How to Start a Memoir…

Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Wednesday is the day I like to share information, tips and inspiration with writers and bloggers. The kind of information that I wish someone would have shared with me back then.

For those of you participating in NaNoWriMo can you believe we only have one more week to go? I am a little less than ¾ of the way to the finish line. Whether I make the 50,000 word goal or not isn’t concerning me. For me making writing urgent again leaves me feeling like a winner.

NaNoWriMo logo

Starting a Nonfiction Book

Where do you start? With a memoir you do not start at the beginning. The best place to start is with the event that changed the course of your life whether it was in a good way or a bad way.

It is natural to want to tell your story chronologically but with a book you only have three pages, maybe a chapter to hook your reader, to convince them to continue reading. Starting with the day you were born, kindergarten, grade school, middle school and on and on and on will leave a reader bored with the story.


I am working on my third memoir. It still amazes me how much I learned in a few short years. This book was so much easier to start than the previous two.

The focus of your story should be the “main event.” In telling your readers about that main event you want to be sure to answer all what’s, when’s, why’s, where’s and how’s.

There are several techniques for adding back and forward story to your manuscript. One is to use flashbacks. Some writers use a series of memories and others use dialogue with someone who would be familiar with their past, perhaps a relative or an old friend.

Quote A professional writer is

Before writing my first memoir I read dozens of nonfiction books trying to figure out what my style was. It is up to you to find your own style.

The most important thing you can do is to start somewhere. Get that first draft out of your head and onto paper. Once you have the first draft finished you can go back and make revisions.

Happy Writing,


Quote Get ahead Get started

The release date for The Stranger In My Recliner is January 26, 2016! Pre-Release copies are available now:

High Res Stranger In My Recliner

He gently helped her back up onto her feet and then picked up what he thought were her grocery bags. After giving her a quick look over and insuring she had no injuries he insisted on giving her a ride home.

After asking her numerous times for her address and struggling not to get frustrated with her, Sophie finally admitted to him, she had no home to go to and nowhere to stay.

John called me to ask if he could bring a woman home for the night.  Not exactly the thing you expect your husband to call and request.

When Sophie walked through my front door that night I could not believe my eyes. She was a frail, filthy, and hunched over, eighty- year –old woman.

I made her a hot cup of tea and then went upstairs and prepared her a warm bubble bath. I gave her my favorite silk pajamas, clean underwear, a warm fluffy pair of socks and a thick robe.

What possibly could have happened to her, what sin or crime did she commit that left her no choice in the world but to trust complete strangers over family or friends? Imagining what in the world those possible sins and crimes were, scared me to my core.

My husband on the other hand is trusting to a frustrating fault. I admire his compassion and knew in my heart that keeping her safe and warm on that cold, wet night was the right thing to do no matter how she came to be in this situation. I could not help wondering why I had to be the one to do that particular right thing on that particular night.

I just kept saying to myself, no worries, she will only be with us until we can find a good home for her. I believed one of her relatives would show up and claim her. They would knock on our front door and tell us they had been searching for her and they could not thank us enough for taking care of her.

Sophie’s story is one of jealous, vindictive siblings, an abusive husband, and a sexual assault that resulted in a pregnancy, a kidnapping and bitter, unforgiving children. She was attacked by several younger homeless people and an Elvis impersonators girlfriend. She was left out in the cold by a deceiving judge who convinced her to care for his dying wife while he cheated on her and then by a group of lost souls that she devoted her life to serving.

As much as I felt we were getting to know Sophie and it was starting to feel like she was just another one of our ‘crazy’ relatives there was still so much that we didn’t know about her. After more than two-years how was it possible that she was still very much the stranger in our recliner?


Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

Random Acts of Kindness for Caregivers…

Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

When my mother-in-law became ill and could no longer be home alone, there was no question I would leave my job and care for her. When my father was diagnosed with cancer there was no doubt I would fly or drive from Pennsylvania to Florida as often as possible to help my mother with his care. From the minute my father was put into Hospice care until he passed away I personally cared for him.

Dad and Me

When one of my closest friends, Joelle was diagnosed with cancer another close friend, Tina and I drove to North Carolina to be with her. Joelle’s husband was in Iraq and she had two children. Tina’s children were grown and out of the house. She made the decision to leave her job and her husband to stay in North Carolina to care for Joelle and her family. I wanted to do whatever I could to help Tina. I visited as often as I could and chauffeured Tina back and forth for visits with her family.

November is National Caregivers Month. 40 million caregivers in the United States are unpaid and non-professional. They are often midlife women sandwiched between the needs of their parents and their own children.

Most caregivers neglect their own care for the sake of others. They don’t eat, sleep or exercise regularly and are often sad or depressed.

That’s why AARP created a community where caregivers can connect with experts and other caregivers and can find information and tools to take even better care of the person who once took care of them.

AARP LOGORandom Acts of Kindness for Caregivers

Kindness Random Acts

Do you know a caregiver that could use a random Act of Kindness?

Identify someone in your life or in your community who is serving as a caregiver and do something nice for them. It doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive, just a small gesture that makes a caregiver’s life a little easier

We’re also asking that participants share their story with us. If they submit a 150 word or less summary of how they made a caregiver feel special and photo, they’ll be entered to win a cash prize from our $10,000 pot.

             “This is a sponsored post on behalf of Element Associates and Midlife Boulevard.”

     For more info watch this short clip:









Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

How to get your book or blog on TV

Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr


Typewriter Pink

Wednesday is the day I like to share information, tips and inspiration with writers and bloggers. The kind of information that I wish someone would have shared with me back then.

How To Get Your Book or Blog On TV

I’ve written a lot about how important it is for us writers to have a marketing plan for our writing. Your plan should include advertising (paid for TV, radio, print, mailings, internet etc…), promotions (events like book release parties, book signings and products that promote you and your writing such as pens, mugs, tee shirts) and public relations. Public Relations is the part of marketing that cultivates and maintains a favorable and credible public image of you and your work.

Media appearances fall under PR. Your paid advertising will be much more effective if it is done in conjunction with a series of TV and radio appearances.

The difference between the two is advertising is about selling your book, product or blog and media appearances are about gaining credibility so people will want to buy what you are selling. To put it simply during a TV interview you should not even mention your blog, book or product. That is the job of the person doing the interview.

[The Buzz About Your Book Should Never Come From You]

How exactly do you manage to get an opportunity to do a TV interview?

Press Club Comcast 2

Think local. We all have to start somewhere. All of us dream of sitting in a chair next to Ellen or on that couch with Oprah and I will never be a dream crusher, because I believe it could happen! It would be a good idea to be prepared  when that call comes from Ellen.


You most likely have dozens of opportunities available in your own demographic.

Become an expert, first.  It is that simple. Writers do a lot of research and a side effect of all that research is learning. What do you write about? If you write romance novels would you call yourself an expert on romance? The possibilities are endless. Perhaps a TV host is doing a segment on the most romantic locations for a date. If she or he isn’t planning the segment you should pitch the idea. Suggest they air it during the week leading up to Valentine’s Day. I’m sure you can come up with a few ideas for romantic dates! Maybe you write a book review blog. Why not pitch a segment on new releases by local and national authors. No matter what you write about if you think of ways to tie your writing in with what is current in your area, the possibilities are endless.


Watch all of your local morning shows

 Local weekend shows

Local morning, afternoon and evening news segments

Watch local cable programming, many colleges and high schools now have their own TV studios and the shows they produce are watched by parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends and neighbors

local PBS and NPR stations.

Most of these will have a website with contact and pitching information.

Watch these shows carefully and familiarize yourself with the hosts and what they cover, before you pitch them. Check them out online but never pitch online. While researching keep your eyes open for the names of the producers. The producer is the one you want to pitch if possible. In most cases the producer is the one responsible for booking guests.

When writing a pitch, remember first and foremost the producers are interested in what their audience wants not what you are selling. Pitch your expertise not your book or blog. In the very short bio section of your pitch you should list your book and any other publications.

Write your pitch with the audience in mind. Explain why your segment will be relevant to them, not relevant to the host of the show. Be creative when coming up with the idea for a segment. Think about what is currently in the news, upcoming holidays, events, pets, parenting, social media, food, like I said the possibilities are endless.

When the call or email comes, before freaking out be sure to ask what color you should wear on set!

At the end of the segment the host will thank you and mention where viewers can find your book or blog and how they can find out more about you. They may even put a link to your site on theirs.

Be sure to share the appearance on social media and ask for a link to the podcast so you can share the actual segment.

Be sure to send a thank you card.

Good Luck and Happy Writing,







Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

Library Humor…

Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

I want to introduce you to humor writer and librarian, Roz Warren. We have been Facebook friends for quite a while and to my delight, over the summer we met in real life at a lovely tea house to celebrate the release of mutual friend, Cathy Sikorski’s  book Showering With Nana (good book)

Cynwyd tea room

About Roz


Roz is dubbed the world’s funniest librarian. She started her career as an attorney and left to take a job at her local library because “I was tired of making so damn much money.” Now that is funny! She has no regrets.

She writes for The New York Times, The Funny Times, The Christian Science Monitor, The Jewish Forward and the Huffington Post. She’s been featured on the Today Show twice!

Roz is the editor of the ground-breaking Women’s Glib humor collections, including titles such as The Best Contemporary Women’s Humor, Men Are From Detroit, Women are from Paris and When Cats Talk Back. Our Bodies, Our Shelves is her thirteenth humor book.

Interview Questions

Bala Cynwyd Library

Are you famous at your library? Does anyone ask for your autograph?

I’m not famous — yet. Most of our patrons have no idea that I’ve written a book about them! I was on the Today Show a couple of years ago, and basically went from being interviewed by Savannah Guthrie on live TV in front of 5 million people to my library shift, where I checked out books for patrons who’d just seen me on TV. It was fun watching them try to wrap their minds around that.


Thirteen humor books wow! Have you considered a serious book maybe a memoir? Perhaps a novel?

Some writers are long distance runners. Others are sprinters. I’m definitely a sprinter. My ideal day is to write an essay in the morning, send it an editor, then have it accepted and published by day’s end.  And then — a check in the mail! Lots and lots of instant gratification. I don’t have the patience it takes to write a novel. (Maybe some day I will?)


Where did you grow up?

I grew up in Detroit. It was a great place to grow up. And then a great place to leave.


Where you raised in a ‘reading’ or a ‘writing’ family?

My dad was a psychoanalyst and my mom was a librarian and they were both big readers. Weekly trips to the library were a very big deal. I spent my childhood with my nose in a book.


Do you prefer writing or having written?

I love them both. I love the feeling of having written something that really works. But nothing beats the fun of actually writing.


Are you working on a fourteenth humor book?

I’m working on a new collection.  WOULD YOU ASK A LIBRARIAN FOR A LAP DANCE? Which is also the title of my most popular library-based humor piece.


Where is your favorite place to write?

The only place I write is at my desk in my office at my computer. I don’t own a lap top.


Do you have a favorite writing snack and/or drink? Coffee, tea or wine? Sweet or Salty?

I don’t snack or drink when I write. There’s no point. I’m too focused on what I’m doing to remember to eat or drink. But I almost always “jump start” a writing session with a cup of strong black coffee. I write in the morning. I wake up, enjoy coffee over a magazine or book, then head for the keyboard.


Many libraries are experiencing an epidemic of homeless people using their facilities. Is this happening in your library?

Everyone is welcome in our library. Whether you are homeless or not is none of our business, and we don’t ask. We definitely have regulars who spend most of their time under our roof and don’t seem to have anywhere else to go. But we much prefer them to those patrons who live in large homes but scream at us about having to pay fines!


My Review

Author ROZ WARREN Cover

Our Bodies, Our Shelves: A Collection Of Library Humor [Humor Outcasts Press 2015]

Four –years ago, before becoming an author I was under the impression/misconception that libraries where hanging on for their dear book laden lives. I was ridiculously mistaken.

Libraries are alive and well and combined they are the largest book buyer in the world.

Another misconception I had was in thinking that librarians were plain, boring people. Boy was I wrong.

Our Bodies Our Shelves is a compilation of essays written by humor writer and librarian Roz Warren covering her observations and experiences working in a library in the affluent suburb of Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania.

While reading Our Bodies, Our Shelves I was extremely grateful that I never lied about or squawked about paying a fine for an overdue book. If I had I could have easily been portrayed negatively yet hilariously in one of these essays.

Some of the short essays in the book left me saying, “Oh my did this really happen, some made me smile and others had me laughing hysterically.”

The book is quite educational I learned that if you borrow a GED study guide and don’t return for three –years, you can actually be arrested, if you live in Texas or several other areas. I also learned I should start to envision the tag sale and the comments from patrons to the sale after my demise and I am purging and/or adding belongings accordingly.

If you happen to know Roz and decide to visit her at the library and she acts a bit strange, be kind. She suffers from face blindness and has no idea who you are. It’s a real thing.

This book for me was an enlightening, easy and delightful read.

Do you have a library story? When is the last time you were in a library?

To order Our Bodies Our Shelves-

To learn more about Roz visit her website-

Connect with her on Facebook:


Happy Reading,
















Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

Festival of Lights…

Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr Welcome to Friday Fragments. If you haven’t fragged before, Friday Fragments is the place to share those thoughts, quips, and tidbits that happened in your week but don’t quite make a whole post, e.g. fragments.

Traci hosts every Friday and we would love for you to join in.

To link up:

A Star in My Own Universe – Shining Brightly for All to See

Shining Brightly for All to See


This time of year the weeks seem to start running into each other and I find myself constantly checking the calendar and the clock and being astonished every time. The holidays are only a few weeks away. As much as I love them they do come with their own brand of stress.

I am SO grateful my daughter and son-in-law are hosting Thanksgiving. They always do a great job and I just have to show up and play with the kids.

Speaking of the holidays have you done any shopping yet? I have 13-grandchildren so I start early and I am always looking for the best deals on what they really want. I am a little less than half done.

I spent the day with my first granddaughter today.  She is so busy with school and work and her boyfriend, I jump at the chance when she asks.

Allysons Pumpkin

Allyson Rae

This weekend we are invited to a friends’ house to celebrate Diwali, the Indian festival of lights. It is celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs and Jains in India and around the world. It is dedicated to the triumph of goodness over evil and knowledge over ignorance. It also honors the goddess of wealth. There are fireworks, candles, and food. I have no idea what to expect but celebrating goodness over evil sounds good to me.


I just read that 35% of the ACA insurance providers are going out of business in January. Customers will be left with no coverage, including cancer patients in treatment, one of which is a family member. Frightening.

So far I am doing okay with NaNo (National Novel Writing Month.) The goal is to have 50,000 words written before the end of the month. I have 26,700 so far, ½ way there. I am hoping to get some extra done this week so I don’t fall behind with Thansgiving.

Have a blessed weekend,




Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

Marketing, Advertising and PR

Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr


Typewriter Pink

On Wednesday’s I like to share information I picked up on my path to publishing, marketing and preparing to publish again. Information that I wish someone would have shared with me, back then.

 Author Marketing Plans

No matter where you are with your writing, even if you are just starting out, whether you are self, independently or traditionally published, marketing should be on your mind very early on in your process.

Marketing is the process for creating, communicating, selling and delivering your product (book) to customers and for managing customer (reader) relationships in ways that benefit. It requires coordination, planning and implementation.

Before creating your plan you will need to:

Establish your goals

Determine your target audience

Research your competition

Research advertising costs

Consider strategies

Choose a timetable

Set a budget.

 A good marketing plan includes paid advertising, promotions and public relations.

Award Talk of the Town

Keep in mind when planning your timetable that most print publications (other than newspapers) require a long lead time for placing ads. Some magazines are laid out months in advance of their publication date. Internet banner ads can sometimes have a long lead time too. Radio and T.V. producers book guests well in advance. Most book stores schedule readings and book signing’s well ahead of time as well. Conferences also book speakers and presenters months in advance.

Advertising & Promotions are the paid communication about your book through direct mail, print media, radio, television and the internet. An integral part of marketing, advertising is the process used to motivate buyers. Advertising can be expensive. It takes diligent research to come up with advertising outlets that reach your target audience and fit within your budget.

Bookmarks photo

When considering your marketing budget remember to include promotional materials like business cards, postcards, postage, bookmarkers and other promotional items, advertising, travel a launch party, web site, and professional organization memberships to name a few. If you are publishing with a traditional or an Indy publisher they may cover some of advertising cost, chances are the bulk of it will be up to you. Some authors self-publish and feel they can skip the advertising step. They say, “I cannot afford it.” To this I say publishing is a business. It is absolutely possible to sell books without advertising, most likely one at a time. One well placed add can sell hundreds.

Public Relations (PR) is the professional action that presents you and your book to the public, stores, and the media including social media in the best possible light and managing the spread of the information about you and your book. These actions also include:

writing press releases

pitches to T.V. and radio producers

event management

designing promotional materials

book cake 3

Tips for writing Press Releases

If you have the budget to hire a professional to write and submit your press releases for you, they are well worth the money. If a professional isn’t in your budget here are some tips on writing and submitting press releases.

The fact that you wrote and published a book is not ‘newsworthy’ to most media outlets. They are looking for news that is of interest to their entire audience. The main thing you have to remember when writing a press release is you are informing the audience of something important to them, you are not promoting your book (that would be considered advertising.) What expertise or insight have you gained from writing your book? If you wrote a book about your transition from the corporate world to owning a bakery perhaps your angle could be ‘the pros and cons of opening a small business in (name of town,) or tips on how to have a memorable celebration. The possibilities are endless but you should choose 2 or 3 and stick with them. The second thing to remember is to be concise and professional. The third thing is to send it to the right place. Do the research. My suggestion is to start small, think close to home. Your small hometown paper, magazine or newsletter is a great place to start. On most media websites you can find a place to submit press releases. Does your alma mater have a paper, your church? Once you have submitted to these local publications submit to 3 or 4 city papers closest to home. You can expand from there.

It isn’t a good idea to pay someone who promises to distribute your press release. It is time consuming but you are better off looking up the publications and submitting to them yourself.

Make sure the publication is right for ‘your news.’ If it isn’t something their readers would be interested in, you are wasting your time and theirs.

Use simple words.

Do not submit press releases more than once a month unless the news is really big.

Tips on format:

Your headline has to be fabulous and should be no more than 8 words. You only have about 15 words to grab an editor’s attention so the headline counts big-time.


Next you want to put your first choice for the date you want the release to be published. Most people put, For Immediate Release.

Next you want to write an introductory paragraph. Press releases are written in third person. If you are announcing a book event, mention that and the host and any other authors involved. Think hooking the reader here.

Next you want to go more into ‘the news of your release,’ answering the what, why, when and where questions. Remember you cannot ‘sell’ in a press release so don’t mention where your book can be purchased. You want the ‘news’ of the release to be so good that the reader will go look for your book.

A short bio comes next and then you want to list your contact information. Let the editor know what contact information you want published and what information you don’t want published. I usually list only an e-mail publicly. If it is for a book event you can list the phone number of the book store or wherever the event is being held.

When a publication does publish your press release, thank them, promote them and share on social media.

And you thought writing the book was the hardest part didn’t you? Don’t get discouraged. Marketing is a bear, for sure but the key is to have a good, well researched, well implemented and realistic marketing plan.

Do you have any tips for figuring out who you target market is?

Happy writing,


The Official Release Date for The Stranger In My Recliner Is: January 19, 2016!

Review copies will arrive in 4 weeks!

Sophie Book Cover

“Before the angel of success arrives in your life, you should devote yourself to preparing your welcome for her. Polish your craft and strengthen your body to be fit so that you can do your job and enjoy success when it comes. Sharpen your mind and spirit so they are ready to face the challenges that accompany a visit from the angel of success.

If you are not ready when the angel knocks, she will flee. And who knows when she will make it back around to your door again.” Unknown

Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

Big News, Pie, Fragments and Wine…

Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

Traci has taken the reins at Friday Fragments!

Welcome to Friday Fragments. If you haven’t fragged before, Friday Fragments is a place to share those thoughts, quips, and tidbits that don’t quite make a whole post, e.g. fragments or frags. I host every Friday and would love for you to join in. Please link up and visit other Fraggers.



It looks like fall in the Philadelphia area but all week it has felt

more like summer. Today we are expecting a record-breaking –eighty-degrees. I love it!

The cold front arrives tomorrow:(

Fall in Delco

We finally got to one of our grandson’s football games. His team was 5-0 and yesterdays game should have been their 6st win but one of the referees made a terrible call so the game ended in a tie. I am not a fan of any kind of yelling and screaming at any kid’s event but the call was so blatantly bad I wanted to scream. 6-year-old Adriana did not hold back.

Adriana sticking tongue out

I finally received the official release date for The Stranger In My Recliner. It is January 19, 2016. If you signed up to do a review back in July, the review copies will be available in 4-weeks and you should have them shortly after. The real work starts now, there is so much to do for the book launch and the holidays are practically here too!

We are 6-days into NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) where 1000’s of writers attempt to write 50,000 words in 30-days. I am slightly behind but intend to catch up if not get ahead over the weekend.

I just turned my AC on. I tried not too but I failed.

A friend, Michelle Leonard aka the Hat Lady, invited several friends and me to do a pie tasting. She purchases holiday pies for her real estate clients (and there are many of them because she is fabulous) and she wanted to choose the best.

Pie tasting selfie

Her home is lovely and the table, oh my!

Pie tasting table

We started with 5-slices of pecan pie from different bakery’s and wine to cleanse our pallets. That was easy. The winning slice was so much better than the other 4-slices and I cannot wait to try her cupcakes!


Next was pumpkin. The winner there was:

I was most excited to try the apple and it was such a tough choice because there are so many varieties of apples and apple pies. For us it came down to the crust. The winner was:

I only took a few bites of each slice but honestly I’m okay with not even seeing pie or wine until Thanksgiving. Okay maybe that is too drastic, and this weekend is more realistic!

Happy November All,


Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

Writing Side Effects…

Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

IWSG badge 2

The first Wednesday of every month is officially

Insecure Writer’s Support Group day #IWSG

Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your writing doubts and the fears you have or have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time.

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

To join us, sign up here:

IWSG badge

 Visit our Facebook Page here:

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

Wednesday is also Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Writing Wednesday is the day I like to share what I have learned on my journey from writing to publishing to marketing my first book and then doing it again. The type of information I wish someone would have shared with me, back then.


I gave up worrying, two-years ago, anxiety last year (still a work in progress but I will get there) and one of my 2016 goals is going to be to give up insecurity for good.

Who’s with me?

Insecurity is a feeling that is triggered when we think we are either vulnerable or inferior or have a sense that our self-image or our ego is about to be threatened.

With a best-selling book having its 4th birthday next week and a new book being released soon, you would think I would have my insecurities under control. I feel embarrassed to admit that my insecurities do take brief breaks but this month they are on steroids.

It’s the new book, production was a nightmare and I am not confident it is the best it can be.

It could be the old book.

Maybe it’s NaNo. I am participating this year in a non-official kind of way with a Facebook group of mostly nonfiction writers and my 3rd book is now four-days underway.

NaNoWriMo logo

Then there is my blog. I have been so busy writing books, ghostwriting, writing content for others I feel like I haven’t been posting ‘serious’ or ‘heartfelt’ posts on my own site.

Could it be the fiction, short story I wrote for the IWSG anthology? I say I want to write fiction but what if I suck at writing made-up stories? I felt extremely vulnerable submitting the piece but I submitted it, so that is something, right?

I know insecurity is a side effect of being a writer or in any creative field but I am so ready to give it up.

Do you think it’s possible for us?

Maybe this #Supergirl bracelet made for me by friend, entertainment writer Kelly Deeny will work.

Supergirl Bracelet

Happy writing,


  • I will be hosting the #IWSG next month!


Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

Happy Hour, Hayrides and lots of words…

Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

Traci has taken the reins at Friday Fragments!

Welcome to Friday Fragments. If you haven’t fragged before, Friday Fragments is a place to share bits and pieces of your week, those thoughts, quips, and tidbits that don’t quite make a whole post, e.g. fragments or frags. I host every Friday and would love for you to join in. Please link up and visit other Fraggers.

Friday Fragments logo

Bits and pieces of my fragmented week…

Last Friday I had the opportunity to chat with girlfriend, Annmarie Kelly on her Happy Hour radio show. It was exciting to go into the studio this time instead of chatting on the phone. I come in at around 41.80 but the guest before me was interesting too. Marnie was thriving on Wall Street when diagnosed with the BRCA mutation gene. A masectomy and subsequent reconstruction led to the development of the Billow Pillow. You’ll love hearing her story of success-devastation-success. The pillow is pretty ingenious!




After listening to the show, if you have a suggestion for a Happy Hour guest or topic, Email Annmarie Kelly at and use Radio Guest in the subject line.

Here’s the link! The show was 10/16/2015-

After the show Annmarie and I went out for Happy Hour of course, and it was so nice to catch up.

There’s an orchard in our town that has an amazing playground, a petting zoo, farm store, garden shop and so much more. They have a festival every fall and of course hay rides. The hayrides at Linvilla Orchard are perfect for us because they aren’t scary. This was the third –year we took three of our granddaughters. Each year the lines seem to get longer but they move quickly and we had a great time. I am not looking forward to them getting too old for the happy witch’s house.

Avery Morgan Payton hayride

L/R Morgan, Peyton Elizabeth and Avery

Before our visit to the happy witch’s house I went to a Supergirl party. Supergirl is a new series on CBS, Mondays. The cast is very interesting and the first show was good. Entertainment writer, jewelry designer and all around friend and supergirl herself, Kelly hosted the girlfriend get together.


The #EAGLES game was depressing.

Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday I worked on my fiction piece for an anthology. The deadline is quickly approaching. It took some work to get there but my editor and I both like the way the story is coming together. I hope to have good news on that soon.

On Thursday I attended the Temple University Alumni Luncheon. I am freaked out that every time I visit, the buildings look newer but I keep getting older. The energy on campus was electric because the football team is 7-0 and will be playing Notre Dame this weekend. I like Notre Dame but I am definitely rooting for the Owls. Lunch with Press Club friend Marianne and Wolf Blitzer was pretty cool too. He is a really nice guy. The only thing I don’t like about these alumni functions are the food. Dear Lord they look lovely but eck. It was a tomato with bits of eggplant, bits of squash and covered in pieces of yucky flower and bitter vinagarette.

Temple 3 Wolf and Marianne

Marianne and Wolf Blitzer

Temple 4 Me

Me outside the Mitten Building at Temple

Temple Lunch 2

That lunch…

Bristol boyz Stomp is in its fourth printing and the new copies are on the way to Amazon and all of the other booksellers. I am SO grateful to everyone that has read and talked about this book!

It’s back to writing for me so I can enjoy a weekend of kids, costumes, candy and lots of football, oh and NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) starts on Sunday. Yes I am out of my mind. 50,000 words will be written by me during November, yikes!

What do you have planned for the weekend?




Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

Sharpening my pencils…

Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Wednesday is the day I share what I have learned on my journey from writing to publication, marketing and writing and publishing again. If you have any questions please feel free to leave them in the comments and I will do my best to answer them. If you have any tips please share them with us…

NaNoWriMo Preparations

NaNoWriMo logo

Year after year I have watched from afar in awe of writers from all over the world that have declared November; National Novel Writing Month. They devote the entire month to writing a first draft of something.

Basically, you sign up and agree to write 50,000 words between the 1st and 30th of November.

It is not as easy as it sounds, definitely a challenge.

If you have ever wanted to write a book, I encourage you to simply jump in and go for it.

This year I am going to participate, but in my own way. I’ve joined a small Facebook group. Most of us in the group are nonfiction writers. I will be working on the second draft of my 3rd book.  It’s our own spin on things but the challenge is the same, 50,000 words in 30 days.

Quotes Just Write Dont worry

It’s only a few days away and I’m wondering what I’ve gotten myself into?


To prepare for NANO I am:

  •  Practicing by writing 1500 words a day for a week.
  • Formatting my manuscript, Times New Roman, 12point, double spaced.
  • I almost always work from an outline. Not this time. I am scrambling to at least come up with chapter titles and opening paragraphs, enough to keep me from getting stuck.
  • Scrambling to finish a few of the projects I have with November deadlines.
  • Made sure I bought (a lot of) extra Halloween candy.
  • I stocked up on my favorite flavored hot chocolates, French Vanilla, Amaretto and chocolate mint.
  • One of my favorite writing snacks is grapes, cheeses and crackers and of course I need to stock up on wine for the late nights of writing to catch-up.

I really need this challenge and I’m hoping that win or lose I at least get myself back into a productive writing routine.

Are you in? Do you have any last minute suggestions?

Happy Writing,









Email, RSS FollowShare on Tumblr
Shop Amazon
Enter your Email:
Preview | Powered by FeedBlitz
  • Never Say Never September 20, 2015
    In the past few years (and recently), I've changed my life in some significant ways (significant for me, anyway). Five years ago, I would have bet you $100 that I would NEVER be doing the following today:*Working out every day (and loving it!)*Getting up at 5am to work out (This is seriously shocking to me.)*Drinking […]