Monday, July 23, 2012

The 7 Cs of Success

My family recently attended a program at Northwestern University on Careers of the Future. The intent was to inspire my middle schooler to look beyond study hall and consider his future. I hoped he would be inspired to better strategize his academics toward getting into college. 

The surprise keynote speakers for the hubs and I turned out to be a highlight. Drs. Virginia H. Burney and Kristie Speirs Neumeister gave us a recipe for success, and there are only seven ingredients….

  1. Critical Thinking – (learn to formulate questions, evaluate your source, organize the information, analyze the relevance, synthesize it into your own words and reflect on what you learn) There are many steps to critical thinking. It is no wonder it is the #1 key to success.

  1. Communication – written, oral, body language. Clear communication is necessary.

  1. Confidence

  1. Content knowledge – specifically, they said upper level math courses were important and predictive of college completion. You don’t just go to college, you should come out with a degree.

  1. Commitment – this includes all those key words for success….resilience, persistence, working hard, work ethic

  1. Collaboration - learn to work with others. The village raises the child. The village can do a lot of things.

  1. Creative Thinking – different from critical thinking. We are moving from the Information Age to the Innovation Age. Creative thinking is vital for survival in an Innovative Age. Everyone is looking for something new. Technology is constantly changing and folks have to adapt and work with it.

Now that I have these keys to success, I should be a millionaire soon, right? If only I took more math classes. 

Monday, July 16, 2012

In Editing

Many of my friends and family have been asking about the book. Publishing takes a long time, and it probably seems like forever since I announced I had a book deal. It really hasn't been that long. Being a writer requires a lot of patience. I don't have a lot of patience, but I have learned to exercise this when it comes to my writing life (while getting immediate satisfaction elsewhere, like defeating the zombies in Plants vs. Zombies).

I am happy to announce that we are in editing. Right now, as I type this, I should be reviewing edited material and send changes to my editor. 

Somehow, the editor turns this working copy into a master copy that gets edited again (and maybe again, I don't know). This becomes the book. 

I am enjoying dipping into "Divided Moon" again. I can’t wait to share it with the world. I think it will give readers a wonderful ride. The hard part of editing it is slowing down. I still get carried away by the story. 

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Book Review: The Year the Swallows Came Early

"The Year the Swallows Came Early" by Kathryn Fitzmaurice (The Bowen Press, 2009) is the perfect summer read. Set in California, one can almost smell the salty air of the ocean breezes in this quiet tale about the year Eleanor “Groovy” Robinson turned 11, and the swallows came early.

The book opens with Groovy’s father being arrested in front of her. The next 100 pages is her trying to find out why.

The book has a vivid theme of forgiveness, and reminds the reader how harmful it is to hold onto anger and draw too quick conclusions. There is always another side of the story, which may not seem any better, but should be heard.