Category Archives: Genre

Having a tracheal tube never stopped her…

Recently, I presented at the Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library, Topeka, Kansas, on Clementine Paddleford.

At the end of the presentation, I answered questions.  Most of the questions I have been asked before.  But, one question got me to thinking…”Why don’t you focus more on the fact that Paddleford had a tracheal tube and how hard it must have been for her to do her job with it?”

I do mention in my presentation that Paddleford had throat cancer and elected for a partial surgery so that she could continue to talk with a tracheal tube.  I also talk about how hard of time she had re-learning to talk and getting used to the tube.  It took her a year with many trips back and forth to the hospital and dealing with pain.  The tube was held in place with a velvet ribbon.

Paddleford, herself, stated that because of the raspy whisper of her voice caused by the tracheal tube “people remember me.”  She also said that the only things she couldn’t do, that she liked to do, was to play tennis and go swimming.  Because of the tracheal tube she could not go on lecture circuit, the radio, or television.  These are some reasons, she is largely forgotten about today.  Otherwise, the tracheal tube never got in her way of doing what she loved: being a journalist-food writer.  Paddleford traveled wherever she wanted to go, interviewed whomever she wanted to interview, wrote about them, turned in her receipts, and got paid.

So, who is Clementine Paddleford?  She is the best known food editor, you never heard of.

December 28, 1953, Time Magazine declared Clementine Paddleford, “the best known food editor in the U. S.”

Here is the program from the Wilder Society Tea where I presented.  They put together this booklet because they wanted to share the recipes of the food served at the tea with those in attendance.  Recipes are from Paddleford’s 1960 book How America Eats.

Note, if you decide to make these recipes, remember they are from 1948 to 1960, and they are not as sweet as desserts are today.  So, if you are looking to cut back on sugar, but still want a dessert, use one of the recipes below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Go Gentle Into That Good Night

Do not go gentle into that good night,” wrote Dylan Thomas.

Thomas’ poem was looked at in the PBS show “Into the Night: Portraits of Life and Death” by Helen Whitney that aired on Monday, March 26, 2018.

This documentary allows us to think and even talk about mortality.   It does not provide us with any answers, instead, it raises many questions.

Do we go gently or raging against the dying light?

Are we in denial?

Do we think we will live forever?

Why do we try to prolong life?

Should we try to create immortality?

What do we say when someone tries to talk about death?

Are we prepared for death?

Would your family know how to access all your online accounts once you are gone?

Does your family know what your wishes are for funeral arrangements?

And so many more questions.  And of course, the biggest questions that no one has the answer to is: When am I going to die?

Even though this documentary is about death, it really showed me that is was also about LIFE.

 

 

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Filed under Authors, family relationship, Genre, Non-Fiction

Is that a family name?

“What is your name?” someone asked me.

“Cynthia,” I replied.

“Is that a family name?” they asked.

Well, yes and no.

Yes, there is a Cynthia in my ancestral line, but I was not named after that “Cynthia.”

Several years ago, when I started doing family genealogy, I asked mom if I was named after a family ancestor.

“No,” she said.

“Where did you get the name, Cynthia, from,?” I asked.

Mom laughed and told me this story.

“When your Dad and I were at the grocery store, Mr. Stewart asked if we had a name picked out.  We didn’t, so he suggested that for a baby girl her name be Cynthia Ann, after his mother.”

Yes, my parents went shopping at a grocery store and came away with a name for a baby girl.

I know, I know!  People go shopping at a grocery store for many things, but a name is not usually one of them.

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Filed under Authors, family relationship, Genre, Memoir, Non-Fiction, parenting, Writing

I Am Magical

Title: I Am Magical: magnifiqueNOIR, Book One

By: Briana Lawrence

Publisher: Sewn Together Reflections

Publication Date: October 3, 2017

 

About the Book:

“The revolution will be magical”

There’s a city. It’s like most other cities. Buildings. People. Monsters who can destroy sidewalks by vomiting acid onto the ground, and an elite group of black, queer, magical girls who work to put those monsters in their place.

See? Just like most other cities.

Bree Danvers would’ve compared it to a video game, maybe a cartoon or comic book, except black girls are rarely the heroines of the story. But there her heroine stood, plus size and wonderful, rocking a dazzling amount of purple and defeating monsters with galactic sparkles. Galactic Purple, that was her name, and soon, Bree was joining her on a magical adventure full of transformations and after school battles to defend a city like most other cities.

And soon, others would join them, and each one would be magical in their own way… give or take a few bumps on the acid covered ground.

About the Author:

At the age of nine, like most kids, Briana Lawrence had a dream. She wanted to be the best “WRITER” in the whole wide world. Her fourth-grade class laughed and wondered how one hoped to become a “writer” if they couldn’t even spell the word. Back then her stories were created with crayons and construction paper. As she grew older they progressed into notebooks and colored ink pens of pink, blue, and purple. When she lost her older brother, Glenn Berry, in a car accident, she stopped writing.

Dreams, however, have a funny way of coming back.

Before she realized it she was grabbing her notebook and pens again. She would write stories that ranged from high school romance to her imagination running wild with the likes of Goku, Vegeta, and the other characters of Dragonball Z. This continued throughout college where she would always end up writing about the space exploits of the pilots of Gundam Wing and other works of fan fiction. Soon she realized that she wanted to do more than that. Her head was full of ideas, full of original characters and worlds that she wanted to share with others.

Thus, she stepped into an English Major with some Women’s Studies on the side.

She graduated from Iowa State University in 2006 and moved to Minneapolis with her partner. Here, she tried to get into graduate school, but things didn’t pan out the way she wanted. She ended up working retail, her dream becoming buried by Black Fridays and other busy times of the year. Once again, however, that dream returned. She went from immersing herself in geeky fan fiction to actually writing about the geeky things she loved such as  anime and video game review sites. However, it was her discovery of National Novel Writing Month that made her go back to creating her own characters and plots.

Now, here she is, an author in the writing world.

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Filed under Authors, Awards, Fantasy, Fiction, Genre

Ancestors

Recently, someone asked if I would ever write a historical novel using one of my ancestors.  I answered, yes, if I had any that were colorful.

If any of you do genealogy, then you know how frustrating it can be to do research on your ancestors.  If you are lucky enough to have had someone do the research for you, thank your lucky stars!

One of my great-grandfathers seems to have been born under that cabbage leaf you hear so much about.  Where I grew up when children asked where did babies come from they were told that babies were found under a cabbage leaf.

Yep, Jacob was born under a cabbage leaf.

There is no other explanation for it!

Ancestory.com has no birth record for Jacob.  None of the Census records show his parents’ name.  Nowhere have I found where he was born.

Here is what I know about my ancestor, Jacob.

  • He fought in the American Revolutionary War.
  • He deserted while a soldier in the American Revolutionary War for a Pennsylvania Regiment.  This was not uncommon, as many soldiers did.
  • When he deserted he was headed for Hagerstown, Maryland.
  • Her married, Jane, however, I cannot find a marriage record and have only been able to guess her last name, which is not a “fact.”
  • Jacob and Jane moved to Tennessee.
  • I have found their children’s names.
  • I found Jacob’s and Jane’s death dates.

As with any family, there are stories – which most I have found not to be true.

So, to go back to the beginning – would I write a novel about one of my ancestor…I guess if I ever did, I could always write a historical novel involving Jacob’s parents since I know absolutely nothing about them.  That way, I could really write a historical fiction novel and know for a solid fact that is was pure fiction.

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Parisa by Conrad Trump, a Virtual Book Tour

Parisa by Conrad Trump

Parisa by Conrad Trump

Publisher:  High Peaks Publishing (September 7, 2015)
Category: Contemporary Fiction, Adventure, Fantasy, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
Tour dates: Mar/Apr, 2018
ISBN: 978-0976159766
Available in Print and ebook,292 pages
Parisa

 

Guest Post Review by Laura R: 5 Stars

If you love to get lost in a book, you need to read Parisa by Conrad Trump!  The lead character, Scott is in a horrible snowboarding accident.  He then unknowingly releases a century-old spirit.  Her name is Parisa.  Sure, she can grant wishes so it may remind you of the old television show, I Dream Of Genie’ but this has so much more depth to it.  Scott is left with the responsibility of helping Parisa fit into today’s society which is no easy task.  To top that off, he starts to have romantic feelings for her.

This book is well written and full of both drama and humor.  Even though it is fairly short, the characters are well drawn out.  As I was reading it, I felt like I was there in a real place with real people.  I think it would make a great movie! This is book one in a series and I can hardly wait to read book two!  I recommend Parisa for fantasy and adventure readers.  I give it 5 stars!

Book Excerpt:

“What are the X Games?” Parisa asked.

“The X Games are the pinnacle of extreme sports. Athletes from all over the world meet every year and test their skill against one another. I snowboard on the half-pipe.”

“I don’t understand,” Parisa confessed.

“Do you see these boards?” Scott asked, leading her to the wall opposite the front bay window. A pair of silver medals was mounted under the neon-green Burton snowboard splashed with blue paint. Beside the board was a matted picture of Scott rising out of the pipe. His board was pointing upward, and he was holding the tip of it with one hand. His matching green parka looked as if it was speckled with the falling snow. In the pictures, he wore dark goggles and a neon-green helmet. “That’s me,” Scott said, pointing to the picture. “I came in second that day.”

“I have only just seen snow for the first time,” Parisa told him, looking fondly at the photograph.

“The day I released you. I saw you near the ribbon cutting at the bottom of the slope.”

“I wasn’t strong enough yet to stay separated from my vessel for more than a few seconds, but it was long enough to see you and snow for the first time.”

“You had never seen snow before?”

“No, my Scott. I had always wanted to, but I was forbidden to leave the palace.”

“Well, honey, you are looking at the King of the Snow,” Scott said, puffing up his chest. “It’s a shame that we’re in San Diego. There’s no snow here, but when I go back to Lake Placid next week, you’ll see lots of snow—if you want to come with me, that is.”

“Of course I will come with you. You are my Scott.”

“I’ll teach you to snowboard. I would take you today, but”—Scott shrugged his shoulders— “no snow.”

“Would my Scott like it to snow?” Parisa asked, raising her arms above her head. Suddenly the lights in the house dimmed as a heavy cloud cover rolled in from the ocean, west of Coronado. There was a rumbling of thunder, and the windows shook. Scott could feel the barometric pressure sinking around him as he stood there in wonder.

Scott grabbed her arms and gently lowered them to her sides. “It can’t snow here, Parisa. This is San Diego.”

As soon as he said it, the world became a little lighter. The clouds just beginning to form over the city dissipated.

“Could you really have made it snow?” Scott asked.

Parisa smiled knowingly. “If my Scott had wished it,” she answered.

Scott laughed, but the display of power frightened him. It was one thing to float a box of roses. It was another to change the West Coast’s weather pattern. He was humbled by the scope of her magic. It was truly unsettling, but the Locke smile never faltered. He continued to chuckle and shake his head.

“I could take us someplace where there is snow,” Parisa suggested. “Would that be better?”

“What do you mean, ‘take us’?” Scott asked, uncertain that he was ready for the answer.

“Give me your hand, my Scott, think of where you would like to be—someplace snowy, someplace tropical, someplace on a beach—and we will go.”

“You can do that?” Scott asked. “Anyplace?”

“Anyplace,” Parisa assured him.

Scott thought about it for just a second. He smiled and whispered, “I know just the spot.” He took Parisa by the hands. The world jumped sideways. He fell forward without ever leaving his feet. For a moment they were one, traveling not hand in hand but spirit in spirit, moving through the ether at the top of the world. He felt neither warmth nor coolness, and there was no pain. They were slipping through the coil of known science, pushing back against the realities of time and matter. He was free in a way that his greatest, highest jumps had never come close to reaching.

He barely remembered the lingering morphine-induced dreams of floating on his snowboard after surgery. Traveling through space and time now was just like those dreams. He was floating, and he was free—only this time, he was not alone. His essence was entwined with Parisa’s, and together they soared untethered like snowflakes in a blizzard.

Praise for Parisa:

“Parisa held my interest and was hard to put down. I enjoyed it and can’t wait for Conrad to write another story. I believe Parisa would make a good movie!”- Debbie Moore, Reviewer

“I read Conrad’s book in less than three days. Not only is it a good story, but anyone from West Virginia will love the way Conrad blended our home state into the story about a West Virginia native who becomes a world-class snowboarder. This gave us native mountaineers a great deal to be proud of not only with the West Virginia setting, but knowing our native son has developed into a great writer.
I look forward to reading more stories written by Conrad in the future. I loved the book.”-KC Bohrer, Reviewer

“What an excellent book! This book keeps you hanging until you get to the next page. An excellent read by an excellent author! I am looking forward to reading future books by this author! Excellent word choice provides vivid pictures throughout the story. Excellent storyline.”- Meredith L. Zirkleml, Reviewer

About Conrad Trump:Parisa by Conrad Trump

Conrad Trump was raised in Berkeley Springs, West Virginia, where he still resides.  He received a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from West Virginia University and a master’s degree in Special Education from Old Dominion University.

Conrad has worked with youth, guiding troubled teens for the past quarter of a century at a residential school outside of Winchester, Virginia.

Prior to the publication of Parisa, Conrad had dozens of shorter pieces of fiction published in magazines and anthologies.  In addition to writing, he is an award-winning and published artist with his paintings featured in national juried exhibitions.  Conrad is also an accomplished and published photographer.  He is an outdoor enthusiast and an avid supporter of all things West Virginia.  He and his wife, Kim, have been married for twenty-five years.  Together they have two children, Hilary and Shaun.

Website: http://conradtrump.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/conrad.trump

*****

Where to Purchase the Book:

Amazon
Barnes&Noble
BookDepository

Giveaway Parisa by Conrad Trump

This giveaway is for one print copy or ebook copy of the book.  Print is available to the U.S. only but ebook is available worldwide.  This giveaway ends on April 30, 2018.  Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Parisa by Conrad Trump

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The Lottery

No, I am not talking about the lottery where you buy a PowerBall ticket every couple of days or so.  And no, I am not talking about the state lottery you might play, nor am I talking about those scratch tickets you buy at the Mini-Marts.  I am talking about Shirley Jackson’s short story, “The Lottery,” that was published in The New Yorker magazine on June 26, 1948.

If I am not talking about lottery tickets as we know them today, then what is “The Lottery?”

The story described a fictional town where an annual lottery takes place to ensure a good harvest.  HUH!

How can a lottery ensure a good harvest?

On June 27, every year, children gather stones while the townspeople gather for the event.  Slips of paper are placed in a box for a drawing.  One slip of paper has a black mark.

 

Doesn’t this remind you of The Hunger Games

Anyway, once a family draws the slip of paper with the black mark, the members of the family must draw to see which one of them gets a slip of paper with a black mark.

Once a family member draws a slip of paper with the black mark, they become the scapegoat or the sacrificial lamb that will cleanse the town of its bad doings.  The townspeople gather around the unlucky person and stone them to death.

Not quite like The Hunger Games, but similar.  In The Hunger Games, teenagers are selected from a district to compete with other districts in a game of “to-the-death.”

If you travel to one of the districts from The Hunger Games, the dates on the tombstones might be close, but probably not exactly the same day.

How would you like to browse a cemetery and realize that someone died on the same day every year for many decades?  What would you think about that?

Well, I don’t know about you, but that would be one lottery I would not want to participate in.

 

*** Note, both Shirley Jackson and The New Yorker received hate mail over this story.***

***This short story was made into a movie.***

 

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Filed under Authors, family relationship, Fiction, Genre, Movies

Time Flies Right Past Me!

I opened this blog and realized that the last post was nearly three weeks ago.  Where has time gone?

I have been busy with my 40-hour week job, my home chores, and being a Heritage Consultant for the Koester House Museum.  The museum applied for and got a grant from the Kansas Humanities Council (KHC).  As part of the grant, the museum needed a Heritage Consultant.  Apparently, there are not many in my area, so when small museums apply for grants and they ask where can I find a Heritage Consultant, KHC points them in my direction.

No, this is not part of my 40-hour work week job.  It is something I do on the side.  Now, if I could make a living at being a Heritage Consultant, I would do it because I enjoy going to different museums and seeing what they have and what they need help with.  Unfortunately, when I work with grant recipients, the pay is on the very low end of the scale.

The Koester House Museum is located in Marysville, Kansas.  The house started out as a two-room home and over the years more space was added on.  Today it is a two-story house.  It is surrounded by a brick wall that was created to keep the flood waters out.

 

Sarah Koester Morrison, great-granddaughter.  Photo courtesy of the Marysville Advocate.

Sarah is standing in front of the home.

 

Sarah wrote a book titled Memoirs of the Charles F. Koester House, An Intimate Portrait and it is told from the perspective of the house.  This book is on my “to read” list.

Anyway, the project I  have been consulting on is one of cleaning and cataloging 1,200 books. The museum has a few volunteers that have cleaned the books and they are now in the process of putting the books into LibraryThing so they can be found in the Library of Congress online catalog.  As part of my job as Heritage Consultant, I taught them how to clean the books using “best practices” and I taught them how to use LibraryThing.

Once the project is complete, the museum will begin to use the books in displays/exhibits and during tours of the house.  It is the hope of the museum that the Kansas Poet Laureate will read from some of the poetry books in the library when he does a presentation in the near future.

For this Heritage Consultant, I find joy in watching people’s eyes light up when they find something of interest or learn something new.  It is truly rewarding.

 

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Filed under family relationship, Memoir, poetry

Brief Timeline of Printing 1970-2011

This is a continuation of the Brief Timeline that began on January 26, 2018, that continued on February 2, 2018, and this is the last blog on the timeline of printing.

1970: Water-based ink introduced.

1972: Thermal printing developed.

1977: The Compugraphic EditWriter 7500 phototypesetter introduced.

1981: Microsoft Disk Operating System introduced.

1982: Adobe Systems Inc. founded.

1983: Desktop publishing appears.

1984: Apple Macintosh personal computer introduced.

1984: 3D printing developed.

1985: Microsoft Windows introduced.

1985: PostScript typesetting language introduced.

1985: Apple LaserWriter desktop printer introduced.

1985: PageMaker desktop publishing introduced.

1987: Soy-based ink appears.

1987: QuarkXPress desktop publishing program introduced.

1988: Adobe Photoshop raster graphics editor introduced.

1990: Xerox DocuTech. Production-publishing system that allowed paper documents to be scanned, electronically edited, and then printed on demand.

1991: TrueType scalable computer introduced.

1991: Heidelberg and Presstek introduced GTO-DI, the first plate making on the press.

1993: Indigo digital color printer introduced.

1993: Portable Document Format (PDF) introduced.

1996: OpenType scalable computer fonts introduced.

1999: InDesign desktop publishing program introduced.

2011: The Saint John’s Bible is the first completely handwritten and illustrated Bible since the invention of the printing press.

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Chaos – Can’t Have Anyone Over Syndrome

Is your life in chaos where you can’t have anyone over to your house?
There are times when I look around my home and see clutter.  At times I get motivated and clean like a mad woman.  Other times I feel overwhelmed and close my eyes to the clutter, especially, if I am carving out time to write.
Thank the powers that be for Marla!  She teaches folks how to FLY (Finally Loving Yourself).
In her daily email titled “Morning Musing: It’s My Birthday,”  Marla lists 62 lessons she has learned during her life. While the lessons are in no particular order, the first one listed is “It is OK to be sidetracked because sometimes the path you take brings you out into the most wonderful places.”  And the last one listed is, “Patience doesn’t cost a dime but the benefits are worth more than gold!”
If you want to get out from under clutter, whether it be in your home or your life, Marla, the FlyLady, can help you do that.
Yes, she has helped me with my home, my 40 hour work week office, and my spare time for hobbies, etc.

 

 

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