I’m here to build a creative community

Connecting minds and hearts to inspire more creativity in the world

Wow Gurl!! Didn’t realize you were such a Righteous Bad-Ass Writer- I knew you were Powerful but I’m truly empowered, inspired and motivated by your words!!

Marie Flowers

Pennie Nichols, creator of eclectic things

Pennie of many tradesWhen I was a child, my family moved every one to three years. Without a grounded community, I turned to interior stories.

In Spain, my tiny Juliet bedroom balcony in our three-story house inspired imaginary tales in which I was the heroine and my rich environment was the setting.

My own imaginary world swept me away, across the moors of Lorna Doone and up the mountains with David and his phoenix.

I began using a typewriter in Spain. When we returned to the US, I filled notebooks with poems and stories.

My cluttered creative impulses followed me to college. I started as an art major (painting), transferred to another university as a creative writing major, transferred again, changing majors with the seasons, from Spanish to English, until my advisor stopped me and decided I was a liberal arts major.

I was indecisive. I wanted to do everything.

Ultimately, I fell into teaching Spanish when I was accidentally recruited into a grad school program at LSU. The master’s behind me and still indecisive, I headed west to collect a Ph.D. at UT Austin. By the time I was done attending classes and writing papers for other people, I was married with two kids, soon to be followed by a third, and teaching and working as a freelance editor in educational publishing.

I kept thinking, “OK, NOW can I write?”

Sometimes, I did. But mostly, life was busy. I worked 15+ hour days with seemingly endless carpool duties.

For decades.

One afternoon in 2019, when COVID-19 was brewing in other countries, I read Steven Pressfield’s The War of Art. Pressfield parses out and names the factions that do battle on creative impulses. His words opened a magic door for me, and that same day I began writing, really writing.

During the pandemic, I decided to put my creative work first. I set aside the mornings for writing and began checking in for work and errands in the afternoon.

Thanks to that shift, I finished my first novel in six months. In the next year, I finished the second and began a third. I also continued writing my blog and my newsletter and dabbling in other projects you see here.

My journey may sound familiar, as many of us have dream projects and bucket lists with “NOW can I do my thing?” repeating in our minds at every turn.

And I want you to know that your time is now. It can be done. And it must be done!

I love your writing, your world-building through characters’ thought, and your truthful commentary about how life unfolds.

Nancy Hill

Writing has always been the thing

This website is a collection of all my creative endeavors, which range from blogging about my interests (relationships, travel, cooking, gardening, jewelry, canning, and writing)–all the way to my retreat center project, forthcoming books, and Etsy shop.

But my #1 focus is and always will be writing.

I’m a writer. I write in order to be.

Pennie Nichols
Pennie Ann Nichols The Accidental Blogger

Your writing is always so powerful and heartfelt.

Laurie Stone

We get there through community

My family moved around a lot and I learned to move easily in and out of diverse circles.

I’m known for throwing parties (to this day) where I bring people from vastly different walks of life together, forging surprising connections and friendships where there are no obvious overlaps.

I’d love to see y’all get together here!

There is no one else like you. You have a unique connection to the source of all life and love and inspiration. All of humanity will be missing out if you don’t put it first.

I hope that spending time with my creations brings you:

    • Entertainment
    • Enlightenment
    • Inspiration
    • Reflection
    • Healing

For the first time, I feel my way is not wrong! But I’ve ALWAYS quietly kept to my course. Tried to spread cheer and happiness. I’m certainly far from perfect and I thought my inability to call people out was a sign of weakness. Your words have made it a strength. Thank you so much for this. In tears here.

Diane Tolley

Faves and takeaways:

Bird by Bird, Anne Lamott – “Don’t look at your feet to see if you are doing it right. Just dance.“

The War of Art, Steven Pressfield – “The most important thing about art is to work. Nothing else matters except sitting down every day and trying.“

The Artist’s Way, Julia Cameron – “But do you know how old I will be by the time I learn to really play the piano / act / paint / write a decent play?“ “Yes . . . the same age you will be if you don’t.“

Just Write, James Scott Bell – “The writing game is an arena and once you’re in, don’t waste precious time worrying about how good you are. Gather your weapons and supplies, and fight.”

Real Artists Don’t Starve, Jeff Goins – “Eventually, you have to decide who you are. You have to choose your role and own that identity. We don’t fake it till we make it. We believe it till we become it.“

Big Magic, Elizabeth Gilbert – “So this, I believe, is the central question upon which all creative living hinges: Do you have the courage to bring forth the treasures that are hidden within you?“