Balancing Fame and Family #MondayMusings #OpenBookBlogHop #Inspiration

Abbie wears a blue and white V-neck top with different shades of blue from sky to navy that swirl together with the white. She has short, brown hair and rosy cheeks and smiles at the camera against a black background.Photo Courtesy of Tess Anderson Photography

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Two Pentacles Publishing.

 

Welcome to another edition of Open Book Blog Hop. This week’s question is: If your book took off tomorrow with enormous worldwide interest and sales, are you prepared for all that entails?”

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In my novel, The Red Dress, my main character Eve is a bestselling author. I wouldn’t say her books have gained worldwide interest, but as a bestselling author, she’s struggling, at the beginning of the book, to balance her writing with her family life. Want to know more? Read the book.

That having been said, my answer to this week’s question is yes. Since, unlike Eve, I don’t have a husband and children, I probably wouldn’t have to worry about balancing my writing life with my family life. Of course, I might have to give up my other obligations, but that would be nothing compared to neglecting family. Frankly, though, I doubt my books will gain worldwide interest, and that’s okay. As long as I reach one person, I’m happy.

What about you authors out there? If your books took off tomorrow, gaining worldwide interest, could you handle it? You can click here to participate in this week’s hop and read other bloggers’ responses.

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New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

The cover of the book features an older woman sitting in a wicker chair facing a window. The world beyond the window is bright, and several plants are visible on the terrace. Behind the woman’s chair is another plant, with a tall stalk and wide rounded leaves. The woman has short, white hair, glasses, a red sweater, and tan pants. The border of the picture is a taupe color and reads "Why Grandma Doesn't Know Me" above the photo and "Abbie Johnson Taylor" below it.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

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This or That #TMI Tuesday

This week’s questions are all about choices. See what you think, and feel free to make your own.

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Money or Fame? Why?

 

I don’t need either one. I’m happy with the amount of income I receive, and fame comes with a price, that of privacy.

 

Fish or Chicken?

 

I like both. My favorites from Schwan are chicken cordon bleu and breaded blue hake.

 

Sleeping at night–too warm or too cold?

 

This time of year, I’m in danger of being too hot while sleeping. Although I have a window air conditioner in my spare bedroom, even with it and the ceiling fans going full blast, cool air doesn’t always get to my bedroom. I’ve looked into getting central air conditioning, but  because I live in an old house, this would be expensive. Besides, here in Wyoming, we only need air conditioning maybe two months out of the year. So, I can’t justify the cost.

 

Beard or Moustache? Why?

 

Well, since I’m not of the male persuasion, I don’t have a choice. For me, it’s neither. When my husband Bill was alive, I liked his face smooth as a baby’s bottom.

 

Cars–classic or modern?

 

I’m visually impaired. So, I don’t drive. But if it were possible, I’d like one of those self-driving cars that I could just tell where I wanted to go and have it take me there, no muss, no fuss.

 

 

Which holds more beauty–smile or eyes?

 

Because of my visual impairment, I’m not qualified to answer this question. But I’ll say that they’re both equally beautiful.

 

Soothing the soul–hiking or shopping?

 

I prefer to take a nice walk. Here in Sheridan, there’s a cement trail that meanders along the creek and allows me to hear its babble and the chirping of birds first thing in the morning. That’s what soothes my soul.

 

 

Bonus: What is your favorite type of foreplay?

 

Since Bill was impotent, we didn’t engage in much sexual activity. But after his strokes, we enjoyed snuggling in bed, my head resting on his shoulder next to his, my right arm around him, his right arm around me. I often buried my face in his hair, drinking in its scent, and kissed it. You can learn more about our life together by reading My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for The man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds.

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Now, it’s your turn. To learn how to participate, click here. Alternatively, you can answer one or more of the questions in the comment field below. Any way you do it, I look forward to reading your answers.

By the way, from now until July 31st, you can download My Ideal Partner and The Red Dress absolutely free from Smashwords as part of its annual summer/winter sale. Click here to visit my Smashwords author page.

Also, for those of you who use the National Library Services for the Blind and Print Disabled, The Red Dress is available for download from their site here. Thank you for reading. Stay safe, happy, and healthy.

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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Memories of a Coal Miner’s Daughter #Thursday Book Feature

Loretta Lynn: Coal Miner’s Daughter

by Loretta Lynn with George Vecsey

Copyright 1976

 

What Amazon Says

 

Loretta Lynn’s classic memoir tells the story of her early life in Butcher Holler, Kentucky, and her amazing rise to the top of the music industry.

Born into deep poverty, married at thirteen, mother of six, and a grandmother by the time she was twenty-nine, Loretta Lynn went on to become one of the most prolific and influential songwriters and singers in modern country music. Here we see the determination and talent that led to her trailblazing career and made her the first woman to be named Entertainer of the Year by the Country Music Association and the first woman to receive a gold record in country music.

 

My Thoughts

 

After seeing the 1970’s movie that is based on this book, I was intrigued. So, while searching on the National Library Service for the Blind’s website for Loretta Lynn’s most recent memoir about her friendship with Patsy Cline, I was delighted to find this older book by her.

I love Loretta Lynn’s down-to-earth way of telling her story. Yes, there are plenty of grammar mistakes, but that’s how she talks. She insisted her book be written that way, and it’s great.

I did find Loretta’s latest memoir on Audible. So, I plan to read that and review it here soon. Meanwhile, if you like Loretta Lynn, you’ll enjoy the book and realize that the movie doesn’t do her story justice.

By the way, My Ideal Partner and The Red Dress are now available on Smashwords as part of its sale to support those isolated by the coronavirus. This sale will run until the end of May. Please click here to visit my Smashwords author page and download these books. As always, 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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Leia Speaks

Abbie-1

The Princess Diarist

By Carrie Fisher

Copyright 2016

 

In this funny and poignant memoir, actress Carrie Fisher shares her experiences filming the 1976 production of Star Wars. She touches briefly on her life beforehand: her father, singer Eddie Fisher, leaving her mother, actress Debbie Reynolds, for actress Elizabeth Taylor, her step-father squandering all their money, leaving her mother nearly penniless, and her roles in Shampoo and other theatrical and film productions.

She explains how she auditioned to play Princess Leia in Star Wars and Carrie in the movie Carrie on the same day and of course got the part of Leia. She then describes the filming process in England: spending a week at a Texas fat farm in an attempt to lose weight beforehand, the Irish hairdresser who gave her the Princess Leia hairstyle, her affair with Harrison Ford, who played Han Solo, and friendship with other cast and crew members. She includes a series of diary entries she made during that time.

She discusses the aftermath: the shock of Star Wars’ unexpected popularity, dealing with fan mail, and signing autographs. She explains how her love of shopping and two years with a dishonest business manager impoverished her and how as a result, she was compelled to write travel pieces and appear at Disney Land with four-year-old daughter Billie in tow to make ends meet. She touches on other Star Wars episodes and points out in the end that if she weren’t Princess Leia, she would have been just herself, Carrie Fisher.

The recording I downloaded from Audible is mostly narrated by Carrie Fisher. Her daughter Billie Lourd reads the diary entries, most of which I skipped because they really don’t add to the story, and Billie Lourd’s reading of them was bland.

Although Carrie Fisher’s voice has aged since the original Star Wars production, I enjoyed the way she read the many anecdotes from her experiences and commentary on other subjects. Having once been a Star Wars fan, the miniscule details in the filming process fascinated me: the hairstyling and make-up, how she re-worked one of her lines because she thought it would sound better her way. I would like to have known more about the characters of Darth Vader, C3PO and R2D2.

When reviewing this book for Audible, I was asked who my favorite character was. Well, that was a no-brainer. It was Princess Leia, aka Carrie Fisher, may she rest in peace. I loved her spunk, determination, and courage. May the force always be with her.

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Author Abbie Johnson Taylor

We Shall Overcome

How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

That’s Life: New and Selected Poems

My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds

Click to hear an audio trailer.

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