Valentines To Heaven

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Valentines Day, 2016

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free valentines stationary with Fanny Valentines poem

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

Click here for information on her publications.  This e-book can be delivered within a few minutes for the cost of less than a Valentine’s Day card. And you can learn more about the character that I sent this Valentines to Heaven to through the memoir Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected.

From my heart to yours, Happy Valentines Day from

http://www.allthingsfulfilling.com.

 

 

 

 

 

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Into the Heart of the Story

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An angel can fly directly into the heart of the matter. ~ Unknown

Time is running out! Order the three time award-winning memoir Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected right now for the entire family to enjoy reading together. It is available in audio book (the voice holds the real treasure!) and the e-book and can be delivered in just a few minutes. It’s  not too late to order the paperback either. It may arrive at your doorstep before Xmas if you jump right on it.

Since Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected was published, a few of the most common remarks from readers have been:

“I wanted to be part of YOUR family!” 

another reader said:

I read the story slowly, a little bit each evening, because I didn’t want it to be over!

Why? Because the truths from the stellar character, Fanny, were told in a manner that involved hilarity and unconventional wisdom. Life long lessons were taught by a human being with a limited education who knew how to go directly to the heart in every manner. Fanny’s unique translation of the gospel truth can be grasped by children.

 

Recipe for an angel

See you back here on Monday, on All Things Fulfilling! I will look forward to your company.

Elemental Truths

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When we read a story, we inhabit it. The covers of the book are like a roof and four walls. What is to happen next will take place within the four walls of the story. And this is possible because the story’s voice makes everything its own.”  ~ Unknown

In the Oven, a chapter in the award-winning memoir Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected is one family’s Christmas story. The anthology shares an elemental truth about many life lessons which are shared in a unique voice. Adults and children can enjoy the memoir together.

The real treasure lies in the audio book. For your reading pleasure, Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected is also available in paperback and e-book. Pictures in both of these formats greatly enhance the reading pleasure.

Here is what other readers say about Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected.

I enjoyed Gift of a Lifetime so much I read it three times. What a character was Fanny. So much devotion to God and the family. ~ Leonie, from Brisbane, Australia

Such a heartwarming and inspiring story. The author did an amazing job and it was a very easy read! Once I started I did not want to put it down. I will definitely pass this one on to my friends and family. ~ Pam

Fanny and her winsome ways are a must read! Can’t wait to also listen to the audio version of this inspirational book. ~ Grace

cookiesI really loved this book because it is so well written. It is personalized story of how the “help” (Fanny) had such a positive influence on the young children in the Batton family. This is a story of love and wisdom sprinkled with humor to get through adversity. ~ Carol

This blog is brought to you by EVVY award-winning author, Sue Batton Leonard. Do return to All Things Fulfilling.

 

Writing: Host Your Own Party

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Happy Friday! The other day I began thinking about what I like about writing. Its akin to hosting your own theme party.

bon bons for thought

Here are a few bonbons for thought:

  • Set the stage for a grand fete with all your favorite characters in attendance. Beautiful imagery with words draws others into the celebration.
  • Need a pity party? A sadder story is never told when we are feeling as if the world is against us. Relate the experience in great detail with raw, heart-wrenching emotion.
  • What would a movable feast look like? Take a journey in your imagination to a far off place.  Describe the garb, the people, the food that decorates the table. What does it taste, smell and look like?
  •  You say “you want to get down and dirty?” How about a thriller?
  • A fantasy tale with a carousel of amusement from fairies and elves is always a rousing good time.

As C. S. Lewis once said “You can make anything by writing.” ~ C.S. Lewis

This blog is brought to you by Sue Batton Leonard, EVVY award-winning author of Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected and short stories Lessons of Heart & Soul.

See you after the Halloween weekend. On Monday we will be blogging about work on hallowed ground. Join us!

 

Flaws in Character and Writing

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Two weeks ago Charles Shields, author of 20 histories and biographies for young adults came to the Bud Werner Memorial Library to talk about his knowledge of Harper Lee and her two publications, To Kill a Mockingbird and Go Set a Watchman.

Shields publications Mockingbird: A Portrait of Harper Lee and I am Scout: The Biography of Harper Lee reveal a multitude of little known facts about Lee’s childhood life prior to becoming an author.

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  • She left law school and moved to New York City to become an author. However, her dreams of becoming a full-time writer were delayed because she needed to find a way to pay her expenses, so she became an airline reservationist for a period of about eight or ten years.
  • A neighbor and playmate was Truman Capote, author of In Cold Blood
  • She and Capote hauled a 12 pound Underwood typewriter up to their tree house where they’d sit for hours and write and discuss ideas for stories.
  • Upon her fathers death, Harper Lee inherited her father’s watch, which she in turn gave to Gregory Peck who played her father (Atticus) in the 1962 movie To Kill A Mockingbird.

In his book talk, Shield’s certainly provided the audience with a wealth of information about the author and her two books. To sum it up, Shields says that “Mockingbird” asks the reader for compassion, while “Watchman” asks the reader for forgiveness. I agree with this statement. It helped me to  lay aside my own profound sadness for Scout when she finds out at the end of “Watchman” her father was not the man she thought he was.

During the Q & A session one of the audience members mentioned that she was bothered by the fact that “Watchman” was released in it the same form the original manuscript was written. I personally appreciated that the publication was released “unpolished.” I hope the lady in the audience can forgive and understand perhaps why “Watchman” was released without copy editing. I believe the “raw state” of the publication adds to the historical value to the writing from a Pulitzer-prize American author whose work has certainly held up to the test of time.

Tonight I look forward to the community discussion to wrap up the One Book Steamboat series, which has received attention from the National Library Association newsletter.

Thanks once again to Bud Werner Memorial Library for a fulfilling opportunity to learn all we can about one of America’s most beloved authors.

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

Anthology Construction

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Anthology construction is one of the pleasantest hobbies that a person who is not mad about golf and bridge – that is to say a thinking person – can possibly have.” ~Arnold Bennett

Hey, wait a minute! Did I really post that? Before you jump all over me let me clarify that I should have edited the statement (the part about golf and bridge) since I don’t fully agree with it. Please forgive…

Both golf and bridge, in my opinion, take great thought and brilliant tactical moves to play them well.

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So, now that I’ve done my pondering, I wish to share a writing tip about short stories that I’ve learned from experience in penning an EVVY award-winning memoir, an anthology of stories.

The beauty of anthology construction – with great thought you can tactically plan the order and organization of your individual stories to give the publication a cohesive theme, which it needs to be successful and adds to the lessons for the reader. ~ Sue Batton Leonard

Did you know?  Harper Lee’s book “To Set a Watchman” began as an anthology of stories -until editors got their hands on the manuscript. Then it became the novel “To Kill a Mockingbird.”

This blog is brought to you by Sue Batton Leonard. The author of Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected. It won the Harvest Book Reading Contest in the Young Adult category as well as two EVVY book awards (one in the anthology category and one for the audio book).

 

Returning to Familiar Place

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Each time you write something, part of you grows. You’re training your artistic muscles to find your voice.” ~ Pen Densham

Last week was busy, filled with all good things for a writer who seeks to take advantage of every opportunity to advance her knowledge about  the craft of writing and publishing.

BK Loren WSI attended an author presentation on Tuesday evening which left me hungry for more knowledge from multi-award-winning American novelist, memoirist and writing professor, BK Loren. She has been the recipient of several prestigious Pushcart Awards, the Dana award for a work in progress, the Colorado Book award and the Willa Award. She regularly teaches at the highly-touted Iowa Summer Writing Festival,  Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Chatham University and the Taos Summer Writing Conference.

BK Loren was a presenter this past summer at the annual “Day for Writers” sponsored by the Steamboat Writers Group. Last week she returned to town to spend time with creative writing students at Colorado Mountain College (Alpine Campus).

Since I am in the final revisions of my first fictional piece of writing I particularly appreciated her advice on how to advance a story through emotion, and listening to the character to determine obstacles and what actions they should take in the story. After all, Loren says “literature is the study of the human heart.” And I believe writers must craft a story that leaves an opportunity for the reader to get to know what they feel in their own hearts that attracts them to a story.

Do return to All Things Fulfilling tomorrow. I am very grateful I was able to return to a familiar place inside a creative writing class with Dr. Lindsey Royce. I had taken a course from this CMC professor a few winters ago where I learned to understand the words of Pen Densham.

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