"...IF YOU FOLLOW YOUR BLISS, DOORS WILL OPEN FOR YOU THAT WOULDN'T HAVE OPENED FOR ANYONE ELSE." - Joseph Campbell

"SOMETIMES ON THE WAY TO YOUR DREAM, YOU GET LOST AND FIND A BETTER ONE." - Lisa Hammond

"IT IS POSSIBLE AT ANY AGE TO DISCOVER A LIFELONG DESIRE YOU NEVER KNEW YOU HAD." - Robert Brault


"IT'S NEVER TOO LATE TO BE WHO YOU MIGHT HAVE BEEN." - George Eliot

"WE DID NOT CHANGE AS WE GREW OLDER. WE JUST BECAME MORE CLEARLY OURSELVES." - Lynn Hall

"GO CONFIDENTLY IN THE DIRECTION OF YOUR DREAMS! LIVE THE LIFE YOU HAVE IMAGED." - Henry David Thoreau

Sunday, September 30, 2012

* Nostalgic Sunday *

It's Time for Another Nostalgic Sunday


I didn't realize it had been such a long time since I last posted a Nostalgic Sunday, but it looks like it was July 22nd. (Time to get back into my routine again.)

Since it's almost October, let's talk about purchasing Christmas cards!

A couple of years ago I somehow stumbled upon the Bodleian Library at the University of Oxford, in Jolly Old England! Yes, it's THAT Oxford University! The library sells truly unique items and two of my favorites are their Christmas cards and wrapping paper. That first year I wasn't aware of the store until really close to Christmas, but the sales staff is so competent and good to their customers that I received my cards in time. The design below is what I bought that first year.
Jolly Girls Christmas cards. Aren't they adorable? 

Last year, I ordered much earlier and bought three designs of cards and two designs of wrapping paper. All of the items are made of such quality, heavy-weight material.
Last year, besides Jolly Girls, I bought this design and one other.
This is one of the wrapping paper designs. It comes folded, so it's easy to ship and it's such good quality.
Also: All profits from your purchases help fund the conservation, collection and care of the Libraries' important papers and manuscripts.

I honestly don't remember how much my total was, including shipping, but I didn't think it was that bad, considering everything! Please check out their site and browse their online store. And if you have any questions, just e-mail Wendy at sales@bodleian.ox.ac.uk. Tell her "Becky sent me!" (Wendy or other staff members can calculate the cost in American dollars, of course!)


Since this is Nostalgic Sunday and I'm writing about Christmas, I must take a moment to mention how sad I was to hear that Andy Williams passed away last week. When I was growing up, I watched his TV show every week, bought a couple of his record albums, especially the Christmas ones, and his family Christmas show was by far my favorite all year.

Image Courtesy Wikipedia
So, both of my favorite "Andys" are gone now: Andy Williams, and of course, Andy Griffith. But, how fortunate we are to have them on film, and vinyl, and tape, and CDs, etc. They will  never really leave us.



"Isn't it funny that at Christmas something in you gets so lonely for - I don't know what exactly, but it's something that you don't mind so much not having at other times."  ~Kate L. Bosher

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

* This and That on a Wednesday *

Happy Wednesday, everyone!

I've been feeling a bit "autumnly" for a few days, but our weather is wacky, and today was warmer and more humid again. Yet, October is right around the corner, and the beginning of my favorite time of the year....October, November and December. The aromas of traditional meals and desserts, seeing family and friends, drinking those yummy flavored coffees, and burning lovely scented candles. Ahhh, heavenly!

I thought I'd share some photos from around my house. Even though they are from past years, many of you may not have seen them before.

From November 2010

From October 2011
My fireplace in September 2010

Are you reading anything really great right now? Do you have any favorite books for particular seasons....like favorite movies?

I'm rereading "Crazy Ladies: A Novel" by Michael Lee West. (The chapters progress though quite a few years and aren't about any certain seasons or holidays, although they certainly are mentioned.) I first purchased and read it in 2006. (I know this because I wrote my name and the date inside! And that reminded me of my excitement when receiving brand new books at the beginning of each school year!) If you click on the title, it will take you to its page on Amazon where it averaged 4 out of 5 stars in 118 reviews! I loved it in 2006 and I'm loving it again in 2012!
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Besides being an author of about a zillion books...well, maybe not quite that many, Ms. West also cooks and bakes and decorates. I have no idea where she gets the energy! Click Here to visit Rattlebridge Farm. AND please click Here to visit her website. She's awe-inspiring!


~~~~
One More Thing about Michael Lee West: She also wrote a book blurb for my memoir, of which I will be forever grateful, but that is not the reason I rave about her or her writing. That all comes straight from my heart and I know she knows that, too. 

Lastly, the fabulous Jennifer Daiker over at Unedited is hosting Guest Bloggers and I will be the featured guest next Monday, October 1st. Please stop by and browse all through Jen's blog. She is amazing!


*Welcome to my newest followers, Riet and Lady CatI hope you'll stop by often and always enjoy what you read and see! Thank you! *   


"Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns." - George Eliot

Friday, September 21, 2012

* Climb Every Mountain *

An old girlfriend and I got together today for lunch. Old as in we've been friends since grade school, AND old as in she's my age. Well, actually I'm the older one.....by 10 months!

It was a beautiful day and we had a wonderful time as always. She's excited about my book,too. The support and excitement of other people is magical

Before I left home, I grabbed a couple of CDs to listen to since I was driving farther than my usual 5 mile radius. I was able to hear the entire soundtrack of The Sound of Music. I think it was the first time I've listened to it in my little car, and it surrounded me as if the orchestra and actors were riding along. I turned the volume way up and sang my little heart out, using my perfectly beautiful god-awful-opera-singing-voice. The song that meant the most to me today was Climb Every Mountain. 
image courtesy: Milagros Boutique Online

How long has it been since you've heard it? Do you know all the words? I found these on Let's Sing It.
Climb every mountain,
Search high and low,

Follow every byway,
Every path you know.

Climb every mountain,

Ford every stream,
Follow every rainbow,
'Till you find your dream.

A dream that will need

All the love you can give,
Every day of your life
For as long as you live.

Climb every mountain,

Ford every stream,
Follow every rainbow,
Till you find your dream

A dream that will need

All the love you can give,
Every day of your life,
For as long as you live.

Climb every mountain,

Ford every stream,
Follow every rainbow,
Till you find your dream.



These words really spoke to me today. I've been following my dream, and blogging about it, for so long, and to know I've almost reached it is an amazing feeling. 

What about your dreams? Are you following the paths to reach them? I hope you are!


Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined. -- Henry David Thoreau

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

ADVANCE PRAISE FOR MY MEMOIR


I am thrilled to post my first book blurb!


"Becky Povich has a light and whimsical way with words, and a knack for making the everyday seem a bit more special."  -- Philip Gulley 


(image: Philip's website)


Seeing the above words written by the fantastic author Philip Gulley, makes me feel as if I'm dreaming! I'm so excited and I can't imagine what I'll actually do when I'm holding my book in my hot little hands, reading Philip's recommendation. Wow! 


I borrowed the following from his website: Philip Gulley is a Quaker pastor and beloved writer and speaker from Danville, Indiana.  An eclectic writer, Gulley has published 17 books, including the acclaimed Harmony series..... and the best-selling Porch Talk series... Philip has also written four books on Christianity. 

      

I've read quite a few of the fictional Harmony Series books and I just love them. It's small town life at its best.


Thank you, Philip, from the bottom of my heart. This means the world to me. 



*Welcome to my newest follower, Rita. I hope you'll stop by often and always enjoy what you read and see! Thank you! *   
  


"A writer never has a vacation. For a writer life consists of either writing or thinking about writing."
 - Eugene Ionesco

Friday, September 14, 2012

The Splendor of Clouds and Sky

I think I've mentioned before how much I love to take pictures, and how I keep asking Santa to bring me a really good camera for Christmas. I guess he actually does know if I'm good or bad, because it's been three years now, and I still haven't gotten one! Oh well. I can make do with my cheapie camera until the real thing comes along. La Di Da...La Di Da....

Below are some of my favorite clouds photos

These first two were taken from my front porch. Beautiful dark clouds along with the sunset.



The next two were taken from my deck. I don't know why, but that afternoon, these white, puffy clouds were bright white, so bright they hurt my eyes to look at them very long.



I thought these next two were so unique, like pulled taffy, or paint strokes.



Dark, ominous clouds but nothing developed. The first one looks like the Loch Ness Monster is on the left. I love the second one because it appears as if there are dark mountains behind the houses, and weird clouds above them. 



This is one of my favorites. I took it from my window seat in an airplane .


This was just a few days ago. It was after some storms and the sky was this gorgeous color of violet and the street reflected it, too, just as it shows. It was unbelievable.  

Last, this picture is from tonight. I was on the deck with The Ronald and Vern. It was close to sunset and I walked over to the edge and saw these clouds, ran into the house, grabbed my camera, and took this. 






"You must not blame me if I do talk to the clouds." -- Henry David Thoreau

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Special Wednesday The Next Big Thing

I've been tagged by Margo Dill in a blog game called THE NEXT BIG THING! (Writer bloggers answer questions around the web about the next big thing in publishing....because aren't we all writing that hugely popular, next best seller?!
Here are the rules per author Ey Wade’s blog:
“If you like the game of Tag, this is the game for you. If you’re tagged, you’re “it,” and you have to answer 10 questions about your WIP (work in progress) on your blog and then pass the baton on to 5 author volunteers who will answer the same questions the following Wednesday on their own blog.”   *After searching through all the blogs I follow, I'm not really sure who I could pass this on to. I have plenty of writer/blogger friends, but not many who have a WIP, that I know of. *
~~~~~~
Here are my 10 answers!
What is the working title of your book?
From Pigtails to Chin Hairs; A Memoir & More 

Where did the idea come from for the book?
After I'd been writing newspaper opinion columns and had a few stories published in anthologies including Chicken Soup for the Soul, the idea of a memoir came to me. I felt really motivated to write about various times in my life and I believed others would enjoy reading about them, too. 
What genre does your book fall under?
Memoir.
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
This is a great question. I was asked once who I thought should portray me in a movie and my answer was Janeane Garofalo. I love her sarcastic sense of humor and I'm a lot like that at times. As far as the child or teenager version of me, I can't think of anyone. I'll have my people get back to your people!
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
From Pigtails to Chin Hairs; A Memoir & More contains snippets of my life, vignettes that tell the tales of an ideal childhood, shattered by my parents' divorce; plus teenage angst, unrequited loves, grown-up years, and humor when you'd least expect it. 
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
It is being published by a small press in Missouri, High Hill Press. 
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
Uh...how about 10 years and counting?? I'm trying to get it completed asap!
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I really don't like to compare my writing to anyone else's. I'm still a beginner and wouldn't feel right saying, "Oh, my writing is similar to - - - - -."
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
My estranged dad and reconnecting with him again after MANY years. 
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
I grew up in the 50s and 60s. My life was right out of "Father Knows Best" until Dad divorced Mom. It's real. It's funny. It's poignant. It's sad. And it's not just about my growing up years. There are also chapters from later on in my life. Thus the "& More" part of the subtitle. 
** Thank you, Margo, for tagging me! **

*Welcome to my newest follower, Mevely317. I hope you'll stop by often and always enjoy what you read and see! Thank you! *   
  


"There is always one moment in childhood when the door opens and lets the future in." -- Graham Greene

Friday, September 7, 2012

Writing Contest & Calls for Anthologies

As promised yesterday, I'm sharing some contest information and calls for submissions. I've already mentioned some of these in the past, but want to post a reminder since deadlines are coming up. 

First: Lynn Goodwin at Writer Advice has a fascinating contest with a deadline of October 15, 2012. That's just a little over a month away! Can you believe it? The name of the contest is Scintillating Starts. Isn't that cool? If that doesn't spark your interest, I don't know what will! 



                                WRITER ADVICE ANNOUNCES ITS FIRST-EVER




Scintillating Starts
A new contest from Writer Advice

Success



*Winners will share prize money and have their first paragraphs published on the website.*


~~~~~~

I interviewed Lynn this past March and she shared so much information and "writerly" sites with us. Click HERE to read Part One of the interview. Part Two   can be found on the next day's post. 


~~~~~~



Chicken Soup for the Soul has a call-out for your stories! Click on the link to find out all the details, but until you do, here's a little info:


Lemons to Lemonade - deadline February 28, 2013
Holiday Stories - deadline February 28, 2013
Devotional Stories for Wives - deadline February 28, 2013
20th Anniversary Reader's Choice - deadline January 15, 2013
Raising Kids on the Spectrum - deadline September 30, 2012

~~~~~~

There are many call-outs from Publishing Syndicate for the NYMB (Not Your Mother's Book) anthologies! I'm highlighting FOUR of them below. One for friend Linda O'Connell, one for friend Dianna Graveman, and two for new-friend Pat Nelson!


Linda O'Connell is developing and seeking sassy, snappy, sincere and humorous submissions for, Not Your Mother's Book on Family. Deadline is October 1, 2012! So Hurry!

Dianna Graveman is seeking first-person funny and downright embarrassing submissions for Not Your Mother's Book on Being a MomDeadline is October 1, 2012! So Hurry!


Pat Nelson is looking for stories about you and your parents or you and your children for the parenting book and you and your grandparents or you and your grandchildren for the grandparenting book.


Pat is offering a free critique of your parenting or grandparenting story. If you would like to receive one, submit your stories directly to Pat:  PatsStorystorm@gmail.com during the month of September. She will return your story to you with her suggestions. Then, make any desired changes and submit to Publishing Syndicate for parenting, and to PublishingSyndicate for grandparenting. OR you may submit them directly to, without Pat's critique. 

These two books have an Open Deadline as of now, but it's always a good idea to submit your stories early! *



*Welcome to my newest follower, Beth I hope you'll stop by often and always enjoy what you read and see! Thank you! *  







"I couldn't be me, without you being you, allowing me to be me." -- Becky Povich (said to The Ronald one evening when discussing my writing)

Thursday, September 6, 2012

A Girl Named Zippy

I'm almost certain that I've blogged about the memoir A Girl Named Zippy, by Haven Kimmel, but I didn't see it listed in my Labels. It's possible I wrote about it before I started using labels, because I didn't know what they were or how to use them until about two years ago!

So, anyway.....When A Girl Named Zippy was first published in early 2001, I bought the hardcover. It was displayed in the New Books section of my favorite indie book store, Main Street Books, in St. Charles, Missouri. The store was still at its old, and I think original, location. Sometime soon I'll do an entire post about the store and a little of its history.

courtesy: google.books.com



I bought it for the same reasons I choose any book, whether I'm buying it or borrowing it from the library:


1) The cover really caught my eye. I mean, really....look at that adorable face!

2) I read a bit of the first page or two and flipped through it, noticing the photos. 

3) I liked the writer's style, her voice. 


I don't remember if I read "Zippy" before or after May of 2001, but it was somewhere in that time period. Why does that matter? My estranged dad became very ill in May 2001 and wasn't expected to live. I went to see him and when I got home, my feelings just flowed out of me and....long story short.....I realized I was a writer. I discovered my passion at the ripe old age of almost 50.

The entire time I read it, I kept thinking, If I wrote a memoir, it would be like this!  I was definitely not comparing myself or my writing in any way to Ms. Kimmel. Not at all. What I meant was the small town life, the little adventures of a young girl who had a couple of much older siblings, the similar era although I'm older, and the use of B&W photos. Reading that book prompted and inspired me to write, and not only to write, but to submit my writing.....without fear. I owe so much to little Zippy. 

As I get closer to finishing my first book, a memoir, my excitement builds. My book cover hasn't really been discussed much yet, but I'm leaning toward something like this: What do you think??


From Pigtails to Chin Hairs
A Memoir & More
by Becky Lewellen Povich



Finally, I'm so excited about a package I received yesterday from Amazon.com. (Yes, I shop at various book venues.) I've never listened to an audio book before, but when I heard about this one, I just had to have it. (P.S. I got it from one of Amazon's vendors and it is brand new, still in plastic wrap. The retail price on it is $26.95, and I got it for less than $10.00, including shipping.)


My hardcover "Zippy" book on the left, plus its new companion: my new audio book! 
It's on 5 CDs and is read by the author, Haven Kimmel. I can't wait to start listening.



What about you? Have you ever listened to audio books? 

Are you a writer? 

What writers/books have influenced you?



*Welcome to my two newest followers, Elizabeth Seckman and Pat Nelson. I hope you'll stop by often and always enjoy what you read and see! Thank you! 




Tune in tomorrow when I'll have some contest information to share.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Saturday Centus - Football

 

It's Saturday Centus time, via Jenny Matlock's blog. I haven't participated in Jenny's meme for such a long time and today seems like the perfect day to begin again. Why? Because it's September 1st and the prompt is: "Are You Ready For Some Football?"

WORD COUNT -  Not to exceed 106
STYLE OF WRITING - Any
PICTURES - Any Additional 



For more rules and more 100 word writings using the prompt go to 



Below is my entry:

Poised Excitement

Are you ready for some football? You bet your sweet patootie I am! Being such a klutz, though, and a possible danger to myself and others, it's best for me to stay home and watch games on television.

One time I attended a local college game, and as I moseyed along a concrete walkway, I tripped and fell, scraping my hands and knees while soda, ice, and a warm pretzel went flying through the air. The force of my fall caused a slight lack of bladder control, thus causing way more embarrassment than any physical pain.

Hooray for Big Screen TV and a nearby bathroom!