Tag Archives: spice of life

Good-Bye, Simple Life


When I started this blog about writing my first novel, I had no idea of the complexities of the world of publishing and selling books. I didn’t know that the writing of the book would be the easy part.

There was a time when I read the daily blogs of many, many people, keeping up on details of their lives and projects. I enjoyed the interaction, the making of new friends. We talked about our dreams. We dreamed about telling stories that others would read and enjoy. Together–at our own pace–we put one foot in front of the other and started the Writer’s journey. We encouraged each other.

Man, I loved those times!

Then came knowledge–cover design, marketing strategies, book conferences, interacting with the media, and more. Intermingled with all of this is the grind of the re-write and editing, editing, editing.

Plus, I have work outside of writing. And family and friends who need nurturing. And it’s summer: the grass is growing; the garden needs weeding, the ants taking over my house need murdered; the animals need care and play time.

I have complicated my life–by choice–in so many ways. Even though I have given up commercial farming, there is no spare time in the schedule. In fact, I am busier than I ever was. And I am trying to get the #$%^# novel finished!

Okay. Now that I have bawled like a baby and thrown a tantrum, let me say this–I wouldn’t change a thing. Well, maybe one thing. Me. I’d change me to be better organized, less frazzled, less fearful of the unknown, more optimistic about the future. But I wouldn’t change a thing about the craziness of the book world I have embraced.

Simply said, “Good-bye, Simple Life.”

Advertisements

From Dream to Reality


Dates don’t stick in my brain. That’s why I always disliked history classes. The tests seemed to focus on memorization of lots of dates. I was at an instant disadvantage. I would have preferred that the instructors focused on the lessons we can learn from history. If that had been the case, I likely would have majored in history. I love to learn. I hate memorization.

But I digress.

I was saying dates don’t stick in my brain. I can’t remember when I first decided that I would start a writers group. If I were to guess, I would say it was two years ago. About that time, I started attending writing workshops by mystery author Lauren Carr, hosted by different local libraries. In fact, it happened after the first Carr workshop, but before the second. At the second workshop is where I asked for anyone interested to give me his or her contact information.

It took a bit of time to find a meeting place. I had a list of 25 names. I had no idea how many would actually show up. Rose Harris, owner of a local coffee-house in historic Williamsport, MD, was willing to let the group use her back room free of charge two times per month. The local library also had a meeting room, but it was in high demand. The writers group may have to compete for meeting dates. That was no good. Plus, the library felt sterile. The vibe at the Desert Rose Cafe was nurturing, creative, friendly. As an added bonus, “the eats” were good and inexpensive.

Desert Rose Cafe TL

It was the vibe that made the decision for me.

Over time the group whittled down to a dozen, then ten regulars. The group was very diverse, from writing styles to personalities to topical interests. Yet we jelled. We shared work by reading aloud. We criticized (in a constructive way) and guided each other in developing our craft. We encouraged and inspired each other.

The restaurant hosted a writing contest, posting short works from the group in the dining room, asking diners to read and vote on a winner.

We all were winners, because, after the contest, we decided to put together the Anthology. We had faith we could create a collection of short works, edit them, compile them, then publish them in a period of about six months.

With the professional assistance  and coaching of Acorn Book Services in Harpers Ferry, WV, by December, 2012, the humble writers group–Writers of the Desert Rose Cafe–released its first e-book. The members range in age from 30 to 80-plus and live in a three state area.

One member with Asperger’s Syndrome remarked that the release date of the e-book was one of the greatest days in his life. During the course of writing for the Anthology, he made a decision to move out of his parents’ home and into his own apartment, so he could enroll in college. He is currently working on a solo writing project.

An administrator in the local library system called me a couple of days ago to express her surprise and joy that Writers of the Desert Rose Cafe had achieved its goal. She offered to help arrange publicity for the book through the local newspaper. In turn, I offered to promote the library workshops as wellsprings of creativity. Without the library’s workshop, the Anthology would never have been written.

An idea led to a call to action and resulted in the creation and e-printing of a publication. A young man’s life changed. Others came to see that setting a goal and working on it faithfully yielded results. Several are working on new solo projects.

Dreams do come true.

Writers of the Desert Rose Cafe, An Anthology, available from Amazon.com or Barnes & Noble

Here

http://www.amazon.com/Writers-Desert-Cafe–Anthology-ebook/dp/B00ARYTOYC/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1357500066&sr=1-1&keywords=writers+of+the+desert+rose+cafe

or here

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/writers-of-the-desert-rose-cafe-an-anthology-fay-moore/1114018983

Banana Curried Cauliflower


This morning I was perusing my collection of recipes clipped in the past for use someday. Someday is tonight.

I spotted a recipe card for Banana Curried Cauliflower that I have had in my possession for more than ten years, yet never used. For the average American, this dish sounds exotic. It certainly isn’t meat and potatoes. Mention to a friend in casual conversation that dinner includes Banana Curried Cauliflower and watch for the dumbfounded look on the friend’s face.

The point is an author needs to serve up the literary equivalent of Banana Curried Cauliflower once in a while. It shakes up writing rituals and creative habits one has acquired. Further, it pushes an author’s limits outside the comfort zone.

This is what I have been doing with my sudden fiction stories (using the song prompts) on this blog. I am trying out new characters, topics,  voices, and writing styles. I want to see if any of it fits me as an author.

Tonight, after eating my interpretation of the cauliflower recipe, I may chuck the recipe card in the trash, or I will write personal remarks on the card before placing it into the permanent recipe file.  An author will act similarly with a newly concocted exotic-for-him work.

By venturing beyond the commonplace, both diner and author  expand personal experience upon which to call in the future.