Indie Bookstore Day

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A few Saturday’s ago was celebrate Independent Bookstore Day. In many states  COVID-19 has restricted the opening of brick and mortar stores over the past 6 months but regulations have relaxed just a little allowing a celebration with social distancing. Many bookstores held sidewalk  celebrations.

As I participated in a book signing in Bel Air, MD I couldn’t help but think how selling books by e-commerce and also the development of electronic books (e-books) and audio books were made for a time such as this. Had it not been for the vast changes in the publishing industry over the past 12 or 15 years, bookselling would have come to a complete and utter screaming hault during these challenging times.

It felt so good to be able to participate in a bookselling event and to meet and greet other authors who share a passion for writing.

Here’s a few images of Independent Bookstore Day in 2020! Books are already being written about this unique time in history.

Book with a Big Takeaway Message

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I just read a book by Rubi Ho called The Thrival Guide to Work and Life. Briefly, Rubi Ho is an expert at organizational change and an Executive Business Coach. His talents are especially valuable in this day and age when corporations everywhere are looking at change or overhauls  due to the pandemic.

Along with sharing many achievable tips, his book paints an abstract of his early childhood as an orphan and how he became a successful business person working with Fortune 500 companies and living a fulfilling life. The tools he used to become successful endorses the idea that education is not always the key ingredient for a thriving life.

The biggest takeaway for me was Rubi Ho’s assurance that limitation, lack of resources and challenge early in life often lays the foundation for learning critical thinking skills and problem solving which can be greatly used to one’s advantage. Knowing oneself and using ones own innate gifts and lessons learned through real life experience leads to thrival. Quang Ho, his brother, a world renown artist is sited as an excellent example of someone who followed his heart for art even though he knew the big challenges he’d face trying to rise to an elite level of accomplishment.

The book is so filled with strategies for both personal and professional achievement that it is best read in it’s entirety.

Rubi Ho, best wishes to you for thrival in your publishing endeavors. You have much of value to share.

2020 Eric Hoffer Award Finalist

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We are pleased to announce a biography about Richard Galusha called “An Artist’s Journey,” written by Sue Batton Leonard is a 2020 Eric Hoffer Book Award Finalist. The narrative tells the story of the unique influences that drove  Galusha’s passion for the arts from childhood to amateur artist to arts educator to professional artist to gallery owner.

e-Books & Audio Books Reign

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With libraries and brick and mortar bookstores all around the country being closed due to the Corona virus outbreak, there has never been a better time for e-books and audio books.

We offer a list of e-tailers for electronic books and audio books. These are just a few. Search the internet for others. Many offer free e-books too.

No Kindle or Kobo book reader? You can install a Kindle reader on your computer. Directions can be found on their website or search the internet for more information.

Where to get e-books and audio books:

  • Project Gutenberg
  • Smashwords
  • Book Bub
  • Open Culture
  • Open Library
  • Mashable
  • Audible (audio books)

It’s the perfect time to make progress on your “Want to Read” list. HAPPY READING

Holiday Books

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Happy December 1st everyone. Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving!

I recently began spending time at the Charles W. Lightner Library, a Christian Community Library. What a wonderful assortment of titles – currently 6,300 but who is counting? The number is constantly increasing as new books are acquired.

As I browse the shelves, I see so many titles perfect for family reading. The chances of the whole family being on the same page together when it comes to faith and spirituality is increased when Christian book titles are on the bookshelves of the family library.

Here are two publications which will reinforce your family’s determination to put the focus back into Christmas where it belongs. Pre-holiday reading is recommended!

  • 7 Days of Christmas: The Season of Generosity by Jen Hatmaker
  • Advent Conspiracy by Rick McKinley, Chris Seay and Greg Holder

You, too, can join in on the Advent Conspiracy. I have! I’m participating in a group discussion with the local United Methodist Church in Bel Air.

Keep your eye on AllThingsFulfilling.com.  In the New Year there will be more recommended titles because there are genres of books that can make a world of difference to individuals and family alike who want to live more fulfilling lives. Click here for one more title to add to this short list! There is a meaningful chapter about Christmas in it you will not want to miss.

Post Script:  Ever since I entered the media world as a blogger and writer ten years ago, I have taken about a two-week hiatus, through the holidays, from posting writings. This year it will be a little different. I am dedicating myself to a whole month of quietly observing the holy season and to the renewal of spirit. When the New Year rolls around, 2020!! I will be refreshed and rejuvenated.

Merry Christmas to You and to Yours.

 

Artful Titles

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“It is what you read when you don’t have to that determines who you will be when you can’t help it.”

~ Oscar Wilde

Last night, many artists whom I’ve directly or indirectly made connection with in the art community were in my thoughts when I attended Bruce E Mowday’s book signing for his publication Stealing Wyeth. The book signing was held at the Harford County Public Library in Bel Air.

The veteran reporter, investigative journalist and public speaker knows how to tantalize an audience! Bruce E. Mowday gave us just enough information about the theft of fifteen Wyeth paintings for us to want to learn more and read on! All you art enthusiasts and crime book fans will want to know more about the characters, the art thieves and the author behind the story. Go to the author’s website. He has published about twenty books in various genres and he says his range of subjects can be contributed to his avid interest in people, both from the past and in today’s world.

Soon, more revelations will be made about more books artists world-wide will be interested in.  Keep your eye on this website.

 

Hallowed Halls of Johns Hopkins

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The path of spiritual growth is a path of lifelong learning. ~ M. Scott Peck, author of Gifts of the Journey, In Search of Stones and The Road Less Traveled

Happy Halloween, everyone. On October 3rd, my cousin Meg Heisse and I witnessed a little hocus-pocus when we attended An Evening of Victorian Magic at Evergreen Mansion and Library, which is a Johns Hopkins University Museum. Since my cousin is a member, we attended a pre-performance reception held in the Asian red room among Chinese and Japanese collectibles. The bartenders stirred up Victorian libations and we saw up close magic tricks by David London. Mind reader indeed, out of a 52 card deck, the magician asked me to select one card and show it to others.  No slight of hand involved, through telepathic transmission he correctly identified the card I had picked. But that was just the start of the delightful evening. The magician had many more magic tricks up his sleeve once the show started and he came to the stage.

There was no need to build a stage for the evening because there is already a Victorian era theatre in the Evergreen Museum. And although there were no upper level seats for celestials to sit as in many Victorian theatres, we were told apparitions are in or about the rooms of the mansion. The theatre, painted by Russian Artist Leon Bakst, was used regularly to entertain the three Garrett boys, who at one time lived there.

The Evergreen Museum and Library was built in 1850 and became home to railroad magnate, John Garrett and his family. He was President of Baltimore and Ohio “B & O” Railroad. A little over one hundred years later, in 1952, the Italianate home from the Guilded Era was donated to Johns Hopkins University and it is now on the National Register of Historic Places.

Also in the mansion is a 30,000  volume library with much of which is English Renaissance literature. Paintings by Picasso, DegasModigliani and stained glass by Tiffany, a 23 karat gold plated bathroom all are housed in the structure. In the Asian red room I spied several pieces of Chinoiserie furniture and as I snooped around in the museum gift shop at Evergreen, I saw several beautiful publications about stained glass.

Today, my Halloween treat to our readers is a recipe for soul cakes which traditionally was the offering to others on All Hallows Eve. And here are a few pictures of our evening at Evergreen Museum and Library, too. Look carefully you might see things that fool the eye!

Some time soon I do look forward to returning to the historic Evergreen Museum to take the full tour. This wonderful landmark is only one of the institutions of the Sheridan Libraries of Johns Hopkins. Check out the others on their website.

Thank you Meg for inviting me to accompany you for the evening.

This blog is brought to you by award-winning author, Sue Batton Leonard.

 

On this Independence Day 2019

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On this Independence Day, we at AllThingsFulfilling.com have decided to take stock by looking in on some of the latest statistics regarding independent publishing! Indeed the publishing paradigm has changed enormously over the past ten years.

Did you know in 2017 alone, over 1,000,000 books were independently published? That’s right!

Go right to the source for the report from, Bowker!

That’s not even to mention 266 million e-books that were sold. Read the full reports here!

For the fifth straight year the number of books in print have grown. According to Beat Barblan, Director of Indentifer Services at Bowker, independent publishing “shows no signs of slowing down and it continues to grow at a steady rate.”‘

Of course, in this digital world, intellectual property piracy continues to be a huge concern and at issue.

Since 2012, there has been 156% increase in ISBN#s issued, says Bowker.

What can that be attributed to? You might ask. Here are some of the reasons why:

  • Increase in number of publishing associations which serve authors.
  • Technology
  • Growing author communities
  • Increasing products and services for authors
  • Resources to market books independently and digitally

On this Independence Day 2019, I’d like to point out freedom of press has been a cornerstone value since our country began! It is our belief at AllThingsFulfilling.com that with freedom comes great responsibility. Use and choose your words carefully to help unite rather than harm.

In short, practice the golden rule “Treat others as oneself would wish to be treated.”

Happy 4th of July!

 

A Vital Option: e-Books in 2016

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The freedom to move forward to new opportunities and to produce results comes from living in the present and not the past.” ~ Brian Koslow

Shopping-CartIf you are ready to publish your manuscript, there are many choices to consider. Offering an electronic version of a book has become a necessity if you are an author who wants to reap the benefits in the digital marketplace. More often than not, potential book buyers want to know if a title “is available as an e-book?”

According to this article from Author Earnings, in February 2016, readers downloaded one million sixty-four (1,064,000) paid e-books PER DAY!

In my opinion, there will be more technological developments coming that will blow away any remaining doubts that e-books are just a passing trend. Especially as digital publishing becomes integrated into more classrooms and library catalogs.

Authors don’t miss out on a stream of income by failing to offer an e-book version of your title. And remember “if you are selling over the internet, you must be marketing over the internet” because that is where your potential book buyers hang out!

Speaking of hang-outs, thanks for frequenting this website. Do return tomorrow.

This blog is brought to you by award-winning author Sue Batton Leonard. Check out her e-books, audio book and books in print!

Author Narrated Easter Story

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Resurrection is a whole new way of thinking.” ~ Deepak Chopra

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAEastertime has always been a memorable time of year ever since my childhood. In my memoir, Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected, in Chapter 14 called Easter Traditions, I recount an Easter story that I have always held near and dear to my heart. Since it’s Easter week, I’d like to share it with you. Listen in!

If you are wondering who narrated the story, it was me, the author. The audio book won an award (2nd place in the EVVY book awards sponsored by the Colorado Independent Publishers Association.)

I hope you enjoy the retelling of this Easter story and the voice of the central character in it!

Order the full narration of  the award-winning anthology Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected. It is also available in paperback and e-book.

Also available Short Stories: Lessons of Heart & Soul.

See you back here tomorrow!