"Roundheads and Ramblings"
Welcome to Katzenhaus Books, where we tell - the stories behind the history.
RSS Follow Become a Fan

Delivered by FeedBurner


Recent Posts

Yankee Daughters -- Recipes
Yankee Daughters--An Excerpt
Yankee Daughters: Some Images
Yankee Daughters--Inspiration
Yankee Daughters--Synopsis and Reviews

Categories

A new contest
Abolition
absurdity
academic myopia
Almost Free
Amazon
ancestors
Announcement
apocalypse
Applications and software
Appomattox
Arnulf of Lisieux
art of speaking
attracting readers
audience
audio books
Author Central
Author Gifts
author's Plea
awards
baseball
basketball
Battle of Port Royal
Battles
biographical
blind artists
blockade
blog chain
Book Club Guides
Book Design
Book Launch
book stores
book trailer
bookstores
Boxed Set
bright ideas
Building a platform
business
Business plan
Busy-ness
butterflies
Career choices
cats
cemetery research
Census
challenges
characterization
Characters
Charleston
children
children's books
choosing a publisher
Choosing a Title
Christmas Past
Civil War
commercials
Computer Hacks
Confederates
Conferences
Connections
constitutional amendments
construction
Contract labor
cotton
Countdown Sale
Countdown to Launch
Cover Designs
Cover images
cutting and pasting
Cyber Monday
daily drama
daily events
Dead Mules
depression
diversions
dogs
Do-Overs
DRM
earthquake
e-book pricing
e-books
editing
elevator speech
elmore leonard
Elves and Holidays
Emancipation
England
English class
evidence
Excerpt
exclusivity
Exercise
Expertise
Facebook
fact and fiction
failures
fame and fortune
family affairs
Favorites
Fear of Failure
Fish
flood waters
flowers
food delights
Formatting
Fort Pulaski
free chapter
Free Days
freebies
Friendship
Frogmore
garden
gardens
genealogy
Getting organized
ghost stories
Giveaway
Goals
good business
good news
grammar cops
gratitude
gray horses
gripes
grocery shopping
guest blogs
Gullah
handicaps
Harriet Tubman
Hiatus
Historical background
Historical Fiction
historical puzzlers
historical thinking
history lessons
Holidays
home office
hope and kindness
horse races
horses
hurricanes
identifying your audience
illustrations
imagination
indie authors
Inspiration
inspirations
internet
internet history
intruders
ISBN
Kalamazoo
karma
Kindle
Kindle links
Kindle rankings
Kindle Serials
kings
Klout
Ku Klux Klan
Lack of co-ordination
landmarks
language
Laughs
launch dates
Laura Towne
Layouts
legal matters
lending library
Lessons learned
lessons unlearned
libraries
literary genres
local news
love story
making choices
Marketing
Matchbooks
medicine
medieval-isms
Meet the Characters
Memorial Day
memories
Milestones
military matters
mind-mapping
Misfis
Monthly Musings
name recognition
NaNoWriMo
Nellie Chase
New Blog
New Book
New England
New Research
New Year
newsletters
nonfiction
non-profits
nostalgia
Nurses
oddities
odds and ends
olympics
opening lines
outrage
Papacy
parties
Penn Center
photographs
picture book
Pinterest
Pinterest and copyrights
Pirates
planning ahead
plot
point of view
polite society
politics
portraits
powerful women
Predictions
pre-orders
press release
previews
pricing
Principles
procrastination
productivity
Profiles
Progress Report
Promotions
proofs
pros and cons
publishing
publishing companies
publishing ploys
publishing rights
pure sentimentality
puzzlements
quiz
rain
random thoughts
RBOC
read an ebook
readership
recipes
Reconstruction
Relaxation
research
Resolutions
reviews
road trip
rough draft
Roundhead Reports
royalties
rules
SALE
Sales
scams
schedules
Scoop It
ScoopIt
seasons
Secessionville
second edition
Second Mouse
self-publishing
settings
Shiloh
Short Stories
Silliness
slander
Slavery
small world
Smile of the Day
snow, living in the south
social media
software
software disasters
South Carolina
Speechless!
sports
Spring
story arc
Substitutes
Success
summer
Synopsis
Taking a Break
Taxes
Thank You
the difficulties of blogging
The Gideonites
Theme
Tongue-in-cheek
Traditions
trailer
Travelog
trilogies
trolls
Tweet
Twitter
Upcoming Events
using commas
Vacation
vacation photos
Valentine
video
Visitor
vocabulary
Volunteering
voting
warnings
weather
weather trauma
website
word counts
Word-of-Mouth
Words
Words of Warning
Writer Beware!
Writer's Block
Writing Advice
Writing as Career
writing process

Archives

July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010

powered by

"Roundheads and Ramblings"

Principles

A Baker's Dozen of Birthday Resolutions

 I tend to make resolutions in May rather than January.  Birthdays do that to me. This year, I'm sticking with just one: that I will stop and think before I believe anything I read or hear.  Here are some of the messages I've learned to think about carefully.

"Yes, of course your new kitten is litter box trained."  OK, maybe, but I'll line the bottom of his carrier with lots of newspaper before I try to take him home.  

"Dearly beloved, I am writing to you because I have been assured of your veracity."  Do people really talk like that any more?  Apparently the only ones that do are orphans in Nigeria who need help getting a small fortune safely deposited in an American bank – or British lawyers that have just discovered that I am the only surviving heir to the fabulously wealthy Lord Muckety Muck of Trentwell-on-Thames.  There are some e-mails I just don't answer.

"This won't hurt a bit."  Oh, really?  Why mention it, then?  Forgive me if I see that phrase as my cue to hunch my shoulders and clench my teeth, particularly if a needle is somewhere nearby.  Let's face it.  Even small children see through that one.

"Grandma's Home Cookin'."  Yes, she must be cooking at home, because the fellow in the kitchen with the bare biceps and a sweaty rag tied around his forehead doesn't look like anyone's Granny to me.  And menu items such as a super-thick, triple cheeseburger smothered in onions and hot peppers and accompanied by chili cheese fries doesn't sound like anything that ever graced our vegetable-laden family dinner table.

"Huge Going Out of Business Sale.  We've lost our lease, so shop quickly."  I'll be back in a year or so.  Chances are good that the same stuff will be waiting on the shelves.  In fact, I suspect there are some stores that only open so they can start holding closing sales.

"Easy assembly.  Even a child can do it."   It will take hours to put this piece of furniture together.  Worse, it will require seven tools that I do not own, and at least two burly stevedores to manhandle the pieces together.

"No interest until 2013."  Yes, but after that, the interest will be 120% per month, and some guy will follow you around with a baseball bat aimed at your kneecaps.

"The greatest movie ever filmed."  If it were really that great, they wouldn't have to announce the fact.  This one is probably a re-make of a movie you saw as a teenager, now updated with the current heart-throbs playing roles they don't understand.  You can only hope that the director hasn't done anything too silly, such as making historical figures use the latest slang or dress in modern garb.

"Lose ten pounds by the weekend."  Short of chopping off a limb, I doubt that this is possible.  This one is right up there with "I lost two hundred pounds and you can, too."

"The only cleaning tool you'll ever need to buy."  Nothing does everything.  If it's a monster of a vacuum, I'll only spill little things in cracks..  If it fits in tiny spaces, it will take forever to accomplish big jobs.  And even if it's perfect for everything, it will get misplaced, or borrowed, or stolen.

"Men working ahead." Or "Your tax dollars at work." Oh, there may be men ahead, and they are probably pocketing your tax money, but the chances of them working are pretty slim.  They'll be standing in a group talking about work, perhaps, or watching the traffic go by, but you won't see much hard labor as you whiz by the work zone.

"We need more rules of ethics."  Absolutely, but don't expect those rules to apply to any politician who makes such an announcement.

"Unbreakable."  Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha!  Want to bet?


10 Ways To Improve your Life and Your Outlook on It

For the past two days I've been fighting the 3-digit heat wave without the benefit of air-conditioning.  The unit is fixed now, thanks to a very talented AC man, but more complications lie ahead.  Starting tomorrow, I'll be working non-stop on my favorite charity's biggest fund-raiser of the year.  The Mid-South Lions Sight and Hearing Service provides free vision and hearing care for indigent patients in TN, AR, MO, and MS. We're holding a casino night, a silent auction, and then a formal dinner with a live auction.  If you're in the Memphis area, come on over to the Marriott East Saturday night and join us.  Dinner is $80.00 per person, but you do not need to buy a dinner ticket to bid on the silent auction items.

Instead of complaining or losing my cool because I have no free time to write, I've been looking for blogging items I could pass on to you.  This is one of my favorites. It was originally published by Tony Schwartz, the president and CEO of The Energy Project and the author of Be Excellent at Anything. Enjoy! And I'll see you back here on Monday.

What enduring principles can you rely on to make choices that reflect openness, integrity and authenticity?


1. Always challenge certainty, especially your own. When you think you're undeniably right, ask yourself "What might I be missing here?" If we could truly figure it all out, what else would there be left to do?

2. Excellence is an unrelenting struggle, but it's also the surest route to enduring satisfaction. Amy Chua, the over-the-top "Tiger Mother," was right that there's no shortcut to excellence. Getting there requires practicing deliberately, delaying gratification, and forever challenging your current comfort zone.

3. Emotions are contagious, so it pays to know what you're feeling. Think of the best boss you ever had. How did he or she make you feel? That's the way you want to make others feel.

4. When in doubt, ask yourself, "How would I behave here at my best?" We know instinctively what it means to do the right thing, even when we're inclined to do the opposite. If you find it impossible, in a challenging moment, to envision how you'd behave at your best, try imagining how someone you admire would respond.

5. If you do what you love, the money may or may not follow, but you'll love what you do. It's magical thinking to assume you'll be rewarded with riches for following your heart. What it will give you is a richer life. If material riches don't follow, and you decide they're important, there's always time for Plan B.

6. You need less than you think you do. All your life, you've been led to believe that more is better, and that whatever you have isn't enough. It's a prescription for disappointment. Instead ask yourself this: How much of what you already have truly adds value in your life? What could you do without?

7. Accept yourself exactly as you are but never stop trying to learn and grow. One without the other just doesn't cut it. The first, by itself, leads to complacency, the second to self-flagellation. The paradoxical trick is to embrace these opposites, using self-acceptance as an antidote to fear and as a cushion in the face of setbacks.



8. Meaning isn't something you discover, it's something you create, one step at a time. Meaning is derived from finding a way to express your unique skills and passion in the service of something larger than yourself. Figuring out how best to contribute is a lifelong challenge, reborn every day.

9. You can't change what you don't notice and not noticing won't make it go away. Each of us has an infinite capacity for self-deception. To avoid pain, we rationalize, minimize, deny, and go numb. The antidote is the willingness to look at yourself with unsparing honesty, and to hold yourself accountable to the person you want to be.

10. When in doubt, take responsibility. It's called being a true adult.