Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Would You Read This Book?

Last summer when my publisher was sick, I took a leap of faith and self-published a novel called Drama Queen Rules. Next week I hope to enter it in a "breakthrough novel" competition sponsored by and Penguin Books. Do me a favor?

Read the following pitch and tell me if you would read Drama Queen Rules.

Thanks a million!


Her mother says Lainey Cook will never amount to a hill of beans. Her sister Emma Grace, who contentedly lives on welfare, says Lainey isn’t smart enough to change her life. Boyfriend Skip Boyer doesn’t say much of anything at all. He has no ambition at all that doesn’t involve fast cars and cold beer.

Readers know Lainey Cook. She is the gal from the trailer park on the edge of town – but not necessarily the wrong side of the tracks. She’s smart, savvy and willing to work hard at whatever life throws at her – even the grabby guys at the bowling alley where she works as a waitress to pay the rent. She may have to walk to work in a howling blizzard, and bury her mother on Christmas Day. She may have to hitchhike all the way home to upstate New York from Alabama. She may even have to work at the bowling alley a while longer, but she won’t give up her dream of a better life that will allow her to help others despite the drama queens who predict her failure at every turn.

Drama Queen Rules is a story about hope and dreams that come true – but not without struggle and faith. It is a story about the variety and vagaries of love – and what it takes to change one’s stars. Lainey Cook’s courageous struggle will make you wake your partner up in the small hours of the night because you are laughing so loudly – and cry for happiness when she achieves her goal. She’s your home girl, your baby sister and most of all the girl you’d love to be.

Thanks again - and keep on the sunny side! Terry

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Reading: A Writer's Chore.

I try spend some time writing each morning, work on crafts in the afternoon, and then try to read in the evening. Keeping busy is easy if you have plenty of things to do and anyone with a house knows there is always things to do.

Sure, I run the vacuum and do the dishes and laundry, but no day is complete without spending some time with a good book. It is part of my real work.

Last autumn I had the opportunity to do several book signings and to my surprise people bought just as many of my older books as they did the newer volumes. Most of my books are historical fiction, with a few exceptions. My degree in American studies helped me with some of the material culture in more than a few of my novels. In other cases, reading has helped me with the details of cultures I would never be able to have otherwise - and the Internet makes research easy.

Some of my stories, however, have a more modern focus. The Picker, for instance, is the story of a man whose calling did not always make for a happy life. He is a country musician. It isn't easy to chase one's dream, but the dream will call you on for good or ill. The Picker leans more heavily on my personal experience as a working musician. Still, reading all sorts of books helped me with the voice of this quasi-memoir and picking it up recently told me I was always a storyteller - again, for good or ill.

I think a writer has to be a reader for that is where they find the recipes for their tales - it is part of the writer's must dos.

Today's writer has a tough time getting noticed in the vast sea of writers also looking to make their mark on the world. Today one of my books was rejected - and hey I simply applied for a review! It is not a vocation for the weak or faint of heart.

You know what? I believe I am past the point of no return and I am going to continue to find stories to write and take the time to make them as good as I can. And I'll keep reading - it is part of the writer's work.

Good luck on your own journey and keep on the sunny side. Love, Terry

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Visionary Valentine Planned

Hello All,

Exciting news! The Main Street Gallery is planning its third Visionary Valentine show! In addition to valentine art of all sort, the gallery will offer a lavish reception on February 12 from 7:30 to 10:30 p.m.

This should give everyone time to enjoy the Second Saturday excitement and then drop by the Main Street Gallery for its biggest fund-raiser of the year.

Music will be supplied by Eli McCoy and Tom Sparks and friends offering Dorchester County's best in bluegrass sounds.

A live auction will feature all sorts of donated items auctioned off by well-known auctioneer T. George Wittstadt.

The Main Street Gallery is operated entirely by volunteers and is in partnership with New Beginnings, an after-school programming offering access to the arts for children in the community.

Plan to come out for this special reception! We'll be looking for you.

Live, Love and keep on the sunny side. Terry