Thankful Thursday

Today, I’m thankful for technology and FaceTime. I didn’t think to take a screen shot earlier, but here’s a picture of my two-month-old grandson, Logan.¬†

Isn’t he the cutest? Sadly he lives two states (7 hours) away. His Pappy and I love him dearly! We actually got to be there for his birth, and then we visited again for a few days last week. But oh how I miss him when I’m here and he’s there.

Thankfully, we have FaceTime, so we can video-chat with him and his mommy (our sweet Sunshine) anytime we want. Mountain Man likes to be a part of the video chats. He likes to sing, “Logan, Logan, Logan…Roll Tide” to the tune of the old Rawhide song. ūüėÄ Nothing like a grandson to make a grown man act silly!



A watched pot never boils…

And apparently a watched phone never rings. ūüėÄ

What is the hardest part of being a writer?

Developing a plot? No.

Writer’s block? No.

Achieving daily word count goals? No.

While these things are hard, they are still somewhat in my control. Sure I will¬†develop plots with holes, and¬†I will have¬†days where I¬†struggle to add words to the page. But I¬†can fill in the plot holes, and if I¬†don’t meet a word goal one day, I¬†can¬†sit back down the next day and try again. And keep trying until I¬†get it right.

So, what do I find to be the hardest part of being a writer? Waiting.

It’s the one thing that is completely out of my control.¬†Waiting to hear from the editor. Will she hate my story¬†and reject it completely? Will she like my story¬†but¬†ask for revisions? Or will she love my story and want¬†to buy it? Only time will tell.

In the meantime, all I can do is keep myself busy. Start writing my next book. Spend time with loved ones. Read. Clean house. Anything but sit around watching the phone, waiting for it to ring.


Writing Dreams

One¬†question I see in nearly every author interview is “When did you know you wanted¬†to be a writer?” For me, a better question would be “When did you let go of the fear of failure and start pursuing your dreams?”

You see, I’ve always wanted to be a writer. Well, okay, maybe not always, but for at least the past thirty-five years. . . which, let’s face it, is a really long time. I was always telling my friends and family that one day I was going to be an author. I even sat down a few times and attempted to write, but I’d get distracted and never complete a project.

So, what changed? Well, I heard about a pitch contest for Harlequin’s Love Inspired line. I told my husband, Mountain Man, about the pitch. Actually it was all I could talk about for days. Mountain Man finally told me to either enter the contest or stop talking about being published. He said, “One day is now. You either do it, or stop talking about it.” Of course, I had to ask, “But what if I fail?” To which, he replied, “Then you fail. But one thing is certain, you will never succeed if you don’t try.” [Boy is that man smart!]

That was in the spring of¬†2013. When I pitched my 100 word blurb, I received a request to submit a proposal (synopsis plus first three chapters). I couldn’t believe it! I hurried and prepared my proposal and sent it off. Not surprisingly,¬†that manuscript received a rejection. Actually, it was a very nice rejection with lots of positives. The main thing I learned was being a good storyteller does not equal being a good writer.

Of course, I pouted for a couple of months, and  I set the manuscript aside and never finished it.

Now, I was faced with a dilemma. You see, I told everyone (including my 7th grade students) that I had written a book and was trying to get published. So what now?

I had two choices. Either be a quitter and teach my students that when things don’t go their way they need to give up, or try again and teach my students that hard work is the only way to achieve their dreams.

Two years have passed since that first manuscript winged its way across the Internet to an¬†editor’s inbox. Since that time, I’ve participated in two more pitch contest. During Love Inspired Suspense’s Search for a Killer Voice contest, my manuscript made it to the final round. This time, I received a request to revise and resubmit.¬†It took me a couple of months to wrap my mind around the changes that needed made, but five months later, I sent the revised manuscript back to the editor. I’m waiting to hear the outcome, but I suspect I missed the mark and that manuscript still needs a bit of work.

In the meantime, I entered this year’s Love Inspired pitch contest, Blurb to Book. I happy to say I made it to the final round and wrote another full manuscript within a four month timeframe. My completed manuscript is¬†in the hands of the editors. So¬†now I wait.

Will this manuscript will be the one that garners me the much coveted call from the editor? Only time will tell.

Hello World!

Welcome to my new website. This is a place for me to share my journey to publication. I’ve¬†dreamed of being a published author ever since I was a middle school student. Now, I’m a seventh grade ELA teacher who is showing my students that you’re never too old to chase your dreams.

If you’ve decided to follow my journey, hang on tight. . .the road tends to be¬†bumpy! ¬†But with you all cheering me on, I know I can stay the course.