One of my most enthusiastic readers.
We writers aren’t allowed to be introverts anymore.
Back in the day, a writer was a man most times (women were home frying the bacon and changing the diapers) with thick dark hair that he pulled with one hand as he wrote down his words furiously on paper with his special pen.
Then that man walked dejectedly to the local pub or bar and drank away his creative problems. Somehow, he produced a masterpiece with a good editor, and then his publisher made sure the book sold tens of thousands of that hard-earned tome.
Those were the good ole days.
Now men and women write on fast-paced computers, editing with a keystroke, and banging their heads against the monitor between washing the sheets and emptying the dishwasher. Continue reading
It’s 8 a.m. Mother’s Day morning and the doorbell rings.
Could it be? He didn’t forget, after all?
I check out my appearance in the mirror: make-up free face, frizzy hair, leggings and sweatshirt adorn my body. That poor delivery person.
Nonetheless, I open the front door with bright eyes that grow wider as I see what’s standing in front of me. A young blond-haired man holding a tall glass vase filled with at least a dozen delicate long-stemmed pink roses.
I sigh with relief and relieve the man of his burden. “Thank you so much,” I gush, as if the gift is from him. But he smiles, pleased, as I withhold the question I want to ask: Who sent them? Continue reading
It’s taken me 89 years, two months, and 26 days to figure it out.
But Lord help me, I have figured out what no one told me all these living days.
I don’t blame the people in my early life. My grandmother’s folk (she had 14 siblings) spent their lives just surviving. The earlier generations didn’t have time to figure out what was real, because life was just too damned hard.
But we technocratic, soft-skinned, thin-skinned spoiled people of the 21st century – we have no excuse. We have toilets and warm showers and grocery stores packed with food. We have vehicles of all sizes and shapes to transport us anywhere; free education from 5 to 18 years; easy chairs to sit in and stare into our gas fireplaces just to ponder. No need to chop our wood and cook our meat on that fire. We just use it to warm our souls and ponder. Yes, to just think.
Not that thinking helped me figure it out. The opposite, really. Continue reading
© Shelley Steinle, Birds of Paradise
I never would have guessed that the third stage of publishing a kid’s picture book – the stage in which I actually read said book to kids, would produce knocking knees and sweaty palms.
But last week I found myself at my grandson’s elementary school, nearly ending my children’s book career at the front desk. Continue reading