Tuesday, December 8, 2015

I'm a Lucky Woman

From front left: Evan Marriott, Dody Marriott, Andrea Buford, Catherine DePledge
From front right: Rosemary Wehner, Katie Kolberg Memmel, Deb Baker, Christine Schimpf

Today, I had the privilege of sharing a Christmas lunch at Zesti Restaurant in Hartland with my writing colleagues and our special guest, author Deb Baker. We took the time today to relax and celebrate all we have accomplished in 2015 as individual writers including our collective efforts with our author panel, "The Inspired Writers".
Catherine DePledge , Katie Kolberg Memmel, and myself released new books. Andrea Buford and Rosemary Wehner are nearing the completion of their books. Dody Marriott is working on more than one work-in-progress and Evan Marriott entertains us with his paranormal novel entries. Brenda Axt, who was unable to attend today, writes some of the most endearing poetry you'll ever read.
I cannot stress enough the importance of finding your people, others who share your passion, those individuals who are like-minded, and speak your special language. I believe this holds especially true for writers. Writing demands a lot of time alone. Time away from family, from friends and activities, and from the slightest interruption.
The ability to connect once a week and critique each other's work, to encourage each other to keep going, to laugh about the absurd habits we share as writers is as important as the air we breathe.
Writing makes each one of us tick, but together we help move the mountains that may be standing in our way. If you have a passion in life, like I do, I encourage to reach out and find your people. You'll be amazed how much joy they will bring into your life, and when that happens, you don't feel so all alone.
Until next time, let us enjoy this life we are blessed to live.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

A Different Type of Thanksgiving

It was a different type of Thanksgiving this year. We were missing some of our “regular” family members. Responsibilities to the other side of the family resulted with my youngest sister and her family’s absence – that accounted for four empty seats. My daughter and her husband, and their three children moved to Nashville last year – that’s five more. And, this year, my nephew and his girlfriend moved to ‘The Big Apple’ – two more. There was no need to rearrange the living room to accommodate two dining tables seamed together with matching tablecloths because we all fit nicely on the large table using the two leaves. The meal turned beautifully – a brined turkey that was as juicy as last year’s had been but there was no need to double up on anything else like the green beans or potatoes or stuffing or the spinach-stuffed rolls. As I looked around my table, I was thankful for years passed when the entire family was present. When I closed my eyes, I could almost envision them in the next room. At the same time, I was thankful for the family I had surrounding me that very moment realizing each year we are presented with different challenges and different blessings in this life. It’s our attitude toward change that determines our behavior, and if there’s one thing in life we can count on, it’s change. Until next time, let us enjoy this life we are blessed to live. Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Southeast Festival of Books

I spent the day at the Southeast Festival of Books held at the University of Wisconsin-Waukesha. I rented a table with the intention of selling both of my books and promoting our author panel, "The Inspired Writers". Although I didn't sell oodles of books, I had countless conversations with like minded people on both subjects. The air was electrified with the busyness of attendees rushing in and out of classrooms listening to author panels and keynote speakers. One conversation I initiated, may lead to an author panel of independent published writers next year presenting to attendees. What an honor that would be to be able to share the journey from writing page one to producing a book. Every opportunity is worth pursuing when you're starting out in this field, every handshake could lead to another door opening. When days like today come along, I pack up my books, my promotional material, put on a smile and start talking about my books. After all, who knows the story better than I do? Until next time, let us enjoy this life we are blessed to live.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Spring is Here

Spring was never one of my favorite seasons; however, I've changed my mind on that one. The glorious span of green colors is enough to convince anyone that spring truly is a rebirth. Although I typically suffer from a minor case of pollen allergies, I refuse to let the beauty of spring pass me by. Every night when I walk my golden retriever, Rudy, we walk underneath these luscious blooming apple trees, and it captivates me each and every year. What about spring does it for you? What takes your breath away or makes you grateful to be alive enjoying another spring gifted from Mother Nature? Maybe it's the day you uncover the grill and fire it up for a great burger or grilled chicken. Maybe it's dusting off the smoothie maker and piling it full of vegetables and fruits to re-energize your spirit or shed a few pounds before summer begins. I'm guilty of enjoying lots of comfort foods during Wisconsin's colder months, but this morning, I pulled out my Ninja and blended up an energy smoothie. Here's the recipe if you're interested....Handful of baby kale, slice of avocado, couple fresh watermelon and pineapple chunks, big teaspoon of golden ground flax seed (King Arthur brand), a scoop of protein powder, splash of organic coconut water (some of the pineapple juice) and handful of ice. Oh, almost forgot, since I had some leftover chocolate covered strawberries from Mother's Day - I threw in a couple of those too - just to use them up, of course!! Until next time, let us enjoy the life we are blessed to live.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Introducing my new eBook: The Ticket

     Are you a fan of Downton Abbey and Mr. Selfridge like I am? Both of these popular series take place in a time period that fascinates me, the same time period Titanic was built in Belfast, Ireland. 

     When we passed the 100th anniversary of Titanic’s fatal voyage, I was inspired to write The Ticket, my new eBook, now available on Amazon, and soon, other online book retailers.
     After watching many documentaries, recorded survivor testimonials, and reading books on the topic, I began to create the scenes and spin this tale. Conducting the research and weaving the ship’s details, set in the early 1900s, was a pure joy.

     The premise of the story, giving rather than receiving, set the stage for the main character, Margaret Reardon, plagued with self-centeredness. That was, of course, until she met our hero, Joseph Flanagan. Throughout the story, we see Margaret maturing and finally realizing that life holds more meaning when we remove self-absorption and focus our concern on others.

     The Ticket is my first published work in the inspirational romance genre. I must admit, I love it. In fact, I’ve already started another book in this genre grounded in the Midwest entitled, One Enchanted Christmas. Through the characters, the story poses the question—are we really ever forgiven after hurting someone so very deeply? I hope you look for it during the holiday season. Until next time, let's enjoy the life we are blessed to live.

Contract Signed for new book: "A Perfect Fit"

It was a great day today because I signed and mailed the contract back to the publisher for my fourth book, "A Perfect Fit "...