Eat your Vegetables, What the ancients ate, Sherry Perkins "Connor" meet B A Simmons and n

National Eat Your Vegetables Day is on June 17 every year. Traditionally, kids don't like them at first and Moms have to find creative ways of introducing them into the diet. Here are a few notes taken from:

Learn about the day.

They come in every color of the rainbow, almost every believable shape and size. Whether you’re just talking about the staple vegetables like carrots, potatoes, and onions that we all get from the store, or the diverse range of vegetables that come from around the world, we’ve eaten them all our lives.

Eat Your Vegetables Day is dedicated to getting people eating their veggies, and to their necessity in a healthy diet.

History of Eat Your Vegetables Day

Vegetables have always played an important role in the lives of humans, from the time when we were simply hunter-gatherers. Cultivation of vegetables slowed us down to the extent that civilization developed. People who planted crops couldn't travel as often and settled where the vegetables grew.

As time went on people discovered the benefits of eating them; of better health and growth. Much later science confirmed vegetables were a vital source of nutrients that couldn't be obtained from the eating of animal protein alone.

The easiest way to celebrate Eat Your Vegetables Day is to make sure vegetables are a major role in your diet for the day.

To make sure you’re getting enough ensure that you’re eating at least a half a cup of each vegetable you decide to consume, or a cup of a medley. Think vegetables can’t be delicious? We have the simplest recipe to prove you wrong. Just take an equal mixture of cauliflower, broccoli, and carrots and steam them until tender. Then layer them in a casserole dish with seasoning salt, cheddar cheese, and sunflower seeds and place them in the oven to bake until the cheese is melted.

If that doesn’t make you believe that vegetables are delicious, we don’t know what will! So get out there on Eat Your Vegetables Day and gobble down a tuber, munch on a leafy green, or serve up a nice bowl of legumes.

Veggies in the ancient world.

Even the poor Egyptians ate well as far as the eating of vegetables went. Farming was a major concern and the fertile Nile River made crops easy to grow and harvest as long as it cooperated.

A poor person ate grain, beer, and root vegetables like radishes. The wealthier a person was, the more meat and sweets they ate. They ate dates, honey, yogurt, figs, lotus roots melons and cakes as well as imported pomegranates and wine from grapes. The mummies show they over-consumed, too. Unlike the art which shows Egyptians to be slim and well toned, many of the nobles became obese as they aged. Many also had bad teeth from all the sweets and grit in the flour.

Much of the early scholarship about the seasons and the stars as well as the development of religion and science sprang from the study of managing the seasons and the growing of food. Gods were offered food so that the seasons and the river would return foodstuffs favorably.

Your veggies...

I asked my readers what their favorite veggie was: Christine Baker - Carrots

Gayreth Walden - Corn

Maureen Kolenc - Spinach salad

Jacqueline Simonds - Avocado or artichoke.

Christa Maria Wydia Shabazz - Usually peas but lately salads are my thing

Michelle Lilykoi Adams - Edamame, avocado and eggplant

Chrys Tremththanmor - Freshly cooked beetroot

Suzie Wong - Peas. Popped into my mouth, raw, standing in a garden.

Lisa A. Erb - Spinach.

Anna Hague - Cabbage

Robin Chapel - Bok choy

Jennifer Zamboni - Raw carrots

Guy Donovan - Asparagus.

Raven Dana - spinach

Jeri Chavis Torrance - Broccoli

Fizza Younis - Bitter gourd

Cheryl McMahan - Broccoli

Amy Hubbard - Asparagus Cari Robe - Cucumber

Kathy Williams - Asparagus

Rose Livinginfairyland - rocket with fetta cheese

William Benner - Potatoes

Mara Reitsma - Brussel Sprouts, but only with bacon and brown sugar!

Shakyra Dunn - Broccoli.

Tina Lock - Broccoli

Ginette Atcheson - sweet potato (no brown sugar)

Pami Perry - Spinach

Lauren Long - Potatoes

Joyce Hertzoff - Sweet corn

Sherry Perkins - Cucumbers.

Sherry Wilber - Zucchini THANKS Y'ALL...

Last week Sherry Perkins talked about her life as a writer.

First here's a KIRKUS REVIEW An American college student uncovers a gruesome mystery and a hidden world of magic while studying in Ireland in this debut novel.

For Morgan Patterson, attending the University of Ulster in Coleraine is the opportunity of a lifetime. Her host family, the O’Donnells, provides a supportive and stable home, and she enjoys learning about an area her grandmother frequently visited.

While searching for mollusks, she meets Sgt. Tiernan Doherty. Their attraction is instantaneous, but Tiernan has a dark past and obligations. His routine duties take an ominous turn when he finds a bag containing two dismembered feet. Morgan was in the area and saw a distinctive car shortly before the discovery. Although the investigation stalls because the authorities are unable to identify the victim, Tiernan believes the murder was intended to send a message to him. Morgan and Tiernan fall in love, but two women from his past threaten to complicate their future.

Em and Withypol want something from him, and they will stop at nothing to ensure Tiernan pays his debts. When Morgan discovers that Tiernan is actually a faerie, she enters a world of magic and intrigue and crosses paths with a dangerous enemy.

Perkins’ genre-bending series opener is an arresting mix of murder mystery and paranormal romance with well-developed characters and a narrative that takes many twists and turns. Morgan is a resourceful heroine who generally regards stories of faeries and enchantment as nothing more than fantastical Irish folklore. Tiernan is a well-drawn character, loyal and passionate but unable to fall in love until he meets Morgan. The author also succeeds at creating dynamic supporting characters who could potentially serve as protagonists in future stories. The setting is an important element in the book, and Perkins paints a vivid portrait of life in a university town. The narrative is sprawling, with the focus often shifting between the murder mystery and the paranormal activities of the characters. The author, however, keeps the novel from seeming overstuffed by maintaining the focus on the protagonists and their relationship. This story may satisfy fans of Nora Roberts and Sherrilyn Kenyon. An appealing paranormal suspense tale.

Be sure to cehck the buy links at the end of this character interview!

Speaking of one of her characters, Connor--

1. Go ahead and introduce yourself.

As if I needed introduction. I’m the thing Morgan Patterson’s nightmares are made of. I’m the man that arsehole Tiernan Doherty hates more than anyone in the world. It’s only fair, though. I’ve the same feelings for him. And the faerie queen? I’m her man, her consort and protector of the realm. My name? It’s Connor Doyle and I am the Far Darrig.

2.Tell us where and when were you born.

The Scottish Lowlands, a very long time ago. We’d not even had a calendar then and surely never celebrated birthdays. We were too busy for that foolishness. If I had to guess, I’dve been born in the summer, sometime near about the second week of July, near Lammas.

3. How would you describe yourself?

A bastard in every possible sense of the word.

4. Tell us about where you grew up.

It was a simple place, a glen by the loch, with my mother’s people until my shite father took me away from that. He’d put me in the house with his proper wife and children. When I was old enough to get out, I went to Britain, then to Shetland. It was a place my father hated. But I loved it.

5. How old are you?

Older than I look. A lot older. Because we are immortal – did you not know?

6. Did you have a happy childhood? Why/why not?

I’d thought it was happy—until my father came into it. His family had wealth. The kind of wealth that others would kill for. It’s not to say life was easy because wealth, it needs be protected, much like anything worth having needs be protected. The less fortunate in my father’s kingdom needed be protected as well. Everyone needed protecting.

Shite, I needed protecting but what I got was something elsewise. No matter, Morgan Patterson will make up for all that. Because a debt made is a debt paid, no matter how long ago it was made, who made it and no matter the cost.

7. Past/ present relationships? How did they affect you?

See my above answer. Surely it affected my relationships with women. It’s always been my relationship with women what got me in trouble deep. It’s true of all the men in my family—we cared too much and pretended as if we didn’t.

Morgan, she sussed it out soon enough…and used it against us all. Smart one, she is. But not too smart to be taught a lesson. Or two.

8. What do you value above all else in life?

Duty. Maybe Morgan Patterson. She has value—what’s the saying? Value above rubies. She has the ability to destroy, or save, us all. That makes her valuable. And she loves Tiernan; he, her. It makes her value twice that above rubies!

9. What are you obsessed with?

Making Tiernan Doherty answer for his crimes. He’s a lot to answer for. I’m only too happy to make him do it. I’ll do it through Morgan, if need be.

10. How do your beliefs make life better for yourself and the people you care about?

My father’s people believe in your word being your bond. In never making a promise you can’t keep. In paying your debts. In duty, honor and service. We are bred to it, born to it and bound by it. Our beliefs are definitive of us, both individually and as a people. Without it, life would be worthless.

11. Biggest fear?

That Morgan will suss what I’m up to or what her place is in it.

12. What line will you never cross?

I’m a man of my word. I’d never go back on it. Even if it costs me everything. Or irritates Morgan. That it irritates Tierney Doherty is pleasing. Very pleasing.

13. What is the best thing that ever happened to you? The worst?

The best thing was the day I found out I had brothers and sisters. The worst was the day I met Morgan Patterson. The twit should’ve stayed in the States and not come to the North, nor fell in love with Tiernan Doherty, neither. Because the day Morgan came to Northern Ireland was the day I knew I’d kill her, regardless of whether she could save us. Or me. In the end, she will be dead, nonetheless.

14. Most embarrassing thing that ever happened to you?

It’s not happened yet, but I’ve no doubt it will involve Morgan Patterson. And probably that damn cat of hers. Or maybe her friend Mada.

15. Biggest secret?

Well, it’d not be a secret if I told you, would it now? But you’ve likely sussed it already.

16. What is the one word you would use to define yourself?


17. What is your current goal?

To be king of all the faerie—whatever it takes.


Our next Author is B. A. Simmons

What made you want to be a writer?

I’ve been writing since I was ten years old. I can’t be certain this is what started it all, but I remember watching some show on the Disney Channel (back when there was only one of those) where they featured young writers and their stories.

In my fifth grade class, we wrote stories which our teacher then laminated and bound with one of those plastic spiral bindings.

I still have mine; it is a scifi story entitled Known Space. I love telling stories, especially those about what could be.

Storytellers hold a type of power over their audiences. The power to make imagination come to life and touch hearts in ways that facts alone cannot.

When is the release of your next novel? Name genre or if it’s part of a series. If your book is part of a series tell the readers about the others that are out for sale.

The fourth installment of the Archipelago Series is scheduled to come out in late January, 2020. I currently don’t have a title for it other than Archipelago 4. Well, not true; I have four or five possible titles, I just can’t decide which one is best. The Archipelago Series is an epic seafaring scifi adventure set on a planet of islands and oceans. The first three books (The Voyage of the Entdecker, The Hellhound Consortium and The Perils of Archipelago) are available for sale via Amazon.

How important is it to read books when you want to be an author?

Vital. It cannot be done otherwise. I am also of the belief that writers need to read from all genres and authors, not just those they wish to write in or emulate. The classics are just as important as the newest release. Middle Grade and Young Adult are just as pertinent as Adult genres.

The self-published author you know from your book club can be just as creative and inspiring as the best-selling author. Read them all.

Do you remember the first book you read?

I know there were others before this, but I don’t remember their titles. I do remember reading The Finches’ Fabulous Furnace by Roger W. Drury in my second grade class. That is a fun story. What kid wouldn’t want a volcano in their basement?

What book are you reading now?

My current read is The Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt. This is historical fiction set during the 1960’s. I’m reading it so that I can work out how to teach it to my jr. high students. After this I plan to read Beyond the Cabin by Jared Nathan Garrett.

How did you come up with the idea for the book or series, especially the title?

I grew up playing strategy role-play games created by my father. The Archipelago Series came from one of these games called Planet Archipelago. When he was making this game, he asked me and another friend to test the game; work out any problems. In doing this I created characters and took them on an adventure.

When the test game was over, the adventure continued in my head and I couldn’t help but start writing it. When I decided to take my writing seriously, this was the story that flowed out of my fingertips.

Which character do you identify with most in your novel?

My main character, Rob Engleman, is most like me personality-wise. He loves to learn but hates having others dictate his education. He’s average in every way, but determined to achieve his dreams.

How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

The events are all based on the planet Archipelago, which is a far-fetched world I’d hate to live on.

No, the events are not realistic or based on actual experiences. However, the relationships are based on real life, especially Rob’s relationship with his family.

To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?

I wish! I research to help guarantee realism in my writing but only in my dreams can I afford to travel for this part of my life.

Tell us how the atmosphere needs to be for you to be able to write. Example, music on or quiet etc.

I do need to be free from distraction. My best writing comes when no one else is around and I can listen to one of my varied Spotify playlists without other distractions.

However, I have small children in my house, so this is nigh impossible.

What is one goody you must have at your desk when you’re writing?

I’m taking the word “goody” to mean food. I need to have chocolate in some form close by while I write. At least, it helps me get through tough scenes or chapters.

Which part of the publishing process do you detest most?

Honestly, I understand the benefits of traditional publishing with their need to be selective. I get that it’s about money for them as its their bread and butter, but I hate how exclusive they are. I dislike feeling shunned by authors who are published through some of the big-name publishing houses because I took the initiative to do much of it on my own. That’s the only part of publishing I dislike at all.

What is the worst thing you’ve had to overcome before publishing your novel? IF it’s too personal just make a generalized statement if you can.

As I have invested my own money into publishing and publicizing my novels, there is a great deal of self-doubt that comes into it. I see the success of other books, other authors and I think- why can’t people love my books as much. Either my writing isn’t as good as I’ve been led to believe, or people just aren’t getting around to reading what I write. Or perhaps, what I write just isn’t popular enough.

Self-doubt can be crippling and has made me want to quit more often than I care to admit. I have to tell myself that it’s worth the time, effort and money to finish this series and then see what comes.

When you need some extra encouragement who do you turn to?

My wife is the best cheerleader. She reads everything I write (including the answers to these questions) and gives me honest feedback. When I have wanted to quit, she encourages me to keep going, even at the expense of having me ignore her (and the rest of the world) for hours at a time.

How do you market your book?

This is, without a doubt, the hardest part of it. Assuming my writing is as enjoyable as those who’ve read it have told me, I figure I’m just not getting my books noticed enough. I’ve tried social media ads and Amazon ads. Right now, I’m the best marketer of my books. I go to as many events as I can to meet people and try to interest them in the story. I sell more books at these events than anyplace else.

Have readers ever contacted you? If so, tell us the best thing they’ve said to you.

A sparse few have left reviews, and several of my students have read the books and told me their impressions. It’s all encouraging, but feedback is something I want- nay, need more of.

Who do you trust to read your finished books before publication?

My wife, my dad and a few close friends. These are my beta-readers. I also hire an editor to go through my novels for a professional look. Even (and especially) if self-publishing, you need an editor.

Tell us all about your very first book signing. Take us there with your description of people, place, food, décor etc.

There were more than sixty people at my first signing, I don’t know the exact count. I sold nearly forty copies of The Voyage of the Entdecker. As I’m a teacher, we held it in the library at my school. My wife bought some Costco cake and I displayed some of my older work, including that story I wrote in the fifth grade. I read the first chapter of the book with sweat rolling down from my armpits. I was really nervous, yet excited. Becoming a published author ranks among my top life accomplishments and was a major bucket-list item.

Is there a message you’d like to send through your book?

There are three major themes in the series.

First and most important is the message of friendship and loyalty. Despite the hardships my characters are put through, their loyalty to each other is what makes the story exciting and memorable.

Second, is the defiance of tradition for tradition’s sake. We often hold to tradition for no other reason than it’s what we were taught to do. Discovering why we do what we do is a crucial message in this story.

Third is the fight for what is right. In real life, we all too often give in to public or peer pressure. We allow those with power to maintain or increase that power at the expense of the poor and marginalized. This is a great “David vs. Goliath” story told on a futuristic, alien world.

If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?

Asa Butterfield (of Ender’s Game and Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children fame) would make a great Rob Engleman.

Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?

There are many I’d love to meet for various reasons. Right now, I wouldn’t mind bending the ear of directors Peter Weir or Taika Waititi

Do you have any hobbies?

Oh yes. I am an avid strategy and role-play gamer (table-top, not video games), I am a beekeeper, an ultra-runner, a birder and a medieval reenactor.

What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

I don’t watch much TV. However I do love movies. Anything with Cary Grant is perfect. I enjoy movies with great storytelling (obviously) and great acting, it doesn’t matter too much what genre; except horror. NOTE: Suspenseful thriller is not the same as horror.

Favorite foods

Homemade (never the box stuff) macaroni and cheese… with ketchup. Delish!

What’s your sign, lucky number.

Um… seven? I think I’m a Leo, though I feel my sign is most often “rough road ahead”.

What’s your favorite color.


What music do you hear in your latest book.

Something epic by composer John Powell

Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?

Other than teaching and birding (and my family of course), there is little else worth doing.

You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?

I would get my family and friends over and throw a huge farewell party.

What do you want written on your head stone?

No headstone, I want a silver birch tree planted over me.

Are there any mistakes you made with your first book?

Yes, I made my cover too dark and broody. I have an interesting but not a “grip-you-by-your-eyeballs” hook.

What kind of advice can you give to other either aspiring authors?

Aside from technical advice, I think every aspiring writer needs to understand the advantages and disadvantages of each type of publishing.

When in doubt, who do you trust to help you out?

With writing? I have a great network of writers, editors and the like who I turn to. Many of them are part of the SciFi Roundtable.

Tell us how we may get a copy of your book. (Kindle, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, paperback etc.)

Amazon Kindle and paperback:

Social media links and websites?

Twitter: @BenSimm17316309

Facebook: @Archipelagoauthor

Instagram: b.a.simmonsauthor



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