I am so excited! Today I have my friend and extremely talented author, DEBBIE KUMP, guest posting on my blog. This is my very first guest post ever and I am thankful it is with such an all-around awesome person. I had the honor of editing DEBBIE’S novel, 7G, before it was published and I must say it will leave you with a different feeling about technology after you read it. I did a review for 7G which you can read here. Please help me make her feel welcome. Read the review for 7G and visit Debbie’s site here . Come back to leave a question for her and you could win an autographed copy of 7G! The winner will be picked at random by Debbie and notified via email so make sure and include your email address in your comment. The winner will be announced on Monday, August 1st.
I’m a big fan of black moments in fiction. But in real life…not so much.
In literature, I love reaching that emotional climax when the protagonist’s future seems bleak, hoping that a minute chance for a HEA, or Happily Ever After, still remains. Yet when my own life takes a similar turn, I grow increasingly frustrated, doubting a personal HEA exists.
Just as I prefer to write by plotting out the major scenes in outline form before delving into my next novel, I prefer to map out my future career plans and goals than to simply take things as they come. But unexpected twists in the road of life occasionally throw off my plans.
And lately, these black moments seem to be occurring with increasing regularity.
Nine years ago, I resigned from full-time teaching to stay home and raise our children. By teaching part-time in the evenings, I felt like I never truly left the classroom. Yet when my oldest son entered school, I abandoned the part-time gigs to keep my evenings free for his homework and sports.
As busy as my children kept me with their activities at home, a void began to grow in my life. No longer needing to read Geometry, Algebra II, and ACT prep books in my spare time to prepare myself for answering myriad student questions, my brain thirsted for a new challenge. In response, an unachieved goal continually surfaced in my mind.
Personally, I’m driven by goals. Wanted to run a marathon. Check. (Completed four, to be exact.) Wanted to live in Maui. Check. (Then missed it so much after we returned to the mainland that I made my husband move back to the islands.) Wanted to publish a book…
Despite my growing commitments to my children’s school and sports, I decided to do something to remedy that. Back then, my naiveté was bliss, never guessing how much time and effort I’d invest over the next few years in order to actually achieve this goal. But looking back, I believe all of it was worthwhile to be where I am today.
Especially since my prospects of reentering the teaching field this fall are slim.
Recessional government cutbacks and a failed levy recently forced my school district to eliminate numerous teaching positions. Not that I’m sure I could even manage a part-time position should one become available. Shortly following my sons’ births, a genetic autoimmune disease called iritis flared in my eyes, triggering eye pain and debilitating migraines due to extreme light sensitivity. To cope, I wear a hat and mountaineering glacier glasses both indoors and out.
Blessed with supportive family and friends, I eventually met my publishing goal. In October, Whiskey Creek Press will release Exiled to the North in e-book and paperback. Yet a different project surprisingly debuted first. This July, World Castle Publishing released my Apocalyptic Thriller, 7G. Chronicling the interwoven lives of multiple characters, 7G is set in the near future when Smartphones will be obsolete. Instead, technological innovations provide virtual computer screens for texting, surfing the Internet, or reading an e-book on lenses worn directly over the eye. With the upcoming conversion to 7G Network allowing instantaneous optical and audio recording, limitless military and civilian applications abound. Yet an unexpected programming glitch proves fatal, spelling disaster for the nation. In the aftermath of 7G, the fates of college sophomore Erik Weber and submariner Alyssa Kensington entwine, making the reader wonder if these protagonists will escape and manage to survive in a crippled world.
So for now, I’m done losing sleep over my black moments. (My characters do that to me enough as it is.) While waiting to apply for the scarce job openings in my field, I enjoy working on my next novel and coaching my sons’ soccer, hockey, lacrosse, and baseball teams. Though I know I’ll return to the classroom in some capacity (eventually), in the meantime I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to follow my dream down this new career path.
Thank you, Beth, for inviting me as a guest on your blog today. I wish you all the best in following your writing dream! (And believe me, Beth’s off to a great start. I recently had the pleasure of reading a sample intro of her novel. She really hooks the reader right from page one!)
Wow! Debbie, I didn’t realize how extremely busy your life is! The fact that you find the time to write a paragraph, much less an entire book as thrilling and scary as 7G, is a miracle! I would like to know more about the iritis that you mentioned. Thank you so much for taking the time to guest post on Writing Opinions and I would love to have you back soon. Mi casa es su casa! Also, do you think you might be able to tutor me in Algebra when I start the class? I love words but hate numbers with a passion! LOL!!! Thanks for the kind words about my novel, you sure know how to give a girl a big head!
You can also find Debbie on Facebook here. This is a brand new author page for her so it is still under construction. Make sure to stop by both her website and Facebook page and show my girl some LOVE!!!