Pavarotti was talking about the advice he got from his father when he couldn’t decide between teaching and singing. His father told him, “Son, if you try to sit on two chairs, you will fall between them. For life, you must choose one chair.”

I love that message. His father wasn’t rich or famous but gave great advice. Too often in this fast paced world, people want things handed to them or become an overnight sensation. The easier it is, the better.

When I first started writing my book, I kept telling myself I was crazy. I researched how many words a book should have and found 60,000 to 100,000 as the common answer. I decided if I made the commitment, I’d stick it out till the end, regardless the outcome.

I wrote, researched, and read each chapter over and over again. I had no idea how many words it was because I decided that wasn’t important. The essential thing was to get the words on the paper. Worry about the small stuff later.

I finally gave in and used the tool bar to click “word count”. Imagine my surprise when I had 55,000 words and wasn’t nearly done. I chose one chair and stuck to it. More stepping stones would come along after the book was written but I had met the challenge. As I continued on, each task needed to be handled with that same mindset. One chair at a time.

The message is clear. Stick to one thing and do it well. If you don’t love what you’re doing, try to see it through to the end. You never know what might happen and you could end up liking it. Can you change your mind and follow a different path? Absolutely. Just do it one chair at a time.

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taylor_swift14sTaylor Swift is my best friend. It didn’t start out that way. We mostly hung out in my car once in awhile. No one would ever believe we were friends. Kids would make fun of me if I told them and that would just be ‘Mean’.

She talked about boys mostly. There was this one boy she liked who was a prince and wore a dark gray t-shirt. Back then, she told me she used to be a damsel in distress. I think she wore a dress when she went out with him. There was this other guy named Romeo, but her dad didn’t like him. Don’t know how that turned out.

Then there’s all that competition with other girls. Taylor had a problem with some cheer captain even though she had more in common with some guy than this girl did. I hope it worked out for her. She already had a best friend, Abigail, the girl with red hair. I knew she never considered me her best friend even though she was on my BFF list but I didn’t care.

Okay, I have to admit this friendship is purely one-sided. Taylor would say she doesn’t even know me and has no idea what the inside of my car looks like. Those kids who’d make fun of me are the young adults in my family. I’m aunt to some and mom to one.

I may not be the target audience Taylor’s shooting for so I secretly put some of her songs on my MP3 player and of course have the complete Fearless album. It was released the year before I started my book and those songs were front and center on the radio back then. I give credit to them for helping me along as I wrote my first novel. I can’t listen to music as I write but I do listen when I’m thinking. I like to hear the same music/artist over and over for some reason. Everyone’s different, I guess.

Taylor Swift was my girl for Waiting for Dusk. Something about her words and the simple messages she puts out there remind me of any girl, any decade.
Could I see her as Katie, my main character? Absolutely. Strong in values, loyal to friends and loves her family. So thank you, Taylor Swift, wherever you are. You’ve got a fan in me.

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