Observe life at its best, Listen to life’s songs, Embrace life’s bounties, Breathe the breath of life, Savor life to its fullest!

Awakenings: St. Patrick’s Day, Green Beer and Blue Mead by R. L. Cherry


See on Scoop.itAwakenings: America & Beyond

Author Spotlight: R. L. Cherry

St. Patrick’s Day, originally a feast day of the Catholic church, has become a major American drunken  celebration. Before I get into the down and dirty, let me assure you that St. Patrick never drank green beer. In fact, drinkers in ancient Ireland had a choice of ale (no hops) or mead (honey based), unless they wanted to pony up for imported wine. So beer is obviously not an ancient Irish tradition. How about the color green? Is it Irish because Ireland is called the Emerald Isle? This is a question that is still up for debate.

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

Love all the tidbits of history that I absolutely did NOT know! You, too, may find yourself quite surprised!

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Awakenings: Kick Assitude & Southern Pecan Pie

See on Scoop.itAwakenings: America & Beyond


What a combination! I know you are wondering about the connection of Kick Assitude and good ol’ Southern Pecan Pie. In actuality, a party is about to happen and it is in celebration of the release of two new books.

Having a Ball (by Rhoda Baxter) and Kick Assitude (by Trish Jackson) are both to be released on the 15th of March. The two authors got their heads together and decided to have a Trans Atlantic Pot Luck Party to Celebrate. The party is on Facebook. Click HERE

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

If you haven’t joined the party, it is not too late! Party starts Friday, March 15.

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Wildlife and Nature

The epitome of catnip is the enjoyment of wildlife and nature – observed, listened to, embraced, breathed, and savored. A visit to Autumn Sunshine today unveiled breathtaking views of wildlife, nature and the great outdoors. As Autumn put it so graciously, “We need to take time and think about it, and thank Mother Nature!”

I encourage you to visit Autumn Sunshine for inspiration. She is a wonderful writer with a heart full of sunshine ready to lift your spirits and bring on a smile!


Awakenings: 7 Writers Get To Strut Their Stuff (The Seven-Line Challenge)

See on Scoop.itAmerica & Beyond

This is a little different post for Awakenings but yet is representative of a form of awakening befitting of any culture: awakening of the senses. An excellent way to awaken emotional senses is through the written word. Writing is an art: An art enjoyed by those who are the writers but most importantly its readers for the written word is only as good as the message received when read. The online environment is totally dependent upon writing presented within varied avenues/genres. A question that often arises is, “Which ones are worth reading?”

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

If you missed the 7-line challenge at catnipoflife, here is your chance to be introduced to some great reads @Awakenings. Seven authors from various genres are featured with links to their blogs where you can gather more information about their writing and books.

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The Next Big Thing

AwakeningsHR1The Next Big Thing is a series of blog posts where authors talk about their work using the same ten questions. At the end of the blog we tag other authors who will do the same thing a week later. So not only do you get to find out more about my book but you also will discover some other interesting writers. The wonderful Taylor Fulks tagged me. Taylor’s first book, My Prison Without Bars, was just released on December 17, 2012.

“Taylor Evan Fulks is a talented wordsmith, able to conjure up the hideous experiences with remarkable clarity and emotion. She writes from the heart, and the agony of real experience lends authenticity to her riveting descriptions.”
– Reviewed by Fiona I. for Readers Favorite. Awarded 5 stars.

Thank you, Taylor, for giving me the opportunity to introduce my latest book, which is currently available at Tate Publishing and will be officially released on January 22, 2013.

1. What is the working title of your next book?

While there are actually two other books in progress, catnip of life and Reminiscent of Chocolate, I would like to introduce Awakenings from Then ’til Now. It is in its final stages awaiting official release in January, 2013.

2. Where did the idea come from for the book?:

There is a need for everyone to make connections within whisperings of the past to the present day on into the future. Each of us is not an isolated individual but a thread binding together with countless other threads to create a rich and colorful tapestry of life. From the far reaches of America’s past, we can all, in some way or another, connect to someone who set foot upon America’s soil looking for a land of promise. It is through laughter and tears that the yesterdays of centuries past paved the way for today’s future.

There is also an important need for us to support our military. Since history is plagued with war after war after war it is only befitting that this book be dedicated to those who made the ultimate sacrifice. Therefore, this book is dedicated to those who laid the foundation and established the platform for our American freedom: those who have served in the past, presently serve, or will serve our military forces in the future. A profound appreciation is extended for the sacrifice of these brave men and women who left or will leave their homes and family to ensure America’s freedom endures.

A contribution from each book sale goes to benefit the Wounded Warrior Program and/or Veterans of Foreign Wars. Its purpose is not for advertisement or to gain endorsement but solely in support of our military forces.

3. What genre does your book fall under?

Historical poetry

4. What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?

This book is poetically written so the book itself would not lend itself to movie production. However, there are many parts of the book that have already been successfully produced as movies or television documentaries.

5. What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Embrace the past, Empower the present, Enrich the future (Not a sentence but definitely highlights the purpose for the writing)

6. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

My publisher is Tate Publishing. The book is due to be released in January 2013.

7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?

That is truly hard to pinpoint. The idea initially came when writing my first book, Echoes, in 2004. I actually outlined five books for the volume. After Echoes, Remembering was published in 2009. The third was to be Step Back in Time, which later became Awakenings. I would venture to say from the time the first outline was drafted for Awakenings to its final manuscript would be approximately a year and a half to two years. Don’t hold me to that explicitly! All writers know of the interruption after interruption that sometimes delays a project’s completion.

8. What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

Janice Richards recently published A Tribute to Those Serving the Red, White and Blue. It is also a book written in poetic verse targeting our military.

9. Who or what inspired you to write this book?

My love for America and the sadness in seeing her become less than she is meant to be, the lack of knowledge of her citizens concerning her establishment, the historical events that helped shape our nation

10. What else about the book might pique the reader’s interest?

TinyFlagIf you want to know more about the hardships endured in the founding of America and establishing her freedom but do not want to resort to the informational text of a history book, then this is the book for you.

TinyFlagIf you want to know more about ‘from whence you came’ with a better understanding of your ancestry, then this is definitely the book to read.

TinyFlagIf you want to experience the sacrifices, feel the emotion, relish in the joys and sorrows from the past in order for you to enjoy the freedoms America has to offer today, then do not miss reading this book.

TinyFlagIf you want to make a personal connection to past events, then not only read this book but engage in the opportunities within the text for personal journal reflections.

After all, America is your country, this is her story!

So that’s it for me. If you want to discover some other great writers, check these out:

Carole McKee – Writing from the Heart that Cleanses the Tear Ducts

Christine Hannon –Trading Scissors for Other God-given Talents Just to Survive

Claire Cappetta – A Woman’s Journey from Abuse to Empowerment

Jeanette Andersen – Treasure Valley Mysteries: Dreams, Ghosts & Coffins

Rosemary Adkins – Life on its Own as Memories

Stuart Carruthers – Exploration of the Hidden Depths of Asia



Select Writers Group & Pinterest Boards

Select Writers Group

It is such an honor to have become a part of a dynamic group of authors who formed a collaborative mission to meet the world through writing: books, video clips, articles, book trailers, blogs, poems, and an assortment of messages. Each author brings a unique collage of expertise within a variety of genres.

With the holiday season right before us, remember, books make great Christmas gifts – fabulous stocking stuffers! Yet keep foremost in mind that a book is a terrific gift for ANY occasion!

When time permits, I invite you to peruse selections of your choice and/or fancy. You will go away amazed at the abundance of selections and information available. So, without further ado – click on this link  and go shopping!

Sharla L. Shults


Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Last week there were 144 comments on the Should Be Reading post. Introduce readers to various books along with an introduction to your blog! Happy reading!

My Teasers:

Michael raced through the swarm of bees buzzing questions at him. The vibrant red exit sign at the end of the hall seemed miles away, and he hoped to reach it before a scream erupted from his mouth.

~p. 274, A Stop in the Park, by Peggy Panagopoulos Strack

PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your ‘teasers’ in a comment (if you don’t have a blog). Thanks! :D



A poem from the catnipoflife collection has been selected for inclusion in THE POETIC BOND II (2012). After months of planning and over 600 submissions, the final forty-six poems from thirty-nine poets from all over the globe, have made it into THE POETIC BOND II.  The ethos of The Poetic Bond is to accept submissions in any form, style, length or subject, and let the theme and content of the anthology emerge organically from the contemporary zeitgeist [The defining spirit or mood of a particular period of history as shown by the ideas and beliefs of the time.].  This produces an eclectic mix which challenges, entertains, and gives a snapshot of our world as it is now!

MEET THE POETS of THE POETIC BOND II, many of them LinkedIn poetry group regulars!


Awakenings: Happy Halloween

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animated halloween_animated.gif photo


The Witching Hours by Micki Peluso, author of “And the Whippoorwill Sang”
A story of the origins of Halloween from olden times up to the present. . .

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Moving Autumn

Photo Credit: Garden Stop Sign – Rosanne Jordan

STOP! Take a few moments to just sit back, relax and enjoy the Piano Instrumental – Moving Autumn

soothing clear waters
wind magically
amid chatoyant
gems of autumn

Thanks goes to Peggy Strack @Kick Back Moments for sharing this great video on her blog. Peggy is the author of A Stop in the Park, which is quickly gathering nothing but 5-star reviews. After reading her book, I have decided while it does encompass ‘a stop in the park’ it is definitely ‘a stop in the heart’! Highly recommended good reading!


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