Tag Archive | taylor anne

New Year, New Vision

New Year Goals

2018 Goals

New Year New Vision – Every year at this time people sit down and make New Year’s Resolutions. They start the year off with a BANG! Then, things slowly go back to the way they were before the resolution was made. Yep, I’m just as guilty as the next person.

2018 will be a different year for me – as an author, as a R&F consultant, as an event host, as a wife & mother. How, you might wonder. GOALS – not resolutions. These are the same thing, right? In a sense they are. But for me, it’s a mindset. Resolutions are typically over the top, way out there, unattainable demands. Goals are attainable, realistic, and work to advance a situation. So I’m going with goals.

Here are my steps in setting goals:

2018 Goal Setting

2018 Goal Setting

  1. Write them down.
  2. Publicize (most of) them so others can help keep you on track.
  3. Review them often. Remember, goals can change as life changes.
  4. Celebrate the smallest victories!

Share with us some of your goals for 2018.

2018 Goals – What it is!

  • Have 100 General Admission / 50 VIP Admission readers at Signing in the South – Author/Reader event at The Isle of Capri Hotel Casino, Lake Charles, LA.
  • Finish my current WIP – Book 1 in the Sunset Bayou series.
  • Grow my Rodan & Fields business by adding 10 new PC’s and 5 new Consultants.
  • Plan a successful Spring 2019 wedding for my daughter and her fiance!!

Although I have several more written goals, these are my top 4. This is where my focus will be for the upcoming year.

Share your goals. If you have a business you are trying to expand, drop a link in the comments as well. Together, let’s spread the word about where we are going and the businesses that will get us there.

#2018goals #supportingeachother

Signing in the South ticket link.

Rodan & Fields customer link.         Rodan & Fields business link.

New Year, New Skin, New You event link

Taylor Anne Amazon page

2018 Cheers

2018 Cheers

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Cheers to a successful YOU!!!

Love, hugs, and kisses – Taylor

Tacky Wine Tour – What an experience!

tacky wine tourTacky Wine Tour – What an experience! What does a wine tour day look like? Picture it: Get in the vehicle and meet several other people who are also out for a good time. Introductions for those who you are meeting for the first time. Pass out the goody bags and bag lunch. Oh look – a hand decorated wine glass! (Thanks Melanie!) Rearrange the luggage to make room for all the wine you will buy. Then sit back and travel from winery to winery – tasting, testing, enjoying!

Our first stop of the day was Bruno and George Winery. Owners Sbruno and george wineryhawn and Misha treated us to a wonderful tasting of over 10 of their specialty wines. Shawn is the grandson of Salvatore Bruno and he blends his wines from the original recipes established in the rolling hills of Salaparuta, Sicily. I really enjoyed the wines, but also the way Shawn incorporates his memories of his family and traditions into his entire business. This is a definite stop for anyone who loves wine and a good time! (p.s. – you must try their raisin wine!! – be prepared for a WOW moment!)

 

yepez wineryNext stop of the day was Yepez Vineyard. This is a most amazing vineyard nestled in Baytown, TX. The setting is gorgeous with its adobe style tasting house and outdoor sitting areas. Lena Yepez was there to greet us and show us around. She was such a pleasure to meet! I am so excited to contact her about a future book signing at her location. The wines I tasted there were fabulous. They are made from grapes grown right there in Texas. What a lovely place to stop!!

 

vine 2 wineJumping ahead to the next day, we visited Vine 2 Wine Vineyard and Winery in Winnie, TX. AMAZING?! This place is exactly that and more. Stacy was the best wine hostess! She knows her wines and loves explaining them. Vine 2 Wine offers great wine and an incredible atmosphere to sit back and enjoy a glass of wine. Stacy brought out one wine at a time, explained the history of it and what we could expect to taste on our tongue and palette. Normally I prefer dry, but Red Velvet Infusion was an awesome semi-sweet! I have to say, Stacy hooked me on all of her wines!

So – how and where can you get this experience?  Melanie at Tacky Wine Tour will hook you up! Her tours are organized, casual, and loaded with fun! Her touches in the goody bags will have you aahhiinng and oohhhiing. She even provides a bag lunch and snacks so you’re not tasting (drinking) wine on an empty stomach. Best part of it all, she does all the driving so you don’t have to worry about getting from place to place. (No worries – she does not drink while hosting her tours) And the very best part of it all, Melanie is such a sweetheart! She has a wonderful personality and loves taking care of her tacky tourists. Contacts are made, and friendships last!

Go ahead – visit Tacky Wine Tour website and Tacky Wine Tour Facebook page. Tell her Taylor sent you!

Till next time – Love, hugs, and kisses – Taylor

wine tastingtacky wine tourtaylor and melanie

 

 

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Happy Thanksgiving

HAPPY THANKSGIVING

What is Thanksgiving to you? Thanksgiving is a day I reflect on things I am thankful for. And there are many! God, family, friends, health, shelter, the ability to pursue my dreams and the people who help make that happen (like you!), and the list is endless.

But, with everything I am thankful for, the week of Thanksgiving often weighs heavily on my heart. My little brother (45) and Mom both have birthdays this month. The 22nd and 25th, respectfully. So this has always been a wonderful week! However, February 2016 I lost Mom and my brother, a week apart. I try hard to focus on the memories and good times. I know that’s what both of them would want. And my older brother is still with me, so I am very thankful for that!

 

Family and Friends are in the top of my thankful list. Without them, what is life all about? It’s nice to get together and reminisce as well as make new memories. Having our kids over when hubby and I cook a meal – LOVE IT! Especially now that Grandkids are involved! Flying out to CA to visit my son – OH YES!!! We have similar interests as we are both artsy / crafty people. He has formed a band and not only plays guitar, but also writes lyrics and composes music. Outings with my daughter – THE BEST!! No matter where we go, or what we do, it’s always fun. And I’m trying to keep her as stress-free as possible until college graduation gets here! What are some fond memories you have?

Okay – Now Let’s Talk Food! What is your Thanksgiving meal? Ours is not always the same. Most of the time it is fairly traditional for us – ham, turkey, dressings, green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, and many desserts, especially pecan and pumpkin pies. This year, we are mixing it up a little. Sticking with ham, because that’s my favorite! Our other “meat” dish is Plantation Supper (recipe at the end of post). And sides of course – green bean casserole, smothered cabbage, and rice dressing. Desserts – well, my daughter is making a Cookie Dough Trifle. http://www.delish.com/cooking/recipe-ideas/recipes/a50270/cookie-dough-trifle-recipe/ With all of that, I think we will be satisfied at the end of the day!

I’m sharing with you the recipe for Plantation Supper. It’s an easy dish to make, can be customized to your taste, and freezes well if you need to make it ahead of time. (Also makes a good 4-H competition dish.)

Please share what you are thankful for, fond memories, or holiday recipes.

Plantation Supper

1 ½ lb. ground beef

½ c. chopped onion

½ c. chopped bell pepper

½ c. milk

1 can cream of mushroom soup

1 can cream of chicken soup

8 oz. sour cream (or cream cheese)

1 can whole kernel corn, drained

Salt, pepper, or your favorite seasoning

1 pkg. egg noodles

16 oz. shredded cheese (8 oz. works, but I love cheese!)

Brown meat, add onion, bell pepper, and seasonings and cook until tender. Drain excess fat. Stir in milk, soups, sour cream, and corn until well blended. Prepare noodles according to package directions. Combine meat mixture and noodles in pan. Top with shredded cheese. Bake for 30 minutes or until cheese is bubbly. Serve with warm rolls.

 

Happy Thanksgiving,

Taylor

Things you learn at a writers’ conference

Yesterday I attended a writers’ conference hosted by Bayou Writers’ Group. The four speakers that presented were amazing. Not only in their presentations, but in their attitudes and personalities. It was a joy to see them interact with so many writers – from aspiring to published. Their presentations satisfied every writer that attended. It was my pleasure to attend this conference and learn from these women.

What I learned at BWG Writers’ Conference:

Johnnie Bernard – Developmental and Content Editing

You think you know all about editing? Let me tell you, Johnnie is a mastermind when it comes to this topic. What stuck out in my mind the most was her analogy of using the sitcom some of us remember (showing my age again). What do you think of when you remember Leave it to Beaver? More so, how does it apply to writing?

  • Landmarks – Just like the memorable landmarks of Mayfield, your story needs to have landmarks readers can identify with.
  • Strong Supporting Cast – Incorporate an Eddie Haskell into your story. Not only will he/she bring lots of laughter, but will resonate authenticity with your readers.
  • Teachable Moments – Beaver always had a life lesson intertwined in those thirty minutes. Make sure your story brings a lesson your readers can learn from.

Elizabeth Ludwig – Researching Historical Facts for Fiction

Elizabeth presented on the importance of historical facts. Your genre readers are looking for a great story, but keep in mind that some of them are also interested in history. What this means for an author is that you must research facts and portray them correctly in your story.

  • Locate Social Etiquette books for the time period you write.
  • It is okay for your character not to know all the social rules, but there must be repurcussions. This lets the reader know that the author knows the social rules.
  • Cliches are okay to use if they are appropriate for the time period of your story.
  • Colleges and universities are great resources for checking historical facts.
  • If at all possible, visit the location of the setting of your book.

S.M. Schmitz – Becoming Visible in an Invisible Marketing World

Every author wants their work to be seen by readers. S.M. has the knowledge and experience to show authors how to accomplish this feat. She walked us through Launching a New Book and Online Platforms. There was something for writers in every step of their journey.

  • Before launching a book, you need to understand Amazon Ranking. (see S.M.’s website for more info.)
  • Authors need an online presence through websites, newsletters, and social media.
  • Plan – Plan – Plan – Make a plan for each day of the month to learn something about marketing your book. (listen to podcasts or read books; research ads)
  • Send newsletters consistently, and keep the content fresh, brief, and relevant to your books.

Juliette Cross – Building a Realistic Fantasy World in Your Fiction Novel

Juliette touched on what is needed to bring your reader a believable and memorable story world. Not only did she present, but she worked with the writers through various writing prompts that pertained to her topics. The readings from the participants at the writers’ conference were amazing!

  • Sensual – The story must appeal to the five senses; evoke mood/emotion; and show a unique perspective of nature and surroundings.
  • Realistic Fiction / Fantasy Element – Have the story grounded in the familiar; embed realism in mythology, history, and storytelling.
  • Emotional Characterization – Engaging dialogue should reflect characters’ personalities; internal monologue adds depth and humor to your story; know the way your character walks, talks, eats, etc.
  • Take a journal with you into nature. Sit and feel your surroundings. Write through your emotions and senses.

Following the writers’ conference, these speakers joined twenty other authors for an author signing (Pelican Tales). It was a fabulous day full of learning, meeting new people, and mingling with authors and readers. Check out each of these authors / speakers. They offer a lot more than what they had time to present at the conference.

Till next time,

Love, hugs, and kisses – Taylor

Pelican Tales

Writers’ Conference – Taylor Anne, Juliette Cross, Elizabeth Ludwig, S.M. Schmitz, Johnnie Bernhard

Pelican Tales – Author Signing

Pelican Tales 2017

Author & Reader Event

Sponsored by Bayou Writers’ Group of Lake Charles

An author signing / reader event where readers meet and mingle with their favorite (and new) authors. Want to spend an afternoon in scenic Bayou Country at a multi-genre author / reader event? Mingle and make some new contacts. Help us grow – spread the word to other readers that you will attend. Bring a friend, or two!

Where:                 Central School, 809 Kirby St., Lake Charles, LA

When:                   October 14, 2017 3pm – 6pm

Reader Tickets:   Only $5.00 admission at the door for readers. Readers Facebook group to see which authors will appear.

Hope to see you there!!