Mama Diaries

Wednesday, March 1, 2023

Author Envy


It's time for another IWSG question of the month. "Have you ever read a line in a novel or a clever plot twist that caused you to have author envy?"  I had to think about this one. I don't recall a specific line or plot twist, but I can say that after reading, Face Like Glass by Frances Hardinge, I was extremely impressed with her world-building and lush language. I had never read anything quite like it. So, I'd say I had a little author envy of her tremendous skill in those two areas. I hope when I grow up, I can write like her. 

What about you?   Have you ever experienced author envy?

Not a whole lot of other news to report. My oldest daughter is getting ready to graduate from college. Can you believe it? And my son is still in the Navy. My, how time flies!  I guess the cutest thing is that my dad got a Goldendoodle dog. Her name is Daisy. Isn't she adorable?



Thursday, February 2, 2023

About Book Covers


This month's IWSG question is about book covers. "Do you create your own covers or purchase them?  Or if you are traditionally published, do you have a say in what your cover looks like?"

I've had experience with self-publishing and traditional publishing. With self-publishing, I designed the covers myself, gave my ideas to professionals, and they made the covers look good. I don't think I have the skills to create a professional-looking cover myself. Same with the interior illustrations. For the most part, the illustrations for my self-published picture books are my own ideas. Admittedly, I was hoping the illustrators would come up with their own creative ideas so I could be more surprised by their interpretations, but I was still pleased with the results.

Regarding my traditionally published books, the publisher's illustrator came up with the covers himself. I liked being surprised by his ideas. Yes, I had to approve the covers, but I really didn't have any changes. I'm sure if for some reason, I didn't like them, changes would have been made.

Here are some pictures of my book covers. The first three are self-published. The others are traditionally published. 


If you're an author, what kind of role did you have in designing your covers?

(And some good news:  The next Bubba and Squirt book, City of Bones is on its way. The contract has been signed!)

Tuesday, January 3, 2023

Word of the Year


Happy New Year!  Welcome to the first IWSG post of the year. The question is, appropriately, "What word sums up what you need to work on or change this year?" Easy peasy. SUBMIT! I have finally finished writing the rest of the Bubba and Squirt manuscripts and am just about ready to submit the next one of the series. I even wrote a blurb for it on New Year's Day!  Good start, right?  Of course, I thought of something else I could do to make it better, so I'm not quite ready. Ugh!  I should just follow the Nike slogan and Just Do It! 

That's my word. What's yours?

I'll leave you with a picture from my recent trip to New Orleans. Sitting in the seance room at Muriel's restaurant. Supposedly it's haunted, but I didn't see any ghosts. Has anybody ever been there or seen a ghost?


Wednesday, December 7, 2022

IWSG and Happy Holidays!


It's that time again—the monthly Insecure Writer's Support Group post. I'm really glad we have these things. Thanks to Alex and the crew for keeping this going. Otherwise, I'd probably fall out of touch with the blog world because life is just so darn busy! Speaking of busy—the question of the month is, "Does the holiday season make it easier or harder to find time to write?"  For me, the answer is resoundingly harder.  I'm a musician. 'Tis the season to perform Christmas concerts. Just this week alone, I have 3 performances and 4 rehearsals. That's on top of my job as an Executive Director for an orchestra and the more than 30 students I give private lessons to each week. Talk about busy! Oh yeah—and I have to buy and wrap Christmas presents, make Christmas cookies, and send out Christmas cards. That said, I've been trying to revise my Bubba and Squirt manuscripts so that I can submit them to the publisher early next year. I was on a roll with 2 chapters a day last week. (This week, not so much. I need to practice all the music I have. Plus I have to learn how to play the organ. I've had a two-week crash course with an organist for a performance I have to do this Sunday. Wish me luck!) 

Are you tired just from reading all of what I have to do? 😊

How about you?  Do you have more or less time to write this time of year?

I wish all of you a joyous holiday season! See you next year!


Friday, November 4, 2022

IWSG and a Wedding


As usual, I am late again for the IWSG post of the month. Maybe one of these days I'll be on time. The question is, have I ever participated in the National Novel Writing challenge?  Short answer:  Nope. Reason: Too busy! I admire everyone who participates and completes the challenge. It's a great way to force yourself to write and hopefully complete a project!

Here's what I've been up to:

Any guesses about where I was?


Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Best Thing About my Favorite Genre and Updates


Today's question is, "What's the best characteristic of your favorite genre?" My favorite genre is historical fiction. I like that research is involved to get the facts straight and recreate the time period. It's like going back in time. I also like that historical fiction helps me learn things or reinforces things I already knew. 

What's your favorite genre, and what are the things you like about it?

Now, for updates. Many of you who have followed this blog for a long time remember my son, Bubba, and daughter, Squirt. (Not their real names.)  They used to entertain you with their funny antics and humor. Well, they are all grown up now. Five-year-old Bubba is eighteen. He just enlisted in the Navy and started boot camp. He'll be in the military for the next six years. working on cyber security. Squirt is a senior, graduating from college with a degree in music technology and production. It'll be interesting to see what career she ends up with!  And me...I actually completed the last manuscript of the last book of the Bubba and Squirt series. I'm working on revising now. A big accomplishment considering how much is on my plate!  And finally, the next time I post, I'll be married! So hard to believe! It's funny to see how the path of life winds around and takes you to unexpected places!

Hope you all enjoy the lovely autumn season!

Thursday, September 8, 2022

Most Difficult Genre to Write


Can you believe I'm actually on time with this post? LOL! Got through DragonCon and the wedding plans are going well. I'll share a picture from DragonCon at the end of this post.

So, the IWSG question of the month is, which genre is/would be the hardest for you to write?  The first thought that popped into my head was Romance. I know there are many of you out there who are great romance writers. I don't think I'd be one of them.  Then the question would be, why not?  It's not that I'm not romantic. I most certainly am. But I think I'd just have a hard time writing love scenes. Steamy ones would definitely be a challenge. I guess I'd always had a sense that some things should be private. So, writing something so intimate for the whole world to read would feel weird to me. I'd probably struggle a bit coming up with a good storyline, too. But who knows? I've never actually tried writing a Romance. So, maybe it wouldn't be as tough as I've built it up to be.

What about you? Which would be the most challenging for you to write?

DragonCon:  Big event that the orchestra I'm the Executive Director for performs at. We played for a crowd of about 3000 people. It's always a blast! And our conductor was none other than the Joker!