Notable Works

April/May 2016
"Grandmother's Green Legacy" - My grandmother had a special way with roses, especially a green variety. Here's her tale in "Between Neighbors."

Find Texas Gardener magazine at: Texas Gardener 

Winner in the Women's Issues category of the 2015 Next Generation Indie Book Awards. 

When I saw the submission call for the Sisterhood anthology, I knew I had the perfect essay to submit: Sister Act. Sister Act tells of a holiday tradition my sisters and I shared when we were youngsters and how I adopted it when I had my own family.

 Find Sisters Born, Sisters Found at: Amazon
Defining Sisterhood: "Laura McHale Holland has edited this anthology of poems, memoirs, stories and essays and dedicates it ‘To all women throughout the world whose birth families gave them siblings, to those who became sisters through other kinds of bonds, and to all the sisters and brothers who love them.’ As she states in her introduction, ‘I embarked upon this anthology project to honor my sisters, Kathy and Mary Ruth, as well as to capture the power of readings I have conducted in recent years at SISTERS Consignment Couture in Sonoma, California. The shop is a cozy place where local authors have shared memoir, essay, fiction and poetry by and about sisters of all types. The readings have been heartfelt, memorable and multifaceted, ranging from intense and painful to lighthearted and celebratory.’ Her idea was so favored and touched so many empathetic eyes and ears that after posting the concept on the social media she was inundated with entries from around the world who were part of the sister journey. ‘I considered several possible ways to organize the varied contents of this book but ultimately did not attempt to place them into categorized groups. But given the size of this book, I divided the work into seven sections to suggest places where readers might want to pause. While grouping the work, I strove to create a reading experience that emulates what I experienced when reading submissions as they came to my inbox. I never knew where the next writer would take me, what aspect of the sister journey she or he would reveal, or how the work would affect me. I believe whether you read the book cover to cover or skip around, you will find numerous insights and fresh perspectives on sisterhood. I certainly have.’
"Reading this collection of works by women about that special bond women can form between each other, whether that connection is genetic or simply the proximity of neighborly, is not only illuminating: it is revelatory. Perhaps something men will never understand, really, truthfully. Being male crowds out such sensitive bonding, unless during combat on the battlefield.
"What happens in this exquisite array of the spectrum of ‘sisterhood’ is discovery of new poets and writers who deserve a louder voice, a chance to talk about women in ways too often usurped by whispering – those myriad details of owning homogametic XX chromosomes that attracts yet deeply, philosophically distances the XY gender. These are songs of linking, love, need, compassion, yearning for some semblance of sameness that make two women sisters.
"A difficult task, but some excerpted examples follow:
"Sister Act – Vicki Batman – 'To this day, I plop my family on the couch with treats and drinks, and we turn on White Christmas. I sing all the tunes. When the signature song ends, contentment swells inside me. I fight back tears. My holidays are perfect. Life is perfect. I have everything. Funny, my men refuse to sing with me. Maybe some things are best shared with sisters.’
"To attempt to taste this panoply of works by 85 submissions is nearly impossible: each reader will find particular passages that speak more strongly to memories, minds, souls, and experiences. For women this is not simply an anthology: this is the definition of ‘sister’. For men it is a Diogenes lantern as a guide to understand or appreciate that elusive bond." -Grady Harp, Poet, War Songs

MuseItUp Publishing is proud to announce the release of Lavender Dreams, an anthology to raise fund for the Dana Ferber Research Hospital, featuring "Taking Flight," a short story by Vicki Batman, available in ebook.

"Taking Flight" is about a woman's courage and determination when fighting cancer and the unusual experience she shares with a friend. It is a warm, heart-felt story and mostly based on actual events.

Find Lavender Dreams at: MuseItUp Publishing

An anthology to help fight cancer is wonderful project - add talented and gifted writers and you have a win win situation. Taking Flight is a sweet, uplifting story that reminds us of the miracles of life even after loss. Vicki Batman excels in short stories.

When I heard about Vicki Batman's butterfly story I just had to buy a copy of Lavender Dreams. I'm so glad I did. I cried and smiled, cried some more and smiled again. Thanks for touching our hearts in such a triumphant and uplifting way. 
Fact or Fiction? I had a delightful Jazzercise friend who passed from colon cancer. She'd fought a fight seven years prior and to exact date of beating the odds, she found it had returned to her liver. She tried some things, but nothing drastic. One day, she told me her news and I had to contain my tears. I wanted to be brave for her. As our class began, something outside caught our attention. We looked at each other, shrugged, and went to investigate. The monarchs were migrating.

I'd never seen thousands move like this before--ever. We stood in a tornado of them. They lightly brushed our bodies and swirled en masse around us. Then my friend raised her arms above her head and twirled, saying, "Whee."

To this day, I still get sobby when I think of our time with the butterflies.