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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Reaching Out... One of more to come

I have thought about this in a dozen different ways.  Reaching out.  When I first published Life Goes On, I desperately wanted to find a way to reach out.  I did want to reach out about my books and the things that I write, but it was, and is so much more than that.  I wanted to be able to reach out and feel alive.  I wanted to find a way, that as I sit here alone, I am not alone.  I know that the good Lord is always with me and will be, from here to the next life, but I hope that walk can wait a while longer.

I wanted to be able to reach out even when I could not get out.  When I could hardly get up I would not be alone.  I did not want to cry out and hear only the echo of my voice knowing it died in silence with no one to hear the thoughts, hopes, dreams and things I wanted to share. 

Internet... computers... modern technology... are things of wonder to me.  There are times it does not take a lot to impress me but I am trying to learn so many new things.  You have to understand that I remember back to when there were party lines and our telephones were mounted on the wall.  You it went round and round with each number.  After all of that, you realize you dialed one number wrong and you can start over.  Dial ... ditttttttttttttt....dial another number...ditttttttttttt....and another.  Now cell phones are everywhere.  Beep beep beep and send.

Science is amazing.  Technology is amazing and for an old gal like me it is all a lot to learn..... but... it is like a doorway that opens to the whole world.  That is an amazing thought.  The world.  Good, bad, and what ever.... it is all out there.

I hear and read terrible stories about things that happen connected to the internet.  There are stalkers, hackers, thieves, cons and who know what all lurks in the space they call cyber space.  Did I let it in?  Did I open a portal to the unknown with all of the evil and malicious individules out there to come and get me.  I probably did. 

It did more than that though.  It opened a door to the world and all of the people there.  Years ago I got a computer and learned how to use it to write my books.  I got online and met some people but not many and was in a terrible head on collision.  My hands and arms were crushed along with many other injuries.  I was no longer on line.

I had learned some things such as why we have to click on start to stop the computer.  Eventually I was able to resume writing.  I had the novel Journey Home written and wanted it to be more than I had the ability to make it.  I wanted it to be the best that I could make it, so I enrolled and took classes here at ASU.  They were wonderful.  I wrote about that in the book I Will Not Give Up... Not Today...Life Is A Journey.  I went back and rewrote the entire book.

I remember the first time I went to the library there at the college.  It was huge.  It was bigger than any I had ever seen.  I was so impressed and amazed.  I looked and looked but could not find the card files.  You younger people may not have any idea what I am talking about but those who do, might see some humor in all of this.  I had really lived so isolated from the world that I looked for the card files to find books.

When I could find none, and they should have been easy to find....usually a whole wall full of little drawers filled with cards for each of the books, I asked the young librarian.  I think she was younger than my youngest child.  She stood mutely looking at me with one of those looks that tell you she would rather be doing something else and asked, "what is a card file."  She stood looking at me with a condescending look of one who was not sure if I was crazy or just senile.

I was excited about my new class but had so many things I needed to look up.  "If you want to look up a book you go to the card file.  Every library I have ever been in has a whole wall full of drawers with little cards that tell you where to find each book.....a card find books." My back hurt, my foot hurt and I leaned on the counter waiting to find out where the card file was to look up books.

Her expression did not change as she asked, "Look up books?"  She then silently pointed toward a computer on a near by table.

"I need the card file to find the books I want."

Rolling her eyes she responded.  "If you want a book... if you want to find a book... that is where you look it up.  I do not know about any card file.  I have never heard of such a thing.  I don't know what libraries you have been in...but there is how you find a book."

It was a new world and I had so much to learn.  I was taking an advanced class and had not been to school for many years.  I have to say that it was wonderful.  I learned how to find a book but learned so much more.

I learned how to think in a different way and how to improve what I was wanting to do in my writing.  I learned every day and in many ways.

I was not able to walk all the way to the class so I would park and then walk to a bench that was located near the door.  I would rest for awhile and then continue to the class.  While I sat there it was so peaceful with the beautiful layout of the college.  There was even a squirrel that often came to visit and was unafraid of people.

Dozens of students would pass during the class change as I rested there.  Many would smile or utter a friendly greeting.  I did notice that eight out of ten had a cell phone in their hand either talking or texting.  What was so funny to me is that more than once I would overhear a person talking on the phone to someone not far behind or in front of them.  I never could understand why they would rather talk on the phone than walk together or visit.

They were reaching out in ways that I had no idea or experience.  I did not have and had never even used a cell phone.  I would still rather sit and visit a spell.

The library used computers to allow a student to reach out and find any book they want with the click of the mouse, if they knew how to use item and they all seemed to know how.  I learned.

I learned that and so much more.  I knew about typewriters but there were printers.  Spell check was a special treat.  I became a regular in the computer lab.  The people who worked there were so patient and sweet.  They helped and showed me spectacular things....computers.  It was a new world.  I used to go to the book shelf and look through several volumes of encyclopedias to look up something at home and there you could just type and click.

You could reach out and learn so many things but only if you learned how to use the computer.

Trying to reach out and learning so many new things.... it was a new world.  It was a world that the others in the class did not understand.  They all had at least one college degree and were working on advanced studies.  Most were on the deans list and had the confidence that went with it.  I was.... just me.  I wanted to learn. I had promised if I was unable to keep up with the class I would not slow them down.  I understood that I was unprepared for such study but wanted to learn.  I just wanted a chance to learn and was afraid I did not have the years or time left to live to prepare for such a class in the traditional way. 

When I did not understand a term...I looked it up.  I had learned how to use the computers for that and the library.  When I needed to know more about something pertaining to what they were teaching.... I looked it up.  I was reaching out. 

I went through Journey Home, one line at a time and worked to make it the best story I could make it.  I love that book.  I am proud of that book.  I have read some books that I really liked but half way through it, you knew who did it.  You could see the ending coming but it was still a good book.  I wanted a book that carried the reader right there so they could see the scenery, know the people, and feel how they felt.  I wanted a book that carried the reader so they felt how it is to look out a window in the dark and not know who or what was looking in.  When you know in your heart there is someone, somewhere, stalking and out there but have no idea who or why, but deep down inside know your life could depend on finding a way to survive it.  I did not want to tell the story but have the reader feel the story.

My covers for Journey Home, Life Goes On and all of the others are my own art projects and paintings.  I want every book I write to be special from cover to cover.  I am still learning.  I am still trying to be able to make them special.

I am beginning to get tired so I am going to shorten this up.  There are so many things, thoughts and special things that I want to share but I will have to do it a little at a time.  I called this Reaching  Out and that is what I am trying to do.  I am trying to reach out.  I found a new site that help authors with their books.  It sounds fantastic.  They help us to reach out.  When I see one of my books on a site it warms my heart but it does more than lets me know I am not alone.   I can reach out out beyond these walls and the things that hold me back.  I can reach out to a whole world....

My books will soon be included in those here on this site and I will share the news.  Until now.... if you write books... Tell them Linda sent you and have fun.  It is a place you can show what you have and who you are.  It is a place where the readers can find some very special books..... or

I have so many other things on my mind and that I want to share but it will have to wait.  I do still really get tired.  It is not just tired like when I was healthy and young but very tired and the rest will wait for another day....

I want to thank you each and everyone who shares this link or reads my words.  I want to thank you for helping me to reach out and not be alone.  I want to thank you.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Linda, Hope you are doing well -- love your blog so much I nominated it for the "One Lovely Blog Award!"

    Check this out: