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Black Friday, Cyber Monday Poetry Shopping List

I’m sure many readers are like me and do not venture out on Black Friday, but if you do, I have a list of must haves from the poetry section.

And if you don’t venture out on Black Friday, you can always use this list for your Cyber Monday purchases.

 

  1. Story Problems by Charles Jensen (my review) was simply so creative I haven’t forgotten it.  It’s fresh and inventive in format and style.
  2. Home No Home by Naoko Fujimoto (my review) is devastating in how it uses silence.  It’s tragic and hopeful.
  3. Dear Almost: A Poem by Matthew Thorburn (my review) is another collection that’s hard to forget because it explores grief and the “what could have beens” after miscarriage.
  4. Ada Twist, Scientist by Andrea Beaty (my review) is for the younger readers in your house.  This book gets kids to love poetry and science at the same time.  Best combination ever.

What books would you recommend be on shoppers’ lists this season?

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone in the United States.

Enjoy your time with your family and friends.

Guest Post: The Top Five Winter-Reads

The Top Five Winter-Reads

As we head into the cold days and nights of winter it’s only natural to have that urge to hunker down indoors, staying warm and cozy. What this means is that it’s the perfect time to catch up on your reading and get through all those books you’ve been too busy to pick up. Just think of it, you can curl up on the couch with a warm fuzzy blanket, have book scented candles going to help set the tone, and of course a warm and tasty beverage to sip on. Sounds pretty relaxing right?

So what looks good in terms of winter reading? We’ve got your top five reads right here, both old and new.

Emma by Jane Austen

Why not kick off the winter reading season with a true classic. Sometimes we can get so caught up in the newest releases that we forget to delve into the classics and show them the appreciation they deserve. Emma is one of those books that shows up on top reading lists over and over again, so you really can’t go wrong with it. This book has it all – bad behavior, intrigue, havoc, and more.

Origin by Dan Brown

For all the Robert Langdon series fans Origin is a book you won’t want to miss. This is a new release from Brown which takes Langdon on yet another incredible and eye-opening journey. It’s got all those ingredients that audiences loved in the previous books – Angels & Demons, The Da Vince Code, The Lost Symbol, and Inferno, so you can expect for this to be a real page-turner and nail-biter.

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (Chronicles of Narnia, #1) by C.S. Lewis

While you may pass this one off as a children's book, nothing could be further from the truth. And because this is only book one in the series you know you’ve got plenty of reading ahead of you. With this book you will head out on an epic adventure in the land of Narnia along with the book’s main characters Lucy, Edmund, Susan, and Peter.

The Game of Thrones Series by George R.R. Martin

If you’re still in denial that the Game of Thrones is on a break now possibly until 2018, then why not re-live all the drama, heart-break, backstabbing, torrid love affairs, and more by working your way through the entire Game of Thrones series. The books do differ from the television series and it will act as a refresher so you’ll be ready when it’s back on air.

The Wisdom of Sundays: Life-Changing Insights from Super Soul Conversations by Oprah Winfrey

Maybe you want to use the cold weather to feed your soul with inspiration, motivation, and some eye-opening revelations. That’s exactly what you’ll get with this brand new release from famed television personality Oprah Winfrey. This book is a collection of stories she has gathered from her television show The Wisdom of Sundays and is sure to leave an impact on you.

Pick Up a Book and Get Reading

Now that you’ve got a list in front of you, all that’s left to do is pick up your first book and get reading.

Join me at Better Than Starbucks!

I don’t talk much about my poetry writing on the blog, but I do post occasionally on Facebook about when I submit poems to magazines and contests and when I receive rejections.  I don’t let those rejections get me down … not too much.

I save the acceptances for the blog!  I love to announce what magazines have accepted my work, and I’m doubly happy that my urban haiku are beginning to find homes. I’m not a traditional haiku writer.  I’ve known this for a long time.  Like a modern woman, my subjects are bit more familiar to urbanites.

Hope you’ll check out the great poems at Better Than Starbucks!  I’m in the November issue (2nd column, midway down).

Thanks to Kevin McLaughlin for seeing merit in my little haiku.

24-Hour Readathon

As you may know, this weekend is the 24-hour read-a-thon. In honor of the event and Dewey, I’m talking about some read-a-thon memories.

Join me and share your memories.

Join Us Oct. 7 — Poetic Book Tours and Kelly Davio, author of It’s Just Nerves

JOIN Poetic Book Tours and Kelly Davio, author of It’s Just Nerves, for a Facebook book launch event.

Oct. 7, 2017, at 7 p.m. EST

Join us on Facebook

Ask burning questions about her candid essay collection, ask her about her writing life, and more.

Join Me at Bourgeon

Over the last weekend while on vacation, I got the wonderful news that a very personal poem about my Vovó, who passed away two years ago.  I knew that she was ill and didn’t have much time left, and I was furiously writing.

I planned to read it at her funeral, but I was so emotionally wrecked, I was unable to do so.  I did the next best thing — after seeking sage advice from a few writer friends — I let the poem rest with her.

Fast forward two years, I tried to read Pergola at the poetry reading I participated in this year, but failed miserably at that as well.  However, during that reading, I met the wonderful Gregory Luce, who suggested I send him a few poems.

I was happy when he told me Pergola found a home at Bourgeon.  Please feel free to check it out.

Vacation To-Read List

When we get ready for vacation, my daughter takes the time to pack her favorite stuffed animals, books, and her sleeping bag. You never know when you’ll need that for a sleep over. This year, she’ll probably add her favorite swim goggles and toys for the pool.

Me, I pack the essentials — BOOKS. I always over pack books for a trip. If we go away for a long weekend, I bring at least 5 books. While I don’t often read them all, I do change my mind on which one holds my attention while away. A kindle has helped in years past, allowing me to take several more books than usual. This year will be no different, but my top three picks this vacation are below.

Let me know if you’ve read them before and what you think I should start with:

The Inseparable Mr. & Mrs. Darcy by Jennifer Joy, this is book three in the Meryton Mystery series.

Fitzwilliam Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet have had their fill of crime-solving. Now engaged to be married, their greatest wish is to leave Meryton with its penchant for mysteries for the serenity of Pemberley. If only Mr. Bennet would give his consent.

When a secret correspondence is discovered, revealing a possible elopement, a plot against Parliament, and exposing their families’ reputations to shame, the investigations begin anew. The couple’s search for answers unfolds more trouble as Mr. Bennet becomes the target of their unknown enemy … or is it merely the desperate act of a lonely father unwilling to part with his favorite daughter?

Darcy and Elizabeth team up to once and for all prove that family trumps adversity and love conquers all — if they can make it to the altar…

Cocoa Beach by Beatriz Williams

Burdened by a dark family secret, Virginia Fortescue flees her oppressive home in New York City for the battlefields of World War I France. While an ambulance driver for the Red Cross, she meets a charismatic British army surgeon whose persistent charm opens her heart to the possibility of love. As the war rages, Virginia falls into a passionate affair with the dashing Captain Simon Fitzwilliam, only to discover that his past has its own dark secrets—secrets that will damage their eventual marriage and propel her back across the Atlantic to the sister and father she left behind.

Five years later, in the early days of Prohibition, the newly widowed Virginia Fitzwilliam arrives in the tropical boomtown of Cocoa Beach, Florida, to settle her husband’s estate. Despite the evidence, Virginia does not believe Simon perished in the fire that destroyed the seaside home he built for her and their young daughter. Separated from her husband since the early days of their marriage, the headstrong Virginia plans to uncover the truth, for the sake of the daughter Simon never met.

Simon’s brother and sister welcome her with open arms and introduce her to a dazzling new world of citrus groves, white beaches, bootleggers, and Prohibition agents. But Virginia senses a predatory presence lurking beneath the irresistible, hedonistic surface of this coastal oasis. The more she learns about Simon and his mysterious business interests, the more she fears that the dangers that surrounded Simon now threaten her and their daughter’s life as well.

To Lay To Rest Our Ghosts: Stories by Caitlin Hamilton Summie

In these ten elegantly written short stories, Caitlin Hamilton Summie takes readers from WWII Kansas City to a poor, drug-ridden neighborhood in New York, and from the quiet of rural Minnesota to its pulsing Twin Cities, each time navigating the geographical boundaries that shape our lives as well as the geography of tender hearts, loss, and family bonds. Deeply moving and memorable, To Lay To Rest Our Ghosts examines the importance of family, the defining nature of place, the need for home, and the hope of reconciliation.

What do you pack as a must-have on vacation?

Guest Post: Books That Are Great for Writing Inspiration

Writer’s block is more common than you think. Most writers experience writing block at least a few times in their writing careers. When you feel like you cannot come up with good, creative ideas or you cannot produce exciting chapters for the book you are working on, there are a few things you can do. The most recommended thing is to keep writing and to not give up even though you struggle. Another great recommendation is to read as much as you can. You might wonder which books are the best for a writer who suffers from writer’s block so here are my suggestions:

1. Writing Exercises Books

The first thing that comes to writers’ minds when they are no longer able to write is that they need to read books about writing techniques. While this trick may work for some writers, the best writing books focus on more than writing techniques. They also include writing exercises that can be practiced on a regular basis to rewire the creative part of the brain that is responsible for writing. The Daily Writer is just an example of a book that offers information about writing techniques combined with writing exercises and it is definitely a must for all writers who lost their inspiration.

2. Spiritual books

Reading spiritual books when dealing with writer’s block may seem strange but the main purpose of spiritual books is to make people improve their lives by making them aware of their spiritual sides and hidden desires. This recommendation works best for writers who are open minded enough to try a totally new approach or for those who are in touch with their spiritual side. However, every writer should give this a try and if you are willing to do this there are plenty of spiritual books you can read.

3. Children’s Books

Another surprising recommendation maybe, but before dismissing it, think about it for a minute. What all children books have in common? A lot of creativity, a simple writing style and inspirational stories. Sometimes writer’s block happens when a writer is too stressed. This can be due to a deadline, due to self-doubt or many other problems that affect creative minds. The best way to disconnect and to find motivation again is to read an easy book that can reopen the creativity drawer in your brain. Also, in order to test your creativity you can find new ways to interpret the classic stories or to find new meanings for certain situations. Houghton Mifflin Books For Children is a publisher that offers a variety of children’s books with old and new characters that can help you find your muses again.

Besides these book recommendations, I have to say that a writer has to keep his mind and heart open in order to be able to try new things all the time. New experiences can mean new sources of inspiration so instead of locking yourself in the house, go outside, observe people and have the courage to do something that you did not do before.

Come Join Me at Mothers Always Write

It’s funny how life works sometimes. I had participated in a poetry prompt workshop through Two Sylvias Press in April and had one poem critiqued.

While the poem published this month in the new issue of Mothers Always Write was not the one I had critiqued by Two Sylvias Press, it was one of the poems created from one of the prompts in April.

“A Poem to Save Us” was a fun poem to write and work on. I’m happy to see it in print. Click the badge above to read it yourself. Feel free to leave comments.

Come Join the Modern Creative Life

Following my poetry reading in June, I set to work on an essay about the experience.  If you’re interested click the image and feel free to join the conversation.

Happy Independence Day!

I hope everyone enjoys their 4th of July festivities.  Happy Independence Day!