Five Things

An everyday photo essay

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Bonus photo: Elk. Quite a drama unfolded as the bull elk on the left chased off the youngster in the distance. In the end, the young one was forced to swim across the river to the far bank while the bull elk continued to court the female in the foreground. [Image: Nikki Tate]

When you live in a valley defined by a river, it’s hard not to spend time by the water. Most days at some point in my valley bottom wanderings, I walk along the Bow River (in Canada’s section of the Rocky Mountains). Sometimes, I call up far-flung family members and chat while I stroll. Occasionally, I listen to a podcast or audiobook. But most days, I just walk and take time to deeply appreciate this stunning place I’m lucky enough to call home.

For me, part of the process of being appreciative is to stop and take a photograph of something that catches my eye. Sometimes that’s a grand landscape of mountains and towering clouds — and sometimes it’s the delicate whiskers of grasses gone to seed. …


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This giant shell greets visitors to the Casa Domingo hostel on the Camino in Spain. (Image: Nikki Tate)

We are going on a Camino!! Yep, members of the Writers on Fire group (a Nexus Generation Community) are planning a Camino. Our exact departure date will obviously depend a bit on what happens with COVID, but we are thinking that it will be safe to travel again by the fall of 2021 or the spring of 2022.

The idea is to take our time and allow lots of space for two important Camino activities for writers — rumination and writing. Interested in learning more? …


Poetry Forms

Be among the world’s first to try this new poetry form

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One of the constraints of the quatorché is that the subject matter must be natural — as in, no human-made structures of artifact may be mentioned. [Image: Nikki Tate]

Ah, the Challenges of Poetic Forms

I love the constraints provided by working within the strict parameters of poetry forms. From the diminutive and elegant haiku to the longer and more complex ghazals, sonnets, and villanelles, working with forms is a process rife with challenges and rich with rewards.

Each poetic form started somewhere when some writer decided to put a box around the poetic process.

To add to the collection of mentally-stimulating poetic gymnastics challenges, I thought it would be fun to invent a poetry form of my own.

Introducing, The Quatorché!

Here are the parameters:

Each of the four stanzas in a quatorché has four lines. …


Five Things…

An everyday photo essay

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It’s an Old Country thing… [Image: Nikki Tate]

1. The Kitchen Witch

My husband brought a kitchen witch to our joint kitchen when we fused households. I assumed it was an Italian tradition, but it turns out there’s some debate over where the idea to have a good luck witch in the kitchen actually originated. There are many references to German and Scandinavian kitchen witches, which is ironic as my German mother had a deep aversion to spending any time in the kitchen. Maybe that’s because she didn’t have a witch hanging around to encourage her.

I must confess I can’t decide whether our witch is cute or kind of scary. Not as scary as the knives (see #3) but creepy in a staring-doll kind of way. …


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Photo by Jess Bailey on Unsplash

I have a passion for office supplies. Pens, paper, file folders, stickers, labels, notebooks, paperclips, glue, staplers, sharp scissors, envelopes, and anything else you might find in your friendly neighbourhood office supply store (or aisle in the dollar store, drugstore, or corner grocery) gives me a thrill.

This delight with all things stationery goes back to my childhood when school supply shopping filled me with a degree of glee exceeded only by the anticipation of unwrapping Christmas presents.


When life gets so busy all you can write are the titles…

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The last time I posted anything on Medium, it was March and chilly. Note that I’m holding my cane because I was still hobbling around on my old, wobbly, PAINFUL hip. Much has changed, though you wouldn’t know it from reading my non-existent stories here… [Image: Nikki Tate]

I was shocked when I logged into Medium a few minutes ago to see what I’d last posted and when. What the heck happened?! My last story went up in March! Granted, we all went into lockdown and things got weird right about then, but wow — it’s not like I haven’t been writing.

I have. Daily. Pages and pages. How could I not?

Writing=I’m still alive.

Apparently, though, not much of that output has dribbled its way over here.

It’s been so long since I popped in here to see how things are going that I had also forgotten if there were any draft stories sitting in the queue that might be useful. …


Five Things…

What needs to stay, what needs to go?

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My desk is a mess. Way to state the obvious, Sherlock! I thought it might be fun to do some posts that were mostly photo posts (because I love taking photos of, you know, everything), but sort of themed. It’s a way to distract myself from the weightier issues that are currently infiltrating my daily scrolling.

Today’s theme: five things currently on my desk.


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Follow us on Facebook or IG (or both) for the latest coworking meeting dates and times.

Hey, everyone — it’s been a while since I reached out to say hello and update you on what’s been going on inside the Nexus Generation community. We’ve been working away in our writing group (Writers on Fire), exploring new poetry forms and prompts each week as well as doing deep dives into topics like character development, blog posts, evocative descriptions, and more. Our discussions are always fun and wide-ranging — it’s great to meet live each week to share our thoughts on writing and the creative process.

Have a minute? Check out this reflection on haiku, Bashõ and writing poetry. …


No… seriously — virtual co-working sessions are awesome!

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Come join us for some fun co-working and community-building sessions. The link to our Zoom room is down at the bottom. [Image: The Nexus Generation]

When I left my government job several decades ago to see what would happen if I tried to make a living as a writer, I confess I was a little surprised at how much I missed my coworkers. The potlucks, the team-building retreats, the going away parties were a lot of fun. Every time someone in the department had a birthday, an amazing cake appeared. …


Writer on Stage

A Ten-minute Play is Birthed

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Table reading of ‘At Sea’

As a writer, I spend a lot of time alone with words. Sometimes they flood out of me and I can hardly type fast enough to keep up. At other times, I struggle to string a single sentence together. There are days when I rewrite and toss out and delete and start over more times than I care to admit.

What is consistent, though, is that I am alone with my work. Eventually, the edits and rewrites are done, the various editors, designers, and proofreaders have their way with the work and at some point long after I’ve grappled with whatever it was I was trying to say, a book appears. …

About

Nikki Tate

Author, creativity coach, storyteller exploring the world living the dream Let’s talk writing — book a call: https://bit.ly/Call4Writers TheNexusGeneration.net

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