Shifting Sands: Secrets My new book “Secrets” in the Shifting Sands Short Stories series is ready for July 1 release. You can now preorder on Amazon. Just enter Emma Palova historical fiction. Below in the book section are listed links to book 1 and book 2 on Amazon. The core of the book is the long short story “Silk Nora” that takes place at the turn-of-the-century Belding. You will be swept away by the historical setting of the “Silk City Girls” dormitory known as Belrockton. The major characters are Nora, her friend Mathilda and the matron of Belrockton- Doris from Sussex in England. Other characters include newspaper man Harry and band player John. The cover “Face of Gossip” and the main story “Silk Nora” were inspired by my multiple visits to the Belrockton Museum over the last two decades. A story from the hosiery mills was picked up by the Associated Press and major newspapers in Michigan ran it. I will be with the new book at the Muskegon Art Festival on July 5th and July 6th inside the author’s tent on Clay & 2nd Streets. I will be at “Books Alive” in Ludington on July 19th, followed by a series of book signing events at LowellArts with exact date TBA. Fall events will include the Belding Labor Day twilight parade on Sunday, Sept. 1 at 9 pm. My major event will take place at the historic Belrockton in Belding on October 6th in the afternoon. The museum is open from 1 to 4 pm on the first Sunday of each month. For up to date news follow me on EW Emma’s Writings on http://emmapalova.com SecretsThe new book is a collection of 15 short stories. Thematically, the stories range from the action-packed 40 Hunks where driver Jose transports 40 Mexican men to labor in Michigan orchards to the core of the book which is historical fiction “Silk Nora”.
Excerpts from “Silk Nora”Signs of progress were touchable everywhere from the interior six bathrooms at the Bel to a space designated for women in the saloons of the bustling city. At the time, the city of Belding had four hotels. Known as the “Silk City Girls” the young women spent much of their time weaving silk on spools. Silk at the time was on high demand as the major feminine fabric due to the existing shortage of woolens and cottons. Nora and Mathilda worked together long hours at the silk mill earnings 47 cents an hour. The Belding Banner called the girls “Sweethearts in Silk” blasting propaganda about their happiness with headlines such as “The Silks with Happiness Woven into Them.” The girls sat at their stations on the floor of the factory in orderly rows. The downstairs of the Richardson Mill was used for making stockings. Sentiment played a part in the founding of the silk industry in Belding by the Belding brothers. After prospering in silk manufacturing in New England, they built a plant in Belding, where they had made their start as door-to-door textile salesmen. Mathilda traveled home to Alpena twice a year for the holidays, while Nora stayed year- round at the Bel. She had a beautiful view of the Flat River and the boardwalk from her room. Nora was an avid reader and she frequented the dormitory library. Nora easily made friends with other girls, both at work and at the dorms. She cut her hair short, a sign of times. Matron Doris Applebaum managed the Belrockton dormitory and the girls who lived in it. She came from England to take the job at the “Bel” when it opened in 1906. Doris kept her English accent and manners. “Girls, I will make you into ladies,” she said at the dinner table. “You already have the right foundation otherwise you wouldn’t be here in the first place. You’re a diamond in the rough. I will make you shine.” The silk girls respected this English lady from the county of Sussex on the English Channel seaside. Doris was single and constantly happy. She competed for the Belrockton job with other ladies from around the world and won. She took a special liking of well-mannered Nora. “We’re going to be friends,” Doris said resolutely to Nora at their second meeting, since Nora arrived in Belding. “We have a lot in common. You come from New England, I come from the real England. But you have better food here.”You can pre-order the new book at: https://www.amazon.com/Secrets-Shifting-Sands-Emma-Palova-ebook/dp/B07SH9YGQH/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=Secrets%3AShifting+Sands&qid=1559745646&s=digital-text&sr=1-1
Book 1 in Shifting Sands Short Stories series, 2017
Upcoming author’s eventsInterview with author Donald Levin on https://donaldlevin.wordpress.com/ on June 20 Muskegon Art Fair …..July 5th and July 6th Ludington ……………..July 19 LowellArts……………….TBA Radio shows TBABelding Twilight Parade…. Sept. 1 Belrockton, Beding………….Oct. 6 Girls Nite Out…………………..Oct. 17 Christmas through Lowell…..Nov. 15, 16, 17
Lent is a spiritual time of reflection for 40 days before Easter observed by Christians around the world. It begins with Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Thursday, April 18 this year.
It is marked by the color purple and fasting. On Lenten Fridays, Christians should abstain from meat and excessive drinking.
One of its traditions are Lenten soups served by many local parish communities such as The Franciscan Life Process Center. The following soups, donated by the area restaurants, will be offered on Lenten Wednesdays:
March 20th Cannonsburg Catering Potato Soup Dilly Bread Cannonsburgcatering.com
March 27th Applause Catering Broccoli Cheese Oatmeal Bread Applause-catering.net
With its deeply embedded traditions, Lent has inspired many of my stories and writings. My favorite soup, not only for Lent, is Mediterranean lentil soup with lemon and turmeric.
Excerpt from “Shifting Sands: Secrets”
decided to further think about a night walk under the moon in pursuit of a
glimpse of the giant silk moth.
the meantime, she would do some research about the luminous winged wonder, and
find a clock that wouldn’t be as noisy.
even yet in the cottage living, you couldn’t release any stink either; like
frying a fish on a Lenten Friday or on any Friday. Being a good Catholic, Amora
made sure she never ate meat on Fridays. Unlike Margot, who both ate meat and
drank on Lenten Fridays, Amora stuck to her acquired routine.
Undisciplined Amora had to build up her routine like a bee flying from a wild flower to an order trapped in her own beehive.
we going out on Friday, Amora?” Margot asked when they were gossiping on the
shouldn’t,” Amora said. “It’s Lent. You should know that, you’re Irish.”
decided to go anyways to the old Irish Pub with dubious reputation in downtown.
They settled at their favorite table in the corner.
it be the usual two Killarneys for the ladies?” asked the waiter.
one,” snapped Amora. “It’s Lent.”
you, mam?” the waiter looked surprised at Amora.
for her,” Amora pointed at Margot.
Margot smiled at the waiter. “That’s cheers in Irish.”
The waiter brought the reddish beer and a glass of water full of ice. for Amora. Margot disciplined herself and ordered fish and chips like Amora.
least it’s cheap,” Margot said eating her chips. “Tell me all about him.”
“Who?” Amora was shocked.
Copyright (c) 2019 Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.
Lowell, MI- I am working on e-newsletters; as I look outside my writing studio window, I see snow on the ground.
However, definite signs of spring are here. The spring theme dominated at the 40th Home and Garden Show in Grand Rapids at the DeVos Hall this weekend.
The fragrance of tulips and daffodils was in the air as hundreds of people browsed through the packed hall.
I marveled at the CNC sewing and embroidery machines; how skillfully they stitched an image and a message into a piece of cloth.
“That’s the only way I could do it,” laughed a woman next to me.
Also the upcoming March 23 Lowell Expo is close to the heart as more than a hundred of local vendors and organizations showcase their work at the Lowell High School.
My fellow history lovers from the Fallasburg Historical Society will be side by side with the Lowell Area Historical Museum located inside the cafeteria.
My favorite are the bucket rides by the Lowell Light & Power crew.
On a personal note, I am moving ahead with the publishing of my second collection of short stories “Shifting Sands: Secrets.” Copyright (c) 2019 Emma Palova.
I am on target for April/May publishing. The new book, a sequel to my debut “Shifting Sands: Short Stories” will be available for preorder on Amazon. Both the cover and the anchor story “Silk Nora” were inspired by the Belrockton Museum in Belding. The “Gossip” photograph can be found on the third floor of Belrockton. The museum is open on the first Sunday of each month.
Venice, FL- The morning tide washed ashore treasures galore: large speckled cockles, coquinas, calico scallops, whelks, sturdy white jewel boxes, twisted conches, translucent jingle shells in shades of orange, olive and bubble shells.
The yellowish cocquina and turkey shells were still attached holding on tight to each other. The mollusks have long jumped out of the shells digging themselves into the sand.
The warm westerly wind combined with the cold Norte whipped a white foam on top of the waves breaking and crashing to the shore.
The perfect morning cup of jewels hiding inside a large cockle shell was still filled with water. A skilled paddle boarder navigated the wild waves falling only once, and climbing back up again. A sailboat rocked in the waves.
A dead seagull found its resting place on the beach. A trio of pelicans delighted in the wind flying ten feet above the water.
A slippery wrack of branches and seaweed washed ashore will serve later as a buffet for the birds. Wrack communities are native to Florida beaches; it is stuff cast ashore by the sea.
The encounters on the two-mile long morning walk on Venice Beach range from brief hellos to “How long are you going to stay?”
People walking on the beach were not only couples or families, but often a parent with an adult child. Life on beach takes on a different rhythm; time constraints disappear.
The beach walk has inspired the last story in Shifting Sands: Secrets, a sequel to Shifting Sands: Short Stories.
Feature photo: The perfect morning cup of jewels
The perfect morning full of jewels washed ashore still filled with sea water.
To be continued
Copyright (c) 2019 Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.
As winter changed into spring, we celebrated St. Pat’s in historic Hubbardston tavern with the oldest liquor license in Michigan. It used to be a speakeasy during the prohibition. I have yet to write about this.
I was also featured in the 2018-2019 Grand Rapids City Guide in the life&style section “The long road to resilience.”
I love summer and surprises. They truly all came in one day: Interview with WGVU host Shelly Irwin, a new author event and the Epilogue Bookstore. While looking for a hotel in Ludington, where we celelebrated my dad’s birthday on July 23rd, I came across a true gem. I found out about the annual Ludington Writers’ Rendezvous organized by author Joan H. Young. Thank you Joan for so much inspiration and for new author friends. You rock. https://emmapalova.com/2018/07/16/writers-surprises-all-in-one-day/
Daily insights from #nanowrimo with story excerpts
By Emma Palova
EW Emma’s Writings
Lowell, MI – What does NaNoWriMo mean to me?
I can only answer this question now that I have completed the 50K creative project and claimed the Winner 2018 cetificate.
NaNoWriMo is like a powerful fuel that you need to keep you going. You also have to keep on refueling as often as possible. It’s a gauge that efficiently measures your progress as you go.
Secondly, I have realized that there is no such a thing as a writer’s block; only slumps, slowdowns and funks around the Thanksgiving holiday and on Sundays.
Is creative activity as mysterious as we all think? Yes. You don’t know at the end of the day, what you’re going to come up with.
Is it scary? It can be, if you don’t know what your character is going to do next.
The creative project required a lot of discipline without credits or end of the year bonuses. But, also you were your own boss in determining when and how you were going to accomplish the 50K challenge.
I was amused by some of the questions on social media like: “What is your favorite writing drink?”
Mine is definitely tea, because I get a headache from drinking a lot of coffee.
Will I do it again in 2019? Most likely yes.
Would I recommend it? It depends on your writing goals. Fifty-thousand words is a nice chunk to start with.
Is it doable with kids and a full-time job? It depends on your partner on how many house chores will he or she take on.
Is writing still the most lonesome activity in the world that in the end depends on the the public’s liking or disliking? Yes.
At the end, I committed to revision and editing, as well as writing more short stories to include in the new book “Shifting Sands: Secrets.” (c) 2019 Emma Palova.
The NaNoWriMo certificate defines a winner as:
A literal literary hero. A disciplined wordsmith.
A squirrel-suit flyer who just earned their wings…………
My sincere thanks to the staff, organizers and pep talk authors of the NaNoWriMo creative project for support and encouragement.
I will be using Pacemaker.press on http://www.pacemaker.press to further measure my progress into the publishing of the new anthology of short stories.
Excerpts from “White Nights” (c) 2018 Emma Palova
It was the gossip of the village that Joe beat his wife. He was a fourth-generation farmer on the largest farming plat in the village.
In front of the public eye, he acted as a proper man. Joe did everything that was expected of the largest landowner to do. He sat on the township board, on the school and the church boards. In spite of the gossip, he was a respected man with other great qualities than self-control.
Unlike Father Sam, he had no choice of what he wanted do. He inherited the land, so he had to farm it. When farming got tough with the dumping of the cheap apple juice from China in the late 1990s, his two brothers decided to get out of working with dirt. They went to work forthe largest milling company out by Shimnicon Corners. At that time, Joe too had to seek his soul, after beating one of them near death.
“You will never cross the threshold of my house,” he yelled that winter when they fought over the buyout money. “Where do you think I am going to get two million bucks?
They left anyways, and Joe owed them for the rest of his life. Joe sold off land fordevelopment and paid off some of the money, while making enemies with other farmers.
Copyright (c) 2018 Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.
Lowell, MI – This morning I finished “Oceans Away” stort story and I started “Fallasburg Code.” I logged in with 47,568 words in the 50K word marathon. I would like to finish by Wednesday or Thursday depending on how the last two stories go.
This was my first time participating in the National Novel Writing Month. Many people have already completed the creative project. My major takeaways are:
Finding my optimum daily writing quota of six pages or 1,500 words. The hardest part is always the start-up of new stories, on day two usually the plot unravels, and the wrap up is on day three.
I will have a total of 14 stories in the new book “Secrets” (c) 2019 Emma Palova. There were a lot of suprises for me in this one as well. In some cases, I changed titles to better fit the story. The second book is definitely not any easier than the first one.
Is it different and how?
I added some historical fiction in stories “Silk Nora” and “Fallasburg Code.”
Do I have a favorite short story? People asked me this question about the first book “Shifting Sands: Short Stories.” In this collection it is definitely “Silk Nora” which is set in my favorite time period of the 1920s.
In this sequel, I don’t dedicate as much to immigration as in the first one. Some stories like “Secrets in Ink” still draw on my newspaper writing experience.
I would like to thank the National Novel Writing Month staff for the opportunity and for the encouragement.
Even though she was suspicious at first, Norma went for the app and diligently filled out all the fields about herself.
Paul was good looking as she requested, blonde and tall; while she tallied up to his expectations as well, brunette and medium height and weight. Their first rendezvous was in Budapest, Hungary on a boat.
Norma insisted on neutral grounds such as Europe. It was Paul who picked the capital of Hungary for their first meeting. The app set their date on a boat “Princess” floating on the Danube to explore the river towns.
The date was expensive and exotic, that’s what they both wanted for their first time together. They had separate cabins on the boat. The first night, the boat was just anchoring in Budapest and they took a taxi into the city.
Paul proudly started first telling Norma all about himself. He was a doctor of Slavic origin, who wanted to get away from the nationalistic France. Norma wasn’t ashamed of her new job of the Warhol Museum executive director, either. She worked hard to get the job studying online for her master’s degree.
Budapest at night was like a star waiting to shine on the night sky. They sat long into the night on the deck bar on the boat eating shrimp and drinking red Hungarian wine.
“Will you come and see me in Noumea?” Paul asked on the boat looking at Norma.
Copyright (c) 2018. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.