A Little Bit About Me:
I'm Robin, and I'm glad you stopped by.
I am an author, ghostwriter, journalist and writing coach. But most of my time is spent answering to the name of "MOM."
My husband and I have a blended family of 9. We added a daughter-in-love to the mix and are expecting our first grand baby! If you are doing the math, let me help you. I used to joke about these numbers adding up to a lot of laundry. Now I joke that they add up to a lot of college tuition. The truth is, neither of these is a joke.
Raising children has proved to be the single most difficult job I have ever done. Before kids, I believed that if I poured my heart and soul into the entire parenting thing, then my children would naturally turn out to be above average members of society.
That dream turned in to hoping none of them would become a threat to society.
Or end up on the Jerry Springer Show.
Okay. I'm kidding about that. I love being a mom to these kids and am super proud of who they are becoming. Hang out with me for a while and it won't take you long to figure that out.
A little more about me: I am a christian, sarcasm is my second language, and I'm pretty good at getting inside your head. I tell you these things for three reasons: faith is an identifying factor of who I am, I like saying that I know a second language, and the last note is very helpful in my work as a ghostwriter.
A little bit about my work:
My roots in writing started a little over 16 years ago with a mom-blog and a local humor column. It was kind of a hobby, kind of a way to keep in touch with friends and family, and kind of (mostly) therapy. Initial readers of that first blog and local column were either related to me or they simply could relate to me. My first following of loyal readers numbered somewhere in the tens.
In the early years of writing for publication, I wrote a lot about my adventures as a mom, life in my community, and my faith. I may not have offered much in the way of wisdom, but readers could count on taking a glimpse of my life as "mom" served up with a healthy dose of humor.
That first column and blog opened a few doors to (gulp) public speaking at area MOPS groups. I wasn't very good back then, (questionable now) and my first attempt at professionalism in the speaking world involved a horrible incident with fake fingernails and a zipper that wouldn't zip. It's a fun story if you're not me. Maybe I'll share it with you some time.
On the brighter side of how things unfolded for me: I began to receive writing and photo assignments from my local newspaper. I started gaining a little confidence with this whole writing for publication thing, and I started attending writers' conferences and submitting articles for publications outside of my small town. As it would turn out, I kind of had a knack for this writing thing, particularly when it came to sharing the stories of others.
While I won't bore you here with my resumé, I will tell you that over the years I have accumulated hundreds of writing credits with pieces that appear in blogs, newspapers, regional and national parenting publications, and in Chicken Soup for the Soul. I've won the "Promising Pen Award" from the Quad Cities Christian Writers' Conference, and have even received a public endorsement (that I wasn't expecting!) from best-selling author, Cecil Murphey, while I was attending one of his events.
I'm not really comfortable when it comes to "tooting my own horn," which might explain why I am a pretty good ghostwriter. Basically, a ghostwriter is someone who writes for another in the first person, sometimes receiving the credit, sometimes not. If you have read a book by a famous celebrity, sports icon, or political figure, it's a pretty safe bet that it was ghostwritten. Probably not by me. But I might know who did (winky-face).
I have, however, ghostwritten memoirs, website content, ad copy, speeches, bios and other articles. I've completed a full manuscript for an actress, sample chapters and website material for a director of a national organization called Christian Communicators, and a couple of speeches given at major events. It took me a while, and I may have had to deliver mail or wait tables while I was building this writing resumé, but I've finally got some creds to show for it.
When I'm not busy writing for newspapers or for people with names-you-may-or-may-not-recognize, I started writing life-stories for people whose names you will not recognize. People who are not worried about their books being sold for mass publication. People who want nothing more than to connect with their families, both now and for generations to come, through their story.
I think I enjoy this work more than any I have done so far.
Working as a personal historian began as I project I started with my grandma when I helped her organize journals, records, photos and newspaper clippings. Her desire was to pass on a legacy-in-writing to all of her grandkids and great-grandkids. Two days after her manuscript was complete, my grandma fell asleep in Iowa and woke up in heaven. She was able to add "author" to her list of accomplishments.
And she was able to create a connection to her family members, both now and for generations who will follow, because she wrote her memories, her stories and her family history.
Today I help other people create that same connection through writing their life-stories. This is done in a variety of ways, but the end result is the same:
Another way I can help you share your stories is by coaching you through the writing process. If you need help writing your own book, life-story, or memoir, I can customize a program for you to include consultations, manuscript reviews, writing prompts and publishing ideas. The best way to find out more info is to drop me a note on my contact page. I'd love to visit with you about your project.
I'm also available to speak for your group about the power of writing your story or lead an interactive workshops on life-story writing.
And, after knowing how my first MOPS group speaking engagement went, if you are brave enough to invite me to provide some encouragement to your mom's group, I'd love to hear from you, too!
So that's my story. Now let's get started on yours!