Renewal Thursday!

There are so many pieces to having a presence on Social Media promoting yourself. Many things, like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are free. I’ve seen followers increase lately, and did a couple Facebook Ads, for my author page, business page, and the VFW Post. It’s amazing the traffic that can be brought to your door. We’re trying to keep up all four pages (including my personal account) on a daily basis. It’s fun, but time consuming.

Other parts are the “set and forget” kind. Like my website/blog. It’s where I have followers and folks who read my blogs daily. When I originally set up the website, I paid for two years, since it was cheaper. Best money I ever spent. It’s my consistent practice writing. I’m experimenting with my craft with learning about websites, and making my presence known.

When I logged in earlier this week and saw the message, “Renew Your Subscription,” I stopped and smiled. I’ve stuck with it for two whole years. I’ve learned so much. Mostly what not to do. But I’ve had a lot of fun doing it. With a happy heart, I hit the renew button, entered my credit card info, and thought, “You’ll really be published next time you renew this!” How very exciting!

I’ve published 746 blogs before today. That’s a bunch. Some haven’t been very good, and I know that. It’s all part of the process. It’s all there, good and bad. I can definitely see improvement in content, form, and all that jazz. There is always room for more improvement. I take it day by day. Another month is ending and a brand new, shiny one is on the horizon. I like month’s with 31 days in them. They feel more complete.

The next three months will see me sprucing up the website, adding some information, and hopefully, publishing my kid’s book. More on that a bit later. I’m just going to enjoy the feeling of continuing to create on my website/blog and know it will just get better. And you know, the kid book is about our grandson Gavin and his love for dogs. Especially our special dog, Roxie.

When we lost her, it was an accident, and it hurt us for a very long time. In fact, the only thing I could do when she died was write. I wrote one of my first blogs on a regular basis about her. I think telling Gavin’s grief story can help other children learn something important about loss and coping with it. He is doing very well two years later, and loves Goldie, who is a crazy lab who loves to play catch, and his Josie, who came to live with them a year ago. He is old enough to care for a dog and it’s good responsibility for him. How things have changed!

We have a book launch to attend tonight at 5:30. I think I purchased the book beforehand, so we’ll be picking it up and listen to the presentation the author gives. I want to take it all in, because I’ll be having one before too long myself. It’s all coming together. Good days and bad days, all happening at once. Life is indeed, very good. Have a great evening. See you tomorrow!

Monday-WIP, 2021

My Women in Publishing conference started today. It’s a little difficult to find your way around, as the majority of the presentations didn’t load properly earlier so I hope I can find them sometime today. Even is one of the four areas covered, Children’s Books, Fiction, Non-Fiction, and Publishing isn’t exactly your forte, you can view it and learn something anyway. I hope I can watch the presentations to finish them all. Paying for the conference even at a discount is a motivator for sure.

While listening to the Children’s Books segment, I discovered somethings I hadn’t considered before. Natasha Carlow and Felicia Lee gave some beautiful presentations. One about Rainbow Babies and the subject of miscarriage, subsequent pregnancies, and the family point of view on this sad, painful topic. Culture played a part in why she wanted to tell the story. Often our stories and our pain serve others. They discover they are not alone, which is key. She pointed out there are very few books regarding this topic with a black family. I can see where this could be a problem.

A child must be able to relate to the pictures of characters in the books they read. And it is true, how can a black child or Hispanic child relate to all white families in stories? It would be hard. I never considered it before. Which brings me to Felicia’s topic, Diversity and Representation. I disliked the word diversity when I first heard it. There were still not a lot of women in the IT field where I worked from 1987 until 1999. All I wanted was to do my job and earn the pay I was qualified for. The place I worked did a great job with EEO and Affirmative Action. I didn’t see a need for diversity.

What I learned today, is diversity is not just about gender, race, religion, and what I associated with it. It is about those things AND things like family structure, jobs, gender roles (do Dad’s cook? Do Mom’s work construction?), and abilities. If an author includes those things while telling a child a story, they see the story reflecting their lives. They no longer feel as if they are looking in a window and viewing something they don’t participate in. We need both kinds of stories. It’s vital to a child’s sense of self.

Being intentional in forming characters in our stories helps both minorities and majorities. It strengthens our co-existence. We can feel things in common. In my book, “What ARE You Doing, Roxie? I’m telling a story about our grandson and our dog, Roxie. Gavin and Roxie loved each other a lot. They played and walked, and were two of a kind. Someone left our gate open after July 4th, and Roxie ran away. She was hit by a car. We were all as devastated as Gavin was. It would be hard for kids of other cultures to relate to the story, from what I heard this morning. It’s a point to ponder.

Back to the Conference now. I hope you have a beautiful day. Thanks for reading. I appreciate your support. See you tomorrow!