Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Advantages Of A Small Town




I grew up in a small town, and like most I couldn't wait to get out and explore the vast world. Only....the vast world was only two hours from my
small town to the city of Cincinnati, Ohio. and trust me Cincinnati, although I love it, isn't the vast world.

The older I got I became to appreciate the small town and what it meant to me. I realized moving to a larger city life has become very busy, hustle and bustle, smog, violence, you know.


When I decided to become a writer, well~I've always been a writer, but when I decided to write for publication, I knew I wanted to base a series around a small town and the people in it.

Let's take a look at what you will find in a small town. First you will notice there isn't any traffic, only a few straggling cars. But people! The people are walking around the town with little fear of safety. So much so you can almost feel it. They say hello to you and give you eye contact. They ask about your family, and invite you over to pick some berries or tomato
es out of their garden.

And the buildings! How amazing are those old buildings. They are the core of the town. Generally small town buildings are compact, well organized and centered around the city building. It embraces you, giving you that welcome feel. There is a sense of belonging. And that feels good!

Did you take a big deep breathe? No? Well do! How about that?
Fresh air! Clean fresh air. Free of smog!

Have you seen a small town school? Yes, there is no barbed wire around it, or metal detectors. Just kids all over the school yard, laughing, eating, and making jokes. Harmless. The building itself is small, with few teachers, but that's because there are fewer children in small towns. As you can read on the school's marque, the upcoming dances, PTA meetings, and other school spirit activities taking place.

Then there are the business. Local, homegrown doctor (who might be a vet too), locally owned grocery store, feed and seed, post office, and florist.

These are just a few reasons why small communities are being sought after. People are wanting the hometown, good salt of the earth life for their families. Most of these communities are only a hop, skip, and jump away from larger cities where most the families travel to work.

These communities offer charm, a sense of humanity. When someone is sick, the entire community jumps in and helps the family. No matter how hard I try to make this happen in my community, it just doesn't happen. Of course my kids are great, and we love our neighbors, school, and jobs, but there's something to be said about the love and warmth of a small town.

The Ladybug Jinx is the first in a series of novels set in my fictitious small Grandberry Falls. I've built a community around the lives of the residents there, and I hope you enjoy visiting Grandberry Falls. The second book in the Grandberry Falls Series, Happy New Life, will be released in October!

You can click on the Grandberry Falls tab and take a stroll down Main Street.

What do you think about small town life?
Be sure to join the blog!! I'm going to pick a winner at the end of September to win a SWAG BAG with so much cool stuff in it!!
AND....be sure to head over to Jaye Ormerod's blog today where she gave CARPE BEAD 'EM a FIVE beach umbrella review!http://bit.ly/mZwJ5l
SQUEEEE!!!!

32 comments:

  1. *WAVES*

    I'm here neighbor!!!

    Stephanie O.

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  2. Cool post, Tonya. I did the opposite: moved from a large city (Baton Rouge) to a small town (Natchez)and have never regretted it. Yes,one loses the comfort of anonymity, but the pleasure to be had in becoming part of a community more than makes up for it. Downside? We have no IHOP, no Target, no Macy's, hey, no Olive Garden ;) So why do so many people move from large, sophisitcated cities to live in dinky Natchez, Mississippi? We've got charm, antebellum homes, we've got history. Oh, and we've got Greg Illes. That's got to count for something...

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  3. Oh, this really resonated with me. I live in a somewhat small town and love raising my kids away from a big city. I've got the best of both worlds because we have a historical old town square and small town feel, but in the last few years we've acquired a Target (yay!) and a great movie theatre. However my mother grew up in a very small town in MN and when we visit, it's amazing. Everyone knows everyone. You can walk from one end to the other. And more often than not, I'm related to someone in the bakery, the quilt shop or the drug store down the street. :)

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  4. I found it! Yay! I'll have to list it on my blog sidebar.

    I've lived in both large cities and large and small towns and prefer small towns. Granted,you lose some conveniences of shopping (Malls? What malls?), you don't have some of the choices of restaurants--try 3 cafes with daily plate specials and mostly fried--and around here most of my friends still live on gravel county roads (my poor tires I've learned the difference between 4 and 6 ply tires and why).

    I live beyond the back 40 and it's one mile off the nearest paved road. Nearest neighbor, that's not wildlife, is a half mile away.In the winter that paved road isn't plowed and you have to go yet another mile to get to the interstate which is. My second nearest neighbor (a mile beyond me) usually gets out his big old combine styled tractor and attaches a blade and plows the snow from his house to the paved road and the 4/10ths of a mile of the paved to the turnoff on the county maintained paved road that leads (.9 miles) to the interstate. No one pays him for this, btw. No wonder there are so many pickups and 4x4s in the country.

    But I love the fact that people wave at you when you drive by, or smile when they see you. I can walk in the grocery store and have 4 clerks ask me if I'm feeling better (I've been pretty sick and in a small town people know those things). Ask after my family and usually by name. In this small town (7 miles from my house) they still close off the main square for the fall festival/street faire--no cars allowed. They have a square dance right there on the town streets and vendors, food, crafts. Kids run around and everyone keeps an eye out for them. It's the only place I've been where I've checked out a book from the library and had someone call me or see me in town and ask me if I'm finished with it because they want to read it.

    Yah, I like my setting in the country.

    I loved Ladybug Jinx and Grandberry Falls. I'm looking forward to the next one in the series. :-)

    Sia McKye's Thoughts...OVER COFFEE

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  5. You know I love small towns!! I posted this link to the #WhatIloveAboutSmallTowns hashtag on twitter so others would find it too. Love you and your books....Hugs and happy writing!

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  6. Tanya, I grew up in a relatively small town in New Jersey. In fact, it's where they filmed Guess Who starring Ashton Kutcher and Bernie Mac!

    As a child I loved it, because everyone basically new everyone else, but as a teen I hated it because there was absolutely nothing to do. All we wanted to do as teens was get away from there and go to the larger towns that had more than one movie theater and places to hang out. LOL!

    One I got older and moved away, I realized what a wonderful place Cranford, NJ was in which to grow up. Live and learn ...

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  7. Mornin', Super T!

    Does your Grandberry Fall's Tin Cup Cafe serve breakfast?!

    You know I'm a huge Grandberry Falls Books' Fan, and I can't wait for Happy New Life!!!

    Save me a seat at The Thirsty Turtle...I'm on my way!!!

    And I'm luuuvvvin' your new blog!!!

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  8. Small towns are fascinating. I grew up in a small neighbourhood in the middle of nowhere (well, sort of), and it had such a sense of community. I miss it!

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  9. Tonya -

    Although I no longer live in a small town (unless you consider L.A. small :-)), I write my contemporaries set in them because it's so much a part of who I am. I'm looking forward to exploring Grandberry Falls when my TBR pile will allow!

    Kelsey

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  10. Tonya, I was (mostly) raised in a small town in S.E. Louisiana ... and it was fantastic.
    Though my first three novel ms. were set in the real city/county where I now reside, I found I was agonizing over the historical and geographical details of this place.
    So, for my 4th ms, begun in Aug. 2009, I created my own small town, about 25 miles east of Nashville. So much nicer to begin with a clean slate and put everything where I WANT it. I like it so well, I've mapped it and built its history .. and set three MORE novel ms. in that area.
    I think I'd like your Grandberry Falls.

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  11. Hi, Stephanie! Thanks so much for coming by!!

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  12. Oh, Cadence! That sounds like my kind of town. One day I will be moving back to a small town. I love the fact that you don't have a Target, Olive Garden etc...What do you have? Charm, cozy, and a great community!!

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  13. Ginger, that is exactly what I LOVE about the small town! Everyone knows everyone and going into a quilt shop where you are either related or they know your name is just so comforting.

    Thanks so much for stopping by!!

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  14. Hi, Sia!! I'm so glad you found me! I would've sent the Grandberry Falls' horse and carriage company to come get you!! I've always admired where you live. When my family and I go back to visit my parents, I LOVE that everyone waves, no matter if they don't know you or not. More times than not, I do know them. AND I love going home for the little county festival. I look forward to the local booths and visiting friends.
    Thank you so much for loving my stories!!

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  15. I love our small town... but what if you get into the centre of some cruel gossip - that gets very interesting... but that's a post for another day :)
    Great post. Lx

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  16. Nancy! You are a doll!! Thank you so much. I had no idea about the hashtag, but I'll definitely be using it from now on!!

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  17. Chicki! You sound exactly like me!! I couldn't wait to get out of my small town. And now that I have kids, I wished I had stayed for them. I want them to know a since of community and what it means to be part of it.
    I'm so glad to see you here!

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  18. Thanks, DD! There is an honorary bar stool in The Thirsty Turtle with your name on it;)

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  19. Hi, Talli!! I miss the small community I grew up in too. It's the nostalgia!

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  20. WOW, Kelsey! The Ladybug Jinx visits LA! I'm curious to see how you like it! Please let me know. AND NO! I wouldn't consider LA a small town, even though the gossip does resemble a small town;) I look forward to looking up your books and reading them!! Thanks for coming by.

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  21. Jeff! I did the same thing. I have my own Grandberry Falls map hung in my office. I even talk about Grandberry Falls as though it's a real place. I feel like I live there....ahhh....

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  22. I was born in a small town, and grew up in one. Then I went to college in Berkley California right across the bay from San Francisco. I thought I had arrived. Then I moved to Silicon Valley, and wanted to leave again for a small town. Eventually I did. And love it. I never want to leave. I have the best of both worlds in my small town, SF not that far, and no traffic, and able to get across town in 10mins. I wouldn't change it for anything.

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  23. Love small town life. I grew up on a farm, went away to college and ten years later moved back to my small hometown and bought the farm I grew up on. To me, traveling 20 minutes to shop and 40 minutes to work is normal.

    Makes me wanna grab my honey
    Tear down some two-lane country
    Who knows
    Get lost and get right with my soul
    Makes me wanna take
    Makes me wanna take a back road. -Rodney Adkins

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  24. I've found you can take the girl out of the small town but you can't ever take the small town out of the girl! Shook off the dust of that small Ohio town where I grew up and headed out to see the world. Now I find I have to return "home" every few years to recenter myself.

    Thanks for the shout out to my blog. CARPE BEAD 'EM was such a fun read!

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  25. I'm with you LA!! I dream of going back to a small town. I'm sure that's why I'm having so much fun writing about Grandberry Falls.

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  26. Awwww.....Christina! I do sometimes take the country roads just to roll down my windows and smell the air. Thank you so much for sharing the poem!

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  27. I do the same thing, Jayne! I go to my hometown to get away. I'm lucky that my parent's have a small house on their property away from their house, so when I need some writing time, I make a big excuse to go home:)

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  28. Hi Tonya, sad to hear about The Naked Hero shutting down. Wish I could have been there more. Glad about this new venture though. I haven't been on the internet much since work started, so I'm playing catch up now. Looking forward to your blogs.

    Peace and love,
    Paula R.

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  29. Hi Tonya,
    Followed on over from G+. So glad to see you there!
    I have the best of both worlds - a small town that's about an hour away from the big city (ATL). We have a love/hate relationship, since the small town wants very much to stay small, but progress keeps beating on the door. It gets frustrating sometimes, but then when I come home from an hour's drive, for a lunch date with myHero at his downtown office (right across the street from Margaret Mitchell's home where GWTW was born) and I see my little pharmacy and the big church and the funky little houses and the trees...well, I wouldn't want it to grow up either.
    Love. The. Blog!

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  30. HI, Paula!! I know it's a sad day about TNH, but at least we are all friends and collaborating on new projects together. This publishing stuff is a crazy ride, and I'm so blessed to have wonderful peeps like you to ride along with me!!

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  31. Oh, Pam!!! I saw your Google + post!! You did make me smile! Just seeing your beautiful face brings a smile to my face. AND I do love seeing you here!
    WOW!! You do have the best of both worlds. I hope our sweet country continues to keep those small towns a treasure and NOT let growth take over.

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