I Was Alone But Not Alone

My book, My Soul to Keep, launched yesterday. It was a special moment. But as I reflected on the hours, days, weeks, and years I worked on this book, I realized something important. I was alone but not alone. So many things go into writing a book. All the books read, the friends roped into endless conversations, writing group members who tolerated endless rewrites, beta readers, editors, proofreaders, artists, and ARC readers each contribute to the story. I’m going to take a moment to say thank you to all who had a part in this. A Little Emotional I’m a little (okay, more than a little) overwhelmed by the friends and family who celebrate this book with me. I’m delighted that my very first review was a five-star review (it’s on Goodreads if you want a peak). Now you might rightly assume that my emotional outpouring has to do with pride. Yes, I have a healthy amount of pride in accomplishing a book. But what I am most grateful for is all the people who helped me get to this place. I could not do it alone, even though I must write alone. The support, the camaraderie, the encouragement I […]

Twenty-One Ways to Be Kind to Yourself

Have you ever thought about defining what it means to be kind? When you look the word ‘kind’ up in the dictionary it says of a friendly, warm, and generous nature. Do you think of yourself as a kind person? Is that how you treat yourself? Do you know how to be kind to yourself? Practice Practice kindness to yourself every day. If you normally do one thing per day, today do two. The following day do three kind things for yourself. Keep adding one kind act per day until the habit is your natural routine. Forgive yourself for not being perfect. Shut down negative self-talk. Take good care of yourself. Get enough sleep. Eat nutritiously. Get exercise. Respect yourself—honor your opinion, trust yourself. Tell yourself that “I am enough.” Invest in yourself. Spend 15 minutes reading or listening to inspirational talks or music. Smile at yourself in the mirror. Pay yourself a compliment. Buy yourself some flowers. Take a bubble bath. Write a letter of appreciation to yourself. Give yourself 15 minutes to induldge in your favorite activity. Treat yourself to a favorite food or drink or a small gift. Find one part of your physical self and praise […]

7 People Who Changed My Writing Life

In this month of Thanksgiving, I have reflected on some of the things for which I am thankful. Today, I recognize the seven people who changed my writing life. These people were generous with their time, their knowledge, and their encouragement. I hope this chronological list expresses at least a small portion of my gratitude for their gifts to me. 1. Madeline L’Engle. Shortly after it won the 1963 Newberry award, I read A Wrinkle in Time. I fell in love with Meg, the witches, and their world. Fast forward to the early 80’s. I was an aspiring writer and the mom of a three-year-old. I had the opportunity to go to a writer’s conference out-of-state. Ms. L’Engle was a presenter at that conference. I submitted one of my manuscripts for her critique. The appointed hour came and I was sick with nervousness. Ms. L’Engle was gracious, and kind, and talked about my manuscript for thirty minutes. She told me I should expand my story into a novel. What a shining moment! I thought my heart would explode! I hope Ms. L’Engle knew how grateful I was for her encouragement. 2. Warren Norwood. Warren Norwood is the second of the […]