Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Brain Exercises… Music

Gloria Estefan and the ______________  

Sting and the _______________

Caedmon's  _____________                                   

Casting  _______________

Captain and _______________                               

Loggins and ______________

The Band _________________                              

D C ___________

Audio _____________                                            

Mama's and ______________

Jars of ______________                                          

Smashing _______________

Foo _________________                                        

Red Hot ____________ ____________

Third Eye ______________                                    

Paul Revere and __________________

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Happy Birthday to me...

As a kid, I couldn't wait for my birthday. There would parties and gifts and friends and fun. And each year that past made me wonder what the next year might be.

My life spread out before me like a mystery. I dreamed of what I might become.

I wanted to be a veterinarian, until I realized you had to deal with blood.

I wanted to be superwoman, to save the world. Really I just wanted to fly and have all those cool super powers. There was no end to what superwoman could do. Except for Krypton, I would be invincible.

I wanted to be a genie, like Jeannie, pretty much for the same principle as being superwoman. Jeannie could do anything. She could get herself in and out of trouble with a snap. And it would be nice to blink and clean my room or go wherever I wanted. Homework would be a breeze, and I could live in a tiny little bottle and not be disturbed. (Unless someone capped said bottle and made me their Genie slave) I could help the world.

I wanted to be an actress. The next Doris Day, singing and dancing across the stage, my name in lights. Of course to be that, one had to know how to dance. I had the singing down, but only as long as I was alone. Put me on stage and I'd freeze like a deer in headlights. So I had to set that dream aside.

I had other aspirations like becoming an archeologist, trekking through lust jungles, uncovering lost civilizations. Had to give that up when I realized I had to go into dark tunnels. Claustrophobic as I am, I'd probably come out screaming, if I ever went in. And let's not discuss spider webs and the beasties that make them.

I wanted to be a princess, (well really queen,) so I could rule the world. And if a charming prince were thrown into the mix, that might be okay as well.

I wanted to be an astronaut and travel to the stars, float around in a tube, seek out strange new worlds and…

I wanted to be dropped off back in time and become a gunslinging cowgirl.

And I'm excited to say that I've become all those things. Okay I've managed it because as a writer. I take day trips to places the human me can never go.

Now that I'm older, I don't spend my life wondering what I'll become.

(That's not to say that I don't have some dreams, because there are still things I'd like to do. Become a best selling author. Have a book become a movie. Become a photographer. President.)

Now, I spend more time wondering what I've done and whether or not my life has amounted to anything. To any of the dreams I had for me. Any of the Dreams God had for me. Did I use my time wisely? Did I glorify my creator?

Have I left a legacy? I realize I'll probably only be a brief blurb in history, (and that could be thinking big again) but will it a kind blurb? A blurb worth mentioning?

Will the life I've lived matter in time? Will the life I've lived touch others?

Only time will tell...

Monday, June 02, 2014

Blog Hop...

I’ve been invited to participate in a “blog hop”! The assignment is to write a post that answers four specific questions about my writing, and then tag three other writers who will do the same in their blogs. Be sure to see the links at the end to their blogs–you’ll want to get to know these amazing ladies! Thank you to Dana McNeely for inviting me to be part of this.

What are you working on?  I have several irons in the fire or perhaps several stories floating around in my head, which can get a bit busy when all the characters want attention at once. But as of late,  life  has been a bit more demanding and my brain seems to be a bit on hold. Still, I'm working on Her Secret Garden, a novella, Counting Tessa, a futuristic speculative novel with time travel, with cloning, Tamed by Mercy and still trying to finish a couple other Civil War novels, From Hell to Eternity which is about Andersonville Prison and Finding Middle C, a story about a woman who loses much in the war, but begins to find life's music again.

How does your work differ from others in its genre? While the stories I write may be similar to the stories of other writers, the difference arises because I put a touch of who I am, my heart and insight, into the stories.  I try to put a new spin, or tell something in a different way, but comparisons to other writers are still made. I won't complain because sometimes that puts me in pretty good company.

Why do you write what you do?  I write what I do because the thought of the story has piqued my imagination and I want to delve into a new work and see where my characters take me. I also want to touch readers with my stories. I believe my imagination comes from God and He wants me to use it to His glory.

 How does your writing process work?  Some days my mind is firing on all cylinders. And I can sit down and write and write. I do most of my writing my hand, because I find that helps me to think the story through better. Then I put all into the computer. When I do input I do a bit of editing as well. I don’t usually start with an outline, but later on I might jot down the finer points of where the story is headed.

Tag, You’re It!
I didn't exactly tag anyone to carry on, but here are the links to others on the hop. Sometime in the next few days each of them will answer the same four questions in their respective blogs. Be sure to check out their posts. They are:

           ◦   Amory Cannon writes romantic suspense as Amryn Cross. She is in American Christian Fiction Writers with me. Her debut novel, Learning to Die, will release in September 2014. Amory/Amryn blogs on her website. Watch for her answers to the four questions there in the next week or so.

           ◦   Laura Hilton will post her answers at her blog. Laura and I used to be members of a critique group several years ago. I've been privileged to see her writing grow. She writes Amish fiction, and has published several novels in that genre.

            ◦   Dana McNeely is a semifinalist in the American Christian Fiction Writers Genesis contest in the historical category.  Watch for her answers to these questions in a few days on the Christian Writers of the West blog.

           ◦   Renee Blare I've met Renee online through American Christian Fiction Writers. she is a semifinalist in the American Christian Fiction Writers Genesis contest. You can find out more about her at her blog.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

For Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day
and especially to my mom, who I miss this year. 
The first is over 50 that I won't be able to call 
or say I love you.

Baby Steps
by Tina Pinson

I used to carry you, used to complain
about how heavy you were becoming.
So I set you down and taught you to walk.
Baby Steps...
Look at you. When did you learn to walk so well?

I used to hold your hand. Or you held mine.
But a time came when you want to run.
So I let you go and watched you trot away
Baby Steps…
When did you learn to run so fast?

I used to watch you play. In the sandbox. On the slide.
But running gave way to bikes and bikes to cars.
So I folded my hands with a pray, and watched you drive away.
Baby Steps…
Where did that handsome young man come from?

I used to listen to the roar of your car's engine,
signaling your save return home. But you've moved away.
It was time I suppose, but your room is so empty.
Baby Steps…
Now I wait for the phone to ring and you to call home.

Oh that I could watch you toddling again.
I remember when you held my hand and walked in my shadow.
Baby Steps...
When did your steps surpass mine?
When did your shadow become so long?

You take the steps of a man now. So sure, so strong.
You don't need my hand to hold you anymore.
Forgive your mother her tears.
Forgive your mother her dreams that we could go back
and I could snuggle you and hold you again.
See, you may be grown, and have a family of your own,
but you'll always be my little boy.

Baby Steps.

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Just Imagine...

Tina here. I showed you my doodles a few days back and thought I would share the post they went to.

You know I hate to admit it, but as a child I had some quirky ideas about life. My imagination was on constant overload. ( I got in trouble quite often for telling whoppers)
As a child I believed.

Trees came to life at night and their shadows moved across the wall.
You had to keep your window closed or they could snatch you out of bed.

Gravity held me to the earth, but if I spun hard enough I would fly off into space.

If I killed a spider all its friends and family would come crawl all over me while I slept.

Drinking chocolate milk gave me a tan.

The clothes in my closet came to life after midnight and held battles against each other. My blanket protected me from their weapons.

When I ate my body filled from the toes up. When I got too full I had to puke.
I used to stare at my feet just to see if I could see them fill up.

If I dug a hole deep enough, (as a kid that was probably ten feet) I'd reach China.

If I was quiet enough, I could hear the animals talking.

My father put a camper on our truck when we moved to Germany so we would have a place to live. People there still lived in caves. (And this I believed in 1969)
I could fly with an umbrella.
It could happen if the wind blew just right.

If I acted angry and growled real loud when I was mad, my sisters would leave me alone because they were scared. Yeah, that one rarely worked. They laughed and bothered me more.

 You can see these were some silly things. And there are others, but I won't bore you.

 I've grown up now. Matured. Put away childish thoughts and things.

 For the most part.
In reality though.

I still catch myself blowing on dandelions, hoping my wishes come true.

Every so often I find myself skipping cracks.
I say knock on wood and cross my fingers.
I check my books on Amazon, religiously, thinking somehow if I stare long enough the numbers will fall and my books will sell.

I wish on stars although I don't really believe they'll come true.
I sometimes keep the wishbone.

I still wonder about those spiders and their families sometimes.

I make tents with my grandchildren and pretend I'm camping or on a wild safari.

I dance in rain puddles and sing. "Singing the Rain."

But I have stopped sending out chain letters because I'm pretty certain they don't work.

You're probably wondering why I'm saying all this. Admitting my childish thoughts.

Because imagination is a wonderful thing. A gift. It's not to be misused. We shouldn't let it lead us astray and into trouble. No. Like children, we need to turn our imaginations over to God and trust him to direct our thoughts, trust him to take wrong thoughts captive and show us dreams we never thought before. Like children we need to look for the wonder in creation around us.

From the mind of imagination comes new concepts, new stories. New Dreams.

Have you ever thought of an idea and kept it or used it for yourself and did nothing more, only to find someone else took the further step and got a patent? And consumers soon had a new product.

You can't stop at imagination and hope to fulfill a dream. Hope has to be engaged and steps taken to move you forward. I realize those steps can be scary. So you might just want to sit down and give up. But don't.  I want you to engage your thoughts. Your dreams.

How many failed attempts were there before the telephone? How many planes crashed before man flew?

Hope and vision carried the imagination of inventors the world over through trials and disappointment.

Just imagine how life would be if inventors and scientists just gave up?

No Cars. No Planes. No Trains. No Electricity. No Toilet. No Gum. No ATM's. No Books. No Paper. No… well you fill in the blanks.

What would you miss?

Proverbs 29 :18a (KJV) Where there is no vision the people perish…

Acts 2:17 (KJV) And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith the Lord, I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh: and your sons and daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions and your old men will dream dreams.

What has God seeded in your imagination that you need to give more attention to?

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Anatomy of a Cover...

They say you can't judge a book by its cover. But that seems to be how several people pick a book. I admit I am guilty of this myself.

And perhaps they read the blurb too.

But it's the cover that draws your attention. As does the name.

A lot of thought goes into a cover.  For some it might not seem that way. But many author spend time visualizing their cover and working with the publishing house to get the proper concept on paper.

My covers are important. I hope the design flies off the page and captures the eyes of readers. I can't change the covers now,  but I wanted to let you take a look at my covers and see what you think. Why or why not would you choose any of the following books?

Which book is your favorite cover? Why?

Which is your least? Why?

Your input could help me with covers in the future.



Saturday, April 12, 2014

Summertime… oh wait it's only April

Got to love Summers in Arizona.

Oh wait… It's not summer yet. It's April. We haven't even celebrated Easter yet. School is not out.

But we're already in the mid 80's which is summer weather in some places.

No, when summer hits in Arizona it will 110+. Yay.

Anyway back to my Summers in Arizona that aren't summer quite yet…

I took a dip in the pool yesterday. What they call a play pool here (because it's 5 and 1/2 foot deep goes 8 x 20). Really it is bigger than any play pool I had in Colorado.

The water was 70 degrees. I stuck my feet in the water, then inserted, very slowly, my lily white legs a bit further and thought it felt pretty nice. Then I inched further, and found myself yelping from the cold and ready to climb out. My back was too warm and toasty from the sun so it was akin to dropping ice down my shirt.

Besides, wasn't there house work to do? Didn't I need a nap? Hmm, I could always fill up my tub with a touch warmer water and swim there. It did look as though my legs could use a shave.

White legs that need a shave… eew. Just saying

My grandkids were playing in the water like seals and my DIL had taken the final initiative to get wet, albeit with a great shiver. With lips chattering she assured me it was much better if you just get all wet.

So I did it. I took the plunge. Tensed up like a board no less, I fell into the water and soaked myself in the crystal blue waves of our play pool.  After a few moments of teeth chattering of my own, it actually started to feel pretty good. Of course, I didn't want to get out for any reason and have to climb back in again and go through the whole process of freezing once more.

But here's the thrust of this tale…

In Colorado we swam in lakes that rarely got above 60 degrees and body surfed in rivers that were constant ice makers and here I was fighting to not grow massive goose bumps jumping into 70 degree water.

I'm turning into a weeny.

And come summer here, when the mercury rises, the temps in our pool will probably hover closer to 90 more like a jacuzzi than a pool. And I'll probably be forced to cool it down some.

Although, sadly, the water, even at 90, will be 20 to 25 degrees cooler than the Arizona summer sun beating down on me. And might even feel refreshing.

Got to love Summer in Arizona.