Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Pushing through Zilch

Oh, the places I've been this month. Never in my life, have I visited so many different blogs and left so many comments nor have I received so many. I have also signed up for the Pagan Blog Challenge, a little late in the alphabet, as we are on "I" there but thankfully, our posts are once a month, not every day of the week, like the A to Z challenge. So stay tuned for that.

I love blogging but am a rebel and free thinker so I was not altogether happy about having to stick with a particular letter of the alphabet as my topic or concept. To be honest, I thought I would have given up on this A to Z challenge long ago--actually I first thought about quitting after "B" and then I thought for sure the end had come after "W" but here I am, still blogging, making it to this day's Z post.

I picked zilch for Z. I thought I had zilch left for you, and would take off Z day, enjoying taking some zzzz's of my own but I have a bit more left to say. This challenge has been a lesson in going beyond zero and pushing through when you start thinking you have zilch left to offer. It has been about tapping source, finding light, delving into inner wisdom and bringing it out and into the light, in my case through words and visual art, to share with others.

Though it has nothing much to do with having zilch, I wanted to share this piece about infinity and place, with you today to end the A to Z challenge:


This painting is about place and also as I said, it is about infinity. It is about going to the outer bounds and finding space and a special place in the unknown. I call it "Elcho Island" which is the place I centered my studies of Aboriginal Australian culture, during my Fulbright Senior Scholar award year. Like today, going to this place also known as Gali'winku, took me into unknown and unfamiliar territory that I never knew existed in my realm of being.

The painting, "Elcho Island" is unstretched, constructed canvas, with oil paint and mixed media over acrylic. It is stuffed, folded, distressed, glued and remolded. It is about 4 1/2' wide by 7 1/2' long, so it is quite large. I was influenced by the African American painter Sam Gilliam, who worked with unstretched canvas in an abstract manner for many years.

Like this painting, I have been stretched, distressed, and unstretched by blogging A to Z to what seemed to be my limits. I have persisted, pushing past the notion of giving zilch, to tap inner source and continue to blog. I want to thank all the new followers and visitors from the challenge. I will see you, visiting your blogs throughout the year, and though I never thought I'd say it, I look forward to the challenge next year.

Blessed Be we have reached Z.
Z is for Zilch in the A to Z Blogger's Challenge

22 comments:

  1. Zilch--love that! I'm with you. It was all I could do to hang in there some days. In the end, I'm glad I kept my commitment to myself. Thanks again, for stopping by!

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    1. Oh, yeah--zilch it is. I'm so glad we all hung in there though, at least those of us that are left. Our numbers have diminished but the quality of the blogs, including yours, has not. Thanks for visiting. I hope you'll come back.

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  2. Congratulations on fulfilling such an arduous and challenging task! By the by Stephanie, did you know that More Nobel laureates are former Fulbright recipients than any other award program? Hmmm!

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    1. Dawn thank you! I am relieved to have reached Z. I did not know that about Nobel Laureates. Hmm indeed; something cool to contemplate.

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  3. I read your entry out loud to my husband, who isn't like me and never participates in this challenge, yet he is intelligent in ways I am not. I am amazed I had the good fortune to meet you, despite the fact that it is on the last day of the challenge, as you have blown my mind with your brilliance. Thank you so much! jean

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    1. Jean, I am so flattered that you read my post to your husband. Thank you so much for complimenting my Z post and I'll be over shortly to read yours!

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  4. Stephanie it pushed us to the limit and m glad to read you are a rebel and free thinker. Congrats and we are champions:) Beautiful and expressive painting on Infinity:)

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  5. Vishal, thanks for the compliment about my painting! We are indeed champions. I am getting writer's cramps in my hands. I enjoy your posts too.

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  6. Yes Susan, the spirit of plenty meets the feeling of not having enough.

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  7. I understand being burned out. I feel that same way. I'm looking forward to taking a break, but I do have 3 blog posts scheduled for the first week of May and then 2 each week after that.

    "Elcho Island" is a beautiful name! I would love to try to make a painting like that.

    Congratulations on making it to Z! I am following your blog by email, so I'll definitely be back. I'm glad I was able to get to know you through She Writes and our blogs. :)

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    1. Chrys, yes, as soon as my writer's cramp is gone from my left hand, I'll be back up and at the blogs too! I have been neglecting my novel and haven't even started my nonfiction book's illustrations so I have to get cracking on all fronts. I'm so glad you liked "Elcho Island," the place is magical and would leave a spell on you too. Congratulations to you as well. I enjoy your posts on writing and it looks like many other people do as well. Thanks for subscribing.

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  8. I loved the way you worked this last piece around the word Zilch, leading us all to Elcho Island. Beautiful!

    It's been a pleasure to meet and share with you. This A to Z Challenge has been really hard and very worthwhile. I met great bloggers, and I also learned functions of my blog site that I never knew existed that helped me stay on track and meet my goal. Space, of course, was the key. I gave myself the space I needed to succeed and realized that I actually had more than I needed to get the job done. Funny what can happen when we just relax into the space.

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    1. Thanks so much Donna! I'm glad you like the painting. I too met great bloggers I didn't even know existed and am glad I found your blogging space. What wonderful voices we have discovered during this challenge. I love contemplating space and place.

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  9. Congratulations Stephanie. We did it :)

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    1. Indeed Jyotsna, despite the odds of not finishing, we did it!

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  10. Stretched and distressed--awesome description! I wasn't sure I would make it around P week, but here we are. You have captured the overall feeling of the finish line perfectly for me. Thank you! Conlee http://www.conleericketts.com/blog.html

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  11. Thanks Conlee! What a journey it has been. No offense to our organizers but I'm so glad to have reached Z. I enjoyed your posts this month and will be back to read more.

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  12. Congratulations on making it to Z. It is a tough challenge, but you made it. Interesting painting. Love the colors.

    Thanks for visiting The Busy Mom's Daily.

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    1. Thank you Cheryl. I enjoyed visiting the Busy Mom's Daily and am following you on twitter.

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  13. Ha that's exactly how I felt through the challenge...I joined a good 12 days later and was doing 2 posts a day to compensate for my late entry.All said and done, it seems worth the effort after connecting with so many great people!
    Thanks for the lovely birthday wishes you dropped for my son on my blog post.Great to know that you have a son of the same age....that's leaves us with a lot of common stories to write about! Will be popping by on and off to read your amazing posts here :)

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    1. Wow Vinodini, two posts per day? That must have been truly exhausting! That was a wonderful post about your son. I'm glad we share our sons too and look forward to seeing what's going on over at your blog.

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