NaNoWriMo

Everyone connected with writing has heard of National Novel Writing Month, which takes place in November each year. It is commonly referred to as NaNoWriMo. The goal is to write a 50,000 word count manuscript between November 1st and November 30th. It’s to be a rough draft. There are even places that you can sign in so that you have encouragement to keep going from others typing their fingers to the bones.

I do think about this each year. But November is a really difficult time for me to write. The holiday season is upon us, and we have several birthdays, mine included in the month of November. Not to mention that turkey day is a pretty big celebration towards the end of the month. But…if you aren’t well on your way by Thursday, the 28th this year, you’re probably not going to get that 50,000 word count accomplished.

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Since I left my job as the activity director at our local nursing home this past August, I have been writing. I had my third book in a series started before I began the job on January 15, 2018. I had about 20,000 words written. I had also designed the cover and had it ready to go. Well of course, the best laid plans always have a hitch in them. During that year and a half, the publishing program I used went over to Amazon. So many changes there. Yes, I was already a part of KDP, but now it was all-encompassing. The new publishing format changed the way covers are created. So will probably have to start from scratch with my cover.

The good news…since I left my job on August 9th I wrote 48,000 words in about a month! This also included me doing some of my own editing along the way. So, in my own little world I’m going to count that as my NaNoWriMo. It’s a huge feeling of satisfaction to know that manuscript is finished and now ready for my editor to take over. Two proofs were ordered yesterday, and now I need to learn all I can on how to get that cover I designed into the new formatting.

I know I’ve had many readers asking about the third book in this latest series. I’ve had many readers encouraging me to write and keep it up. A huge “thank you!” goes out to all of you. Without that, it would have made it very difficult to continue thinking about writing over the past year and a half. It would have been very easy to give up and concentrate on another career. I absolutely love to write and could do it 24/7, but life has to happen along the way. This includes having a home, fixing meals, laundry, and paying bills. We all know that those basics of living can get in the way of our dreams. The key it to juggle them while you still pursue your dreams. Encouragement from others along the way is huge!

I’m shooting for an early November release of When Faith Begins. Our community has an event held in early November called Candle Light Charm. I usually have a table set up for this event. Our community has been extremely supportive with my writing. Many have purchased my books at this event and others. The local library has been phenomenal with their support, and they are SO appreciated. My daughter just shared a photo this past week of When Love Grows being displayed with a review from one of the librarians. We also have a store in our town that has my books for purchase. All these go a long way in supporting an author, and keeping that drive to get another book out there.

So, I’ll be updating about the release of When Faith Begins. In the mean time, please read When Hope Blooms, and When Love Grows, or read them again to refresh your memory!

October Front Cover                 When Love Grows Cover - 6.2 x 9.5 measurements

If you would like to visit my author page on Amazon, here it is: https://www.amazon.com/Deborah-Ann-Dykeman/e/B01B2BYPK6?ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1&qid=1568484768&sr=1-1

As always, I would love to hear from you, and if you are taking on the NaNoWriMo challenge, the best of writing wishes for you!

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Hello! Are you out there?

Growing up with a father that worked for IBM meant many moves over the years. I became accustom to starting a new school, and trying to make the best of it. I have always been a bit of a loner, so that lifestyle probably worked fairly well for me. Changing schools didn’t give a lot of time to get involved very deep, so I didn’t. Even though we have now lived in our little town for almost twenty-five years, and our house for fourteen, I still find it difficult to really fit in and feel a part of everything.

Those old feelings are coming back as I navigate this blog once again. For the past year and a half, I’ve been working full-time as the Activity Director at our local rest home. I loved the job…my co-workers and the residents making it extremely hard to leave. But I just couldn’t keep up the pace any longer. I have some health issues that I’ve dealt with for about twenty five years, and they need to be taken care of. But because of the job, health and life in general, writing was sitting in the ‘way back’.

Everything changes after a time. The same with WordPress. I will have to learn new stuff on here again. But, I hope to reconnect with many of you on here, and gain some new friends. So, be patient as I learn the ropes, and try to update.

I am currently writing the third book in a series. The first two books are When Hope Blooms and When Love Grows. This WIP is titled When Faith Begins. As you can see below, my goal was to have it finished in 2018. Just a bit behind! I am so excited to be writing again. Last week I managed 12,000 words, and I’m hoping to have it finished soon! It was becoming very stressful to have readers coming up to me at events and asking if I had another book for them! As a writer, you don’t want to let your readers down, especially those that have been so loyal.

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So this is a quick “Hello!” hoping you all are still there. I’ll post more when I can clear a path!

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Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

Slipping…

A few years ago…but just a blink in my eyes…our oldest daughter was preparing to be married. I visited her in Colorado, where she had been living for a few months. We went to see Mama Mia! at the theater…and I loved the movie. I haven’t seen the new release, but I’m very excited to. ABBA was a favorite singing group of mine, back in the day. I loved their songs, and I thought the movie did a great job of capturing ABBA’s songs. Not to mention the actors singing the songs, and doing a pretty good job, I thought.

I’ve shared a song from that movie. I’ve always loved it…one of my favorites. But watching that movie with our oldest daughter, and hearing that song was difficult. Thankfully the theater was dark! I don’t cry often, and I’ve never been one to want to share my tears. But sometimes they just have to fall.

With every daughter that has married over the years, and every child that has left for college, this song has come to mind. My life was spent with my children, every day, all day for so many years. And it’s hard to let go!

I really do wish them the best. They are starting to scatter. Families of their own, houses being bought, far from ours, and grandchildren growing up so fast with me working full-time. I want to push the pause button, and savor the times I was drowning, (I thought) , it days of cooking and laundry. Constant children chatter, and battles among siblings ruled my days, and I wished them to hurry… at the time. Now I would like to replay them, late at night, in the dark, when no one can see my tears of missing them all so much.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zi7OXmTmgGg

You’re all Slipping Through My Fingers…but always in my heart. Much love to my five babies!

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Oldest daughter’s wedding.

It Will Be Okay!

Some days the words to this song ring very true. As a human, I’m on a constant treadmill of making ends meet, and the day-to-day struggle of life in this world. It can be very exhausting at times!

This song is a gentle reminder to those of us that believe our home is in heaven, our hope is in heaven. A reminder that this daily life is but for a time.

Yesterday, I saw something that made me think. I will probably repeat it wrong, but you’ll get the general idea. It’s so true!

Spoiler Alert! I’ve heard the end of the story, and it will be okay!

Here’s some Jim Reeves for you on your Sunday. Have a good one!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ndMZqT6i4I

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My Cup Runs Over…

Hi, my name is Deborah, and I write books.

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I feel the need to introduce myself on here. I knew it had been awhile since I had posted anything, but when I checked just now, March 3rd was my last post. Way too long!

I started working as the Activity Director of our local nursing home on January 15th of this year. This past week, I finished the course to be certified as a director. To say I’ve been busy is an understatement. Most days I’ve come home from work, and felt as though I didn’t have the energy to shower and get ready for bed.

Our yard is a catastrophe, my kitchen project is hanging in mid-air, and the third book in a series I began last year is calling me desperately. Usually around 2:00 am when I should be sleeping. I’ve taken to playing games on my Kindle rather than reading, trying to block out the constant barrage of that ‘to do’ list. People I’ve known for years probably think I’ve died. But I’m still here…

I love my job. The older generation has always been a joy to me. They have so much to share, so much to give, so much to express…in so many ways. I think our facility is especially wonderful, staffed with caring people that have been there for many years. It takes a very special person to work in a job setting such as a nursing home. Let’s face it…it’s not really just a ‘job’. And if you think that…you probably shouldn’t be there.

Today, I hope to read the first pages of the book I was working on. That other life is calling me, and if you write, you understand. If I’m really motivated, these fingers just may type a few words, a chapter or two over this weekend.

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My life is busy and crazy. But it is also overflowing, and a daily blessing to me. I’m so very thankful for all the opportunities I’ve been given, and all the talents bestowed. I pray I use them for His honor and glory in everything I do.

Have a wonderful weekend!

This Too Shall Pass

Trials and tribulations seem to clump together. Rather like a large boulder in the middle of a merrily chirping stream. The water still rushes past, swirling around that stone for a few moments before gurgling merrily along. This is the same with life. Our lives are that water, and the tests the boulder. Life will continue on at some point. We may be a little bruised and battered, but we go on.

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Please pray for our grandchildren if the thought passes through your mind. They have all been struggling with colds, although I don’t think any have had the flu. This past week, two of the sisters spent the night at the hospital due to RSV. They came home today. Now the youngest, just a little over a week old is at the hospital, and she will be there overnight for observation.

It is scary watching your child struggling with sickness. Even more so when it involves a hospital visit, or surgery. I have been there more times than I want to think about. It makes you want to snatch them away, to protect them, and take on all that they have to endure. After all, you are stronger, able to understand all that is happening. Their little bodies and minds aren’t able to take it all in. I hurt for those families that have had children diagnosed with cancer, and diseases that their little bodies have had to fight off. It takes a parent to the limits of where no parent ever wants to go.

I don’t fully understand why these kind of trials and tribulations are allowed in our lives. I really don’t want to face them. I want to be swept down that stream, gurgling merrily along as the blue sky smiles down at me.

That little stream rushes to the ocean, and is stronger in the end. So are we. And this too shall pass.

Jeremiah 29:11 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

11 For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.

Welcome to Life!

I feel as though I should begin this post with a “Hello”, and the lyrics from Adele’s song. As you already know, I haven’t been around much lately. Life is happening at a pace that I’m having a hard time adjusting to. But I will…eventually.

We now have seven grandchildren, as of 6:36 pm on the 22nd. Her name is Josie. I had the privilege of being there for her birth, just as I have for all but one of our grandchildren. Eden decided to be born quickly in the middle of the night, so I stayed with the older two children while her parents made a trip to the birth center. When I say privilege…it is! At one time, I seriously considered being a midwife, or at least working in labor and delivery at a hospital. I love being with women in labor. The process of labor and birth is absolutely amazing to me…and it never dulls. So, it is a privilege to be a part of that very intimate time in a couple’s life, no matter how many times that process occurs. Mother and little Josie are doing well, and big sister Ashlynn is taking well to her new responsibilities.

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I am now also working full-time as the Activity Director at our local rest home. I do love this job…even if it seems strange to call it that. But it is hectic, and it takes the stuffing out of me by the end of the day. I love being more active and walking for much of my day. The sitting at my desk all day was wreaking havoc on my back and hips, but I’m adjusting to the activity. Sitting is about all I can handle by the time I arrive home. I am hoping that with warmer, spring air and sunshine, my energy level is back. After all, I’ll have a yard to tackle!

Renovation projects…of course have come to a stand still. I’m happy I accomplished as much as I did before Christmas. I really do want our son to have a life of his own, but I hope he has a couple months after he finishes with school in South Dakota to help me get caught up. Then I think we should sell the house and move to an apartment! 😉 We shall see. The little house by some water is still extremely appealing. And of course my lap-top will travel where no desk-top can. A row-boat in a middle of a pond with frogs croaking and birds chirping is beckoning me.

So, I’m still here, and I check in every now and then. Thank you to all of you that keep stopping by and commenting. It is a real encouragement! Have a great week…spring flowers and painted toe-nails are just around the corner!

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Baby of Mine

Everyone will remember this song from the Disney movie, ‘Dumbo’. It’s always been my favorite part of that movie. It always amazed me that an animated mommy elephant could convey such emotion, and when I had babies of my own, I knew how she felt. This is for our two youngest grandchildren, one three months old, the other almost two days old. I know how much our second to youngest will appreciate this song! 😉

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZKyO_f_jt-o

Those Precious Memories

When in doubt, I go to Jim Reeves and his melodious voice.

Our memories mean more and more to us as we grow older. I see this every day. It amazes me what the mind can recall. I pray your memories are indeed precious and beautiful this Sunday morning. Have a wonderful week.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EMGtWkJgdIM

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I’ll Smile As I Pass…

I wanted to shout a big, “Thank you!” to all of you that have continued to stop by here and read my posts, even though I have not written anything in a while. It is much encouragement to me in the writing area…and that is greatly needed right now.

You see, almost a month ago now I started working full-time. It is a job that I really love, at a place I worked at once before back in 2011. I was the Activity Assistant then, and now I’m the Activity Director, with no assistant. So, I’ve been busy. In time, I hope to be blogging a bit more again, and I am working on the third book in a series that I hope to have available this year. But right now, I’m in survival mode. I fall asleep practically before my head hits the pillow, and I wake a few hours later with it spinning of all I need to accomplish that day. The weeks have rushed past in a blur. But it is a good busy. I’m just slightly out of breath right now.

Please keep stopping by. I’ll do the same for you. I may not comment as much as I zip through, but I still like what you’re doing. Have a fantastic Saturday!