About impermanence in Shifting Sands Short Stories with excerpts from book

I am trekking the publishing journey from writer journalist to author. Follow me on this incredible adventure into the June 30 publishing of the short story collection.

The impermanence of the characters in the short stories collection is embodied in their struggle with immigration. They are living in between their old homelands and the new American culture, which they find hard to accept.

This impermanence becomes the unifying element in the first circle of stories drawing on my immigration experience from former Czechoslovakia to Canada, and then to USA.

Source: Impermanence in Shifting Sands Short Stories with excerpts from book

Impermanence in Shifting Sands Short Stories with excerpts from book

Storyteller 2017 journey from writer journalist to author

By Emma Palova


Author’s note:

In the Storyteller 2017 series leading up to the June 30 publication of Shifting Sands Short Stories, I write about the origins of the characters and the stories.

I’ve named my campaign Storyteller 2017 because of the big changes taking place this year. These changes continue to inspire me, along with my passion for history, arts and nature.

I can divide the 13 stories in the book into three circles: The first circle draws on my early years of immigration to North America, and living in between Canada and the USA.

These stories in the first circle include: Danillo, Honey Azrael and the Temptation of Martin Duggan.

The second circle of stories is from the time of assimilation into the American culture. These stories draw on my experience of working in a Midwest retail store. They include: Tonight on Main, Therese’s Mind, Boxcutter Amy, Orange Nights and the Death Song.

The third circle of stories is from the newspaper business for various media; on staff and freelance. These stories include: Foxy, In the Shadows, Iron Horse, Riddleyville Clowns and Chatamal.


The characters in the first immigration circle of stories Danillo in the story “Danillo”, Vanessa in “Honey Azrael” and Martin with Ellen in the “Temptation of Martin Duggan” embody impermanence as they struggle under the burden of immigration.

They find themselves in a transient state between their old countries and the new American world. They have trouble adapting to the new culture in everything that surrounds them: food, people, spices and love.

In that aspect, the characters are living in a state of impermanence, and as such are transient for the rest of their lives like  driftwood on the beach.

Also the featured photo of transient dew on grass in the morning.


They adapt or go back to the old status quo in their homeland. Either way this struggle transforms the transient characters into a new state.

Excerpts from “Danillo”:

He had trouble adapting not only to the winters Up North, an expression Danillo never quite understood, but also to the language. And of course loneliness. He had no friends, except for old Jose on the apple farm.

His family was thousands of miles away. His only connection with the warmth of home was the phone, the letters and memories of the past; the rising and the setting sun on the horizon of the small bay.

Danillo was living between the sunny past and the cold present. Back home by the Sierra Madre, he used to drive to the warm waters of the bay, but here Up North, the waters were cold.

Another cold wave came and washed more sand from under his feet.

About the design of the cover to Shifting Sands Short Stories by Emma Palova:

People have also been asking me about the cover design to the Shifting Sands Short Stories collection.

I used the hour-glass with the shifting sand as an anchor to the cover. The grains of sands make up the characters like the genetic make-up of our DNA. This was inspired by Dali’s fascination with genetic spirals. The grains shift like the destinies of the characters, like the fluid energy of our lives.

Further the  mood/tone of the stories  is expressed in the shade of the hour-glass and the fallen mauve colored petals of a tulip at the base.

Watch for more excerpts from Shifting Sands Short Stories now available for pre-order on Amazon





Copyright (c) 2017. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

Summer solstice

The longest days are now as the sun is directly overhead. Enjoy them.

This year, I marked the summer solstice by the 11th week of walks to the Franciscan Life Process Center through the summer woods.

I noticed the arrival of summer in the woods last week, as the wildflowers disappeared and flowering rosemary bushes replaced them, along with the flowering Japanese lilac tree by the center.

Yesterday, I could smell the fresh-cut grass for feeding. On a good year, there are three cuttings of grass for hay.

My favorite spireas also blossomed last week, and wild orange lilies joined them  together with fireflies in the evening.

The seasons in the woods are refreshing, with fall being the most colorful. Follow me on my walks throughout the seasons.

Walking is my favorite activity if I need to take a break from writing or if I am looking for inspiration.

Nature has always inspired me.



For more info on the summer solstice go to:


Copyright (c) 2017. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

Storyteller 2017 with excerpts from book

The beginnings of Shifting Sands Short Stories

 I have named my book campaign Storyteller2017 because I am so excited about this epic year full of big changes.

Follow me on my journey from writer journalist to author of Shifting Sands Short Stories to be released on June 30 on Amazon.

Storyteller Emma 2017

I started writing short stories in grade school in Stipa, Czech Republic when I won a short story contest with a story from a summer camp in Texas under the tutelage of Czech language teacher Mr. Dolezal.

But, a more coordinated and structured effort came with the creative writing program at the International Correspondence Schools (ICS) in Montreal, Canada, 1990-1993.

The first circle of stories was inspired by the early years of immigration from our homeland former Czechoslovakia to Canada, and then to the USA. During that time I wrote short stories that I now call the first circle: Honey Azrael, Danillo and the Temptation of Martin Duggan.

For 3.5 years, we lived in Montreal, and I went to the French language immersion school COFI. The French classes and the students inspired the story Danillo. I transported the character and the setting to the shores of Lake Michigan and to one of the apple farms.

The common elements in the first circle of short stories are the powerful forces behind immigration. These are loneliness, being homesick and the fear of the new strange culture. The main character Danillo longs to go back to his home country, as he struggles to assimilate into the new American culture.

Honey Azrael depicts a woman chemist Vanessa who is no longer in love with her first husband, Rudi. She loves her collection of beetles more than she loves Rudi.

In the Temptation of Martin Duggan, the couple who left Czechoslovakia due to the 1968 invasion of their homeland by the Soviet Army, tries to desperately fit into the small pretense culture of a small university town close to Lake Michigan.



Here is an excerpt from Danillo:



“He came with the warm southern winds, and the birds. On the first spring day, Danillo was 23. Young and strong, with a body designed to love. It was a body pure and perfectly cut for any woman. The skin covering his muscles was tight. The color of Danillo’s skin was the color of the sand that he was standing in.

He was half dreaming, subconsciously perceiving the light spring wind. From the vantage point, Danillo could see the green water coming in and out of the small bay. Each wave washed away some sand from underneath his feet, like small grains slipping away from his brief life. He felt cold and the chill surprised him. Danillo was counting the endless waves, as well as his years.

This was his third birthday Up North, as he learned to call it from the locals. He never quite understood the expression Up North. Every spring, he came to the beach to watch the winter birds arrive from the South.

To be continued………in the Storyteller 2017 series leading up to the release of Shifting Sands Short Stories on June 30.

You can pre-order now at:




Copyright © 2017. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

Amazon.com: Emma Palova: Books, Biography, Blog, Audiobooks, Kindle


Follow me on my journey from writer to author of Shifting Sands Short Stories coming out on Amazon on June 30. 

I have named my book campaign Storyteller2017 because I am so excited about this epic year full of huge changes.

“When I don’t write, I like to get out to the lakes for inspiration.”

That is my favorite hobby: watching the lake. It doesn’t matter whether it’s the nearby Murray Lake or Lake Michigan, as long as I see water movement to calm my mind.

I recently explored the Stearns Beach in Ludington on Lake Michigan. I love to watch the  Badger head out across the lake to Wisconsin. 

Other beachcombers love doing just that as the memorial engravings on the beach benches state.

“They loved watching the sunsets and the Badger,” a statement about  people loving the area repeated throughout the beach park.

We plan on taking the ship this year for a vacation with Ludek and Ella.

Any change deserves a story about the transformation of a character in different settings.

The main setting in the book is the fist to be town of Riddleyville with its secrets and vices.

Come along on the journey of the Storyteller2017 for an adventure of a lifetime. 

Next: The beginnings of Shifting Sands Short Stories part 1.

The book is available now for pre-order. 
Starting tomorrow I will be publishing excerpts from the stories 

Copyright  (c)2017. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved .

Happy Father’s Day

This year we spent Father’s Day locally at our son Jake’s in Hastings. My dad Vaclav and Ella also came for some quality family time and grill near the Yankee Springs​ area and Gun Lake.

Usually we travel 500 miles deep into the Midwest to the banks of the Mississippi River in Prairie du Chien, WI for the fur traders Rendezvous.  It is also a rendezvous with our Des Moines friends Sheryl and Brian. We’re sorry that we missed it.

We didn’t go this year due to logistics surrounding the upcoming release of my new book “Shifting Sands Short Stories” which will be released on June 30 on Amazon. The book is now available for pre-order at https://www.amazon.com/Emma-Palova/e/B0711XJ6GY

I’m very excited as I am ligning up my booksigning on July 16 at the Fallasburg one-to-one school house from 1 to 4 pm.

Everyone is welcome. Pictured below are all the men in my life except for my brother Vas Konecny.

From left to right: dad Vaclav, husband Ludek with Domik and son Jake.
Copyright (c) 2017. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

Don’t Be Late… Don’t Make People Wait For You

I’ve always hated being late for anything. It puts you at a great disadvantage if you want to position yourself for pictures, story or an interview.
You don’t get the best seat in the house. And you miss out on the insider’s scoop.
Being ready and prepared is always the best strategy to success, and a roadway to new friendship.

Becky Due - Author

Today’s Challenge: Don’t be late… don’t make people wait for you.

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