Good morning world…

Looks like this might be a hang out on the sofa weekend… which gives me the opportunity to work on When I Look to the Sky and some “chores” to do like updating some things on the website. It’s not that I’ve been lazy – just busy!

I’d like to thank everyone who came out to the Meet the Author night at the Black Horse Winery in Orange Park to support me. It was fun and an awesome learning experience and I’m glad I stepped out of my comfort zone to do it. I’m hoping to find some pictures from the event in my in-box soon!

Everyday I learn something new to help me move forward.

I’m receiving lovely comments and feedback on Rock and Roll as well as Boots.

I’m excited about this journey! 🙂

Take a look at the site later in the weekend and see what I’ve done!

Thank you for being a Traveler in my Journey!

Love, Barbara

Oh! What a night!!!

Last night was an INCREDIBLE “next step” for me! I told y’all a while back that I was stepping out of my comfort zone, last night was the night!


I was nervous – something you don’t know about me – I AM NOT A FLAMING EXTROVERT! My friends never believe this – that’s because I KNOW THEM! I’m not anxious at all around people I know! Put me in a place where I don’t know people, and OH MY GOODNESS… TOP IT OFF BY PUTTING ME IN FRONT OF PEOPLE TO TALK ABOUT MYSELF, heart races in a big way!!!

Last night was the Meet the Authors Night at the Black Horse Winery in Orange Park. It was nice mingling with the other authors, and the guests before the program began. Their questions and comments helped me feel a little more at ease. Everyone was very interesting, but one writer that I spoke with, Chris Hejmanowski, was very personable, knowledgeable, and made me feel comfortable from the first words of our conversation (check out his website – ). We talked about our work not fitting “the traditional molds”. I’ve been told that my work isn’t Contemporary Romance, instead  they are LOVE STORIES – I think I like that better anyway, but there is no “bucket” for Love Stories. We talked about taking chances and later he told me he was proud that I took a chance.

When the program began, I was ready… my cheat sheet of notes to talk about myself, my experience on this journey, and my books, in my hand and ready! My turn to talk…(ACKKKKK!!!!!!!) I decided not to use my cheat sheet – just speak from my heart, and DO NOT MAKE EYE CONTACT WITH ANYONE! But I looked up at Dr. Hejmanowsk made me feel at ease, and I just started talking. AND I LIVED THROUGH IT! ha ha!

I LEARNED SO MUCH FROM LAST NIGHT’S EXPERIENCE, and I am ready to move on, finish my next LOVE STORY and see what happens. I learned that I need to explore more ways to better my work, more ways to promote my books – AND ME 🙂   I have some groundwork to get started and homework to do.

It was a great personal AND professional experience and I am SOOO glad I participated!

Thank you to my friends and family who were there to support me, and special thanks to YOU for standing behind me – literally, so I didn’t have to LOOK AT YOU! ha ha ha!

I will have pictures to put up soon.

I am blessed!

Love, Barbara

Time to git’r done!

Ok.. Ok… I HEAR YOU!

I’ve been nagged enough, no wait….. pushed and bitz’d at… no, that’s not good either… GENTLY NUDGED – YEAH, THAT’S IT!

DEADLINES: (thank you @Jeff Manalo for your subliminal messages – now you need to get busy too!)

1) Finish the draft for Book Two of the Trilogy – When I Look to the Sky – by Wednesday January 23rd – definitive – achievable – and….. I can say I have completed the draft on Wednesday evening when I take part in the Meet the Author Night!

It’s not just my friends who are asking – I’m getting emails from readers asking the same question – WHEN WILL THE NEXT BOOK BE READY? – I LOVE THIS!!!!!!!

2) Get the draft out for edits, corrections, changes and “this doesn’t work” or “I LOVE THIS” feedback! Set a deadline to have the inputs back to me by February 15th.

3) Cover ideas to work with my cover artist by February 6th

4) Have edits and corrections done by March 1st

5) Send final work out to proofers March 1st with a March 15th request for return.

6) Cover deadline (I <3 U Jeff!) March 22nd (there will be pizza nights between now and then! ha ha ha!)

7) Upload for publication ( – please listen!) by MARCH 31st.

So there’s my PLAN OF ACTION – with deadlines because “Goals are dreams with deadlines” Diana Scharf Hunt

Now… I must get busy, I have a deadline to meet 🙂

Love, Barbara


Excited to share this with you…

I almost have the first draft of When I Look to the Sky – Book Two in the Rock and Roll Trilogy – ready! Someone SPECIAL gets first peek (because she won the right at a Chance Drawing for the Oakleaf Relay For Life!) I will still have work to do when she gives it back, but IT’S A STEP!

My other EXCITING news is that I pulled Rock and Roll Never Forgets – Book One in the trilogy – from the distributor I published the eBook through; lessons learned are part of life, RIGHT? It went LIVE on KINDLE SELECT yesterday and in 12 hours I’ve had more downloads than the first 2 weeks through the other distributor.

It’s been a busy time and I am ready for some quiet time, but alas…. THINGS TO DO, PEOPLE TO SEE, PLACES TO GO!  🙂

Thank you for following my journey!

Love, Barbara

PS – this is one of those places to go! Scroll till you find someone you know 🙂

January 23: Meet the Authors, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Black Horse Winery, 420 Kingsley Avenue, a block west of Park Ave. (Hwy. 17) on the south side of the street. We cosponsor this event with winery owner and winemaker Kiyoko Fiedler, who offers this and other cultural events featuring local musicians, poets, artists and writers.

Chris Hejmanowski, M.D., Collider<br /><br />
Dr. Hejmanowski draws on his experiences deployed with the U.S. Marines in Al Taqqadum, Iraq. The idea took form during “quiet moments” while leading a Shock Trauma Platoon along the Syrian border. His passion for the mysteries of science and religion plays a major role in how this story unfolds. It traces the adventures of characters whose lives collide and intertwine as they face off with an evil beyond their comprehension. You will never view science and religion the same again after reading this book. Military trained in Emergency Medicine, Dr. Hejmanowski started out as a flight surgeon. He’s worked at the Naval Medical Station in Portsmouth, Virginia, and at NAS JAX. Following a decade in the military, he is an ER physician in the Jacksonville area. See the Charlie Patton profile on him, “Physician grapples with faith through science fiction novel.” (Florida Times Union, Jan. 15, 2013, Metro Section, p.1) His website includes a gold mine of links to sites for learning about the scientific behind his work.  **Be sure to share the science links with anyone (kids, teachers, parents) interested in learning about science in smart and engaging ways. Topics include “Fun Physics for Kids,” “Cool Universe Images,” and more.<br /><br />

Dr. Hejmanowski is writing his next science fiction thriller, Jesus Rock, set amid a devastating full-scale war in the Middle East. At 7 p.m. the 23rd, he speaks about writing Collider, his first full-length novel. </p><br />
<p>Barbara Stewart, Rock and Roll Never Forgets<br /><br />
Barbara’s second book of romantic fiction is based on the “soundtrack of her life.” We learn the story of Beth Morgan, whose determination to meet her favorite band leads to a chance encounter with her idol, musician Andy Stevens. The book follows Beth through the peaks, valleys, and plateaus of a relationship lived in the spotlight, caught between demands of the music business and her struggles to stay in the shadows. In the end, it's all about what the heart can't hold back. Barbara works in healthcare and lives in Middleburg with her husband, Gene, and their cat, Kooky. A volunteer for the American Cancer Society, she received the Hope Award for volunteerism in 2009.<br /><br />


Mary Jane Hayes, Emma’s House of Sound<br /><br />
A lifelong friendship with a deaf schoolmate inspired Mary Jane (“MJ”) to write this book. Geared toward early readers, the story shows how easily deaf children are misunderstood and explores the world of a profoundly deaf child. Emma was adapted as a stage play and performed at the Limelight Theater in St. Augustine and at the Cummer Arts and Gardens. The book is inspirational, promotes understanding, and motivates children without hearing impairments to understand the experiences a child with healing disability. MJ also wrote Emma’s Freaky Sneakers and other books.<br /><br />

  Robin Montesano, M.S., Clues to the Cause Questions for a Cure:<br /><br />
The Poisons Causing Multiple Sclerosis Worldwide<br /><br />
Millions struggle with Multiple Sclerosis (MS), an incurable, debilitating disease. Robin’s MS diagnosis came in 1992. By 1995, she was wheelchair-bound and continued to deteriorate physically. Today she dances, sails, plays piano, and can even hold a child. The book expands on research conducted as part of her Master’s degree in Human Nutrition. It includes insights from her interviews with people with MS around the country. The book shows readers with MS and their families how to investigate their own personal environments to discover clues to the source of the condition, helping them get proactive instead of reactive—to create a healthier living environments for themselves and their loved ones. Robin was named MS Mother of the Year (2003). She presented her work at the Harvard Medical School Biomedical Careers Fair (2004).<br /><br />             Book Cover.jpg


 Future “Meet the Authors” are scheduled for 2013: February 27 (2 spots left), March 27, and April 25, all at Black Horse Winery, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Contact me directly if you’d like to participate as an author.

Clay County Writers is a writing group sponsored by the Florida Writers Assn. Monthly meetings (the third Wednesday) are devoted to presentations by writing experts and authors discussing areas of their expertise. Our programs focus on the art, craft, and business of writing.

To learn more about the Florida Writers Assn., go to: Be sure to visit our blog, and join us on Facebook at “Clay County Writers”

Looking forward to seeing you at our next meeting! Be sure to spread the word.

Warmest wishes,

Maureen Jung

Group Leader, Clay County Writers

Thoughts on the year passed…


Oh, I could go on, but the reality is, I have to get ready to go to work at some point. 🙂

I never could have imagined what the past twelve months would bring, but I guess we never do, do we? I’ve stepped out of my comfort zone so many times that I feel like I’m dancing! (you really don’t want to see that, so quick… THINK OF SOMETHING ELSE! ha!)

Sweet Surrender – the first published – is sitting right where it should be, an average rating of 3 stars. It was a TREMENDOUS learning experience, and I will always be proud of myself for taking a chance.

Rock and Roll Never Forgets is still an UNKNOWN to me at this point, and I’m not thrilled about that, but I took a chance and will chalk it up to lessons learned, and maybe in the very near future I will have other news on that. The chance I took was going to an expanded distribution through a different distributor than I used with SS – the problem is – I can’t see what is happening until too far out. on January 4th I will get information for October. With Amazon/Kindle I could see real-time. I am still VERY proud of this book, because it’s the one that brought me to this point in so many ways. I learned it was “GOOD ENOUGH”, something I struggled with for almost 4 years. We’ll see what the rest of “you” think as time goes by.

And on the advise of my good friend and “artistic mentor”, Jeff, I did a quick read to throw out in time for Christmas. Whose Bed Have Your Boots Been Under is doing well, and I am hearing (HAPPY FACE AND MORE DANCING!) that this is the “best so far”. BLESSED…

I participated in NaNoWriMo again this year and was a WINNER with over 50,000 words in 30 days (25 actually!) and someday soon I hope you will read The Face In The Mirror, (Thank you Mom) but for now…

I am in the final stages of Book Two in the Rock and Roll Trilogy – When I Look to the Sky, and my chance-drawing winner from the Oakleaf Relay For Life “Dinner with the Author” night – Jennifer Johannes will get to read through it to take me to the next step! Hoping for a spring 2013 publish date – will keep you posted. The story for the third book is KNOWN, but I have to fill in all the middle!

Lastly, to celebrate my adventure, I am posting a link for an event that I am participating in on January 23rd – Meet The Author Night (kinda like Open Mic, only with books! ha ha ha!) at the Black Horse Winery in Orange Park. This event is sponsored by the Clay County Writer’s Group and the Black Horse Winery. There will be three featured authors (I THINK) and I will be one of them. (WAY OUTTA MY COMFORT ZONE, but I have to start somewhere!) If you would like information please email me and I will get it to you – I will have something on the website in the near future.

I love and appreciate EACH OF YOU who have supported me this past year, walked with me, sometimes holding my hand – gently, sometimes dragging me as I dug my heels in because I was scared (YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE!) I wouldn’t trade 2012 in my life for anything and I hope the journey (you knew I had to get that in there SOMEWHERE!) continues into 2013.

Happy New Year, with blessings for happy trails and journeys of your own!

Love, Barbara