Convergence, Stepping Stones to Authordom


It’s Resurrection, a bloghop hosted by Mina Lobo, and IWSG hosted the first Wednesday of every month by Alex J. Cavanaugh.

Digging through my blog archives, I’m able to combine the two. I wrote this post over two years ago. I added some updates. The message: enjoy the journey no matter where on the path you are. It’s exciting and fulfilling. Why? I live my dream. That’s all that matters. Sometimes we forget.

It’s not always easy to see how one step relates to another when in the thick of picking your way across the stream. When I look back, the connections often amaze me.

Moving to Central Oregon led me to Pine Mountain Observatory. Its stepping stones out into the galaxy and beyond spark my imagination and wonder. I use that fuel the rest of the year in my writing.

Speaking to the public in the dark takes most of the fear out of it. I’m now very comfortable speaking and reading in public venues, even with the lights on.

During a meeting with other volunteers / friends one winter, one mentioned to me the existence of Central Oregon Writers Guild. I went home and looked it up online. There I found the fellowship of other writers. An important support group. I took my writing from novice to more professional, learned about platforms and marketing, and get the encouragement to go after what I want.

I also learned about conferences, workshops and Second Sundays. At Second Sundays I found the courage to stand up and work on reading aloud to an audience. This won me fans, advice, and more encouragement.  The first time I got up to read, the woman who organizes my town’s writers conference, Nature of Words, was in the audience. Kindly, she told me to never take no as an answer and said I ‘must’ go to Willamette Writers.

I went home and looked up Willamette Writers online. When registration opened for the conference, I signed up and committed to four face-to-face pitches with agents and a publisher.

Having a deadline helped me get the spit and polish on my first novel done in a timely fashion – even with two complete redirects of the plot. I felt confident at the conference. I learned what it takes and what agents and publishers are looking for in my genre. All four asked me to submit, but it didn’t go any farther. That was OK. I learned a lot, and I understand why it didn’t.

Every rejection leads somewhere, too. Maybe we don’t see it. For me it usually leads to learning and growing and trying again. It is merely a bump not an insurmountable obstacle. Turn to your support systems, take a deep breath and go at it again. And again. And again.

You know when something feels right. It beats in your core. Sings. You don’t mind the work and the effort. It’s more like fun and play than work.

Since then the indie revolution started and went full tilt, and I decided that was the road calling loudest to me. For now. It suits my independent nature, and I love working for myself. I’ve gotten even better at deadlines. I usually set one with my editor before the first draft is done.

The beauty about being a writer in these turbulent times is we have choices and have the freedom to change our minds and explore all the options and roads out there.

I’ve said this several times, but it’s worth repeating. I love fan mail.

Anyway, I just want to encourage you to be bold. It’s amazing where one tiny step can lead. 

FIRST EVER Jousting Tournament! Right here, beginning next Monday (Nov. 12th), for the launch of my new book The Renaissance of Hetty Locklear. It’s not too late to join the fun. Read more HERE



December 14th is HobbitFest! Get your Hobbit on. Read more HERE



Breaking News!

The trailer for The Renaissance of Hetty Locklear.

Thank you, dear friend, Raven.



  1. November 7, 2012    

    It feels more like fun and play – you got that right!
    All those things that fell into place. And we’re really glad they did, because we get to read the results.

  2. November 7, 2012    

    That’s a nice thought at the end. Taking chances and being bold can lead to some exciting new things.

  3. November 7, 2012    

    Thanks for sharing your journey. It really does resonate deep down when you’ve found the right path. And you already have a trailer! Yay, you!

  4. November 7, 2012    

    It was nice joining you while you re-lived your journey Mary.

  5. Stephen Tremp Stephen Tremp
    November 7, 2012    

    I’ll include a link to this Blogfest on my Friday post! Good luck with everything. I’m sending big thoughts your way right now for a smashing success!

  6. November 7, 2012    

    Just reading this has made me feel so much more confident, thank you :) I love your work and I hope your success continues :)

  7. November 7, 2012    

    Thanks for sharing your journey, Mary. And I enjoyed the trailer. Nice job!

  8. November 7, 2012    

    I agree. And it’s only when you look behind that you see where each of those steps has led. Here’s to your next step ahead!

  9. November 7, 2012    

    They become more obvious when you look back, Alex. But, yeah, it’s a fun ride. Sometimes frustrating, but no if we remember to find the fun again.

    It can, Brinda. I was afraid to volunteer at the observatory because I didn’t really know anything when I started. But look at what I would have missed if I’d chickened out.

    It does, Laura. The trailer came out great. :D I love it.

    It’s nice to now take this journey together, Carolyn.

    Thanks, Stephen. If I can get it to the geeky gals, it should do well.

    Thanks, Anna. I have a teeny toehold. Not quite success yet.

    I’m very grateful for my very talented friend, Doug. I’d have no trailers otherwise.

  10. November 7, 2012    

    Wow, I love the Hetty trailer!! Awesome!

    It was interesting to me to read about how speaking in the dark at the Observatory helped you overcome your troubles with it. That’s one of my biggest fears and the prospect of it always makes me a nervous wreck. I should find a way to try it in the dark here!

    Very inspiring post, Mary. :)

  11. November 7, 2012    

    Hey, MPax!!

    Since I joined in your What’s Your Chocolate blog event a while back, I thought I’d extend the invitation to you to participate in my blog’s “A Christmas Tale” blog event! Here’s the signup link with information if you’re interested:

    Happy reading!

  12. November 7, 2012    

    OMG! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your trailer!

    I also like what you said about one step leading to another. I’ve seen that in my life, too. Probably all of us have.

    Looking forward to reading Hetty’s story!

  13. November 7, 2012    

    I got another form response today. I lost count but it’s gotta be over fifty now and it hurts. This was a beautiful post, M. I have so much admiration for you.

  14. November 7, 2012    

    Hi M.
    I love the picture, my imagination took to stepping across that bridge. I love how inspirational you are. Good luck with the new release and oh, what an excellent trailer.

  15. November 7, 2012    

    Yes, when it feels right, like a good fit, it all falls easily into place. Isn’t it wonderful to have so many choices these days?

  16. November 7, 2012    

    Great post about one thing leading to another and knowing your feet are on the right path. And I love that photo of the stone bridge!

  17. November 7, 2012    

    I agree, Lee. It’s too bad we can’t get a better glimpse of where something may lead. But I suppose it depends on our other steps.

    My cats helped, too, Julie. They make faces if I don’t use enough emotion when reading aloud.

    I will give your bloghop a shoutout, LM. I’m taking most of December off, so don’t know if I’ll be able to participate.

    I love it, too, Carol. She did such a great job. Some steps I wasn’t sure about, but they all lead to where we are. Yes? Right now, I think that’s a good thing for me.

    Congrats, Suze! That means you’re submitting. I’m proud of you. Let it roll off your back. They have bad taste. Obviously.

    Thank you, Nancy. I like that we can use this group to lift everyone up. It’s a wonderful creation of Alex’s.

    It is, Nancy. Never give up.

    It is a great photo. The idea that even the steps that curdle your stomach lead somewhere OK usually calms me down, LG.

  18. November 7, 2012    

    Well put, Mary. Thanks for saying you’d host me for a blog tour. I’m putting you down on a list so that I can make a better decision.

    This whole new ebook revolution has been great. I don’t think I’d have ever gotten published without it. I would have remained invisible and all those stories would just rot in a box somewhere.

  19. November 7, 2012    

    Great advice. I’m getting better at this.

  20. Miranda Hardy Miranda Hardy
    November 7, 2012    

    I love that you say “be bold”. That is very inspiring in itself, but your tale speaks volumes, too. Never give up and learn along the way.

  21. November 7, 2012    

    Great post. I’m glad you found your path.

  22. November 7, 2012    

    I ‘m so glad I didn’t miss this “resurrected” post. It was sooo encouraging to me to read it. Thank you, Mary!

  23. November 7, 2012    

    Enjoyed that post, and the photo of the stone footbridge. (like the rails on the sides) I like the way you heard about something, then went home and looked it up. You followed up on tips. I like that.

    I’m buckling down and writing now, so not joining too many blogfests. I’ll still visit blogs though.

  24. November 8, 2012    

    I’m very happy to host you, Michael. The ebook thing is great.

    Glad to hear it Susan.

    It’s important to keep learning, Miranda, especially when you think you know it all.

    Me, too, Tonja.

    I’m glad you found it so, Loretta.

    I need to be buckling down, DG. After the joust next week I will.

  25. November 8, 2012    

    I love the idea of these little “stepping stones” you’ve encountered along the way which have led to your path to writing:)
    I’m glad you followed where they led.


  26. November 8, 2012    

    I’m so glad you followed this path that now makes you so happy. Like yourself, I also feel I have much to thank and that every apparent fail makes us stronger. Great resurrected post! Happy IWSG day.

  27. November 8, 2012    

    yes, one thing definitely leads to another and often we’re on a path that’s better for us, but it’s a path we may not have picked without first having been led there.

  28. November 8, 2012    

    Great post! Very encouraging and got me thinking about some things– still need to process them through but I’m thinking…

    Can’t wait to see where things go for you! Cheers, Danette

  29. November 8, 2012    

    Happy to be bold…ish. hehe. Great choice for the Resurrection blogfest!

  30. November 9, 2012    

    Love this post! I’m so glad you shared your journey, and how indie publishing opened up a way for your writing that suits you!

  31. November 9, 2012    

    I agree; living one’s dream, regardless of where it takes us or what it brings, is the only fulfilling way of living. Thanks for participating in my blogfest!
    Some Dark Romantic

  32. November 20, 2012    

    I loved reading this post. So far I have a publisher, but if anything were to go wrong, I’d go total Indie.