Thursday, November 26, 2015

Tristi Pinkston and the Festival of Trees

Author Tristi Pinkston
It started almost a year ago.  A friend of mine, Tristi Pinkston who  is both a talented writer and a great person, was with her family, visiting The Festival of Trees, which contributes all its proceeds to Primary Children's Hospital.  While there, she was hit with the desire to do something with her own talents to help out.  But what to do? she wondered.  Then it came to her.  She knows how to write, and how to edit, and she could get a group of writers to write uplifting, hopeful Christmas stories, compile them into a book, and then sell copies at the Festival of Trees, with all of the proceeds going to Primary Children's.  That was when she started her project, contacting authors she knew, and asking if any would help to contribute.  Many of us eagerly jumped on board, and wrote short Christmas stories, poems, and songs, all for this fantastic idea that Tristi came up with.  Over the course of the year, we've polished the stories, with Tristi's and others' help, and despite some unforseen things, and a lot of hard work on Tristi's part, there are books now ready to sell at the Festival.  All the proceeds will go to Primary Children's Hospital.  If you have the chance, and if you live in Utah, I hope you are able to visit The Festival of Trees.  It is a wonderful cause, and will help so many people if you can contribute.  And while you're there ask about The Hope of Christmas: Finding Joy in the Season... which contains many uplifting stories by authors like J. Lloyd Morgan, Jaclyn Weist, Michael D. Young, and others, including a story I wrote, called The Christmas Sparrows.  If you're so inclined, pick up a copy for yourself.  Or get one for someone else!  And remember that you're helping out a great cause.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Wasatch Elementary in Ogden

I had a great experience today, when I had the opportunity to visit a fantastic bunch of students and teachers!  The teachers, staff, and students of Wasatch Elementary in Ogden were very welcoming, and I appreciated the opportunity to talk to them about the basics of story writing, why we enjoy stories, and what the main parts of a story are.  The students were all wonderful!  I really appreciated their participation, and their comments.  They were an amazing bunch of kids!

Ms. Stacey Starley was especially helpful, and I want to say a big thank you to her, for setting everything up for me, and for the tasty lunch she got for me afterwards.

Oh, and here I am, in a Wasatch Elementary Wildcats t-shirt!  Thanks so much, everyone at Wasatch Elementary in Ogden!!

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Spindle by W. R. Gingell

Spindle (c) 2015 W. R. Gingell
I recently discovered a wonderful book, Spindle, written by an extremely skillful writer, W. R. Gingell.

I am a sucker for well-written, clean fantasy, and I especially like it when there's a healthy bit of humor thrown in as well!

Spindle has all of that.

Polyhymnia or Poly for short, was a fantastic character, and I truly admired her. She was spunky, thought for herself, and could take care of herself if need be. Not your typical damsel in distress, for sure!

I liked Luck, the hero.  He was quite sure of himself, but not overpowering, and he was very pragmatic.   He and Polly were wonderfully entertaining together. And Onepiece was absolutely adorable! So cute, smart, and protective of Poly.   Onepiece starts out as a puppy, but then... Well you'd have to read the book for yourself.

Spindle was a very funny spinoff of the idea of Sleeping Beauty, and how her troubles didn’t end when she woke up from her long nap. In reality, they were actually beginning!

I heartily recommend this book to anyone who enjoys fantasy, especially fantasy with women who can stand on their own two feet and make their own decisions, without needing to have a man to motivate them, or tell them what to do! 

Spindle is a great book!  Loved it, loved it!