Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Wednesdays Only Come Once a Week

If you could hear the voice in my head when I say I hate Wednesdays, it would sound a lot like Indiana Jones when he says his iconic "I hate snakes" line. (Also, I sound a lot like Indy when I say "I hate snakes" too, come to think of it.)

I both love and hate Wednesdays. (I only hate snakes.) It's my marathon day. We all have them. But this one wipes me out every week. I go to work, and it's usually a very busy work day, come home, change clothes, go out walking with a friend (which is a priority exercise event for me), go run a few errands, and go straight to the church for youth night. (The errands are almost always related to youth night.) I get home, and usually have one or two things to do for other clients, and then just crash.

Today was no exception. I'm beat. I'm exhausted. But the crazies won't let up for a few more days.

I can make it to the end of this sprint, right? Right?

Monday, January 11, 2016

which do you like better?

Help me choose, my bloggy friends. I know neither one of these is perfect. But they are what I have to work with for the time being. (I'm already working on getting another set made up.)
Which of these banner ads do you like better? the top or bottom?

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

And so it goes

Oh, hello Blog, I see I've been neglecting you again. Sorry about that. Well, sorry, not sorry. Sometimes I just don't care anymore.
But today I've got a gerbillion things on my mind, and the thought occurred to me to blog them. But then, most of them are private things that I don't want to share. What can I say? I confuse even myself sometimes.
In less interesting news, today I was forced to accept that I have yet again burned out another laptop keyboard. It's not all that surprising how fast I go through laptops considering how long I spend on the computer each day. I think 2 years was the longest I've managed to hold on to a laptop before having to upgrade again. I can't be sure, but I think this one is now going into its third year of life. Practically a dinosaur in my world. But alas, the keyboard is about to die on me again. I type so fast and hard that I literally kill keyboards. And it usually costs more to replace a keyboard than it would be to buy a new computer. So if my capitalization is a little wonky today, you'll know why. (My left side shift key has officially quit on me.)
Tomorrow I start a brave new journey that will require a lot of lifestyle changes for me. I won't get into the details about it. Not yet anyway. Maybe in a few weeks if all is going well, or maybe if they go absolutely awful. We shall see. I'm nervous about the changes, but I'm more nervous that after I make all the effort, dedication, and changes, I won't get the results I want. I'm not normally prone to being nervous or anxious, but in the rare off day, today I am. I don't think I could handle the disappointment if after all I am about to put myself through, it doesn't work out.
Because, sometimes, that feels like the story of my life. No matter how hard I try to reach personal goals, something completely out of my control derails it. And that can be very hard to rebound from.
And so it goes.
Sorry to be so vague. I want to talk about my feelings, but I don't want to expose my situation. Not yet anyway.
Feelings. So many feelings. 

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Goodbye, Sweet Kathy

A dear friend, cheerleader, mentor, and supporter passed away today. She was a woman I barely knew, and yet she had a profound influence on many of the professional choices. There are so many things I could say about what a wonderful woman she was. But mostly, I just want to say that I wish I had told her and thanked her for her incredible influence. I never did tell her what an important role model she was to me. And now I never can. And there is a huge painful hole in my heart tonight as a result. 

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Special Report is FREE on Amazon today and tomorrow


"Special Report: Prequel to the Haley and Cam Series" is free on Kindle today and tomorrow. You don't have to have a Kindle to download it. The Kindle app is free to everyone and on nearly every device or phone. 

It's a 67 page look at the first time Haley and Cam met back in Haiti. And you get a glimpse of Haley's life before she fell out of the chair on live television. Some of the story is based on my real life experiences in Haiti, much of it is not! 

Sunday, November 22, 2015

A spark of freedom

Got into a very heated... "conversation" (I won't call it a full blown argument, because I never cared that we were in the conversation, but the other party may have felt it was a full throw down) with someone tonight. I had never met this person before. And for the record, he started it.
He made it very, very clear that he has strong political feelings about all refugees being evil. And how we shouldn't allow them into our country when (and I quote) "my buddy has to wait 4 months to get glasses at the VA hospital."
He was quite adamant that "all those liberals who say let them in, let them in" are fine with the government paying for it, but would "never let them into their homes."
(I silently laughed on the inside that I was being called a liberal. That was a first, for sure.)
I told him that I would be more than happy to allow refugees into my home. I told him how much I have donated and given to refugee aid programs.
His response was colorful. He provided a few interesting ways that he is superior to others because of the good deeds he has done. And then basically challenged me to prove that I both "walk the walk and talk the talk."
It comes down to this- in the heat of the "conversation" I've never been more grateful for the opportunities that have come my way to serve others. I am grateful that I can proudly stand up and say that I don't just vent and complain or protest. But that I have gone out there and served and worked to solve problems.
The other person wasn't happy. He certainly didn't expect my response. He didn't back down. But it sure felt good to know that I have nothing to be ashamed of. I've done my part. And always will.

Alma 60:27-28
 27 And I will come unto you, and if there be any among you that has a desire for freedom, yea, if there be even a spark of freedom remaining, behold I will stir up insurrections among you, even until those who have desires to usurp power and authority shall become extinct.
 28 Yea, behold I do not fear your power nor your authority, but it is my God whom I fear; and it is according to his commandments that I do take my sword to defend the cause of my country, and it is because of your iniquity that we have suffered so much loss.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Old Dog, New Tricks

I started a new nearly full-time job about 5 weeks ago. It has been a very crazy five weeks. On the same day I got the job offer and a book contract. Both of which required a lot of time and focus for me. I hit the ground running with my new job, and within five days of being hired put on my first big event for them. You know how when you start a new job there is a little bit of lag time and slow periods while you ramp up and learn your new position? There has been none of that with this job. Instead, every day I get asked if I'm overwhelmed (yet), and how I'm coping. I admit, I much prefer jumping in head first like this, rather than weeks of boredom. 
I get home from work, walk the dog, and immediately jump into some big huge project. Whether it's writing my own book ("When Books Fly" - which is now finished), editing a client's book, or keeping up with the never-ending duties of being the young women's president. Every single day of the last five weeks has been an exhausting marathon. 
(And I love it.) 
I passed a kidney stone (for the zillionth time) last week. My new local doctor gave me Percoset. I truly hate taking Percoset. I'd much rather take Lortab. Percoset makes me hallucinate, nauseates me, and more. I really hate the stuff. But I have to admit, taking it meant being forced to slow down and take things easy for two days. (While I mostly stared at the wall and had bizarre hallucinations about chicken and duck eggs. Don't ask. The hallucinations never make sense, but I always remember them later. Wish I didn't. This time I was afraid my car was going to get filled up with eggs. Which is slightly better than the time I hallucinated that the doctors from MASH were trying to operate on me and take my kidneys from me. It wasn't pleasant.) But I digress. 
Being back in an office, juggling clients, and managing teenage girls and their mothers, has been an all-new experience for me. I'm learning to work with personalities, keep my cool, and not give sarcastic answers in a way I've never had to control myself before. It's good for me, I think. I'm really having to focus and make an effort to be kind, polite, and yet a strong leader, without resorting to being sarcastic and flippant. Which is all to say, apparently you can teach an old dog new tricks. 

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

When Books Fly!

We have a winner! My next book will be out May 10, 2016!

I am more than a little happy to say that my final manuscript is finished and handed off to my editor. It's all Chelsea's problem now. I'll get to see the edited copy in a few months for a final review. But otherwise, this book is out of my hands. I look forward to seeing it next spring! 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Help Me Name My New Book

HELP! I need a new book title for my new non-fiction book.
Here are the titles currently under consideration-
These are all Title then Subtitle. For instance, When Books Fly: Sell More Books With Social Media Marketing
When Books Fly (title):
A Guide to Social Media Marketing for Authors
Sell More Books Using Social Media Marketing (My favorite)
Social Media Marketing for Authors
How to Sell More Books Through Social Media Marketing
Sell Your Story (title):
(same subtitles)
Got anymore suggestions or ideas for me?
The publisher is looking for something catchy and witty. I've never been very good at titling books. This is definitely not my strong suit. I can write a book, but I can't write a title to save my life. 

Thursday, October 08, 2015

When the going gets tough

Things have been tough lately.
I feel like I've started off way too many blog posts with those words. Unfortunately, that doesn't make it any less true.
I don't just feel like things have been tough, they have been tough. And as usual, I'm not truly at liberty to share much about it except my own feelings.
I haven't had much control over many of the circumstances in my own life. That alone is hard for me. I'm a very independent, strong-willed woman. Unfortunately, I can't say that I've been self-reliant lately. I want to be self-reliant, but I've had no choice but to let a lot of other people be a part of my life, and control major details.
There have been people in my life that are just plain difficult to deal with, be around, and accept. As much as I wish I could cut them out of my life, that hasn't been an option.
And then there is my job situation. Let me make something clear, it is NOT easy being a writer. The pay is inconsistent and not dependable at all. I am very grateful that I've had some part-time work for the last several weeks. And now that work has changed into full-time permanent work. I am very excited to have a job again, and get back on my way to self-reliance (at least in this one respect).
I am also very grateful and happy that I just got a new book contract! A non-fiction book that I submitted a few months ago to my publisher has been accepted. So it's time to start the publishing process all over again. (I'm going to be really busy between the new job and the book!)
I wish I were at liberty to dump all my problems out there in detail to share. But I'm not. I know it would make things worse and not better. But writing is how I express myself, and that makes it hard for me to not share.
The issues of late have had me on edge, constantly on the defensive, and exhausted. So many things that I normally love have become a huge burden. I've had to really rely on my faith to get through much of this ordeal. My prayers are constant pleas for patience, kindness, forgiveness, and love. Not to mention, the strength to endure this constant trial.
And yet, through all of this, I have never before felt such a closeness with my Heavenly Father. I have a firm belief and understanding that I was meant to be here to endure these trials. That is not all a big mistake. I have been prepared and strengthened for all that is happening, and I need to hold to that knowledge so that I can be strong enough to endure.
I know that many of these trials are not mine to bear. I have learned to let others help me, and trust them to do their parts. It's not easy, and it really isn't pretty. But I've learned to accept that this is how things must be for the time being.
I don't know that I have yet reached the point where my broken spirit can say I am grateful for these struggles. And it might be a really long time before I ever can say that. But for now I can say that I am grateful for a faith strong enough to accept this new reality.
And I can pray for the strength and faith to endure what I cannot yet handle. 


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