TMI Tuesday June 2, 2020

Apparently, the TMI Tuesday Blog is back in business. So, here I am with another episode. After you read the questions and my answers, you can find out how to participate.

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  1. The best part of your job is _____ creating ideas with words on a page, or, in my case, a computer screen.
  2. My favorite quote is _____ “Your grandmother pretends not to know you on Halloween.” This comes from Erma Bombeck and is the inspiration for my novel-in-progress, Grandma Doesn’t Know Me.
  3. The best part of my day is _____ the end when I can relax with a good book, magazine, or podcast.
  4. What is the hardest part of your job? How do you deal with it? The most difficult task related to writing is marketing. However, I’ve hired a wonderful person to help me with that. Patty Fletcher lives in Kingsport, Tennessee, with her retired guide dog, Campbell. She has published two books of her own and is working on a trilogy. Her business, Tell It to the World Marketing, helps authors and businesses with public relations. Click here to learn more.
  5. You must write a “how to guide” about something for which you have expertise. What is this guide about or tell us the title? I don’t write how-to guides. Once in a while, I don’t mind sending instructions to friends on how to use certain technology, but I prefer to write fiction, poetry, and memoirs.

Bonus: What would you name your boat? Believe me. Because of my visual impairment, you wouldn’t want me piloting a boat.

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Now, it’s your turn. Click here to learn how you can participate. Alternatively, you can answer one or more of the questions in the comments field below. I look forward to reading your answers. Thank you for stopping by today.

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

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My Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

WebsiteImage contains: Abbie, smiling.

 

 

Wind Beneath My Wings #Monday Musical Memories

The song I’m featuring today is one I sang to my late husband Bill. After his death, I realized that he was truly the wind beneath my wings.

If he hadn’t come along and persuaded me to marry him, quit my day job, and write full time, I might still be conducting music activities in nursing homes and other senior facilities. If not for him, I might still be in the apartment where I lived for years instead of in my own house with my own washer and dryer and back yard. If I hadn’t married him, I wouldn’t have five published books under my belt with a sixth on the way.

Bill was one of my biggest fans. He supported all my writing endeavors, even helping me with story ideas. I remember the day I received print copies of my first book, We Shall Overcome. I placed a copy in his hands, and because he had no vision at all, I described the front and back cover to him. With what I imagined to be his shit-eating grin, he said, “My wife, the published author.” When my second book, How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver was ready to be published, he posed with me for the photo on the front cover. Whenever possible, he was at my side during book signings and other events, smiling, even though he was confined to a wheelchair as a result of two strokes. You can read more about us in My Ideal Partner: How I met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds.

On my birthday today, I’d like to give you all the gift of my gratitude to Bill for making me what I am today. Even now, this song is hard for me to sing. But as you’ll note when you press the Play button below, I somehow managed to pull it off. Enjoy!

I was inspired to share this song by a prompt. Thank you for reading.

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

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My Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

WebsiteImage contains: Abbie, smiling.

 

Would You Give Up Your Television Set? #Writing Prompt

When I was a kid, I enjoyed watching television, even though I couldn’t see much of what went on unless I sat close to the set. In my teenaged years during the 1970’s, my favorite shows were The Bionic Woman, Little House on the Prairie, The Walton’s, and Dallas. I also enjoyed such situation comedies as Alice, The Jeffersons’, and MASH.

When I graduated from high school, my parents gave me my very own television set. It sat on a table next to the armchair in my bedroom, so I could see it more easily. Although it was a black and white set, it opened a new world for me. I could see what my favorite characters looked like and could take pleasure in watching Lawrence Welk’s dancers perform.

Six months later, Santa brought me a color television set. By that time, I’d become a fan of Star Trek reruns. For the first time, I discovered that Captain Kirk wore a gold shirt. Mr. Spock wore a blue shirt, and everyone else wore red shirts.

When I went away to college, I took my TV set with me and watched in my dorm room when I wasn’t studying or participating in extracurricular activities. But over the years, I developed more of an interest in books than television. When I married my late husband in 2005, I was forced to give up TV altogether. Although we had a set, Bill didn’t watch and didn’t want cable. This was fine with me because by that time, there wasn’t much on television I liked. We watched movies on videotapes, but that was it.

After Bill became incapacitated as a result of his strokes, and we moved to another house that could more easily be made accessible to his wheelchair, we got cable television because it was one way he could tune into his beloved Colorado Rockies games and other sports events that weren’t always available on the radio. I occasionally watched news and other programs, but that was the extent of our television-watching.

After Bill passed, I discontinued the cable service and relegated our television set to the garage. I suppose I could subscribe to NetFlix or some other streaming service I could use on my computer or tablet, but I don’t see the need. I have books, podcasts, and social activities to keep me entertained. There’s nothing on television I need to watch.

How about you? Did you have any favorite television programs when you were growing up? Would you get rid of your television set now? Thanks to blogger Cindi for inspiring this post, and thank you for reading and responding.

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

My Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

WebsiteImage contains: Abbie, smiling.

My Favorite Places #Essay #Writing Prompt

I enjoy working in my office at my three-corner desk containing my computer, printer, and closed-circuit television magnifier. Behind me is another desk with a braille calendar and other odds and ends. My entertainment center with my stereo receiver, CD player, cassette deck and shelves storing cassettes and CD’s stands in one corner. The speakers sit on a bookcase across from it. This bookcase also holds books and other materials. Next to it is a hutch containing, among other things, my Amazon Echo Tap, which I now use to play music while I’m working. I rarely use the stereo. As I sit at my desk, I can sort of see out a high north-facing window.

At the end of the day, I like to listen to books or podcasts in my recliner. This belonged to my late husband, who was partially paralyzed by two strokes soon after we were married. Now, I feel close to him when I use it. It’s situated in my living room, which also contains a couch, another armchair, a buffet, my piano, and a couple of end tables. The recliner has buttons that raise and lower the head and feet. As I sit there, I can see my front yard through another north-facing window above the couch.

My third favorite place is the YMCA. For years, I’ve been participating in water exercise classes there on a regular basis. Recently, they opened a new aquatic center, which is much nicer than the facilities we were using before. It features several pools, a hot tub, a rock climbing wall, and new locker rooms with private showers. In the morning when I go there, the sunlight streaming in from the windows in the pool area makes the water sparkle.

If you’ve read my latest book The Red Dress, you may be wondering if my main character, Eve, had any favorite places. As she points out in an interview I did with her last summer soon after the book came out, one of her favorite places when she was a child was her father’s bookstore, where she loved to stretch out in an old bathtub filled with pillows. You can read the interview here. If you haven’t read The Red Dress, and you’re now curious, you’ll find more information and ordering links here.

How about you? What are your favorite places? Thanks to Moondance Pages for inspiring this, and thank you for reading.

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

My Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

WebsiteImage contains: Abbie, smiling.

About Love #Writing Prompt

Love isn’t necessarily romantic. You can love a movie, food, a computer, or any other object. But what I’m going to tell you is a story about true love.

In 2003, I met my late husband Bill through an audio publication called Newsreel. Designed for blind and visually impaired people like me, it provides us with an outlet where we can share our thoughts, a favorite song, ask a question, or buy or trade something.

Back then, I submitted a question about computers. At the time, I was living here in Sheridan, Wyoming. Bill Taylor, who lived in Fowler, Colorado, answered my question by email. I wrote back to him, and that’s how it started.

For two years, we carried on a long-distance relationship, emailing each other daily and talking by phone once in a while. My dad and I visited him in Fowler on our way to New Mexico to spend time with my brother and his family. Bill had downloaded over a hundred songs onto his computer, and he sent me tapes of some of those songs.

It never occurred to me that he fancied me as anything more than a friend.

But one night in January of 2005, my world was turned upside down. That day, I’d received a braille letter from him. I didn’t think this unusual. He’d sent me tapes of his music, so why not a letter? But then, I read the first sentence of his letter.

“Dear Abbie,” he wrote. “I’m writing to ask for your hand in marriage.” After I read those words, I knew my life would never be the same.

He wanted to come to Sheridan to visit me in a couple of months. I suggested waiting until summer, so we wouldn’t have to worry about bad roads. But he said he thought the roads would be okay by March.

So, for the next couple of months, I lived in a world of uncertainty, not sure whether I loved him or wanted to spend the rest of my life with him. But after he came, and I felt his tenderness for the first time, things changed. I can’t explain why, but when he officially proposed to me in front of family and friends during dinner at a restaurant, I said yes. You can read more about this in My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds.

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I was inspired to write the above by a prompt provided during last Saturday’s meeting of a local writing group called Range Writers. Now it’s your turn. Here’s the prompt.

Write about love. It doesn’t have to be about romantic love. It can be about a food, television show, or movie you love. Here’s a list of words you can use.

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Affection

Adoration

Friendship

Tenderness

Feeling

Fondness

Devotion

Passion

Ardor

Adore

Worship

Fancy

Care

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I’d love to read your responses, either on your own blog with a link to this post or in the comment field below. Thank you for stopping by today.

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

My Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

WebsiteImage contains: Abbie, smiling.

One Thing About Me #Essay #Writing Prompt

One thing I love about myself is that I’m healthy. I don’t smoke. I don’t consume alcoholic beverages of any kind. I drink only one can of Dr. Pepper a day. I exercise regularly, watch my weight, and try not to eat too much ice cream.

To stay healthy, I get myself checked out every year. I have the obligatory annual physical exam. Because I have a heart murmur and a family history of heart attacks plus some mild hearing loss in my left ear, I have an echocardiogram and a hearing test each year. I endure an annual screening mammogram. Except for a couple of scares involving unknown spots on my breasts, all my tests have turned out normal so far, except for the hearing loss, which isn’t getting any worse, and the heart murmur, which appears stable.

I also try to keep my mind sharp. Every day, I play several games with Alexa to stimulate my brain cells. These include “Word of the Day,” “Question of the Day,” “True or False,” “Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader,” “Who Wants to be a Millionaire,” and “Song Quiz.” I recently started trying a meditation skill called “Head Space.” Maybe it’ll help me be more mindful and stay focused. It’s my hope that if I keep my body and mind in good shape, I can live long and die before experiencing any serious health issues. Life is precious, and I want to live it to the fullest.

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Thanks to Moondance Pages for inspiring the above. Now, it’s your turn. What’s one thing you love about yourself?

Don’t be afraid to toot your own horn. I’d love to read your responses, either in the comment field below or on your own blog with a link to this post. Remember. We’re all special in our own way.

 

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

My Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

WebsiteImage contains: Abbie, smiling.

The Thing #Essay #Writing Prompt

Remember the song about the man who discovers a box on a beach? He opens it and finds a treasure. He tries to sell it to a friend, but the friend threatens to call the police if he doesn’t leave the premises. He takes it home to his wife, but she tells him to go away and never return. He tries to give it to a desperate hoboe. But the hoboe runs away when he sees it.

For years, this man travels far and wide with a treasure nobody wants that’s doing him no good. He finally ends up at The Pearly Gates, where St. Peter tells him to take the thing down below.

One wonders why he didn’t leave this unknown treasure on the beach where he found it if nobody wanted it. But if he did, it wouldn’t be much of a song, would it? One also wonders what was in the box that nobody wanted.

At the end of the song, the singer advises that if you find such a box on the beach, don’t open it because you’ll never get rid of whatever’s inside. Likewise, if a friend came to me with a box and claimed that what was inside would change everything, I’d say to my friend, “Why don’t you open the box?”

 

 

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

My Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

WebsiteImage contains: Abbie, smiling.