Wednesday, January 31, 2007

The Shundi Divas And Televenge

There are no words to describe what I'm feeling at the moment. I spent my lunch yesterday with four brilliant writer friends. The Shundi Divas. Carol, Dena, Lisa, Brenda and me. Trust me, the name fits. We celebrated life on a day that meant nothing to most of the world. Just an ordinary Tuesday in January. And yet, the exhilaration walking out of Bravo Restaurant ... ah ... Bravo! I knew there was a reason we went there! Not just for the good food and chic atmosphere, but for the name! Bravo! Our accomplishments are but a glimmer of good things to come. I do believe.

Those feelings speak to me now as I write. I've wondered at times, does anybody really care? How connected are we to each other’s lives? And do my rambling thoughts bore any of my blog readers? ... I'm very melancholy today, so maybe that's why I sound like I drank my lunch. Or quite possibly, it could be that Televenge, my manuscript, has been completed and is now in the hands of two Editors, two Line Editors, and four fabulous Readers. What that means is after receiving their feedback, the novel will undergo one last rewrite. Not a long process, really. At least that's what I'm anticipating. Then I can really say, The End.

In the meantime, I'm preparing the synopsis, query letter, book proposal, and gathering names and addresses of the contacts I've made over the past five years. Agents who have expressed interest, requested chapters. Hopefully, with all good intentions, late spring or early summer ... sometime in May or June ... the book of my lifetime will be in the hands of the industry.

I'm sure--it's not the last book. In fact, as I sit and contemplate my next steps I'm thinking about digging out the outline for the sequel to Televenge. Or another story I've been tossing around for a year or two. It's just that the next book will not take 15 years to write. I assure you.

I'm still booked with speaking engagements through the spring. I'm going to spend a week in February helping my parents move from Ocala, Florida to Atlanta, Georgia. They're in their 70s and they're upsizing. Can you believe it? A bigger and more beautiful home than the last two. Well, hey, they're healthier than they've been in a long time. Why not? And we have a grandbaby on the way ... so life outside of my writing career is moving right along. And my dream of building a house is sprouting wings. I've started a file with ideas for that endeavor. We have a few pieces of land we're thinking about.

So I celebrate the past few years of labor-intensive writing this week. Those long nights of crawling into bed at 2 or 3 a.m. Televenge will hopefully hit the stands with a powder keg explosion. We shall see. I've been told it's going to piss some folks off. I've also been told it's going to rock the evangelical world with truth and light, and open the eyes of those not in that world to what really happens to many involved in inner circles of major mega ministries. There's always something in the newspapers or the news magazines about evangelicals these days.

My heart is throbbing ... I've given it my best shot. Thanks, ladies, for your encouragement, you're the dearest friends. I look forward to the next celebration lunch of the Shundi Divas.

Time rolls on.

Blessings to you and yours.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Sweah To Gawd, Sugah

Ah'm back, dahlin'.

Charleston, South Carolina, in all its glory and array of finery, melted into my flesh and bones this past week. I think I lived there in another life. The Ashley and the Cooper River surrounds and caresses this city of days-gone-by.

Michael and I stayed in Shem Creek, but the sights and sounds of Charleston are but a skip away. Over the Arthur Ravenel Bridge, (my God, you should see this bridge at least once in your life) you can view the tops of the city's buildings and homes. But to get to the beautiful streets of Charleston you pass through the poorer section. Not a fine place, in fact, you wonder ... how the two co-exist. Reminds me of the Caribbean islands. Palaces and resorts line the beaches while tenements and huts huddle inland. And yet, the people here are all smiles and warmth.

We ventured out for Antique stores and little out-of-the-way restaurants for lunch every day. (I love it that my husband loves antiques as much as me!) Gullah Cuisine, one of our favorites restaurants, wasn't much to look at ... but man-o-man ... the food and the friendly staff; I could've stayed there all week.

But, along with the few times I spoke, (which went well) we took time out and focused on US for this trip. I arrived at the Shem Creek Inn to a bottle of champagne on ice and a white rose on my pillow. What can I say? I married a romantic man. Lucky me. Although the weather for the first two days was mostly for ducks, pelicans, sand pipers, egrets, and seagulls ... it was warm enough that you could still walk around outside and not freeze. Fifty degrees sounds cold to the southerner, but for folks who used to live in zero degree weather, it's balmy.

Food? If you're a seafood lover, then go to Charleston. We ate at The Water's Edge and at Hanks for dinner. The Water's Edge was fine dining by the bay, Hanks was a little piece of New York City in the middle of the Charleston. A hip, trendy and NY feel, the food is pricey, but it was our reward for a successful first six months with Southern Fried Women. (And of course, our anniversary.)

While away, I kept my promise and only checked my email. Good thing. Tuesday morning brought great news! I've been invited by Joseph Beth Booksellers to attend their Bluegrass Book Festival in Kentucky in April! It's a big deal, and I'm thrilled.

The sun came out by Thursday, we continued touring a couple old antebellum plantation homes, shopped, rested, ate good food, and then ... all good things must end ... why is that, I wonder?

Charleston is an amazing glimpse into the past, a city where ancient mossy oaks line the Ashley River and weep into the water. The largest salt marsh in the world surrounds the area. Ghosts still walk the streets and over the plantations there. Rich in history, the past seeps into the present Charleston. No other place in the South can you get a sense of living in the last century as you can in Charleston. The Lowcountry, its history and its beauty call to us all.

I sweah to Gawd ... y'all must visit, at least once in your life.

Blessings to you and yours.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Lowcountry, Land Of Leisure

Heading to the lowcountry. Charleston, Isle of Palms, Sullivans Island, and Beaufort. Heading to bookstores and speaking engagements. Heading to the land of Gullah, the Magnolia Plantation, and Fort Sumter. A combination of a few days vacation and book promotion. Vacation because January is the only time of the year we can squeeze in any time for real R & R. Rest and relaxation. Also, we celebrate our anniversary in January. It's time for us, all rolled up into one week. Not the greatest time for weather, but the traffic is lighter and the hotel prices are cheaper. Restaurants not as crowded, and certainly, the beach is empty.

But ... it's time away.

See you in a week. Other than any critical e-mails, I'm banned from the computer until then.

Blessings to you and yours.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Snow And Rotary

Once again, I'm amazed.

This past Thursday morning was our first snow of the season. A dusting, but here in North Carolina, it sends folks into a panic. Cars spin off the roads and traffic comes to a standstill in many areas. Schools close, the stores run out of bread and milk, and the news-folk break in every five minutes with "storm" updates.

Cracks me up.

When the roads get a bit slippery in the South, the world comes to an end. Once in a while, we do get hit with an ice storm during winter. That results in the Governor calling the state a "disaster area." The whole region just ... shuts down.

So, naturally, I was due to speak Thursday morning to a local Rotary group. We wondered ... will anybody show up?

Michael and I knew we'd be there. Both of us having lived in the North, are accustomed to snow and bad weather.

The place was packed. The Gate City Rotary meets every Thursday morning for breakfast at the O'Henry Hotel in Greensboro. They're a group of Rotarians that not only put Service above Self, they put Service above Snow. What a warm and witty group of men and women! I walked in and my eyes popped. There they were, smiles and all.

The speech went well, and they bought 21 copies of my book. I donated 20% of the book sales back to the group. We drove home happy because we really had thought nobody would be there. It taught us a lesson. Never underestimate the enthusiasm of Rotary. They're in it for a reason. It's not all about lunches and breakfasts. They support each other, their speakers, and their projects.

Snow or no snow.

Blessings to you and yours.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Audition Lines

It's no secret. I don't watch much TV. Very little. BUT, I have two shows I don't miss. Gray's Anatomy for one. And I'm a HUGE American Idol fan. As much as I think reality shows have pretty much gone into the toilet, I've been an AI fan since the beginning. The reason is, I love music. Love, Love, Love my tunes. I can be found at all hours with my Ipod hooked to my ears. Ask my husband, he gets the Itunes bill.

Anyway, with great anticipation, I sat and watched the first two nights of AI this week. If you've watched any of AI, you know the first several shows are all about the losers. Those auditions that absolutely suck. The contestants, it seems, don't realize they suck. Or at least, for some reason the judges that screen the thousands of try-outs let these losers slip through just for the purpose of ... TV RATINGS. For the viewers, it's funny.

But for me ... it's painful. Watching these folks give it their best and just dive bomb into a vat of pure humiliation. I'm finding it harder to watch these first few shows every year.

Well ... I got to thinking. That's how it is with so many writers. They're like those geeky singers. They write books they think are worthy of the NY Times Bestseller List and end up as $2.00 specials in Used Book Stores after a year. If they even get that far. Makes me wonder ... who are the Kelly Clarkson, Fantasia, and Taylor Hicks of the book industry? Who are the Paula, Randy, and Simon? And where do I fit in this contest? Am I a geek? Do I think I can write and I'm secretly being laughed at by the masses? How far will I go to be noticed? Will I stand in front of the "camera" with no bra under a satin shirt and dance like a woman who has lost her mind?

If I don't make it, am I going to stand in front of the "camera" and call the judges names and declare they don't know what they're talking about? How dare they reject my work! At least, in my world, we don't have to be in our 20s. In fact, the more mature we are, the better. But the differences between one contest and another are few.

Will I get to go to Hollywood? Get the chance to break out? Pass to the next round? And maybe, with any luck, be in the top 10 waiting for America's votes ... in book sales rather than text messaging. Waiting for the public to determine who is the next American Author!

Art is art ... and no matter how you twist it and turn it, we all start out in the audition line.

Blessings to you and yours.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Conquering Demons

I might as well spill it here. I've yo-yo'ed my weight, continually, for the past ... oh, I don't know, since I was born? But size was never a problem as a child, teen, or young adult. Always within normal ranges. Skinny, in fact. But life happens and it changes things. Two 10 pound babies, divorce, living in dumpy apartments, no money, junk cars ... you know ... life. Anyway, instead of turning to alcohol and drugs ... I injested plenty of Dove Bars and Pizzas. Work consisted of desk jobs, for the most part. I'd eventually look at myself in the mirror, cry, then go on the next fad diet. And if you've read my blog, you know ... I've tried them all.

I've been every size. My closet ranges from size 8 to size 28. But now ... things are different. I'm (ahem) older. It's my health, more than my dress size, that I'm most concerned about. It's time to stop the maddness, forget the scales, and find wellness.

After years of sitting and writing, it's taken its toll ... not only on my backside, but on my insides.

Time to change the tide.

As of Jan. 2nd of this new year, Michael and I stripped our house of every bad food. Believe me, we know what NOT to eat. We restocked our shelves and began to eat to live.

It's been almost three weeks. I'm feeling better, and though we may never be skinny again, we're going to be healthy. If weight loss is a result of it, fine. But I want to live long enough to see a few goals come to pass. That means I need to get healthy.

So say a prayer ... this is no diet. This is a life changing experience for both of us. We're students of Bob Greene and Dr. Oz these days. Oprah has always been my mentor ... as we are so much the same ... born the same year, we've struggled with weight all our adult lives.

I'll NEVER go on another diet. But I WILL change my health. I'm in training to walk a half-marathon in Kiawah Island this December. If I can do that, I will have conquered my demons.

Blessings to you and yours.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Our Little Miracle

I remember the days when you went to your OB/GYN and was thrilled to hear just a heartbeat! Those were the days when you painted your nursery green or yellow, because until the bottom end of your baby slithered out, you had no idea whether or not to return the pink bonnet Aunt Gertrude gave you because she hoped the stork would bring you a girl.

I even swore on the old needle and thread device. An old wives tale that if you thread a needle, then hold it over the wrist of any woman (the left wrist as it's closer to the heart) that you'll be able to see the sex and number of children you would or did have. The needle swings in a circle for a girl and back and forth for a boy. But now I find, it's hogwash. My little game bombed. And really ... it was a game.

These days, high tech is the name of the game inside the wombs of pregnant women everywhere. Our daughter-in-law is four-months pregnant and yesterday, we discovered ... (drumroll) ... it's a BOY! Our first grandson. Tentatively, Matthew Christopher, but that's subject to change as time goes on. In the meantime, we'll call him Matthew. And truthfully, I'm thrilled. Though I predicted a girl, who really cares? Really. I had one of each. Each child is a gift from God, not be hoped for one sex over the other.

(Of course, my father had three girls in a row and would not stop until Mama gave him a boy. But that was the 60s. Men got away with stuff like that back then.)

Today we are thankful for our little grandson that's all cocooned in his mommy's womb. He's perfect and growing properly. Everything looks great and Michael's son is ecstatic. Christopher will have a son to take to the games! This child will be wearing diapers that say, "Go Panthers!" Every onesie will be UNC blue for the Tarheels or Hockey Red for the Hurricanes. And when he's with Grandaddy Cable, he'll be dressed in Philadelphia Eagle Green.

Ah, life goes on! Enjoy the picture of our little punkin. Mommy Nicole carried her baby's picture all day and teared up every time she talked about him. Her first glimpse of her son.

What a miracle.

Blessings to you and yours.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Jesus And The Junior League

I spoke to a group of 50 women, young women, last night. The High Point Junior League's monthly meeting. I felt like I could put my arms around each one of them and truly wanted to. Jillian, my daughter, turned 30 in December, and like I told these young women, I wasn't able to hug her on her 30th birthday. Looking at all of those beautiful faces last night made me miss her terribly. It's strange, I was one of them ... once. Several in the crowd were very pregnant. All of them ... just beginning their lives with husbands, new jobs, careers, new mommies, new homes, life for most of these twenty and thirty-year old women is really ... just beginning.

My speech, Coming Out Of The Dark And Into The Life Of A Writer, was tailored more toward what happens as you grow older and you need to reinvent your life. If that time should come, and for some it definitely will, they'll need to dig deep for courage. And, I wanted them to feel even more grateful than, I'm sure, they already do for the blessings in their lives. I gave it to them straight.

Themes of religion run through everything I write, everything I do, and when I speak publicly, the topic of faith touches people on levels like nothing else.

The reception was tremendous, the Q&A great fun, and I have to say ... I think these girls got it. Though many of them probably could not relate to some of it, they opened their hearts and you could hear a pin drop, they were listening.

Life is not all about fun and games. Although, I love a good laugh. It's why I read Dena's blog every morning. But these young women are embarking on lives that over time are going to change. In ten to twenty years, some of them may not even recognize themselves from the person they were last night. We don't know how the course of our lives will change in just the blink of an eye.

And so my mission last night was to drop a seed. A seed of hope and light into these young women's hearts and minds, so that when the rain falls, the dark times come, they find the thorn on their rose ... they might recall something I said to give them the ounce more courage they'll need to make it through.

As for me, I hate messages of doom and gloom. But I'm also one for speaking the truth and talking about real life. Real life, to me, is all about this one scripture ... Matthew 5:45 …for He maketh the sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and the unjust." Baby, it falls where it falls. No one deserves it. It’s just the way of things.

I pray Jesus bless the Junior League and that every one of those precious girls lives their life out with NO bumps in their road. But every "Steel Magnolia" knows ... that which does not kill us, makes us stronger.

The Junior League surprised me. They're not a bunch of debutantes that get together just to gossip and show off. These days, they're real young women on a mission ... to make their world a better place to raise their children, setting examples for others to follow, and listening to old broads like me talk about life.

God bless the Junior League.

Blessings to you and yours.

Monday, January 08, 2007

The Power Of Words

I received a call this evening from a dear friend who informed me that one of her dear friend's mother-in-law passed away last week. I did not know the family, but evidently this beautiful elderly woman was deeply in love with her husband who passed away last year. They had been married over a half century and it seemed her world stopped when her husband died.

My friend called to say that HER friend happened to love my book, SOUTHERN FRIED WOMEN. Especially the story THE HOMESTEAD. I certainly understand how she must have related to the characters in this story. She gave the eulogy at her mother-in-law's funeral this past week and read from the ending of THE HOMESTEAD.

It sent chills all through me. I was deeply moved and touched that this young woman loved my story enough to include it in the eulogy for her loved one. The funeral was at a Baptist Church, filled to capacity.

An unexpected gift of publicity. You never know. But more than that, oh so much more, my words were a source of comfort to a family in mourning. The power of words never ceases to astound me.

Blessings to you and yours.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Lightbulb Moments

I sat on a panel of new authors this past Thursday evening at Barnes & Noble in Greensboro. An eclectic group of 2 men and 2 women ... all small press or self-published. The audience of over 40 was also a mixed bag of old and young. They smiled and nodded as I stood and talked about SOUTHERN FRIED WOMEN and read from its pages, many if not most related to my words. They've lived it at some point--Or a part of it--Have known someone like my character--Something in my words brought back a memory of a person or time they had experienced.

That's the amazing thing with writing. You find out there are so many folks like you that just can't put it into words, so when they hear yours ... it's a lightbulb moment.

You know the cartoons when a character suddenly has an idea, or is enlightened, or remembers something, the artist often draws a little glowing lightbulb over their head. I call these ... lightbulb moments. We've all experienced a few. Isn't it a great feeling? When doubts are suddenly believed. A problem gets worked out. A confusion is made clear.

I look forward to lightbulb moments all year long. And I love to see others in the midst of one. Reading from my story, Vernell Paskins, Mobile Home Queen there were many lightbulb moments over the heads of the audience. As a writer, it's a thrill to give that to another person. Especially a whole group of them. It's a gift from the author to the listener or reader.

In life, there are many lightbulb moments. Some we share, some we hide away and ponder. Some important, some fleeting. My point is ... occasionally, when you experience this kind of revelation, no matter how fleeting or in depth it may be ... take the time to write it down. Go back and read them at the end of the year. Many times these moments are "divinely" inspired or a section of your brain has come alive.

For me ... it added depth to my novel in certain chapters and created another short story idea.

And the other reason to write them down, is because as soon as you've had one of these moments, many times they're like a dream ... they blow right out of your head and it's gone forever.

So keep you lightbulb moments recorded this year. See what flicks itself on in your head. Could be an interesting revelation about you.

Blessings you to and yours.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Scared Religion

Yesterday’s blog about Pat Robertson got me all riled up. I had coffee with friends Lisa and Brenda at lunch yesterday and they agreed … What happened to Joy, Peace, and Love … the message of Christianity? Why is it that these holier than thou TV preachers think the fear and condemnation message is going to push us all into heaven?

I doubt I’ll ever be part of an organized church service again. Although I know there are many, many wonderful people who worship together without scared religion shoved down their throat. And really, that’s awesome. But for me? It’s like any abusive relationship … once you’re set free from it, it’s not something you ever want near again.

I raised my children in Sunday school … in a “perfect” church. The damage that was done to them because of it … I won’t post here. My friend, Lisa, can tell you horror stories of her childhood living with religious fanatics as parents. (Catholics don’t have the corner on this one anymore.)

My message to evangelicals everywhere … The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Not all people who love God are Republicans. Some are Democrats. Some are liberals, as well as conservatives. Some no religious or political affiliation at all. God … is NOT a “respecter of persons.”

If you are a believer, then think real good, long, and hard about the life that Christ led … he lived in and among the destitute, the down and out, the prostitutes, and the vilest of men. He turned water into wine. The real stuff; not Welch’s grape juice. He danced, he drank, and he had fun. He laughed, and he loved, and he lived in and among all types of men and women. And though he preached against sin, he knew we could never live free from it.

I can see some heads shaking. Most of the people I used to hang around with can’t buy it. In their minds, they must live free from sin. I know someone who attends a church that preaches that message. That sin can’t enter into heaven. This woman has pulled away from life. She’s so heavenly minded she’s no earthly good. And frankly, I don’t care to argue about it. It just upsets me when folks are thrown into a life of fear using this philosophy.

I found peace of mind a long time ago and learned to live free from fear. I’m fearless in oh, so many areas of my life. And I learned how to love unconditionally, and stop judging, and to say thank you. To everyone. I’m tolerant; I have friends who are different than me in every way. I have friends who are Republicans, Democrats, are of every nationality and race, rich, poor, homosexual, smart, mentally challenged, churchgoer or not … unless one is cruel/criminal/and just a plain jerk ... how does one draw a line when reaching out and being a friend to your fellow man?

I love to drink wine, and dance, and play cards, and go to movies, and I occasionally let a “damn, shit, fuck, and hell” slip out … I’m NOT perfect.

It’s a non-evangelical life … but it fits me fine. And (giggle) above everything else, I know without a doubt … my child-like faith believes that Jesus still Loves Me.

Scared religion, we’ll find someday that it needs to be studied by psychiatrists to get a handle on the damage it’s created. In the meantime … I’ll laugh when my friend Dena calls God a “she” and my friend Lisa refers to religious zealots as “Shundi’s.” I’m bettin’ God has a sense of humor.

Otherwise, He would’ve made us in the image of Pat Robertson.

Blessings to you and yours.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Does God Make New Year Resolutions?

Silly question, maybe. But in the hopes that He does, I would like to suggest He do something about the televangelists/psychics in this country that predict mass destruction. Have you heard that one, yet? Seems like televangelist/psychic/politician Pat Robertson has predicted millions will die in the U.S. at the end of 2007 due to a terrorist attack of some kind. That "God told him." Robertson's "track record" has been hit and miss on predictions, the article says.

Let me clue you in, Pat. If God really spoke to you, your predictions wouldn't be "hit and miss." God don't miss.

I'm personally fed up with guys like this. I've dealt with these people all my life. They're dangerous. So if God does make resolutions, please God ... tell Pat if he doesn't stop with the stupid predictions that gets the billions of evangelicals all stirred up (enter Y2K memories) You predict he may end up preaching in a small town in the South, where most of the congregation has never heard of him, fewer still care that he's been on TV, he ends up eating chicken every Sunday at some redneck's house and gets the wishbone stuck in his throat!

Believe me, Pat. If millions die in the U.S., it won't be at the hand of man. You should know your Bible better than that.

I usually don't get political on my blog ... let alone name people. But this one, frankly, pissed me off and excited me at the same time. Why? TELEVENGE, the novel. Coming soon to a bookstore near you!

Okay ... I'm done. This New Year is going to, I PREDICT ... erupt into a wonderful new year for so many promising writers. I know several writer friends that have amazing books and projects ready for publication and notoriety. Carol, Ed, Dena, Lisa ... all friends with writing projects worthy to be noticed!

Speaking of Dena, I have to say our NEW YEAR'S EVE party at her house in Madison, ROCKED! Small and intimate, Dena and I cooked all day. Her apple pie turned out wonderful and her spaghetti sauce ... mmm ... magnificent. I really must say, Blair can certainly throw a party; his spread of food and drinks for our little party was yum! Michael and I spent the night at the Dena and Blair Bed & Breakfast and woke to coffee and leftover coconut/walnut cake for breakfast! Ahh ... it doesn't get any better than that. I'm hoping next New Year's Eve is a repeat!

And I have one last resolution to make this New Year. I resolve to buy some real estate in 2007. Michael and I want land. Have always wanted land. So ... with any luck and barring any terrorist attack, we'll be on the lookout for our own piece of earth this year.

Here's to your happy, healthy, and prosperous year. Whatever you do, don't let the likes of men like Pat Robertson upset your outlook on a better year. God is still a God of grace and mercy ... I suppose that's why Pat is still out there making his stupid predictions.

Does God make resolutions? Nobody knows, but I'm hoping He reads my blog.

Blessings to you and yours.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Lofty Goals

Yes, it's a new year. Time for "resolutions." bla bla bla bla bla. After all these years, you'd think I'd learn how to stick to at least one of them. Well, (giggle) I did.

Last year, I resolved to publish my first book. And damn, I did it. "We" did it, Michael and I. This year, today, I've "upped the stakes."

In 2007, I'm turning inward, as well. I'm going to get healthy. Writing, I'm afraid, can be hazardous to your health. Sitting all day ... well, you can imagine the damage and the toll it's taken on my health (which spills into every other area of your life, unfortunately.) Do I still believe in my December 15th blog of Holiday Eating Tips? You bet I do. Life is not a rigid boot camp of do it or else! It's realizing that having fun is one thing, but getting down to business is quite another. And the thing is, my friends and family have all seen me "lose weight." (Many, many, oh God, many times.) But they've NEVER seen me "get healthy."

It's time.

My life, at this stage, has got to change physically and I believe in saying that publicly ... the other wonderful changes will follow.

Is this, yet another resolution? Maybe. Not really, but my friend, Dena, is right. What better time than the first of a new year to wipe the slate clean and give it all you got. Whether it's to quit smoking, or loose weight, or get healthy, or clean up your debt, or remodel the kitchen, or go back to school, or sell your house ... whatever the goal is for your year ... resolve now to head in the direction of your dream. Today. Not January 15th. Not wait until Valentine's Day. NOW.

I did it last year. And that, my friends, has given me all the incentive I need to set my feet on the next path ... the path to wellness.

Because God knows I'll need it ... TELEVENGE is just around the corner. My novel is in the final stages ... by the end of the year, I want a deal in hand. Why not? Lofty? Hell, yeah it's lofty. It's been 15 years in the making ... is there a stronger word than lofty? Because that's it.

There you have it ... Portion control ... less sugar ... treadmill, weights, and yoga ... and finish the novel.

I shall return to this blog page on December 31, 2007 ... and either eat my words or write them on a medal and pin it to my chest.

We shall see.

Blessings this new year, to you and yours.