Touching Others

I will be the first to admit that I live in my own little world, a vacuum if you will. I do my thang. I do family stuff. I'll post to my goals groups. I'll help friends out if they are in need for a shoulder to cry on, to critique, to gritch about life in general. I belong to the PTA, but I'm not really 'active' unless someone calls for help. I do know the word NO and I know how to use it.

But last week, I had a few surprises. None of them were big surprises, but each one of them touched me.

1) My friend Cyndi sent me 21K on her new story to critique. Now, Cyndi writes contemporary cowboy stories, romances along the lines of Harlequin. I don't read these stories on a regular basis, but I do enjoy Cyndi's stories. Imagine my surprise when I saw my name, MAGS.
Recently, I've been calling myself Mags when I comment on blogs, post to my goals group, or whenever. This isn't unusual since I tend to add an "s" to other peoples names as a term of endearment (Jods, Megs, etc) if it works with their name.
So when I come across this secondary character's name in Cyndi's manuscript, I laughed out loud. Mags in her story is an older woman, secretary to a lawyer who delightfully banters with the hunky cowboy hero. Trust me, this made my day! I sent Cyndi a quick IM and she told me she had forgotten she put my name in there and would take it out if I was upset--Heck, NO! Again, funnly as H3LL!

2) My friend Jody has been around for decades! We met at KJM Stables--at the time she had Quincy and I think I had Princess, but the Abe monster brought us closer together. We lost touch when she moved to Califorinia, but managed to find each other again about five years ago. Jody is an uber-talented struggling artist who has found her groove and is catapulting her horse cartoons into the spotlight. Check her out on Misfit Designs Facebook page or CafePress.

Jody has been in my cheering section from the first time I started to write middle grade novels. In fact, Jody was the one who gave me Kyte's name. It was her Dungeons & Dragon's persona, so she connected with Kyte on the visceral level. She was one of the first people to read GNOME and her words of praise helped me realize that this was the writing path I needed to travel. Fast forward--we were emailing each other last week or the week before and she sent a note along the lines of  "expect something in the mail". Okay, I was excited because she recently sent me a Mac & Jill coffee mug and I LOVE IT!
It wasn't a Mac & Jill mug. Instead, it said, "oh, fizznuts!" I died laughing!! I'd take a picture, but I'm currently using this mug while I'm typing this. If you havn't read my stories--and trust me, I will NOT take offense if you haven't!--but since Kyte is an 11-year-old, she doesn't curse. I don't want her to curse, it's not in her to curse, but when things go awry she has to say something! My daughter used this term, I don't know if she made it up or read it somewhere, but I took it.
And it tickled Jody's quirky side, thus the coffee cup. :-) Yes, it really does make me smile.

3) If you've read this blog through any Christmas holiday, you'll know that I make candy--LOTS OF IT. It's a very lonely, time-consuming, back-breaking and laboreous process. Virtually all the candy is given away to my hubby's peers and employees. I never see their reactions. Oh, I hear about some of them, but maybe only 2%. It's one of those thankless jobs that I like to do because it makes me happy. Anyhoo, we were at a going away party for my husband's boss and I was approached by one of the wives. She told me that they FIGHT over the candy. "What??" Yes, my secret hidden smile popped out right about then as I got all warm and glowy. And then she wondered if I took special orders. Again . . . "What?" Turns out she's thinking about giving my candy to their daughter's swim coaches at the high school awards banquet. Too Kewl! I doubt if it will happen because it would probably be too pricey for them to afford. I did price it out since I am donating 5 one-pound boxes to Brenda Novak's For the Cure Auction to benefit Juvenile Diabetes in May. It would cost me close to $18 just in supplies to make the candy and that doesn't count my labor.
But again, it was nice to get that feeling of touching someone else's life even through my candy.

4) One of my writer friends, Karin Tabke, posts on a group blog, MURDER SHE WRITES. These ladies write romantic suspense. I've been reading the blog almost from the inception. Periodically, they will add new writers and one or two will have to drop out due to obligations, but they always have something fun to talk about. About a couple of weeks ago, they released an anthology called GUNS AND ROSES. An anthology is a book of short stories. Many times they will have to have a key ingredient to link the stories, this time each story had to have a gun and a rose. Period. I was reading away and then I start reading Karin's story. Imagine my surprise when I come across the name of the police dispatcher--MAGS. Yep, me again. I sent Karin a note, and while she didn't confirm or deny it, she did mention that she had to cut many of Mags scenes, but she would have more air time in another story. I hope Mags is a quirky character who has tons of idiosyncrisies!

So even though we don't realize it in our every day grind, we do touch other people's lives. You never know who you might touch or bring a smile to their face simply by sending them a {hug}, or the words you write or by showing them a little of your heart. Think about it and don't be stingy, we only have one life to go around, so make it a good one!

Later, peeps!


Jody Werner said...

"No man is a failure who has friends"

A quote from one of my favorite movies of all time, and something we all need to remember every day!

magolla said...

And I'm so happy to call you my friend, Jods!

Cynthia D'Alba said...

I LOVE Margaret from Texas Tango Tangle! She's got a mouth on her. Umm I wonder why Mags thinks I named the character about her! :)

Twisted Sister said...

What a great blog! You've made a great impact on my life.

magolla said...

Well, let's see, Cyndi, I guess if Mags isn't me, then I'm a raving egomaniac. :-P

magolla said...

Thank, Meggie! You have also changed my life!

Patti P said...

Thank you for your post. I really needed to hear that. I tend to feel things I do go unnoticed but I guess that is just my gloomy gus side.
Smiles to you!
musicalfrog at comcast.net

magolla said...

Thanks for stopping by, Patti.

It isn't the heaping dollops of praise that really matters--though those are nice every now and then!--but instead the quiet knowledge that you DO make a difference even if it's in some small way.