A Good Home, Books, Canadian Gardens, Food, Gardens of An Honest House

When Readers Write

Photos by Hamlin Grange

One of the most enjoyable experiences I have as a writer of a newly published book is hearing from readers. It happened with my first book, A Good Home: I got hundreds of notes and cards from readers.

Book photos - cards from Readers

This time, a new thing happened: readers started emailing me while still reading the book. Bloggers whom I knew and many readers whom I didn’t, wrote as they finished a chapter or part (the book has 3 parts).

I love it! 

I also love the surprises involved.

Jeanne at Still A Dreamer posted a beautiful remembrance of her dad’s garden.

I savoured every flower, every memory she described. Then, at the end of her post, came a surprise connection to An Honest House. A smile warmed my soul.  I was glad that reading about our farmhouse gardens had triggered Jeanne’s happy memories.

Blog Photo - White garden Bridal Wreath and Arbour

But when – over just 2 days — readers in 3 different countries wrote to praise “all the great food” in An Honest House, I was stunned.

The only great cook in this house is my husband. Could I really have written so much about food? It sent me scurrying to reread my own book. 

Eureka! There it was, dozens of mentions:

Blog Photo - Afternoon Tea Ladies

blog-veggies-in-basket2

Food growing and being harvested from the garden.

Blog Photo - Garden harvest Basket tomatoes pumpkin

Food cooking on the stove or fresh-baked from the oven.

Blog Photo - Cake 2

Pots of jelly burbling.

Blog Photo - Jelly in Pot

blog-photo-verandah-red-currants

And there it was: 

Blog Photo - Apples in Bowl

The joy of making apple pies, apple crepes and jellies – from our own rare apples.

Blog Photo - Kitchen harvest table

The delight that comes from knowing that almost every ingredient in a meal has come from one’s own garden.

Blog Photo - Tomato Yellow

blog-photo-herb-garden-parsley

Family and friends having supper — cooked by our resident chef.

Blog Photo - Robert Family Visit Dish CU

Blog Photo - Robert and Family on the Verandah
Above 2 photos by Robert Vernon

And, of course, the hilarity that follows my guests’ discovery that I’ve ruined yet another simple dish.

~~

Running gag among family and friends:

Me: Hi there. Will you please come over for supper?

Them: Ah…hmm… who’s doing the cooking?

~~

I learned that sometimes, what you think you are writing and what the reader is getting may be not exactly the same. I knew that I wanted to infuse this (sometimes painful) book with my family’s gratitude and joy in life’s simple pleasures. But it took my readers to tell me how much I’d written about food.

So:  ever wanted to write to an author whose book you enjoyed?

Do it. You might tell them something they didn’t know. 

 

A Good Home, An Honest House, Books, Canadian Families, PTSD

The Book is Released!

An Honest House

 

~~

Dear Friends:

The long wait is finally over.

My new book, An Honest House, is on sale online today – earlier than I expected. 

An Honest House by Cynthia Reyes

An Honest House will be available in some bookstores in June and later, though any store worth its salt will bring it in for you before that.  Just ask.

Here are the Amazon links:

Amazon USA

Amazon Kindle

http://www.amazon.com/Honest-House-Memoir-Continued/dp/1772360368/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1462851324&sr=8-1&keywords=cynthia+reyes+an+honest+house

Amazon Canada

https://www.amazon.ca/dp/1772360368/ref=cm_sw_r_fa_asp_kTXAL.Q9M9HBE

Amazon Kindle

Kobo Books

Amazon UK
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Honest-House-Memoir-Continued/dp/1772360368/ref=sr_1_10?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1462921393&sr=1-10&keywords=an+honest+house
 ~~
When you’ve read it, I’d love to hear your thoughts. Meantime, please help me spread the word.
Thank you for your wonderful support,
Cynthia.
Book image An Honest House 1
A Good Home, Cake, Dessert, Food, Poetry

The Hungry Philosopher

At dinner that evening, I asked a man

Who had taken three pieces of cake

One after the other

Though he paused before the last

Photo by Simply Splendid Victorian Afternoon Tea
Photo by Simply Splendid Victorian Afternoon Tea

And looked straight at me across the table

As if seeking a stranger’s approval

Then dug right in

With an almost-grunt of satisfaction

**

“What happened?” I asked him, curious,

“At that very last moment

Just before

You gave in to temptation?”

Photo Courtesy of The No Grainer Baker
Photo Courtesy of The No Grainer Baker

He smiled at the crumbs on his plate

Then looked at me and said:

“You tell yourself

That it won’t be that bad, not really

**

That’s what you tell yourself.

It is, after all, such a little thing

A small piece of nothing

That you’ll make up for later.”

Jamaican Christmas Cake - Google Images
Jamaican Christmas Cake – Google Images

The hungry philosopher smiled again

But sadly now, at his plate

Regretful, yes

And something else, perhaps

 **

A bit of shame caused by a stranger

Who spoke

When she should have stayed quiet

And let the man enjoy his cake.

**

Dedicated to everyone who knows when to keep their mouth shut.

A Good Home, Celebrations, Family Moments, Happy new year, Inspiration, Poetry, Wisdom

A New Year

Blog Photo - New Year's Poem Birthday Cake

We measure a year in months and milestones

Birthdays and other anniversaries

The goals achieved, honours received

And various victories.

Blog Photo - New Year's Poem Sunset

These things we dream of, yearn for, live towards

The dates forecast in calendars

And marked off by celebrations

Of our lives.

aunt Rose with her son, great niece, and great-great niece

I wish you all that and more.

Blog Photo - Garden - Butterfly on Mint

But when I wish you a happy new year

I know there will also be struggles

And challenges and dirty dishes

Because this is life.

Blog Photo - New Year's Poem Maple Leaves

And so I wish you:

**

Laughter

For when things turn out crazy

Blog Photo - flowers with alium closer

Faith

On days of loss or disappointment

Blog Photo - New Year's Poem CR Thinking

Wisdom

In times of uncomfortable change

Blog Photo - New Year's Poem Hydrangea in Rain

Delight

In the small things, not just the big ones

Blog Photo - Doggies in window

blog-photo-dawson-up-close

Gratitude

For the gifts you have and will receive

blog-photo-simon3

Photo by Hamlin Grange

Hope

For tomorrow and the morrow after

Forest Tunnel

Health

To do the things you most enjoy

Blog Photo - New Year's Poem Skiis on Snow with Trees

Blog Photo - New Year's Poem Cyclist

Blog Photo - Playing guitar 1

Peace

In the fact of your humanity.

Book launch cynthia and rev claire

**

Dedicated to my Family, with love.

**PHOTOS COPYRIGHT OF HAMLIN GRANGE**