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June 4, 2014 / diannegray

What is your life theme?

I’ve finished my latest novel The Devil Seam and have sent it off to my first Beta reader for comment. Thank you to all those who encouraged me (and cracked the whip!) when I posted about the pain of finding a good ending. I finally found an ending I loved after a week of cleaning, mowing, sanding and painting!

There is a scene in The Devil Seam where the two main characters have a short discussion and differing opinion about the theme of a certain book. I’m sure you all know what a theme is – a universal idea or message carried through a book (music or art); a thread woven through a story which can be a lesson about life or humanity, good overcoming evil, survival, chaos and order, everlasting love, fear of failure (the list just goes on and on).

This got me thinking about life themes. When I finished the book a few friends came over to help me celebrate so I asked them about their life themes. If they had to describe a theme or thread running through their life, what would it be?

What an interesting discussion! At first there was a fair bit of thinking going on. This wasn’t something anyone could come up within five minutes, but during the course of the evening life themes began to sprout and grow.

The life themes that emerged were – fear of failure, overcoming loss, belief that true love conquers all, greed and downfall, faith and doubt, the search for truth, and the will to survive.

Have you ever thought about your life theme, maybe you have more than one?

Feel free to share your thoughts about life themes in the comments.

In the meantime I took another video of the morning birds from my veranda. I did it mainly to compare it to the last one to see how much the sugar cane flowers had taken over the countryside.

The first video was taken three weeks ago and the second was taken this morning. I couldn’t zoom in on the second one because the sugar cane flowers in the foreground made the trees blurry.

They’re only 30 seconds long and even if you don’t watch them, you can clearly see from the still shot what an amazing difference three weeks makes!

 I hope you have a wonderful week!


Leave a Comment
  1. John / Jun 4 2014 10:15 am

    Life theme… I wish I had made better choices many years ago. That’s off topic I guess…


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 11:00 am

      Good one, John. Choices, I’m sure I’ve made a few as well that could have been better 😉


  2. Jonathan Caswell / Jun 4 2014 10:23 am

    Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:

    Liked by 1 person

  3. ygm17 / Jun 4 2014 10:31 am

    Oh I love these deep questions! (It’s the Psych Major in me) My life theme would have to be Service. It is probably more a ‘value’ than a theme but that is how I have always ‘seen’ my life and how it feels to me. A life of service; of giving and sharing of myself.. I think writers are givers too, servants…anyway don’t want to get to philosophical. Congratulations on finishing The Devil Seam 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 11:03 am

      I LOVE philosophy, Yolanda (my last story, The Eleventh Question was full of philosophical elements!)

      “A life of service; of giving and sharing of myself” is a beautiful theme! I love it – what an amazing person you are 😀


      • ygm17 / Jun 4 2014 11:36 am

        I do have The Eleventh Question and it is on my Summer reading list. I expect I will read it on our camping trip in Aug. Am really looking forward to reading your books 🙂 Thank you for the kind words Dianne.


      • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 12:09 pm

        Thank you so much, Yolanda. I’m very excited you’re going to read The Eleventh Question! 😀


  4. JackieP / Jun 4 2014 10:46 am

    Congrats Dianne on finishing the book! Well, at least this far. My life theme would probably be ‘reinventing myself’. It seems every 15 years or so that’s what I do. All for the better I think.


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 11:06 am

      Reinventing yourself – that’s great. You must have lived many interesting lives, Jackie! I think we all need to do this so we don’t get stuck doing the same thing (and making the same mistakes) over and over again 😉


      • JackieP / Jun 4 2014 11:13 am

        Exactly! I have lead an interesing life I think lol not always in the good way, but I learn as I grow older. And I do learn by mistakes.


  5. jannatwrites / Jun 4 2014 11:04 am

    Congratulations on finishing the book! I hadn’t really thought about my life’s theme, but I guess the main theme would have to be more dreaming than accomplishing. Many sub-themes go on as well… fear of failing, fear of succeeding… fear of just about everything 🙂


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 11:08 am

      Thanks for the congrats, Janna! Phew, now I can focus on my other WIPs 😉

      Fear is an interesting one. I hope your life theme ends up being ‘How I used my dreams to overcome fear!’ 😀


  6. nrhatch / Jun 4 2014 11:04 am

    Congrats! You write books faster than I read books these days.

    My theme ~ “this too shall pass.”


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 11:10 am

      I absolutely love that saying! King Solomon 😀

      What a brilliant life theme it makes 😀


      • nrhatch / Jun 4 2014 12:45 pm

        Maybe I’ll cross stitch it on a pillow . . . thanks for a thought-provoking post, Dianne.


  7. Ruth Rainwater / Jun 4 2014 11:09 am

    Congratulations on finding an ending! And my themes would have to be thriving in spite of adversity and reinventing my life as often as necessary. 😀


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 12:08 pm

      These are excellent, Ruth. I just love the way you thrive in spite of adversity – you are walking, talking, blogging proof of this! 🙂


  8. Amy Reese / Jun 4 2014 11:41 am

    Congratulations, Dianne! Good job finishing your book. What an interesting subject for discussion. I liked the choices you offered. A big one for me would probably be fear of failure! But my life is not over yet. I plan on conquering. 🙂


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 12:11 pm

      Ah – yes, Amy! Conquering any fear is a beautiful theme and I just know you’ll get there! 😀


  9. rundmach / Jun 4 2014 11:48 am

    Congrats on finishing!!! I love this theme and question. I’ve thought of this often growing up and still do now and it has not changed. My theme: Roller-Coaster Ride. My life has had so many ups and downs, terrifying but exhilarating, and ultimately in the end, it can be fun! It all depends on your outlook of the ride, it could be horrific or it could be the happiest time of your life. Sounds about my life, so many changes but always depends on my outlook of it all.


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 12:16 pm

      The outlook is really important. I love the roller-coaster ride, some people just can’t handle it – it really takes a special person to handle that kind of theme! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  10. DaydreamsInWonderland / Jun 4 2014 11:59 am

    This is an interesting conversation piece. I guess I could say my life theme has been foresight. A lot of things (good & bad) – I’ve seen coming. That’s something I don’t think will ever change. It’s something I was born with.


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 12:20 pm

      I really like this about you and *whisper* love talking to you about it 😉 It certainly is hereditary and a beautiful gift to be born with. I think if I was going to read a story with a life theme ‘foresight’ would be on the top of my list 😀


  11. javaj240 / Jun 4 2014 12:15 pm

    I love this idea of a life theme — the first one that came to mind was overcoming adversity, but then I thought, “Well, aren’t you the negative Nellie!”, LOL. The more I thought about it, though, the more I think that’s it. Thanks, once again and, as always, for giving me something to mull over! Best of luck with your book!


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 12:25 pm

      I think overcoming adversity is a very strong theme, Jacqueline, and not negative at all (I love the ‘negative Nellie’ comment! LOL).

      I’m glad you like to mull over these things – and it also makes for great dinner conversation! 😀


  12. EllaDee / Jun 4 2014 12:44 pm

    Congratulations on finding the ending, sending off The Devil Seam to your beta reader and celebrating the milestone. What a great discussion to come out of it. My life theme took some thinking about, and while I did I enjoyed reading the other comments, and will probably come back again later – it’s a fascinating topic.
    I think my theme is don’t look back. Sometimes I can’t resist a peak over my shoulder but it’s fleeting. The onwards journey calls me. I’m ably accompanied by my sidekicks: resilience – gets me through any boring or tough miles; and mutability – I can pull over anywhere and feel at home; grace helps me out when I get sick of doing the driving myself, and takes the wheel. Occasionally fear makes me think a wheel has fallen off but faith keeps me motoring along 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 1:44 pm

      The don’t look back theme is a good one and reminds me of Lot’s wife who was turned into a pillar of salt for looking back (I’ve done a fair bit of bible research in my time to use in my novels!) 🙂

      Resilience, mutability (what a great word), grace, fear and faith – wow, they’re great incentives to get you to your destination! I want to hitch a ride in your car! 😀


  13. Gallivanta / Jun 4 2014 1:49 pm

    Congratulations on ‘finishing’ your latest book. I can’t believe how quickly the sugar cane has grown. I grew up in a sugar mill town surrounded by sugar cane but, in my childhood, the whole sugar cane process from field to mill seemed to take forever. A life theme…that’s a hard one. At the moment, the theme might be ‘the will to survive” 🙂 or to change from survive to thrive.


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 2:46 pm

      The will to thrive is a great one!

      The sugar industry here is the only industry in the town so it’s what everyone talks about LOL 😀

      It’s great to write ‘The End’ on a novel, but as most of us know that’s when the tough work begins! 😉 Thank you so much for the congrats 😀


      • Gallivanta / Jun 4 2014 3:21 pm

        Do they still burn off the cane fields?


      • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 4:03 pm

        Not often – they cut ‘green’ here now. Sometimes they burn the trash, but it’s rare to see a full-blown cane fire 😉


      • Gallivanta / Jun 4 2014 4:23 pm

        That must be a relief!


      • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 4:29 pm

        Particularly living in a wooden house on the edge of a sugar cane field! 😀


      • Gallivanta / Jun 4 2014 4:36 pm



  14. Denise Hisey / Jun 4 2014 2:05 pm

    First of all congrats on completing your novel, Dianne!
    And secondly, what a great topic on life themes.
    Some of your reader’s comments are quite inspiring.
    I think my life theme is healing and the subsequent change.
    So perhaps transformation is a better word.
    My hope is that my legacy will be a life lived of love and action to offer a new kind of branch on the family tree.
    Doing my part to throw away the legacy dad handed to me.


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 2:51 pm

      A beautiful theme, Denise. It’s not easy to break that chain and you have to be a special kind of person to emerge from the fire. It certainly is a tough transformation, but one that will inspire others to follow your path. I truly admire you, my friend xxxx

      And thanks so much for the congrats! “The End” are my two favorite words to write in a novel! 😀


  15. harulawordsthatserve / Jun 4 2014 2:59 pm

    Woo hoo – congrats! Glad you found an ending you loved:-) Hmmm my first response to my life theme is…searching and questioning. There’s something about keeping my physical roots strong but a little shallow, so I can follow the search wherever it takes me, because I can’t take other people’s opinions for an answer, I have to find out for myself through direct experience. Hmmm…thanks Dianne, interesting question! Oh…and simplicity is also a big life theme for me:-) Hugs, H xxx


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 3:59 pm

      Simplicity, searching and questioning – they’re great themes, Harula. It’s a very interesting topic and it really made me think as well (I’m still trying to figure out my theme, but I’m sure it has something to do with giving and/or searching for the true meaning of love) 😀


  16. bulldog / Jun 4 2014 3:07 pm

    Congrats on finishing the book … may it be the success you wish it to be… life themes, a difficult one to define, I have thoughts on what I would love it to read, yet I have thoughts on how it should read and they seem to be miles apart or so different… the inequities of life make it difficult to define, as I think they might change from year to year…


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 4:02 pm

      Had you asked me a few years ago I may have had another answer to the one I have now, Rob – so I’m sure our life themes can change!

      Thanks so much for the congrats on finishing the book. I just love writing “The End” LOL 😀


  17. bodhisattvaintraining / Jun 4 2014 3:48 pm

    I love that you celebrated with friends and had this discussion! And I love the videos – great idea to film the same scene at different times and see the difference…the birds in the first, and the wind in the second mesmerised me 🙂

    As for themes – I came up with a few but all so negative…I’m hoping I have enough life left to ‘do it my way’ 😉


    • diannegray / Jun 4 2014 4:05 pm

      I’m really glad you liked the videos. The birds were flying around in the second one but I couldn’t zoom because the cane flowers are so high!

      I’m sure you’ll do it your way, Annie and the theme will switch from negative to positive before you know it 😉


      • bodhisattvaintraining / Jun 5 2014 10:49 pm

        I did see the birds in the second but the wind just had me – must remember to film the waves next time I’m up at the beach 😉

        Thanks so much for your positive faith x


  18. Roy McCarthy / Jun 4 2014 4:48 pm

    Nature cracking on there all right Dianne. It would be interesting to see a series running throughout the year.

    I suppose most of us are multi-themed? I guess the word ‘sport’ runs through me like a stick of rock – watching, participating, administering, coaching. I’ve got most pleasure out of coaching in my latter years, seeing individuals improve in a way I never seemed to do! And roll on the World Cup.

    Congrats on getting the m/s out. Question – does the physical work on the RUC help release your creative side? Can you work through scenes whilst not actually sitting in front of the screen?


    • diannegray / Jun 13 2014 5:55 am

      I thought about your suggestion of a series and that’s a great idea, Roy! I’ll be filming when they harvest the sugar cane (it’s a spectacular sight because thousands of white birds follow the harvester through the fields!)

      I totally agree with the multi-themed idea, as we grow and change our themes and outcomes must change as well. I love the idea of sport as a theme because with that comes achievement, disappointment, goals and personal/physical growth so it’s a very interesting multi-layered theme.

      Most of my ideas come to me while I’m working on something else and not sitting in front of the computer screen. I often walk around the RUC talking to myself like a mad lady trying to get conversations and situations sorted out. It may sound weird, but the open spaces and very high ceilings seem to help with the flow of information 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  19. anotherday2paradise / Jun 4 2014 6:04 pm

    Congratulations on finishing your book, Dianne. A cause for celebration indeed. I so enjoyed both of your videos. What a wonderfully peaceful place you live and write in. I will have to give some thought as to what my life theme would be. It’s a very interesting question and something to ponder for the rest of the day. 🙂 Hugs to you.


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 5:50 am

      Thank you so much for the congrats, Sylvia 😀

      A life theme is something I need to ponder on as well. Notice I didn’t mention what I think mine may be 😉


  20. Minuscule Moments / Jun 4 2014 6:55 pm

    Oh Dianne congrats on finishing your novel Thats great. My theme would be learning patience. For many years I travelled the globe doing as I pleased BUT when I became a mum of a special needs kid PATIENCE is something I am still learning.


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 5:54 am

      Patience is a really interesting one, Kath. I always thought I was a patient person until last year when I realised that ‘putting up with a lot’ is very different to being ‘patient’. The word patient could have an entire blog post on it’s own! 😉


  21. the eternal traveller / Jun 4 2014 7:08 pm

    Great to hear that you’ve finished the book. What is a Beta reader?

    I love the sound of the wind blowing through the cane fields. It’s quite a restful sound.

    I don’t know what my life theme is. I’ll give it some thought.


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 6:13 am

      A Beta reader reads through the first or second draft to gauge character development, plot, transitions, cohesion, gaps and language. They don’t ‘edit’ as such (but some do). They’re very handy indeed! Sending a book to an editor can be a fairly expensive exercise so having several Beta readers keeps costs to a minimum. A lot of readers and writers are better readers (I’m one) and also family members are handy at it as well 😀

      I’m glad you like the video – it’s such a beautiful and serene place.

      I’m not sure of my life theme either – I’m still giving it thought 😉


  22. Theo Fenraven / Jun 4 2014 10:03 pm

    When does the cane get harvested, and how is it done?


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 6:54 am

      It’s done by a cane harvester, Theo. They should start cutting soon (in the next few months). The harvester goes along the rows, cuts the cane off at the bottom, pulls it up into a chute and throws it out where it lands in the bin of a tractor. When they do it I’ll definitely be taking a video 😀


  23. Jill Weatherholt / Jun 4 2014 10:58 pm

    Congratulations on finishing your latest novel, Dianne! I’m happy you were able to come up with a satisfying ending.
    My life theme would probably be, don’t worry about tomorrow, tomorrow will have enough worries…live in the moment.
    Love the videos! Thanks for sharing!


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 6:56 am

      Live in the moment is a great one, Jill! 😀

      I’m really glad you enjoyed the videos and thanks so much for the congrats. I was SO happy when I wrote ‘The End’! LOL 😉


  24. pommepal / Jun 4 2014 11:03 pm

    Well done after all the searching you found your ending. Interesting to read all the comments and discussion you have stirred up Dianne. I think my life theme has always been going forward and taking opportunities as they come up with out regrets or looking back. On the bus tomorrow so forward I go again….


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 6:58 am

      You’re always moving forward and I love that about you. A true adventurer at heart! 😀

      Have a lovely trip east 😀


  25. avwalters / Jun 4 2014 11:28 pm

    Life theme, eh? I’d have to say, it’s about the work. Whatever work you have in the moment, giving oneself over to it. That could be writing, cooking, loving, or maybe renovating a basement apartment–putting your all into it and getting everything out of it that there is to get.

    Congratulations on the book–and believe me, I do know how painting and sanding and such can give your mind some open space for creative thinking.


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 7:02 am

      These are very interesting thoughts, Alta. Putting your heart into work (like renovations or writing) leads to constant improvement – so I really like this theme! 😀


  26. mcwoman / Jun 5 2014 12:30 am

    Congrats on finishing your novel. I’ve just done the same, although I didn’t have a party. I always like this lull after writing the last word. After the editor returns the manuscript, there will be more work to do. Enjoyed the videos. I’ve never seen sugarcane flowers, so thanks for expanding my world. My life theme: Be the be friend I can be to everyone.


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 7:04 am

      What a thoughtful theme, Barb – friendship is one of the most important things we can have 😉

      Congrats to you for finishing your novel as well and I’m really glad you liked looking at the sugar cane flowers, they’re very pretty! 😀


  27. Carrie Rubin / Jun 5 2014 12:38 am

    I guess I haven’t thought too much about my life theme, but after reading your post, the first thing that came to my mind was the Golden Rule. I believe in the “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” credo. It’s simple, but if we abide by it, it should keep us on the right path. Not saying I’m perfect at it, but I try to keep it somewhere in my mind most days. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 7:06 am

      What a great theme, Carrie – and SO true. I wish everyone had this theme of life, the world would be a far better place! 😉


  28. billyraychitwood1 / Jun 5 2014 1:08 am

    Guilt – Choices – Meaning – Relevance — typical, I suppose, for an Appalachian ‘hill boy’… bad and good… Congratulations on the new book, “The Devil Seam.” Looking forward to reading it… As I finish my 12th inconsequential book, I’m trying desperately to come up with the big ending (‘the pain of finding a good ending’)… Not there yet but working today and tomorrow on it.
    All the best, dear lady.
    Billy Ray


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 7:13 am

      I find the word ‘guilt’ very interesting, Billy Ray. I guess we all feel some kind of guilt in our lives at some time, but it’s something I just can’t live with so I try to avoid it at all costs! Choices, meaning and relevance are very cool indeed 😀

      Best of luck with the ending of your novel – (take deep breaths and relax or go for a long walk) I’m sure you’ll come up with something satisfying and remarkable! 😀


  29. cravesadventure / Jun 5 2014 2:03 am

    Great Share 🙂 My life theme is very much about CRAVING, especially Adventure. Happy Day!


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 7:15 am

      I’m sure the book of your life would be a very exciting one with a theme like Craving Adventure! Good work 😀


  30. starproms / Jun 5 2014 3:41 am

    Love the videos. Fantastic noises with the corn tops swaying. So good for your writing. Good luck with the new book. and thanks for sharing your morning birds.


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 7:17 am

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it. I love seeing other parts of the world and even though the sugar cane fields are a small part of Australia (given it’s size) I love sharing the beauty 😀


  31. jmmcdowell / Jun 5 2014 9:36 am

    This isn’t something I’ve ever considered in terms of my own life—I have a hard enough time figuring out if my stories have a theme. 😉 I think mine might be a combination of Carrie’s Golden Rule and leaving as small a footprint as I can on the planet.

    It was so relaxing to listen to the breeze on the second video as I watched the birds in the distance. What an amazing atmosphere to have around you when you’re writing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 4:18 pm

      Finding a theme is very hard, JM – when I was writing the conversation my two main characters were having in the story I realised just HOW hard it is. Now I need to go back and look at all the other stories I’ve written and write down their themes (how embarrassing I’ve never really gone through this process before!) 😉

      I’m really glad you liked the video – it’s such a beautiful and relaxing place 😀


  32. Jacqui Murray / Jun 5 2014 10:54 am

    That last video should be looped as a serenity tape–play it over and over to calm oneself, go to sleep, biofeedback. Gorgeous.


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 4:22 pm

      Aww – thanks Jacqui! I’d be only too pleased if someone looped it for themselves. It’s always there for me, which is probably why I’m so relaxed 😉


  33. Janna G. Noelle / Jun 5 2014 12:00 pm

    Congrats on finishing your novel, Dianne. I can’t wait to hear more on what it’s about!

    You pose a difficult question about life themes. I suppose mine could be “Outside the Lines”. I’ve always found myself to be something of an outsider – at times by choice, at times because what’s made sense for me has been contrary to what the majority of people think/do. It used to bother me to exist on a different trajectory to most people I know, but I’ve learned to come to terms with it over the years and accept myself for the person I am.

    Another theme of my life is “Adventure”, for what I want more than anything else in the world is live an exciting life (not that I always do, which is perhaps why I write – to have an vicarious adventurous experience).

    Next time you take a video, you should narrate it David Attenborough style. Seriously, that’s all it’s missing: “Here we are on the veranda, overlooking the sugar cane. In the distance, the birds are making their morning rounds…”


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 4:25 pm

      I’ll do that, Janna – I can’t promise my voice will sound like David Attenborough! LOL (my odd little aussie accent would probably shock you all 😉

      I like the Outside the Lines theme – that’s a really interesting one and if you mix it with adventure – WOW, I’m loving it!


  34. ocdreader / Jun 5 2014 3:27 pm

    Yay! You finished, that is awesome!!! Life Theme, that is a thinker! I might need a glass of wine or two, or a night with the girls, or hey – maybe both! to figure that one out. lol I like it. I am going to have that as a topic on Friday when we meet. I will give you full credit though 😀


    • diannegray / Jun 5 2014 4:27 pm

      Woo hoo – it should make a great discussion on Friday – enjoy! 😀


  35. 4amWriter / Jun 5 2014 11:21 pm

    What a great discussion about life theme. I guess in general I spend every day trying to move forward, to look ahead, to not give up. This applies to my roles as a writer, a mom, a friend, and a human being. So, in a word? Positivity. Some days are easier than others!

    Beautiful videos!


    • diannegray / Jun 6 2014 6:35 am

      Very nice theme, Kate! It’s not always easy to remain positive, but if it’s the theme then it should power life forward regardless of what is happening around us 😀

      I’m glad you like the videos – it’s a but windier here this morning, but still very serene 😉


  36. Alarna Rose Gray / Jun 5 2014 11:34 pm

    You live in some beautiful country, there. Those birds, wow! Great setting for such meaningful questions… If I had to put a theme to mine, learning to love and be loved? There are probably others, but that’s the first thing that springs to mind. Incidentally, it came out in a Positive Education survey on the Top 24 Character Strengths as the lowest ‘Strength’ on my list. Hm.


    • diannegray / Jun 6 2014 6:39 am

      That’s really interesting, Alarna. The lowest strength on your list from the survey may very well be your life theme. Strangely enough while I was thinking of mine a similar theme came up. I didn’t put it in the post, but I think mine is searching for the true meaning of love 😉

      The view from my writing area is just spectacular – it’s a bit windy here this morning, but still an amazingly serene view 😀


  37. Bonnie / Jun 6 2014 6:49 am

    Wow, Dianne, what a great question. I think about so many things about life and from many perspectives (and you know I choose a word for the year) and yet haven’t considered until now the idea of a theme of life. But you know that I will start and be thinking of this now! It really is a great question/reflection. And what a gorgeous view you have!


    • diannegray / Jun 6 2014 6:55 am

      It is a very interesting question, Bonnie and I probably wouldn’t have thought of it if I hadn’t written the conversation between my two characters. They only talk about a book theme, but I guess the conversation tweaked something in my brain and I started to think about life themes. It’s not easy getting to the crux of a life theme, but I looked at all the major events in my life to see if there was a familiar thread – and there was! 😀

      The view here is magnificent and great for those elusive creative thoughts to flow 😉


      • Bonnie / Jun 6 2014 6:58 am

        I think – in the 10 minutes I have been thinking so far, and see, told you I’d be thinking about it – the challenge is to allow honesty to emerge at life themes that have shown up over the last however many years and then take a look to see if that works or if a new theme needs to be swapped in. Hmmmmm! I like how you put that, ‘looked at all the major events for a familiar thread…” Good food for thought. Nom Nom. 🙂


  38. dearanonymousfriend / Jun 6 2014 12:52 pm

    What a wonderful thought. Life themes, I will be thinking on that one for a few days. Thank you for this.


    • diannegray / Jun 7 2014 6:14 am

      It can take a lot of thought to go through this process. I looked at all the major events in my life (good and bad) and they all seemed to have a similar thread. It’s an interesting process indeed 😉


      • dearanonymousfriend / Jun 7 2014 8:17 am

        I am certain that part of your theme runs a melody of encouragement.


  39. cestlavie22 / Jun 7 2014 1:24 am

    Hmm what an interesting question you pose. I would say the theme in my life is overcoming obstacles to prove that I can succeed. This started in school with overcoming teachers who told me I wouldnt make it down the path I chose. It carried over into relationships proving all the exes wrong that I would never find the guy I was looking for (which I think I have). And now it is about proving myself wrong as I get more and more discouraged with this job search. I need to prove to myself that I can find a job and a job that I will succeed in.


    • diannegray / Jun 7 2014 6:23 am

      I can really relate to this, particularly the part about teachers at school who told me not to bother with writing or art (I took up writing, but one day I’ll also go the the ‘art’ road.)

      I’m sure you’ll find a job – one that you will succeed in because your determination really shows in your words. Well done.


  40. Britt Skrabanek / Jun 7 2014 12:42 pm

    WOOT, WOOT! Go Dianne…congrats on what I’m sure will be another fabulous book. Can’t wait to read it.

    I love the idea of asking a group of friends what their life theme is, and I do plan to steal that question to stir up some trouble when we hang out with our best married couple friends soon. I’m always posing ridiculous questions when a group of people come together. Last night, I pointed at one person to say the first word that came to mind, and we all needed to share a personal story based on that word. Unfortunately, my friend’s husband chose “fermentation”. So, that one kind of stumped the rest of us. : )

    The first thing that comes to mind with my life theme…living and loving.


    • diannegray / Jun 9 2014 6:28 am

      You’re so much like me, Britt! We have a group of friends who visit regularly and we have ‘panel’ discussions. I just love it and some amazing thoughts (and very big nights) have come out of it 😀

      I’m going to use the “first word that comes to mind” conversation next time 😉


  41. Zen A. / Jun 8 2014 6:13 am

    Congrats on finding an ending, Dianne! 😀

    That’s an interesting question though. I’ve never thought about what my life theme is. If I had to decide, I would say it’s, “There are opportunities everywhere. You just have to find them.” Some people wait for things to come to them, but I like to work hard at it, and so far it’s worked well for me. 🙂

    Also, I watched the videos – it IS really incredible how much things can change in three weeks.


    • diannegray / Jun 8 2014 8:20 am

      Thanks so much for the congrats, Zen! 😀

      I love the ‘opportunities everywhere’ theme. It’s so true that they rarely come up and land in our laps – we really have to go looking for them 😉


  42. agjorgenson / Jun 10 2014 12:03 pm

    Congratulations on finding a theme, and thanks for the invite to find our own. As I read your blog, I realized that your theme came to you in the expenditure of elbow grease. I suspect that this would be true for many of us in taking up your challenge. This is no time to sit and think, but to get our a saw, a rag, a piece of sandpaper…


    • diannegray / Jun 10 2014 12:50 pm

      It’s certainly not an easy task, Allen 😉


  43. dex / Jun 12 2014 6:57 am

    Excellent post, and fantastic question. [shifts into quite, deep-thinking mode…]


    • diannegray / Jun 12 2014 6:59 am

      LOL – A lot of deep thinking is required for this one 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      • dex / Jun 12 2014 7:12 am

        Wow. Just saw my typo above. Um…I was already deep thinking! Yes! Too absorbed to notice that I’d inverted the ‘t’ and the ‘e’!


      • diannegray / Jun 12 2014 7:14 am

        I didn’t notice until you mentioned it 😉


  44. Letizia / Jun 13 2014 4:12 am

    I can’t wait to read your new book, Dianne! My name means happiness in Italian and it seems to be a recurring theme in my life: defining and redefining what happiness and contentment means to me. And every time someone says my name, I smile, as it’s a reminder to pursue happiness (well, not EVERY time, but you know what I mean….). What about you? Do you know what your life theme is or is it being your wonderful creative self? 🙂


    • diannegray / Jun 13 2014 5:43 am

      What a beautiful comment Letizia – you certainly spread happiness wherever you go! I can imagine your life story through this wonderful explanation of your theme (that is a book I’d love to read!) 😀

      Of all the comments I’ve received on this post you’re the first one to ask what my life theme is 😉 It took me a while to figure it out, but the thread that runs through my life is the illusive search for the true meaning of ‘love’.

      Thank you so much for the tweet! 😀


      • Letizia / Jun 13 2014 8:09 am

        The true meaning of love – that’s a beautiful and worthy theme indeed!


  45. bluebee / Jun 15 2014 7:19 am

    Congrats, Dianne!

    I think my life theme would have to be the search for courage.


    • diannegray / Jun 15 2014 7:44 am

      That’s a very interesting one. I’d love to read your life story! 😀


  46. Kourtney Heintz / Jun 15 2014 8:37 am

    It’s funny, my critique partner and I were just talking about this. How each of my books has a theme but then you can see an overarching theme across my work. It’s pretty cool to realize something you didn’t necessarily set out to do. 🙂


    • diannegray / Jun 15 2014 12:27 pm

      It’s weird like that. Even if you write different genres there may be a thread running though all your books just like the thread that runs through you life 😉


  47. restlessjo / Jun 15 2014 8:59 am

    I’m copping out of this one, Dianne. Happy for your completion. Another book on the shelf is imminent 🙂


    • diannegray / Jun 15 2014 12:29 pm

      You’re allowed to cop out, Jo. It took me ages to think of what my life theme could be 😉

      Another book on the shelf will be great (it’s been far too long since the last one) xxx


  48. Hazy Shades of Me / Jun 17 2014 12:19 pm

    I’d think I’d have to say that my life has many themes. Fear of failure is a big one.

    It’s so nice that your friends came to celebrate the completion of your novel. And you rewarded them with a great discussion!

    Peaceful videos. Only 3 weeks apart?! You live in such a wonderful spot, Dianne!


    • diannegray / Jun 18 2014 5:45 am

      The cane flowers have grown about a foot since I took this video – I can’t believe it, it’s like Jack’s beanstalk! 😀

      Fear of Failure – that’s a huge one and I’m pretty sure you’re not alone in that theme 😉


  49. Inion N. Mathair / Jun 17 2014 5:07 pm

    Hi Dianne: so sorry we’ve been ghosts as of late. Two books supposed to be done by June now July around the corner we have one down one to go!! Can’t wait to read yours, girl!! By the way, that would be a cool challenge to put up on Facebook and hear the feedback! It’s one of those questions that is fun, but can feel like a challenge to pick the perfect one!!! Sharing this now & congrats on the book, Di!!! xo ❤ 🙂


    • diannegray / Jun 18 2014 5:48 am

      Thank you so much my dear ones! I’ve been a bit ‘ghostly’ of late as well with another couple of books in the wings. Best of luck with your books! 😀

      Putting this challenge on FB is a great idea 😉


  50. lacunakittie / Jun 18 2014 11:39 am

    my life theme… that’s a good question…. I guess it would be “ever changing into a cleverly disguised responsible adult.”


  51. Harliqueen / Jun 18 2014 10:02 pm

    What an interesting post and topic!

    Life theme, hm? I guess that, ‘perseverance can overcome it all’ 😀


    • diannegray / Jun 19 2014 7:10 am

      Perseverance is a great word (particularly for writers!) 😀


  52. lbellucci111 / Jun 22 2014 3:28 am

    Hi Dianne, I am happy you liked my blog The Girl from Ipanema. I too am a writer. There is more about life in Brazil at Check out if you wish. Cheers!


    • diannegray / Jun 22 2014 6:33 am

      Thanks so much for coming over – I’m checking out you links now 😉


  53. Photos With Finesse / Jun 26 2014 2:15 am

    Congrats on wrapping up the new book! (And wrapping up the housework in the meantime 😉 ) Life theme was a tough one for me. Initially my reaction was “I don’t have one, I just live life for the moment”. But that in itself is a theme, I guess. I look forward, don’t (try not to) dwell on the past, appreciate the small and large things, take responsibility for myown actions and explore the new. And, just because something has always been done a certain way, does not mean that’s the best way to do it!


    • diannegray / Jun 26 2014 9:07 am

      I like that theme, Suzan – particularly the ending “just because something has always been done a certain way, does not mean that’s the best way to do it!” So very true indeed! 😀


  54. ventisqueras / Jun 29 2014 9:58 am

    bellezza e amore per vivere 🙂


  55. helpwithyourlife / Jul 2 2014 5:14 am

    Congrats on finishing your latest novel Dianne! Sounds like the conclusion you were looking for found its way to you via a lot of physical labor! 🙂 Two goals in one, as now your home is spruced up and your book is done. Love your life themes idea too. Mine would be something like, ‘looked for love in all the wrong places until I looked within, and love of self brought love with others.’ Liked your videos as well, demonstrating lots of growth can happen in 3 weeks! Blessings, Cathie


    • diannegray / Jul 2 2014 5:40 am

      I just love your life theme Cathie and it’s VERY closely related to mine! ‘Great minds’ as the saying goes…. 😀


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