Monday, July 30, 2012

Monday's Making a Difference

Yes, I know it's been a while..... One of the reasons I didn't get to a "Making a Difference" entry last week was because I have been writing a lot lately. I am pleased to say that I am now done with the first draft of my book! I couldn't do it alone. I have been part of several writing groups over the last three years.

So, today's Making a Difference is a group of people... my writers group(s)!

(I realize they don't have a direct influence on Brielle other than the lunches we might have when she tags along. However, their inspiration and feedback have been critical to my writing which is about Brielle and our experiences together. )

MH, S and me at Ashley's graduation party
May 2012
"MH" and "S" have been part of my writers group throughout the last three years.

I first met "S" at a book club connected to a local women's organization for new members of the community. She heard me mention I was working on a book and called me to ask if I was part of writers group. We quickly found an informal group that met every other week and decided to be brave together and check it out. That's where we both met "MH".

Me, "K", "MH", "S", "C" and "A"
June 2010
Within a few months, one of the members suggested we get a group of six serious writers together to form a new group. Weekly meetings and a writing deadline every three weeks really got me motivated to write regularly.

We were all working on something different:
- "MH" was working on her second screenplay (and has now completed three and is starting her third while getting very close to selling at least one of her screenplays)
- "S" was working on a novel about two adult sisters (she is now in re-writes)
- "K" was working on a novel about dressage (published it about a year ago and is writing another novel in the series)
- "C" was working on several things (always several things - published a novel and poetry, but also wrote a play and many short stories)
- "A" was working on short stories and a novel about teenage boy in the 70's (he completed the novel as well as a second novel and published the short stories as an e-book)

"S", me, "MH" & "G"
December 2011
Inspiration came in handfuls with all of those creative minds giving each other feedback every week. However, the group ran its course and broke up about 18 months ago. After a six-month break from writing entirely, "S", "MH" and I formed our own new group and invited a new member to join us. "G" contributed to "MH's" third screenplay, but is a very busy mother of a young child and does not get to join us much any more.

So, as I start the re-writes of my book, I am thankful and honored to have "K", "C", "A", "G" and especially "S" and "MH" helping me push through the process and see this project to completion!

*Miss any of my previous "Monday's Making a Difference" profiles? Just check them out right here!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Busy Days!

It's been a busy couple of weeks at the Stull household! After all of the festivities of Ashley's graduation and Brian's birthday, we had a little time to recouperate.

We had a special day for Father's Day. After church, we took a picnic lunch to Lake Lanier and then had fun playing Brian's new corn hole game.

Hanging out at Lake Lanier on Father's Day

Playing our new corn hole game by the lake

Brielle and I spent the next week at Vacation Bible School. Brielle's best friend also joined us and the two girls had a blast together.
Brielle and her BFF at VBS
Vacation Bible School
We spent a few days in Orlando, FL at Ashley's college orientation at the University of Central Florida. We had two overwhelming days trying to process all of the information thrown at us. We are still numb knowing Ashley will be leaving in just a few weeks. :(
Parents orientation at UCF
Ashley at the Rosen School of Hospitality Management (UCF)
We spent one additional day at Clearwater Beach, FL just soaking up the fun at the beach.
Chillin' at the beach!
About to watch the sunset at the beach

We were home just one day before Brielle and I left to visit the Tri-Cities in WA to visit my parents and brother (and his family). While we were there, my aunt and uncle visited us for a few days. They live in Arizona and we hadn't seen them in many years. We spent one morning retelling old family stories which was incredibly special.

Brielle with my parents at the river
My dad and his brother
Me and my brother at one of the WA wineries
Since Brielle and I got back from our trip, I've been in catch-up mode and college preparations mode. Where has this summer gone???