Posted in blogs, Craft, Family life, humor & fun, Links, Links, MG & YA, Muse, Reading, Uncategorized, writers, Writing and Poetry, YA

Finding the Inner Truth/Beauty in Yourself by Traci Kenworth

Finding the Inner Truth/Beauty in Yourself

Traci Kenworth

The taunts and cruelty growing up can cause you to lose faith in yourself. To not want to be who you are. Anything special, anything unique, you work to do away with. Because that would make you different. And different is bad. Or at least, that seems to be what we’re taught. Keep the formation. Don’t step out of line. Dream these dreams, not those.

It can be a daunting reality for a lot of kids. If there’s one thing, I think school’s get wrong: it’s that. We’re not all meant to be put in a binder together. We’re not all meant to follow the same path despite how much easier it would be for the higher-ups. Being different is good. It brings other perspectives to the table. It can show us a path forward in life that we should’ve taken all along.

So, what do you do years down the road when you look back with regret at some of the things you wish you’d done but didn’t? Dreams have a way of passing us by if we don’t grip them hard and run with them. Things change though. Sometimes due to finances, sometimes to personal problems. Or through no fault of our own. We wake up one day and look back and wonder if we’d chosen a different way, where we’d be.

We can wonder and wish all we want. The fact is life happens. That career we wanted since we were old enough to decide, didn’t pan out. The marriage we hoped for fell apart. A lot of times I think it has to do with letting other people’s perspectives influence our own. We don’t think we’re good at something, so we turn aside. If we’d stuck it out longer maybe the pegs would’ve lined up.

Still, there’s always a new start. One day you might decide to go back to one of those dreams, make a living at it. You could ignore all the naysayers and just do what’s best for you. After all, no one has to live your life but you. No one has to decide what you will be, what you will find. Uncovering that inner beauty of something we’ve always wanted to do takes time.

It doesn’t shortchange us. We weren’t supposed to pursue the path before that moment for whatever reason. It doesn’t make it wrong or silly to try and recover the dream. It makes us fulfill a promise to ourselves maybe. We let our children grow and now it’s time to rediscover something for our benefit. Maybe you always wanted that mechanic shop. Or a trip to Europe. You can do so at a later date. Nothing wrong with that.

In your pursuit of dreams, things get overturned. When you’re young, it seems you have all the time in the world. All the energy. All the faith. As the day ages, you lose some of that enthusiasm. There are those sent to talk you out of an idea for whatever reason. Holding true to what you want and believe takes a lot of determination. It takes a lot of perseverance, but you can do what you set your mind to.

Only you can hold you back when it comes down to it. You promise yourself one day. Well, one day has arrived. Dig down deep and find that core, that strength that was always there. Waiting. Find the foundation, discover the new road. Life can be anything you want it to be. Sure, you might be starting down the end road in life. Your finances might not be where you want them to be. A few kids, a few grandkids later might seem like time to retire.

Don’t give up on yourself. Take that moment. Pursue that dream. And find the inner beauty within, that truth that was always meant to be. Have a great week, take care, God bless.

Some products you may be interested in. I may receive a small compensation for the advertising from the seller.

Some blogs around the web you may enjoy:

Come swim with me in Jupiter’s moons,

roam the red rolling hills of Mars

come back to rest against blue earth.

Welcome to a repeat of the series from Carol Taylor, the wonderful Culinary A – Z and a reminder, not only of the amazing variety of food we have available to us today from around the world, but delicious recipes to showcase them. Carol also introduces to cooking methods and kitchen equipment that assist in creating meals for all occasions.

Welcome today it’s the letter D …I have some exotic fruits for you and some lovely recipes I hope you enjoy!

  • Chris the Story Reading Ape: The Teritary Principles of Plot: In storytelling, the primary principles of plot include goal, antagonist, conflict, and consequences. You can’t have a great plot without those elements first. The secondary principles of plot build directly off the primary, and they include progress, setbacks, costs, and turning points. As you likely guessed, the tertiary principles build off the prior two sets, and they include plans, gaps, and crises. Chris, always has such interesting posts! Check this out!
  • John In Keith’s words. “Using this photo (below) as inspiration, write a short story, flash fiction, scene, poem; anything, really; even just a caption for the photograph (If you are curious about what we were photographing, it was the sun beginning to set over one of the domes of the mosque adjacent to the Taj Mahal. Click here to see my effort). Either put your offering (or a link to it) in a comment or email it to me at before Sunday evening UK time. If you post it on your own blog or site, a link to this page would be appreciated, but please do also mention it in a comment here.
  • Story Empire: Hello SE friends, Gwen with you today, and together we will venture further into the theme of diversity. In June, I wrote about including racial diversity in your stories. Here’s a link to that post. In July, I focused on financial diversity and offered suggestions which you can read here. Today’s topic is PHYSICAL ABILITY. Just as in the prior two posts, I will write from personal experience and invite you to share your experiences as well.
Posted in Links, MG & YA, traditional, Uncategorized, writers, Writing and Poetry, YA

When Do You Make Yourself Happy? by Traci Kenworth

When Do You Choose What Makes You Happy?

Traci Kenworth

Our lives are built around doing things for others. When do you choose what’s right for you? When do you choose what makes you happy? I hear you. Kids. The spouse. Your boss at work. Friends. They all pull us in different directions. And I get that they’re important. That you love them with all your heart. That’s great. That’s good.

We spend so much time doing for others, we sometimes forget our own priorities. And I’m not saying family, friends, or work aren’t a priority. The truth of the matter is, if you continue to let dreams crumble, one day they’ll be no more. We need to take a step back here and there to see what we’d like to do with our goals/our futures.

I’ve written since I was little but had no idea that that’s what I wanted to do with my life till after I left college. To me, words were something sacred, something that wouldn’t be practical for my life. Don’t all those guidance tests tell us that? Or at least, the guidance counselor? Choose something else. That was hammered in me from those days.

So, I did. Nothing worked out for me. I struggled to find a job that interested me. They were all boring. Or a necessity. But you know, I came to realize that’s what the draw to writing was about. It wasn’t boring. In fact, it was damn exciting. It thrummed through my veins as soon as I put my fingers to the keyboard or picked up a pen.

I stopped fighting what others told me was impossible. In a lot of areas of my life. Today, I’m so glad that I didn’t give up. I wouldn’t have kids. I wouldn’t have a good life. And starting this journey again would be so much harder. My health, admittedly, is something I still have to consider. I’m not where I want to be, but I’m taking strides further.

By the way, if you see someone you used to know from wherever, don’t assume things about them without knowing their health. I’ve had classmates from school and old neighbors assume my weight problems were due to pregnancy. The truth was far from that. I didn’t gain this weight till I ended up in the hospital and then they jerked me from medicine to medicine trying to solve my problems.

There comes a time when you have to realize that if something makes you happy, do more of it. Writing is the elixir of my life. I need it to feel accomplished in my day. No matter if I ever reach the goals I wish, I will keep going, keep fighting. Because to not do so, doesn’t give me anything to shoot for.

It might not seem like much to you, but for me, it’s more than enough. It’s a hope that I haven’t always had a lot of in my life. It’s a strength that builds my day. Who knows how long we have left in this existence? I don’t want to waste another minute. No matter what happens, I will always keep stringing words together. Hoping. Smiling. Keeping the faith. Have a great week, everyone.

Some products you might like. Keep in mind that I may receive a small compensation from the sellers.

  1. Empowered Women Empower Women
  2. Inspirational Gifts for Women
  3. The True Measure of a Man

Some blogs you might enjoy:

  1. The Killzone

Fictional truth is never quite as clear as it seems on the surface. Deceptiveness boils down to manipulation, disguise, and misdirection. The writer can deceive characters and readers in numerous ways.

A villain might murder another character, then lie to avoid detection. This leads to more lies, more misdirection, and deepening deceptions, creating tension and conflict.

What if the main character lies to themselves about who they are or their current circumstances? Because the truth may be too difficult to accept, the charade continues. One of the most widely known examples is The Sixth Sense.

2. Writer’s Helping Writer’s With so many books in the world and ads on every platform imaginable, social media can often feel like screaming into a void. In order to get any traction, you need ad design that gets noticed by your ideal reader or target audience. Following these 3 tips will give you a bit of a secret sauce foundation for capturing those clicks.

3. Middle Grade Mojo

Who can resist a fun retelling of a classic fairytale? Having some knowledge of the backstory allows the reader to get invested in the story quickly. Today’s guest post is a fairytale specialist—Leah Cypess is the author of the SISTERS EVER AFTER series and shares some of her favorite retellings of Cinderella.

Leah Cypess: While writing GLASS SLIPPERS, I avoided reading other retellings of Cinderella. But now that GLASS SLIPPERS is out in the world, I was able to revisit some old favorites — and discover some new ones — to recommend to any middle grade readers who are looking for more takes on Cinderella! Here are my 5 favorites:

  1. Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine. I know, I know! It’s so obvious it almost doesn’t bear mentioning. But it’s so good that it has to be mentioned. (And don’t just take my word for it — the Newbery Committee thought so too!) The story of a girl named Ella who is “blessed” with the gift of obedience, this retelling is inventive, enthralling, and thoroughly magical. (And if you’ve watched the movie — go read the book anyhow. Seriously. They are barely telling the same story.)
  2. Princess of Glass by Jessica Day George. This book is the second in a series, and I highly recommend starting with the first, Princess of the Midnight Ball (a retelling of the Twelve Dancing Princesses). With that said, if for some reason you must, you can also read Princess of Glass as a stand-alone. This book is actually about a different princess at that famous ball, thus setting it up for a series of fascinating and fairy-tale-bending twists. It’s a sweet and fast-paced entry in George’s fabulous Princess trilogy.

4. Entertaining Stories

I generally only have one or two windows open at a time. Recently, it’s gotten kind of crazy. I’m working on two manuscripts at once, so when I find something interesting or informative, I currently leave that window open. Beats adding a bunch of bookmarks when I only need them temporarily.

Let’s take a look at them, just for a laugh.

Entertaining Stories – you are here.

Facts about Potassium Iodide – used for radiation poisoning

Google window -for saltwater taffy

Recipe – for saltwater taffy – vehicle for Potassium Iodide

Google translate – for English to Spanish

5. The Write Stuff Are you ready for a few smiles this morning? Thor thinks you are, so let’s get right to it! Here is a bit of a mixed bag for you, and I hope you find a couple of things you enjoy!

Posted in blogs, Craft, Links, Links, MG & YA, Reading, writers, Writing and Poetry, YA

Five Links 10/17/2020 Traci Kenworth

Image by PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay

Five Links 10/17/2020

Traci Kenworth


1. “In college my roommates and I used to play a game with a dictionary. We cleverly called it “The Dictionary Game.” It was played with a big dictionary and scraps of paper. When it was your turn you’d look through the dictionary until you came across a word no one was familiar with. You wrote down the correct definition. The other players made up fake definitions that sounded right. The object was to fool as many people in the game as you could. You got a point if you guessed the correct definition. You got a point if somebody guessed your fake definition. The person who chose the word would get a point for every wrong guess.

I learned some cool words this way. The one that has stayed with me for over forty years is borborygmus. It means a “rumbling in the bowels caused by gas.”

This still cracks me up. It’s an onomatopoeia, a word that sounds like the thing it describes (although onomatopoeia itself is definitely not an onomatopoeia). And it makes for a great insult: You borborygmic swine! That’ll stop a bad guy in his tracks.” Sounds like an unusual game.

2. ““Let us record the atoms as they fall upon the mind in the order in which they fall, however disconnected and incoherent in appearance, which each sight or incident scores upon the consciousness.”

—Virginia Woolf, “Modern Fiction”

We write in order to explain ourselves, in one way or another, to perfect strangers removed from us by both place and time. I’m all for fun adventure stories in any genre, all the while understanding that even those fun adventure stories have something to say about the author and his or her time and place and culture and prejudices and fears and anxieties and desires and… as much as I can pry out, all of which will have been pried out, by me, because that’s what I’m looking for as a reader. Your readers will read your work in which you have poured out some measure of your time and place and culture and prejudices and fears and anxieties and desires and… filtered through their own time and place and culture and prejudices and fears and anxieties and desires and…

See how that works?

Why you start to write at all is entirely personal. I hope you’re not approaching it as some kind of “If J.K. Rowling could do it…” get rich quick scheme, but what the hell… that will come through in your writing as well. Maybe you have something to say about… anything… sibling relationships gone wrong, elder abuse, the eternal power of love and forgiveness, why it sucks to be living through COVID quarantine… anything in any combination.

In “Pippi and the Moomins,” Richard W. Orange uncovered that:

‘It was the utterly hellish war years that made me, an artist, write fairy-tales,’ (Finnish author Tove) Jansson told an interviewer after her second Moomin book, Comet in Moominland (1946), came out. ‘I was feeling sad and scared of bombs and wanted to get away from gloomy thoughts.’

Oh, boy, do I want to get away from gloomy thoughts right now. That sounds like a fantastic reason to write in October of 2020.”




Research & Fun Bits:

1. “KRISTEN TSETSI: In a since-deleted interview on Medium, in answer to a question about your attraction to horror, you say, “I’m one of those weirdos who enjoys the exploration and what I might find waiting for me in the dark, even if it terrifies me.”

That’s all well and fine in fiction, but in real life, standing at the edge of very dark woods, would you step into the trees? And, when standing at the edge of very dark woods (literally, not metaphorically), if there is fear, what is your fear? What do you imagine is in there?

TODD KEISLING: Do I have a flashlight? If so, then yeah, I’ll probably step into the woods.

I used to go on long hikes and bike rides with my dad in the state parks of Kentucky and Tennessee, so the woods themselves don’t scare me. I’m more afraid of tripping over something, falling into a hole or from a cliff, or disturbing a nest of snakes. Yes, I’m terrified of snakes. And ticks. Lyme disease is no joke.”

2. “Arthur’s Quoit came as something of a surprise. The huge neolithic tomb rises from the plateau behind St David’s Head, the angle and ridge on the capstone seeming to shadow the lines of Carn Llidi beyond. The capstone is around twenty feet long and over eight feet wide, supported by a single orthostat that holds the point of the stone around five feet from the ground. At first glance, you assume that somewhere during its five thousand year history, the other two orthostats that would have supported it must have fallen and the earthen mound that covered it been eroded away. There are many such places where this has happened.” Amazing!




Some Things More Serious:






Teaser Fiction & Poetry:






Book Reviews, Cover Reveals, & Author Interviews:

1. “You all know I have a horror bent (especially those of you brave enough to have read the first book in The Armageddon Showdown, Guns of Perdition). So, when I found out my good friend and fellow horror lover, Robbie Cheadle, had stories published in a few anthology series’ called Box Under the Bed, I rushed out to get my hands on a copy of one of the anthologies. Not only were Robbie’s stories terrific, but the other authors told terrifyingly delicious tales that chilled me to the marrow!

Compiled by award winning author, Dan Alatorre, the Box Under the Bed anthology I started with was called Nightmareland. The stories are bookended by Alatorre’s own short story(ies) focusing on Jessica (good name), who tries the new designer drug, Nightmareland, and goes on a wild trip into her own terrifying subconscious. The stories in the middle of these opener / closer stories symbolise her nightmares. Get it?”

2. “As if her book about roadkill (Something Rotten) wasn’t gross enough, Heather Montgomery brings us a book about poop. And just like her roadkill book, this one is stuffed with science and scientists. She writes about Dr. Logan Kistler, an archaeologist that specializes in archaeogenomics and who, by studying mastodon poop, made a connection between ancient wild gourds and the pumpkins we eat today. There’s also Dr. Daniella Chusyd, who trained her dogs to sniff out elephant dung so it could be analyzed to determine why the forest elephants in Africa are declining in numbers.

Even though there is a lot of information about defecation in this book, it’s also a fascinating look at real scientists and how the scientific method is used to answer questions and solve problems. Not only did I learn how important whale dung is to phytoplankton and the overall health of our oceans, I learned how scientists study this subject. Who knew there were so many cool jobs as a scientist?

Heather’s unbridled enthusiasm for all things in nature, even poop, is intoxicating. She makes the science of scat so interesting that you almost forget to be grossed out. Written in a personal, humorous narrative style, I felt like I was riding along with Heather when she interviewed the scientists and I was looking over her shoulder when she did hands-on research. Her detailed description of cutting open the bowels of a dead possum is probably one of the grossest things I’ve ever read.

I highly recommend Who Gives A Poop? Young readers, ages ten and up, will be all over this book like a dung beetle on deer droppings. It would be great for the classroom too!

Kirkus gave it a starred review. “A well-stirred slurry of facts and fun for the strong-stomached ‘poop sleuths’.”

Heather Montgomery has a B.S. in Biology and a M.S. in Environmental Education. She has published 17 books for young people. Learn more about her at”




Good Omens: Season 1. Midnight Sun. Disney Princess Trunk Dress-up.

Posted in blogs, Family life, MG & YA, Reading, YA

Book Talk 10/9/2020 Traci Kenworth

Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay

I’m reading: Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas, The Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo, The Girl from the Well by Rin Chupeco, and The Nethergate by Robbie Cheadle. I’ve cut down in an effort to help while taking better care of my health and dealing with major house repairs.

Posted in blogs, dark fantasy, fantasy, MG & YA, Reading, YA

Book Talk Sarah J. Maas’s Heir to Fire (Book 3 Throne of Glass series) Traci Kenworth

Book Talk 9/4/2020: Sarah J. Maas’s Heir of Fire (Book 3 Throne of Glass series)

Traci Kenworth

Heir to Fire by Sarah J. Maas. Bloomsbury 2015. YA.

Amazon’s blurb: Celaena Sardothien, heroine of the New York Times bestselling series, rises from the ashes to burn even brighter than before.

Celaena has survived deadly contests and shattering heartbreak-but at an unspeakable cost. Now, she must travel to a new land to confront her darkest truth…a truth about her heritage that could change her life-and her future-forever. Meanwhile, brutal and monstrous forces are gathering on the horizon, intent on enslaving her world. Will Celaena find the strength to not only fight her inner demons, but to take on the evil that is about to be unleashed?

In this USA Today bestselling third book in the New York Times bestselling series, Sarah J. Maas again delivers the epic fantasy, heart-stopping pace, and heady romance that have won her readers the world over. Look for a teaser for the fourth book in the series, Queen of Shadows, out in this same season!

My Review: Caelena Sardothien has been sent to her homelands to kill the king and queen there. She finds herself unwilling to complete her orders. While she contemplates what to do, a fae by the name of Rowan, sworn to her aunt Maeve comes to retrieve her. Maeve wants to know what Caelena wants. Caelena asks about the Wyrdkeys. Maeve says she must serve her before she will answer. Rowan begins training her, showing no mercy for her weakness in her human form.

As Caelena begins to remember her former life as Aelin Galathynius, Princess of Terrasen. She remembers who the assassin was who killed her family. One sacrifice saved her. As she mourns the memories, enemies the King of Ardalan has sent to her homelands close in. They work to drain her but she finds forgiveness in her suffering and rises up against them.

Can she do the same with her Aunt? And old enemies who wish her dead? She finds unexpected allies.

The read was an absolute delight! I’ve already started the fourth book in the series, Queen of the Shadows. Three more to go!

Posted in blogs, Craft, Links, Links, MG & YA, Reading, Short stories, writers, Writing and Poetry, YA

Five Links 8/29/2020 Traci Kenworth

Image by Jill Wellington from Pixabay

Five Links 8/29/2020

Traci Kenworth


1. “We’ve all been there. We’re driving home from a party where we were engaged in robust conversation. Someone said something boneheaded and we thought, That was a boneheaded thing to say. But not wishing to hammer that very obvious nail, we did not reply.

Now, halfway home, it comes to us. The perfect comeback! Witty, wise, pithy. If only we could go back in time! We’d be like the legendary members of the Algonquin round table. (“He and I had an office so tiny, that an inch smaller and it would have been adultery.” – Dorothy Parker.)

There’s an entire Seinfeld episode based on this premise. George is at a Yankees’ board meeting where a platter of shrimp is served. He over-enthusiastically consumes the crustaceans, prompting another board member, Reilly, to remark, “Hey, George. The ocean called. They’re running out of shrimp.” The other members laugh. George can think of nothing to say in return.

Only later does he come up with what he thinks is the perfect comeback. “Oh, yeah? Well, the Jerk Store called, and they’re running out of you!” George’s friends are not impressed and offer alternatives. “No!” George insists. “It’s Jerk Store!” I sometimes have characters do what I didn’t necessarily do in those situations as well. The words and the actions can make the character stand out.

2. “It recently came to my attention that the email list for our agency’s blog has grown by 40% over the last two years. It’s now the size of a small town or a rather large church!

That is only the email list. It doesn’t count those of you who use the Facebook feed, the Twitter feed, an RSS feed, or come to the site directly on a regular basis. That is a pretty big crowd, and it is humbling to say the least.

It does raise a few questions.

Why do you read this blog?

Is it for the ever-delightful Tamela? For the always-fetching Bob? For the fascinating podcaster Thomas? For the curmudgeon comments of grumpy Steve? Or do you only come to watch videos on Fun Friday?

Actually, it is a serious question. We are regularly asking ourselves, “What do we address next?” “What do our readers want to read?” “What do our readers need to read?”


4. “Staci Troilo’s back on Story Empire today explaining the next part of The Nutshell Theory. This is great stuff, and something we can all learn from, so I hope you’ll stop by and check it out. As usual, please consider sharing on your favorite social media sites so others can learn as well. Thanks, and thanks to Staci for giving me a whole new batch of things to consider before I start my next book. Great job!”


Research & Fun Tidbits:

1. “One thing I do, and have done, with every edit (at least of a fantasy or science fiction novel or story) since starting at TSR in 1995 is create a word list/style guide. I’ll share my basic template here and encourage everyone to create and maintain this resource. I guarantee it will be a valuable tool not just for you while you finish your story or book—or series, even more so!—but it’s something you not only can but should give to editors and others who will be working with your text.

You might be surprised how often, as an editor, I get manuscripts in which the spelling of even the primary characters’ names change subtly throughout the text. Rules for initial caps and other things can easily end up being more or less randomly applied, too. But a sense of plausibility is often signaled in the subtlest of ways, including the judicious application or careful revision of an exiting rule of grammar and usage that works on a subconscious level so your world just “feels real.” Believe me, you’ll really come to appreciate it when it prevents an editor like me from “fixing” a perceived “mistake” that was an intentional component of your worldbuilding. The word list will warn your editor ahead of time that this was intentional, and not a typo.” This sounds like an awesome thing to do! I’m going to try this while I edit and going forward, each story I write.

2. “I’m glad there is pumpkin beer in the refrigerator, because I need it.

I wanted to pick up some kind of fuel additive to use on my generators. I have one that runs beautifully, and one that acts like it’s on life support. When I ran them a couple of weeks ago, one would only run if I left the choke on. Home Depot was our first stop.

My brother said to get one of two specific products, but they didn’t have either one. I found something that sounded like it would do the job and bought it.

My Dad and my Grandfather each had small generators. Even after 20 years they started right up with a couple of pulls. I whined to my brother about that, and he said it’s all because gasoline has ethanol in it today. I can see how that might be the” Not sure what a jackfruit is, lol.

3. “Welcome to the Pitch Wars Workshops with some of our amazing past and 2020 mentors. From a lottery drawing, we selected writers to receive a query and first page critique from one of our mentors. We’ll be posting some of the critiques leading up to the Pitch Wars submission window. Our hope is that these samples will help you in shining up your query and first page.

We appreciate our mentors for generously dedicating their time to do the critiques. If you have something encouraging to add, feel free to comment below. Please keep all comments tasteful. Our comments are set to moderate, and we will delete any inappropriate or hurtful ones before approving them.

First up we have …

Pitch Wars Mentor Keena Roberts  … 

Keena Roberts is a 2020 Pitch Wars mentor for the Adult category. She is the author of Wild Life (Grand Central, 2019), about her childhood growing up in her primatologist parents’ research camp in the Okavango Delta in Botswana. She lives outside New York in the mountains with her wife, daughter, and several pets and enjoys reading by campfires, wherever she can find them.”



Some Things More Serious:






Teaser Fiction & Poetry:






Book Reviews, Cover Reveals, & Author Interviews:






Bestselling in Writing Books. 2,000 to 10,000. Complete English Grammar Rules. Burn After Writing. Writing Tools. The Blue Book of Grammar & Punctuation. 642 Things to Write About.

Posted in blogs, Craft, MG & YA, Reading, Short stories, writers, Writing and Poetry, YA

Writerly Things 8/24/2020 Traci Kenworth

Image by Valiphotos from Pixabay

Writerly Things 8/24/2020: Settling in to a New Routine

Traci Kenworth

Things are finally starting to settle into a new routine for me with driving the kids to their work, errands, cleaning, and writing. Thankfully, the kids work at the same place and the same hours but not always the same days off with the exception of Fridays. We were hoping when my son put his application in that it would work out that way. He’d applied for another job way back but they didn’t get back to him until after he got hired for this one. Their background checks take way too long!


I’ll be trying to return to posting recipes every Sun. on I’d fallen behind on enough recipes to do the customary three I did. I had a post up just this past week and plan another for this weekend. Because I’ve changed posting times to the late evenings (after 9p.m.), you won’t see them till then. I’m hoping to draw more people in with more regular postings again.

I’m also scheduling the Inspirational Mondays or Random, Mythical Horses or Beasts or Humor and fun on Tuesdays, Writing or Dollar Hacks/decorating on Wednesdays, Pet Stories/Sci-Fi/Fantasy on Thursdays, and Fridays are off for me. Now these days of the week rotate but I do try and do two to three postings a week. Oh, and Saturdays, if I have them, I do book reviews that I’ve posted on either here or Loleta Abi.


I’m going to be spending my days split between the Kindle, digital books from Netgalley, and arcs. I’ll be reading the Kindle on Saturdays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays. The digital books from Netgalley will be read on Sundays and Fridays. The arcs, if I have them, on Mondays and Wednesdays. I think this schedule will help me the most. Of course, I always read my physical copies while waiting for the kids, at appointments, etc. Or at night, before bed.

I’ve been neglecting my reading since early this year because of the chaos and then more recently, all the time we spent job searching, running errands, etc. I still don’t have everything rearranged but I’m getting there. Like I said, sometimes they have different rotating days off from each other and I’m still running one to work. The other is usually helping me clean or taking care of outside chores on one of their days off. The other is free for them.

Guest Posts.

I’ve been very slow on getting these out as of late. I intend to buckle down and get more out there. I hope my editor will be patient with me regarding Two Drops of Ink. In addition, I’d like to appear on some other sites in the future to keep my writing chops working. It helps to finish something more often than your novel, per se. When you finish a post, it makes you feel like you’re making progress. You might not have the book out there but you have something to show others.

At the moment, I’m working on two posts. I’m halfway through both of them so hopefully, it won’t be long. When I started writing posts early this year for Two Drops, I had no idea (just as all of you didn’t) what was going to be happening around the country in the months to come. We’re still not back to normal, whatever that is. I’m not sure we ever will be. There’s just so much risk and this spreads so rapidly.


I’ve had to juggle my nights. Edits won out for Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. I’ve had a hard time working on these with such uncertainty out there. Recently however, I’ve come to realize the possibility that we’ll return to normal will be far off down the road so there’s no point in not doing something I enjoy. It was hard to concentrate on it with everything going on.

I’ll make no more excuses, just get back to work on them.

Short Stories and Poems.

These, I’ve actually had more luck with since they’re shorter and the turn-over is quick. I came real close to getting one published a few months back and got word that I’d made it to Round Two but in the end, they had to pass. They encouraged me to resubmit. It was the nicest rejection I’ve received so far. I mean, cause hey, Round Two. They’re also some of the nicest people in the horror community so that was also a plus for me.

I have been participating in Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Poetry challenge as some of you know when I have the time. I’ve tried to write three poems and a story to go with them of late. I’m starting to see a real improvement in my work because of them. They give me just enough confidence to keep at my regular writing.

Other Things.

I’ve returned to working on character builder on I had slowed on that as well. I’m returning to my agent research where I read what the agents I’m interested in are saying and where they are toward their wants and query piles. Genealogy, I’ve picked back up and am working on new leads. I’ve also started watching podcasts again. I have a lot of these to catch up on. I haven’t been able to get over to discord in some time. I hope to pick back up there eventually. I’m sorting through my craft books again and started up where I left off with them.


A generous and wonderful writer in her own light gifted me a year of Masterclass. I finished going through Neil Gaiman’s classes last Sunday. They were SO fabulous! I learned so much from him. He used examples from his own work such as The Sandman, Coraline, and The Graveyard Book to mention a few. The man has such a lovely voice and is an absolute pleasure to listen to.

Up next, I’m not sure if I’ll listen to R.L. Stine or James Patterson or one of the many other talented writers they have on there. They also have many other professionals on there including Ron Howard, famous chefs, interior designers, you name it. It’s kind of on the expensive side but I’ve heard from people you probably wouldn’t normally run into in your own life unless you perhaps moved into their community.

Hope you have a great week, take care, and God bless!

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