What the Heck!

Because it’s the beginning of a new year, I’ve spent time over the past few days thinking about 2019 as a whole, and I found a theme.

What the Heck!

That was the theme? Yep! I noticed myself saying it over and over again.

Backstory: I’m not ashamed to say it. I’m a ginormous Bravo fan,

and anyone who knows what the letters “RHONY” stand for knows that Bethenny Frankel preaches about coming from a place of “yes.” You should accept every challenge head-on and plan to succeed. Now, I don’t think anyone would ever confuse Bethenny and I. The only thing we possibly have in common is our shoe size (though I have zero clue what her shoe size actually is.) She is much more assertive and aggressive than I, but I think our theme is the same. Mine is just a bit less intense: Go for it. Give it a try! What the heck!

So, back to 2019, I had an idea for a Christmas story.

“People” say don’t write Christmas stories.

I shrugged my shoulders and thought, “what the heck!” and dug in.

The story came to me in rhyme.

“People” say don’t write in rhyme.

I thought, “what the heck!” and revised. And revised. And revised.

I saw the opportunity to apply for the #PBChat mentorship. Again, same shoulder shrug. I spent a week filling out the application for a prose (i.e., non-rhyming) story, and before sending it in, I sat in front of my computer, heaved a great sigh, shrugged my shoulders and thought, a rhyming mentorship would be SO much fun. So I submitted my rhyming Christmas story to a potential mentor.

And got it.

Yes, there was also rejection and disappointment during the year, but I don’t remember the details anymore. I remember that I took a chance on myself. I worked hard with my brilliantly, lovely mentor, Lori Degman, and learned a ton.

And when I shared my story that “people” said not to write to an agent at my local SCBWI conference (that I helped plan because, well you know), and she offered me representation, guess what I said… “I’m not allowed to decide right away,” because that is not a decision to be taken lightly.

But a few weeks later I said, “YES!”

So maybe I have a tiny bit in common with Bethenny Frankel. I’m not a mogul of any kind, but I am what I want to be. A picture book writer. And here’s a picture of my agent, Marisa Corvisiero, and I to prove it.

Marisa & Kelly
Photo by Joy Givens (Thanks Joy!!!)

I hope I continue to say “what the heck!” in 2020, and I hope you do too!

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