Friday, 9 December 2016

“Capture your dreams and your life becomes full. You can, because you think you can.” – Nikita Koloff

I read publishing announcements regularly. On blogs, on Twitter and in trade papers. Some are dry industry notices that emphasize the deal and not the author. But, many are direct from writers both new and seasoned. I rejoice for all of them, but I relish the debut author announcements. They are always effusive. Filled with squees, happy dances and smiley emoticons, they make me smile. And, they encourage me to keep dreaming.

Well, today it is my turn to broadcast good news. I am happy…no, thrilled…to share that my contemporary young adult novel, Cutting to the Chase, is being published by Evernight Teen! Needless to say I have been squeeing, dancing happily and sending out a few smiley faces of my own. It is all signed, sealed and delivered with a projected publishing date of February 2017.

I am optimistic that publication is not the end of the road for this writer's journey but, instead, a fork with more choices to contemplate. To that end, I need to get seriously busy. I am working on building my YA image and author site here. There is promo to consider to support what the publisher plans. And, Mags' story will not write itself. If readers enjoy Lizzy's tale, they might want to hear more about Mags. She'd better be ready and waiting in the wings.

So, I am going to take a small hiatus from the blog. Between what I need to accomplish in writing and the festive season, something needs to give. Besides, you folks will be busy too. And, if you miss me and want a little fix, either follow me on Twitter or Instagram. Or, even easier, scroll down two posts and watch me sing Hallelujah. J

I will return in the new year. Until then, be good to yourself. And continue to dream. Dream daringly. Dream big. Then chase those dreams down. I'm living proof that if you dream it and think you can do it, you can.

Happy Holidays!

Friday, 2 December 2016

If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude. —Maya Angelou

Years ago, Keev and I joined five friends on a houseboat on the Trent Severn Waterway in Ontario. It was a week filled with eating and drinking, playing tourist and enjoying the quiet beauty of inlets along the river. One day, we awoke to rain splattering the bedroom window. A bit disappointed but undaunted, we headed out to join the others in the main living area. A typical laughter-filled breakfast started the day but, as the morning wore on, we saw no sign of the heavy rain stopping. That meant no walks, no lounging in the sun, no swimming. We grew quieter and felt a little down. That's when one of our friends announced, "I think it's a soup day!"

Now, that sentence in isolation sounds a bit odd. But, it was stated with such an air of confidence and expectation that we bought into it. Together we made soup and, while the weather remained the same, the mood lightened. Afterward, we curled up around the boat, napping, reading or chatting. And it felt cozy, not claustrophobic. All because our friend changed the tone by declaring it a soup day.

Soup has always been at the centre of my husband's life. In true French-Canadian style, he grew up with a pot of soup on the stove for his daily lunch. It's a tradition he loves, and we have now fallen into the routine of enjoying a noon-hour bowl of soup. And, none of that canned stuff. He makes it from scratch, and I look forward to his creations.

It has been a wetter fall than usual on the island. Not wanting our moods to reflect the gloom, we decided to have a pre-emptive soup "pick-me-up." But, since soup making is a regular occurrence in our house, we wanted to do something different. Recently, a friend in the neighbourhood had mentioned that she would like to try my husband's lentil soup. So, we brought the ingredients to her house. Keev made the soup while we watched. It was a wonderful afternoon of laughter and talk and, yes, wine. J

It poured that afternoon and we didn't care. We couldn't have been more content.

In life we often cannot control what happens to us, only how we respond. Our houseboat friend, wise beyond her years, understood that. When it rains in your life, choose to make it a soup day!