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Posts Tagged ‘appreciative’

In a few months my blog will turn five. I can hardly believe it. Just like I can hardly believe it’s already 2016. As I was taking the calendars down last night, I considered the fact it didn’t seem that long ago I put them up. And now I’ve turned their pages twelve times. I’m sure a few of you can relate.

And that got me to thinking about this blog. It hardly seems possible I started it, albeit very reluctantly, back in May of 2011. I had very little knowledge of what a blog really was, let alone the purpose of creating one. Yet I had been told if I wanted to be a serious writer, I needed one. So voila, Summersrye was created. Had I known then what I know now, I’d have skipped the nickname thing and just used my proper name. But I like Rye, and not knowing any better, it seemed acceptable. Honestly, I don’t recall how I ended up at WordPress. It might have just been the first blog site that popped up when I plugged in a Google search.

keyboard and notebook

I went through recently to see what kind of posts I’ve written and the transformation this blog has undergone. The results sort of surprised me. My first post was May 11, 2011, called “Starting out”. That was pretty much it for 2011. In 2012 there were a whole 17 posts. The content changed directions twice. First I was going to take a non-fiction manuscript and blog it piece by piece. Feedback was nil. I even sent out a post asking “Am I doing this right?” of which I got one response back. Okay, at least someone out there in cyber world was aware I was blogging.

directions sign

Then I got the contract for my first book, “Whispers in her Heart”, the book that would forever change my life. I was going to be a published author. Time to get really serious about this blogging thing. Right? My posts changed from the random and non-fiction snippets to lots of “Whispers” stuff.Whispers cover from amazon

 

 

2013 I posted about 48 times, (give or take one) I was learning book promotion and it showed. I started putting in progress on edits and cover creation as well as teasers for “Whispers”, and a few pictures of my first book signings. I included poetry and shared life happenings. I opened up just a little, trying to remember if anyone was reading this, they were a real person on the other end of the computer screen. I shared photos of my pets, who are part of my life. I shared personal reflections and works in progress.

chasing ideas

2014 I continued sharing anecdotes and photos of my pets. I was now reading other people’s books and trying my hand at posting my reviews. I was following other blogs and re posting things I found interesting. Now I had a few books out and was regularly sharing status and updates on “Whispers”, “Shimmers of Stardust”, and “When Clouds Gather”. I posted more times than ever before.

Recipe for writing success

 

 

2015 was much the same. Book reviews. Pet anecdotes. Personal situations. Personal reflections. I was getting pretty personal this year. My family of books was growing. Now we added “Chasing the Painted Skies” and “Sizzle in the Snow” Anthology plus more works in progress and two more slated for 2016. I had people contact me asking if I would please read and review their books. I added the new feature somewhere along the way of hosting authors, interviewing them and talking about their books. In exchange, I was usually hosted on their blogs. Giveaways were another new feature in 2015.

All in all, not bad for a kid who few thought would ever make a writer. I recall hiding in my closet, pounding away on an old manual typewriter I bought at a garage sale. I baby sat so I had money for paper, notepads, and pens. Finally my mother gave me an electric typewriter for either my birthday or Christmas when I was around twelve. To have access to the electric outlet, I had to move out of the closet and into first my bedroom and then a corner of the long harvest table situated in the living room. I guess she wanted to see her daughter once in a while.

old typewriter

 

So while looking back, I also want to look forward. What do I want this blog to accomplish in our brand new 2016? Well, I want it to be a communication point. First, I want to be able to share news with readers about new books, giveaways and anything else share-worthy. I want to continue having others from other houses on my blog, sharing news about their exciting new releases. Bonus if they offer giveaways too. I want to grow the book reviews. In fact, I just finished a sassy little story last night and will be posting a review this weekend. And I have that author scheduled to be hosted on the blog in a few weeks.

Writing is a gift

Of course I want to share stories and pictures of my zany pets. They are the world to me, as many pet owners will testify. I’d be tickled if readers shared their wonderful pet pictures. I will also continue to share personal reflections and observations. Sometimes life gets rough or crazy and it’s nice to talk about it on a blog. It may not fix it, but it makes handling it a little easier. I follow a few blogs of people who do that very well. I’ll probably go back to posting some of the poetry from time to time and maybe some short flash fiction or sample chapters. That has been in the back of my mind for a while too.

Happily ever after

 

 

 

 

 

The end result, I want 2016 to be a year of growth and connection both for this blog and my writing career.

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February

February is the shortest month of the year. For me, this year’s February has been fraught with challenges and quandaries worthy of filling the longest season. Normally the first two weeks of April is historically the traditional time of great dread for me, when it seems the whole year’s worth of misfortune pours itself out over my head. This year, however, we seem to be getting a head start–several weeks early.

On the ninth, I fell, not in a glamorous fashion on the ice like some folks. I was simply coming home from work, was tired and forgot to pick up my feet. Or something like that. The good news is nothing broke in the fall, but it sure rocked my world. I was stunned for several moments before I could slowly–and oh so gingerly–climb to my feet. The next day I discovered a rash on my knee, that slowly turned a rainbow of bruising colors ever since. Now, 2 1/2 weeks later, it’s still an irritating dry patch of red. My hands and shoulder were also injured in the fall, excruciating at first, and slowly easing up as the month ends. While the swelling has gone down, the pain continues to remind me.

In addition, about three weeks ago, just before the graceful fall, my hot water stopped running. Due to the below freezing temperatures, I kind of assumed it was a frozen line and would thaw out soon enough. Well, I’ve been boiling water in my copper tea kettle, bird bathing using my ceramic bowl & pitcher set and generally roughing it ever since.

bowl abd pitcher

I did go to a friend’s house a couple of times for hot showers and do a load of laundry when the pioneer woman mentality ran thin or I ran out of work clothes. I kept plastic jugs and refilled them at work and at my friend’s house.

In the meantime, our temperatures have climbed well into the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s and still no return of my hot water Finally on the 22nd, I went out to check on the situation. I was greeted with at least 6-8 inches of standing water in the crawl space. This was not good.

Monday the 23rd I contacted the company that services the home warranty I took out when I bought the house. They assured me they’d take care of this and hook me up with a great technician. Well, they did that much. To take a long week of frustration and impatience and condense it down, it happened like this: Yesterday a nice gentleman from a company specializing in water damage arrived. He drained all the gallons of standing water out, so the crawl space was pretty much dry for the plumber who came this morning. Over eight hours later this poor soul had more or less replaced most the piping under the house. Shout outs to both these guys and their companies.

I did learn, however, that neither my home warranty nor house insurance will cover nor reimburse any of my expenses. So thank goodness I had the money available on the plastic, unfortunately, they are almost maxed out now. But I have hot water once again and no fishing hole in my crawl space.

And apparently February wants to keep reminding me we are evidently in early training for April. As I was running a fast errand this morning, the check engine light come on the dashboard of my Jeep.

check engine

 

So tomorrow morning I have an appointment for that next.

If this keeps up, you won’t see me in April, I’ll be hibernating beneath a big rock!

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I will make no excuses for what I cannot do. I will make no apologies for what I cannot do.

If I think or suspect I can do it, I will most certainly try. If I know beyond reasonable doubts or expectations that I cannot, I shall not try. And if that decision happens to upset someone, then so be it. That is their problem, not mine. As for me, I shall only do the very best that I can for as long as I can.

Others may be irritated at my limitations, perhaps not understanding them. Or caring. I cannot help that either. I am not like more able-bodied people. Not anymore. And I make no apologies for that fact. No one is more aware of my limitations then I am, or more upset by them. No one is more inconvenienced or affected by my limitations then I am. So if there is any apology to be made, it should be made to me. But none is required.

I know what I have been reduced to. I live it each day. Others do not. I know what has been taken away from me, forever. Others might not. I still travel on. Others can only watch and form their own opinions. To each their own I say.  I know what I once was capable of, and more so, what I will never be again. I know the bitter taste of unfairness slowly melting in my mouth.

So for this I make no apologies. I am no not the person I once was. I am now less. But I am also more. Because I have had to become more in order to overcome.

I also know what I can do and do quite well. Things that so many others cannot. What most of the population cannot do actually. When I look at my list of personal accomplishments, I have to smile. How many can really do all the special and unique things that I can do? And to do so while carrying the unfair load I must carry and ‘look good’ while going it?  So few really. Just the travel weary warriors that share my same spirit of being a riser. Just those few who are like me.

When I look back at the life I have lived, at the accomplishments I have achieved, and what I am still doing, I have nothing to apologize for. The trivial things, everyday, ordinary things that I cannot do are nothing compared to the extraordinary things that I can do.

Philippians 4:13

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IN truth, I had really sort of expected the first event to be more of a -everything-that-went-wrong sort of learning experience. Instead, things went smoothly right from the beginning–sans my getting lost dowtown of course. Apart from that, however, thanks to research and planning, the entire time was wonderul, the location was lovely and I so enjoyed spending time with the people who came. Whether they stayed only a short while or lingered, whether they bought a book or not. It was time well spent and I am appreciative.

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