Learn more about some of my writing inspirations from reading these articles:

Today is Grandparents Day, and there are so many reasons to celebrate. The relationship between grandparent and grandchild is like no other.

Unlike my character, Clarice, in Many a Sudden Change, who felt challenged in her relationship with her grandson, I fell enthusiastically into my role as a grandmother. To my five grandchildren, I am known as Grammy.

I delight in spoiling them without guilt or worry. A favorite story of mine is about my oldest and only granddaughter, who is now a young adult. When she was a five-year-old, we were together in the car—she in the back seat, me driving. I gasped when a driver cut us off, almost causing an accident. The incident led to a series of questions, which often happens with a small child. When the conversation disintegrated into the idea that I could have sustained serious injury, she was devastated. “That would be terrible, Grammy!” My heart swelled with the love this child had for me. I beamed from ear to ear, but I was quickly put in my place when she said, “Who would take me to the Disney store?”

Grandchildren keep us laughing; they bring us so much joy.

A fact you may not know: Over 2.4 million grandparents in the US have full-time responsibility for their grandchildren.

A SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT

I am excited to partner with INDEPENDENCE CENTER to raise funds and awareness for this wonderful non-profit organization that is a transitional residential program for adults with learning differences.

From September 15th through September 30th, all profits from the sale of Many a Sudden Change in ebook and paperback editions sold on Amazon will be donated to the organization. The donations will be matched up to $500.00.

To find out more about this important organization, click the link below.


https://www.icliving.org





Writers often search for new ways to express a character smiling, and often they include the eyes. “Her eyes lit up with a smile” or “His laughing eyes,” or we’ve all seen this, “A twinkle in her eye.”

But how much of our smile is really expressed through our eyes rather than an upturned mouth or a silly grin? I’m finding during these times of Covid-19 and masks, that the eyes are everything.

My discovery started in the supermarket during the early days of the virus, while I politely passed a shopper at the new appropriate distance. I, like many others, felt uncomfortable with the new rules, so without thinking, from behind my face covering, I smiled reassuringly at the woman. To my delight, she responded in kind, her eyes, the only thing visible behind her masked face, lit up in a gesture of silly understanding.

On my rare occasions out in public, I began a mission of smiling. At first, to test my theory of smiling eyes, but gradually my objective evolved into a desire to let people know we’re in this together. A casual smile can go a long way. So, don’t be deceived in thinking that just because we hide our faces behind the mask, people can’t see our joys, and sometimes our loneliness.

Despite these strange times, I find I have a lot of reasons to smile, and I hope you do too. But if you feel down or find yourself with a bout of anxiety, share a smile, you might be amazed at the comfort of a return smile, and you may bring joy to a stranger.

I am often asked I how come up with my story ideas. In Many a Sudden Change the story started with a simple "what if" from my daughter. One day while enjoying an afternoon together the conversation veered toward her autistic son and the challenges of raising him. She asked, "What if" something happened to her and her husband, who would take care of him? In my mind there was no question. I knew I would be willing to take on the responsibility. But, would every grandmother? At the time he was still very young, and a handful, often prone to raging fits. He was a big boy and very strong. Raising him was not for the faint of heart. The challenges would need to be balanced with love and acceptance. In my book, Many a Sudden Change, the grandmother Clarice does not feel capable of raising her grandson Eric on her own when her daughter dies, nor does she understand his special needs. She convinces herself it would be best to contact his estranged father in hopes he will want to raise the boy. So that's how I started. Stay tuned to find out how the character of Matthew, the father, turned out to be a Marine serving in war-torn Afghanistan. The book is already available on Amazon in paperback and for those of you who read ebooks it is available for pre-order and will launch on July 19th. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08C4V3BKF?pf_rd_r=2KRQKVFWMPW0N5TSEQPX&pf_rd_p=edaba0ee-c2fe-4124-9f5d-b31d6b1bfbee

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