The equivalent of a cold room and a warm quilt


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As I type this, the rain is coming down in a miserable, drizzly, gray downpour. And it’s perfection!

I love being at home, and being closeted away at home by the weather is absolutely ideal! There is no cozier feeling than being inside a warm home with warm lights and warm tea, while outside, it’s cold and damp. It’s the outside equivalent of a chilly room and a warm quilt. And it does wonders for my serotonin levels.

My son is a lot like me. We introduced him to the concept of baseball this summer, and his response was perfect:

Son: I love baseball! This is great! (Runs from the room.)

Husband: Where are you going?

Son: I’m going to write a story about it.

That child is after my own heart! My best adventures happen when I sit down and write about it. Leaving the house–unless forced for grocery shopping–is entirely optional. This weekend, bring on the quilt.

I literally just sat down.

Call me Coordinated…


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This makes me laugh! Now, I was never considered “hot.” I wasn’t that kind of girl. I was bookish. I read a lot, wrote a lot, and was very opinionated. I got good grades, enjoying debating, and was very confident in my intellect.

It took my breath away the first time I was called beautiful.

I heard somewhere that pretty women like to be called smart, and smart women like to be called pretty, and I think there is some truth in that. We don’t need our strengths to be stroked the way we do our insecurities. It doesn’t mean that pretty women are idiots or that particularly bookish women are homely, it just means that we all have a pretty good sense of what we’re good at.

I know my strengths, but I also know my weaknesses. I’m a rather awkward person. I’m not joking when I tell you that I have trouble both peddling and steering a bike at the same time. I’m a klutz. I break dishes constantly. I’m told that I look like a flapping chicken when I run (by my loving husband, no less.)

To really butter me up, don’t tell me I’m hot. Don’t even tell me I’m beautiful. Tell me I’m coordinated! I’ll be putty in your hands. ;)


Writing update


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Today, I heard from both my editors, and I have more projects lined up to work on. This is part of the drill if you’re a writer–you are in charge of your own time, which means that if you want to be writing, you have to get your work lined up yourself. There is no boss breathing down your neck, just you and your gumption.

So, for the next few weeks, this what I’ll be up to:

  1. I’m editing a proposal for one editor so that I can incorporate her notes and send it back in.
  2. I have the go ahead to start on another book!

That means I’m staying productive while I wait for some official contracts, because just sitting while I wait is simply not an option. I might grumble. I might pace. I might start a whole new book for a whole new line. But I just can’t sit.

I’m always a little bit afraid of boring you all to tears with my writing updates, but it really is the biggest part of my life! I mean, my family, of course, holds the biggest part of my heart, but my work hours–that big gap during the day between dropping my son off at school and picking him back up again–is all writing. Boring to watch, perhaps even boring to hear about, but fascinating if you’re the one doing the writing! ;)

I hope to have some covers to share with you soon for my 2016 releases, and until then, I’ll be fingers to keyboard.

Have a wonderful weekend!


Come hither


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I don’t think that a man needs to fall down at MY feet in order to be worthy of goodness and happiness. Don’t get me wrong there. There are very good men–extraordinary men–who didn’t look twice at me. There were very good men who showed interest who didn’t interest me back.

But then there came along a man who took one look at me and knew that I was it. I was The One. All he wanted was one chance with me, and slipped me his number twice before I used it. And ever after, he pursued. It didn’t take me long to feel the same way he did.

As a woman, I love being pursued because beyond love, it means that he values me. I’m worth the effort.

One morning, I read my husband a question someone had sent to an advice columnist asking if he should become seriously involved with a woman that he knew to be good, honest, sweet and truly wonderful, but whom he didn’t find to be particularly beautiful. My answer would have been a resounding YES! Of course, he should go for her. The man shouldn’t be so shallow.

But my husband said No. He shouldn’t, and I was horrified until he gave me his reason. He said that no woman should have to live her life with a man who didn’t think she was gorgeous. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, he said, and if that man couldn’t see her beauty, then he had no business wasting her time because a man would come along who WOULD find her beautiful. And no man should waste his time with a woman he didn’t find beautiful, either. If he couldn’t see it, then she wasn’t the right one for him. Two good people can very well not belong together.

It was a very good point. I’m married to a man who thinks I’m stunning, and there is nothing more reassuring. If I was with someone who thought I was generally okay, but my personality made up for most of what I lacked appearance-wise… that’s just depressing! Even if I’m not considered conventionally beautiful, the one place I should feel beautiful is in my home.

So while I don’t think a man needs to fall down at my feet to be a worthy, wonderful man, he does if he’s the right man for me. That doesn’t mean that I don’t have to put effort into the relationship, too, but pursuit… pursuit seems to be the universal language of love.

And when we pursue each other… that’s a love that lasts.

A little clicking gear


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Photo by Craig Sunter

Photo by Craig Sunter

Every since I was young, I’ve had a little clicking gear in my head that gets tighter and tighter, clicking louder and louder whenever I don’t have something to write.

As a kid, that was taken care of with a notebook. As a grown woman, that is taken care of with a novel. It’s slightly neurotic, I’ll give you that, but it’s also highly effective to keep me writing. When I say I want to write five books a year, that’s a little inaccurate. I need to. If I don’t keep writing, that little gear in my head starts to click forward. I feel like an addict when I email my editor pleading for a go ahead on a manuscript, and planning for ways to fill my time until I get one.

Heaven forbid I be left alone without a plot to guide my thoughts!

I’ve been running free of deadlines for a few days now, and I’ve taken time to read, hung out with friends, and generally behaved like a normal and balanced human being. It’s a good exercise–like research for my characters. But painful–I won’t lie. ;) Today was Day 6 without a deadline, and two things happened:

  1. I went to the ladies’ Bible study this morning at our church, which I don’t normally have time for because of the way it slots into my work day. It was nice. It’s good to reconnect with the women in my community.
  2. My editor sent me the revision letter for my latest manuscript.

The gear stopped clicking and I had to physically stop myself from signing my return email with a heart. <3

I have something to work on–something with a deadline–and that just does me good.

Puking, crying, blood and pain


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I’m a person who refuses to work out in any traditional fashion who also enjoys following exercise encouragement on Facebook. Silly, isn’t it? I know it’s a common joke, but if you did see me running down the street, seriously—there would be an emergency! Like, stop me. Offer to call 911.

But when I sit in front of my computer, a manuscript open in one tab and my internet open in another, I get this rush of “YES!!” when I read exercise encouragement. Dwayne Johnson is particularly good for this. He’s very funny, and talks about being the hardest worker in the room. And I can identify with that… more figuratively speaking.

Sometimes I’m asked how much I make an hour in my writing career, and I laugh out loud! An hour?? I refuse to do that math because it would only bum me out. Writing is hard work, and it takes hours and hours on end of fingers to key board. Then there is editing, editing, editing, the endless hours of walking around in a daze wondering how to get myself out of some corner I’ve written myself into… Writing is a lifestyle, but it’s also a job, and if you don’t treat it like a job, you’ll be hard pressed to achieve anything.

So I press on, keep at it, sit down every single day in front of my computer and push forward. I don’t want to write one book a year, I want to write five!

So falling and crawling are definitely acceptable, if that’s all I can squeeze out that day. Puking, crying, blood and pain? Yikes. Go see a doctor. This is figurative!

But quitting… No, that’s never an option. And neither is writer’s block. Deep breath, another cup of tea, and back at it.

Be the hardest worker in the room. In my case, I’m generally the only person in the room… but don’t ruin this for me! Eye of the Tiger. Rocky-style air punches. “Adriaaaaannn!”  ;)



Girl, it is NEVER too late!


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Just look what this woman had waiting for her when her flight came in. ;)


And if he’s waiting with flowers AND chocolate? He’s not a husband, he’s a beau.

That isn’t me being cynical about marriage, either. My husband and I had our own airport scene when I went to visit my parents for a few days. When I came back, there were kisses and hugs, and he carried all my heavily laden bags for me. But the flowers and chocolates? Dead giveaway for non-married status!

So if she can find it…

Just thought I’d put that out there. Carry on. Enjoy the rest of your day. <3

Unattractive pie


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So I normally make a pretty good pie, but this time, it was a disaster. I lost my pie plate (how does that even happen??) so I used a square dish instead. Which shouldn’t have mattered THAT much.

I don’t know what happened or how… but my pie turned out no thicker than a deck of cards. And I’m not exaggerating!



I’m not saying that we didn’t eat it. I mean, we’re not terribly picky about how attractive our pie is around here, but still…

It’s a good thing I have other talents. ;)

Now, back to my writing. I have a cowboy romance in the works that is currently fueled by unattractive pie.


A little bit fat


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My in-laws come from central Africa, so their way of saying things is different than I was used to. For example, talking about where you work is considered a very personal conversation topic, but discussing who you’re related to is like talking about the weather. So we all had a learning curve when getting to know each other after I married my husband.

The biggest adjustment was the casual discussion of weight.

Now, for them, pointing out when someone has gained or lost a few pounds is no biggie. They’d say things like, “Oh, look at you! You’re getting a little bit fat!” And I’d be stricken, and they’d wonder what they said wrong. “But she is. I don’t understand. Look, right here.”

Here in North America, “fat” has come to mean all sorts of things that have nothing to do with your BMI. “Fat” means ugly, unattractive, stupid, and not worth a lot of respect. If someone calls you fat, they are saying exactly how they feel about you, and it isn’t a compliment. Curvy, rounded, voluptuous and huggable: all fine! There is no shame in being plus-sized (which I am), but “fat?” No.

The thing is, in the country they come from, “fat” is not an insult. It’s an observation that points to the fact that you can afford to eat enough to put on some padding. Now, times are changing over there and Western ideas are taking over in some ways, so I’m not saying that things haven’t changed over the last couple of decades, but for the older generation from that part of the world, noticing how someone has put on or lost weight is a great indicator of how that person is doing. Losing weight? Maybe they aren’t doing so well and might need a little more family support. Gaining weight? Then they’re eating and their husband is providing. Well done!

It took me a long while to get used to this, but I have, and it’s been good for me. I used to be uncomfortable printing off pictures with me in them if I thought I looked bigger than I was used to being. (I yo-yo a little.) I’d think, “Oh no, I look too big there. I’ll print off some pictures that are more flattering,” and then not print off any because the camera doesn’t lie. But then I realized that looking “a little bit fat” doesn’t mean that I don’t look pretty, healthy or attractive. It’s a size, not an indication of my worth or beauty. So I started printing those photos off. Because that’s me, and I was there at that event, and I enjoyed myself and I posed with my family. That big smile means that I laughed at jokes and snuggled up to my husband and chased down my child. It means I ate a meal with the people I love and I even went for seconds. Because it was delicious.

The next time you look at a picture of yourself or get a glimpse of yourself in the mirror and you start to mentally criticize yourself, remember that there are parts of the world that don’t share our fear of padding. There are women out there who would be confused at your desire to be thinner. They’d say, “You’re getting a little bit fat! Oh, she’s pretty. Isn’t she pretty? You’re doing well.” And they’d hand you a plate.

And it would be delicious.



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