For Teenage Girls With Wild Ambition and Trembling Hearts

When you are 13 years old,
the heat will be turned up too high
and the stars will not be in your favor.
You will hide behind a bookcase
with your family and everything left behind.
You will pour an ocean into a diary.
When they find you, you will be nothing
but a spark above a burning bush,
still, tell them
Despite everything, I really believe people are good at heart.

When you are 14,
a voice will call you to greatness.
When the doubters call you crazy, do not listen.
They don’t know the sound
of their own God’s whisper. Use your armor,
use your sword, use your two good hands.
Do not let their doubting
drown out the sound of your own heartbeat.
You are the Maid of Untamed Patriotism.
Born to lead armies into victory and unite a nation
like a broken heart.

When you are 15, you will be punished
for learning too proudly. A man
will climb onto your school bus and insist
your sisters name you enemy.
When you do not hide,
he will point his gun at your temple
and fire three times. Three years later,
in an ocean of words, with no apologies,
you will stand before the leaders of the world
and tell them your country is burning.

When you are 16 years old,
you will invent science fiction.
The story of a man named Frankenstein
and his creation. Soon after you will learn
that little girls with big ideas are more terrifying
than monsters, but don’t worry.
You will be remembered long after
they have put down their torches.

When you are 17 years old,
you will strike out Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig
one right after the other.
Men will be afraid of the lightening
in your fingertips. A few days later
you will be fired from the major leagues
because “Girls are too delicate to play baseball”

You will turn 18 with a baby on your back
leading Lewis and Clark
across North America.

You will turn 18
and become queen of the Nile.

You will turn 18
and bring justice to journalism.

You are now 18, standing on the precipice,
trembling before your own greatness.

This is your call to leap.

There will always being those
who say you are too young and delicate
to make anything happen for yourself.
They don’t see the part of you that smolders.
Don’t let their doubting drown out the sound
of your own heartbeat.

You are the first drop of a hurricane.
Your bravery builds beyond you. You are needed
by all the little girls still living in secret,
writing oceans made of monsters and
throwing like lightening.

You don’t need to grow up to find greatness.
You are stronger than the world has ever believed you to be.
The world laid out before you to set on fire.
All you have to do
is burn.

- Clementine Von Radics

The notes hath returned…with bonus review!

And they were not as bad as I thought!  I even made someone else open them first because I had been dreading them so muchThank you Elena!

First, the good news.  They are nowhere near as bad as I thought they were going to be.

The bad news?  I really should’ve done this at the beginning.

I’m trying to look at this situation glass half full – that is, I can update the book never mind the print version.  As permanent as anything is, I can still get the best version of the book online and this can be accomplished well before my next novel is published.

Additionally, whether or not these notes from my copy editor are genuine, I’d like to think they are:

I love this book. I know I am not alone wondering about the details in others’ lives. This novel gives your reader snippets of the private day-to-day goings-on of our fellow humans. And you covered a vast majority of life’s dramas and rarely repeated any, giving the reader a capsule of real life.

I even like the cliff-hangers where the reader is never told what happened afterward. The most vivid one that comes to my mind is of the date rape scene, but there were others. First, it allows me to imagine my own ending. Second, it confirms real life in that sometimes the public just doesn’t know the inner workings, never finds out the “why” or “how” sometimes.

You did an especially wonderful job making these characters fully 3-D and in just the one to five pages allotted to each chapter. Well done. Best wishes with this book.


I’m hoping to finish an edit of my current manuscript and then focus on getting the corrected version of Room 702 available.


Holiday I want to do over. #30stays

Does this mean I want to do over because I loved it so much, or do over because I want another try?  Clarify yourself 30 day challenge!  I’m taking this one as, would do over because I had such a great time.  The answer to that is the World Cup trip to South Africa in 2010.  Hubs and I had an incredible time, stayed at some amazing places, and saw tons of wildlife.  I would go back in a heartbeat.

Favorite Travel App. #30stays

Like anyone who travels frequently, I think TripAdvisor is the most reliable place for accurate details of a property.  It will usually make or break a decision for me.  I also recently discovered TripTease, which has been a fun place to share information.  When it comes to booking a room, I will usually rely on (unless I’m trying to get points, in which case I will go directly to the website and pay a few bucks extra).

Am I missing anything good?

Trip I was most out of my comfort zone. #30stays

I had to think about this one for a moment – ultimately, I landed on a journey I had more or less blocked out – the trip from Galle to Colombo.  While this wasn’t actually worse than driving in India (cows!  people using the road as a toilet!  cars everywhere!), there was something about being completely blocked in traffic for hours when I had to pee and didn’t know where we were actually going or when we would get there that really shut me down.  Our driver was perfectly nice, the car was clean and safe – but somehow I almost forced myself into a panic attack.  Fortunately, that hasn’t happened any other time in my travels except yesterday – thanks a lot 3+ hour delay and 2.5 hour drive in traffic.