Friday, December 21, 2012

Take a look at my book,


Published by Black Lyon Publishers!

Friday, August 3, 2012


Ten years ago, I allowed myself to dream. “I’m a writer,” I began to say, to myself and then to others. I had written before, but this was the time period during which I realized I had a goal, and that it was a part of me.
When I was an adolescent, and searching for that tag that related to myself, I had nothing. Academics were only absorbed if they interested me. I could almost draw, almost sing and almost act. And athletics? Last in line to be picked at dodge ball. I was a good target for volleyball and baseball, for catching the ball, with my head. In fact, I may have gotten hit in the head with the ball one too many times!
And so I told myself, that dreams were for other people. They were artists and singers and football players. They were into science and architecture and interior designing. Those were the kids that knew what they wanted and had the drive to accomplish it, those that were born already talented so that the completion of that dream was more of a possibility.
And meanwhile, I read books. I read a lot. And I lived, and had relationships and learned to love people. I found God, and He was such a friend to me, that the part of me that was locked away began to jump up and down. He gave me gifts. And the freedom to dream.
So ten years ago when I finished a story, I knew that I’d been given the ticket. Dreams weren’t for other people. I could accomplish a dream too. I could begin a story and finish it, put everything I wanted to happen in it. I could fill a book with words and create worlds, and develop meanings and shape myself through my characters. To create, like God does, a place of warmth after hardship, a hand to hold when facing trouble, and at last, the end spot of safety. 
On August 1st, I was published. It may not go far. My book might disappoint my publishers and sell only a few copies. But for me the dream came true before now. Ten years ago I began to dream, and I still get to translate that into colors and sounds and words on the page. And that’s a gift I hope I never lose.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Nine Letters in Wonderful

In thinking about the number nine I always go right to the Lord of the Rings. Nine brave heroes set out from Rivendell to counter the nine evil Ringwraiths. When I consider my own quest stories and how many should be in the team, I never think of writing nine. Nine is so big. J.R.R. Tolkein was truly a master writer to choose nine characters to involve himself with. But how fun to imagine having nine friends, clotting the trail, sitting around the sizzling bacon during the campfire, making a cacophony of snores at night; and leaving one elf to smile about the noise while he sits on watch. And poor Frodo, blushing while bards sing about his nine fingers.
Nine months is so long when you’re pregnant, too. God knew what He was doing to design it that way, of course. It takes nine months to adjust, to begin to lay your life down, and to transition into anticipation. The story I’m writing now has five main characters and four side ones. Hmmm. Maybe I’ll lock them in a cave and make them figure out how to free themselves. Maybe I’ll dabble with the wonders of nine, just for fun and as a nine-sided challenge!

Friday, June 8, 2012

The Original Eighth

There’s something about the eighth chapter for me. I just finished writing the eighth chapter in my current story. And, as often happens, I’ve hit a crossroads. In the past, when I was first learning to write, the eighth chapter was painful. Still, in the first story I tried to complete, I’m stuck there, forever glued to the road. Those old characters, in their nineties clothes, frozen with animated faces. I didn’t have the courage to push through it then. I thought this was it. That’s all I can do. And I let years go by before I tried again. My third novel was called ‘Vanish’ and I hit chapter eight and froze like a block. I went on long walks and pondered. It would hurt too much if I quit. Days went by, and then weeks. And finally, one day the light came on. An idea, so brilliant, so perfect for my story, had me rushing home to go on. Now, when I hit the Eighth chapter and freeze, I don’t fear it so much. I know by the time I’ve reached this far, the story is established. I can trust myself to find the answer like the quest my character is on. There’s eight chapters of original inspiration in me. But that makes moving on to chapter nine exciting. I hope I come up with something grand!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

I've Always Liked the Number SEVEN

Today there's just seven things I want to say:
1. I'm going to be published!
2. Check out Black Lyon Publishers, they make dreams come true!
3. I'm going to be published, and I'm so excited!
4. I don't know if I've mentioned this but...
5. I'm a slow bloomer and a slow learner, and I'm really grateful for everyone's help!
6. Black Lyon Publishers, who publish HIGH Quality Romances in several genres!
7. Well, what can I say? I'm going to be published!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Six Loops Around Back to the Start

       It would be impossible to mention a blog about the number six without thinking of my six children. Yet, in an odd way, my writing is the world I made separate from my kids. Six, beautiful, life-changing people have entered my life like precious treasures, and as wonderful as that is, myself could get lost. Eventually I entered my own world and left them while I romped through the trees of my imagination, marveled at beautiful castles, and invented noble heroes. Supple, I moved unfettered, able to do those things that I could do when I had the fitness of a 20 year-old. Through writing, I was a child again. I could be selfish, deciding that this fantasy would be exactly what I wanted it to be. In here, I was bossy, and I got my own way. 
       Also,  I'm yearning. I'm feeling insecure. I'm risking making new friends in the publishing world, putting myself out there like a kid in junior high, afraid I might be laughed at. 
       In this journey I've made a discovery. That I can talk to my kids about what I'm writing. Sometimes they listen with kindness and let me ramble on about this world I've discovered/created. And sitting next to them, revealing my vulnerability and hoping they like me, I find that I'm a child even younger than they are. 
      So I allow myself the freedom to wander off and write, because I know that when I choose to come back I will be enriched by the experience. Safe, in the love of my family, I can find that story inside that I need to express. And maybe someday, one of my kids might even read one of my books from cover to cover!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

                           The Fetching Five

     Or, five times at a spot standing in front of everyone. I guess I needed those rehearsals. Last night my writing group looked glittering at a fancy gala. Well, we looked nice at a cozy gathering anyway. We were all brave and had offered to read one of our pieces at the microphone. Talk about pasting on a smile over a shivering mid-section. All I can say is, it was a good thing I had practiced beforehand. Being the titular Program Manager, I had to read my piece at every one of our four scheduled rehearsals. (I tried getting out of it but they wouldn't let me!) It was there that I discovered that the girl 'Becci' in my story had to be 'fetching' instead of 'coltish' or the audience would complain. And last night I learned that I need my friends to improve myself. The best way to push me to do more is to do more with me. So now I will take this opportunity to say, 'Thanks, kind writing group friends'! You glitter like gold!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012


       The first inspiration gleams like a tantalizing flow, carrying me off for a moment. There is a powerful current, but I have to jump in it to be swept away to a new story beginning. 
      Second, I add some machinery. There must be structure to hold up the idea. This too has power, for this skeleton gives the inspiration it's life. A colorful name I've always secretly liked deserves to have an entire story devoted to a character capable of living up to that name. And so I add description, coloring in the character's personality traits or occupations. 
       Now I'm standing full in the stream, proud and ready to declare myself. And yet here the third step. Will I jot this down? Commit to this marvelous story as more than an idea? The life of my new idea may be very brief now. Or it may have a power of it's own that delights and implores me to discover the vivid inner workings. 
       If all these elements are yes, then I can begin the journey. Step four, I can now create, and enjoy what the pounding keyboard tells me about itself, caught up, as I hope the reader will one day be,  in my new story.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012


   I write a segment, then the second look fixes it, and the third look pulls it together. Often there are other edits after that, but 3 glances seals the scene, and brings me to the place where I decide, 'yes, this segment is what I want,' or 'no! This isn't right!' 
   Sometimes it takes three tries before I find the correct ending to my novel too. I luxuriate in the freedom to say, 'no, there's more I want to happen at the end, and therefore more that I want my story to be'. So when I write, I need to be willing to expand, to open possibilities, until I can read my story and be certain, 'this is right!'
   Once I finish my novel, and have edited it in all it's parts, I then set myself to read it three times. This is where I make certain I can get lost in the story, that I don't have to stop and get hitched at bad grammar or a clunky sentence. But I don't go on editing forever. Three read-throughs is enough. 

Friday, March 16, 2012

Therapeutic Twosome -

   Writing is so special. Even when I can't think of a new story, I'm still taking note of life. My mind is split in two, the part that's experiencing, and emoting about that experience, and the part at the back. That part that exists no matter how scattered I am, or how spread thin.
  Inside is the treasure chest; behind the ornate door is a world all my own. I just have to step through into that windswept landscape and call out. Sometime I know I'll live there again.
  Perhaps I can't write now. Maybe real life is affecting me too deeply. I'm worried, or agitated, or in a permanent state of waiting. I'm trusting God that somehow my children will be all right, that all the pieces I drop are noticed by Him.
   Yet that inner world is there to help me, to show me that in the life of my characters there's answers. The way  for them is untangled.
   God allows me this hideaway. He gave me the gift. He understands the inner workings. And forgives me that I go there alone. And one day soon I'll insert that rusty key. The ornate iron gates will open for me with a creak of possibility. I'll step through into the windscape, and smell a journey coming on.
 There's two parts of me, and inside either I'm powerful and safe.

Friday, December 30, 2011

The First Line Must Shine


     I've heard some great first lines. I haven't been able to write 

them. But the way I look at it is this. When you meet someone

for the first time, aren't they more than a line of writing? The

great first line is like love at first sight. Its that one person 

you've caught sight of that is irresistible. It can't happen too 

frequently. You can't walk around staring at every person you 

see and thinking, 'gasp! It's HIM! He's the one!' 

     So that's why I write adequate first lines. And sometimes I 

write good ones. Because I'm hoping that you'll fall in love 

with my story, and like love, I don't mind spending out some 

time and effort to get you there.