Meet Hoosier Author Nancy Zimmerman!

Nancy1Nancy Zimmerman

When did you start writing?

I was raised in the country near Princeton, Indiana and moved to Vincennes as an adult where I taught school for 34 years. I actually began writing on Jan. 1 of 2013.

Why do you write?

My first book, Embracing Your Best Self, was actually intended to be a way for me to collect my thoughts and awareness then share with anyone who might benefit. It led to the second book, Confronting Your Best Self. It was at this time I co-authored a political fiction novel, but while I enjoyed the experience greatly, it was not a genre I wanted to pursue. I wrote the third in the series titled, Balancing Your Best Self….

I had a young friend on Facebook, from Scotland, contact me about writing a book for her.. after considering it, I decided to do a series under the umbrella, Sadie’s Great Adventures. It contains 4 books, Sadie and Lexie, Sadie and Lexie Rescue Chloe, Sadie’s New Friends, and Sadie Meets a Monarch. They are available individually or bound together. The illustrations are line drawings so the book is also used as a coloring book so kids can get immersed in the story to its fullest. I also have published 2 romance novellas:  Shades of Love and Cream in My Coffee.

Where is your favorite place to write?

I generally write at my home, but a couple of my books, and the co-authored novel was written , probably 80% at Panera Bread. I read at least one book a day, and have for years. I couldn’t do that when I was teaching and raising my children, but it was a dream of mine to be able to read as much and as often as I wanted to, so that dream is one I live daily.

What is the last book that you couldn’t put down until it was finished?

If I can put a book down, I don’t ever finish it. By that I mean, I sit and read and don’t put any book down unless I just can’t get into it at all. When I write any of my books, I begin with sending out a message into the Universe…. Do not let this be a book that people put down and wonder – Why did I spend my time reading that??!! I want my writing to be enjoyed and I want people to get reading pleasure from them. I also hope in the case of my “Best Self” books that they genuinely help those who read them. I tend to like mysteries best.

If you could spend the day with any writer past or present who would it be and why?

I think the author I would most like to talk to would be Margaret Truman. Her mysteries are probably the best I have ever read and I think she would be just a very interesting person to talk with.

What is your next book project?

I am currently working on Book 4 in the Best Self Series, .. Accepting Your Best Self… I am working on a romance novel… I am getting a Young Artist Series of children’s books together that will be utilizing local high school, middle school, and college illustrators. I have written 7 stories and found 3 artists so far who have begun working. I feel it will give the young artists a tremendous opportunity and will help build their portfolio and resume as they pursue a career. I work with art teachers and in one of the books, there is a lot of community involvement… In that book, Wonders of Muscatatuck.. adults are providing the observations of nature and high school students are doing the artwork s part of their classes… truly an amazing experience and I am only compiling the work, so it give me a chance to really hone my publishing skills in my small Indy publishing co…. Hedgehog Hill Press…..

I am still looking for young artists who would like this opportunity, so if anyone knows of an interested young person, I hope they will contact me through my website.

What else would you like to share with fellow Hoosier Authors and fans?

I am available for speaking engagements and presentations. I am a talk show host on 2 radio stations, one locally which can be streamed on Friday evenings at 6 pm… at and the other, an hour show on – The Magic Happens Radio – which can be listened to on Thursday or Sunday. The show on both stations is called A Look at the Bright Side and I have featured several local authors and artists on the show.

Where can we connect with you?

I can be reached through my website




Happy First Draft!

Every First Draft Is Perfect

“Every first draft is perfect, because all a first draft has to do is exist.” ~ Jane Smiley

Happy New Year! 2018 holds a world of words waiting to be written!

We are starting the year off with a Meetup at the Indianapolis Central Public Library, which happens to be one of my favorite libraries in the world!

The first hour of the February 3, 2018 Meetup will be a planning session to determine 2018 Hoosier Authors Meetup content so that you get the maximum benefit from Meetups! Do you want to meet other authors, learn about the writing process, book launches, online marketing, self-publishing, author spotlights, book fairs… This is your chance to shape Hoosier Authors into the platform you want to see!

The second half of the Meetup we will meet Pulitzer Prize winning author Jane Smiley! In addition to talking about her award winning books, Jane plans to share some of her writing tips as both an author and creative writing professor.

That powerhouse combination makes this a Meetup Hoosier Authors won’t want to miss!



Real Cool

voice poems

Ready to be real cool? Record yourself reciting the poem, “We Real Cool” by the great Pulitzer prize-winning poet of the 20th century, Gwendolyn Brooks and email it to to have your voice featured in the Chicago Poetry Foundation sound installation. Deadline to submit your recording is September 13, 2017. What a creative and fun way to share the power of poetry to leave a legacy!

We Real Cool
by Gwendolyn Brooks

The pool players.
Seven at the Golden Shovel.

We real cool. We
left school. We
lurk late. We
strike straight. We
sing sin. We
thin gin. We
jazz June. We
die soon.


I submitted my recording! I am looking forward to hearing the symphony of voices and various interpretations of this powerful poem.

NAMI Art Exhibit at Minnetrista



Chances are you know someone who struggles with mental illness. The statistics on mental illness are staggering. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), one in five adults experience mental illness and half of all chronic mental illness begins at age 14. The list of conditions that are classified as mental illness is extensive and includes everything from ADHD and PTSD to Substance Abuse and Schizophrenia. Often we feel helpless when it comes to helping someone who is dealing with mental illness. Our nature is to want to help.

Helping is exactly what Pam Nicholas had in mind when she proposed that the local NAMI chapter partner with local artists to create an art exhibition that provides insight into mental illness and raises the community’s awareness of the impact of mental illness on individuals, their families and friends.

I heard about the call for submissions through one of my Facebook writer groups and jumped at the opportunity to participate. Writing to help causes is my favorite writing to do.

Taking action on that one thing has led to even more opportunities such as participating in writing workshops and networking with other authors to come up with some more creative ways to help good causes. I love the synergy that happens when like-minds get together with the intention of helping others and contributing to the greater good.

I hope you take time to visit the NAMI art display at Minnetrista, leave a little donation at the door for this volunteer non-profit organization that is helping provide mental health resources for our community. While you are there checking out the art and reading the poems, I hope you realize your own potential to affect change and discover the world of possibility that awaits you!

Get the Drift


DayDrifter Quarterly Publication written by Hoosiers 

I am excited about a new publishing opportunity I recently learned about from Ben Barrick, the founder of DayDrifter.

DayDrifter is a quarterly publication startup featuring the writing of Hoosier authors! If they aren’t authors yet, they will be after being published in DayDrifter magazine.

One of the hardest parts about pursuing a writing career is getting over the perceived obstacle of being a published author, at least it was for me. I wasted many years thinking I wasn’t “good enough” to be a writer because my writing wasn’t published. Once I got over that hump by self-publishing some anthologies, the voice no longer constrained me. I am hoping this publication will help many want-to-be-writers in the same way by helping them get their voice heard and the story they are meant to share out to the community of raving fans who are patiently waiting to be entertained and inspired.

Let’s make sure DayDrifter exceeds their Kickstarter goal by giving what you can and spreading the word. Also, to all you Hoosier authors and writers out there, DayDrifter is now accepting submissions. This is your opportunity to have your story in their premier edition!

Write on.

Kathy G

Shadow Poetry

22 aug 2018
Poetry Night inspired by Georgia Goy’s Shadows Found in Nature Photography

I love it when something motives my muse and inspires me to stop whatever I’m doing and write! That happened tonight when I received an invitation to attend Poetry Night at the Bridge Cafe. Attached to the invitation was three  “Shadows Found in Nature” photographs by Georgia Goy that are being used as prompts to write poetry that will be read and judged at the event. The first place winner will receive 10 greeting cards with the photo they wrote about and their poem inside. Runners up will receive a greeting card of the photo. How cool is that?

My muse, who has been buried beneath my busy schedule, appeared as quick as a rabbit from a magician’s hat, and for a moment, all my worries and stresses melted away as I was one with words. That is one of the most rewarding perks of writing poetry. It’s almost like meditation. I get lost in the writing and forget about my never-ending to do list.

I decided to make time for this event. It will be my artist date and a chance to hang out with my tribe. Even though I’m an introvert and usually avoid crowds, I like to step out of my comfort zone and meetup with writers because it is in this world I feel most at home. I am looking forward to the event and hope to see YOU there!

Below are the poems I was inspired to write for this event. The first one is a riddle. Can you guess the word I had in mind as I wrote it? I actually came up with three words! What word first comes to your mind when you read it?

creativity is Intelligence having fun (1)

A thousand roads I’ve traveled to find you just to discover you were with me all along. 

The second poem was inspired by the photograph of a couple by a tree. My husband, two kids, and our American Eskimo Spitz lived in Sweetser, Indiana for 20 years. We had a willow tree in the back yard that towered over the other trees in the neighborhood. A guy in his 80’s stopped by one day and said his family planted it when he was a kid. We spent hours under that tree as a family. Our dog Cotton even went under the tree to die. He looked so peaceful when I came home from work and saw him lying at the base of the tree with his long white fur being caressed by the breeze and the wispy willow gently swaying. I loved that tree and was heartbroken when a bad storm came through and knocked part of it down onto our house. The insurance gave us $10k for repairs so it all worked out. I have never forgotten that willow tree and the important role it played in our life.

creativity is Intelligence having fun (2)

Meet me by the willow tree where we held hands as we talked about our dreams, where our children played on the tire swing, where the branches bent with the fiercest wind, where love never ends. 


Poetry Night inspired by Georgia Goy’s Shadows Found in Nature Photography will be Tuesday, September 13, 2016 from 7 – 9 p.m. at the Bridge Cafe, 138 N. Main Street, Upland, Indiana 46989. Join us! 



Poetry Superstar STACY SAVAGE

see our facebook page for details (1)

“Poetry is my outlet, my voice, my pride, my peace of mind, and a path to my soul.” ~ Stacy Savage

Stacy Savage – a name destined for glory. Fitting for a Hollywood movie star, chart-topping singer, or famous author. But, fame is not what Stacy seeks. She prefers to quietly change the world with her words and books that helps charities.

I first met Stacy when she started an anthology to benefit a place in our hometown that we both love: Mounds State Park. We are both Poets of Madison County which happens to be her next book project.

I am honored to feature Stacy as the April Hoosier Author. The timing is perfect because it is National Poetry Month and she is one of the best poets I know! I hope you check out her work and spread the word about Poetry Contests for a Cause!

Kathy G

stacy savage

Stacy Savage with a wolf from Wolf Creek Habitat – a recipient of proceeds from one of her books.

 Q & A with Poet Stacy Savage

When did you start writing poetry?

I started writing poetry in 1999 after my sister passed away. Writing helped take my mind off the pain I was feeling.

Why do you write poetry?

I write poetry because it gives me a voice. I am a quiet person but when I write, I feel like I can really express myself. I feel like I can say so much through my poetry. It also calms me if I have a lot on my mind. Poetry is my outlet, my voice, my pride, my peace of mind, and a path to my soul.

What was your first poem?

My first poem was “From an Eagle’s View” and is my most popular poem to date. It has been used for many venues, including children’s school projects, in children’s yearbooks, on the hood of a race car from the nonprofit organization Racin4wheelchairs, in the Indiana Istep test, in a skydiver’s funeral, in a bald eagle exhibit at a wildlife refuge, and on many websites. It is the only one of my poems that I have memorized.

What is your favorite poem?

I would say my favorite poem is “A Butterfly Through the Storm” because that is the longest poem I have ever written. It is 96 lines and I feel like my voice came out loud and clear in that poem. The poem is not about me but about someone very close to me who was abused by her boyfriend at the time. The poem gives a window to those in abusive relationships and lets them know that they are not alone and they can live a better life if they break free from the person holding them back. I am honored that Kathy is including the poem in her forthcoming book, Break the Cycle Volume III.

Where is your favorite place to write?

My favorite place to write is on my couch at home. When something pops in my head, I grab some paper, sit down and start writing the flow of words wandering through my mind. Sometimes it takes me a while to write a poem and other times I can write one in just a few minutes.

What is the last book you finished reading?

The last book I read was my anthology, “‘Tis the Season: An Anthology of Christmas Poems”, which I published last November.

If you could spend the day with any poet from now or the past who would it be and why?

I would say I would spend the day with my husband, who is a poet. I love him dearly and enjoy spending time with him. I especially love it when he says poems to me that comes from the top of his head and from his heart — that warms mine.

What made you get into writing poetry for charities?

I wanted to give poets another reason to write poetry. Not only are they writing to express themselves, but at the same time, they are helping a good cause with their words. I enjoy writing and reading poetry and I enjoy helping good causes. I thought: Why not tie the two together?

What are the books you have published and the associated charities?

That would take a while so I will just list the last three that are still available for purchase. The other books are no longer in print.

Naturally Yours: Poems and Short Stories about Indiana State Parks and Reservoirs, selected and edited by Stacy Savage and Kathy Chaffin Gerstorff. The book benefits Indiana Natural Resources Foundation’s “Discovering the Outdoors Fund“.

We Are Poetry: An Anthology of Love Poems,  selected and edited by Stacy Savage. The book benefits One Love Foundation.

‘Tis the Season: An Anthology of Christmas Poems, selected and edited by Stacy Savage. The book benefits Operation Gratitude.

What is your next book project?

I am currently working on a book project called “Poets of Madison County”, with Janine Pickett, editor and publisher of Indiana Voice Journal. The book is expected to be published in Summer 2016. The publication will showcase the talented poets who reside, or once resided, in Madison County, Indiana.

Where can we connect with you?

I have a Facebook page, Poetry Contests for a Cause, where I post my calls for submissions and poetry contests.