Thursday, March 10, 2016

33 and 1/3... It Ain't Just for Records, Anymore!

Speedbo: From Heartland Dictionary, 2016, 3rd Edition: Speedbo is the one-word-made-of-two-words designation (like Brangelina and TomKat and Bromance) "Write-a-Book-in-a-Month" style challenge put forth by a group of united and highly successful (but amazingly humble, of course!) inspirational authors to help provide an impetus and possible kick in the pants which helps aspiring authors boost their word count and attain the publication of their dreams.

While giving away great prizes, words of wisdom and confidence boosts along the way!


There is no crying in baseball. 

Dave and me with Boog Powell, legendary player for Baltimore after he found out I named a hero "Boog"...
Youse think I'm kidding??? You think I'm messin' wi' youse???

(shakes head and finger at computer screen)  There is NO CRYING IN BASEBALL.


And here's why.

This is a challenge... This is teamwork... this is a glimpse at a new tomorrow, laid out before us.

We don't cry.

We don't get down because we're off to a rough start, because we've got 21 days to go!
That's an amazing amount of time. That's time to re-group, re-strategize, and re-align ourselves with our goals.

Life happens. Stuff happens. Time gets away from us. People get sick. People die. Folks lose jobs... friends need help, kids need help, we need help. Plumbing and computers are guaranteed to break at the worst possible time.

But we fight on because these things happen to everyone of us, and you can't let it mess with you.

PEEPS!!! THIS IS OUR FIGHT SONG!!!!!   (I have this Rachel Platten song with many other motivational songs on a CD for my car, and my kitchen. No matter what happens, there's a lot of fight left in me, and no one charts my destiny except me... and the Good Lord above! Land sakes, if we can't do anything else, the least we can do for ourselves is to grab hold of our own reins... captain our own ship... and forge ahead!)

So if you've lost your way, now'd be the time to set a new plan in motion. If 1,000 words per day was too much, try 500.

If you can't find two hours to work, compromise on one.

If you can't write at night, get up earlier in the morning.

If you can't write at home, go into work an hour early each day (or stay an hour late) and write there.

If you can't write during the week, block out weekends.

Here is the gist of this: You have to be the one making time.

No one can do that part for you.

No one can adjust your schedule. You have to be the fierce competitor and do that part. You have to gaze with the eye of the tiger and ROAR like Katy Perry!!! 

Regaining ground is clutch in building success. Not conceding or acceding defeat.


Tina always used to post this saying... "What Have You Done Today To Make Your Dream Come True?"

And that saying should mean at least a little something to each of us. So if your first ten days weren't as expected, tuck them behind you and grab hold of your future. Today is a new day, with no mistakes in it yet... (L. M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables)

Come on inside and talk about what you've done or what you want to do! I'd love to hear it!

The coffee's on and I've got some fresh cheese Danish from Grandma Eichas's recipe... Soft, chewy pastry, stuffed with sweetened cheese and sprinkled with streusel topping.

Folks talked about Grandma's recipes from Germany... but Grandma laughed and said to me, "I was eleven when I came over! What recipes? Anything I learned, I taught myself and it was half farm, half-Depression and half-need. And in the end, it worked out all right." She raised eleven successful children. She lost two in childhood, dealt with a husband who had a stroke in his late-thirties, and worked non-stop to help her children, and then her grandchildren... A Great Depression, eleven kids, two lost, a World War, and a husband who worked two jobs while she and the kids ran the farm...

If you want it badly enough, my friends... you can do anything. That's what Grandma Eichas and a whole lot of good music taught me.

We've got THREE copies of "Back in the Saddle" to give away today, so pop in, leave a comment and I'll toss your name into Colt Stafford's smokin' hot cowboy hat!


  1. I'm here because I haven't made my word count yet for today, but I feel like I should be singing or dancing or something.

    But I might scare the dog.

    So I guess I'll go write instead. Hopefully, by the time you read this, Ruthy, I'll have hit that magic number of words and be catching some zzzzzzz's.

  2. Ok group huddle here people......Your strategy...keep writing, whenever, wherever, however....YOU CAN DO THIS!!!! I'm in your corner rooting for all you wonderful authors. Ruthy gives some great advice here, and maybe a kick in the pants when needed :-) But look, she provides brain food (who doesn't like fresh cheese danish & COFFEE), well ok maybe not brain food, but a nice sweet & a shot of caffeine to enjoy while you're writing.

    Now go out there and conquer.....dismissed!!!

    P.S. I have a copy of "Back in the Saddle" so no need to add me to the cowboy hat :-)

  3. My eyes are burning and my rear end is tired of this chair, but I made my goal tonight after a busy day at work. And now I get to reward myself with sleep. Yay! I like sleep. :-) Thanks for the pep talk, Ruthy. I'll need it tomorrow when laundry and dusting are vying with writing for my free hours.

  4. Hi ya, Ruthy! I'm feeling energized after reading your post. Since I'll be heading to bed as soon as I post this comment, I'm not sure that's a good thing. If I toss and turn as your pep talk plays in my head, I'll have you to thank for it. LOL

    But no worries. You know I love you, right, Ruthy?

    Dreams are powerful. When we embrace them and couple them with action, great things can happen. I dreamed of being a writer for 40 years before I grabbed hold of that dream and did something about it. Yup. I waited around for four decades. It wasn't until I chose to put legs to my dream that it came true. Not right away, mind you, but in time.

    So I'm here waving my pretty purple pompoms to cheer on all those who are Speedbo-ing their way to their bright, shiny dreams-do-come-true futures. I'm cheering in my oldest sister voice, which can be a wee bit on the loud side, so you might wanna cover your ears. Here goes...

    Write! Write! Write!
    By day or by night.
    Don't give up the fight.
    You're clever, and you're bright.
    So write, my friend, write!

    I'll leave you with that as I head to bed and attempt to get some much-needed shut-eye.

  5. You can achieve a great deal in 21 days.

  6. Cate, go for it!!! When I saw that great group of folks who made it to the Courtship round of the current LI contest, I thought of you and Dana and Meghan and all the folks who've made it onto the Main Stage of publishing via these contests, and I know ... WE KNOW!!!!... what it takes to make that challenge work for you.

    AND THEN to make it happen again!

    So proud of you!!!

  7. Tina, you've never heard of a 33 1/3 record????

    78's, 33 1/3????

    Record albums???

    AM I THAT OLD???????????????????


    Pretend it's a Compact Disc... Or an iPod mP3.

    Whatever that is!

  8. CLARI, YES!!!!! I do the same thing! When I know I should finish scraping that last wall, but I want one more writing sprint in the bag... and then I remember that NO ONE PAYS ME TO SCRAPE WALLS... :) and honestly, if it bothers anyone, they are welcome to start scraping on their own and help, LOL!

    Life happens.

    But we have to set our own course.

    It's clutch.

  9. TRIXI!!!!! I love the group huddle! Cheerleading days!!! "The team is in a huddle! The captain bows his head. They all get together and this is what he said: We're gonna S-C-O-R-E! S-C-O-R-E!!!!! WE'RE GONNA S-C-O-R-E!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SCORE!!!!!!

  10. Keli, great minds think alike! I love the cheer!!!! Go you!!!!!!

    And I love you right back, my friend!!!!!

  11. Thanks for the pep talk. Please throw my name in for a book. I better get busy! Happy writing everyone.

  12. Thanks for the encouragement and excitement! I'd love a chance at winning. (o:

  13. Mary Preston, yes!

    Twenty one days is a lot of time, and if we got a little bit stymied initially, well... we begin again!

    I'm always starting over, and with a little practice, it's not so bad!!!

  14. Bettie, you're most welcome and your lovely name is in the hat!!!

  15. Kate... Darling....

    I am nothing if not exciting!!!!


    You are most welcome, and your name is in! Nothing better than reading a great cowboy romance once the month is over! MINI-REWARD SYSTEM!!!!!!

  16. No, Ruthy, you're not that old. I remember 33 1/3 records. Maybe you are that old...and so am I. :(
    Thanks for the energizing post. You've got me ready to tackle the day. Yesterday was a flop.
    Congratulations to all of the Seekervillians who advanced in the manuscript matchmakers contest!!!

  17. I definitely remember 33 1/3 records. I'm listening to the fight song and ready to edit for a bit.

    Thanks for the pep talk! This month has hit me with some major curve balls to the point I've wondered why write? And then God dropped a new idea for a story into my mind. Just a nugget, but how many people mined for gold nuggets?

    I appreciate your encouragement. Thanks!

  18. Don't mind me...I just received a major kick in the hinny, so I'm just going to stand over here at the kitchen counter and type for a bit while I allow the burn to subside...

    Ruthy, I can always count on you to tell it how it is! Thanks for the pep talk!!

  19. Oh, we called them 33's. I thought 33 1/3 was a baseball thing.

  20. Dave bought me the 4 album collection of ELVIS when we'd been going steady for six months.

    OH MY STARS!!! TRUE LOVE!!!! 4 albums, I think it was his "GOLD" release, like 50 songs!

    Be still my heart!!!

  21. Jackie, that happens to me all the time, and you have learned the most valuable lesson there is... We all get curve balls and we can overcome every stinkin' one of them!

    And those nuggets are gifts of the Holy Spirit I believe... Hints of what can be with his inspiration and the gift of our hands and brains.

    As long as we don't quit. Good for you, don't let those doubts grab hold of you. We conquer doubts here, and cast them overboard.


  22. Rhonda Starnes, those kicks hurt!!!!!

    But the worst ones are often the most necessary.

    Did you know that Billy Joel said he couldn't WRITE MUSIC when he was happy??? That he needed the angst of life to put him in writing mode.

    Who else do you think was like that? Hemingway? F. Scott?


    It's interesting how the writer brain meshes with the writer spirit and how together they produce the variances that make us all unique.

    I don't read grippingly sad literary.

    I lived it.

    I'm glad it's over.

    I don't wallow or dwell.

    I like moving forward, laying my track, running my own train! (And right now my train is heading west with cowboys!) :)

  23. Tina, it could be a baseball term!!!! If you were batting 33 1/3 you could be in the MAJOR LEAGUES!!!!

    That would be a .333 batting average and every team would fight for you!!!!

  24. Hey Ruthy and good morning Seekerville,
    After visiting family, it's good to be back home and that includes Seekerville. As soon as I got back, I posted three reviews that I was waiting for the books to release (that's the equivalent of a reader's speedbo day) one of them yours Ruthy, to quote you, "to further your cause of world domination", LOL.

    Re 33's: my numbers brain assumed you were talking about 33's not being just for records anymore in the context of percentages, as in 1/3 of the month was gone, but there was still 2/3 of the month left to write :)

    Happy writing everyone!

  25. RUTHY, I remember 33 1/2, and 45s. A little young for 78s. And I remember Elvis. Sheesh, what a talent, he had a voice like black velvet, he could still have been a star without all the "ELVIS!!!" crap. And did you know he had a twin brother who died at birth? We'll never know what HE could have been...
    I'm doing okay on my SPEEDBO goal. Not spectacular, but all right, which is better than not doing it at all. Far better. I'm doing a 10-chapter novella and I've got four, so can't complain. I'm not used to writing this way, I usually edit as I go and do chapter-by-chapter with my crit partner. This is stretching me.
    Checked out the Manuscript Matchmakers and was pleased to see a lot of names I know, and some I've actually conversed with on this and other sites. I won't be there because I went Pony Express, we'll see where that goes.
    Thank you for the motivation, Ruthy. Don't enter me in the drawing, I'm buying it this weekend.
    Kathy Bailey

  26. Ruthy is pursuing world domination? Does anybody remember the cartoon, "Pinky and the Brain"??


    RUTHY, how fun to meet "Boog".

    Please put my name in the drawing....

  28. Life happened so I had to adjust my strategy. Instead of daily counts I'm working on weekend counts. So far so good!

  29. Ruthy, thanks for nudge to keep writing in Speedo. I'm working the polls in Florida and sit in front on an Evid computer for four hours straight. By the time I get home it's hard to face another one. Ha. But after a break of laundry or other homework that I face, I'm back at it typing away. Reading Seekerville helps keep me motivated. A big thanks to all who contribute and write blogs. It is greatly appreciated.

  30. Hi, Ruthy! Can you believe I totally forgot about SpeedBo??? Of course, it might have something to do with being a Freshman in college this year. Oy! Crazy stuff has been happening in my life for sure! Anyway, I haven't had much time, emotion, brain space for much writing the past two years with my life turned up on its head, but I haven't given up! Last night I finally typed "the end" for book 2!!! I know. I should be celebrating a release, but I'm just so thankful to be in this place right now. I don't know how much time I'll have in the next seven weeks as I finish up my Freshman year, but I plan to do all the rewrites and edits this summer in hopes of getting Tiffany's story on the publishing calendar. I think of my Seekerville family often. I miss you all! I'm so glad I can always come back to find encouragement here! Love you gals!!! <3

  31. Yes!! I needed this post, Ruthy. My first ten days have been rather unproductive in the realm of my next story. My goals include researching and plotting out my next story. Yesterday was the first day I was able to do research. And it's getting the juices flowing. :) I plan to work as many days as I can toward my goals. And I'll put the first part of this month behind me . . . not viewing it as failure, but as the heart preparation time that it was.

    Thank you for reminding me (us) that if we make up our minds to do it, we can get the job done!

  32. Great post to get us back in the saddle again! Thank you, Ruthy!! It is almost baseball season. I cannot wait!! I write during games, well, the commercials anyway lol.

  33. I grew up attending a high school that was built in 1901, although I'm not quite that old, lol. I was a competitive swimmer and the school's pool was 33 feet long, instead of the "newer" schools that always had the 25 ft pools. Believe me, working out in the 33 ft pool was to our advantage. While everyone else was looking for the end, we were still looking on the speed. Thirty-three is the first great turning point, but it's not too late to catch up, ladies, if you're used to swimming in a shorter pool. Just keep watching that Lane line at the bottom and take the next stroke!

  34. I grew up attending a high school that was built in 1901, although I'm not quite that old, lol. I was a competitive swimmer and the school's pool was 33 feet long, instead of the "newer" schools that always had the 25 ft pools. Believe me, working out in the 33 ft pool was to our advantage. While everyone else was looking for the end, we were still looking on the speed. Thirty-three is the first great turning point, but it's not too late to catch up, ladies, if you're used to swimming in a shorter pool. Just keep watching that Lane line at the bottom and take the next stroke!

  35. Tracey, you nailed it! We're 1/3 through, and that 33% ain't just for records!

    Tim McGraw says that vinyl records still sound better than CD's in his book.

    All I know is they both scratch up mighty quick in a house like mine!!!

  36. And TRACEY!!!! Thank you for the reviews!!!!! I am so stinkin' grateful!

  37. KAYBEE!!!! I love Pinky and the Brain and Phineas and Ferb!!!! Most people don't understand that side of me, you've got me laughing and yes... listening to Pinky and the Brain taking over the earth!!!!

    Total World Domination or Bust!!! (this is a Blodgett remnant of raising too many very competitive children!)


  38. I love your books Ruth. I'd love to win a copy of this one.

  39. Thanks for the Peptalk today. It's been a crazy couple of days playing catch-up and get ahead between two basketball tournaments and I was feeling guilty for the lack of words. But after a few hours of other work this morning, the weekend holds nothing but writing and three days of State basketball games. I'm planning to tote my Alphasmart everywhere including into the bleachers for use during other games while waiting for my senior to take the court.

    Here's praying for a lot of words...and a State championship (since we lost in overtime last year in the championship game.) And a certain college coach to step up with an official invitation to play at the next level. Oh, and some scholarship money might be nice too! :-)

  40. Another super-duper Ruthy-style kick-in-the-pants post!

    "Life" is happening to me this week thanks to my insane promise to help Project Guy paint the living room and dining room. What was I thinking??? At least the mindless act of cutting in around the ceiling and door frames gives me plenty of "think time" for my wip. Even woke up this morning with some new ideas for where the story could go.

    So, Speedbo-ers, even if you're not getting the words written, you can still find opportunities to be productive!

  41. Kaybee, thank you for buying it! I'm hoping this is a wonderful launch for Waterbrook, they really stepped out to take a chance on me and I'm crazy grateful.

  42. Caryl, I had so much fun telling Boog Powell that story.



  43. CALLIE JAMES!!!! With 6 kids, a job and 14 grandkids, I have to re-strategize all the time. And so I do. You are on the right track! That's how it's done, and we re-group regularly!

    I think the steady attempts are what make a difference at the end of the day.

  44. I'll take one of those kick-in-the-pants things, please. Make that two. Ruthy, you know I think you're totally awesome, but I'd have to say that Tina is running neck-and-neck with you for the kick-in-the-pants queen at Seekerville. Therefore, I'll take one from each of you and consider myself blessed.

  45. Suzanne, have you ever seen a more invigorating race for the White House??? I'm not getting political here, but I love that people are talking and getting off their couches and VOTING!!! That's huge! Nothing is worse for a country than apathy....

    So seeing folks get up, get out, and get busy delights me!

    And it gives us another bit of contemporary "history in the making" to add into books!

    Thank you for working the polls, and I love that you're jumping back in to write later in the day.

    Honestly, that's my major reward, to sit and work on fiction, and I love it... Good for you!

  46. Ruthy, thanks for cheering us on toward our Speedbo goals!! Even if we have to tweak them a bit, we can still accomplish a lot in the 21 days that remain!

    I'd never heard of Boog but shared your photo with my dh, who knows all things baseball. Fun to see you and Boog.

    My dh still plays 33 1/3s on an old record player in his office. He has that little gizmo to put in the center of my 45s. One day I'll go listen to a few. And take a walk back in time.

    But for now, I'm looking to the future!


  47. Linnette, I'm so proud of you! And I'm tucking your name in here for this book because you would love to read this once the semester is over!!! THIS IS YOUR REWARD!!!!

    God bless you for tackling this, it's an amazing journey you're on!

  48. Keli, love the simple rhyme of your poetry! No wasted words. No wasted time.


  49. Jeanne, we can be way too hard on ourselves, and that becomes counter-productive because then we steal the joy from the task of writing the story.

    That story prep is clutch for all of us and we all do it differently, but it's vital! Go get 'em!!!!

    And now we've got 21 days left, and oh my stars, there is so much that can be done in 21 days!!!


    Yes, Ruthy owns a small marshland area, complete with literally hundreds of tiny tree frogs, AKA spring peepers and they were out in full song last night because it got warm here!


  51. Myra, even sleeping your mind is working. Go you!

    The idea of freshly painted walls is appealing. Very appealing. Will wait until we can open windows.


  52. Sally, I can work during games, too! And with Dave around, there's generally an evening game on for 6 months of the year.... But if it's a really good game, I have to either pay attention or leave the room.

    But usually, by the time we get to evening, I've been at it for sixteen hours, so my mental capacity is drained.

    The image that creates is quite disturbing, isn't it? :)

  53. And yes, we are opening windows this week! Lovely spring weather!!!

  54. Cindy, I will take the back seat to Radcliffe any time!!!!


    She is the bossiest. We all know that. We respect it. We respect her.

    But she and I agree on the most important things of all:

    Love God.
    Love your family.
    Do your work.

    There are no shortcuts, and if God has given us a talent and we don't use it, then that's our bad...

    This Erma Bombeck quote is in my kitchen where I can see it multiple times/day:

    When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, 'I used everything you gave me'.

    And that keeps me moving!

  55. Renee McBride, I love you and I love that example!

    Train to win and it's amazing what happens!

    When my boys were younger they were great soccer players and runners. We advised them to excel at running in high school because there's a lot of subjectivity in team sports. Good coaches/bad coaches, favoritism... But if you're a runner or a swimmer, NO ONE BENCHES A WINNER.

    And then the colleges notice. And my farm boy sons had to work on the farm picking, planting, tilling, spraying... and then go train... but what they realized later is that the perseverance of having to work and train made them elite runners... because how many rich kids do you know that excel at running distance?

    It was a formula that worked and got them Ivy League educations and you've exemplified that perfectly here!

    I'm all in for a 33 foot pool!!!!

  56. Cathy, thank you! I'm tucking your name in!!!!

  57. Candee, I know that feeling of hoping for notice!!!! I just put it in the reply above to Renee, that we coached the boys to go big... and they did!!!

    I can totally see you in the bleachers with the Alpha Smart!!!

    It's funny but I've learned to tuck myself wherever I need to be to get the job done. A dance competition last year for my little buddy Casey... the maintenance man let me into the teacher's lounge to work!!!! There were sometimes 2-3 hours between Casey's numbers and that was Saturday work time, but how nice of him???? He saw me on the floor, asked what I was doing and I told him, and he opened the lounge for me.

    That's the kind of Christian kindness that makes such a difference in people's lives.

  58. Myra, I hear you and because I love painting, I understand! There's nothing like a fresh, new look, and I swear it energizes me to be more creative when I'm back at the keyboard.

    Good stuff! I can mentally plot while cutting in around a white window with "Sandstorm" paint!

  59. Janet, our Rochester Red Wings used to be Baltimore's farm team, so I grew up walking to the stadium on Knot Hole days, and seeing some of the great Baltimore players when they were in Rochester... so Boog, Belanger, Brooks Robinson, and so many others were here now and again.

    Now Boog has an amazing barbecue joint right there in the ballpark in Camden Yards and I was so glad he was there that day! I told him that the editor made me change his name and he became "Brooks".... and he laughed and said that was the story of his life! That all around Baltimore/Washington, folks had kids they named "Brooks" after legendary third baseman Brooks Robinson... and a lot of dogs named "Boog"!!!!

    He was a great sport!

  60. This is so inspiring! And two memes (is that the right word?) on Facebook spoke to me this morning as well. Must be encourage Kav day. :-)

    I'm a bit behind but not by much. I'd wanted to be a third way through editing and revising but I'm just shy of that. I'm constantly revising my working strategy for various reasons. Finding that getting up early and working for food works best. (I don't allow myself breakfast until I reach a certain goal and I love my oatmeal!) Then I take a bit of a break and fuss around the house and check online. Then back at it until lunch (which I can't eat until I've reached my goal.) What can I say -- I'm food motivated. If I was a dog I'd be a star in obedience class. I pretty much peter out mid-afternoon. That's when I turn to book reading or Downton Abbey binge watching. The rest of the day is downhill from there.

  61. Thanks for the Pep Talk, Ruth! Last week was a little rough, but this week has been exceptional...though I should be setting writing aside long enough to file income tax.:)

  62. I'm so impressed with myself, since I'm slightly farther than I expected on my goal. I'd planned in 3 days of non-writing for a massive Robotics event that I volunteer at, and even so, I wrote on two of those days! And then with a number other volunteers, I got crushed by the flu and was sent home early. Yet even so, outside of that one day, I have been writing through fever to keep on top of things! (Though I'm uncertain as to if that's a boon or a curse to my creativity).

    Now I have proved to myself I can write even when ill. It maybe didn't feel great at the time, but I kept going, and I'm even farther ahead than expected - over 33 1/3%!

    *Note: As I have, in fact, somehow acquired TWO copies of Back in the Saddle, you don't need to put me in the hat

  63. Ruthy, Thanks for your encouraging post. Yes, I am behind due to illness, which could not be helped. But I am moving forward and hoping to make up for lost time as my body heals. Each day is a new day. See I have been listening!

    Yesterday I finished writing my first ever synopsis. I submitted it to the critique loop on ACFW. I received an answer back within a couple hours. I had totally done it all wrong. Yet, the author was kind in their comments and directed me in the right way. Guess what I will be doing today? I am not giving up. I am grateful for that author.

    Has spring arrived to New York? Daffodils and Forsythia are blooming here in NC.

  64. What great timing! Ruthy, I love ya! I was sitting here at my desk, scrapping my notes and staring at a blank screen. The 'perfect' story I've been struggling with is so not the perfect story. Instead I've decided to start something else. And I am grateful to hear you remind me that we still have 21 days ahead of us. Yup. We don't cry. So I'm pulling myself up by my bootstraps and moving forward. Onward!

    Please throw my name in the hat too!

  65. Kav, you've learned to do what works for you! That's the best advice we can give anyone!!!



    But I'm in love with POLDARK possibly even more so I will be thrilled to see that come on again! But it's not airing until next fall... which means what to the U.S?????

    An amazing series I highly recommend for fellow history lovers!!!

  66. Angela, I know what you mean, and I'm plowing through because I know that tax return is waiting, haunting me!


  67. Great inspiration, Ruthy! Thanks!

    I can hear a swell of fingers on keyboards tapping out words. It's a great day in Seekerville! Plus we have flowers blooming in GA! And the time changes on SAT, and Easter isn't far off. So it's all good.

    Thanks for being our cheerleader, Ruthy!

  68. Jackie, right????

    Shark Food is where all the bad stuff gets put!

  69. Rachel, two copies!!! One for you, one for a friend, the kind of friend that you LOVE!!!!


    And we've got flu up here, too, it's annoying because the people that have it got the flu shot... and me, who does not get flu shots, has escaped thus far.

    So sorry you're sick, but so proud of you mustering on!

    MORE HOT LEMONADE OVER HERE!!!!! Hot lemonade is wonderful when you're ill disposed!

  70. Wilani, I'm so glad you dived in and wrote that wretched synopsis! Good for you!!!

    And we all re-write them, so you're not alone.

    We have SPRING PEEPERS singing right now, their first day of song in our marsh!

    The saying is that spring is really here when the peepers have frozen three times. So we'll see what happens.

    It sounds so cheerful, I have several little ponds and a marsh and tons of trees and my peepers will sing night and day right now because they're looking for a mate! And we've just started seeing spring birds returning, and nests are being built! So there is hope!

  71. Christina, I miss you like crazy when you're not here!!!

    I'm putting your name in and applauding that you're starting anew!

    Go get 'em! When I think of all that can be accomplished in three weeks....


    We've got time, we can do this!!!

  72. Debby, did you know that I was a real cheerleader in junior high? At Sacred Heart, my elementary school.

    Gosh I loved that school. Those Sisters of St. Joseph were so kind to me. Bless them, every one.

    Anyway, I made the 8th grade cheering squad (mind you, Ruthy did NOT raise any cheerleaders because the times are different and I really wanted my girls to play sports, not cheer for other people playing sports... but that's another issue for another day)... and we WON the pink division!!!!


    That is one of my big claims to fame. Winning squad of the Pink Division.

    Oh my stars.

  73. Spring Training is in full swing. As is Spring Break. I'm sitting in the stands waiting to catch that ball! Come on, guys. I want a ball...uh, no a novel!

  74. THANK YOU, RUTHY!!!! :)
    Nothing like a Ruthy Pep Talk to get us going!
    And I am SO glad to finally see a photo of Boog Powell, because....(please allow me to reminisce a tiny bit, LOL)...back in my college days (many, many years ago) I dated a very nice guy who was drafted by Baltimore, and he was compared to Boog. Of course I had NO idea who Boog was, but all I knew was my "at that time boyfriend" was a complete foot taller than me (which I loved, because at 5'7" I sometimes dated guys who were my height or just a teeny bit taller).
    Sorry to ramble...but loved your photo, Ruthy!
    Back to Speedbo, recharged from this Ruthy post!! (And thanks for the Danish - - YUM!!)
    Hugs, Patti Jo

  75. WE'VE ONLY GOT 21 DAYS TO GO???????????? Cue the psycho music as Mary runs screaming in circles.
    (I could TRY writing but where's the fun in that?)

    Honestly I'm on track to reach my goals. I just wish I was a bit ahead of track, you know?

  76. I'm always guaranteed to feel encouraged even with the ol' kick in the keister by Ruthy. This is great timing for me because I've been smacked by Murphy for the past month or so and Speedbo has definitely not be moving forward too much.

    Have made a couple mistakes today, but not anything to do with writing, so it's all good there yet. Got twenty-one days left and I only need to succeed today. Baby steps...

    Thanks Ruthy! I don't need to be in the draw for your AWESOME book (countdown to posting review), but can you direct me to the one that has Boog as your hero? My brain isn't connecting hero with book title.

  77. Ruth, I would love to win to copy of your book. Thanks for the encouragement in your post. I've definitely had some down days with my writing this month, but overall I've surpassed my weekly goal. And, in the process, I do feel like I'm making progress on the overall plot and character development. Cheering everyone on from here. Best of luck to all!

  78. You have spring peepers? Already? A mild winter is giving way to an early spring here in the Black Hills, too, but it's still a bit cold at night for the peepers. :)

    Thanks for the pep talk!

    Yesterday I realized that I was letting the 2K a day goal get in the way of productivity. So I changed to 500 words at a time. It was like magic. I wrote 500 words, then ate breakfast. Another 500 words and did my morning chores. Another 500 words and had lunch. Another 500 words and I had met my 2K goal for the day.

    I actually had time left before supper to spend a couple hours on another project that has been anxiously waiting in the wings.

    There's nothing like changing things up a little to get the ball rolling again. :)

  79. Linette, you're so welcome. I've been praying for you, dear one... and I admire your bravery!!!

  80. Marianne, the boys of summer!!!! Go you! My son in Scottsdale messaged me that he and his girlfriend (whom I love!) are planning on catching a few games while spring training is in session. HOW FUN!!!!

  81. You dated a baseball guy who got an invite to BALTIMORE??? BACK IN THE DAY????


    John "Boog" Powell was and is a big guy. And with a big heart. What fun that your old beau was compared to him!!!

    And I'm glad you're on the track, my friend! Every day I think, "What have I done today to make my dreams come true???"

    And then I make sure I do something...


    Like that's news, darling??? :)

  83. Ruthy, thanks for your wise advice and the needed pushes! My Speedbo start has been pretty amazing....and I don't want to fizzle out now please keep giving me those reminders.

    Sending out my appreciation to all of Seekerville for the encouragement.....and adding my cheers for those who are working on their Speedbo goals. #GoSpeedbo!

    FYI Ruthy: My blog post review of Back in the Saddle is ready for March 15. Angelina's cherry cupcakes were coming out of the oven as I read the Manuscript Match announcement yesterday. Perfect celebration. :)

  84. Deb, thank you so much for being a Ruthy-influencer! I love you!!!! And Boog (Brooks) was the hero in "Made to Order Family" my third book released by Love Inspired... but the order of the books is "Waiting Out the Storm".... then "Made to Order Family".... and then "Winter's End"...

    They were published out of order, but if you haven't read them, they were all 4 1/2 Star books from Romantic Times Review, and I love that series...

    In a side note, Running on Empty was the original story in that series, but they didn't contract that one. The story of predator pedophile didn't fit what they were looking for, and I totally understood that... but they bought the other three and began my mainland career and then I changed the names and published Running on Empty as an independent book and it has sold thousands of copies....

    And that's a wonderful thing.

    And I still get facebook requests from men with kids in the pics, and all the men use double male names... Mike Johns, Philip Samuel, Jonathan Phillips, etc... and they're just letting me know that there are organized pedophilia groups out there and that my book didn't scare them off...

    And this might be one single person grabbing/stealing these pics off the internet and making up the names, who knows? But this is what happens when you write about absolute unholiness, and people who prey on kids don't want their apple cart upset by romance writers.

    And if you wonder can I shoot a gun? I'm married to a skilled hunter. I sure can.

    But the veiled threat of these pedophiles is NOTHING to the number of facebook messages and e-mails I've gotten from victims who told me how much this story... Anne's beautiful, heart-wrenching story... helped them.

    And that's worth everything.

  85. All your prayers are very much appreciated, Ruthy!!! :)

  86. Lara, you're welcome! THIS IS WHY I LOVE SEEKERVILLE SO MUCH!!!! First, because we love youse.

    Second, because you should never feel alone in this biz. That ship sailed out the door when the Internet came in the window, and I will tell you not all authors feel this way. There's a laundry list of authors who really aren't thrilled with new and more competition, but WE FEEL DIFFERENTLY.

    Hence this blog.

    Hence our daily/weekly harangues and advice.

    Hence our time.

    Because this is a tough business, and I won't ever pretend otherwise, but I love it and if youse have what it takes... then I want you to go for the gold! Because I absolutely, positively love what I do.

  87. Jan, that's just what I do! I shoot for 1K or 1Hr, and whatever happens in that hour, happens.

    And then I catch up on something else, kitchen, painting, laundry, chicken, errands, then more writing, then more stuff, then more writing.

    It's amazing how much can be done in an eight-hour "day" when you break it up like that!

  88. Sherida, I'm so stinkin' excited for you!!!!

    LOVE IT!

    And I love that cherry cake, too! Great way to celebrate!

    Did you try chocolate frosting with them? I keep meaning to try that!!!!! Cherry sponge cake and dark chocolate frosting.... Mmmmm..............

    Tina! BRING CAKE!!!!!

  89. Oh RUTHY, I needed this so much! Perfect timing! A crazy schedule and some unforeseen circumstances have me behind on my Speedbo goals, and this was just the kick in the pants I needed. You said, "If you want it badly enough, my friends... you can do anything." Thank you for the words of wisdom and the pep talk! Btw, I still have a record player and lots of the old 33 1/3 albums. Love listening to them every now and then. Thanks again!

  90. Ummm...sooo...yeah, I gotta go write now. :)

  91. Yeah, Mary Runs Screaming, we call this event....Thursday

  92. Ruthy girl, you are so encouraging. I love your kicks in the behind. You are a true example of true grit and determination.

    Listen up folks. Ruthy is giving great advice here.

    Love the photo of you and Boog. I remember that character. Great writing.

  93. Laura, I'm so glad you're here! That just made my day!

    And this is so true for all of us, we plan, we organize, we jump in and life comes along and kicks us in the bootie and all of a sudden we start feeling pressured...

    When that happens I imagine separating myself from the crazy. Just envisioning me, set apart, doing what needs to be done, and then I think "but when???" and when a time comes to me, like Saturday... Or Friday afternoon, or Tuesday morning, I make a mental plan to use that open space of time as best I can, and then I breathe.

    It helps.

    Laura, I know how those weeks get crazy! And guys, Laura's two beautiful granddaughters were singing a duet on facebook, and it was BEAUTIFUL. When I was young I learned to sing harmony because my older brother and sister (I was the 7th of 9 kids) sang and played in a band on the front porch. They sang beautiful harmony and I was itty bitty but I can sing the alto on every Everly Brothers tune there is! And the Nelsons... and Peter, Paul and Mary. So hearing your beautiful girls tweaked a great memory!

  94. Sandra was my first and only critique partner.


    God bless Sandra.

    She has been an amazing help and friend over the years. And she still loves me even when I get snarky.

    I love you too, Sandra!!!

  95. Thank you, Ruthy. I so needed this today. Even if the thought of trying to finish my manuscript in 21 DAYS has me clicking back and forth between this site and Word. You know, in case my characters get busy and start thinking for themselves.
    A yet-to-be-diagnosed illness has thrown me for a loop, and the medication we're trying has given me the attention span of a toddler. A hyperactive toddler.
    So, your words of encouragement mean a lot. Just as I mustn't forget my diet because a chocolate bar tempted me to cheat one day , I can't let a couple of crazy days keep me from getting back to my Speedbo goals.
    Isn't writing like this a freeing experience? Thank you, Seekerville residents, for thinking this up.

  96. Georgia, that is the perfect analogy. One day of inactivity doesn't ruin us, or a goofy week, or a rough month. It can actually strengthen us because it gives us a solid view of what we need to do/say/try. So even drugged and with a toddler's attention, if you can tuck that toddler's butt into the chair.. (grinning!) and tempt her with a shiny object at the end of an hour, it can help.

    Pretend your toddler is watching WILD KRATTS!!!! :)

    I'm so sorry you got sick, but I have every confidence in you!

  97. I have pretty much had a lost week because my daughter is home for spring break, and I don't want to miss a minute with her. So I'll be re-setting on Monday! And I refuse to let a lost week get me down. Thanks for the pep talk, Ruthy!

  98. I just got home from errands to find a Ruthy book in the mail! I love a new book, they even smell great. And the note inside made my day, thank you friend!

    On another note, you get creepy veiled threats on Facebook because of Running on Empty? I hate that and am praying a hedge protection and safety around you. That book has helped a lot of people and the fact that those bullies have noticed just speaks to how effectively you hit the target. Your books are more than just love stories, they're books with a social conscience, keep on writing!

  99. Thank you, Ruthy! That's so neat that you learned to sing harmony with your siblings, too. Our pastor son-in-law and daughter are at a preacher's conference in Oklahoma this week so the girls are staying with us. We get to hear a lot of the old (I mean classic :-) music every night. Having a blast!

  100. Oh, and you know the words to Peter, Paul and Mary songs! I had their The Wedding Song sung at my wedding in 1974. I still love it, beautiful words!

  101. hedge of protection? Do you have Prayers that Avail Much? Tracey Hagwood? Sounds just like one of the prayers I pray daily.

    And on a creepy note. Lots of friend requests from spammers on FB lately. Be careful out there.

  102. Yes, I do have Prayers that Avail Much as a matter of fact (the 3 volumes in 1 edition) but I have heard a hedge of protection prayed over so many people for years, for sickness, safety, travel, eNdanger of all sorts, etc, it has now become a part of my prayer vocabulary. Psalm 91 is at the core of praying protection over others and myself. One of my favorite Psalms!

  103. Tracey, I will gladly sing that song to you. I love it.

    And when I can't reach the notes, I'll pretend. :) And you and I can sing Peter, Paul and Mary in harmony!!!!

  104. Tracey, I love the hedge of protection, and I will welcome it. And yes, a few times/week I get these sicko requests from these double male-named men, always with a picture of a young child staring innocently into the camera.

    So I welcome prayers because you know me well... I'll keep writing about things that sometimes make folks upset with me.

    And I'll keep right on doing it! :)

  105. Missy, the reason I waited so long to start writing was because those six kids meant the world to me and I was already carving time to try and be their mom. So I totally get it.

    God's timing.

    I rely on that and try not to grumble too much, at least not in public! But on Monday, Tippens, don't be giving me any lame excuses! I know where you live! :)

  106. Wonderful post, Ruthy! Just the kind of pep talk I needed! I hit a plot snag, so I went back to the synopsis, busted through with a fictional explosion, now we'll see if I can tie up the ends and get back to writing. :)

    Would love to be entered for Back in the Saddle!

  107. I love a good explosion! I don't think I've ever used one! (Makes note....)

    Good to have you here, Natalie! When all else fails, kill someone.

  108. Tina, you're right, there are a lot of those cheesy stolen military or contract worker guys who don't know how to spell the college names correctly. :) And a friend's kid got into an interesting conversation on a site she shouldn't have gone to and he threatened to hurt her if she didn't send him money, and he'd tell her parents that she was talking to him and sent her picture.... But thank heavens she told her mother (knowing she'd be in big trouble). Whoever thought 14 year olds and limitless internet (this is on a school-issued iPad) was a good idea????

  109. Ruthy, I always do love baseball references. With my son being in the final half of his senior year and planning to attend college five hours away, it's been difficult for me to adjust and find time. Not getting as much done as I want to, though I'm sill typing new words.

    As I type this, my son is taking a lesson from his pitching coach. (His coach wants help from me in writing a book about his experiences. This will be a challenge. :-) )

  110. Tracey, The Wedding Song was sung at my wedding too. Still love it!

  111. I love baseball season! Always enjoy your posts, Ruthy! Please put my name in the drawing for Back in the Saddle- it looks fabulous!!

  112. Fun, Ruthy, to know you were a cheerleader! Rah, rah, sis-cum-ba! Or however it's spelled! :)

  113. Praying for your return to health, Georgia!

  114. Oh, I shrink away from people who want help writing....

    They write.

    I check it later.

    Honestly, there are no shortcuts here.

    But Walt, I hear you, and having that wonderful boy heading off is a BIG DEAL.

    I cried each time. EVERY TIME.

    I'm ridiculous.

    I love that he loves baseball that much! And one of our cousins is with the Washington Nationals. Chris Bostick, we saw him get thrown out at home on national TV the other day! This is his dream and he was listed on the 40 man roster... or he could be picked up by another team. He puts heart and soul into baseball and we drove to see his minor league team play about 3 years ago.... He was in this area and it was so fun to go and cheer for him!

    You tell sonny boy to hang onto that dream. Ya gotta go for the gold.

  115. I knew we were sisters separated at birth, Tracey,

    I never heard of praying the Psalms until I bought the books. I have Volume 1 and 2 and my first note in them is dated 1994.

    Awesome, prayers and I used mine every single day. They are falling apart. I should get the big one, but I only gift that one.

  116. Yes, could be! We are sisters of the heart for sure Tina! My triple volume is dated 1997, but I think I had one of the single volumes first.

    I pray everything I come across in the Bible that is applicable to me. I once heard a sermon that said if we don't use all that God has given us, we live beneath our privilege as children of God. Not me! I want all the advantages God has for me and prayer gives us access to them.

  117. OH, WOW, RUTHY ... I could kick myself for not checking in this morning because I could have used this kick in the butt.

    BUT ... I was actually WRITING most of the day, a complete rarity, I assure you, so I have a good excuse for being late, teacher, and it isn't the dog ate my homework!

    Seriously, I may reread this blog tomorrow and the next day and the next just to get me pumped, my friend, because nobody pumps adrenaline in a writer's veins more than you, sweetie-pie!

    LOVE the pic of you and Dave and Boog! :)


  118. Debby Giusti, how fun is that that we had the same song? It was so popular then. We have several parallels in our lives if I remember correctly. I think we both had Christmas babies too!

  119. YAY, CATE AND CLARI ... you earned those zzzzzz's, so enjoy them!!

    KELI ... I'll bet you were a cheerleader, weren't you (along with Trixi), because that cheer is AWESOME!!

    RUTHY ASKED: AM I THAT OLD???????????????????

    Yes, you are, but good news -- I'm older!! ;) But, Tina, even I didn't know what Ruthy meant by 33 1/3, so mine's not age, just fuzz in the brain.


  120. Hey, TRACEY, welcome home, darlin', and you're right -- three reviews posted is an excellent Speedbo day!!

    LINNETTE!!! I didn't know you were in college, girlfriend -- WOW, that makes "The End" all the more special, so you go, girl!!

    CANDEE ... saying one right along with you for the state championship, girl!!

    CINDY ... really??? You want TWO kicks in the pants from Ruthy?? You're a VERY brave woman, my friend. A half kick for me, and my tear ducts are on duty, but then I'm a weepy CDQ, so what do you expect???!


  121. LOL, KAV ... I'm with you, girl ... I didn't know what a "meme" was until Tina started tossing the word around like confetti a month or so back. :)

    WHOA, RACHAEL ... way to go, girlfriend. I'm ready for that other half kick in the butt now, Ruthy ...

    YAY, WILANI ... your first synopsis is HUGE, girlfriend, so CONGRATS!!

    MARY SAID: "WE'VE ONLY GOT 21 DAYS TO GO???????????? Cue the psycho music as Mary runs screaming in circles."


  122. LOL ... thank God for Mary and comic relief!!

    JAN DREXLER, YOU ARE GENIUS!!! I may try that 500 words at at time tomorrow as well!!

    GEORGIA!!! Saying one right now that the docs figure out what you need and/or God heals you, girl!

    MISSY, good for you, girlfriend -- precious time with daughters comes before Speedbo in my opinion, especially when they are home from school for break!! I know you'll have a blast!!

    TINA, who DOESN'T have Prayers That Availeth Much -- one of the BEST books ever printed so if they don't have it, they need to buy it!

    Off to write before Ruthy kicks my butt ... AGAIN!!


  123. Ruthy, Thanks for the post. I like the no crying in Speedbo. I keep your ten suggestions for writing on my desk and number seven is stop whining, then number eight is "I mean it, Stop Whining. Sheesh." I love the reminder to put aside my whining and complaining and write.

    I'm getting through my list for the month. I'm printing my WIP out tomorrow so I can see the actual printed words, and from there, I start outlining my next book. Thanks for the reminders to write, write, write.

  124. O yes! We've got to be the ones to MAKE the time! Thanks for sharing!

    Great book Back in the Saddle is, love it! No need to enter me, I'm keeping mine for sure!

  125. Cue the Rocky theme and Meg running around her living room pumping her fists in the air! Whew! What a great pep talk, Ruthy! I want you in my corner all the time!

    I was just beginning to feel discouraged because I'm quite behind my Speedbo goal. But time to get back on the horse and go! BICHOK tonight and smiling the whole time :) :) :)

  126. Thanks for the pep talk! I think I might have to print it out and stick it in front of my face. After a long week of zero progress and lots of outside forces, I am ready to hide from my family this weekend. ;-) Keep at it guys, we can do this!

  127. I finished my rough draft today. Whew! Now the hard part ... Thanks ya'll!

  128. Jess!!!! THAT IS WONDERFUL!!!!! Now the FUN part, sweet thing! We get to polish. :)

    Have some cookies, I just brought them from the Yankee Belle Cafe!!!

  129. I'm laughing at Julie because I don't have that book on prayer... and yet I'm familiar with the beautiful "Hedge of Protection" image, so I must be getting around in my own inimitable way!!!

    What a fun day! You guys rocked it today! MEGAN!!!! Did you know the theme from Rocky is my ring tone????? :) How wonderfully obnoxious is that? I love little reminders that the future is mine if I've got the guts to grab it and work for it, and the Rocky theme music is a perfect motivator. LOVE IT!!!!

    Crystal, I'm not sure which Crystal I'm talking to! We've got three now, I believe and no pics, so whichever wonderful Crystal you are, you're welcome. And I will fully promise you, grasping this new career is worth every little hour of missed sleep I've had because I am absolutely living my dream. Who can ask for more than that?

    I don't need riches. Never did, never will. But I do love being paid to write books!!!

  130. Annie, thank you! Thank you for chiming in, I'm so glad you've enjoyed Back in the Saddle. I just sent my son his birthday gifts (his birthday is Sunday) and in that box were snickerdoodles (fresh from Mom), a Starbucks card, and copies of More Than a Promise and Back in the Saddle... One dedicated to him, one dedicated to his brother Matt...

    It will make him smile to know he helped me on a book, and that he got a couple of shout outs, but he's my son. He's supposed to help, right???

    When readers and reviewers like you do it, it's out of the goodness of your heart and that means so much to us. I hope you and all the rest of our readers/reviewers/authors see that. That gift of time is priceless.

    Thank you!

  131. I remember seeing 78s, collecting 33 1/3 (oh those Beatles albums) and putting those little plastic discs in the 45s so they would work on a regular record play. I also remember printing my first news letters on a mimeo graph machine with purple ink- even the smell! Had to hand crank the mimeo machine.

    I've just started reading Back in the Saddle and am enjoying your writing talent and hard work. Thank you.

    – No one charts my destiny but me . . . and the good Lord – I really needed that today, blessings

  132. Thank you for the encouragement to press on! It helps to know everyone's trying in synch. Ruth, I love your ringtone! How imaginative. You all are super! It's so easy to be distracted, and takes such determination to march forward in faith. Thanks for helping me refuel again!

  133. What an inspiring post, I really needed it this morning. I got up at 5 am. to write as so my baby girl :). Fortunately my husband decided to entertain her until she doze off again. So I got 1600 words. Yay!!

  134. Very inspiring post. I am reader, but am taking a class. Having trouble finishing up that last assignment. Your post was what I needed to hear.
    Off to finish!
    Becky B.

  135. I so needed this post!! Thank you!!! I've been swamped with work and haven't written in almost a week (I hang my head in shame). This was just the pep talk and motivation I needed!!!

  136. Ruthie,

    Great post and a kick in the rear! I needed this!!

    Thanks - and please put my name in that smoking' hot cowboy's hat!

  137. I am way late reading this post because I have been busy writing in my limited free time so there was no time yesterday to read Seekerville. The writing I am doing this month doesn't seem to me to be worth anything right now, but I am plugging away.

  138. I had to take a few days off from Speedbo last week...had a corker of a migraine last week; even broke down and went to the doctor, so you know it was bad. Back on track again today and will write at lunchtime, after work, etc. "Back in the saddle again" as they say!! Loved reading about Boog...never heard the name before, how unique!! (great for a story, too!) Blessings to you all!