Woo-hoo! Talent had a write up in the Midwest Review of Books. I, Sandee Mason, was impressed with how many people will be learning about the book. Please feel free to share this anywhere and everywhere. If you have a tween or teen, I hope you’ll share my story with her or him. Talent
Fifteen-and-half-year-old Sandee Mason wants to find her talent, get her driver’s license, and stop living in the shadow of her big brother, Bri, who disappeared while serving in Afghanistan. A deftly crafted novel by an experienced author with a genuine flair for creating memorable characters and a consistently entertaining story line, young readers will follow Sandee’s journey as she experiences drama onstage and off. While B. Lynn Goodwin’s “Talent” is especially recommended for high school and community library YA Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that “Talent” is also available in a Kindle format ($2.99).
Instructions for the author:
You have complete permission to utilize the review in any manner you deem useful for marketing and promotion.
The review has been provided to the Helen C. White Library’s “Cooperative Children’s Book Center” (University of Wisconsin, Madison) where it will be made available to school and community librarians throughout Wisconsin’s public school systems and community libraries. This review has also been provided to the Cengage Learning, Gale interactive CD-ROM series “Book Review Index” which is published four times yearly for academic, corporate, and public library systems.
I went to graduation two nights ago. The graphic to the left was on the back of the program. Of course not everybody can be helped. Some people can’t handle advice or assistance. You know the type.
Rob didn’t graduate. You’ll have to read TALENT to find out why. I mean, he’ll graduate, once he takes his finals. But. . . he couldn’t be there because. . . Just click on the link above and read the book, okay?
And Nicole has another semester before she’ll graduate. Or maybe another year. I’m not sure, but I know she didn’t get to graduate with her class.
So Tessa was the only one who put on a cap and gown and walked through the ceremony. Now that I think of it, those signs apply to her too. She knows how to ask for help and advice. She gives great tips and advice. And her mom has given me and my family all kinds of assistance and guidance.
Since she’s already taking classes at Pine Mountain College, I was glad to see that she wanted to go through the ceremony. Her mom took pictures to add to the scrapbook for her sister. The one with the injury that’s kept her in a coma all these months. Still there’s more hope in a coma than in a telegram.
Miss you, Bri. I was thinking of you while I watched Tessa graduate.
But hello. I’m here. I’m not Bri, I know. That’s because I’m me, Sandee Mason, a teenager and a drama geek, who will probably never drink after what happened to Rob.
Poor Rob. He doesn’t have much common sense any more. We had a psychology unit about understanding people and I think when his dad left, he took Rob’s common sense with him. Okay, maybe not. But really, why does he think people will like him if he buys them beer?
Back to Mom, though. Dad and I took her out for dinner and bought her flowers, but she said the best part of her day was watching Lifetime Movies with me. Made me feel more like a friend than a daughter. In a way that’s a good thing. I just realized that by writing it down.
Maybe it wasn’t such a bad Mother’s Day after all. How was yours?
Writer Advice seeks flash fiction (750 words or less) Draw us in. Open our eyes. Dazzle, delight, and entice us. Winners receive cash prizes and are published. Low fee for solid feedback. Deadline: 06/01/17. Fee and details: www.writeradvice.com.
Questions? Concerns? Please contact Lgood67334 at comcast dot net. We look forward to reading your work.
I’ve hung on to a lot of shirts over the years. Some are too small. Others have holes. I keep them for the memories. They remind me of how I got to be as old and fulfilled as I am today.
One of my favorites is a fitted black tee with white letteringfrom the seventies that says Improvisational Comedy in an arc across the back. In the front is my name and the word director. These were our costumes for San Ramon High School’s Improvised Comedy Troupe. I loved working with those actors. They were always actors first in my mind and teenagers second.
I let my actors make the decisions about color, lettering, and style. I would not be a performer, so I didn’t order a shirt, but they surprised me. “You’re our director,” one said. “You taught us how to do this stuff,” another added as…
SM: This may sound a little strange, but I’m going to interview my author, B. Lynn Goodwin about the book she wrote before mine.
You see I’ve been learning a few things about care giving since I met a girl named Tessa. You’ll meet her when you read Talent. Her sister came back from Afghanistan with some kind of a brain injury. She’s still in a coma, but Tessa’s keeping a journal for her to help her when she wakes up. So, Lynn, my first question would be is Tessa’s journal like your book?
BLG: A little bit. In both cases caregivers are relieving stress by writing their stories one incident at a time and one feeling at a time.
They are processing their thoughts as they write them down. There’s something about slowing down and putting pen to paper or fingers to keyboard that makes what’s happening more manageable. You don’t deny thoughts the minute they flit into your brain. Instead you deal with them.
SM: Cool. That’s like my journal for English class, except I try not to say anything too personal there.
BLG:You can be as personal as you want when you journal for yourself. So who else would this journal be good for?
SM: Maybe my mom. Maybe even my dad. They can’t get over what happened to my brother, Bri. Not that I blame them. But it totally sucks—I mean it’s totally hard—to be me right now. They hardly even know I’m around.
BLG:So they could process what happened to Bri and how they are coping?
SM:Wait a minute. I’m supposed to be asking the questions! Do you have to journal every day?
BLG:Write when you want to. Write as often as you want to. Some people set a timer for 10 minutes. Some people keep going long after 10 minutes.
SM: Where did those 200 sentence starts come from?
BLG: Good questions, Sandee. I’m not sure anyone ever asked me that before. I first wrote them for my students. They were tenth graders who kept saying, “There’s nothing to write about.” So I started saying, “Finish that sentence start on the board and just keep going.”
SM:Did it work?
BLG:Would it work in your English class?
SM: It would for some people.
BLG: Exactly. When I used sentence starts with more motivated people, like drama students developing their characters or my free writing group, people used them to start. They let one idea lead to the next.
SM:So are journaling and free writing the same?
BLG:Free writing is a form of journaling.
SM: So I think I might like a copy of the book for Tessa, and I think I should get Mom and Dad separate books. So how do I get it?
BLG: Go to Amazon. I know you know about Amazon because they sell your story, Talent too. The Amazon page for You Want Me to Do WHAT? Journaling for Caregivers isYou Want Me to Do WHAT? The page for Talent is Talent.
SM:Thanks for letting me interview you. Maybe I should take up journalism.
BLG: It’s okay with me, but you’ll have to wait until I get my newest book published before I can tell more of your stories, Sandee. I’ll tell you more about that book in our next interview.