Two states down – Two to go!

Ann H Gabhart Ann's Posts, One Writer's Journal

I made my trip to New Albany, Indiana. The Heaven Help Us Bookstore was a beautiful place owned by a couple of beautiful people, Nyla and Mary Lou. They were mother and daughter team, and both had a love of books. Their store overflowed with lots of other lovely Christian items as well. I did a little Christmas shopping while I was there and got the twins a couple of cute plush hammers that make a breaking noise when you whop them on something. My husband, who was sweet enough to drive up there with me, kept popping them against his head and laughing when it sounded like his head was shattering. It must have been a man thing. But then again, I was the one who bought them.

You can bet if I lived in the area, I’d be in Nyla’s great store shopping all the time. I kept seeing things I would like to buy. And the book section was well stocked and had lots of great titles. Not only that, Nyla was an avid reader who stood ready to point out the best books to her customers. That’s service.

Oh yeah, one more sort of amusing note about the trip. Nyla had told me her story was right next door to the nice restaurant when she sent me directions. I thought that was good, to have a nice restautant right next door. But it turned out the restaurant was actually named The Nice Restaurant. Great thinking. What do people sometimes say when you ask where they want to go out to eat? Right. Somewhere nice or a nice restaurant. So if you’re in the New Albany area you can go to the Nice Restaurant and slip on next door to an even nicer bookstore, Heaven Help Us. And believe it or not, just up the street is The Flower Shop. No joke.

Three other inspirational fiction writers were there as well. Jamie Carie had her book, Snow Angel; Shelley Shepard Gray was signing her popular Hidden; and Ramona K. Cecil had a couple of her Heartsong Presents novels there. One of her titles was Sweet Forever. So of course, I ended up buying all their books. They looked so good and writers should support other writers, shouldn’t they? A couple of them were sweet enough to return the favor. I decided their books would make great give-aways on my website in the next few months. So check that out after I draw for the “trick or treat” winner on the thirty-first. You’ve still got time to send me an e-mail in get your name entered into that drawing. Just go to my website, and click on contact Ann.

All three of the other authors were coming out with new books in December or the first of the year. So they’re ahead of me a few months there. My new book, The Believer, is a summer 2009 release. I got the changes finished on the new book and sent in and approved, so it’s a wrap. Of course there will be copy editing and proofing down the road, but the story is ready. I’m hoping my readers will be ready for another Shaker story. I think you’ll like Ethan and Elizabeth, the two main characters. Now I need to get started on researching the next book. I thought I had decided on a Civil War book, but I’m wavering on that historical time frame now. I’m thinking that might be better in another story and not a Shaker story. But we’ll see. That’s one of the good things about research. It seeds your mind with a lot of different ideas and then you have to sort of wait to see which ones are going to sprout and grow best.

Then today was the trip to West Virginia to see Matt and John’s baby dedication at their church there. It’s always fun to see the new babies and the loving parents and families at a baby dedication service. My son’s family took up quite a bit of room with his three girls and the twins. The two year old wasn’t too patient with the preacher’s dedication talk, but the twins never made a peep. They are both very laid back and happy babies.

We didn’t get to stay to play long since Darrell and his group were singing tonight and we had to get back in time for that. That was the third night in a row the guys had sung. Their Homecoming on Friday and Saturday went well. Thanks to all who came and thanks, Faye, for coming by to speak to me. Then Sherry stopped to talk to me tonight. It’s great to meet you guys wherever I am. Also hope you’re feeling much better by now, Bonnie.

Tomorrow we’ll head out for some R & R with Darrell’s brothers and sister and spouses in Tennessee. I won’t be going to South Carolina until the next week, but I’m really looking forward to the trip down there to see my daughter and maybe gain some new readers for The Outsider and Summer of Joy at the Spartanburg Barnes and Noble Store (Nov 7)and the Greenville Barnes and Noble (Nov 6). I love bookstores. Especially these new bookstores that are so reader friendly. My biggest problem is trying to keep from buying a carload of books everytime I go. I love to buy books for my grandkids and for everybody on my Christmas list. At least this close to Christmas I’ll have an excuse.

Guess that’s all my news. But I did have one more thing. Do you guys have a magic mirror? Maybe not exactly like the witch in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, but a mirror that you look in and you see yourself as looking not all that bad. Then you get out somewhere, perhaps go in a public restroom and all of the sudden spot yourself in that big bright mirror and you don’t feel so flattered. Your hair looks messier or grayer or duller and your skin looks a little splotchy or not as smooth as it did back in that magic mirror in your own bathroom.

Is it because we’re holding our mouths right and lifting our chin to a flattering pose? Or is the light dim and we just can’t see? I don’t know. What I do know is that most of us have people in our lives who look at us and see us prettier and better than we are. That’s because they’re looking at us with “magic mirror” eyes of love. I’m wishing you lots of “magic mirror” eyes looking at you this week and making you feel beautiful and loved.