Magnets and Ladders Spring/Summer Issue Now Online

Magnets and Ladders is an online magazine featuring work by authors with disabilities such as myself. You’ll find stories, essays, poems, articles about writing, and contest information. Even if you’re not a disabled author, I think you’ll enjoy this publication. It contains, among other things, two of my short stories and one of my poems. I’ll post these works here in coming weeks, but in the meantime, please check out all the wonderful work Magnets and Ladders has to offer at http://www.magnetsandladders.org/wp/.

Abbie Johnson Taylor, Author of We Shall Overcome and How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

Author Alethea Williams Rides Again by Abbie Taylor

I’m re-blogging this post I wrote for Writing Wranglers and Warriors. You may remember when I interviewed author Alethea Williams a couple of years ago when her book, Willow Vale, came out. Now, she has published another western romance, Walls for the Wind. You can read more below.

Writing Wranglers and Warriors

Abbie Taylor This post by Abbie Taylor.

A couple of years ago, I interviewed author Alethea Williams on my blog about her book, Willow Vale. Now, she has just published a new book, Walls for the Wind. Like Willow Vale, this is a historical romance set in Wyoming, but unlike Willow Vale, it’s a totally different story. Alethea Williams graciously sent me promotional materials which I’ll include below: a synopsis, an excerpt, and an author bio. You can visit her blog to find links to where Walls for the Wind can be ordered in Kindle and Nook formats. The print edition will be out next month. I enjoyed Willow Vale, and I’m definitely looking forward to reading Walls for the Wind.

Synopsis:

Displaying WallsfortheWindcover4.jpgCan an angel survive Hell on Wheels? When Kit Calhoun leaves New York City with a train car full of foundlings from the Immigrant Children’s…

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Recipe for Love

Picture this. You’re a successful chef with your own restaurant. Things are going pretty well until a television cook and food reviewer writes a scathing piece on your establishment. After that, things start going downhill, and you’re eventually forced to close your business.

Your aunt retires from her catering job with a wedding venue and arranges for you to have her old position temporarily. You really want this to become permanent. One day, your boss asks you to prepare a sample menu for special clients. No problem, you think, as you put the menu together and prepare the meal.

At the appointed time of the tasting, your boss tells you that only the groom’s brother has arrived, and he’ll be sampling the food. Okay, you think, as you start carrying everything into the dining room. Then, you spot him, that same chef who put you out of business with that awful review. He’s the groom’s brother, charged with arranging the food for the wedding.

Garrison Keillor would say, “Wouldn’t this be a good time for some bebop areebop rhubarb pie?” However, in Lucy Kevin’s book, The Wedding Gift, once successful San Francisco chef Julie Delgado ends up eating humble pie, opening her mind to new cooking possibilities, and falling in love with well-known television chef Andrew Kyle. Will these two cook up a brand new recipe together? You’ll just have to find out.

New York Times and Washington Post best-selling author Lucy Kevin’s books include Seattle Girl, Sparks Fly, and Falling Fast. The Wedding Gift is part of a series called Four Weddings and a Fiasco. The Washington Post has called Lucy Kevin one of the top writers in America. When she’s not writing, she’s swimming, hiking, or laughing with her husband and two children. Click here to read more.

I downloaded The Wedding Gift from Audible, but it should be available in print and eBook formats from Amazon and other online retailers. One thing I like about this book is that it’s short. Some romance authors drag out the “girl meets boy, girl loses boy, girl gets boy” scenario, but in The Wedding Gift, things are resolved much more quickly as a result of its brevity. Although I didn’t like the ending at first, I definitely plan to read more of Lucy Kevin’s books. I can’t wait to get my next credit for a free download from Audible so I can read the second book in the Four Weddings and a Fiasco series.

Abbie Johnson Taylor, Author of We Shall Overcome and How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

An Encounter with a Drunk Indian

When I was a student at Rocky Mountain College and Montana State University, both located in Billings, I often traveled the 150-mile trip home to Sheridan by bus. Years later, I heard a radio interview with a writer who published a collection of poems based on her experiences traveling across the country on a bus. After hearing her read some of her poems about people she encountered on her journeys, I remembered a particular experience I had and was inspired to write the following poem which appears in this year’s issue of Serendipity Poets Journal.

Intoxicated Crow on a Trailways Bus

December, 1984, in the early afternoon,

I board a bus in Billings, Montana,

for the three-hour trip to Sheridan, Wyoming.

A college student going home for Christmas,

I sit behind and to the right of the driver.

Storm clouds gather, as the bus leaves town.

 

An hour later, he gets on at Crow Agency,

sits next to me, tells me he’s Crow.

I tell him I’m one small part Cherokee,

the truth, but he doesn’t respond.

I ask where he’s going.

He says nothing—we ride in silence.

It starts to snow.

 

In the darkness about twenty miles outside of Sheridan,

the bus is surrounded by white.

The driver, a robust black man, slows down.

Wipers slap their own rhythm against the windshield.

 

The Crow tells me he’s scared.

I ask why—he doesn’t reply.

He stands, stumbles to the back,

returns, places his long legs over my short ones.

 

The busybody behind me asks if I’m comfortable.

I tell her I’m fine—I’m almost home, anyway.

She marches to the driver,

tells him about the drunk Indian on my lap.

After glancing in our direction,

the driver pulls the bus to the side of the road,

approaches the Crow, gives his shoulders a rough shake,

carries him off the bus.

Driver and Crow disappear in the swirling white.

 

I see no buildings, no trees,

nothing to shelter one ejected from a bus.

The driver returns, mumbles,

puts the bus in gear.

Wondering, I disembark in Sheridan

to begin my Christmas vacation.

Have you ever traveled anywhere on a Trailways or Greyhound bus? Did you meet any interesting people?

 

Abbie Johnson Taylor, Author of We Shall Overcome and How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

 

 

More about National Poetry Month

Since this is the 75th anniversary of The Wizard of Oz, and this month is National Poetry Month, you might enjoy this post from Alice Massa, a fellow writer in my Behind Our Eyes group. You may have seen her comments on previous posts. She’s a retired teacher who loves to write so I hope you enjoy what she has to say.

alice13wordwalk

 

One Poem and Many Ideas for a Poem

For this post in the midst of Nationl Poetry Month, I am sharing with you a poem about clichés and a list of ideas for writing a poem. Throughout my years of teaching writing, I, of course, encouraged my students to avoid clichés in their writings. After I retired, I thought writing a poem consisting primarily of clichés might be fun. Although I wrote this short poem on May 13, 2012, its references to The Wizard of Oz make the poem more pertinent this year, which is the 75th anniversary of the famous movie.

Immediately after the poem, you will find lists of ideas to help you write a poem for National Poetry Month.

The Art of Writing Clichés–Ruby Clichés

by Alice Jane-Marie Massa

No rhapsody in the blues–

I want to think in the pink,

wear rose-colored glasses,

and…

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