Tag Archives: Emma Palova author

Author’s stop at Palmer Park in Detroit

Illustrators and caricaturists at the Palmer Park Art Fair last weekend. I love this show in Detroit for its diversity. I met new authors from Ghana, Jamaica and some great visitors to the show. Stay tuned for full story.

Copyright (c) 2022. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

Happy Easter 2022, Vesele Velikonoce

Czech & Slovak Easter traditions

By Emma Palova

The Czech and Slovak Easter traditions are deeply embedded in the villages of Moravia and Slovakia, and they are not as prevalent in the big cities such as Prague or Bratislava.

Most families color eggs in dyes or onion skins for the deep brown color and polish the eggs with butter and set them on the Easter table to reward the revelers, along with a bottle of plum brandy, desserts, lamb pound cake, and open-faced sandwiches.

Easter egg artists make “kraslice,” which are decorated empty eggshells after the yolks and whites have been blown out. These pieces of delicate art painted on a fragile shell are the mainstay of Easter sold at markets and gift shops, along with hand-embroidered tablecloths and ceramics.

The prevailing tradition remains the mysterious “whipping” of the women of the household on Easter Monday known as “schmigrust.” Men and boys traditionally braid their own whips from willow branches in all sizes. These whips are called “pomlazka” or “karabac” and they can be up to two meters long braided from 24 willow rods. Some use large special wooden spoons with ribbons or branches of juniper.

“Schmigrust is my favorite part of Easter,” said Ludek Pala, a Moravian native of Stipa, now a resident of Lowell, who still practices the tradition in the USA.

The revelers get up at the crack of dawn and head out into the streets in groups of all ages. Depending on the region they also carry wooden carved noisemakers carved by local wood artists.

When the door opens, the women and girls get a gentle whipping to drive away evil spirits, according to old legends. Originating in ancient pagan fertility rites, the practice is supposed to guarantee beauty and good health for women in the coming year.

They cite the following Easter chant:

Hody, hody, doprovody, dejte vejce malovany, nedateli malovany, dejte aspon bily, slepicka vam snese jiny.

Loosely translated as: Give me a colored egg, if you don’t give me a colored one, give me at least a white one, and your hen will lay another.

The plum brandy aka slivovice reward

The plum brandy is made in the stills in Moravia and across the country. People usually bring in their own plum or pear ferment that is distilled.

We decided to bring this tradition to the USA where we live permanently. The fruit is locally sourced from Paulson’s, Hills Brothers, and Mason peaches and apples, with no additives the brandy reflects an age-old tradition of craft stilling started by our forefathers.

Moravian Sons Distillery

In return for the whipping, the revelers get a ribbon tied to the whip, a colored egg, a shot of plum brandy and they help themselves to open-faced sandwiches and desserts, such as festive kolache and lamb pound cake.

“By noon you’re tired,” said Pala.

In some regions, if the group arrives after 12 p.m., they get doused with water. However, in Slovakia, the Easter custom is to douse the women and girls with water or perfume in the morning.

According to a 2019 survey, 60% of Czech households follow the tradition of spanking (or watering) someone on Easter Monday.

In the past, young boys would chase young girls in the village streets with the whips, and vintage illustrations by Josef Lada of people in traditional folk costumes show girls running or hiding as if playing tag.

Copyright (c) 2022. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

Writer’s retreat & an unplanned reunion

After a two-year hiatus due to Covid-19, I’ve returned to my annual winter writer’s retreat on the island of Venice in Florida.

I missed everything; from the turquoise waters, tropical flowers to Mahi Mahi and Mango Bango at Sharky’s.

This year’s stay was very special because we had an unplanned family reunion that just happened when Doc Chavent and Ludek decided to join us in “Paradise.”

Since it was sort of a reunion, mom Ella slaved in the kitchen and made some tropical goodies like open-faced sandwiches with mango chutney and blue cheese spread. We bought cold cuts at the International Food deli in nearby Northport owned by Ukraine owners.

I admire these Ukrainian women who have been running the store sine 1989 with little knowledge of English, but with a lot of gusto for life and preserving the old country traditions by carrying foods such as sproty, smoked mackerels, Russian champagne, Alexander II black tea and loose tea packed in Russian nesting dolls.

Venice on the island with sandy beaches and pelicans is better known as “Paradise.” The temperature in the winter months is around mid 70F. We lucked out it was in the 80s all week long, and sunny.

We all met on Sunday, Feb. 20 by the beach at Sharky’s, the only restaurant on the beach in Venice. Ludek waited for us by the picnic bench and surprised Doc Emma and the grandkids, as well as Vincent by his unexpected presence. Our daughter didn’t recognize him in his beach attire and hat, and her new friend Vincent didn’t stand a chance, since they’ve never met.

However, the grands eventually realized that it was their own grandpa sitting underneath the palms drinking beer, even though they were jet-lagged after the long flight from Paris.

We all enjoyed the sunny tropical afternoon on the beach in February. Usually, we spend Sunday afternoons at home shopping after the Sunday mass.

This was a much-needed break from the winter drill of taking care of the house and our new business. But I also had to somewhat break away from my usual retreat routine except for the morning yoga on the beach with Elin.

My dad Vaclav gave me a ride every day for the 9 am yoga session on Venice Beach. The class is always well attended by close to 200 participants from all over the USA. But most of us are from either the Midwest or from New England.

I enjoyed the morning conversations about how many inches of snow was the northeast getting and how many flights have been canceled. The last yoga class before my departure was dedicated to Dotty of Michigan who was celebrating her 100th birthday and until two years ago did yoga with Elin on the beach, a definite testimonial to the overall benefits of yoga.

“Dotty wouldn’t want us to do any balances today,” said Elin holding a poster of Dotty. “ So we’re not going to do them.”

Elin offers plenty of tips on how to maintain balance, good posture, and fall correctly, if necessary. We often do executive stretches and airplane balances. Plus there’s a lot to do in town including Farmers Markets on Saturdays.

I love downtown Venice with palm-lined streets, boutiques, Ciao Gelato shop, Coffee and Wine Co., and restaurants. This year, colorful sculptures of mermaids and seahorses adorned the street corners and storefronts.

We only made it once to town for coffee with mom, and a few times to Jetty’s Jack for ice brewed latte with Ludek. However, we indulged in a fancy tropical lunch at Finn’s on an unlimited budget sponsored by the Docs from France.

You should never tell a Czech person that he or she can order whatever they want from the menu. Because they will. LOL

Mom ordered filet mignon, while dad went cheap and ordered fish and chips. We all shared octopus for appetizers. I have yet to acquire a taste for that.

The North and South Jetty located on the north side of Venice are wharves with marinas, kayaks, and boat rentals such as sailvenice.com and the Freedom Boat Club.

We enjoyed a sunset cruise with Captain Paul Aquaholic Charters starting at the Venice Marina by the Old Salt Dog. Marine patrol officer Paul for Sarasota County during the day turns into Captain Paul at night. Barefoot Paul took us out to sea via the Venice waterways past the dockside restaurants on the waterways.

We saw dolphins playing by the docks. They chased our small boat in the waterway and Paul even lent the Captain’s bridge to the grandkids to steer us toward the setting sun.

The journey into the sun that lit the gold and orange waters on fire to see the Gulf sunset lasted more than an hour, and created memories for a lifetime.

Copyright (c) 2022. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

Dockside restaurants.

Romancing February

Rosette Nebula aka NGC 2237 with the Unicorn Constellation.

Starting strong in February

It’s 5:59 am. It’s Groundhog Day and National Wear Red Day aka Heart Health Day for Women. We’re supposed to wear red and post all sorts of numbers like blood pressure and cholesterol.

Well, I have yet to wash my only red sweater that I wear in December for podcasting, and my blood sometimes boils. I don’t like red. I prefer the earth colors. My cholesterol should be good because I deprive myself of steaks, eggs and cheese on regular basis. I don’t eat pasta because of A1C, but I know it’s under 7, and I don’t take Trulicity or Ozempic. I eat plenty of broccoli and salads even in winter.

I walked to the gauges by our French door this morning. The temperature outside was exactly zero. Yesterday, I finally got out, and it was like walking into an ice cube, after breaking the door in the garage open. Everything was frozen to the bone. The only thing warm at the Hong Kong Buffet were the koi fish swimming in the lovely pool. So, I threw them a penny that I didn’t have in my pocket and had to borrow from my husband.

After streamlining my podcast show “For the Love of Books Podcast,” the stats are booming, the episodes are exploding with fun, and laughter is ringing in my writing studio. I love my colleague fellow authors who are my featured guests on the weekly podcast show because I have a passion for the indie writing business. We put our hearts into what we do best on daily basis with its ups and downs.

I’ve been privileged to meet some of the amazing authors in person at festivals and art shows. And that season is coming up starting in February with the Women’s Expo in Lansing.

https://wordpress.com/post/emmapalova.com/334530

So take a listen as they pour out their hearts with passions of their own.

Listen in to authors and poets from all around the world as they share their personal stories and insights from the publishing industry.

Copyright (c) 2022. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

Today’s reading from Saint Paul to the Corinthians

Inspiration spin-offs

This was today’s second reading from the First Letter of Saint Paul to Corinthians mostly used at weddings. It was made even more famous by the blockbuster movie “Wedding Crashers ” with Owen Wilson, Vince Vaughn, and Rachel McAdams.

It’s my second favorite comedy for a myriad of reasons.

It has inspired me to the point where I wish I could write comedies if life wasn’t full of them.

All is Vanity from the Belding Museum Belrockton.

But I like Seinfeld too, and Schitt’s Creek in all its 58 episodes. We watched them four times.

Why can’t I write comedies?

Like I stated before life takes on its Shakespearean version of a tragic comedy where we become the actors on daily basis in various scenes with or without costumes.

                     All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages.

Fellow author Xander Cross aka Ayakashi Fox who does cosplay as his protagonist stated it well in one of his recent shared Fb posts about the comic stages in life as we evolve from the initial omg what a talented kid,  to f….disappointment and end as a weirdo who dresses up in a costume.

I assured him those were just various scenes in life that I can relate to even though I don’t do cosplay.

He was a guest on my For the Love of Books Podcast last year in June, so let’s listen to him again.

Inspired by Japanese folklore, author Xander Cross creates a dark, forbidding future and a demon in peril in “The Origin of the White Wind.” Welcome to The Atlas Dystopia Apocalyptica, the memoirs of a former Divine Messenger turned yakuza assassin! This gritty action thriller will take you into the shadowy world of dragons and yōkai in the 22nd Century New Toky and beyond! 

Here is the episode

https://emmapalova123.podbean.com/e/author-xander-cross-portrays/

To be continued

Enjoy the week ahead of us with upcoming authors Tony Lindsay and Renae Micou on For the Love of Books Podcast on podbean and major apps.

Copyright (c) 2022. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

Emma’s book signings in September 2021

I have embarked on my fall author adventures through west and central Michigan. After an exceptional summer with crowds flocking to community events, autumn promises are in the fresh air painting a colorful palette.

I am so grateful that the in person events are making a comeback, they are a lifeline for artists, artisans and crafters. After year-long hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic, I finally get to introduce my new book “Greenwich Meridian Memoir” to the public at large.

I will be at the Charlotte Frontier Days Arts & Crafts Show in booth 101 from Sept. 10 through Sept. 12 . The arts show is located on the lawn of the Old County Courthouse. Stop by to pick up a book or two.

Friday, Sept. 10 noon – 7 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 11 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Sunday, Sept. 12 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

https://www.charlottefrontierdays.org/

Fallasburg Arts Festival

I will be in the one-room schoolhouse located at 14029 Covered Bridge Rd. NE in the historic village of Fallasburg signing my books and serving as a museum guide. Cross the Covered Bridge and step back some 150 years ago, when the bridge was built. The bridge is celebrating its 150th anniversary next weekend.

Saturday, Sept. 18 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Sunday, Sept. 19 noon – 5p.m.

Feature photo: Emma Palova signs her book no. 1 “Shifting Sands Short Stories” for Jeanne Vandersloot.

Copyright (c) 2021. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

Art Festivals in Michigan

Meet your next favorite read

By Emma Palova

Frankfort, MI – What better way to meet your next favorite read than on the shores of Lake Michigan at a local art festival.

After a succesful Lakeshore Art Festival (LAF) in downtown Muskegon, where even a tornado watch couldn’t stop Michigan Authors from selling their books, we have somewhat dispersed. But if you check the previous post about the Michigan Authors Comeback in 2021, and go to the authors websites, you will be able to catch up with them.

Lakeshore Art Festival in downtown Muskegon.

I will be in Frankfort on July 4th at the Art in the Park craft show at 517 Main Street from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Stop by to pick up a book or two; I will have Shift Sands Short Stories series, book 1 and book 2 and my newest release “Greenwich Meridian Memoir.” I will also have posters of the cover of “Secrets.”

I will be around Lowell during the Riverwalk next weekend.

July 31- Grand Ledge, Island Fest

Aug. 7- Holland, Art in the Park

Aug. 28- Lowell, Hometown Reception on the Showboat

I also have a virtual booth at the Detroit Book Fest. Check it out at:

https://detroitbookfest.com/directory-manage/

More events to be announced.

For authors: check out the podcast Michigan Authors at LAF for tips on how to organize your events with author Darla Jean Davis and Melanie Hooyenga.

For the Love of Books Podcast

https://emmapalova123.podbean.com

Copyright (c) 2021. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

Michigan Authors @LAF

Michigan authors are making a comeback in 2021

Muskegon- They are back and stronger than before; strengthened by the quiet months of the COVID-19 quarantine, these authors used their time to create, write and to launch books in the finnicky technical world.

Michigan authors will be grouped at the Authors Alley at the Lakeshore Art Festival (LAF) in downtown Muskegon on June 26 and June 27. Close to 20 authors will be ready to present to you your next favorite read; from fantasies, short stories, young adult fiction, childrens books to thrillers and mysteries.

You will find Authors Alley along 4th Street on the left hand side of the road in front of the Lakeshore Museum Center and extending into the intersection at Clay Street. The hours are: Saturday, June 26 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, June 27 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Following is a list of participating authors: Ingar Rudholm, Joan Young, Melinda Clark, Sara Shanning, Lon Hieftje, Andrew Smith, Jean Davis, Norma Lewis, Melanie Hooyenga, Michael D. Jones, Lori Hudson, Emma Palova, Bonnie Votkis, Judy Burke, Marianne Wieland, Randy Pearson, Mike Carrier, Gary Buettner and Gregory Scott.

For links to authors’ websites go to:

https://lakeshoreartfestival.org/attend/authors-alley/

Lakeshore Art Festival on Fox TV

https://www.fox17online.com/morning-mix/lakeshore-art-festival-taking-over-downtown-muskegon-june-26-27

https://www.facebook.com/events/1097983580662621

For the Love of Books Podcast

Listen in to the weekly podcast show featuring Indie and small press authors from authors close and far away.

For podcast interviews with authors: Ingar Rudholm, Joan Young, Andrew Smith, Jean Davis, Randy Pearson and Marianne Wieland go to:

https://emmapalova123.podbean.com

Listen in this Friday to a podcast interview about Michigan Authors at LAF with authors Jean Davis and Melanie Hooyenga.

If you would like to be featured on the podcast pm or email Emma or write in the comment section below.

Copyright (c) 2021. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

The future of Indie Publishing

The authors and their books.

By Emma Palova

Listen in to the podcast “For the love of books,” download and share the episodes. The insights from the Indie authors are incredible, beyond trade journals.

Each author represents a unique individuality in what some call “a mass book production market.” There may be one million ISBNs issued annually, but each book and author are distinctively different in how they approach the writing business and writing itself.

It’s like there is a piece of the author in each one of his or her books; it may be in the character, in the setting, in the plot or in the point of view. POV.

One of my favorite questions is: “Where do you see the future of Indie publishing?”

The overall response is that it will continue to grow.

“We have physical books, ebooks, audiobooks, virtual book events. Maybe virtual reality books are next?”

Ingar Rudholm

“And how will the Indie authors be remembered?”

“We’re the trailblazers.”

Joan H. Young

Podcast interviews this week

Coming up in this week’s podcasts are authors Marianne Wieland, A. Kidd and Colleen Nye. They are pictured in the gallery above.

Nye is an author with multiple pen names and an overactive imagination.

A. Kidd calls herself a kid at heart with a youthful exuberance, A. Kidd writes books for children full of magic and wonder in the hopes that they will have the courage to live their own stories and possibly even be inspired to write stories of their own.  

Wieland is the author of 10 books.

Nothing is ever as it seems on the surface. Expect the unexpected. Is it real, fiction or a combination? You decide. Go ahead. I dare you!

I just had my 10th book released a few days ago.

Marianne Wieland

Follow the podcast on:

https://emmapalova123.podbean.com/

Copyright (c)2021. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.