Wednesday, February 29, 2012

See Who is Featured in Healthy Women Today!

Today I am featured in Healthy Women.  What an honor.   I wish to thank Carol L. Doyel who is the Editor-in-Chief, and
Marcia Mangum Cronin, Managing Editor for this privilege of being their guest.  I have written articles for them in the past, and I appreciate this support for my book: Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts.  
Bladder Cancer Survivor Publishes Book
There have been so many people who have played a role in the creation of this book.  Carol is only one of the many, many people who have supported me in telling my story. The people who have read it, have said that it is a book that everyone should read.  I did not do anything heroic; I just had the guts to tell about the rough spots in my life that began as a child.  It is not a book that is in anyway trying to be a “scholarly” work of non-fiction, but just my voice sharing with you my life experiences and how I coped with them.  It, also, share the highlights as well as some funny moments.  My greatest hope is that those who read the book will give them insight into understanding that each of us has the strength to that regardless of the situation they can survive these obstacles that life throws in their road.  It does not matter if they are victims of child abuse, marital abuse, disease, or the death of a loved one, with faith in themselves and pure determination to overcome, they can survive. 
Learning to develop backbone is as vital as learning to laugh at your foibles when you would rather cry or hide.  It is important that we never give up on our dreams because we never know when the opportunity may arise to make them come true.  I don’t want to sound as if I am lecturing; I am merely sharing what I have learned along life’s highway.  Regardless of what others may think, each of us is special in our own way and we have no idea of our capabilities until we try and sometimes keep on trying.  If my life had been easy, it would not have been as rich and I would not have had the chance to develop the strength I needed to survive it all. 
If you would like to purchase a copy of the book, the link on Amazon is:

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Announcing the Birth of Traveling a Rocky Road With Love, Faith and Guts!

I just found out that my book, Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts, is now available on line at Amazon.  Wow!  I have had requests from several people to let them know when and where they can buy the book.  It won't be showing up on my Author Central Page for a few days, but it is online.  Here is the link if you want to go ahead and purchase a copy. 

I will still be updating on what happens next.  If any of you know or have a book store anywhere within 5 or 6 hours of Georgia that may want to host me for a book signing, please let me know!  Thank you all for your support.  Don't forget that I do not keep a penny of the money earned on any of my books, I give it all to the American Bladder Cancer Society. 

There are a lot of things to do, stay tuned, I will keep you updated.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Book Launch for Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts in Full Preparation Mode

I have been a busy lady.  The book will be available on Amazon sometime next week, other channels later on.  I guess all of that takes time, but not the time is growing near, I am scrambling to get ready for the launch.  I have a press release ready, and will soon have another professional review. 

It is getting more difficult to find bookstores any more other than Barnes & Noble.  I saw today where one that is downtown Atlanta closed their doors today.  It is sad. 

I am going to have an author reception/presentation and book signing at the Elks Lodge here in Augusta, on March 24th.  I have been working on my invitations and poster for that event.  I have put together a power point presentation and recorded a sound file to possibly use for a video.  I have been working on a mailing list for invitations.  If you live close enough and want to come, just drop me an email, or post in the comment section so I know how many goodies to buy.

In addition to all of that, I haven't forgotten about passing it on to others in the field.  I set-up and scheduled a few interview posts for my other blog.  I still have a lot to do before the day is over.  My youngest son will be flying in tomorrow for a couple of days, and I want to spend time with him. 

Whew!  It has been a day, a week and a couple of months!  When writing, getting a book ready for publishing, promoting and finally preparation for its launch is somewhat like riding a roller coaster, but who would miss out on the experience...especially when it is all for such a good cause. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

A News Update on the Birth of Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts

I am happy to announce that Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts will be available within five to seven days on Amazon. It will also be available soon to bookstores and other online channels very soon. 

For those of you who are new visitors, and to my wonderful followers I want to say thank you for your support.  I decided on this blog entry to take a look back on the journey and bring the journey up-to-date.  I have been given an additional opportunity to advance on my quest to make bladder cancer a common word rather than one that is unheard and/or unknown. 

As I have traveled along life’s highway, I keep running into people who have let the rocks that have been thrown in their life’s road giving up on themselves, or life in general. The truth is that life is harsh, and it is not like the movies that give a false impression that it is smooth sailing. Being the hero who toughs it out and keeps on regardless of the situation is difficult, but with faith, a few guts, and the ability to laugh, it can be accomplished. It often takes a backbone, humor and a wishbone to survive it all.

Because of life’s journey can get very rough at times, I decided to write a book to share my life’s experiences so that it may inspire someone to come back fighting when life knocks them down. The book is a journey though time from childhood to mature adulthood. The stories and poems in this book reflect the lows and highs of life. The loving memories, the hardships and the things we learn as we travel the road of life. It covers an abusive mother who had mental problems because of being abused as a child, childhood polio, a rocky marriage with a husband who was often abusive, the role of caregiving, death and grief, coping with bladder cancer, asthma, losing a home and more. Therefore, to not to scare you off with gloom and doom, there are funny stories along the way and an ending that I never dreamed would happen.  The reaction of the first person other than Dr. Kay who read the book was, “I just read your manuscript of the book. “Wow!”  What higher compliment could an author get on anything she/he had written.

My hope is that the book will bring about understanding to others, and be inspiring to even more. Our journey in life has a purpose, finding it is often the most difficult task of all.

I have been so fortunate to have the guardian angels in my life. They have always been there in my darkest hour, and when I needed one the most. They have walked beside me, helped me to maintain faith and belief in myself as well as in others. I have learned that giving is much more rewarding than receiving.

My life reminds me of Robert Frost’s poem, The Road Not Taken, in the line: “Two roads diverged into a wood, and I took the one less traveled, and that has made all the difference.” I will always remember what my elementary teacher wrote in my scrapbook, “Laugh and the world laughs with you, cry and you cry alone.” This book is not about crying, it is about getting knocked down by boulders, and standing back up in spite of them to go forward.  It’s about facing your fears and laughing at

Dr. Aman Kay, who is an internationally published author, has been helping me with this book by reviewing it. He is the one who is responsible for my poetry that has been sprinkled throughout the book. This poetry has all been published either in my book, Pulse Points of a Woman’s World, or in various literary magazines. It is poetry that is written from the heart and soul, and was the only way I could express my feelings. I once had an instructor who asked me to explain poetry. I told him that it was much the same as an artist who paints what he or she sees and feels. The difference is that the poet uses words to paint the minds pictures rather than oil paints, watercolor or some other medium.

When I began a draft for the book, I crossed my fingers and asked Dr. Kay if he would mind reading it to see if I was spinning my wheels, or should I write the book.  He encouraged me to complete it.  Now that it is finished, his review of the book is:
“Taking the rocky road with Sylvia is a joyful challenge.  It takes the reader through the most common and uncommon hardships, but at the conclusion of this delightful journey, the reader feels more joy and satisfaction: Love, faith, and incredible guts turn the rocky road into an assuring path that all of us so humanly desire.  This book is so uniquely universal in every essential aspect that I enthusiastically recommend it to all readers regardless of their age, gender, and race.” ~ Dr. Aman B. Kay
Some wonderful things have happened on this journey.  I have met new friends who have supported me in this venture.  I owe a lot to them.  One of these friends is Julie Weishaar and she has volunteered to help me with marketing.  We discovered that we have a lot in common.  Her mother is a bladder cancer survivor.  The other person is Christy who is a freelance writer, and has a blog on poetry called the Poetic Parfait.  She is a cancer survivor as well.  One of the instructors at the college where I work came to me yesterday, and she wants to have a launch party for my book when it is released.  Healthy Women is going to publish a follow-up article on my book release.  So many other people are re-tweeting my blog and supporting me and my quest in many other ways.  The next thing I found out was that I had been nominated and selected for Today's Honoree.  I can never thank you all enough for your support and help. 

Where the next part of my journey will lead, I do not know, but stay tuned for updates.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Nominated and Selected as Today's Honoree! Wow, What an Honor! A Win for Bladder Cancer!

I was amazed and delighted that I was nominated and selected as a Today's Honoree.  I am always delighted when someone helps spread the word about bladder cancer, or does something that helps their fellowman/woman.  What a wonderful thing to happen.  I hope all of you who read this visit, or at least find out what the risks and symptoms of bladder cancer are at the American Bladder Cancer Society at  A big thank you to the person who nominated me! 

My friend Dr. Aman Kay and I proofed the new book and I had to make a couple of changes on my book, Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts.  However, I think it will be very soon and the book will be available.  I have to follow-up on my launching plans, and schedule some booksignings. Once I get a copy of my book, I have a review lined-up.  I have ordered bookmarks to give away, and I have business cards.  Any suggestions on what else I should do besides work on my online marketing. 

I just completed the questionnaire for an interview on my children's book, Merchild Land.  I will let you know when that will be available.

This waiting and anticipation is not a comfortable place for me.  My hands are tied in many ways.  All I can do, is to look for ways to promote bladder cancer and the books so the sales will help out with the quest that it is no longer underserved and unknown.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Nominated and Selected as Today's Honoree! Wow, What an Honor! A Win for Bladder Cancer!

I was amazed and delighted that I was nominated and selected as a Today's Honoree.  I am always delighted when someone helps spread the word about bladder cancer, or does something that helps their fellowman/woman.  What a wonderful thing to happen.  I hope all of you who read this visit, or at least find out what the risks and symptoms of bladder cancer are at the American Bladder Cancer Society at

I had to make a couple of changes on the proof copy.  However, I think it will be very soon that the book will be available.  I have to follow up on my launching plans, and schedule some booksignings. Once I get a copy of my book, I have a review lined-up.  I have ordered bookmarks to give away, and I have business cards.  Any suggestions on what else I should do besides work on my online marketing. 

I just completed the questionaire for an interview on my children's book, Merchild Land.  I will let you know when that will be available.

This waiting and anticipation is not a comfortable place for me.  My hands are tied in many ways.  All I can do, is to look for ways to promote bladder cancer and the books.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Others Who Have Traveled the Rocky Road of Bladder Cancer

Here is why I want to help others, the victims of an underserved cancer in spite of its prevalence for being ranked #5 in the United States. 

In 2012, about 56,000 men and 18,000 women will be diagnosed with bladder cancer in the United States. There are approximately 600,000 survivors of this cancer in the United States.  There should be more, and could be if it was diagnosed early enough. 

You may think that you do not know anyone who has had bladder cancer.  Let us see if you know any of these people:

·       Frank Sinatra

·       Telly Savalas

·        Dominick Donne

·        Andy Williams

·        Jack Lemmon

·        Herbert Humphrey

·        Ray Bolger

·        Mary Lou Williams

·        Ronald Edward Santo

·        Aaron Russo

·        Allen Ludden

·        George Tobias

·        William Rosenberg

·        Jimmy Martin

·        Nick Charles

·        Bob Schieffer

·        Patti Hansen

·       Eric McCormack's mother

·       Tommy Newsom.

 Do you know of more?

There are definite risk factors for developing bladder cancer.  There are even occupations that are high-risk for this cancer.  Learn more about these on the American Bladder Cancer's Website at: 

If you do not buy my book, if you do not donate directly...pass this on your facebook, tweet it, whatever site and wherever you interact with others. please share this information, post a link to the blog or to the ABLCS' webpage.  You never know who you may help...and please become informed yourself.

My sites:
Original webpage:

My blogs: 
Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith, and Guts,

Thoughtful Reflections Blogspot

My Amazon Author Central Page:

Friday, February 10, 2012

The Highs and Lows of the Rocky Road and Hanging on With Love, Faith and Guts

The paperback proof has arrived! This weekend will be spent going over it carefully looking for any errors.  The final look before it goes to press.  There are so many things yet to do and so little time.  The brain is in a foggy whirl and writing at this point is difficult to find the words.  I have planned, but there is so much yet to do.  This book and the others are of more importance to others than to me.  Who knows, it may even save a few if they read the book. 

Right now it is difficult to write for more reasons than the book.  One of my very dear friends is going through what I did with my first husband.  Another young person I know is facing so many hardships right now, and I cannot do anything but stand by and be there if they need me.

In both situations I feel empathy, but useless.  I am a doer and a fixer...I can do none of, I wait until I can.

The Silent Muse

Silence surrounds the muse

    like the murky veil

    on a smoke-stained rose

   that enfolds a city’s dawn

   as the elegant words

   of pomp and circumstance

   are as voiceless

   as the cry of a city’s neon lights.

In agony, he craves respite

    from the tyranny  of a need 

   that makes him a wanton, helpless pawn

   that lures him tauntingly

   like a siren lures a ship

   toward the hidden craggy rocks

   on cold, rainy, foggy, nights.

Thus, taunts this siren

   tricking the mind

   with ghostly strains

   of lilting rhyme

   to entice the muse,

   causing the need to be stirred

   when the mind’s curtain is drawn

    to suffer silent, voiceless nights.

© Sylvia L. Ramsey 2005

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts, Another Update!

Recently, some new information about my bladder cancer was revealed.  I had always tried to find out why I had bladder cancer and no one on my side of the family that I knew of ever had any kind of cancer.  Well, that is a story in itself.  A few years ago, I receive a phone call from a lady who said she had been trying to find me.  At first, I thought that was very odd.  At least that was my first thought until she told me that we shared the same great-grandfather on my mother’s paternal side of the family.  She went on to tell me that her grandfather and my grandfather were brothers…more information!  I soon learned that there were a number of relatives that lived in another state.  Wow!  For a lot of people, that may not be too exciting, but for me it was. 
This past weekend, I called her to keep in touch and to get an update on everyone.  I was surprised to hear that her brother has bladder cancer.  She knew about my bladder cancer, so she decided to DNA test to see if she had the genetic marker for bladder cancer.  The results were positive, and she does have the gene strand.  Once I got off the telephone with her, I called my children to make them aware that they may also have the marker.  What I have learned that this gene strand was very possibly passed down from our great-grandfather.  How much farther back than him this gene strand may go we will never know because of what was known about cancer during his lifetime and earlier.  However, learning this information may prove to be vital to our children.  Being aware of the possibility is important, and if they choose they can have a DNA test just to be sure.
The birthing of the new book is almost here, and I wait with anxious anticipation.  I have been working on pages to add to my blog to prepare for its launch.  I have some scheduled interviews coming up, working on a booksigning tour, and a media kit.  I working on updates on my Author’s Den webpage, and I am out of the dark ages (I think!) because I now have Skype.  I haven’t quite worked out all the ways to use it, but I will…remember…I am persistent…and I persevere.  I will conquer Skype!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Getting Ready for the Book Launch of Traveling a Rocky Road, with Love, Faith and Guts

I have been busy getting ready for the launching of the book, Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts.  It looks as if it will be around the end of February.  There is so much to do before it is actually released.  I have been working on a Media Kit, and working on a page on this blog for that.  I have been reaching out to fellow authors for an interview.  I have been finding new release sites, media outlets, and whatever I can find to help this book sell and help the American Bladder Cancer Society.  I have a couple of interviews lined up, and I am looking for more.  If any of my readers are bloggers, and would like to post one on your site, please contact me. 

I did have one of my love poems posted on a website today. If you are interested in checking it out and making a comment, please do so.  It is located at: It dawned on me that the book of poetry would make a perfect gift for Valentine's Day.  You can hear me read some of the poems from the section in this book, Pulse Points of a Woman's World on my Authors Den site.  

All of the sales from any of my books is given the American Bladder Cancer Society.  So, any book you purchase is going to help others, and maybe even informing yourself. 
I am getting plenty of comments from the poetry posted on Poetic Parfait.  There has been comments on Romantic Ideas as well.  I am waiting to find out about three more interviews.
If you want to help out, simply copy paste the link to this blog, and send it to friends, or post it on your Facebook page.

The video link for the book is: 

Click on book cover to go to video
Or, click here:

Stay tuned for more updates, and check out my other posts for more information on the books and me!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Navigating a Few Pebbles in the Road, but Getting Some Sunshine Rays along the Way

Interesting things keep popping up as I travel this journey.  I was contacted by a very nice young woman who found my poem, "A Tired Vagabond", and asked if she could share it on her blog.  I was very flattered that she had found it and liked it enough to wish to share it with others.  Christy ask if she could put the poem on her blog, Poetic Parfait.  I felt very honored that she had found my poem which is also in this book as well as in the Pulse Points of a Woman's World book.  Christy is in British Columbia and has quite a following. 

I have had more invitations to interview on blogs.  It is nice to know that fellow authors reach out to help each other.  Sometimes one can get so caught up in their personal goals that they fail to reach out to their fellowman. 
 Sometime ago, I wrote a blog series on bladder cancer and women.  Today, I wrote to  thank the managing editor of Healthy Women, Marcia Mangum Cronin, to thank her for allowing me to blog about bladder cancer and women.  It was that blog series that re-kindled the urge to write the book, Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts.  I heard back from her and could not believe that she was gracious enough to write a follow-up on my story and how it has led to writing of this book.  I will keep you posted on when the article is online.

BTW, I am enlisting my husband Tom to be my secretary to help me with all the emails coming in on the book.  :)  I am overwhelmed by all the responses.  It is wonderful, maybe my dream to create awareness of bladder cancer and inspire others will all come true.

There are more updates on the way.  Stay tuned!!!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Exciting Day along the Rocky Road! Just have to Share!

This entire trip of sharing my story has been exciting, but I think today was one of the most exciting of all. I am still in a state of shock over what all took place.  If you read my bio, you know that I am a coordinator for an academic resource center.  That is a place that provides a variety of services for our college students such as library/research resources, tutoring, orientations for classes and a study area.  We have a company that provides printer kiosks which is WEPA™.  I have been interacting with one of their staff members, and I was apologizing because I had forgotten to email him back with some information.  I explained that I had been on the telephone with the publisher and Julie Weishaar, and with the publisher because of the book release coming up soon.   
On a whim, I put in the link to the book trailer.  It wasn’t long before I received an email back from him wanting to know more about the book.  I replied with a description of the book and about the book the book sales going to the American Bladder Cancer Society.  The next thing I knew, there was a reply from him saying that he “talked with Frank our CEO and we would be interested in helping you out with promoting your book.  We could run an add on all of the kiosks at GMC (screen saver).  Do you have a digital picture of the front of the book or all of the books?  I think that it is great what you are doing for ABLCS!  Please let me know if we can help in any other way.”  I was overwhelmed by that wonderful gesture.
Later that day, I received a request from Patricia Kubus to write a “blurb” for the back cover of her soon to be released book that is the last in her Amanda Series.  I really didn’t know what to say.  Again, I was overwhelmed.  I wanted to do it because she also donates to a foundation that is for a very good cause.  Finally, I put together something that I thought may relate to her book and the reason she wrote it.  The funny thing about this is that after she sent it to her editor/publisher, the person wrote back with this request, “Before I do that though, I would need to know who the quote at the beginning is by (starting with “The truth is that life is harsh…”) If those words belong to someone, it’s important that we cite that person.” I had a good laugh over that because it was part of the “blurb” I had written for her and I thought I had set it up so that was very clear.  However, I took it as quite a compliment as well. 

That wasn’t the end of the wonderful surprises.  Later, I found out that Julie had nominated me for Todays Honoree at  I blush when I think of all the wonderful things she said about me, and I wonder if I know the person she described. 

I am getting emails from people telling me they love the book trailer, and the fact that I give the money from the book sales to the American Bladder Cancer society.  Emails are coming in to tell me to let them know when the book is available for purchase. 

I do believe this has been one of the best days of my life…except that is, for the day I married Tom.  

Stay tuned for updates!