Thursday, October 22, 2009

Blogtoberfest Day 17 - Trish Milburn aka Tricia Mills

The winner of Linda Joy Singleton's Dead Girl in Love is...Jamie! Congrats!

Today's guest at the Halloween and Homecoming Blogtoberfest (ha, you thought I was going to say "Blogtoberguest" again, didn't you? I'm such a rebel.) is Trish Milburn, who writes YA fiction as Tricia Mills.

In addition to writing two different series, this year Tricia also launched the fabulous Healthy Writer blog, which offers great tips for authors or anyone else who spends a lot of time on his or her butt. I was particularly intrigued by the post on Energy Zappers, and particularly the part about multitasking. For instance, right now I'm trying to write this blog post, check e-mail, and "watch" a baseball game on GameCast, and I can attest that I feel zapped. (But I'd feel great if the Dodgers had pulled off that comeback. Just sayin'.)

Trish/Tricia had her YA debut this past April with Heartbreak River:

Alexandra Landon once loved running the Grayton River through the Colorado canyons near her home and couldn’t imagine doing anything else with her life but continuing the family’s river rafting business. But that was before her father died in a rafting accident and she developed a full-fledged fear of drowning. It’s been nearly a year since her father’s death, and the arrival of another summer means Alex has to face the river, the question of whether she can ever recapture her love of rafting, and the return of co-worker and former boyfriend Sean Kenley. One way or the other, this summer is going to change Alex’s life forever.

* * * *

The Past and Present Collide
By Trish Milburn

Earlier this month, I attended my first high school reunion -- the 20th. No matter how many times I see that number, it doesn't seem possible that it's been 20 years since I marched into my high school gym to the tune of "Pomp and Circumstance." A lot has happened since then. I got a college degree, I worked for many years full time in the journalism field, I got married, I moved to a different state, I traveled to or through 41 states, and I've managed to get three of my books published so far. Despite all the accomplishments, part of my less confident younger self emerged in the days leading up to the reunion. I was looking forward to it, to seeing friends I hadn't seen in awhile, but I wondered how people would react to each other. Would they pick up where they left off? Would they naturally gravitate toward who they'd been friends with in high school? Would the people who were at odds then still be that way?

I needn't have worried. Yes, we naturally gravitated toward the people we'd been closest to in high school, but that makes sense. While I spent time with most people there and really enjoyed the fact that the whole clique thing seemed to have faded, I hung out most with my closest friends from back then. In fact, I'm still in contact with them 20 years after we took our diplomas and left our small hometown.

The reunion was actually three days of activities. On Friday night, we were supposed to tailgate at the high school homecoming football game. But since the game was canceled because the other team had to forfeit, we ended up having a cookout and eating in our old high school cafeteria. I don't think I'd been in that room since the night I graduated. Some people were easily recognizable as they walked in; others not so much. I kept having to ask my friend Kim who people were. We took a tour of the school. Some things looked the same; even one of the teachers is still there. But there was a new annex, which included a very nice computer lab with big Mac computers. Way better than the Commodore 64 computers we had back in the day. :) There was also a new arena where the basketball games are played, though we did walk through the old gym. Still smelled the same as it did 20 years ago. LOL! And it was funny to see the kids of classmates playing with each other just like their parents did years ago.

The next night was the official dinner at the country club. At one point, we all introduced ourselves, told what we did for a living, if we were married, how many kids, etc. It was interesting to hear what people ended up doing -- teachers, chemical plant workers, lots of nurses, a prison guard, a state trooper, and a variety of other occupations. Only three of us didn't have any kids. The rest had anywhere from one to four. We sat around until midnight, catching up and recounting stories from those days of big hair, ‘80s music playing on the iPod speakers.

Sunday morning, one of our classmates who is now a minister preached a service, but I headed home instead of driving back into town for it since I was staying in the next county. I heard it was a nice service though.

Even though the reunion is behind me now, I still can't believe it's been 20 years. I hope the next 20 years don't fly by quite so quickly.

So, have you ever been to a high school reunion? What was it like? Were people the same? Different?

* * * *

To enter to win a signed copy of Heartbreak River, leave a comment below. And remember, each comment automatically enters you in the drawing for the grand prize package: all 25 books!

For complete rules, read the introductory post.

Deadline for entry: Thursday, October 29, 11:59pm Eastern. NOTE: THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED. The winner is ddurance!

Linda Gerber and Death by Denim
Alexandra Diaz and an ARC of Of All the Stupid Things
Melissa Walker and Lovestruck Summer
Sydney Salter and My Big Nose and Other Natural Disasters
Christine Marciniak and When Mike Kissed Emma

Thanks to Trish for going to her high school reunion, so I didn't have to!

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So I haven't gone to a high school reunion yet. My five year reunion is coming up and I am planning to go. I want to see how everyone has changed.

Posted by: Blogger cait045 at 10/22/2009 9:21 AM

I'm pretty excited for my high school reunion because my class got along so well. It will be fun to see them all again, I hope some of them would come even though I know they are far away.

Posted by: Blogger Brittany at 10/22/2009 9:50 AM

I haven't gone to any of my high school reunions, it just didn't interest me that much. I almost went to the last one this past summer (20 year reunion) but didn't. I didn't really have many friends back then and didn't like high school at all, so there really wasn't much point.

Posted by: Blogger Poppy at 10/22/2009 11:43 AM

I only graduated a year and half ago, so I won't be attending any reunions for awhile, but I don't think I'd be so excited for it. In high school, I had a tight little group of friends and that was it. I wasn't a grouch or anything though, so it WOULD be nice to see everybody again. :)

Posted by: Blogger Katie at 10/22/2009 12:51 PM

I missed my 10-year reunion because I was recovering from surgery and couldn't travel -- bummer! So I was psyched for my 20th. But due to some very bad planning on the organizers' part, no one wanted to go. I think that they had only 6 RSVPs out of hundreds of students, so they finally just canceled the whole thing. I was sad... yet thanks to Facebook I feel like I'm still tracking most of the people I went to school with, anyway!

Posted by: Blogger Ken at 10/22/2009 1:06 PM

I haven't had a high school reunion yet - it wasn't that long since I graduated. It would be interesting though...


Posted by: Blogger Sara at 10/22/2009 1:15 PM

I have never been to any of my reunions - Graduated in 83'. It seems no one else goes either since last I heard they were having them in bars since there weren't enough people for anywhere else :-)

The book looks great and I love that cover. Simple & sweet.


Posted by: Blogger Karen at 10/22/2009 2:30 PM

Hey, everyone. Been way busy today, and just managed to get over here. Thanks for commenting. My class actually had two reunions previous to this -- at 5 and 10 years. I'm actually glad I waited until the 20-year mark because there was enough distance between who I was then (so not the most popular girl in school) and now (at least more confident than I was then). I think 5 years is too close to when you graduated to see a whole lot of difference.

Karen, thanks for the compliment on the book and cover. I've been very fortunate with my covers so far.

Jeri, thanks for having me here today. You rock, girlfriend.

Posted by: Blogger Trish Milburn at 10/22/2009 6:00 PM

Hi Trish~

I have had my eye on Heartbreak River and I think that it sounds really good.

I did not attend my high school reunion when we had a couple of years would have 20 years for me too. For some reason it just did not work out and I missed it. It would be very interesting to see how everyone was and how they have changed. I know that I have changed so much.

Posted by: Blogger Lori T at 10/23/2009 12:46 AM

My 20 year reunion was this summer...and once again I chickened out and didn't go. I like to think that I'm more outgoing & social now than I was then but something about facing all the people I graduated with just takes me right back to the feelings I had in high school. Yeesh.

Luckily, I had some friends who did go so I got to hear how everyone was doing. It sounded like they all had a really good time. So maybe I'll actually try to go to the next one.

But I'm not holding my breath. *grin*

librarygrinch at gmail dot com

Posted by: Blogger Dawn M. at 10/23/2009 5:01 AM

I graduated in 1997 and as far as I know my class hasn't had a reunion yet. Will I go if they do? I'll have to think on that. lol


Posted by: Blogger Asylumgirl at 10/23/2009 5:42 PM

My batch had not have our class reunion as of yet. I am curious to see how everyone change. When I get my invitation for a reunion I would definitely go. It would be a fun to see everyone again.


Posted by: Anonymous Anonymous at 10/23/2009 7:31 PM

Please count me in. My high school reunion isn't up yet, but I would totally go and see how everyone turned out :-)

cindyc725 at gmail dot com

Posted by: Blogger I ♥ Book Gossip at 10/24/2009 5:11 PM

I've only been out of school for 5 years, and I'm pretty sure that's not gonna happen for a while. I probably wouldn't go. I'm so busy with my son, and work, I doubt I'd have the time.. but I am glad to see yours went so smoothly! :)

Posted by: Blogger Unknown at 10/24/2009 9:12 PM

Heartbreak River sounds so great!

Posted by: Blogger Erica at 10/25/2009 2:00 PM

This looks great!!! I'll have to put it on my list

Posted by: Anonymous Brittany at 10/26/2009 1:46 PM

Heartbreak River looks great i feel for Alexandra & her loss.. don't know if Id be able to do it...
Ive never been to a HS reunion myself either, But then Ive never been invited.. 2008 would have been my 20th (holy cow who'd have thought that?) Guess its just not meant to be.. Thanks for sharing Trish

Debbie in NY

Posted by: Blogger WriterWannaB_NY at 10/26/2009 2:47 PM

There've been college reunions, but we emigrated so we can't get to them. I'd like to one day, though it would feel strange. Still, I still have some close friends and we always meet whenever we're back visiting. After years away, it's as if we'd only just said goodbye.

Posted by: Blogger Sheila Deeth at 10/26/2009 3:00 PM

Last summer my class had a 5 year reunion. (I didn't even know people did those, lol) We ended up having it in another city at a bar(because I graduated from po-dunk) and most people wouldn't even show up. It ended up being about 30 people there, but it was more of all the laid back crowd. While I was very hesitant on going, we had the best night! There were moments I know will be brought up at the 10 year.


Posted by: Blogger Just Your Typical Book Blog at 10/26/2009 6:42 PM

Last summer my class had a 5 year reunion. (I didn't even know people did those, lol) We ended up having it in another city at a bar(because I graduated from po-dunk) and most people wouldn't even show up. It ended up being about 30 people there, but it was more of all the laid back crowd. While I was very hesitant on going, we had the best night! There were moments I know will be brought up at the 10 year.


Posted by: Blogger Just Your Typical Book Blog at 10/26/2009 6:43 PM

So I am freaking out because my 10 year reunion is coming up in 2011 and that is waaay too close. It doesn't even seem like it was that long ago, but whatever. I was a nerd so I am excited to just go and say "YEAH, I am STILL a nerd. So what! And I STILL read books for fun yo!" Okay not the yo part but it sounds cooler.

Posted by: Blogger Casse AKA Catholic Kittie at 10/27/2009 5:35 AM

I have never been to one of my class reunions. I usually keep in touch with the people I was good friends with. I would love to win your book.

seriousreader at live dot com

Posted by: Blogger Linda Henderson at 10/29/2009 11:54 PM

The winner of HEARTBREAK RIVER is ddurance! Congrats!

Thanks to everyone who stopped by and shared their high school reunion experiences!

Posted by: Blogger Jeri at 10/30/2009 8:50 AM


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