Sunday, September 30, 2012

Life in the Slow Lane

I'm sure wishing life was moving in the slow lane. Homecoming was last Friday night. The opposing team audience came in droves and wore orange shirts because it is the favorite color of the young girl who was being bullied. They also had banners signed by the entire school they represented. Two other area schools sent representatives to show support, also. The stands were packed and there was pretty much standing room only.

My daughter came home for the first time in 17 years to attend. The hostility from locals was so bad she went to sit with the opposing team audience. I was met with hostility as well. While not all the kids are bad and we never said they were, the senior class of 2012 voted a young man with Downs Syndrome as their King. No it was not a joke. The young man is popular and well loved by his classmates. We left at half-time.

While the big bullying issue has made media attention all over the world. My daughter is still working to get her non-profit set up. She is working on a video montage of people who have been bullied and some photo shoots.

I on the other hand am off to Cleveland for Bouchercon 2012. A conference I have been looking forward to for a long time. I have misgivings about going, but I will make the most of it.

I am working on book three in the Macy McVannel series. While I've dealt with a cold case murder in book one, bullying in book two, book three will tackle abuse. All things you find in small towns as well as big cities. I've been a bit remiss at writing and keeping up with my hubpages on what happens behind the scenes of a novel. Too much life going on, I guess. I will use my time in Cleveland to network and work on that novel.

I am about half way through my semester at the University. While I'm going to miss it when I'm done, I'm going to be glad to have my time back so I can get ready for my winter trek south. It's already too cold here for me.

I am ready for long walks on the beach and the sound of the ocean 24/7. I am ready to immerse myself in writing and just relaxing. I am ready.

My second book in the Macy McVannel series is due out the end of November and I am looking forward to that. I am looking forward to the three book signings in Georgia, and South Carolina. I still have much to do for that.

Meantime, curl up with a good book, have some cocoa and immerse yourself in something outside of life.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012


I have not blogged in days. I am not even sure where to start. I've been living in a whirlwind for the past week and it's not over yet.

I'll try to make some sense of it. On Friday, Sept. 14th my daughter called me, not anything unusual in that. However she needed me to stop at the bank and see if an account could be set up to take donations. It seems the sophomore class at the high school in town, same high school my daughter had attended, voted a young girl to be the class representative at homecoming. All well and good you say. Not exactly. It was done as a joke. Pick the unpopular girl to make fun of her. To say the least, the young lady was devastated. My daughter who has children who have been bullied and who was horribly teased in high school was enraged. She set up this page on Facebook.

Little did she know what would happen. For starters she does no know the young lady this happened to. The town was so enraged they rallied around the young lady. Her hair, nails, and make-up have been donated by one of the beauty shops, as well as dinner before the dance on Saturday night. A bridal shop in town donated her dress, shoes, and tiara. This will be a homecoming she will never forget. She has been overwhelmed by the kindness of strangers.

My daughter is completely overwhelmed  by the out-pouring of support and the stories being shared by adults who were bullied as children and still bear the scars. She is looking into opening a non-profit to raise awareness of bullying and bring programs to schools. She has talked to more national media people than she ever planned to in her life. Even questioning Ryan Seacrest when he called her. Like REALLY, Ryan Seacrest would call me?

All of this comes as the release of my newest book Crossing the Line nears. A book in which bullying to the extreme is dealt with. My publisher and I have talked about linking my book to the site my daughter will have for her non-profit and giving 10% of the book price to the non-profit.

We as adults need to set an example for our children, grandchildren, nieces, and nephews. Bullying is not acceptable. More teens commit suicide because of bullying than any other thing. It's why we have Columbines to remember and regret. We can stop it, if we start at home, in our neighborhoods, in our communities, and in our schools. This is bigger than one girl at homecoming. This is an epidemic in our nation. It's part of what drives inner city kids to gangs. They are bullied into joining, they are bullied in school so join because in joining someone will defend them. Many bullies are bullied and this is what they do to defend themselves.

Okay off my soapbox and on to other things.

Saturday, September 1, 2012


I have waited several years to read a book about the growth of the county I live in. That it happens to be a murder mystery just adds to my wanting to read it. Tonight while watching Alabama run over U of M, I picked up the book and began reading.

I had to put the book down and know that I will never finish reading it. I cannot get past the grammatical errors. If you are writing a book for publication, get an editor. In fact, have several people read it who know something about grammar. The really sad thing, is the book is written the way people here speak. It is not a dialect it is just poor grammar. It is generations of poor grammar and has become accepted.

I truly believe this might have been a best seller outside of this county had someone taken the time to edit the work. This is what happens when people self-publish. I have self-published. I had at least two editors for every book I wrote and then went through the proof copy for final errors. I want people to get my best work and to take me seriously as a writer.

Now I will head to my book shelf to find something suitable to read. Ugh. I was so looking forward to this.


My laptop has been at full capacity for the past two weeks. It's nice to be consistently writing again. It's been hit or miss for...