Thursday, November 23, 2006


Words have tremendous power. They can cause someone to see a person or issue or the world in a whole new way. Say something hurtful to someone and you can see in their body language the power of the blow that’s been dealt. Say something encouraging or hopeful and you can see the same power only this time in a positive way.

One of the most powerful words we have is “thanks.” It can change our world the more we use it. Today I’d like to give thanks for some of the wonderful things in my life.

I am profoundly grateful for my children. Each is a blessing and each has taught me to see the world in a way I otherwise would not. With the perspective of several years, I can even look at my ex-husband and be grateful for the good he brought into my life at the same time that I know more than ever that the divorce was right for both of us.

I am grateful for all the friends in my life—both the new ones here in Texas and the friends I still am in touch with from the past. The internet is something I am grateful for every day because it helps me stay in touch with friends all around the country as well as with clients I coach. And I’m grateful that it gives me the opportunity to share my thoughts through my blogs. Not to mention that the internet is a wonderful research tool.

I am grateful for my home here in Texas. I am also grateful for all the opportunities to travel and give workshops.

I could go on and on. I’ve come to believe that focusing on what we are grateful for is one of the most powerful ways to live and to bring more good into our lives. What are YOU grateful for today and every day?

I am grateful for all of you who read my blogs. May the coming days, weeks, and months give you many opportunities for saying “Thank you” to the people in your lives and to the universe/God.


Saturday, November 18, 2006

Five Things You Might Not Know About Me

I’ve been tagged by Sharon Schulze so now it’s my turn to post 5 things you might not know about me. When she tagged me I thought it was a great way for visitors to any of our sites to get to know some other authors whose blogs (and books!) they might enjoy reading. Plus a fun way for visitors to get to know more about all of us. I hope you'll follow the links along the path of the tagging.

Back to my list. Given that I tend to be pretty open about myself, it’s going to be hard to think of 5 things people don’t know but let’s see what I can come up with...

1) I love country music.
2) I’ve gone snorkeling in Hanauma Bay in Hawaii on Oahu.
3) I designed and made a large dragon needlepoint tapestry for my son when he was an infant.
4) I love rum raisin ice cream.
5) I grew up believing I was tone deaf and only at the age of 53 discovered that within 24 hours could teach myself to play Beethoven’s Ode to Joy note perfect on the violin. (Note: I played cello in high school but was so bad they once held a concert and didn’t tell me and instead brought in someone who had already graduated to play the cello—and this was after 3 years of lessons!)
6) I’m an optimist. I believe it’s possible to rise above any trauma or challenge in our lives. Okay, so that’s not much of a secret. Anyone who has ever heard me speak knows I incorporate those ideals into every workshop I present. What isn’t widely known, however, is that I have a blog that deals with precisely those ideas. It’s called Thriver’s Toolbox and is for anyone who wants to overcome self-doubt or life challenges.

All right, so I couldn’t stop at 5. Anyone who has ever taken a workshop from me knows that I always have lots of information to share! Now I’m going to tag Karen Harbaugh and Beth Pattilo, wonderful and talented writers I know..... I hope you’ll check out their lists!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Washington, D.C.

WRW, the Washington Romance Writer’s group was wonderful! Gave my Book in a Week workshop there and loved having all day to cover the material. I still didn’t have time to cover everything, of course. But that’s how it always goes.

I love giving workshops. I love knowing I make a difference when I do. I love making writing easier and more fun and sharing tools that can make us more effective writers. At the same time, I’m always energized by the ideas people at the workshops have to share and I always come home eager to work on my own manuscript.

I also got to see an old friend from high school. This is someone who had the courage to be himself in school and as an adult found a career that involved something he enjoys. It was wonderful to be able to reconnect with him. We vowed to keep in better touch in the future.

Flying back home I found myself spinning stories about some old maps my friend showed me. I also found myself wondering about other people I knew in high school and wondering how they are doing.

How many of us, I wonder, avoid high school reunions, feeling that maybe we’re going to feel the same way we did back then? And for many of us, high school was a time of insecurity, wasn’t it? Seeing this friend, though, made me wonder what it would be like to go to a reunion. What would it be like to see how everyone has grown and changed? To discover a side of them I didn’t get to know at the time? That was such a difficult time in my life anyway that I wonder how much I missed seeing about my fellow students.

And, of course, it had me working out how various characters in a novel might react to going back to a high school reunion and what it would help them realize about themselves. But that’s what we writers do. I’m not sure, if we’re writers, that we can keep life and writing separate. If we did, I suspect our work would ring hollow. It’s when we’re willing to look at and dissect our own emotions and those of others that we find the means to bring characters to life and maybe even offer new ideas of how one can face life’s challenges.

Here’s hoping everyone has a great week! I’ll be voting tomorrow and hoping that someday it will be possible to truly discuss the issues and listen, really listen, with respect to each other knowing that none of us has a lock on wisdom or truth. that we each have something to offer, and that deep down we all just want to be safe.