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I Get By With A Little Help From My Friends

February 8, 2019

Hi, all,

I know I went silent for a few weeks. Nothing wrong here at all. More like needing to clear my head and focus on two new books. And now I find myself looking for some advice.

I’m closing in on final edits for the book I’ve been calling “Out of the Desert.” I’m not sure if that’s the best title.

So, what do you think? I have four titles below that people have recommended. Do you like any of them? Please email me at betsy_ashton2005@yahoo.com with your ideas. You can add your own suggestions.

  1. Out of the Desert
  2. Grains of Sand
  3. Sands of Time
  4. Toad the Dreamer
  5. Other

This is a novel in stories about Toad, his brother Cricket, his best friend Polly, and his cousin Phyl.

Once upon a time a little boy named Toad the Dreamer lived in the Mojave Desert. He dreamed first of being a spaceman. Then, he dreamed about growing up and going to college. Next, he dreamed about having a big family. He dreamed his mother’s dream for him becoming a writer. 

One day, when Todd, the grown-up version of Toad, was closing in on his 50th birthday, he wondered what happened to the little boy who wanted to be a spaceman. Or a writer. Todd’s story, and those of his favorite cousin and best friend, bring him to this turning point.

Will he go back to the desert he left behind and find Toad the Dreamer? Or will he continue as he has, living a good life but not being satisfied with what he’s doing? Will he reconnect with his best friend?

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2 Comments

  • Reply Rosie Amber February 12, 2019 at 9:49 am

    Toad the dreamer has me asking, who is Toad and what is he dreaming about. 1-3 are a bit generic and bland. But do be careful about the word dream. I’m not sure how much of your story features dreams, but they are a feature that has been overdone. They can lose readers who don’t feel connected to the story.
    I can’t tell if your book ‘s main theme is the childhood or the adult life. What age reading audience are you aiming at? Toad the Dreamer shouts #YA to me, or something very laid back. However, if it is adult fiction / memoir style, from the synopsis I’m afraid there’s not much that grabs me – lots of folks reach a milestone birthday and look back at their life, what is going to make this book stand-out and have readers begging to read it?
    Hope this helps, but do ignore me if I’ve got this all wrong.

    • Reply Betsy Ashton February 12, 2019 at 9:52 pm

      I hear you, Rosie. Thanks for your comment.

      Dreams are so passe. Toad’s daydreams set up the rest of the narrative. He begins a young boy with a vivid imagination.

      This isn’t YA, nor is it a memoir. It’s literary fiction, women’s fiction, if you will, which focuses on the lives of a group of friends who grow up, grow apart, and may or may not get together again. I’m not sure how much new ground the story breaks. Perhaps it’s more of a familiar tale told differently. I hope.

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