writing

My Vision Board

When the words quit coming, I usually take a break and work on some form of art. Sometimes I’m designing the covers before even starting the book. And, I put them on the Kindle app or iBook app to see how they look. Below, I’ve stuck them in the order of intended publication. Two are already published, Jessica Lost Her Wobble, being the first, and The Color of Cold and Ice being second. The next intended publication is The Missing Butler and Other Life Mysteries (hoping for December). The Innkeeper on the Edge of Paris, possibly by next summer and Sally before the end of 2017.

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book

Books Now Available on Smashwords

I have both of my books, The Color of Cold and Ice and Jessica Lost Her Wobble on Smashwords. I have listed both as buyer sets the price. Feel free to get them for free. I hope you will leave me a review on all of the various sites, Smashwords, Amazon, Goodreads, etc. But at the same time, only read my books if they call out to you. Life is too short, and we should all be reading what makes us happy, makes us think, or expands our minds and our hearts. Thanks, J. Schlenker

Sybil has prophetic dreams. Her latest involves her sister Emerald. John wants to make a difference as a doctor and save his marriage. Allison, John’s wife, wants to ignite the spark that was never in their marriage. Mark, Allison’s brother, a struggling musician, wants inspiration. The cold changes…
book cover (1)
“Jessica Lost Her Wobble” is psychological in nature. At mid-life, Jessie, the main character, after many upsets, moves to an island for contemplation of her life and to make a new start. While there she reflects back on her beginnings. Her friendship with a young girl opens up a new world for her and helps her explore her own soul. Jessie reinvents herself, but all is not as it seems.
“Jessica Lost Her Wobble” was chosen as a book club selection for Novel Tea Book Club in August, and is an upcoming book club selection for Jewel City Book Club.
writing

Last Day Free

Amazon Link for Jessica Lost Her Wobble

This is the last day for the free download of my book, Jessica Lost Her Wobble, the Kindle Version.

I download lots of Kindle books. I also buy lots of hard and paperback versions of books. About half of what is in our bookshelves are unread. We have lots of bookshelves in our house.

imgresThe main reason is I believe I’m saving them for the rainy day or for some disaster that may happen, wiping out the internet and/or electricity. One of my most favorite episodes of the Twilight Zone was one of the earliest shows, Time Enough at Last. You might recognize the episode from the picture.

writing

Strange and Exciting

  This morning my husband came back from the post office with our stack of mail that was on hold while we were on a Christmas holiday road trip. My first published book was in the stack of mail. Having the e-book on my iPad was nice, but this somehow made it more real.

I was pleased with the way it turned out. Everything looked to be in order. I was especially pleased considering I self-published doing all the design and layout work. It was a learning process, on some days a down right struggle, but it paid off. 

I took various pictures of the book this morning, but ended up using the one I took of it on the kitchen counter, which is fitting, since that is where I wrote it during the NaNoWriMo in November of 2013. And, then there were the many edits, rewrites, and edits which came after.

On Monday I plan on plunging once again into the process of writing, editing and rewriting my current two other manuscripts and collection of short stories. I tend to use the word plunging quite a bit. Maybe because my father was a plumber.

Books

Confessions of a Book-a-Holic That Doesn’t Always Read

My Husband Reading

I don’t necessarily read them.  I just collect them.  I do have certain books I read everyday, usually on some esoteric subject, or some type of self-help book.  I’m the queen of self-help books.  I’m usually reading Yogananda.

Books grace most every room in our house.  We even have a small built-in bookshelf in one bathroom.

My husband has the same habit.  Most of the time we like the same books, and we take turns reading them.  If a book has been made into a movie, we usually always try to read the book first.  We are succors when it comes to entering a bookstore.  Several weeks ago the cashier told us that we had been her best customers of the day.  We had only intended on browsing.  I didn’t really think it was such a huge purchase.  I always joke with my husband that he is so lucky.  I’m really not into jewelry at all, or shoes for that matter.

As stated before, I’m a bigger collector than reader.  Sometimes I won’t start reading a book only because I know that if I start to get into it, I won’t put it down, and will neglect all other duties until I get it finished.  Also, I have this thought in my mind, that the reason for this collection is to be well prepared in time of disaster.  If it comes to a point that we lose all technology I will have actual books on hand.  I am probably fooling myself on that one.  If we lost all technology I wouldn’t have time to read.  I would be out in the garden hoeing, standing over a fire canning, and out in the woods collecting firewood.  And obviously I would have to learn to make candles if I wanted to read.  After all this, I’m not sure if there would be time left for reading.

I’m thankful we have some Foxfire books in our collection.

 

Home

Home is Where the Heart Is

We just returned from a friend’s house.  There were six of us, and she cooked a wonderful lunch.  There was so much love that went into the meal, and so much warmth around the table reconnecting with friends we hadn’t seen for awhile.  I’m thankful for the sharing of one’s home.  We have encountered that a lot over the last several years as we’ve gained many new friends traveling along our spiritual path.

Home is definitely where the heart is as the old saying goes.  I feel the beat of my heart as I write this.  If everyone followed their heart wouldn’t life be much simpler and much happier?

So how does my own heart beat when it comes to my living space?  I follow my own heart when it comes to my own home.  I should say our home.  It is helpful to have a partner whose heart beats in a very similar fashion.   We live more rustically than most.  In looking around I find I pattern much after nature.  The rock from the outside, and we have plenty of this on our farm, has been moved to the inside.  We have two rock fireplaces – well we actually use wood burning stoves.  Both are truly unique.  Our home overall is truly unique as each person’s should be.  When you walk into our home you see an eclectic mix of materials, patterns, textures and objects that resemble us but at the same time don’t define us.

Since we are empty nesters I will mention children briefly.  Grandchildren may delightfully change our home scenario in the future; but for now it is just the two of us.  You can always tell a home where there is children.  You walk in and toys are everywhere.  If I ever go into a home with children and don’t have to maneuver around toys, a sadness lingers.  Something just isn’t right.  I do feel children should be as much a part of every room as the adults are.  I remember one summer having the couch by the window.  I could lie on the couch watching television while my daughter rode by repeatedly on her tricycle by the opened window playing drive through.  We used various toys for food and monopoly money for payment.  At other times I would come home and she would greet me at the door like I was entering a restaurant, seating me, with menus written up, mints by the door, and taking my visa for payment.  She had quite the imagination.  No, she didn’t go into the restaurant business.  We did however, pass on to her as did my mother, her grandmother, a love of food, and she is quite a good cook now.  It is really hard to mention children briefly, so I will cut myself off at this point.  However that brings me to one of the most important areas of the house – the kitchen or eating area.

We are one of the few families that actually use our dining room full time.  Our kitchen is rather compact, and the dining room is the only eating area.  It is actually the center of the house and gets a lot of use.  We like lots of warmth as well as light.  You might feel you are entering into a fantasy when entering our dining room.  The walls are painted a shade of orange with tinted yellow woodwork and a vermillion cupboard.  Dishes are equally colorful.  Several years ago I went wild with colors covering all the white walls.  Call it menopause, but it was definitely time for a change, and I haven’t tired of the colors one bit.

Both my husband and I have a great love of the outdoors.  We love that we are virtually in the middle of nowhere or in the middle of the woods.  We love to let all this beauty in with lots of windows.  It’s good for reading, which brings me to another essential element of a home filled with heart – books.

Sometimes I wonder why we collect so many books.  Each time I vow not to buy another and just read what we already have, I see one more, no five more I think I can’t do without.  My husband has this same addiction.  I think I’m preparing for those days ahead if they do come to pass when we may be forced back to simpler times.  And what do you need in simpler times – well, besides a horse and a plow – books.  Books are everywhere in our house – yes, even the bathroom.

I think the bathroom at one time used to be the most overlooked part of the house.  What was once simply utilitarian has grown in some homes to resemble ancient Egyptian baths.  Bathrooms now can be as much living spaces as the rest of the house. We are fortunate that my husband can do tile work.  Tile has been the main theme in our bathrooms, one large one and one small one.  Our bodies are made mostly of water; therefore, we should pay no less attention to the room that holds our lifeblood – water.

This is the inside scoop.  Stay tuned for the outside scoop.

What is home to you?