Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Magic Touch

The African violet in the picture is a table prize from a friend's 50th wedding anniversary celebration. We were college roommates and kept in touch ever since although I hadn't actually seen her since right after graduation. When we were invited to the reception, I decided to make the effort and drive from North  Carolina to New York and surprise her. I will never forget the look on her face when we showed up -- priceless.

I carried the violet home and waited for it to bloom. It was a small plant, but steadily grew larger, until I had to re-pot it. Although the leaves were green and healthy, it never produced a blossom. I moved it from window to window, hoping a new exposure would do the trick. I fed it houseplant food. It grew and remained green.

Then, by chance, I saw a bottle of African violet food on a Walmart shelf. I tried feeding the plant a few drops. At the same time, Jim read that burying a nail in the soil would stimulate flowering. He had a hard time finding a nail that wasn't galvanized, but he finally did (it's the rusting that does the trick, adding iron to the soil).

And it bloomed! and continues to bring forth flowers as if making up for lost time. Was it the window, the plant food, the nail, my entreaties or a combination of all of these? I don't know.

Now, you know I am going to compare this to writing! We write the story and try everything we know to promote it: blast e-mails, FaceBook, Twitter, begging for reviews, and telling everyone we meet in the grocery store line. When the book takes off, we're never sure just which promotional avenue did the trick. We're just happy something worked!


Again, if you are a returning reader or a new one, please sign up as a follower. That way, I know who's reading. And if you get a chance, visit my web site and read an excerpt from "The Almost Bride," my latest novel. I'd love to know what you think!

1 comment:

  1. Gotta try the nail trick...I can't tell you how many african violets I've been thru over the years. Good analogy!