Monday, July 13, 2015


You will know my name.

Okay, it may not ever be on a New York Times best seller list, but someday it will be in a bookstore.

I was scrolling through Facebook today, when I noticed an article shared by a friend. Good-to-know stuff about the Christian fiction market. While reading the article, I noticed a link in the sidebar to this one: Five Reasons Why You May Never Get Published.

I stiffened. I clicked. I prepared to be shattered. I wasn't.

I may not as regimented as I want to be, but I am willing to put in the years   yes, years!   that it takes to accomplish this goal.  I don't expect to write a rough draft and have total strangers drool over it. I am not a professional. I WANT to be. Someday. What I know compared to what I need to know is a drop in the bucket. Or ocean. Yes, more like a drop in the ocean. It is sometimes overwhelming, but yet I plug away...

I am willing to take criticism, and LEARN from it. I have sent pieces of my WIPs to friends 'in the business' and listened to their advice. From pasts posts, you know that I am friends with the recently published author, Terri Tiffany. Terri has offered to be my critique partner, and has offered me tremendous encouragement. But she has also pointed out my mistakes and offered well-informed advice to correct those areas. AND I LISTEN! Apparently, that is not the typical reaction from a novice. Many people tell me stories of hurt feelings and 'I never heard from her again' scenarios. Why? If you're serious about writing, as I am, shouldn't you prize that information?

I won't even think about submitting my work to anyone until I am positive   and have other knowledgeable people in agreement   that my novel is the absolute best it can be. I worry enough about Terri seeing my drafts! This book is my baby. I birthed it. I want to be proud of it. It isn't enough to be published. I could self-publish tomorrow. (And I think too many have at this stage.) I want to be an author   by my definition. I want to write a really good book that people will recommend to others. A book that people are willing to pay for   not just willing to read because it was free.

I want my book to be different. I don't want to write a book that is predictable, or just like so-and-so's. I have my own voice, and want to perfect it so that is stands out from the crowd   or rather, the slush pile. I'm not so in love with my current WIP that I would continue down the same path if told the idea is overdone and will not sell. That is true insanity if my goal is to be published.

Lastly, I'm not so big-headed to think my talent surpasses that of other published authors, and therefore I will be 'discovered' by that lucky agent...blah...blah...blah...  Just as my book is my baby, I am a baby in this world of writing. Even though I've been doing it all my life, I've never before attempted to do it correctly. Yes, there is a method. There are rules. There is so much to learn. But I am willing and eager.

I  stumbled across this bit of wisdom today:
 "There is no comparison between that which is lost by not succeeding and that which is lost by not trying."     Francis Bacon 
 I am trying. I am definitely trying!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Father's Day: Another of Those Occasions

We set aside this day to pay tribute to those men who sacrificed to give us the things we
needed--who did without to give us more. The men who taught us respect.
The men who cheered us on when we were just mediocre.
The men who picked us up when we stumbled.
The men who loved us unconditionally.

Some of us don't know that man.

For some of us, choosing a simple card can be excruciating. 
All those beautiful words like 'always been there for me'. 
My brother asked me last week if I had a hard time 
finding a card that didn't seem like a lie. 


Every. Single. Time.

Some years, I don't bother sending a card.
When I call, he says, 'It's just another day for me.'
That's what he says on his birthday.
That's what he says at Christmas.

For years, I punished myself by trying to win his approval.
Achievements didn't bring the praise I sought.
Effort never paid back.

Though I never felt love from this man, I tried so hard to make him love me.
I tried to stir emotions that didn't exist within his soul.
Many times in years past, I sent homemade cards.
My own heartfelt words--or wishes... 
But the words weren't truth.
I still have the poem I wrote him in 1980.
I wanted him to say how wonderful it was.
I wanted him to say how much it meant to him.

And so, it was hard for me to understand the love of our Heavenly Father.
To say 'He loves us as His children' meant little to me.
Am I a disappointment to Him as well?

(It took me awhile, but I now know the love of God.
The whole in my heart is filled.)

So today, I called my dad.
He told me he got my brother's card.
He said it was the best card he's ever gotten.

I sent him this one...

 Inside it says:

You're in my chair.