Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


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Fire Season, Again, Again

So yesterday, Sister Debbie and I had planned to go after work to take pictures at the ranch where we spent a lot of time growing up.

Don’t you love making plans so they can change?

Early in the afternoon, we started seeing heavy smoke coming from south of town. Fire Season, again!

Picture by Matt Shay as he left C-Town

Picture by Matt Shay as he left C-Town

There’s one thing about our Small Town World, when tragedy happens, everyone pitches in to help. Busses couldn’t leave the schools because so many of the kids live in burning areas and many of the roads were closed, so teachers voluntarily stayed to watch over them until parents could find a way in to get them. (Not! Easy!)

Friends picked up children when parents couldn’t get to town.

People offer you a place to stay if you can’t get home. And today there’ll be tons of clothing and furniture donations if they’re needed.

#2 son tried to go home later in the afternoon, but they’d closed Highway 64, so he turned around and left town going north instead of south.

Picture by Matt Shay

Picture by Matt Shay

We tuned in our police scanners and listened to neighborhoods outside of town being evacuated. We heard about people who couldn’t go home because the roads were closed.

Yep, we prayed.

Then it was time for me to go home. I decided to go down through Terlton (a super-small town near ours), across Benight Road (a roller coaster road) up Highway 48 and home.

BUUUUUT . . . Then I got to where Grandma Reeves used to live and decided to turn at Dog Center and head east. After all, we’d heard that part of the world had been burning a few hours earlier. Should be finished by now, my smoke weary brain reasoned. Right?

Wrong!

Besides, we have land in that area and I wanted to see how badly it had been damaged.

I drove a ways and recognized several places I hadn’t seen in years. Then the smoke got a little heavier. I started seeing airplanes drop low and leave water behind.

Finally, I met this coming out of the smoke.

fire-truck

A few others were driving my way, too, and lots of them had very young fire fighters on them. They didn’t stop and make me go back (maybe because I was pulled over to let them pass) but seeing the flames ahead (and next to me) I turned around and went back the other way as fast as I could.

That’s when the fun started. 😉

I turned on a road I thought was going my way. Then I saw one heading east again. I turned on it, thinking it would take me to 48.

Pretty soon there were heavy duty fences and lots of trailers and little outbuildings. I wasn’t passing through a neighborhood. I was on private property, proven when I pulled up to a pair of iron gates. Closed. Locked. Iron gates.

About that time I thought I heard the theme to Deliverance playing and, expecting to see people running out of their buildings at any moment (either to sell me an illegal substance I wasn’t interested in OR to shoot me) I did a perfect three point turn and zipped out of there as fast as my little car would go.

It’s amazing what you find in our countryside. 😉 Especially when you have one of “those” imaginations. LOL.

I finally found a cute young deputy next to a roadblock and asked him if I was headed the right way to get to Benight Road.

Yep. In a couple of miles, I’d be on it.

Will there be a sign that says, “Benight?”

After yelling the question and echoing it a few times (my deputy was from Stillwater, so he didn’t know that answer) the Head Deputy in Charge said, “Nope. 5700 Road.”

I spoke to G-Man a time or two on my cell phone (TGFCP!), keeping him up on where I was in case I didn’t make it home, and told him I was having too much fun!

How often do I get to be in the middle of all that action (accidentally, of course) and not be in a world of hurt?

I finally made it to 48, and saw the fire in the distance.

Fire

I made it home just fine, but I was a little wrung out when I got there.

When everything stops smoldering, Sister Debbie and I might have to drive out that way and snap a few pictures.

My next door neighbor drove through the area where I couldn’t go and shared these pictures with me.

Picture by Melissa Smith-Chenoweth

Picture by Melissa Smith-Chenoweth

Picture by Melissa Smith-Chenoweth

         Picture by Melissa Smith-Chenoweth

Thank you, Matt Shay and Melissa Smith-Chenoweth for sharing your pictures.

And a huge thank you to the Fire Fighters and people who worked to put out the fires. We appreciate you!!!

Fire Proof.

 

 

 

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Cashew Caramel Corn–To Die For

Robyn Venable asked me to share my recipe for caramel corn, one of my favorite autumn things. I didn’t share it with anyone for a long time, because it was the only thing I could make better than anyone else.

Besides, it wasn’t MY recipe. It was a recipe given to me by a friend or two.

But I’ve changed it so much over the years, I think I can safely share it now without worrying that she’ll get mad at me. I hope so, anyway.

The trouble with the way I cook is that I use a specific pan for the popcorn and know how high it should go in the pan. When it gets that high, I stop popping corn. LOL.

I use a turkey roasting pan (the heavy kind) filled just less than half full. Since that doesn’t tell you much, the recipe calls for 8 cups of fresh popped corn.

1 1/2 C brown sugar
1 1/2 C cashews
12 T margarine
6 T light corn syrup
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp vanilla

Bring brown sugar, margarine, corn syrup and cashews to a boil. When mixture boils, stop stirring. Cook for five minutes. Stir in soda and vanilla.

Pour over popcorn and put in 250 degree oven for an hour, stirring every 20 minutes.

Spread out on waxed paper to cool. Break up and eat. It’s really (REALLY!) good with coffee. 🙂

As I said, this really isn’t my recipe. (I’m always shocked at people who share a recipe as if it’s theirs. Does anyone really create a recipe from scratch?)

This recipe came from my friend Joy and my sweet friend/neighbor/Heavenly Citizen Suezan for sharing their recipes with me. I’ve enjoyed it for years, and now I’m sharing with you!

Yums!

Yums!


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Have You Met Jean?

So far, I’ve been introducing you to people I know, love, and love to read. This week is no exception! Jean Brashear is one of those authors I love, love, love!

When I asked if I could talk to her about where she writes, she was more than happy to comply. (Thank you, Jean!)

Me: Do you always write in your office? If not, where else do you write.

 Jean: I just about never write in my office, nor do I do my first drafts on my computer. 🙂 I wander, thanks to my old-school Alphasmart.

chair

Jean: The rocker where I often sit to re-read drafts and wield my red pen. (Behind me, the first 4 shelves are copies of my published books in various languages…the 4th shelf with Susan Elizabeth Phillips’ Chicago Stars series in front of me, as it should be.:)

Me: Where’s your favorite place you’ve ever written?

 Jean: My back deck under the live oaks, sitting in a cushion-y wicker rocker.

 

Me: Ooh, that sounds like a great place to be, writing or not! Where’s the weirdest place you’ve ever written?

 Jean: No physical place that weird. I save the weird for inside my head. 😉

Me: Do you do anything before you write? Light a candle? Put on music?

 Jean: Can’t write to music! Don’t want to influence where the story goes—I’m too busy feeling the characters and can’t afford to interfere with feeling the music.

jean-herself

Jean: And while we’re living in the Land of Make Believe, here I am, pretending that I actually write at my desk.;)

windows

And this is her favorite part of her office. Can’t say that I blame her!

Me: Do you write every day?

Jean: Weekdays, yes. I save weekends for my honey.;)

Me: Did I mention she writes romance? No wonder! What’s the atmosphere in your office?

Jean: Not good for writing—though I have photos of my beloved, a comfy rocking chair and a dog I love. Too many reminders of business, otherwise, though!

Me: If you could have your dream office, what would it be?

Jean: I like mine fine, though a separate little writing shack might be fun. On the other hand, I get up and wander a lot in between scenes, and a lot of a book forms in my head during my rambles, so not sure one little building would work.

Wait—a tree house! Wow…I might need that. 😉

Me: How did you get started writing?

 Jean: My husband and I were having one of those “what do we want to do with the rest of our lives?” conversations when our last child was about to graduate. As an avid reader since childhood, I said “I’ve always thought it would be amazing to see my name on the spine of a book.” My honey, Mr. Pragmatic, basically said “What’s stopping you?” and proceeding to support me in every possible way as I took the leap into a dream I’d never imagined possible (and if I’d understood publishing better—don’t know I’d have had the courage! LOL)

Me: Are there any how-to books you recommend for writers?

Jean: How-tos just freeze me up. I SO wish I were a writer who could plan and follow the plan, but the reality is that I dive into the story and just feel my way through, however impossibly inefficient that might be. (And trust me…it is.:( )

Me: What’s your process for starting a new book?

Jean: We’re supposed to have a process?? (You’d think, after 40+ books, that I would, but truthfully, I have a few snippets of ideas rolling around, and most of it is just finding a scene that grabs me—and readers, I hope—and diving in.)

plotsJean: Here is the wall I recently created, thinking I could actually change myself and my process aka Jean Pretends She Will Actually Plot:

Me: Did you struggle as a new writer or were you blessed with sales from the word go?

Jean: I wasn’t one of those “I sold my first book” luckies, no. Got the rejection letters to prove it!

Me: Do you write in more than one genre? Ever write under another name?

Jean: I have written romantic suspense, women’s fiction and paranormal romantic suspense, but no other name.

Me:  What piece of advice do you have for a newbie struggling writer?

Jean: These days, though indie publishing is an option and one I’m loving, I would still urge a new writer to write more than one book before publishing any. And get help from experts—all of us need editing!

For one thing, things we think are on the page may not be—with the story so alive in our heads, we may not realize that we know things that aren’t coming across. I don’t mean endless details—readers don’t need to know all we have to know about our characters—but that what we think we conveyed may indeed not be what’s there.

We need objective eyes, and we have all seen our words way too many times to trust that we truly know what’s there!

I will say that the few times I’ve been able to let a story sit for at least a few months (a luxury I never had when writing for a traditional publisher) I never cease to see new things I could do with it to make it better.

Ergo my advice above: don’t publish your first effort. You will learn with each one and get better. All of us get better—or we’re doing something wrong if we’re not—over time.

Let that first effort sit and ripen while you write something else. Then go back and see what you think, see if fresh eyes helps you make the story stronger and better.

That said, your story is your story, and only you know what it should be. Get professional eyes on your work, but never be afraid to stick up for your vision of what your story really is.

Me: What are your latest books?

Jeans: I’m releasing my first-ever serial, a 3-part story (with a surprise connection to my Texas Heroes Sweetgrass Springs books) called The Book Babes.

Part One, Texas Ties, released on 3/15, Part Two, Texas Troubles, releases on 3/26, and Part Three will wrap up the story on 4/9. All are available for order/preorder at all retailers, and here are the links plus an excerpt: http://jeanbrashear.com/texas-heroes-series/the-book-babes/

book-babes

Me: Do you have anything in the works?

Jean: I’m starting the next Sweetgrass Springs story—which totally changed, in the wake of the Book Babes and its surprise connection that I never saw coming.;) Hey, I like surprises, too!

Me: Thank you so much for letting us visit your office, Jean! That was fun!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Behind the scenes with . . .

better-meme Me! (Yikes!) As you can see, I’m not good at taking selfies. 😀 Here’s a tiny corner of my office. I especially like the thingy with all the drawers, because a dear friend gave it to me not too long before her death. deskish But I don’t write in my office anymore. Most of the time I write in my recliner in the family room. When I look up, I see this picture. viewI won this picture and I love it, because it reminds me of my Small Town World. (Funny how that works.) When I got my new hip, I wrote here– writers-couchand if you can see above the couch, those are my kiddos looking on. My first desk that I claimed all for myself was this one– 2nd-deskIf you think it looks like an old vanity table that’s lost it’s mirror, you’re right. Back then it didn’t have the game boards or the kids book on it, but it did have a big monitor and keyboard. Not an ideal place to write, but I learned a lot on that mini-desk. (Thank you, Grandma Reeves!) While I wrote there, I read through Deb Dixon’s Goal, Motivation and Conflict several times. And I still keep it handy. Now I want to introduce you to my muse. I don’t think any of the women I’ve interviewed have mentioned their muses yet, so maybe I’m the only writer with one. My sisters gave me Minerva for my birthday the month before we lost our mom. museMinerva is an Attic Baby. She’s wearing a housecoat and slippers and in her basket she has cleaning equipment and a mop and tucked in one corner is a Romance Novel called True Romance. I love her! Once in a while, Minerva just takes over and writes for me. muse-writesThat’s okay, too. 🙂 IMG_0724When the weather’s right and it gets light early enough, I like to take my laptop outside. And yes, Linda, I have that “Oh! A Squirrel!” problem, too. I’m trying to get over it. When I’m outside here’s my view– lakeWe live on Keystone Lake, and this is the prettiest part! So, the questions I make everyone else answer. (I’ve probably answered them already, but just in case . . .) Question: Do you write in your office? If not, where else do you write.

Me: Never.

Question: Why not?

Me: Don’t ask. It’s not pretty.

Question-Where’s your favorite place you’ve ever written?

 Me: We had a retreat once at a place on Grand Lake and I loved writing there. I don’t know why, either. I might have been because I was with other writers, it might have been because our speaker did a fantastic job, or it might have been because each time we had a few free moments, my roomie went straight to her computer and went to work. So I did, too.

Question-Where’s the weirdest place you’ve ever written?

Me: I don’t think there is a weird place to write. I haven’t written at work (really! I haven’t!!!) and I’ve never written anything during a funeral, but I usually have stories going on in my head. I’m afraid I’ll never have time to write all of them.

Question-Do you do anything before you write? Light a candle? Talk to Minerva?

Me: I write best in the early morning, so I make coffee before I write. Wish I did something more interesting.

Question-Do you write every day?

Me: As much as possible, unless I oversleep. I have more time on weekends, so I love writing then. Sometimes I take Christmas off.

Question-What’s the atmosphere in your office?

Me: Easy going. The kitchen’s right over my left shoulder, so I refill my coffee as often as possible. My writing partner sometimes interrupts to go outside, then to come back in. But until G-Man wakes up, it’s pretty quiet.

Writing Partner

Bossy Writing Partner

Question: Do you play music while you write? If so, how do you choose the music?

 Me: I tried to. But I found myself singing along with the music instead of writing. Silence is best for me.

Question-If you could have your dream office, what would it be?

Me: I used to think I wanted an office off by itself, but I know better now. I’d never go out there to write. And I don’t play the guitar to get my juices flowing. (Wish I could, though.) Since the kids are all married and living somewhere else, I have the entire house to write in. So my dream office is where ever me and my laptop are.

Question- How did you get started writing?

 Me: Well, it’s not because I made straight A’s in English. The truth is, I’m a huge reader. If I don’t have something to read, I’ll go nuts. And when I can’t read, I’ve always made up stories in my head to entertain myself. I found out writing them down is even more fun than just thinking them, because you get to find out how the story ends. Good stuff!

Question- Are there any how-to books you recommend for writers?

 Me: Deb Dixon’s Goal, Motivation and Conflict and just about any of James Scott Bell’s how-to books.

Question- What’s your process for starting a new book?

Me: I wish I could say, I do this and this and this, but sadly, I can’t. Sometimes I play the What If game and sometimes a character takes shape in my head and won’t leave me alone until I write her story. That’s what’s happening to me this time. I wish I knew where this story was going, but I don’t. I do think it’s a Christian Suspense, though.  Maybe.

Question- Did you struggle as a new writer or were you blessed with sales from the word go?

Me: I wish you hadn’t asked that question. The truth is, I struggled. And I’m still struggling. I sold lots of short stories, but I can’t tell you how many novels I learned on before I started selling.

Question- I know you write in more than one genre. Can you tell us a little about that?

Me: My first book was To School a Cowboy, a straight romance. The second one was Blind Sight, romantic suspense, and the third one was Make Me Howl, which is a werewolf story. Those three were published by The Wild Rose Press and under my name, Susan Shay. I just finished a manuscript called Jordan Valley that I call Christian Women’s Fiction. The new one I’m working on is also set in Jordan Valley and is (hopefully) going to be a suspense. I plan to write those as either Susan Spess or Susan Spess Shay, unless someone changes my mind for me.

Question- What piece of advice do you have for a newbie struggling writer?

Me: The best advice I can give anyone is stick with it. Find a good critique group. And read. I met a guy once who had written a long, long book he wanted to get published, so I asked him what he liked to read. He told me he didn’t read. I was shocked. Writers read. Maybe not all the time, and maybe not in the genre they write, but if a person doesn’t like to read, why would he want to write? And don’t take yourself too seriously. Look for the glee in life and laugh as often as possible, especially at yourself. After all, you know the inside story. You know how funny you really are.


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Sweet Little Wild Child

Today I’m reintroducing you to a friend of mine with a ton of guts– Ashlynn Pearce. She’s a young-in-years writer who’s lived a lot of life! On the day her first book, Rough Edges, came out, she had a stroke.

Remember, from back in January?

Even though she thought she’d never write again, she’s made her way back and is now burning up the process. I thought I’d see how and where she does it!

I love this girl, so be sure you stop by the comments section and ask a question or just say hi!

Me: Do you always write in your office?

Ashlynn: Most the time, but not always. I have a Mac laptop hooked up to a large screen with full size keyboard- but sometimes I need a change. So I’ll take it into the living room with me. Especially if I’m doing edits.

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Me: Where’s your favorite place you’ve ever written?

 Ashlynn: I’d have to say my office. It’s a cool place.

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Me: Hm. Okay, where’s the weirdest place you’ve ever written?

 Ashlynn: Years ago, I would go to Panera Bread or Barnes and Noble and write there. I really enjoyed that. Since I’m not allowed to drive any further than the bank, which is two minutes away, I don’t do that anymore.

Me: Do you do anything before you write? Light a candle? Dance around the house?

Ashlynn: I kinda have a pattern. I do email, blogs, social media first and then hit writing.

Me: Do you write every day?

 Ashlynn: My goal is to write every day during the week but because of health issues, that doesn’t always happen. And life can sometimes get in the way. Laundry doesn’t wash itself. I don’t usually try on weekends. Family time and whatnot.

Me: So tell us about the atmosphere in your office.

 Ashlynn: It’s colorful. Bright pinks, blues and purples decorate my office. Hubs won’t let me paint the walls a crazy color, so I do it with nick-knacks, a very colorful rug and bright pink curtains.

That said, I love to write when its raining. It’s my favorite writing weather and I like my office dim. I realize that’s a complete contradiction, but it’s no secret I’m a li’l odd.

IMG_0415

Me: You listen to music while you write. How do you choose the music?

 Ashlynn: I have playlists for every book I write. And the music depends on the story. But I always have music playing. I can’t write without it.

If you want to listen to the music that inspired my books, you can follow all my playlists on Spotify here 12169150219. There is a wide range of music and it all depends on the characters.

Me: If you could have your dream office, what would it be?

Ashlynn: You know, this is going to sound weird, but I have it. There are two large windows in my office that face our waterfall and pond. I can’t see it, but I can hear it if I open the windows. I have my favorite gargoyle licking a pen on my desk.

I have a stuffed dog my son got me when I had my stroke and it went everywhere with me. It’s had MRI’s and all sorts of tests done on it. A picture of my hubs and the kids when they were little. A pen holder in the shape of a pink tulip. A replica time-turner from Harry Potter.

Me: So how did you come by this magical writing space?

 Ashlynn: This room was originally supposed to be a very open formal dining room. But, it was very important to my Hubs that it was closed in and double French doors put in before we even moved in.

That he made it so important, makes me love this room that much more.

Those things make it my dream office. 😀

Me: How did you get started writing?

Ashlynn: How did I get started? A dream. No, literally, I dreamed a story. And thought, why not? So I bought a good pen and a notebook and started writing.

I didn’t know anything about computers back then. I didn’t know what program you used to write or that there was a format that you needed to use.

All I knew was I’d read thousands (and I mean thousands-I started reading them when I was 13 and would read no less than 2 a week from there on out) and this story dream wouldn’t leave me alone. No, that one isn’t published, but I plan on releasing it one day.

Then I joined this amazing writers group. They taught me, encouraged me, pushed me and I absorbed as much as I could from them. (Ms. Susan is one of them, btw) I wouldn’t be the writer I am today without them.

I still love every single one of them. They were, and still are, super supportive. Even if they would laugh at my lack of grammar abilities. (still suck at grammar-but I keep trying and I have an editor— know your weaknesses!)

Me: I laughed because your grammar abilities are so much like mine!

What books to you keep close at hand while you’re writing?

Ashlynn: Writers books I use regularly— The Emotion Thesaurus by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi (AWESOME book! Helps you really dig into showing the emotion and not telling), The Writers Digest Character-Naming Sourcebook by Sherilyn Kenyon (I love original names) and Thesaurus online. (I have a habit of getting stuck on one word and using it a lot. It helps me switch it up. Do NOT use it to find words no one has every heard of… Just a tip)

Me: Click on the title to check out those books!

What do you see when you look out that window?

The windows face the front of the house and I see the backside rock of the small waterfall, that leads into a short creek, which falls off into a bigger waterfall and large pond. There is a small bridge you have to walk across to get to our front door, so thats in my view.

In every season but winter there are all kinds of birds and squirrels that love to play in the creek and eat from the bird feeder. They are so fun to watch.

My puppies hang out with me in my office and they like to bird and squirrel watch, too.

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Me: What piece of advice do you have for a newbie struggling writer?

 Ashlynn: #1-The first draft of anything is crap. The second draft of anything is crap. If you can accept that and realize the editing and polishing are what make it a good story, you will quit worrying if you’re any good.

#2- You can’t edit a blank page. And I do know that blank page staring at you with the little cursor blinking at you is the most intimidating thing in the world. (I face it every time I start a new story) Grit your teeth, hunker down in your chair and just write.

#3-Don’t get caught up in the “right” way to do it. Not when you start out. Refer to step number two.

And the last thing, probably the most important, find one or two critique partners you trust. Not family if you can help it. People you can bounce ideas off of and read your stuff when your stuck. Believe me, they are worth their weight in gold.

Me: Do you have any advice for people who find themselves struggling through bad things that happen in life, such as your stroke?

Ashlynn: Life is short. Really, really short. So chase that dream, whatever it is. Make time for it. Don’t put it off. You never know when your number is up or when the ability might be snatched from you. Take it from someone who thought I’d never be able to write again after suffering a stroke. Don’t waste time worrying about what other people think or might say. Just do it. It’s your life and you only get one. Do it your way.

Thank you for sharing, Ashlynn! BTW all y’all–you can follow Ashlynn on Facebook , her website, and Twitter @ashlynn_pearce .

She has a new series called Dirtslap and the first book in that series is called Fuel (click the link to purchase) and another coming on May 7th called Wreck.

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Game Change

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Mama when she played basketball

When I was in high school, C-Town didn’t have basketball for girls. Happily, by the time my younger sibs were in high school, they did. And (much to Mama’s delight!) they not only played, most of them excelled.

Sister Debbie and I, though, were only cheerleaders.

Sisters Cindy and Lisa and Omega were all great players. But basketball has changed for girls so over the years! Cindy and Lisa played half-court ball. I don’t remember if Omega played half-court or full court, but she played!

And now Omega’s youngest daughter is playing.

Omega and her daughter. (Daughter doesn't wear this dress when she plays.)

Omega and her daughter. (Daughter doesn’t normally wear this dress when she plays. Or ever.)

And, not surprisingly, she’s pretty darn good. (Said her aunt who couldn’t be a bit prejudiced and couldn’t hit a basket without a tall ladder.)

So Friday afternoon, Dad and I went to watch this young’un do her stuff. Naturally, she jammed her finger before we got there and didn’t play a whole lot, but we got to see some.

While the other girls played and our Little Bit sat out to let her finger heal, Dad and I got to talking about how much bball has changed for girls.

Apparently, since they switched out the peach basket for a hoop, the guys haven’t changed all that much. But girls?

Back when Mama played–

  • Girls play half court–six girls from each team on the floor.
  • Girls could only dribble once (that’s one bounce!) and then they had to pass the ball.
  • Girls couldn’t take the ball away from one another. They could try to catch it when it was being passed, but absolutely could not try to snatch it out of their hands.

There are probably other differences, like what they wore or how they held their pinky while they served tea at half time, but those are the ones I heard about.

I asked Dad why for each of those old rules, and he had one answer for all of them. It wasn’t feminine.

Dribbling more than once wasn’t girlish? Ooookay.

I come from a long line of storytellers. Dad is no exception.

He told me about Old Ford’s team when Mama played. They had a tall girl (and great player) who had a hot overhead shot. She would hold the ball high and if a guard was blocking her,  she’d use the ball and push the other girl’s hands out of the way. And she nearly always made her shot.

And he followed that with another story.

Like today, back then if one of the girls got knocked down and lay there with her eyes closed, it stopped the game. So one girl, he said, got “knocked out,” stopping the entire game while everyone rushed to see if she were okay or if she needed a doctor.

Trouble was, while she was lying prone and “unconscious,” she forgot to stop chewing her gum.

By the way–the comment about serving tea was a joke.

I think. 😀

 


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Fighting Back – Overcoming Obstacles

Sweet friend, Ashlynn Pearce, has just published her second book. You won’t believe how she fought the good fight to do it!
Check it out!

Ltrout's Blog

Today, I’d like to welcome Ashlynn Pearce to my blog. Ashlynn has been struggling with some major health issues and I wanted to give her the opportunity to tell you about her journey and to also introduce you to her book, FUEL, which releases tomorrow.

I hope this provides some encouragement to others facing major obstacles to keep fighting, to know that it IS possible to overcome despite the roadblocks in your path. One of my favorite sayings is, where there’s a will, there’s a way. Ashlynn’s journey proves that to be true. So now I’m going to turn the blog over to Ash.
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Were it not for Hope, the Heart would Break…

April 28, 2010 my first book was published…and I had a stroke.

Yes, on the same day.

They never figured out why I had the stroke, nor can they explain all the multitude of symptoms I…

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