Sedges to coffee in time.

senior hands on a bible

For those wanting ROW80 scroll down to the bottom – am working on getting a different page but not quite there yet:(

Some of you might know how much I like connections through time. I delight in those I find in my own family history, but I often read of others which give a very satisfactory feeling of contentment. One such,one of many in fact, occurred in one of my summer reads, a book going under the catchy little title of

Etymologicon: A Circular Stroll Through the Hidden Connections of the English Language ‘tis by Mark Forsyth.

Well worth the read I do assure all word lovers out there.

Let me tell one of the stories of happenstance he tells. The tale begins in the 700’s (well probably well before, language being a very old affair), when the Vikings were indulging in one of their regular raids of mayhem on these shores. They landed in the North and plundered their way down the East coast, maybe some were beginning to land grab and settle down, and just outside Harrogate in Yorkshire one, or maybe a group, found a stream full of splendid ‘sedge’. I assume it was splendid, why else name what is after all only a stream not even a river; maybe just because it was such a useful plant. It is not so hard naming geographical features – this was called Sedge Stream, it is not like naming a novel after all, needs no poetry or mystery just needs to identify a place.

Of course as they were Norsemen and spoke Old Norse what it was actually named was Starbeck, which is Old Norse for sedge stream. Over time families lived around this stream and they became known as ‘Starbecks’ and then over more time and due to – whatever – a vowel changed and they became Starbucks.

 

Now you are jumping to conclusions, this tale is more devious than that:)

During history there was the usual turmoil, war and mayhem. Religions came and went, religions changed, splintered and chaos abounded all around! There was not room in these islands for all these dissenting splinters.

Fortunately, during this history, the intrepid had sailed across the oceans and ‘discovered’ new lands. One such splintered religion – Quakers- believed the ads painting this new land in wonderful shades of pink and gambled their lives and future history on the dream.

I say gamble because,what else was it, people drowned just crossing the Irish Sea for goodness sake, and that was a veritable puddle compared to the Atlantic. And do you know the size of those sailing ships?!

One of those families settled on Nantucket Island and eventually made it big time in the whaling industry. They were Starbucks.

Wait for it- wait for it.

Now a couple of important deviations in the tale.

First deviation: A former whaler called Melville wrote a novel,I do like it when fiction becomes entangled in fact. He named his novel Moby Dick,it was, for those who have never heard of it about a great white whale which was hunted by whalers on a ship named Pequod. Melville knew of course about the great whaling family and in a nod of homage toward them named the first mate, Starbuck. The novel wasn’t that popular in the 19th century but come the 20th it gained the popularity it deserved. It was hammered into school children across the reading world.

2nd deviation: We go to Seattle now to a school teacher who loved Moby Dick, rating it high on his list of must have/must read all time great books. His name was Jerry Baldwin. He had a couple of friends who like him wished to set up a business. A coffee shop type business. Jerry knew he had the perfect name for this new shop.

Yup you’ve guessed it ‘Pequod’!

Well his partners didn’t take to it and dusting down a map looked for some local name that would do better. They found an old mining settlement with a name they liked and thought their shop should be called ‘Starbo’. Jerry not a man to be beaten saw a possibility and suggested a compromise between them and himself.

So Starbucks was born.

From 1st century Vikings, through religious turmoil, across the wild Atlantic to Nantucket Island,a hop across to Seattle and then across the globe to the 21st century. From Sedges to whaling to literature to school teaching to international coffee.

I do like connections over time and distance:)

 

 

 

ROW80:

 

Having faded through the summer I am so impossibly behind it doesn’t bear thinking of:) Bearing this in mind this round I have singled my goals to one – get WIP finished, at least to friend from forever/editor level.  If I do NaNa this year it will be as a rebel, just for the buzz to keep WIP flowing.

I will try and catch up the networking – been a trifle remiss over the summer!

so all the best to all and have a fruitful week:)

Cover reveal party, a great new book and Morgan Dragonwillow

 

Cover Reveal

 

Let’s have a party

Fun Trivia Game

 

What’s a party without a game? In this game you will hop from one blog to the next, finding the clues and when you think you have the answer, go back to Morgan Dragonwillow’s post, Soul Prompts Book Cover Reveal Party, and put the answer in the comments. The first person with the correct answer will win a signed copy of Soul Prompts and a $10 Amazon gift card. Have fun!

Question:

Where in the world is one of my favorite places to sit or walk and connect with the source of creation and to remember we are all one?

CLUE: It is in a state park. Next Stop Priya Sridhar

Good luck but most of all have a great time!

I am pleased to reveal the cover for Soul Prompts: Finding and Hearing Your Inner Voice.

Soul Prompts Book Cover2d

Soul Prompts is a spiritual writing experience that gives you a direct line to the source of inspiration.

If you could communicate with your soul would you?

If you could hear what your soul’s plan is for this life, would you want to hear it?

What if learning to communicate with your soul could help you get your words on the page?

Soul Prompts will help you connect to that voice within whether you want to have a deeper spiritual life, a better understanding of your purpose, discover which path to take next or to help you get your stories written.

Are you open to the possibilities?

It’s time to have a conversation with your soul.

This book is for you if you want to:

  1. Take your writing to a deeper level.
  2. Explore your connection to your soul.
  3. Live a more spiritual life.
  4. Have a better understanding of your writing journey.
  5. Figure out your next step.
  6. Discover where your words come from.
  7. Learn why your soul chose this life.

And so much more.

Soul Prompts: Finding and Hearing Your Inner Voice – Paperback and ebook – coming out this October!

 

 

Me aAuthor

Morgan Dragonwillow is a poet, survivor, lover of all things magical, dancing with words, recovering perfectionist, and indie author that (mostly) doesn’t let her fears get in the way of her passion for writing and creating. She is team leader at @StoryDam and creatrix of #OctPoWriMo. She lives in Marietta, Ga. with her loving and patient partner, their dog that thinks she’s a princess, and the cat that reminds her that she isn’t.

 

This beautiful cover was created by the artistic and wonderful Andrea Moore! Working with her was a pleasure and she was very patient with my questions and suggestions until we were both happy with the results! If you are working on a book and don’t have a cover yet, I highly recommend you have a chat with her!

Andrea Moore a

Cover Artist

Andrea Moore grew up in a town so small, on top of a marsh, that the mosquito was considered the city bird. She uses her degree in computer graphics and her artistic abilities to sprinkle joy throughout local consignment shops and EtsyEtsy. Andrea is now breaking out of the box further as she explores the adventures of book cover creating.

 

 

 

 

 

Morgan Dragonwillow and her new book Soul Prompts were guests on the Red Carpet today.  So great to have her here:)

Red carpet at night.

Loss, gain, exhaustion and fun

deer grooming c

 

I have abandoned my holiday to post as I am feeling a wee bit guilty at my lack of contact this round.

The two or so weeks before I went away, I was in a determined effort to finish moving the rooms around. Not just the sorting of endless stash and, I have to confess, accumulated rubbish! but also switching furniture from room to room. It was foolhardy and I pushed myself past safe limits, but I got as far as sleeping in my new room before I left to explore my roots. There is still unpacking of boxes to do, but that can be done in the sunshine of my south facing room now, with no time pressures.

I wondered if I had gone too far, I was near the point of exhaustion when I ceased working, with hardly a functioning brain cell, However,not only did I manage that, but after a day to rest I managed a very energetic two and a half days away. So feeling very pleased with myself.

Kiss a Frog explained where and why I was going to visit the ancestral pile! It exceeded all expectations. I come back with many photos  and  lots of notes of new facts gleaned from various guides and gardeners. Fortunately, my friend from forever/editor was with me because, even though there are months only between us in age, she is spry and energetic, unlike me, and set off to yomp over the hills and dales of the estate.

And I do mean hills.

Of the steepest, the house being nestled at the bottom of the valley. So I have lovely pics of the parklands, the tree collection and of course the deer as well, I concentrated on the house and gardens. Lovely and at times hysterical time was had by both, I haven’t laughed so much in yonks.

As friend from forever/editor didn’t have to be back home until the weekend, I took the rest of the week off also and have been having a very lazy time of it all. This morning I snapped up some great plant bargains at a local Boot Fair and my new garden has been boosted considerably for it.

The only sore point in these last couple of weeks is that Older Cat lost her battle with cancer. The last morning she slept beside me for a while on the bed, she was never a bed person, so it was nice to share a few moments like that. Younger Cat keeps watching out the garden window, I suspect for her old adversary. However, Older Cat went peacefully and without intrusive medical work so I am pleased about that, even though I shall miss her.

I have done nothing writerly for over a week now, after the A-Z frenzy, I felt a trifle wrung dry, but I have managed to draft 18 short stories for Companion Tales, so have kept up on Story A Day Challenge.

Now I must get down to getting back to a normal routine for words on page, I really do need to bring some completion to various projects.

So it is head down, probably.
Fingers flying, hopefully!:)

Next week?

Write, edit, catch up on networking, sit in sun, garden.

Hope all has gone well since I vanished, all the best for the coming week :)

Affection and sunshine when we fade

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I am one with the white rabbit – I’m late I’m late. . .

Round two already, life is twirling around in the sunshine> I had a good break, busy but good. In my real life:) I read a great deal, began my new garden and began journaling. I finished making my crazy patchwork cover for journal, made a couple of fat dolls and moved a whole lot more stash from one room to another, will soon have changed bedroom and workroom around and the sun will shine on me when I wake in the mornings.
I continued pre-drafting blogs, posting A-Z blogs and began writing the missing bits.

Have at last managed to carve out three days so I can get down southwest to visit the old ancestral pile. It takes a great deal of organization as I have to have someone sleeping here at night and popping in during the day for my sister and also it is a little too far for me to drive at the moment with my health not recovered yet so I need someone to get me there. It has all come together. Yay. So two nights away in May with friend from forever/editor.

I also spent more time sitting in the sun with older cat, she is definitely desiring more human contact and affection as she fades. I have to handle her more carefully because of the growth on her spleen, but her purr is not diminished and we spend time just being together. I guess that’s what we all want at the end.

This round I have tweaked goals a trifle. Because the re-read last month showed some gaps in Children’s Tale I will be spending time this round on it, it will not going to friend from forever/editor just yet.

I need to design a cover for memoirs this round and get them Lulu-ed
I must get a trailer together for Jack’s Tale
Think of a cover for The Children’s Tale.

I will write short stories in May while the story a day challenge is on but not committing myself to one a day, just work on the shorts each day – for Companion Tales.
In the same way as I will join in JuNo again this year, but not committing to the 50000 words. Not sure what I will be doing it depends so much on how well I have proceeded on Children’s Tale.

 

I hope everyone had a good break and are all fueled up for this round:)

Ginger in the milk and chilli in the jam

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Another round over and, really, where does the time hurry to? Spring is let loose – although the temperature plunge today would rather give lie to that – and April is almost visible around the corner. Hmmm – how have we all measured up I wonder? For myself looking back at my goals at the start of this round I have done better than I thought.

I wanted to finish The Children’s Tale and begin editing – well, I began editing only to find I needed to add some more writing, that’s okay – it’s part of what editing is about – so pretty well up to speed there.

Finish editing memoirs and find a title well, working title is, at the moment, Ginger in the Milk, Chilli in the Jam and editing is done (must send to ‘friend from forever/editor’ for her keen eye:) – think the chapters need moving around a bit. So yes not bad.

Blogging more – yes, I managed that reasonably well and fairly regularly, also have re-arranged my Triberr v blogs and joined a few more tribes so that blogging next round will be more effective.

Put some work into social networking and have improved Goodreads, Google + and Pinterest – Google + lags a little behind in my understanding but more comfortable with it.

A-Z blogs nearly finished. Post on what my theme is here.

Have had some guests on the Red Carpet and, what wasn’t in my goals, tried my hand at beta reading.

As far as my life goals have gone – I have managed to establish a reasonable good division of writing to reality!

Two months now of eating better – three meals a day now – bloods are on target and appetite is reluctantly returning, doctors and nurses pleased with me:) In exchange for feeding myself, I now have more energy and have managed a fair amount of time in the garden – mainly sawing down trees (small:) and pruning/weeding and can walk further. Still need a lot of rest, but I needed that before, so the exercise is a bonus.

Have designated Saturday and/or Sunday as craft days where I can get on with embroidery, art doll making, crazy patchwork etc and now my new delight art journaling.

I had already made my busier social weeks reading, rather than writing, weeks, so all in all I am much more relaxed and less stressed.

I hope everyone else had a good round and will be back next month ready to go again. enjoy the hols :)

Proverbs are the children of experience

proverb badge

proverb badge

As I have nothing to post on goals, I thought I would use the Wednesday check in to share a few ‘wise’ words! Depending on how you feel about proverbs. I like them – okay the well known ones border on cliche, but even cliche can be good sometimes. They are popular because they offer homely wisdom. They are not invented by the Shakespeares and Dickens of the world . They are observations and quick answers from us ‘common’ folk – hope I didn’t offend just then:)

Proverbs are found in every culture and are very similar in all, just wrapped a little differently, because aren’t human problems pretty well the same the world over. They are often contradictory, quirky, and, if very old, difficult to understand which, is of course exactly like LIFE itself:)

Today I offer a handful for us writers.

          1) Every book must be chewed to get out its juice (Chinese)

2) Like author, like book

3) The pen is mightier than the sword

6) Painters and poets have leave to lie (I reckon that applies to all fiction writers also:)

4) The calf, the goose, the bee:the world is ruled by these three

(quite old – calf = vellum, goose = quill pen – the bee = sealing wax)

But beware

5) Writing destroys the memory

(believed to be the  destruction of oral memory)

Have a good week everyone:)

 

Been missing but, I have been busy – honest:)

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Been missing for a while, no excuses, nothing wrong – just missing. However, I haven’t been idle:)

I have been organizing myself (hard work that!) continuing with changing the way I blog, market, and share. I sawed down a few more tree trunks, weeded quite a bit of the path that wends its way through the garden. Been writing more A-Z posts for April. Finishing a book cover and some beta reading. Busy, busy, time.

So, new blogging regime?

I have lost patience with Facebook refusing to share my posts unless I pay them, in consequence, I am changing the main focus of sharing to Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest. I have, I hope got the hang of Pinterest now, and this last week I have spent time wandering around the halls of Google+, popping my head around doorways and checking out ‘circles’. I think I understand how it works much better now and so will spend some time making friends there.

I have reorganized my Triberr links (one can only change the link to a blog site once every 30 days) so, as I am running 4 blogs there, I am changing when I blog on a site. Some, like this one, will get onto Triberr every other month. I have just joined a couple more to do with book reviews and blogs.

Because of this I shall only be hosting other authors(The Red Carpet), their books spots, guest posts etc on alternate months when they will be tweeted by seven of the blogs on Triberr – giving the maximum range of people likely to see the posts.

So alternate month, starting with May,July,September, November. Anyone thinking of book tours, book spots, guest posts etc and would like another place to post during those months get in touch I can book you in:)

I am sharing any of these last, ‘Red Carpets’also with my ‘albertareads’ blog which is attached to Goodreads as well as , now,  Triberr so not just Twitter but Goodreads as well, bonus:)

I’m sure the other sites will want paying at some time, it is the way of the world but, for the moment, they are still free.

I have created boards on Pinterest for blogs, interviews, books etc as well as boards for my publications, memoirs and family history so all my posts will be pinned up there as well, fingers crossed they will be read. I had already been sharing other peoples posts to Google but not mine, as yet, as I get confidence in the place I will post more often.

Google + seems to be more like Facebook groups, like this one, and these are still fun to be on so I will not be leaving Facebook anytime soon. It all sounds complicated and it has taken a bit of working out and planning and exploring but most of that work is over and hopefully I can get back to serious writing again:)

I have begun to write a month’s worth of posts for each change of Triberr,it is in fact easier to draft these one after the other as I can stay in the same mind set.

April is different as the A-Z is an everyday affair and I’ll switch most of my tribes to’ kissafrog‘ for the month.

All this has taken a fair amount of time but I have actually rather enjoyed it:)

I have also been watching a lot of short videos on journaling – learning about sealing paper and such stuff. Spent a day constructing crazy patchwork cover for a journal, with my embroidery group, almost finished – needs a little more actual embroidery on it.

When I was taking back the reading group books to the library in the village I noticed they had Season One of Game of Thrones, on a whim, I booked it out, I have read the first three books of the series and thought I would see how the DVD did. Was pleasantly surprised at how well they kept to the book.

Enjoyed it. Didn’t expect to.

The only snag is we are only allowed a DVD for a week before returning it and Season One is so long! I do not normally spend so much time watching things. Wrecked spare time:)

I have been doing a little editing. Drafting a lot of blogs, sewing, gardening, reading, viewing and in between time I sleep:)

I hope everyone is getting along fine and enjoying the approaching good weather of spring or, if the other side of world,  autumn