About Mary E. Knippel

Mary E Knippel, Writer Unleashed and the founder of Your Writing Mentor supports women to take pen in hand to unleash their story worth writing...to leverage their impact through their stories...reclaim their voices...to polish their words so that they sparkle and shine from the start...and go from making dinner to making a difference. Contact her at mary (at) yourwritingmentor.com.

[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] My heart wants me to know

travel writing

My heart wants me to know…

Friday five-minute writing prompt

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt – My heart wants me to know… or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and a spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

Who inspires you?

Meurer girls

Meurer girls

November invites us to celebrate National Inspirational Role Models Month. 

Who inspires you? 

Inspiration comes to us with new ideas we are exposed to, the things we see in the media, concepts and plot twists from our favorite authors. Perhaps we are inspired when we watch larger than life heroines take on challenges and save the day. Or, when we worship…logic and life intersect when spirit and faith combined. And if we are lucky, the people who inspire us are also the people we love…our family.

They are our link to our past, our present, and our future. Our roadmap of how to be strong and compassionate.

Grandmothers who survived losing husbands and the deaths of children. Great Aunts who succeeded in carving out lives for themselves despite the fact society frowned on women invading men’s business sanctuary. Sisters and cousins who maintained a deep strong bond of not only kinship but also friendship.

When I was growing up we lived with my Grandma Emma. She seldom traveled farther than the several hundred yards to the church for Mass and the backyard to hang up laundry. But she did venture out for one specific activity that I can picture so clearly. I can even smell the bacon lingering in the air for the old-fashioned German Potato Salad she prepared for the occasion.

Grandma, her sisters (the Meurer girls in the picture above:  Lena, Emma, Gertie, Madie, and Martha), their daughters (our mothers), and their daughters (my generation of cousins) got together for what they called Cousin’s Club. It was a ladies lunch with the best china, followed by card games with lots of lively conversation, ending up with caramel colored coffee and lovely sweet confections (did I mention these ladies loved to bake?…and bake they did!).

I attribute my affection for my cousins to the time we spent observing our elders having fun with each other.

Do you have an inspirational story? Care to share? Hop over to my Facebook page and introduce me to who inspires you!

 

[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] Wondering about…

travel writing

Wondering about…

Friday five-minute writing prompt

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt – Wondering about… or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and a spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

Ready…Aim…Unleash Your Story!

http://www.dreamstime.com/-image10494661Take aim at the target…the target of the stories that make up your legacy!

 

Stories of:

  • inspiration
  • hope
  • purpose
  • family
  • relationships
  • community

When you look in the mirror, do you smile back at what you see reflected? When your work is praised? When your compassion is recognized? Taking aim at your legacy happens with every decision you make towards your goals, interacting with friends and family, deciding what to have for dinner…even in the line at the grocery store when you are purchasing the ingredients for dinner.

What are you taking aim these days? Or is life winning the battle with challenges, complications and those persistent inconsistencies which throw a monkey wrench into your well-plotted plans?

I won’t pretend that I know how you can use a bow and arrow to take aim at your story, but I do know that writing your story can help you unleash your legacy.

Do you struggle with what you want to say when you sit down to write?

I think an exciting part of writing is that it is a direct line to building a relationship with the world at large in a way not many other things can.

Your story so far does not have to dictate where you go from here. Take time for yourself…even five minutes uninterrupted…will help you find clarity about how you can focus on finding yourself again. Taking time for you and only you.

When my daughter was a toddler, I took a week-long writing workshop. It was the first time I’d gone away to really work on my writing (although I’d been keeping a journal since I was an 11-year-old hiding my spiral bound notebook from my brother) and had a degree in Mass Communication. Our teacher greeted us at the door with a 3-ring binder and told us that we were all writing a book. That statement put me in such a state of panic and I almost bolted from the campus. Almost is the operative word. My determination to write pushed me to stay more than my panic wanted me to run.

Sharing our passion and beliefs exposes our vulnerability, deepens our authenticity, our transparency, and builds trust with everyone we encounter. I found my voice through my two breast cancer experiences. It made me passionate about encouraging everyone not to wait until you have a health crisis to practice self-care. I learned to self-validate and to take loving action on my own behalf for my highest good.

If we pay attention, sometimes the stories we are supposed to write find us instead of the other way around. First, you have to show up at the page!

Hop over to my Facebook page to share how you are showing up on the page!

 

 

photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] Thank you!

travel writing

Thank you!

Friday five-minute writing prompt

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt – Thank you! or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and a spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

Break Free of Haunting Phantoms

haunts you-No trick! Halloween this week makes light of ghosts and spooky things going bump in the night…childish good fun…and then again…another day in your life if you find it difficult to escape nagging and unpleasant thoughts from your inner meanie, inner critic, or your doubter.

You want someone to wave a magic wand and make those haunting thoughts disappear…sweep them away from your consciousness and go on with life’s original programming…not so easy. Or is it? 

What if I told you that you do have a magic wand?

You can treat yourself to another perspective and change the story running in your head. Yes, and you can sweep haunting thoughts away for yourself. 

Think you know where I’m going with this? If you’ve already started reaching for your journal and pen then you’ve guessed it!

Your pen has magic powers – it is a wand to help you drive the inner doubter out of your head and create a new reality.

Sometimes writing about what’s bothering you may be the last thing you want to do, but the physical act of grasping the pen, moving your hand across the page, and forming the letters to create words, helps you assume power and control over a situation in which you previously felt powerless. 

Writing can help neutralize those haunting thoughts…  

Writing it down is not a magic bullet…where you do it once and every doubt you have ever had will be wiped away. But when used consistently, you can develop an understanding of where these doubts are coming from, why they haunt you, formulate a strategy to defuse or deflect their phantom power and relegate them to your past instead of impacting your present, and be free to have the glorious future you deserve. 

I find myself creatively energized by a routine of starting my day with at least 15-minutes of writing in my journal…taking dictation from my soul. I start my day curled up in bed with my journal, purple ink flowing out of my fountain pen and tea tray close by.

If you want to improve your perspective on life and clarify issues, I strongly suggest that you start writing in a journal. 

  1. Start writing about where you are in your life at this moment…describe your living situation, your work, and your relationships.
  2. For five to ten minutes just start writing in a “stream of consciousness.” Don’t edit your thoughts or feelings and don’t correct your grammar. Don’t censor your thoughts.
  3. Dialogue with your inner child by writing in your subdominant hand and answer with your dominant hand.
  4. Cultivate an attitude of gratitude by maintaining a daily list of things you appreciate in your life, including uplifting quotes.
  5. Maintain a log of successes…all successes the big ones:  new jobs, promotion, graduation, awards. Write down small successes: rebate checks, no cavities, all the socks from the dryer match.
  6. Start a playlist of your favorite songs and the moods they evoke when you hear a song that triggers a strong memory.
  7. Write about something you are struggling within the third person to give you a new perspective.

Override that automatic response when the haunting thoughts hijack your emotions…write it down and allow the healing to begin.

Photo credit:  canva.com

 

 

 

 

Easily find inspiration to write your story

Do you have  a hard time getting started writing? I’ll tell you a secret that anyone can use to jump start your writing…take a look at the headlines on the front page of the newspaper, the cover of popular magazines, what’s trending on Facebook, or any news program. Your subject matter is in that headline, on the magazine cover, or blinking from your screen. I guarantee that there is something that grabs your interest and begs your attention. Something that makes you want to shake your head in disbelief, shed a tear in dismay, or cry out in pain. And wouldn’t you like to have a discussion with someone about your observation? Or, voice your opinion on the current state of affairs?

I’ll give you an example. Unless you live under a rock, you know that October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. It is a timely subject you could blog about. Why would you write about breast cancer? One-in-eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime. If you are that one-in-eight woman, then you could write about how you are not a statistic, you are a unique individual with hopes, dreams and a successful business. If you know someone who is that one-in-eight, then you can talk about how that someone (family member, co-worker, or friend) has persevered, coped and confronted an incredible challenge. How they have shown you by being a living example of how precious life is and you have to live every minute. Commenting on whatever you experience has been shows that you are aware of the community and the world around you. Breast cancer has touched you in some way and affected how you live your life because of that experience.

In my case, I’ve been diagnosed with breast cancer twice. I’m passionate about encouraging everyone I encounter not to wait until they have a health crisis to take care of themselves. I am not a statistic. I am an individual, unique, and amazingly talented. Breast cancer is part of my story, but it is not my whole story. I’ve changed my story to be visible with my gifts. And I help others realize their ability to share their story which is why I founded Your Writing Mentor and why I am adamant about the fact I feel everyone is a writer, reluctant they may be, and has an incredible story to tell which only they can tell…their own!

[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] Trick or treat?

travel writing

Trick or treat…

Friday five-minute writing prompt

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt – Trick or treat or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and a spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

What do you and I have in common with Barbara Walters?

Have you ever been moved to tears? Not just at a sad movie, or a sentimental greeting card verse. Really moved to tears because something touched you to your core.

I know what that’s like. It’s my sincere hope that you do too. Which brings me to the reason why I titled this blog, “What you and I have in common with Barbara Walters.”

Why in the world would I have the nerve to compare myself to Barbara Walters? Or suggest that you had something in common with her as well? Remember when she did those interviews with celebrities and famous people? They often found themselves brought to tears because Ms. Walters asked such probing questions. In responding to the questions, the folks being interviewed went deep and it seemed were almost compelled to share details about themselves they hadn’t looked at for a long time. She had an uncanny ability to ask the questions the public would most like to hear.

Now, you may never have thought of yourself as a journalist, however, in going deep to unleash your story worth writing, you are a journalist. A “journalist” in the sense of writing in a journal.

Is there something going on in your life right now you need answers to? Or, something from your past that won’t let your thoughts rest. And, of course, the possibility that something could happen keeps you anxious. Getting in touch with your emotions on paper is a solution anyone can make use of.

Yes, I believe writing can do that for you. Asking yourself probing questions and writing about it in your journal will assist you in going deeper with what is going on in your life right now, coping with what has happened to you in the past, and making a plan as to how you will move forward into the future you want to have

Oh, and I’m very happy when those around me cry. As a matter of fact, I’m often the first person to cry. I’ve decided it’s my thing. I take it as a sign that another layer in the story has been unleashed.

Want to have conversation about tears and the layers of your story? Let’s connect!

 

 

 

[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] October memories

travel writing

October memories…

Friday five-minute writing prompt

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt – October memories or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and a spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com

Invitation: Exclusive Creative Resource for Entrepreneurs

 Writers Mindset for Entrepreneurs –

An Exclusive Creative Resource for Entrepreneurs

facilitated by Petalyn Albert and Mary E. Knippel

Thursday, Nov. 16, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Half Moon Bay, Calif.

Space is limited in this intimate art gallery setting. Grab your seat today! 

Register now for this juicy, inspiration-filled and information-packed day!

If you have ever felt like the writer shown here, this is for you!

Come learn how to prime yourself for your next writing project in a beautiful, intimate setting on the San Mateo Coastside.

As an Entrepreneur, you wear many hats in business. Your success in business begins with the right mindset. It takes time and experience to be able to get to the right mindset. It is not something that you can force. You can, however, make tremendous stride with motivation and commitment. Your motivation and commitment to the reason WHY you are in business in the first place hold the key to your success. Developing critical decision-making skills and tapping into your inner writer is a big part of your success in business and your life.

During this highly focused and motivational day, you will receive tools and techniques to support you in not only making necessary day-to-day decisions but in making influential choices to move your business forward and to craft a compelling message so that the clients who Need YOU are more readily able to Find YOU!

 

Fast Action BONUS! register by Nov. 1, you will be rewarded with a VIP consultation hour with Mary to polish your words so that they sparkle and shine! And a copy of Mary’s latest writing:  Bloom Where You are Planted and SHINE!

In the morning (9-noon)  Petalyn Albert, founder of the NLP Advantage, who works with men and women striving to be at the top of their field, will address how we can change our mindset to get on with what’s next in our life free of doubt

In the afternoon session (1-4) Mary E. Knippel, your writing mentor, will help you unleash your entrepreneurial story so that you can shine in your business and your life.

Space is limited in this intimate art gallery setting! Grab your seat for this deep dive into uncovering what is holding you back and embracing mindset tools to unleash your message and the impact you are meant to have out into the world!
 
Fast Action BONUS! Decision makers are leaders who take fast action and when you register by Nov. 1, you will be rewarded with a VIP consultation hour with Mary to polish your words so that they sparkle and shine!
 
Are you ready? Yes! See you at Writers Mindset for Entrepreneurs!

Space is limited in this intimate art gallery setting. Grab your seat today! 

Register now for this juicy, inspiration-filled and information-packed day.

Join us and start your journey today…be inspired, reclaim your voice, rewrite your story and discover your powerful self!

[Friday Five-Minute Writing Prompt] Lovin the state I’m in

travel writing

Lovin the state I’m in…

Friday five-minute writing prompt

Take out a fresh sheet of paper. Natalie Goldberg uses a “fast-writing” pen. I suggest using your favorite writing instrument and an unlined piece of colored paper for fun. I use a fountain pen with purple ink. Some folks opt to use their computer. If that is your preferred method to write, then just open a new word document on your computer and go for it. The point is to keep your fingers moving for five minutes and not stop. I want you to experience how much writing can be accomplished in a short period.

If you get stuck, just repeat the writing prompt – Lovin the state I’m in or any other phrase that is comfortable for you. Do not stop to edit, correct spelling, look up a better word, or rearrange a sentence. Do not question what comes up in the five minutes: this doesn’t make sense, where did that come from, or what a crazy notion. This is a timed writing exercise so be sure to set the timer on your watch, phone, microwave, computer, or kitchen stove. Whether you use an egg timer, a No. 2 pencil and a spiral notebook, your iPad, or even your iPhone, the theory is the same. Keep your hand and fingers moving and have fun taking dictation from your unconscious self. Make a list, hum a tune, write a poem, or create a short, short story. This is your time to explore and experiment.

Photo credit:  Dreamstime.com