The Doctor is IN

Keen Observations on Life … Whether You Need Them or Not


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Locals Lunch: The Belted Goat part deux

We were on a tight timeline today, so we didn’t get too crazy with Locals. But we had a new plus one (my peanut) to add to the interesting conversation. In honor of Brexit, I had fish & chips for lunch after spending the better part of the morning listening to The Beatles.

Lunch was just meh, but nevertheless I felt very continental. I figure Britain’s got a couple weeks to settle into its new predicament before we descend upon London.

My Adventurous Son regaled us with tales from behind the lens (including his work from the Women’s March in Raleigh and the Illiterate Light concert he shot last week at the Cat’s Cradle) and his excitement over the belted Galloways (he does love cows), before the discussion turned to politics. There’s a bunch of heavy shit happening in the world right now, but as I enjoyed a meal with some of my favorite people in the universe, I was reminded of how blessed I am to have strong women in my life and how fortunate I am to have equitable, #feminist men who love me. Pay attention, people … question everything, stand up for what’s right, speak out when you see something inequitable, and include people in your conversation who don’t just look like you. Enjoy the good times when they’re happening, and find a squad for locals lunch!


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Locals Lunch: The Belted Goat

Last year, my mom and I started something called ‘Locals Breakfast.’ My goal was twofold–keep her from turning feral, and be welcomed a la Norm and Cliff. After nearly every Monday morning at the same restaurant, here are the results:

  • they never learned either of our names,
  • they did have coffee ready for me and a Coke for her, and
  • they did remember our orders: scrambled eggs with bacon, sliced tomatoes and whole wheat toast for me; scrambled eggs, grits and sausage for her.

Did it chap our asses that we remained anonymous? Sorta, but two outta three ain’t bad. Now that loyalty isn’t a goal and anonymity isn’t a bother, we’re switching it up to lunch in the new year, and rotating restaurants. Sometimes it’s just the two of us, sometimes we have extras.

This week, my mom, whose colleagues referred to her as ‘Rah-Rah’ for years, came loaded for bear (check out her outfit). I complimented her wardrobe and accoutrement selection and she said, “Well, nobody’s beat the crap out of me yet.” So, winning.

I thought it would be interesting to wrap up our weekly discussion. This week’s was pretty obvious.

Rah-Rah: “If Roe v. Wade is overturned, it will set us back 50 years. Women have worked so hard to get where we are, and it’s just being chipped away. One of the things that’s so disturbing about voters in America is that they would support this administration no matter what happens, in order to have Roe v. Wade overturned … it’s as if no other issues matter. While that’s such a difficult and private decision for a woman to make–I wish it was something no one ever had to make–what I do support is having the option of making that decision.”

Thanks to the strong women in the world. You keep it running.


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Got fiction on your mind?

Come write with me! I’ve got a busy spring with four classes at two terrific community colleges. Whether you’re pursuing your dream of writing a book, or funding something important in your community, find your verb, and do it on your side of town!

Spring 2020 Schedule

  1. Introduction to Grantwriting: March 25 – April 29 (WTCC)
  2. The Business of Writing Romance – workshop: March 28 (CCCC)
  3. Writing for Young Audiences: April 2 – May 14 (CCCC)
  4. The Business of Writing Romance – workshop: April 4 (WTCC)

Course descriptions

  • Introduction to Grantwriting: learn the basics of writing a grant in a hands-on, workshop-style setting. We will cover the different components of grants, and learning to set and maintain a workable grant cycle, building a successful grants management program, developing a logic model, tracking possibilities in the business community, and applying good storytelling to a successful program. (Get in touch if you’d like for me to work directly with your organization.)
  • Writing for Young Audiences: develop and begin writing a manuscript for a children’s book during the classwork workshop periods. Additionally, we discuss the business of writing for children, including how to identify publishers, how to write a query and synopsis, and how to market your work.
  • The Business of Writing Romance: develop & begin writing a romance book manuscript. Instruction will focus on the craft of writing, along with elements of style (plot, characterization, setting) and process (outlining, etc.). Business discussion includes identifying publishers, preparing queries & submissions, and self vs. traditional publishing.


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The Decade at a Glance

I am nothing if not an optimist. It’s been a crazy year, but a good one, and as we come to the start of a fresh new year and a fresh new decade, I’ve been reminiscing over the last ten years. They were pretty great, actually. There have been some doozies: I stopped working full-time so I could pursue life as an author; I survived and fought my way back from a life-altering traumatic brain injury; we experienced the death of a close friend, which encouraged us to give in to our wanderlust and stop waiting for the perfect time to travel and see the world. There have been highs and lows, excitement and boredom, happiness and love. In fact, this last decade has been my most creative, most productive yet. Since January 1, 2010, I have:

And best yet: I’m still in my mid-40s!

So a little advice: say Y.E.S. when someone asks you to experience or do something new. Take a leap of faith. Believe in yourself. Save for a vacation – you can do it. Nobody needs to eat several lunches or dinners out each week. Pack a lunch and cook at home. Put priority on your happiness, and enrich your hearts and minds with family and friends. Learn a new language. Take piano lessons. Plant a victory garden. Make a new friend. Volunteer at your local food bank or homeless shelter. Be the best YOU you can be. Think positively: this is going to be a great decade!


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Attention 2019 Wrimos: Check out these NaNo events in Pittsboro

I’m excited to be the new Municipal Liaison (ML) in Pittsboro, partnering with Chapel Hill ML, Maia Maile, to host lots of fun events throughout November. Here’s a listing (so far) of kick-off’s, write-in’s and TGIO celebrations. Never participated in NaNo? Check it out here. Want to join our Chapel Hill Wrimos group? Check it out here. Want to join our Chapel Hill Wrimos on Facebook? Check it out here. Want to make a donation? Make it here. You can find me participating as BeckyMoore. Hope to see you at one of the events!


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Front Page News

For so much of my career I was behind the scenes. And now, even after two children’s books and five romances, it’s still strange to be the focus of coverage. But I’m excited about the story our local newspaper did on me this week. 🙂

Despite initial resistance to the genre, romance books shape local writer’s world

On a side note, it’s not too late to sign up for The Business of Writing Romance at Wake Technical Community College. I’ll be back at Central Carolina in the spring!


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A Nod to the Creators

I’ve been a writer for a long time. I started off at Nortel Networks in the late nineties before being sacked during the dot-com bust of the early millennium, and moved into the non-profit and then media worlds. Along the way I added graphic designer, photographer … and all the other things that are part of my interesting career. I’ve written white papers, grants, reports, essays, book reviews, newspaper and magazine articles, novels, children’s books, radio commercials, playbills, obituaries, and a daily advice column from the perspective of Basset hound Miss Fifi (one of my favorites). I pay attention to the finished product, yes, but I also pay attention to the creative process. I’ve been part of the creative process. And I give a nod to the creators.

Last month, I worked to revise and re-issue my first children’s book, Peggy Noodle, Hula Hoop Queen, which rolled off of copyright when its small indy publisher shuttered in 2016. It was both easy and difficult, challenging and rewarding, but ultimately satisfying. As a published author who is getting back in the game after a life- (and career-) altering trauma, I pay attention to the creators. The creators of the books, of the photographs, of the graphics, of the distribution … I pay attention to where I can submit my manuscripts and article ideas. When I read the news, both online and in print, I look at who wrote the story and provided the photos. Because it matters. The creators matter. There would be no content without them.

Today, the creator I honor is my son, who is an up-and-coming photographer kicking ass and taking names. It started last year with National Geographic, and brings us to today, with the moment in time he captured of Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, who kicked off a college tour of the Carolinas at UNC Chapel Hill on Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019.

Read the bylines.

Know who’s creating the things you’re reading and sharing and enjoying. Know the things they’re creating are the result of hard work, practice, talent, and skill.

Go Peyton! Go creators!


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A Dozen!

My sweet Magnolia May is 12 today.

She’s in good company, according to the ‘On this date’ section of our local newspaper. Mick Jagger is 76, Dorothy Hamill is 63, in 1775 the Continental Congress established a post office and appointed Benjamin Franklin as its Postmaster-General, and in 2016 Hillary Clinton became the first woman to be nominated for president by a major political party.

To celebrate, I think we’ll listen to some Stones and give Maggie a gold medal Frosty Paws this afternoon. It’s going to be a great day!