Monthly Archives: September 2017

#IDareYou Book Tag


I accepted this challenge after reading The Magic Violinist‘s answers to these twenty book questions.

1. What book has been on your shelves the longest?

Hi. My name is Andrea, and I’m a bookaholic. My house is full of books. I have books I bought decades ago that I haven’t read yet. I couldn’t possibly tell you which one has been waiting the longest.


These are just the TBRs that are stacked on the floor of my office. I have more on my bookshelves all through the house, and more in closets…

2. What is your current read, your last read, and the book you’ll read next?

I usually have about five books in progress at any one time. Currently, I am reading Canon EOS Rebel T5/1200D for Dummies by Julie Adair King and Robert Correll; Growing Gills: How to Find Creative Focus When You’re Drowning in Your Daily Life by Jessica Abel;  Good Poems collected by Garrison Keillor; Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen; and Tanabata Wish by Sara Fujimura. The last book I finished was The Serpent King by Jeffrey Zentner. I think I need to reread Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne and Dave King next.

3. What book did everyone like, but you hated?

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood. Ugh! What an ugly world.

4. What book do you keep telling yourself you’ll read, but you probably won’t?

War and Peace.

5. Which book are you saving for retirement?I am retired, so all of them. Or none of them.

6. Last page: Do you read it first or wait until the end?

For goodness’ sake, each page in order, please.

7. Acknowledgements: Are they a waste of paper and ink or interesting?Because of my obsessive/compulsive characteristics, I have been reading the acknowledgments sections since I was a child, even before I knew what the word meant. As I writer, I find them fascinating.

8. Which book character would you switch places with?

I don’t know. I have a pretty terrific life.

9. Do you have a book that reminds you of something specific in your life?

Heidi, by Johanna Spyri. I read it as a little girl (and saw the Shirley Temple movie) and read it to my daughter when she was little (it brought me to tears, because of Heidi’s childlike faith). It reminds me of my grandmother’s house in Germany.

10. Name a book that you acquired in an interesting way.

My Bible study leaders gave me a copy of Jesus Calling by Sarah Young. At the time, I resisted reading it, but I’m so glad I finally relented.

11. Have you ever given away a book for a special reason to a special person?

Last January I attended a writers workshop where the featured presenter was Allen Arnold. While he was speaking, I kept thinking of Tom, a friend of mine who was struggling with finishing a book. Arnold’s message would have been so encouraging to Tom. So I bought two copies of his book The Story of Withone for me and one for Tom.

12. Which book has been with you the most places?

When I travel, I take my Kindle with me, so hundreds of books have accompanied me across the country and to the doctor’s office.

13. Any “required reading” you hated in high school that wasn’t so bad two years later?I pretty much loved everything I can remember reading in high school.

14. Used or brand new?

Since I reread books I like over and over, used is not an issue. In fact, I like the idea of keeping preread copies in circulation. I donate books that I know I’ll never read again, and I’ll generally buy a used copy if I can find one, because it saves me money for more books. The exception is when one of my favorite authors (see the answer to question #19) has a new release. I can’t wait, so I buy new.

15. Have you ever read a Dan Brown book?

All of them. I am looking forward to the release of Origin.

16. Have you ever seen a movie that you liked more than the book?
I can’t think of one. I usually like the book better than the movie, even if I loved the movie, because the book contains nuances that don’t translate over to film, or scenes that had to be cut for time’s sake.

17. A book that’s made you hungry?The Mitford series by Jan Karon. Some of the cakes sound to die for.

18. Who is the person whose book advice you’ll always take?

Jeff Goins.

19. Most read authors?

Patricia Cornwell (for her Kay Scarpetta series), Sue Grafton, John Grisham (for the legal thrillers), and Janet Evanovich (for her Stephanie Plum numerical series).

20. Ship from two different books?

I don’t even know what this means.

Tag, you’re it! Answer some or all of these questions on your blog (give us a link!) or in the comments below.


Creative Juice #61

Creative Juice #61

Oh boy! Lots of inspiring stuff to jumpstart your creativity this weekend!

In the Meme Time: Write Memorable Books


Emotional books


I Dare You


I belong to the Zentangle All Around group on Facebook, and I don’t think I’ve participated in a single challenge all year. But I needed some artistic inspiration today, and referred to the Taking It to the Next Level prompts. Yesterday’s was I Dare You to try a circular tangle. So, here is Ur-Chen:


Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Flowers

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Flowers

Cee is doing an “alphabet with a twist” series for her Fun Foto Challenge, and we’re up to F: Fun or Flowers. Here are my offerings, from a recent walk through the ‘hood.

Ocotillo blossoms:




Red bird of paradise:



Guest Post: Sculptor Transformed 100-year-old​ Norway Maple Tree Stump into Revolutionary Wartime Presbyterian Minister


Thank you to Ruth E. Hendricks, a photographer and former art teacher, for sharing this guest post featuring a historic graveyard. For more of Ruth’s work, see her blog.

Ruth E. Hendricks Photography

That lengthy title gives it all away -Another post of last week’s time in Philadelphia -

Sculptor and excellent ice carver,Roger Wing, transformed a 100 year old Norway Maple stump into an impressive likeness of Pastor George Duffield (b.1732-d.1790).

(ClickRoger Wing Sculptorand you can see more examples of his amazing sculpture.)

Walking back to the hotel, I passed byThe Old Pine Street Church Graveyard.

Architect Joseph G. Brin articledetails information about how this Revolutionary War Minister’s sermon inspired John Adams to sign the Declaration of Independence.

The wind made the flags billow and flap, making snapping sounds.
Unlike the Harmonist Cemetery I posted yesterday, these graves are marked.

Well, they were marked.

Years of erosion have made many names difficult to read.

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Video of the Week #117: Judy of the Blue Eyes

Video of the Week #117: Judy of the Blue Eyes

Tuesday Photo Challenge: Signs



Actually, it’s a lamp post along the canal in my neighborhood. But it’s kind of a sign. My offering for the Tuesday Photo Challenge.

Wordless Wednesday: White Oleander

Wordless Wednesday: White Oleander

White Oleander

Doing double duty today with Cee’s Flower of the Day.

Share Your World

Share Your World

I’m taking Cee’s Share Your World Challenge today.

What is your favorite outdoor activity?

Walking. But walking is too much like exercise (translation: unpleasant work), so I need a secondary activity. I bring along my iPod so I can listen to music, or a notepad so I can jot down story ideas, or my camera.

In a car would you rather drive or be a passenger?

Definitely the driver. It is hard for me to relinquish control. (Yes, I have issues.) My husband can’t stand my backseat driving, so he often just suggests that I drive.


If you could have three wishes granted for you alone, what would they be?

First, that my children would grow into the people God created them to be. (I know the wishes are supposed to be for me alone, but what mother doesn’t wish her children would be successful?)

Second, that a publisher would pick up one of my books.

Third, that Greg and I could travel the world. (I know the wishes are for me alone, but who doesn’t her best friend along when she travels?)

What inspired you or what did you appreciate this past week?  Feel free to use a quote, a photo, a story, or even a combination. 

I’m a little short on inspiration this week, but I’m looking forward to going on a writers’ retreat this weekend.