All who joy would win must share it.

 Happiness was born a Twin.” –Lord Byron.

My father loved poetry.  I adored my father; therefore I love poetry, too.  I’m sure there’s a name for this reasoning in the math or logic world, but I don’t know what it is. (Fallacy? 😉 )

daddy poetry book

Anyhow, as a result, I frequently interpret my life in famous quotes, which makes me very annoying to a lot of people.  This is not a deduction on my part.  They actually tell me so.

But I can’t help it.  Poetry isn’t just pretty.  Sometimes, it is capital-T Truth. Like this past Sunday night.  One of my books won a contest, and I didn’t have anyone to tell.

cleo's heating padWell, I told the cat, who roused momentarily, in case “Holt Medallion” meant “tuna fish,” but then went back to sleep.

I was happy, of course.  I was.  Ecstatic.  Really.

But His Highness was out doing errands.  My son and daughter were busy being young and cool.  My special writer buddies were living their own lives.  It was Sunday night.  NBA finals night.  The Tonys night.  Let’s use that pizza coupon night.  Discover you’ve nothing to wear to work tomorrow and do emergency laundry night.

I couldn’t just start texting, busting into their family fun as if my news trumped all that. So I sent a few emails and waited.  And waited.  I felt like water trying to boil on a cold burner.

baby whispersFinally, my husband came home, and all my considerate “remember you’re not the center of the universe” restraint evaporated.  I bounded out to him, ignoring his struggle to lug in heavy boxes, and shouted, “Hey!  Guess what about ME?”

He’s not the type to squee, but he is not a fool.  Despite having no idea what the Holt Medallion is, he grinned, made a big fuss, hugged me, and the pot finally began to boil.  Once all next-of-kin had been notified, I posted on Facebook.  The famous “like this” friendliness began to flood in, and suddenly I was bubbling over with joy like a crazy woman.

So, for me at least, Byron got it right.  Happiness really was born a twin.

mike and matt cropped cd(Hey…just occurred to me that my dad might have loved this quote because he, himself, was a twin!)

What about you?  Does an unshared joy feel a little flat?  Who is your go-to person–the one you can’t wait to tell?

Since this is my first post with the wonderful Jaunty Quills, and I’m so excited about having new friends to share the writing world with, I’m giving away books to three of the people who comment here.  If you win, you can choose either WILD FOR THE SHERIFF, the book that leads into my upcoming July release, or THE VINEYARD OF HOPES AND DREAMS, the book that just won the tuna fish…I mean Holt Medallion.


betting on the cowboy coverI hope you’ll check out BETTING ON THE COWBOY, which will be available July 1. It’s the second in my Sisters of Bell River Ranch series from Harlequin Superromance.


46 thoughts on “Happy Together

  1. Great post, Kathleen! Congratulations on your Holt Medallion win. I always tell my husband first followed closely by my kids and my parents. And then I announce it to my friends who understand that the good news is usually the result of a lot of hard work. 🙂

    1. Kathy, you’re so lucky to still have your parents around to share these things with! My mother and father died so long ago, and yet there still are moments when I’ll hear something on the news, or see an azalea bush in glorious bloom, and think, “Oh, I must tell Mom about this one!”

  2. What a fun story, Kathleen! Yeah, the cat just wasn’t cutting it in the “shared joy” department. A dog, on the other hand…Congratulations again on your award! It’s very thrilling!

  3. Woot on the Holt! (Which will now be linked with tuna in my mind. I think I was a big, fluffy cat in a previous life.)

    I have to remind myself to share news, good and bad. Otherwise, I keep it inside, then wonder why a) nobody is Snoopy dancing with me, or b) I’m not getting the sympathy I so clearly deserve.

    So happy for your success, excited for your new release and loving your first official JQ blog!

    1. LOL, Kristan! We do have a dog, but she’s His Highness’ personal temple-sweeper, and is ordinarily unable to hear my voice. 😉 Thanks!

    2. Jesse, thanks so much! His Highness has the exact same personality that you describe here. He simply isn’t a talker. He feels no internal need to share his emotions verbally. It mystified me in the early years of our marriage, as I’m the complete opposite and find it impossible to hush up about anything! I bet your family has learned to read your non-verbal signals pretty well, though! That’s absolutely what has allowed my marriage to continue for decades! 😎

  4. Jo's Daughter says:

    Congrats Kathleen!!! I usually share good news with my mom & my cats aswell, hihi. Not that the girls have a lot to say but they might blink their eyes at me, jump on my lap and smile a little 😆

    1. Jo’s Daughter, I hear you!! We have to make the most of the crumbs our adored cats allow us, don’t we? It’s worth it, though. I’ve been a “cat person” since I was about two, and a little indifference now and then isn’t going to change anything now! 😉

      And how wonderful that you go to your Mom. As a mother, I heartily approve!

  5. Shana Shana says:

    That’s a great quote. I hadn’t heard it before, and it definitely applies. I don’t like to share good news with lots of people, but a special few makes it even more special for me!

    1. Isn’t it a lovely quote, Shana? (Not that Byron was known for having a good grip on emotional health… 😐 ) So you are fairly selective about who you want to include on the celebration? His Highness, and my daughter, as well, are definitely that way.

      It’s odd…I think i used to be, as well. I actually hesitated sometimes before including my congratulations to others, or even my condolences on a loss, because I wondered whether I was close enough to have the right, or the power to help.

      But after my mother died…about fourteen years ago now…I changed entirely. I was so grateful for every single expression of comfort and understanding. I didn’t care one bit whether I knew the person well or felt intimate with them. I felt warmed and sustained by the sense of shared humanity.

      I think the same has been true for me ever since, with happiness or sorrow. I feel so connected to the human experience, and I know that, whether or not the person really knows *me* very well, they obviously know what it’s like to feel honored, to get a nod for a job well done. LOL…I can actually get very spiritual about it! But will stop myself from doing so, with effort. 😐

  6. When it’s writing-related good news, I always want to share it with my BWFF (Best Writer-Friends Forever) first. Oh, sure, my family will celebrate all my wins, because they love me. But my BWFF *gets it* at the cosmic/soul level.

    1. Kathy H, I hear you about writing friends understanding better than anyone. What would we do, I wonder, if we didn’t have each other? I remember thinking writing books was so easy…back before I tried it. 😉 Other writers understand that it takes forever to write something that actually reads with simplicity!

  7. Kristin Miller says:

    I tell the world…my grandma was always my first call and now it’s my dad. I post on Facebook, I post on LJ, I post on twitter, and then I text my friends.

    When I’m happy, the entire world knows about it LOL

    1. Kristin, thanks so much for coming by to share! I’ve always watched your loving, mutually supportive relationship with your grandmother with great admiration! She must have been so very special–as you clearly are, too!

  8. eap says:

    one of my family is always that first call.

    1. Eap, what a beautiful, simple statement of the solidarity of family! They are the people who are always, always on our sides, and their happiness at our successes is untempered by any ambivalence.

  9. Congratulations on your Holt Medallion win, Kathleen! That is a very prestigious award, so many kudos to you! I’m with you on sharing the joy of welcome news – my go-to person is my hubby. Since he’s a writer as well, he really understands why I get excited about milestones like that. the other person I share with is my stepmother, who loves celebrations and exciting news. She’s always happy to get excited on my behalf!

    1. Thank you so much for the congrats, Vanessa! I have so much respect for that contest, and it’s truly an honor to have done well there.

      You’re so lucky that your husband is in tune with your labors. Mine is a retired journalist, so he’s been a writer much of his life, but he spent his most recent years as an editor…so perhaps his sympathies lie most naturally with my poor editor! 😉

      And what a fabulous thing to be able to say about your stepmother! You put every fairy tale to shame!

  10. Congratulations, Kathleen! This is such exciting news and so well deserved. It’s a fabulous book! I share my news with the Norwegian, our daughter and my close friends first. The thrill does seem to expand when you have someone to do the happy dance with. 😀

    1. Thank you so much, Nancy! The happy dance definitely takes on a special magic when it’s not a solo act…although Snoopy did prove, didn’t he, that one *can* be a solo twinkletoes!

      I just always hope no one is looking!

  11. Cindy Kirk Cindy Kirk says:


    Congrats again! And kudos to your hubby for trying to act excited.

    Mine would have just looked at me with a quizzical expression and said something to the effect of well, that’s good. Which proves the only thing worse than having no one to tell is telling someone who doesn’t grasp the importance. lol

    1. Cindy, I’m lol-ing about your poor husband. I think mine only pretends to appreciate this stuff because I’ve been…um…shall we say HIGHLY EMOTIONAL…about times when he didn’t react with adequate enthusiasm. 😉

      We are an odd couple. I’m like Odie…remember that cartoon dog? Always leaping and slobbering and carrying on? He’s more like the Cheshire cat. If you get a smile, that’s about it. I had to explain that dancing dogs like me do not appreciate his elegant New England reserve. So now he makes appropriate noises and offers hugs. It’s something, right? 😉

  12. catslady says:

    Oh, that’s wonderful, congratulations!!! It is nice to know you have others to share good tidings with (so much better than the usual complaints lol). I guess it would depend on what the good news was but an honor like that, I would want to tell my husband, children, mother, friends lol.

    1. H, Catslady! You make a great point! The “go to” person would be different for different kinds of news! Always the family first, of course, but then it depends on who understands the situation best!

  13. Sharlene Wegner says:

    Congratulations on your award & welcome to the Jaunty Quills! I think it is true that happiness is “happier” if you share it! A lot of my happy comes from my daughter’s accomplishments, so I have an auto-sharer.

    1. Sharlene, thank you so much for the welcome! I do feel extraordinarily welcome here, and I appreciate the camaraderie more than I can describe!

      How lovely that you take such joy in your daughter’s accomplishments! A daughter is a treasure like no other–at least she can be, if you make sure to indoctrinate her correctly from day one! 😉 Sounds as if your bond with yours is something special!

  14. Bebin says:

    I must say “CONGRATS!!”, I love what you do… the picture stories I imagine while reading your books always make me feel the world is better because we can legally escape to paradise through stories.
    My sister, Mary Lou (your old junior high school BFF) is BY FAR the first and sometimes only person I reveal all too!
    Luckily, my mom, Mary… on her way over now to spend the night with me (will be 91 tomorrow)… is also THE ONE I share all highs and lows with daily!
    It is great to see good works be rewarded, recognized and shared with so many… it truly helps us ALL to be better at each of our passions.

    1. Hi, Bebin! How fabulous to see you here! Thank you so much for stopping by to help me celebrate joining this terrific group of writers!

      You’re a lucky lady, indeed, to have Mary Lou as a confidante. She has such zest for life, such support and loyalty for the people she cares about, and such insight into the human heart. I count myself lucky to have her in my life still, too–though I do sometimes miss the easy, frequent girltalk of junior high school! 😎 I have a feeling you provide a fount of wisdom and support and love for her, in return!

      And your mom! What an amazing, beautiful lady! I think of her often, and always with admiration and affection.

      Thank you so much for always being the special people you are! I’d love to get a chance to catch up someday. It’s been a long, long time.

  15. Laurie G says:

    How exciting to win an award for your writing! Congrats!

    I would share the news with my husband , my children and my sister.

    Hope you had some fun celebrating!!!

    1. Thanks so much, Laurie! Sounds as if you have a terrific cheerleading team in your family…standing ready to do the happy dance alongside you!

      And yes, I did have some fun celebrating. His Highness is always looking for an excuse to eat out, and I was happy to provide it this time! 😎

  16. suzanne stewart says:

    Congrats Kathleen!!!! Such exciting news and I will be looking for this series! When I was chosen to be a Beta reader, I was so excited and had no one that I thought would care! I called my 12 year old Granddaughter, who inherited my love of books, and she was so excited for me. It truly made my day! As the rest of my family and friends are not big readers, I have to agree with Cindy -who wants to explain their excitement to the blank stare! I will now always associate an award for a great book with you and your “Tuna Medallion”!!! lol

    1. Suzanne, how cool to be chosen as a Beta reader! And even cooler that you can see your granddaughter carrying on the “reader” tradition into yet another generation! Your family is obviously doing something VERY right!

      LOL about the “Tuna Medallion.” I would hate to do anything to sully the fantastic name of the Holt Medallion, which is truly a well-run contest and a highly respected part of our industry, but I’m afraid the nickname is going to stick in my mind now, too! On the positive side, Cleo may treat me a bit more respectfully in the future! 😉

  17. Rob says:

    Before I tell anyone good news I have to do a dance. Several hours later I’ll likely send out a text telling all of my adoring fans (family, pets) the good news. I’m not sure I know the feeling of having to keep good news in.

    1. LOL, Rob! You dance for several *hours*? If I tried that, they’d be announcing my contest win at my funeral! And hurray for texting the news to your pets! They have their own accounts? Do you have to worry about them sending inappropriate tweets to their friends when you’re not watching? I’m thinking Sprocket is probably trustworthy…but Thello may be hiding an edgy side behind that big, sleepy facade. 😉

  18. bn100 says:

    Congrats! My mom

    1. Bn100, “my mom” is always the right answer to this question! 😎 I hope she knows how special she is to you! I bet it would make her day!

  19. Polly says:

    Congratulations on the contest win, Kathleen. Pretty great way to end a day! If I’d received that news I would have called my daughter and husband, in that order. It definitely makes a happy occasion even happier when you can share it (with someone who can reply with more than a meow, woof or birdie tweet which is what I would have heard in my house!)

    1. Thanks so much, Polly! It was truly a lovely way to end the day! And I’m smiling about the meow, woof, and birdie tweet echoing back to you…because that’s exactly the mix of responses I’d get in my house! I’ve already mentioned, though, that our Bichon, Lily, rarely deigns to acknowledge that her beloved master has a wife, and our cockatiel, Lizzie, knows only one, totally egocentric, sentence: “Lizzie is a pretty bird.”

      So around here, I really did have to wait for the humans, who at least know they’re supposed to pretend to be thrilled. 😉

  20. RobynDeHart RobynDeHart says:

    Oh congrats on the Holt win! That’s a big deal.

    I always share my news with The Professor and then my friends and rest of my family. I love it when my little girls tell me “Congratulations, Mommy.” That’s the best!

    1. Oh, Robyn, you made me smile when you mentioned your girls saying, “Congratulations, Mommy.” My “kids” don’t call me Mommy much anymore, but I do remember the warm glow of hearing that sweet word on little lips.

      Of course, though mine are fully grown, married and living in their own houses now, I still look at them and see bright eyes and baby smiles. LOL…I bet they *hate* that! 😉

      Thanks so much for the congrats!

  21. Congratulations on your tuna fish, Kathleen! Oops, I mean your Holt Medallion. It couldn’t happen to a nicer person!

    Who do I tell first when I get good news? Frankly, I rarely get any. And when I do, I must bear in mind that few if any people would be interested in it.

    Still, there are events like what happened last month, when a wisecrack I made on George Takei’s Facebook fan page received over a thousand likes. That’s the closest I’ve ever come to my fifteen minutes of fame. So I posted the link on my Facebook page—of course! And I told two flesh-and-blood people, Dave and Cheryl—a married couple who are my oldest and dearest living friends. If I were to tell other friends and acquaintances, they’d think I’m weird. But Dave and Cheryl already know.

    Good luck with the release of “Betting on the Cowboy”. Your romances are always a good bet!

    1. Mary Anne, thank you so much! What a great compliment…and fun play on the title, too! 😎

      I have a feeling you’re underrating your successes dramatically–though that humility is part of your charm. I know how much I look forward to seeing what you have to say on various topics–and to your lively, witty jokes–and I know I’m not the only one!

  22. Rhonda says:

    Congrats on the award! I enjoy sharing happy times with someone. I usually have to share with my son and my best friend….and then everyone else that breathes. Haha!

    1. Rhonda, that’s too funny! Everyone else that breathes is just about enough, right? 😉

      It’s great to hear that your son is high on your list. My son is one of those wonderful, tender-hearted males who isn’t above getting silly and happy for me when I need that. When I first heard that I’d had a son (I grew up with only sisters, and my first child was my daughter), I was horribly intimidated, thinking I’d never know how to relate… But I quickly learned the lovely truth–your children aren’t really male or female, in the end. They’re just little pieces of your heart that miraculously turned into living breathing *people.”

      Thanks so much for the congratulations–and for stopping by to help me celebrate joining JQ!

  23. Anne says:

    Congratulations on the award. Wonderful and celebrate and enjoy. I tell my husband and then my children.

    1. Kathleen Kathleen says:

      Thank you so much, Anne! Husband and children–that’s the order for my celebrating, too! Then I’m willing to share the joy with anyone who will listen! 😎

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