Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Chicken Soup for the Soul!!

Well, the day started off as usual. After getting my husband off to work and the girls off to school, I poured myself a coffee, toasted up some raisin bread and headed down to my office/studio to start my day.

I opened up my emails, immediately noticing a message from my composer friend, Blair Thomson, who sent me the unmixed version of the song I recorded for him in the studio yesterday afternoon. It's from his and Frayne McCarthy's new musical - The Virgin Courtesan. I smiled when I heard the character voice I used for "Harlot 3" coming through the speakers because it reminded me of Mme Thenardier from Les Miz (which immediately brought back wonderful memories and distracted me for a few minutes). I closed the email and was just about to respond to it when I saw one from someone whose name I didn't recognize at first. It was at the bottom, under a slew from the band members of Slice of Vegas confirming our next rehearsal date.

I literally held my breath as I clicked on the email.

"Dear Lisa,

Your story “Hope” has made it to the final selection round for Chicken Soup for the Soul: O Canada. Only about five percent of the submitted stories have made it this far." .... "The publication date is scheduled for November 1 2011. You will receive...."
(then all the monetary and legal details followed...)

Oh my God!!! My first paid piece!!

I jumped out of my chair and started doing a happy dance! I immediately dialed my husband's work and cell numbers and couldn't reach him (argh!!), so I quickly called my sister Christine, who began to do a virtual happy dance of her own at the other end of the line. Bless her - she is so supportive of everything I do!

I finally reached my husband Shawn and even though he was dealing with some stressful work issues, he took the time to tell me all the wonderfully encouraging things a wife wants to hear her husband say, including, "we'll celebrate when I get home."

After that sweet conversation, I contacted my daughters. They are my first readers. They read everything I write (er...well most of the things I write. I am experimenting with a few genres that wouldn't be appropriate for them! LOL!)and so they're always interested to get news about something I've submitted. They were thrilled!

I guess they must be talking about it because, since I told them earlier today, I've been receiving congratulations from their friends via email, texts and Facebook messages!

I've spent most of the morning in a happy tizzy, writing the bio that will appear along with the story, dealing with the agreement as well as preparing this blog entry. Goodness knows, I've got a load of work to do and my taxes to prepare but I'm floating on a cloud and can't concentrate on anything else!

The truth is, there's always the possibility that "Hope" may not make it into the very final cut that will have it published in the O Canada edition, but there's always the very strong possibility that it will!

(Chicken Soup has permission to publish the story elsewhere so, who knows, it could one day end up printed in a national newspaper or family magazine.)

The way I see it - today is a very good day!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Irish Week

a.k.a Green Week!

Too busy singing Irish ditties to do anything else...

Here in Montreal, the Irish festivities begin the night the Parade Queen and her court are chosen. This year, that was February 5th. The celebrations will continue right up until the United Irish Societies Banquet on April 2nd.

I have the honour to be a part of it and today I especially enjoyed doing a concert for the long-term patients at the Richardson Hospital. I loved their enthusiasm and was so impressed by their participation. The old Irish songs brought back many memories for them - even those who weren't of Irish descent. Some shared a story or two and one sweet lady walked up to the performance area to hand me a box of her treasured "Smarties"! Moments like these make it all worthwhile.

I love this time of year but by the end of the Irish season, I'll be ready for a vacation, lol! (anyone handing out a trip to Ireland??)

I do look forward to when I'll have a moment to think and hopefully, write!

May the luck of the Irish be with you this week!


PS: Here's a link that might be of interest:

PSS: My song "Across the Sea", inspired by my love of the Irish people and the Emeral Isle, has been very well received. I think I may step into the studio with a few musicans to record it....