What “Nashville” Can Teach Us about Writing

p13566322_b_v8_aaSomeone told me once I began writing, I’d never be able to sit through a movie or television drama without dissecting the plot. They were right.

A few days ago, I watched the latest episode (9) of one of my favorite shows – Nashville. The plot blew me away and left me in a puddle of tears.

For those Nashville fans who haven’t watched it yet and are reading this – heads-up – spoilers ahead.

This episode was the most seamless example of good script writing, I’ve seen in a while. I could easily pick out, the goal, conflicts, raising tensions, foreshadowing events, and subplots. My own anxiety increased as the scenes unfolded and the subtle bits of foreshadowing lead me slowly toward the inevitable and unexpected ending (diaster).

The episode was one of the most believable and emotional scenes I’ve ever watched on a screen. It was heartbreaking and powerful.

What Can Nashville Teach Us?

To write scenes that pull our audience (readers) in through genuine emotions, realistic problems (conflicts), seamless subplots, and disasters/dilemmas that leave them breathless from chapter to chapter.

A Sneak Peek Inside Episode 9:

Watch with tissue box by your side.


What did you think? I’d love to hear your comments. Talk to me. Tell me your story and look for me on Facebook at SheilaMGood,  PinterestBloglovinTwitter@sheilamgood, Contently, and Instagram. You can follow my reviews on Amazon and Goodreads.


I Am Not The Suitcase Killer

Don’t you just love getting emails telling us we’ve been mentioned? These alerts (which you set up) provide updates on the latest and most relevant mentions on the web.They come from many sources like Google, TalkWalker, Stumbleupon, or other analytic feeds.


It’s exciting to see these alerts come across my feed or into my inbox. My words are getting noticed, my blog read and perhaps shared.

If you’ve followed my blog for any length of time, you know my stories lean toward the dark side. I’m unashamedly addicted to crime fiction, but even I was surprised when I received this Google Alert, yesterday.


I imagine those of you familiar with my writings raised a brow at the title of this little nugget. It certainly caught my attention, but in spite of what my husband implies about my potential, I do not know 365 ways to kill him, and I’ve never harmed a flea – ok, maybe a flea.

It just goes to show you, the things you read on the web are not always what they seem, and I swear to you –  I am not the “Suitcase Killer.


I’d love to hear your comments. Talk to me. Tell me your story and look for me on Facebook at SheilaMGood,  PinterestBloglovinTwitter@sheilamgood, Contently, and Instagram. You can follow my reviews on Amazon and Goodreads.

Are You S.A.D.?

Contrary to my plan, I did end up writing a couple more depression posts. This one was requested by several readers, first published on Feb. 8, 2013.

Study God's Word

One of the suggestion I received this past week was to write something about Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).  Since we are just now starting to come out of the darkest days of winter, it’s an appropriate topic for today’s Friday Depression post, which I’m going to start categorizing simply as “Counseling Issues.”

I remember my parents mentioning someone being “shack happy” or having “cabin fever.”  We’ve all heard of “being in the Doldrums,” which relates back to the days of sailing ships that would be caught sometimes for weeks in a completely still part of the tropics–not a wisp of a breeze, like being caught in an endless moment of time. Hot sun, no clouds, no rain, no wind, and a ship that wasn’t nearly large enough to keep men from grinding on each other’s last nerve.

The other two terms, cabin fever and shack happy, derive from a…

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Looking Back at 2016

2016My mother once told me, the older you get, the faster time flies. She was right. The time between October 1st and the New Year gets shorter every year. It’s as if I blinked and we’re on the precipice of Valentine’s Day.

This is my first real post since taking a medical leave just after Thanksgiving. I owe big thanks to all my Cow Pasture Contributors and guest authors for helping to keep the conversations going while I was away. I hope you enjoyed their excellent posts.

I’m not at a hundred percent, but I’m getting there. In the meantime, I thought the best way to get back into the groove was to take a look back at 2016 in the Cow Pasture.

For the last couple of years, WordPress did a great job sending out an annual year-end review for WordPress bloggers. However, this year, they decided against it. So, I decided to do my own.

Mine isn’t as artistic as the one offered by WordPress, but it was definitely enlightening.

The Numbers:

In 2016, there were 167 posts published; growing the total archive of this blog to 480 posts. The most popular day for posting- Friday and the most popular time – 9:00 am.

Traffic to the Cow Pasture almost doubled with 10,086 views; 5,543 visitors. My longest streak was in the month of April when I participated in the A-Z Blogging Challenge – posting daily for 30 straight days. The busiest month of the year was July with 2062 views.

The most popular post was Dark Cloud Hovering, with the most views in one day, 341 and a whopping total 977 views. This post continues to be very popular with more than 1742 views on Stumbleupon. The post receiving the most comments: My Top Twenty Websites for Writers – 56 comments and 196 views.

How did they find Me? The top referring sites in 2016 were:

Reaching the World – One Word at a Time.

The Cow Pasture Chronicles reached more than 100 Countries and regions.

To all my readers, Thank you, and, particularly, those who took the time to comment, interact, and share. Feedback is the lifeblood of the blogging community. I encourage each of you when you read something helpful, inspirational, or thought-provoking- speak up, say something, comment and even debate. Communication, after all, is what brings us together.

Here’s to an even bigger and better year for all of us.

I’d love to hear your comments. Talk to me. Tell me your story and look for me on Facebook at SheilaMGood,  PinterestBloglovinTwitter@sheilamgood, Contently, and Instagram. You can follow my reviews on Amazon and Goodreads.


Grief and Depression

Grief almost always includes some depression along the way to healing. It’s normal. This article was first posted on Feb. 1, 2013.

Study God's Word

I believe this will be the final Friday Depression post.  I’m thinking of moving on to other counseling topics, and I would love your input.  If there is something you’d like to suggest as a future post, please comment here, or on my page, or via Facebook or email.  I really hope you’ll help me out with some ideas.  The response to these Friday posts has been so encouraging to me.  I’d like to continue with something else that will be helpful.

Today, I want to address how depression and grief are closely related. In my practice, I often see widows or widowers who are so deeply grieving that they can hardly function in their daily lives.  They come to counseling hoping to find out what is wrong with them, and when I say, “There is nothing wrong with you.  You are experiencing a normal grief reaction to the deepest…

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