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Thursday, September 25, 2014

A Book Filled with Blessings and Beauty


5.0 out of 5 stars This book is a treasure for all who live and love through life's trials and troubles, celebrations and successes. 
September 25, 2014
This review is from: Remembrance: The Pink Chair Project: an artist's journey of love (Paperback)
It was my privilege to read Lynne's book as a work in progress, and to view her incredible paintings in a showing at a local library on the North Shore of Massachusetts. The book contains the brief annotations exhibited with her paintings, and so much more. The connections between Lynne and her mother, Lynne and her art, and the thoughts and inspirations they shared are palpable within her words and paintings. This book is a treasure for all who live and love through life's trials and troubles, celebrations and successes. Buy one for yourself, and one to share with those you love. It will be the best book you purchase this year.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Depression in Older Adults, a guest blog post



This guest blog post is written by Laura Chapman, who has written an article posted at http://psycheguides.com, and to which she shares a link here in the blog.Thank you, Laura!



"Depression amongst adults is said to be present in roughly 10% of the population. However, a lot of cases go unreported and therefore never get treated. Symptoms of depression in adults are changes in sleep patterns and appetite, feeling hopeless, numb and disinterested, and an irritability that wasn’t there before. Fortunately, treating depression is fairly straight forward and a combination of therapy to find the route of the problem and anti-depressants are usually used to ease the symptoms. If thought of suicide occur, the sufferer should seek professional help straight away."


Living With: Depression in Older Adults

anxietyDepression affects more than 35 million adults each year. Of these, 6.5 million are over the age of 65. In the later years of a person’s life, changes occur that can lead to depression. These include medical illnesses, death of spouses or other loved ones and retirement. Depression prevents older adults from enjoying their lives like they did when they were younger. The effects of depression, however, extend far beyond changes in mood. Patients become less energetic, experience changes in sleep patterns, changes in their appetites and decline in physical health. However, depression is not always inevitable when it comes to aging. There are steps and strategies that older adults can focus on to overcome the symptoms of depression.

Causes of Depression in Older Adults

Health Problems

As people get older, their health typically begins to deteriorate. They may experience severe or chronic pain, become disabled or have surgeries or diseases that damage their bodies. These symptoms can cause a person to become depressed and feel useless.

Loneliness

Many elderly people live alone, usually due to the death of a spouse, have decreased mobility and no longer have driving privileges. These factors can contribute to feelings of loneliness and isolation.

Increased Sense of Purposelessness

When people reach retirement age or are physically challenged, they may feel a sense of purposelessness.

Fears

Anxiety over health issues or financial problems can cause one to become depressed. Additionally, as people get older, they become more afraid of death.

Bereavement

When people lose their spouses, friends or pets to death, they may become saddened; this can lead to depression. In this case, the bereaved might consider moving in with family members or friends.

For more on how to spot and treat depression in adults, read this article."


Friday, April 4, 2014

You Tube Book Promotions

When you self-publish a book, you not only write the book, publish the book, reconfigure it for an e-book edition and purchase books for local gift shops, libraries and the like: you also market the book.

Promoting it via local advertisements, local author events at libraries, or book signings at gift shops that are willing to stock your book ... or social media such as Facebook, Linked-In, blogs, websites ... or free copies in coffee shops, or to friends and family with a request that they share it with their friends and families ...

Sometimes, the marketing gets in the way of the writing. Sometimes the author tires of it. More often the author's circle of friends and family tire of it. And the books fades into the shadows of busy lives.

You Tube offers authors a way of providing self-promotion that is not intrusive. Video's can be viewed at the viewers' convenience. Weather is not an issue. Allergies are not an issue. Absence is not an issue.

But there are a lot of books out there to be read. And a lot of authors asking for your time and attention. 


My previous post brought my characters, Helen and Henry to life. This post will, optimistically, bring me to life, at your convenience. 

Our town cable tv station posts its videos at You Tube, which benefits us all.

Will you tune in to my most recent? You'll find it here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uh8vZp8XiE0

I'd love to hear from you, either here in the comment section, or via email at needlesandpens@comcast.net.

If you want to meet me in person, visit Buttonwoods Museum in Haverhill, Massachusetts tonight at 6 pm for a poetry reading. I'll be there next month, too!

Be well! 
                            ~ Terry

ps - if you've lost my book shop link, it's here.
Oh - the Amazon link: that's here, too.
And you can always stop by the shop to pick some up. 


Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Helen and Henry: Bringing Characters to Life


Rick and I love walking through the Boston Christmas Festival at the World Trade Center exhibition hall on the waterfront in Boston. The originality and creativity that is evident there restores  our faith in "Made In U.S.A." labels. People who go there are selling not only articles but a part of their own spirit.  The smiles and the hustle and bustle there are always the beginning of the Christmas season for us. Our senses are overly-filled with beautiful sights, tempting aromas and happy holiday music. It reminds me of walking the streets at Downtown Crossing as a child, looking in the windows at the competitive seasonal decorations between Jordan Marsh (always the winner) and Filene's (marketing an older, fashion-conscious audience.)

To our surprise and delight, we found an artist who makes ceramic dolls ... large dolls of senior citizens, about the size of two-or three-year old children.  Their faces, arms and hands, legs and shoed-feet are all of ceramic, with fabric covered stuffed bodies and clothing that fits their personalities.  I love that they are sized like small children, for in many aspects they seem to be reliving their childhoods in their 'happily ever after' days.

I had just begun writing my first fiction book, the mystery titled The Quilter's Quarters.  My characters had begun to develop, and I was in the process of choosing their names. When we rounded that corner at the festival we found Henry and Helen, and I knew then that they were the couple about whom I was writing.

Henry is pleasant, confident fellow who dresses in a plaid flannel shirt and jeans on most days. He wears his white sox and his black work boots when he is out in the barn fulfilling his dreams of woodworking through his retirement.

Helen, who had taught for decades, has finally begun working on her own dream; she and Henry have added a quilt shop to his Wooden Toy and Gift shop, and they are avidly seeking buys on fabrics, notions and such. Helen spends some days in the shop cutting fabric remnants into what quilters call "fat quarters." Henry spends his days out back in the newly renovated woodworking shop of the barn. They delight in having a short commute of ten steps from the back door of their home to their workplaces.

Helen and Henry will be the main characters in several stories yet to be written. That they exist now, here in our own quilt shop / wooden toy and gift shop is a serendipitous advantage to my writing. I can see them. I can imagine their conversations, and pose dilemmas to challenge them and rewards to delight them. They are very real for me now. Their names, borrowed from Rick's uncle and my aunt, help guide me in writing consistently within their personalities, and their actions are believable as a result.

They  have taken up residence in the shop, sitting together with Henry's arm sheltering Helen's shoulders, a quilt of mine carefully tucked over the laps to ward off winter's chill in the barn.

All  authors need inspiration for their writing. My own memory is somewhat limited these days by the illnesses I have experienced. Having Helen and Henry here with me keeps me on track in writing their stories.

The first book is written and available at my webstore, at Amazon, at Barnes and Noble and other online sellers. The second book is begun, and may be published before the winter's end. The third will be started soon after in the pleasant environment of a warmer, freshly aired shop. The mysteries happening in the shop, and the challenges facing these two wonderful old folk will continue through the series.

I invite you to join me in Henry and Helen's world, and in my world, at our new blog, "At Quilters' Quarters." You'll notice that the name of the blog is plural, for it is a place designed for many quilters to gather and enjoy the progress I'm making in writing these books and in living out my dream of owning a quilt shop. Please come, sign on to follow, and enjoy the journey with Helen, Henry, Rick and me.




Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Worried about Plagiarism?

Today I am happy to share a guest post with you. Nick Baron  has written of the concerns with plagiarism that independent authors have: both of their own work being pirated and plagiarized, or with being accused of plagiarism because something they have written echoes the writing of others. He offers valuable, supportive links.  Here's what Nick has to say:

The Ails of Plagiarism

The thing about plagiarism is that no one is safe from being labeled as a plagiarist. And let’s face it, once a writer is under that category, no matter how famous of a writer he or she is, readers will still cluck their tongues, point their fingers, and assume it was all-intentional.

 What non-writers don’t understand is that in today’s society, unless a person lives under a rock, it is impossible not to be influenced by what we read, discuss with friends, see or listen to in the media. When Stephenie Meyer, author of the best-selling trilogy Twilight, published the last book of the trilogy, “Breaking Dawn”, she, too, was accused of plagiarizing from a book posted on the Internet. Clearly, plagiarism doesn't discriminate by popularity. What are some methods writers can use to ensure a piracy-free manuscript, without busting their pockets? What things can writers do to protect their writing from future piracy? Here are some tips I’d like to share with you.

 Unintended Plagiarism

Thank God for tools available on the web that allow writers to double check if any of their passages or sentences seem to parallel another existing source.

 One such program is Small SEO Tools. Simply cut and paste your text into the yellow box, and the software will plant red flags where content appears to be similar to another source. These simple websites are perfect for quick and free plagiarism checks. Marketers and students frequent Small SEO Tools because it’s completely fuss-free, and really user friendly.

 If you’re looking for a more advanced program, try Grammarly. Grammarly not only has a free plagiarism checker, matching content on the web to that of your text, it also acts as a proofreader, detecting more than 150 text errors, beating the rate of normal word processors by more than 10 times. The best part about Grammarly is that if an idea or phrase is flagged for potential plagiarism, the source website is suggested along with a prompt to either include a citation in your text or modify your work. This intuitive program is user-friendly and will redefine the ease in which authors publish their books.

 Protection

Google, Google, Google. It’ll be a good idea to randomly search for your book title or your name on various platforms to see if a pirate managed to land their hands on your intellectual copy. If you’ve written a few books and catch one on a website, go into that website and hunt down the rest of your books. Chances are, if they managed to get one of it on, they wouldn’t have stopped there. Report these websites to protect your book from being passed around further.

 Though some authors don’t mind the free distribution of their books since it helps them get the word out faster, if you lie on the other side of the spectrum and really consider it a misfortune instead, what you can do is to acquaint yourself with article 17 USC 512(c)(3)(A)[ii], which is the “Limitations on liability relating to material online”. In a polite letter, request for your book to be removed. Under legal terms, the site is obliged to comply. Do maintain your professionalism at all times. You are representing yourself after all.

 It is very difficult to eliminate piracy altogether. Once a consumer grabs a hold of the book, the possibilities of what they could do to it are endless. Take piracy in your stride; see it as the highest form of compliment. On your part as a writer, check and recheck your document for any plagiarism issues using online tools available. Plagiarism will cease to take such a toll with the current market offerings.


By Nikolas Baron
- Online Partnerships Team -

(415) 326-4403 | Skype |  Facebook | LinkedIn | Twitter | Web

Grammarly Inc. 548 Market Street, #35410, San Francisco, CA 94104

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