I’m happy to welcome Wild Rose Press author Barbara Mountjoy who writes as Alana Lorens. Today, Alana shares her multi-act life and new release, A Rose by Any Other Name
I’d studied English and Journalism in college, because I’d always wanted to write, since I was a kid. My first and second round of job searches hadn’t yielded much, so I didn’t have a job in the field. Life attacked in the form of a husband and two daughters, which put my employment on hold. Motherhood and wifehood was plenty to deal with, especially as my husband was in the service, so we moved a couple of times even in his first hitch.
Given a year into our Homestead, Florida posting, I saw the local paper was hiring a reporter. I snagged that position and for several years, had a blast doing all the stories and columns. I was the religion editor, the schools’ reporter, and put together the special hurricane tabs—on a first name basis with local senators and mayors and even the head of the National Hurricane Center.
One of the small cities I covered was Florida City, the last town right before the Florida Keys. The city attorney and I became close, and he recommended I go to law school. Now, this was never a career path I’d considered before that time—and my husband and I had just divorced, so I was a single mom of two preschoolers. Law school? What a crazy idea.
But it grew on me.
So I started with the entrance exam, the LSAT. I’d take it and see how I did. I did really well.
Well, I’d have to have help going to school. I didn’t have much saved up. But the grants and loans came through.
Then I’d have to have somewhere to live with my girls, and there was only limited housing on campus. But we got it. Right across the highway from the day care center.
Since it all came together, I took the jump. Those three years of school set the stage for a second act career as a family law attorney, which I practiced for 30 fulfilling years before I retired.
And now I’m back to writing full time again. 😊
For those contemplating a change, as so many are at this point in America, I’d hope they’d try to imagine where their potential career might be in five years. With tech and culture changing so quickly, they wouldn’t want to cross train into a field that doesn’t have longevity. But also, don’t stay in a career that doesn’t bring you joy simply for lack of courage. Waiting too late to change jobs might be the saddest choice of all.
Up-and-coming mommyblogger and single mom Marisol Herrera Slade returns to her old hometown in western Pennsylvania for her 20th high school reunion in 2005, reluctant and yet compelled to see her high school sweetheart, Russell Asher, who dumped her for the homecoming queen.
Russell’s marriage to the golden girl, however, ended in a nasty divorce, and he has been systematically excluded from his sons’ lives. In his Internet wanderings, he’s found feminist blogger named Jerrika Jones, who glorifies single motherhood, essentially putting a stamp of approval on what’s happened to him. His group of single dad advocates have vowed to take this woman down.
What Russell doesn’t know, when he thinks to rekindle what he had with Marisol, is that Marisol and Jerrika are one and the same. When his group discovers the truth, will their drive for revenge derail any chance the couple have to reunite? Or will they find they have more in common than they ever expected?
Heather Armstrong had books out now, spawned by the popularity of her Dooce blog. The Julie and Julia movie deal started with a simple blog. That Shatner show on TV, “$#*! My Dad Says” came from a Twitter account. If she could get noticed, really noticed, the big time wasn’t so far away in this brave new Internet world.
So. Better to stir the pot, right?
She closed her eyes, summoned up the image of Jerrika at her cheekiest, and started typing. Apparently I stomped on a couple of hearts yesterday when I pointed out the joys of raising my son without having to kowtow to the demands of an irrational non-custodial father. You know what? I’m not sorry, either.
People like FreeDad91 hide in their troll costumes and take pot shots at other people instead of addressing their own issues. Sounds to me like this guy has problems from his past. Either his own father walked out on him, or he walked out on his own kids, and he’s decided the best way to handle his guilt is to dump on the mothers.
Well, honey, this is one mother who’s not going to just sit by and let you. I love my son dearly. He’s been my morning, my evening, and lots of my midnights over the years. Maybe he didn’t have a father by his side during those days and nights. But he never lacked for attention, from men or women. I made sure he had that village he needed, the one it takes to raise a child. Would it have been easier to co-parent? I expect it would have. But that option wasn’t open to me. So take your hatred and turn it back where it really belongs: on yourself.
She added a few more choice stabs, and filed the post for the day.
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Author Bio and Links
Alana Lorens has been a published writer for more than forty years, after working as a pizza maker, a floral designer, a journalist and a family law attorney. Currently a resident of Asheville, North Carolina, the aging hippie loves her time in the smoky blue mountains. She writes romance and suspense as Alana Lorens, and sci-fi, fantasy and paranormal mystery as Lyndi Alexander. One of her novellas, THAT GIRL’S THE ONE I LOVE, is set in the city of Asheville during the old Bele Chere festival. She lives with her daughter on the autism spectrum, who is the youngest of her seven children, and she is ruled by three crotchety old cats, and six kittens of various ages.
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I love a good life re-invention story! Good for you! Congrats and best wishes on the new release!
What an interesting and varied life you’ve had, Barbara! Congrats on the new release! Here’s wishing for tons of sales!
What a fabulous story of your life! I too was a reporter for a small daily that covered a large rural region, and as you know small towns are microcosms of the world. I loved it! My next career path took me back to school and to college teaching English and journalism (including Media Law and Ethics ) for 30 years. I salute your courage and determination. Your law school path was meant to be, for sure, Barbara. Keep up the delightful books. Continued all the best.
Thanks so much. 🙂
I’m totally inspired by your courage to tackle law school and completely change your life. Wow! And best of luck with the book, too. 🙂
Well, when you’re young, it’s easier to make crazy jumps like that, wouldn’t you say?