Welcome to my blog, thank you for stopping by. If this is your first time to my blog, it's nice to meet you. If you've been here before, welcome back.

My writing journey has begun. The road will have some bumps and detours. I only hope that the first hill is not too high, and the journey is long.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day

Today, please take a moment to thank a soldier and say a prayer to keep them safe.  They fight for our freedom.  Then say a prayer for a soldier who has given their life to protect ours.  They have all earned our respect and deserve it!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Books With Cookies And Milk

Hi Everyone – Once a week, I am going to try something with my blog. I am going to recommend a book, and post a cookie recipe along with it to make and enjoy while reading the book. My children always enjoyed a story with two cookies and a glass of milk. Today, I am recommending Mary Newell DePalma’s “The Perfect Gift”. The story is about Lori, a little Lorikeet, who wants to give her Grandma a strawberry as a gift. After, losing the strawberry, Lori and her friends set out on writing and illustrating a wonderful story about their adventure. The story book is presented to Lori’s Grandma, who claims it is the perfect gift. I hope you enjoy the story along with the Strawberry Cookies and Milk.

                                                    The Perfect Gift, Mary Newell DePalma, Hardcover

Strawberry Cake Cookies
(makes about 2 1/2 dozen)

1 (18.25 ounce) package strawberry cake mix
2 eggs, beaten
½ cup chopped fresh strawberries
1 cup whipped cream
Additional slices of strawberry to top each cookie with a slice
Granulated sugar for sprinkling on top of each cookie

Preheat oven to 350°F.
Grease Cookie Sheets.


In a medium bowl, mix together the cake mix, eggs and strawberries until well blended. Fold in the whipped cream until well blended. Drop by rounded spoonfuls onto the prepared cookie sheets. Top each cookie with a slice of strawberry. Sprinkle with granulated sugar.

Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Prep Time 10 minutes           Cook Time: 15 minutes           Ready in 30 minutes

Don't Forget The Milk!

Happy Reading!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Day Trip To Martha's Vineyard

Yesterday, I made a trip to Martha’s Vineyard!

A trip with co-workers for a day of fun and relaxation. Great way to start the long weekend and renewed motivation. Back to writing and more relaxation. How about you?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Passion for Dialogue

One of my passions in writing is dialogue.  Good dialogue sounds like real-life conversation, but without adding in all the "you know", "huh", "right" and "ahhs".  leave out the extra added noises.  Write your dialogue down, then read it out loud.  How does it sound?  Does it sound differently when it is spoken, than how you wrote it?  Leave some things to your readers imagination.  Your readers are smart.  Let them draw some of their own conclusions.

So, in your story give your characters lots to say.  Just make sure what they have to say is worth saying and that it keeps your reader wanting to hear more of what they have to say.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Recommendation to Read

"Daddy Dates - Four Daughters, One Clueless Dad, and His Quest to Win Their Hearts" by Greg Wright

I just finished reading this book by Greg Wright.  This is a story about a dad (Greg Wright) seeking and effecting a plan to have a positive influence in his daughters' lives.  He does this through initiating dates with his daughters to show them in what to expect and want from the future boys/men they will date.  He leaves the choice of going out on the date with his daughters. 

Listening, focusing, talking and connecting is the basis of a good date/relationship and that is what he is teaching his daughters.  He wants for his daughters to be confident in knowing what they want and how they want to be treated.  There is something in this story to help Dads realize and understand the young woman emerging in their daughter.  Greg Wright states that he is not a parenting expert, he is a motivational speaker and leader.

Daddy Dates is the story of a father's love for his daughters and the bond they have that grows and strengthens.  I truly enjoyed reading Daddy Dates.  Think of it as a great gift for the new dad on Father's Day!  For more on Daddy Dates or Greg Wright please visit his website at: 

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Seek Out Your Inner Child

Very often there is a connection between what entertained us as a child and what entertains us now.  Did you act out shows and little theatres as a child?  Revisit your old passions as a child, now as an adult, in your writings.  Draw on childhood experiences and memories.  Here is where your creative genius kicks in.  Can you visualize it?  You can!  Then write about it!

Never underestimate your inner creativity.  There is so much inside, waiting to unfold and blossom.  The possibilities are exhilarating!

Friday, May 20, 2011

2011 NE-SCBWI Conference - Celebrating Milestones

This past weekend, I travelled to and attended the 25th Annual NE-SCBWI Conference in Fitchburg, at the Courtyard Marriott. Celebrating Milestones was the title of this year’s conference. The Conference was attended by both published and waiting to be published authors. I walked among greatness!

The guest speakers were:

Jane Yolen
Lin Oliver
Steve Mooser
Tomie DePaula
Harold Underdown

A couple of the workshops I attended were:

12 ¾ Ways To Tickle Young Reader’s Funny Bones
     Part I and II
     Conducted by Donna Gephart
Strengthening Your Sentences
     Conducted by Linda Urban

Here we worked on tips and techniques for creating stories with humor in ranges from picture books through young adult novels. Ideas and suggestions were shared on how to inspire your writing and apply it to your own creativity.

Words I took away with me:

Word building

I am now back at work writing. I can’t wait for Celebration!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Have You Felt An Angel Today?

Moms are Angels in training from the day they are born.
While they are here, they show you that they care,
Until their work here is done.
Then they become Angels, with wings to be worn.

So, to feel your Angel
And know she is there,
Open your eyes and heart
She’ll show you she really does care.

Recall memories of kisses once upon your face.
She is still there…
Blowing kisses in the gentle breeze across your cheek.
Showing you that she cares.

Share photographs tattered and worn by hands they once held.
She is still there…
Gentle hands held out urging you on.
Showing you that she cares.

Recall the warmth of her hug and how good it felt.
She is still there…
Enfolding her heart around you in that warm glow you feel.
Showing you that she cares.

Share stories funny and sad.
She is still there…
Tickling you with laughter or sharing a sigh.
Showing you that she cares.

Recall her unconditional love she had for you.
She is still there…
Spreading her love from you, to your children and grandchildren.
Showing you that she cares.

I have two Angels, my Mom and my Mother-In-Law. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t feel them there. I have felt the Angels I have in my life, today. Have you?

Happy Mother’s Day Mom & Rita! You are missed and loved every day!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

A Little Tip I learned On Writing And Utilizing Your Background Information

While writing keep the background of your story at the forefront of your imagination. You may not use all of the background information in your story, but keeping it at the forefront allows you to keep it pictured while writing. Children like to be able to visualize what is happening.  How would they picture the story?  Take a step into their shoes, what would they visualize?  Picture books add many of the background details with their illustrations.  Try not to over explain your background.  Allow the reader to utilize their imagination.  Isn't that part of the fun and wonder of books?

Just sharing.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Writing For YA

So, I am working on my YA novel, it falls in the contemporary category. The subject of my story is intense. The bond between the characters strengthens throughout the story. It deals with relationships, coping with tragedy and what is really important. The characters explore unfamiliar territory, experience growth and realization of who they really are.

Developing my characters as individuals is fun and challenging, giving them each their own voice. I am challenging myself with just how far to push a topic. I find myself questioning, how far is too far?

We’ll see where it takes me.

Monday, May 2, 2011

"A Picture Book A Day Keeps Imagination At Play" - Margot Finke

No matter how much you love writing you will always need inspiration from somewhere or someone.  For inspired writing, a writer needs inspiration.  Take the time and let your imagination play reading other picture books.  Here are two of the latest picture books I have read:

Are You My Mother?, P. D. Eastman, Hardcover  By P. D. Eastman

The Perfect Gift, Mary Newell DePalma, Hardcover  By Mary Newell DePalma
Happy Monday!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Like Morning Coffee

Doesn't this beautiful weather help to inspire you to write?  This morning I woke up with that rush of creativity.  I have been working on my latest project, a YA novel.  It is beginning to take shape.  At first, I had the title and then a piece of an idea.  My characters are developing and I know where my story is going. 

It started out as a slow brew and is now percolating.  Just like my morning cup of coffee, I can't wait to get at my story.