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A Bittersweet Ending

They say all good things must come to an end, and that is true of most things in life. This blog was home to a variety of women who, at one point or another, came together to share their views on life, love, and a myriad of other topics that struck their fancy.

Every woman who posted articles here–Dianne Venetta, Tracy Solheim, Shelia Seabrook, Andrea Wenger, Janna Donn, Kimberly S. Belle, Patricia Yager Delagrange, Sharla Lovelace, Kim Boykin, and yours truly–left a mark on the blog and in the hearts and minds of readers.

Dianne instructed on the finer points of gardening. Tracy catalogued her journey to publication. Sheila brought Canada’s frozen countryside to life. Andrea dove deep into complex issues. Janna shared her emotions with breathtaking honesty. Kimberly gave insight into the wonders of living abroad. Patty showed what it was like to live with a menagerie of animals. Sharla rolled out the welcome mat to the great state of Texas. And Kim brought her roses to life.

Although we part ways and forge new paths, the bond that was created here cannot be broken. It’s been a true blessing to work beside the ladies of Women Unplugged. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for each of you. I’ll be cheering from my little corner of the south.

As for me, I’m around in the usual haunts. Facebook, Twitter, my website, and my shiny new personal blog. I’d be honored if some of you who’ve spent time with WU these past few years visit me on any of the venues above. Until then…

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And the New Year Means…?

2016 is a big year for my family. My oldest graduates from high school and heads to college. My youngest just got her driver’s license and is off to parts unknown. My husband and I spend our time planning our “empty nester” stage in ways that both excite and frighten me to no end.fireworks

And the writing? Well, I’ve hit a snag. Last year, after finishing The Power of Faith When Tragedy Strikes by Chris and Terry Norton, my head was a mess–my creative head. Toward the end of the project, I couldn’t wait to get back to fiction where I could just make stuff up. I thought I was ready to dive head first back into my abandoned series, but after reading the first two books and a novella, I couldn’t find my mojo.

So I did what I always did whenever I got stuck. I read craft books–the ones that inspired me and guided me through every book I wrote.

Nada.

I reread my favorite authors.

Nope.

I decided to take the holidays off and not think about it for awhile. Enjoy the family, eat lots of food, and worry about it in 2016.

Now 2016 is here, and I’m starting to feel the fire again. I read some fantastic stuff out of my genre and signed up for an online class that begins today. When my laptop recently died, and along with it my floundering work in progress, I could have taken it as a sign to quit or take a little longer time off. Instead, I took it as a sign to email my files to my home computer and get back to finding the joy.

I’ll let you know how how it turns out, but things are looking up. What does the New Year mean to you?

photo credit: Happy New Year !!! via photopin (license)

Recharging the Old Batteries

Believe it or not, I’m not going to write about the upcoming Christmas holiday! I just returned from a writer’s retreat with three fabulous women. We ate (thanks, Susan), we drank (thanks, Laura B.), and we laughed (thanks, Laura A.). And we got some writing done.lake

I have to admit, I’m in a bit of a slump. Coming off my year-and-a-half break from fiction, I can’t seem to find my stride. But…I did get some words written, and more importantly, I had a great time with friends I hadn’t seen in way too long. Life’s about relationships, and I’m glad we took the time to spend together.

So here’s to making time with friends and catching your breath before the holiday madness. And to seventy degrees in December!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all!

 

Giving Thanks

I intend to keep this short and sweet. America’s Thanksgiving holiday is not all about food. It’s a wonderful time to pause, reflect, and feel gratified for life’s blessings.

I’m thankful for my family and friends, for my health and the tdayhealth of those I love, and every day I spend on earth. Nothing in this life is guaranteed, so I’m going to spend time with loved ones and really appreciate what matters in life.

I wish the same for you, no matter where you are.

Enjoy the day!

photo credit: Thanksgiving Table @Thalestria – Details via photopin (license)

Friends in Low Places

It’s the age old argument. Is romance real literature?

To some, no.romance

According to Washington Post writer Justin Wm. Moyer, romance is”formulaic with fill-in-the-blank qualities.” His recent comments expressed in the article about the plagiarizing case against Laura Harner sparked a firestorm of controversy in the romance community over his generalization of the genre.

Author Jenny Trout recently wrote a scathing rebuttal to the Washington Post article. Both the WP article and Jenny’s rebuttal are worth the read, as are the comments in both articles.

The truth is, romance is a billion dollar business catering mostly to women. Romance is no more formulaic than the mystery, suspense. or science fiction genres, but you rarely hear diatribes on the worthlessness of those stories. I write romance. I read romance. And I can appreciate the work behind a well-written love story. I wish everyone could.

Love makes the world go round. When people lie on their death bed, they don’t want co-workers or acquaintances around–they want their loved ones–husbands, wives, lovers, children, family, and friends. These relationships are what matters in life–all that matters in life, so I become confused when books that delve into the making of said relationships are bashed as worthless.

I suppose Justin Wm. Moyer, upon his deathbed, will feel gratified while surrounded by stacks of newsprint. May that same pile of print keep him warm at night.

What are your views of romance?

photo credit: Romance via photopin (license)

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