Unplug that – Metal Thing!

Oh, my love/hate relationship with everything social media and electrical.


Sold on Etsy by TheManicMoose

I’m frankly a learning nut and love what I can discover and do online, but so often it takes over what I’m actually supposed to be doing. Which is why I’m now trying to consider a timer my best friend. I just can’t look at it. Then I feel the moments slipping away.

It didn’t feel like that as a kid. Time stretched out in front of me, and it felt like I had endless amounts of time to play or read, with an occasional movie. It was special for me to imagine and create worlds and stories, but I find the more I look at other stories — the more I’m inspired — but for some reason I take less time to write and create what my imagination comes up with.

I think that’s why this video by Random House that I found over at Alicia Padron’s blog connected with me.

It’s not just kids that need the reminder to unplug and play. How many times do I chill out in the evening over just one Youtube video — sorry that’s not even possible. Youtube videos are worse then potato chips.

How often? Way to much.

I think I need to go back to scheduling computer time instead of doing it all the time. That way I can have more time to imagine, which is why I love being a writer anyway.

Goal… find consistent time to unplug and imagine!

How do you find time to play/dream/imagine? Do you schedule it or work it in whenever you have a chance?

See ya next week!

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My First Picture Book – Harold Hark – Release Party!

I don’t think I can describe how it feels to write this. A huge part of me is psyched, yet it feels unreal.

About a year ago a silly question popped in my head. “We have Hark the Herald Angels Sing, but what if there was an angel named Harold Hark who couldn’t sing?” Usually I get stuck in the idea phase, but this one refused to stay there and it’s the picture book that I’m releasing today!

My Mom is wonderful. On top of everything else she encourages me to reach for my dreams. So when the idea for Harold Hark popped into my brain, and out of my mouth, she loved it and reminded me from time to time that I should really turn it into a book.

I’ve always wanted to be a writer, and illustrating had seriously caught my interest last year, but even though I agreed I probably should turn it into a book I had no idea what to write.

Most of my ideas don’t come as a complete package and filling in the blanks isn’t always easy. So I put it on the back burner.

To be honest, without Mom’s prodding it might have stayed there, but her gentle encouragement came to mind when I was trying to decide what to get her for Christmas last year.

I thought it would be cool to give her the completed book as a present. I could imagine Mom’s face lighting up when she opened the box so my creativity kicked in.

And so with no story, no idea what Harold would look like, only an iPad to do my digital drawings on, and a 4 day deadline — I set to work.

 Can you say pressure?

You’re probably thinking I’m crazy right now, but where I can get something done for others on time I tend to be a procrastinator when it comes to my own ideas. Knowing I had a locked amount of time I looked for an idea and sat down to write.

I wrote the story in a few hours and spent the rest of the day sketching ideas until Harold’s face appeared on the page.

Then with the help of my sister the book was edited and we decided 16 simple images would work best. I sketched into the wee hours and for the next day and a half I turned them into digital images with my iPad. And when every image was complete I uploaded my book. The next day I found out the “deadline” was a misunderstanding on my part, but looking back I’m glad because it gave me that push to complete it.

Harold Hark was carefully wrapped and under the tree well before Christmas, and on Christmas morning it was so special to watch my Mom’s face when she opened the box and saw it sitting there. She had no idea I’d actually made it.

It was an amazing moment to hear her read it out loud for the first time.

And now Harold Hark is published! (Click to Tweet)

 Click Here to buy a copy of Harold Hark at Amazon.com.

amazon button
I’m so happy and blessed to have my first picture book out, and I hope that the story will mean as much to you as it does to me.

 “Harold can’t sing. Which would be okay except he’s an angel, and angels sing… right?

Instead of doing the best job in heaven Harold’s stuck with a little job. But then an idea strikes — why not try more important jobs? Walk with him as he tries building the golden cities and picking up a sword to join the warrior angels. It isn’t until everything seems hopeless that you’ll both learn a secret to serving God. And how a change in attitude makes all the difference.”

And those of you who buy a copy, from 10/7-10/14/13, can email me a copy of your receipt I’ll send you a small thank you PDF package! One you can print as many times as you want . (Just can’t sell them.) ;)


Please tweet, post on Facebook or your blog, and pin about this! Harold Hark’s success depends on you!

I’d like to see how many people we could tell, who knows maybe we’ll reach the #1 position in Children’s Books at Amazon (wouldn’t that be so cool?!).

 Want to have some extra fun?

Check out the Harold Hark Pinterest Board and come back Monday for links to cool projects you can do with your kids!

Have a question? Drop me a line, tweet, or comment on this post and I’ll get back to you.

*The amazon link in this post is an affiliate link.

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Picture Book Update

Well, next month my picture book is coming out and have I been learning a lot about self-publishing lately. I must say there’s more then I ever knew (or expected) to it. It’s been quite a learning experience, including having to redo my art a couple times.

Can anyone tell me why computers decide to randomly loose things?

Yeah, I know it might just be me, but i have to tell you that sometimes I think my computer’s hiding stuff on me.

Anyway. It’s all coming together amid writing, fixing,  and twiddling my thumbs while I wait for proofs somehow it’s all getting done.


belongs to Charles Schultz

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