Monday, August 14, 2017

Hold On, Reach Out

Hold on
     to the good
     with the strong

Reach out
     with both hands
     filled with love

Hold on
     to the true
     to hope

Reach out
     to the needy
     to the battered

Hold on
     with everything you have
     with everyone you love

Reach out
     with everything you can
     with all that you are

Hold on
     to love

Reach out
     to love

Hold on
Reach out

Hold on



Monday, August 7, 2017

Nicole Locke & Creating Characters

Please welcome Nicole Locke to the blog today!
***

It’ll happen to you someday. While creating your latest secondary character, who will eventually become a primary character, you draw a blank. 
Oh, you have the name, and a good idea of what they look like, but what makes them tick? What are their mannerisms?
Now those are two different character traits. One is based on motivation (abandonment issues), the other is a characteristic (hair twirler).
No problem, you’ve lived some years; you can make things up. Except…you can’t. You’ve used up all your own motivations. You can only address that bully in school for so long. You’ve even used all your own characteristics from your love for cake to your twitchy right leg. You’ve got nothing left in you. So it’s time to use your friends and family and reveal their likes/dislikes and their mannerisms.
Except, you’ve already run the gamut of relations and friends. Even your great Aunt Maude, who reportedly had three teeth and chuckled, was used for that hag in book three. You could watch people at airports, but you know from that brief observance you can’t glean the depth your character deserves. 
Something more is needed. Long ago, a fellow writer confessed to using Linda Goodman’s Sun Signs for creating characters. Easy enough, and incredibly helpful. Suddenly character motivations can be determined if you make their birthday in May, and know they are a Taurus. Your character can now be bull-headed and loyal. 
Except Sun Signs, as brilliant and useful as it is, doesn’t address the breadth of mannerisms needed when creating characters. Neither does Love Signs, which explores the different signs in relationships.
To make your character distinct from every character you’ve written, you need even more depth. My tip? Birthday books. 
These books are a wealth of quick information for 365 days of the year. That’s 365 distinct personalities. Some of them are detailed enough to give you motivation and characteristics. Do I recommend one book? No. Because you can’t get the depth you need from only one.
For example, I’ll use the birthday of November 11th.  The astrological sign is a Scorpio. According to one book, it says: If sports isn’t your career, it should be your hobby.  However, another book says: You’re defensive and suspicious. Both those reveals are gold when creating a character. And that character won’t match your other characters because they won’t share the same birthdate (I do recommend marking the birthdays you use).

So what happens when I’ve used up all the dates? I’ve thought of this, but I have no worries. I’ll probably be too doddering to remember, and will gleefully write them again.
***
Nicole first discovered romance novels hidden in her grandmother's closet. Convinced hidden books must be better, Nicole greedily read them. It was only natural she should start writing them (but now not so secretly). If she isn't working on the next book in the Lovers and Legends historical series, she can be reached at:

The Knight's Scarred Maiden (Lovers and Legends)
A maiden for the mercenary 
Mercenary knight Rhain is living on borrowed time. With a vengeful warlord pursuing him, he has accepted his fate—though first he must get his men to safety. 
When he rescues mysterious and deeply scarred Helissent from her attackers, Rhain soon wishes he wasn't marked for death. He can never be the man she deserves—his scandalous lineage alone dictates that—but Rhain can't resist the temptation to show this innocent maiden how beautiful she truly is… 
Lovers and Legends A clash of Celtic passions

Buy on:
Amazon Kindle          Amazon Paperback           Harlequin US          Amazon UK             

Book Depository        B&N                                   Kobo                         iBooks


Enter to win signed copies on Goodreads!
***
Thanks Nicole!

I've never heard of birthday books but that'a a great tip! I tend to use mannerisms and quirks of some of the kids I've taught and the adults I've worked with over the years.

How about you? Have you heard of birthday books? Used them? Planning on trying it now? 

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

IWSG & Pet Peeves


The Insecure Writer's Support Group is the brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh. He, his clones, minions, friends, and fellow authors make it an amazing event every month.




Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

And we’re revving up IWSG Day to make it more fun and interactive! Every month, we'll announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say.


 IWSG Day Question: What are your pet peeves when reading/writing/editing?

Fun Question!

Reading Pet Peeve 

  • when I come across authors who use "that" instead of "who". When people who earn their living with words make this mistake, it's like nails on the chalkboard!!!

Writing Pet Peeve 

  • Titles! These are so hard. I tend to come up with super cheesy ones first and then they're so hard to get out of my head!

Editing Pet Peeve

  • redundancies!!! My first drafts are littered with them! I'm pretty good at catching them when editing, but I need to learn to eliminate them when writing in the first place!

How about you? Any pet peeves you'd like to share? Do you sprinkle redundancies everywhere as well?


Monday, July 10, 2017

Genre Help Please!


For the last couple of years, our lives have been dominated by dementia. Two of our loved ones were diagnosed over a year ago, although the condition was consuming us all long before the diagnosis.

As part of a way to deal with it all, I've been compiling the stories into a book (because that's what we do, right?).

I don't plan on using real names. I'm not out to embarrass anyone (some of the stories are snort-laughing funny, others are heartbreaking).

It's not a memoir. It's not a self-help book. It's not strictly nonfiction as I've changed names and have avoided some details to avoid identifying anyone.

It reads like a story. It is a story. A story of our family, our struggles, our victories, our pain, and our love.

This isn't a medical book. I have no medical knowledge, just experience. While it could be considered a guide for people caring for those with dementia or Alzheimer's, it's not exactly that. It's a journey. Our journey. One that might help a lot of people in similar positions.

The tone of the book will be light-hearted despite the pain and sorrow, because that's the best way we know how to survive.

My question of you, is:

What the heck am I writing? How do I classify it? Any ideas?

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

IWSG and Lessons Learned

The Insecure Writer's Support Group is the brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh. He, his clones, minions, friends, and fellow authors make it an amazing event every month.



Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

And we’re revving up IWSG Day to make it more fun and interactive! Every month, we'll announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say.


July 5 Question: What is one valuable lesson you've learned since you started writing?

So many!

One of the most valuable is to be much more careful about sharing my work.
I was a member of a small online critique group with a few absolutely wonderful women. Kind, generous, talented, thoughtful, insightful. Everyone brought something different to the table and I think we helped each other enormously.

A friend of one of the women asked to join the group and we agreed. She wasn't a good fit for me.

Her critiques were cruelty disguised as humour. She didn't have a single good thing to say. I'm not someone who needs false or effusive praise. I enjoy a crit buddy pointing out where I can improve and when something isn't working. I like the truth.

But, I couldn't handle her crit style. Her vicious comments hit me at a vulnerable time and it took me many, many months before I could face the keyboard with any joy. I slipped out of the critique group and backed away from sharing my words with anyone.

I've come to realize that the problem may have been hers, not mine. She didn't like the genre, didn't think humour belonged in romance, didn't like banter between the characters, didn't like the lack of description (she had a point there!), and wanted more introspection. Her complaints were more about a conflict in styles than a comment on my writing, but they were nasty. Thoughtful and encouraging advice I received from two agents at the same time helped me see that her critique was not only unnecessarily cruel, but not justified. Nonetheless, her words set me back a long, long way.

Now, I'm much more careful about crit buddies. And while I mourn the loss of the other members of the crit group, removing this woman from my circle was worth it.

How about you? Any crit buddy horror stories out there?

Thursday, June 8, 2017

IWSG and Quitting

(I am the worst!!! I had this post ready to go, but didn't press Publish... *sigh*)

The 
Insecure Writer's Support Group is the brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh. He, his clones, minions, friends, and fellow authors make it an amazing event every month.




Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

And we’re revving up IWSG Day to make it more fun and interactive! Every month, we'll announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say.

The IWSG question this month is:

Did you ever say “I quit”? If so, what happened to make you come back to writing?

I haven't said "I quit," but life has insisted I say, "I pause," at different times.

My life is a little beyond hectic. (I know we all say that!) A fellow teacher recently used me as an example of, "You might have some challenges in your life, but it doesn't mean you have to take it out on people around you. Look at Mrs. Fraser. If you knew the things she was juggling in her life, you'd expect her to be mean, miserable and constantly cranky, but you'd never guess that, would you?"

Still not sure how I feel about the whole description, but my life is incredibly busy. Finding time to write is challenging enough. Finding the appropriate energy to apply to writing, revising, & editing is even harder. Exhaustion and sleep deprivation have reared their ugly heads on occasion and I've had no choice but to slow down on everything but the necessities.

And that all sounds incredibly self-pitying. It's not meant that way. Truly. I love my life - every crazy bit of it.

It's just an example to show that while I may appear to the slowest writer on the planet, it's actually not completely true. I'm growing and learning and still writing. And, no, I don't think I'll ever say, "I quit." Writing is too much fun!

How about you? How crazy-busy is your life? Any other slow-but-growing writers out there?

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

IWSG & Bloo Moose

OOPS! I missed last month's IWSG post! The flu had me in its grip and I totally missed it - sorry!

***
The Insecure Writer's Support Group is the brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh. He, his clones, minions, friends, and fellow authors make it an amazing event every month.



Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

And we’re revving up IWSG Day to make it more fun and interactive! Every month, we'll announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say.

May 3 Question: What is the weirdest/coolest thing you ever had to research for your story?

That's a great question! I think CSIS, the FBI and Interpol probably have all of us on a special list. We do look up some weird and wacky things!

For my current story, I've looked up:

  • wolf reintegration
  • winter survival tips
  • pay scales for freelance journalists
  • Afghanistan (terrain, climate, and culture)
  • skinning an animal
  • deaths and injuries caused by wolves, moose, hypothermia, gun shots, machetes, and snow machines
My least favourite research was for the name of the town I'd created. I'd named it Blue Moose and there are a lot of quirks to the town that go along with the name.

Turns out Blue Moose is a name for a coffee shop, a promotional company, a paint company, a pub, ... well, you get the idea. 
I don't want to infringe on any copyrights, so I've changed the spelling to Bloo Moose. Now to get the stories done so I've got my own copyright going on!

Some of my other stories have had much weirder searches, but that's for another day!

How about you? What's one of your weird look-ups?

Monday, May 1, 2017

Joanne Dannon & Tropes with a Twist

Please welcome Joanne Dannon back to the blog today!
***
Tropes with a twist
I read somewhere there are only a handful of romance tropes, think – 
  • Friends to lovers
  • Secret baby
  • Forced marriage
  • Billionaire and an ordinary gal

To make your writing shine and stand out, you need something to make your story interesting and I
call it a twist. It’s what you make it interesting to keep the reader glued to your book.
In Notting Hill, it was heroine who was the “superstar” not the hero. It had the twist that made it interesting. Same with Roman Holiday where he was a reporter and she was the Princess. I do have to add that Roman Holiday is a love story not a romance since they don’t end up together.
But with these two movies, they added an interesting twist to hook you in. On top of that, you have awesome actors, clever dialogue and terrific secondary characters.
Looking at your writing, what can you do to add a twist in? Twists keep your writing fresh and interesting. Keeping in mind, all romances end with a “happily ever after”, so why should readers read your books?
Irrespective of your writing style, you should look at what twists you’ve included to keep your story exciting. 
In some of the old 1950s movies, the heroine would unpin her hair, take off her glasses and voila, she was stunning and the hero would suddenly notice her. Real life isn’t like that and in today’s romances we don’t expect women to physically change themselves to make themselves more attractive to men.
Using the duckling to swan trope, what can you do to add the twist? In my latest romance, Hannah is an everyday gal and is not the glamorous/hot type that Zac usually dates. In his POV we know that he sees her as pretty, reliable and a good friend. So how did I make Zac go from seeing Hannah as his sister’s friend to someone he can’t stop thinking about? That’s the twist. 
I spent a lot of time working on this so after a few chapters, Zac starts seeing her in a different way. He’s fighting it because he doesn’t want to take advantage of his sister’s BFF. 
It makes you want to read more. We know that Hannah likes him but will she be with him, knowing it will only ever be short term? Predictable is boring. You want to make your reading exciting so your readers will want to read more of your books.

Happy writing  
***
Joanne Dannon, an Australian author, writes to give her readers the experience she loves to savor--indulging in a sigh-worthy-happily-ever- after, being swept away from the everyday by diving into a delicious romance novel.

Joanne is a happily married mother of two heroes-in-training who loves spending time with friends and family. She can be found on Facebook and her website www.joannedannon.com chatting about reading, writing, cooking, vintage-inspired dresses and all things romantic.
Joanne Dannon on the web:  
Facebook      Website      Instagram      Goodreads

Sign up to my Reader Newsletter and get a FREE e-copy of Bidding on Love


Forever Mine is the 4th book in the Alex Jackson series and can be read as a standalone book.
It's never a good idea to fall for your best friend's brother... or so they say. 
Hannah Greene is fed up. A romantic at heart, she's had a major crush on her best friend's brother for years but he's never noticed her. To shape a life for herself away from Zac, she must move on.
Zac Warne, smooth-talking sales guy who takes responsibility to a whole new level, loves the thrill of the chase but is not interested in settling down, ever. It's not that he doesn't believe in love, it's just not for him.
But circumstances have Hannah and Zac spending one weekend together and a night of fun leads to more than just emotional consequences for them.
Compelled to right wrongs and beholden to fix problems, Zac has to convince Hannah his about-turn about wanting a relationship with her is not just one of convenience. Can Hannah now trust this smooth-talking playboy who has a reputation for breaking hearts, including her own?
Buy on:
***
Thanks Joanne!

I love some tropes and I'm not too fond of others, but I especially love when there's a twist on a favourite trope.

What about you? What's one of your favourite tropes?



Monday, April 17, 2017

Worn Thin

Heart full
Shoulders laden
Hope bruised

Worn down
Worn through
Worn thin

Pain
Heartache

Loss

Defences weakened
Eroded from the inside and out

Our world

So much hate
So much pain

Drained

Worn down
Worn through
Worn thin

But still

Shoulders back
Chin up
Heart open

Hope alive
Hope ready
Hope able

Worn down
Worn through
Worn thin

But

Not worn out
Not yet

Not ever

Monday, March 27, 2017

Still Me After All These Years

Please welcome the lovely Karen Walker to the blog today!
***

It’s a pleasure to be participating in the Blog Tour for STILL ME … AFTER ALL THESE YEARS: 24 Authors Reflect on Aging by Karen Helene Walker through MC Book Tours.

This is a charming, funny, and enlightening collection of essays about aging. In addition, Karen is offering a tour-wide giveaway featuring two (2) print copies (U.S. entries only) of STILL ME and two (2) eBook copies of STILL ME (International entries). See how you can enter to win below.

STILL ME…AFTER ALL THESE YEARS: 24 Authors Reflect on Aging
◊ By Karen Helene Walker
◊ Kindle: 2000 KB, 102 pages
◊ Genre: Biographies, Memoirs, Nonfiction
◊ Publication Date: April 4, 2017
◊ Language: English
◊ ASIN: BO6WWRK82K

Poignant...Humorous...Brutally Honest!

A collection of personal reflections guaranteed to keep you inspired and entertained on that journey we all travel together: The Journey of Aging.
With a blend of grace, dignity, warmth and humor, women and men from 60 to 90 and from all walks of life candidly share the blessings and pitfalls of aging – from keeping dreams alive and keeping sex lives active to dealing with retirement, loss of independence and a growing sense of mortality.

A BOOK ABOUT LIVING EVERY MOMENT OF LIFE!

STILL ME is available at the following sites: Amazon (print and Kindle), Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and iTunes. Be sure to add it to your shelf on Goodreads.


Rev. Clara Alexander is an ordained New Thought minister who creates and performs sacred ceremonies, including unique weddings, funerals, memorial services, baby blessings and house blessings. She is also a popular speaker, inspiring groups with her talks on how we cling to our grudges, how we overuse the phrase “I’m sorry” and how we can live the life we love.
Wendy Brown recently retired from a career in wildlife biology, where she studied sandhill cranes and whooping cranes as they migrated from Idaho to New Mexico. Wendy eventually found a permanent home in Albuquerque, where she and her husband enjoy the sounds of sandhill cranes from their deck. Since retiring from state government in 2014. 

Valerie Capps has bypassed the porch rocking chair to pursue her life-long passion for writing, thereby proving that in today’s world, life can begin again at 65! Valerie lives in Nashville with her husband and their spoiled-rotten Welsh Corgi. www.amazon.com/Valerie-Capps/e/B016VD9V72
Mary W. Clark retired from her law practice in 2007 and transferred her observation and composition skills to travel writing. She is currently working on a book about her father’s World War II experience flying “the Hump” from India to China over the Himalayas. Mary lives in Paris, Texas. www.maryclarktraveler.com
Fran Fischer: “I was born at a very young age and that happened 82 years ago, so I don’t remember much about it. I’ve crammed as much living into my life as possible, and I’m not through yet. I’ve traveled extensively and I even flew in the same zero-gravity plane that the astronauts trained in. I live in California with my first (and only) husband, and we celebrated our 62nd anniversary this year.”
Pat Garcia (Patricia Anne Pierce-Garcia Schaack) is an American expatriate living in Europe. An accomplished musician as well as a writer, she has been writing (and reading) since childhood.
Mark David Gerson is the author of more than a dozen books, including critically acclaimed titles for writers, award-winning fiction, and compelling memoirs. Known as “The Birthing Your Book Guru,” Mark David works with an international roster of clients as coach and consultant, helping them get their stories onto the page and into the world with ease. Mark David Gerson
Holly Deuel Gilster plays “make believe” for a living. In other words, she is a professional actress and musician. Holly also loves painting with words as an accomplished poet, an award-winning short-story writer and a book reviewer for The Or Echo.
Aaron Gordon is a retired social sciences community college professor. He and his wife, Ellie, have been married for 65 years and have three children and grandchildren.
Ellie Gordon is a retired public school teacher who spent the best 20 years of her life in the classroom. A Chicago native, she now lives in New Mexico.
Karla “Rosie” Harper recently retired from teaching elementary school, freeing her to return to her early love of dancing. Today, when not helping out with her grandchildren, Rosie is taking dance lessons, spinning on a dance floor or performing in senior centers and retirement communities with Albuquerque’s Sugartime, as a singer as well as a dancer.
Linda Hoye is the author of Two Hearts: An Adoptee’s Journey Through Grief to Gratitude, available through major online retailers. A native of Saskatchewan, Linda currently lives in British Columbia (by way of Washington State) with her husband and doted-upon Yorkshire Terrier. www.lindahoye.com
E.V. Legters hasn’t so much retired as she has exchanged one life for another — from rewarding years with career and children (while pursuing the arts on the fly) to a life with the arts at its center. She is the author of Vanishing Point and Connected Underneath and is currently hard at work on her third novel. www.evlegters.com
LD Masterson lived on both coasts before becoming landlocked in Ohio. After twenty years managing computers for the American Red Cross, she now divides her time between writing, volunteer work and enjoying her grandchildren. Her short stories have been published in several magazines and anthologies, and she is currently working on a new novel. www.ldmasterson.com
Kathleen Messmer not only runs a film production company with offices in the UK and the US, she is an avid photographer and wildlife advocate. In the unlikely event that she ever retires, Kathleen plans to live on a ranch with draft horses and pygmy goats and vineyards and fruit orchards, somewhere near the water. Oh, and a cowboy...maybe. www.kathleenmessmer.com
Karen Norstad has worked as cashier/gift wrapper, secretary, boutique seamstress, administrative assistant, manager of employee stock options, executive assistant, and budget analyst. Now retired, Karen’s life revolves around lounging about, wearing PJs until four in the afternoon, obsessing over the news, reading, fusing and slumping glass, practicing piano, keeping a small balcony garden and cooking.
Matt Nyman’s nonlinear career path has included working in the geological sciences, teaching high school, stay-at-home parenting and, currently, training tomorrow’s teachers. Poetry equently resides near the surface of his existence, occasionally erupting onto paper.
Jill Plaman was born and began aging in Milwaukee, but she has lived and worked in Albuquerque since 1977. She holds a BS from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and an MSW from the University of Minnesota. Her special interests are travel, international folk dancing, reading, hiking and spending time with family and friends.
Maureen Polikoff is a clinical social worker/ therapist who has always pursued many other creative endeavors, including painting, playing music and, now, writing. A Connecticut native, she lives in New Mexico with her husband, Michael.
MaryFrank Sanborn left Boston 33 years ago, to apprentice with photographer Walter Chappell in Santa Fe. Still in love with the beauty of the Southwest, MaryFrank photographs, writes, hikes, travels, teaches yoga and meditation, makes soups on Sundays, and dreams of the ocean and whales.
Patricia Stoltey is the author of four mystery novels. The most recent is Wishing Caswell Dead. She lives in Northern Colorado with Sassy Dog, Katie Cat and her husband, Bill. www.patriciastolteybooks.com
Susan Swiderski grew up in Dundalk, Maryland, where everybody calls everybody hon and eating steamed crabs is a sacrament. Although she’s happy in her adopted Georgia, part of her heart still lingers on the shores of Chesapeake Bay, explaining the setting for her novel, Hot Flashes and Cold Lemonade. Susan is currently working on a trilogy, proof that this old gal is still a pathological optimist. www.susan-swiderski.blogspot.com
Jan Castle Walker is a retired teacher and an active artist. She lives in Davis, California with her husband, Mack. www.jancastlewalker.com
Karen Helene Walker is a novelist, memoirist and essayist and the author of The Wishing Steps and Following the Whispers. When not writing, Karen is tap dancing, folk dancing or performing with the musical group Sugartime at retirement communities. Karen is currently working on her second memoir. www.karenfollowingthewhispers.blogspot.com 

You can follow Karen and the other authors along on their tour by checking out the schedule HERE.


This tour-wide giveaway is for two (2) print copies (U.S. entries only) and two (2) eBook copies of STILL ME … AFTER ALL THESE YEARS: 24 Authors Reflect on Aging. The giveaway will end at 12 a.m. (EST) on Tuesday, April 4.

To enter, click on the Rafflecopter widget below and follow the instructions. The widget may take a few seconds to load so please be patient.

Thanks for stopping by today. Be sure to check out this charming book.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

***
Thanks Karen, all the best to you and your collaborators!

How about you? Does getting older scare you or are you doing it with grace?
Me, getting older hasn't scared me yet. I know more, I have more confidence, and I'm much better at saying No. Sure, it would be great if my body would do a better job at staying strong, but I'm doing okay!

Monday, March 20, 2017

Theresa Milstein & A Moment in Time

Please welcome one of my blog buddies and all around sweetheart Theresa Milstein to the blog today!
***
I have a question I pose at the end of this post:
If you could relive any moment in time, what would it be?


Before you answered, I thought I should share my own answer. Then I realized how hard it is to answer this question. Sorry! I could choose the births of my children, but I don’t want to experience all of it again. I could also choose my wedding day—that was pretty great.

One of the poems in my collection is called “Un-Perfect Moment,” which was inspired by a family party a couple of years ago, dancing outside with my cousins and my daughter. Many of my aunts and uncles were there.

“those blood-bond circles of life swirl
through the past and towards the future
you sweep away in a shared moment
as hot and sweet as summer’s breath”

It panged me at the time thinking that in a year or two or five, some people might no longer be there. And that captures me entirely—even in a blissful moment, my head can’t stay there. I’m always thinking back, looking forward.

So I tried to consider if there were times when I was just present. I recalled another summer on vacation. My husband and kids wanted to take surfboarding lessons in Santa Cruz. I had no interest in doing so. They got into gear and climbed down to the ocean. I stayed on top at a small sitting area with my laptop. While I revised on that perfect-weather day with others out there enjoying the day, some older guy played guitar and sang original songs. I revised while I enjoyed the music and periodically looked out at my family, little dots upon at sun twinkled waves.

That was a very good day.


With subtle wit, and poignant imagery, the unrelenting passage of time connects the vignettes in Theresa Milstein’s Time and Circumstance. This reflective collection of real and imagined poetry and prose, speculates on an erratic childhood, the uncertainty of adolescence, and the reality of parenthood, through flashbacks of love lost and found.
Theresa Milstein writes middle grade and YA, but poetry is her secret passion. Her vignette collection, TIME & CIRCUMSTANCE, will be published by Vine Leaves Press in March 21, 2017. She lives near Boston Massachusetts with her husband, two children, a dog-like cat, and a cat-like dog. For her day job, she works as a special education teacher in a public school, which gives her ample opportunity to observe teens and tweens in their natural habitat. 

TIME & CIRCUMSTANCE is available for preorder!

$3.99 AUD (eBook)
Kindle AUS
Kindle US
Kindle UK
Kindle CA
iBooks | Kobo | Nook

$12.99 AUD (paperback)
Amazon US
Amazon UK
​Amazon CA
Barnes & Noble
Book Depository
Chapters Indigo


Leave a comment  and you’re eligible to win a prize during my blog tour!

1 $25 Amazon gift card
1 signed paperback copy
1 ebook

Answer the question:
“If you could relive any moment in time, what would it be?”

Extra entries if you share on Facebook or Twitter and link it to me.
@TheresaMilstein on Twitter.
@Theresa Milstein on Facebook
#ReliveMoment or #TimeandCircumstance

Winners will be announced on April 5, 2017

***
Thanks Theresa! There are so many wonderful moments in a life, but finding a perfect moment to return to... so hard. I think I'd choose a bright summer day when my hubby and I were teaching the kids to play t-ball. So much laughter and joy and love. One of those days full of potential.

How about you? What's your moment?