Monday, November 15, 2010

November Is National Family Literacy Month

November is National Family Literacy Month. Obviously literacy is important to you or you wouldn’t be reading this. LOL Celebrate by volunteering to help someone learn to read—whether encouraging an adult or tutoring a child. Give yourself a break and curl up with a good book. If you don’t have one handy, please let me recommend mine! at Blatant self-promotion, but I feel compelled. If I don't push my books off on you, who will?

My First Book--Isn't it Sweet?
 Can you remember the first book you read? The first one I read alone—not counting the newspaper comics my dad used as incentive to teach me to read—was a small Golden Book of PRAYERS FOR CHILDREN. At the time, my mom wasn’t a reader (although she became an avid reader later in life), so she didn’t buy books for me. Occasionally she’d let me buy a comic book.  Why comic books and not real books? The fact the comic books were cheap made all the difference for my frugal mom. Could that woman ever pinch a penny until Abe Lincoln begged for mercy!

My dad read the newspaper and any book he could get his hands on, but didn’t buy them or use the library. I have no idea why, but he borrowed them from my half-siblings. He loved to read and encouraged me to learn at an early age. Probably he tired of me nagging him to read me the funny papers and comic books. At the time, I thought Bugs Bunny was the funniest thing on earth. What can I saw? A sophisticated kid I was not!

What was the first book you chose to read from a library or bookstore? Can you remember the first book you purchased on your own? I do. My first library book was a Nancy Drew mystery, although I don't remember which one. The first book I purchased with my allowance was LITLE WOMEN. Those books resurrect fond memories for me.

A favorite book
of our daughters
My husband and I also share fond memories of reading to our daughters, even long after they could read themselves. It was a cozy bedtime ritual whose memory I wouldn’t trade for any amount of money. They’re both avid readers now and were good students in school. One has a PhD and the other her Masters, so reading paid off for them. But reading pays off for anyone! Even if you don't get to finish school for some reason, reading brings pleasure forever. The ability to read is necessary to excel in any field, even math. If you don’t read well, you can’t even pass the personnel application test—now always given on a computer—necessary to get a job. I realize I'm preaching to the choir, but if you don’t read to your children or grandchildren, do yourself and them a lasting favor and start right away.

November is also NaNoWriMo. Due to family crises, guests, a party we've planned, holiday plans, etc. I'm not participating in the writing challenge this year. It's a great thing, though, and many of my friends are involved. Writing without letting your internal editor slow the process is tough for people like me, so NaNoWriMo is good practice in letting the words flow unchecked. As my heroine Nora Roberts reportedly said, "I can edit crap; I can't edit a blank page."

My newsletter avatar
 Big news for me is that the 15th is my first ever Mostly Monthly Newsletter. If you missed out on this month, sign up on this blog's sidebar beneath my photo and get in on future emails. It's painless. Honest. And it includes an exclusive FREE (always my favorite price for anything!) short story, recipe, news, and miscellaneous odds and ends as whimsy dictates.

Hooray! I finished the final edits for my next release, HOME SWEET TEXAS HOME. This novel is quite a departure for my writing. Instead of sensual, it’s sweet, which means that there is no consummated sex. The book includes lots of sexual tension between the heroine, Courtney Madison, and hero, Derek Corrigan, though. Plus, it’s set in West Texas near where I grew up and part of it even takes place in Lubbock. Courtney has a teenaged brother for whom she’s guardian since their mom’s death. Derek has two young kids, eight and five, and is a widower. Oh, you see where this is going, don’t you? Maybe. Maybe not. I'm not saying. Soon I’ll get the release date, but I’m sure it will be 2011.

No cover yet
I also signed the contract for a novella titled SAVE YOUR HEART FOR ME. I love this little story. I began it years ago, then decided to change the name of the heroine and her mom to that of my aunt and my mom. When my mom died three-and-a-half years ago, I put the story away. One week last month, I dug it out of my computer’s hard drive and finished it. It’s a western historical set in—no surprise—Texas in 1885.

Thanks for stopping by!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Excellent post, Caroline. Great info. Thanks!