Getting Real

It’s time to get real, folks. And by way of a fair warning, I’m going to say I’m about to get very real here soon. Let me first state the facts: I am pregnant. This isn’t my first rodeo. In fact I have been pregnant six times. This is, however, my 5th child. Now that you all know the extent of my insanity, let me just say a few words on all of this, while attempting to paint a little picture for you. I do not write this for any other reason but to kind of set the scene (I am a writer you know) and to explain the way I am feeling. This blog is usually reserved for when I find my life and my writing combine to make something interesting. Right now it’s going to serve its purpose by being a literary outlet for the words in my heart. Here is what pregnancy looks like for me. I am quite possibly the barf queen of Pregnancyland. To be clear (and I did say I was going to get real up in here), every day of my pregnancy I toss my cookies at least once a day – right up until the blessed day I give birth. During the early weeks (by early I mean the first 20-25 weeks), I am purging my soul at the porcelain throne 3-5 times a day, sometimes a lot more. In the first 13 weeks of this pregnancy I counted having vomited over 125 times. After that I quit counting – I mean, anything beyond this number is equally sucky right? So I get sick. Is that all? No my friends. About the time the nausea lets up some so that I can feel relatively human, my hips decide to quit working. That’s right, every single move I make (standing, sitting, laying down, walking etc) will cause me physical pain to do. And finally, add this time around that I got a blood clot in my leg that was SUPER fun (and by super I naturally mean excruciating and by fun I mean horrible). So why would I ever ever decide to do this again after the first time? Believe me, I have been asked this more than once. It was not as if any of my offspring were unplanned. Knowing as I do what I would be required to go through meant that each baby was thought about, prayed about, and considered for months if not years before we decided to try to conceive. You don’t take jumping off a cliff lightly. Okay, so now that you all know exactly how crazy I am – then why? The truth of the...

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A thought for you…

Okay, friends.  Its time to talk about something important.  I recently had a thought (yeah, okay I walked into that one… I happen to have many thoughts – thank. you. very. much.) Yes, a lot of my thoughts these days tend to lean towards the pregnancy-hormone-induced-mental-imbalance side of the spectrum.  For example, like how there are probably women in the deep deep jungles of South America that have yearlong pregnancies, and nobody knows about them (because duh, they are in the deep jungles of SA) and that I must be somehow genetically descended in some way from them.  Or how, it makes TOTAL sense to wake up at 5 am and really really need, like need from the very center of your soul, a bowl of curry.  But I digress… That thought I had, the one that made sense, that was important and I wanted to share with you is this: Editors are freakin’ amazing. Allow me to explain by way of metaphor, or simile or parable (it doesn’t matter which one is correct because yay EDITORS! jk).  So I figured, writers as a group are like architects.  We design cool things.  We create things that evoke emotion and inspire people (hopefully).  We set about putting our imagination in to the book, making characters come alive and hope that what was in our minds was accurately translated to the page. Editors, editors are like engineers.  They take the imaginative drawings of the architect and make it into something solid, tangible and strong.  They take the dream that the architects set about to create and make it a real possibility.  They do not destroy, change or evolve that dream to something different unless it is absolutely necessary to the integrity of the piece.  As the architect (writer) my sketchings are still my own, only ready for others to experience.  That has at least been the experience I have had. With my three books, and participation in Meryton Press’ summer anthology book coming out this summer, I have had the privilege of working with two very fine editors.  And with my recently awarded IPPY for Haunting Mr. Darcy, I have been reflective of the many good things, people and opportunities that gave me the chance to get a literary award at all. So this totally cohesive, sane and heartfelt thought goes to you Gail Warner, and Christina Boyd: Thank you....

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Yippy IPPY

I am very pleased to announce that Haunting Mr. Darcy has been awarded a 2015 Bronze IPPY from the Independent Publisher Book Awards in the category of Romance. Okay, that’s my sedate, reserved and professional statement about the above news.  This is what I would like to say on the matter. OH MY FREAKIN’ GOSH! I won an IPPY! I won an IPPY! Yippy skippy an IPPY for me!!!  ::insert incoherent and excited mumblings here as I dance around my living room like a crazed maniac:: Now back to my professional self.  Many many thanks go to the judging panel for choosing my book.  (Oh my gosh, I seriously love you guys!) I am honored to receive this award (are you kidding me? I am geekin’ out here).  Receiving an IPPY is a very great compliment (Would it be weird if I got a tattoo of it?  Yeah… yeah it probably would, huh?).  For those of you who would like to view the press release on the awards, the link is provided below (I think I might pass out…false alarm – I’m dancing around again.)...

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Fan Mail of the Best Kind

Sometimes an author has to take a moment to brag.  And today is one such day for me. Last week I was asked to speak to my daughter Corilynn’s 2nd grade class about writing and being an author. Talk about BIG gig! These kids are just developing their writing skills.  What if what I say makes them think writing is BORING.  Should I tell them that authors sit at computers with bags of Doritos as friends?  In their sweatpants?  TALKING TO THEMSELVES? No… that cant be inspiring. That is downright frightening.  ::shudder:: So I told them that I had the best job in the world — I got to use my imagination and tell stories all day long. (To fellow authors out there – you know that’s code for the voices in our head tell the stories to us all day long.) Today I received this: Dozens of adorable thank you notes from little eight year olds.  Some were pop up cards, some colorful rainbow cards.  One little boy named Garrett gave me his number and asked me to call him. I’m flattered Garrett. What these cards did was warm my HEART and though they said I inspired them – they inspired ME! I was so pleased to see things like:   and infinitely happy to see this: This one made me grin: I got a chuckle out of the one that thanked me for coming and then wrote: But hands down the best note came from my daughter.  That’s the real reason to brag here.  Shes the best thing that I have....

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“Life seems but a quick succession of busy nothings.” – Jane Austen   My baby tiny, my “little” is already 18 months old.  We were waiting around for her to be born when I was preparing to publish Bluebells in the Mourning.  I remember we were rushing to finish the last aspects of the process so that it could be finished before I delivered.  We finished in plenty of time since she was born a full two weeks after her due date (it still makes me tired thinking of it). And now Elsie Mae is full grown.  Tomorrow she will probably go off to college.   When I think of where the time went I am reminded of the quote above from Jane Austen.  “Life seems but a quick succession of busy nothings.” By hobby I am an author but by trade I am a domestic engineer…erm a Mom.  Everyday I feel like the only things I do all day is turn lights off and flush toilets (Can I just get one day where my kids use the facilities and I am not aware of it?). Like a security guard I make my rounds several times a day pressing the lever and flipping those switches.  Its hard some days to see what difference I am making and what consequence I am adding to the world around me. But then… My little Mae Mae toddles over to me and giggles as I scoop her up onto my lap.  She presses sloppy kisses into the crease of my neck, pulls at my jewelry and tells me pretty. Her belly jiggles with her laughter when I press my face into it, pretending to feast on her little stomach.  She pulls my face towards hers when I am talking to someone else so that I might give her my undivided attention.  Usually her important messages relate to what toy she has in her hand or what snack she wants.  Sometimes her jabber makes no sense at all but I am filled with such a tremendous love for her then.  It doesn’t matter that I cannot understand her babbles, its that she felt I was important enough to tell them too. So my life is full of a ‘quick succession of busy nothings.’  I’m not sure I could be happy any other way.  Oh dear… she is feeding the dog from her highchair.  I better log off now and see to that.  Besides its almost time for me to make my rounds.  ...

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Jane Austen and Bad Poetry

I was talking to a friend the other night.  We were talking about hardships we have endured over the span of our short lives and the topic turned to how Jane Austen influenced and helped us in various ways.  My friend found a world in the JAFF community where she could be herself and be fully accepted.  I know for myself her books brought to me a reminder of my love for writing after years of neglect.  My last venture into creative writing had been my angsty teenage poetry.  Reading her books made me want to be engulfed in her world – over and over.  The only way to do that was to write my own or read others.  I had read hundreds of others and decided to try my own.  If not for Jane Austen, I might have only written bad poetry.   What has Jane Austen given...

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A Million Thanks

Its a strange feeling when an author does not know how to express herself with words.  And I find myself in that situation now as I try to explain how I am feeling.  I heard another author say recently that they do not even read the reviews posted on Amazon etc about their book.  I thought to myself then that I do not know how they could not.  For me the reviews are addicting.  I love to hear what people thought of the book as a whole or certain parts.  I do not even mind when the review is not particularly full of praise.   I am honestly so thrilled to see someone else’s perspective on it and I find it fascinating. Often, I am also honored. Awed. Humbled and amazed. I have some of the best readers in the world!  They express praise about my books in ways that truly make me blush and even at times make me a little bright eyed.  Each review is slightly different and their differences bring something new to the forum.  Occasionally I am so blown away by their kind words that I am overwhelmed with gratitude.  For what?  Not just the kind words but way more. This is the part I cannot explain sufficiently.  I am grateful for the chance to write, for the ability to provide someone that wonderful release that a good book gives, and that they found it in my book. I recently got this review on Amazon for Haunting Mr. Darcy. “My wife read this book and so enjoyed it that she offered to read it aloud to me. I looked forward to each evening that she would read to me this enchanting story of the two most read and written about characters in romantic literary history … Haunting Mr. Darcy really is one of the best fan versions I have ever “read” or heard. One cannot help but get as intimately involved in their story as is humanly possible. The writing is fresh, funny, surprising, clean, and just plain exceptional. This is a “must read”.” – Jake Huff, Eugene, OR Wow. Thank you so much to Jake (and his ‘great reader’ of a wife) for your unbelievable words.  And to all of those out there who have reviewed my book.  Thank...

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