Road Map to Create Your Book

Post # 202

August 2, 2019

 

 

A Road Map to Create Your Book

Star Signs: New and Selected Poems

By Lynda McKinney Lambert

Published July 15, 2019

 

Let’s take a tour of my newest book.

I think of a book as a landscape that we can walk through.

Let’s begin with the beautiful image on the book’s cover.

 

The book  is a creation by many different people.

 

Yes, as the author, I wrote the book and selected everything that is in it.

But once I did the writing, the book was sent off to DLD books, and that is where David and Leonore Dvorkin began to do their magic on it, too.

Leonore is the editor, and David is the technical director – he’s the one who puts everything it its proper place. But decisions are made by all of us as we go through the process of creating a book.

We have a shared vision for how the book should look and how it should be designed. When I say “we” I am usually referring to the Dvorkins and me, as we worked together on the book.

 

~Book Cover ~

Our book cover has to have an image that attracts the eye of a potential reader.

The first thing you are aware of when you see a book, is the cover. Immediately, you know if you like it or if you don’t. If the cover is appealing, then you will pick up the book and open the first page to have a look at the inside.

As we created the book, the cover was the last thing that was selected.

I had the idea that I wanted a rural landscape with trees, a stream and a star strewn sky.

When Leonore Dvorkin found this photo, we instantly knew it was perfect.

James WHEELER, a photographer, created the photo that Leonore found on Pexels.

WHEELER’S original  photo was too large for the cover size, so David and Leonore selected a detail from the photo and it fit perfectly. That was an exciting day when we finalized the cover image! Every time I hold this new book in my hands, I whisper a “thank you” to the wonderful photographer who captured this breathless night scene.

 

~Pre-Publication Endorsements ~

Once you get your draft to the place where you have your poems in place where you want them, you can begin to ask some other people who are respected in the writing field to write a blurb – or an endorsement – for your book and for your promotion of the book once it is published.

I asked 2 authors  to write an endorsement that would be inside the book. The 2 blurbs are by Tennessee poet, Wesley D. Sims, and New York author, Annie Chiappetta. The 2 writings are featured on a page just inside the front cover.

An excerpt from Wesley D Sims is a special highlight on the BACK COVER.

In addition, several others wrote  pre-publication endorsements that I will use in promoting the book after publication. All writers are my personal friends.

 

~Table of Contents~

The Table of Contents is a  ROAD MAP  to help a  reader  find the items in  the book.

Every aspect of the book is listed in this section, in chronological order from beginning to end of the book.

Be prepared to spend so much time on this part of the book! It may seem endless once you begin creating it – because you will move different pieces of the book around once you begin and that will change the order of the listings in the Table of Contents every time you make a tiny change. I made  an enormous amount of changes right up to the `last day of preparation before the book was published.

 

~The Dedication Page~

Choose someone you want to honor by writing a Dedication Page for them.

I chose a high school English teacher and his wife for this Dedication. Both are deceased, but both were an important part of my academic life as a young girl, and they were life-long friends through the years.

 

~Foreword~

I wanted the Foreword to be written by an editor who has published my poems in his literary magazine and immediately, I thought of Michael Northen, editor of Wordgathering. To my delight, he agreed to do it and I was thrilled that he did.

You will find that you have so much respect for the editors you work with in the different publications, that you feel so honored when they agree to help you in this way.

 

~Divide your book into parts~

Since this is my 3rd book, I realized that I have a pattern for putting together a collection of work. I was not too aware of that fact until after I completed the 3rd book. What I will describe next, is really the skeleton on which I build the book. Other writers may do it completely different than me. That is ok, because we all have a vision of how we want our book to look. What I will describe next, is my personal vision for all 3 of my books.

~Select a Photo to Begin Each Part~

 

I am a visual artist and even though I have profound sight loss, I still highly value photographs and other art forms. I want strong visuals in all of my books. After all, my entire life-long career has been in the Fine Arts. I am still the same person I’ve always been. Because I lost my sight does not mean I have lost my VISION.

I am a visionary – one who dreams

awake or asleep

I select a photo or art work that will be the opening visual statement for each part in the book. I chose an image that would reflect an idea or theme in the first poem for that section.  People really enjoy the photos  and I get compliments on my choices. In most instances, they are my own photos. I list the source of the photos to give credit for each of them and I give each photo a title which is printed below that photo.

 

~How I create different parts~

First, I select a theme for my entire book.

My theme is always discovered in one of my poems!

There is a particular poem that just stands out, for me, and I keep thinking of that poem so much that it seems to rise to the surface of my thoughts. Eventually, I realize that poem will be my opening poem, and the theme for my book is there in that poem.

For Star Signs: New and Selected Poems, I began with the poem, “Star Signs.”

This poem is the entry way into my collection.

It was FIRST PUBLISHED  in  2016,  by Wordgathering Literary Magazine. In addition to the print version of the poem, there is also a voice recording of Melissa Cotter,  who is reading my poem. I love to listen to Melissa read my poems, for she brings them to life with her interpretations.

Listen to Melissa Cotter read;  Listen to this poem now.

READ the POEM HERE:  Read it now!

When I heard her reading my poem, it was as though I never heard it before. Her reading was so beautiful that I listened to it so many times. She gave it a magic that thrilled me when I heard her voice.

From the poem, “Star Signs,” I selected an image for the opening of  Part 1 of the book.

Once I decided on that first part, then I moved on and selected 3 other poems that would open the section of Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4.

I used a line from the opening poem, for each section –

~I’ve listed the  4 Parts of the Book and the PHOTO INTRODUCTION to each part~

~Part 1 – Lights Across the Sky~

~Part 2 – Distant Legends and Metaphors~

~Part 3 – Transmutation of Earthy Elements~

~Part 4 – For Seasons, Days, and Years~

~Acknowledgments~

For poetry, you will cite only the “first publisher” of that particular poem or essay.

Here is where good record keeping is important. If I did not keep good archives of my publications, I could never do this important piece of the book.

I keep detailed records of every individual piece of writing in a file that I update monthly.

In another file I keep the publication history of every published work.

In a third file, I keep the publication history by year.

You will need to know all of this to create your Acknowledgments Page.

Believe me – this page will change so much during the editing of the book that your head might begin to spin. Leonore and I labored over this page and the Table of Contents Page for many days throughout the entire process of creating the book.

~Meet the Author~

Here is where you will have a photo of yourself as the author of the book.

In addition, this is where you will write a biography of your professional life.

For this book, since it is a collection of new and selected poems, I wanted to share the roots of my publication life – I put my first professionally published poem in this section so my readers could enjoy seeing that first poem that motivated me to continue on the writing path back in 1990.

That poem also gives the reader the information about what is important to me as a person who loves art and poetry that spans the centuries. It establishes me as an author who loves history, mythology, the Classics,  and setting work in the historical context.

 

~Additional Highlights~

This is something I never did before, but I had some additional professional recognitions that I wanted to share with my readers. I cited some international anthologies my work appeared in; a book that was published in recognition of fiber artists who have disabilities; and listed some honours I was awarded in the past year. I did this as a way of showing my appreciation for these opportunities.

 

~The Back Cover~

The back cover is just as important as the Front Cover.

It has to look appealing and it should carry information about the book.

 

For Star Signs: New and Selected Poems, we decided to put a quote from the endorsement that Wesley D. Sims wrote.

Below that quote, we wanted to put a poem that was appealing.

We chose “Painting in Mid-October” for the back cover.

It fit perfectly.

 

Below the text is a small head shot of me – the Author of the book.

It is a detail view of the black and white photo of me which we used for the “About the Author” section. I really like this photo because it shows me wearing a hand-knit jacket that I created and I am seated in my Zen Meditation Garden, in front of the Tamukeyama Tree which is as it’s peak in brilliant hot pink/red blazing colour.

I created this road map for a book of poetry.

This works for me – and I am pleased to share it today.

I hope you find it helpful when you are beginning to design your own book.

Copyright 2019.  Lynda McKinney Lambert. All Rights Reserved.

Created for the Sizzling Summer Super Book Release Party Event,

August 3, 2019.

I will present this information and speak with our guests from 1 to 2 pm that day.

YOU can WIN a PRINT COPY of my book:

Star Signs: New and Selected Poems

1_Read this article.

2_Write a comment about the picture of the girl holding something in her hands.

What do you think this girl  is doing in the photo?

What do you think this photo says about the girl and the book of poetry?

3_After you LIKE this page, and Comment – Please SHARE on your Social Media site.

This will QUALIFY you to be in my drawing.

I’ll draw the LUCKY WINNER of the BOOK on August 10th.

Please share the happiness.

I love you for that!

 

 

 

 

 

5 Photos of a Lucky Day

5 Photos of  A Lucky Day

 

This is a  LUCKY DAY

because  I get

to share 5 PHOTOS of my ART with YOU!

 

I’d bet 5 bucks that you have just met the first

Talisman Maker and Mixed-Media Fiber Artist

in your life – Me.

 

For your viewing pleasure, I’m submitting 5 Photos:

           5 Mixed-Media Fiber Art Works from my Studio

I’ve selected talismans, a bracelet, and wall works.

Now that you have enjoyed my work, it is complete Thank you.

 

 

Each is created from fabrics, artist’s canvas, gemstones, found objects, beads, mirrors, twigs, memories and my vivid imagination.

These talismans and wall works were made in my

River Road Studio

Layered in between raising our 5 children and communitee work, I have made art for the past 45 -plus years.

 

Photo #1:

“Dance of the new Moon,” (Detail).

A  talisman

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo #2:

From the “Little Meditations” series.

This work is quite small – ab out 3 x 4 inches.

 

 

 

 

Photo #3: 

“Girl on a Bench Sees Visions of butterflies,”   Won First Place in InSights18, Louisville, KY.  This is a self-portrait of the artist as a child.

Art show sponsored by American Printing House for the blind, 2018.

 

Photo #4  My Bleeding Heart: A Talisman.

 

 

Ida Matildas Morning Glories, Encrusted Bead Work Cuff Bracelet.

 

 

 

 

 

Photo #5

Ida Matilda’s Morning Glories, form my Grandma, Ida Matilda Kiesling Kirker who died when  I was fourteen.

I remembered her flower gardens and created this piece  from my memories of her gardens.

 

 

 

 

Visit me on FaceBook:  River Road Studio

Saturday is for Sharing: Jo Elizabeth Pinto

Post #172

Saturday is for Sharing

February 23, 2019

 

Good morning to our Readers

SCAN-a-BLOG

Author’s Interview with

Lynda and Miss Opal

  We  are so delighted to welcome a fellow writer and author

 ~ Jo Elizabeth Pinto ~

 

Jo Elizabeth Pinto ~

LYNDA_ WELCOME To  RIVER ROAD STUDIO,  IN THE RURAL VILLAGE OF Wurtemburg.

 Early this morning. Lynda & Miss  Opal watched from the kitchen  window as Jo Elizabeth Pinto  walked down the long sidewalk  and stepped up onto the wraparound porch of their century-old home in The Village of Wurtemburg, in rural western Pennsylvania.

Jo arrived after a long trip from her home in Colorado. Miss Opal, the curious feline writing assistant to Lynda, was at the door, waiting to greet our long-expected guest.

Lynda_ Good Morning, Jo.  As  you see, my assistant,  Miss Opal, is here to welcome  you. She is such a help and comfort to us and we also have her sister-cat, Miss Bessie. But that isn’t all.  As you can see,  the 2 dogs, who just greeted you as you came into the kitchen, are Miss Dixie Tulip and Miss Mitchell.  The little brown Doxi-mix is our Miss Dixie Tulip,  and Miss Mitchell is  the taller one with brindle spots.  Miss Mitchell  is the  one who barked at you from the window. She gets very excited for she is a terrier.

Before you arrived  this morning, we were wondering if you have a favorite animal in your life? Do you have a bird, or a favorite wild animal that is really an important part of your life? Sometimes, we know that people have a totem animal or other sort of special creature. And, if you do, when did you become aware of that?

 Jo_At age eight, I began attending a camp for people with disabilities in the Colorado mountains. There were hummingbirds everywhere, hovering and sipping nectar from the flowers and hanging feeders. I loved hearing their high-pitched calls and rapidly beating wings.

Some years later, I was  a young woman at the same camp. I m happy to say that  the man who would become my first husband showed me a tiny nest of hummingbird eggs, no bigger than miniature jellybeans. I once freed a hummingbird trapped on a high window ledge. Before I released the exquisite creature, I relished for a moment the touch of its soft feathers and slender beak against my fingertips, its delicate feet on my palm, its vibrating heartbeat in my cupped hands.

Lynda_ Did those earlier encounters with the tiny birds give you a better or deeper understanding of nature?

Jo_ I eventually researched hummingbirds on the Internet. I was awestruck by the way the virtually weightless little birds fly nearly 450 miles, or up to twenty hours against the wind, over the Gulf of Mexico without stopping to rest, to reach their wintering grounds. I started to feel a deep kinship with the hummingbird. Both of us may seem fragile to the world, but we are amazingly strong and free. I got a tattoo of a hummingbird with flowers on each shoulder. I love my tattoos; I can cover them most of the time and show them off when I choose to.

Lynda_ Well, I have to say, I also have 2 tattoos.  They are both images of a griffin. I have always been interested in Greek Mythology and the creatures I’ve read about in those ancient writings. Sometimes, they come into my poems, too.

Miss Opal_  When  we talk about animals, I have to admit that I like to watch birds from our windows, Jo. I am really very shy, so I am contented just to see them from a distance. I would not want to touch one of them, as you did with the little hummingbird.

Are you shy, too, Jo? Are you an introvert or an extrovert? I like all people, but, I am a little bit shy around them sometimes. My sister, Bessie, always hides from people.

Lynda_  What makes you think you belong to a certain  group of people?

Jo_ I’m definitely an introvert. That doesn’t mean I don’t love people, and it doesn’t mean I’m shy around them. Neither is true, although I do prefer small groups and intimate settings to large crowds. I’ve never been afraid of public speaking, and I enjoy good conversation and an active social life. Still, I draw my energy from taking some time to myself every day. If I don’t get a bit of solitude at least several times a week, I feel overwhelmed and out-of-sorts. Introverts and extroverts may both care equally about people. But introverts refuel by taking time alone, while extroverts recharge by seeking interactions with others.

Lynda_ What do you think about your name? Do you use your own name for your professional work?

 

Jo_ Most of my family calls me Jo Elizabeth, which I’ve always loved. Friends usually shorten my name to Jo for convenience. That exasperates me a little, but I’ve gotten used to it. When I published my novel, I decided to use my initials, J. E., because I wrote the book from the point of view of a teenage male protagonist. Jo Elizabeth sounds like the name of a young woman in a romance novel, not a scrappy teenager from the projects.

 

Lynda_ Before you have to leave, would you tell  us about your AWARD-WINNING  book?

 Miss Opal_ Can you tell us about how you began to write that book?

Jo_ My novel, “The Bright Side of Darkness”, began as a short story assignment for a high school English class. I fell in love with the hard-pressed, loyal, smart-mouthed teenagers who became as real as my own friends while I wrote about them. I couldn’t quite put the story out of my mind even after I tucked the assignment away in a scrapbook and moved on with my life.

I never forgot those characters. In my twenties, in order to learn how to use a word processor, I dragged out that old short story and typed it into my first computer—a DOS machine with 5-inch floppy disks and no Internet. The writing needed a lot of work, but the characters still captivated me. I added to the story, changed and deleted weak parts and moved paragraphs and chapters around. I picked the project up and laid it down many times over the next twenty-some years as life happened. In June of 2015, I finally published my book.

Lynda_ Please, j:ust give us one page from that book – we want to  hear more!

Book Excerpt

 

                “Would you like to know why I came here today?”

                I nodded. “You were the last person I expected to see.”

                “I saw your suicide attempt in the paper when I was glancing through the police reports. I spotted a lot of potential behind your smart mouth when you came through my chambers, and it would have been a terrible shame if you’d bled to death on the floor of an isolation room at a state detention center. You deserve more out of life than that.”

                “You sound like my folks.” I picked up the picture and traced my finger over the smiling faces. “They told me over pizza once that I was going to do great things some day.”

                “You can’t let them down.” The judge read Daisy’s note again. “You have your life ahead of you. Live it for me and the rest who believed in you. Daisy was a smart girl.”

                “Yeah, she was.” I glanced around the dreary little room. “I guess she wouldn’t be too impressed with how far I’ve come.”

                “Are you ready to do something about it?”

                I stood up and washed the blood and tears off my face. It looked like whether I wanted it or not, I had a life to live–for the people who had believed in me.

                The judge pushed to his feet and strode toward the door. “That’s a good start. Now we better find you some real clothes. That outfit you’re wearing doesn’t leave much to the imagination.”

 

Reflection – About the Book

Jo_  I chose this excerpt from Chapter 8 of my novel, “The Bright Side of Darkness,” because it takes place at a pivotal moment where mentoring makes a crucial difference in the life of the protagonist. The overarching theme of the book is that all of us, wherever we are, have the potential to reach out to others in big and small ways that can change the world one person at a time.

 

 

Lynda_ When you say, “All’s well,” what do you really mean?

Jo_ “All’s well” refers to an abiding peace that runs deeper than the situation at hand, a contentment not based on anything happening in the outside world or ruled by passing emotions or temporary doubts. I’ve pretty much gotten to the point in my journey where I’m comfortable in my own skin and satisfied with my place in the world. It takes a lot to shake my faith. I don’t have to be happy with everything that occurs each moment to be pleased with life overall.

Lynda_  Please give our readers some additional information for your book.

Maybe you can share a couple of internet Links?

Jo_ “The Bright Side of Darkness” Is my award-winning novel, Available in Kindle, audio, and paperback formats.

http://www.amazon.com/author/jepinto

Jo_ I want to invite your readers to please visit my author page on Facebook:

Just  click Here.

Lynda_ Where can we find your book for sale, jo?

Jo_ Yes.  Thanks for asking. Please  find the paperback edition of my novel at Barnes & Noble online here:  Read it here!

Lynda_ Could our readers find your book on GOODREADS?

Jo_ Anyone can  see my Goodreads blog, “Looking on the Bright Side,” here: Read it.

And the final one I can share is this one:

To read my guest posts about parenting in the dark, please click here:

https://blindmotherhood.com/?s=Jo+Pinto

To read my guest posts on a variety of topics, please click here:

https://campbellsworld.wordpress.com/

Lynda_ Thank you, Jo, for coming to visit us today. I am glad we had a nice break in the wintry weather so that your trip was enjoyable.  I know you have a number of other places you will be visiting on the East Coast on this book tour you are doing and we are so happy you fit in a bit of time with all of us.

Miss Opal_ Yes, Jo, we all say to you, “All’s Well!”

About the Book

   

 

  –  

Dear Reader: Would you like to be  one of our  GUEST AUTHORS?

If you are a published author, please look at our INVITATION to be our GUEST. Information is available:  Here’s the LINK to Information.

About Lynda McKinney Lambert

This Special Feature interview is courtesy of Pennsylvania author, Lynda McKinney Lambert. Copyright: February 23, 2019..   All rights reserved.

Lynda’s Author Page – Click Here!

Read this article about Lynda on Campbell’s World – Click here!

Saturday is for Sharing is a Special Feature Article, coordinated by Lynda and Miss Opal, her feline writing partner. Lynda and Miss Opal live in rural western Pennsylvania in The Village of Wurtemburg.

Lynda is the author of 4 books:

Her first book is: Concerti: Psalms for the Pilgrimage, Kota Press, 2002.

Her second book is:  Walking by Inner vision: Stories & Poems, DLD Books, 2017.

Lynda’s 3rd book: Star Signs: New & Selected Poems – 60 poems.

Her FIRST CHAPBOOK  – first snow –  16 Poems with a Wintry Theme.

Both new books are now available for publication.

Thank you for visiting with us today. Miss Opal and Lynda McKinney Lambert  

Please SHARE:  We LOVE YOU FOR THAT!

Please include copyright information with article. Thanks so much.

 

Friday Favs_The Story Behind a Story

Friday Favs

Article #126

Friday Favs

Can you Find the Story Behind a Story?

“Girl on a Bench Sees Visions of Butterflies”

Friday Favs – I looked back at some of my blog posts  in my other blog,

Walking by Inner Vision.

I started that blog in 2009, and most of what I feature there  is about my writing  or art projects.

You can find

Walking by Inner Vision

at this Link:  www.lyndalambert.com

I was surprised  when I read one of my stories from 2013.

A version of the  story is published in my latest book, “Walking by Inner Vision: Stories & Poems,” DLD Books, 2017. I began to think more about it.

The topic of this essay is an explication of a work of art.

It is the “Story Behind the Story,” of that art work.

All Art Comes From Our  Core Beliefs and Our  World View.

( Note; this art work is “Girl on a Bench Sees Visions of Butterflies,” a mixed-media fiber wall work.

This art work  is in the InSights18 exhibition  sponsored annually by the American Printing House for the Blind.  I will attend  the opening reception and the awards banquet in Louisville, KY, in October. This year will mark the 5th time I have been juried into this international exhibition, and my 5th time to have my work win an award.)

I say  this because it is important for us to be able to articulate where our ideas, influences, and themes  begin when we are writing. Everything we believe, is evident in our piece of writing. If the reader knows how to do a deep reading and is observant, that reader can know about the author intimately. The writing comes from not only our thoughts, but from our spirit and from our own experiences.

We have a core belief, that is uniquely our own. We have a distinctive world view that we each embrace.  Everything we do and think about comes from our core and our chosen world view.  Everything we write reflects who we are – at our core. We have an inner life which becomes visible to our readers, if they are observant and wise.  Who we are speaks clearly in our writing.

When we are aware of this, we can identify an authors core beliefs and world view as we begin to read a piece of the writing.

This is a fascinating aspect of our writing, isn’t it!

In my  classrooms at the college, students  learned how to do deep readings and how to identify the author’s World View. If they don’t learn how to do this, they will never be able to fully understand the writing.

Often we are not even aware of those unseen and powerful impulses.  When we do begin to recognize them and can begin to articulate them, we untap an ocean of possibilities and opportunities in our writing life.

When I read my own blog post from 2013 this morning, I was aware that I am a visual artist and that everything I write emerges from  my  inborn sensibility and a way of viewing the world and everything I encounter. No matter what theme I am writing about,  it is, always  viewed through core beliefs and a keenly aware world  view.

Have you looked back at something you wrote some years ago?

How did it make you feel when you read that piece?

Do you see the theme of the work as it fits into your World View?

Do you see how you have grown or changed in your concepts and writing since that time?

If you want to see the 2013 article  – CLICK HERE: http://www.lyndalambert.com/the-story-behind-the-art/

__________

Lynda McKinney Lambert. Copyright: September, 2018. All rights reserved.

Friday Favs 

is a series coordinated by Lynda and Miss Opal, her feline writing partner.  Lynda and Miss Opal live in rural western Pennsylvania in The Village of Wurtemburg.

Lynda is the author of 4 books:

Concerti: Psalms for the Pilgrimage Buy it!

Walking by Inner Vision: Stories & Poems Buy it!

Lynda has just completed her 3rd book

Star Signs: New & Selected Poems – not yet published.

AND… her FIRST CHAPBOOK

first snow, 16 Poems with a Wintry Theme – Not yet published.

Both new books  are now available for publication. 

Currently Lynda is working on her next book, a Memoir.

Thank you for visiting with us today.

Miss Opal and Lynda McKinney Lambert

Your COMMENTS, QUESTIONS, and SUGGESTIONS are always welcome.

PLEASE SHARE by Re-Blogging this article on Social Media. 

I only require that you copy/paste the entire blog post including our Copyright and blog information.

We LOVE YOU for that!   

Miss Opal & Lynda

Welcome YOU to

Friday Favs

Saturday is for Sharing – Phyllis Staton Campbell

Post #121

Saturday is for Sharing –

#7 Guest Author

Meet  Phyllis Staton Campbell

Guest Author

Where Sheep May  Safely Graze

 

Phyllis, We are honored today to have you on Saturday is for Sharing weekly event  on SCAN. 

The scope of your creative work in teaching, musical performance, writing and publication is remarkable. You are truly a Renaissance Woman, Phyllis.

Often, I like to begin by asking an author about their name as a way of introduction.  Our readers like to know more about the importance of an author’s name.

Q_ Do you use your own name for your writing projects or do you use a pen name?  What do you think about your name?  What do you think a name represents?

I can’t say that I have strong feelings either pro or con about the name by which I’m called. Conceited soul that I am, I always write using my name. I take pride in my work, and want the world to know it is mine. There is another writer whose name is Phyllis Campbell, so to prevent confusion, I sometimes add my maiden name, making it  Phyllis Staton Campbell.

However, each of us has another name, one that is never spoken, nor appears on a legal document. This is the face we present to the world. This name is what we are, not to be confused with what some people may think we are, although certainly it helps to form the opinion of others. “She has a name for being generous.” Only we know the truth of that name. It is what we are deep down. Are we truly generous, brave, etc, or do we simply show these characteristics to bolster the opinion of others. Think about it. Do you like your name, both of them?

Q_If you wanted to leave a message for someone you have not seen in a long time, who would get your message and what would it say? How could the message be left?

Phyllis_ It has been five years since I heard my husband’s voice, touched his hand, or felt the warmth of his kiss. Five years since I sat beside him, knowing that I could not go with him on that last step on his final journey. Do I have things I want to say, things I never said? No. They are the same things I said during those years of our marriage, but now, they seem different. “I love you,” somehow has a different, deeper meaning. “I’ve missed you,” is different from when it was spoken when one of us had been away for a short time. So many feelings are different, now that the voice is Silent, the touch is gone, the step no longer heard, the passion of youth is no more. I long to tell him so many things one more time with the deeper meaning that is in my heart. There is no conventional communication between us, yet there is that spirit of love that will connect us throughout eternity.

 

Q_ What do you look for in a personal relationship ? Tell us about your friendships.

Phyllis_ It has been said, and for me, it is true. “You may have many acquaintances, but few friends.” Don’t get me wrong, acquaintances are nice. They are the people you meet casually, in the neighborhood, at work or school, at the grocery store. You discuss the weather, your favorite sports team, perhaps a new movie release.

 

A friend is one that you may not have seen for months, and who walks back into your life, occupying the same place as when they left. A friend is there at midnight without asking why you need them. A friend knows without being told what is on your mind, or in your heart. A friend accepts you as you are, even though they don’t always agree with you. Acquaintances are for today, friends are forever.

 

Q_ What thing could you never live without? What would happen if this one thing went away?

Phyllis_ I pushed the play button on the recorder, and the day-room was filled with the notes of “All Glory Be To God On High” for brass and organ. She sat beside me, this woman, who had been the organist at Saint Francis Catholic church in my home town of Staunton, Virginia for over thirty years. I had visited the church on several occasions, and thrilled to her music. Now that talent was gone, and she was spending the rest of her life in what amounted to a state of oblivion. To our amazement her hands and feet began to move in time to the music. I gently placed my hands over hers, and the fingers were moving exactly as they had moved on the keyboard of the pipe organ. She had no idea where she was, perhaps didn’t remember her name, yet the music she loved brought a fragment of the memory of her former life.

 

Memory is so many things from the practical, “I must remember to buy toilet paper,”

to those things of the past, good and bad, funny and sad. In many ways,

memory is our very existence. For me, it is my life.

 

Q_Do you have a handicap – if so, how does that affect your life and what you do? What would you want others to know about you as a writer?

Phyllis_ I have been blind since birth. People frequently ask, “Is it better to have been born blind, or to have lost your sight later in life.” Well,” I reply, “I’d prefer neither.” This usually earns me a laugh, and moves in the direction I’d like to go.

Losing one’s sight and knowing about the loss when it occurs, can be a traumatic experience, and there’s no getting around it, but it isn’t the end of the world. Well, yes, in a way it is, because that person’s life can never be quite the same. For me, and others born blind, or who may become blind in infancy or as a toddler, blindness is the world we know. Of course, we have problems, but I sincerely believe that in many ways they’re easier to at least accept, but, hey, blindness is blindness.

 

I have devoted most of my writing, especially my books to showing the public that we, the blind, are like everybody in the world, and most important, that we are individuals, with individual likes and dislikes, and diverse abilities. I also hope that in reading my books the blind, especially those who have recently lost their sight, may see themselves and their place in their new world, in a more realistic way.

 

Q_Where can readers see your latest book, Where Sheep May Safely Graze, as well as your previous titles?

Phyllis_  http://www.amazon.com/author/psc-books-all

Continue reading

Scan Presents: Christmas in July

Scan

July 6, 2018

Christmas in July – a Song and a Poem

Every year  my sister, Patti, tends her flower gardens from early spring  to the first frosts of late autumn.  

As she took me on a tour of her flower beds  one afternoon, she grinned with pride when she pointed out her roses.  Every flower gardener I have ever known has loved their rose bushes and each one has shown tremendous pride in the beauty of the flowers on a rose bush.

 

Last  August, Patti  brought me a birthday bouquet she had created from her flower beds – and the prize flower in the bouquet was a very stunning pink  rose! I think no matter how much a gardener loves all the flowers they have blooming, it is the rose bushes that seem to elicit the most pride and happiness to them.  Roses are the dazzling queens of the flower bids.  They  seems to be the proverbial “icing on the cake.”

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***Photo by Lynda McKinney Lambert:

Patti’s Flowers on my Dining Room Table

Ah, yes, I contend that the rose is Queen of all Flowers!

I am certain of it! As you begin doing some research on the “rose” as an iconic image,  you will soon   find references to

Mary, the Queen of Heaven and Earth.

She is often depicted with a rose in her hand, or surrounded by roses.  Roses are used as garlands in art and sculpture and roses are used to encircle  the Queen of Heaven. Roses are a halo at times in Christian lore as well as in pre-Christian mythology.   Mary’s  son, Jesus Christ, is  symbolized as a rose.  King Solomon described Jesus  as  “the rose of Sharon.” You can find this particular reference in The Song of Solomon, 2:1. There are many other such references as well.

***

 In a popular  German Christmas song,

these  words are from an Eighteenth Century  poem by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe;

 “es ist ein Ros entsprungen.”  

This can be translated in English to

“A Rose has sprung.”

You may recognize this Christmas song as “Lo, How a Rose E’er  Blooming”  or “A Spotless Rose.”  This song is a Protestant  Christmas  Carol and a Catholic Marian hymn that originated in Germany.  I remember it from my childhood  when we all stood to sing carols together at the small  Methodist Church  in my village.

Listen to this song in English:

Click Here to listen

Click here SING ALONG with the music:  Yes, I want to sing a long!

 

***

I sat down to consider the pleasure of

a visit with my daughter, Ilsa

Below you will read a  poem about her visit and something we did together. Sometimes, it is unusual when we think of a child teaching a parent a lesson of some sort.  But, here in my poem, a daughter teaches  me a lesson  in a unique way.

This poem, “When My Daughter Cuts the Roses,”  marks the beginning of Advent in our home.  The bouquet of flowers on my dining room table today  reminds me  that now is the Season of Hope.  As I listen to the latest news from around the world, it feels like the  whole world is longing for hope right now – Oh, I know! It does appear the the entire planet is in deep distress.   The EARTH could be laboring  for the birth of HOPE.  Perhaps there is a longing for hope   in the souls of Earth’s people and all of NATURE.

On the First Week of Advent we can choose to keep our thoughts  and our  eyes focused on HOPE as we light that first candle.  

There is great beauty in the  symbols  of the weekly lighting of the Advent candles.   When the FIRST WEEK OF ADVENT comes this year,  we can pause to embrace the message  of the ROSE  and the  coming of the LIGHT, who  is promised from ancient times.  

 

Ah, yes!  As  I complete the writing of this essay, I am hearing a tune in my mind.

 This Flower, whose fragrance tender with sweetness fills the air,
Dispels with glorious splendor the darkness everywhere;
True man, yet very God, from sin and death He saves us,
And lightens every load.

(Final stanza of “Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming)

***

  “When my Daughter Cuts the Roses”

My daughter looked

At the bouquet of fresh roses

noticed two of them were drooping.

“Let me show you how to trim the roses

so they stay fresh and strong.” she said.

Her hands held the roses firmly

one-by-one, trimmed off extra leaves

“These will make the water stink,” she said.

She found scissors in the drawer

put the roses in a bowl of tepid water

held each stem under water

sliced them all, diagonally –

“As I cut the rose under the water,

little bubbles of air come to the surface.

Now, when the rose inhales

it will only breathe water into it,

it won’t fill up with air.

The living water inside the stems

gives longer life to each rose.”

She carried the freshened flowers

In the tall glass vase

back to the center of the dining room table

darkest crimson buds, sunny yellow petals,

deep green fern leaves

and a frilly white carnation.

***

 

This essay & poem is brought to you by the author, Lynda McKinney Lambert.

Lynda is the author of 4 books:

Concerti: Psalms for the Pilgrimage Buy it!

Walking by Inner Vision: Stories & Poems Buy it!

Lynda has just completed her 3rd book

Star Signs: New & Selected Poems

AND… her FIRST CHAPBOOK

first snow, 16 Poems with a Wintry Theme.

Both new books  are now available for publication. Editors, please contact Lynda for the manuscript.

 

Thank you for visiting with us today.

Miss Opal and Lynda McKinney Lambert

 

 

Contact Lynda & Miss Opal at:  riverwoman@zoominternet.net

Your COMMENTS, QUESTIONS, and

SUGGESTIONS are always welcome.

PLEASE SHARE by Re-Blogging this article on Social Media.

 

If you are a published AUTHOR or an actively exhibiting ARTIST – Miss Opal and I want YOUR STORY for our “Saturday is for Sharing” blog features.

 

View Publications Page for updates on my stories and poems being published.

Walking by Inner Vision.

Lynda’s Author ‘s Page

this blog post is the property of Lynda McKinney Lambert.

Copyright April 29, 2018.

Copyright July 6, 2018.  Revised.

Lynda McKinney Lambert. All rights reserved.

I welcome your COMMENTS and I love it when you Re-Blog my posts!

Please share with all your friends.

Thanks you

Thursday Treasures #4 – Reasons

July 3, 2018

Thursday Treasures #4: Reasons

What is a  TREASURE?

 How do you define a treasure?

What is your reason for calling it a treasure?

How do you recognize something as a treasure?

Do you have something that is your treasure?

____________________

My first thought is that a treasure is something precious or important to me.  Different things feel like treasures to me for a variety of reasons.

 My REASON for calling it a treasure is because of the 

human touch and creative spirit that is

embodied in the object.

Each item is unique and one-of-a-kind. 

Each item holds a memory for me. They are reminders of people I care for, the artists who created them, and even memories of trips and events.

Fine Art is a Treasure.

Decorating_Library_DadPainting

View from the Fombell Bridge, Acrylic on Canvas.

by Lynda McKinney Lambert.   Portrait of the Artist’s father, William J. McKinney (1916-1988)

 

Paintings, sculptures, pottery and fiber arts  fill my home and give me pleasure.  Each is hand crafted by an artist. Unlike commercial products  and mass-produced objects.

Why woldn’t anyone want ” the real deal” that bears the fingerprints of the person who created it?

There is a reason that I drink my morning coffee in a hand-thrown mug created by a friend. I love to feel the surface of that mug as I drink – I can feel the hand prints in the clay and feel the energy of the masterful hands that made it.  It has a human touch and it connects me with another individual who cherishes the act of making beautiful things.

 

Art works remind me of a variety of creative people I have known throughout my life.

 

I consider the works that surround me as my friends. Each one touches a special place in my heart – I know this person and I think of her every time I look at the painting she did. Each of the artisans who created the objects in my home-made the pieces with love and passion. Those things are treasures that cannot be found in a big box store where everything is made by machines and mass-produced.  There is a reason that Treasures cannot be mass produced. They lack the human touch of the artist.

Books are a treasure. 

Decorating_LibraryShelves

Photo by Lynda Lambert.  Art & Books in a corner of my studio. 

I love books of poetry. \Each of them are works of art. Each volume of poetry I have collected is a treasure. I keep my treasured poetry books all together in my library where I know they are safe.  I have them arranged alphabetically, by author’s last name. I can find exactly the book I want, when I want it.  I like to think about the books sometimes, and I like to go to the library and pull a book off the shelf to read.

Books  feel good in my hands. No technology can replace the feeling I have when I touch a real paper book.  Reading a book through an audio recording can never replace the imagination I have when I read with my eyes.  For me, it is the sight of the words on the pages and the cover of the book that thrills me. I’ve had to adjust to experiencing a book totally by listening to someone read it  and it is not the same. It never can be. Something is missing.  There is a reason that we read a book that we hold in our hands.  It is the personal contact with the author’s mind that we experience.  I miss that more than anything else I can think of since I lost my sight almost eleven years ago. For now, listening to it being read to me, will have to do.

Music is a treasure.

Blog2014_Photo_Mozart

I like to begin the day with Mozart sometimes.

Songs and melodies come to me through the day and night. II wake up in the morning with a song in my heart.  I seem to have an internal radio station that never turns off. It’s a wonderful feeling to be so filled with music and song – and I’ve heard that each person has a unique song placed inside of them by the Creator and it will be revealed when meet in person one day.  We will be recognized by God by the song we are singing when we meet Him. He wrote the music that is inside each of us.

This song  by Alison Kraus is a  Tuesday Treasure.  

Listen Now!    “There is a Reason.”

HOPE is a treasure.

It’s hidden in my heart.

Hope is in every cell of my body. 

Hope is the reason for everything I am. My hope is in my Creator, who placed in us  all the capacity to love because we am loved. We are his treasures.

 Peter 3:15 English Standard Version (ESV)

15 but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,

__________

 

Thursday Treasure is brought to you by author,

Lynda McKinney Lambert.

Copyright July 2, 2018. All rights reserved.

Please LIKE & SHARE with your FRIENDS.

PLEASE Re-Blog.

Please leave a comment for me so I know you visited today.

 

View Publications Page for updates on my stories and poems being published.

Walking by Inner Vision.

Lynda’s Author ‘s Page

this blog post is the property of Lynda McKinney Lambert.

 THANK YOU FOR SUBSCRIBING TO SCAN.

 

 

 

 

There is a Reason:   Listen Now!

 

Tuesday Treasures – Reasons

 

 

There is a REason for it all.

Friday Favorite – Sacred Rest

Post #85

Friday Favorite – Sacred Rest

 

Friday Favorite – Sacred Rest

 

Each week, I reflect on something I learned during the week.

Today, my topic is REST.

What does this word mean to you?

I discovered a book this week while watching Cornerstone Television.

SACRED REST

Sacred rest might be just what we need right now.

 

Do you ever feel like life is exhausting?

Do you feel like you never get a break but simply slide from one situation or problem to another?

Do you yearn for quiet time alone just to regroup and get refreshed?

How do you FEEL when you wake up in the morning?

 

I think the answer we are looking for is outlined in this book.

SACRED REST

 

I took the “rest quiz” and discovered the 7 different areas of rest and how I rate in each of them.

You might like to do this too. Here is the link and it only takes a few minutes to do.  But, don’t worry about it or over think the questions. Just be honest and select the response that seems to be right for you.  It is as easy as that.  Try it and see how you rate on REST.

Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith is the author of this book.

Click here to view the book

Click here to take the REST QUIZ.

Sleep alone is not enough. You need time to mentally unwind, time to reconnect, and time to appreciate the blessings in your life. Here is a recent podcast I did on the difference between sleep and rest. Have a listen next time you’re on the treadmill or commuting to work. 

_____________________

Friday Favorite  is brought to you by Pennsylvania author, Lynda McKinney Lambert.

View Publications Page for updates on my stories and poems being published.

Walking by Inner Vision.

Lynda’s Author ‘s Page

this blog post is the property of Lynda McKinney Lambert.

Copyright April 29, 2018. Lynda McKinney Lambert. All rights reserved.

 (Quote in this article is by the author – Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith)

Saturday is Sharing Day

Post #84

Saturday is Sharing  Day #1

 

Saturday is  Sharing Day

#1 in a series

Today, I am SHARING

Spirit Fire Review

 

Do you LIKE to read uplifting stories & poems?

Do you LIKE ee beautiful photos and art work?

 

If you said, YES,  then I have something nice to SHARE with you.

 

Spirit Fire Review Click HERE!

__________________________

Spirit Fire Review is a magazine of celebration ~

changing the world through love! 

Our mission is to show the goodness of God by sharing through the creative and literary arts our experiences of the Holy Spirit’s presence in our lives. We hope you will join us by reading, sharing, and submitting your own experiences and work to Spirit Fire Review”  Quote from Spirit Fire Review, April 2018.

_____

 

Saturday is Sharing Day

is brought to you by

Pennsylvania author, Lynda McKinney Lambert.

SCAN is owned by Lynda McKinney Lambert.

View Publications Page for updates on Lynda’s  stories and poems.

Walking by Inner Vision.

Lynda’s Author ‘s Page

Saturday is for Sharing is Lynda’s property. You have permission to SHARE this blog post with your FRIENDS on FaceBook.

Copyright May 27, 2018. Lynda McKinney Lambert. All rights reserved.

Please share with your Friends on FaceBook and SHARE to your blog.

Leave me some comments and let me know what you liked about this post today.

 

SHARE Good Thoughts

with someone EVERY day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friday Favorites #2

Post # 83

Friday Favorites Series, #2

 

 

 IS SNOW on your MIND today?

After a long winter  

I’d say, Probably not!   

HOWEVER…

 

My FRIDAY FAVORITE REFLECTION

for this week is

SNOW

 

SNOW is in my  personal weather forecast for

3 reasons:

#1   My new CHAPBOOK is now completed and I am sending it out to potential publishers & editors.  The title of my chapbook is “first snow,” a collection of wintry-themed poems.

 

#2

31Ju5HK-6bL._AC_SR160,160_

My new

Voice Recorder is a SNOWBALL, BLUE iCE.  Now I can record my own voice reading my poems and post those recordings on my Author’s blog.  What fun!   Visit Walking by Inner Vision Blog – click here!

 

#3      I am getting a new hand-held CCTV that is CALLED … the SNOW.  I visited the LOW VISION SPECIALIST yesterday. This piece of equipment will be coming to me  soon.    I have profound sight loss.  I can only see sharp contrasts with the aid of technologies for the blind and visually impaired.  SNOW CCTV_Photo

 SNOWSTORMS AHEAD – in my personal FORECAST.

__________

 

This essay on FRIDAY FAVORITES is brought to you by the author, Lynda McKinney Lambert.

View Publications Page for updates on my stories and poems being published.

Walking by Inner Vision.

Lynda’s Author ‘s Page

this blog post is the property of Lynda McKinney Lambert.

Copyright May 25,  2018. Lynda McKinney Lambert. All rights reserved.