A Writer’s Distractions

When I struggle with putting words to the page, I step outside, breathe in fresh air, then search for tiny miracles. In truth, distractions of the extraordinary.     Yet, tiny miracles always bring me back to the place I’m avoiding.   I, too, want to silently dive deep, explore a daylily (or an untold […]

The Importance of Being Present

“Red moon,” he said, his two-year-old hand reaching for mine in the dark. As urgently as my granddaughter grabbed my arm, earlier that day.   For her, it was the return of the hummingbirds.     She’d spotted a female resting on a high branch, a potential mate preening his feathers nearby. Our clothesline, his […]

My Writing Process

Today I join the blog tour where writers and authors answer questions about their writing process. Author Rebecca Colby preceded me. Please check out her writing process here: What am I working on now? My present focus is on eight-year-old E. B. Louise, who is determined to save her shredding and too-small elephant slippers given […]

Children’s Literature Inspires Compassion for Animals

A few weeks ago, my seven-year-old granddaughter and I were taking a walk when we came upon a bush filled with red berries.  A handmade sign swung from a branch: “Please do not pick berries. The birds need them for winter food. Thanks!” Ava read the words to me, and then continued to read a […]

PiBoIdMo 2013 Comes to an End

PiBoIdMo has come to an end. Which leads to withdrawal. It also leads to realizing one’s strengths and weaknesses, some of which I learned during PiBoIdMo 2013. 1. I can come up with picture book ideas under pressure, while also tending to a middle grade revision. 2. I should not pretend to know what I […]

PiBoIdMo Week One with Norman the Gorilla

At the end of week #1 of PiBoIdMo, I’ve successfully met this week’s goal: eight new ideas, three of which continue to feed the muse. My weekly volunteer session in my granddaughter’s second-class yesterday bumped my idea count from five to eight, thanks to one-on-one sessions in the hallway. The project I was helping the […]

PiBoIdMo and a Thank-You to All the 2013 Participants

Today is November 1st, and the start of PiBoIdMo 2013! If you haven’t yet signed up for Tara Lazar’s annual picture book challenge, I inspire you to jump in before the day ends.PiBoIdMo 2013 Registration is OPEN! If you are on the fence, slide on down to join the almost 1000 writers and illustrators already committed […]

The Deer Watcher

Ever since my recent Unavoidable/Terrifying Deer Encounter, driving the grandkids in the car has taken on new meaning. Technically, I am using my husband’s Nissan truck since my accordion of a car is parked in an auto body repair lot. Strips of its frame lay in a pile on the gravel. We will not be […]

Love and Letting Go

This past week I’ve had lessons in letting go. I said goodbye to our beloved sheltie. I said goodbye to one of our cats. I let my YA novel leave my hands to allow it to become what the world needs it to be. I let go. I let go out of love. Stories whisper […]

A Writer’s Plea to the Neighborhood Squirrels

Dear Mr. Squirrel, Dear Mr. Squirrel and your girlfriend, Dear Mr. Squirrel, your girlfriend, and your overly-curious offspring, Dear Mr. Squirrel’s Entire Immediate Family, Extended Family, and Furry Friends, I am a writer. I like to write early every morning. I like quiet at this time. No TV blaring. No lawn mowers rumbling and roaring. […]