December 4, 2013

My Story Has Been Published

One of my stories has been published! A few months ago I read an ad on the Indiana writing website calling for submissions for a book they were doing about Indiana state parks. If chosen, it would be published in an anthology containing stories and poems from many contributing authors. Well, I grew up in Indiana and I attended those state parks. I thought, here we go!

The short story is about my camping trips with my dad at Shades State Park. Of course, it is done in my style and includes the harrowing experience I had with a crazy rabid raccoon family in the middle of the night. 

It just came out so I haven't received my copy yet but if you are from Indiana or like to go camping you may enjoy it.

Here is the website and yes, there is my name, Debbie Kollar. Or, you can go on The great thing is all of the proceeds go to help school children visit state parks to learn about nature and wildlife.

Whatever the case, I'm in. I can now say I am a published author in a book no less. I can say I have had an ongoing published column which people actually read. I can say I have had a blog, which pretty much anyone can have, right! I can even say I have had fan mail from my column, well two letters, but they made me feel wonderful. 

Yes, I am a writer. I am not perfect and I am slow going but I'm getting somewhere. I don't know what the future holds but if I want to get anywhere pertinent I'm going to have to work for it. I have never been one for good fortune to fall into my lap.

When I look back on my life there is a continually thread. I still have the poetry book I made in third grade. In junior high, my stories were published in an ongoing column in the school newspaper. But get this, because it will at least provide you with a laugh. They were soap opera stories! As a 7th/8th grader I was writing soap opera short stories about men and women in love. I don't have a copy from back then but I'm sure they are hilarious! 

In high school since I didn't have any money, I made up poems for my sister and brothers, wrote them on parchment paper with a calligraphy pen and framed them. Quite cheesy but I think a few of them still have it. I also had a story published in a high school book which I don't remember writing. When I worked at United Airlines in South Bend, I wrote for the company's newsletter and did exposes on the people who worked there. Then when I went to Catholic Charities, besides doing social work, I had a column in Keenager News. A newspaper which also contained articles from Monsignor Boland and Cardinal George.

You know we all have heard this before, try and find your purpose in life or what you should be doing. I can tell you how and if you don't see it, email me and I will be able to show you what it is. I think God or the universe or something shows us but most times we don't want to listen or see it because we are scared to fail, to succeed, or how much work it will take to get there.

Look at your life and see what threads or connections you have? Maybe you were always good at putting things together, figuring out how it worked, solving problems, and you felt wonderful when you did. Along the way, you won the science fair, you built a bookcase for the 4H fair, you always gravitated to discovering, building, and making things. You see where I am going? From the time we are young, we all have something which we come back to. Like my daughter. She is only 7 but I see her pathway emerging. She always gravitates towards arts and crafts. She watches You Tube for an hour just to learn how to build an outfit for a barbie doll out of duct tape. She will pick an art class or painting over her favorite show and considering how much she likes television, that is saying something. At the parent/teacher conference her teacher notices how great she draws. You see, we all have the answers of what we are supposed to be doing and it started when we were young and in some cases either we forget, our parents want us to go in a different direction, or we grow up and have family or financial responsibilities which preclude us from going down that path. What I'm asking you is, what path were you supposed to take? Only a few are lucky enough to be doing exactly what they want to in life. 

Every now and then it seems something comes along to show me my way. I just have to fight for it, harder than I have been. We all have dreams and many people tell us we can't do it. Most times it is us, telling ourselves, it is too hard. Here is the thing, the hard truth of it all. The more time we wait to work hard for something whether it's to change careers, write a book, get in shape, or take that dream vacation to Paris (anything you really want in life but feel you can't have) the more time passes until we wake up one day and realize how much time we have wasted. We have to continually work harder than we thought we could for what we truly want in life. We only have one lifetime to do it.

It is never too late to be what you might have been.

– George Eliot

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