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Thursday, July 20, 2017

Celebrate the small things

Hi everyone,
I hope you've had a great week. Be sure to stop by to see what she and her co-hosts have to say. I hope Lexa is feeling better.
What are you celebrating this week?
Here's what we're celebrating:

  • I finished the first draft of my story about our dog, Elliott. Hoping when it's finished, it shows his personality.
  • Emails from my sister who lives in another country. I miss her lots so when we keep in touch, it's fun Sometimes we have Skype chats. So far, she's enjoying her new home.
  • Making good progress catching up with book reviews. I was feeling sad after Elliott passed away so I got way behind with them.
Happy weekend everyone


Thursday, July 13, 2017

Celebrate the Small things

Hi everyone,
It's almost Friday again so let's celebrate anything we want. Hop on over to to see what's happening there. We hope Lexa is feeling much better and ready to start blogging again.
Here's what we're celebrating this week:

  • I started a new picture book about our dog, Elliott. You might remember he passed away last month and we miss him lots because he was part of the family for more than 13 years. We used to tell our sons that he was their brother and he didn't look like them because he was adopted.
  • Working on reviewing more books and making good progress with it.
  • Had a fun conversation with my friend Charlene today.
What are you celebrating this week? Hope you have lots to share.
copyright 2017: Deanie Humphrys-Dunne

webstite; www,

What if you're discouraged?

banner by Rhonda Patton

What if you're an author who's feeling discouraged? Maybe you're struggling to finish (or even start) a story?  What if you don't have any ideas for a story? Has marketing been a challenge? Your story was rejected? Here are some suggestions:
  • Let's say you're looking for an idea for a great story. Did you have funny or memorable experiences as a child? Did you have a relative you always made you laugh or who gave you amazing advice? You can use these things as a basis for a story. Start writing and see where it takes you. Remember, starting is often the hardest part.
  • In my view, marketing is the biggest challenge. Try engaging more people on your twitter or Facebook network. Be as helpful as you can with them. Retweet for them, or post reviews for them. They'll generally appreciate your efforts. If you wrote a children's picture book, contact the local library about doing a reading. Find ways to get people talking about your book.
  • If your story or article was rejected, try re-editing it. How is the grammar and spelling? Did you miss typos? Are the tenses consistent? Have you included enough conflict to keep the reader turning pages? If you find any of these problems and remedy them, you'd be surprised the difference it can make in your story.r
  • Read your story aloud. How does it sound to you? Do you hear overused  words like that, I guess, maybe, somewhat, rather, very? If you find them, delete them. You'll be glad you did.
I hope these suggestions help encourage you to persevere. In my opinion, perseverance plays a big part on the road to success.

copyright; 2017: Deanie Humphrys-Dunne

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Celebrate the small things

Hi Everyone,
I hope you had a great week with lots to celebrate. Don't forget to stop by to see what's happening there. Hopefully, she'll be feeling better and is able to give us an update.
Here's what we're celebrating this week:

  • Not much rain, which is good because the grass and weeds don't grow as fast. :)
  • We got a little blender system called the Magic Bullet. Have any of you tried it? It's fun and we've made some nice smoothies and other things with it.
  • My author friend, Virginia Wright, featured my new book on her blog this week. She also has a new coloring book out, called "Practice Your Way to Perfect; Seashore Coloring Book. It's another beautiful creation, written and illustrated by Virginia.
  • I'm enjoying reading another author friend, Janice Spina's new middle grade mystery, The Case of the Mischievous Ghost, part of her Davey and Derek series.
What are you celebrating this week? Thanks for stopping by and have a great week.

copyright: 2017: Deanie Humphrys-Dunne

What if?

Let's imagine you wrote a story. You thought it was ready for your publisher, but when you read it, something didn't seem right. It's seems flat to you. Here are some things you might check out before it  goes to your editor:

  • Is the opening engaging? Does it make your readers want to know what happens next?
  • What if you develop your main character more? Show his/her personality. Remember you want your readers to identify with this "person." Will your readers root for his success?
  • What if you change the ending? Does it tie up the loose ends in the story? Or does it leave them wondering what happened.
  • What if you check your story for overused words, or words you don't need. Some of these include; that, maybe, some, any, somewhat, I guess, I think, etc. Also, do you have two sentences starting with the same word, i.e. She.. or He.. If so, think about revising those sentences.
  • Did you include good descriptions of the scenes so your readers feel like they're taking the journey with you? Remember, you need to draw them into the story so they can't wait to turn the pages.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Virginia Wright's interview with Deanie Humphrys-Dunne

Today’s guest author is Reader’s Favorite Book Award-Winner, Deanie Humphrys-Dunne. Deanie is a winner in 2016, 50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading Presented by The Author’s She has received several other awards and nominations.
I met Deanie online a few years ago, and we have been author buddies ever since. I hope you have fun learning a little bit more about Deanie through the conversation we had below.  Her book My Life at Sweetbrier is being spotlighted in this interview as it is a true story that I loved.
My Life at Sweetbrier by Deanie Humphrys-Dunne is a beautiful, touching true story about a little girl that was diagnosed with a condition Cerebral Palsy and was told by her doctor that she would never be able to walk. Her father would not accept that diagnosis and instills faith in his little girl, and he set out to teach her to ride horses and felt if she could do that, she would be okay. Her parents opened a riding school (Sweetbrier) so that her dad could keep his promise to her. Despite her diagnosis, the family sets out on quite a journey in life…I recommend this book for older aged children for a couple of reasons, because it is a touching story of determination and it teaches a lesson never to give up, and that dreams can come true.
Big Bear Hugs,
How long have you been writing?
I studied and graduated from 2 courses at the Institute of Children’s Literature before writing my first book, Tails of Sweetbrier. It was published in 2009 but republished in 2017 with a new title, My Life at Sweetbrier, a new cover, and five additional chapters.
Do you like silence or music when you are writing?
I prefer silence because I think it’s easier to concentrate on my writing without distractions.
Is there any one thing that helps the creative juices flow?
No, I’d like to discover one, though.  If I have trouble discovering an idea, I try taking a break from writing. It sometimes helps me gather ideas.
What is your next work in progress?
My sister, Holly Humphrys-Bajaj, is working on the illustrations for our next book. We’re excited about creating our first picture book, about a little tractor named Wilbur. We don’t have a timeframe for the release yet, but I’ll be sure to keep you updated on it.
What would you like readers to remember most about My Life at Sweetbrier?
I think every child deserves to be inspired to follow their dreams because all things are possible if you persevere. You can realize your dreams against the odds like I did.
Thank you so much for interviewing me today, Virginia. We had fun together, as always. -Deanie
You are welcome, Deanie. It was fun…you truly are an inspiration. Xo -Virginia
Amazon page:
Memories of Sweetbrier:

Children’s Author Deanie Humphrys-Dunne:

Interview by: Author and Illustrator, Virginia Wright 
Books by Virginia Wright can be found at and other online retail stores
Latest release: Who the Hell Are you? Alzheimer’s the Wrong Diagnosis

Monday, July 3, 2017

My Life at Sweetbrier- 5-star review by Kris Miller
Born two months premature and weighing in at just three pounds, by the age of three Deanie was still crawling. Diagnosed with cerebral palsy, the doctor's were certain she would never walk. Deanie's father made a solemn promise, if Deanie couldn't walk, she would learn to ride. And ride she did, straight on to becoming a champion within competitions. Born with strength and determination -- and a father who taught her anything was possible -- Deanie displays unrivaled courage in defying the odds stacked against her. An unforgettable read, Deanie's story is truly inspirational. MY LIFE AT SWEETBRIER is the incredible true story of a young girl who achieved her dreams through perseverance and hard work. A children's book that should should be required reading within a classroom.

~ Kris Miller, certified TopShelf Reviewer. TopShelf Magazine does not offer 'paid review services’ and TopShelf Reviewers are not compensated for their reviews.