Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Time Ain't On My Side

Thought for the day:  I think our house is haunted. Every time I try to look into a mirror, some fat old lady gets in front of me so I can't even see my reflection. 


Time for this old gal to try something new. The Insecure Writer's Support Group has been around for quite a while now, but up until now, I've been content to sit back as an observer. Well no more! The clock may be running down, dadgum it, but it's time to get my sorry butt off the bench and into the game before the buzzer sounds to end the game.

The first Wednesday of every month, participants write a pertinent ISWG post, and this month, for the first time, I'm one of 'em.(You can find a list of other insecure writers who are participating this month by clicking on that participants link.) 

Now then, let's start by addressing the basic issue of insecurity. Am I insecure, and if so, why? A gal named Sheila Kaye-Smith said it best: I am old enough to see how little I have done in so much time, and how much I have to do in so little.

Yep, that's it in a nutshell. I'm an old broad. I'm not particularly upset about being this old, because it happens to everybody, and there's a lot of good things to say about this time of life. But considering I've been an avid reader and writer my entire life, the fact that I've only published one novel in all these years is a wee bit disheartening. Not that I'm not happy with Hot Flashes and Cold Lemonade. I am. But for the most part, since it came out, I've been sitting back as an observer... just thinking about writing another book, and thinking about when I could find time to do it, instead of actually doing it.

No more! My butt is off the bench and back into that game, too. The thing is, I'm working on a trilogy. An ambitious undertaking at any age, but even greater for someone with nearly fifty years of marriage under her belt and a whopping crop of thirteen grandchildren. I mean, what if I don't live long enough to finish it?

I say... SO WHAT???

So far, I'm only about half-way through the first draft of book one. Maybe I'll live long enough to complete all three books; maybe I won't. But I am going to keep at it, because that's what writers do, right? We write. And for me, for now, the finally getting around to beginning another book is what matters most.

Thoreau said None are so old as those who have outlived enthusiasm. That I still have. In spades.

The question for this month is How do you find the time to write in your busy day?

Funny you should ask, because not finding time to write is the reason... no make that the excuse... I used for not getting started on this trilogy sooner. We all have twenty-four hours in a day, and how we use them is a good indicator of where our priorities lie. Trouble is, I wasn't prioritizing writing. At all. I've always been an early riser, but when I got up, I'd have a cup or two of tea, and read the newspaper. If my better half still hadn't shown his smiling face by the time I'd finished devouring the newspaper, I'd check emails. Once my hubby got up, it'd be time to cook breakfast and start the daily routine of chores. One thing would lead to another, and before I knew it, yet another day had passed without me writing a single word of my so-called Work-in-Progress. I made time to read, and time to write reviews, and time to edit for other writers, and to putz around in the blogosphere, but nothing... zip, zilch, zero... no time at all went into the book I supposedly wanted to write. I'd done tons of research in preparation, but when it came to the actual writing... I couldn't find the time.

Dumb, dumb, dumb!!!

Few things are as foolish as hoping old behaviors will somehow present new results. [Robin Sharma]

Clearly, if I wanted different results, I had to change my behavior.

Now? Those delicious early morning hours are spent with a cup or two of tea and my writing notebook. Every morning, I spend a peaceful hour or two with pen in hand, and it feels awesome!!! Now that I'm in the habit, and getting all wrapped up in my book, I'm even finding additional time here and there during the day, as well. Son of a gun! Time I didn't think I had was actually there all along. Bottom line? If you truly want to write, you will find the time.

                             Nice to meet you guys. It's fun to be part of a team again.

Now, for a quick tip of the hat to a gal who definitely knows how to find time to write. Not only has the lovely Julie Flanders written four terrific thrillers to scare the bejeezus out of us adults, (Polar Night, Polar Day, The Turnagain Arm, and The Ghosts of Aquinnah)  but she has now written something that's (ahem) the polar opposite. Tomorrow, her first children's picture book will be released. CONGRATULATIONS, Julie!

                                                                     Here's the scoop:


Baby Moo has a dream. He wants to travel the world and sing on the stage of the Sydney Opera House! While he loves his home at Sunrise Sanctuary, it hasn’t been the same since a piglet named Nathan showed up and stole all the attention away from Moo. Jealous of the new baby, Moo decides now is the time to make his escape and pursue his dream.
But the world outside the sanctuary gates is not quite the fun and exciting place Moo imagined, and he quickly finds himself in big trouble. Moo's friends Missy the dog and Ruthie the cat rush to help him, and land in some trouble of their own.
Lost and frightened, Moo and his friends must rely on each other to find their way back home. Will they ever see Sunrise again?

Release date: September 8, 2016 from Native Ink Press
Links:

Julie will donate $1 to Sunrise Sanctuary, home to Baby Moo and numerous other rescued animals, for each copy sold in September.

                        Here's wishing all the best to Julie Flanders and sweet Baby Moo. 


              [To my regular readers, this will be my only post this week. Seeya next Friday!]
{Oh, crap-a-doodle-doo. Turns out, I may be away from the computer for several days, so it may take me longer than usual to respond to your comments. Sorry. I'll get to your blogs asap.}

                            Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.

101 comments:

  1. This bookaholic is so very grateful to all the writers. And if ever you are feeling insecure, please remember you have the thanks and gratitude of all of us readers.

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    1. Me, too! As much as we enjoy losing ourselves in a good book, we'd be up the proverbial creek if nobody enjoyed writing them for us to read. (Nice of them, eh?)

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  2. Hi Susan - congratulations on joining the IWSG ... and yes we need to ensure we make the time to write ... and we are doing it for a reason - for our readers ... clear the chores and write! - cheers Hilary

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    1. Hi-ya, Hilary. Thanks. We've all been guilty of saying it at one time or another: "But I don't have the TIME to... " Turns out, we don't have to make time at all, because it's always been there all along. :)

      Cheers back atcha!

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  3. Awesome of you to join in with like-minded people. All the best!

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    1. Thanks! I dunno why, but the first thing that sprang to my mind is something an old stand-up comic used to say: "I wouldn't want to join a club that would have me as a member." HA! Luckily, the IWSG is very inclusive. :)

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  4. Welcome, Susan! So glad you joined! And you are right. If we want to find time, we will.

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    1. Thanks, Liza! I'm glad I finally got off my duff and joined what is obviously the best doggone online writers' group in the world.

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  5. You're writing a trilogy??? Woo-Hoo!!! I hope it goes extremely well :)
    Baby Moo's Great Escape sounds like a fun read.

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    1. Thanks! And it's waaaaay different from my first book.

      Julie's a terrific writer, and she has an enormous soft spot for animals of all kinds, so I'm sure her new book is terrific. From what I've seen of the illustrations, they're really super, too.

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    2. Thanks, River and thank you again, Susan!

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  6. Welcome to the IWSG! Sounds like you've got a great attitude. If we want to write, it's not about making time; no one can do that. We just have to use the time differently, and more productively. I hope we get further updates on how you're doing with your trilogy. Exciting times!

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    1. Thank you, dear sir. Attitude I've got by the boatload; all I need is to back it up with actual work. :)

      Yeah, I am kinda excited...

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  7. ILOVED Hot Flashes & Lemonade. I'm glad you're writing again. :)

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    1. Oops, forgot a word. It doesn't sound as cute without the 'cold' in it...but still intriguing. :)

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    2. Thanks, dear lady. You put a huge smile on my face. Heck, who needs "cold" when you're feeling that kinda warmth? :)

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  8. I just re-read Hot Flashes last week and was wondering when you were going to get off the pot and write another one. Good luck with the new books....

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    1. I feel honored that you liked it well enough to read it a second time. thank you, :)

      Yep, I've definitely been idling on the pot for far too long.

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  9. "I am old enough to see how little I have done in so much time, and how much I have to do in so little."
    That sums up a lot of feelings about life. Nice to see it written so succinctly.

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    1. I agree. There's a lot of wisdom and truth in that little quote.

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  10. Hey Susan, have you heard about the anthology I'm working on about aging. What you wrote in the beginning of your post would be a great start to an essay for it. What do you think? Shoot me an email if you want the details. And I wish you so much luck with your trilogy.

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    1. Hi-ya, Karen. Yeah, you wrote about your anthology on Facebook a while back. It sounds terrific. Not sure if I could "find time"... HA! If you truly think I could contribute anything worthwhile, I'd be happy to give it a whirl. I'll email you asap to get the details.

      Thank you, ma'm. :)

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  11. That is what one has to do, switch it up and the writing can come due. I have so many ideas I could live to be 100 and write every minute of every day and still not get them done, so meh, just ave to do what you can do, and hope we don't croak any time soon lol

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    1. Your head is so full of ideas, it's a wonder your neck can hold it up without wearing a brace. :)

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  12. The only way to get things done is to throw away the excuses and just do it. I have found that as the days go by I find myself coming up with very creative excuses to put most things off in my life. Somehow, though, when push comes to shove, at the last minute, like a gust of wind, I get my act together and things get done. However, you plan big, my dear Susan, and have excitement and love for what you do. I look forward to reading your trilogy and know that with your skill and talent, they will be great.

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    1. Ab-so-doggone-lutely! When it comes to a task that needs to be done, I rarely procrastinate, but when we're supposed to go somewhere, I must confess to dragging my heels. Funny thing is, once we GO, I always enjoy myself. It's that initial act of actually leaving the comfy cocoon we're living in that slows me down. (Turning into an old poop is what I am!)

      Thanks. I'm very excited about the story I want to tell in the trilogy. I hope you get to read it someday. :)

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  13. I love your post. It is so encouraging. Thank you.
    All the best.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat Garcia

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    1. Thank you. We all need all the encouragement we can get. Shalom.

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  14. Yay for Julie's book, and yay for you! My husband tells me all the time that the books I leave behind will be such a fun legacy for my kids and grandkids. Although I'm far from ready for the next generation, I think it's important to put a piece of ourselves out there for the future. And so, I'm all the more proud of you for going forward with gusto! You've got this.

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    1. Julie's book sounds terrific, doesn't it? :)

      Yes, writing... even these blog posts we write... gives us something to leave behind for our children and grandchildren to enjoy. There's a lot of comfort to be found in that.

      Thanks! I've got gusto! I do. I do! (Right after my nap...)

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  15. I'm glad you joined our group. I've only been in it a month and I have to say it is invigorating. Listening to other writer's talk about the stuff we all deal with. I love the honest and sincere tone of your post. Thanks for sharing.
    Best Wishes
    Jo-Ann Carson

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    1. Thanks! I'm glad we both joined. It's encouraging to know we aren't alone.

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  16. The lack of time is definitely no excuse to not give yourself time to write. You go, girl!

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  17. Don't worry about not finishing your trilogy! Just keep copious notes and I'm sure Brandon Sanderson can help you out. ;-)

    Good luck in your endeavours! Keep putting words to paper and you'll always have something to show for it.

    IWSG September

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    1. HA! I may be keeping copious notes, but I doubt if Sanderson or anyone else could make heads or tails out of them. :)

      Thanks. That's the plan... :)

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    2. Well, darn, Mr. "festering cesspool of positivity and optimism." I was unable to post a comment on your post. :( Sorry about that, but some Google+ accounts don't let me comment, and your was one of 'em.

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  18. Love your post, your attitude, and your age. I'm an old broad, too. Kudos for knowing what you want and not being intimidated.

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    1. Thanks. Being an old broad ain't half bad, is it? :) (Beats the alternative, anyway!)

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  19. Hi, Susan,

    WELCOME to our club! LOL..... Great that you are penning a trilogy. You'll finish it BECAUSE you are a stubborn OLD BROAD! LOL. How exciting. Now I need to do the same and sit my butt down and RECLAIM my writing time. Soon I hope..

    Kind of vegging after an insane year of rehabbing m loft. I put the last coat of enamel on the woodwork on Monday afternoon. A year and one month of sheer hell.

    But now it's done and time for a new project....

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    1. Hi-ya.

      Well, yes, Michael. You know me too well. I AM a stubborn old broad. :)

      I'm glad to hear your loft rehab is finally coming to an end. Now, you can enjoy it... WHILE you're writing.

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  20. Thank you so much again for sharing about Baby Moo, Susan!!! And I'm so glad you are writing a trilogy. I know all three books will be fantastic. :)

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    1. It was my pleasure, Julie.

      Thanks for the vote of confidence. :)

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  21. I love this enthusiastic and inspiring post! And the Thought of the Day totally cracked me up. :)

    And yeh for Julie and Baby Moo!

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    1. Thanks. I'm glad you enjoyed it, And as for that thought of the day? You won't find it so darned funny when it happens to YOU! HA!

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  22. This made me smile, Susan. I love your writer's voice. It's like I had your voice in my head. I'm glad you're going to keep writing your trilogy. Good for you and welcome to the IWSG! We're so glad you're here :)

    Elsie
    co-host IWSG

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    1. Thanks. I LOVE to make people smile. :)

      I appreciate the welcome, and thanks to you for serving as a co-host. This group is fantabulous, and it's an honor to be a part of it.

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  23. Love it! Finding that early morning time is awesome!
    Those grandkids will keep you hopping and that enthusiasm flowing! :)

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    1. It kinda makes me laugh that it took me so long to put the darned newspaper down and use that time to write. Duh! It was right there in front of me all the time.

      You betcha! Grandkids can keep you on your toes.

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  24. Yay to making time to write... it's that way with everything isn't it... it kind of makes me crazy when I let things go and start to think I don't have time, I remind myself that's not true... I have the time, I just need to prioritize...

    I also completely agree with you, if you're a writer, you just need to write... xox

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    1. You're right. It IS that way with everything. We can make excuses about why we can't do something... or we can shut up and DO it. :)

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  25. I was thinking about joining IWSG now that I hardly ever have any First Impressions to do (which used to conflict with it). Maybe I'll jump on the bandwagon next month. We'll see.

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    1. Do it! Your experience and wisdom could help a lot of other writers. (Even if there's no reason in this world for YOU to feel insecure...) :)

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  26. Welcome to the group Susan! I love your outlook and enthusiasm. It's certainly inspired me to get my act together. I look forward to hearing about your progress with your trilogy - you go girl! Thanks for stopping by my blog - it's great to meet you. :)

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  27. Congrats, Susan! So glad you’ve signed up for IWSG. It’s a great group.

    Since I can’t seem to get this darned stand alone off my desk, it’s hard for me to imagine writing a trilogy. Needless to say, I’m impressed.

    Congratulations to Julie as well. Baby Moo sounds awesome. The cover alone made me say, aww... :)

    VR Barkowski

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    1. Thanks! It really is a terrific group; I don't know what took me so long to join. Too insecure, maybe?

      Don't be impressed. Saying and doing are two different things. If I finish all three books, then we both can be impressed. HA

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  28. I liked your post Susan. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Thanks! I'm glad you did, and thank YOU for stopping by.

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  29. Your quote at the top cracked me up! You know, I think it's possible to finish all the books. I just had guest, Mark Noce on my blog, and he said he completed the first draft of a novel in 3-4 months! If he can do it, we can too!

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    1. Uh-huh, you may be laughing about that quote NOW, but wait until it happens to YOU! HA

      Lots of writers can complete a first draft in a matter of weeks or months, but I'm a tortoise. Hopefully, that means I'll still win the race. :)

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  30. Hello, Susan. Hello from another plump old broad who's enjoying this age. HFACL sounds like a hoot, and I've just ordered a copy. Your routine sounds very much like mine; it's so easy to fritter away a day with chores, chat, and things that are only tangentially related to writing. So--of the internet and back to my MS I go!

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    1. Hi-ya! It's nice to meet you. (We plump old broads have to stick together.) Thanks for ordering my book; I hope you enjoy it.

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    2. I feel like a real doofus, Rhonda. If you have a blog, I couldn't find it. :(

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  31. Yay for making time to write! I completely understand not making time to write; sometimes you just don't feel like anything you have to say is important or useful. Or, like you said, you just get busy. (Funny how chores can take over your day like that!) I recently read a blog post where this guy kept track of his time for a week, and even with a full time job and 8 hours of sleep a night discovered he had far more time than he believed he did. He'd lose 10 minutes to facebook or looking out the window, staring at the fridge… It's crazy where our time goes! But it sounds like you have a plan for conquering your time and are already getting back into writing. Hopefully your new schedule works out for you in the long run. :) Best of luck! :)

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    1. Yeah, the daily routine definitely has an annoying way of eating up your time if you let it, but the truth is, it's those stupid little time-wasting "nothing" things that gobble up most of it. Just like that blog writer said!

      Thanks. You know what they say about the best-laid plans of mice and men, but I'm gonna give it my best. :)

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  32. Ha! I think we share the same weakness - the dreaded Daily Ritual. Sure, I have a nice cup of coffee, and a good breakfast, and I get to catch up on news and read my e-mail... but when you sit back and look at how much time that wastes, it's kind of disheartening.

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    1. Yep, you'd better nip it in the bud, young man! HA

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  33. Last??? But hopefully not least.
    I tried to leave a comment last night but was plagued with computer glitches...I'll spare you the ugly details...

    This is one of your best posts ever, Susan (and there are many). I can relate to so much of what you've said.
    Making time to write should always be our priority - and the results are definitely the rewards for our efforts.

    Believe it or not, I've put my memoirs and novel on "hold" for a moment - - because I'm writing a book for children (yes, it's true!!!). And I'm almost finished.

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    1. You'll never make "least," Jon, but you aren't making last this time, either. :)

      Wow! You're writing a book for children??? I'm truly stunned. But very intrigued. Good luck with it, but don't put those memoirs on hold for too long! Lots of people want to read it. I promise!

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  34. Great post! Good luck with your trilogy. If it is as good as your first book, I know I will love it. I hope you keep writing and sharing your talent.

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  35. Congratulations on publishing your book, Hot Flashes and Cold Lemonade. I LOVE the title. You're not the only old broad on the #IWSG list either. Glad to find another like-minded, like-aged (is that a word?) person. You're one book ahead of me so I applaud you. A trilogy is a wonderful idea. I love your sense of humor - makes me want to order you book... Have a good rest of the week. www.dianeweidenbenner.com

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    1. Hi-ya. Thanks! I'm glad you like the title. :)

      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment, AND signing on as a new follower. I do appreciate it. Welcome aboard!

      You have a super week, too. It's very nice to meet you.

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  36. I'm glad you joined IWSG. I love early morning writing. Good luck with your project.

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    1. Thanks. Me, too! But I'm not nearly as prolific as you are. :)

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  37. Susan, you have time to write whatever you set your mind to. That's because you get to live a long life. Statistically speaking, you chose your gender wisely.

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    1. HA! Thanks for the good chuckle. It's especially funny to me, because after I was born, my mother told my father I was a boy. The doctor took her glasses away before delivery, and she was verrrrrry near-sighted. So the boy who was to be named Ian quickly became a girl named Susan...

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  38. Kudos to you for making time to write! Trilogies are a beast of their own, but you can do it. I finally got mine drafted, and now I'm editing. The light at the end of the tunnel is growing brighter every day.

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    1. Thanks. Even MORE kudos to YOU! I'm am soooo exited about you getting to the editing stage of your trilogy. You go, girl!

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  39. A trilogy! How fun. I like writing in a series. I don't have time anymore for a full novel series, so I'm working on four novella length stories for one book instead.

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    1. I hope it keeps on being fun, anyway. :)

      With all you do, it's amazing that you have time to write novellas. You must have super powers.

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  40. Hi Susan, I'm so glad you joined the IWSG, and I'm excited that you're half-way through your second book! Hot Flashes and Cold Lemonade will be a tough act to follow, but I know you're up to the task! Did I hear someone mention an Old Broad? You have more energy than a lot of people I know - including me. So I have faith that you will complete your trilogy in the near future, but you might have to give Smarticus a few cooking lessons in the meantime!

    Congrats to Julie on her adorable new book!

    Julie

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    1. Hi-ya, kiddo! Thanks. I appreciate your support, but I don't know where the heck that person is who you think has all that energy... :)

      If by "near" you mean within the decade, you could be right...

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  41. Woohoo for getting in gear and going for it :) That's awesome you decided to join them for the feature :)

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    1. Thanks. It was about time to get it in gear. All I was doing before was burning up my tank of gas while revving the engine in park.

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  42. Well that was one inspirational post. You've really made me stop and think, especially about not prioritizing time to write.

    Trilogies are great fun to write. Keep going!

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    1. Thank you. At my age, I have to be careful about stopping to think. Sometimes, it's too darned hard to get going again...

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  43. Well that was one inspirational post. You've really made me stop and think, especially about not prioritizing time to write.

    Trilogies are great fun to write. Keep going!

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  44. Uplifting post. All the best with your trilogy Susan!

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  45. I really enjoyed your first book, so you know that I'm looking forward to the next three!

    And managing time is something I need to work on, too...sometimes it seems life is just running away and I have trouble keeping up. And that's really not how it should be. I need to work on that!

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    1. Thank you, ma'am. That's ONE book I might sell next time around, anyhow... :)

      I think time management is a little bit of an issue for all of us, but I am verrrrry impressed that you always find time to exercise.

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  46. I am so glad you visited my blog so that I could discover yours! You're a joy. Your mornings sounded beautiful and relaxing before, but I'm glad you're enjoying them with your notebook now. And how funny to find those extra writing minutes whenever you can. It is true, that when there's a will there's a way. Thanks for the optimistic, uplifting post. Very nice to meet you! Christy

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    1. Hi-ya. Thanks so much for the kind words. I do appreciate them. And yes, if the desire is great enough, there's always time to do the things we truly want to do. Funny how that works. :)

      Very nice to meet you, too. Thanks for signing on as a follower. (I'm one of your groupies now, too.) Welcome aboard!

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  47. Have you been hanging around my house without me knowing about it? You've just described my little old lady writing rut. Okay, I'm using you for inspiration. Back to the storyboard!

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    1. You caught me! That lady looking back at you in the mirror is actually ME!

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