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Step-by-Step Career Guide to Become a Florist

The job of a floral specialist, or florist, involves cutting flowers and arranging them into bouquets and display which are suitable for specific social events. The job may sound simple, but there are various crucial parts to it which are impossible to learn overnight. A crucial part of the job that is often overlooked…

Live a Greener Life With Sustainable, Reusable Water Bottles and Coffee Cups

I am trying to do my part to live a greener life. I am in no way an expert in living a more sustainable lifestyle, but I am doing little things that make a difference. I am already a stickler when it comes to recycling. My family and I no longer buy water in plastic bottles. Instead we filter our tap water and…

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Melina Druga's Blog (88)

Christmas Shopping in a Bygone Era

The commercialization of Christmas began during the Victorian era.  Retailers encouraged consumers to shop for the holidays instead of giving homemade gifts, and shop employees also decorated their shop windows with lavish displays to attract passersby.  The tradition of Christmas shopping was born.

 

So what were the popular gifts in this bygone era?  Let’s find out by…

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Added by Melina Druga on December 18, 2019 at 10:50am — No Comments

Early 20th Century Dentistry: More Modern Than You Think

Dreading that next trip to the dentist?  You’re not alone. 

Patients a century ago, equally dreaded the visit, but thankfully, dentistry had modernized considerably by the early 20th century.  At least, you could reasonably expect pain medication and a speedy drill.  Let’s take a look at early 20th century dentistry.

Dental schools got their start in…

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Added by Melina Druga on December 4, 2019 at 10:59am — No Comments

An Interview with Author Kelli A. Wilkins

When Kelli Wilkins isn’t writing, she enjoys a variety of hobbies including reading, traveling, gardening, visiting flea markets, and visiting weird/creepy/haunted places.

In addition to historical romance, Wilkins has written gay, contemporary, fantasy, and paranormal love stories at all heat levels.



Wilkins is the author of Redemption from a Dark Past. She…

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Added by Melina Druga on November 26, 2019 at 10:21am — No Comments

School Kids in 1903 Explain Why Thanksgiving Turkeys are Important

“Kids Say the Darndest Things” may be a television show, but kids have been saying what’s on their minds –  and amusing adults – for centuries.  In 1903, the Sioux City Journal in Iowa asked the city’s school children to pen an essay on Thanksgiving turkeys.

 

A sampling of the essays were published on Nov. 26, 1903.  They were written by second and third graders at…

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Added by Melina Druga on November 20, 2019 at 11:05am — No Comments

An Interview with Author Anthony Barton

Anthony Barton has a pet bat named Bulmer.

In addition to historical fiction, Barton has written a non-fiction: Famous Teachers and Their Methods.



Barton is the author of Press Gang!.  He is the next author to be featured in my interview series focusing on historical fiction and historical romance authors.…

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Added by Melina Druga on November 12, 2019 at 10:15am — No Comments

What Affect Does Birth Order Have on Personality?

Families in the 19th and early 20th centuries often had large families.  What affect does birth order have personality?  This is a question I considered while creating the Steward family in Angel of Mercy.

Birth order and personality wasn’t something people considered until the 1920s.  That’s when Austrian psychiatrist Alfred Adler first theorized that birth order played a role in how…

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Added by Melina Druga on November 6, 2019 at 10:22am — No Comments

An Interview with Author Mary Van Winkle

Mary Van Winkle loves classic movies, and TCM is her favorite channel. She enjoys the styles, the music and the attitudes of the first half of the 20th century.

In addition to historical fiction, Van Winkle also writes contemporary fiction.

Van Winkle is the author of Finding Wonderland.  She is the next author to be featured in my interview series focusing on…

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Added by Melina Druga on October 29, 2019 at 10:39am — No Comments

Where to Write? Is There Really a Best Place to Write?

Where is the best place to write?  If you’re an author or aspiring author, you’ve no doubt been asked this question, often by colleagues.  The answer isn’t that simple.  It’s very much a personal choice based on where the writer is the most comfortable and productive.

The internet is full of advice on where an author should write.  These articles suggest authors and freelance writers get out of the home office. …

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Added by Melina Druga on October 23, 2019 at 10:47am — No Comments

Homophones: The Right Word Might be the Wrong Word

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Added by Melina Druga on October 16, 2019 at 9:42am — No Comments

An Interview with Author Richard Roux

Richard Roux has a variety of interests outside of his career.  He enjoys hiking, fishing, hunting, playing ice hockey on an adult recreational team, binge-watching TV shows, and experimenting with his outdoor grill and smoker.

He has served the boards of several organizations, including the local chapter of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and the Kern County Historical Society.…

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Added by Melina Druga on October 15, 2019 at 10:24am — No Comments

6 WW1 Historical Fiction Novels that Bring the War to Life

World War I ended in November 1918, but it hasn’t failed to capture our imaginations.  Perhaps it is because it was thought to be “the war to end all wars,” or it could be because of the destruction in caused, not just in terms of lives and property, but to politics and social economics.  Or maybe it’s because war is an event ripe with stories to tell – heroes, villains, love, loss, ordinary people thrust into impossible situations.  Here are six novels…

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Added by Melina Druga on October 9, 2019 at 9:43am — No Comments

An Excerpt of The Legacy by Ann Markim

The following is an excerpt of The Legacy by Ann Markim. The excerpt was provided by the author.

 

 

Anna Jorgesen studied her reflection in the small mirror hanging on the wall of Peder’s room. Her hair, a bright blond when properly coifed, looked drab and disordered. Dark circles beneath her blue eyes added years to…

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Added by Melina Druga on October 3, 2019 at 10:15am — No Comments

Plural Nouns: An Easy Guide to How to Pluralize

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Added by Melina Druga on October 2, 2019 at 10:13am — No Comments

An Interview with Author P. J. Roscoe

P.J. Roscoe was inspired to write by tragedy – her son, Jac, died before he was born. Daughter Megan has autism and dyspraxia but lives an independent life.

 

A Pagan, Roscoe also works as a medium interacting with angels, spirit guides and loved ones to assist trapped, unhappy spirits with the process of finding peace and moving onto the next world.…

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Added by Melina Druga on October 1, 2019 at 1:14pm — No Comments

Edwardian Wedding Fashion and Traditions

As the new century dawned in 1901, fashion was quickly changing.  Soon hemlines would rise while necklines would fall, and dress styles began to hug a woman’s body.  Wedding fashions, however, did not move so drastically and were sometimes behind the times when compared to streetwear.  Wedding traditions, on the other hand, were surprisingly recognizable.  Let’s examine Edwardian wedding fashion and traditions.…

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Added by Melina Druga on September 25, 2019 at 10:21am — No Comments

An Excerpt of Downriver: A Tale of Moving Pictures Before Hollywood

The following is the first two pages of Downriver: A Tale of Moving Pictures Before Hollywood by Evan Anderson. The excerpt was provided by the author.

Four women in black picked their way along the wooden footpath, skirts hoisted ankle high above the estuary mud. By the time Anne caught sight of them it was too late to step back and hide among the cattails. When they came around a bend in the path she faced…

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Added by Melina Druga on September 19, 2019 at 9:55am — No Comments

A Writing Key: Make Every Word Count

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Added by Melina Druga on September 18, 2019 at 10:08am — No Comments

An Interview with Author D. L. Havlin

Dennis Lee Havlin, who goes by the penname D. L. Havlin, has held a number of professions including licensed boat captain, football coach, customer service director and systems analyst.  These experiences, along with others in his life, have provided him with material for his novels.

When not writing, Havlin enjoys reading, doing historical presentations and fishing.…



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Added by Melina Druga on September 17, 2019 at 10:00am — No Comments

5 Victorian Era Writers that Tell Us What the Gilded Age Was Really Like

Nonfiction can be used to inform as Jacob Riis did in How the Other Half Lives or Nelly Bly in Ten Days in a Mad-House, but literature has the unique ability of telling readers about the human condition without preaching.  Often readers don’t even realize they are learning something about society or reading commentary.  Here are five 19th-century authors whose work informs us what life in era was really like.…

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Added by Melina Druga on September 11, 2019 at 9:18am — No Comments

Excerpt from What Heals the Heart

The following is a portion of chapter two from What Heals the Heart by Karen A. Wyle.  It is the first meeting between Joshua and Clara. The excerpt was provided by the author.

 

“Boot blacking, coffee, cornmeal, flour, soap. Put it on your tab?”

“Thank you kindly.” The suggestion would, in fact, save him some…

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Added by Melina Druga on September 5, 2019 at 10:20am — No Comments

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