Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Ten Ways to Show an Author You Love Them on Valentine's Day

It's Valentine's Day. Some of us of a Valentine as someone sweet and cuddly who might conceivably give us chocolate, flowers or perhaps even jewelry. But I think we should broaden our view. This is because authors have been giving us Valentines for years. Books are not easy to write. And it's not easy to put your brain child out in the open for other people to criticize or even worse, ignore. So if an author has written a book you love, they really have given you a great gift.

Many of us wish we could send fan mail to folks like Jane Austen or Charles Dickens or George Eliot. But some of our favorite authors are still alive.

So if you admire a living author who wrote a book which has given you hope, great ideas, information or even wisdom, here's a top ten list of what to do for your favorite living authors in return. Remember that nonfiction authors get a lot less fan mail than the fiction ones do which would make your note to them even more special.

1. Post an author's book on your Facebook page.

2. Tell a friend how wonderful an author's books are. Word of mouth is the best way to spread the good news about a book.

3. Like an author's Facebook page.

4. Follow an author on Twitter.

5. Write an honest review of an author's book on Goodreads, Amazon, or Barnes and Noble.

6. Give a favorite author's book to someone else as a gift.

7. Give a copy of an author's book to your local library.

8. Pin an author's book cover or portrait on a Pinterest board.

9.  Lend your copy of a favorite book to a friend to read.

10. Send the author a note telling them how much you liked the book. Tell them how it inspired you or changed you. Snail mail is grand but email costs nothing for either you or the author who might reply.

Some of these things would take only a second. I think I'm going to see if Elizabeth Peters has a Facebook page.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

New Coat

 One of the nicest things about having my book do well this past month is that I've been able to treat myself to a few much-needed things. Top on my list was a new coat. My old coat (and frankly, I have no idea how old it is. Michael seems to think that some of our children weren't born yet when I got it and the baby just turned twenty-eight) still looks fine on the outside but the lining is just shredded.

I could have relined it. That would have required buying a lot of lining fabric, cutting out the old lining, cutting new pieces from the old shredded pieces, sewing them together, doing a lot of handwork getting a new lining put in, etc. Or paying someone else a lot of money to do it.

The other alternative was to wait until the very end of the coat season and pick up a deal. Which I decided to do.

The coat situation had become rather ridiculous. I found myself going to church for the last three Sundays without a coat rather than wearing the ragged one or my every day down coat. (Fashion discipline must be maintained.)

So here is my gorgeous new coat. Even on an insane sale the coat was still an investment, but I've been taught that you buy clothing based on cost per wear. If you wear a dress once and it costs you $100, then the dress is $100 per wearing. But if you buy a coat and wear it thirty times a year for twenty or more years, then the same $100 investment works out to be...well, I promised there wouldn't be much math in this blog, but you get my drift. I definitely got my money's worth out of the old one and the new one will get good use for years to come.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

NYC Anniversary!

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. If it's a really good photo, I'd say ten thousand or more. And Michael is a really good photographer. So rather than tell you how romantic and lovely a day it was, I'll just show you.

Here's the rundown on our fabulous NYC anniversary trip on Friday.

Michael loves cars, engineering and architecture. So our first stop was naturally the Chrysler building. Art Deco raised to its very highest level.

Then on to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. We had been once before but hadn't had a lot of time. I swear this museum would make you ADD. Because as you're standing in one room looking at one of the most famous paintings in the world, you're catching out of the corner of your eye another oh-so-famous one in the next room. Very disturbing but very great experience.

I am a huge fan of Vigee-Lebrun and anytime I get to stand in front of one of hers, it's a very good day. And this one is one of her very best.

You can't look at pictures all day, so we spent some time in the musical instruments exhibit. We fell in love with this beautiful metronome.

We also ate lunch in the museum right by a very disturbing statue (from the rear) which we found out after lunch was a sort of triumph of the spiritual over the natural man. I'll sit somewhere else next time.

On the way to The Square Meal which is just a few blocks from the museum, Michael caught this shot of the Guggenheim. Very effective, I thought. It was a beautiful night. And he has such a fabulous eye.

And I think this photo he caught in Central Park was also a stunner.

And last but not least, Michael said he couldn't resist this one. Be sure and click on it to enlarge it. She was obviously clueless that she was being watched!

All these photos are copyrighted by Michael Denney. But if you want to share, just let me know and I'll see if he'll let you post them elsewhere.