Locked away in the seclusion of the Terem Apartments, the Romanov Tsarevnas were no threat to the crown. Yet the same Romanov blood flowed through their veins, and they weren’t so easily forgotten – one of them ruled Russia for seven years. Maria Alekseyevna writes her deepest thoughts in her diary, hides away to read, and has a forbidden love that lives in her secret script.
Natalya Alekseyevna has dedicated her life to her sister, Anna Alekseyevna, who suffers from a condition that claimed her brother, Tsar Feodor Alexeyevich. She fills her days by creating her own versions of the ancient poems sung to the Romanov children. Fyodora Alexseyevna, the youngest, is nurtured by Maria, who hopes for a better life for her youngest sister. Sofia Alekseyevna fights tradition and rules the terem and eventually the country.
Covered from view, rare excursions outside the Kremlin enhance their lives and the discovery of a secret passageway – changes everything. Sofia’s absences from the terem are explained when Maria follows Sofia and learns her secret.
The author, Shirley Forrest Nomakeo received a B.S. in Graphic Design. She worked in the printing industry for twenty years. Before turning to writing full-time, she was a partner in a Golf Marketing and Promoting business in western Massachusetts. Currently, she is a published author. As an Independent author, audiobook producer, editor, and APA member, she writes full-time. She edits manuscripts for new authors and reviews audiobooks. She lives in MA with her husband and two children.
I can’t listen to music with words, as it interferes with my word process, but wordless music, classic or jazz, can sometimes enhance my writing. A Bach piece with choral work or John Coltrane’s horn can bring me there.
I guess combining art forms is usually a good thing. I’ve happily done readings of my poetry in art galleries. I think the art enhances the reading. How do you use the arts to enhance your writing?
My upcoming book, Touch My Head Softly is due out in early 2021;
Many of us watched in horror this week as the Capitol of the United States, a symbol of democracy for hundreds of years, was attacked by angry mobsters. Additionally, we are dealing with a pandemic that is infecting more than 22 million people in the country, a failing economy, and a dysfunctional government with many trust issues.
As writers, how do we cope with chaos around us? What does it mean for our writing? Do we become immobilized and stop writing? Do we add to the body of literature on the incident? Do we try to put positive energy out there to offset the negative?
My philosophy is to try to go with the latter.
I have a collection of poetry coming out in 2021 about my experiences with my partner who died of Alzheimer’s. I will be donating part of the proceeds to the Alzheimer’s Society to further their research. I’m just trying to make the world a more positive place. If I can help even one person with Alzheimer’s or a caretaker, it would make me feel better.
What do you do to put positive energy out into the world?
Culture is a fuzzy term. Some cultures just have speech, no writing. Language affects the way we write. Some writers are multilingual, and that’s a definite advantage. Speech is flexible and can be used in particular ways in a cultural setting. We speak naturally in many diverse backgrounds as babies, from the playground, to school, to home. Writing can also be a misery for a child in school who hasn’t mastered the rules.Writing is where we must be precise. Speech is where we get to be imprecise, to play.
Imagine, as writers, playing with our words the way we play with speech. We can make magical words in our writing. Witness the incantation to open the caves entrance in Tolkein’s Lord of the Rings. Gabriel García Márquez made frog kings.
So how do we make magical writing in our culture? I’m not sure. Does anyone want to answer this question, just reply to my blog.
My latest collection of poems, Touch Ny Head Softly, will be out soon from Finishing Line Press.
Have you ever written a personal essay on the same subject as a creative book you’ve published? My upcoming book, Touch My Head Softly, is about my experiences with my partner who died of Alzheimer’s Disease. I learned a lot about Alzheimer’s when my partner had it. I also did quite a bit of research on it for the collection of poems that I wrote.
I’d like to write an essay about Alzheimer’s. It’s a terrible disease that needs to be highlighted. It affects more Americans than prostate and breast cancer combined. I’m also donating part for the proceeds from the sale of my book to the Alzheimer’s Association for research for a cure.
Do you have any experience with writing a personal essay on a topic related to your novel or poetry? Would anyone like to guest blog a post in exchange on this topic for a guest blog here on a topic related to your book?
My upcoming book, Touch My Head Softly is due out in early 2021;
I don’t know how writing this year has been for you, but I know that writing has sustained me through this difficult year. I have a new collection of poetry coming out in early 2021 by Finishing Line Press about my partner who died of Alzheimer’s. With so many issues affecting us this year, such as the pandemic, the 2020 presidential election, the struggle for racial justice, I wonder how relevant my poems about Alzheimer’s Disease are in the world. I am donating part of the proceeds from the sale of the book to the Alzheimer’s Association to try to create a positive effect from the publishing of the collection. I am also trying to reflect on what I learned about myself in these trying times.
Black Love is an original collection of poetry by a new Ghanaian writer and poet. It’s a collection in seven chapters: relationships, black, money, politics, free, religion, and root. Relationships is the most substantial section with 13 of the 17 poems, and here Ayim shines, as in the poem “eyes opened,” “self, a book I finally enlightened my head JJK8with, has unveiled the misery and loneliness that engulfs me.” Black, with the poem “color,” illuminates “so light up the beauty; ugliness in success deeper and deeper, fear must fall. “ Innovative artwork accompanies the compelling poetry. I would like to hear more from this poet. I found it on Goodreads. Check it out on Goodreads.com.
I have a new collection of poems to that coming out soon from Finishing Line Press:
Her father, Bronson Alcott, was a Transcendentalist who knew Thoreau and Emerson. He moved here, to Fruitlands Farm, to form a Utopian Society. it failed after 7 months, but it influenced Luisa May, his 10–year–old daughter, to write Little Women and Little Men. What has influenced your writing?
I had a partner who died of Alzheimer’s in his 60’s. It influenced me to writer Touch My Head Softly, due out from Finishing Line Press in January.