My mind is still abuzz with the editing and book cover design for my soon-to-be-released YA paranormal (the book cover, by the way, is being created by Crystalyn Abercrombie, natural-born artist and expert inker, who should be known the world over - OMG, OMG, OMG – it is fabulous!!!), so for today’s post, I decided to clean out the mental closet – a nice break from the routine.
Following in the footsteps of my fellow bloggers, August McLaughlin, Amber West, Tim O’Brien, Natalie Hartford, and Tameri Etherton, each who have done posts similar to this, I thought it would be fun to do a little Q & A session with you all, at Tameri’s urging, to see if you knew how much of a Goody-Goody I was/am (or not).
Here’s how this works: I’ll list some things that I may or may not have done. Your challenge is to let me know in the comments section which items you think are true or false. In a couple of days, I’ll give you the answers.
This should be interesting. I wonder what impression you have of me, given the previous soul-revealing posts I’ve written.
So, let’s get started:
1. In high school, I was a forgery expert.
2. In the 1980s I made Tijuana runs and snuck bottles of Everclear grain alcohol back across the border.
3. I helped organize a relief effort for Hurricane Katrina survivors in 2005.
4. I snuck backstage at a UFO concert back in the 1980s.
5. In college I cut my hair within inches of my scalp as a dare from my sorority sisters.
6. I slept in the gutter outside of my college dorm after a particularly wild night.
7. While working in the Security Department in college, I was a model employee.
8. I stole a moped.
9. I used to make cookies and distribute them to residents in retirement homes.
10. My college roommates and I had were very thrifty and furnished our apartment with stolen furniture.
There you have it. How well do you think you know me? Educated guesses and stabs in the dark are totally allowed.
I was telling one of my awesome WANA711 sisters, Tameri, just yesterday, that my sole intention of writing, be it a novel or a blog, was to reach out to others, to make them feel and make them think. I want to reach into their soul and wake up anything that may have fallen asleep, because with our crazy, hectic, unbalanced lives as writers/mothers/wives/husbands/fathers/friends/overall superheroes, we tend to forget or push these feelings away for another day, sometimes never to be felt again.
And so I wrote.
Right now all I can say is, wow, I must be doing something right because I was given the Liebster Award by two of my good friends, Natalie Hartford and Kate Wood. Thank you, ladies, for your generosity! I really appreciate it! I’m not really sure what to say, but here goes!
I’m a huge fan of Natalie’s blog because, first of all, her blog page makes me want to throw on some capri pants, bangle bracelets, and a fresh coat of pink lipstick and go shopping! Her writing style is fresh and totally uplifting. She is educational and entertaining. You never know what you’ll be reading about, but know it will be awesome! So, go on…read it.
Kate’s blog is one of my favorites as well, because, well, I totally dig on the Celtic culture. As part of the Napier clan myself (my ancestors anyway) I really enjoy the information she puts out about the Celts. Be sure to check out her blog! Your world will be richer for it.
Here’s fine print on receiving the Liebster Blog Award: Winners of a Liebster must:
1. Post the award on your blog and show thanks to the blogger who gave you the award by linking back to them via the award graphic
2. Reveal your top five picks and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog or send them a shout out on Twitter.
3. Bask in the love from the most supportive people on the Internet – other writers (and bloggers).
The point of the award is to help bring attention to blogs with fewer than 200 followers, but that’s a box thing for me and in keeping peace with my rebel side, I fudged on a few of these. I wanted to bring attention to these blogs because I thought they deserved the exposure.
Choosing my five was difficult, because so many are deserving of this award, but here we go…my choices for the Liebster Award:
1. JM Randolph. I think I stumbled upon her blog via Amber West, another of my blogging buddies. I think one of them was RT’ing the other or something. I was curious who JM Randolph was and so I followed the trail to her blog. I’m so glad I did. She is an “accidental” step-mom to five children. She is creative, strong, and funny. She has such a great attitude. I love to be a fly on the wall as her blog allows us a looksie into her life.
2. Wajiha Hyder. Honestly, I just met her last night. We tweeted a few times back and forth and found a common ground – mothering perceptions. I checked out her blog and absolutely loved what she wrote. (Probably because she thinks a lot like me!) So join me in getting to know her better by following her (she’s just shy of the 200 mark) and learning how her mind works!
3. Nancy Nicholson. Now here’s one you’re gonna love. Nancy writes her novels and blog from aboard her Fawkes Phoenix, a 47’ sailboat! How cool is that? While we pound away at our keyboards on solid ground, Nancy and her family are cruising the coast of the Eastern United States and the Caribbean. She shares favorite recipes and sailing adventures. Head on over to her site for some spectacular pictures!
4. Johanna K.P. This girl tells it like she sees it. Her Note To Self is exactly like it is labeled. A note to self. Sometimes I feel like I am intruding on her thoughts and other times I know she’s letting me in. Johanna is a dark fiction/horror writer, so you know she’s plenty deep.
5. Krystal Wade. I love Krystal’s blog. Her blogs are sometimes fun, sometimes serious, always generous, sharing her space with fellow writers. Now I’m not sure where she finds the time to write and blog, being the mother of three and all, but from what I see on her blog, she has some incredible balance in her life. We should all take lessons from her.
So there are my choices! Please help me congratulate them by visiting their blog and saying hello!
When my #wana711 blog-sister, Natalie Hartford, tagged me in her post, 10 Random Facts About Me, I thought it was be a great way to open my life up a little bit more, since we are all so intimate in a blogging sort of way. By revealing myself to you, I reveal myself to me, because I had actually forgotten about some of these random things.
The rules for this game are simple:
- Must be tagged by someone.
- List ten random facts about yourself.
- Tag four (I have five, actually) others to do the same and pass it on (it’s a good idea to ask them first because you never know where their comfort level is).
So…Let me get started.
- I was a child actress and model. Under the name of Deanna Martin, I shot my first commercial for the Bank of Seattle when I was five years old. I went on to model for Avon and some department stores. In the 70s, I had acting parts in Adam-12, Marcus Welby (playing the daughter of Sonny Bono), The FBI, General Hospital, and a few others. I think the biggest highlight was playing the daughter of Anne Bancroft in the 1973 movie The Hindenburg. I stopped acting when I went to college because I just wasn’t in love with the business. It’s tough out there, but I didn’t care about it enough to fight for the parts. I did have fun while it lasted, though.
- I love wearing stone and crystal pendants hanging from cords of leather or hemp instead of necklaces or bracelets made from gold and diamonds. Don’t get me wrong. Diamonds and emeralds and rubies are beautiful and I actually have some pieces tucked away, but I prefer the down-to-earth feel of the agate or jasper stones.
- I can’t/won’t/don’t know how/am too busy to cook. Never liked to cook, never was good at it. In fact, I regularly burn food along with the pots and pans. I just lose interest and get involved with something non-food related and eventually remember that I was cooking, but usually when it’s too late. Needless to say, my boys have learned to fend for themselves in the kitchen.
- I’m a cardio junkie. I love running – on a treadmill or outdoors. I have to run at least one hour five days a week to maintain some level of sanity. I love physical activity. Summer brings on yard work, and winter brings on shoveling snow and chopping wood. The strenuous movements quiet my always-racing mind.
- I have a nightly routine with my son’s hamster. Before I turn in, I say goodnight to Coco (lovingly referred to as “The Ham.”) When she hears my voice, she runs to the edge of the cage and sticks her nose out of the bars to grab the sunflower seeds and peanut pieces that I hand-feed her. She’ll take four or five of them at a time and stuff them in her cheeks. This lasts less than a minute, but I get a kick out of it every time.
- I love, love, love la bella lingua – Italian. I’ve been studying the language for the last six months or so, and have a wonderful Twitter friend who chats with me daily. He DM’s me in Italian and I do my best to reply in Italian. Oh, he is so patient with me! In two years my posse and I will be making a big road trip overseas. I can’t wait!
- I am a direct descendant of Ponce de Leon, the seeker of the Fountain of Youth. I don’t know how many greats there are in front of grandfather, but my cousins have the family tree chart that lists my ancestors. Getting them to let me borrow the chart is just as challenging as finding the Fountain must have been! Also, according to my cousin, Alejandro Quezada, my great-great grandmother was an Indian princess. So, royalty runs in the family. With this said, I do believe I’d prefer to be addressed as Your Highness instead of Diana. *wink, wink*
- I’ve always had a dream of buying a big house with a lot of rooms, about 20 perhaps, and opening it up for runaways. I’d staff the house with cooks, counselors, fill it with computers, clean clothes, and lots of beds. I’d give the kids a chance to be loved and cared for. I’d help them get clean, teach them skills, and help them be a productive part of society. I’ve got a soft spot in my heart for teens. I don’t know why. I just wish I could adopt them all.
- I love medieval castles. I’ve spent plenty of time on the internet searching for pictures and stories behind those fabulous structures. Maybe it’s a past life thing. Maybe it’s the royalty thing, but I’m looking forward to making a trip to the UK sometime soon to take a tour of castle ruins.
- I’m very unorthodox. Always have been. I color outside of the lines. I bend the rules or ignore them completely. I don’t follow tradition, though sometimes I think it would be nice. But I do things my way. Because it works for me.
There you have it! I hope you’ve enjoyed yet another look inside my heart and soul.
Now I get to tag some of my favorite bloggers to carry the torch onward! Here are my choices (and I thank them for accepting – *waves*):
So, take it away, my friends!!!
Before July of this year, blogging was something I had put on my To Do list and its position shifted constantly, bouncing around somewhere near the bottom five, always beneath the “Do the laundry” and “Pick out paint for kitchen.” I think even “Paint toenails” ranked higher on the priority list.
A year ago I made an attempt to start a blog and had one follower – my friend Kathleen Mulroy. It was so depressing and I lost interest. I could never figure out how to do it and I certainly didn’t think I had anything to say.
But blogging never left my To Do list, because I knew I needed to blog. Especially after reading Kristen Lamb’s We Are Not Alone. I’ve been a loyal follower of Kristen’s blog so I understood the reasoning behind blogging, but still…I never got around to launching my own.
Then, in June, Kristen mentioned in her blog that she would be instructing a blogging workshop. I thought, how could I go wrong? Suffice it to say that Kristen lit the fire under my procrastinating –ish butt and I committed myself to give birth to a brand new blog.
As it turns out, I had more than enough to say. I’ve been able to pull issues from my past, examine and reshape those experiences, and use it as a platform for healing and change. I never really set out to engage anyone, but as it turned out, I now have a great group of friends and acquaintances who have a front row seat to examine the inside of my head.
Now, just shy of two months and 18 posts later, I was thrilled to find out I had been awarded the Blog on Fire award, not once, but twice! As Sally Field would say, “…you like me, right now, you like me!” And I am truly humbled.
The first award was presented to me by Michelle Simkins, a funny, insightful, what-you-see-is-what-you-get badass woman whose blog I really enjoy reading because of her diversity, including beautiful pictures, a Round Robin Blogvel, and stuff that just needs to be said – out loud! Be sure to check her out! She’s a breath of fresh air!
The next time I was awarded the incredible Blog on Fire award, it was from my WANA711 sister, Natalie Hartford. I really don’t believe she knows how good of a writer she is. Her tone is upbeat, fun, and her style is engaging. Whenever I open her blog, the page pops out and I just…smile. I can’t help it. Please make it a point to stop by her blog.
Now, I understand that I am supposed to pass the Blog on Fire award to only one other blogger, but since I received it twice? I don’t know what the rules about this are, but I’m taking it upon myself to pick two deserving bloggers. (Besides, from so many to choose from, this gives me a little bit more freedom…)
So, here I go!
I’m not sure how or when, but I discovered rolliwrites and fell in love with his flash fiction. I Have a Giant Uncle Who’s a Refrigerator was my first and guaranteed will not be the last. To be able to write fiction of such brevity is a craft all in itself. Kind of like writing a synopsis or a query letter. Not everyone can do it well, but I think he’s nailed it.
I also want to recognize Naomi Bulger, another friend who rode the WANA711 wave with me. Her Messages in a Bottle blogs are so heartwarming and down-to-earth; it’s like chamomile tea for the mind. She keeps it real, letting her experiences have a voice.
Join me in in celebration of these two awesome writers!!!
Now, to keep the blog love going, I wanted to slip in a few other bloggers worth mentioning. (Keep in mind this is only a small portion of the incredible blogs out there!)
Kathleen Mulroy: My writing buddy and fantastic copyeditor. She writes and reads, educates and learns (not to mention slicing and dicing up my WIP). Her new blog is quickly finding its footing. Her topics touch many corners of her mind, coaxing the thoughts to grow under her charm. She’s off to a great start. Please stop by.
Kerry Meacham: He’s got a style about him that just makes me want to curl up with a good book on a rainy afternoon. Must be the southern gentleman in him! And from what I can tell, he’s typing away feverishly on his WIP. I can’t wait to see the end result!
David Scott Hay: I Have a Theory About Superman’s Day Job was my first glimpse into this talented writer. His book, Fall: The Last Testament of Lucifer Morning Star, the story of Heaven and Hell making deals with each other in order to find the stolen Book of Life, has so far been an incredible read. I highly recommend it!
Kate Wood: She’s one of the New Kids on the Writer’s Block. She’s got a lot to say. Personally, I love the fact that she is a Celtic history buff! Also a graduate from Kristen’s blogging workshop, she’s created a great space to hang out in.
Dannie C. Hill: What a fascinating guy! He grew up in North Carolina, and now lives with his wife in Thailand. When he’s not writing, he’s exploring his home or growing all sorts of things on his farm. He has great posts about the beautiful area he lives in.
So now for the finale. As part of this award, I am supposed to share seven random things about me…ready?
1. I love to paint my toenails. The more unconventional the color is, the better – baby blue, lavender, sour apple green, peach, sunshine yellow, midnight blue…I’m always looking for more.
2. I’m a techno-dork. I can find my way around a computer for the most part, but anything that goes beyond the obvious, my brain checks out. And controls for PS3, Xbox, televisions, and stereos. Ugh. My personal nightmares. It’s not that I can’t figure the damn things out; what irks me is the effort it takes to slow down and actually decide which button does what. I have no patience for it. I’d rather hire someone to figure it out and just give me the Reader’s Digest version of it.
3. I unwillingly commit houseplant homicide. The poor dears. I water them, sometimes not enough and usually too much. I talk to them, but the words are few and hurried. I take them outside for a little sunshine and end up forgetting them, leaving them to overdose on vitamin D and ultraviolet rays.
4. I hate mean people. Well, not really hate, because hate is such a strong word. I am deeply disturbed by mean people. It’s just that I don’t understand that side of human nature. Why shoot verbal bullets, aiming straight between the eyes? In the words of Rodney King…”Why can’t we all just get along?”
5. I am fascinated with genealogy. So far I have discovered some famous relations of mine: President Thomas Jefferson, Daniel Boone, George Washington, and Katherine Banks, the wealthiest woman of the colonies, who was the great-great (and then some) grandmother of President Jefferson and other history-making men and women. I often get to thinking….what if I am the reincarnate of one of the ancestors I am researching? How cool would that be?
6. I meditate, but not sitting still. I run, walk, lift weights, vacuum, swim, or something that involves physical movement. I have found the faster my body moves, or the more stress I put on it, the quieter my mind becomes.
7. I live for power naps. I take them every day. Sometimes two or three times. I have to. Nocturnal rejuvenation is not my specialty. But I can take power naps anywhere. All I need is something to lie down on (the floor works well), and something soft for a pillow (a rolled up jacket) and I’m off to a 12-minute (two minutes to fall asleep and ten to sleep) mental break. And, yeah. I can fall asleep in two minutes.
Thank you so much, Michelle and Natalie, for honoring me with this award. I’ve always known that I have something to say, and writing allows me to say it. I hope that others will also be able to find something in my words that will make their day.
Now, Naomi and Charles, it’s your turn!