Wednesday, September 3, 2014


Have you ever felt like a fraud? It’s a feeling I've been wrestling with the past few months.

I've written and told stories all my life. I've always had a project in progress. My creative mind usually leaps forward with more ideas than I have time to put on paper. This past couple of years I've not been as…active. So many other things, emotional and physical, have had to take precedence and by the time I deal those things writing just isn't the smooth flowing joy it has been. It’s become a chore and god knows I have wagon of chores and I cringe at another. I've never looked at my creative writing like that. A chore. *Shakes my head in dismay  

It's not to say I haven't written anything because I write a lot of things but majority is non-fiction and work oriented. Not the same thing. As far as creative writing most of it has been poetry which is a great way to put emotions into order, or so I've always felt.

I've had writing friends who've ridden me about stories I've written and why aren't I doing something with them. Bless their hearts, they mean well. They’re trying to motivate me, encourage me. I've done the same for them. Yes, I like the fact they've enjoyed reading my work and they feel it’s worth pursuing but…how do you tell them you just don’t feel like writing?  How do you say I look at this series and go meh? I can encourage others. I critique stories and proposals. I can crack the whip over them but I can’t seem to get ME going again. To find that inner fire. I feel like a fraud.

I've been thinking a lot about it lately. Haven’t found all the answers. I have had some creative ideas and those ideas were strong enough to shake me out of my…apathy? At least they excited me enough that I wrote a brief summary down and one is dancing around in my head where they usually play for awhile before making it to the writing stage. I consider that progress. I know part of the problem is finding that groove in time that belongs only to my muse and me. The other part is I’m chained to my computer so many hours in the course of the day the last thing I want to do is sit longer—I just want to escape. My schedule is so caddywumpus right now that I haven’t found that fun time for creating. I know I need to find it because I feel amputated without it.

My conclusion, after thinking about all this for some time, is I have to find a spot in my schedule that again belongs only to writing. Give myself permission to let go of everything for that time and just settle in and do. If I need to be away from my computer, and I do, then there is always a notebook and a pen. I can write anywhere, right? 

I’m working on it. J

Monday, September 1, 2014


Welcome to September. Where the heck did the summer go? I hope you all had a good summer. Mine was far from the projected summer of relaxation and more balls to the wall busy. August has been intense training for a new aspect of my job while maintaining my normal work schedule. Insane.

Have you seen the new Lone Ranger movie? We saw it this past weekend on DVD. It's not a bad movie. Johnny Depp took a good role. Both my husband and I grew up watching The Lone Ranger and of course they were reruns on TV by the time we watched them. It was a special childhood memory for us both. So watching this movie elicited quite a discussion in the McKye household. Comparisons and memories.
There were a ton of westerns on when I grew up and my dad loved them. If you wanted to watch the one TV in our house you watched them, too.  My dad even had a western revolver with a gun belt and holster. Let me tell you, he practiced with that gun and was very fast on the draw and he was a good shot. Well, many a target died. J There were a couple of his friends that were big into that sort of thing, too. I still remember that gun with dark maroon cherry wood handles. It was fancy and my dad liked to dress in black when he practiced—the ultimate western fantasy. There is an old record album of Marty Robbins’ western ballads where he is dressed in all black in the middle of a draw—it’s on a dark pink background (seriously, pink?). We have a picture of my dad in a similar pose only he was much better looking than Marty and had a well developed chest and arms—he came by them honestly in construction. Made old Marty look a bit puny.  J

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I've never been a big fan of westerns and I'm still not although there are a few I like. The Lone Ranger was okay. It was entertaining and I loved Tonto and Silver was the coolest horse ever. I liked the fact that the good guys won and that they were tough but honorable men who lived by a code.

Clayton Moore played a strong character and that character became an American icon. Clayton Moore’s Lone Ranger (based on the original stories) was strong minded, heroic, and a tough man. He was larger than life. There was nothing wimpy about him. The Lone Ranger was an excellent marksman, he excelled in hand-to-hand combat, and in today’s standards he would be an
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above average athlete. He was the last surviving member of a group of six Texas Rangers that were ambushed and killed by the outlaws they were chasing. His brother was the captain of the Ranger group—Captain Dan Reid. It was in honor of his brother that he wore the mask made from his brother’s vest and fought for justice.  

I don’t think the Lone Ranger ever killed anyone except, I think, by a ricochet shot. If you remember the silver bullets were a personal reminder to him that life was precious and not to be taken unnecessarily.  It seemed he was always disabling them without a killing shot or shooting the gun out of their hand (amazing how accurate he was considering those are some very hard shots to make). It was the times, folks. Good won and evil was never glorified and always lost.

Lone Ranger Wallpaper
I've seen a lot of negative comments on The Lone Ranger movie. Part of it was the way the way Armie Hammer portrayed the Lone Ranger. Kind of weak and wishy-washy—I know it annoyed me. Tonto irritated others. A couple that made me laugh was about the portrayal of Tonto vs Native American culture. No, it’s not particularly politically correct but we’re talking about the historical period of 1868. C’mon people, prejudice abounded in that time frame against Indians. Most Native-Americans were caught between their heritage and fitting into the white world. You can’t rewrite history as much as you might wish to and even in today’s era of politically correct verbiage, prejudice is still just hiding behind the words. If you have lived where there is an Indian reservation and/or a large population of Native-Americans, I can assure you there is still a certain disdain in the general populace. 

As writers we know if we're depicting a particular historical period there is a need for good research so you cover the mores, dress and accoutrements and at least the flavor of the vernacular of the times. I have several nitpicks along that line in The Lone Ranger movie but the most grating to me were the weapons. Most of the pistols used post Civil War were Dragoon .44 caliber conversions
take the old cap and ball and convert it to cartridge guns. Lot of experimental handguns in the late 1860's by both Remington and Colt. Some were fancy and engraved others just serviceable. Smith and Wesson got into the act in the 1870's onward.  I want to point out The Lone Ranger is using a colt in 1868 that wasn't made until 1876. Hello—fact checkers?

The movie itself was good. Cons: Lone Ranger was rather wimpy in the beginning and he’s sort of depicted as a city dude and wrongly as an attorney. He toughened up (but it took way too long since he should have been tough from outset) and became a hero. It had a bit more focus on Tonto then it should have and while he was always a main character in the original he never dwarfed the Lone Ranger. It wasn't Tonto and the Lone Ranger. The movie was a bit long and could have been edited a bit to give it a tighter storyline.

Still, it was entertaining, has some funny moments, and worth watching.

  • Have you seen it? What did you think?