I realize July is nine months away ... but I have to share: I'm going to be one of 50+Authors rocking Savannah July 25 - 28, 2019! I can't wait to meet readers of the Awaken My Heart series and meet new ones!
Have you registered yet? If you do before October 31st, you are entered to win cool experiences with authors. Certainly sounds like a lot of fun and I can wait to enjoy drinks with a new reader. There will be prizes, opportunities to dive into a variety of romance genres. We'll be signing, selling, partying with all of you, so what are you waiting for? Here are the links for more information:
Facebook Event info: www.facebook.com/events/871256626393289/
So sign up quick so we can talk outfits. I mean, what are you going to wear?
I've been spending unexpected moments longing for odd things lately--especially this weekend. I was in St. Augustine, walking the streets ... George Street, residential streets, and I longed to live there and I couldn't figure out why.
Was it the atmosphere? The history? The fact that the houses were all different like I was used to back in my neighborhoods up north? Was it the cute little shops--all different with fewer chain shops and restaurants? That had to be it--uniqueness. Was that the theme? Different homes? The uneven sidewalks that had seen countless generations walk to school as they fought against old tree roots? Different shops? Different coffee origins? I do gravitate toward unique things and people.
But at one point I walked past a corner house that wasn't particularly spectacular on the outside--many St. Augustine homes are not: they are often old and beaten up from flooding--and I suddenly wanted to go inside. I stopped walking a moment and wondered what was wrong with me. I mean why? I didn't know the people. I thought, thought, and ... then I had it.
Roots. The home looked like the people living there had roots they put down over the years. The flower pots looked like they had been there a long time. I could see some stuffed shelf units through a window. There were rocking chairs on the beat up porch and an older shed in the backyard that I imagined held a mower and a family history worth of junk.
I grew up in the two-family house my father grew up in. I found my grandparents' old Christmas ornaments in the attic. Our home was ... ours ... our history. I had found marbles my father and uncle used to play with while digging in the backyard. My mother always spoke of the past as if clinging to it even though she had left England in her early 20s. Both my parents were very regimented in the way they did things. I grew up very adverse to change, always seeing the sentimental in everything. Always trying to hold onto the past.
It was exhausting.
Eventually, that way of thinking made me feel stuck and I grew a fear of the past repeating itself ... seeing school pictures of your father on his first days of school standing exactly where you did in yours will do that. By 17 I was craving change--but I went to a close college where I didn't need to stay in dorms. Going further was discouraged. But that's another story.
When I got married and moved out, then later moved a little further into NJ, it was to a town where we used to visit family friends. I had dreamed of moving to that beautiful suburb my whole life. It was like a dream come true. After a while, I did find its drawbacks--I suppose every town has them. Still, I wasn't prepared to move from my comfort zone and all the way down South three years ago.
Now I'm in a brand new development where the houses, despite variances in style, all look the same to me. There are rules about what can be displayed, etc., and I feel like I've lost my roots and that much of this new area has been wiped clean of its past. But change happens. I know this: You can't step into the same river twice.
After renting it out for years, my parents sold my childhood home shortly before I moved out of NJ--with many of the things they had deemed so worthy of hanging onto still in it. And when I moved fom my home, so many things had to be given away or sold first. And I hate the sadness of so much being gone, but it was just stuff--not important. Yet, sometimes I need to remind myself of that. So, now I'm surrounded by chain everything, and the only sense I can find of history and roots is in antique shops--which I can't stand. But that, too, is another story.
So, I'm caught between running from the past and wanting to feel roots. Looking to the future and missing the past. And this, too, is exhausting. So, looking at that house on a little street in St. Augustine, wanting in, perhaps was my heart's way of wishing to experience roots even if they were someone else's. And that ... I think ... is just plain weird.
I guess what it means is that I'm still in transition down here...even as more changes are heading my way with kids going off to college. It really is time to look toward the surprises of new horizons and while I do enjoy the idea of that, part of me is stubborn, still trying to grab the past and hold it close, and asking myself, "For what?"
Before leaving St. Augustine, I walked on the beach, played with the shell-strewn sand. Finally, I relaxed. Fiddling with small handfuls of shells out of gajillions, watching huge amounts of water tumble, roll, and seep up onto the shore ... it became a momentary peace. I was small in comparison, yet I had my place in it all. The shoreline balanced my love and hate of nostaglia, my craving for the past and my yearning for something new and fantastic in the future. I wish I could bottle that feeling.
Anyway, like I said, it's complicated.
Just wanted to announce that I get to pair up with The Voluptuous Book Diva for this year's Foster an Author! It all takes place next week beginning October 22nd. Please visit this review blog!
The site is super pretty, isn't it? But right away I started to get the feeling this blog was more than just a pretty face. The blogger, Laura Hernandez, has read and reviewed loads of books and has earned outstanding rankings as a book reviewer. In fact, Book Sirens has given her the following reader rankings:
Laura is always up to sharing anything that authors and even other bloggers need shared. All they have to do is hit her up on the page or click on the email button.
I hope you'll check out the Voluptuous Book Diva website for reviews and cover reveals, like her on Facebook, share and comment on her Foster an Author posts and follow her on Instagram!
What's the toughest part about being you?
For me, the thing I love to do most, write stories, is part of what makes my life tough. Oh sure, writing is rarely easy for anyone. How it makes my life tougher though, is this...
I can't get MY story right. I can't find my way to the ending I want. Am I talking fame? No. Sure, I wouldn't turn it down, but I'm talking about the story I told myself for decades: I would grow old with my family and my closest friends--in some cases, they have become one and the same. I thought we would be physically there to support each other through our entire lives. And yes ... we can talk, but what happens when we really need each other or when it's time to celebrate milestones? Serious illnesses? The marriages of children? Retirement parties? Empty nesting? Deaths? The birth of grandchildren down the line? I am no longer physically there to share those moments, the good, the bad, the ugly.
I had to move. I don't know if and when I'll ever be able to move back. Money is tight, so hopping a flight isn't always an option. And today, thinking about all this, I really struggle with what feels like writer's block. My friend--more like a brothe--is finally getting married. His bride is a wonderful person. And I'm so happy for them, but I cannot share in this day. Try as I did, I couldn't rewrite the situation and stick to the story I had in my head for years.
And it hurts so bad. Of course, the truth is that the moment you decide something about your future is the moment God, the universe, fate laughs and switches the game up. So "writing" your story and your HEA is a stupid move to begin with. As much as I know this, my heart isn't about to bow to the logic of my brain. So, I'll smile at the pictures on social media and truly feel happiness for my friend who deserves a wonderful day. Never in my wildest dreams, though, did I think I would miss the wedding of someone so important to me. And it's only one of many significant moments to follow.
Although, when it comes to stories, I don't write with definitive outlines ... just very loose ones. So, I guess it's time to put on the big girl panties and keep writing, keep living. Time to work on finding some sort of thrill in not knowing what my story has in store for me.
What's the toughest part about being you?