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September 2012

Wanted: Accomplished Kids

LighningDue to a number of situations I've heard about lately, I've been thinking about celebrating the accomplishments of my readers' demographic. In my novel, Treehugger, the core character possesses unique powers that have taken a back seat to the effects of bullying and self doubt. While much of the backdrop for this story takes place off world under fantastic circumstances, the concept of losing your power to a lack of confidence for any reason, is certainly not new--especially among young adults. I plan to dedicate a post each week to a pre-teen, teen, or young adult (ages 10 through 21) or group of kids who demonstrates talent, intelligence, compassion, and/or heart by accomplishing something special. The message behind it?  Never let anything steal your power—not bullies, not disabilities, not shyness, not unfortunate circumstances, not life-long struggle with math. It doesn't have to be some over-the-top accomplishment, either.

Examples: Did the person take a journey to help others? Organize a drive (food, clothing, etc) to help others? Did he or she make a comeback after an injury? Start a business or non-profit? Befriend an elderly neighbor? Write a book? Save a stranger or loved one? Enter a main stream school program after needing special education? Win an art contest? Make a film? Receive an award as employee of the month? Volunteer their talents?

The Deal: Email me at (subject: YA Own Your Power) with a short description of the accomplishment. If I plan to post the story, I will send a short list of questions for the teen (or parent) to answer. It would be great to get a photo of the person and possibly a photo showing involvement in the accomplishment, but this is not required. If you do send photos, .jpeg or gif, please. Full names can be used, but I'm perfectly happy using a last initial if requested. Town or city is optional, however, I would like to use a state for those living in the United States. Reach: The story would appear on my blog (, and be promoted on the Kea Alwang Facebook page, and through Twitter. You are free to share the piece anywhere you like (with the exception of sites only appropriate for ages 18+).


1)What does your accomplishment mean to you?

2)How difficult was it to (make a comeback, set up your organization, rally people to your cause, convince someone to act on your idea)?

3)Which of your talents or traits came into play for you to succeed in this accomplishment?

4)How have you changed or how have others changed as a result of your venture?

5)Please note any websites involved in your accomplishment so we can link to them.

Thanks so much for considering involvement!


Timing is Everything

HourglassTiming really is everything, isn't it? Either it's on your side or it's not. Normally, time sticks its thumbs in its ears and sends me moose horns. However, I'm pleased to say that, for the past 48 hours, it has given me a break. So I figured I should acknowledge that for further good fortune. You know ... the whole karma bit.

1) I drank coffee too late last night at my friend's house (Steve, man ... that coffee was real good, but stroooong!) When I got home the caffeine kicked in big time. At 12:30 am, one would hardly think this is a good thing, but it helped me take advantage of two hours of work that I actually enjoyed doing. Yeah, I'm shot this morning, but the sleepiness and foggy brain is actually a good thing too ... perfect timing because ....

2) of our parakeets died this morning. If I wasn't so hazy, I would have been sobbing a lot more. It really hasn't sunk in. We knew poor Dobby was not long for this earth, but I'm sad just the same. He was green and beautiful, sweet, twitchy and subservient to his mate, and I'm waiting on pins and needles for the other bird's reaction. Weasely had a habit of snuggling up to and kissing Dobby half the time and screeching and poking at him the rest of the time. Weasley absolutely wore the pants and ruled the roost. She has been too quiet this morning. Probably mulling it over. Waiting for Dobby to return? I need to keep an eye on her. I don't want to get another bird, but if she starts crying -- as I've heard they sometimes do -- I won't be able to put off getting her a friend. Honestly, she's a mean bird and appears to hate us, but I love her anyway. Now Dobby's demise, while I wish it hadn't happened, did happen with perfect timing because ...

3) ... my daughter, Energizer Bunny Girl, was at a sleepover last night and hubby picked her up this morning to bring her directly to rock climbing team practice (she made team, yay!) while I go to work. Had she not gone to the sleepover, she would have been the one to find him this morning. (She greets them each morning.) Instead, hubby buried Dobby in the backyard with a nice marker, and so EBG didn't have to see him at the bottom of the cage. So when she returns today, we'll be able to sit her down calmly and tell her. She will not handle this well and will probably cry for hours and hours. But at least she didn't have to see him like that. It's going to be a looong day, but slightly less traumatic.

4) Lastly, I caught the last banana in the fruit basket at that perfect ripeness. Usually, I miss noticing it, and it hits that pasty mush stage. Know what I mean?

Anyway, I hope time is on your side today! As for me, I'm holding my breath -- lucky timing doesn't stick around long!


P.S.: In anticipation of Book Two (Risktaker) coming out this fall and another awesome review of Treehugger from a friend (wish she'd POST it somewhere already -- you know who you are!), buying Treehugger today would be rather good timing! The ebook has temporarily gone to $0.99 and the print version dropped to $11.99 on Amazon and