So what is it about me that you might find worthy of reading about? What makes me special enough that you might want to hear what I have to say, especially when it comes to writing?
There is nothing special at all about me, and that’s exactly the point. I am exactly like every other busy wife, mother, or employee.
Just like most people I started early in my youth, with a love for books. Any books! According to my mother, I was trying to read her books at age 2 but the first book I really remember fondly was Go Dog Go, by Dr. Seuss. My mother borrowed it from the library while I was sick with tonsillitis. I devoured any story with relish and learned to tell my own. I didn’t care what I was writing, as long as I was making up some fantasy. Later, I tried my hand at baby-sitting and found I had a knack for it. Kids liked me and I enjoyed them so for the next year I worked away, earning $5/hr while parents had a much needed break while having a rapt audience for my stories.
But by the time high-school hit, I had developed more complex stories, learning through trial how plot worked, to fuel a story through dialogue and drama. And then, there was always plenty of material to work with as a teen girl. A steady stream of jobs followed…some better, some not. I’ve worked as a groom, trainer, receptionist, admin. assistant, office manager, transcriptionist, insurance adjuster and they were all fantastic jobs at the time and in their own way; however, I wanted something more. By now, I had found the love of my life, (yes, really!) and, after a whirlwind courtship, we married. Children followed and writing was pushed aside for babies, bills and basic needs.
As I grew older and my family grew, I found myself desperately longing to be with my children while I was at work. I felt guilty that they were at daycare, even though our provider was a close family friend and I knew they were well loved there. It wasn’t me! I had continued to write off and on. A short story here, chapters to a novel there, always hoping that someday I would be able to stay home and write full time.
Suddenly, it happened. My husband’s job provided us a way for me to stay home with them and still have enough to live on (if we cut corners). But being a stay-at-home mom didn’t make me happy either. I missed the adult conversation, I began to feel like “just a mom.” I felt like my life was nothing but dirty dishes, kids and diapers without any ME left in the equation. As much as I said I wanted to write, committing to it was definitely harder to do. Especially when faced with rejection, something NO writer enjoys.
Years passed, and I never found the success I thought I needed as a writer. The publishing market is a tough nut to crack and I just pushed the dream aside, thinking it wasn’t for me. Maybe I wasn’t good enough, maybe I wasn’t cut out for it. Maybe….maybe…I buried the need to write by staying busy homeschooling our three children, in Bible studies and teaching fitness and exercise classes, but it was still there. It was my dream that wouldn’t die, no matter how many times I tried to snuff it out.
While teaching fitness classes, I wrote an exercise and fitness manual and devotional called “Rebuilding the Temple” which was used extensively in various local weight loss competitions. It was then used by other churches and began to be requested. I threw myself into my fitness business, speaking and writing on topics of interest (you can find that blog at www.getfitwithtina.com) which honed my nonfiction skills. Five years after launching the business, I realized that I had more time to write. I should be reaching out with fiction as well. I dusted off my manuscripts and began to edit while spending every spare moment studying the publishing market again. It had changed since I’d first begun seriously writing for publication. E-books, once unheard of, are now a market staple. Publishing houses are failing right and left and self-publishing has become a convenient way for a writer to actually make a living.
From my fitness business, I received fantastic mentoring, real advice and knowledge and a new outlook that applies to ANY area of life. Those things are exactly what I want to share on this blog with everyone. No tricks, no gimmicks, no scams. There is nothing here for you to buy into. You will find links to my books, short stories, and articles. I’ll post ideas and thoughts on getting published, answer questions from readers and just general information about what is going on in my head at any given moment for YOU, my readers.
Now I have published the Rodeo Series with Avon Impulse including the award-winning, RODEO QUEEN, THE COWBOY AND THE ANGEL, LEARNING THE ROPES and RUNAWAY COWBOY. The Healing Hearts series will be releasing it’s first book in April from Avon Impulse – HEART’S DESIRE – with TAKING HEART and CLOSE TO HEART following in June and July.
So, in a nutshell: I’m a work from home wife and mother of three teens. I write while I try to fit in daily workouts, running two other businesses from home and maintain a menagerie of pets all while being the best mom I can be. I visit my family and in-laws regularly, chauffeur my children, make dinner for my family…in other words, I’m just your normal busy mom with no spare time. I don’t have a college degree, I talk too much (and too loudly most of the time) and I’m too cheap to pay full price. I’m just like most of you. If I can succeed, anyone can!