Wednesday, April 29, 2009

LDS Storymakers Conference

Here's just a sampling of the crazy, fun kind of people I hung out with last weekend at the LDS Storymakers conference in Provo, UT. I hope you recognize some of them because they are all published authors and most are in the LDS Fiction market--and believe me, some are like rock stars to Mormon folk. If you want me to name drop, I will...

James Dashner
J. Scott Savage
Josi Kilpack
Rachel Ann Nunes
Tristi Pinkston
H.B. (Heather) Moore
Julie Wright
BJ Rowley
Annette Lyon
Jaime Theler

There were others, too, that weren't in the video, that I got to rub shoulders with: Matthew Buckley, Julie Bellon, Janette Rallison, Marsha Ward, Liz Adair... The conference was an overload of awesome information and RAH RAH RAH encouragment. I will blog about it soon...

Note that I figured out how to insert links so that you can click on a name and magically there you are at their website or blog! One small computer-technology step conquered...

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Wife, Mom...and Writer?

My brother sent me a link to a poignant article that goes straight to the heart of the mother/writer question. I think you'll all be able to relate. I did.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Baby's Alive!

I have a recurring dream that has baffled me for many years. No, it's not the one where I am in school and I'm lost and can't find my classes or realize I haven't been going to class at all and the semester is almost over. That was my previous recurring dream, and frankly, I'm a little concerned that I've stopped having that one because I think it was related to my desire to finish my college degree. Graduating is a real life awake dream that I still want to pursue, but is my subconscious saying the dream is dead? (I'll have to have a little talk with my subconscious, then, plus start figuring out financial aid to pay for the dream!)

Anyway, my current recurring dream has been 'curring over the last several years and it has become increasingly more disturbing. In it I have a baby. Always at least one baby, but sometimes two. So in the beginning, it was good...babies showing up in dreams is happy, fun, often delightful, but now in the dream where I have a baby, I see the baby or find the baby and realize with horror that I have not been feeding the baby. It is barely alive. I have been neglecting my baby. I immediately begin to feed it and hold it and thankfully, it is still alive.

Why? Why am I having this dream? I have eight children--a fair amount, and I also just turned 48--a fair amount. I simply am not having more children. Okay, grandkids? Well, no married kids yet, so that will have to wait. Am I neglecting my own children? I asked a few of them that and they said basically, yes, now leave us alone. Teenagers. They're so funny.

I was excited to come upon this in a book titled One Year to a Writing Life by Susan M. Tiberghien: after relating Maya Angelou's recurring dream, she writes, "I also have a recurring dream..." then she proceeds to describe MY exact dream about the baby and the not feeding and the rushing to feed and it's still alive. This is what she says, "The child is my creative self. I realize that, yes, I have been forgetting my own creativity, my inner child, but that now I am paying attention. The child is still there, still alive."

I was thrilled with this explanation. I've been neglecting my writing baby for too long. It needs my attention, it needs to be fed, and, yes, it's still alive.

I told my husband of the interpretation and he said, "Are you sure it's not that you're neglecting housework?" Husbands. They're so funny.

[NOTE: He may have a point...I was vacuuming Saturday and after vacc'ing up several shades of the always lovely Easter grass that grows in the carpet every spring, I reached down to run my finger along the corner of the entertainment center, and, you guessed it, I pulled out Christmas tree pine needles. Eek!]

This post is simultaneous occurring at today.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Hey, Universe!

It's one of those things you try to hide. You don't tell your spouse or your sister or best friend. Even when the topic turns to goals and dreams, you don't mention it. You barely admit it to yourself. Your writing group is usually the first to know.

But I was at the dentist with children last week and the lady behind the desk I'll call Sandy, because that's her name, asked if I was still writing. (She knows I write for the Beehive Newspaper). I said yes, and then I blurted, "I'm writing a novel." Then, because she asked, I told her what it was about.

This has been happening with more and more frequency over the last several months, so, yes, I've pretty much outed myself. I've told the universe that I am writing a novel. It all started at the writer's retreat last July, when Joan Sowards happened by my little computer table, noticed the first chapter of my manuscript and asked to read it. I didn't know what to say, but yes, so she did and that led to me actually allowing others to read it--members of my writing chapter and even Kerry Blair, who, for the record, gave a positive response. I went on to even allow my husband to read the first few chapters and I caught my 15-year-old son reading it off the computer the other night when he should have been in bed. Now it has become a not-so-far-out-there proposition. Mom's writing a novel and she wants to publish it. It could happen.

I like how it feels to be doing something I've wanted to do for a very long time (my story idea first came to me in 1997--at least my earliest notes on it are from that time period) and that people seem to be fine with it and are even supportive. (Check the acknowlegements when my book is published, you'll all be mentioned!)

Anyway, it's very freeing to just let it out. (Still a bit scary, too, but freeing.) What is your dream? I daresay the universe is waiting to hear from you!

[Originally published at, 3/24/2009]


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