Saturday, May 18, 2013

Strum the Heart Strings

Heart Strings photo HSFinishedVersion-Color.jpg

Struggling to write a new book is just that -- a struggle. It is worth it, or at least that's what I tell myself as I slog on through days when it feels like I'm prying the words out one by one with a toothpick or pair of eyebrow tweezers. There are days, however, when the words flow and time ceases to have meaning. I often stop when the light goes to turn on a lamp and realize I've been writing nonstop for 12 hours or more. Those are the days I look forward to.

When my father died, I decided to put myself out there and began writing a series of stories about myself and my family for various anthologies. The words came easily then. I felt like I was writing for my father, showing him the world of our family through my eyes and experiences. I amassed a lot of contracts in those, a few of which fell through just before publishing because the publishers needed to cut a few stories to make the anthology just the right size. I accepted their last minute rejections with equanimity. After all, it was only one book and I could sell the story elsewhere, and I usually did.

It seemed during those days that a new anthology came out every couple of months containing one or two of my stories. Those were heady days as I decided who would get a copy from my box of author's copies. I always had more names than books, but people decided to buy the books instead.

I get excited even now when I put out a new book. It's that sigh of relief that all the fussing, editing, and frustration are behind me and the fussing, frustration, and review ahead that energize me to keep moving forward. Getting bogged down in the work-a-day world is a problem, but I manage to slog through most of the time without resorting to playing games or picking up my latest cross-stitch project.

Today is another one of those heady and exciting days because I have put out another book. This time the book is a collection of the anthologized stories I wrote mostly for Dad. Instead of buying a whole lot of books, readers can now pick up Heart Strings and read them in one place, with a little something at the end of each story about its history.

So, without further ado, I offer Heart Strings: A Collection of Memories. Buy it here on Red Room or at Amazon or through Smashwords for $1.99 and share the good times and the bad, the laughter and the tears.

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