Get started on the way to your writing dream THIS Thanksgiving weekend! Ridiculously low BLACK FRIDAY SPECIALS on my go-at-your-own-pace online classes!
What you get is original, proven curriculum to move you one step closer to finishing that novel or memoir, AND mentoring by someone passionate about seeing your story come to life.
Release the Novel in You! For teens and adults $50
Writing Your Memoir $75
Gift certificates available, but hurry, only a limited amount will be sold at this price.
More about me and what I do:
You have a dream to tell your story! So what’s stopping you?
My passion is to inspire that dream within so it can no longer be contained. I commit to creating an environment where your voice can be released to tell the story only you can, and I provide the tools and motivation for you to make that dream come true.
Through my classes your dream will take shape and manifest through brainstorming, plotting, and writing. My guidance will inspire your voice to be released and the ideas will take shape into a cohesive and impactful message. When you commit and do the work, you will release your story within and your dream will become reality.
Ask about online and in person classes to get you started. Group rates and gift certificates available. Christmas break classes forming.
Other available classes: NonFiction: From Idea to Outline
And I’m having so much fun. My writing partner and I are now doing our Teen Writers Publish Podcast on Blab. I’d tell you all about it, but you just have to see for yourself. The Blab session below is me teaching on a book I’m reading. It’s a great way to chat with people from all over the world. I think I’m really going to like this so FRIEND me on Blab and come hang out!
If you’re still reading my blog or have stumbled upon it, this is my first post in a long time. So many life changes going on in the last three years I don’t have time to get into it all and the changes are not over. Which is probably a good thing because life without change is just stagnant.
In the last six months I’ve packed up a house, moved across town, started some new writing projects, a podcast, a blab chat, been involved in a life changing bible study, and caught a glimpse of what’s holding me back in life. I feel like a life time of weight has been lifted off my shoulders and even though my life is nothing like I’ve envisioned it to be, I am embracing it, creating the life I want, and open to the possibilities of amazing things I can’t even imagine.
So what can you expect from me? I want to share more of my personal journey here. I’ll still be blogging craft and writer stuff at writerinterrupted.com and podcasting craft, marketing, and publishing with my partner, Ron Estrada, and “blabbing” with other authors, and writing! Can’t forget writing! I also plan to launch new online course to help writers achieve their dreams.
Are my goals lofty? Yes. Am I still trying to figure out how to make it all work? Absolutely. I might not accomplish everything I set out to do, but if I do nothing I will accomplish nothing. Hey, that sounds like a meme!
Want to create the life you dream about? You can! I’d like you to join me in setting your own personal life and career goals so we can inspire each other as we create the life and career we want.
Every since I can remember I’ve dreamed of being a dancer. I remember watching Flashdance, Footloose, Fame, and all the other fun dancing movies and thinking how much fun it would be to do that. But to achieve that goal would take hard work, discipline and talent. We didn’t have a lot of money growing up, but when I was ten I took my first dance lessons. To this day I can remember the recital. I also remember feeling chubby, uncoordinated, and self conscious in a class of older girls. So I quit something I loved for fear of ridicule.
When I went back to take dance lessons at 15 years old, it was obvious I’d never be good enough or catch up to the level of the other girls. My insecurities had held me back from reaching my dream of dancing.
Fast forward twenty plus years and my secret desire is taking form in ballroom and swing dance lessons. After attempting to swing dance in sandals last summer and suffering through insecurities and my ignorance on the dance floor, I thought it necessary to take lessons just in case I ever got the opportunity to go swing dancing again.
So I signed up not just for swing, but salsa, rumba, cha cha and a whole slew of dances I was “expected to master” in just seven hour long classes. Okay, I admit, I didn’t plan on mastering them all, and the dance studio’s gamble won out when I purchased another set of lessons. And after 20 plus hours, I still haven’t mastered any of the dances. But I’m not quitting, no matter how tough.
I remember one particular lesson when my instructor arrived 20 minutes late with a scowl on his face and threw me into a salsa turn immediately when I was still trying to get the footing down.
I tried my best, but I was perfectly fine with my bent legged salsa. Unfortunately, he was not. I guess we had two different definitions of “mastering” salsa. We spent the next 30 minutes trying to get my leg to straighten. I just couldn’t get it. And the more I tried, the worse and more confused I got and the more flustered we both got.
There was a point he kept pushing me that I wanted to throw my hands up in the air and quit, and say “This is not dancing with the stars.” In stead, I asked him if I could practice at home and if we could move onto East Coast swing.
And we did. And he threw me into a spin again when I was still adjusting to the footing, but by this time he had apologized for his attitude because he’d just quit smoking that morning AND coming from a stressful, life altering situation. We laughed through my own klutzyness and made progress. I worked through my insecurities and inadequacies and kept pushing until I figured out what I was doing wrong. If I had given into the voices in my head that told me I’d never get it and my instructor thought I was hopeless, I never would have succeeded and learned.
It’s the same with our writing or any other dream in our lives.When insecurities start to shout that I’m not a good enough writer, no one will “get me,” and my story isn’t good enough to show my agent yet, I have to push through the inadequacies I have real or imaginary. My work may not be perfect, but who better to show me how to improve it than my agent who wants me to succeed?
I might never be worthy of Dancing with the Stars, but I’m not quitting. And too bad if I have bent salsa knees, at least I’m on the dance floor!
From the archives March 18, 2010:
Are you holding on to your BIG dreams! So am I. I wrote this five years ago and my big dream back then was to get published. Nine months after writing this I was offered a contract for a novella. Not my ideal publishing scenario, but I’ve learned not to despise the small things. I thought it’d be interesting to revisit this post and share my thoughts today at the end!
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:11-13 NIV
Lately, there’s been a lot of talk about dreams and working hard to achieve them? A part of me believes whole heatedly in never giving up on your dreams, the other part of me wonders if the price is really worth it…if the realization of that dream will actually come to pass. If I have what it takes to carry it through to the end.
I’ve been dreaming BIG dreams my entire life, yet the only dreams that ever come to pass are the little ones. Is it because of MY effort? Am I not trying hard enough? But if I try harder, then something in my life will be out of balance. Seems a bit like works mentality to me, and that I can make it happen. Where’s God’s will in all this dreaming?
I don’t care how hard you work, you might NEVER reach your dreams. Your dreams, the dreams you think are God’s dreams might not really be HIS dream for you. That’s where I’m at right now. I’ve spent over 30 years dreaming big. Sometimes I wish I could be happy, content with small dreams. Where are you in your dream cycle?
2012, Two years later:
I haven’t given up and I haven’t stopped dreaming big dreams, but I still have doubts whether my BIG dreams will happen. I have yet to see a full length novel, though my agent believes in me 100% and is presently shopping around two of my manuscripts. If they don’t sell will I give up? Nope! I might take a breather, but I’ll keep writing.
Do I still doubt if all the work is worth it?
On my low days. But most days I don’t think about it. I don’t even think about why I’m writing anymore. I just do it. I still have BIG dreams and goals, but it’s not up to me whether or not they will come to past. I’m starting to see that it’s not so much what I accomplish, but what God accomplishes IN me a long the way.
Do I wish my journey was short and sweet, that someday soon I’ll arrive? Yep, but that’s not for me to decide either. Only God knows my path and how long it will take and as for me, my prayer of late has been “show me the next step.” My BIG dreams are still in the horizon, but I’m not focusing on them as much as I am looking down at where God wants me to follow…his next step for me!
What are you looking at as your travel this road?
Lord, help me focus on the next step instead of an unknown future. Help me to rest in your shadow as you walk beside me, showing me the next step!
Fear of failure? Lack of direction? Passion without purpose? Defeat and envy? Disappointment in the process? Or the fact you don’t have the know-how to take the next leap towards your dreams?
I’ve suffered from many of these dream killers at one time or another and at times they can be debilitating. They can suck so much life out of your dreams, that you end up doubting more than yourself.
You start to doubt God.
I want to explore these dream killers and how to take steps to overcoming them. I’m not an expert, just a someone with a dream who’s still struggling and fighting for what I know in my heart I’ve been called to do since I was little.
Won’t you join me on this journey into evicting YOUR dream killers?
Let’s get the discussion going by identifying your dreams and what makes you want to quit for good.
May 16, 2011
“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11
What gets you out of bed on a lazy, rainy morning to brave a day of errands? What keeps you going when nothing you’ve planned is working? When your kids are defiant and your husband just doesn’t ‘get you’ and you’re friends, well, are only online?
How about when your dreams are crushed, and you’ve received that last writing rejection and just want to quit?
If you’ve been reading my posts and following my writing journey, you know it’s been an up hill battle for me. I write and study and attend writer’s conferences and write some more and get rejections. Then I start the process all over again. But what keeps me writing even when I say for the millionth time I’m going to quit are the little encouragements along the way.
A kind word from a friend, whether in person or on fb, a bible reading that connects with your soul, or an encouraging rejection…yes, in rejection we can find that little push we need to keep going. We just need to look past our hurts and hear what an editor or contest judge is really saying.
And then be brave enough to accept the truth and stubborn enough not to let it crush our dreams.
A little bit of encouragement along the way helps us move forward, but sometimes you have to look hard. Look hard, keep pushing, and pay it forward. Your encouragement to others just might be the thing that keeps someone else from quitting!
What encouragement can you find today?
The world pushes you to be sensible. Make choices that are normal, ordinary and expected. Do what has to be done and fall in line with the rest of the world. It doesn’t dare you to dream.
Dreams live beyond that place. They catch a rainbow and ride into the clouds. Dreams are beyond the understanding of the world and tend to dance to the beat of their own drum.
It matters not where you live today – tomorrow can begin your journey into that land of dreams. All that it takes is a mind willing to imagine the impossible and a heart willing to persist with consistency to bring the imagination to life.
Making the Changes that Help You Dare to Dream
Stop resting on the excuses. There will always be a reason not to do something, not to try something, or not to expect something. You can rest on the reasons or take action to make changes.
Create a map. Every journey needs a guide. Make your dream map by laying out what you want to do and practical, every day steps that you can take to get you to that dream.
Close your ears. Stop listening to the rules and regulations set up by the world. See past those limits and reach into the extraordinary that lies beyond the normal and expected.
Start playing again. The greatest dreams you dreamed happened when you were free from worries. Childhood allowed for playtime with dragons, riding unicorns, being superheroes and talking to animals. Talking to animals may not be the best route for an adult, but then again it could be just what is needed to cast off the restraints and make way for the dreaming once again.
Each person on this earth has a God given purpose. Discovering that purpose begins with the desire to be more than what is happening right now. Learning how to dream will open up the window to the heart so that the purpose and the passion become clear.
Don’t be afraid to dare to dream! Start by sharing your passion here!
It’s been a while since I had something to say. A while since I felt like I had something encouraging to say. Truth is, I’ve been the one needing the encouragement.
But today I was reminded of something as I opened by bible for the first time in a long time. Since I dusted off a devotion book I haven’t read in probably a year. And though the words in the bible and devotion book were different and unrelated, God’s message was loud and clear.
“Why do you keep looking for me on the mountain tops when I’m already here with you in the valley?”
Whoa, okay. Can I just rewind that for a moment and tell you about the fleece I put out for God yesterday in church? See, I’m in a tough spot in my life right now, and I’ve been asking God for direction, for BIG signs that he actually cares about me. For even just a simple glimpse into the future. But there hasn’t been any floodlights on my future. He’s just illuminated each little baby step. And honestly, sometimes that’s just not enough to keep going. So in church yesterday I asked for a big sign, but it didn’t come, and I thought, “figures!”
But this morning I picked up my bible and simply asked to hear from God. I really wasn’t prepared for what happened next. I opened to the EXACT scripture the pastor spoke on in church yesterday. What are the chances of THAT in a 2000 page book? And when I mean exact, I mean EXACT. At the very top of the page the story started on the exact scripture. I didn’t bring my bible to church yesterday, so there was no reason it should open here, or was there?
So I opened my heart up and read and listened. And nothing jumped out. No big surprise. I got a few good nuggets, but nothing big. So I switched gears and opened a devotion book to where I left off. I hadn’t read it in a while. This time God’s point was a little louder. The chapter was EXACTLY what I was dealing with yesterday. The title, “Losing What I Don’t Need” hit home on so many levels as I declutter this house and get rid of stuff I can’t take with me when we down size. It’s been an emotional process letting go of things that have been tied to hopes and dreams. But the devotion reminded me “everything I seek is already here, right inside me.” It’s okay to let go of stuff and to let go of dreams. And maybe I need to fully embrace that to make room for new stuff and dreams.
But that message wasn’t the big lesson in all of this. Remember what I felt God was saying to me?
“Why do you keep looking for me on the mountain tops when I’m already here with you in the valley?”
Well, before I “heard” this, I got a picture (yes, I’m a visual person) of a mountain and in the valley were yellow flowers. Lilies of the valley? I don’t know, but what I do know is while I was asking God for BIG things, for the Moses-type mountaintop experiences and signs, I was missing Him in the valley. In the tiny yellow flowers all around me. The little things that let me know He was walking beside me, like opening up to the exact scripture and story today I had heard yesterday in church, and having the next chapter in my devotion book be exactly what I had been dealing with all day yesterday (and frankly for the past year.) See, those are not mountaintop experiences, in my opinion. But they’re tiny blooms of God’s love. And they’re all around me as I walk this unknown path. They’re evidence that He’s not up on the mountain, distant and aloof like I’ve thought, but He’s right beside me, sprinkling my path with tiny yellow flowers, except I didn’t notice because I wan’t looking around me. I was looking up and focused on the wrong thing.
Do I still desire mountaintop experiences? Absolutely, but I don’t think that’s where most of us experience God. Even though we can’t see or feel him most of the time, He’s there. With us in the valley. And that’s the biggest lesson I learned today.
I need to quit looking up to the mountain to find God and look around in the valley. For there I will find Him! Walking right along side me, giving me signs, little flowers to brighten my path. And I believe if I do that, the journey might still be rough, but it will also be more beautiful.
Are you walking in the valley? If so, quit looking to the mountain and notice the things around you. What has he set in your path that you might have missed? I’d love to know and be encouraged!