Liebster Award

A couple of weeks ago, Mae Clair nominated me for a Liebster Award, and I’m happy to say I’m finally able to take part. Thank you so much for the award, Mae. I had fun with this one. Here are the rules:

  1. Acknowledge the blog who nominated you and display the award.
  2. Answer the 11 questions the blogger gives you.
  3. Give 11 random facts about yourself.
  4. Nominate 11 blogs
  5. Notify those blogs of the nomination.
  6. Give them 11 questions to answer.

Here are the eleven questions Mae asked, and my answers to each:

  1. You’ve been given a working time machine. What era of history would you visit?
    I’m not so sure I would want to visit any historic era that was BAC. (Before Air Conditioning). Every time I try to picture myself sweating through a centuries-ago summer, I balk at the whole concept. Maybe if I could just do a fly-by, I’d visit the building of Stonehenge. That could be fun, as long as my time machine was artificially cooled to about 68 degrees.
  2. What is your totem animal?
    I’m going to go with cat. I love almost all animals, excluding sharks and hairy-legged spiders, though I’m working on those. But cats have fascinated me since I was a very small child. I love the way they move, the way they stare at you as though they understand they are a superior species, and even the way their fur smells, like baby powder. And I fully understand why they were worshipped by the ancient Egyptians. Yep, cats it is, for me. (But don’t tell my dachshunds, who actually think they rule the house. Poor schmucks.) 
  3. What was the first story you wrote?
    I started writing long, epic poems at five, filling up pages with verses featuring mostly cowboys and horses. And sometimes cats. I wrote poetry through high school, and expected to be a writer at some point, but then there’s this mysterious gap of forty years or so where I didn’t write anything at all. The first thing I wrote after that was my first novel, Wake-Robin Ridge. 
  4. Beach or mountains?
    Mountains, hands down. I don’t do sun (way too many scars from that) and I am connected via some unknown past life to the Appalachians. Particularly the North Carolina mountains. Hickory Nut Gorge, Lake Lure, Chimney Rock, Bat Cave, and all the surrounding fern-covered, waterfall-graced, mist-shrouded hills speak to my heart. Though I have never lived in the mountains, I have a sense of coming home every time I visit. A cabin in the woods, with a rushing stream nearby is my idea of heaven. 
  5. What is your favorite time of year?
    Autumn, because . . . PUMPKINS! Heaps and piles of pumpkins on every porch, and corn shocks, and tart Granny Smith apples, and crisp, frost-covered mornings, with blue silk skies overhead. And, of course, autumn in the Blue Ridge mountains—it doesn’t get any better than that. 
  6. Name someone from history you find intriguing.
    So many! Benjamin Franklin, because of his inventive, creative mind. Hannibal. I mean, elephants? Where’d that idea come from? Cleopatra. I’d like to see exactly what she really did look like, without the headdress and kohl-rimmed eyes. (I’m guessing it wasn’t much like Elizabeth Taylor.) 
  7. What is your favorite fairy tale?
    Rumplestiltskin. Girl outsmarts creepy bad guy, yay!  Besides, it’s fun to say. 
  8. When was the last time you played a game of chess?
    When I was about 12. I hate chess. It hurts my brain to try to plan that far ahead. Besides, I’m big fan of spontaneous smiting! Give me games with WORDS. Crossword puzzles, in particular, and I can do the daily Jumble in 30 to 90 seconds, flat. (I almost always have the answer filled in before I look at the words.) 
  9. If you could travel to any city or country in the world, where would you go?
    Scotland. And then, Scotland again. Come on, now . . . men in kilts!! And lochs and shaggy-haired cattle. And men in kilts. And castles and standing stones. (Did I mention men in kilts?) 
  10. Name your favorite cartoon when you were a kid.
    Bugs Bunny. He invented snark. 
  11. What mythical creature do you wish actually existed?
    Dragons. Huge, beautiful, fire-breathing dragons. Fierce when the need arises, but benevolent and protective the rest of the time. Friendly dragons, you could stop by and chat with, and maybe play a quiet game of . . . well, anything other than chess.

And here are 11 things about me you may or may not know.

  1. I’m tall. Close to six feet. (Okay, I’ve shrunk a bit over the years, so more like 5’10” today).
  2. I like to laugh. And I like to make other people laugh. And mostly, it seems to work.
  3. I love reptiles, especially snakes. Such interesting creatures.
  4. I was a very good gardener before I started writing, and even now, I have fresh roses from my garden on my desk almost every day of the year.
  5. I’ve been an ardent birdwatcher since my 20’s, and have hiked many a mile to catch a glimpse of something unusual.
  6. I’ve been a confirmed tea drinker for over 50 years. Couldn’t start my day without Earl Grey!
  7. I’m a very good canoeist, having paddled hundreds of miles on Florida waterways.
  8. I love bagpipes. I also love Elvis, Tom Petty, and The Eagles, but I adore Celtic music, Beethoven, and Vivaldi even more.
  9. My love of music notwithstanding, I write in as close to total silence as I can achieve in a house with two dachshunds who love nothing more than the sound of their own voices. (The four cats are usually pretty quiet).
  10. I used to care for orphaned and injured birds for the Florida Audubon Society, even having hand raised a clutch of screech owls, once.
  11. I’m a native-born Floridian. Yep. There’s me and some guy up in the panhandle. 😀

My Questions:

  1. How many languages do you speak?
  2. What do you believe to be your best asset?
  3. Your worst?
  4. When reading, what is your go-to genre?
  5. What kind of things do you collect?
  6. Museums or art galleries?
  7. Irish wolfhounds or chihuahuas?
  8. What makes you cry?
  9. Grilled porterhouse or steamed lobster?
  10. Are you more likely to send animated e-greetings, or handwritten cards?
  11. Your favorite guilty pleasure?

Now for my nominations, but under no circumstances should you feel obligated to participate. We all understand that some folks just don’t have the time, and others simply don’t do awards and the like. Just know you were among my eleven choices, for whatever that’s worth. 🙂 So, seven women, and under the theory that guys should bare their souls now and then, as well, four men! And there’s no time limit on this, should you prefer to wait until it’s more convenient for you. I did. 🙂

  1. Caitlin Stern
  2. Sue Vincent
  3. Rosie Amber
  4. Sarah Brentyn
  5. Judith Barrow
  6. Cathy Ryan
  7. Shelley Wilson
  8. Chris, the Story Reading Ape
  9. Nicholas C. Rossis
  10. P. H. Solomon
  11. Callum McLaughlin