Sunday, June 13, 2021

⭐BOOK FEATURE: THE FIRE INSIDE: A COMPANION FOR THE CREATIVE LIFE⭐ BY LUCY ADKINS & BECKY BREED⭐




The underlying principle of The Fire Inside is that we all have within us vast untapped reservoirs of creativity, and when we recognize and begin to connect with that potential, our lives will open in ways we cannot begin to imagine. Many books have been written about the art and craft of individual disciplines of creativity. Yet few are so inclusive, so welcoming as this book, offering insight not only for furthering ones abilities in the traditional arts, but also in our day to day creativity, which so enriches our lives.

Based on the authors’ combined fifty-five years of teaching, working with writing groups and providing workshops on writing and creativity, The Fire Inside is written in a spirit of warmth and generosity. It invites the reader to:

Say yes to creativity and the nurturing it provides

Choose to live a bigger life

Uncover inner sources of inspiration and discover how “the magic” happens

Become a part of the creative community

Let go of forces that try to limit you

Develop skills for what it takes to live more creatively

Locate the “sweet spot” needed to build your life as an artist and creative being

Wherever  one may be in his or her creative life—just tiptoeing in or fully immersed in the life of the imagination, The Fire Inside will be a companion in that life, a source of encouragement and inspiration. The manuscript is composed short essays designed to provide a daily dose of support and motivation. It includes anecdotes, inspirational quotations and end of chapter meditations and exercises which ask Why not me? What gets in my way of being creative? In what unknown ways am I waiting to blossom. 

More and more, we hunger for meaning and for opportunities of self-expression. The Fire Inside, in its bite-sized essays which can be read in five or ten minute increments, speaks to that hunger, and provides a source of the creative nourishment we all need.




Deep within us, we have a yearning, a passion, a desire to make and to do, to create something out of our hearts and imaginations that did not exist before. To bring forth something new upon the earth. It is innate in us, this intense wanting, and when we are engaged in the specific type of creativity we were meant to do—whether it be painting, writing, making music, or designing a new way to educate our children—we experience what Martha Graham calls “a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening.” It’s what puts the spark in our eyes, the skip in our steps. It is the fire inside.
         Do you know that fire? Sometimes it manifests itself as restlessness,a vague dissatisfaction, a feeling that there is something important you must do, you have to do, to be true to yourself. It is the little ache you feel when you read a story that is heartbreakingly true and think I want to do that, or when you see a painting that stuns you with its power, and your fingers itch to pick up a paintbrush. Maybe it isn’t exactly clear what is burning inside, what you want and are put on earth to do. Or perhaps you know in your bones that you must write poetry, you must dance or die, you must create gardens of incredible beauty, but maybe you’re afraid that if you try you will fall flat on your face. You doubt yourself and your abilities. This is the way we humans are, having an intense wanting on one hand, fear and doubt on the other. But let us accept as an essential truth that we are all creative, wildly creative, each and every one of us— that we have vast reserves of untapped talents and abilities—songs only we can write, sculptures waiting to be born from the unique spirit that is us; and when we accept that belief and act on it, oh, then! We wake each day with a new animation, a vibrancy and passion. We feel like children let out of a stuffy classroom into a blue-sky spring day, and we can’t wait to see what we can do with it.
         The fire inside is the “something” that fascinates you, intrigues you, so that you go to sleep and wake up thinking about it. You want to study it from all its interesting angles and make it central to your life, keep working at it, falling short in your aspirations at times, but trying and trying again. And if you are not currently involved with something that brings with it such zeal, if you’ve kept your fire tamped down, unable to act on your passion for whatever reason, know that it is still there—the beginning of days filled with intense purpose and meaning, waiting for you.

The Highest Kite
         Imagination is the highest kite that can fly.
         —Lauren Bacall, By Myself and Then Some          The human brain is a remarkable thing. It keeps the body going, stores knowledge, analyzes, remembers, puts two and two together to make sense of the world, and somehow allows for the miracle of imagination. When we were children, we lived in worlds rich in imagination, allowing us to transform a blanket draped over a chair into a cave, the tree-filled ditch behind the house into a secret forest. We carried out endless adventures in the worlds we created, the synapses in our brains sparking with delight and excitement.
         But when we become adults and take on duty and responsibility, we don’t invite imagination out to play as much as we used to. The good news—especially for those wanting to live more creative lives—is that we can become just as involved in flights of fancy as we used to be, rediscovering the world in all its beauty, its design as well as its asymmetrical magnificence. Ask yourself: if you were a little seed in the ground waiting for spring to warm you and pull the green livingness of you up to the sun, what would that be like? If you were a baby robin in a blue egg in a nest, how would it be pecking your way into the world? Crazy questions, maybe, but ones that can stimulate us to bursts of creativity, and as Lauren Bacall suggests, that is a joyous way of living in this world.
         So, if you haven’t exercised the muscles of your imagination lately, why not start now? Not that you have to embark on a novel, necessarily, or begin work on the next Mona Lisa; you can begin simply and joyfully as children do. Look at pictures of art and imagine stepping inside the frames. Who would you talk to and what would you see? Or look outside your window and take note of the different elements there. Maybe you see a bird flying or tree branches swaying in the breeze, then imagine a conversation with that bird or that tree. It may come haltingly at first, in fits and starts, but when you let whimsy back into your life, the brain begins to work in new ways, mapping out new neural pathways. And like muscles gradually becoming stronger as you exercise, so does the imagination become livelier and more free-wheeling. You will find your life opening up, becoming richer as your mind discovers ideas for your next artistic project in the pattern of the night sky or the sound of the wind before a storm. Imagination can be the be-all and end-all for you; it can be everything.

 




  









Lucy Adkins earned her MFA from the University of Nebraska at Omaha and is a writer of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. Her poetry and short fiction have appeared in many journals and anthologies, and her first poetry chapbook, One Life Shining, was published by Pudding House Press. She co-presents the Nebraska Humanities program “Diaries and Letters of Early Nebraska Settlers,” and is a frequent writing instructor for OLLI, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, and the Larksong Writers’ Workshops. Her book, Two-Toned Dress, was the winner of the 2019 Blue Light Press poetry chapbook contest.

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | PINTEREST

 

Becky Breed, a veteran educator, poet, and essayist, co-wrote and facilitated “Women at the Springs,” a Nebraska Humanities program empowering women to live more courageously, as well as “The Intergenerational Project” connecting elders and teens through stories to promote communication, writing, and use of the media. She has an Ed.D. in Education, and in addition to teaching at the university level, was the principal of a Gold Star School which was awarded recognition for significant improvements in reading, writing, and math. The students’ resiliency and drive to be the best they can be helped shape the fabric for several of the enclosed essays.

Together the two co-authored Writing in Community: Say Goodbye to Writer’s Block and Transform Your Life, which was awarded an “IPPY” in the Independent Publishers Book Awards. Writing in Community, the first book in their “Essential Writing and Creativity” series, along with the impact of Adkins’ and Breed’s many presentations and workshops led to their being named winners of the 2020 Lincoln, Nebraska Mayor’s Arts Award in Artistic Achievement in Literature.

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK



 


WRITING IN COMMUNITY: SAY GOODBYE TO WRITER’S BLOCK AND TRANSFORM YOUR LIFE

 






Sponsored By:

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Book Review: The Sitting Swing by Irene Watson

  



Paperback: 248 pages
Publisher: Loving Healing Press (July 16, 2008)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1932690670
ISBN-13: 978-1932690675
Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 0.6 inches

Book Synopsis:

Irene Watson's pretentious life could go no further until she faced her past. Her moving and inspiring memoir begins at the end, in a recovery center, whe she has gone to understand a childhood fraught with abuse, guilt, and uncertainty.

Two distinct parts of the book look at abusive child rearing and the process of recovery years later. This story shows change, growth, and forgiveness are possible. It gives hope and freedom to those accepting the past and re-writing life scripts that have been passed down for generations. It's never too late to change your life, never too late to heal.




This book was truly an eye opener. Upon hearing of Irene's upbringing, I got tears in my eyes. My mother is not a whole lot older than Irene, and yet she had clothing bought for her and plumbing and electricity her entire life! She was the oldest of 6 children, but never felt neglected (maybe the first born syndrome was in play...even then). My heart broke for young Irene, constantly living in the shadow of a brother she never knew, and was never spoken of. She could do nothing right, yet had no freedom as both of her parents were afraid of what might happen to their daughter. Their fear may have led to their inability to show her the love she so desparately craved, and led to her seeking to find any way out of a miserable exsistence.

This books starts out with Irene enrolling in Avalon, a treatment facility recommended by her friends. She is leary from the very beginning as she looks up at the corner of the room and sees a video camera. There is no way she is going to consent to being videotaped, who do these people think they are? After dealing with Gilles for the first two weeks, she is ready to throw in the towel. She is not sure she believes anything that he is "preaching", it is the same old, same old and he is harsh and demeaning in his delivery. After the first two weeks his wife Liliane takes over the sessions and it is a different world. Gone is the harsh and demeaning lessons, and the love and support that Irene felt so lacking in the beginning of her stay comes shining through...that is until she has to do a scripted session about a conversation she envisions with her husband. Liliane has words with Irene, words that shock Irene but in the end lead her to the breakthrough she needed all along.

There were so many parts of this book that I could relate to. I have some people in my family that struggle with alcohol, and it is heartbreaking to watch. It also is the reason that I don't drink, something that Irene and I share. Don't get me wrong, I will have an occasional glass of wine, but do not enjoy being around people that have had too much to drink. I also can relate to the overprotective aspect of mothering...but I am the culprit. I don't seclude my daughters, but I do have a daughter with heart defects and there isn't a day that passes that I don't try to protect her just a little bit more than you might a "regular" child. I think the part that I could relate to the most was the Needs section from her stay at Avalon. After reading that I knew that this was my type of woman - it was exactly the way I thought of things.

This was an excellent book, and one I would recommend highly. Great job Irene, and I look forward to more from you in the future!



About the author:

Irene Watson holds a Masters Degree in Psychology, with honors, from Regis University in Denver, CO. Her life has taken her on many paths, with breakthrough results and exemplar growth, to find her authentic and true self. She lives with her husband in Austin, Texas. You can visit her website at http://www.irenewatson.com/.

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Monday, June 7, 2021

It's Monday What Are You Reading?

 


It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a place to meet up and share what you have been, and are about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment and er… add to your groaning TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started on J Kaye’s blog and then was hosted by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn here at The Book Date.

Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels or anything in those genres – join them.


WHAT I READ LAST WEEK:

            



(Library/Sora)

I actually was on a roll reading Karen Marie Moning's Fever series but just wasn't drawn to read Dani's story. I may go back to it at some point but knew I had many other books on my list. I did love this series and will review them as a lot soon. 

I have owned The Coldest Girl in Coldtown for a few years but to be honest, it is just easier to read on my Kindle so I checked it out from our Sora system (that is our schools library system). I will review this soon as well, it wasn't as good as I hoped but I didn't hate it. 


(REVIEWS COMING SOON)

***********

WHAT I'M READING NOW:




(NETGALLEY)

A chilling feminist novel set in a near-future dystopia, Anna explores the conflicts between selfhood and expectations, safety and control, and the sacrifices we make for the sake of protection.

Beaten. Branded. Defiant.

Anna is a possession. She is owned by the man named Will, shielded from the world of struggles by his care. He loves her, protects her, and then breaks her. Anna is obedient, dutiful, and compliant. Anna does not know her place in the world.

When she falls pregnant, Anna leaves her name behind, and finds the strength to run. But the past - and Will - catch up with her in an idyllic town with a dark secret, and this time, it’s not just Anna who is at risk.


UP NEXT:



(NETGALLEY)

Few writers evoke the complexities of the heart and the gritty fascination of the American South as vividly as Donna Everhart, whose lyrical new novel, set against the background of the Great Depression, is a powerful story of courage, survival, and friendship . . .
In the dense pine forests of North Carolina, turpentiners labor, hacking into tree trunks to draw out the sticky sap that gives the Tar Heel State its nickname, and hauling the resin to stills to be refined. Among them is Rae Lynn Cobb and her husband, Warren, who run a small turpentine farm together.
Though the work is hard and often dangerous, Rae Lynn, who spent her childhood in an orphanage, is thankful for it—and for her kind if careless husband. When Warren falls victim to his own negligence, Rae Lynn undertakes a desperate act of mercy. To keep herself from jail, she disguises herself as a man and heads to the only place she can think of that might offer anonymity—a turpentine camp in Georgia named Swallow Hill.
Swallow Hill is no easy haven. The camp is isolated and squalid, and commissary owner Otis Riddle takes out his frustrations on his browbeaten wife, Cornelia. Although Rae works tirelessly, she becomes a target for Crow, the ever-watchful woods rider who checks each laborer’s tally. Delwood Reese, who’s come to Swallow Hill hoping for his own redemption, offers “Ray” a small measure of protection, and is determined to improve their conditions. As Rae forges a deeper friendship with both Del and Cornelia, she begins to envision a path out of the camp. But she will have to come to terms with her past, with all its pain and beauty, before she can open herself to a new life and seize the chance to begin again.


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Thursday, May 27, 2021

⭐AUTHOR INTERVIEW ⭐ ISLA GREY⭐ AUTHOR OF MU: THE GRIMM CASES COLLECTION PART ONE⭐





Lyla Oweds is an Amazon bestselling paranormal romance and urban fantasy author who resides in the beautiful Pocono Mountains, Pennsylvania. She grew up near Gettysburg, Pennsylvania and is a native of Baltimore, Maryland, and has a deep appreciation for the paranormal, hauntings, and Edgar Allan Poe. As such, she loves all things fantasy, mystery, crime, and horror.

When not reading, writing, or working as a web programmer, Lyla can be found doing adult-y things such as being a mom to small children, cleaning, and gardening. She also frequently enjoys makeup videos, massages, wine, and coffee.

WEBSITE & SOCIAL LINKS:

Website: http://lylaoweds.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lylaoweds






The things I see aren’t for the faint of heart.

And I am no longer willing to ignore them. Not even when my family, and my best friend, tell me to keep quiet about what’s happening. They say people will think I’m crazy.

Maybe I am.

But the spirit haunting my professor’s house is definitely trying to tell me something, and I’m the only one who can see it.

The one person who can help me is my best friend’s brother. But I don’t know if I can trust him or his friends. Or if I can step outside the protective bubble I’ve built around myself.

At this point it’s a toss up: the ghosts will kill me or my panic attacks will.

Either way, I figure I’m going to die.

ORDER YOUR COPY

Amazon → https://amzn.to/3r4qCRt



Thank you for this interview!  I’d like to know more about you as a person first. When did you start writing?

I started writing comedy fanfiction in high school, then stopped for a few years even as I plotted out my current series in my head. Then, as a way to cope with some changes happening in my personal life, I began to write again as a form of therapy.

As a published author, what would you say was the most pivotal point of your writing life?

The day I began to work on my own series. It’s one thing to consider fanfiction, but an original work is a completely different ballgame.

If you could go anywhere in the world to start writing your next book, where would that be and why?

China. My series is based heavily in Chinese Five Element theory (as I used to practice it as a therapist). I was going to study abroad, but my funding fell through at the last minute, so I’ve actually never had a chance to visit the country.

If you had 4 hours of extra time today, what would you do?

Sleep!

Where would you like to set a story that you haven’t done yet?

A cruise ship.

Back to your present book, The Grimm Cases series, how did you publish it?

I’m self-published. There were a few publishers I was considering originally, but in the end decided to self-publish so I could have full control of my characters, the story, branding, etc. Since the story is so important to me, I couldn’t see myself caving in any of those things.

In writing your book, did you travel anywhere for research?

No.

Why was writing The Grimm Cases so important to you?

The Grimm Cases is a story about recovery. The main character, Bianca, was extremely traumatized as a child with elements of physical and sexual abuse. She’s made it into adulthood, but has refused to acknowledge any of her past, and instead opts to ignore that it’s affecting her. However, it does affect her, because she is barely able to function in the real world due to her anxiety and fears. This is a story about a character who has comes to terms with the fact that she has no choice but to explore those aspects of herself if she wants to truly be at peace.

Where do you get your best ideas and why do you think that is?

Lying in bed listening to music. That’s basically the only time I’m alone without children, so I can think.

Any final words?

Thanks so much for having me! I hope that you all love this series as much as I do.


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Friday, May 21, 2021

Book Feature: Patti Cake by Donielle Ingersoll

 

 










 

Inside the Book:





Title: Patti Cake
Author: Donielle Ingersoll
Publisher: iUniverse
Genre: Inspirational Romance
Format: Ebook

All Patti Murray asked the Lord for was help in finding a God-fearing husband who would be a good provider for her and the family she hoped to raise. Oh, and if he were tall, dark, and handsome, that wouldnt be so bad either. Aside from this goal, she wanted to continue to grow her cake decorating business. This would give her the opportunity to exercise her unique creative talent and earn a little money on the side while being a full-time mommy. However, when one of her exquisite wedding cakes comes to the attention of a national celebrity, Patti is suddenly thrust into the exotic world of the rich and famous and a whole new chance for romance. Was this Gods plan all along?

Author Donielle Ingersolls Patti Cake: An Inspirational Romance, ventures into the world of this witty cake decorator as she has humorous encounters with a tall dark stranger. Enter her kitchen and watch as she creates her magical cake creations. Join her as she tries to fit into the dazzling world of the elite. Youll empathize with her as she struggles with intense, conflicting emotions as secrets from her deep, dark past come bubbling to the surface. And be with Patti as she makes the decision to marry for love or love and money.

Youll be able to create your own versions of Pattis delectable desserts because Patti Cake: An Inspirational Romance includes recipes. Enjoy them as you follow Patti on her journey to find love.

Purchase Here

Meet the Author:

Donielle Ingersoll was gifted with a double portion of creativity and an active imagination. Located in the western portion of the United States, this author brings a unique view of God’s guidance in our lives to readers who love spiritual romance and adventure. Sometimes it is good to see life through the eyes of others.


Giveaway

Donielle is giving away a $25 Gift Card!

 
Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins May 17 and ends on May 28.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on May 29.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!

ENTER TO WIN!

a Rafflecopter giveaway 

Tour Schedule

Monday, May 17
Book featured at Review From Here
Book featured at Literal Exposure

Tuesday, May 18
Book featured at The Writer's Life
Book featured at As the Pages Turn

Wednesday, May 19
Book featured at Splashes of Joy
Book featured at Personovelty

Thursday, May 20
Book featured at Blogher
Book featured at SheWrites

Friday, May 21
Book featured at A Title Wave
Book featured at I'm Shelf-ish

Monday, May 24
Book featured at Read My First Chapter

Tuesday, May 25
Book featured at The Dark Phantom
Book featured at The Book Rack

Wednesday, May 26
Book featured at The Zen Reader
Book featured at Inkslinger's Opus

Thursday, May 27
Book featured at All Inclusive Retort
Book featured at A Taste of My Mind

Friday, May 28
Book featured at Bent Over Bookwords
Book featured at Feeling a Draft
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Book Blast: CBT for Psychotherapist by Avigdor Bonchek

 

 








 

Inside the Book:



Title: CBT For Psychotherapists
Author: Avigdor Bonchek
Publisher: PartridgeSingapore
Genre: Psychology
Format: Ebook

Avigdor Bonchek, a clinical psychologist, explores how cognitive behavioral therapy and treatment programs that derive from the theory can help solve a variety of psychological problems in CBT for Psychotherapists.
Drawing on professional literature and his decades of professional experience, he encourages readers and practitioners to think critically when deciding how to use CBT.
In straightforward language, he explains what CBT isand isntand how it differs from other approaches. He also highlights some of the strengths of CBT, including:
It takes a here-and-now approach: Knowledge of the patients past is not essential to helping the patient solve his problem.
It offers an individualized treatment plan for each patient: There is no one size fits all to solve problems.
It outlines clear behavioural goals for patients: CBT helps people overcome their problems.
Therapists take an active role: They direct the therapy, assign homework, and coach their patients
Lastly, CBT therapists usually see their patients as having a problem rather than seeing them as problem patients.
Filled with examples, anecdotes, and insights on varied approaches, this book is a balanced guide to CBT for new and experienced therapists alike.

Purchase Here

Meet the Author:

Avigdor Bonchek is a clinical psychologist with more than fifty years of experience as a therapist. He received a doctoral degree from New York University and did post-doctoral studies with pioneer behavior therapist Professor Joseph Wolpe at Temple University. He also studied with Professor Giorgio Nardone in Italy. He taught in universities in the United States and Israel for more than thirty years and is the author of numerous articles and books on psychotherapy and psychology.


Giveaway

Avigdor is giving away a $25 Gift Card!

 
Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins May 17 and ends on May 28.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on May 29.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!

ENTER TO WIN!

a Rafflecopter giveaway 

Tour Schedule

Monday, May 17
Book featured at Write and Take Flight
Book featured at  Fiction to Fruition

Tuesday, May 18
Book featured at 
A Title Wave
Book featured at The Hype and the Hoopla

Wednesday, May 19
Book featured at 
Voodoo Princess
Book featured at 
As the Page Turns

Thursday, May 20
Book featured at  All Inclusive Retort
Book featured at 
Confessions of an Eccentric Bookaholic

Friday, May 21
Book featured at 
I'm Shelf-ish
Book featured at 
The Literary Nook

Monday, May 24
Book featured at 
Lover of Literature
Book featured at 
A Book Lover

Tuesday, May 25
Book featured at 
From Paperback to Leatherbound
Book featured at 
Write and Take Flight

Wednesday, May 26
Book featured at 
The Writer's Life
Book featured at 
Harmonious Publicity

Thursday, May 27
Book featured at 
Bent Over Bookwords
Book featured at 
Review From Here

Friday, May 28
Book featured at 
The Revolving Bookshelf
Book featured at 
Literal Exposure

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