A Little Business ‘Reading’

Hey Y’all!

This is just a little something I wanted to share with y’all.  I’m working on creating a link so you can print out your own copy, but these things take time.

Business Bookmark for BLOG

As always, thanks y’all, for reading and following me.  Your support means everything!

“Happy Dance!”

This week is definitely improving compared to what last week was like.  Not only did my daughter do very well in school today passing both quizzes and redoing a misunderstood assignment from a couple weeks ago, but I finally spoke with the publisher this afternoon.  I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to call him, or if he was going to call me, but when he hadn’t called 10-minutes after the time, I called him–and he answered!

It was such a nice conversation.  It was full of information and he answered all my questions!  My head is still ‘buzzing’ with all the new-found knowledge!

So, what is my next step?  Well, the only direction to go is up.  From here on out, Monday through Friday, I’ll be creating, writing, revising, editing, and polishing until June when I’ll submit my finished manuscript to Page Publishing.  Then I’ll figure out what I’m doing from there.  For now, I have an official deadline.  He told me he’d call me in another month to see how I’m doing, and find out how my manuscript is coming.  I literally heard him typing this into his computer, so he’s serious, and I’m excited!

This is a whole new experience for me, but I’m not afraid anymore.  I know I can write.  Friends and family tell me this all the time.  Well, not all the time, but often enough I should start believing them.  I need to believe in myself.

The door to opportunity just opened, so I’m going to take it.  Now, to focus and concentrate!  Happy dance!

“Tag, You’re It!”

Have you ever played ‘tag’?  The game we played as children with our friends and the neighborhood children where one person is ‘it’ and runs to ‘tag’ another person?  I used to love that game, but now I play ‘tag’ with phone calls.

Last week, I did some research, checked out a publishing company website–I’m sure you’ve heard of it, it’s called Page Publishing.  I’ve seen the commercials for it across my television all the time.  Well, last week I finally decided to check into them.  I entered my name and mailing information on their website, and the next day I received a phone call.  I was in class connect with my daughter at the time, so I let it go to voicemail and I checked in after class was over.

Checking the message, he let me know he’d mailed the submission informational kit that morning, but he had some questions for me about my book.  I didn’t call him right back, but instead sent him an email.  I was hoping I could get an idea of what kind of questions he had for me about my book, but no such luck.

Well, a day passed, and then he called me again this past Friday, but I missed the call busy with something else.  When I listened to his voicemail later, he was checking if I’d received the informational kit, and urging me to get in touch with him.  Being later in the day, I decided to wait out the weekend, see if the informational kit arrived, and prepare myself for our phone call.  I spent the weekend thinking about all the reasons why I write, all the things I could write about listing a few topics specifically, and I wrote down some ideas I have for other work (other books) I plan to write.  However, I forgot Monday was President’s Day and after the packet didn’t come Saturday, that was it until Tuesday (today).  No mail.

Today, I finally received the informational packet from Page Publishing and I read it thoroughly because I want to be as prepared as possible for our interaction.  Then I called the representative back, but I got his voicemail.  Guess what?  ‘Tag’, he’s it!

I’m currently waiting for him to call me back…

“A Make-over in Media”

I think it’s time for a make-over.  Not a make-over of myself because I’ve done that.  Two years ago, I was not the person I am now.  I didn’t wear a hat and tinted glasses then.  I do now.  I didn’t keep a blog then.  I do now.  I didn’t write nearly as much stuff then, but I do now.  A lot has changed.  Maybe it’s time for me to make over the other part of me.  The ‘social media’ part of me.

I’m not hiding behind a fake face, or a fake name, or anything like that. I’m not actually hiding at all.  I’m an introvert.  So, in writing, I’m in my simplest form.

I’ve never thought much about my writing, I just know I’ve always loved it as an activity.  I used to write all the time–lists, letters, poems, my name, subject notes, etc.  When I wasn’t writing, I was reading or drawing.  I used to free-hand draw all the time, but dropped it in high school.  I loved to write, but I didn’t share any of it.  Not even the letters.  When I did write a letter and actually give it to the person I wrote it to, things were never good.  So, I’ve always been afraid to write to share, but then I began keeping a journal and even that took time for me to confide in.  I was afraid someone would pick it up and read it, or my little sister would snoop around because she was good at doing that.  It wasn’t until recent years that I’ve began to come out of my shell.  I’ve always been afraid of what others would think of my work.  I’ve had a lot of overly-critical, ‘so-called’ friends, and just as many overly-judgmental relatives to go with them.

I don’t think of things that way anymore.  Constant writing practice and learning to trust my conscious and subconscious thoughts have helped me navigate this path I’ve found in the literary world, and while I’m comfortable where I’m at, I can’t stop.

If I’ve learned anything from writing, it’s ‘don’t stop’, and ‘don’t be afraid to stand out’.

 

“Write, Wait, Repeat”

One of the hardest things I’ve had to learn being a writer is the amount of patience I have to have to get published.  Your first submitted story never makes the cut, so receiving that first acceptance letter takes forever.  Years.

I’ve been submitting short stories to Chicken Soup for the Soul since 2014.  It’s been a very long, very trying road, and it continues to be, but I keep writing, and I’m still submitting.  My writing has improved greatly through the passing time.  However, I’ve learned another lesson because of this trying process–don’t look for the email.  You’re almost better in forgetting that you submitted a story, but we all know better than to believe we can forget about something we really really want.  Whenever Amy Newmark shares a new cover design for a book on Twitter, I save it to my phone.  I know and remember the stories I’ve submitted to what titles, I can’t help but to keep track because I’m proud of that work.  My work.  I surprise myself every time I read one of my own polished peices.  I’m all like, “I wrote that!?”

I think the worst thing a writer can do to themselves is wait for that acceptance email because it just makes it worse when you never receive it.  Another thing I have learned is to constantly remind myself that it’s not that my stuff is crap.  I’ve been following Chicken Soup for the Soul long enough to understand that most of the time, it’s not me or my writing, it’s the direction or the multiplicity of common topic stories.  For instance, I submitted a story to Chicken Soup: Stepping Outside Your Comfort Zone.  My story Retail To Detail didn’t make the cut, but I still attended Chicken Soup for the Soul’s twitter launch party for the book.  I got to greet and converse with all the other contributors that were in the book.  One of the contributors wrote a story about how he landed a job as the weatherman on the news.  Well, in learning this, I realized my story was written on a similar note, so it was no wonder my story wasn’t chosen.

Coming to this realization, I’m still writing and I’m still submitting because one day it’ll happen, but never look for the email to come.  Besides, all my work doubles for my own book series, Y’all Didn’t Hear it From Me–my personal memoir.

 

“Work From Home VS Work-From-Home”

I hate Mondays, but I can’t say I hate Mondays because in reality, I don’t hate any day, I just hate the things that can occur during the day.

For instance, through the week, my daughter is in school.  I’m there as well, listening in, keeping my daughter focused on school.  Sometimes the day goes smooth.  She doesn’t act out or act up, she doesn’t run her mouth but listens and does as instructed.  Sometimes she has a really good day.  Other days, like today (which is coincidentally Monday) she doesn’t want to do anything school related.  On days like today, her attitude gets the best of her and she doesn’t want to do any more than sit and listen.  Today she had a quiz to complete in English class, the teacher also instructed her students to locate a tune for tomorrow’s ‘Tune Tuesday’ and create a slide for the song of choice, then submit it to her.  Well, my daughter was all over locating a song, specifically looking up “Ins and Outs” by Sofia Carson, for her presentation slide.  With me supervising, she found the song, used her tablet to take a screenshot of the lyrics, and she was ready to transfer it to paper.  She grabbed a clean sheet of paper, a gel pen, and she went right to copying it out.  Later when it was time to take a quiz also assigned for English, I told her to get her paper and a pen, and get to work.  The quizzes in  school allow for unlimited attempts (except for math–I don’t know why).  She took the quiz five times she said, got an “F”, and she was going to give up.  When I checked in on her work, I didn’t see the quiz questions on paper.  When I asked her where they were, she told me in her quietly timid voice, I didn’t write them down, or I didn’t do it.  Do you see the problem here?  She has no problem copying down the lyrics to her favorite song, but school work is another story. (Sigh)

So, here I am.  I’m finally able to do my work.  I wanted to write this, and I have a story I’m working on rewriting for my manuscript (or work-in-progress).

Working from home is hard; it’s just like having any other kind of job.  I’ve worked retail, ringing up customers for 8-10 hours a day, putting out stock, unloading delivery trucks, and I’ve had other jobs.  I waitress-ed for a small cafe, and I’ve worked as a cook in a couple restaurants.  One of them went out of business, but that had nothing to do with me.  It was a financial problem on the owners end.  Working from home is just like any of that–just cut out the commute–but there is still the stress, time, and effort applied.

Working-from-home doesn’t just mean I can do my work from home, it means I work from home.  I’m a mom, a Learning Coach in School, a writer and blogger, a wife, and a caregiver.