Patty Farrell

Why do you write?: Personal entertainment, fantastical reverie

Describe where you write.: Side-by-side laptops on the couch when possible

Who or what is your muse?: life’s ridiculousness

Three wishes . . .: peace, happiness, fantastical reality

Favorite childhood book, and why?: The Giving Tree… say no more

Explain when is your ideal time to write.
: When focus is in the air

Name a book you would reread again and again, and why.: Sex, Drugs and Cocoa Puffs… pure pleasure

E-book or print? Why?: Print… no emissions

Favorite magazine, and why?: Us Weekly… fun smut

What would you like readers to take away from your writing?: A smile in fun, in release… escaping reality

Patty Farrell

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Monday (should be Sunday) Thanks

Sunday Monday Thanks.  My children never cease to amaze me, and I am constantly learning from them.  When we asked our two daughters to make a Christmas list, my oldest daughter added, “7.  for everyone to be jolly at all times.”  If this does not put life in perspective, I do not know what does.  Not to mention, 4 of the 7 items on the list are books.  One proud English teach of a momma here. . .

jolly

A friend I have known for over twenty-five years e-mailed me this morning asking if my girls might be interested in her doll collection.  She wrote, ” . . .it’s time for me to pass them along to the next generation . . . [and] I was thinking that your girls may like them.”  The collection itself is not what touched me, but the fact she thought enough of my girls to pass on a sentimental collection.  Who knew when we were sitting on the page bench in the Illinois House of Representatives twenty-five years ago talking about boys, about which representative tipped the best, and about when we would next soak up the sun we would one day be talking about bequeathing items to others?

In the mail today I found my FREE “You Just Got Joy’d!” cards, and I was ecstatic.  I am looking forward to using these in the next few weeks in an attempt to brighten the days of others (which, in turn, brightens my day . . . can’t beat that).

The hub and I have a visitation and a funeral to attend out of town.  As we were trying to figure out the logistics of a dog, two small girls, two jobs, and volunteer coaching, my salt-of-the-earth friends stepped in without hesitation with one covering practice and the other watching my girls while my hub and I travel.  I am deeply grateful for them as is my hub.

Today is the birthday of a dear friend whom I met at church over five years ago.  A phenomenal writer, she was there for me every step of the way during my breast cancer journey with just the right words when I needed them.  Not wanting to bother my hub with the numerous appointments as I felt he had enough to deal with considering his wife was losing her breasts, she said, “You need to let him in,” and so I did.

Motivating words from a teacher and author whom I know I met for a reason my first year of teaching.  She mentors me, incites much laughter in me, and, most importantly, loves me unconditionally.

For what are you thankful this Monday?  Share below in the comments section so that others may realize how much they have in which to be thankful.

Writing Workshop Wednesdays (15)

In classical mythology (who doesn’t love mythology?), the daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne are referred to as the nine muses, each responsible for protecting an art or science:  Calliope (epic poetry), Clio (history), Erato (lyric poetry), Euterpe (music), Melpomene (tragedy), Polyhymnia (religious music), Terpsichore (dance), Thalia (comedy), and Urania (astronomy).  Personally, my muses are my two daughters.  Initially motivated by a diagnosis of cancer, I wanted to have some sort of record of my love of reading for my girls.  Thus, the conception of AuthorGroupie.blogspot.com which has evolved into AuthorGroupie.com.

In an effort to convince my English 111 students of the validity of being referred to as authors (aren’t we all authors of our own story?) and after reading their memoirs, I assigned them the task of completing my author interview, Ten Questions.  As responses are trickling in, I, once again, am amazed at my students’ creativity, honesty, and sense of humor.  Mr. Carter writes in response to, “Who or what is your muse?”

“My muse would be the fact that if I don’t write I will receive a bad grade. I think that’s enough motivation for anyone to sit down and write something amazing.”

So, for this week’s Writing Workshop Wednesdays, who or what is your muse?

i knead A editer!

640px-We_Can_Edit

Reading is my passion.  Being transported inside a character’s head or to an unknown locale  makes me speechless when an author writes well.  In fact, on more than one occasion, I have been  known to grieve when the conclusion of a novel arrives.  Usually, a replacement novel is one of the only means of rescuing me from the depths of reading despair until the replacement novel’s conclusion.  Thus, a cyclical cycle of addiction and sorrow emerges, worth every savored word on the page.

So, it comes as no surprise I enjoy reviewing books, sharing books, gifting books, discussing books, decorating with books, etc.  Saturday I received a novel in the mail for the purposes of review for a blogging book tour.  Snuggled in bed I picked up this new read and ogled the front and back covers as I always do prior to reading page one.  Disappointed to find a spelling error on the back cover,  I did not abandon all hope and proceeded to open the book and commence my read.

On page four I found two additional spelling errors and another on page five which was when I made the decision to read no more.  This particular author, according to the brief biography, worked as a journalist.  So, I think this person in particular should know better.  However, I believe anyone who is pursuing a career as an author should definitely revise and edit for the cleanest draft possible for his/her readers.  To me, this is  an essential part of the author job description.

My English 111 students are on draft three of a Memoir Essay assigned on day one of class;  we are now two-thirds of the way through the semester.  Revisions will continue until each student is able to walk away with a clean copy in hand.  While enrolled in this class, these students are authors and should respect the craft of writing.

In the same manner, when I purchase a cupcake from the store, I expect it to taste sweet.  If the baker misplaces salt for sugar in the recipe, I would not expect him/her to reason, “It’s close enough.”   While undergoing surgery to eradicate the cancer found in my breast, my surgeon performed three procedures for a successful clear margins outcome.  I am grateful she did not determine “close enough” was good enough.

With this being said, authors please revise and utilize an editor (friend, peer, family, Writing Center, writing group) always.  Keep hope and grammatically correct writing alive for your readers.