Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Building Sand Castles

I've been thinking recently about all my manuscripts that are started, in various stages of completion, as well as those in need of final edits before sending out into the world. I seem to have an easier time starting new things this summer than I do tackling the edits needed on several PB manuscripts.

As a matter of convenience, I can start something new no matter where I my car, on vacation, running errands, etc.  All I have to do is grab a scrap of paper or dictate a voice memo into my phone and viola...something new is born.  However, it feels a much bigger project and is definitely a more time consuming one to sit down, butt in chair, and tackle the edits and re-workings of shaping a current WIP into submission shape.  Perhaps it is having the kids all home during the summer months or constantly being on the go for a variety of reasons. I have four PBs needing final edits and want them all complete before a very exciting September conference thus the time has come to buckle down and get to work. It is exciting to envision the finished products and yet daunting to tackle as a whole.

Today, I saw this quote, and it gave me new inspiration.  Who doesn't love to build a great sand castle? It is an inspiring idea and one I will hold onto as I shape my sandbox into various sand castles.

Where do you find your greater the creation of the original draft or in the shaping into a final and finished product? I would love to hear your process and insights.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Book Review: Tamara Turtle's Life So Far

AUTHOR: Regan W.H. Macaulay
ILLUSTRATOR: Javier Duarte
PUBLISHER: Mirror Publishing
PUBLISHED: June 15, 2017
PAPERBACK ISBN: 978-1-61225-368-8

Tamara is a Red-eared Slider turtle, and this endearing story tells the tale of her life thus far. Tamara is excited to be chosen from all the other Red-eared Sliders only to eventually be forgotten and ignored by her owner and set free in a nearby creek by his mother. Tamara is found by a man who finds her and taken to a special new place where she eventually is rescued and taken home where she belongs.
Ms. Macaulay weaves facts about turtles and taking care of them as pets into a fun story to which kids can relate and learn from without feeling a lesson is being taught—though a good lesson on the importance of providing the best environment and pet care is being taught.

Javier Duarte’s illustrations are beautifully colorful and vivid and bring Tamara and Ms. Macaulay’s story to life.

TAMARA TURTLE’S LIFE SO FAR is a terrific book which teaches responsibility and encourages a very important conversation between parents and children about rescue and care of pets.

Author information can be found at

**Disclosure: I received a copy of this book free of charge from the author in exchange for an honest review. This review consists only of my truthful opinions, not influenced in any way by the author or publisher.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Celebrate Independence

Happy Independence Day!  Thank you to all who have served and those who continue to serve. We owe you all such a debt of gratitude!

Enjoy your 4th of July holiday and be safe. God Bless the USA!

Thursday, June 15, 2017

To Rhyme or Not to Rhyme?

That is, indeed, an important question.  It is one I've been wrestling with on my recent PB edits.  I have a story begging to be written in rhyme, so I've been immersing myself in the "what to do/not to do" rules in the world of rhyme recently to refresh myself as I tackle the edits.  

I LOVE rhyme!  Always have.  I love to read a good rhyming picture book, and I enjoy the challenge of writing a good rhyming picture book.  But a challenge it is! There is so much to think about...more than just rhyming the end words of lines. It has to sing!

I listened to a wonderful webinar replay on rhyming last night by Renee LaTulippe from my 12 x 12 webinar series. It was incredible and re-energized my edits.  Renee is wonderful and so very knowledgeable about writing in rhyme. I highly recommend reading or listening to anything she presents if you are prone to writing in rhyme.  I will be checking out her Lyrical Language Lab myself soon.

For more information on 12 x 12, go to  I cannot say enough about the benefits of belonging to the 12 x 12 community.  It is, without a doubt, the best thing I've done for my writing life.  

For more information on Renee LaTulippe, go to

Back to the point of my post...for you rhymers out there, what is your process?  Do you start with a story written in prose and decide it needs to rhyme? Do you hear the music and rhyme of your story and build from there? I would love to hear your thoughts if you are willing to share.

Happy writing and rhyming!

Monday, May 29, 2017

Find Your Creativity

Well, lately, the thud of the tennis ball has landed squarely in the wrong quadrant writing wise.  Wrapping up the school year for the kids and work year for me, sports and activity obligations and now preparations to depart on a much needed family vacation tomorrow have all served to waylay my time for writing--and energy for the same.

I have my good pen and notebook packed and plan to recharge my batteries while lounging in the surf and sand.  You know what they say about the best laid plans, but I am hoping for a creativity burst.  There is nothing like fresh ocean air and sound to spur on creativity.  I will check in upon my return and report my progress.

Until then...keep writing!

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Life Lessons in Tennis

I was sitting watching several of my son's tennis matches yesterday and started thinking how applicable that tennis ball was to life as I watched it thunk back and forth across the net. The back and forth of the tennis ball made me think of the back and forth of my writing life.  Perhaps because there was so much I needed to be home doing at that moment (both writing wise and otherwise), but such is the stage of life I am in right now. I can't miss one of my kid's activities, and I was, technically, now thinking about a blog post in my head.  The back and forth doesn't at all represent the interest in writing for me but rather the commitment to prioritize it.  Thud...making the time to write before anything else.  Thud...doing everything else FIRST in an effort to have a bigger block of time to write only to be left with NO time. Back and forth, back and forth, all the way to the deuce point. What's going to take it...the non-essentials or the writing? One's head controls the choice in the game of tennis. One's head also controls the choice in writing.  So, what's it going to be? Many days, the ball lands squarely in the net and goes nowhere. Today, it was a little more back and forth for me in the productivity department. How about you? Game, set, match! 

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Happy Easter

Wishing you all a blessed Easter shared with family and filled with peace, love and joy. God Bless!