Book Reviews, Contest, My Books, Writing

Today is a good stuff day!

First up today, we have a winner in the Invisibility Cloak Contest. Congratulations to Cristina Trapani-Scott! You have won a signed copy of The Brevity of Roses. I will contact you by email to get your mailing address. I hope you enjoy the read.

Thank you all for your support. Those of you who didn’t win today, stay tuned because I’ll be giving away another signed copy in a few weeks. You might be interested in Helen Ginger’s review of The Brevity of Roses at her blog today. And don’t skip her hilarious FTC disclaimer at the end.

Next, I’d like to point you to more free books. My friend, Christa Polkinhorn says: On Thursday and Friday (Jan. 26 and 27) my novels (ebook versions) about love, art, and family are available for free on Amazon. The freebie lasts ONLY TWO DAYS, so grab them while you can. Curl up on your favorite sofa and travel to Switzerland, Peru, Italy, New York, and Guadalajara, Mexico!

 An Uncommon Family

Love of a Stonemason

Remember, if you don’t have a Kindle, you can get the free Kindle app for your computer, smart phone, or tablet.

Inspiration, Writing

Bloggers who inspire and help keep me sane

I’m astounded when I think how many people have come into my life the last three years through blogging. Only twice, since my school days, have I had a “social circle”. The first developed when I joined a church. That lasted twelve years. For several years after that, I retained a couple of church friends, and then we drifted apart.

A circle of virtual friends

In 1988, I moved 2,000 miles away from my birthplace to California. I knew no one here, and since I didn’t work outside the home, I met very few people. My growing family sufficed as a social circle. Fast-forward twenty years. I decided to take fiction writing seriously, and soon realized I needed the company of other writers.

That was the beginning of a new social circle, though for the most part, it’s become a virtual circle. I started this blog five months after I started my new life as a writer. I’ve met many wonderful people, mostly writers and poets, through blogging. I can’t imagine making it this far without them.

If you scroll down, over there on the right side of this page you’ll find links to some of the bloggers who’ve entertained, inspired, and taught me. At various times, most of them have kept me company on this blog. Some have helped me through numerous private emails. A few are writers I’ve met in real life. You would do well to visit their blogs.

I said in my last post that I would mention a few who recently lifted me from my despair and inspired me to come clean about why I self-published. So here goes:

  • Michelle Davidson Argyle is open and honest about her struggles as a writer in both her public and private blogs. Many times, I’ve read her posts and marveled that her thoughts and feelings mirrored mine. With her post on failure, she inspired me to change my attitude about my self-publishing venture.
  • Cristina Trapani Scott has inspired me many times, but recently she wrote a post about words as food that woke me up to how malnourished I’d become. Recalling the days when writing sustained my soul, I felt starved. Her post pointed out not so much a needed change in attitude, but a change in focus.
  • Jessica Luton is new to blogging, but she’s long been an inspiration on Twitter and Facebook. Recently she wrote a post about opening ourselves to abundance. It was another reminder that my attitude needed changing.
  • Chris King wrote a post about aging and how to find more joy and energy. Since all the stress in my life had certainly made me feel I’d aged rapidly, I appreciated her post. Again, it pointed out the need for a change in attitude.

These are not the only bloggers or posts that inspired me this year. I hesitated to make this list, knowing I would leave out important ones, so know that these are only a few of those most crucial to my renaissance. I hope you enjoy them.


Photo credit: showbizsuperstar

Advice, Block, Craft, Doubt, Prompt, Tips, Writing

Keep the pen moving

My friend and fellow writer Cristina Trapani-Scott has begun a series she calls Twelve Days of Writing. In her first entry, she told how she taught her creative writing students to get past the inner voice that tells them they can’t write. We all fight that voice from time to time.

Cristina started her students with a prompt and told them to write for ten minutes. The secret, she says, is to keep the pen moving. Chances are you will be surprised that you’ve come up with at least a few good nuggets, even if you veered away from the prompt.

I know a lot of you write flash fiction, often from prompts, but that’s not a habit I’ve developed. I suppose I should at least try this ten-minute exercise. I tend to fight regimentation far more than is good for me. I don’t think a little discipline will kill my creativity. It might just preserve my sanity.

I suggest you check out Cristina’s first lesson and return for the next eleven.


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Fun Fridays, Humor, Writing

No lurkers at the party, please!

party-formalWhew! I’ve had a busy week, and I’m not caught up, but It’s Friday so I’m throwing a party. Looks like it’s a Mad Men theme—but no smoking! All you sociable people, please circulate and encourage the wallflowers to join in.

The buffet table is in the corner; help yourselves. It’s a magical thing, whatever you want is there. Same for the bar. Don’t hold me responsible for the after effects.

Let’s talk … comments, comments, people! Don’t be shy. Introduce yourselves—name, rank, serial number. If you’re a writer, what are you working on? If you’re not a writer, but you come here often, I’m curious why you do. And if you just stumbled in here because Google erroneously thought you’d be interested, have a bite to eat, fill your glass, or at least grab a cookie on your way out.

Feel free to open all my closets, cupboards and doors; you never know what you might find here.

Some of the most witty, intelligent, talented and beautiful people stop by here. Hopefully, you’ll meet them at the party, but if you get caught up in Nekkid Charades, or stuck in the line to have your palm read and missed them, go visit them at their places:

(In alphabetical order, because I’m just so darn diplomatic.)
Christine Ashby
Danielle Cross
Cathryn Grant
Joseph Grinton
Lisa Katzenberger
Candice Kennington
Jennifer Neri
Cynthia Newberry Martin
Mireille Noël
Karen Schindler
Tricia Sutton
Cristina Trapani-Scott
Pamela Villars
Judy Clement Wall
Kasie West