#30DayWritingChallenge (Day 2): Share something you struggle with

Being called “pretty”.

Sounds weird but it’s true.

I remember exactly the first time that I remember someone saying that about me.

The family was on a cruise, I was 16 and the remark came from our dining room waiter. I had never heard anyone say that I was pretty before (at least not that I can remember) and I simply figured that he was trying to butter up my folks to get a bigger end-of-cruise tip. And if he wasn’t, I was convinced that he needed to get his eyes examined.

There was just no way that the term could apply to me.

Growing up in a world where beauty was only linked to blonde or straight hair, blue or green eyes, white and lighter skin tones, being called “pretty” had never been part of my wheelhouse.

“Pretty” was reserved for those Other Girls on the cover of books, magazines and actresses in movies and television.

In “real life”, Other Girls with that same phenotype were always the center of attention, part of the popular crowd and the object of crushes by the boys in school. When those Other Girls became Other Women out in the world, the cycle simply continued. I observed many of them navigate their environment with an air of entitlement and full of themselves.

Maybe it was partly sour grapes but I distinctly remember making a decision at the age of 9 that if I couldn’t be pretty like those Other Girls, I would just have be as smart and kind as I could. And since my brain and kindness have served me very well since that time, that’s the way I see myself.

So to this day, when someone uses the term on me, I say thank you because it’s the polite thing to do. I always take it with a grain of salt because, as the saying goes, “pretty is as pretty does”, looks fade and I’ll choose brains over looks any day.

But with all that said, the little girl in me will always struggle a little with that compliment because it’s in her DNA.

What are some of the things that you struggle with? Share with me in the comment box.

See you tomorrow.


M xoxo

#30DayWritingChallenge (Day 1): List 10 things that make you content

Today’s challenge question was “List 10 things that make you really happy” but since I don’t think that I’ve ever truly been “happy”, I’m switching it out to “List 10 things that make you feel content”

There is a big difference between “happy” and “content”.

  • The beach. Under a palm tree. On a week day. With a good book;
  • A piping hot bowl of pho on a cold winter day, preferably during a snow storm;

  • Decluttering and re-organizing areas of my home which also helps to clam my nerves and distracts me from thinking too much;
  • Puttering around my garden on a sunny day, doing a lot of this, that and the other;
  • Visualizing a scene for a story and drafting it until it feels just right;

  • Hitting the snooze button as many times as I want on a Sunday morning;
  • Getting lost in the pages of a novel so good that I slow my read so that I prolong the pleasure;
  • Sipping on the perfect cup of coffee with just the right ratio of sugar and heavy cream;

  • Playing old school jams and dancing around the house with no shame; and

  • Waking up to this view every morning, at least once but preferably twice a year.

Have you gotten to know me a little better? 🙂

What are some of the things that make you happy or content? Share with me in the comment box.

See you tomorrow! 


M xoxo

My #30DayWritingChallenge starts tomorrow

Quotes About Self Reflection

The results of the poll I posted fell in line with what I wanted, which was basically a combination of personal and writing related questions.

I’ve adapted the #30daywritingchallenge posted by a fellow writer-friend to make up for questions that don’t apply, are a bit too personal or to which I don’t have an answer. I’ve also changed the order of certain questions as they originally appeared.

I’m hoping that this challenge will help me get back into a daily writing habit and help you to know me a little better as a person and as a writer.

All of the posts will likely disappear during my next blog clean-up. 🙂

See you tomorrow!



getting into the groove

When I’m writing, I feel like I can conquer the world.

I want that feeling back.

Like I said in my last post, I’m going to try a 30 day writing challenge to get my creative juices flowing.

My friend Kathy reminded me that our fellow friend Pam just finished a 30 day challenge that I might like. I instantly remembered Pam’s posts and loved reading her daily personal type posts.

In addition to that, while I was sifting through my writing files, I also came across 100 blog topics for fiction writers that I had saved a few years ago that I thought would be fun to pick 30 topics out of the 100 listed.

So I’ve got 2 choices and getting your input on which one to choose would be fun, don’t you think?

So here is a little poll below (but if you are using Mozilla Firefox, it will not appear and I have no clue why).

I’m already leaning towards one but I’m curious to see how you vote!

Looking forward to your vote.



M  xoxo

grace (not writing)

I miss a lot of things about my blogging space.

I miss the exchanges with you after posting something. It’s more about interacting as friends, fellow writers and readers than the external validation element.

I miss spending time reading your blogs and knowing what you are all up to.

I miss writing and blogging challenges that get my creative juices flowing.

Giving myself grace is the only way to go but I truly miss the act of sitting down and seeing what I can create.

After long days stuck at the computer and working from home all the time, the last thing I want is to spend more time with a device.

But like I miss writing too much to give up.

A J gave me an idea in a recent post and my light bulb went off – I’m going to find a 30 day writing challenge to “just write”. Maybe I’ll post them or maybe not. We’ll see.

The race is not for the swift but for those who can endure to the end.

If you are a writer, would you have any 30 day challenges to suggest?

All Rights Reserved ©2020 Marquessa Matthews

everything but writing

Enough is enough.

I’ve been doing every and anything else except write since the ‘Rona hit…

Like playing with my hair, giving it the daily TLC it deserves by moisturizing and being amazed at all the things it can do with the slightest care…

Liking drinking way too much white apple and grape juice out of the wine glasses I rarely use, allowing the neighbors to think whatever they like as I sip, sip and sip away on my deck…

Like stocking up on all things related to “the second wave of Corona is coming so get prepared” mindset I have developed and aimlessly surfing Amazon for things I truly don’t need…

And most of all, like eating crap while I binge watch (and re-watch) 51 episodes of a Turkish romantic comedy I fell in love before they get taken down…

So yeah, enough is enough already.

It’s time to hop back on the writing train even if it’s just a quick daily write for myself. I made myself some promises and it’s time to dust of my fingertips and get to it.

What have you had enough of? Not being able to get back to a normal routine? Tell me.


if this man kidnapped you…

Wow, this is a first. 

Actually being able to understand all the controversy, in real time, about a new movie I have already watched is new to me because I’m always late to everything trending.

I’m talking about “365 DNI” also known as “365 Days”.

The movie wasn’t very good (but I’ve seen worse) and it made me wonder if the book is better than the movie adaptation. There was basically no plot, minimal dialogue, one hot-looking man and a cliffhanger.

But what do I know? I hear that the sequel is going to be made and I can only assume that the controversy swirling around the premise is a good thing for the movie.

What controversy?

On one hand, there is the complaint that the movie glorifies kidnapping and romanticizing Stockholm syndrome.

(Hopefully there won’t be any headlines in the news about creepy weirdos doing what the lead character did to “catch” the woman of their dreams…)

On the other hand, there is the complaint that it’s just a movie and viewers should be able to temporarily suspend right from wrong and live in the land of movie make-believe for a little while.

To be honest, I didn’t think about any of the above because if the plot is thin, I’m not analyzing much of anything. All I was wondering was how a man like Michele Morrone could actually be that good-looking and if those sizzling sex scenes were real…like real, real

If you’ve seen “the yacht scene”, you know what I mean.

But there were two bigger questions on my mind during that movie and they were these…

If placed in Laura’s position, how many women or men would seriously consider not trying to escape?

And what would the movie have been like if Laura had kidnapped Massimo?


M xoxo