Thursday, June 16, 2011

Writer Versus Blogger

I can't believe it's been more than a month since my last post.  When I started this blog, I vowed to myself that I'd keep regular postings.  However, life doesn't always go as we plan.  This past month has really taken me by surprise and not in a good way.

As a writer, I have to write down everything going on in my life.  If I'm upset or stressed, writing helps me to relax.  I've come to more than one resolution by getting it all down in black and white.  And it lets me forever immortalize a memory I never want to forget.  This habit developed in my early teens.

Dozens of legal pads and composition books are filled with random thoughts and blurbs.  You never know when some real life event may become fictionalized into something I'm working on, hence the origin of my short story, Grandmother's Tree.

I've said all that to say this.  Writing a blog is totally different from writing a novel or journaling your thoughts.  A blog is made public for everyone to critique, take to heart, completely ignore or forward to others.  Fiction can also be viewed in the same respect but the reader doesn't know what views and feelings are that of the author or those of the characters.  And a journal is completely veiled in privacy.

I thought long and hard about sharing my personal crisis with all of you, but I'm not that brave yet.  Instead I've put all of my energy into my second novel for the last five weeks.  So far, I've got eleven chapters done, and even I can't wait to see what happens next!

I know I still have to get busy on finding a publisher for the first one, but with the second one burning a hole inside me, I've got to get it written down.  If you don't hear from me again, it's because the writing has taken over.  However, I'm going to try and find a balance and keep posting.

Thank you for your support and encouragement.


2011 Writer's Market

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Breast Cancer And Mother's Day

On Mother's Day, it gives us a chance to spend with our children. I always reflect on the job I've done with my girls and look ahead to the job still left to do.

Mother's Day also gets me thinking about my own mom. We've had our ups and downs, but it's all in the past. My mom happens to be the bravest woman I know. You see, she's fighting breast cancer. And for the most part save one sister, she's fighting it alone. Her five kids are scattered along the East Coast with me being the farthest away.

Mom comes from a family of eleven, and she had us five kids. Recently divorced, she's not used to being on her own. Never mind being away from everyone she loves. This past year has been hard on her, and she's impressed me by pulling herself up and starting over.

When she was diagnosed with breast cancer, I thought it would do her in. I was wrong. I've never seen such a positive attitude in all my life. When her port threw a clot, I wondered if she'd begin to sway. Again, her resolve only strengthened.

Now into her third round of Chemo, she's had a few more setbacks, but her spirit is still strong. I'm proud of my mom. I know she's going to pull through this. She needs all of our prayers and support. Most of all I want her to know, she's always in my thoughts and never leaves my heart. She's my mom, and nothing will ever change that.

- Heather

Saturday, May 7, 2011

My Daughter's First Poem

My daughter had an assignment in Language Arts this week. Her topic was to write a poem about Love. She struggled with this assignment but ultimately wrote something so beautiful. She's given me permission to share it. It also received 9's from the judges in her class competition and a fellow student was moved to tears. I am so proud to call her my daughter.
Picture by K. Thorpe


Love is something you cannot measure,
But it is something I always treasure.

Thinking of my Grampa in his favorite chair,
Or with a baseball cap on to hide missing hair.

He'd read my favorite book 'til we started to doze.
Time for TV and our afternoon shows.

I learned to dive in my Grampa's pool.
At four year's old, I thought I was cool.

No on ever loved food more.
At Grampa's house it was snacks galore.

Disney World was favorite spot.
We'd be there rain or shine, cold or hot.

Plays, chorus, or soccer he was always there.
Though his seat is empty I still imagine him here.

Love is like the sun, it'll always shine.
In my memories, he'll always be mine.

~ K. Thorpe
Seventh Grade

Monday, May 2, 2011

Away Too Long

Being away from my writing for any length of time sends me into withdrawals.  Whether it's working on my book or just posting a blog, I need to be putting my thoughts down.  This post is going to be a short one, but I felt I needed to get one out there.

Those of you who've seen my tweets or are my Facebook friend know my girls have had Strep Throat. When you're kids are sick, everything else goes by the wayside.  Having both of them home at the same time hasn't happened since they were babies.  And I hope it doesn't happen again for a very long time.

Nothing has gotten done around my house in almost a week.  However, it's the sleepless nights I can do without.  Whenever my youngest is sick, these are always a guarantee.  She's a chronic asthmatic, and we've had countless attacks this week.  Come to find out, the culprit this time has been her antibiotic.  She's had an allergic reaction to it, and her old standby has been called in.

Here's hoping to a better night tonight and sleep for both of us.  The poor baby is running on empty, and so am I.

- Heather

Saturday, April 23, 2011

When Life Imitates Art

COMEDY AND TRAGEDY THEATER MASK Pinback Button 1.25" Pin / Badge Drama ArtsAfter talking to my sister, I knew I had no other choice but to share it with all of you.  As a writer with a pretty good imagination, even I couldn't  make up a scene this bizarre.  I found myself laughing instead of offering her the support I knew she  needed as she continued to tell me about her day.

She’s the Assistant Manager of a national establishment.  This means she’s learned to deal with all kinds.  However, Thursday’s series of events took top billing on her list.

It started out as normal as any other day until one customer came up to the drive-thru and retrieved his order only to pull forward a few feet and shout back, “By the way, I hit your wall.”  My sister looked out the window at his truck and then back down the drive-thru.  It was littered with cinder blocks. 

She was shocked by the arrogance of the man who drove off.  He’d left her with no other option but to call the police, and pick up the blocks herself.  A traffic jam was now forming. 

As she crossed through the dining room, she could smell smoke.  Quickly looking around it was easy to locate the culprit.  A dingy looking man had casually settled himself down and lit up a cigarette.  He’d never approached the counter to order anything.  He just sat there puffing away.  What the #$@% ? She was thinking as she approached him. 

She politely told the man there was no smoking inside the building.  He looked quite confused and wanted to know, “Since when?”  With her voice a few octaves higher than normal she explained, “Smoking was banned about a decade ago.”  Stoner guy gave her one long last look before he left as quietly as he came in.

She finally set about to move the cinder blocks out of the way all by herself.  She was determined to get back to business as usual.  In doing so, a customer rolls in and asks her what’s happened.  When she explains, he tells her he’s seen the exact truck a couple miles down the road with two blown tires.

She hurries in to call the police with the new information.  Her head is spinning with the day she’s having.  Just when she thinks it can’t get any worse, in walks two guys with a checklist.  They explain it’s time for her annual inspection of equipment. 

Now she begins to wonder if she’s getting Punked.  No, these guys are real, and she needs to show them each piece of equipment.  With her nerves frazzled already, it takes every ounce of patience she can muster to be civil.

Close on their heels is the company’s own insurance agent.  I guess they figure it’s the two birds, one stone theory.  When the insurance agent hears about the accident, of course he needs to go inspect the damage. Isn’t having my sister count the bricks going a little bit far?

Upon their return back inside, the police have now joined the party.  They inform her the suspect’s vehicle was eventually abandoned.  It’s hard to drive for too long with two flat tires.  He was eventually apprehended.  My sister’s asked to give her own statement, and she’s handed an accident report.  It’s now the cop's turn to go visit the scene of the crime.  When he returns, he asks my sister if she’s filled out the report yet.

“You’ve got to be kidding me?”  She points to the three guests behind the counter and asks if she can drop it off tomorrow.  The officer smiles and asks her who moved all the blocks.  She tells him she did, all twenty of them.  He’s impressed and says tomorrow will be soon enough.

- Heather

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Family Night And Vampires

The Vampire Diaries: The Complete Second SeasonMy daughters are fourth generation vampire fans.  They've inherited their love of vampires from me, and I inherited it from my grandmother.  She got me hooked on vampires before they were pulsing in the mind of every tween, teenager, and young-at-heart closet watcher who won't admit they're a fan was even paying attention.

On my overnights to Grandma's I would snuggle up next to her and watch the old black and white classics with Vincent Price and get scared out of my mind.  I also loved every minute of it.  Those are memories I will treasure forever.

Now it's my turn, and I get to make the memories with my daughters.  Every Thursday night, the computer is off, the phones are silenced, and the junk food comes out.  It's become our Girl's Night. 

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Best Laid Plans

My plan when I got home tonight was to fry up some chicken and homemade french fries, return some emails, and get some writing done. It was a good plan, one I was looking forward to. However for the fifth night in a row, the writing wasn't going to happen.

When you have kids, you're life is no longer your own. Tonight my seventh grader was staying at school late to finish her video project. She calls as I'm pulling into my driveway to see if I'm busy and tells me she could use some advice on editing and music. Since the project is due tomorrow, I do the only thing any other parent would do. I drop everything without giving it a second thought, and go help her finish her project.

On the way to her school, I think to myself, how old will she be before I stop dropping everything every time she calls for help? Then I smile to myself as the answer comes to me. She'll never be too old. And I'll never be too busy to drop everything every time she needs me.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Book Review - The Vampire Diaries, The Return: Midnight Vol. 3

The Vampire Diaries: The Return: MidnightHaving a middle school daughter, I review all young adult novels before letting her read them.  It started out as a screening process and has turned into a bond that I will always treasure.

My daughter was so excited when the latest volume of The Vampire Diaries hit the shelves.  She kept begging me to buy it.  With Vol 2. The Return: Shadow Souls ending on such a cliff hanger, she couldn't wait to read this one.  I hope she still feels that way once she gets started.

Unfortunately, I can't say I was very impressed with L.J. Smith's latest edition to the series.  While it had some interest holding moments, it was lacking in staying power.  I never felt a connection to this book like I have with the others.

One reason being, I found it hard to understand how Stefan could need so much blood and be so weak for so long. He's a vampire getting blood from Elena whose blood is supposed to be like no other.  Then once he's in the Dark Dimension, his health issues are no longer mentioned.  Bonnie was also a bit disappointing.  She was beginning to develop courage in Shadow Souls, but in this book she did a lot of crying and was even more helpless.

Like my daughter, I so badly wanted to be as drawn-in by this book as I was by its predecessor. Both of my daughters were shocked when it took me five nights to finish this book.  They didn't even need to ask me what I thought of the book.  Taking this amount of time to read a book, speaks volumes in my house.  It'll be interesting to see what my daughter thinks.

To read my summary of the book will give away a few secrets to anyone who hasn't read the book yet.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Facebook And Our Children

I've always been leery of social networking when it comes to children.  I never thought I'd be one of those moms who allowed her children on Facebook before the posted age of thirteen. However, a couple of years ago, I gave in and created a Facebook account for my oldest. Not for the reason she was begging, which was all her friends were getting one so they could remember each other as they all got separated into different middle schools, but because I wanted her to get to know our family up North.  Facebook is a great way to keep in touch with those you love.

We discussed the fact that she couldn't accept any friend requests without my permission, and I had to be one of those friends.  She wasn't allowed to take any quizzes or play any games that I didn't approve of.  Her privacy settings were set at the highest priority.  I believed I'd thought of everything to keep her safe.

Her younger sister is now of the same age with her own page and all the same rules apply.  Things have gone reasonably well, but she's more of a free spirit. I have to monitor her much more closely and have had to delete a friend or two on occasion.

The problem I've been eluding to happened last week when she declined a young man's request to "go out" with her.  He instant messaged her through Facebook, and she gave him her standard reply.  "Mom says I'm too young to go out with anyone." 

He wasn't happy with this answer, and tried to persuade her.  While they were chatting, his profile picture became her picture.  She was "creeped out" when he did this.  At first she thought she hit a wrong button and changed her own picture.  Before she could tell him to delete it, he disappeared from her screen.  He unfriended her in the middle of their chat because she'd finally had to outright tell him, "No."

Thursday, April 7, 2011

~ Omen Or Celestial Message ~

I can't say I've ever given a thought in my belief about omens one way or another.  However, when the same thing happens twice in five days, I've got to pause and assess the situation.

If you live in the South, you'll understand exactly what I mean when I say torrential weather can blow up at a moment's notice.  Picking my daughter up from school on Thursday, this is exactly what happened.  We'd been under various weather watches all day, but just as the pick-up line started moving the sky opened up and the wind blew in from out of nowhere. 

The line was stalled while all the kids were taken back inside to a secure hallway for a tornado lockdown as a safety precaution.  The rain was still coming in sheets when my daughter was finally escorted out, but at least we were on our way to my other daughter's school. 

Coming around the corner my route was again delayed. A tree had just fallen across the road.  I turned to my daughter and told her someone must've been looking out for us.  If she hadn't been stuck at school, it could've been us under that tree.

On Tuesday, we woke to the weatherman warning us of inclimate weather on the way.  I couldn't believe the line of storms headed our way.  It's just too early in the year for this kind of tropical weather to be starting.  The thunderstorm came so hard and so fast our yard was flooded within a matter of minutes.  You couldn't even see to the end of the road.  I waited for it to let up a bit before leaving for school.

It was like deja vu.  Another tree was blocking our path.  Again, it was a good thing our routine had been delayed.  Once, I consider a coincidence but twice?  What are the odds?  Am I being sent a message of future events?  Death by tree, I hope not.  It leaves me with only one other explanation.  Is someone up above trying to get in touch with me?  If so, it's a pretty drastic way to send a message.

I'm no stranger to paranormal activity.  Since my daughters' two grandpas have died we've had quite a few strange but enjoyable events, but that's a story for another time...

- Heather

Sunday, April 3, 2011

A Tribute To Amazing Granparents

I've been doing some reminiscing this week.  Thinking back to those who influenced me growing up, and one person always jumps to my mind.  Nana.  She was a wonderful lady.  She was my safe harbour, my confidant, my mentor, and my wind beneath my wings.  If it wasn't for her, the book I've recently finished would have no foundation. Click here to learn more, and here .

She was everything a grandmother should be.  In my mind, she will forever be immortalized standing over the stove cooking something wonderful.  The savory smells carried all the way outside, and your mouth was watering before you opened the door.  You were instantly starving even if you didn't know it two seconds before.  Needless to say, no one ever went hungry at Nana's house.

I never remember Nana ever raising her voice or saying an unkind word to any of us kids.  She never got upset when we broke something or made a mess where she'd just cleaned up.  As we got older and our personalities began to shine through, she never tried to change us.  It's the reason I could go to her with any problem.  I knew she wouldn't judge me.  She'd guide me in her always gentle voice.

She's the person who taught me how to cook, how to embroider, and how to be a better person.  She had the patience of a saint.  Oh, did I forget to mention?  She spoiled us rotten with love and her never empty jar of candy.   More importantly, we had a bond that couldn't be broken.   I'd do anything for her and she for me. 

To this day, I miss her terribly.  My heart breaks for my own daughters who experienced such a treasured bond so briefly with the passing of their grandfather when they were only seven and nine.   

If you're a grandparent who treasures your grandchildren, protects them, and makes sure they know how important they are in your life, then this is a tribute to you as well.  People like you are a blessing and a rare jewel in today's world.  Children today have precious few who they can look up to and respect.  Be proud to know that one of those people is you.  The bond you share with your grandchildren is your priceless legacy.


Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Great Aeropostale Debate -- With or Without the "T"?

The debate in my house for almost a week now has been how to pronounce the name of the popular clothing store, Aeropostale.  Do you pronounce the T or not?  My oldest says without, and my youngest says with.  These girls are only nineteen months (11 & 12) apart and are at the age where they can bicker about anything or nothing. 

Usually I can break their feud with my opinion being the tie breaker, but not this time.  I've always pronounced the name without the T.  As a teenager, all my friends did, too.  It may have been due to my geographic location.  I don't know.  This answer didn't satisfy my little one who told me "You people just don't know about this kind of stuff anymore."  The image of the fence came rushing to the front of my mind again.  See earlier post.

She told me she'd prove she was right and bring home hard data from school.  She was sure everyone in her (advanced) fifth grade class pronounced the T.  A tally mark list would be her proof.  My 7th grader took a poll of her friends via text message.

Their results are in.  It was unanimous in the fifth grade.  Aeropostale is pronounced with a T.  Of my seventh graders close circle of friends, 80% pronounce it with a T. 

These results are backed by Wikipedia's pronunciation of the word.  However, I don't know if I'm truly convinced. Everyone that I know (from my generation) drops the T.  And when we shopped their  Wiregrass location in Tampa on Friday, their own employee greeted us, "Welcome to Aeropostale," without pronouncing the T.

I guess this means the subject is still open for debate.  Is Aeropostale pronounced with or without the "T"?  I'd like to hear from you.  How do you pronounce, Aeropostale?

- Heather

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

History on Grandmother's Tree, A Short Story by Heather Thorpe

I want to start out by thanking all of my Facebook friends and beyond for their kind words and encouragement with this weekend's posting of my short story, Grandmother's Tree. Click here to read.  When the weekend started out, I had every intention of working on some thoughts swimming around in my head for my sequel, but sitting down with pen to paper, Grandmother's Tree poured out instead. 

I was a little leary about posting my first short story on such a public forum, but the response has been so positive, it encourages me to post more in the future.  If you've never had the experience, you wouldn't believe how hard it is to publish one of your own works.  To leave yourself open to possible criticism is not for the weak spirited.  Thankfully, I've never been one of those individuals.  Backing down from what I believe in has never really been an option for me. 

Still, writing had always been very personal and not something I wanted openly critiqued by strangers, but I'm letting go of that notion.  Writing has been second nature since I was a teenager.  It's almost like therapy.  Unless you were within my trusted circle, this fact was a closely guarded secret of mine until now.  I cannot fulfill my lifelong dream of becoming a published author, without opening up myself and my writing.

I plan to talk more in the future about my writing journey towards publication.  The next time my pen has a mind of it's own, I'll be sure to post the outcome.  For now I'd just like to find the time to write my original thoughts for the sequel.  So many words swirling round.  So little time to jot them down.

- Heather

Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Wonderful World of Blogging

Into my second week of blogging, and I'm beginning to realize how much time I could spend online.  Blogging alone could be a full-time occupation if I had the luxury, not to mention the world of Twitter which I'm still not sure I understand.  I've had to physically pry myself away from my computer on more than one occasion just to get a few things done that I've been neglecting.

As I mentioned last week, I just finished my first YA (young adult) fantasy novel, see earlier post.  I am so excited to take it to the next level!  The closest comparison I can make to my series is if C.S. Lewis': The Chronicles of Narnia  met  Alyson Noel's: The Immortals.  However, my characters are slightly older, there's a dark edge to the plot, and a fated romance, what could be better?  These characters and creatures have been a part of me for so long.  I can't wait for them to come alive for you, but I want to do this right.

I've been spending a lot of time on the sites of fellow bloggers, such as Nathan Bransford,  Robert Kroese,  Jane Friedman, and more.  They all seem to be saying the same thing.  Whether you're a published or indie author, social networking plays a vital roll in your success.  I'm up for the challenge.  I've had a Facebook account for years.  It's always been a private account for family and close friends, one where we exchange picts of our kids and talk about our day.  However, I'm eager to become more social, hence this blog and a public Facebook page.

I'm no stranger to marketing and the hours you must invest.  Having been a Real Estate Broker in a previous life, I'm well aware of the importance and time it takes to cultivate a following.  Although I'm at a bit of a loss when it comes to building a virtual presence.  I've read the blogs of other independent authors who have credited their success to their followers and book bloggers.  Each has said you need to find your target audience and blog about things that interest them. 

I'm a mother of two and plan to blog about the joys and challenges of having two, tween girls.  Being a writer, I will be blogging about my journey, frustrations, goals and anything else pertaining to writing.  My questions are these.  Where exactly do you find this following?  Better yet, how do you know if you're saying something they want to hear?

This isn't exactly like my old profession where I had concrete structures of glass and concrete to build from.  There are no neighborhoods to canvass with postcards or full page ads to rotate.  I can't exactly plan an event at our local board office where I can network and establish relationships as I have in the past.  As far as technology goes, I'm not a total clod.  I've kept up to date, having had my own website, virtual tours, and  monthly newsletter, but this is still different.

If any of my fellow bloggers are willing to share their experiences and offer me any kind of advice, I'd be eternally grateful.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Locked The Keys In The Car

Taking my eleven and twelve-year old daughters shopping is anything but dull.  Something unexpected always happens.  Usually I'm embarrassed beyond belief by my younger daughter, which I am happy to say was not the case today. However my older, responsible, trustworthy, follows every rule daughter decided it was her turn to make sure our day wouldn't go as planned.

With today being a No School Day, we decided to take the drive to The Shops at Wiregrass down in Tampa.  Being in the car for an hour, always requires an immediate bathroom break.  Amidst their bickering about where we'd go first, I ushered them into the Barnes & Noble since I was sure they'd have a bathroom.  Being in a bookstore is like heaven for me, and probably my only chance to visit one today.

On our way out, my oldest realized she left her phone in the car.  Being that I'd just gotten her this new phone a few weeks back, I didn't want it heating up in the car.  Any of my Facebook friends already know the Saga of the Green Cell Phone. I only shook my head and allowed her to walk back across the parking lot to retrieve her phone watching her the whole way.  She was so happy I let her to go back to the car on her own and came back with a huge smile on her face.

The smile quickly changed to panic when I asked her for the keys.  She patted her pockets, looked in her purse, and showed me her phone.  I gave her the look only a mother can give and told her, "Don't even..."  as the three of us walked across the street.  And sure enough, there were the keys sitting on the back seat.  After a few crocidile tears, which she can turn on at the drop of a hat, we made our way back into the mall to shop as planned and get in touch with their dad who had the spare key.

To my surprise and delight, the only slight reprimand I had to give my youngest was to stop saying, "This looks like old lady stuff!" especially when we walked by a store full of older women.  She's my fashion guru, and while I wholeheartedly agreed with her assessment, there are times when you need to keep your opinions to yourself.  It's a life lesson hard for children to grasp and one some adults never have.

All in all it was a great day.  Life moves us at such a fast pace.  There's never enough time to just stop and spend it with the kids doing whatever we want.  Being stranded for a few hours didn't hurt any of us.  We had a good time laughing, talking, and wandering into a few stores we probably wouldn't have.

Monday, March 21, 2011

It's Hammer Time & The Wooden Fence

Since Target is two minutes from my house, I am in there almost on a daily basis for something we've run out of.  However, yesterday I was stopped dead in my tracks as I was overcome with a severe case of Deja vu.  A late 80's flashback took over my mind in stereo. U Can't Touch This (click here to relive the video) started playing in my head over and over again.  My twelve-year old fell in love with a pair of pants (click here to view) similar to what I wore in 1988 to 1989. Although the style's been updated, the baggy principle is still the same.

My eleven year old was thoroughly repulsed by the newest style and the fact that I may have worn anything resembling such a fashion don't, in her opinion. Explaining to her, clothes like this were the hottest thing and people like MC Hammer wore them didn't help my cause.  "Macey who?" she replied. 

My eyes grew large, and my life flashed before my eyes with her comment.  In my mind, I could see the wooden fence.  In the next instant, I saw myself  on the other side of the fence.  The same side of the fence MY mom was always on.  The side my grandma and The Aunts were on.  The place where the grass wasn't greener.  The place where people, whom I've always loved dearly, were to be treated with respect but were just a little out of touch with the real world.

As horrifying as my realization was, I still chuckled at the fact that I could remember those harem pants like it was yesterday.  They were neon purple, and I wore them everywhere.  And I don't feel any older now than I did then.  I certainly don't feel as old as those people on the other side of the fence have always been.

However the truth remains, my daughters have become me, and I am now the mom on the other side of the fence.  No matter how much I want to deny it, the proof looks me in the eyes everyday in the form of their two beautiful faces.

My question is this.  How many of you can still remember the color of your harem/parachute pants?  Better yet, how many of you still own yours?

Sunday, March 20, 2011

The Magic Basket

Friday night's sleepover was a success! You'd have to know my younger daughter to understand why this excites me so.  Her grampa died of lung cancer in June of 2007, and she hasn't been able to sleep over there since.

However before she left, I gave her a new pair of shorts from a basket of overflow I keep on the top shelf in my closet.  I think every mom has one of these.  It's a bag or basket we keep of things we buy at a fabulous price and put away until we need it.

My daughter got so excited by these shorts she went screaming to her sister, "Look what the Magic Basket just gave me!"  I thought it was so funny to think of it that way.  To me it's just a large wicker basket I (literally) throw things up into.  But to an eleven-year old, this basket is always "magically" giving her things when she needs or wants them the most.

It's wonderful when the world still holds a bit of magic for us and the innocence of childhood is a beautiful gift that doesn't last long enough anymore.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Finding My Way

This is my last day of school vacation, and where did the week go?  I did get a lot accomplished on my book, but not so much of anything else. The house is a disaster. Today, I had no choice but to tackle a mountain of laundry that was threatening to take over my bathroom, and I had to run the dishwasher since we were out of counter space in the kitchen.

However, now that the kids are safely tucked at Grandma's for the night, I'm right back to work. This is my last free weekend before life sets back in, and we all go back to school on Monday.  I'd like to finish editing tonight so I can begin the next phase, self publication or traditional. Still deliberating on that one.

As you know, if you've been reading my other posts, this blog is new for me. I've also started my own Twitter page of the same name. Trying to navigate my way through the Tweeting world has been harder than I thought. I have to say I find Facebook so much easier. However, I'm not going to give up. It took me a few weeks to get a handle on Facebook, and I'm sure Twitter's no different. 

I'll find my niche soon enough.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Every Kid's Dream

This week is Spring Break for us, Yay!  I've had all week to devote to my daughters and my writing.  My twelve-year old has been my personal proof reader.  I thought we'd stay up late and read all night, but it hasn't worked out that way.  The other night I even gave her permission to stay up all night with me.  Every kid's dream, right?

By 10 o'clock, she was nodding off.  Her younger sister was laughing at her.  Even guzzling a Mountain Dew couldn't keep her going.  She'd read a few lines and doze back off.  It was priceless.  I guess it's true what they say.  Tell a kid NOT to do it, and they will.  My mistake was telling her she could stay up all night long.  I should've told her to go to bed like any other school night and read till ten.  Then she would've kept begging me for another half hour like she always does, and we might've made it until midnight or 1 a.m. if I was lucky.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Traditional or Nontraditional? That is the question.

I have loved and hated the power words can hold since I was a little girl. As a teenager, I was never separated from my pen. As a mom, my girls are always asking me, "Mom, will you tell me one of your stories?"

I've finally put one of those stories to paper.  The words flowed like a river, and there's at least two more novels to follow.  I can't wait to start on the second book, which is where my dilema sets in.  Being a published writer has always been my ultimate dream. Now as I sit at a crossroads, I contemplate whether or not to continue with the frustration of finding an agent in the hopes of publication or taking matters into my own hands and self publishing.  A possible dream still years from fruition or instant digital publication.

There has been a lot of talk lately on the pros and cons of traditional publication versus self publication. I never thought I'd want to go the way of self publication, but I must admit it's looking more and more appealing.  With Amazon Kindle offering a 70% royalty, and my book being at the reader's disposal by the mere click of a button, I'm not seeing much of a down side.

I realize I'd have to market the hell out of yourself, but having owned my own business for most of my life, I'm not totally turned off by this.  Where my weakness lies is being new to this industry, and the contacts of my old life won't help me in this new one.

Crossroads - a crucial point where a decision must be made.  To continue querying agents or self publish, advice from fellow writers would be most helpful.