Terrific Tuesday!

It’s another beautiful morning out there at the Home Office in Gretna, Nebraska. When mornings start like this, it just sets you up for blessings all day. Sure, some days we have to work at it. Some days you have to really look for things that are good, that are going well. For many years, things weren’t that great finacially, and being a single parent is hard. You have to keep going, though. We all do now, too. Whether we’re a grandma, a 50 year old single guy, a 44 year old Veteran, or a 75 year old widow. We have to work at it. Only then does it become a habit.

The month of July, I’m challenging myself, and you, if you’d like to join me, to do 71 squats a day. With my knees and other orthopedic issues, I’m doing “sink squats.” They’re modified and work perfectly well. I will amass 2201 squats by the end of the month. I’m only reporting here, and keeping track in my mind. The 2200 is a challenge for the 22 Veterans a day who are committing suicide. We need to help them, if they will allow it. We can do a lot if we can get through to them.

PTSD is nothing new. I’m sure my father had it. He worked patching folks up after gathering them up from the battlefields of WWII and Korea. I remember him having a faraway look at times. I can only guess where he was. But he wasn’t present, that’s for sure. He was meticulous about fixing up cuts, scrapes, bruises, and recording temps if we were sick. He did the same for me when my kids were sick. Since he worked nights, he took care of them for me. He was the best! Gosh, I miss him.

I finally have time today to listen to/view my $97 bargain Master Class on Journey to Kidlit. I’m going to use the day for it, and learn all the things I’ve missed or not known about my kid book. Should be a great day! Feel free to learn something new today. I love when that happens! We’re never too old and it’s never too late. See you tomorrow! We should have lots of fun stuff to talk about. BTW. Only 22 days until my Apple ID gets unlocked. OH! And we’re getting back on the KETO way of life. I’ve not gained any weight, still at 30 pounds lost. I’m going for more. I feel so much better. More tomorrow!

What? #500 Words?

What’s today’s challenge? Consider where, and how to cut words after Cartney illustrates our KidLit Book. It’s a challenge. A timely e-mail came from Brooke/Journey to KidLit. She tells me the industry standard for a picture book is 500. Most/Many have over 1,000 words. As it sits now, mine is 1,617.

Cartney mentioned to me about the number of words in my current draft. I love her honesty and ability to speak up to me, and be kind while doing it. I truly felt like I was working with an equal, we’re both new to publishing a book. BTW, my illustrator is graduating from high school today. How fun! Congratulations, Cartney!

Happy Graduation Day, Cartney!

This e-mail further explains to me what I need to do as a writer. From the very beginning, I’ve known I will cut words out as illustrations will make them unnecessary. Now, I’m going to remove passive voice, making it active. Easier said than done!

To use a word our friend, Lenny Leavitt almost coined, I need to do a “word-ectomy” to my story. It might be a little painful, but the story will heal and be much better with fewer words. The idea of a picture book, after all, is to let the pictures tell the story. Lenny adds “ectomy” to “foot” to explain a pedicure. Maybe I could get some great words from him! Maybe for the novel. Not now. I don’t want kids confused.

My Challenge for this weekend, before Cartney begins illustrating.

Another hint from Brooke @ KidLit is to always show action above anything else. And each page needs to feature something different to keep a kid’s interest. I have plenty of kid books to look at for “how to do this.” I collected them like crazy for the Grandkids. They’re some of my favorites, I’ve even found some of the books I had for my kids. They’re fun to read to the Grands. And soon, I may be reading them to practice for making a video of parts of “ROXIE! What Are You Doing?” Grandma Kathy may be going “Hollywood.”

Oh dear, what have I gotten myself into?

I’m just joking. I know perfectly well what I’ve gotten myself into. It never occurred to me I’d really make this opportunity for myself. I’m going to publish my kid book! All the pieces are falling into place; at the same time, I’m learning creative ways to make myself seen and heard among the avalanche of books that are out there. How do I stand out?

I think Grandma Kathy needs to read books (any good books, not just mine!) to kids on video. It might be a substitute for when Mom or Dad are busy and cannot read to their littles. It might be a way to stand out. I think it’s worth a try. Kate Whitecotton of RAVE ON Productions, I may be asking you some questions soon!

So even after the Babe having a fall off a ten foot ladder, a small brain bleed we’re watching, and me serving as his UBER driver for the next few weeks, It’s been a very productive week. My words are all in the manuscript text boxes, I’m going to flag the ones I’m going to omit (for Cartney) and we’ll see what happens next. This is pretty exciting. Thanks for being here with me today and every day. We’ll see each other tomorrow, eary again! I love writing in the morning. It’s so much easier, my brain isn’t so cluttered. Take Care. Be Kind.