photography © by Andrea R Huelsenbeck
For twenty-seven years, I’ve lived seven miles from the Gilbert (AZ) Historical Museum, and never visited it. That changed last month when a friend invited me to accompany her to a quilt show there.
The museum documents the story of the farming community, which sprang up in the early 1900s when the Arizona Eastern Railway established a rail line between Florence and Phoenix. But it also preserves the memory of our country as experienced by our grandparents, great-grandparents, and great-great grandparents.
Full of charming artifacts, the museum catapulted me into memories of my extended family, particularly my aunt’s in-laws, who farmed in New Jersey. I will intersperse pictures of items from the permanent collection amongst the photos of the quilt show.
You can click on the smaller images to enlarge and see the captions.
On Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday mornings, a group of quilters gathers at the museum to work.
Who wouldn’t want a laundry room equipped with these lovely washing machines, fully loaded with mechanical wringers?
Seeing the crazy quilt below triggered a memory from my childhood. When I was a little girl, an elderly friend of my parents gave them an old crazy quilt like this, heavily embroidered silk bordered and backed with burgundy velvet. My mother gave it to me to use as a bedspread on my bed, until it deteriorated into shreds. Knowing what I know now, I wish I’d had the option of saving it. I suspect it was already pretty worn out when we got it.
World War I artifacts from the Military exhibit:
Let us never forget our men and women in uniform who have perished in service to our country.
The quilt show runs through May 30, 2016. It was so worth my $4 (senior discount) to see it. And the museum is absolutely charming. I’ll be back again. And the quilt show is an annual event! See you next year, maybe.
Make the tabernacle with ten curtains of finely twisted line and blue, purple and scarlet yarn, with cherubim worked into them by a skilled craftsman (Exodus 26:1 NIV).
It’s time for Weekend Writing Warriors! Every Sunday, a bunch of writers post 8-10-sentence snippets from their WIPs on their blogs. There’s a lot of reading, commenting and great writing. Click on the link to see the full list.
Today’s excerpt happens the day after the events of Chapter 2. Hillary is having trouble paying attention in algebra class.
Hillary looked at the blackboard. The equation made no sense to her at all.
“Just follow the steps you wrote down. You did write them down, right? You’ve been scribbling away.” Mr. Belluchi was at her seat in two long strides. Too late, Hillary tried to cover her notebook with her hands.
“Unicorns? You’ve spent this entire period drawing unicorns?”
Laughter broke out all around her.
I know it’s short (the limit is ten sentences), but what do you think of this small excerpt from Chapter 4? Any suggestions on how I can make it better? Please leave your comments below.
This is my response to Cee’s Flower of the Day challenge.
I live around the corner from a busy street. I give the city credit for making it an oasis of beauty instead of just letting it be unremarkable. All these photos were taken along 100 feet of sidewalk from the corner to the next business. Click on the images to see enlargements.
I am so blessed to live in a paradise. I get to see this whenever I walk to the pharmacy or the bookstore or Trader Joe’s.
On March 30, I was among a delegation of Phoenix International Folk Dancers who performed at the 28th Annual World Festival at Arizona State University. Organizations representing the cultures of many countries set up booths for friendly interaction. And, of course, foreign cuisine was available for sampling. (Click on the smaller photographs to enlarge them and see the captions.)
A karate school gave a martial arts demonstration, using student volunteers.
A Chinese dance troupe performed.
And a belly dancer.
And Japanese musicians.
I wish I had some photographs of Phoenix International Folk Dancers’ performance, but I was dancing at the time. We had some audience participation. Lots of fun!
Photographs © Andrea R Huelsenbeck 2016
It’s important to include the time-tested, standard author bio elements in the “About Me” page on your author website: professional headshot, education, career, and publication credits.
But you may want to offer your visitors a more intimate portrait than a basic professional bio offers. So what can you do to make your “About Me” page stand out in the crowd? (And trust us—writers on the Internet are a humungous crowd!)
Writing a letter to your fans is a great way to do just that. You can even scan your own handwriting into your computer and use it as a font. It doesn’t get more authentic than that!
Use candid photos. Instead of having a professional headshot, consider creating a slideshow of some candid photos. If the photos reflect on themes found in your writing, so much the better! For instance, if nature is a source of inspiration, you can include your Galapagos Island vacation photos. Is your adorable dog your writing sidekick? Feature Fido in a photo!
Incorporating informal photographs into your “About Me” page adds a personal touch and gives your visitors a glimpse into what you do in your free time. Say cheese!
Embellish your headshot as if it’s in a scrapbook. If a slideshow’s not in the cards, consider adding some creative flair to your headshot. Giving your author photo a scrapbook-style background will add a unique element to your author website while showing off your artistic side.
Here’s a great example of how a simple scrapbook layout can dress up your “About Me” headshot.
Interview or Q&A. Posting an interview with yourself is an interesting way to spice up your “About Me” page while offering a lot of information. Think of questions your visitors will want answers to:
When did you start writing?
What drove you to write?
Who are your inspirations?
Post a video. Want to give the illusion that you’re having a face-to-face chat with your visitors? Post a short video introducing yourself and thanking visitors for coming to your page. Then tell them a little about you.
Use your video as an opportunity to guide them around your website. Is your latest novel available for purchase on your “Books” page? Let them know!
Keep in mind that some of your visitors may be lit agents or editors wanting to learn more about you. This is an excellent opportunity to show them you’re serious about marketing yourself and your writing.
Include a personal anecdote. Along with writing a letter to your visitors, you can also post some personal stories—perhaps a funny memory from your childhood that inspired you to write; a vacation that provided the perfect subject matter for your work; or a book you read that influenced the way you write.
By showing a little personality on your “About Me” author website page, you reveal another side of yourself to visitors and make yourself more “real” in their eyes. When it comes to checking out a new writer (or a favorite writer), it’s nice to get the facts…and even nicer to get something more.
Here are a few of our favorite “About Me” pages—incorporating videos, image slideshows, and other fun techniques—straight from Web Design Relief clients. [ARHtistic License’s note: click on the pages below to view on the actual websites.]
Photo by CollegeDegrees360
QUESTION: Which of these helpful tips do you find to be most useful on an author “About Me” page? Any other ideas?