Follow me on Pinterest

Saturday, January 17, 2015

My First Guest Blogger--Donna Martin

Today I am highlighting author Donna Martin.  Her book The Storybook Catcher is being released on January 20 by the Adventures Imprint of Anaiah Press.  I am very thrilled for her.  Congratulations, Donna!

Title: The Story Catcher
Author: Donna L. Martin
Imprint: Adventures
Release Date: January 20, 2015

Addie comes from a long line of readers, or “story catchers,” as her family likes to call themselves. Every time Addie tries to catch a story on her own, though, the words play tricks on her. Addie tries everything she can think of to corral those wiggly letters, but it  will take a little faith to become the next STORY CATCHER.

BUY LINKS:Amazon Kindle
                        Amazon Paperback
                        Barnes & Noble

Fan club membership includes: 
Membership Certificate
Bi-monthly Newsletter full of mazes, puzzles, games, news and other goodies
Reading log for earning Story Catcher Award
Short story starring YOU! 

Link to Story Catcher Fan Club

Would you like to see a trailer?

Who is Donna Martin?

By day, Donna L. Martin is a Fourth Degree TaeKwonDo Black Belt; by night, she is a self-proclaimed “ninja author” of picture books, middle grade chapter books, and young adult novels. Somewhere amidst all this excitement, she also created the Free Author Promotion event that takes place every May during the Children’s Festival of Reading. Donna loves laughter, snuggling with her cat, and reading good books. To get a sneak peak of what it was like growing up among the swamps of southern Louisiana, check out Tales from the Bayou on her blog at

Anaiah Press will give away a $20 iTunes Gift Card to one lucky winner.
Donna L. Martin will give away a beautiful journal.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Widow Barthomew's Bread

Can't you smell it?  Mmm....freshly baked bread!  In MOUSE'S CHRISTMAS GIFT, Widow Barthomew bakes bread to share at the Christmas Eve Service.  I chose bread because it is a simple food that would be eaten in the time period, as well as one that would not be too expensive.  To me it is an image of a cozy, loving scene. It is also an image of a sustaining food.

The irony of it all:  My last name is Baker, but I don't do a lot of baking.  I do have one recipe for a double chocolate banana bread that is delicious.  Here is a link:

Have you ever tried these rolls?  This is what I buy when I want the taste of homemade bread:

Look at these delicious breads below:

Here are my sources:

Which of these breads do you think looks the yummiest?  Which do you think Widow Bartholomew brought to the Christmas Eve Service?  Feel free to share your delicious bread recipes!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Where the Story Begins...My Church Ornaments

I have a little collection of church ornaments that I envision my main character Mouse living in.  Of course in Mouse's Christmas Gift he lives in Parson's church, but Parson's church looks a lot like my ornaments--just bigger--people size. Want to see them?  Which is your favorite?


Who inspires you?

Every teacher wants to make a difference in her students' lives.  I am no exception.  I want to make a difference!  I love "teacher" movies, "teacher" books, and you guessed it--"teacher" picture books!  You know the ones that chronicle how the teacher comes alongside her students and their whole world changes :).

One inspirational storyteller is Patricia Polacco.  I love that she tells real stories from her life experience.

In her story, Mr. Wayne's Masterpiece, Patricia Polacco tells of her own experience as a student overcoming the fear of speaking in front of an audience.

What happens?
Her English teacher Mr. Tranchina recognizes her writing talent and sees her potential.  He also sees her fear of public speaking.  He gently introduces Patricia to the drama teacher, Mr. Wayne, who invites her to help out with the winter play.

As the story unfolds, Mr. Wayne includes Patricia in the workshops and continues to give her more and more opportunities to blossom.  Because of a turn of events, Patricia winds up overcoming her fear, acting as the star role, and discovering her hidden talent.  I love the line "I was on fire," as she described her acting debut.  It shows her self-confidence and the pure joy she felt while acting.

I also love the title.  It is a play on words--they students are acting out a play Mr. Wayne wrote--his masterpiece--but the true masterpiece is Patricia and every other student he trains and coaches to become all they can be.

The teacher
 characters are very inspiring!

A few of their traits I admire are:

--noticing the struggling student and taking the time to help
--utilizing creative teaching techniques
--empowering students to become the masterpiece

Who was your most inspirational teacher?  Name and grade level?
Or, who inspires you and why?
I have too many to list, but one was Mr. Marsh for 7th grade English.  I loved it when He would read our papers aloud and we would try to guess who wrote them.