4th of July 2017

Dear Fellow Journalers,

The following is a reprint of a post I wrote for my craft blog on July 4, 2014. It is still relevant.


On this 4th of July, we pause and remember all the brave Americans who fought and died to make our country free. The following is an excerpt from “George Washington’s Secret Six”:

This book recounts the methods, the bravery, the cunning, the near misses, and the incredible successes of the Culper Ring, which helped to save our nation and shape our future. Most of all, this is a story about ordinary citizens doing extraordinary things, people whose fears and hopes and lives were not much different from our own, and how they changed the course of history. Their humility stopped them from seeking fame or fortune because their love of country sparked their exploits. …This book is written to honor them and the groundwork they laid for our future of freedom.”

Novel Beginings

Dear Fellow Journalers,

     I don’t know about you, but I often have difficulty writing that first sentence. It doesn’t matter if you are writing a letter, a blog post or your novel. How many times can you re-write a sentence?

     Your beginning is where the reader decides to keep reading. You want to keep the reader engaged and captivated. So here are some ideas (remember to write them down!)

1.       Make the reader wonder about something. No ready answer to the nagging question.

2.       Start with a problem.

3.       Start in the middle of the story.

4.       Introduce the main character and settings.

5.       Start with background information.


Here are some examples:

     “it looked dead, but I began to back away just in case.”

     “Katie Donovan’s heart pounded in rhythm with the sound of hoof beats on the road behind her.” 

                                                                     Mama’s Bible by Mildred Colvin

     “The execution of Nathan Hale on September 22, 1776, was the lowest point in a month of low points for General George Washington.”    George Washington’s Secret Six by Kilmeade


‘Til next time,



August 2022

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