Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Favorite Season...

      I've always loved summer best of all, but right now, autumn has a strong hold on me, so like a little kid, this is my favorite. (for now anyway!)
       My writing friends are much to blame for my change of heart.
       Tami Wight and her family hosted our annual Fall Schmooze at Poland Spring Campground. Even though most of us only see each other once or twice a year, we've bonded in friendship and writing critique buddies. Before we get down to the business of writing we literally schmooze with pizza, wine, and plain ole catching up. Our guest for this fall was Sarah Dotts Barley, editor, Harper Collins....she's the cute blonde closest to you on the left. Then from left to right are dear dear writer friends,
Cindy Faughnan, Jo Knowles, Valarie Giogas, and Tami Wight.

    Saturday was a different story. It was truly a work day. Each of us brings a writing project to read. Then we take turns commenting, jotting notes, critiquing the piece. Jeanne Bracken has been our trusty timekeeper pretty much since we've  been getting together.  I kid you not, this is serious business!!!
 But we have to eat, right!?!? Besides being awesome writers and critiquers and supportive friends, we can cook. This year we had focaccia, mac and cheese, chili, caprese salad, home baked rolls, veggies, whoopie pies, raspberry bars, and much much more!!!!! And we always have to call someone in to take the group photo, always in front of the bookcase in the Poland Spring Room. Here we are-Font row: Mary Morton Cowan, Tami Wight, Sara Barley, Back row: Me,  Anna Boll, Denise Ortakales, Cindy Faugnan, Jeanne Bracken, Jo Knowles

Then I had to leave while the others continued working. Off to a nephew's wedding, practically right in my own back yard. The autumn colors enhanced the beautiful fall day.
Sunday afternoon was an apple picking kind of day with girlfriends. The orchards are open and the trees are heavy laden with so many varieties of crisp delicious apples. I picked Macs, Cortland, Red and Golden delicious. There are other varieties at different orchards around. The more I pick the more I have to bake!!!!
Then on Monday, my sister-in-law and I went on a glorious kayaking venture. The water was calm and crystal clear. I had to shoot was like the sky fell down, Henny Penny...look here, the clouds are in the water.

 We kept going and going and going-3miles up river and 3 miles back...and stopped to visit an old friend who lives along the way. We called her while paddling and she came down to her dock to chat while we stayed put in the kayaks.
  ...and one more glimpse of who we saw along the way-

      Now it's time for me to open up my WIP and get busy writing. I'm being held accountable since I signed up to Jonowrimo, a writing challenge that Jo Knowles puts out to writer friends.
       Have a happy day- I guess I can't worry about favorite seasons. See what I've found around me already, in just a few days of fall.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Letter of Merit - and in my case, Encouragement!

Yes, my Letter of Merit from the Society of Children's Writers and Illustrators came, finally! I say that, but it was so perfectly timed with the online edition of the society's newsletter. It looks from the date that
it sat awhile in an outbox, but that's came! I've read the meaningful words over and under and inside out!  "promise and creativity - extra recognition  - extra creativity - my manuscript!!!YEAH!!!!!! (sorry I couldn't hold that shout out back!)
And then on another sweet note, I won a critique from the wonderful children's author, Tara Lazar. How? Well it was actually by default, but honest default! I sent the most writers over to her site for her picture book story premise contest...and now to announce the winner... my friend Valarie Giogas won the contest. YeeHaw Val!!! We'll be seeing each other soon so we can dance a bit together!
     Our Schmooze at Poland Spring Campground is coming right up. It's a small gathering of children's writers where we work, play, eat, play....Actually, Saturday is a structured working day where we sit around and have timed sessions of reading and critiquing of each others work. Before and after are our social know, sociable writers!!!!! It's always fun, rewarding, and a learning experience. I'll post more later on, maybe with a few photos too.
      I love to post photos that I've taken so I'll leave you with this....September, 2011's Harvest Moon
     Sorry...this should have been posted yesterday but somehow I "filed" it. I will get used to Blogger!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

First Blogger Entry

I've been wanting to be a Blogger for awhile now. Thus far I'm a Live Journal poster and not so frequent, but today I want to share a Birth Day celebration with all of you... so here goes
 This (not yesterday) is the official release day of my friend Brenda's new book and I'm doing the happy dance as I introduce you to
A fun book with colorful words by Brenda, enhanced by the bright and colorful illustrations of David Slonin, produced byMarshall Cavendish. And if that isn't enough for them to celebrate, Scholastic book clubs will feature Turkeys in all their book orders...Truly, dreams do come true in author land!
I have  my copy...hand delivered and signed by Brenda herself!!!  You can visit her at
and see what's going on in turkey land-visits, readings, partys!!!!!!!
All I can say is CONGRATULATIONS to you my friend Brenda!

***Do you love a contest? Well then Gobble Gobble Gobble on over to Brenda's Face Book page and sign up to win two copies of 10 Turkeys in the Road-one for you and one for your favorite hospital. Sign up at Brenda Reeves Sturgis FB page - read the rules, but here's a little reminder. Don't forget to put the word Gobble and the title of the book in you entry.

Now I'll ask you to  bear with me my friends while I keep trying to get this Blogger thing under control. I'll be adding links and other good things as time goes on. I follow many of your blogs so will add them when I get my wits about me..with me, all this "stuff" takes time!

Let's dance, dance, dance,  and join Brenda's book contest and release party!!!!!!