Tag Archive | fiction

Grow Where You’re Planted is The Secret

Woman writerEvery morning, I give thanks I no longer have to wake up to the jarring noise of a blaring alarm clock, tear myself out from under the coziness of my bed before I’m fully awake, drag myself through showering, dressing, and then breakfast–only to fight traffic on the way to a job I hated.

My “retirement” came quite unexpectedly three years ago when I couldn’t find a job after I had asked my boss in the insurance business to fire me. I was burned out and disgusted by the whole scene. (Someday, I ‘ll tell you about it.)

My intention was to return to Marketing/Communications in some big company to live out my working years. However, there were two problems with this plan. First, the economy had tanked and these jobs were nonexistent. Second, because I had taken a left turn into the financial industry, nobody in marketing believed I still had what it took to be a viable talent. The situation became scary when the unemployment cheeks stopped, and I was forced to exhaust dip into my retirement savings to survive. But, we must go forward, right?

Looking back on the whole ugly mess, I think this happened because God wanted me to stay home with Ken and have a chance to do what I really wanted to do. Write.

So, after a month of  recovery, I embarked on a journey to produce my first novel. A  former client had a story she wanted to tell, but she didn’t have the writing talent to do it. It was a fascinating tale of a witch in a hospital. NO really, that’s what MercyLess Memorial Hospital is all about. It was Cindy’s story with my fictional twist. But when she decided to self-published the book with her name on it as the author, I was pissed annoyed. I thought we were co-authoring this book, after all, I did all the writing. If I had been smart, I would have charged her s ghost writing fee  and gotten paid. But being the sap nice person I am, I did it for FREE.

What this experience proved to me was I could write a decent story. Before I knew it,  my own series of novels started pouring out of me. I chose a time period when the world went crazy. World War II was a classic struggle between freedom and oppression. Good and Evil. The Devil and he Savior. If you watch the History Channel even a little bit, you get an inkling of what men went through during this time. But, like usual, the stories of the women are not told. It’s as if the opposite gender never existed, so I wanted needed to tell stories of my mother’s generation.

Apple Pie and Strudel Girls, Stranger in the Spotlight, Tea and Biscuit Girls, The Love Immigrants and now Finding Gessler have not blown the minds of any major market—YET. But things maybe a changin’.

Recently, I have hired a literary agent for the third and fourth books, and they are now being presented to publishers in Europe and across the United States. I keep telling myself it will only take one to buy the rights. And with the success of that one—I’ll be on my way to prosperity. I still have a vision of that writing room that looks out to the ocean, remember? And seeing the “experts” say, don’t quit your day job before you have written 10 novels, I’ve decided I’ll continue producing books until I fill my bookcase with  my work.

And until that day, I will grow where I’m planted and keep producing seeds of writing. After all, the good book says we all will reap what we sow.

Paintings of Imagination

In the Meadow by McCloskey

In the Meadow by McCloskey

Every morning when I wake, the first thing I see are two paintings I created about a year ago. The one to the left is a meadow of spring color with a mountain range in the background. I’ve never seen this place, but one day I was inspired to plop color on a canvas and this is what materialized.

 

 

 

 

 

Alaska by McCloskey

Alaska by McCloskey

The second painting is a scene from Alaska. My friend Jackie had the opportunity to travel to our 49th State and came back with some amazing pictures. Traveling there is still on my “bucket list” but I know that even if I have to go someday with cane in hand, my eyeballs will see the glaciers before they all melt.

 

 

 

 

 

Neither one of these paintings will win awards. I don’t even know if they’re any good. These places only exist in my mind, and I love staring at them.

Do you see how wonderful our imaginations are? I can love a place that exists only in my mind! WOW!

I’m so grateful we have this ability, especially now since my world has shrunk to my home’s four walls because of my husband’s MS.  When I want to travel, all I have to do it close my eyes and dream. I can zero in on a scene and think about what I would do there, what I’d be thinking about as I took in the natural beauty, who would I be with, and how would I feel in such a different place.

Being able to imagine things like this is what makes fiction possible. The best writing is always based on what the author knows and how well he or she can tell a story, but this ability to dream about places we find in our minds enables new stories set in other-worldly place. The result is new genres and stories that can challenge our imaginations.

Ain’t writing grand?