Giovanni Gelati's Blog
August 11, 2014
Happy Monday folks!
We have a very interesting group of guests on The G-ZONE blogtalk radio this week.
Tuesday Melanie M. Jeschke drops by to discuss her pending release “Expectations”, her trip to Oxford, and much more. Melanie will be on @11AMEST! Here is the link for the show: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/gelatisscoop/2014/08/12/melanie-m-jeschkeexpectationsinklingsintentions-much-more
Weds. is a double header with Lynette Sowell & Julia Roller. The show starts @10.30AMEST.
Thursday night @6PMEST RJ Thesman returns!
If you wondering, ”Hey, how can I be a guest of The G-ZONE?” , wonder no more. Just email me, message me on Twitter, or any other place you find me. I would love to have you on the show.
Here is the main link for The G-ZONE, you can find any of the shows we have done on the archives as well as any that are scheduled for the future: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/gelatisscoop
August 9, 2014
GLOW IN THE DARK
Matthew 5:14-16; Exodus 34:29-35
When Moses came down from Mount Sinaihis face was radiant because he had spoken with the LORD. – Exodus 34:29 (NIV)
I can remember when I first discovered how glow-in-the-dark figures really worked. Until then I’d never really given much thought to how something could radiate light without being a source of light itself. I noticed how they shone brightly at first, then slowly lost their glow. Rather than give off light all by themselves, glow-in-the-dark figures radiate the light they’ve absorbed from a light source such as a light bulb or the sun. The brighter the light source and the closer and longer the exposure, the more light is absorbed and the brighter the glow.
I remember how I’d take a glow-in-the-dark figure and hold it close to a light bulb, then hurry to a darkened room so I could watch it glow. But the glow would eventually fade, and I’d have to return for more light.
Christians, too, are “glow-in-the-dark” figures. We are to radiate the light we absorb from God to a world darkened with selfishness and sin. The closer we get and the longer we stay in His presence, the brighter we will glow.
I wonder how well I am radiating God to those around me. Too often I jump right into the day without taking much time to absorb His light through praying and reading His Word. Then, when I go into the sin-darkened world, His radiance dims much too quickly.
Yes, I can go to church once or twice a week and catch some light, but it’s only when I’m up close to God on a daily basis and I spend adequate time with Him that I absorb – and then radiate – the most Light.
Remind me, O God, that my purpose in life is to radiate Your glory. For You alone are the true Source of Light. Amen.
By Michele Huey
© 2000 by Michele Huey. All rights reserved.
Michele Huey is the author of The Heart Remembers, “Gracie’s Gift,” Vol. 1 in her Fifth Wheel series, and Before I Die¬, as well as two books of devotionals. She writes an award-winning weekly newspaper column, God, Me, and a Cup of Tea. Michele and her husband, Dean, live in western Pennsylvania and have three grown children and five grandchildren.
Visit Michele online : www.michelethuey.com
August 8, 2014
Michele Huey, author of "Before I Die", "The Heart Remembers", "Fifth Wheel",will be on The G-ZONE blogtalk radio show today @ 1PMEST!
Today @ 1PMEST Michele Huey will on The G-ZONE blogtalk radio show!
She will be discussing a number of things including her soon to be released novel "Before I Die".
The link for the show is :http://www.blogtalkradio.com/gelatisscoop/2014/08/08/michele-huey-before-i-diethe-heart-remembersfifth-wheel
Here is more on Michele:
A writer with a passion for teaching and speaking, Michele Huey writes an award-winning weekly newspaper column, God, Me, and a Cup of Tea, which placed second in the 2009 Pennsylvania Newspaper Association's Keystone Press Awards. Two compilations of these columns have been published as devotional books. Her work has appeared in numerous anthologies and national publications. Her daily radio program, God, Me, and a Cup of Tea, aired on stations in Pennsylvania, Georgia, and Alabama for 10 years. She writes devotionals on assignment for Pathways to God and is a former newspaper feature writer, photographer, and editor. Her debut novel, The Heart Remembers, has enjoyed 5-star reviews on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Goodreads. Her second novel, Before I Die, and her short story series, Fifth Wheel, are also published by Helping Hands Press. An inspiring speaker, Michele is a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association and serves as pulpit supply for a small, local congregation, which she calls her "little flock." A former teacher with more than 20 years of experience in the classroom, Michele was named to Who's Who Among America's Teachers (2004-2006). In addition to serving as a mentor for the Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild, she coaches writers through The Writing Academy, teaches at writing conferences, and was a member of the team that rewrote two CWG courses. She has a passion for reaching women with the Word of God and serves as the assistant director for the annual Punxsutawney Christian Women's Conference.
WHERE YOU CAN FIND MICHELE ONLINE: Visit her website at http://michelethuey.com/
August 7, 2014
David Clarke,Alan Lester,David Stearman,Anne Baxter Campbell! Why it must be another "Thirsty Thursday" simulcast on The G-ZONE!
It is almost time for another “THIRSTY THURSDAY”
What is Helping Hands Press “THIRSTY” for:
Your input! Your ideas! Your feedback!
The authors at Helping Hands Press will be ready to answer your questions, listen to your thoughts, and to help you have a great experience!
The Party starts @ 8PM EST, we hope that you can make it!
The link for this evenings simulcast is: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/gelatisscoop/2014/08/08/helping-hands-press-thirsty-thursday-party
Tonight’s guests are : David Clarke, Alan Lester, David Stearman, Anne Baxter Campbell &….who knows who else will call in, maybe you.
The call in number is 1-949-270-5955!
Nature, Nurture, and a little bit of Maturity by Jen Cudmore
"Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it." Charles R. Swindoll
"Nature vs. Nurture" is an argument that has stumped people for ages. How much of our identity is shaped by the personality we were given at birth, and how much is influenced by the way we were raised? I remember discussing this argument in one of my psychology classes in college. The final answer seems to be that it differs for each person; some are more dominated by nature and others by how they were nurtured.
Our reactions, which we choose, play a big part in quality of life. As proven by statistics, if we are positive and loving in how we respond, we’re more likely to be content and happy. And as we get older and learn from our mistakes (another choice!), we’re less likely to respond in a negative manner.
The nature /nurture topic struck me as I was working on my origin story for the San Francisco Wedding Planner series. These installments are due out this month! As you delve into the backgrounds of Heather, Bryan, Indigo, Gloria, and Skye, you’ll see how nature, nurture, and maturing over time has shaped each character.
Here is the opening to the story I wrote about Bryan and how he ended up in San Francisco.
"Bro! Over here!"
Bryan Tate swiveled on his heels at the sound of his brother's voice bellowing across the airport terminal. Raul charged toward him, white teeth gleaming nearly as much as the mass of gold necklaces about his neck.
"I thought you were gonna meet me at the curb," Bryan said.
"No way!" Raul threw his arms around Bryan and squeezed. "It's been too long, man!"
The smell of cologne wafted over Bryan and he tried not to gag. Ignoring the raised eyebrows of those nearby, Bryan patted Raul's back and stepped away. While he wasn't much for PDA, he was glad to see his only sibling for the first time in over a year. They had separate mothers and for the most part separate childhoods. Yet despite their differences, they'd kept in contact over the years.
Raul scanned him up and down. "A flannel? Really?" He gave Bryan a pained expression.
Bryan glanced down at his blue and green flannel over top a plain navy T-shirt. "What's wrong with it?"
With a shake of the head, Raul tsked. "We'll have to do some shopping while you are here."
Jen Cudmore’s Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Jen-Cudmore/e/B00D9EMQ7Y/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1407417971&sr=1-2-ent
August 5, 2014
No, I Won’t Use an e-Reader
Let me begin by saying I love books, whether electronic or paper. I’ll read on my Kindle or a “regular” book. Frankly, I’ll read on whatever’s available. I just love reading and being transported to another world beyond my own. It’s pleasurable to share the domain the writer has created. It’s a realm to which I bring my own thoughts, feelings, fantasies and experiences, all of which no doubt, color my reading experience. It’s the experience of taking in the writer’s creation that’s so meaningful, not the medium by which it’s delivered.
I’ve heard many people refuse to consider using an e-reader. There seems to be an impenetrable wall of resistance to even the notion of using a reading device. It’s the usual mantra about loving the “feel” or “smell” of paper, or the pleasure derived from holding a real book in hand; or perhaps it’s the physical act of turning pages; or the heft of the book itself.
I too, love the sensory elements of reading a paper book, but that hasn’t precluded me from using an e-reader. After all, one reading medium doesn’t rule out the other.
Why do some people refuse--absolutely reject--the idea?
It’s not that they’re knuckle-draggers or technophobes because they often have smart phones, iPods, computers and Skype. And, I’ve noticed the repudiation of e-readers isn’t limited to older people. I know plenty of people under forty who, despite being completely comfortable with the technology of our times, want absolutely nothing to do with reading devices.
So, what exactly causes them to spurn this one technology?
I’ve thought about it as a psychiatrist, writer and avid reader. Maybe it’s because reading is something cultivated over the course of a lifetime, often beginning in childhood. Many book-lovers were read to as children—by a parent, babysitter, or some other adult. It was, for most of us, a very special thing.
“Read me a story” is something most of us can remember asking, if we think back to our earliest formative years. “Being read to” is an experience which becomes embedded in our psyches as a distinct and unique childhood pleasure. It’s loaded with meaning, and is suffused with memories of nestling on Mommy’s or Daddy’s lap; the look of the book with its bright, colorful illustrations; or the feel of the paper while we helped turn the pages. The physical book itself became the symbol housing the powerful emotional satisfaction of having parental attention bestowed upon us, with all its attendant meanings.
The book encapsulated a deep sense of pleasure, safety, wonder, satisfaction, and above all, love. These early experiences, and their residue, linger with us, and can have enormous emotional resonance.
On a pre-conscious level, perhaps some of us refuse to even try an e-reader because our minds view it as a renunciation of one of life’s earliest pleasures.
It’s merely my theory, but when I reflect upon how readily other technologies are embraced, none of them carry the primal significance of a “book in the hand.”
Author, “Mad Dog House”
August 4, 2014
Three Lessons Learned From Adopting Older Children from Foster Care
By Sue Badeau
1. Everyone can heal and grow. Healing and growth may look different for each individual and we may never see the wholeness we are hoping for, but we can continue to work towards it. I learned this lesson at an early age from my grandfather as he showed me how he cared differently for the various plants in his vegetable garden so that each would have the best chance of growing and bearing fruit. I have come to understand that this analogy also applies to children and teens – they are not all easy to grow – like zucchini – but then, what a boring garden it would be if we grew nothing but zucchini!
2. There is as much value in the journey as in the destination. I know, I know, it sounds like a worn cliché, but we have found it to be true. Years ago, we went on a family hike and this message came home to me in a powerful way as I saw my son who had been diagnosed with cerebral palsy and predicted that he would never walk, clambering along the hiking trail with his brothers and sisters. Years later as we experienced everything from teen pregnancy to a son in prison, I have had to remind myself again and again of this important lesson.
3. God makes all things new. While God does not “fix” everything in the sense of removing all obstacles, curing all diseases or unlocking all disabling conditions, He does, indeed, make all things new. I learned this after experiencing a car wreck – I still have some scars and there are things I cannot do, yet I was changed by the experience and “made new” in important ways. And as I think about some of my children viewed as most “damaged” by the world – whether physically or emotionally “damaged” by all kinds of brutal early life experiences – turning to drugs, early pregnancies or other outlets for their pain– I know that some people look at them and only see the wreck – but I like to look at them and see them as survivors. And I am always amazed how – in spite of the “damage” they have sustained they – through God’s grace and healing power – are able to find amazing new ways to do old things that many of us take for granted – communication, relationships, eating, moving, getting through the day.
Internet Treasure Hunt
When I was a kid, I enjoyed Nancy Drew. Many stories involved treasure maps or disciphering clues. The Internet is like a giant treasure hunt. Here are some of the things I've discovered in my travels:
1. Zoe McCarthy gives 5 tips on building relationships. She stresses a genuine caring to see others succeed.
2. K. M. Weiland guest posts at The Write Conversation about using lighting to communicate mood in a scene.
3. I love teacups and saucers. While most of my modest collection aren't antiques, it's fun to read about them. Here's a website that gives tips for beginning collectors.
Writers: What are some of the techniques you use to show danger or match a dark mood?
Readers: When reading a book, what makes a scene creepy for you?
July 29, 2014
Sue Badeau has had a lot of experience with children (read her bio, below!), and she has lots of wisdom to offer not just about parenting, but also about embracing life with joy. I love this super summer UPGRADE!
“As a child, I couldn’t wait for summer,” Sue writes. “What’s not to love? Fireflies. Popsicles. Campfires. Books. Barbeques. Beaches.
“As an adult I dreaded summer. What’s not to hate? Ants and Mosquitos. Oppressive humidity. Sunburns. Poison Ivy. And this body in a bathing suit? NOOOOOOO!”
HA! That’s the best description of summer—pros and cons—I (Dawn) have ever read!
Sue continues …
Memorial Day 1985. Only May and temperatures were already blistering. It was our first summer with multiple foster children—three teen boys— along with our “littles” (five kids under the age of five!). The prospect of a hot, miserable summer drained the life right out of me. Like the Psalmist said,
“My vitality was drained away as with the fever heat of summer” (Psalm 32:4).
And then I looked around at the gleeful faces on my beautiful children as they ran back and forth under the sprinkler their awesome dad had set up on the lawn.
I decided that I was going to find a way to change my own attitude from “grumpy” to “gleeful” and take summer back!
I developed a seven-step plan for upgrading my summer from grumpy to gleeful. Perhaps my plan will help you upgrade your own summer as well!
The underlying principle is to become like a child.
Summer was made for children and childlike wonder. “Children are the kingdom’s pride and joy. Mark this: Unless you accept God’s kingdom in the simplicity of a child, you’ll never get in” (Luke 18:15-17, The Message).
You can do all of these things on your own, even as a fifty-something “empty-nester,” but they are better when shared with a child—so grab your children, grandchildren or neighbor’s children and get your glee on!
1. GROW something: Get your hands dirty. Experience the thrill of eating a tomato from the vine, letting the juices run down your chin. Bring new life to the lesson of the sower and seeds.
2. LEARN something: Read. Check out that museum in town you’ve never visited. Add a new word to your vocabulary every day. Practice sign language.
3. ELIMINATE something: Put the song “Let it Go!” on. Sing it loudly—off-key is okay!—and get rid of stuff. Donate. Recycle. Toss. It’s freeing.
4. EXPLORE & Experiment: Try something new. That first “gleeful” summer we boldly took eight kids on a cross-country camping trip. We explored and took risks. We experimented with the idea that we could live as frugally on the road as we could at home. And we did!
5. FLIP over something: Somersault on the lawn. Jump on the trampoline. Cannonball into the pool. Be silly and find what excites you. Catch fireflies. Watch fireworks. Be present, in the moment, completely head-over-heals enjoying the activity at hand.
6. UPLIFT someone: One year, our kids held weekly lemonade stands to raise money for earthquake victims in Haiti. Find your passion and make a difference.
7. LEAVE a lasting LEGACY: More than anything money can buy, children crave your time and presence. Sleep under the stars. Tell ghost stories by candlelight during a thunderstorm.
To this day, the memories our now-grown children talk about the most are from the lazy, hazy, crazy and gleeful days of summer. Don’t sit it out being grumpy.
Upgrade to a GLEEFUL summer—what’s not to love? Fireflies. Popsicles. Campfires. Books. Barbeques. Beaches. And always, amazing memories!
Which of these “get your glee on” ideas inspired you? How can you “become like a child” today?
Sue Badeau is a nationally known speaker, author, and child welfare and trauma expert. Sue and her husband Hector are lifetime parents of twenty-two children—two by birth and twenty adopted. They wrote the book Are We There Yet: The Ultimate Road Trip Adopting and Raising 22 Kids. Sue’s new Kindle book is Volume 3, “Never Too Old” in the Summer in Sweetland series. Learn more about Sue at suebadeau.com and badeaufamily.com.
July 28, 2014
Cheat Sheet or Quick Reference Guide? Part II
Last week, we talked about Cheat Sheets and how they keep you from putting forth your best writing efforts.
When I read a craft book, blog post, or take an online course, I often think, "how am I ever going to remember all this material?" Well, the plain fact is I won't recall everything. Unlike a Cheat Sheet, a Quick Reference Guide is designed to summarize the important stuff without explaining every nuance related to the topic. It's a memory jogger not a way to cut corners.
How do I construct a Quick Reference Guide?
1. If a nugget jumps out while I'm reading a craft book or other educational tool, I jot it down. It's helpful to have more than one document with each focusing on a specific topic.
For example: I have a mental block with techy stuff. "Now, how do I do an em dash?" I have the simple instructions printed out for quick reference. This way, I'm not searching the Internet every time I need an em dash.
2. A short statement that gives me a fast definition of a term.
Jill Elizabeth Nelson's book, Rivet Your Reader With Deep Point of View,* drove a particular point home: Don't name your character's emotion. That simple statement keeps me on track when writing my novels.
I read this book while writing my second book, The Scent of Fear. One reader commented: "I don't know what you did in this book, but it's even better than the last one." I employed the principles in Jill's book to my writing.
3. Writers Conferences
If you want to talk about cramming tons of information into your head, this is the place it happens. Many workshop presenters hand out notes to help you retain the material, but I rarely had time to go over them more than once.
I try to isolate the principles they're teaching and write them down. This helps me remember the highlights and apply them to my writing.
For example: Tim Shoemaker taught a workshop on Show, Don't Tell. He gave out a small tube and a lightweight ball. The lesson is embedded in my brain forever. I look through the tube at the ball. This represents what the Point of View Character sees, hears, and knows. This character cannot refer to what another character is thinking. He's not a mind reader.
These are the types of items that go on my Quick Reference Guides. Most of the time, they're not formal lists. They can be notes in a file that I can grab when I need them.
*I was unable to get the Amazon link to work in this post. This book is available on Kindle.
Writers: What Quick Reference Tips do you have for me?
Readers: Do you ever save household/DIY/craft or other tips to jog your memory about a subject? Please share.