personal, Social Media, Uncategorized, writing

Fearing Authenticity

mask
Yep, that’s me.

I have a confession to make. I’ve been in a slump this year, afraid to post on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. I’ve even been afraid to blog. Why is that, you ask?

I’m afraid to be me.

Since I’ve signed a publishing contract in April, I’ve choked at being just me. It’s silly, I know. But being an author and having to promote yourself as an author has me all twisted up in trying to be a “real author” — you know, someone who is serious about the business side of writing.

Don’t get me wrong. I am serious about writing and all it entails, but I miss being free to be just me. I love to laugh, not take myself seriously, and have fun with life. That includes all aspects of my life.

People talk about finding your “voice” in writing. If I can’t find my voice in real life and express that life (even on social media), then how can I ever find and free my voice in my writing? Indeed!

So this month I am focusing on authenticity. I want to be real. I want to be me — the real me. This should be fun, right?

When has your authenticity been stifled? Is it hard to be real, either in life or on social media?

Sherrinda Signature

 

personal, the call, writing

My Call Story – A Writer’s Dream Come True

In the writing world, getting “the call” is one of the highlights of the writing journey. Whether it is the call from an agent offering representation, or the call from a contest coordinator telling you that you are a finalist, or the call from an editor offering you a contract, the call is something to be celebrated.

Many of you saw on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram the pictures of me signing my new contract with Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas for my medieval romance. I look excited, don’t I?

I thought I’d share the story of how “the call” came to be and the funny story of where I was when I received that call.

It all began when I was reminded about #FaithPitch on Twitter. (Note: There are several Pitch Days on Twitter where you pitch your story in 180 characters or less. If an editor or agent wants you to send them a query/proposal, they LIKE your pitch.) The day was February 28 and I had totally forgotten about it until a friend asked a group of us writers if we were doing it. It was early afternoon and so I pitched my medieval romance, The Lady’s Masquerade.

I checked Twitter off and on the rest of the day, but had no “likes” so I chalked it up to another good experience and moved on. Let me be honest here and say that out of all the social media I am on, Twitter is the one that I don’t check as often. So FOUR DAYS LATER, I check Twitter and lo-and-behold, I have a private message from Pegg Thomas (she is also an author) from Smitten, the historical line of the Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas! She said to send her a proposal and she would take a look at it.

Yikes! It had been FOUR days since she had reached out to me!

And how in the world do I do a proposal????

You writers out there are probably rolling your eyes, but I’ve never been asked for a proposal. A query I could do, but a proposal? So I got online and researched. I had a friend send me a sample one, which helped tremendously. I got busy on it and gave it to my critique group to look over. Bless their hearts, they got it back to me that same day.

I submitted the proposal and was asked for the full manuscript! Be still my heart!

And then I had to wait. Here’s the thing – in the writing world, nothing happens fast. Sometimes you submit your work to an agent or editor and it takes days, weeks, and even months to receive reply. I was prepared for a good long wait, so I got back to working on my second book, delving into the medieval world once more.

Tuesday, March 13, I went to the Dallas Arboretum with my friend and her two boys (I call them my “adopted” grand-kids.) It was a glorious day and we got to the section specifically for children. The older boy wanted to get in the Tornado Tunnel, a telephone booth sized tube that creates a mighty wind inside. I got inside with him, then my phone began to ring. I pulled out my phone and checked the number.

Could it be a contest win? I was a finalist in a contest, so I decided I needed to answer the call. I said “Hello” and a woman answered, but I couldn’t hear her name because the wind had started to blow. And boy, did it blow! I am a little sketchy on what was said here, because I was trying to get out of the tube so I could hear and explain to my friend I really needed to take this call.

Once I was out of the crazy wind, I realized it was Pegg Thomas again and my heart began to pound. You know that weird sensation when things are surreal and even though there is a lot of noise and commotion, you can’t hear it? Yeah…that was me. And throughout all the weird feelings and tunnel vision, I heard those fabulous words:

“We would like to offer you a contract for your book.”

Yep! A contract to publish my medieval romance! I really didn’t expect to get a medieval published, as it’s not really the “happening” genre right now. I truly expected to seek out a different time period to write. But I am so glad God had other plans for this story.

My dream of writing and publishing a book, which started in high school, is being realized. A dream put on hold as life, children, and jobs took precedence. A dream finally come true. Thank you, LPC, for taking a chance on me!

Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas is a small press publisher making waves in the Christian arena. With many lines, they are putting out award-winning books and creating buzz for excellence. Check out their books HERE. Also, if you love historical romance, join LPC’s Smitten Facebook Group to learn more about their books and their authors.

personal, silly

Living Life Young

I’ve been told I don’t look my age. I must have good genes, but I don’t think that is what makes me seem younger.

To be honest, I think it is because I love to laugh. I don’t mind looking silly. I don’t care if people laugh at me. Hey…I laugh at me. In fact, I record Dubsmash videos of myself and save them to my phone so if I’m down or discouraged, I can watch the videos and bring a smile to my heart.

I was going through some pictures the other day and thought I’d share some of my fun and silly photos.

 

I am married to a man who makes me laugh every single day. He is a kid at heart and I like to think I’ve absorbed some of his youthful spirit.

So laugh. Indulge in funny jokes, silly movies, and crazy pictures. Don’t care what others think. Just have fun. Life’s too short to just act your age. There’s no fun in that!

How do you stay young at heart?


Father's Day, personal

Taking The Dad To The Museum of Biblical Arts

 We were given tickets to the Museum of Biblical Arts in Dallas by some dear friends from church. (Thank you, Eric and Megan!) Since Father’s Day was nearing, we thought it would be a good idea to take my dad and mom. You see, Dad is an artist. He has drawn and painted all his life. He is now a writer and editor, but art is in his blood. So last Friday we met for lunch and toured the museum.

I was blown away by the quality and variety of the art there. There were works dating back to the 1100’s. There were pieces from all over the world. There were works done in paint, ink, pencil, mixed media, oil, and even markers. It was fascinating to see the various mediums and the creative way in which they were used.

There was an exhibit by an artist that honored women who had served and made a difference during World War II and the Holocaust. I learned about so many brave women who stepped up, risked their lives, and changed history by their efforts. Just incredible.

I think my favorite part was all the statutes. There was such a variety of materials used to create them: bronze, wood, steel, plaster, and even drill bits! Such beauty. Such creativity.

I thoroughly enjoyed the day and I think Dad did too!

What is the most fun thing you have done with or for your Dad for Father’s Day?

personal

32 Years Being His

Saying it out loud makes me feel so old, but then, I am over half of a century old! Thirty-two years ago today I walked down the aisle of a church in South Houston, Texas to marry the love of my life. It was the best decision I have ever made.

I moved to Houston right after I graduated high school to attend a small Bible college affiliated with my husband’s church. I was 17 years old. Two weeks after I moved, I turned 18 and he gave me a dozen roses…and that was it. We were pretty much inseparable after that. The next birthday he proposed and we were married four months later. I was 19, he was 20.

It has been a beautiful life. It hasn’t always been easy, but it has been a blessed one. You see, I married a man who love God even more than me. So much so that he emulates his Savior each and every day. He may get angry, but he doesn’t show it. He loves sacrificially and I am as spoiled as they come. Sure, he is not perfect, but he is perfect for me. He is truly a gift from God and I am so incredibly thankful for him.

I love being his.

I love you, John!

Fun Friday Five, personal

Fun Friday Five

It’s been crazy at my house, but here are a few of my obsessions this week.

Pokemon Go
Don’t judge me, but I jumped on the Pokemon Go bandwagon. I did it to spend time with my daughter and walk, but alas…I have been a little obsessed with it. I have found that the new is starting to wear off, so that’s good, but really….what a cool concept. I’ve walked more – even in the heat –  and I have talked to people I don’t know, which is really hard for me. I love that it helps me connect to the world around me and make connections I never would have before. It will be interesting to see what other games pop up like this one.

Compel Training (Writing)
So it’s been a long time but I have had the urge to pick up my pen and write. Not another novel, but I am feeling the call to write devotionals or articles on spirituality and the Christian walk. And it’s not even to get published. I want to offer something to the ladies at my church in some form or another. I’m not sure what I will do or how I will do it, but it is something that has been impressed on my heart for some reason and I need to make sure I follow through. (That is why I am stating it here so as to be accountable.) So I signed up for Compel Training through Proverbs 31 ministries. It is training for writers, especially non-fictions, and I am excited about all that I am learning.

Sumo Wrestling

Sumo Nation Rentals


I know what you are thinking….WHAT????? No, I am not sitting around watching Sumo wrestling. I just received 2 sumo wrestling suits…you know, the kind that blows up and you put it on and wrestle with someone? I’m sooooo excited! I rented them for 2 of my boys’ birthdays and we are going to have fun tomorrow night wrestling away. **Please note that these boys are 30 and 26. (Just wait for the pictures to come!)

Pedicures
I love pedicures. LOVE them. Almost as much as I love getting my hair cut, which is saying a lot. The thing is, I have been obsessing over getting a pedicure and I can’t go get one! In order to do the Compel Training for Writers, I had to give up something, and that was pedicures. Can I just say that when you see me next, do not look down at my feet? I do NOT do good pedicures. Just saying.

Ice Cream Shakes
I am obsessed with Sonic’s Peanut Butter Oreo shakes. It must be because I’m stressed at work and have been super busy every night with stuff, because all I want is one of those shakes. No, I don’t go get one every night, but I sure do want one. They are so creamy and yummy…sigh. Delicious. The best part are the huge chunks of Oreos are the bottom that you have to eat with a spoon. All-around-goodness, I tell you.

So that are the things on my mind this week. How about you? What are you obsessing over this week?