In spite of the "monkey wrench" I did manage to complete today's pod cast! I hope you enjoy. This is a more personal side of me, not my usual show. There are pictures of authors! Oh and for my grammar buddies, I left one typo for you! The first one to spot it and respond below to me gets a prize.
Monday, March 3, 2014
Monday, February 24, 2014
Book Talk with Ginger Dawn Does Switzerland
Titles of a book are important and equally central for a blog too. It is often the title of the book that captures the reader’s attention. Yet, in life a title is how one can identify or find relation to a particular object. Funny how everyone wants a title. I started this blog out with Ginger Dawn Does Switzerland but I felt it sounded too much like the title of a porn movie. However, it might attract more viewers. Nevertheless, I am no porn star. Cripes! We better change the topic before I get censored. We all remember that Earl Merkel show. Lately, I have been feeling like I live in a fish bowl.
So much pressure and scrutiny for everything that I post, what I write in my book reviews, how much I promote others, how I teach my child, keep a household, and the list goes on. I knew it would be a grand idea to take a break so that is what I did. You might be curious as to what I have been up to. Where I have been? Who was with me? Good lord the questions…
At the beginning of February, I attended the Geneva Writers Convention in Switzerland. Now, I can already hear you. “What? You are going to start writing?” I have been considering this. Yet, I am still learning to feel comfortable with the idea. I guess I should give credit to Alan McCluskey, and D.L. Nelson because they have really been encouraging me to write. So I did. I have. And well why not start off with my first writers conference in Geneva, Switzerland. It was a huge trip for me. First, I was traveling overseas alone, this was something that I have never done before. Second, I left my computer systems engineering husband in charge of home educating our son for five days. Third, I do not speak French.
Sitting next to me was the cutest older French man. I was rather thrilled! I thought this must be a sign of good fortune because he spoke to me in French while we were waiting to board. Can you believe it? I must not look American! I shrugged my shoulders and mumbled what little French I knew and pulled it off rather well. There he is was all snuggled up in several cheap velour blue blankets. Therefore, I just had to share mine and so I handed it to him. He unquestionably made a mistake choosing beef tips over the vegetarian meal that I chose. I gave him my dessert bar in hopes of negating the assuredly unpleasant taste of Filet d’United.
There was a beauty about the French man’s face that reminded me of nature. His cheeks flowed like a river, Lips like mountain cliffs that have been well explored by many a climber. As we each were served a beverage, I focused my attention on the tall man who just ordered Jim Beam on ice. He sat in front of the French man, diagonal to myself and wow did he ever look like a rock star! He was wearing the largest turquoise ring that I have ever seen and reading, How the Irish saved Civilization by Thomas Cahill. He leaned forward, looking rather tired with his chin jutted to the right. When he yawned, he would brush his long fingers softly over his beard. He was obviously thinking. But what was so amazing about him was his long, slender fingers and the strength of his hands which seemed to hold a wisdom of time etched by memories. Well educated with his posturing, he held his book with his left hand and turned the pages with his right as if conducting a symphony orchestra.
I must admit that it took me forever to figure out how to turn on the damn light. The first switch I tried created a metal cascade of blinds that covered the windows. Then the light by the restroom door turned on the towel warmer. Not to mention that some switches set off the hair dryer and the French even have a switch to turn on the power outlet.
|Never leave home without a miracle in a box!|
|And he made me snails! This time I didn't even cry!|
Sunday, February 23, 2014
Today there seems to be so much advice on social media that one can just type “Help” and about 2,490,000,000 results will pop on your computer screen in 0.64 seconds.
I have always been an altruistic person, the girl that could be depended on, and sure, I can drop what I am doing for you but offering help leads to suspicion.
HELP ME SPOCK!!!
Yet, in the selfish world of "me first" one cannot do everything. It is not so much about priorities but what is one’s purpose or matter.
"Father, what is my purpose?"
So now go to that Google search button…
Yes, "finding purpose" has about 363,000,000 results in 0.51 seconds. Now that is a great place to stop and ponder.
Wednesday, January 22, 2014
Under the Apple Boughs
By Peter Maughan
In a series of seasonal vignettes, Peter Maughan has crafted a pleasurable read that has been highly anticipated and reviewed by many. I received a review copy from the author with much excitement. Having purchased Peter Maughan's novel, The Cuckoos of Batch Magna which I gave my highest recommendation a few years ago, I was eager to begin this new novel. Under the Apple Boughs is rich in sensory details, lush imageries, and carries the reader away into the countryside.
|Visit Peter Maughan's Amazon Page|
The setting offers the reader a variety of settings within the West border area of England and Wales. From the kitchen of George Perry, Bedroom of Miss Holsworth, to the local Inn, the reader will not find the stories lagging or slow in pace. Peter Maughan uses several themes from the didactic, social, and escapist with a purpose of entertaining. The author uses aesthetic and emotional qualities in his writing. For example the author uses this talent as a basis with the tone of the hunting trip as, "Powder from the hazel catkins by the stream blew in a breeze and the alder trees, that in summer shaded a bridge built by monks, were bruised with purple flowering, and yellow points of the primrose were a small bright find among the winter drabness."
I further enjoyed the meditative repetition of words that Peter Maughan used when describing the "percussion of death had beat the air, as barrel after barrel was emptied into the flocks of woodpigeons" and at the end of the day, "the evening star fluttered above the valley, fluttered and then held, and the rapid call of the woodpecker reached out across the wood like a question." There is no question that the author is a master of lyrical style, yet do not be fooled as Maughan expresses an elegiac tale of his beloved Bill Sikes. This not only keeps the reader engaged but offers a different story with each short.
|Peter Maughan an ex-actor, fringe theater director,script writer, married, and living in the Welsh Marches.|
My favorite short was, Passage to Spring. From the descriptions and word choice such as the cocooned and near death stir of the earth's pulse strengthened as the first colors cut into the land like small healing wounds left me breathless. Additionally, I felt as if I were walking and capturing all the sights, sounds and tastes in a rhythm of poetic syntax. I also greatly enjoyed the short story titled, Village Wedding. With rich twists of emotional wedding day festivities and experiences, the guest, bride, and groom are the center of the plot with climatic rise and fall. The author teases the reader with a bit of foreshadowing as he earlier states, "putting aside for that moment what is, or was, or might be, and allowing only what should be."
|Visit Amazon.com to purchase your copy today!|
I had difficulty with rating, Under the Apple Boughs. I did not find it as the same quality as the author's previous work, The Cuckoo of Batch Magna partly due to the difference in novel verses short story format. This is more of a personal preference than that reflecting the authors work. However, I do highly recommend this book. I especially feel that readers aged 30 and older would be more drawn to Under the Apple Boughs. These stories can be easily read over and adapted into monologue for an afternoon tea. Make sure you visit the links provided and pick up your copy today!