I’ve been absent from this blog for several months but it has not been far from my mind. As we move even deeper into this election season, I’ve been trying to keep my emotions and feelings from getting away from me. It’s way too easy to get caught up in the noise. Here is one of my tips for keeping my happiness levels up. http://www.actionforhappiness.org
Give it a try. I’ll start – For October 1 – My most important goal this month is to complete a new manuscript. Your turn!
Happy Birthday to those of us who value the rights and privileges that being a citizen of the United States of America allows. Those same rights and privileges that we as a country fought for and defend when necessary. Those rights that were promised to us at the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776. Those rights that were offered to ones fleeing from persecution and atrocities. Those rights that we share not only with those native-born Americans but those coming here seeking the security and future of one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
I can hardly believe that I’m lucky enough to be here on the fringe of a book launch.
My book launch.
I received my proof copy and cried when I saw my name as author on an actual press printed bound hardcopy book. I first wrote this story three years ago and with the support of my wonderful critique group, multiple revisions and persistence, my manuscript was purchased by Clear Fork Publishing for their Spork imprint.
Special thanks to Jeanne Conway whose illustrations have brought my characters and story to life.
Much has transpired since I last posted. Much of that has been the reason that I have not blogged anything or written since early May. We lost my father-in-law to Alzheimer’s on Mother’s Day. It was a very long road for him and we’ll miss him a great deal, but his suffering is over and that is what we all wanted for him. He is finally at peace. I’ll just say this one thing – the Hospice care that he received was outstanding. There are tremendously generous people in the world that can provide that type of care to an individual and family and they are much appreciated. They made the transition an easy one for all involved – and they do it day after day. Amazing!
I’m going to get back on track slowly with my writing. I’m thrilled to have volunteered for SCBWI-LI. It’s wonderful to have a chapter so close to home. Participation is helping my get back to work and I am thankful for it. I have several items due to my own critique group that I’m working to have done by the July 4th holiday. Fingers crossed!
I’ve been taking some R & R time on the beach I and was able to get these photos of eggs in a nest for a pair of Killdeer Plovers.
Killdeer Plover nest
Not a rare Plover, but beautiful just the same. The nest is just feet from my back door and we are anxiously awaiting the arrival of the four baby plovers.
Killdeer on beach
Their parents swoop in and out all day long checking on the nest.
It’s wonderful to see nature’s natural parental instincts on display. My words of wisdom – Stop and take part in nature’s celebration of life.
2017 is shaping up to be a very busy year – I hope I can keep up! My first picture book is slated for publication by Clear Fork Press this August. I’m excited and nervous all at the same time. I’m sure other soon to be published authors feel the same way. I’m trying to keep writing new work or revising others but my focus is not cooperating.
In an effort to re-focus myself, this weekend I spent time organizing. I started by reviewing my other manuscripts. I keep everything I’m working on in hard copy, old fashioned I know but it works for me. Any critique group notes are filed with those manuscripts. That makes it easy for me to look back if I’ve left the manuscript and notes to cook a little. I looked at all of them and selected two that I want to begin revising. Two should be enough to keep me in the writing mode.
Then I moved on to planning marketing for the August 2017 book release. It’s only seven months away. Granted, I started thinking about this before I had even submitted the manuscript but I never dreamed I’d be really doing it! I’ve not gotten very far, but I recognized that it is not something that I can just set a couple hours at and let it grow. This will need my attention.
Super Bowl Sunday is usually busy and we were supposed to attend a party, but that was canceled at the last minute and I quickly looked to fill up that time slot with productive writing time. I typed up notes for a new story idea that I had worked out the day before. It seemed to flow so well, I kept going and actually got my first draft on paper too! That was exciting. I researched upcoming conferences and organized some library books that I have to return. I’ve not had that much momentum for a story in a long time. Creativity is very recognizable if you stop to listen to it.
I’m not that much of a fan for either of the two teams playing so I have no problem sitting here, away from the T.V. with my notes, my laptop, and my thoughts. If only there were more days like this. Getting back to work… Go, Team(s)!
This post is going to be short because I find that I am getting weepy.
Today is my son’s 25th birthday. So long ago but then again it seems like yesterday. As a small child he was so good and he has grown into a wonderful young man. Respectful, loving, funny and gifted. My husband often said that we won the child lottery when Brian was born. It was a joke then, but it turns out to have been true.
I consider myself a generally patient person. I don’t mind long car rides. As a kid, I don’t think I ever asked, “Are we there yet?” I was having too much fun. The way back in the old family station wagon was cozy with pillows, blankets and stuffed animals. There was always the scenery from the windows. Day or night there was always something to see, even if it was a ton of other cars in a traffic jam. That was not a worry for me, I was just a passenger.
As I’ve grown older, I find that I still do enjoy the journey, as a passenger whether it be a plane, train or automobile.
One area where my patience is not as developed as it should be is waiting to hear back from publishers. I equate the time between sending out a manuscript and receiving feedback like waiting for Santa Claus at Christmas. Waiting for that response makes me feel like my six-year-old self sitting under the Christmas tree next to a big gift wrapped in shiny paper with curly ribbons looking suspiciously like a bicycle – that I’ve been told I can’t open.
Sounds a bit odd if the feedback is a “thanks but no thanks” kind of a comment, but my gift is the acknowledgement. As a writer I’ve worked on a manuscript and gotten it to be the best that I think it can be. I’ve shared it with my critique groups. I’ve revised it , shared it again, put it aside, revisited it, polished it, blessed it and put it out there. After all that work, I proudly accept the “thanks no thanks” response as “we recognize all that you have put in but…”
Being passenger or driver makes a huge difference in the patience factor. As a passenger, the expectation is to be carried from one place to another. As a driver, I am responsible for the trip. So I’m responsible for the outcome as well. That’s why my patience goes from abundant to zero.
As I write this, I have two manuscripts out to publishers, so I’m working on my patience. Combatting my impatience with productivity keeps me from wringing my hands and pacing the floors and eating. I’m working on a new story. I’ve put up some Zucchini Relish and will be canning more things this weekend. As the saying goes, Nunca hierva una olla vista or A watched pot never boils.