Saturday, February 16, 2013

I'm Busy - and I LIKE it!

Greetings Kind Reader,

Yes, that's right...I am so busy these days and I tell you what...I am absolutely LOVING it!  This is about the time that I beg your forgiveness for having been so remiss in not posting to my site for a little over 2 weeks - but not this time.  Nope.

And why?

Because over the past four or five months I've been able to dive into my writing like never before.  Sure there was about 3 weeks where I had to put it on the back burner because my daughter's school musical needed my attention (I am on the Board of the Booster Club and I have a rule - when it comes to family or always wins!) but once that was over, I tell you I got into this writing stride that has been exhilarating.

I even entered another writing contest - it was called 'Beat the Clock' and we were given a prompt that had to be used in some shape, form, or fashion within a short story that could be no more than 950 words (not including the title) and had to be completed in a very strict 24 hour time frame.  It was intense.  When I got that prompt on Feb. 2, I was so psyched.  And after I read it, an idea immediately popped into my noggin - and it wasn't anything that I would have expected because the prompt, I believe, was meant to generate ideas of a 'scary situation'.  My story wasn't anything like that!  Nope, again.  Oh, it did have something 'scary' in it BUT it was an honest scare - a real scare - something we all can relate to in one way or another.

When it was all done (Todd, Jessica, and 'Gma' Williams) gave me all the time I needed to get it done.  And at 1:30am (yes, AM) I sent it and and all that was left to do was wait.  So I waited.  It was a 'blind' judging meaning the 4 judges had no clue who the writers were that submitted them so they wouldn't have any preconceived notions about what to expect (since many of the judges and contestants actually know each other)  I thought that was a pretty cool idea.

And when the list of winners came out - I was not one of them...didn't even get an Honorable Mention.  I'll be honest, it stung for about 5 minutes but then I said to myself 'Don't do that! You wrote something great, Brown! So, it's not what they were looking for?! Can't please all the people all the time!'  Weirdly - it worked.

Yeah, I know...who really ever believes those 'inner monologues'?  Typically, I don't and I let things gnaw at me.  But not this time because I was so proud of the story since it let me get back to my good old fashioned Southern story roots and I was able to envision the story in my head as if I was a kid listening to my dad tell me a story from so long ago.  In fact, I sort of got this sense that my dad was with me, reminding me about how writing should come from within and be true to who you are.

When we got the 'alright, go ahead and post your stories' OK, I posted my story, "We Interrupt this Program" on BookRix for my buddies to read and guess what...

It has gotten some rave reviews and lots of hearts (sort of like stars or thumbs up symbols) for it because it was WAY out of the box so far as the vast majority of the other stories submitted and because it was real.  Here's the link to read it if you'd like to read it:  "We Interrupt this Program..."  And if you enjoy it...leave me a little note!  I'd really appreciate it.

Of course, the contest isn't the only thing I've been working on.  Nope, for a third time!  I've been busy doing reviews of books on BookRix for my blog 'Magnolia Blossom Review' and I've been reading a fabulous book I'm going to review for a fellow author, Jess Wygle, who is on a 'blog tour'  (Oooh, I do hope my book 'Fly Home, Earli Byrd' gets selected for a book tour when it's done!)

That review will also have an interview with Jess, too.  And somehow, the folks heading up the blog tour are going to have freebies of my book "Kissing 101: A Guidebook for Men" available!  That's so flippin' COOL!  (K101 is humorous book for men who are in serious need of a 'kissucation' - and women think it's a hoot!)

Last but totally not least, is my Freelance Editing and Digital Media Promotion work...right now I'm working on some digital YouTube promos for some BR friends of mine as a way to build my portfolio because it takes a lot of attention to detail to create a visual marketing tool for a book and right now the only one I've got to show is mine that I created for K101!  (Now I've produced and edited LOADS of videos as well as audio CDs for my daughter's chorus as well as for her public performances with her music school only that's not 'promotion' work!  But, I've been told it's pretty dang good work!)

And then there's MY writing.  Oh, I cannot tell you how totally cool it is for me to open up the window shade early in the morning and sit at my little desk with ideas just about to burst out of my fingertips!  I've been working SO hard on my full length novel and  I'm really hoping to get it out SOON...but I also know that if I rush it just so it can be 'out there' sooner - I very well might wind up shooting myself in the foot.

Heck, Fly Home, Earli Byrd, is honestly - and I am totally NOT kidding - nearly 20 years in the making.  (Granted about 18 of those years it was stored away in a folder in my closet but still!) I suppose taking a few more weeks than I might want to take to get it P-E-R-F-E-C-T (okay, so it'll never be 'perfect' but ooooh, I'm shooting for as close to perfection as possible) won't be so bad.

Gosh, look at this...I've been rambling on and on about my writing that I didn't get to write the goofy story I'd planned on writing about one of my dearest friends from my childhood, Jeanna McClannon, and the day her mother, Francis, introduced me to what has to be THE MOST AMAZINGLY TASTY DIP - in the world...Hidden Valley Ranch dip back in 1981.  Oh Lord, now that was an awesome day.

THAT, I CROSS MY HEART AND PROMISE WILL BE THE NEXT POSTING HERE ON WHEN A SOUTHERN WOMAN RAMBLES!!  (Oh, Lordy, I hope I'm not setting myself up for a good old fashioned lightning strike)

And that's all I've got...til next time!