Tag Archives: Never Give Up

Where Are You Going?


“Where Are You Going?” by Joan Y. Edwards

Many times in your life, you know exactly where you want to go. But, you might have trouble proving that this is your destination when people see you in a different place or different surroundings.

If you plan to ride a camel in Egypt, would you need to practice first?


Practicing would be good.


If you want to learn about a famous city, figure out the best transportation to get you there.



Is it easier to find a parking place for a motorcycle than for a car?


Do they have bike lanes?



Will you need a truck to carry what you learn?


Are you speeding away from a problem?



Do you need rest from the fast pace or the usual routine?

2012-10-18 14.42.02

Do you need to get away from it all and fly to a new part of the world and land in a new situation?


2013-10-26 18.22.03

I hope these pictures and words move you to enjoy where you are or to plan a trip down the street or to another world with your writing and illustrating! Whatever you do and wherever you go, enjoy being you! You’ll get there. God will empower you with answers to your questions and deliver you safely in the face of the reality of your dreams!


Never Give Up

I am honored by all who buy and read my books. Thank you for your support and encouragement!
Flip Flap Floodle, Will this little duck’s song save him from Mr. Fox?
Joan’s Elder Care Guide A guide to help caregivers and elders never give up

Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2018 Joan Y. Edwards


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  1. Never Give Up image
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Spivey’s Web, a Christmas Story: Interview with Author, Sandra Warren

“Spivey’s Web, a Christmas Story: Interview with Author, Sandra Warren” by Joan Y. Edwards

Spivey's Web cover 300 dpi (1)
Spivey’s Web written by Sandra Warren; illustrated by Susan Fitzgerald. Available on Amazon.

Today, it is an honor to interview Sandra Warren, author of Spivey’s Web. Thanks for coming today, Sandra. I want to hear all about SPIVEY’S WEB, a picture book that’s out now that you had in your head for 15+ years! 

I’m so glad to be here. 

Sandra Warren

1.Tell us about Spivey’s Web.

I am very excited that Spivey’s Web is out now since it has a Christian twist at the end. It’s about a spider who wants to spin a web of her own design, not the expected web for a barn spider. After being ridiculed for her efforts, she moves to a window high in the loft and when the Star of David shines through, it sprinkles stars, like a disco ball, around a manger and calms a very special baby. Although the baby is not named, you can tell by the illustration that it’s the baby Jesus. I love the last line….My web didn’t catch flies. It caught the light!

Spivey’s web is more than a Christmas story, however. It’s also about having the courage to follow your heart and do what makes you happy even when everyone around says it can’t be done or it’s never been done like that. From Spivey we learn to never give up.

Writers take heed. When agents and editors say, no, no, sorry no, we have to keep at it and never give up because if we do, we’ll never know how close we came and we’ll never know what amazing things might come from our creative, imaginative minds. We all need Spivey’s courage to spin a web of our own design.

2. Did you submit Spivey’s Web to traditional publishers? Christian markets? 

Sandra: I tried for years to get Spivey’s Web traditionally published, but it was too secular for the Christian market and too Christian for the secular market. A major agent loved it until she got to the end and realized it was a holiday/Christian theme. She said she doesn’t do holiday books. Although I was still holding out for a traditional publisher, everything changed when I met an amazing artist.  


3. Marvelous illustrations. Who is the illustrator? 

Sandra: Susan Fitzgerald, one of our part-time neighbors at Hidden Lake is a FINE artist who approached me asking if I’d LET her illustrate a manuscript of mine. I was floored because she’s an amazing artist who exhibits full-time in a gallery in Jacksonville. Her concept of Spivey and all her illustrations are fabulous in my opinion.

4. Did you encounter any problems with the formatting of the book?

Sandra: Oh my, yes! One problem we had that took us almost a day to figure out was that we were trying to put a landscape/horizontal illustration into a square template. A landscape picture book template was not offered by the company we chose. We also had trouble balancing the required minimum 300 dpi of each illustration for printing. It’s tricky to send illustrations through email without losing dpi. Now we know how to do it. Our original vision was to have a horizontal format with illustrations that bled off the page–flowed to the very edges. But because of issues with the horizontal formatting of the original artwork, we had to compensate by reducing the size of each illustration allowing for a border or frame around each. 

Here are suggestions if you’re self-publishing a book:

  • Make sure you download the publisher’s PDF Specification Guide from CreateSpace or other publisher and read it before beginning to make sure they print books in the size and format you want.
  • Don’t be afraid to contact Support if you have any questions. The folks at CreateSpace are very helpful! 

Despite all the formatting issues, we’re thrilled with the end result that Spivey’s Web is now available online. https://www.amazon.com/Spiveys-Web-Sandra-Warren/dp/1981217673/

Thanks for being a guest on my blog, Sandra. Thank you for offering a giveaway, too.

Winners of the Giveaway:

Between December 10th and midnight yesterday, December 21, 2017, the following six people left a comment on this blog post for a chance to win a free autographed copy of “Spivey’s Web:”
1. Sarah Maury Swan
2. Gretchen Griffith
3. Dr. Bob Rich
4. Linda Andersen Gutheil
5. Lisa Anne Cullen
6. Barbara Bockman

Thank you to all those who left a comment! You make my blog sparkle with excitement.
Random.org chose number 4 and number 1 for the two winners:
Therefore, Sarah Maury Swan and Linda Andersen are the winners. I will send you Sandra Warren’s email address so you can email her your snail mail address so she can send your prize – an autographed copy of the beautiful picture book, “Spivey’s Web.” Congratulations! Yippee!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Sandra Warren’s website: http://www.sandrawarren.com

Sandra’s blog: http://sandrawarrenwrites.blogspot.com

Other books by Sandra Warren:

Bomber Book Cover

Arlie alligator bookcover

Hidden-Casualties book cover

When-Duty-Called book cover


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Never Give Up
Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2017 Joan Y. Edwards

Flip Flap Floodle, Will this little duck’s song save him from Mr. Fox?
Joan’s Elder Care Guide A guide to help caregivers find ways to meet their needs and those of their elders to help them survive.


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  1. Never Give Up image
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Happy 8th Blogaversary

7 balloons filled with helium and tied together with a string.
Happy 8th Blogaversary Image Credit: Pixabay


“Happy 8th Blogaversary” by Joan Y. Edwards

It’s hard to believe that it has been 8 years since I started this blog. Oh my goodness! Thank you for reading and following my blog. I have had fun getting to know each of you who have responded in the comment area. I smile each time I receive an email saying that one of you subscribed to my blog. Those things mean a lot to me. They tell me that what I’ve written means something to you the reader. That’s an awesome experience and a great privilege and honor.

I started it on October 9, 2009. At the time, I didn’t know what I was going to write. I just knew that I wanted to write articles to inspire people to keep reaching for their goals and to never give up.

My focus has been inspiration, education, laughter for everyone.

For writers, I’ve placed special emphasis on articles about writing, revising, and marketing a manuscript. I developed PubSubbers plan with detailed steps to get a manuscript ready for submission. PubSubbers and Week 1 have received more than 2,000 views. I researched publishers who accept unsolicited manuscripts and listed them in a blog post.

Pub Subbers
Week 1
Week 2
Week 3
Week 4

The last two years, I’ve added a focus on adding inspiration, education, and laughter for artists and illustrators because as I’ve needed a little help and encouragement myself as I’ve worked on the illustrations for my chapter book, Larry, the Terrifying Turkey.  It will have at least 15 illustrations – one for each chapter. I have 7 draft illustrations done. To celebrate today, I thought I’d share a draft of the cover. It’s not etched in stone. It’s a draft. I am self-publishing it when I complete the illustrations.

turkey chasing young girl
DRAFT Cover or Larry, the Terrifying Turkey Copyright 2017 Joan Y. Edwards. The book will be 5.5 x 8.5 inches, so the final cover will be narrower.

Selling Pitch/Blurb for Book Cover:  Larry, the Terrifying Turkey, Chapter Book, Ages 6-8, Grades 1-3

Scarred by her mother’s pet turkey and taunted by her third grade classmates, Sara Brown searches for a way to get back at him. Will she face the turkey square in the gobbler or will her parents ground her until she is twenty-one after she wrecks her mother’s new car?

I now have 422 subscribers. Thank you for all of you who have subscribed to my blog.

If you haven’t subscribed, please do. Subscribers get an email notice each time I post a new blog article. New subscribers also get 3 free gifts:

  • Never Give Up image
  • 20 Affirmations for Writers
  • Ten Time Savers for Writers and Illustrators

Here are the top 12 blog posts, each has over 2,000 views:

  1. 40 Publishers Who Accept Unsolicited Manuscripts
  2. 22 Literary Agents Who Are Looking for You
  3. How Many Words Should Your Sentences Contain?
  4. What Is the Purpose of Dialogue in Your Story?
  5. 7 Questions to Make Sure Your Plot Has Believable Consequences
  6. Family Sewing Projects – Jedi Robes and Princess Leia Ponchos
  7. What Are Easy Readers?
  8. Put Universal Conflict, Theme, and Emotions in Your Story
  9. Prayers for Writers and Patron Saint of Writers
  10. What Is Your Story’s Premise? Editors Want to Know
  11. About Me
  12. Twelve Ways to Get Over Disappointment

Do you have a favorite post from my blog? I hope you’ll share it with me.

To celebrate my 8th Blogaversary, I offered a choice of prizes for the lucky person chosen by Random.org who left a comment on this blog between October 9 and October 17…8 days. I decided to give a prize to TWO winners instead of one. Here are the names of the ten wonderful, delightful, fantastic people who left a comment. 

  1. Sandra Warren
  2. Claire Iannini
  3. Gretchen Griffith
  4. Dr. Bob Rich
  5. Linda Martin Andersen
  6. Maureen Crites
  7. J.Q. Rose
  8. Joan Reid
  9. Carol Federlin Baldwin
  10. Cat Michaels

Random.org chose two winners for me – #5 and #2. So, Linda Martin Andersen and Claire Iannini you may choose one of the four choices below for your prize for  winning the 8th Blogaversary giveaway. 

  1. A copy of Flip Flap Floodle.
  2. A copy of Joan’s Elder Care Guide
  3. A critique of 5,000 words.
  4. An image of the winner or their favorite animal saying, “I Never Give Up.” 

Please email me with your choice at joanyedwards1 @ gmail.com.


Believe in You
Never Give Up

Books to Enjoy
Flip Flap Floodle, Will this little duck’s song save him from Mr. Fox?
Joan’s Elder Care Guide published by 4RV Publishing. A great gift for a friend who is caring for a loved one.

Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2017 Joan Y. Edwards


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  1. Never Give Up image
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Happy New Year 2017!

Copyright Animated Images.org

Each year when the New Year comes in. It’s fun to remember the great things that happened during the prior year and be thankful for all the people and things that made it prosperous. Let go of worrying about the things that happened over which you had no control. Forgive grievances. Make plans for the new year and set reasonable goals.

Here’s to forgiving grievances. It’s healthy for you not to carry anger into the new year.

Here’s to remembering the great things that happened during 2016.

Here’s to thanking the great people you helped you along your life’s journey.

Here’s to thanking God for all that He gave you during the past year. Thank him for filling your heart with ways to keep you on the path to meet your goals.

Make plans for 2017:

Health – Diet, Exercise of the mind and body

Financial Health – Put money in savings, be frugal and wise with spending; research before you buy

Vacation – Take time off from work

Work – Give an honest day’s work for an honest day’s pay.

Daily Relaxation – Meditation – Prayer

Fun – Do something fun for you every day that costs nothing. Do something fun once a week that costs a little. Do something fun every 6 months that you’ve saved up for. This means you really want to do it.  So it’ll be worth every penny. Never spend money earmarked for a bill you owe that’s due today.

Help someone do something they can’t do for themselves.

I’ve given you a few ideas. Take time to contemplate these ideas and those that pop into your sweet head. When something you want to accomplish comes to mind, write it down, and set a reward for you when you accomplish your goal.

Rewards can be whatever will spur you onto achieving those goals.

Whenever I do something that needs to be done, but I don’t want to do it, I buy myself a pecan roll from Panera Bread.

After I taught school for 30 years, I got tired of checking papers. I had Language, Math, Science, Social Studies, Spelling, and Handwriting papers that needed to be graded every day. I decided that I should hire someone to check some of these papers. I could pay them $3.00 an hour. I should choose someone who really needed the money to check the papers. Who did I know who really needed money? Me. So I paid myself $3.00 an hour to check the papers and bought myself a new dress, a pair of shoes, or went to the movies with that money from checking papers. It helped me laugh. Being able to laugh about a problem shows that it no longer has control over you. That you’ve let it go.

Happy New Year! Good luck in making any New Year resolutions, plans, and goals. I’m so proud that God had our paths to cross. You are an inspiration to me. Whatever you can see in your mind, you can achieve. Never Give Up on you. Your dreams await your footsteps.

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Believe in You
Never Give Up

Live with Enthusiasm
Celebrate Each Step You Take toward Your Goals

Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2017 Joan Y. Edwards


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  1. Never Give Up image
  2. 20 Affirmations for Writers
  3. Ten Time Savers for Writers and Illustrators

Valuable Tips for Artists/Illustrators from Aidana WillowRaven

Aidana WillowRaven

Aidana WillowRaven, Cover Artist/Illustrator/Graphic Designer

Copyright 2016 Aidana WillowRaven and 4RV Publishing
Copyright 2016 Aidana WillowRaven and 4RV Publishing

“Valuable Tips for Artists/Illustrators from Aidana WillowRaven” by Joan Y. Edwards

Thank you, Aidana for doing the cover for Joan’s Elder Care Guide published by 4RV Publishing on April 15, 2016, for sharing it on your website, blog, and social media. I am honored that you agreed to let me interview you for my blog. 

You’re welcome, Joan. I’m looking forward to it.

Let’s get started.

  1. Where were you born? Harlingen, Texas, USA
  2. Where was your favorite place to live as a child? Why? That one is really hard to say because everywhere I lived had it’s own influence on me as a person and eventual artist.
  3. Did you have a favorite place to draw as a child? Where and why? I rarely drew as a child. I wasn’t good at it so usually quit in frustration. 
  4. Where is your favorite place to draw now? My favorite places change depending on my mood, but it’s also a convenience issue.
  5. How do you keep yourself physically fit? Me? Fit? I love your sense of humor.
  6. What do you do when you think about giving up? I don’t. I have a big stubborn streak, lol.
  7. If you go to an amusement park, which ride do you go to first? Which ride do you ignore at all costs? Rollercoaster!!! I like water rides, too. Anything fast is fun, but I even enjoy monorails and slower activities.
  8. Would you share 3 covers that you designed? It’s hard to pick a favorite, especially since I work with so many genres, but here are three more recent favorites for three different genres:
    Weaver of Dreams Cover by Aidana WillowRaven
    Weaver of Dreams Cover
    by Aidana WillowRaven


    A Family for Leona Cover 9000841
    A Family for Leona Cover by Aidana WillowRaven (4RV Publishing)


    Honourable Lies Cover by Aidana WillowRaven
    Honourable Lies Cover by Aidana WillowRaven

    Weaver of Dreams, A Family for Leona, and Honourable Lies. Your covers are amazing.

  9. What is your favorite novel? Why? Again, with the impossible questions, lol. I’m going to have to go with a favorite series rather than a single book. I think I’ve reread the entire Wheel of Time series, by Robert Jordan, more than any of my other books in my library.
  10. What is your favorite picture book? That’s easy … Alice in Wonderland
  11. Do you set goals for yourself as an artist/illustrator? Do you reward yourself when you reach them?  Goal? Yes. Rewards? Who has time? I just keep going. lol
  12. What are three craft books about drawing and illustrating that you recommend for study by other artists/illustrators? That really depends on what genre and style one’s goal is as an artist. For me, I study anything Michael Whelan does. I also study the works of Todd Lockwood and Frank Frazetta and too many others to list. I don’t want to limit anyone to any three books, though. I study all I can from many genres and styles. I even take pictures of book covers I like at the grocery store to study later, lol.
  13. Where is your favorite place to visit? Why? Downtown Memphis. There is such a vibe that I’ve never felt anywhere else I’ve lived or visited. That same vibe is probably why there are so many songs written about it, too. But even the swamps in Memphis have a wonderful mystique.
  14. Did they have art courses when you were in High School? We had one art class a week, which I all but failed. The art teacher told me, in front of the entire class, that I had no talent and apparently art was not my ‘thing’, lol. In my art teacher’s defense, my Mom said pretty much the same thing, and even my best friends in high school, reuniting with me decades later via Facebook, were all like, “Sooo… Where did this art thing come from?” As a result, I don’t believe in abstract terms like ‘talent’. I believe in drive, determination, training, and skill, which anyone can acquire when the first three are part of the recipe. I like that you believe in drive, determination, training, and skill rather than being born with the talent. I admire you and your determination to be an artist.
  15. When did you decide to become an illustrator? Why? After my second failed marriage, I was really into epic fantasy books and found myself fascinated with the cover art. I started recreating book covers with visuals I felt better portrayed the stories. Next thing you know, I was standing at a college registrar’s office wondering what major to study, and the only thing I could think of was wanting to create book cover art. Floored EVERYONE who knew me that I chose to study fine art.
  16. Who or what has been the most help and inspiration to you as an illustrator? Michael Whelan
  17. Where do you get your ideas for your illustrations? The books, music, movies, everything … lol.
  18. What are you illustrating now? I keep several projects going at once, so that’s hard to answer.
  19. What has been your most exhilarating moment as an artist/illustrator? When Michael Whelan, my idol, actually responded to one of my tweets, lol. I know that made your day.
  20. Does research help your illustrations? How? Absolutely. I like to be as accurate as possible. One time, I even found a discrepancy within the text that contradicted the period and culture. The author and publisher made the necessary correction to the text. 😀 They were lucky to have you working on this project for them.
  21. What are your top ten tips for illustrators? Study, Study, Study, Draw, Draw, Draw, Paint, Paint, Paint … repeat 😀 
  22. What are three marketing tips for illustrators? Get used to talking about your work on social media. Also, never give up. Keep looking until you find your place.

Connect with Aidana through links on her website:  http://willowraven.weebly.com  

Aidana’s Blog: http://aidana.willowravenblog.com


Aidana WillowRaven, tradigital artist (hybrid artist who combines traditional training and techniques with digital tools and applications) and mother of three, trained in Fine Art, Studio Design, and Animation at NSU and ODU. WillowRaven works with traditional publishers, as well as, independent authors. In addition to her freelance business, she’s Art Director and VP of Operations at 4RV Publishing.

Working in most genres, from picture books to novels, she has illustrated and/or designed over 500 books and ebooks since 2007 through her company, WillowRaven Illustration & Design Plus, in Memphis, Tennessee.

Thank you again, Aidana, for letting me interview you for my blog. You are amazing!

Believe in You
Never Give Up
Joan Y. Edwards

If you would like to leave a comment or question for Aidana, please click here.

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1. Never Give Up image
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You Have a “Never Give Up” Spirit

Never Give Up Spirit copyright 2016 Joan Y. Edwards“You Have a Never Give Up Spirit” by Joan Y. Edwards

This is Day 28 of “Say Good Things February.”

Say Good Things February-Copyright 2016 Joan Y. Edwards





Do you have a Never Give Up spirit? My answer for you is:

Yes, you have a Never Give Up spirit. You are determined. You follow through with projects until they are finished. You are dependable. You are trustworthy. You are honest. You are a good organizer. You are organized. You reward yourself for completing little steps.  You are grateful for each step you take and all the material and tools you have to do the task at hand. You celebrate each day.

Repeat these affirmations using I instead of you.

Yes, I have a Never Give Up spirit. I am determined. I follow through with projects until they are finished. I am dependable. I am trustworthy. I am honest. I am a good organizer. I am disciplined. I reward myself for completing little steps. I am grateful for each step I take and all the material and tools I have to do the task at hand. I celebrate each day.

Here are resources to help you gain a firmer Never Give Up spirit:

  1. Heather Summerhayes Cariou. “Determined to Succeed: Some People Just Won’t Quit:” http://www.reliableplant.com/Read/27792/Determined-to-succeed-people/
  2. One Life Success. “8 Top Tips For… Determination – How To Keep Determined in Life:” http://www.onelifesuccess.net/top-tips-for-determination/
  3. Song Chengxiang. “The Secret of Really Good Affirmations:” http://www.trans4mind.com/counterpoint/index-success-abundance/chengxiang6.shtml
  4. Wiki How. “How to Be Determined to Achieve Something:” http://www.wikihow.com/Be-Determined-to-Achieve-Something/

My personal mantra since I was a little girl has been “Never Give Up.” I am very glad that God helped me understand how to use this spirit and share it with others.

I made up the story of Flip Flap Floodle when I was five years old. I told the story to anyone and every person who would listen to me from that age on.

It makes my heart sing when people tell me how much they love my book and illustrations. It makes me stand a little taller and smile when they tell me that singing Flip’s song helps them to remember that they can do it. Even though it looks like it’s the end of the world. God somehow inspires them with the answer or sends someone to help.

Joan Reid, a new follower of my blog, bought a copy of Flip Flap Floodle on Amazon  the other day. Thank you, Joan for reading my blog, buying the book and reviewing it for me.

Here is her review:

Flip Flap Floodle cover 300 res 300x420 pixels

FULL OF FUN***** 5 stars
Flip Flap Floodle, a sweet trusting musical duckling encounters several characters on his way to Grandma’s house. There’s Mr. Chicken, Mr. Bear, and the baddy-wad Mr. Fox.  This is a delightful story on several developmental levels: colorful illustrations to entertain toddlers; a funny story that will enrapture kindergarten-age children; a self-reader for first and second graders; a good message for older children; and a musical book to please all children.  A great twist at the end!
…Best regards, Joan Reid


Thank you for your review of Flip Flap Floodle, Joan Reid. You’re a jewel.

Don’t ever give up. Help is on the way. God will show you what to do. In Jeremiah 33:3 – God says, “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.”

Mary L. Kupferle wrote an essay called, “God Will Show You How:” https://joanyedwards.wordpress.com/2009/12/07/god-will-show-you-how-by-mary-l-kupferle-public-domain/. I highly recommend it.

May God be with you, beside you, above you, below you, and be inside you.

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Never Give Up
Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2016 Joan Y. Edwards
www.joanyedwards.com (Gospel-related puzzles and skits)

Here are links all of the posts in my “Say Good Things February” series.


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1. Never Give Up image
2. 20 Affirmations for Writers
3. Ten Time Savers for Writers and Illustrators

7 Strategies for Success

Copyright 2015 Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright 2015
                    Joan Y. Edwards

“Seven Strategies for Success” by Joan Y. Edwards

All of you, both men and women,  like to get what you want when you go shopping. You want what you want. You have certain ideas about what you’re shopping for. In your mind, you designate rules that this new purchase must meet:

Fits you to a “T”
Simple to Use

In life when you make goals, you also designate rules for what things will look like when you reach your goal. Some of them are assumptions based on what you’ve learned about the situation from others and part of it you learn from personal experience. Sometimes your assumptions and reality are different. That’s when you have to realign your thinking to make sure you get where you want to go.

I realize that each person has different goals and aspirations. I’m not going to tell you what goals to make. This blog post focuses on beliefs, thoughts, and actions that will help you reach your goals successfully, no matter what they happen to be.

  1. Immerse and surround yourself with positive thoughts, words, actions, and people. State your goals as affirmations in the present tense. I am a best-selling author. I am a prize-winning illustrator. I find the best deal for a computer, dress, suit, shoes.
  2. Believe in you
    If you think you can’t do it, learn how. If you don’t think you can do it, change your thoughts. If you made a mistake, forgive yourself and let it go. When you’re down, give yourself three days to rest, recuperate, and realign your thinking. Talk with God. He understands. Talk to a friend, they can help you look at the broad picture. Be your best friend. Never give up. Be determined to get to your goal.
  3. Be thankful to God/Universe.
  4. Encourage others and share your time and talents with them.
  5. Use available resources: library, books, videos, blogs, Google search, and others. Ask questions. Talk to people who’ve done what you want to do. Ask for help, information, support, sales. Ask people to buy your book, illustration, or other product. Give them something extra free when they buy.
  6. Take action. Take a chance – Do what brings you joy! Put your money where your goal is: Take lessons. Build an audience (a group of followers who could possibly buy your product or help you find what you’re looking for. Write, draw, create. Get your work critiqued by your peers and by professionals, too. Submit your work to a publisher or self-publish.
  7. Celebrate baby steps and achievements. Reward yourself. Have a writing or illustrating party with other writers and illustrators.

You, the readers, are an indispensable part of my blog. Thank you.

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Never Give Up
Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2015 Joan Y. Edwards


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1. Never Give Up image
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10 Songs to Shake It Off and Keep You Going

Copyright © 2015 Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2015 Joan Y. Edwards

“10 Songs to Shake It Off and Keep You Going”

I haven’t done a music or sounds blog in a while. I love music. It soothes my body and my soul. When I’m in a sad mood, it can change my focus and make me smile. These songs I hope you will like and that one or more of them will help you let go of something that’s bothering you and renew your belief in yourself so that you keep on going towards your life’s goals.

If you don’t know where you are going, God knows. He is very proud of you. He will help you get where you want to go.

  1.  Shake it Off ” Taylor Swift Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NEcS32iOH5s
    Lyrics: http://www.metrolyrics.com/shake-it-off-lyrics-taylor-swift.html
  2. Let It Go” from the movie Frozen. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L0MK7qz13bU
    Idina Menzel’s Lyrics: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/idinamenzel/letitgo.html
  3. “Never Give Up” – Johnny Orlando original song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1O7JkEcm-fY
    Lyrics: http://www.johnnyofans.com/lyrics.php
  4. “Never Give Up” – God is always there” Hillsong Kids https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=15R6SNZ-K1g
    Lyrics http://www.lyricsmania.com/never_give_up_lyrics_hillsong_kids.html
  5.  “Hero” by Mariah Carey https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0IA3ZvCkRkQ
    Lyrics: http://www.metrolyrics.com/hero-lyrics-mariah-carey.html
  6. The Climb” Video: Miley Cyrus’ “The Climb” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UsaWvf1Kw3A
    Lyrics: http://www.metrolyrics.com/the-climb-lyrics-miley-cyrus.html
  7. Let it Be” The Beatles https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WcBnJw-H2wQ
    Lyrics: http://www.lyrics.com/let-it-be-lyrics-the-beatles.html
  8. We Will Get There” by Stephanie Sun https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rZWWCY0y6v4
    Lyrics http://www.songlyrics.com/stefanie-sun/we-will-get-there-lyrics/
  9. Celebration” by Kool and the Gang: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3GwjfUFyY6M
    Lyrics: http://www.oldielyrics.com/lyrics/kool_the_gang/celebration.html 
  10. Things I Am Thankful for” Hap Palmer https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TKl8BuVWnUA
    This version leaves blanks for you to say what you are thankful for: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=160VWPsM_og
    Lyrics: http://www.songlyrics.com/hap-palmer/things-i-m-thankful-for-lyrics/

What songs inspire you and keep you going? Please share them with me.

Never Give Up
Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2015


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Don’t Let Rejection Get You Down – These Famous Writers Overcame Rejection

Image Copyright © 2014 Joan Y. Edwards
Image Copyright © 2014-2017 Joan Y. Edwards

“Don’t Let Rejection Get You Down – These Famous Writers Overcame Rejection” by Joan Y. Edwards

Thank you, Riley Amos Westbook, (sonshinegreene), one of my latest subscribers, for telling me he would like to know more about how many times famous writers got rejected. I had no idea that little seed of curiosity would lead to a whole series of posts about this topic. There are over one hundred authors I found with information about their rejections before they were published.  I put them in alphabetical order by first names to help you and me find them easier.

  1. Agatha Christie tried to get The Mysterious Affair at Styles, featuring the character of Poirot published for 5 years without success. She got it published in 1920. The Guinness Book of World Records lists Christie as the best-selling novelist of all time. She published 85 books according to Wikipedia as noted by Passive Guy in “Ten Best Selling Fiction Authors of All Time
  2. Alex Haley wrote short stories and articles and sent them to magazines and publishers back in the United States. Although he received mostly rejection letters in return, they published a handful of his stories which encouraged Haley to keep writing. His book and movie “Roots” told the story of his ancestors.

  3. Alice Walker. Literary Rejections stated in “Best Sellers Initially Rejected” that Little, Brown & Company passed on a two book deal for Alice Walker. When complete her novel The Color Purple sold 10 million and won the The Pulitzer Prize. Her Official Website stated that she was the first African-American woman to receive the Pulitzer Prize.

  4. Allen Loeb. Kyle Buchanan’s article on The Vulture quoted Allen as saying, “[I was] the baby writer at the lowest rung within the system, who has just enough rope to hang himself. That’s what I lived and breathed for seven, eight years.” Undercover, Escape From New York, Rock of Ages, Just Go With It, and countless other films.

  5. Amanda Hocking. Ed Pinkington relates that in March 2010 Amanda needed $300.00 to go to Chicago for a Muppet exhibit. Here’s how she got her $300.00. She self-published one of her many novels that had been rejected by umpteen book agents and publishing houses from 2001-2010 on Amazon and other digital eBook websites  She thought surely, she could sell a few copies to her family and friends. She was right. By October 2010, she not only raised $300.00 but she sold 150,000 copies of her books. She published My Blood Approves on March 17, 2010 and My Blood Approves, Book 2 called Fate was published April 15, 2010.

  6. Andy Warhol. The Guardian says in its blog,In a way, he was not a writer at all. All his books were either dictated or transcribed from recordings, and in this respect he was part of a curiously old-fashioned tradition. In the LA Times Culture Monster blog, it shows a letter from the Modern Museum of Art(now known as the New York Museum of Art) in which they reject the copy of The Shoe drawing that Andy offered to donate to them for free. The museum official, Alfred H. Barr, Jr. wrote “I regret that I must report to you that the Committee decided, after careful consideration, that they ought not to accept it for our Collection.”

  7. Anne Frank. John Noonan states in his article on Finding Dulcinea.com that after the holocaust was over, Anne’s father, Otto Frank found her diary. He typed it in German and shared it with family and close friends, who convinced him to share it with the world. He took it to a publisher, which released the first copies of the diary, titled “Het Achterhuis,” or “The Secret Annex,” on June 25, 1947.

David Oshinsky states in his New York Times Book Review that The Diary of Anne was rejected by Frank Knopf and 15 others before Doubleday published it in 1952. Now it is one of the best-selling books in history. According to one publisher, The Diary of Anne Frank was scarcely worth reading: “The girl doesn’t, it seems to me, have a special perception or feeling which would lift that book above the ‘curiosity’ level.”

  1. Audrey Niffenegger. In Jessica Strawser’s interview in Writer’s Digest.com, she stated that Audrey Niffenegger spent four and a half years writing The Time Traveler’s Wife and had 20 or more agent rejections before it was published in 2003.
  • Ayn Rand  Rand did not enjoy real success until the publication of The Fountainhead in 1943 which was rejected 12 times. Gradesaver.com states in its Biography of Ayn Rand that many people consider her last novel, Atlas Shrugged (1957) to be her masterpiece

  • Beatrix Potter.  Beatrix sent her tale to six publishers, but was rejected by all of them because of the lack of colour pictures, which were popular at the time. She self-published Peter Rabbit in 1901 because she was fed up with rejection letters.


    I can’t find where Barbara Kingsolver was rejected, but Barbara Kingsolver gives you great advice if you are rejected.

    Barbara Kingsolver. The Poisonwood Bible is one of her best-selling novels. One Hundred Rejections.com says in “Famous Rejection #36: Barbara Kingsolver’s Advice” for writers about rejection is: This manuscript of yours that has just come back from another editor is a precious package. Don’t consider it rejected. Consider that you’ve addressed it ‘to the editor who can appreciate my work’ and it has simply come back stamped ‘Not at this address.’ Just keep looking for the right address.”

    Famous writers recovered from rejection, so can you. Submit again.

    Here’s a three-week plan to get your manuscript, query, cover letter, and/or proposal in gear. Week 4 gets you to celebrate and write another story.PubSub

    Pub Subbers

    Week 1 Send manuscript off for final critique before submission. Choose publisher or agent. Print Guidelines.

    Week 2 Write pitch, query, cover letter, proposal, etc. to make a good impression.

    Week 3 Proof read everything. Submit this week.

    Week 4 Celebrate life. Write another story.

    50 Publishers Who Accept Unsolicited Manuscripts updated November, 2017

    22 Literary Agents Who Are Looking for You

    Good luck in your publication. Believe in you and your writing.

    Celebrate you.
    Never Give Up
    Joan Y. Edwards

    Copyright © 2014-2017 Joan Y. Edwards




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