A Perfect World #MondayMusings #OpenBookBlogHop #WritingPrompts

Abbie wears a blue and white V-neck top with different shades of blue from sky to navy that swirl together with the white. She has short, brown hair and rosy cheeks and smiles at the camera against a black background.Photo Courtesy of Tess Anderson Photography

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Two Pentacles Publishing.

 

Welcome to another edition of Open Book Blog Hop. This week’s question is: “Share your tips for world-building, even if it’s only a village.”

In my ideal world, people would contribute equally to the economy. There would be no upper, middle, or lower class, and nothing would be exclusive. Poverty, homelessness, prejudice, religion, and war wouldn’t exist.

In schools, curriculum would include social values: respecting one another, not stealing, lying, or cheating. Children would learn that abuse of any kind is wrong and should be reported. They would also be encouraged to tell on others for doing something wrong and to always do the right thing. Prison inmates would learn to feel bad about themselves because of choices they made, then be given tools to rebuild their lives, become law-abiding citizens, and feel good about themselves again.

Of course, I’m no expert on economics, education, or psychology. So, I couldn’t tell you how to build such a world or even if it could exist. But wouldn’t it be nice?

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How about you? What would your ideal world be like? Do you know how such a world could be built? You can click here to participate in this week’s hop and read other bloggers’ responses.

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New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

The cover of the book features an older woman sitting in a wicker chair facing a window. The world beyond the window is bright, and several plants are visible on the terrace. Behind the woman’s chair is another plant, with a tall stalk and wide rounded leaves. The woman has short, white hair, glasses, a red sweater, and tan pants. The border of the picture is a taupe color and reads "Why Grandma Doesn't Know Me" above the photo and "Abbie Johnson Taylor" below it.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

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A Collection with Something for Everyone #FridayFunReads #Poetry #Inspiration

Colors Passing Through us

by Marge Piercy

 

What Amazon Says

 

In Colors Passing Through Us, Marge Piercy is at the height of her powers, writing about what matters to her most: the lives of women, nature, Jewish ritual, love between men and women, and politics, sexual and otherwise.

Feisty and funny as always, she turns a sharp eye on the world around her, bidding an exhausted farewell to the twentieth century and singing an “electronic breakdown blues” for the twenty-first. She memorializes movingly those who, like Los desaparecidos and the victims of 9/11, disappear suddenly and without a trace.

She writes an elegy for her mother, a woman who struggled with a deadening round of housework, washin gon Monday, ironing on Tuesday, and so on, “until stroke broke/her open.” She remembers the scraps of lace, the touch of velvet, that were part of her maternal inheritance and first aroused her sensual curiosity.

Here are paeans to the pleasures of the natural world (rosy ripe tomatoes, a mating dance of hawks) as the poet confronts her own mortality in the cycle of seasons and the eternity of the cosmos: “I am hurrying, I am running hard / toward I don’t know what, / but I mean to arrive before dark.” Other poems–about her grandmother’s passage from Russia to the New World, or the interrupting of a Passover seder to watch a comet pass–expand on Piercy’s appreciation of Jewish life that won her so much acclaim in The Art of Blessing the Day.

Colors Passing Through Us is a moving celebration of the endurance of love and of the phenomenon of life itself–a book to treasure.

 

Buy from Amazon.

 

My Thoughts

 

Marge Piercy has inspired my work for years. Her poem, “In Praise of Joe,” which appears in a previous collection, inspired my poem, “Ode to Dr. Pepper,” which appears in my collection, How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver. Her memoir, Sleeping with Cats, inspired me to write My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds, in the same style, with a poem at the end of each chapter.

I found myself relating to many of the poems in Colors Passing Through Us. I enjoyed “Got the 21st Century Blues,” in which she writes about a day when her furnace, computer, and cable stopped working. “Minor Losses,” in which she waxes nostalgic about buying homemade ice cream, reminded me of times as a kid when my family bought ice cream from Baskin-Robbins in Tucson, Arizona, and from Dairy Queen and the ice cream stand in the park here in Sheridan, Wyoming. “The Disintegration” made me thankful my marriage ended in death, not divorce.

I found some poems disturbing. A good example of one of these is “Family Values,” in which she reflects on domestic violence that occurred in her neighborhood when she was growing up. I didn’t particularly care for the sexual references in “Kamasutra for Dummies” and other poems.

But I especially liked the poems on nature themes in the section, “Winter’s Promise.” I found the poems on Judaism in the section, “Little Lights” fascinating. Colors Passing Through Us has something for everyone, and I highly recommend it.

A photo of Abbie smiling in front of a white background. She has short brown hair which is cut short and frames her face. She is wearing a bright red shirt and a dark, flowy scarf swirled with hues of purple, pinks and blues.

New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

The cover of the book features an older woman sitting in a wicker chair facing a window. The world beyond the window is bright, and several plants are visible on the terrace. Behind the woman’s chair is another plant, with a tall stalk and wide rounded leaves. The woman has short, white hair, glasses, a red sweater, and tan pants. The border of the picture is a taupe color and reads "Why Grandma Doesn't Know Me" above the photo and "Abbie Johnson Taylor" below it.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

***

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A Novel About Reconciliation #Friday Fun Reads, #Reblog

Note: I posted this review last spring when the book came out. It was recently discussed by one of the groups in which I participate. So, I thought it worth a second look.

 

Goin’ Home

by Phyllis Staton Campbell

Copyright 2020

 

What Amazon Says

 

Pastor Jim, blinded in Iraq, and his wife Amy settle down after the storm that has almost destroyed the town, only to find that the most peaceful garden can harbor a serpent. The town is thrown into chaos, when a mass killer is returned home to die after fifty years in prison. The town is divided and they find themselves in the middle.

There is humor when the new church secretary confuses names, and sends the hearse to pick up a dog. A country music singer appears on the scene, and Jim learns a secret from the past.

For readers who enjoy the Mitford series by Jan Karon.

 

My Thoughts

 

I met Phyllis Staton Campbell several years ago through Behind Our Eyes, an organization of disabled writers to which I belong. Goin’ Home is the sequel to Where Sheep May Safely Graze, which I reviewed here.

I was riveted from the first page. I laughed, got mad, but was finally rewarded in the end. I love the way the parsonage cat appears in the first and last chapters.  I was left wanting more.

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By the way, for those of you who use the National Library Services for the Blind and Print Disabled, The Red Dress is available for download from their site here. No matter how you read it, please be sure to review it wherever you can. That goes for all my books. Thank you for stopping by. Stay safe, happy, and healthy.

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

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Image contains: Abbie, smiling.

About Patty L. Fletcher #Sunday Sharing

This week’s blogger bio comes from Patty Fletcher, author and owner of TELL-IT-TO-THE-WORLD Marketing, which promotes authors and other business owners through social media and other traditional approaches. You’ll find links to her blog and other social media sites. Now here’s what Patty has to say, in her own words.

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ABOUT PATTY L. FLETCHER

 

I’m a single mother with a beautiful daughter, of whom I am enormously proud. I have a great son-in-law and six beautiful grandchildren. From April, 2011 through September, 2020 I owned and handled a black Labrador from The Seeing Eye® named King Campbell Lee Fletcher A.K.A. Bubba. Sadly, after a long battle with illness on September 24, 2020 King Campbell went to the Rainbow Bridge where all is peace and love. It is my hope to one day return to The Seeing Eye for a successor guide.

ABOUT MY BLINDNESS…

I was born one and a half months premature. My blindness was caused by my being given too much oxygen in the incubator. I was partially sighted until 1991, at which time I lost my sight due to an infection after cataract surgery and high eye pressure. I used a cane for 31 years before making the change to a guide dog.

WHERE I LIVE AND WORK…

Currently, I live and work in Kingsport, Tenn. I used to work for CONTACT-CONCERN of Northeast Tennessee, Inc. I left that position to spend time with my family and pursue my writing full time. I’m now the creator, and owner of Tell-It-To-The-World Marketing (Author, Blogger, Business Assist)

WRITING GOAL…

I write with the goal of bridging the great chasm which separates the disabled from the non-disabled.

MY BUSINESS…

At Tell-It-To-The-World Marketing, we support talented authors, as well as successful business owners in their marketing, by marrying social media, with more traditional approaches.

Services…

Featured blog posts

Social Media advertising such as…Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn

E-mail-out…

Outreach and Networking Services…

Facebook page Admin Assistance.

MY HOBBIES…

My hobbies include reading, music, and standup comedy. I also like nature walks, light hiking, tent camping, and fishing. No, I am not afraid to bait a hook.

Music I enjoy

My favorite types of music are classic rock, rhythm and blues, and classic country, as well as some present-day country music. I also like meditation music.

My favorite books and authors

I enjoy fantasy, science fiction, and books about the supernatural. I love books by Stephen King, Dean Koontz, and many more. My favorite books include; Stephen King’s Dark Tower series, J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series, and J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings series.

MY SPIRITUAL FAITH…

I am a spiritual walker. I claim no faith, either Christian or pagan. I simply know that there is God and Goddess, or Mother Father God, as some call her/him. I lean toward the natural approach, or Druidism (Druidry), as it promotes harmony and respect for all beings, including the environment. I am also interested in herbs and their healing properties.

CONTACT ME…

Email: patty.volunteer1@gmail.com

Links

http://www.campbellsworld.wordpress.com

https://www.amazon.com/Patty-L.-Fletcher/e/B00Q9I7RWG

http://www.dldbooks.com/pattyfletcher/

https://www.facebook.com/Bubba-Tails-196761360863975/

https://www.facebook.com/tellittotheworld/

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Thanks to Patty for this excellent bio. If you’re in need of marketing services, she’s your go-to gal. She also produces an online magazine and a podcast that is now widely available. You’ll find more information about these offerings on Campbell’s World.

By the way, for those of you who use the National Library Services for the Blind and Print Disabled, The Red Dress is available for download from their site here. No matter how you read it, please be sure to review it wherever you can. That goes for all my books. Thank you for stopping by. Stay safe, happy, and healthy.

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

My Books

My Amazon Author Page

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Image contains: Abbie, smiling.

No Sex, No Religion #TMI Tuesday

In case inquiring minds want to know, here’s my take on these subjects as answers to this week’s TMI Tuesday questions. If you’re up to it, you can scroll down to learn how you can participate and answer these questions.

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How important is religion in your life?

 

When I was in sixth grade, a friend invited me to her Baptist church. There, I found Jesus, or at least I thought I did. My mother encouraged me to join the Presbyterian Church because she knew the minister, who was active with her in the local theater guild. There, I was baptized, sang in the choir, and got involved in youth activities for a while.

As I grew older, for some reason, I stopped believing. My father always thought religion was a bunch of bullshit. So, maybe his influence won me over. Who knows? Now, except for the rare occasions I’m invited to sing for a church service, either alone or with my group, I don’t attend. So, to answer the question, religion is no longer an important part of my life, but I don’t begrudge others their beliefs and practices as long as they don’t interfere with human rights.

 

How often do you use pornography?

 

Never! I think it’s disgusting and degrading.

 

Do you feel your religion restricts sexual behavior?

 

I have no religion but firmly believe that sexual intercourse, defined by my high school P.E. teacher as “the insertion of the penis into the vagina,” is unnecessary unless a couple wants children or is past their child-bearing years. Too many young people who think they love each other don’t understand the true concept of the word. They treat sexual intercourse as just another fun activity you can do on a date and don’t consider the consequences. Yes, there’s protection, but it’s not always fool-proof.

Because my late husband Bill was impotent, during the seven years we were married before he passed, we got along well without sex. Even if I knew he was impotent before we were married, it wouldn’t have made a difference to me, and it certainly didn’t matter to him. In my opinion, relationships aren’t just about sexual intercourse. You can read our story in My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds.

 

Is your participation in sex, of any kind, tempered because of your own religious beliefs?

 

Actually, my lack of participation in any kind of sexual activities is caused by what I have observed around me. As I write this, Michael Jackson sings of how Billie Jean isn’t his lover and that her kid is not his son, a great example of sexual irresponsibility. Alternatively, lives of innocent fetuses are sacrificed because young mothers-to-be won’t bother to either raise a child or put a baby up for adoption. All life is precious, and children don’t choose to be born.

Then, there are cases like that of Natalie, the heroine of my young adult novel-in-progress, Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me. At sixteen, she finds out her father is actually a man with whom her mother had an extramarital affair, a man she doesn’t know. Imagine how that would feel, and think before spreading your legs.

 

Can you be kinky and practice religion?

 

That depends on your religious beliefs.

 

Bonus: Are you aspiring to anything?

 

Oh yes, I’m always aspiring to be a writer. I’ve published five books, and a sixth is on the way.

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Now, it’s your turn. How do you feel about sex and religion? Click here to learn how you can participate on your blog, or sound off in the comment field below.

By the way, for those of you who use the National Library Services for the Blind and Print Disabled, The Red Dress is available for download from their site here. Thank you for reading. Stay safe, happy, and healthy, and may you always have positive experiences.

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

My Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

WebsiteImage contains: Abbie, smiling.