Wednesday, October 3, 2018

The BIG Fat FAIL Post: IWSG & Being Human

Have you ever had to make a REALLY hard choice?


That's where I'm at. It's been coming for a long time, but it is finally time for me to step away from the blog.


And no, I don't mean for a month, or two, or three... This is an extended farewell.



I know, I know. We've all seen people desert us here on the blogosphere for the continued reason that, "I need to focus on my writing." Basically, when I read those words I think:


I've been doing this for over ten years, and the relationships...oh the relationships! I love this place. Seriously, I do. Watching each person disappear has been painful--like spooning out a peice of my heart and stomping on it. (Sorry, that was graphic.)

But it's time.

And it's killing me.

This won't come as a surprise to some of you, as many have marveled at how I juggle the writing, home schooling, and babies around not just blogging, but leading choirs, writing music, vocal performances, and visiting hundreds of blogging friends each month. The truth is, we could make it work, until now. My oldest is leaving, my baby is walking and getting into everything, and my toddler is in preschool full time (which we teach her). My older middle children are on the cusp of high school. My writing is almost non-existent, and I find that my creative juices really do need to be focused on my children for the short time that I have them. It flies.

I've even cut down (or dropped out of) Facebook, Goodreads, Instagram, and Twitter. And reading. *gasp* (So you know it's desperate.)

And that's it. I'm not leaving to write. (And yes, I'm sorry, the writing thing is a lame excuse. Even if I've used it before...)


So give me a virtual hug, and perhaps if the stars align, I'll be back one day.


In the meantime...



This has been an answer to the IWSG blog hop: How do major life events affect your writing?

Huge thanks for hosting
Alex Cavanaugh
Dolorah @ Book Lover, Christopher D. Votey,
Tanya Miranda, and Chemist Ken!

Last month Sherry Ellis shared BUBBA AND SQUIRT'S BIG DIG TO CHINA along with two truths and one lie. Anyone who guessed was entered to win a signed print copy.

The game:

1. Sherry once played her viola at night in the middle of the Black Forest in hopes of scaring away the wild boars. 
2. Sherry enjoys parasailing and hopes to do it in Australia some day.
3.Sherry once crawled through a window of a locked hotel in Europe to get inside because she was out past curfew.

The lie: #2. From Sherry: I have never para-sailed. I do want to go to Australia, but I don't care about parasailing there. SCUBA diving? Yes. 

And the winner is:

...DRUM ROLL...

Congrats, Shannon!

WAIT, WAIT, BEFORE YOU GO--!!!


What kind of lame-o friend would I be without a parting gift? Exclusively for you, my blogging buddies, pick any one of these books, shoot me an email (crystal@crystal-collier.com), and your inbox will fill up with cheese and joy:





Wednesday, September 5, 2018

One FIRM Truth about Sending Your Babies into the World & IWSG

My writerly friends think I'm talking about books.

I'm not.

Have you ever taken a jump that scared you to death?


Just watching that makes me shudder, but I think this next one is a hundred times worse:


It's so much easier to take a terrifying jump than watch a loved one do the same thing. (And yes, your projects, hopes, and dreams can be the things falling into the world.)

This is pretty much what I'm experiencing right now. In just a few months, my first baby is leaving to fulfill a church mission. I've prepared him well and taught him the best I know how, but that doesn't bring much comfort when facing this big...jump.

I know, I know, I should stop dreading it. He's leaving for a good reason, and his service will bless so many others. To borrow a line from Kiren (my Maiden of Time Series), "My head understands. My heart will not."

But here's the deal, I know this is just the beginning of the end. After this, he's gone. Life will happen, he'll strike out on his own. I'll still feel every blow along with him, every sadness, every hope, every joy, but from here on out, it will be entirely up to him how and if he succeeds. I don't fear he'll fail. He's a smart, kind, hard working young man, but after this, he's no longer just mine.

I think we all feel that way about anything close to our hearts that we choose to share. And it doesn't matter HOW we choose to share them, there is just as much anxiety, hope, joy, etc. involved in the process. It's just important that we do take the jump--terrifying as it may be. Otherwise our loves atrophy in obscurity.

My son will do amazing things and I look forward to seeing them happen. I'm so grateful for him. Life is fuller (fulfilling) because of him.

This has been an installation of the IWSG blog hop:

Huge thanks for hosting
Alex Cavanaugh
Toi Thomas, T. Powell Coltrin, 
M.J. Fifield, and Tara Tyler!

Last month Tanya Miranda shared THE ONYX RING along with two truths and one lie. Anyone who guessed was entered to win TWO eBooks.

The game:

1. I drink white vinegar straight from the bottle. 
2. I have dozens of analog clocks around my house. 
3. I could never build anything "cool" with LEGOs.

The lie: #3. From Tanya: Actually, I can build elaborate cars, planes, buildings, and other structures with layers and layers of details. I become a bit zombie-like when I get in front of a bucket of LEGOs. I get so absorbed, hours pass by without notice. During gatherings with friends and family, my husband knows he has lost me as soon as the kids bring out the LEGOs. 

And the winner is:

...DRUM ROLL...

Congrats, Juneta!

And speaking of adventures, how about an adventure story? Check it out:

Squirt doesn't believe Bubba can dig a hole to China. But when the hole swallows them, the kids find themselves in Xi'an, China, surrounded by Terracotta Warriors.

It gets worse when the ghost of the first emperor of China appears. He tells them they can't go home until they find his missing pi. The kids don't know where to begin until they meet a girl and her grandmother who promise to help find the pendant. 

Soon they realize they are being followed. And they are no closer to finding the missing pi. Will Bubba and Squirt ever make it back home?

Buy your copy now on Amazon.

Ready to meet the author?

Sherry Ellis is an award-winning author and professional musician who plays and teaches the violin, viola, and piano. When she is not writing or engaged in musical activities, she can be found doing household chores, hiking, or exploring the world. Ellis, her husband, and their two children live in Atlanta, Georgia.

www.sherryellis.org

You might run across Sherry nibbling at French Gruyere on a water biscuit. Does this make her a cheese snob? (No, it just makes her epic.)

Sherry gave me two truths and one lie to test your "lie detector" skills. If you guess the lie, right or wrong, you will be entered to win a SIGNED PRINT copy of the BUBBA AND SQUIRT'S BIG DIG TO CHINA(Open internationally.) DON'T HAVE A BLOGGER ACCOUNT OR AN EMAIL ON YOUR PROFILE? No problem. EMAIL crystal@crystal-collier.com to enter.

You have until Tuesday, October 2 at 2 p.m. EDT to guess. Be sure to come back for the answer on October 3rd, 8 a.m. EDT.
TRUTH OR LIE

1. Sherry once played her viola at night in the middle of the Black Forest in hopes of scaring away the wild boars. 
2. Sherry enjoys parasailing and hopes to do it in Australia some day.
3.Sherry once crawled through a window of a locked hotel in Europe to get inside because she was out past curfew.

So sleuths, which is the lie? What important lessons have you learned in your journey for success? Have you met Sherry? Do you read love foreign adventure stories?