Monday, April 22, 2013

Author Feature: Day in the Life of Dianne Gardner

So today I have a great author feature to share with you, Day in the Life of Author Dianne Gardner.  Enjoy

A day in the life

I try to keep my days simple. It’s an odd feeling, this desire to just stay home and write. I seem to be basing my entire day’s activity around those precious moments I can sit at the computer and pound on the keys, pouring my heart into the story I’m writing.

At this time in our life, my husband is home from work due to an accident. It’s a temporary disability and he expects to return back to his job this summer. We’ve had to make some adjustments with his being home. One of them, of course is the amount of time I spend at the computer. But we’re getting used to being around each other constantly. It’s probably been harder on him. As much as I love being social, I love being a hermit more. So my husband having to live with a hermit has to be hard on him!

One of his favorite things to do is walk and I love walking with him. I need the exercise and fresh air. We’ve found a wonderful place to walk to that is just the right distance from our home with enough hills to afford us the exercise we need. We live in a rural area among forest and valley both. Every home near us has at least an acre surrounding it with many situated on five acres or more. Our walk takes up past llamas, a lovely creek that meanders through a meadow, and a little farmhouse with a pond and a rooster that announces our presence whenever we walk by. At the top of the hill is a graveyard. It’s one of those old personal graveyards where every resting place has a different style headstone, or cross. Statues and flowers and little fences that envelope the mounds of the deceased. Someone planted heather on one of the graves some forty years ago and it thrives over its boundaries. Another roots a young willow tree. I told my husband this is where I want to be buried. On a quiet hill without the pomp and circumstance the more modern burial places boast. No. This is a country graveyard that is peaceful and lovely. My husband doesn’t see it. He says what does it matter once you’re gone? What I see is the solace for the loved ones. Benches have been place around where people can sit and think; watch the wind in the trees, and the mountains in the distance. There’s a well with an old hand pump that still works that the caretakers used to water the flowers that people have planted on their loved one’s graves. There’s even an outhouse tucked away in the trees.

We walk past the graveyard into the fields until it edges a forest. From there we turn back.

We don’t always go to the graveyard. Sometimes we take the car and walk in the park in town. The trails in that park are long and lead into the woods. There’s a little miniature railroad that operates in the summer. Kids can ride the steam engine through the woods on a miniature train that hobbyists facilitate. It’s really a wonderful service for the community. I love it there.

Now why am I telling you all of this when I’m supposed to be telling you about a day in my life?
Well, because walking, thinking and breathing fresh air is what inspires me to write.  And I try to do both every day.

If I don’t walk, it probably means I’m painting. How I love my studio. It smells of linseed oil and art. On those days I have work to do in the studio, I shut the door, turn my favorite music on (violin, Enya, classical guitar), and lose myself into this wonderful world of oil painting.

My kids think I should spend more time with them and they may be right. I try. But I tell you when I’m away from my little plot of land here in the ‘valley of many berries’ the only thing I think about is coming home. Sometimes I think I am the happiest creature on earth. Other writers look for a place to go for a retreat. I have one all the time.

I am so thankful! 

Thanks so much for stopping by my blog today, Dianne.  It was great to read what a day in your life is like.  

Dianne Lynn Gardner Author-Illustrator Young Adult Fantasy-Adventure Fiction Dianne Gardner is both an author and illustrator living the Pacific Northwest, Olalla Washington. She’s an active member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, and the National League of American Pen Women. She has written Young Adult Fantasy novels as well as articles for national maga¬zines and newspapers and she is an award-winning artist. Dianne spent many years living out in the desert wilderness of the American Southwest, lived in a hogan made from adobe and cedar for thirteen years, co-owned 25 horses both pure bred and Native American ponies, traveled horseback and by wagon throughout the Navajo reservation, herded sheep and goat, worked in the forest planting trees and piling, farmed on barren soil and even lived in a teepee for a short while. She spent many long years using survival skills as a way of life. Later she studied pastoral counseling and was a Pastor’s appren¬tice at a mainline church. She and her husband have been feeding the homeless for over twelve years. Today she shares both her survival experiences and her love for people, especially young people, into her writing as a way to not only to give her readers a firm understanding of her stories’ characters, but a rich appreciation of nature.

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