The book Cover features a detail of western Pennsylvania wild flower – Yellow Crown Beard. Photo by the author, Lynda McKinney Lambert.
Lynda is a visually impaired artist and author. She is a retired professor of fine art and humanities at Geneva College, located in Beaver Falls, PA. She lost her sight in 2007 but this did not stop her from pursuing a new career in writing. This book was her first book published after profound and permanent sight loss!
Despite profound sight loss, Lynda continued to make art and write books full-time since her retirement from teaching. She has 4 books on Amazon at this time and is working on 2 new books for publication in 2021.
I am working on my next full-length book, Gifts of the Spirit: Stories & Poems from now till the end of 2021.
The new book is a companion of my book Walking by Inner Vision: Stories & Poems, published in 2017. See it here.
~ My Writing Process ~
I began writing stories and poems for the new book a couple of years ago.
I always like to start with a plan that gives an order in which to work out the process. I laid out a skeleton or structure for it several times over the past couple of years. I gathered lots of ideas, writings. I divided the book into categories or topics – several times. I try to put everything into a cohesive whole, bring order to the myriad of concepts.
Each new version of my draft eventually is altered.
But, not all of it is erased, discarded or moved. No, it is more like a palimpsest manuscript. Layers of words remain as other coatings vanish. Spaces appear, created, holes filled. When one works in layers, some fragments remain, some punctuation altered or deleted, meanings changed, paragraphs removed, and some words, sentences or paragraphs are shifted to new locations. I use the Socratic method as I continually ask questions in the working process. I search under, around, and through the rugged terrain of my verbal landscape.
Over my years of writing, I’ve come to an understanding of how I work. I have a process, and it’s messy!
I am going to war, and I know it before I write that first sentence.
I step into chaos. I always begin with the disorder in just about everything I do in my creative life.
Nothing magically happens when I am creating – no magic bullets and no writings that plop down on my pages. Writing, for me, is more like an excavation site. I have to dig through layers upon layers to sort, sift, discard, build, destroy, explore, and patch.
My process is physical, a painful boxing match. I am a warrior woman going into battle.
Lynda McKinney Lambert – Author/Artist
Your comments and questions are most welcome.
Most of all, I need your prayers over the next year.
When you think of me please stop for a moment to whisper my name in a prayer to our lord, Jesus.
Thank you for your interest in what I do.
Please contact me at any time if you need to speak with me or need to ask me to pray for you. I am a Prayer Warrior.
Your encouraging messages give me the GIFT of HOPE.
I’ve become familiar with the way God whispers gently to us to give us His divine guidance and ideas for the direction he wants us to go?
I feel this tender nudge from God that at times. It is usually about
something that is common sense. I often think, “Why didn’t I think of this?
Yes, it makes sense, and it’s an
Gifts of the Spirit is the new full-length book I started writing this year.
I plan to complete the manuscript draft by the end of December 2021.
About this blog –
Gifts of the Spirit.
I’ll share some new poems, reflections, thoughtful, personal essays, and non-fiction stories on this blog for the next fourteen months. You might be reading the drafts of those writings that will finally become a collection in the book, Gifts of the Spirit: Poems & Stories.
I received a personal note from my friend Lynda J.
It arrived in a moment when I was thinking about writing this post. She references the Dallas Holm song, “I Have Hope.” God sends us such gentle reminders from unexpected sources at the precise time we need them. God is always right on time.
During 2020, a year of pandemic fears and anxieties, I can truly say, “I have hope.”
Here is what my colleague and friend sent to me today:
what a powerful testimony the Lord has led you to share.
I couldn’t agree with you more if I’d written a statement myself!!
One of your sentences reminded me of the chorus of one of my favorite Dallas Holm songs:
I have joy in the time of sorrow,
I have peace in the raging storm.
I have faith that Jesus holds tomorrow,
I have hope, I’m resting in His arms.
At the beginning of 2020, I chose One Word for my entire year – GIFTS.
I started choosing One Word for my year in 2015.
I wanted to think more seriously about giving GIFTS and receiving GIFTS. Because I am a Christian, I decided to do everything this year as a Gift for my King, Jesus! In my writing, artmaking, and everyday life at home, I kept this in mind.
This entire year is a journey of surprises for all of us, isn’t it?
Of course, I had no idea how that Word would reveal new meaning as the months come and go.
None of us could have anticipated the arrival of a pandemic and how we would experience life this year. We still have no idea what to expect, but we live in the eternal hope – our lives are in God’s hands, and he will take care of us no matter what the circumstances may be at any time.
Looking at history, we know that events such as this pandemic are not exceptional. People of all ages have faced tremendous changes and fears that come with those unexpected events. I know that for Christians, we are never alone in any circumstances that we face. Our faith is built on the solid foundation of our Lord, Jesus Christ.
I placed my life in His capable hands, and I find peace in times of storms or painful circumstances, and I find joy in times of sunshine and prosperity.
We have the gifts that the Father gives us in all seasons and in all cases. In fact, here is just one example of what God’s intentions are for His beloved children.
Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
During the first week of October, I received some beautiful gifts, and I am sharing the news with you in this message.
I am delighted that Marcia Meara, author of the blog _The Write Stuff_ published a Special Feature about my writing and award-winning fiber art.
I enjoy seeing the visitors who read the article and leave comments.
Hint: I’d love to see your thoughts, and I will reply to any comments you leave. Go ahead, make my day! Visit the link and leave a comment.
Second, I won a First Place Award for my talisman, “My Eyes are Only for You,” at the InSights20 exhibition in Louisville, KY. The show opened on October 7, and you are invited to attend the virtual opening, which is available now.
Note: This year, first place is a shared award – which is lovely for the other artist and me.
The video is live now. You can see a photo of the artwork, the artist who made it, and a description. Rob Guillen is the coordinator of this annual exhibition. He will lead you through the winning pieces via the video. This juried art exhibition is presented by the American Printing House for the Blind. All artists in the show have a visual impairment. I am deeply honored to be a part of this project – my fifth time to have my work accepted in the Crafts Division by the jury – and my fifth award.
Here is the link to see the winners of the Craft Division – See it here!
Third, my poem, “The Talisman,” inspired by the process of making the talisman in the APH InSights 20 show, is in the October Issue of Newsreel.
If you subscribe to this audio magazine, you will hear me reading the poem.
Photo by American Printing House for the Blind – InSights20 exhibition. This is a talisman, “My Eyes are Only for You.” by Lynda McKinney Lambert. This piece won first place in the crafts division – it shared first place with another art work.
Are you going to Scarborough Fair?
Parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme
Remember me to one who lives there
She once was a true love of mine
Tell her to make me a cambric shirt (in the deep forest green)
Parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme
(Tracing of sparrow on snow-crested ground)
Without no seams nor needle work
(Bedclothes the child of the mountain)
Then she’ll be a true love of mine
(Sleeps unaware of the clarion call)
Tell her to find me an acre of land
(A sprinkling of leaves)
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme
(Washes the grave with silvery tears)
Between the salt water and the sea strands
(And polishes a gun)
Then she’ll be a true love of mine
Tell her to reap it with a sickle of leather
(Blazing in scarlet battalions)…
My first chapbook is published by Finishing Line Press.
I’ve put together a collection of 30 wintry-theme poems.
It is available in paperback, or Hard Back copies directly from the publisher at Finishing Line Press. I am so thrilled to have my chapbook available as a hardbound book and a print edition.
I am working on writing a chapbook for each season.
I love chapbooks and have a little collection of special ones in my personal library. They are like a work of art, to me. They have a feeling of preciousness, which I like so much.
A chapbook is shorter than a full-length book, and it has a focus on one theme.
Since I’ve always found winter to be a beautiful time of year in my area of Western Pennsylvania, this is my way of celebrating the season.
With this new publication, I am thinking about creating a chapbook for each of the 4 seasons. I like to work in a series, and I think this would be an excellent way to do that in the future.
My poems are spare – uncluttered by unnecessary words or punctuation. I like to keep them pure and without distractions. Readers tell me how enjoyable it is to read my seasonal poems. Here is a quote by a reader,
The crisp quality of the words and vision… is made poignant by the author’s personal history and victory with physical sight. Her heart comes through her hands and pen. Her words are fresh, yet rooted and ancient. The Natural realms intersecting with the Spiritual realms plus the Human daily-realm creates a deeply pleasing flavor of poetry. Accessible. Thoughtful. Power
_Elizabeth Enright Phillips, owner of Running Creek Co Limited, ardent minimalist, author
Lynda Lambert covers a vast terrain of subjects and topics in this new book, from lights to legends to seasons, treating us to images and metaphors about plants, people, and weather. She opens this extensive collection with the title poem, Star Signs, which walks us through the alphabet. It digs through thoughts, emotions, and observations, “Using star signs to map out new terrain.”
Throughout this book of poems, these gems of poetic creation shimmer like beads on her fabric art, like bold brushstrokes of color on her paintings, and reflect light like the gemstones on her prize-winning piece of mixed–media fiber artwork. It seems this entire collection is like a multifaceted mural.
Her attentiveness to nature and strong reflections from memory have woven from a collage of remnants a beautiful tapestry for us. It offers a beautiful feast for the eyes and the mind.
—Wesley D. Sims, Author of Taste of Change
This is the author’s third book of poetry. Cover photo by James Wheeler from Pexels Cover design, editing, layout, and e-book conversion by DLD Books
Description of the cover image of Star Signs:
The late evening photo shows several delicate, bare trees in silhouette, leaning slightly to the right, against a violet-colored sky. There is a faint streak of pinkish light to the right of the trees, low on the horizon. Thousands of stars are visible in the sky. The solid black landscape below the trees appears to be the shore of a darkened lake, which is in the foreground. A few stars are reflected in the water. The overall impression is one of stillness and beauty. The predominant colors are black and violet, along with white pinpoints of starlight. The title and subtitle are in white at the top of the cover, and the author’s name is in white at the bottom.
NEWS: This book is now available to the National Library Services BARD program. You can order the book, read by Polly Slavet by asking BARD for DBC 11608. You will LOVE Polly’s elegant presentation of Lynda’s book!
Take a journey through the seasons of a year from January through December. With award-winning Pennsylvania Author and Artist Lynda McKinney Lambert
In 2019 Lynda received the prestigious
Albert Nelson Marquis Award for Lifetime Achievement in the fields of Artist & Author
This award is given by the Marquis Who’s Who Publications Board, to honor Biographees who have achieved career longevity.
Lynda is a retired Professor of Fine Arts & Humanities, Geneva College, Beaver Falls, PA
Her first book is-
Concerti: Psalms for the Pilgrimage
Kota Press, 2002
She wrote the book from her travel journal entries, as she taught a course in Europe each summer. From this first published book, the theme of “life as a sacred pilgrimage,” This theme endures in all of her subsequent writings.
In her 2nd book, Lynda continues to take readers on the road with her as she travels through a life pilgrimage from her earliest memories to her present septuagenarian years as a well-known artist, author, educator.
Lynda retired in 2008, after sudden sight loss due to Ischemic Optic Neuropathy. During her recovery and rehabilitation process, she began to write stories & poems for her new blog, Walking by Inner Vision.
In the beginning, her blog was her way of communicating with the world again after sight loss.
Lynda became aware that she was now living in a world of inner vision.
She did not realize at the time that this blog was the beginning step towards the book now available on Audible.
Walking by Inner Vision: Stories & Poems
A personal, private, and spiritual walk through the seasons
Lynda’s Authors Page at DLD Books: See it here! On BARD and NLS: Ask for – DBC11608
$3.99 on SMASHWORDS today!
by Beckie Ann Horter
Celebrating our successes as visually-impaired people is an essential step on the journey to healing. Peer advisor Lynda McKinney Lambert knows this firsthand.
After profound vision loss in 2007 due to Ischemic Optic Neuropathy, Lynda did not use a computer for almost two years. When she finally did re-learn her way around the computer, with the help of adaptive technology, she decided to celebrate in a memorable way. She started a blog.
Lynda’s blog, Walking by Inner Vision, grew and grew over a seven-year period. Last year, she decided to collect her stories and poems in a delightful book by the same name.
Walking by Inner Vision: Stories and Poems is Lynda’s second book. The first, Concerti: Psalms for the Pilgrimage, was published in 2003 by Kota Press.
Lynda is an artist and a retired professor of Fine Arts and Humanities from Geneva College. Her artistic background permeates her writing in an unmistakeable style, painting word pictures and setting vivid scenes. Her black and white photography accompanies several stories and adds to the visual appeal.
“This book takes readers into the mind of an artist, how we work in layers, seeing connections between history, philosophy, psychology, and nature. It’s the artist’s job to tell the things others don’t notice. We see nuances and fragments—these things spark the mind,” Lynda says.
Walking by Inner Vision is arranged as a year-long pilgrimage from January through December. Each month begins with a poem and reflects the happenings unique to its time and place. For example, in “March Arrived Like a Capricious Cat,” she speaks of the changeable nature of late winter in her native Western Pennsylvania.
“Glass wind chimes
shrouded in new snow
March arrived like a capricious cat
hunkered down, bent over
Throughout the 16 poems and 27 essays, Lynda views her world through the lens of beauty, even in the midst of vision loss.
“I want to give people a strand of hope to hold on to,” says Lynda. Her personal Christian faith provides the anchor for her own hope and optimism.
“I believe we were created to be image bearers, as the Bible teaches, and that we are called for a purpose,” she says.
Lynda draws on her wealth of experiences to offer the reader a treasure chest of reading variety. While some stories are light and humorous (“A Wintry Tale”), others are poignant, like the story of her mother’s last family gathering and ensuing struggle with Alzheimer’s (“The Living Room”).
Regardless of the form—free verse or creative non-fiction—one thing remains consistent: lingering images stay with you long after the book is finished. You have been taken into the world of Lynda’s inner vision. And all is well.
The book comes in e-book, Kindle, and print formats. Cost is $3.99 for e-book and Kindle; $14.95 for print copies. It is also available online through Barnes & Noble, Amazon or anywhere books are sold.
ALSO AVAILABLE as AUDIBLE – read by Lillian Yves.
Lynda’s comment on her book:
I work back and forth between ADDING and SUBTRACT ING.
I BUILD and I DESTROY. Writing poetry, for me, is a dance with materials – senses – images.
I order chaos and find balance.
Lynda McKinney Lambert – Smashwords, March 9, 2019.
I like to begin organizing and cleaning my home in March each year.
I feel good when I finish the work and sit back to enjoy the fresh atmosphere in my home. I learned this as a child, helping my grandmother , Ida Matilda, and my mother, Esther, as they cleaned their homes in preparation for the warm days ahead.
Back then, in the 1950s, we took out all the rugs and beat them with a “rug-beater” while they hung on a clothesline. We beat out all the dirt from wintertime that accumulates in the fibers. Of course, we did not have electric sweepers at that time – so this was essential.
Next, we took down all the curtains and washed each panel individually. While the ruffled curtains were still wet, we stretched them out onto curtain-stretchers. It was a wooden frame with little sharp nails all around the edges. This task took a lot of time, and you could get your fingers pricked if you were not careful. But, when the delicate organdy curtains were put back upon each of the newly-washed windows, the room looks exquisite.
My mother and my grandmother took such great pride in their homes and keeping them clean and pleasant in all seasons. I do, as well. My home is my castle and the place where I find peace and solace. I love my nearly century-old home in The Village of Wurtemburg. My house has roots so deep into my ancestry, and so do I.
I grew up with a deep appreciation for my ancestors and this little spot of “heaven-on-earth” the Village of Wurtemburg in rural western Pennsylvania.
I’ve enjoyed a life of travels to magnificent places in this world, yet, coming home to Pennsylvania was always delightful. I had a feeling that my home always welcomed me upon my return. I never took it for granted. This place is my paradise on earth.
This week, I started organizing a tall hutch in my 1920s kitchen – This tall cupboard holds a collection of ruby red glasses on the topmost shelf. Beneath that shelf, I have two more shelves where I store canned goods, and I am working on organizing them today.
Because I have deficient vision, I am assisted by my willing helper, The Merlin CCTV, which magnifies each of my cans so I can know what is in it. Once I know, then I make a 3 x 5-inch recipe card for each box.
On that card, I use a BIG MAMMA marker – the biggest you can find – and I put down a few letters that indicate what is in that can. When I finish the lettering, I put a rubber band around that card to hold it onto the can.
Each item can be carefully organized in my cupboard for me to be able to know what is there. Things take time for me. The little things that I used to do very quickly can now take days. Or more. I am grateful I have always been a patient person with the ability to stay focused on any task at hand. God prepared me in advance for this road I am walking on today. God always prepares us for the next step – even when we are entirely unaware of it. You can ask him, “What am I prepared for?” The answer comes. It arrives as a still small voice – a breath, the Holy Spirit that indwells us.
Like Queen Esther, in the Bible, we are placed where God needs us to be at the right time.
Esther 4: 14.
Esther 4:14 New International Version (NIV)
14 For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?”
My mother’s name is Esther, and I remember the meaning of her name.
Esther could be translated as “star” in Persian. The Book of Esther in the Old Testament tells the story of Queen Esther, the Jewish wife of the king of Persia. This was not her desire, but she was put in this position by God and through Esther, the nation was saved.
If you have committed your life to Jesus, our Messiah, then you don’t need to worry about your next step – as it was for Queen Esther, your arrival will be on time. Trust in God to guide your days, and you will be precisely where you need to be at the right time.
Right now, I need to be in my kitchen organizing my cupboard and in my office writing some more Haiku today. Bob has the dogs out for a walk, and when they return, we will be working in the kitchen today. One little thing at a time is all it takes to make your life and your home a more excellent place to be as we shelter-in-place and wait out the pestilence that is moving across this country and the entire world.
Don’t live in fear. Know that God has everything in control no matter how it appears. I recommend that you not watch much on TV because the majority of the reporting is based on fear. Be filled with faith, instead. Do something that makes you feel good inside.