Monthly Archives: June 2013

Writers of the Future book signing

photo (22)One of my favorite aspects of being a writer is all the creative and talented people I’ve been smart enough to surround myself with. Andrea Stewart is one of those people. She truly is gifted in imagination and the craft of writing speculative fiction. She is a recent first place winner of the L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future contest and had her short story published in the annual anthology. And yesterday, she and a few other winners—Stephan Sottong,Tina Gower, and Timothy Black— had a book signing at the local Barnes & Noble.

I read her short story, Dreameater, as soon as I got home last night. Wow! It’s about the relationship between a young daughter and her dysfunctional, supernatural mother. Of course after reading her other work I wasn’t surprised at how good it was. To read a review of Dreameater, check out Kody Kline’s blog20130501-095631

Andrea is one of those people that when you meet her, you just know she’s going to make it big in this industry. Her stories are unique and fantastical and totally gripping. Plus, she’s also one of the most humble and thoughtful people I’ve ever met.

You’ll also love her book, Dragon Maiden: A Short Story. Andrea Stewart, remember her name. She will be big one day!

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Who am I?

That is the question I’ve been asking myself all year. Well, all my life really but more so since my mother passed away just after Christmas. A very good friend of mine introduced me to a series of books, Conversations With God by Neale Donald Walsch. By reading the books, discussing the more complex points with my friend, and sitting quietly with myself, who I am is slowly coming into focus.

1. I am a creator. I create fantastical stories in my head and transfer them into books. In college I did some drawing but writing is really where my passion lies. The thrill I get when someone has an emotional reaction to my words, whether they laughed or cried or were merely entertained, is like no other feeling in the world.

a pointillism picture I did in college

a pointillism picture I did in college

I have also created three wonderful human beings—with the help of my husband, of course— which I take great care and delight into guiding them to become happy and independent adults. I help them find the answers to their questions instead of giving it to them, I encourage them to make mistakes and try new things, but I don’t push. I let them make their own decisions about their lives, to a degree. Dropping out of the fourth grade to play video games all day isn’t an option.

I also create the events in my life, whether pleasant or not, intentional or not. Because I know my thoughts manifest my reality, I focus on the positive and what I desire rather than what I don’t want. Occasionally I have to remind myself to stop worrying but the more I practice just living in the moment and being grateful for all that is in my life, the more I have to be grateful for. I know everything will work out because it always has, one way or another.

My mom's favorite flower, the iris

My mom’s favorite flower, the iris

2. I am love. I love everyone. I may not like certain people, but that does not exclude them from my loving them. How could it when we are all one? And that also means that I love myself. I’ve always liked myself—I’m funny and kind and the most loyal friend you’ll ever find—but I’ve realized that for the past decade or so I’ve haven’t been a loving person to myself. I put my happiness and desires behind everyone else. That’s what I thought a wife and mother was supposed to do. But how can I tell my children to go for their dreams and be happy when I wasn’t following my own advice. And not just in my career, but all aspects of my life. A lot of changes are coming, but if I listen to my gut and focus on my goals, it will all work out for the best.

I drew this during my Garth Brooks period

I drew this during my Garth Brooks period

3. I am a loyal friend. I was never part of a clique but I’ve always had one or two close friends at a time. For those I call a friend there is almost nothing I wouldn’t do to help out if I could, from carpooling to lending money to giving them a place to stay for a few days. I love helping those I care about. Now, a couple times my generous nature has been taken advantage of and those friends have faded from my life. But there are a few that could show up at my door, dragging a dead body behind them, and I would grab my big shovel without question a second thought. I’m pretty sure “Holy shit! What the hell happened?” would be my first reaction as I help shove the body into the trunk.

On another note, my goal for the summer is to complete The Count of Monte Cristo. A couple friends swear it’s the best book ever. It’s a very thick book but I figure if I read a couple chapters a day, I should get it done before fall. Wish me luck. What are your summer reading goals?

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