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Getting Published by Being Me

Today marks the latest book release for Chicken Soup for the Soul. This book, Be You: 101 Stories of Affirmation, Determination and Female Empowerment is chock-full of beautiful stories written about women by women. I'm lucky enough to be in this book as well! This is my second tantalizing publication with Chicken Soup and I can't tell you how grateful I am for the opportunity. In my opinion, the title of the book and my story work well together. The story I submitted, and the one they took, was about how I started my vintage-selling business. It went through my reasons for starting my shop, why I wanted it, and the difficulties I knew I'd face once I began. As the sage advice goes, "Write what you know." I know how to go about selling vintage clothing online, and I'd like to think I know how to write about it. If it meant a story turned out that merited a chance at publication, then so be it. Well, that's exactly what I did and I suppose exactly why they
Recent posts

Pleats: How the book The Help and Vintage Dresses Coincide Perfectly

In my last post, I discussed the interesting overlap of two novels in my reading world. I went over a few of the similarities of two very different books, with very different genres and subject matter, but also pointed out that the tone and type were the same. This happened to me ... again. How apropos. Only, this time, it was the merging of my reading and vintage worlds. As I have mentioned before, I sell vintage clothing. This November marks ten years of selling vintage clothing and it's still one of my most favorite "jobs" of all time. For those who haven't read the book The Help , by Kathryn Stockett (there has been a huge debate over it due to the resurgence of the racism topic in America, but I loved the concept, as well as the history and highly recommend it), this book is an interesting look at life for working black American women (working for non-working white American women) in the early 1960s.  While I was getting ready to take pictures of an early '

When (Literary) Worlds Collide

Blood, Bones & Butter I just recently read this fantastic book by Gabrielle Hamilton called Blood, Bones & Butter . If you want to indoctrinate yourself into the world of cooking, how to be a gourmet chef, and perhaps get a glimpse of life in the world of restaurant kitchens, this book is it.  Gabrielle is a chef whom I'd originally seen on the PBS show, Mind of a Chef. That show, by the way, is phenomenal. Hosted by the late Anthony Bourdain, the episodes are short and sweet and stuffed full of new foods, cooking techniques, and recipes from all over the world. Gabrielle's down-to-earth way of cooking, speaking, and her style in general, are what drew me to her. She also happens to be a literature graduate student, so from the moment I heard her speak, it felt like I'd known her for years. But, I suppose it feels that way to all who listen to her. She's that familiar and comfortable. She's someone you'd want to have coffee with. Are you famil

Think Positive and Live Happier

Think positive! I am delighted to tell you that I was accepted into Chicken Soup for the Soul's latest compilation, Think Positive, Live Happy.   These little books have been a source of inspiration, laughter, hope, and amusement for over twenty-five years. And to be included in one of them is a privilege. But, here's the truth of the matter: It took me eight years of submitting stories just to get published with them. Chicken Soup publishes about a dozen books a year, and they accept roughly a hundred stories per book, so after doing the math, you'd think it wouldn't be a problem getting in! But as with all publishing and writing, timing and the right story is everything. I'm not saying I liked waiting eight years, but I'm a better writer because of it. It kept me pushing to write stronger. And thinking positively: believing one day they would accept my work, even if I didn't want to keep submitting to them anymore. Pretty much how you'll

Blogging 101 │ 10 Years of Fun

This right here, Fernweh, is why writers do what they do. I went looking for a blog post I'd written years ago for a future article that I'm working on now. And guess what? I went back to the beginning of all my blog posts and it looks like I've been blogging for ten years. That sure went by fast. August 6, 2009 ◄ was my first post and hey, I'm still here and still loving it. While my random blogging is nothing special, I've got to say it's been a wonderful place to hone my writing skills. And as a writer, it's a good idea to have a digital footprint that shows both a writing past and a potential writing future. There are plenty of "real" bloggers who have tons of followers and loyal fans. They're super prolific and making six figures, and writing about their successes. And that's great. But, this blog isn't that. I never wanted it to be that in the first place. Not to mention, it wasn't even a thing ten years ag

Seasons of Change

I tend to use this title a lot, Seasons of Change . I mean, I haven't scrolled back to look, but it feels like I either use this title every year in one of my blog posts, or want to use this title with each post I write. Either way, here it is again. It's only July 1st, but I'm sitting at my computer trying to go back through the last four weeks, and they have been some of the most transitional "seasons of change," yet. This last May was by far the busiest May I can recall. There was virtually no down time for weeks ... and it's fine now. But for all you parents of soon-to-be Senior High School students, who work and run a house, best of luck. You will lose your sanity. You will lose patience. And you will look back and wonder how you made it through. Well, here's a glimpse of the last four weeks in my world. For starters, I had a story of mine published and that was a great way to begin the summer. It's via Guideposts, the story is true, and

End of Year Encouragement

I'm writing this for myself as much as I'm writing this for you. Think you didn't get done, or didn't accomplish, or didn't make, or didn't have, or didn't overcome -- fill in the blank, this year? Don't give up. Time is just time. And all things are possible outside of time. For me, the end of year always culminates in me wondering what I wrote, if anything and did I have any of these writing published? Of course, being published doesn't equal success ... and yet, sometimes it does. There's a ton of writing I do that no one will ever see. Not just because I didn't send it out into the world, but because no one wants it. Yep. It isn't the right fit (or it really isn't any good) and I have to keep looking for the right home for the piece. I'm always, always reminding myself I'm in the rejection business. Because it gets old, this whole rejection thing. Yet, if you know it's part of the job, it's manageabl