The Queen's Proclamation

 April 2005

News, updates, & pronouncements from Pat Ballard, the Queen of Rubenesque Romances

Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent. 
Eleanor Roosevelt

Something to think about....

For all right judgment of any man or thing it is useful, nay, essential,
to see his good qualities before pronouncing on his bad.

Thomas Carlyle

The thing about judging is... we're usually wrong. At least, I am.

A couple of weeks ago, the electric company decided it was time for the trees on our street to be mutilated. (They call it "trimming.") Previously, a couple of people from the power company had walked along and sprayed blue paint on each tree that needed attention, so I knew it was coming.

Sure enough, one morning about eight o'clock Rowdy, my poodle, started barking frantically, and I heard a big vehicle out front. Upon looking out my window, I saw a big bucket truck parked in front of my house, and three guys standing around talking. When I spotted them, they were looking at my holly tree, which had no paint on it.

Already miffed that my trees were going to get "trimmed," it took me about five seconds to be ready for battle when I saw them gazing longingly at my beautiful holly tree. It didn't matter to me that I was still dressed only in my gown and a flimsy cover-up; I knew that if one of them even pointed at that holly tree, I'd hit the door and have it out with them.

But they didn't. One of them climbed up into the bucket and started making ugly with the other two trees.

Breathing a deep sigh of relief, I was happy that I'd been wrong.

But wait. In the meantime, the other two guys on the ground started picking up limbs as they tumbled down. But one of them was only using one hand. He kept the other hand in his pocket.

Again, I started building my case. Is this guy going to spend the entire time with his hand in his pocket? I asked myself. Look at that! He's going to let his co-worker do all the work!

Then I saw him reach down with the one hand and tuck a big limb under the arm that had been in his pocket. And that's when I realized he didn't have a hand on that arm. His hand hadn't been in his pocket. He carried that arm tucked close to his body, and since I couldn't see his hand, which was gone at the wrist, I concluded that it was in his pocket.

As quickly as a mind can change, he went from a low-life slob half-heartedly doing his work with one hand in his pocket, to a man to be highly admired because he was doing a very hard day's work with only one hand.

Again, I was wrong. But this time, I wasn't so happy. I felt very ashamed of myself for jumping so quickly to a wrong judgment.

 A Word From Pat

March was a much better month than February. Everyone in the family has finally gotten over the funk that was going around, and we're all feeling much better.

My perennials are coming up and I'm getting the urge to plant more flowers, but we can't plant anything here in Nashville until the middle of April, as we may have frost until then. I do have pansies in my window boxes, though. Joe bought those for my birthday.


I had the honor of being a part of an event that was held at one of our magnet schools a couple of weeks ago. The event was to raise money for scholarships for young writers of Tennessee. I was contacted and asked to be one of the presenters, so I did my workshop on following your dreams. I had between 25 and 30 people attend my workshop, and was very pleased with that, as they had several other presenters they could have chosen. More about this day in the "Weighty Matters" section below.

Eric has started adoption procedures for Shaun. He'll be "legally" ours. He's already emotionally ours. As some of you know, Tiffany had Shaun when she and Eric got married. He'll be five in June. They want him to have the same name as his parents when he starts to school.

Eric and Tiffany had their third wedding anniversary in March, and I kept Shaun and Kayla overnight. Watching those two is like seeing male and female being reborn. He did something that really irritated her and she yelled, "Shaun, you're making me crazy!" She's two years old.

Then, later, she was sitting on the floor watching cartoons and Shaun walked by, leaned down and kissed her on the cheek, and kept on walking. She didn't take her eyes off the TV, but reached up and touched the spot with her hand, and said, "Aw, Shauny kissed me."

I guess it's just the grandmother in me showing up, but I can sit and watch them all day. Their interactions are precious.

Everyone have a wonderful April. Plant some flowers. Stop and smell the roses. 

                                                 Love,

                                                                    Pat

Visit Pat's Place at www.patballard.com │ Write me at patballard@bellsouth.net

 

Books Existing and Upcoming

Abigail's Revenge, my fifth novel, is now finished! It's a Romantic Suspense, and is different than any other novel I've written. It's also a good bit longer.

Abigail Avery was framed for the murder of her father and sent to prison when she was only eighteen years old. A bunch of crooked "good ole boys" from her hometown of Leaky Springs, Mississippi want her land and house. Abigail doesn't have any idea why they would want her property. But they were willing to kill for it and send her to prison, hoping to get her out of the way long enough to convince her to sell or to acquire it in some other manner. But now, ten years later, Abigail's out of prison and heading back to Leaky Springs to get revenge on the people, especially the judge, who stole ten years of her life.

And now that I'm finished with Abigail's Revenge, I'm going to finish my first nonfiction book, The 10 Commandments of Self-Love, a motivational book on accepting ourselves as we are instead of obsessing over trying to look like some unrealistic actress or image we see in an magazine.

Meanwhile, my new book Dangerous Curves Ahead—a compilation of 10 short stories—is available through my new publisher, Pearlsong Press (www.pearlsong.com). After its May 2004 publication, Dangerous Curves Ahead received a glowing review from Cindi Appel on the Fearless Books review website. Appel wrote:

Ballard doesn’t pull punches. She shows her heroines exhibiting ample will and tenacity to tell off those who would shame them into becoming something they aren’t just to blend in with society's narrow-minded notions of beauty.

To read the entire review, go to www.pearlsong.com/dangerouscurvesahead.htm. You can also read an excerpt from Dangerous Curves Ahead's title story, Dangerous Curves, by clicking on the title link in this sentence.

Pearlsong Press has also re-released my existing books, Wanted: One Groom, Nobody’s Perfect, His Brother’s Child and A Worthy Heir.

The Pearlsong Press edition of Nobody's Perfect was called "a charming, witty love story with a twist" in the July 2004 Small Press Bookwatch section of Midwest Book Review. Read the whole review at www.pearlsong.com/nobodysperfect.htm, or an excerpt at
www.pearlsong.com/nobodys_excerpt.htm.

I’m extremely happy that my books are now available in both print and eBook format. Please visit Pearlsong Press and check out all the options that are available.
 

Ask your local  library to stock my books, allowing many others to enjoy them
while spreading the size acceptance message.

 

Weighty Matters

Because we're bombarded with this lie constantly, so many people, especially women, think that they're not worthy, not beautiful, not even acceptable, if they don't fit a certain "look"—slim, young, beautiful.

But the story I'm about to share with you is just one more proof that most "real" people don't believe the lie. They don't buy into the brainwashing. So how much of it is just the fact that we've accepted the brainwashing and believe it ourselves, when a lot of the rest of the world doesn't think about it the way we assume they're thinking?

One of the presenters at the Young Writers of TN function at which I led a "Follow Your Dream" workshop last week was Don Henry. Don is a songwriter whose songs have been recorded by Ray Charles, Conway Twitty, The Oak Ridge Boys, Kathy Mattea, etc. So he's not a "wannabe," he's a "somebody." So I kind of wondered if I'd get to meet him.

When I first entered the building with my purse strapped over my head and over one shoulder, my bag of 27 books hanging off the same shoulder, and my bag of handouts, pens, water, etc. in the other hand, I quickly realized that there were no signs telling us where to go. I followed the distant sound of voices, but soon came to several flights of stairs leading up to the voices. I had been afraid of that, since so many of the old schools here in Nashville seem to have stairs to the main level of the building. So I decided that before I tried to pack-mule those bags up the stairs and be in the wrong place, I'd go back out front and ask the student who was assisting in parking.

When I got back to the front door, I saw a guy coming in with a guitar strapped on his back and figured it was Don. I told him that I had no idea where we were supposed to go and that I was about to ask someone. We introduced ourselves, just as Don Henry and Pat Ballard, with no details of who or what we did, because about then a woman came in who looked like she belonged there. I asked her if she knew where we were supposed to meet, and she said, "Probably upstairs." 

I said, "Oh, no, not the stairs! I'm playing pack-mule today!" Then I told Don to go ahead because it might take me a minute to get up there. He promptly reached for one of my bags and insisted on helping me.

After we had gotten as far as the concession table, we stopped and started chatting. I put my bags down and was kind of looking around. When I glanced back at him he was looking at me. He said, "I like your top."  I smiled and thanked him, and he said, "It's really beautiful!" And I thanked him again. (I assumed he meant the garment I was wearing. Hee hee.)

About then he asked if I was an author and I told him yes, that I wrote romance novels with Big Beautiful Heroines. He gave me a surprised look and said, "Well, it's about damn time!" Then he grabbed me and gave me a big hug. He was so excited! He said, "Real women just don't look like what we see on TV! And most men don't want those kind of women anyway! Men want a woman with curves!"

Never try to second-guess anyone, no matter what position they have in life. While we may be thinking that they're thinking we're too fat, or too slim, or too short or too tall, or too old or too wrinkled, they may be thinking how beautiful we are.
 

Calendar Of Events

Pat has been invited to bring her books to Enterprise, MS and participate in the Enterprise May Festival on May 7, 2005. The event is sponsored by the Enterprise Woman's Club.

You can still hear the taped radio shows from Size Matters with Veronica, WCRS Radio, on Pat's website.

Show #1 discusses Pat's romance novels
http://www.wcrsradio.org/RadioStage/size/SIZE051.mp3

Show #2 discusses women of size and their sexuality
http://www.wcrsradio.org/RadioStage/size/SIZE052.mp3

And check out the photos from the Nov. 6 Mississippi Authors Festival that are online at The Queen's Proclamation blog and The Pearlsong Letter blog. (Click on the Mississippi Authors Festival link under the "Photo Albums" heading in the lefthand column of either blog to view the photos. While you're visiting, post a comment on the blogs!)
 

Book Contest

Register to win a free copy of the Pat Ballard book of your choice at Top 100 Women Sites: http://www.top100womensites.com/contest.htm.
 

Newsletter Archives

Read previous issues of The Queen's Proclamation at http://www.pearlsong.com/newsletterarchives.htm.

 

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The Queen's Proclamation is published by Pearlsong Press, Inc.

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©2005 Pearlsong Press