Home sweet home!

A recent journey to the ocean to visit family and enjoy some much needed warm weather really got me thinking -in between trips to landmarks, attractions and the beach- about how important it is to take time to spend with your family. The old and the young! My maternal grandparents live across the country from us so, I didn’t get a chance to get to know them very well while I was growing up. In fact, I considered traveling cross country in a packed car to be a form of torture but now, as I grow up and am mature enough to realize that time with them is short and I should be taking advantage of it! So, I did! I have learned more about my grandfather in one week than I did in the last few decades!

Aside from learning about memories from my grandfather’s past, I took the time with my mother and my three kids to make new ones and I’ve got to say, although it wasn’t always pleasant (some of my children are rather impossible unless properly fed and watered) we had a great time and got to do things that I hope my children will remember their entire lives! I remember touring Gillette’s Castle with my grandparents as a small child and treasure that memory and am sure that my kids will as well!

Upon returning to my landlocked homestead, we celebrated a great Uncle’s 80th birthday and a family reunion where guitars, violins and pianos were put to great use as they all congregated and enjoyed playing music together like they used to when they were the real homesteaders. I looked at what once would have annoyed me, singing, dancing and spending a day with very extended family, as a blessing for these people, it was so cool to watch a couple that has been married for decades waltzing and totally rocking out!

Anyhow, all of this and the photo are all to remind us to treasure the little moments in life. Gorgeous sunsets should be treasured and old couples and babies should be adored, always!

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Silver linings!

So excited to have a publisher actually request a partial manuscript!!! I literally jumped up and down when I read the e-mail that I was so apprehensive to open. I always have to work up the courage to open responses from agents and publishers but this time, I actually got a bite and I will tell you, it has totally changed my feelings and renewed hope that I will get published! Now, don’t get me wrong, I know that with enough persistence I will get published but rejection after rejection had me feeling a little lower than dirt but just one request and I have such renewed hope that it’s going to happen soon! Yay!!! Even if this publisher doesn’t choose to take on my work I have bright hopes for the future and even though I really, really hope that they do, I wanted to take a moment to encourage all of you waiting and wanting to get published that there is a silver lining and one day, it will happen for you and for me!

Don’t ever give up! Keep writing!

Spring is in the air!

It’s the beginning of March and it’s 50 degrees in Montana. Wow! It’s not normal for us to have fabulous weather and I can’t quite trust it, I think all locals feel the same and still carry their heavy clothes and layer to the extreme because we know that weather around here is fickle and one second you’re running around in a dress and flipflops and the next you’re snowed in for a week!

My favorite thing about spring is seeing the first buds on the trees, the small blades of grass rising from the once dormant ground and all the babies! The cows, sheep, horses, everything is having babies in full swing and it is so refreshing to see life after a winter of dark, empty nothingness. The other things I love are that my home schooled children hurry to finish their work and head outside to play and aside from me checking on them, I wouldn’t see them again until dinner time. They love it! I love it! Everything is new again; last years bike is as good as new, the trampoline, swing set and well, just driving their matchbox cars in the dirt is new and they love it!

I often complain about the cold and talk about how much I would rather live somewhere that is warm year-around but I love the seasons, I love a white Christmas and a hot Independance day and all the the things in between! Again, I don’t love the cold at all but when spring rolls around again and it seems like the world is brand new… all over again, I bask in the beauty of all it and wouldn’t change it if I could.

What is your favorite season and why? What do you look forward to as the seasons change?

Acceptance or Rejection?

As a brand new writer I have learned a lot -not enough but a lot- and after sending my manuscript to only two publishers I was strangely confident that I would be accepted by one of them. I was less than thrilled with the expected twelve week wait to find out but after only three weeks, I got my very first rejection letter. Serious bummer. I’m still not sure how to feel about it but I took the hint that this may turn out to be harder than I expected so I have been researching and sending out my manuscript to whomever seems best fit to handle my work.

The weirdest thing about a rejection letter is that (at least this one) it held no hints as to what was wrong. I don’t know if they didn’t like my writing style,if it was too long, if the story was bad or if it just didn’t fit into what they were looking for. Talk about giving you a major complex! At the same time that I want to stay true to my work and leave it the way I think it should be, this rejection makes me want to rip the whole thing a part and change it all and try again.

I have no idea how many times published authors have been rejected before they’ve been accepted but I would really like to know. How many times were you rejected? How long do you keep trying? I am not so faint of heart that I am prepared to throw in the towel but I really am curious to see if anyone will respond and just how long they waited to get that acceptance letter! Keep up the good work and don’t lose hope! I won’t!

Burger and fries

Every couple of weeks, I venture to the nearest city with a Walmart and Costco with my mom and we shop for hours to get all of our groceries and any other household supplies. But, we make it fun and have lunch together. Currently, we are on the hunt for the best burger and fries. We’ve had the best burger but the little cafe changed it’s menu and is no longer serving burgers. So we are trying out any burger joint we can find. Last time, we got great fries and a not great burger. This time we got a decent burger and bad fries, oh and the drinks were nothing to write home about.

Although this isn’t a big deal at all and no one is losing any sleep over it, it is supposed to be the American meal, burger, fries and a shake, right? How hard is it to find a good one? Of course, it isn’t just burgers that this applies to. It’s everything, isn’t it? How far will one go to find the perfect burger or soulmate, job, car… the list is endless! The burger is nothing really but we are wondering if we will ever have an amazing burger when we have already had the best?

Can one remarry when you’ve had the best and lost them? Can you ever replace the car that you got in perfect condition for the perfect price? Why does it seem that all these things are once in a lifetime deals? I don’t really believe that they are, I just think we get to a place where we want what we want when we want it and don’t want to go through the pain of test driving every car and not taking one home or eating every sad excuse for a burger in town without finding the right one. It’s hard! It really is, it’s hard to keep trying for a job or a dream while being shutdown or not quite finding you knack.

I do believe that hope is still there, the perfect burger is out there, Mr. or Mrs. Right is out there and so is your talent or gift. I truly believe that the secret to any success is never giving up. My hubby never acknowledges defeat, to such a point that I often wonder if he realizes that whatever he did didn’t work. He just keeps going, regardless of how much time, energy or money is lost, he never stops moving for a second and he succeeds! So, I guess I am encouraging whoever is reading this not to lose hope and just keep moving! Put one foot in front of the another and don’t look back!

On the ledge of greatness…

I completed my manuscript in December of 2014 and I foolishly thought that the work was over… yeah, right! I was all prepared to proofread my document and with the help of a few family members we were going to have it ready to self-publish through Amazon. Ha, ha, ha! It’s been over a month and we’ve all read through the document a dozen times to find small issues and that our editing skills are not quite up to snuff. Thus leading me to look for alternative options such as e-publishing as I already know from receiving a quote years ago that I cannot afford traditional publishing at this juncture.

So here is my dilemma: I have a women’s fiction novel in need of some editing. I am finding that publishers don’t want to take on unpolished work which confuses me because if I had the ability to edit it professionally myself or pay someone to do it, why would I need them? Why wouldn’t I opt for a program like Amazon’s direct publishing which includes somewhat limited marketing but way better royalties? And it’s free! Basically, I have no idea how to navigate the publishing world! Here is what I do know though; I love to write and I would love to be published so others may enjoy my stories as much as I do.

I know that people have made the leap and obviously have survived the publishing process so… how? And where do I go from here? Is there someone out there willing to take a chance on me and help me through this daunting process? I’m on the ledge and ready to make that leap but need some guidance!

Baby Blogger

As a first time blogger I am excited to see what will come of this. To me, blogging seems to be the simple act of people writing random things and other people relating with them so here goes nothing!

This is a simple outline of my life and who I am. I am married to an entrepreneur who is, in his words ‘building an empire, honey!’ and have three beautiful children who are my life. I love them more than I ever imagined possible and am blessed to have the ability to be a stay at home, homeschooling mom. It’s a daunting task that I never take lightly. Even now as I write, I am thinking about how I can better present lessons and try to make education enticing! So far, I am thinking about doing classes in costume but fear that they will be more amused by how I look than what I actually am trying to teach them. I believe, thus far anyhow, that the hardest thing about parenting is trying to get them to take you seriously when they know that you are the same person that kisses their boo-boos and chases them through the house as the tickle monster.

Aside from my job as Mom, I am currently trying to publish my first book (women’s fiction) and am finding it rather difficult and well, terrifying. There certainly is a wealth of information! It is a very odd thing to wade through publisher after publisher to find the one that you think fits your needs and then have to submit your work to them and wait anxiously to see if they want to work with you. I have not submitted my work as I am still struggling with the submission guidelines and whether a ‘completed’ manuscript means an edited and polished manuscript or simply that the story is complete and it is ready for editing and polishing!?! Yes, whoa.

At my young age of twenty-five, I am finding that my hobbies and life are not quite off the ground yet and I am excited for the day that I can say I that I started something and finished it successfully. At this moment, I can proudly proclaim that I have a beautiful family and a very fulfilling life and that I am excited to take the next step, whatever that may be.