Saturday, November 16, 2013


We're just back from a delightful day in Albertville, Alabama, where my husband and I lunched with special people; his sister Maryetta, our niece Mary Shea, and our friend Carolyn. Afterwards, we sent Jamey to the golf course while we girls shopped. Fortunately, I made some headway into my Christmas list.
Oh yes, and I spoke to the Thursday Book Club. Charming ladies were they, AND they served a delicious hummingbird cake. That treat, alone, was worth the drive! Praise be to Jamey, the Man of My Dreams, for driving me over and back.

We arrived home by 9 o'clock, just in time to greet our son Jay after his 39-hour-drive from San Jose, California. Yes, indeed, he drove straight through with only one stop to get some sleep! Jay also filmed scenery along his journey. Picture-taking runs in our artsy family!

So Happy Thanksgiving, Merry Christmas, and lovely holidays to all you readers out there. Don't forget, signed copies of any of my eight books are available for gift giving! Please contact me at: MMP

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Great Evening at St. Pius

Jamey, Amanda, and I arrived just after 6 to set up for the St. Pius Literary Evening. Organized by the Alumni Department of St. Pius X High School, the event featured three writers, Judi Mason, Claire Miller, and yours truly.

We three participated in an interesting panel discussion. The younger panelists spoke about high tech issues and communication, while I focused on the funnier aspects of our shared craft. Our common ground, other than being graduates of St. Pius, was that we all love what we do---WRITE. Nothing else can feed our souls.

In a small world moment, Claire and I immediately recognized one another. I remembered her from someplace, while she agreed I looked familiar, too.
"Wait!" I squealed. "You interviewed me for a story in your newspaper."
"That's IT," Claire replied.
We also share a friendship with Georgia author Jackie White.

Judi, author of "The Chloe Chronicles," was especially nice, too. In fact, she's actually offered to help me move forward in the technical arena. Or not. I'd hate to run off such a generous person. Perhaps being colleagues would prove more pleasant for us both!

Tonight was a treat for me with friends, Cynthia and Bill Davis, Bea Hill, and Pius faculty members, including English teacher, Charleen Klister. AND, of course, the Class of 1963, forever loyal, made up much of the audience. What a wonderful group; they were attentive, supportive, and laughed at my stories. Doesn't get much better than that!

Many, many thanks to Vicky Dorsey and to her committee, Sebastian and Kevin, for one super special time. This is why I love my work, I love the audience! MMP

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

You CAN go home!

I'm pretty pumped up about next week. First of all, I've been invited to speak to a group of retired folks at Emory on Tuesday morning. Having been there four times now, I can tell you these people are far more interesting than is this author.

Then on Thursday, November 7, which is Ociee Nash Whitman's birthday, her 125th, I AM going home. Yes, St. Pius X Catholic High School has invited this alum to participate in a Literary Evening from 6:30 to 8 pm at our school.
I almost cannot wait. I have a couple of surprises for the audience. One is I'm planning to don my 1959 yellowed, nasty, moth-eaten blazer. *I'll burn it shortly thereafter!

Our Class of 1963 just celebrated our 50th anniversary. What a terrific weekend we had due in large party to the Alum folks at Pius, headed by Victoria Dorsey, and to our own amazing reunion planning committee.

Upon signing in at the football game that Friday night, I caught a glimpse of a large banner behind the table. First, I spotted a couple of Ociee book covers, then more, then my other books including the new one, "Writer, Writer."
My head immediately swelled. "Holy Cow!" I felt famous!

More good news, my fellow classmates are telling me they're actually coming to the Nov. 7 event.
I'd best get busy with a talk . . . wouldn't want to let down my Pius family. Milam

Friday, September 20, 2013

Ociee Film

I'd forgotten how truly beautifully filmed is "The Adventures of Ociee Nash." Last night, along with a nice contingent of friends of Nora King, we viewed the movie at the Murphy (NC) Library. We laughed and cried and cheered as Ociee was finally reunited with her beloved Papa and brothers, Ben and Fred.
Skyler Day is simply adorable! Her acting skills were already apparent under the excellent direction of Kristen McGary (director/writer/filmer).

I'm reminded of a Christmas chat Jamey and I enjoyed with Skyler last year when she traveled home from Los Angeles. Said the young actress, "Miss Milam, I was totally spoiled with my first film. Everyone was sooooo nice to me! What a wonderful introduction I had to the movie business."

I loved seeing Anthony Rodriguez as the gypsy and Tom Key as the dashing George Lynch. I'd also forgotten how funny Ociee's brother Ben was, and we all giggled along with Miss June, "nervous as a Junebug." Keith Carradine made us weep saying farewell to his Ociee Sweet Corn . . . and Aunt Mamie, Mare Winningham, was spot on in her role, too.
Several audience members commented that all actors were perfectly cast.

Nora went all out with refreshments, including Roselyn Carter's cheese ring. What a terrific night everyone had.
Earlier in the day, I did have a delightful time with a very receptive group, who listened to me discuss "Writer, Writer." Many stayed for the movie showing.

Thank you, Nora King and Friends of the Library for treating me like a rockstar!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Hitting the Road!

I'm leaving the Man of My Dreams at home while I travel to North Carolina on Thursday. Nora King has invited me to speak to a couple of writers groups at the Murphy Public Library at 4 p.m. (September 19).
Nora is a super enthused person and way fun to visit. She's also arranged for us to show "The Adventures of Ociee Nash" at 6 p.m.
"Yes," she says, "there will be popcorn!"
I've not watched the film recently, so I'm pretty excited about my special day with Nora, her friends, and the folks in Murphy.

I've also lined up several local talks here in Atlanta, including a visit to Emory in November. I always like to speak near my grandmother Ociee's birthday. This one is two days prior on November 5. I'll be in Albertville, Alabama the following week. More about that later.

Back to the present----my next trip will be to Arkansas and Tennessee on September 28 where I'll be focusing on "Writer, Writer." My beloved friend Betty Ann Colley called several months ago to apologize.
"For what?" I asked.
BA has never had reason to apologize to me since the day we met in 1959 at Tennessee's Camp Marymount.
She replied, "I've never given you a book party."
"So? You live in Arkansas."
"Okay, so will you come to Arkansas?"

Thanks to her, the Fort Smith Library has planned a reception for Monday, September 30 at 1 p.m. I can hardly wait. The library people have circulated a lovely poster around town publicizing my upcoming talk. BA has invited lots of her friends, while her mother-in-law, Cathy Colley, who turns 90 the week before, is bringing along several guests and her writer's group. Yes, her writer's group!

About the poster, were I clever enough, it would be displayed on this blog. Sadly, I'm NOT. Please know it's green and gorgeous, and features several book covers along with a picture of Jamey and me.
Alas, I will be leaving him behind once again. Someone has to keep the home fires burning---and walk Bella the dog.

Two days later, BA and I will travel to Bartlett, Tennessee, where her daughter, Emily Ford is hosting another party. My cousin Kay and two Memphis friends, Jane and Betty are also coming. I'm so pumped up, I've even bought something new to wear.

I do enjoy writing, always have, but traveling about and telling stories surely is FUN.
Must get packed up now.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

The Northside Neighbor Newspaper and our Postman

Four men made my day today.

#1 Bobby Tedder wrote an absolutely beautiful story in The Northside Neighbor. He managed to write about me and my new book as if we were long time friends. This young man is on his way to becoming a super newspaper reporter.

#2 Photographer Nathan Self took the front page picture of me, and of all eight books, AND of the Man of My Dreams, Jamey Propst. My husband is mentioned rather frequently in "Writer, Writer"!

#3 Northside Neighbor editor Everett Catts started the whole publicity process after we chatted at a local lunch spot, Nancy G's. *Perhaps I should thank Nancy, too. Hmmmm

#4 Our mailman TC arrived at our door just as we were sitting down to dinner. In his hands were fifteen extra copies of the newspaper. Flashing his toothy grin, the gentle man said, "I thought you might need a few extras for your family and friends."
He was right. Jamey is off to mail them to our out of town folks.

Yes, indeed, July 3 has been a very special day at the Propst's house. Thank you, fellows. Milam

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Marketing is hard!

After I put a huge wooden stork in our front yard announcing "It's a BOOK," any number of neighbors called to congratulate us on a new grandchild. That would be wonderful, of course, but it's sadly not the case.

This is to say, although I was schooled in marketing and worked for years in PR, promoting "Writer, Writer" has not been my strong point thus far. At least, it wasn't going well until yesterday. A charming young reporter, Bobby Tedder from The Northside Neighbor, interviewed me for an upcoming article. I was so excited, I all but burned off his ears talking about the new book and about the other seven long since published. Bobby was polite and encouraging, and he even sent a photographer named Nathan to take my picture this morning.

Here's the best part. Jamey was rushing out the door to play golf when Nathan stopped him.
"I've read your wife's book, you must be 'The Man of Her Dreams'? Come on, jump into the picture with her."

Always my champion, Jamey obliged. Outfit-wise, we didn't match. My husband was ready for sport, while I was dressed to enhance my reputation as an author. But then again, it didn't really matter. Jamey and I just celebrated our 46th wedding anniversary on Monday, so Nathan's timing was perfect. We'll have a professional anniversary photo. Next time we're in the paper, perhaps we'll be celebrating our 50th. By then maybe I will have sold out our guest room closet full of books!

The article should be out in a couple of weeks, I don't know when for sure. I will announce it on Facebook.
Ah, my marketing campaign has taken flight! MMP

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Great time last night with teachers!

Good morning, y'all,

Last evening, I spoke to a delightful group of teachers at Holy Innocents' Episcopal School. I took books, of course, and expected chatting for 30 minutes or so. Weeeelllll, what a fun group were they! For more than two hours, these charming gals asked questions, listened and laughed, and even bought books.

My precious friend, Marilyn Bailey, a retired teacher, finally brought me home in time for the 10 p.m. news. I'm hoping my audience may want to meet for lunch, because I so enjoyed their company. Nothing feeds a writer more deliciously than being asked questions about her craft.

Boosted by their enthusiastic interest in my books, I bravely went on Facebook a couple of minutes ago and mentioned having just received two more cartons of  my memoir, "WRITER, WRITER." My guest room closet is overflowing. HELP ME!

Thanks again to the Holy Innocents' book club. I love you all. Milam

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Writer, Writer arrived today!!!!

I'm en route to the party store to buy one of those storks folks put in the yard to announce a new baby. Ours will read, "It's a BOOK!" (Thank you, Mary Ann, for the clever idea.) Loftin and Emmett, our adorable grandboys, to whom the book is dedicated, will help me with this, my initial marketing effort.

Brian Aubitz gets all the credit for producing "Writer, Writer," while our son Jay's precious girlfriend, Summer Paul, designed the perfect cover. It looks marvelous, you two!!!

The first two boxes have already arrived, and there's an offer for a party down the road. So we're on our way! I love being an author, especially on days like today!!!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Books Are Coming Any Day!

Just got the word "Writer, Writer" will be here any day now! I'll make the announcement on my blog and on Facebook! Milam

Tuesday, March 5, 2013


I just emailed my new book and am about to upchuck. Signing off on a manuscript is akin to mailing a fragile puppy to the other side of the world.

I realize there will always be writing to be improved, edits to be made, and typos to be corrected, etc. BUT, the truth is, I had to let it go.
The feeling is sorta like when we sent our children off to college. We're never ready, but we hope they are. I pray any mistakes will be miraculously corrected, and the book will be perfect.

More soon, I'm off to sleep, Milam

Monday, March 4, 2013


Today I will begin my final run through on the new book. I just got the edits back from Jackie and cannot wait to see her comments.
First it's off to the gym for me. As usual, I gained a few pounds working on my story. Look for news of a release date in the next few weeks.

In the meantime, I do have some delightful events on my calendar, one is a talk in Brazelton, Georgia, with another in Huntsville, Alabama. I always enjoy meeting readers, especially after a long winter alone in my study.
It's akin to being a momma bear as she exits her cave in springtime! Joy!!!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Almost Done!

I'm celebrating with lunch today, tomorrow, and again on Friday. After being cocooned in my study for the better part of a month, this gal is taking a break to chat with long neglected friends and celebrate birthdays.

I'm through the initial drafts of "Writer, Writer," so late spring still looks good for the release date!

As I type this message to you, my sweet Jamey is reading the manuscript for me. Once he's done, I will pass the current draft to my retired teacher friends Jackie and Pam, who will proofread the story. Between the two of them, they've found many a typo through the years. After Jackie and Pam finish, it will be back to the computer for me. That's terrific because for me editing is the fun part of writing books.

Work also goes well with the travel book I'm co-writing with author Jaclyn White. But that's another topic for a blog many moons from now!
Just wanted to let everyone in on the latest. Milam

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Big Changes

Wednesday, I met with Tish Sweitzer, a truly brilliant editor, regarding "A Teaspoon of Trauma." After several hours of discussion, followed by a good bit of soul searching, I decided to change the game plan.

Rather than offering a few writing anecdotes for friends and family, I'm going to pen a piece which may even be of interest to readers who do not know me, or know Ociee, or Honey, or any of the more familiar characters in my novels.
 In fact, I've decided to revamp the whole bloomin' thing. Changes include a brand new title, a totally different cover designed by Summer Paul, AND a complete reorganization of the body of the story. That's all! For two days, I'm been working until my eyes crossed.

Hopefully, readers will think it worth the rewrite. I'm still planning for an early Spring release date.


Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year, Happy New Book!

I hope everyone's 2013 is off to a good start. Mine certainly is!

I'm giving a talk to a local Kiwanis group on Thursday and am busy at work on a new book, one which should be out in late winter or early spring. It's called "A Teaspoon of Trauma, the Seasoning of an Author." Not a book for children, this one is more of a memoir and focuses on drawing from one's challenges to create art. Especially excitingfor me is that our son Jay's talented girlfriend Summer Paul is designing the cover for Teaspoon.

Also in the works for the more distant future is a travel book I'm working on with fellow author Jaclyn Weldon White. So far we've gotten lost a hundred times, eaten our weight in out of the way diners, and laughed so much that people tend to stare. Should the publisher turn us down, Jackie and I will have have a marvelous adventure with this, our first mutual effort.

January 1, 2013 greeted me with a lovely surprise this morning. I received a fan-e-mail from a mother in Canada, one in which she shared her daughter Rose's love of our Ociee girl. She gave me the charming news that Rose is such a devoted reader that she's named her new puppy for Ociee Nash.
I had to grin!

Happy New Year! Milam