visiting and please follow the blog if you are not doing so already.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

#atozchallenge: Reflections Post -- Home Again

A to Z Badge artwork by Ada Z from collagepodge.com
           When my eclectic Tossing It Out blog started getting too eclectic, I decided to create spin-off blogs to focus on certain reoccurring topics of that main blog.  My blog about dreams A Faraway View and my meditative Psalm blog A Few Words both deal with topics that are very dear to me.  However, my memoir blog Wrote By Rote is my special pet blog project.

          During the A to Z Challenge my Wrote By Rote entries were my favorites to write.  Recalling these memories was poignant and fun.  Memoir is perhaps where my truest heart of writing is.  I do plan to write a memoir or memoirs eventually, not so much as a biographical account of a famous person who has made a great impact on society, but as my observations on my world as I have experienced it.  The A to Z April Challenge was my chance to bring a greater fullness to what my memoir venture could one day be.

           In my 26 entries of April I have looked at some of the places that have stood out in my life.  I experimented in some entries with describing these places and in others telling some of the stories that I remember about places where I have been.  It was not a linear story, but a collection of random stand-alone vignettes.  One thing that I take away from the April Challenge is that I love writing memoir as much as I enjoy reading about other people's lives.  

           My thanks go out to all who read some or all of my entries and to those who left comments.  The stories remain for those who would like to go back to read them.  If you do read any of them, please leave me a comment.  I'd like to hear your thoughts about any of these stories.

Here are the links to my Wrote By Rote entries for the A to Z Challenge:



welcome to my world of poetry said...

Everyone I read showed a different insight to you as a person, the places, people.They were wonderful to read and after meeting you I can undestand what an interesting life you have had. Thanks for sharing these memories.


Hold my hand: a social worker's blog said...

I like your passion and the delightful way you present your vignettes.

Great job, Lee, and thank you for all your leadership and hard work during the A-Z.


Sandra Tyler said...

Saw your post on linkined in. I've mostly been blogging about daily moments, scenes, but maybe could write a memoir piece...

Dana said...

I love the way you used memoir during the A to Z Challenge. I also write memoir, and you've inspired me to think about writing vignettes like yours for next year's challenge.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Mary Aalgaard, Play off the Page said...

I enjoyed reading about your journeys. You've lived an adventurous life. Memoir is for anyone who wishes to share their unique story. I'm starting to get the bug myself. It might be a while yet before the story forms, but I know I have one to tell.

Play off the Page

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Lee - I enjoyed reading your tour places .. and seeing how and what you and your family did as they travelled putting on your show.

Great memoiring for us all and I got to see some of North America as you went along .. cheers Hilary

M. J. Joachim said...

Ah, yes! This list will come in very handy, Arlee, and I think you may know why:)Thanks!

Anita said...

Thank you for sharing the journey with us & I'll be reading the rest of your posts now I have more time :)

Arlee Bird said...

Yvonne -- I was trying to create those different insights by looking at different times of my life and the places where I was in those times.

Doris -- I appreciate those kind and encouraging words.

Sandra -- I'll have to take a visit to your blog and then contact you.

Dana --- I enjoyed the A to Z memoir and recommend this experience.

Mary -- A life doesn't necessarily have to be extraordinary, but the story needs to be told in a captivating manner.

Hilary -- My goal was to present travel to places where most people don't normally think to go.

MJ -- Looking forward to hearing more.

Anita-- I hope you will leave your comments telling me what you think.


P V Ariel said...

Hi Lee,
Its again good to read your great challenge experience last month
read few and left out few, will
read and come back soon
As I said, i stopped half way till M due to an unexpected tour to my native land, thee God's own country
called Kerala
surely will catch up in the next challenge.
Keep up the good work lee
Thanks for dropping in.
Best Regards
Philip Ariel

Martha said...

I know I didn't comment much but enjoyed your posts. Thanks for everything Arlee! A-Z is the best!!

Damyanti said...

Memoir writing is for the brave, Lee, and I have no doubts you'll be great at writing your memoir. I haven't been to this blog much...but now that the rush has slowed down, I'll be back.

Thanks for involving me in the A-Z hosting, it has taught me so much about myself, other bloggers, and blogging.

Tina said...

I've been looking forward to reading your posts at all your blogs one the challenge was over...but now I'm thinking it's going to be once I've read all the reflections...time just keeps on slipping slipping into the future...
Tina @ Life is Good
Co-Host of the April A to Z Challenge
Twitter: @AprilA2Z #atozchallenge

J.L. Campbell said...

Hi, Arlee,

It's amazing that you could find a place to connect with all your posts.

I think it's wonderful to be able to post in the A-Z in such a way as to get something usable out of it at the end of the Challenge.

The Challenge is a wonderful idea that has connected so many people and sparked a LOT of creativity. One day, I'll put my 2011 posts together and make something publishable of them. Thanks!

kmckendry said...

Somehow I missed coming here, so I will have to go back and read them. I'll probably start with Cleveland since that's my current hometown. :)

Thanks for a great challenge Arlee!

K.D. Storm said...

I enjoyed reading your posts from both blogs and I thank you for following mine as well. Can't wait til next year.

Sue H said...

Arlee - You took me to places I'd never been (and some I'd never heard of!) and with each tale there was some little vignette of your family!

I feel as though I've been on a road-trip throughout the A-Z challenge! Cheapest travel experience I've come across - thanks!

Lynn Proctor said...

i have so enjoyed all of the blogs and posts i have read of yours---amazing job!

EvalinaMaria said...

Congratulations on finishing the challenge and sharing your reflections. I'm following you now and hopefully, next year, we will do it again!

Nicki Elson said...

Hey Lee,
Very cool you could discover that about yourself during A to Z. I'm sorry I wasn't around much to read the stories...maybe I'll just wait for the book. ;)

Word Nerd said...

First, thank you for hosting this again. What a ride!

I read some of your April posts, but missed a bunch. My plan is to backtrack through a bunch--not just yours, but a bunch of others, too!

Claire Hennessy said...

The A-Z is such an amazing idea and was a blast to participate in - thank you so much for organizing it. Fab job. I write memoir so I will come back when this is all over and read through a few of your posts.Thanks for all your help :)

Nicole said...

Your post about Richmond, VA was the one I remember most but it was cool to see you've visited Pittsburgh. Although I dislike Philadelphia and a few other areas in Pennsylvania, I enjoyed visiting Pittsburgh on a few occasions.

Writing memoirs seems to be one of many of your strong suits, so it's cool that you took on this pet project. I never really consider writing one but think it's a great idea for those who have children or large extended families :)

Recently published: The 2012 A to Z Reflections of The Madlab Post

Follow/Retweet me @MadlabPost on Twitter

Kela McClelland said...

Missed some of your posts, so I'll have to go back through and catch up. Thanks for coming by my blog. :)

Arlee Bird said...

I appreciate all of these wonderful comments that I've been receiving here. Sorry for not responding to each one but I should be seeing you at your blogs.


Carla Karam said...

Great job Lee!! Thank you again for co-hosting this Challenge!

lynnelives said...

How many AtoZ's did you do? I've counted 3 so far. Need to catch up on bits of this one. I found one a huge challenge. Well done you, something for everyone!

Betty Alark said...

Thank's for the list of places, Arlee Bird! I definitely will go back and read them; I'm sure I missed a few!

I hope you follow through on writing your "memoir or memoirs"

It will be a great read; and I know all of your fans will purchase one!

Really enjoy your reflections post!

Thanks for all of your assistance and just for being there for who ever needed you!

Great challenge!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Wow! Somehow I didn't know that you had multiple blogs running during the challenge, and that you were hosting. That's amazing!! I missed out on these during the challenge, but I think I'll start making up for that.

Arlee Bird said...

I had 4 blogs entered in the A to Z besides contributing to the A to Z Challenge Blog. I tend to mostly only promote Tossing It Out as my other 3 fit more into specific niches.

Thanks for the comments.


michelle said...

I did read a few of your memoir posts which I found very interesting!
Maybe now that the frenzy has passed, I'll have more time to "stalk" a few blogs that I missed during the challenge.
Thanks for popping in and leaving a comment on my reflection post.

Dee said...

Dear Arlee, . . . your memoir will do precisely what you hoped if your A-Z postings are any indication. You haven't written it "as a biographical account of a famous person who has made a great impact on society, but as my observations on my world as I have experienced it."

And reading those words from your posting today helps me understand what I want to do with a memoir.

Thank you.

Jarm Del Boccio said...

Hi Arlee!
I've said this many times, but thanks for all the work involved in setting up and maintaining the Challenge...it was one of the highlights of my writing year! I'm off to check out your memoirs...


Donna said...

So I just found this blog and have read a few of the places that you listed. Read of your childhood in Ohio, and it reminded me of my own...small tv, everything looked large, the swans (only mine was a horses head on my grandparents' tv, and a black panther on my Uncle's tv). I'll try to catch up on more as time permits. This has been a great month! Thanks for all the work you've done and all the blogging effort expended! Looking forward to next year!

Maurice Mitchell said...

Arlee, I always love your stories. My favorite is the "Standing on a corner in Winslow, Arizona" post since I live in Arizona. I never even noticed it before! Brilliant blog.
- Maurice Mitchell
The Geek Twins | Film Sketchr
@thegeektwins | @mauricem1972

a.eye said...

What a great, interesting theme! Congrats on finishing!

Francene Stanley said...

Everyone sees life from a different angle. Some are almost blinded by their faith, while others are cynical enough to step away and view their participation as a joke. Love them all.

SharleneT said...

Hello, Arlee, from #62 - aka Rockin'Chair Reflections! I didn't get to everyone during April, but have begun my trek through the list, hoping to finish up before next year's challenge! Congratulations on finishing. Come visit when you can. We're practically neighbors. Zebulon is just down the road from me.