Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Jessica, the Autobiography of an Infant: How Far Back Can We Remember?

Jessica, the Autobiography of an Infant
By Jeffrey Von Glahn, PHD
                This is the true psychological process of a troubled young woman who had no sense of “self” no sense of deserving of love, attention or anything good that came her way. Taken throughout over three years of psychotherapy, patient and therapist weave an true story that peals layer upon layer, until all she’s left with is her “me” her inner self. They take us back throughout her life until we reach the core of her birth and a bit beyond.
               This is an incredible journey. Not frightening, but intense none the less. We see her progress and regressions: one step forward, two back as we’re privileged to peek into their sessions and discover a trip few ever see.
                I didn’t realize anyone could remember back so far. Few have. It makes me wonder, could I with the proper guidance? It also makes me wonder, do I want to?
                Excellently written, as some other reviews pointed out, it reads like a novel, and it does. It was hard to put down.


Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Do You Set Goals? Jessica: The Autobiography of an Infant.

So do you? Set goals?

Usually, when I do, then don't take hold and my goals either change or diminish as time goes by. 

But, here are mine for the New Year, anyway. Hopefully, with setting deadlines and keeping up enthusiasm for tasks, they will not only take hold, but will become achievable. Here goes. 

1. Finish final edits for Legacy of Danger--deadline March 1st. 

2. Start new project, possibly a cozy mystery series. That seems to be popular and usually provides a fun read. (not sure I have that fun of a personality, but I'll try. Romantic suspense has ever been my forte) 

3. Read books and review them for Amazon. I'm on Rave Review Book Clubs a great source of inspiration where members read and review each others' books. 

4. Promote existing published books: In the Arms of the Enemy and Waterlilies Over My Grave (see Amazon.com  Patricia A. Guthrie) 

5. Keep up Writer's Rock, my Facebook writer's group. Many talented, professional and amateur writers are in this group at varying levels. In order to participate in the workshops, you have to be on AOL (Chapter One) Monday nights. You can join and get great information on Facebook. 

Currently reading: "Jessica: The Autobiography of an infant."  Wow, is this ever psychologically deep. If you like psychology this is the book for you. 

Cheers

pg 

Monday, January 4, 2016

Read---Kill Devil: Mystery of the Cane by P.J. Erickson

Here's a book to read in the cold, cold days of winter. A red-hot novel by P.J. Erickson.

KILL DEVIL: Mystery of the Cane by PJ. Erickson (winner of Rave Review Book Clubs Push Week) For Sale on Amazon.com

Someone is clearing the streets of derelicts in a Florida town and the police have other things to do, but when a young girl disappears, Chase Larsen discovers a trail of kidnapping and slavery that leads to a bizarre plantation where two men plot the destruction of America.
Florida's diverse and awesome beauty becomes the backdrop for this novel of kidnapping and murder where one man must bridge the distance between centuries to prevent a deadly conspiracy.
Fast paced action once again embroils Chase and his private investigator, Annie, in mayhem and murder led by none other than their nemesis, Dominick Wilding. The plot weaves through pre-civil war to cyberterrorism with places so vivid you'll see them and characters you'll remember long after you've finished reading.
Don't miss this new adventure. What is Dominick up to now? Will he triumph or will Chase solve the puzzle in time?

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Quote by Franklin D. Roosevelt from Quotable Notes

Happy New Year to everyone who travels through my blogs. Here's a neat quote by FDR. 

" There are many ways of going forward, but only one way of standing still. " Franklin D. Roosevelt. 

I've found writer's block (see my blog) and procrastination to be debilitating. I've also found many ways out. Sometimes it takes a long, long time to get there, other's not long at all. 

This year, I managed to finish a novel I'd started in the late 1990's. It was tough updating some information, trends, social media and electronics, but I THINK I manage to accomplish this. 

So, I did it. I finished the book. Then I enlisted the help from some very good writer/reader beta readers who managed to get me to make a great deal of changes, and MORE changes are still sitting in my files. 

Legacy of Danger is a paranormal romantic suspense novel. I'm hoping it will "get out" this year. Bye Bye baby. It's like sending a kid off to college or the workforce.

Getting back to the quote, I've found many ways back into the writing mode. But standing still is just that. Like sitting in the middle of a traffic jam that won't move. (brain is traffic jam).

Have a great day and a great year.

Cheers.

pg

Thursday, December 24, 2015

From Quotable Notes by Joseph Brodsky

"Cherish your human connections: Your relationships with friends and family."

By Joseph Brodsky 

Have a wonderful holiday. God bless you all. 

Patricia A Guthrie   


Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Santa Claus Came to Town and How He Got Here by Patricia A. Guthrie


    Santa Claus Came to Town and How He Got Here

By Patricia Guthrie

     “‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house . . .”  ‘Jolly Old St. Nicholas . . .’  ‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town.’ What images come to mind?  A rather chubby, merry and ageless man with a twinkle in his eye, carrying a bag full of toys from a sled, way too small to provide gifts for more than sixty-million children around the world.  Nine reindeer, the lead having an overpowering red-glowing nose, paw anxiously, trying not to topple off a steeply slanted roof covered with ice and snow. Realistic? Hell no.  Fun? Absolutely.
     Does Santa Claus actually have anything to do with Christmas?  Nope . . . not really. Christmas celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ, the namesake of its religious beliefs.  Except for Easter, it is the most holy of days in the Christian calendar.  Christmas is the only religious holiday that has survived the separation of Church and State in the United States, despite many attempts to have it stricken from the federal holiday calendar. 
     Santa Claus has come along for the ride–and what a ride it has been for all of these years. So what’s Santa Claus all about?  How did he get to be so popular?  Who is he?  Was he even real?
     There is some disagreement about that.  He is traced back to one Bishop Nicholas of Myra (d350) who, real or not real, became one of the most beloved saints to ever grace the face of this earth.  He was revered in both Eastern as well as Western churches, one of the few things they ever agreed on.  So loved was he, Emperor Justinian built a church in his honor in 540 AD.  It seems the good bishop could do no wrong.  He was the patron saint of children, mariners, merchants, countries and cities.  He saved dowerless maidens in distress by throwing money into their windows.  He is credited with saving ships at sea and somehow or other, saving countries from famine.  After he was dead, he was reported to have come down from heaven to distribute gifts to good little boys and girls and, later, seemed to have gained a side kick named ‘Black Peter’ who punished those children who weren’t so good.  It was (and still is) a dream come true for parents who could now dangle the proverbial carrot in front of their kids,  in anticipation of the arrival of good St. Nick.
     Those who disavow the existence of Nicholas seem to think his legend originated from the pagan gods of the pre-Christian era.  There were similarities between the Teutonic God Odin, who flew around in the air on a gray horse and wore a long white beard.  Thor was another God who seemed to have Nicholas’ attributes, i.e., he came from the North, wore a suit of red, rode through the heavens in a chariot drawn by white goats, and was friendly and cheerful and loved to drop down through chimneys for some reason or other.
     When Christmas was settled as a day to celebrate the Christian tradition, the Roman church decided on an old pagan day of celebration of Dec. 25th.  There was no way to pin down the real birth date of Jesus, and trying to keep their flock away from paganism, the church decided to bring their religious holiday into the pagan calendar–hoping to wipe out any trace of pagan celebration. The odd thing is, if indeed he did live, Nicholas was a Christian man himself, a bishop of the church and one of those to have been present at the first council of Nicea. That cannot be proved, as his name is not present on the list of attending bishops.

Santa Claus in America

     During the reformation which spread around Europe in the sixteenth century, the Feast of St. Nicholas all but disappeared.  Christkindl (Christ child) replaced Nicholas as the bearer of good tidings and gifts.  The Protestant reformers felt that their children should not spend their time worshiping a bishop, lured by presents and goodies.  They thought they could channel their energies instead into celebrating the birth of the Christ child.  The custom changed slightly with Christkindl being the main player instead of Nicholas.  The practice of gift giving, however, remained.  Despite this new emphasis, the Nicholas legends prevailed, especially among the Dutch.
     During the 1600s, exchanging gifts or celebrating the Feast of St. Nicholas was forbidden by the Puritans in America.  It wasn’t until the Dutch settled in what later became New York that they brought with them their tradition of SinterKlaas.  SinterKlaas was just one variation on the name of St. Nicholas and they celebrated it on the eve of Dec. 6th, the anniversary of his death.   Switching the date to Dec. 25th came when the English took over the colony.  The English children wanted their own SinterKlass.  As the Protestants didn’t believe in celebrating saints days, the date was changed.
     Washington Irving, writing under the pseudonym of Diedrich Knickerbocker, mentioned the holiday in his satire, ‘The History of New York.’  Good old St. Nicholas, SinterKlaas, was depicted riding into town on a white horse, which later somehow learned to fly over the tree tops pulling a wagon.  William Gilley printed a poem about ‘Santeclaus’ and described him as wearing fur and driving a sleigh, now pulled by a reindeer.
     The most famous spin in the history of Santa Claus in America came with the poem written by Dr. Clement Moore, a dentist, who was also a theology and classics professor at Union Seminary.  He wrote ‘A visit from St. Nicholas,’ that went on to become ‘The Night before Christmas.’  At last, Santa had a description.  He was now a jolly, happy and a rather hefty soul who had a miniature sleigh and eight tiny reindeer named: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donder, and Blitzen.  Later, Robert L. May created the ninth and most famous reindeer of all.  He was the guiding-light of the team and his name was Rudolph.
     So far, Santa Claus was pictured as elf-size, fitting in his compact sleigh, which made timely deliveries to all those homes around the world extremely difficult. However, Haddon Sundblom, an illustrator for the Coca Cola Company helped Santa with those shipments when, in 1931, he drew a series of Santa images and pictured him human-size for their Christmas advertisements.  Santa’s stature and the ads continue to the present time.
     The much loved Nicholas of Myra seems to have gained a reputation that even the greatest and most famous might envy.  Larger than life, his saga lives on as the patron saint of almost everybody; mariners, merchants, children, cities (including Moscow) and countries (Greece, Russia, Italy) and seems to have grown year by year.  As much as Christmas is a Christian holiday, it is also a holiday that celebrates generosity and kindliness of spirit even amongst those who might have the hardest of hearts during the rest of the year.  Despite all the holiday craziness that we must endure, Christmas and Santa Claus go hand in hand in featuring one of the most beautiful and reverent holidays for the human spirit. 

A VISIT FROM ST. NICHOLAS
by Clement Clarke Moor  

 'Twas the night before Christmas,
when all through the house,
not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
in hopes that ST. NICHOLAS soon would be there.
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
while visions of sugarplums danced in their heads.

And mamma in her kerchief, and I in my cap,
had just settled down for a long winter's nap,
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.

Away to the window I flew like a flash;
tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.
The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow,
Gave the lustre of midday to objects below.

When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
but a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer.
With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.

More rapid than eagles his coursers they came.
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;
'Now, DASHER! now, DANCER! now, PRANCER and VIXEN!
On, COMET! on CUPID! on, DONDER and BLITZEN!

To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!'
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
when they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,

So up to the housetop the coursers they flew,
with the sleigh full of toys, and St. Nicholas too.
And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof,
the prancing and pawing of each little hoof.

As I drew in my hand, and was turning around,
down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
and his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot.

A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
and he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.
His eyes, how they twinkled! his dimples how merry.
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry.

His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow.
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
and the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath.

He had a broad face and a little round belly,
that shook, when he laughed like a bowlful of jelly.
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf.
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself.

A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
and filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk.

And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose.
He sprang to his sleigh; to his team gave a whistle.
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.

But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
'HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO ALL, AND TO ALL A GOOD-NIGHT.’

References:

Bucher, Pastor Richard P. (1999); The Origin of Santa Claus and the Christian Response to Him.
Evangelical Trinity Lutheran Church.

Van der Meulen, Roel;  Sinterklaas, A Dutch Tradition, Project Galactic Guide

Religious Tolerance; All about Santa Claus,  http://www.Religioustolerance.org/santa.htm.

Goode, Stephen (1996); After 17 centuries, Kris Kringle is still making his rounds; Insight on the News.

Dodd, Brian (1995); History of Santa Claus, American Origins. Quote from Encarta 95. Http://www.the-north-pole.com/history/








    

    




     

Monday, December 21, 2015

From Quotable Notables

Judge a man by his questions rather than his answers.

Voltaire

Christmas: Past and Present by Micki Peluso

This is a reflection of the Christmases of today as compared with the past.
                                   Christmas; Past and Present 
                                                     By 
                              Micki Peluso, Author and Reviewer

Twas the night before Christmas and all through the Mall, last minute
shoppers scurried from store to store; short on patience and with little
evidence of the holiday spirit of love. The only ones smiling were the store owners and the costumed Santa, who gets paid to be jolly.

The children were nestled all snug in their beds, while visions of talking dolls, video games, bicycles and other expensive toys, danced in their heads. Mama in her kerchief and I in my cap had just settled down to tackle the mountain of Christmas bills, which was larger than the national debt.

The moon on the crest of the new fallen snow, reflected the concern of
families awaiting the arrival of loved ones traveling on icy roads.
Years ago, Christmas seemed easier, less commercial and more enjoyable. Many families lived near each other, and most of the decorations, foodstuffs and presents were homemade. While there was stress and haste to accomplish the needed tasks by Christmas Eve, the stress was different than what is experienced today. Generations past did not seem to lose sight of the reason for Christmas; a birthday celebration of sharing and love.

The nostalgia of horse-drawn sleigh rides through wooded country roads is sorely missed. Bells jingling accompaniment to carols sung off key by bundled-up children in the back of the sleigh, is a thing of the past. Yet Christmas retains an aura of magic, nonetheless.

Originally, the Christian church did not acknowledge Christmas at all, as such observance was considered a heathen rite. The earliest records of any Christmas celebration dates back to the early part of the third century. Gift giving, as a custom, may have originated with the Romans, relating to their worship of Dionysus at Delphi.

The Christmas tree comes from the Germans, although its origin has been traced as far back as ancient Egypt. The tree replaces a former customary pyramid of candles, part of the pagan festivals. There is a legend that Martin Luther brought an evergreen home to his children and decorated it for Christmas. German immigrants carried this custom with them to the New World, but it did not gain popularity until 1860, when John C. Bushmann, a German, decorated a tree in Massachusetts and invited people to see it. Evergreens, a symbol of survival, date to the 18th century when St. Boniface, honoring the Christianizing of
Germany, dedicated a fir tree to the Holy Child to replace the sacred oak of Odin. The "Nation's Christmas Tree," was the General Grant tree in General

Grant National Park in California, dedicated May 1, 1926,by the town mayor. The tree was 267 feet high and 3500-4000 years old. Mistletoe, burned on the alter of the Druid gods, was regarded as a symbol
of love and peace. The Celtic custom of kissing under the mistletoe comes from the practice of enemies meeting under the plant, dropping their weapons and embracing in peace. Some parts of England decorated with mistletoe and holly, but other parts banned its use due to association with Druid rites. Mistletoe was considered a cure for sterility, a remedy for poisons, and kissing under it would surely lead to marriage.

The 4th century German St. Nicholas, shortened through the years to Santa Claus, has become the epitome of today's Christmas spirit. St. Nicholas, taking pity upon three young maidens with no dowry and no hope, tossed a bag of gold through each of their windows, and granted them a future. Other anonymous gifts being credited to him were emulated and the tradition grew. The Norsemen enhanced the legend of Santa Claus coming down the chimney with their goddess, Hertha, known to appear in fireplaces, bringing happiness and good luck.

Sir Henry Cole, impressed by a lithograph drawing, made by J.C. Horsley, instigated the idea of Christmas cards. It took eighteen years for the custom to gain popularity, and then it was adopted mainly by gentry.

Christmas was banned in England in 1644, during the Puritan ascendency. A law was passed ordering December 25th a market day and shops were forced to open. Even the making of plum pudding and mincemeat pies was forbidden. This law was repealed after the Restoration, but the Dissenters still referred to Yuletide as "Fooltide."

The General Court of Massachusets passed a law in 1657 making the
celebration of Christmas a penal offense. This law, too, was repealed, but many years would pass before New England celebrated Christmas.
When Washington crossed the Delaware River during the Revolutionary War, it was the observance of Christmas that made his conquest of the British a success. The enemy was sleeping off the affects of the celebration.

Befana, or Epiphany, is the Italian female counterpart of Santa Claus. On Epiphany, or Twelfth Night, she is said to fill children's stockings with presents. According to legend, Befana was too busy to see the Wise Men during their visit to the Christ Child, saying that she would see them on their way back to the East. The Magi, however, chose a different route home, and now Befana must search for them throughout eternity. The sacred song traditionally sung on her yearly visit is the Befanata.

The number of Magi visiting the stable on that first Christmas Eve could be anywhere from two to twenty. The number three was chosen because of the three gifts; gold, frankencense and myrrh. Western tradition calls the Magi, Gaspar, Melchior, and Balthasar, but they have different names and numbers in different parts of the world.

Though distinctly Christian, the social aspect of Christmas is observed and enjoyed by many religious and ethnic groups. Rabbi Eichler, during a sermon in Boston in 1910 explains why: "...Christmas has a double aspect, a social and theological side. The Jew can and does heartily join in the social Christmas. Gladly, does he contribute to the spirit of good will and peace, characteristic of the season. It was from the light of Israel's sanctuary that Christianity lit its torch. The Hanukka lights, therefore, justly typify civilization and universal religion."

Dr. Clement Clarke Moore, a professor at the General Theological Seminary in New York, penned the famous poem, "Twas the Night before Christmas." Dr. Moore never intended for the poem to be published. Miss Harriet Butler, daughter of the rector of St. Paul's Church in Troy, New York, accompanied her father on a visit to Dr. Moore. She asked for a copy of the poem and sent it anonymously to the editor of The Troy Sentinel. A copy of the newspaper
carrying his poem was sent to Dr. Moore, who was greatly annoyed that something
he composed for the amusement of his children should be printed. It was not until eight years later, that Dr. Moore publicly admitted that he wrote the poem.

Christmas is the favorite Holiday of children, who unquestionably accept the myth of Santa Claus. In 1897, one little girl began to have doubts as to the reality of Santa Claus, and wrote to the New York Sun, asking for confirmation. Her letter read: Dear editor, I am eight years old. Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus. Papa says,"If you see it in The Sun, it's so. Please tell me the truth, is there a Santa Claus?" Virginia D'Hanlon.

Francis P. Church's editorial answer to the little girl became almost as
famous as Dr. Moore's poem. In part, this is what he wrote: "Virginia, your little friends are so wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe, except they see... Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exists....Alas! How dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as if there were no Virginias...No Santa Claus! Thank God! He lives and lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood."

It is sentiments like this that warm the heart of child and adult alike,
as Christmas nears. It is not the gifts, soon forgotten, that make Christmas a time of wonder and magic. It is the love within all people for God, for children, for each other. During this hectic holiday season, take a moment or two to savor the true meaning of Christmas.

"And I heard him exclaim
As he drove out of sight,
Happy Christmas to all,
And to all a Goodnight!"
Dr. Clement Clarke Moore
 

Friday, December 18, 2015

New Review for "In the Arms of the Enemy" on Amazon

Thank you Professor for reviewing "In the Arms of the Enemy." You really made my day. 
"In the Arms of the Enemy by Patricia A. Guthrie grabbed my attention because of the horses and the racing. I am a great fan of Dick Francis and wondered how Ms. Guthrie would fare in the comparison. I need not have worried. The opening is explosive, clutching both heart and brain before even a few pages are read. Here is a writer on control of her craft and she seizes the reader's emotion right from line one. Great writing; great characterization; and all effortless.
Like Dick Francis, she knows her horses, her racing , and the characters that inhabit that world. She brings us into their milieu, into the color, into the glamour and into the dark side that so often lurks on the fringes of this world.
The story is suspenseful and nicely plotted, although there was scope here for a longer book. I had not fully considered the genre when I purchased the book and, when in the midst of attempts on Maggie's life, masked intruders wielding knives, and general mayhem, the novel morphs suddenly into erotic romance, I have to confess I was a bit startled. Yes, I discovered later that the book is classified as 'suspenseful romance' so I should not have been surprised but this is not a genre that I would normally favor. That is just my own predilection, however, and is no reflection on the writer. I have to say that for the most part she focuses on the thriller/mystery element of her story and does so to the reader's satisfaction. The climax is suspense-filled and exciting and, although I would have to question how foolishly both Maggie and Adam walked into very obvious traps, the ending romps home to a classy finish. Dick Francis fans will enjoy this book. So, too, will readers of suspenseful romance. And I enjoyed it very much. So will you.
You can purchase "In the Arms of the Enemy" on Amazon.com.   Thank you Professor. You made my day. "
Patricia A. Guthrie 

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Quote from The Universe by Michael Tut



"...It's not possible to significantly change your life, for better or for worse, by manipulating the material world. Not by working harder, not by studying longer, not by schmoozing, not by sweating, not by fasting, not by the hair of your chinny chin chin. 

But great change is inescapable when you first begin manipulating the world of your thoughts."

Thinking of you
The Universe (Michael Tut) 

Socrates from Quotable Notes

"The best way to live with honor in this world is to be what we pretend to be."

Socrates

Monday, December 14, 2015

Book Review: Bring Up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel

REVIEW
BRING UP THE BODIES
By Hilary Mantel
                There are some thousand review of Bring up the Bodies on Amazon, so this review will probably encompass much that has already been said. But I’ll try to make it original.
                Bring up the Bodies is the second in the historical fictional account of Thomas Cromwell, Master Secretary and right hand (hatchet and otherwise) man of King Henry VIII. The first book Wolf Hall: A Novel is the first in the series, and there will be a third one—now, work in progress.
                This has to be one of the most fascinating, brutal and fast changing periods of history. The reign of Henry VIII starts with England snuggled into the bosom of the Roman Catholic Church and ends with the transformation of its religious and cultural environments through the arts and emotions of Henry, Anne Boleyn and Thomas Cromwell. Or ‘Whatever Henry wants, Henry gets.” Never mind the bodies they leave in the fray, and the centuries of religious implications that exist to this day.
                This books starts off where Booker Award winning “Wolf Hall: A Novel” leaves off—with the execution of Sir Thomas More. It covers the period of Henry’s courtship of Anne Boleyn, the ousting of his present queen, Katherine of Aragon, marriage to Queen Anne and her ultimate downfall, because she too, could not provide Henry’s obsessive desire for a male heir.
                In the first novel, Cardinal Woolsey could not obtain Henry’s (again obsessive) desire to get a divorce or annulment from Katherine. Thomas Cromwell was in the employ of Woolsey.    One thing I didn’t know about Cromwell is that he brought down the men he thought ruined his mentor.  He harbors his grudge for years before the right opportunity presents itself (perceived adultery with the Queen) Then he pounces and brings  down Anne and four of Henry’s closest friends.
                On the other hand, Hilary Mantel portrays Cromwell as a loyal friend and a loving family man who has compassion for others (even ones he’s hauling off to the scaffold.) Anne Boleyn is portrayed as a scheming and ruthless woman who will stop at nothing to get what she wants.  (Henry and the crown.) It’s like a Shakespearian tragedy. The character’s flaws are what bring them down in the end. With the men Henry executed, it isn’t necessarily adultery with the queen that gets them in the end, but other previous crime and failings.   
                One criticism: This book, as well as “Wolf Hall” is hard to follow at times. Sometimes eloquent and lovely, it can be hard to follow who’s talking to whom. Her overuse of “He ____” can be confusing, not sure whether Thomas is doing the speaking or listening.
                The third in the trilogy is yet to be released. All Thomas Cromwell and Henry VIII fans should be anxiously awaiting this book.

               

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

You...are creations first and last chance...to be you. Just as you are today. That's all you have to be.

You really lucked out. 

The Universe (Michael Tut) Thank you for allowing me to share. 

pg 

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

View from the Sixth Floor: An Oswald Tale
By Elizabeth Horton Newton
The assassination of President John F. Kennedy has fascinated for over fifty years. Numerous books, movies and documentaries have searched for the truth. Was it a conspiracy or the hand of a lone gunman that killed the president and wounded the Governor? Did Lee Harvey Oswald kill the president? Why was he shot by Jack Ruby? Why was there such collateral damage in the aftermath?

But—what if Lee Harvey Oswald didn’t kill the president? What if Lee Harvey Oswald didn’t die from his wounds? And, what if he was living next to you for years?

That is the premise that Ms Newton presents to us in her book “View from the Sixth Floor.” 
When Olivia loses her husband to a heart attack, his best friend and neighbor Bill watches over Olivia and becomes her best friend. Olivia has long been fascinated by the Kennedy assassination and when she has too much time on her hands decides to visit Dallas to see the museum and the places where he was killed. Her two boys try to talk her out of it as does Bill. 
“Don’t go back into the past.” But, Olivia is determine and that’s when Bill decides to go with her.

And that’s when the plot gets thick with twists, turns, mystery, espionage old murders and a couple who throw themselves under the bus to try to get information. But, little does Olivia know, Bill knows the truth. It’s only him that can get the information to the world. But, it’s the world that’s trying to get to him as well. Olivia gets caught up with a fascinating assumption and a life she’d never dreamed would happen to her.

There are some editing and formatting flaws (which I’ve noticed in all E Books) The writing is good and keeps you focused. But the story itself is great. This book will put you at the edge of your seat and not let you go until you’ve finished. Even then, you’ll want to know more.
Good going Elizabeth Horton Newton. If there were sixth stars I give them to you.

Available on Amazon.com 
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Elizabeth-Horton-Newton368956446609506
https://elizabethnnewton.wordpress.com/

From Quotable Notes

Love Quotable Notes. Each day a quote from a famous personality. 


"Life is but a thought."

Sara Teasdale

Monday, December 7, 2015

Demons of the Writing Mind by Patricia A. Guthrie

Demons of the Writing Mind came in MY mind when I was competing in short story contests. This was exactly how I felt while writing a short story. A magazine in the early 2000's published it. I thought I'd share. Maybe someone else feels the same way. 

Demons of the Writing Mind
By Patricia A. Guthrie 

            Lucille stood on the Dunes looking over the peacefulness and tranquility of Lake Michigan.  It was hot and Lucille did not feel either peaceful or tranquil.  She was on the run.
            A couple of lovers walked hand in hand.  They noticed her and walked away looking for a more secluded spot. She smiled.  This was one place the police wouldn’t think to look, and, if they did?  So what!  She’d throw herself over before they were within one hundred yards.  She knew that was what would happen anyway.
           
            “Crap!” I said, not at all ladylike.  “What the devil would a woman really feel like, if she had just killed her husband and was about to pitch herself over a cliff?”  I stamped my foot and walked into the kitchen, deciding to do the dishes from last night.  “Demons, my foot!”  I slammed the Corelle dish, a little too hard on the counter, and it broke.  “Damn!”
            “Okay, here goes.  Brain!  Get in gear!”

            She knew she couldn’t have taken any more abuse. Every afternoon, he’d stop for a “quick one.”  The “quick one” usually turned into a “long one” and George couldn’t handle his liquor.  Usually, glassy eyed, he came home and picked a fight.  The fight turned into a slamming match.  She had the black eyes and bruised arms as proof.

            “I wonder how that feels?” I punched my arm and winced.  Do writers really need to live the experiences of their characters?  God!  I hope not!  I got up and went into the bedroom to make my bed.  My mind keep floating back and forth-back and forth:  clean the house, mow the lawn, write, study my grammar, train the dogs, write, do my lesson plans for school, write, read a GOOD book, write. I continued my thousand word short story.

            The previous evening, George had been blind drunk.  His demons didn’t even bother picking a fight.  They went directly for the baseball bat. Lucille tripped him and as he cursed, she hit him over the head at least ten times.

            “Good for her, the lousy. . . .  Well, maybe not ten times, and, would he still be cursing after the first blow?  Shoot, time to feed the dogs.”  I got up and poured Nutri-Max (not intended as a commercial) into their bowls.

            It had been strange sleeping in her bed alone with George lying dead downstairs.  An experience, she wouldn’t want to repeat.  She wouldn’t need to repeat.  Her mind corrected the error.  By nightfall she, too, would be dead.  Would she have to spend eternity with George?


            “God!  I hope not. How is she going to get out of this?”  So far, I had some four hundred words in my story.  I had demons in my soul, too.  They consisted of a thousand word short story once a week.  I had two more hours to complete my assignment and desperately needed a Diet Cream Soda.

            It was now approaching noon.  Lucille wished she had brought out her Sunblock 24 as the sun beat down.  She. . . .

            I realized that it was I that needed the Sunblock 24.  Though it was fast approaching sunset, the sun was setting directly into the kitchen window and causing little flashing demons of light on my monitor.  I had trouble reading the screen through the glare.
            “Grocery shopping!  I have to go grocery shopping!” Those mind demons again.

            Lucille opened the picnic basket and spread her lunch out on the elegant lace table cloth that she and George received for their last anniversary.

            Would she really have the presence of mind to make a picnic lunch?  Good God!  My lawn needs mowing!  Oh jeez, only six hundred words!  How am I going to get her out of this?

            The lunch having been properly consumed

            Sounds like a bad Nineteen-Century Victorian Romance novel.  Speaking of romance, how about a love interest?

            The evening sun went down in a final blaze of glory as Lucille realized her final evening on earth.  It was a wonderful send-off.  The colors of peaches, oranges, yellows all mingled with violets and blues and clouds flickered their steely, grey tones adding to the collage.  She thought it might rain.

            Speaking of rain, did I shut my bedroom windows?  The glare in the monitor suddenly disappeared and I heard a crack of thunder.  How appropriate! Only a half hour left until six o’clock and the change of topics!

            She looked down onto the beach.  It had to be hundreds of feet below and the rocks would make sure of her quick death.
              What was that sound?  She turned and looked down the path which led back into the  forest preserves. It was the sound of a motor. She trembled. They found her. They would charge her with murder and put her on trial. She would be executed.  Death wouldn’t be so bad, but to spend the next ten years waiting for it, she couldn’t take that.

            “Alex, I wonder what it would feel like to spend the next ten years on Death Row?”  Alex is my blue-merle collie.  He yawned and I looked at the clock. Five minutes to go.

            “Wait, Lucille.”
            That voice. It was (What would his name be? Alex. That’s it!)  It was Alex. The man she should have married!
            “Don’t!  Lucille, we know what happened! Your neighbor saw him through the open door. She knows it was self-defense!”
            She stood, mesmerized, by the sound of his voice. Then, without a word, they ran to each other and stood, locked in an embrace for a very long time.

            “Whew!  Got her out of that one!  How many words?  No!  It’s over eleven hundred.  Two minutes left.  Jeez, what am I going to remove?”  For the next minute, I deleted words.
            “Finally!  Exactly nine hundred ninety-nine!  Now, press ‘select all’, ‘copy’ and (Hm!  Hurry UP America On-Line)  Okay! Got it!  ‘Paste!’  Now hit ‘submit’----okay! Got it!”

            That was before I discovered the typos!

                                                                       The End

           

           

           
           
           

           

           

           


           

           

From Quotable Notes Monday Dec 7, 2015

The essential conditions of everything you do must be choice, love and passion. 

Nadia Boulanger

Saturday, December 5, 2015

From Quotable Notes

I never think of the future. It comes soon enough. 

Albert Einstein

Holiday Advent Calendar ideas

If your writing group is looking for something to do, you might consider writing an Advent Calendar story. Each writer in the group, picks a day and writes a contributing paragraph to the story. The theme should be consistent with the holiday season, but doesn't have to be religious in nature. (there are a lot of holidays around this time). Consider the number of days=number of paragraphs=short story. Fun, creative and different. 
We're doing that in our Writer' Rock/Writer's Gathering workshops. I've never tried this out before, so we'll see how it goes. Writers interested in joining Writer's rock, we're on Facebook and meet every Monday in the AOL Chapter One chat room. We monitor the chats carefully, so we don't get "spoilers" in our room.