Friday, February 9, 2018

Friday Fricassee

Happy Friday, dear ones!

So yesterday I sent out my first author newsletter (go subscribe so you don't miss the next one!), and I spent an awful lot of time checking stats.  As in, how many were delivered (100%).  How many people opened it.  How many people clicked on links (like for the FREE copy of Agent: Demystified). 

I think I'm a stats geek.

It's been a long time since I've done something like this.  Eons ago, I published a weekly newsletter called MOMMY! The Internet Lifeline for Stay-at-Home Moms.  This was back before the days of Mailchimp and moron-proof email campaigns, and I really was that person who accidentally sent out the newsletter one week with everyone's email address visible.

Oy.  It's so much easier now.

I guess you could call that my "first life" as a writer.  I had a burning desire to offer support to other moms-at-home (working or not), and writing has always been a Thing I Do, so it just sort of came together.  Along with the newsletter, I also provided an online forum for these moms.  The coolest thing?  Today, all these years later, there are about 15 of us who are still connected.  We've got a private Facebook group where we still feel safe sharing absolutely anything.

Unexpected pregnancies.  Verbally abusive husbands.  Lyme disease.  Miscarriage.  Cancer.  The death of a grown daughter.  Widowhood.  We've walked through it all together, connected by hearts and words.

We've laughed a lot, too.  Pee-in-your-pants belly laughter that makes your family members nervous for your sanity.  I love these ladies--and I've only met 4 of them in person.

Hearts.  Words.  Lives.

I also wrote this:

I let it go out of print a few years ago, and I've got exactly 4 copies in my house.  Honestly, I can't bear to read it.  My writing style has matured so much that, well, I sort of cringe a little when I flip open the pages.

I've always loved the cover, though.  And the title?  My then-four-year-old daughter actually said that to me one day at the table.  "Mommy, my lima beans are allergic to my spoon."  (Because lima beans.)  How could I not make that into a book title?

In all its imperfection, though, it touched people's hearts.  Encouraged them.  Made them laugh.  Gave them the "you're not alone" feeling that was my intent all along.

So there's that.

Hearts.  Words.  Lives.

And then there's us--this lovely, diverse, bursting-with-words group of people, most of whom have never met face-to-face.  We share our journeys and our hearts, and we offer what we can to our fellow writers.  We learn, we grow, we cheer each other on.  

You know how much I love being part of this community of writers, because I say it all the time.  Isn't it wonderful to be able to use WORDS to connect, to support, to congratulate, to instruct, to love?  We are blessed, indeed, that what we do (write) is also how we reach out.  And I wouldn't trade this connection for anything.

Thanks for being you!  May your weekend be filled with words and loved ones and an incredible sense of knowing that, in the grand scheme of things, you matter.


  1. Thanks for sharing that charming cover -- both the title and the illustration are hilarious! It sure gave me a good laugh. :)

    I didn't like lima beans either when I was a kid, and they're one of the very few vegetables I never developed a taste for -- I still don't like lima beans. But at least now whenever I see them I can just think about them trying to run away from that spoon... :D

    Have you considered rewriting the stories in the book? Now that you have connections with so many readers, I'll bet many of them would also find that they're stories that really speak to them. (And it seems a shame not to have that delightful title and cover out there where they can be enjoyed!)

  2. So true how words connect us! And I totally get the parent chat group bond. That's wonderful your group has stayed together and continues to support each other (and laugh!). Love the title - as soon as I saw it I knew it had to be a quote from a kid. I have a children's book on the back(way back) burner that is inspired by a kid quote too :)

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