Libbie the Lobster

To purchase the children's book "Saving Libbie the Lobster" go to


Marketing Blues


My head is buzzing and my feet are stuck in clay! My fingers are poised on the keyboard but my eyes keep drifting from the computer screen to the ocean outside my windows and I’m trying to think. Thoughts come in words and phrases and follow one after another in a circle. I think you, my readers, may recognize some of these. You know the ones that keep streaming in with no action behind them because they’re circular!

target audience, holiday book signings, tweet, post, blog, write, sell, promote, follow, join groups, comment, like, apply for awards, hashtags, tags, guest blog, email, call, search, watch tutorials, learn more, do more, ad infinitum


I know the target audience for our book, Saving Libbie the Lobster, is children but young children don’t buy books so how do I appeal to the adults who can’t wait to purchase an awesome, based-on-a-true-story, signed by the authors, one of a kind, fun, funny, educational, artist illustrated, children’s book? “All of the above words in red” you may respond. But which ones work the best? There must be a way to do less and accomplish more — an easier, softer, smarter way that doesn’t include an “Upgrade to Premium” which costs money which is what I’m trying to bring in, not put out.

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I think if I can just finish this blog, I’ll be doing well. But the moment I stop writing, the litany of words starts over again. And too, what about my novel, The Jumping Off Place? It is finished or just about and after it’s finished, there is a whole new target audience!

Maybe there is a solution after all. I haven’t found it yet but there must be one. It’s not rocket science I’m sure, although I think I understand rocket science better than that terrifying word — marketing!

If you can relate, please leave your comments below. If you have solutions, please leave comments below. If you have funny stories or anything that will stop this circular stream of consciousness, please write in the comments below.

And as always, thank you for reading.



Reading to Kids: Pure Joy

I feel as though I’m a passenger who is along for a ride to where I do not know. It is an adventure for sure. I don’t know whether we will turn left, or right, or go straight to wherever it is we are traveling. I don’t even really know who’s driving–not really. I see something different every day along this unfamiliar road–faces mostly, of children. Never before in my life have I seen so many children for so long. Little children just being children. I don’t remember what it feels like to be a child so I don’t know them. It was a long time ago. So I watch them as I travel this road. I watch them smile and laugh as they hear our story of Saving Libbie the Lobster.

Even today as I stood next to my friend and co-author, Heather Chalmers, in front of about 80 children every half hour telling our adventure with Libbie, IMG_2852 my eyes scanned the large room filled to capacity with children and their teachers, and I was filled with wonder. Heather, so comfortable with the children, having been a first grade teacher for many years, became my teacher. Unbeknownst to her, I followed her every move, and pretended I belonged there, although I might as well have been in a foreign country and knew not the customs and the language.

I was somewhat intimidated by these little ones, I realized. Are they a simpler version of who they will someday become, I wondered. I watched the shy children being shy; the talkative ones, talking (despite chiding from their teachers); and the thinkers were very obviously thinking. My knowledge of psychology and experience as a psychotherapist, flooded my brain trying to make sense of the many little personalities in front of me. My incessant need to understand was rivaled only by my joy at hearing the kids laugh at all the right, funny places in our book.

And when I arrived home to my familiar, comfortable surroundings, I sat by my window listening to the roar of the ocean and I wondered where I had been and how I arrived here–to this place in my life.

At sixty-three years of age, I am on the ride of my life. Without much forethought, without a plan, and with no end in sight, I allow myself to enjoy the journey. In many ways, I am like these children I think. Learning quickly from every new experience, my eyes are wide open and filled with wonder. Could it be that I am coming full-circle, becoming child-like again, untainted by the weariness of intellectualism? Whether or not that be so, I enjoy this ride and I am grateful. I will let the experience teach me.

So Heather and I will do this again tomorrow and for the rest of this Literacy Week, in   a different school each day. I will again enter this foreign land and hopefully I will emerge knowing it better. Maybe I will meet your child on my journey.




As A Child Growing Up I Learned That Life Is…

Would you like to know the people you communicate with better, to learn something about how they see the world and their place in it? Here is a small exercise of sentence completion that will help us all know each other a little better. Here’s how this goes:bfdd953dc713b8cf68d06d6d18d9ee49

Repeat the sentence stem to yourself and write the first word(s) that comes to mind. No editing or changing it please. You may surprise yourself.

In the past six months of blogging and participating in several social media sites, I have become friends with and followed many people, most of whom I will likely never meet face-to-face. And yet my curiosity about the psychology of us humans and a desire to be connected to others, drives me to want to know you.

So lets get to know each other! Complete this sentence, “As a child growing up, I learned that life is___________.”

Thanks for reading and I look forward to getting to know you better.


Christmas Nostalgia

Dressed in a black velvet dress with a white furry collar, white leggings and black patent leather shoes, I demurely awaited Christmas dinner. Mother and grandmother clearly approved of my lady-like disposition as I sat in the thickly upholstered chair with my feet far from touching the floor. Next to me the crackling fire raged in the stone fireplace and warmed my feet. As I gazed at the Christmas tree that reached to the high ceiling, I became mesmerized by the colored lights shining on the red and green ornaments and silver tinsel. The scent of pine filled the room. Newly opened boxes in many sizes and shapes remained under the tree. On top of the baby grand piano sat candelabras whose shimmering light sent flickering shadows around the large room. fileDespite the warm fire, the room felt cold, or perhaps it only seemed cold because the snow was piled high on the outside windowsill and the oak trees swayed in the blustery wind.

Having spent the day excitedly opening gifts and receiving everything I had asked Santa for, I was content on the outside but inside, I wanted to run and play with daddy and grandpop. I was bursting with energy but was relegated to the living room to await the evening feast. I felt uncomfortable in the crinolines under my dress that made my legs itch and the shoe straps across my feet would have cut into my skin save for the perfectly turned down white socks.

But I was so much younger then. I remember those years with sad fondness. The people are gone and the old-fashioned ambiance of my family’s traditional Christmas is gone with them. The little girl I was is much older now and my ideas of this holiday are tainted by what I see all around me. The general disregard for the problems facing the future of humanity as evidenced by the demands for more of everything, is more apparent to me now.

Although the luster of Christmas has dimmed for me, I believe that Christmas is still magical for children. I could not be more grateful to be able to be a part of children’s joy this year for the holidays. Many people have been buying our books as gifts from Santa to their children. I can picture their faces light up when they see the colorful illustrations and they read the story of Libbie’s rescue from the supermarket tank. I would like to think Heather Chalmers and I are like Santa’s elves who worked happily to bring joy to children. 75696088ec7e30b36947ba739c2c9d01

Now instead of snow laden oak trees outside my window, I see regal palm trees with Christmas lights snaking up their trunks against a backdrop of blue ocean.  I could not be happier. It has been said that with age comes wisdom, so wiser now, I can enjoy making new memories of holidays with friends and their little ones.

What are your earliest memories of Christmas? And how has that changed for you?