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Category: Blog Posts

Real Life Inspirations in Tempting Friendship by Patricia Josephine

New book from Patricia Josephine Whoo hoo! My pal, Patricia, has a brand new book coming out! I haven’t read it yet, but I do know that it’s an Urban Fantasy genre book featuring an incubus and an asexual. Talk about an odd couple, eh? Plus, a giveaway! Make sure you scroll all the way down this post, because there’s a giveaway to celebrate Patricia’s new book towards the bottom!   The storyline for Tempting Friendship At first, Quinn isn’t impressed by Keane. He’s cocky and has sex on the brain. The polar opposite of her. Despite their differences, something blossoms between the…

REVIEW: Hairspray is a Timely Reminder that Tolerance Never Goes Out of Style! #Hairspray @attpac

Hairspray is a satisfying confection While waiting for the doors to open at the Winspear Opera House on Hairspray’s opening night in Dallas, Lyft offered theater goers complimentary Pop Rock macarons. Much to my delight, these hot pink confections were surprisingly satisfying rather than sickeningly sweet. Those pastries made the perfect pairing for Hairspray, because from the moment the curtain rose until the last curtain call, this musical blends fast-paced fun with a cast of quirky characters who, much like a hot pink Pop Rock macaron, create a surprisingly satisfying experience. What’s Hairspray about? Hairspray takes place in Baltimore, Maryland…

#IWSG Do You Have a Soft Shell Crab Phase?

I’m baaaaaack! Hey, #IWSG peeps! I didn’t mean to fall off the monthly posting wagon, but… sometimes my life feels like a blender on frappe and I end up going in so many directions that the only way to deal with things is to pull back from everything except for what I absolutely have to do. So that’s what I did! My writing life is good, but… Though hectic, life’s been great for me, writing-wise! In January, I was contacted by a publisher and after a flurry of negotiations, research, and writing, my first book with Reedy Press will be…

REVIEW: Bright Star Offers Twangy, Toe-Tapping Fun #BrightStar @attpac

Bright Star is a bluegrass musical that first opened on Broadway in 2016 as the result of a creative partnership between renowned comic, writer and banjo player, Steve Martin, and the talented songstress, Edie Brickell. Although set in the hills of North Carolina, it’s worth nothing that this creative duo has roots in the Lone Star State: Edie Brickell grew up in Dallas and Steve Martin hails from Waco. The storyline for Bright Star was inspired by the “Iron Mountain Baby” of 1902, but beyond the inciting incident, it’s pure fiction. I decided not to read anything about the show before seeing…

Historic Cemeteries: Cast Iron Graves by J.R. Abrams #GraveHour

Cast iron grave covering – not mere decoration The photo below shows a child’s grave with a cast iron covering. This type of cast iron grave covering was patented in 1873 by Joseph R. Abrams, and there’s a lot more to it than mere decoration!  It was intended to be better than simply mounding dirt at a gravesite.   Invented by J.R. Abrams in 1873 As J.R. Abrams explains in his patent: “By this construction the sinking of the loose earth in the grave has no effect upon the superposed and hardened artificial mound formed by the cement.” Click here to read…

What’s NEW with: “100 Things to Do in Dallas – Fort Worth Before You Die” #100Things

Yay! My next book comes out September 15! I’ve got a brand new travel book coming out September 15, 2018! It’s called 100 Things to Do in Dallas – Fort Worth Before You Die. A book for road trip inspiration in North Texas: This new  book is meant to inspire people to explore North Texas. It’s chock full of inspiration for day trips, road trips, date nights, family fun, and other outings here in the DFW Metroplex. #1 on Amazon: You Can Pre-Order it NOW: My book is now available for pre-order, but guess what? It’s already hitting bestseller lists on Amazon! If you pre-order…

REVIEW: “Uncanny Valley” Asks Hard Questions about AI @BlackFlagTX #scifi #Visitplano

Thought provoking play by Thomas Gibbons What does it really mean to be sentient? If we create a convincing facsimile of a person and use Artificial Intelligence (AI) to reproduce a personality, does the end result truly replace the original person? Or is it a modern-day chimera? In any case, exactly what sort of legal rights would, or should, such an entity have? How should existing biological family members treat this new being? Questions such as these (and many more) have kept my husband, Larry, and I chatting for days after seeing Black Flag Theatre Company’s production of “Uncanny Valley,”…

Understanding Cemetery Symbols: What does a lotus flower represent? #cemetery #history #GraveHour

Understanding Cemetery Symbols by Tui Snider [The following is an adapted excerpt from my book, Understanding Cemetery Symbols. I hope you enjoy it! Also, full disclosure: that’s an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy my book after clicking it, I make a few pennies at no additional cost to you.] Lotus flower: an Ancient Egyptian symbol The lotus flower, also known as the water lily, is an important ancient Egyptian symbol.Since the lotus blooms during the day but closes at night, it symbolized the cycle of life and death. Egyptian columns are often topped with a lotus leaf, as you can…

Scraped Graveyards – a Southern Tradition? Understanding Cemetery Symbols #history #GraveHour

Understanding Cemetery Symbols by Tui Snider [The following is an adapted excerpt from my book, Understanding Cemetery Symbols. I hope you enjoy it! Also, full disclosure: that’s an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy my book after clicking it, I make a few pennies at no additional cost to you.] Scraped Graveyards used to be common Lush green lawns are such a common feature of today’s burial grounds that if you could travel back in time to the 1800’s for a graveyard tour through the rural South, you might be in for a shock. Back then, many graveyards were kept free of…

Understanding Cemetery Symbols: What is the Hebrew version of RIP? #cemetery #history #GraveHour

Understanding Cemetery Symbols by Tui Snider [The following is an adapted excerpt from my book, Understanding Cemetery Symbols. I hope you enjoy it! Also, full disclosure: that’s an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy my book after clicking it, I make a few pennies at no additional cost to you.] What does RIP stand for? In Christian cemeteries, it’s fairly common to see the acronym “RIP” on headstones. Although we tend to think of that as meaning “rest in peace,” it actually stands for “requiescat in pace.” Since that is Latin for “may h/she rest in peace,” it all works out! Do Jewish headstones…

How did a Victorian Era book influence cemetery symbolism? #cemetery #history #GraveHour

Understanding Cemetery Symbols by Tui Snider [The following is an adapted excerpt from my book, Understanding Cemetery Symbols. I hope you enjoy it! Also, full disclosure: that’s an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy my book after clicking it, I make a few pennies at no additional cost to you.] How did a Victorian Era book influence cemetery symbolism? In 1868, Elizabeth Stuart Phelps published a book entitled The Gates Ajar. Phelps’ book tells the story of a young woman grieving the loss of her brother, a soldier who died in the Civil War. After his death, the main character is unable to…

Understanding Cemetery Symbols: What’s Spock doing in a Historic Graveyard? #cemetery #history #GraveHour

Understanding Cemetery Symbols by Tui Snider [The following is an adapted excerpt from my book, Understanding Cemetery Symbols. I hope you enjoy it! Also, full disclosure: that’s an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy my book after clicking it, I make a few pennies at no additional cost to you.] Live long and prosper? If you are a Star Trek fan, you may be surprised to see a pair of hands, seemingly giving Commander Spock’s famous “Live long and prosper” gesture, engraved on a headstone. As it happens, Leonard Nimoy, who played Spock in the famous TV show, was Jewish. As…

Understanding Cemetery Symbols: What are Grave Goods? #cemetery #history #GraveHour

Understanding Cemetery Symbols by Tui Snider [The following is an adapted excerpt from my book, Understanding Cemetery Symbols. I hope you enjoy it! Also, full disclosure: that’s an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy my book after clicking it, I make a few pennies at no additional cost to you.] What are Grave Goods? When people visit cemeteries, they often leave items at gravesites such as coins, pebbles, seashells, decorations and items called “grave goods.” Two kinds of grave goods Items left at a gravesite that once belonged to the deceased or that are associated with the deceased, are called “grave…

Understanding Cemetery Symbols: The strange evolution from skulls to cherubs #cemetery #history #GraveHour

Understanding Cemetery Symbols by Tui Snider [The following is an adapted excerpt from my book, Understanding Cemetery Symbols. I hope you enjoy it! Also, full disclosure: that’s an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy my book after clicking it, I make a few pennies at no additional cost to you.] How symbols evolve: from skulls to cherubs Just like other symbols, the meaning of skulls depends upon its context in time, place, and religious belief. Skulls, or a skull and crossbones, are frequently seen on early American headstones. In the 16th and 17th century, skulls and other mortality symbols served to…

Understanding Cemetery Symbols: Why are benches so common in graveyards? #cemetery #history #GraveHour

Understanding Cemetery Symbols by Tui Snider [The following is an adapted excerpt from my book, Understanding Cemetery Symbols. I hope you enjoy it! Also, full disclosure: that’s an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy my book after clicking it, I make a few pennies at no additional cost to you.] Why are benches so common in cemeteries? This historic cemetery tradition harkens back to ancient Greece: After erecting a table stone to place food and wine on during grave site celebrations, ancient Greeks often installed a type of stone bench called an exedra. Now the family had a place to sit during their…

Understanding Cemetery Symbols: Doves can mean many things! #cemetery #history #GraveHour

Understanding Cemetery Symbols by Tui Snider [The following is an adapted excerpt from my book, Understanding Cemetery Symbols. I hope you enjoy it! Also, full disclosure: that’s an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy my book after clicking it, I make a few pennies at no additional cost to you.] What do Doves symbolize? DOVES: In general, when you see dove depicted on headstones in historic cemeteries, they represent innocence, peace, and/ or the Holy Spirit. The meaning of a particular dove varies slightly, however, depending on what it is doing: DOVE FLYING UPWARDS: Stands for the soul’s ascent to Heaven. DOVE FLYING DOWNWARDS:…

Understanding Cemetery Symbols: Coins on Graves: Truth vs Urban Legend #cemetery #history #GraveHour

Understanding Cemetery Symbols by Tui Snider [The following is an adapted excerpt from my book, Understanding Cemetery Symbols. I hope you enjoy it! Also, full disclosure: that’s an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy my book after clicking it, I make a few pennies at no additional cost to you.] Coins on Graves? The practice of leaving coins with the deceased dates back to the ancient Greeks, who believed the rivers Styx and Acheron separated the living from the dead. A ferry trip was required to cross these waters, otherwise the soul of the deceased would be forced to wander the…

Understanding Cemetery Symbols: Birth of the Garden Cemetery #cemetery #history #GraveHour

Understanding Cemetery Symbols by Tui Snider [The following is an adapted excerpt from my book, Understanding Cemetery Symbols. I hope you enjoy it! Also, full disclosure: that’s an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy my book after clicking it, I make a few pennies at no additional cost to you.] Bodies spilling into the streets -yikes! From the time of the Pilgrims through the 1700’s, American city dwellers were buried in churchyards. Unfortunately, as our cities grew in population, these urban burial grounds became overcrowded. This was especially troublesome during epidemics, when city graveyards were hastily filled with new bodies. From…

Understanding Cemetery Symbols: Alpha and Omega #cemetery #history #GraveHour

Understanding Cemetery Symbols by Tui Snider [The following is an adapted excerpt from my book, Understanding Cemetery Symbols. I hope you enjoy it! Also, full disclosure: that’s an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy my book after clicking it, I make a few pennies at no additional cost to you.] What do Alpha and Omega look like? Alpha is the first letter of the Greek alphabet, and Omega is the last. Since Alpha looks like an A and the Greek letter Zeta looks like a Z, people often assume that Zeta is the last letter in their alphabet. Well, surprise! It’s…

Full list of April A to Z posts for “Understanding Cemetery Symbols” #cemetery #history #GraveHour

April A to Z: “Understanding Cemetery Symbols” by Tui Snider   Master List of my 2018 April A to Z blog posts: I’m taking part in the annual April A to Z Blog Challenge for the sixth year in a row! This time, I’m sharing adapted excerpts from my latest book, Understanding Cemetery Symbols. I hope you enjoy it! Each day, I’ll add a link for that day’s featured post to the list below. [Also, full disclosure: that’s an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy my book after clicking it, I make a few pennies at no additional cost to you.] A…