22 January 2014

The Purpose Beneath the Story

The goal of a writer is tell a good tale. One in which the reader is drawn in, the cares of the real world drop away, and they connect the people and places on the page. At times a writer will have a deeper purpose to the story they are telling. This undercurrent is usually related to a passion or deep interest the writer has in an issue. 

In Night on Moon Hill by Tanya Parker Mills the reader meets characters with Asperger’s and obsessive compulsive disorder. By the end the reader is rewarded with not just a well written, moving story, but with a deeper of understanding of what it could be like to live, to thrive, in spite of these disorders. 

With  Dancing on Broken Glass Ka Hancock has us crying and laughing and triumphing with Mickey, man who is bi-polar.

Ali Cross, aside from telling a gripping story weaving together Norse myths with modern day in her Desolation series, shows the reader that it is possible to find forgiveness for seemingly unforgivable acts, that everyone is deserving of love and most especially one should love themselves and extend the same mercy they give others to themselves. 

Sarah Eden in her proper romance, Longing for Home, draws the reader into Wyoming Territory in the 1870s with a rich cast of characters while bringing to light the discrimination and violence the Irish faced both in Ireland and America.  

In my series of books, starting with Stars Bright, the reader will find gentle undertones of environmental issues, from the importance of sustainable farming methods, to urban gardening especially in impoverished areas along with the importance of bee keeping. One story even takes the reader on a wild adventure in Brazil while at the same time highlighting environmental concerns that affect the indigenous peoples in the Amazon.  

I enjoy stories that go beyond the telling of a good tale. I love to learn something new, or see an issue I thought I understood from a different light.

What are some books you have enjoyed that take the story one step deeper and seek to make a difference in the world? 

18 January 2014

18 January 2014 Photo Diary

At 4:15 a.m. NAW’s alarm went off. I felt cheated as according to my calculations we should be able to sleep until 4:45 and make it on time.

08 January 2014

Yummy Winter Foods

As a writer I spend a lot of time sitting (still haven't gotten that treadmill desk- I have used the treadmill at the gym a few times and it makes me dizzy, not sure how a treadmill desk would work for me- bummer, but anyway...) I spend a lot of time sitting so to balance that I try to eat healthy. I drink plenty of good liquids, mostly filtered water or herbal tea because there is to much sugar in juices and to many chemicals in the no calorie flavored drinks.

Here are a two of my favorites this winter:

06 January 2014


My mom sent me this photo taken at a family gathering in a small mountain village in northern Italy. Cousins. Years ago a met a few of them. If I showed up and announced who I was, who I belonged to, I’d be welcomed with open arms, fed, housed and fed some more. And I’m not even related by blood. My step-dad is related to these people, I'm not sure how, the family lines get murky so cousins covers it.

Around the table are a few of my kids (dark hair) and my three half siblings (light hair). The last time we were together was two years ago for our father’s funeral. We recently gathered together with their mom and her new husband.  My oldest half sibling is the same age as my youngest child. Technically they are aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews.  The kids get confused especially the seven year old “uncle” to the twenty-five year old “niece”.  Cousins fits better. A less completed way to explain the connection.

Here is my some of my family with my mother-in-law’s cousin’s child and her husband and their children. Something like my husband’s second cousin once removed. Not sure what my kids would call her kids. We opt for cousins. We get together as often as we can. This is so much easier to do now that we both live in the same state.

On paper the blood relationship my family has with each of these people is thin to non-existent. In the heart the feelings run thick. And for me causes my breath to catch and tears to form when I think of how many people I get to love. I see beautiful golden threads linking between all of us, entwining us and holding us close throughout this generation, the generation gone before, and the generations yet to be. 

What special "heart connections" do you have? People you think of as family though the genetic connection might be thin.