BLOGWORDS – Friday 14 April 2017 – SPECIAL EDITION – THIRD BLOGIVERSARY
BLOGWORDS – SPECIAL EDITION – THIRD BLOGIVERSARY
“I’ve been thrown in the deep end. Of a deep ocean. In a tidal wave. And all I want to do is write my stories.”
“because the battle within is the greatest battle of all” Stories by Design
“I’ve been thrown in the deep end. Of a deep ocean. In a tidal wave. And all I want to do is write my stories. (Well, and get people to read ‘em… ) Write a bio, they say. What do you want to know? I write, that’s what I do. (Well, ok, there’s more too, I’ll get to that later.)
And yet, here I am, blogging. Yippee. It’s not that I don’t enjoy it, ‘cause I do. I know at first I wasn’t sure what to say, but that’s not true. I’m a writer, there’s never nothing to say. Ever. EVER.
So, now you know. I’m learning to swim. And I think my feet are touching some sand in the murky waters, and I’m starting to wade through this media panoply. Can’t make promises, not yet, gotta get the rhythm of it yet, but my goal is to post a new blog at least once a week, to introduce myself. That and write my stories.”
That was the beginning of my first blog post. Sheesh, I’ve come a long way bay-bee!
Such a primitive post, unpretty, pre-banners, no trimmings or trappings—and *horrors* no hashtags!. Just words and pics—and *gasp* unaware of Pixabay for images. (I know better now and am OCD about citing my source!)
I’ve come from grasping at straws for topics, to a feature for every day of the week. Mostly I rambled through those first posts, those blogging baby steps, in a get-to-know-me sorta motif.
My first focused post, a review, was on 20 April of 2014. A mere 208 words, no date even in the header! In my spreading-my-writerly-wings, I was reading more and broader, and was happy to have Born of Persuasion by Jessica Dotta as my first-ever review.
By September, I was adding hashtags and my links, and dedicated the entire month of October (a last minute inspiration) to the launch of the print version of my debut novel, Tessa. I added character interviews and special interest topics, but no guest posts yet.
My first real-person (not that an author’s characters aren’t real, they are… ) interview was with one of my (still favorite) authors, Tessa Afshar, 5 February 2015. Still no header and no banner.
I seem to get hit with brainstorm ideas when I’m busiest—my Muse (Holy Spirit) nudged me to add guest posts just weeks before my surgery last year—and within days, I had my calendar booked for nearly the whole year!
My good friend, Amy Brock McNew, was my first guest post.
… and I’m heartbroken but the link to her post has vanished… Amy, you’ll always be my first face on New Week New Face.
I’ve learned so much in three years, both in my writing—much from reading and lots from, well, writing—and toward blogging. I’ve finessed the blog, and fine-tuned my writing. I’ve a feature for each day of the week with a banner to go with it, and I’ve discovered that I like writing in first person—and apparently that’s “my voice.”
Robin’s Nest is a place for friends to gather, to get acquainted. A place to kick back and have a cuppa—and a cookie! All are welcome (unless you’re spam! LOL), the more the merrier—because virtual coffee and cookies never run out, right!
I’ve made countless author friends, and met so many in person. I’m honored and humbled to be in the company of other such gifted and prolific authors. I’ve found my niche and my calling, and I work to produce the best I can, both on the blog and in my stories; I strive for excellence not perfection. And I can’t imagine doing anything else anymore.
So Happy Blogiversary to Robin’s Nest, three years and counting.
You’re all invited to my Blogiversary Birthday Celebration over on Facebook from 5:00 – 6:00 EST.
And a million thanks to all my followers and anyone who has ever read a post or commented! You’re the reason I’m here!
“I’ve always had voices—er, stories in my head. I once said I should write them all down so someone could write them someday. I had no idea at the time that someone was me!”
I write stories of identity conflict. My characters encounter situations that force the question, “Who am I, really?” For all who have ever wondered who you are or why you’re here, my stories will touch you in a very real—maybe too real—and a very deep way. I know, I write from experience.
I have three novels published, the unsavory heritage series. Tessa, Clara Bess and Cissy are available on Amazon, both for Kindle and in print. I also have several poems included in an anthology, Where Dreams and Visions Live (Anthologies of the Heart Book 1) by Mary Blowers as well as a short story, Sarafina’s Light, also in an anthology, Blood Moon, compiled by Mary Blowers. I have begun a new series, Seasons, four stories that will release back to back. The first one, The Long Shadows of Summer, will be available in July.
I am all about family, and my website is designed like a home. In fact, the drawings are my design for my dream home. I love family gatherings, the bigger and louder and zanier the better. My house is designed for company and for fun. I love windows and window seats. I love the outdoors so there’s a sun porch or Florida room. I love to cook and the kitchen is spacious, and I love to entertain. There’s even a movie room in the basement for movie night.
Come on in, take off your shoes, and let’s have a nice hot cuppa. Come sit by the fireplace or on the back deck, and let’s visit a while.
- Perhaps the number one blooper is giving more than one character (other than father and son situation) the same name. Minor characters are all the more confusing because we don’t get to know them as well, and I’ve caught myself doing this more than once over the course of four books!
- I use “master” docs, or templates, and have on occasion, forgotten to change some element to current information relating to what or whom I’m posting about or for.
- Most recently, I posted a review on Amazon—only ‘cept what I posted was the blurb and not my review. If I had slowed down I might have seen the “EDIT” option. Instead I deleted and tried to post the review (vs the blurb) but it never showed up. le sigh…
- Kind of along the lines of master docs, I also copy the formatting for each new chapter, and change the chapter number. Not sure how I did it, but there are two chapters in Cissy that begin the same. (the whole chapter is not duplicated, just the beginning) BOONUS: I failed to correct this before I ran my freebie this week!
- Also in Cissy and perhaps the coup de grace of bloopers, was when I had the wrong character smoking a pipe. I don’t know how many eyes read past that, including mine, before someone caught it and pointed it out to me. And yes, that one is corrected in the final.
“So many secrets that had been hidden for so long, and now they all seemed to be unraveling. And for whatever reason, they seemed to land at my feet.”
“I was being too soft with him. Gentle nudging would never crash through the cell of guilt he had built.”
“Sit down.” I took her hands in mine. “We’ll have some tea.” It occurred to me, we always had tea—cold in summer, hot in winter—when we had a crisis. Sherry if it was an extreme crisis.”
“Now, my adult mind was not at all enjoying the confusion of clues at all. My adult mind—quite pragmatic, as Simone had charged—wanted the riddle solved, the puzzle pieces found and placed together.
I dreaded what that picture might look like.”
“I struggled to my feet and crossed to her, placed my hands on her knees. She rested her hands on mine, and we stood there, two dear friends, speaking without a word.”
- I am ambidextrous. Right hand dominant because along with hundreds of other kindergarteners, I learned to write right-handed. I do a lot left-handed, though, including chopping vegetables and eating. And I can write left-handed but it’s rather higgledy because I never practice. ‘course my right-handed penmanship is, shall we say, its own font.
- Not a secret but I drink cinnamon hazelnut (Dunkin Donuts) coffee and I drink it black.
- I am enamored of all things Irish. Also, I am part Irish.
- Speaking of Irish, I am an actress and Irish is my second strongest accent. Any takers on my first? (also not a secret)
- I am the oldest of three siblings and obviously the coolest! wink wink
- I have three amazing adult children and two beautiful granddaughters. They are my heart. ❤ Our family has been hijacked by some pretty heavy issues, but as my eldest once said (written inside the most beautiful Mother’s Day card) “… a lot of struggle… has forged a spectacular family that I am proud & thrilled to be a part of.” (2011)
- I believe that the passions and desires in our hearts are put there by the Master Creator, and when we “delight ourselves in Him” He is then pleased to “give us the desire of our heart.” Psalm 37:4
- I may or may not be a tad OCD. This may or may not be a good thing…
- I am not a morning person. Let me repeat that, I am NOT a morning person. To that end, I start my day with coffee and quiet time. When I log on in the mornings I troll through my messages and emails and get those out of the way—mindless tasks. I then get blog posts and other miscellaneous tasks done, and spend my evenings making the words. Did I mention I am not a morning person???
- I have had Rheumatoid Arthritis for several years, diagnosed in 2010. I shared in a rather lengthy post in June of 2014
I also mention my knees, and since that time have had total knee replacement. I posted on that last year
The southern town of Saisons lies at the crossroads between North and South, progressive and genteel antebellum life. Between East and West, between history and heritage, and new frontiers. Downton Abbey meets Gone With the Wind.
It’s 1912, in a world where slavery is dying and women’s rights are rising, and four young girls share a bond—and experience a tragedy.
Mercedes has always been an avid reader and devours each new Sherlock Holmes mystery as soon as she gets her hands on them. When one of her friends comes to her, Mercedes vows to keep Simone’s secrets and uncover the truth.
But Mercedes uncovers more questions than she does answers as she digs among the clues, among them one that unravels her own world and challenges who she really is.
rem: Hullo Robin, welcome to… your party! If you could live anywhere in any time period, where would you go?
ROBIN: I’ll stay here and now to live—but I’d visit any number of ages in history in a heartbeat. I’m enamored of the Medieval Era, and my current series is set in the Edwardian Era, so those would be my first stops.
rem: Oh, yes, the Medieval Era! So Celtic-ish… Where did you find this story idea?
ROBIN: Like all the rest of ‘em, it came to me. I think I had the girls’ names first, then each of the titles. As a pantser, the story unfolds as I write it and I discover more and more detail along the way.
rem: Stories on the breeze… Who was the easiest character to write and why? The most difficult?
ROBIN: Tessa was pretty easy, I was in her head more than the others in that series. So far in Seasons, Mercedes has been easy for the same reason. She didn’t believe she could be anything more than what she had always been.
Hardest to write… they’re all “fun” to write, exploring different personalities to mine—as an actress I can get into character (acting or writing) and that goes a long way to expressing them on paper (or on screen)
rem: I’ve been there for that. You nearly hyperventilated writing a scene once, didn’t you?
ROBIN: [nods] Yup.
rem: What do you munch on while you’re writing / researching / editing?
ROBIN: Yes. I graze therefore I have a supply of snackies available. It varies depending on what I’m craving… M&M’s, almonds (not together) I try to be good and eat fruit…
rem: mmmmm, CHOCOLATE…. What do you do to recover once you’ve typed “THE END?”
ROBIN: So far I’ve jumped right into the next story…
rem: Yeah, well, that’s not exactly what I meant by celebration… 😉
“You know you can’t keep a secret from me.” Pearl held the china teacup ever so daintily. She was right.
“What secret?” I clattered my own teacup into its saucer, spilling my tea.
“Oh, Mercedes.” She was as calm and collected as a bouquet of fresh daisies. “Of course you have a secret. I can see it all over you.”
“I’m sure I’ve no idea what you’re talking about.” The calmer she remained, the more flustered I became. And I knew I was giving myself away. But I was at a loss to do anything about it. “Pearl…”
“See there. I knew it.” As smug as it sounded, coming from Pearl it was not. “Do tell me Mercedes.”
“Oh Pearl, if only I could.” Had I just confessed that I was, in fact, keeping something from my friend?
“Of course you can, Mercedes, dearest.” Pearl would not let it rest until she knew.
“But I’ve given my word.” I closed my eyes, chastising myself. I had revealed too much with those five words.
Pearl remained silent. Which was worse than if she had relentlessly hounded and wheedled at me.
Clara Bess in book 2 of unsavory heritage, is a pastry chef, and her specialty is macarons (not to be confused with macaroons.) Here is a tutorial I shared at her launch event.
Besides the Kindle freebies this week (today’s the last day)
I’ll have some fun prizes. Prized didn’t happen, my apologies. BUT the Grand Prize is still on the table. Everyone who comments on the blog today or the Facebook party (starts at 5:00 EST) will be entered.
The Grand Prize will be an autographed copy of The Long Shadows of Summer when it releases in July.
What’s your favourite part or feature of my blog?
#Blogwords, Special Edition, Third Blogiversary, unsavory heritage series, Tessa, Clara Bess, Cissy, The Long Shadows of Summer, Seasons Series, All the Blog Features, All the Feature Banners, #IlovewhatImdoing, #amwriting, #amblogging