Category Archives: Little Things

5 prompt Friday

         Here we go again…

  1. The empty feeling in my stomach spread to my chest and head, threatening to pull me inside out.
  2. How do I say this to you?
  3. On her wrist was a bracelet made from multi-colored paperclips.
  4. His voice crackled through the walkie-talkie, “The Eagle Has Landed.”
  5. Are you ready to do this?

Have a story or prompt to share? Post it here : ) Happy writing!


Join my tribe—subscribe. Yo!

Leave a comment

Filed under 5 Prompt Friday, Advice, Author Interviews, Believe, books, characters, Commit to 3, contests, Creative Essays, Deadlines, Education, emotion, Events, Fiction, Friday Finds, Fun Stuff, Get Published, Give Aways, goals, Inspiration, Little Things, Lost Things, Markets, NaNoWriMo, Non Fiction, Novels, Organization, Perseverance, Platform/Marketing, procrastination, Queries, Reader Wednesdays, Rest, teaching, Thankful Thursday, The Motherhood Muse, Uncategorized, Voice, writer markets, writers, writers block, writing inspiration, Writing prompts, Writing Space, Young Adults

Commit to 3 (goals)

I’m back, baby!

I completed my circuit training 3x this week and worked on my novel’s Matrix revisions, though that is still in progress, plus, I responded to a parent regarding my Summer Writing studio, though I still need to send an announcement to my entire young writer email list.

I changed my salary and instead of a pedicure bought: Revising & Self-Editing by James Scott Bell and Italian Phrasebook by LonelyPlanet (for my novel!)

How did you guys do last week?

This week, I commit to:

  1. Get up early to circuit train 4x
  2. Send Summer Studio announcement via email AND contact two local publications for advertisement
  3. Find an exercise in Revising & Self-Editing to apply to Half Moon Bay novel

My Salary:  Two hours of uninterrupted writing time on Saturday morning at the library. *happy dance*

What’s on your plate this week? You’d be surprised what you can accomplish just by writing it down!


Subscriber list  is G-R-O-W-I-N-G! Join in the fun. (Click SUBSCRIBE at top of the page) C’mon, all the cool kids are doin’ it…

Leave a comment

Filed under Commit to 3, goals, Little Things

Live a little

At some point during your search for the meaning of life, don’t forget to do a little living.”

~From a Thousand Paths to Tranquility

Ways to live and gather fodder for writing:

walk around your neighborhood:  last summer my boys and I came across a garage sale that was winding down, seriously, the elderly owners were sipping glasses of wine and listening to the radio – they let the boys rummage through their dollar box and take what they wanted. relative to writing: character sketch in progress…

smile at strangers: just today I was deciding between two purses while shopping at Marshalls and a woman struck up a conversation with me, reccommended the red purse (which I agreed and  bought!) and she said I looked fun and the red suited me. huh. what do others see when they see you?

relative to writing: could be an essay there..

take a different form of transportation: ever watch people on the train? bus? while biking or hiking? not only the people, but your point of view changes if your normal route is sped up or slowed down outside your window.

relative to writing: create a new world for your story to emerge

hang out: with friends, family, your kids! your pets! “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” and you know what happened to Jack… don’t be dull. find yourself – find the people who help bring out the self you love and fill you with life.

relative to writing: journal-journal-journal about relationships, communicating, silly things, revelations, lost dreams, found dreams
How are you living? How does it affect your writing?
Like me! Tweet me! SUBSCRIBE to me! Pick one or all three: everyone’s a winner ; )

Leave a comment

Filed under Little Things, Rest, writers block

Thankful Thursday


Back in the swing of things, I have many things/people to be thankful for.

Today, I’m thankful for….

Some great online writing buddies who listened to me while my head exploded during the last few weeks. How about visiting their blogs/sites? They’re are AMAZING writers, moms and friends:









Despite my hiatus, I gained MORE subscribers! Thanks to “Madison Woods” and “Lupine Linda” 🙂

Sweet-smelling spring breezes in the midst of a hot summer week in Chicago!

L..O..N..G Holiday weekend to write, read and hang with family

The wicked-cool $1.99 book deals I found on (Bought about 13 books for under $25!!)

What are you Thankful for today?


Filed under Little Things

I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you… we are in charge of our attitudes.” ~Charles Swindoll

David (left) with friend Nick

On Friday, June 11 at 3:20pm, our pediatrician diagnosed our 11-year-old son with Type 1 Diabetes. We knew something was amiss when David awoke several times a night to go to the bathroom, drank water practically by the bucket and was an emotional wreck (depressed, angry, bored, tired, combative) all within an hour’s time span.

His blood sugar count was “High” and he had ketones in his urine. The Dr. sent us to the ER. We spent 3 days in the Pediatric unit. David is doing just fine, so please don’t worry.
He doesn’t look sick and he doesn’t act sick. We caught it early and with proper diet and insulin (4x a day) he will be just fine.  We each have had our “breakdowns” and every day is a little bit better.

Family poured in to help: watching our youngest son, feeding our pets, bringing goodies to cheer David in the hospital, driving me home so my husband could stay (I had become violently ill on Day Two and the nurse sent me home to rest and get well. Seriously. Everything at once.)

It’s funny how you don’t know how loved you are until something unfortunate happens. And that is what this diagnosis is. Unfortunate. It’s not life-threatening, it’s really just going to be a pain in the ass. Measuring foods, counting carbs, double checking insulin calculations, reading everything we can, planning mealtimes and our daily routines/schedules in general, including travel and impromptu fishing/hiking excursions.

Because I believe that life is “90% the way I react to it,” here is a list of blessings in disguise.

The good things:

We will all be eating healthier in our household
We have several months to adjust to this disease before school starts again
We have a specialist (Pediatric endocrinologist) assigned to David
My work is very understanding and supportive about the time I need to take off
Our families live nearby and have stepped in to help in so many ways
Has forced us to slow down and cherish our real priorities
Puts everything into perspective

So, just wanted to share what was going on with me and my family over the last several weeks.  Thank you for your concern, prayers and cyber–chocolate! I knew my readers needed to hear this and be warned: a complete MELTDOWN may still be coming. Right now, I’m just learning how to take care of my child all over again.


Filed under emotion, Little Things, Perseverance

Thankful Thursday: Flashback

Thought I’d make this a weekly prompt – being thankful. I was inspired to write last week’s post when I  stumbled upon my scribblings in The Simple Abundance Journal of Gratitude (Sarah Ban Breathnach)

Flashback: excerpt from January 24, 2007

Grateful for…

  1. Guilty pleasures like reality TV and Oreos.
  2. Crossing a project off my to-do list
  3. Lounging on my over-sized couch
  4. The sweet smell of Freesia
  5. Knowing and have known some really cool, creative people

Track your own. Not only “thankful things” but fodder for writing, perhaps?

I’d be ever-so-thankful if you’d subscribe to my blog 🙂 <Click the link at the top of the page! Hear the choirs sing!>


Filed under emotion, Little Things, Writing prompts

Thankful Thursday – Share your gratitude

“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” 

~ William Arthur Ward 

It’s been a while since I’ve publically expressed my thanks for the many people, events and just little blessings that make me who I am.

So, thanks goes out to:

All of my faithful subscribers – you are the reason I strive to write valuable, insightful posts

Readers passing through – looking at my visits per day brings a smile to my writers’ soul

Inspiring comments – making connections is the TRUE reason I write and the comments you leave give me that sense of community

My gal pals of WPSS you know who you are: superwomen who encourage, kick butt and share this wild journey of writing while mothering. Love each of you and can’t wait till we meet in October!!

My amazing young writing students – you inspire me EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. Your ideas and stories fill me with that bubbling passion for the craft of writing – and teaching! Keep rockin’ out those words…

Fellow writing teachers – we share that strong bond of hope – hoping to reach one more student, reel one more in to the sea of storyland.  I gain strength knowing there are more of us out there, each with our own net. Please tell me how I can give back to you!

Twitter – I know this is silly, but Twitter has brought me mass info, contacts and camaraderie and I love having all of those at my fingertips!

My family – who encourages me, inspires me, makes me crazy yet keeps me grounded. All I do is for you : )

What are you thankful for today? Post it on your blog or comment here, but don’t keep the gift of thankfulness to yourself ; )


Filed under Believe, emotion, Inspiration, Little Things

2009: Which goal(s) did you meet?

“If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much.”

Jim Rohn 1930-2009, Author and Speaker

Did this year fly by for anyone else? Summer in Chicago was cool and mild at best, the Halloween festivities lingered in the air until it was time for Christmas shopping and now, the New Year is knocking. The weeks and months seemed to have melded together and floated off like puffs of dandelion seeds. So, when I sat down to chronicle all that I completed this year, I was doubtful my list would add up to much. Funny thing about lists, what feels repetitious and ordinary becomes quite an extraordinary display when lined up together.

Wanna see?

Little Things I accomplished in 2009 (towards my writing/teaching goals)

  •  Won 1st Place in a Fiction Writing contest, placed as Honorable Mention in two others
  • Attended 2-day AWP Conference in Chicago; had lunch with mentor, Christina Katz : )
  • Created and taught one-week Summer Writing Studio for Young Writers
  • Hosted Young Writers’ Public Reading at Downers Grove Library
  • Began FREE monthly Young Writers’ Groups at Barnes & Noble
  • Critiqued several short stories for my young writing students
  • Began writing my 3rd novel (NaNo)
  • Won numerous novels and writing reference books and a membership to an online writers’ group by blogging and posting and “tweeting”
  • Met numerous authors, editors and organization heads via the online community
  • Celebrated 1 year anniversary for both of my blogs with 60k + visitors to this blog alone!
  • Volunteered as Executive Board Member for Capitol City Young Writers (duties incl. conf calls, brainstorming and implementing new ideas)
  • Acted as Editor for Write On! (CCYW’s Qtrly Newsletter)
  • Invited to write my own column for The Motherhood Muse (first issue debuts on 1/1/2010)
  • Taught 2 Young Writers’ classes for FRoG in Winter ’09 and one in Fall ’09
  • Essay, Cravings, published in Underwired Magazine
  • Hosted Fathers’ Day essay writing contest on this blog
  • Made a valuable connection with the editors of WOW! Women on Writing and have been become a regular partner in their author blog tours
  • Created Facebook FanPage for WriteLike CRAZY
  • Taught an in-school writers’ workshop for Ms Courtright’s 4th grade class
  • Met with Mr. Casey, school principal to discuss afterschool program for young writers
  • Beginning discussions with board member of HGNA regarding journaling classes for 2010
  • Began dream of renting blue building on Maple & Main for a young writers’ studio
  • Obsession, short story, published on
  • Got caught up and came back down from Twitter addiction
  • Began plans for women writers’ retreat in Oct 2010

So, what did you all accomplish in 2009? I guarantee it’s more than you think! Share with us!


Filed under goals, Little Things, Uncategorized

Sometimes life just gets in the way

{photo courtesy of The Work}

{photo courtesy of The Work}

So sorry, readers, for not posting my series “what I learned this week” on Friday.  I actually have about a word doc page and a half of links and other juicy tidbits to share, but I’ll make this Friday (July 24) a double-feature!

What prevents you from posting, or from writing in general? Last week was quite hellish on the day job. Reports due to the big boss, which needed data from several field associates, who were being less than cooperative in getting said data to me on time. And so it goes… Watching travel and entertainment expenses, researching the best long distance phone plans and inexpensive shipping options. Ugh! You don’t want to hear about this monotony, right? Such is the muck that gets my creativity stuck.

domo_screams_150My weekend, however uneventful, was pleasant in that I had a lot of time outdoors. With my two sons. Up and down a hill on bikes, spinning in a grassy field, staring at clouds. Even some indoor activities like creating animations on a Domo website. These are the things that refuel my creativity. What non-writing related activities fill your writing well?


Filed under Believe, Little Things, procrastination, Rest, writers block

Food for Thought…

I’ve been feeling quite overwhelmed lately, taking on too much, deadlines seeping in from every corner and that good old “working mom guilt” to top it all off.

And then this quote greeted me in my in-box today:

“You cannot be really first-rate at your work if your work is all you are.”

Anna Quindlen, Essayist and Novelist

So, my goal for today (at least) is to PLAY!  

I invite you to play as well, then we’ll talk about how much fun we had…in tomorrow’s post ; )

Leave a comment

Filed under Advice, Believe, emotion, Fun Stuff, Little Things, Rest, writers block, writing inspiration