I'm always interested in learning new things. I don't think I'll ever get enough of learning. Sometimes, when I'm doing research for a book, I'll learn how to do something, and it's like an ah-ha moment for me. Like "that's how you do that!" I love it.
I take a lot of online classes and watch a lot of Youtube videos to teach myself new things. This year, I learned how to use a new graphics program, and I've been using it non-stop now. I've also continued my Spanish studies, and I started learning Danish because I'm fascinated by Danish culture. And I learned even more about building websites, SEO, and affiliate advertising.
There's another graphics program I want to learn, and I've already found the class for it that I can start next year. I want to start a small garden on my back porch so I'll need to take a class on that. I want to learn more about the fascinating city I live in (Charleston, SC), and I've become fascinated even more with astronomy since I started writing for RedShirtsAlwaysDie.com. So I'll probably take a class on that, too. A beginner's class!
Is there anything you're hoping to learn next year?
Some of these might not be able to happen, depending on restrictions in different cities, but here goes anyway.
And we're off on another quick blogging challenge! I like doing these when I feel like I've been in a blogging rut. Today, the challenge is something I've accomplished that I'm proud of. This one is an easy one for me as I've recently had an essay published in the New York Times!
I can remember years ago when I first started writing, I dreamed of seeing my name in what I called "the big leagues." The New York Times is the big leagues to me, and I made it. I'm not kidding myself that I've "made it." But I am proud of this accomplishment as it's always better to be moving forward than backward!
'm sure if you've been following me a while you've noticed that I'm bouncing around a lot with the things I write, especially in the past two years or so. Once upon a time, I focused solely on writing fiction, but I reached a point where I was having to force the words, and I wasn't enjoying it anymore. Writing was a chore.
Enter articles. I could write several of these a week and still my goal of writing every day. Along with those, I began to write essays and short stories, and I got more involved with writing posts about television and movies for sites like Movie Pilot (now defunct), Hidden Remote, and now Red Shirts Always Die. It was refreshing not to have to worry about plot holes and characterization.
Recently, my first fiction novella in 2 1/2 years released, and I'm working on a second one now. I'm back in the groove of fiction writing, but I don't know when I'll return to full-length novels. Right now, I'm enjoying writing various things, and I don't have to force any of the words. Writers write, and that's what I'm doing.
I wrote all of this to say, if you're a writer, write whatever you feel like writing. Don't push yourself to write what just isn't in you. I did that for too long, and I almost stepped away from writing altogether. I'm glad, instead, I decided to spread the words I write out over a multitude of avenues.
I shared the news a few months ago about my becoming a contributor to Red Shirts Always Die which is a division of Fansided.com that is dedicated to all things Star Trek. Well, I was recently invited to become a co-expert on the site as well as a contributor.
This will give me more opportunities to write for the site as well as giving me a say in the type of content that gets posted. I'm really excited about this because writing for this site has been nothing but a pleasure. It's a great creative outlet and has even spurred me on to writing science fiction short stories as well as novels.
I hope you'll visit the site, especially if you're a Star Trek fan. We'll keep you up-to-date on the latest happenings with Star Trek, and we'll share trivia, opinions, blasts from the past, theories, and so much more. If you're like I am and can't get enough of this franchise, stop by!
Now available for pre-order! https://amzn.to/3iQSVy2 This is my first book in quite a while so I hope you enjoy it! And a special thanks to all of my readers who have sent emails to me over the past 2 1/2 years asking when my next book would be released.
Noah flicked a glance over his shoulder to watch Ainsley walk toward a row of low-hanging shelves that still looked too high for her to reach. “Do you need me to get something for you?”
“No, no. I have it.” Standing on tiptoe, she used her fingertips to move a large basket closer to the edge of the shelf.
Things didn’t look like they were going her way. The basket tipped, and Noah ran toward her just as what looked like hundreds of strings of lights dropped on top of her head, draped her body, and cascaded to her feet. He skidded to a stop. “Are you okay?”
She peeked out through a row of lights. “So I guess I didn’t have it.”
He burst out laughing and walked closer. “Let me see if I can get you out of these.”
“I think I can…” She pushed her arm through a hole only to have another bunch of green wires fell on top of it. “If I can just get this right here…” Another poke caused a similar tumble of string.
Still laughing, Noah began to peel away the lines, unwrapping her like a chocolate bar. “Just stay still.”
“Ow! Something’s caught in my hair.” Ainsley tried to pull away from the pain.
“Wait. Don’t move.” His fingers dove into the silkiness of her blonde strands and dislocated her hair from the plug. “How many strings of lights does this place need?”
“A bunch. There’s another basket up there.” She peeled two strings apart that were tapping against her cheek. “Oh, this is ridiculous.”
Noah didn’t disagree, but he couldn’t deny he enjoyed being this close to her. The slight flush to her cheeks and the brightness of her eyes tripped up his concentration, and his fingers fumbled in the lights, causing one to smack the back of her head. “Sorry. Sorry. These things are all tangled.”
“Yeah. I noticed. What if you just lift the entire batch, and I’ll try to step out from underneath?”
“They’re not all in order, and I doubt they’re going to go at one time, but we’ll give it a shot.” Noah squatted and gathered as many of the strings as he could and began to ease them up her body. But the thickness of the strands proved more tenacious. The more he pushed, the more they slipped.
“Okay. You’re right. I’ll just stand here, and you can unwrap me.” She rolled her eyes. “This is going to take forever.”
Noah stood. His gaze meeting hers. “I’ll go as fast as I can.”
She looked back at him, and for a long second, neither one of them spoke. His gaze dropped to her lips then he quickly looked away.
“Right. I’ll get started.”
By the time Making Christmas Magic releases on November 2nd, it will have been two and a half years since my last book release. So I had my fingers crossed when I started submitting this book to reviewers. I'm happy to say that the first review brought a HUGE smile to my face! And I appreciate Heidi Lynn so much for such a quick turnaround time!
On October 15th, Making Christmas Magic will be available for pre-order! Then you'll have it in your ebook reader on November 2nd!
Available November 2, 2020
She paused long enough to look over her shoulder. “You here alone, or did you come with Mrs. Noah?”
The blatant curiosity brought a wide smile to his face. Margie probably had a niece or best friend’s cousin’s daughter who happened to be single, and surprise, here he was single, too. “There isn’t a Mrs.”
Another pause, this time with widened eyes. “How has no one managed to snag you?” She waved a hand in front of her face.
“Listen to me. I should be ashamed of myself for embarrassing you like that.”
“I’m not embarrassed, and you don’t look ashamed.” He gave her a wink. “But I don’t think you’re asking about my marital status for yourself.”
Her cheeks flushed, and the hand-waving picked up speed. “Well, heavens no. I’ve been happily married for thirty years. Well, happily for the most part. Man sure does know how to get on a woman’s nerves.”
“Don’t we all?” Noah conceded with a laugh, wishing he had a little more than three days to spend in Broadway.
Margie stopped in front of a large, three-drawer metal filing cabinet. “So what’s the address of that piece of land you’ve inherited?”
“171 Bedwick Circle.”
Her hand dropped to her side, and she whirled to face him. “That can’t be right.”
He couldn’t be mistaking the drop in temperature in the room. “It is.” He dug into the inner pocket of his suit coat and checked the address again. “171 Bedwick Circle. I’m supposed to get the deed in the mail in the next two weeks or so, but I thought I’d…” He stopped talking when he realized he didn’t have her attention. “Margie?”
She clamped her hands on her hips. “Well, you can’t have that property.”
My thoughts, experiences, challenges, and goals. Right here. At least once a week or so. Oh, and opinions, too. Those will definitely come in. Join me!