Jackie Houchin Went South

In June, 2012 we sold our horse ranch in Sun Valley, packed up our four cats, and moved to South Orange County. We’ve never looked back or regretted our escape from LA County, not even once. (Apologies to those of you still living there.)
My hair is gray now. Such freedom! No more pale roots and horrible dye jobs. Moving to a new community was the time to do it too. 
Since we moved, I’ve been to Africa (Malawi) twice with short-term mission teams from our new church. I hope to go again this spring. I wrote a dozen journal posts on my website about that first trip.
Unfortunately, six months later my website was hacked beyond repair and I took it down permanently. It was a traumatic experience; a lot of publishing history gone in a flash.  I eventually realized it was time to let it go and move on.
I’m thankful for the journalism experience I got writing for newspapers in LA, and while I’ve posted a few articles on the Mission Viejo Patch and considered a story for the OC Register, I think I’ve pitched my last newspaper.
So, you ask, what are you doing in the WRITERS in Residence blog?  Because I’m still writing! 
I have two other blogs. “Here’s How it Happened” is a mini-website, with a variety of articles. Check out the recipe for homemade Snickers. Yum!  “Morning Meditations” is a more serious journal blog of my early morning quiet times in the Bible and prayer.
I do proof-reading and copy-editing, which is SO appropriate for a perfectionist nit-picker like me!  I’ve worked on a couple mystery book manuscripts, a doctorate thesis, a “how-to” craft manual, and an African children’s novel translated from Dutch.  And I still review books for Mystery Scene Magazine!  
Look for my future posts on WinR about “The Agonies of Book Reviewing: A 12-step plan” “How Lillian Jackson Braun’s ‘Cat Who’s’ Inspire Me” and “Start Writing Cereals…er…Serials!” 

11 thoughts on “Jackie Houchin Went South”

  1. Your travels to Africa have been so interesting and the work your church group does is invaluable. And now that you aren't writing articles for the local paper, you have found yet another niche: editing. You were always so good in our critique group. I am sure the folks you have edited appreciate your hard work.


  2. Thank you, Jan! I just can't help writing with my tongue in cheek and a grin on my face. I have written a few short… well, I guess they are only vignettes… I just can't seem to make the story come around! I also began a novel during the NaNoWriMo ten years ago that I've never finished. But a memoir….. hmm…. now, let's see… how, and where, would I begin?


  3. You call it nit-picking, I call it perceptive. You have always given me valuable feedback on my work, even though it is NOT in your genre, and your skill with words always awes me. You can write whatever you choose and it will be great.


  4. All your future posts sound interesting–my book club just went through the “Cat Who—” series. Everyone read a book of their choosing–it was fun! You are an inspiration, Jackie. I'm so pleased to have “run into” you, so to speak!



  5. Thank you fellow WinR's for the good words. What a great support group you are! I wish us all success (can I do that?) in writing — and in the new ventures we may do together in the future. Remember that Gun class? And the visit to the Greystone Manor??


  6. Thank you, Marilyn. No we haven't met officially, but I know you through FB and having read/reviewed one of your books. I appreciate your daily glimpses from your Bible reading because it's near to my heart as well. Someday, at a conference or by happenstance, we will meet. Bless you till then!


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