Saturday, April 30, 2011

* Saturday Centus *

Happy Anniversary to Saturday Centus! Yes, one year ago, Jenny Matlock started this wonderful meme. I haven't participated in quite a long time, but tonight I felt compelled to give it a try again. I hope it's acceptable! And Oh, it must be 100 words or less, not counting the prompt....which I forgot when I added mine up and tried so desperately to stay under 100! So, duh.....mine is 95 words, including the prompt!
*These Saturday Centus stories are fictional. *

Like always, Jenny provides us with a wonderful prompt (appearing below, in bold text). And as an extra gift to us on her special anniversary, she's allowing us to add a photo to our submission! My story and photo is below.

Although the traditional gift for a first anniversary is fabulous, still-semi-newlywed husband decided to shower me with luxurious gifts. He said, "Bea, I know you love the song, String of Pearls, by Glenn Miller, so I bought you a lovely pearl necklace, with matching earrings and bracelet."

I was so excited, I immediately put the necklace around my neck, and before even trying on the other lovely items, began doing my Happy Dance, which in turn, caused my real....well, actually faux pearls, to fall off the string, bouncing and rolling all over the floor.
And Welcome to my Three Newest Followers: Terra, Donna & Joyce! Thanks so much and I hope you'll stop by often and always be pleased with what you see.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

* Favorite Lines in Books *

After posting the opening sentences of "Gone With a Handsomer Man", I started thinking about some of my favorite lines in various books I've read.

Last September, I wrote about a memoir I'd just finished reading. It was "The Midwife; A Memoir of Birth, Joy & Hard Times", by Jennifer Worth.

I didn't think I'd like it at first. It was about the poorest of the poor, in 1950's England. But the writing was just beautiful. This is one of those rare books I'd actually read a second time. Fortunately, too, Jennifer Worth has written other books in this series, which I'll look for at the of these days!

Here are a couple that really spoke to me:

"Circumstances bring people together and take them apart. One cannot keep up with everyone in a lifetime."

"What a pity! Life is so fleeting, and the past so rich."

What about you? What are some of your favorite lines from books? Are there any in particular that really resonated with you?

Monday, April 25, 2011

Gone With a Handsomer Man

Isn't that a great book title?! I just love it! And it gives a hint of the quirky story of Teeny Templeton......

Don't forget my contest to win this fabulous book, autographed by Michael Lee West, herself!

See all the infomation HERE. 

** Contest closes at Midnight, CDT, on Saturday, May 7th. You've still got lots of time!

And please pass it along to your family and friends!  (I just finished reading it April 26th and I loved it!)

All I ever wanted in life was true love, a set of copper cookware, and the perfect recipe for red velvet cake. The last thing I wanted was to end up on Charleston’s six o’clock news, accused of murder and a slew of other crimes. --  First two sentences in the book (used with permission from Michael Lee West)

Friday, April 22, 2011

* Tornadoes in St. Louis Area *

Just wanted to let everyone know that where I live is damage free. The St. Louis airport has quite a bit of significant damage and is closed right now. From what I've heard, there were about 5 or 6 tornadoes in the entire St. Charles-St. Louis Counties. Very unusual for us!

I hope all my blog friends are safe and damage free, where ever you are!

“When you're safe at home you wish you were having an adventure; when you're having an adventure you wish you were safe at home” -- Thornton Wilder

Thursday, April 21, 2011

* Saturday Writers Web Site *

As some of you know, I took on the position of president of Saturday Writers for 2011. Although it's been quite a bit of work and time consuming, I've loved every minute of it. We have a great group of approximately 100 members, and  fabulous board members.

Our web site has been under construction for a few weeks and I'm happy to say, it's close to being finished.

The additonal info for Members and Contact pages will follow in the next couple of days.

(image courtesy google)

Our wonderful Webmaster Guru has been living on about 2 hours of sleep every night (well, maybe a few more!) for weeks/months, and is doing this pro bono. When it's finished, it will be awesome.

Click on the link here, or above, to see what's finished at this point.

We've also been posting current Saturday Writers news on our blog, too:

I'm very proud to be part of this group. We really do support each other, encourage each other, and have a good time, too.

Anyone and everyone is welcome. No experience required!!

“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospection” -- Anais Nin

Sunday, April 17, 2011

* Fabulous Give-Away! *

See that book cover on the left side bar? "Gone With a Handsomer Man" is the newest book by the lovely Michael Lee West. In honor of its brand new release, I'll be giving away one hardcover copy, autographed by Ms. West!

As you will see, if you visit her blog, Michael Lee is not only the fabulous author of seven books, she is an extraordinary designer, cook, photographer and a beautiful Southern Lady! She's also been extremely kind to me, encouraging me in my writing. How amazing is that?!

Since this is such a special give away, I'm making it more difficult than usual.
To be eligible, you must do 1 through 4 below:

1) Be a follower of my blog
2) Be a follower of Michael's blog
3) Leave a comment, stating why you'd like to win this autographed book
4) Post a little something on your blog about the contest

In addition to these four things, if you post something on your Facebook or Twitter, let me know and I'll add your name twice.

This Contest Give-Away will be open from tonight through Saturday, May 7th. The winner will be chosen by and will be announced on Sunday, May 8th.  (This is open to all parts of the globe, not just the US!)

Please join in, tell your friends and blog buddies, too. Let's show Michael Lee West what great fans she has!
And if you haven't already read any of her books, this would be a fantastic one to begin with.

"An apple is an excellent thing -- until you have tried a peach." -- George du Maurier (1834-1896)

Saturday, April 16, 2011

* I'm Not a Poet....and Don't I Know it *

April is poetry month: I'd like to share some of my poetry (?) talents.

Let me first say, I do not write poetry. I know I am not any good at it. So, whenever I have to write any, I always write silly stuff, in an attempt to be humorous.This particular one was written quickly, in an exercise where everyone had to write down one word, then write a sentence with it, and then pass it to the person on their left. The next word had to be included in the next sentence, etc. (those words are underlined)

Ron and I drove by the town dump.
It seemed as if our lives were at stake.
The money was mistakenly put in a can.
We needed a magical seer to locate it
among the piles of trash.
As I climbed out of the car,
walking toward a bright red light,
my neck tattoo shone in the dark.
It sure didn't smell like a garden out here.

There you are. Poetry: Povich-Style!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

* Can You Hear Me Screaming? *

Can you hear me screaming all across the continent and all the way around the world?????

We've been on pins & needles for months, waiting to see if our youngest son, Mark, would be offered admission at Washington University, in St. Louis, as a Ph.D student in their PNP (Philosophy-Neuroscience-Psychology) Program. He just received the offer.....and he has accepted!!!!!!!!!!!  Alleluia!!!!

It's a 6-Year Program. He wants to become a teacher....a college professor.

This is the university he just graduated from with his bachelor's degree in philosophy. We're glad he'll still be close to home! ☺

Can you hear this proud mom??!!  Can you hear my huge sigh of relief??  Can you hear my happiness??

I can't even think of anything else to say at the moment!!

"Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined." -- Henry David Thoreau

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

* You Like Me....You REALLY Like Me *

Today I received a blog award from the fantastic OJ at Casta Zero! Which reminded me that I also received one from delightful Julie almost a month ago! Thanks to both of you. Receiving these awards really does mean a lot to me, and I apologize to Julie for being so late in getting hers posted.

Julie awarded me this lovely "The incredibly sweet blog award."
There were some rules attached about listing things about myself that y'all don't know, but I'm skipping that part! With all the information I've posted the past couple of years, I don't think there's much left to tell!
Thank you, again, Julie! I found this doubly "sweet" because we've only known each other a brief amount of time.

OJ awarded me this really cool "Sisters of the Quill" blog award.
This particular blog award is for "deserving writers, to women whose talent needs to be recognized." Isn't that fantastic? And what makes it even better is that it was originated and designed by friend and blogger, Donna at Donna's Book Pub! Thanks again, OJ! You're a really sweet sister of the quill, yourself!

"Everyone has an invisible sign hanging from their neck saying, "Make me feel important". Never forget this message when working with people." -- Mary Kay Ash

Monday, April 11, 2011

* More about the MWG Missouri Writers Guild Conference *

After posting last night about the conference, I realized I still had more to say about it!

I attended a workshop given by Catherine Rankovic. (Learn all about her on her website: Book Eval. I could never do her justice by posting just a few sentences.)

I have to admit that I was truly terrifed to sit in on her session and it just proves how wrong we can be about someone. I made the assumption that since Catherine taught creative writing at Washington University in St. Louis, she would be extremely critical of anything I might say or write, or question I might ask. Boy, was I ever wrong! For one thing....none of us were required to write anything....AND she was the exact opposite of what I expected. What a lovely, soft spoken, funny, and of course, very intelligent woman! I had the pleasure of meeting Catherine after her presentation, and I also sat next to her at lunch. Fabulous woman! I would LOVE to take her evening writing course at Wash U, but I think I'll have to wait two more years when my tuition would be Half Price...due to reaching a certain age. (Getting older does have its benefits!)

I also briefly met Regina Williams, Editor of The Storyteller magazine.
I also met Wendy Drew, owner of Rose's Bookhouse, in O'fallon, Missouri.
And, I had the pleasure of meeting Cindy Lovell, Executive Director/Education Coordinator of the Mark Twain Museum in Hannibal, Missouri. Please check all these fabulous women's websites. They are all have remarkable stories to tell.

"Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great." -- Mark Twain

"Good writing is supposed to evoke sensation in the reader—not the fact that it is raining, but the feeling of being rained upon." -- E.L. Doctorow

Sunday, April 10, 2011

* MWG Missouri Writers Guild Just Write! Conference *

The MWG Missouri Writers Guild Conference, Just Write! was a huge success. It was wonderful to see so many writers join together to do what we writers like to do most: Talk about writing. Learn more about writing. Learn important information from agents and publishers. Learn more about publishing opportunities. Listen to inspirational speakers. Have the opportunity to purchase books from our newly published friends. Etcetera!

It was fabulous to meet C. Hope Clark, owner of Funds for Writers. Hope's blog and newsletters are packed full of helpful information that we writers crave.

Our banquet dinner's keynote speaker was St. Louis' own, Elaine Viets. She traveled all the way from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida to be part of our wonderful weekend. Elaine is an extremely funny lady. Check her website to learn more about her and possibly purchase a book or two!

I had the pleasure to be the shepherd (guide) to Linda C. Apple during the conference. Linda is a writer and speaker. She has stories published in thirteen (13) Chicken Soup for the Soul books. She's also written two books and is working on a historical romance. I purchased one of Linda's books, "Inspire! Writing from the Soul." (Instructional guide to inspirational writing.) She also has a blog. I can't say enough about how much I admire and like Linda. She inspired me to get back to my writing with renewed interest. It was truly a joy to be in her presence.

Some of our Saturday Writer members were winners of, or received honorable mention in the various conference contests. Jack Zerr, Marcia Gaye, Pat Wahler, Alice Mushany & Donna Volkenannt Congratulations to all! (If I've forgotten anyone, please tell me. There were so many names announced last night and y'all know I have an awful memory!)

And now....the coveted award we received was......drum roll please.......

MWG's Silent Auction: The Basket Wars! I don't know if Saturday Writers has ever won it in the past, but I was determined to win this year! Our large and lovely gift basket was: Death by Chocolate. Everything in it was either chocolate, or had something to do with chocolate, and not necessarily edible! Included were the DVDs Chocolat, and Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. There were cookbooks with chocolate recipes and there were books with chocolate in the title such as Chocolate for a Woman's Soul. Add a lovely, handmade knitted dark brown scarf, and a chocolate candle, plus tons of chocolate candies and box mixes. Voile'...Death by Chocolate!

A big thank you to Barbara Hodges, the Basket Wars coordinator, and all the Saturday Writer members who donated items for our basket! And it wouldn't have come together if it wasn't for Sioux Roslawski who searched all over town for the right basket to hold everything, and presented us with the final beautiful result.

Thank you and congratulations to Cindy Lovell from Hannibal, Missouri, who was the highest bidder!

We received a nice check for our winning entry, plus a "traveling trophy", which we hope to hold onto for many years to come!

Hello & Welcome to my newest follower: Vicki Rocho. I had the pleasure of meeting Vicki at this conference! She drove all the way from Iowa to attend our St. Louis conference! Wonderful to meet you, Vicki!

"Don't tell me the moon is shining, show me the glint of light on broken glass." -- Anton Chekhov

Thursday, April 7, 2011

* Tomorrow's the Big Day ~ MWG Conference *

Tomorrow, Friday April 8th, is the beginning of the Missouri Writer's Guild "Just Write!" Conference. I've been anxiously awaiting this conference, in all actuality, since the last one I attended in 2007.

That conference was my first one and it bowled me over. I couldn't get over how many people were published authors, whether it was their own books, or magazine articles, or anthologies. I felt like an intruder, like a girl from the farm, attending a big city! But I was embraced by many helpful and reassuring writers. I also received my first critique, which was an encouraging one.

Quite a bit has happened to me since then. I've joined writers' groups, written and submitted to contests, anthologies, newspapers, etc....and managed to be published in a few. I've met so many wonderful writers, both in person, through e-mails, and in the past couple of years, through my blog.

Speaking of writers....I'm thrilled to be an official "shepherd" this weekend. That means I'm an ambassador for MWG and I'll help my assigned speaker navigate the conference. Which speaker was chosen for me? Linda C. Apple; writer and speaker. Linda has stories published in over a dozen Chicken Soup for the Soul books, plus many others. She also has published two books of her own, about inspriation, speaking and writing. Please check out her website to learn more. I can't wait to meet Linda. I'm sure we'll hit it off!

I can't say enough about how much I've learned through meetings and networking. I'm so grateful to be a Writer Gal! I'm especially pleased to be a member of the Missouri Writers Guild, St. Louis Writers Guild, Ozarks Writers League, and Saturday Writers.

Wherever you are, I hope you have a writers group near you. And if you don't, why not start one? They all have to begin somewhere, somehow!

Hello & Welcome to my newest follower: Souther Girl. Thanks so much and I hope you always enjoy your visits!

I end today's post with two of my favorite quotes:

"If there's a book you really want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it." ~Toni Morrison

"The role of a writer is not to say what we all can say, but what we are unable to say." ~Anaïs Nin

Monday, April 4, 2011

* Writerly Thoughts *

I'm feeling very writerly today. It began when I stopped at Carol Kilgore's blog, Under the Tiki Hut. Carol wrote about her excitement and then disappointment over a new book written by one of her favorite authors. She posed the question, "As a reader: What do you do when this happens with you?" She also asked how you, the writer, can prevent readers from feeling let down when they read your work. I didn't respond to that one because everyone felt pretty much the same: Hoping that wouldn't happen to them!

Then I hopped over to check out Tiny Lights, A Journal of Personal Narrative. I write a monthly essay for the Searchlights & Signal Flares section, where writerly questions are posed. Anyone is welcome to submit answers, as long as they stick to the guidelines posted. The question for March was: How do you deal with writer’s envy? I just LOVE being put to the test on these. Most times I stare at my blank screen for awhile and think, How am I going to write about this? And then, all of a sudden, the words start flowing and I complete it fairly quickly. I usually wait until the deadline, which is the 15th of every month, and for some reason that seems to work for me. Also, there is no word count, so it can be short and sweet or long and eloquent. After I submit my essay, I don't go back and read it for weeks. And almost every time, when I finally do read it again, it catches me by surprise, as if I didn't even write it.....and I think, Hmm, maybe I'm not too shabby of a writer least, sometimes!

I just remembered something.....Missouri Governor Jay Nixon proclaimed April 3 through 9 Missouri Writers Week. The week culminates with the Show-Me Spotlight banquet and awards to the winners of the annual MWG contests on April 9 at the Just Write! Conference in St. Louis.

No wonder I feel writerly today. I'm attending the conference and banquet this weekend! More on that later this week.

Be sure and check out Under the Tiki Hut and Tiny Lights. I haven't known Carol very long, but I love her blog. And I can't say enough about Susan Bono, the Editor-in-Chief, of Tiny Lights!

Hello and Welcome to my newest follower: Nucleo Espirita Verbo de Luz. Thanks so much and I hope you always enjoy your visits!

"Seeing yourself in print is such an amazing concept: you can get so much attention without having to actually show up somewhere . . .You don't have to dress up, for instance, and you can't hear them boo you right away.” -- Anne Lamott

Saturday, April 2, 2011

* And the Winner Is.....*

Thanks to everyone who participated in my newest contest. I found it so interesting to learn that not only many had never watched Joan of Arcadia, but had never even heard of it. No wonder the show got dropped after only two seasons. Thanks to DVDs, though, it will live on and on.

And by using, the winner is ~~~~~ Jeff Campbell! Congrats, Jeff! Please e-mail your mailing address to me and I'll try to get the DVD set sent Monday. I know you'll enjoy reliving those "Conversations with God."

"What if God was one of us?" -- lyrics from If God Was One of Us, by Joan Osbourne

Friday, April 1, 2011

* Do These Folks Look Like Your Ancestors? *

It's a Reunion! Not!

When digging through a drawer of cards, envelopes, and crafty things today, I came across a few of these invitations. You know how you browse in the greeting card aisle at whatever store you're in? You look at the darling ones with the puppies or babies on the front. You laugh out loud at the funny ones. And sometimes you buy a couple of cards, knowing you will save them for the right occasion. 

I saw these in a Hallmark store approximately 20 years ago! They were in a bin of marked down items and the package of ten or twelve cost something like 50 cents. I had no need for reunion invitations, but the photo was just so darn funny, I had to have them. Over the years, I kept thinking that some kind of reunion would come along and then I could use them, but that never happened.

Today, though, I thought of a solution. I'll send them to some writer friends, inviting them to lunch. The invitation will come with just one requirement. In order to attend, they must write a short story based on one of these fine looking family members. And if they'd like to make it even more fun, they could dress in the same attire as their character.

What do you think? Would you like to receive one of these wacky invitations?!

"In my photographs it is apparent that there was no posing at the moment I released the shutter." -- Jerzy Kosinski