Lena's Life

Behind the Scenes, Lena's Life, The Lena Files, The Writer's Desk, Throwback Thursday

The Lena Files: By Any Other Name

My assistant asks if my client if he would like anything to drink in the bubbliest voice she can conjure. I can tell she’s hoping for the answer to be no so she can scurry back to her desk and finish reading an article in Architectural Digest.  I saw the magazine sitting on her desk, she’s not very gifted at hiding. The Office Manager hires the assistants with little input from the financial reps. My job, I like. My co-workers, on the other hand, are from hell.

I’m a rarity at my company:

  1. I’m a Democrat (more anti-Republican than actual practicing democrat).

  2. I’m average height for my gender.

  3. My head is still covered by hair.

  4. I’m not overweight nor have the appearance of being due any moment.

  5. I have common sense (or uncommon sense since there’s nothing common about having sense in these parts).

  6. I don't look two decades older than my age.

  7. I’m female.

  8. I’m black.

Crafting, Lena's Life, writing distractions

Writer's Block

Like many authors, I've known my share of writer's blog. There are times I can't manage to string words together on the screen. Then sometimes it's because the words just aren't there. But, frequently, it's because I'm distracted with desire to do other creative endeavors. 

I’m no scientist or anthropologist, but it's been my observation that creative people often have multiple creative outlets. Some singers also act and vice versa. There are actors that also paint.  I'm a writer that also crafts. 

I sew. I make paper crafts like cards. I dabble with graphic arts. I used to paint and draw (I say used to because I’ve not done either for a while and I’m not certain I’ve retained the skills). At one point during my college career I was a general fine arts major, concentrating in ceramics. The craft that pulls me away from writing the most is flipping furniture and other housewares items I’ve found at flea markets and thrift stores. Last year I decided to change all these crafty hobbies to a crafty business. This year I started selling my wares (including my books) at a local handmade and vintage store here in Indy.

If you’re a fan of my writing, don’t worry my new endeavors will take me away from releasing more novels or short stories. I can no more not write as I could quash my other creative activities. Plus there’s so much down time waiting for paint to dry that I might as well write.

Two years ago I hatched a ten-year plan to my ‘retirement’. For me, retirement doesn’t mean no longer having to work but no longer having to work for someone else by being a full-time entrepreneur. It is my goal to make my living with my creativity, both writing and crafting. My absolute dream is to own a shop downtown in a small town somewhere. I’d have all types of vintage, handmade, and upcycled items for sale and a writing nook in the corner of the shop for me to continue to spin tales of love and romance.

Love,

Lena

Lena's Life, motivation, second wind

My Biggest Fan

HERstory.JPG

It's been several years since the release of my debut novel Jack & Diane but it seems like yesterday. I still feel ecstatic and overwhelmed by its success. It reached #1 in two categories on Amazon. My book remained in the top 100 in a few categories for weeks. It has 4.2 out of 5 stars from almost two hundred reviews. People have e-mailed me to tell me how much they enjoyed reading it. While all of that is great, the thing that brought me the most joy is my mom's reaction before the novel had garnered any success. I called her at work the moment Jack & Diane went live on Amazon. She responded by yelling through the entire office, "My daughter's a published author!"

My mom no longer has an office to scream through because as of last Friday afternoon she's officially retired. As proud as she is of me I'm way prouder of her nearly 34 years of public service ensuring equality and civil rights in housing and employment. She now has, even more, time to ask me when my next novel will be completed.  Actually, I think she'll fill her time with her long time hobby of painting and hopefully turn it into a second career (or at least shares it with the world). I've started by sharing two of my favorite she's painted, HERstory and HIStory.

Mom, congrats on making it to the other side.

HIStory.JPG