Archive for the ‘2002’ Category

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First Critque Group

December 23, 2002

All I want for Christmas is a critique group. I got one. A couple days before Christmas 2002, I joined a few others in an online Yahoo Group to critique our writings. After a couple months, a couple of the writers became pregnant and couldn’t continue with our schedule. A couple others had other types of writing or illustration projects that took priority over pb writing. One other writer went to fight in Iraq. I just kept writing by my lonesome until another Critique group opportunity came along about two years later. I shouldn’t have joined the first group. I wasn’t good enough. My writing had improved a lot by the time I joined my second group.

Lessons Learned: Not every critique group experience works out well for everyone. Not every writer in the group is on the same level. In my first group, I was on one of the lower rungs of the ladder. In my current group, we are all growing at pretty much the same pace. I have a better fit now. – Feb. 2007.

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First Submission Ever

June 22, 2002

I’m not sure when I sent it, but my first ever rejection came from an agent on June 25, 2002. I swore the story was good. This was way before critiques, rewrites, and just knowing what I was doing. The Cat That Loved to Catch Curveballs. WOW! Don’t you love that title?

It was the first story I had written in two years and only my third story ever. Oh my. I was deluded (is that a word?) to send that story. I think.

Lesson learned: Chill out and wait a while before submitting.

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Buying books

February 1, 2002

Late 2001/early 2002

I love to buy books. My son has a library all his own. It began small. It began to grow once we moved back to Irving and began browsing through thrift stores and going to garage sales.

We bought him 15 books in 2000

We bought him 61 more in 2001

Okay, in 2002, I went a little bonkers, I bought him 155 books. It was time for a new book shelf.

More later….

Lesson learned: Just because you surround your child with books doesn’t mean he’ll learn to read early or love to read. It took a few years to learn this one. My son is very creative, maybe the books have helped him with that.  

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Reading to my son

December 31, 2001

After moving to Irving, TX for preaching school, I began reading more books to my son. The library had a larger selection and I had a blast reading the stories. There are tons of readers who say, “I could do that,” after they read their children some picture books. I can’t say for certain that thought didn’t enter my mind. I can say for certain that I had a burning desire to write similar books. I was inspired by these writers. I loved their creations and wanted have some of those 32-page creations myself.

Some of the earliest inspirations:

Sheep in a Jeep

Farmer Mack Measures His Pig

The Cow That Wouldn’t Come Down

The Cow Buzzed

Farmer Brown Sheers His Sheep

I’m sure I’ll think of some other books that were quite an inspiration.  

– this memory is from late 2001/early 2002

Lesson learned: I love reading to my son. He is indeed my God-given inspiration.

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