New Series – Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Book Reading and Interview


Sally opens her doors once again to authors everywhere. Don’t miss this fantastic opportunity!

Smorgasbord - Variety is the spice of life

Sally's Cafe and Bookstore At the beginning of the year I said that I was going to focus the author promotions in 2017 around Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore.. which you will note has had a bit of a refurb.. this is my new library that we created in a previously closed up corridor on the ground floor of the house.. We have book cases in various places around our home but these shelves hold my most precious possessions.. such as my entire collection of Wilbur Smith that I have accumulated since the age of eleven, and many of my non-fiction buys over the years. They also hold some of the first books that I read such as Black Beauty and Little Women as well as my favourite authors from the last 50 years.

You will just have to imagine that they are in my virtual Cafe and Bookstore…along with all the wonderful 135  authors…

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REMINDER – If you are already in my #Blog #Authors Hall of Fame…


Such a generous gift from our dear friend, Chris.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

This Authors Platform also intended to help you remind people that you and your books still exist…

SO…

Once you haveappeared as a Guest Author, you can submit further articles about any subject you’d like to share, providing they’re Family Friendly.

There is no restriction to how often you make further such appearances, once per month is a recommended minimum, but not mandatory.

Why do I recommend that authors who have already been guests, send me further articles about topics they’d like to share, or “HowTo’ informative articles?

It helps keep them (and subsequently, their works) in the public mind and eye, especially if they have them posted regularly, e.g., once per month.

It gives authors the opportunity to prove and demonstrate their writing talents are not just limited to the books and stories they’ve already written.

It’s much more effective than constant spam-like “Buy My’ campaigns…

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#Read about Guest Pre-Published #Author Aurora Jean Alexander


New author Aurora Jean Alexander is interviewed by Chris, The Story Reading Ape! Terrific interview! And, she has a debut novel too! 🙂

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

Aurora Jean Alexander LogoWho am I?

Hello,

I am Aurora Jean Alexander, a romance short story author, and poet. Right now I am working on my debut novel. When I’m not writing or at work, I’m into sports like traveling, extreme reading or going for long romantic walks.

Important keystones in my life are the support of my boyfriend and the affection of our four cats.

I have an extended bio on my Website, and I’d be happy to welcome you there anytime.

What does writing mean to me?

I started reading at a very young age. In many ways reading wonderful and mysterious stories was something to tickle and develop my fantasy. One day I read a book I never forgot. That day I felt the need to write stories. I wanted to create people, tell their stories, and build worlds and adventures. I one day wanted to write a book telling…

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Sunday Lunch Invitation – Anniversary Celebration and a cover reveal.


Congratulations are in order for our dear friend Sally over at Smorgasbord-Variety is the spice of life…for many reasons. So many reasons to discover them! 🙂

Smorgasbord - Variety is the spice of life

sunday lunch logo

A little change from the usual format since I am back and forth to the kitchen this morning. Today is our 35th wedding anniversary and instead of just inviting one or two of the amazing people I have got to know here in blog world; you are all invited.

I do not take the opportunity nearly enough, to thank the one very special person in my life who supports me in everything that I do and have accomplished. So today is the turn of definitely my ‘better half’ in the spotlight. My husband David.

First; what we will be eating in approximately 45 minutes.

roast lamb

On the menu is slow cooked leg of lamb that will be finished off in the oven to get some crispy skin – Potato bravas which is sauteed potatoes here in Spain – Brussel Sprouts – Carrots and rich gravy. For dessert some very special Turron…

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Sunday Lunch Invitation – Claire Fullerton, Kim Gosselin and Alisa Belzil


As a special guest of Sally’s, it was a dining pleasure to top them all!

Smorgasbord - Variety is the spice of life

sunday lunch logo

Sunday Lunch today is going to be a wonderful riot of Southern hospitality, a table laden with great food contributed by the guests and talk of babies, family history and life experiences.

Faced with such three amazingly talented women it is tough to know who to feature first so I am going to go with the menu. I hope that you enjoy the company and the food and that you might consider inviting yourself to lunch. All you need is to bring yourself and a virtual guest who has inspired you and one of the courses. I will do the rest.

Time to meet my stunningly talented guests. Claire Fullerton, Kim Gosselin and Alisa Belzil.

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Claire Fullerton is author of Dancing to an Irish Reel which has received some terrific reviews this year; such as this one.

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We’re treated to the very best of the genre By JML on June…

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The Book of Life


The book of life never truly ends until your last breath has been taken.  Until that moment, keep writing, add new chapters to create paper pages never-ending while leaving your leather cover open to imagination.”

Kim Gosselin

Book Imagination Fannie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*photo courtesy of http://www.sodahead.com/fun/if-books-transported-you-to-their-world-which-book-would-you-open/question-4409215/

Introducing Honey Bear


I’d hop the boat myself if Red Bear and Honey Bear would let me climb aboard. A soon-to-be-treat picture book for all of my grand-babies.

Red Bear has a new friend. Her name is “Honey Bear” and she will soon be joining him on his next adventure sailing the high seas. Stay tuned for more. In the meantime, enjoy this sweet, cute video promotion featuring both Red Bear and Honey Bear in “The Misadventures of Red Bear: Sail Away With Me My Honey Bear” Music courtesy of Enya “Orinoco Flow” from her very first album. Enjoy the video.

sail away with me honey bear

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Old and Newness


Life.  Here today, gone tomorrow.  How fast it flies before our eyes.  No more has this picture reel of reality flashed before my own than in the last couple of days that I’ve helped to care for my grand-baby twins.

They are two months old now and have finally grown to new-born size.  Bundles of innocence swaddled in blankets of gauze.   Flannel sleepers printed in dancing rainbow elephants.  Buttons, zippers and covered snaps of Downey soft against the delicacies of skin gently massaged in baby lotion hinted in shades of pink.  Oh what a scent so sweet!  Hundreds of kisses skip over growing curls of silken black hair on otherwise bald heads.  Too many invisible prints of lips to count.  Never enough for “Grandma.”

Yesterday, while changing the ‘younger’ of the two girls, we had a private conversation.  Staring back at blue-green eyes contented, there was no doubt she recognized my voice.  Normally she isn’t too fond of being naked, even for a short minute.  But, this time she looked at me wide-eyed, as if in amazement.  “What are you saying to me, Grandma,” she wondered?

While covering her in cotton, stories were whispered about Mommy, Daddy and her precious sisters.  I reminded her of the love they shared together, and how one day they would open a chubby fist in order for her to grasp a golden string.   Someday not so far away she would pull a magic wooden moon of painted yellow to float future dreams on four wheels a wobbling.

Spring was coming soon so I traced word pictures on her tummy, creating stroller walks we’d take while rays of sun soaked the curve of our backs.   With wheels bumping over gravel, God would warm our fronts for us to view wildflowers along a path in surprise colors she had never seen before.  E.V.E.R.  Can you imagine that?

Slipping a tiny curled fist through a soft cotton sleeve, the last of two bent legs stuffed into the bottom of a ‘dragons’ foot.  It was an emerald-green grinning face together with grey felt claws hanging from side to side.  Zipping her up, I wound the music on her party-colored mobile of merry-go-round animals to simply gaze at her.  She grasped my finger, holding on tight.  My heart spilled over while drinking her in.

This littlest grand-baby of mine listened to melodies of music while turning her head to and fro to the sound of them.  And, then she stopped to stare straight through me.  Kicking her ‘dragon claws’ in wild delight, she struggled to make first sounds while opening a rosebud mouth.  Smiling at me, yes truly smiling at me, her lips arched upward singing her first “Coo” to the tune of the music.

Life.  Here today, gone tomorrow.  The lives of my little grand-babies are just beginning while mine is….well, on the other side of theirs.  The love I have for all five of them pushes me with renewed inspiration to share with all the world.

Not quite ready to call it a day…or a month…or even a year.  Right here, right now, I see myself writing forever in this cozy office space within the comfort of old and new books surrounding me.  I must remember that inspiration is a newness forever in my mind, never to grow old or disappear.

 

 

 

 

Gifts of Books


Children.  So innocent all around.  Their bodies, minds and spirits flow as rivers to a sea of undiscovered imaginations.

Perhaps it was the snow that triggered this memory from long ago, or maybe it was rushing to grab a cup of coffee before I was out the door.  Years ago, when my youngest son attended kindergarten I still owned a small publishing company producing children’s books targeted to schools.

Once a week, in the afternoon, I stopped by his classroom to help a chosen student write and ‘publish’ a book.  For me, it was a magical time, minutes turning into an hour to strike a rare friendship with a five or six-year-old never met or known before.  Before long, I would get a peek at their inner soul.  Often giggles were shared.  Sometimes tears were shed.

The topic of the book was completely left to the budding author.  Once out of the safety of the classroom, an angelic girl dressed in the latest fashion might begin to fidget in her chair.  Or a boy, warm in a checkered flannel shirt stuffed into jeans would tap his pencil over and over and over again. “What should we write about today?”

We talked about things in ‘their’ world.  Life at home, school and fun stuff like sports, hobbies, collections, pets and family vacations.  Some kids didn’t have the traditional family.  Their parents were divorced or they lived with blended families or sometimes with a grandparent.  I explained how all of these were families too.  I never pried, only listened to what they were willing to tell me.  Most often, what they told me turned into words which made their own unique story.  For the first time, they became real ‘writers’ on those days.

There is one little boy who wrote and illustrated a story I shall never forget.  As soon we pulled our wooden chairs out from the Formica table that winter afternoon he knew what he wanted to write about.  I listened quietly as he began to tell me the story of his loving grandpa.  I got out the pencils and colored markers, the paper and tubes of glitter while he recited his tale.  With each turn of the page, more words were written.  It was not my job to correct spelling or grammar.  This would soon be a book authored by a kindergartner, in all its finished glory.

The little guy with blonde shaggy hair who was dressed in overalls wrote of how his grandpa took him fishing near a fast blue river.  Together, they liked to ride ponies and play cowboys in the woods.  His grandpa liked to lick vanilla ice cream cones on a hill behind his house.  He smoked cigars but never in the house.  His grandpa made funny jokes, tickled him until he giggled and wore scruffy whiskers on his face.  He was his best friend in the whole United States.

“Oh, how lucky you are to have such a fun grandpa.  You must love him very much.”  I remember saying, or something to that effect.  I checked my watch.  Our hour was nearing its end.  Time to staple the cover, add the T.I.T.L.E. together with the proud Author’s name.

“Wait, I’ve got one more picture to draw,” my new friend plaintively said.

I sat watching this endearing little guy who had tremendous love for his grandfather.  Not only did I hear and see it in his words, I felt it from his soul.  He picked up crayons and markers to draw lines in different colors, connecting one to the other.  A long box began to take shape.  Next, a floor lamp appeared at one end of the box.  “What would this be,” I wondered?   The little boy was very quiet…pensive even.

Within seconds I could see.  On a lined paper page, a portrait of a beloved grandpa took shape, laying in a box.  It was a child-like depiction of a casket.  “Grandpa,” I learned through tears and tissues, had recently passed away.  He was very much on this precious child’s mind.  This is what he wanted to write about.  This was going to be his first published book.

All of the children’s stories that year were special.  They were theirs alone, ‘published’ into books right before their eyes.  I still remember each time the last staple clamped down on colorful construction paper covers.  Light shined through on faces of proud innocence as if to say, “I did this!  I wrote and published a book!”

The tangible book is gift to be treasured forever.  Bound pages of paper to hold in the two of your hands.  Run your tips of fingers over printed words while dreaming of the unimaginable.  Oh, what a gift…..

senior-pag-grandpa-walking-with-grandson