Today I am honored to have Doris Plaster as my guest. Her story is a great testimonial for the possibilities of creative inspiration added to participation in Blogging from A to Z. Here is Doris in her own words.
The story behind the 50-word stories
A 50-word story? How in the world can someone write a story with such few words? I pondered as one day I came across a portfolio with interesting quick stories. They were beautifully crafted, made perfect sense and left me with an “Oh” expression by the end of each story.
When Lee announced the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge, I looked at it as an interesting opportunity to establish some discipline related to writing. It’d also be a great opportunity to explore other blogs.
But I don’t have time to write daily! I thought, with disappointment. I live a busy life, holding a full time job as Director of Social Services in a 135-bed nursing home. Additionally, I have a home and family to take care of.
Yet I am not a person to easily give up.
As if a magic answer, the idea of writing 50-word stories flickered in my mind. In actuality, it would become a double challenge: writing something daily and mastering 50-word pieces. I chose elderly and healthcare as my preferred themes for the stories due to that being my area of expertise--and my passion.
I had a plan. I signed up!
The story behind the “Home Sweet Nursing Home” book.
The A to Z project was the most fun writing activity since I began blogging a year ago. The effort of assembling the vignettes, based on real experiences, containing dialogue, characters, and a story line was definitely an amazing challenge. I was so thrilled when I began receiving numerous comments with interesting discussions, and definitely, valuable feedback. My excitement was even more heightened as I noticed an increased number of readers, and quite a few compliments expressed. By the end of the challenge, about five of my readers suggested I publish the stories, given that they were so unique and well-written.
I was greatly surprised! I had no intention to publish a book anytime soon. And surely not when I signed up for the A to Z Challenge.
I gave it some thought, mentioning it to my husband, who was very supportive of my readers’ idea. After several days of debating, I finally made the decision.
I will get the A to Z stories published!
Another challenge began. Small steps toward the world of publication were being made. I was nervous and excited at the same time.
Getting my stories published was a rewarding decision, I thought. Especially when I touched and smelled my first book. Home Sweet Nursing Home was released a couple of months ago, and is available through Amazon.
Since it’s a small book, it was a fairly decent journey to publication. I learned some experience that may help in the future should I decide to publish another book.
Home Sweet Nursing Home seems to have the appreciation of many people that have had the change to read it. I’ve received encouraging comments from friends, colleagues, and workers from the healthcare field. I have received an invitation to write and speak at a local healthcare association. I received an email from the Alzheimer’s Association, Missouri Chapter, asking where they could buy my book, as they wanted to give it to their support group facilitators. I’ve been invited to guest post on other blogs, as well. Last week, I was interviewed by a local writer wanting to know how I was inspired to write my book.
Sometimes a simple idea can develop into a successful project. Your heart and passion must be in it. Motivation, dedication and commitment are equally important.
The link to my book on Amazon is:
I am thankful for all the blogger friends who joined my blog during the A to Z Challenge, and for the marvelous friends who encouraged me to publish the stories.
Thank you, Lee, for having me as your guest. You have certainly been a great blogger friend and leader. I appreciate your and Stephen T. McCarthy’s support. You guys are awesome!
Thank you, Doris, for your wonderful and inspiring story. I encourage readers to support Doris's efforts. Her success is your success. Please share this post with others. Who knows? Perhaps you or someone you know will be the next one with a similar story to tell.
Visit Doris's blog at Hold My Hand: A social worker's blog.