A Moment of Gratitude. . .

sunny forest
A sunny day in green forest with high trees

I love. . .

life.

reading.

my reading friends.

writing.

my writer friends.

my daughter and how she brings sparkle and laughter to my life.

my son and how ambitious, confident and reliable he is.

my husband and how loyal and smart he is.

the city I live in with its small town feel, friendly people, and quaint Old Town and British-style traffic circle, even though it’s actually a big city with all the conveniences.

that I have a short commute to work.

losing myself in music, both as a listener and as a player, and that jubilant moment when I hear, for the first time, a song I know I’ll love forever.

the music and foreign language students of all ages I work with, their enthusiasm, “aha” moments, hugs, and goofy things they say like, “You smell like a seashell.”

my piano students, AKA friends and fellow musicians, who tell me jokes and say Anna is way better than Elsa (I agree!), and get me to do my Stitch, dog, pigeon, and wicked witch imitations.

the excitement of knowing I will publish novels.

my two dogs and two cats, the friendliest, most intuitive furry friends ever, especially Teddie, our not-purebred-poodle-after-all with his really ugly butt.

my friends who make me feel like the nicest, funniest, smartest person in the world and who’ll talk to me about anything.

my parents and wish they lived closer.

my brothers and what good family men they are.

ice cream, being outside on sunny days, being indoors on cloudy days, libraries, meeting nice people, amazing talent, handsome cowboys (but, sorry, not cowboy music), epiphanies,  dumb blonde jokes, walking in the woods, and beauty in all its forms.

–Eve Messenger

 

 

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Juggling it All—Taking a Moment to Assess #amwriting, #the writing life

Life is busy–I wouldn’t have it any other way, but sometimes it’s important to take a moment to assess and shift priorities as needed. Here goes . . .

Family. Is my priority, but finding balance between being there for them and letting them fend for themselves is challenging.

Career. Almost pays the bills.

Second job. Helps almost pay the bills.

Writing. My passion and the focus of my life–when I can fit it in between family and work, which I’ve been managing to do daily, even if only for a few minutes.

Spirituality. Except for a prayer now and again, pretty much nonexistent. I’d like to meditate more at all.

Exercise. I love being fit and healthy, but I’m finding it impossible to find time to shop for, and to prepare, healthy foods and to exercise.

Blogging and Social Networking. Mostly consistent.  Has helped me learn and grow so much as a member of the professional writing community, but I’m wondering if this is where I can cut back to make time to exercise.

Travel. Has become a bigger part of my life, and I’m glad.

Friendship. Sporadic phone calls between everything else.

Reading. At least two novels a week. Brings me joy and helps me improve my writing craft.

Television and movies. Barely.

Housework. Barely.

Cooking. Anyone for takeout? Thank God husband likes to cook.

Pets. Keeping them healthy and happy, but I wish I had more time to take my little furry buddies for walks.

Yay!!! First Day of Summer VayKay!!!

joy

As of 3 o’clock yesterday afternoon, thirty-seven unfettered, glorious days of doing whatever I want popped up and smiled at me like a goofy toddler. For the whole month of August I get to read all the books I want, write whenever and for as long as I want, sleep in, exercise(?), spend time with family and friends, and catch up on. . . everything!

You don’t think my to-do list for the first day of summer break is that bookworm-ish…do you? 😉

  1. Make to-do list for first day of summer break.
  2. Play with dogs.
  3.  Brew tea, continue rewrite of YA fantasy, act III.
  4. Think about going for a walk.
  5. Figure out genre of the next book I’m planning.
  6. Research more literary agents who might be a good match for my YA fantasy.
  7. Finish reading Tahereh Mafi novel.
  8. Make a run to the library – whoop whoop.
  9. Hang with the fam.
  10. SUGGESTIONS??? _________________________

YA Reader, I Could Really Use Your Suggestions

wordle 2

I’m planning a YA book that I’m REALLY looking forward to writing, but I’m having a hard time classifying the genre. It’s about a modern girl fantasizing her way through major life changes and social awkwardness. There’s an integral paranormal aspect, but it’s subtle – no werewolves, witches, vampires — and a sprinkling of chapters set in an earlier period of history.  There’s a little romance, but I’d say it’s more about family and relationships.

What would you call that genre?

Josie’s Book Corner, I’m looking at you.