Rambling Autobiography #sol22 5/31

I was born the same year that Watership Down, my favorite book when I was a teenager, was published. Since I’ve had to give up chocolate, I adore extra-premium vanilla ice cream smothered with sea salt caramel sauce. I buy far more books than I will ever be able to read during my lifetime. I spent my middle school years filling spiral notebooks with fan fiction starring my friends and the members of Duran Duran. Returning books to the library is deeply satisfying. When I was eight, I fell in love with snow and winter. Even now, I won’t agree to live anywhere without snow. I like to daydream about a job I once saw posted at an animal sanctuary: Kitten Caregiver. My favorite place to hide was a fort I made in the woods. Somehow, in my memory, the three or four branches I leaned against a tree have been transformed into something elaborate, roofed, hobbity. I can still smell the metallic scent of rain falling at the end of a hot summer day. It was only last year that I learned there is a word for that smell. I have 7,616 photos of cats on my camera roll. I still enjoy the comfort breakfast of my childhood, a hot bowl of salty buttered grits.  


My theme for Slice of Life 2022 is finding inspiration in the writing of others. Each day I plan to find my slice in someone else’s words or forms. Today’s inspiration came from Angela’s Rambling Autobiography at Slowing Down the Moments. The Rambling Autobiography is a prompt that may be familiar to many from Linda Rief. I first saw it in Kim Stafford’s wonderful book on writing, The Muses Among Us.






43 responses to “Rambling Autobiography #sol22 5/31”

  1. carwilc Avatar

    Lots of fun facts about you. We could go on a great vacation to a tree house with lots of ice cream and salted caramel sauce! Mmmmm!

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      As long as the emotional support dog can come along too! We’d have great fun and conversation!

  2. kmaitland1985 Avatar

    I love this idea! The detail about your cat on the camera roll is something I can relate (only dogs though). LOVE IT

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      It’s ridiculous how many photos we take of our pets! And the same ones! Like I have hundreds of photos of one of my cats sleeping in the exact same spot and position he sleeps in every day…. But I still can’t resist taking his photo when I see him looking all cute like that.

  3. margaretsmn Avatar

    I love this prompt. It’s such a great way to generate story ideas, but to also reveal a lot about yourself in a short piece. I did one on my blog earlier this year: https://reflectionsontheteche.com/2021/08/24/slice-of-life-quick-writes-2/

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Thanks for sharing your post! I was so happy to read it. Such a wonderful generative prompt.

  4. TammyB Avatar

    I am always inspired by your posts every year. Now I am inspired by your influence from others’ posts for your own. I usually do that when I am stuck but I love the intention of it right out of the gate! Thank you for this and your words.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      I was hoping that writing from the inspiration of others would mean I never feel stuck all month! We’ll see if that works…

  5. arjeha Avatar

    First let me say that I love the kitten picture. It is always fun to learn about someone and this format gives us a glimpse at some fun facts about you.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      That’s the newest addition, Pomegranate. Since I mentioned kittens, it seemed unfair not to bless everyone with a kitten picture! I’m sure I’ll write about him and his sister sometime this month.

  6. humbleswede Avatar

    So glad I came here this morning. I love the rambling autobiography idea…since I naturally ramble anyway. Also, I just got so many ideas and connections from your ramble. I too, list Watership Down as a turning point book for me. I can remember where I was when I was reading it…and I have three copies in my house right now because I kept giving copies to my daughters in hopes that they’d read it. And then there are the photos on the phone…Thanks for this.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Writing about Watership Down today makes me want to reread it, which I haven’t done in many years. I tried to read it aloud to my son a few times but he struggled to follow. Rambling writing is my favorite kind!

      1. humbleswede Avatar

        I hope it’s okay if I link to your rambling autobiography in my own post.

  7. Juliana Ellington Avatar
    Juliana Ellington

    I love all these snippets of information about you.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Thank you! You were there for all of it!

  8. Susan Apps-Bodilly Avatar

    Fort in the woods! Yes, I had one also. Thanks for reminding me about that special place.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      So glad you were able to remember your fort in the woods too!

  9. Heidi Allum Avatar

    I truly love this prompt, and I love the feeling of a conversation as I read.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      What a helpful observation that reading these rambling autobiographies feel like a conversation. That’s how I feel reading them too!

  10. edifiedlistener Avatar

    Rambling is an art! I like this format and may have to give it a whirl this month.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Rambling is my favorite, so I was pleased to find a format that requires it.

  11. Susan Kennedy Avatar

    The ramble is delightful. I do want to know that word for the metallic smell of fresh spring rain

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Petrichor! Isn’t that a great word!

  12. Natasha Avatar

    So beautiful! Thanks for highlighting such a fun, lovely format. There’s so much I love about your autobiography–the deeply comforting feeling of returning a library book, knowing that “kitten caregiver” is a job, the word “hobbity” to describe your fort, to name a few.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Sometimes when I’m feeling low, I’ll just think “Kitten Caregiver” and immediately my mood lifts. (Although kittens are hard to keep alive, so probably this is a very depressing job. Sorry to bring us down like this! We’ll just focus on our dream version of this dream job, where all kittens thrive!)

  13. mschiubookawrites Avatar

    What an awesome way to approach this year’s challenge! So many vivid details brought out by this prompt. Metallic smell of summer rain- this brought me back to childhood. So, so good.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      That smell always brings me back to childhood!

  14. karpenglish Avatar

    Your “rambling” autobiography connects together so well! When I was a teenager, my friends and I were obsessed with the novel The Mists of Avalon, so we made a whole movie pitch cast with ourselves (of course) and members of Duran Duran made an appearance in our cast too. (My gosh, I was such a nerd!)

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      A Duran Duran mashup with Mists of Avalon?? I am so there for that!

      1. karpenglish Avatar

        We threw in some other 80s heartthrobs too, to fill out all the male roles, of course!

  15. Ramona Avatar

    I popped by just to see if there might be a cat post and was rewarded with a pic of Pomegranate! Love the rambling autobiography.
    “I buy far more books than I will ever be able to read during my lifetime.” We’re definitely book sisters! And my husband wants me to reduce my books. Why can’t I just keep them all?

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Indeed! When we moved, I did clear out so many but I bet it won’t surprise you at all to know that I’ve had to replace several that I donated in 2020 because I now need to read them in 2022! And I’m sure I’ll have a cat post sometime this week. There are new cats who need introducing after all.

  16. jarhartz Avatar

    I am not surprised at the number of cat photos on your phone or the dream job.
    Thank you for reminding me of the smell of summer rain, and the image of you in a forrest fort.
    And I must now give up the idea that you will move closer to me… no snow here!

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  18. aggiekesler Avatar

    What a way to learn about you! You’ve given me an idea for a slice of life. I am totally with you on the too many books thing. 🙂

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  20. Clare Landrigan (@ClareLandrigan) Avatar

    This line … Returning books to the library is deeply satisfying. And I completely agree!

  21. Denise Krebs Avatar
    Denise Krebs

    Elisabeth, I am on a rambling tour of rambling autobiographies this evening. Thanks for this sweet process. All those cat photos on your phone made me laugh aloud. Precious! Thanks for the links.

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  25. Jill Bless Avatar

    I love how much we learned about you in a short snippet! I, too, love returning books at the library…especially in the drop box. Thanks for sharing!

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