Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The Post I put on the self promotion thread at NaNoWriMo

If you love Narnia and Neverland and journeys to fantasy lands, then let me tell you about myself and my Novel :)

Last year, I finished a Novel (Wow! That feels great to say that!!!)

Duffy Barkley: Seek Well

but I used my winner coupon at createspace to make a proof, 252 pages 6x 9 inches of a book that I wrote nearly 7 years ago, but up until now had only read to my family and to Junior High students.

Duffy Barkley is Not a Dog

It seemed so amazing in "Real Book" form, in my eager hands, that I re-did the proof a few times and then got brave enough to publish it back in August. I opted for the pro-plan and now it is available at createspace at

and through bookstores that can order it easily, and on Amazon as a paperback ($12.99) and a kindle ($6.99).

I have had the most fun, selling it at booths at local arts and crafts fairs and convincing stores and libraries to carry it. It helps you be successful to learn to love marketing your book as much as you love writing it!

Remember being with a group of friends where you felt safer and more included than you had ever felt at home, friends you had always wanted, who made you look around with a lump in your throat, wishing you could stop time? They were a lot like the groups in all the popular stories. They were the reason people love MASH, Harry Potter, Narnia, Friends, The Lord of the Rings etc. They were a group of imperfect, overwhelmed and harassed people who became winners because they didn't have to face the overwhelming odds, alone. Even in the face of dark wizards, popular girls, bad hair days or War, they had each other's back. When one of them had a weakness, another had a strength to balance it out. When one was a jerk, someone else saved the day, and forgave them eventually.
Now times are turning more difficult again. The world needs that kind of support. We need a source of encouragement so that we can find a way to be that kind of support when we are needed. As times are dark, people look for a reason to laugh, love and hope again.
Duffy Barkley is not a dog, a middle grade fantasy, gives you those friends, that escape, that voice of hope in the darkness. Duffy is alone, handicapped, desperate. He is picked-on, lost, & yet, never defeated. In the most alien of places he finds friends. In the most dire of emergencies he finds courage. In the most evil of villains he finds compassion and a solution. In giving away what he most needs, he gains everything.
Duffy, a 9 year old boy with cerebral palsy, survives tragedy in the form of a school shooting in which his younger sister is seriously injured. Falling into a new world, he regains his health but finds himself the focus of historic prophecy. While trying to deny his place in their prophecies he discovers his own abilities & changes his life & that of others in both worlds. He enjoys being physically strong but must give it up to save the villain, and find his way back to save his sister, Izzy.

Also, My name is Dixie D. M. Goode and my blogs are at,

So thanks for making it all the way to the end. Congratulations on being a NaNo Writer yourself.

echopandora (on NaNo) AKA Dixie Goode
Author, "Duffy Barkley is Not a Dog"

Monday, November 15, 2010

NaNoWriMo 2010

I am one of thousands of writers who make the commitment to write a novel, or at least 50,000 words of one, in the 30 days of November.  i love the concept of doing a high speed, quick and dirty, rough draft, instead of walking around for years telling myself that I am a writer, and I have great ideas for novels, and I WILL write that book starting tomorrow, um, Next Week, er...New year's Day.
 I always knew I was meant to write, I started telling myself stories before I even knew what words were.  I wrote poems and outlined stories on every scrap of paper that came my way and yet, I cheated myself by letting life get in the way.  I only wrote when I had a deadline, an assignment to fill, or when I was writing long Holiday letters to copy and send out en-masse.
 Then I began telling my stories to my kids, until there was a young handicapped boy named Duffy Barkley, already living and breathing in the air with me.  And then I heard about two extremely helpful on-line sites, one being NaNoWriMo, and  they changed my life from, "Someday" to "Do it Now!" Flylady.com,was mainly a site where I was encouraged to give up perfection and just bless my home with 15 minutes at a time.  What can you do in 15 minutes a day?  Create a warm, welcoming home out of Chaos, and write a novel in your spare time. Learn to Finally Love Yourself (FLY) as you do it.  And in bursts of inspiration and the willingness to just jump in where I was, my first dream of a book became a real thing that can be found on-line and in stores and held and hated or loved and has begun a life without me.
 But now, for the third time, I have made this commitment and it is November again, and I went from the surge of enthusiasm, to the, "This is terrible, I QUIT" to the "I can't stop eating, breathing and Dreaming this story," stage.

Halfway through the month, halfway through the 50,000 words, almost all the way out of my mind.  Committed?  Me?  Probably should be.
 So I had to take a break, remember that the world where my husband and children live, is not a fictional one.  I hugged my family, grabbed my camera and went outside, to breath the salty Fall air of the redwood coast and yet
 every step of the way, I felt them following me, reminding me that they can't move until I free them, that they can't find their way home until I do.  Every fictional word I write is a true part of me.  The world they inhabit, no less a part of who I am than the world I live in.
So I go back to my keyboard, back to Guatemala and the Oregon trail and mythical Uhrlin, but I sit down, fortified by chocolate, so the taste and smell can call me home from NaNoWriMo land when the story burns too real and the call of my own life is a faint memory.