Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Author & a Pageant

So, I've got some news.

When I made the decision three years ago to write seriously I had no idea where that would lead me. And just like most of you, I learned quickly that writing is a journey of confidence and great joy, but also potholes and blindsiding twists.

To learn the craft, one of my many methods was to surround myself with like-minded folks--people who work hard and give of themselves on a daily basis, and yes, writers: some of the most selfless and supportive individuals I've ever known.
 
Back in May, I was contacted by a consultant for the Mrs. Maine America 2012 Pageant and asked to compete for this year's title. I'll admit, initially I blew the idea off, needing to completely rewrite Marked Beauty and to spend time with my four kids throughout the summer. However, after seeking the advice of others and chatting with Christie--the consultant who's fabulous, BTW--I've recently decided to compete. And I could use your help.

Your support would mean the world to me. Of course, a friendly Go get'em girl will warm my heart. I will so appreciate and need those. But the pageant is also quite costly. As you can see, I've added a widget to my right sidebar. If you'd like to help sponsor me that would be amazing!! Any donation would help.

But that's not all. Recently, a beloved teacher in my area passed away. He was diagnosed with esophageal cancer late this summer. I had him as a teacher in school, and he was also the father to one of my friends and classmates. In his honor, our local high school and a group of students have created a scholarship fund to be awarded to a senior, pursuing an education in chemistry or field of science. I've written a newspaper article free of charge in support of this effort, which was release yesterday in one newspaper and will be reprinted in others. I've decided that any monies I raise above and beyond my pageant expenses will be donated to this scholarship fund, helping to support the scholarship and also raise awareness of esophageal cancer.

I've linked the article to my paypal widget as well as above. I hope you'll read it. Not so much for me, but for this amazing teacher the world lost a few weeks ago. He had a 43-year career doing what he loved to do. My hope is that we all can learn to live our lives that way.

Pageants carry a stigma. Don't deny it; you know it's true. By participating in this pageant, I'm hoping to shed new light on pageantry and all the lessons it can teach and opportunities it can lend. (Just as former Miss Maine Ashley Underwood did when she took the challenge of being a cast member of the hit show Survivor last season.) The Mrs. America Organization has been running for 35 years. Over those years, its title holders have done countless works of charity. Their focus is on a woman's accomplishments--what she's done with her life and how she's lived it. I believe that's an important element of life, and in today's society, it's a priceless example.

My other goals are easy:
  • to share the experience and wisdom I've gained through my almost 20-year marriage and the joys and angst of raising four children--yeah, kind of like writing, isn't my friends?

  • to share my passion for writing, and the importance of regular reading and writing for children and young adults. They don't have to aspire to be professional writers when they grow up. But reading and writing can be therapeutic and teach the vital skill of dreaming. Think Big - Be Big. We never know where we can go unless we dream it first. Reading and writing can develop other skills such as confidence and the ability to formulate ideas and answers, not to mention the ability to communicate in an articulate manner.  

The pageant will be held sometimes at the end of January or beginning of February. I plan on writing posts, recording my experiences to share with you. I've already had a few--as you can see from the photo shoot photos I've added to this post--so I'll have to backtrack. I've also started a separate Facebook page. Would you please head over and Like it for me?

Thank you in advance for your support!!

Hearts,
S~ 

19 comments:

  1. Wow! What amazing news! Well done, sugar plum :o) I'm definitely rooting for you! I'd LOVE to be able to donate some money, but um ... to cut a long sorry story short, I need money to be able to do that. But you know I love you and I will do anything to help you that doesn't mean neglecting putting some food in my fridge :o)

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  2. That's awesome that you were asked to participate. Good luck! I liked your Facebook page too. Looking forward to hearing about your journey.

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  3. Good luck. You have big things going on!

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  4. What an intense undertaking. Good luck to you. Sorry to hear about your former teacher.

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  5. I liked you on fb! :) This will be a huge, busy year for you!! Congrats to you and good luck!

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  6. Consider yourself liked! I think it's fabulous, and a great way to get yourself out there to help others.

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  7. I love that you're using the pageantry to inspire kids to write! How perfect is that? Best of luck to you - I know you'll do great!

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  8. wow! Very cool and what a great idea to encourage reading and writing. Maybe you'll also share how you do so much what with four kids, a hubby, dog, blogs, etc. Are you sure you don't have a time-turner?

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  9. This is fantastic news! Congratulations! I'm off to spread the word for you right now.

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  10. Thank you, all, for your support!!

    Marcy - hahah...that gives me an idea for a story...

    Heather - you are TOO sweet! Thank you for spreading the news for me. I really appreciate it!

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  11. OMGosh, Susan!! Your donation is the bomb! Thank you for sponsoring me. You're name will be on my ad page, thanking my sponsors!

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  12. That is a wonderful thing you are doing! And what if you win? Because you could win...

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  13. Wow, congratulations!!! What an amazing achievement. I'm so excited that you have a passion for encouraging reading with children. :)

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  14. I am so excited for you! And I'll be rooting for ya! I found your FB page the other day and liked it immediately! Bonne chance, Sheri!

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  15. That is so awesome! I'm so glad you are going to keep us up to date with the pageant. You will do great!

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  16. Congrats and good luck! I think it's awesome that you're entering the pageant.

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  17. get outta here, girl! I'm so behind on everything. That's fantastic news, and good for you! Best of luck w/the pageant--those pix are so pretty. I esp. like the first one, but the other two are also very, very nice. So will I see you on TV??? :D <3

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  18. Great teachers are an invaluable commodity. Love what you are all doing in honour of this guy.

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!SPLAT Your Awesomeness! I love to hear from you!

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