Why the blog?

I write as the Spirit moves me. I have prayed about what I'm supposed to do with my life a lot. A lot. Writing. Writing is what I believe God is leading me to do. Whether or not He wants me to write for anyone to read is His business. Much of my writing has been therapy for me so maybe I'm the only one who is supposed to read it. So, why the Blog? As a sounding board, a note pad, a place to keep my ideas and thoughts. A place to share and promote my books, and photography. Written prayers, a place to vent. Possibly, even a place for the unknown reader to learn about the love of Jesus.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Old book, new edit.

I wrote my very first 'novel' way back in 1991.  It was mostly hand-written with pen and paper in a 3-ring binder as I traveled to and from work on the subway in New York city.  I would then type it onto a Brother 'data processor' type of typewriter.  Remember the ones with the little screens?  A year or so after that it was re-typed onto a 386 desk top computer purchased from Sears.  Somehow it made its way onto a flash drive and stored.  I recently found it and fortunately was able to upload it onto my Mac.

The book itself is a work of science fiction.  Technology has changed quite a bit since 1991 so after I've done my initial edits I'm going to have to go back and change things like "telephone receiver" to cell and TV to plasma or something.  It will be fun trying to play catch-up.  I like science fiction because you can do just about anything, but it also dates the story.  The storyline, however, I think is timeless.  It is about racism, good and evil, the ordinary person standing up for what they believe in and paying the ultimate price for freedom.

Stay tuned.  I'll post again when it's published.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Note from a happy customer.

This note is copied by permission, written by Carol Weishampel:

Attention and warning to writers. Learn from my mistakes.
After having 6 books published, I contracted with (and paid) a local publisher to edit, print and distribute (and promote) a novel. My critique group edited the manuscript before I submitted it. The first editing of the manuscript by the publishing company should have been a warning. The editing was unacceptable. I had it redone.

For two years I waited, impatiently, for a galley. I found numerous errors in the galley, had it marked up and was promised that these grammar, spelling and typesetting errors would be corrected before printing.

Six months later, I sent copies of the final, published book for review. Imagine my embarrasment when a sympathetic editor asked to mark corrections (spelling, grammar, typesetting, etc) for me. I agreed. She returned my book, a book that should have been on the market, with errors on over ONE HALF of the pages!

I applaud her concern and effort, and recommend her services, at reasonable cost, to anyone who wants an honest editing job at a fair price.
- grandmas-on-the-go@blogspot.com



colleen+005.jpg







Thursday, January 20, 2011

Strings


STRINGS

As I walk along this path of life,
The child in me is full of wonder and curiosity.

As I grow this innocent trait develops into a sense of I can do that,
Then, I can do that better than you.

I see my friends doing a task, here let me.  I attach a string.
I see my siblings trying to learn, here let me. I can do that. I attach another string.

As I continue down the path of life, I want to protect my children.  Let me do that, you might get hurt. One more string.

I learn this thing called worry. How many strings, let me count the ways.
One string for work. Are my co-workers doing their jobs?  Does my boss have my best interest at heart?
One string for my relationship.  Is he faithful? Will he take care of me?
One string for all the crazy drivers on the freeway.  Wait make it three.
Money, health, my future. The endless maze.

I have a big string tied to the information highway.
One for the TV, one for the internet, another for the cell phone.

Oops, I tripped.
I rest a moment along my path to adjust all my strings.
I think a moment about giving away one or two.

Quickly I tie them on tighter. After all, who could I entrust them to?

My friend, a spouse, co-worker or child is surely headed for disaster.
I must add another string.

All these strings are slowing me down.  I need them.  I need to control all the things around me.  I have to know. 

Oops, I trip again.

The strings of my life are tangled around me. 
I have them tightly in my grip, or do they have me?

I fall on the ground, tangled tightly by my strings.  These are my strings. My life.
But wait, I see more.

Bigger, more powerful strings are attached to my things. 
Who has attached their strings to my things?

I look up and see it is God.  His strings are bigger and more powerful than my strings.
A new string catches my eye. 

It is attached to me.
God has a string attached to me and it makes me feel free.

It is time to say good-bye.

I fretfully cut my strings.  I offer them to God. No, He says, I have my own.
You do not need strings, you see.  Mine have been here from all time. 

Free of strings, free of tangles, I leap up and skip down my path. 

There is only one string attached to me.
It is firmly and securely in God's hands.

As I skip merrily down my life’s path I encounter another entangled in their strings.
I stop a moment, tempted to attach a string.  I pause, then hand over my scissors.

Use these, I say, then point to God.  His strings are best. He will set you free.  

Friday, January 14, 2011

Oliver

This is Oliver. He is 9 years old.  I'll explain the picture in a minute, but first let me tell you Oliver's story.  When Oliver was only 6 weeks old his house was hit by lightening and it burned down.  His family at the time had to move out quickly into a shelter and Oliver could not go.  I knew his family because they lived across the street from me.  He was so cute and playful I told my neighbors that I would take care of him for a little while.  I didn't see them again for over 3 months and by that time he had grown a lot and had been spayed (or is it neutered?).   Oliver lived on the back porch for a little while because I already had 2 cats and a dog.  My children, however, wanted to play with Oliver so they let him in.  Oliver had other ideas.  He wanted to play with the dog, Wilma.  Those two were so silly.  They would chase each other around the house.  Oliver would grab Wilma's tail and be dragged through the kitchen.  Sometimes Oliver would wrap his paws around Wilma's neck and she would run around trying, not very hard, to shake him off.  

A few years later, another dog was introduced, Angel.  Angel was a German shepherd.  Oliver and Angel played like brother and sister.  Angel would playfully insert Oliver's head into her mouth and give him a nice bath, with her teeth.   Not once did Angel hurt the goofy cat.   Wilma was older and slower by then, not as much fun as Angel.  By the way, Oliver did not play with the other two cats.  They were normal.  They did not like dogs and barely tolerated humans.  Angel and Oliver chasing and playing with each other was a sight to see! Sometimes it looked like Angel, who was at least 70 pounds heaver, was afraid of the cat. 

My mom sent me a book one year, as a gag, titled "How to Potty Train Your Cats."  You know what?  It works!  Well, it worked for Oliver.  The oldest cat, Wimpy, had passed at the ripe old age of 18, so I was left with a litter box for 2.   I followed the book, step by step.  Oliver dug right in.  He thought it was fun.  Sally, my fat calico, gave it her best shot, reluctantly.  In the end I had to resort back to the litter box because you can only have one or the other so the book says.   Oliver had the toilet down.  He would jump up, do his business and scamper away proudly.  Sally, not so much.  Reluctantly, the litter box returned. 

A few years later, Oliver became bulimic.   He made many, many trips to the vet.  I changed his food, the way he eats, when he eats.  Still, he's bulimic.  He eats and often gives it back. He is better now that we got the automatic feeder.  

Fast forward a few more years.   Both dogs have passed away.  Oliver's playmates have gone.  Sally is fatter and lazier than ever.  Who does Oliver turn to?  Who is his playmate now? Me.
Oliver is now my shadow.  He follows me everywhere I go.  When I open my door in the morning I hear not a creak but a 'meow'.  (He was banned from the bed when I got married the poor thing).  Oliver sits on my lap, see first picture, behind me, on my desk and at my feet.  He watches me run on the treadmill and even tries to join me.  He nibbles on my ankles when he is hungry even though we have the automatic feeder.  He sits on my lap every time I have a lap and drives my husband crazy.  Yesterday, he was batting at my headphones trying to get my attention.  And yes, he even follows me into the bathroom and wants to sit on my lap there.  When I open the shower door he jumps right in, often getting wet in the process.  

** Picture 1 is Oliver on my lap while I am trying to work.  Picture 2 is him sitting behind me while I am trying to work.  I could not find the one of him sitting on my monitor with his tail in the way.  Picture 3 is Oliver and Sally trying to stay warm. They are Florida cats and do not like the cold. 

I think Oliver needs a pet.  Or maybe a shiny new toy will suffice.  Still, he's cute and loveable - most of the time. 


Monday, January 10, 2011

Contemplating...

I've been praying for the last few days for God to help me focus on my job.  The one that pays me to sit at my desk for 8 hours a day and do work for someone else.  Last week I had a lot going on.  Now that those items are completed, I really wanted to be able to focus on my job. Hence the fervent prayer of focus.

However, today all I can think about is this story idea I have, the outline of which is on my computer.  What does it mean??? I know what I want but what does God want?

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Looking forward to a prosperous new year.

The last couple of days have been super busy.  Busy in a good way. I believe God is, oh dare I say it, finally answering my prayers.  The Accept Pregnancy greeting card project is fully under way.  I have orders for 11 sets, all printed and ready to go.  The slide show for Sunday is ready.  Hopefully, I pray it is so, the PayPal account will be available in the very near future.  I pray this will be successful and God will bless not the project, but the Pregnancy Center. 


My biggest and longest prayer has been for my work.  I have been a transcriptionist for over 20 years.  Not by choice but by God.  Long story but for another time.  My passion is writing.  Transcription not so much.  I do, however, love to read.  So, why not be an editor?


What exactly makes a good editor? I've done some research, and as a writer I have come up with a few must haves.  An editor/proofreader must first and foremost be honest.  After all, a person's written word is very personal.  It is our creation, our blood sweat and tears.  It is our innermost thoughts and dreams.  It is our baby.  How difficult it is to hand over your baby to a stranger and ask them to look over it with a microscope! Not only are you asking some stranger to look for spelling and punctuation errors but also grammar and style and ease of reading.  The biggest fear, I think, is not that they will hand it back and laugh at you but they will steal your hard work.  Therefore, honesty is the most important credential an editor must have. 


The second credential I believe is a must for an editor is the desire for the writer to be successful.  If an editor does not care, they will not do their best. The editor must want the finished product to be the best it can be just as much as the writer. If a word or phrase does look just right, does not sound just right will the editor stop and take the time to research or will they simply move on because everything is spelled correctly and the sentence is grammatically  correct? 


An eye for detail is an obvious must as well as knowledge of spelling, grammar and punctuation.  A good set of reference books and a working knowledge of Google is a no-brainer.


So what's my point.  I strongly believe I fit those credentials listed above.  Apparently so do the two author's who have, with great trust, handed over their precious children who sit on my desk waiting for me to finish this blog so I can scrutinize every detail, every comma, every thought and every letter of the alphabet. I will do so honestly, prayerfully, with the thought in mind that their words do not belong to me and then I will hand them back to their rightful owners better than they were when I received them.  


Do you have a project, a book, a precious work that you need a second pair of eyes to look over with care?

Colleen Wait Edits

Colleen Wait Edits

About Me

My photo

This YouTube channel was created to add video to my blog.  Read it here:  www.colleenwaitwrites.blogspot.com.  I write about my life, my books, my family, my cats and kids, and of course travel.