Wednesday, December 29, 2010

How writing is like Football

While at the Baylor pep rally last night in preparation for today's Texas Bowl I realized that football is like writing. You can't just pick up a pen one day and expect to be the next New York Times Bestseller. You have to train, practice and persevere.

The Baylor football team has trained and practiced for this day all year but really it goes further back then that. I know that they played football prior to college. The will to be a winning football team can be traced back to then and whenever they began not just physical training but the mental mentality of wanting to be a winner.

As a writer I work to make my own luck and reach my goals. I train and practice and persevere. Like any athlete, all writers must work to continue to grow in their craft and trade. So as the New Year approaches compare your writing to football or your favorite sport. Think about how you can prepare for your 2011 writing career like a football player prepares for a Bowl Game.

In other news I'm hoping that nothing big happenes today because I'll be off line as I cheer my Baylor Bears on to a Texas Bowl victory!!!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Planning out your New Year Resolution

As we welcome 2011 I'm sure many of us are stressing over our New Year's Resolutions, many of which probably include are writing ambitions. Remember to not over work the concept of the New Year's Resolution. Last year I made the resolution to complete my book while maintaining a crazy freelance schedule and I knew that I was going to pregnant while working to accomplish these things. Looking back on it my goals were probably too ambitious. The result though was not failure but knowledge. While working on my YA I learned a lot about myself as a writer. It's still not complete. I've decided to change the point of view but the book will be better for this decision. And I had my writing to keep myself sane while I was stuck on bed rest.
This year I'm setting smaller goals as a means to reach the bigger goals. Instead of saying I'll finish my YA and send it off to my dream agent list I'm committing to writing 2,000 words a day on this project. In addition to that I will maintain my freelance contracts but I'm going to learn to say "no" to knew ones so that I don't overbook myself. To make time for my writing career I'm going to also hire someone to come in several hours a week to watch my daughter. I'll still be there but this should make reaching my goals more attainable.
Decide what you want and set small goals in order to meet your big picture goal. It can be done through a little planning a lot of hard work. And of course we all have the resources of West Houston RWA. Good luck with your goal planning and Happy New Year

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Change is good

Fear is the number one reason that writers don't succeed. The best way to tackle the enemy of fear is to change but this can be hard because many of us don't like to change. We're comfortable the way we are. This applies to our writing and our lives.

The past few months I've been playing around with the idea of changing the POV in my YA fantasy. For anyone who has done this to a completed manuscript you realize how hard this is. So of course I didn't want to do it. I am doing it though and after re-writing the first few chapters I can easily see how much richer and epic the story is becoming. This is a good change. Not an easy one but hopefully one that will pay off in the end and bring a better story to the popular YA genre.

So it's not easy to change but it can be for the best. Has anyone else made a major change in a completed manuscript? Share your story below and please share advice!

Monday, November 29, 2010

I won NaNoWriMo now onto revision nightmare

After many painstaking nights and headaches due to my eyes being fixed to a computer screen, I did it. I won National Novel Writing Month which means that I wrote a book in a month. It was insane but the experience helped me learn much more about myself as a writer. Even though I was working on other deadlines for my freelance contracts I was amazed at how much time I could carve away to work on this new novel. And I love it! Thinking about these characters are my new favorite obsession but will I embark on this writing journey again? My answer is no. It really is about the experience and I've done it but I do not feel that I put out my best work when it is a writing sprint. Now I fear that my revision process will be much longer than usual.

The trick now is too not lose the focus that so many of us thrived on during this month of writing chaos. I've finished a new manuscript but that's really just the beginning for this story. I need to evaluate my characters motivations. Check my facts, grammer check and revise for consistency and so on. Now the hard stuff begins but I know that just like I pushed through this month I know that I can make this manuscript work so that hopefully one day before too long it'll find its way into readers' hands. This group of characters deserve that. And I deserve to experience new ways of working in this craft. Writers lead reclusive, private lives driven by odd hours and insane bursts of creativity. This November has been awakening and I look forward to continuing to grow in this wonderful craft.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Family time can also help your writing

The holiday season is upon us and if you're anything like me you are thinking, "how will I finish my draft, meet my deadlines and stay on schedule while spending time with family?" The good news is that you can do both and it may be easier than you think.

Tomorrow in the wee hours of the morning the husband, baby and of course, Oscar our dog will begin the long drive from Little Rock to Houston where we'll have a jam packed week of family time. This involves making time for all family members which are dispersed throughout the large city. The good news is that they all want time with the baby and I'll let them have it. With eager arms wanting to hold baby that means more time for Mommy to write.

Now, as my husband always reminds me, don't be anti-social. I'm not implying for you to lock yourself up in a room and spend Thanksgiving typing away but when you're with family take advantage of their help. Let them play with the kids/pets if you have them. This will easily allow you to carve out a few hours of writing.

Also, don't forget to set your alarm. It's easy to write in a quiet house before everyone wakes up. Plus when the family wakes up you'll be wide awake probably on that second cup of black tea or coffee and ready for a writing break to talk and catch up.

And don't forget to use your family for some brainstorming help. This will let them all know how serious and productive you're being with your writing career and it is always a good idea to bounce ideas off others.

Have fun and enjoy the holiday season while still making time for writing. It can be done. Trust me!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

November: The perfect month to get re-energized

If you've seen all the Twitter hastags then you know that November is NaNoWriMo. If you don't know what this funny sounding word then I'll fill you in on this crazy month for many writers. November is National Novel Writing Month. Many writers celebrate this month by writing a novel in a month. Sound crazy? It can be but then again what writer isn't crazy? We make up stories in our heads and that's seen as being OK in society.

For those of us that are participating in NaNoWriMo it's this time of the month when you might be thinking the following: What did I sign up for? I've been thinking the same thing. Writing a novel in one month while caring for a four-month-old, meeting my freelance deadlines and trying to revise my current YA manuscript can all be a challenge. And I didn't even mention my dog and personal writing assistant, Oscar who requires lots of love and kisses! But the truth is that writing is hard. The month has nothing to do with the nature of this business. Writing is always hard but this is a great month to reevaluate your writing career and get re-energized.

I attended a two-day writing working shop this weekend. New York Times Best Selling author Bob Mayer was in Houston teaching his Warrior Writer and A-Team workshops. They were both wonderful and very helpful. Now with new drive I'll be continue my quest for NaNoWriMo just after posting this blog.

What are you doing to re-energize in the middle of NaNoWriMo?

Learn more about author and teacher Bob Mayer here. And don't miss his publishing company, Who Dares Wins Publishing's blog where they're posting tips for NaNoWriMo participants. And the advice is good for all writers even if you're not NaNoWriMoing.

Tomorrow, I'll be back on my way home to my family. And it couldn't come soon enough. Evidently Oscar has been stealing pens from my desk and munching them. Apparently since he hasn't been with me to assist on writing that he is taking things over for me in the office. For the sake of my BIC pens I must return soon! Tomorrow night I'll be reevaluating my pen supply and apologizing to Oscar for leaving town.

Monday, October 25, 2010

NaNoWriMo: Yes, I'm doing it!

OK so if you are an author or aspiring to be one then you've probably heard of NaNoWriMo. The month of November is National Novel Writing Month. It's basically when writers both professional and amateur get behind their keyboards and write an entire novel in one month. Yes, it sounds crazy but it may be the kind of craziness that I need to get my Middle Grade sci-fi finished.

I've been so wrapped up in my baby, my move into a new house, finishing my YA fantasy and my freelance work that I've been neglecting some very annoying characters and a story that needs to be written.

A little background...I won the State Scholastic writing competition in the short story category my freshman year of high school. I has forgotten that story for years until at some point during my pregnancy I had a vivid dream of the story and it hit me that it could easily be a series. There was a whole world and universe that I was failed to see when I was in 9th grade. This story had depth and purpose and it had to get written. I took Laurie Campbell's Plot Via Motivation class and used this story for the exercise.

So now I've had this amazing story but until now it has always fallen on the back burner. I'm now changing that and hoping that with the motivation of NaNoWriMo that I can make it happen. I'm committing to this project and I guess experiment. I'm hoping for this story to be around 60K so we'll see how well I manage it and all my other projects.

But seriously I've spent a year on the YA. It's time to wrap it up in a neat package and send it off while I give this MG a chance.

Are you working on a project for NaNoWriMo? If so, what are you doing to get ready for the month of literary craziness? Do share!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Find the Energy

Being a professional writer has its pros and cons just like any vocation. One major con is that writers mostly spend their days alone, stuck in front of their computers and piles of notes. Sometimes in order to boost your writing energy a writer needs to get out and smell the roses or in my case the breakfast at La Madeleine's.

I've blogged before about the importance of surrounding yourself with successful writers. What a better way to learn about this crazy industry then spending time with those who obviously know what they're doing? But you can gain more than industry knowledge from other writers you can feed off their energy. To get energized you don't have to be in the room with New York Times bestsellers. Surround yourself with other writers of all levels and genres.

A group of writers in Houston recently launched a Houston YA/MG group. We meet once a month and discuss various related topics. The topic discussions are helpful but the best part is feeling that energy in the room. The excitement that each writer has for the craft is contagious and I love it! I'm currently on my final revision pass for my YA WIP. Ok, I know I said in my last post that I finished but I'm beginning to think that I'll never finish! I do PROMISE that this will be my last read through before send off!

Back to today's blog topic, energy. I have found that when I'm revising I lose the energy that I had when first got lost in my fantasy world, writing the WIP. After spending 3 hours in a room of energized writers how could I not feel pumped and excited to get back to my WIP? Even if I am revising, energy can make all the difference.

So yes, I should have been revising Saturday morning but after getting re-energized I was more productive in my revising. No matter what kind of deadline you are on you need ENERGY. Find a writing group or a small group of friends. Set a regular time and take a writing break. Taking the time to re-energize will boost your writing and your moral in this business. Enjoy the break! If you have had a great "energizing" experience please share in a comment below.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Keeping the Celebration Short

i just wrapped my final revision pass of my YA fantasy. Now I still have the final read through, to perfect the synopsis and send it off to agents that I still need to research. So, yes I still have some work to be a glass of wine while enjoying old episodes of 'How I Met Your Mother' with my husband couldn't possibly hurt!

This morning I'm back on the keyboard following my daily writing plan. A plan that will in time lead me to my goal of making a living as a fiction writer. Celebrate the milestones and large goals being met but don't lose sight of your overall goal. I see each goal that I check off my list as one step closer to the reaching the big picture. Use that check-off list as your ultimate motivation. I do.

Especially now since time is my enemy most days. As a writer and a new mother to an almost one-month-old I have to make the most of my time. Celebrating can be fun but it won't get me on the New York Times Bestselling list. Whether you are caring for a child, an elderly loved one, or working another job while trying to write you have a full plate. Make the most of your time, whatever your situation may be. Enjoy the small celebrations without losing sight of big picture and enjoy the road to reaching your ultimate goal.

Friday, July 30, 2010


As they commonly say on Gray's Anatomy, "seriously?" applies to everything you do in your life or it should in my opinion. With exception of getting out and having some fun every now and then I take everything I do seriously and this includes my writing.

As a freelance writer I keep a schedule (yes, that means I get up really early!) just as if this were a "typical" job. To be successful as writers we must take it seriously or their can be no success. If you don't take your career seriously then who will?

I just had my baby and now working from home has some more challenges! My advice to any writer with children is to ensure that your spouse and/or family take your writing career just as seriously as you do. When I'm on a deadline my husband takes it seriously and does what he can to help me when he gets home from work and on the weekends.

He accepts my career. Does your family accept yours? Seriously, they should. Sorry it's been a while since my last post but the last few weeks have been crazy getting ready for and having a baby. Any spare time that I had was devoted to writing and not blogging.

More advice and experiences to come from the life of this freelance/fiction writer.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Just Write it Down!

Freelancing and fiction writing comes with some crazy weeks. For me this coming week is one of them. So how do I handle it? I just do what I aim to do best...write. I write everything down that needs to happen. This includes what I need to do and when to achieve any deadlines, interview schedules and of course my personal goals for my YA and MG.

By writing it down it makes it easier to follow and I won't get overwhelmed with the whole. Also, it is such a great feeling when I can check something off my list and this is a safe way to ensure that nothing will get overlooked.

So yes, it's an extra step but trust me it is worth it. When juggling multiple projects write it all down. I also, plan out my daily goals every Sunday so that I have a plan.

Make a plan, follow it and you'll get through the stress of deadlines and goals!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Exciting news!

So I'm still in the revision process for my YA so unfortunately my exciting news is not about that. However, I am still really excited to announce that I will soon be a National writer for For the past year I have been writing as the Houston Budget Events Examiner and this will not change. Beginning in a few weeks I will be The Mortal Instruments Examiner. If you don't know what that is then I predict that you soon will. The Mortal Instruments is a popular young adult series by Cassandra Clare. This series has been optioned and the first movie is in development. According to IMDB the release date of movie one will be in 2012. Many blogs, articles, etc. have claimed that this series has the potential to be the next "Twilight" capitalizing on the vastly popular young adult genre.

As a young adult writer myself I'm thrilled to combine my freelance writing with a genre and a series that I truly enjoy. As my column goes live I will post more information on this. And hopefully I'll be able to write about good news involving my YA or MG series. For now though I'm working through revisions, taking care of my health (thank you challenging pregnancy) and making sure that everything is done right. Now I'm back to more writing and those revisions!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Knowing when to slow down

The past few weeks I've been stuck in a frantic frenzy trying to get my manuscript off to agents before I deliver my baby. Yes, I'm still trying to wrap up revisions but it hit me over the weekend that maybe I was rushing too much and sacrificing quality. I decided that I'd rather wait a month or two to send it off then send of a rushed draft only to be rejected and agree with it!

My new plan is to take it step by step and make the manuscript be the final version that I want before sending it off. The end result will be the same, to get my fiction writing published.

Unfortunately, fiction is not all that I write. I do have to work significantly on my freelance contracts.Especially now since I need to be working ahead on everything. It is always smart to have deadlines even if they are self assigned. But when those deadlines begin to impact the quality of your work it is time to take a step back and rethink your strategy.

In other news I've been posting a lot lately to my page. You can view the articles here

I'm the Houston Budget Events Examiner which means if you are looking for summer fun at budget rates then I'm your girl. Even if you don't live in the Houston area some of the advice that I give is useful to everyone. Like picnics. Bring back an old classic family outing and out a modern twist to it. I think you can see where I'm going with this. Well, I'm back to work and please leave comments below if you have budget-friendly summer ideas!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Always Learning Something New

Writers are lucky. We are like professional students since we are always learning something new. At least that's how I feel. I'll never be an "expert." There is always something that I can learn from an online writing class, a conference, or a professional writing group. My best advice, surround yourself with people who know this craft. That's what I'm doing and so far it seems to be helping.

When I began writing my YA novel I knew I could write and I knew (or thought at least) that I had a great idea but I didn't have the slightest clue on how to get into this business. And even though I'm a published freelancer with magazines both local and national I'm still not a published fiction writer but I'm getting closer with each step that I take. And I'm able to say this because of the situations that I've put myself in.

I joined my local RWA chapter almost a year ago. OK, I'm not a romance writer and I can't see myself going in that direction even though I adore the Blackdagger Brotherhood series! After looking into local writing groups and meeting the Chapter President at the time, Kimberly Frost I knew that RWA was for me. Why? Well, these women were making things happen. They weren't just sitting around talking about their dreams of becoming a publish author, most of them were! Like most professional writing groups, we have speakers come in to teach workshops. That's how I met Laurie Schnebly Campbell. Since then I've taken several of her online classes and have found them to make a huge difference in my fiction writing.

I've learned that feature story writing is a different animal from fiction and hearing her advice along with the dialogue amongst the other students has made me a better writer. Now, I just have to get through these revisions, finish my synopsis and submit to agents. But it's because of what I'm doing now, who I'm surrounding myself with that I know I will make it. I will look forward to the day when I can post an announcement on this blog that I'm a published author!! Until then, I'm back to work. Hmmm.. I may squeeze in an hour break tonight for Idol!!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Perks of the Freelance Journalist

OK, so my last entry I introduced you to some of the downsides of being a freelance writer. Today I'm going to tell you about the perks! Oh, and there are so many! First of all I love the flexibility. If I need to run errands during the day I can. If I want to go out to lunch with friends, I can do that as well. What really matters at the end of the day or week is did I meet my goals and deadlines? If the answer is yes then I'm doing my job!

Another, perk is that you can own your topic of expertise. For example, as the Houston Budget Event Examiner I need to go to Houston area events so that I can accurately report about it. With this I get a lot of free passes or invites to local events. If I do have to pay for something then it's a tax write off because this is my business. It's fun to get out and meet people in the "event" circle. As I continue to build and foster such relationships I find that I have to dig for material to write about less and less.

So, if I left you on a down and frustrated note with my last blog entry this should perk you up and create more interest in what I feel to be an ideal job.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Waiting, More Waiting, Then Sprint!

This title basically describes the life of a freelance writer. Sometimes writing means that you do a lot of waiting. For example, when I get a topic I have to first research it which means I conduct a lot of interviews. Conducting interviews means that I'm dependent on other peoples time. So, yes I have a deadline looming over my head but my article/story won't be ready until I have all the pieces.

Once the last interview is done and I've reread all my notes it's sprint time. Then the deadline takes on its full weight since the only thing stopping me now from hitting that oh so fabulous "submit" button is me. After completing my last interview on my current assignment I'm gearing up for the sprint. But I thought that this perspective of freelance writing would be of great importance to anyone considering the field. You never have an 8-5 workday or weekends. You work around your deadlines. Which is wonderful and I love it because in many cases I can work ahead and move things around to fit the schedule I want. But there is always that one story that keeps you from the movie you want to see or the season finale you've been looking forward to. But it's still a career that I would choose again, and again.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

I'm Back Examiner!

OK, I have had to cut back with my writing over the last several months due to the complications with my pregnancy. However, now that I'm feeling somewhat better I'm trying my best to return to the swing of things at least for now before our bundle of joy arrives! So today I've launched my summer article series as The Houston Budget Events Examiner.

Today, I covered how you can save money at the Houston Zoo by planning your trip ahead of time. This concept still applies to anyone, wherever you live. If you want to go somewhere always do your homework. Many places offer discounts, special offers, etc. You don't want to miss out on a great opportunity just because you didn't take a little time!

So here is the story: Find out from the Houston Budget Events Examiner how to save money this Summer at the Houston Zoo

Also, I've set up a Twitter account. You can now follow me @NatalieCMarkey.

Happy writing or reading or whatever you do!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Spring Cleaning can Help your Writing!

So, yes we are now in summer ,especially here in Texas, but it's never too late to commence your spring cleaning. I tackled this job a few weeks ago and I'm still overwhelmed at how much it is helping my writing! Along with the usual task for spring cleaning I took on the huge task of reorganizing my files. You'd be amazed at how much stuff I found that I really didn't need any more!

In addition to organizing bills and other joyous stuff I organized and created files for my writing. I now have files for each freelance contract, freelance contract I'm seeking, novel ideas, current projects (each has it's own file) writing memberships and writing classes. Through this system I'm seeing great results. I now can easily reference something from a past writing class or find that note I wrote at some odd hour of the night. Just one day of work around the house and I'm feeling so accomplished. By keeping everything organized my work area has order to it and I can save a lot of time that now can go towards what I should be doing...writing!

Do you have any "spring cleaning" success stories? If so, do share!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Does Summer Hurt or Help Writers?

As Summer quickly approaches I'm beginning to wonder how the season impacts the writing industry. Summer throws so many different variables at us. First, if you have school-age children they are now home, the weather many days is hard to ignore and there is always a good summertime event to be found. How do writers deal with this?

I've learned to try to incorporate Summer into my writing routine. Instead of staying glued to my table where my laptop lives I like to move outside to my patio. Here I can enjoy the weather and get my writing done. Some of my best articles and chapters have been conceived outside. And I know from speaking to other writing friends that many of them also love the great outdoors. One day I would even love to write at a lake house or beach house. To me that would be the ultimate relaxation!

For me though, Summer brings on a heavier workload. One of my freelance jobs is with I am the Houston Budget Event Examiner ( You've probably guessed it from the title but I follow budget events in the Greater Houston area and Summer is always flooded with them! So I always know to allow more writing time for these assignments.

I'm lucky though. I'm still waiting on my baby's arrival later this summer so for now I don't have too many distractions. How do writers manage their time during the Summer months? If you're a writer please share your tips!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

No Better Motivation then an Upcoming Birth

Motivation. That is the one word that all writers seek. The idea or thing that really gets you working on that article/manuscript and keeps you on the word doc and off of Facebook. For me right now that motivation is the upcoming birth of my first child. I like order and organization in my life and I'm smart enough to know that EVERYTHING is about to change. It already has since I've been so sick throughout the pregnancy. Now thanks to bed rest (off and on) I'm making the most of my doctor's orders and pressing forward to finish my YA. I can see that beautiful light at the end of the tunnel and look forward to hitting the final 'send' to get my last email query out to agents. My goal is to get this done so that I will have the wonderful satisfaction of feeling complete (with this manuscript) before my baby arrives. Plus what a better way to not suffer from the dreaded waiting game then to have a newborn to care for! I also will then finally be able to begin working on my middle grade novel series that won't stay out of my head! In fact its been in my head off and on since I was in junior high. Persistence is finally going to pay-off for that character but I need to finish one project and have a baby first! Don't worry little guy...your time will come soon!

As for all you other writers out there; find your motivation. From the past almost decade of freelancing the best way to not enjoy this job is to suffer from lack of motivation. We've all been there. You're on a deadline and just nothing is feeling right to you. In fact, one of my least favorite articles ended up receiving some of the best praise. At the time I though, "really?" My mind was on everything but that article at the time I wrote it and I really just pushed through and got it done. However, when I look back at it now I do admit that it was a good article. Now I'm in no way advocating for you to go out there and just write even if you are not enjoying it but the truth is that sometimes we do have to just get through it. But if you can tap into your motivation then you will always remember the love for this craft and industry and you will make great things happen. At least that's what my plan is. So enjoy this early post because now I'm off to my word document for a day of revisions!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Finding My Inner Villain

I've reached the point in my revisions where I need to fine tune my stories villain. I spent all night working on the chapter where my heroine meets him. For someone who always loved the villains in the Disney movies growing up (I'm a big Maleficent fan) I thought that this wouldn't be as hard as it is. However, I guess that just shows truly what a nice person I am. I just hate being mean to my heroine and hero! Well, after thinking of countless movie villains and merging their personalities, considering my villain's motivation and reasons for being evil I think I got him where I want him to be. It was a tiring exercise but I'm now happy at how he will turn out. I just hope my readers don't think I'm horrible for creating such a evil person but every good story must be driven by conflict and this story definitely has conflict! Conflict that will hopefully result in nail-biting, sitting on the edge of your seat reading!

Well, not bad for day 2 of my blog. I did submit another entry! Now I'm back to revising/writing while waiting for people to call me for interviews for my current freelance article. I hate waiting on call-backs but that does give me more time to edit. Oscar is happily supervising my work today from the couch as he dreams off and on I'm sure about bones and tennis balls!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

My debut to the World of Blogging

I've read many blogs but until recently I've never thought to start one. This may seem extremely odd to some since I am a writer but problem solved and here I am on Blogger. I'm a freelance journalist on contract with several Houston and National publications. I also love to read fiction and during this past year I began working on a Young Adult novel. I'm revising it and soon will be sending it out in search of an agent. I also am working on a Middle Grade novel that is based on a short story that I won a National Scholastic Award with when I was in Junior High. So yes, I've always loved to write. However, life happens and so far this year I've been following behind many of my personal deadlines but for good reason. My husband and I are expecting our first baby this summer. Our baby is doing great! I however, have not been enjoying the experience of pregnancy. I've been suffering from a condition called Hyperemisis which means I have a hard time eating and drinking. Of course that doesn't stop my cravings which only creates frustration! So now I spend my days writing or trying to write from bed or the couch.

This gives you an idea of what to expect from my blog. As a writer you never know what crazy topic I may be covering! That alone will bring laughs! I also will be blogging a lot about my journey to becoming a published fiction author. This is a very large and overwhelming industry but I'm already seeing the benefits and I'm determined to stick with it until it works out. And of course there is my personal life of pregnancy and the baby on the way. I will try to write often, even if it's just a little. And then there is my personal assistant that helps me with everything I do. That would be Oscar, the seventy-pound dog pictured with me above. Just about everything I write is done with him laying next to me or on me. So I think this is a good start and a enough about me for the day. I hope you will follow. If you are also a writer, leave advice or comment when you can relate to a post. If you have opinions on something I'm researching for an article please comment away. Or you can just lurk and I won't be offended. Until tomorrow (maybe) have a great day!