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Journal Entry #43-A Busy Life and Disneyland Plans

Hello, everyone! I hope all of you are doing well. Once again, I’ve been kept busy with various projects and have finally managed to come back to WordPress. With any luck, I’ll soon be able to come on here regularly again–probably within the next two weeks. Time is passing surprisingly quickly so far this year, but there is a lot of excitement ahead.

Like Disneyland.

I haven’t gone there for more than a decade, when I was a young child. But now, as a special birthday present for my brother and to celebrate my mom’s recovery from her leg surgery, my parents, brother, and I will visit Disneyland together. Over the years, I have heard just how much it has grown, but it also looks a bit intimidating with all the crowds and long lines for rides. Even though it looks like fun as well.

Does anyone have any tips for making our trip there the best it can be?


Chapter Two: A Confused Awakening

By Joyce Jacobo

[Author’s Note: Hope everyone is doing well! Here is chapter two of “The Tinker Town Chronicles.” Here is the link to Chapter One:]

Clocks were ticking in the darkness. Surrounding her. Horatia found comfort in their regular rhythms. Like small, gentle heartbeats. She tried to move but found it too difficult. However, that lack of motion was less important than the sudden absence of the one clock she wanted to hear the most—The Grand Clocktower.

Her clock. A haven big and powerful enough to drive away any terrors.

Except Horatia was unable to hear it. Panicking, she called again and again, “Where are you? Answer me! Answer me!” Her voice came out muffled. Apparently, she was still lost among all those timepieces. Bound in one place and unable to remember how she had gotten there.

The last things could remember were plummeting through the air, plunging past the clockface of The Grand Clocktower, and heading towards the stony ground far below.

There had been the sudden elimination of all sensation.

Now she was aware—somehow. She was here.

Was being lost in this darkness her fate, after becoming too rusty and worn to look after The Grand Clocktower with sufficient ease?

Panic, however, soon gave way to a flare of rebellion. Horatia didn’t care how she had gotten here. Returning to The Grand Clocktower was what mattered. Nothing else. Afterwards, then she could sort out all the other implications in that safe, familiar environment. She would figure out how to fix herself.

Horatia struggled to move again, taking things slower this time, and realized some sort of fabric had been wrapped around her. And, pushing ahead with this knowledge, she wiggled a bit and managed to move one of her arms along the inside of her apparent bindings, moving up past her head. Once or twice, she tried to tear into the fabric with her claw tips, only to discover that they were now blunt and rounded. It was worrying, but—conversely—her arm wasn’t aching as it had in the past and was moving with greater ease than it had in a very long while.

At last, her rounded fingertips found an edge to her soft prison, which she yanked hard to one side. There came a harsh ripping sound, and light spilled in—revealing a room where various kinds of clocks, seemingly the ones she had heard, hung across the walls above long workbenches on which she glimpsed tools and pieces of clockwork.

She was on one of the workbenches, sitting up on a large cushion, and gripping what turned out to be part of a blanket in her… her…

Horatia stared at the limb. It was a limb that didn’t belong to her, except that it was at least attached to her at the shoulder. A wooden arm with fingers, complete with proper joints to bend at the wrist and the elbow, and to rotate around in its socket.

Her other arm was missing and had a bandage that covered the shoulder and wound around most of her body. Both of her legs had been replaced by wooden versions as well, while her tail was gone. Dropping the blanket, Horatia reached up and felt at her face, ears, and whiskers—all still intact, thank goodness.

What was going on? Horatia rubbed her head with her new wooden hand, trying to stave off her rising panic. She was trembling and couldn’t seem to stop. Just where was she?

More importantly, where was her clocktower? Without its mighty presence surrounding her, filling the air with its usual music, the whole tempo of the world seemed off-balance.

She heard a door open along the far wall into the room, and she hid underneath the blanket, peering out from between the folds. A short figure, albeit close to her own height, entered the room. Whoever it was wore a plain lavender robe and a big floppy hat, which had a brim wide enough that, when combined with the puffy green scarf wrapped up past the figure’s neck, cast the rest of the face into shadow.

But Horatia did notice two gray, sharp-tipped ears poking out, and two blue glowing eyes. As the figure turned towards one of the workbenches, a long, whip-like tail with a bright orb on the tip swished here and there.

It was then that Horatia also noticed Petri.

Her small mechanical bird assistant rested on a small cushion, missing his talons and one of his wings. He looked completely helpless there and didn’t make a sound as the figure went on tiptoe, picked him up gently in one blue-gloved hand, and headed for the ajar door.

In desperation to protect Petri from whatever was happening now, in this strange place far from their clocktower, Horatia threw off the blanket. “Hey!” She shouted louder than intended, and her voice was quite raspy. The figure twisted about in alarm, making an odd gurgling sound while the light of the orb on the tail flickered.

“Where are you taking—” At this point, Horatia tipped over the side of the counter, tumbling off and having the brief and horrifying sensation of dropping to the ground again—albeit this time she landed on a soft mat upon a carpeted floor. Still, those images. The feeling of being unable to latch onto anything or save herself.

Why wouldn’t these scenes go away?

They were nothing like The Dream.

Horatia rubbed her head, moaning.

While she was still recovering from this shock, the gurgling sounds drew closer until they were inches away. From between her new fingers, Horatia glimpsed the figure bending down with Petri still clasped in one hand. With the other hand, the figure began to reach into one of the sleeves of her robe for something.

Still, it was a distraction. The figure was momentarily occupied by something else.

Horatia tensed her legs underneath her, surprised again at how easily they responded, and then sprang, grabbing Petri. The springing motion itself was also more powerful than expected, sending Horatia tumbling head over heels past the figure, who let out a series of astonished gurgles as Horatia struggled upright.

Wobbling on her new legs, Horatia shook her mechanical assistant. “Petri, can you hear me?”

The bird’s eyes opened groggily. He looked at her and cooed.

“Oh, thank goodness, you’re okay,” Horatia muttered. “Let’s get out of here.”

The figure, meanwhile, had pulled what looked like a clay tablet out of one sleeve and hurriedly wrote something on it with some sort of stylus, which was, “Wait. You can’t leave!”

“Watch me,” Horatia shot back, keeping a close eye on the figure as she backed out of the ajar door. At first, the only details she noticed in her disoriented and fearful state were two large windows on either side of a glass door leading outside to a cobblestone street, at some point in the late afternoon.

The figure wrote something else on the clay tablet, following her. “I’m not supposed to let you go anywhere.” The gray ears were drooping, as was the tail. “It will cause trouble.”

“Listen, I don’t know what’s going on,” Horatia said, “but Petri and I are going back to The Grand Clocktower right now.”

Unfortunately, that was when the room around them seem to explode into life. There had been objects on numerous shelves, on the windowsills, and even along a front counter nearby that Horatia had completely overlooked, but they brought themselves to her attention immediately when one of them, in some sort of small humanoid shape with a dress, shouted, “Oh, goodie, a new friend!” At which a variety of strange and peculiar creatures and objects launched into wild choruses, filling the air with cacophonous yells and whoops.

All those eyes staring at them.

All those shouts for them to stay awhile, to come closer, to tell them everything about themselves. Some of them hopped down in front of the door, a line of what looked like tiny, plush bears, and excitedly waved at her—effectively blocking their escape.

Horatia felt like she was spinning as she clutched Petri close, shuddering as the first figure kept approaching.

From a roped-off staircase near the front counter, which led up to another floor, a bright, reddish-light zoomed down, and a small but fiercely stern voice cried out, “All right, all right, what’s going on with all of you now? Be quiet, already! You’d better not be playing ‘Wake the dead’ again!”

Horatia did the only thing she could think of to do. She sprang past the throng, scrambled into the first room, and slammed the door hard behind her. Examining its mechanism in a frenzy, she managed to figure out how to twist a smaller latch on the door and lock it.

Then Horatia slipped down to the floor and hugged Petri close, trying to take some comfort in the ticking clocks. But she was still all too aware of the dissonances taking place on the other side of the door now, which included that stern little voice telling everyone to “shut their mouths” and “settle down already,” before she heard a quieter, calmer conversation take place.

“What were you thinking, Gargle?” the stern little voice admonished, “letting her just saunter out of the workroom like that?”

There came several faint, apologetic gurgles.

The stern little voice sighed. “Well, I keep telling you that you’ve got to be more assertive about these things, Gargle. Otherwise, people will walk all over you—or, in this case, right out the door.”

A hesitant gurgle.

Another sigh. “No, I don’t think people might physically try to ‘walk over you.’ It’s just an expression. Anyway, let me show you how to properly handle this tense type of situation.” And a moment later, Horatia heard someone knock on the door. It sounded a bit like a tiny hammer against wood. “Hello in there, Timekeeper, can you hear me?” the voice was gentler, almost melodic. “Hello?”

Horatia sat there in silence.

“I said, can you hear me, Timekeeper!” The voice was back to being stern.

“Yes!” Horatia found herself yelping back. She blinked in surprise, then glanced down at Petri, who had chirped at the same time as if in response to the same question. “But… my name is Horatia, not Timekeeper,” she murmured.

“Fair enough,” the voice replied. “My name is Wispy, and an assistant shop manager. You’ve met my fellow co-assistant shop manager, Gargle.”

There was another gurgle.

“Right,” Wispy went on, “and she didn’t mean to scare you or your clockwork bird and—”

“His name is Petri,” Horatia interjected.

“Fine, she didn’t mean to scare you or Petri,” Wispy corrected, seeming a bit irritated at having been interrupted. “Anyway, it seems like we’ve gotten off on the wrong foot, as it were, so if you would just open up the door, we’ll talk about this whole thing—like civilized individuals.”

Horatia thought about it. About opening the door to that chaotic room. About all those strange creatures flooding into this room and muffling the sounds of the soothing clocks. It was enough to make her shudder. “I… can’t we just talk like this?”

“Nope, I prefer talking to people face-to-face,” Wispy said. “Directly and honestly. So, unlock the door and let us in.”


“Well, Gargle and I, for a start.”

That “for a start” portion was a too bit ominous for her. “No,” Horatia answered. “I’m not letting you in.”

“Of all the—” Wispy huffed and puffed on the other side of the door, muttering such things as, “serves me right for trying to be reasonable,” and lamenting the fact that most people refused to be sensible.

Gargle gurgled something.

“No, Gargle, that is not how these types of situations should go,” Wispy muttered. “Give me a minute, I’ll think of something. Otherwise, you might have to pull off the door.”

Pull off the door? Horatia glanced at it. This specific door was oak-paneled and looked very sturdy, and yet this Wispy was casually talking about Gargle—who was probably an inch or two shorter than Horatia without that floppy hat—just pulling it off. And, somehow, Horatia didn’t doubt that Gargle could do it, because the way Wispy had said it didn’t sound like a hollow threat.

They had to get out of here, somehow.

Horatia clambered to her feet and gazed around the room, but there were no windows. Just the ticking clocks, the workbenches, and all the tools and other pieces scattered atop them.

They were trapped.

“I do not think that will be necessary, Wispy.” Another voice. This time it sounded like a deep male voice. An oddly familiar one that tickled at Horatia’s mind until, in a flicker of recognition, she remembered the plaza and the figure who had stood over her. “Remind me to give you an extra key to the workroom later, all right, Gargle?” the deep voice continued, and Gargle gurgled back in response.

Horatia backed away from the door as it opened, and there on the threshold indeed stood the same man who had scooped her up as she lay sprawled on the cobblestones, in the same button-down green vest. He adjusted the small, wire-rimmed spectacles, and his white beard shifted as he gave her a broad smile.

“Why, hello there. Sorry I wasn’t here when you woke up; it must have been rather confusing.” The man knelt on one knee, so they were closer in height, albeit he still loomed over her. “My name is Mr. Gimble, and let me be the first to welcome you to Unique Toys.”

Chapter One: Concerns a Clocktower Keeper

By Joyce Jacobo

[Author’s Note: This is the first chapter of a much longer novel that I’m working on called, “The Tinker Town Chronicles.” It will follow a clockwork cat named Horatia who has maintained a mysterious clocktower in a place known as Tinker Town. Hope you enjoy it! Here is the next chapter:]

A powerful force was rising just beyond the distant mountains, headed towards Sanctum Valley. It bled into the skies and turned them crimson. Horatia could sense its swift approach. Flocks of birds cried out an alarm and they flew past The Grand Clocktower, and from her vantage point, gripping its minaret, she could see other wildlife fleeing through the verdant pastures surrounding this final stronghold against the encroaching darkness.

From somewhere down below, a voice called up to her, “Horatia, you must—”

Then harsh bells rang out, and the vision exploded into brightness.


Horatia’s eyes flew open as The Grand Clocktower bells continued their usual morning chant. They did an echoing jig, starting from high up in the ancient, looming structure and reverberating downwards. Horatia felt the vibrations shudder through her and groaned as they rocked the hammock in which she slept between two wooden beams, just enough that she went tumbling with a clanking thud onto the small wooden platform below.

The reverberations continued, and Horatia patiently waited for them to gradually ebb away. It would be much easier on her. For whenever the bells sounded nowadays, her limbs tended to jerk about. On this occasion, her large, fox-shaped ears flicked from side-to-side, her long prehensile tail twitched, and the metallic fingers on her right arm creaked as they flexed involuntarily.

She could see her reflection in the enormous clockface nearby, and the small form that stared back looked quite ragged. The fur covering her form had once been a brownish hue—Horatia could distinctly remember that—but now it was worn, and parts of it were so threadbare as to expose bits of clockwork along her arms. The whiskers coming from her thin, feline face were bent at various angles.

Her left arm refused to move at all and would require some adjustments.

She groaned again.

Horatia spotted her toolbox a short distance away on the platform, and she tried to push towards it with her hind legs—only to discover they refused to bend at the knees.

She groaned louder.

Then a flock of doves warbled as they flew past the clockface, and Horatia had a brilliant idea. “Petri!” Horatia called in the wake of the bells. “Petri, come here right now!” At which she heard the instant flutter of wings.

A small bird, a clockwork facsimile of the doves outside, landed on another wooden beam and made a staticky cooing sound. He cocked his head at her, twisted it at an unnatural angle, and regarded her with one telescopic eye.

“Good boy, Petri.” Horatia sighed in relief. “Now, I need you to listen to me very carefully. Go to my toolbox and pull it over to me. Can you handle that?”

Petri continued to stare at her for a while, his eye focusing and refocusing as in thought. He made faint little humming sounds that grew steadily louder until, suddenly, he sprang off his perch and flew to the toolbox. He landed on the top, his head whirling about as he gripped the handle in his talons.

It was a blessing to have Petri around, Horatia thought. Building him as an assistant had been one of her better ideas, and so far, he had listened dutifully to her instructions. She was also more than certain that he could at least drag the toolbox close enough for her to latch onto it with her tail, which she began moving across the floor with great difficulty. The thing felt heavier than usual.

To his credit, Petri did well at first. He tugged the toolbox across the platform, ever closer to Horatia’s tail.


And closer.

Then there came a sudden snap, and Horatia watched as Petri’s talons detached from his body and the toolbox came to a rest inches away from her. The rest of the mechanical bird hovered above it like a hummingbird, gazing at his talons as if trying to process what had just happened, and failing.

Horatia sighed. It was the sixth time that week Petri’s talons had fallen off, and it was only Wednesday. But he had done an admirable job anyway, and Horatia was able to scoot her tail just close enough to grab ahold of the toolbox and yank it back to her.

Around her, The Grand Clocktower ticked along as it had for so many years, which made Horatia swell with pride despite her rude awakening. She was the one who kept everything in proper working order, after all, and it was crucial that The Grand Clocktower never break down because…


Horatia frowned as she used the side of the toolbox to pull herself into a sitting position and slipped aside the metal clasps on the toolbox. The truth was, she had forgotten what would happen if The Grand Clocktower ever broke down for one reason or another. She just knew it had something to do with The Dream—the same dream she had had again, where memories from the past would begin to emerge from obscurity. They seemed to whisper of important things. Things that were still important even though so many things had changed in the intervening time.

She’d begun having The Dream increasingly lately.

But the bells would always ring out and wake her, just before she really learned anything.

Horatia would have shaken her head if her neck weren’t so stiff. She carefully removed Petri’s talons from the handle and set them aside, and then she opened the toolbox. Various tools greeted her within, each one engraved with lavender whorls and tipped with a dark, purplish sheen that glowed when applied to her limbs.

This toolbox was just for her, and Petri as well. Each adjustment with one of these tools radiated warm jolts of energy that gradually loosened her joints and made her body tolerable again. However, it was clear that the whole process was taking longer and longer, which meant it took longer for her to be functional enough to address any dissonances detected within The Grand Clocktower with her sharp hearing—although that hadn’t been the case for quite a while now. Her duties lately tended to mostly involve cleaning and polishing every available surface, using cloths and other small tools hidden away in hidden compartments on her arms that she would slide open.

At last, Horatia regained sufficient mobility to creak upright. She grabbed the talons and set to work on Petri, who was at least simpler in design and took less time to repair. Afterwards, Petri sat perched on her shoulder as Horatia slowly navigated The Grand Clocktower, using a combination of her arms, legs, and tail to move among the various gears and cogs to inspect everything.

It took a while to penetrate the usual ticktock rhythms around her, but Horatia at last became aware of a crescendo of melodies coming from beyond the walls, and she made her way up through The Grand Clocktower as her own curiosity mounted—pausing only long enough to grab her toolbox. She climbed a narrow wooden staircase to a hatch, pushed it open, and emerged onto a ledge that, unlike in her dream, now overlooked an extensive town, with winding cobblestone streets, a canal, and various types of buildings.

Tinker Town.

The Grand Clocktower stood at the very center of it all, amid a vast stone plaza where there were currently crowds of residents milling among colorful booths. A band was playing on a stage near the base of her home, and there were people dancing in small circles. Children were laughing uproariously. Everyone down below was celebrating something, although Horatia could only guess at its significance. All she knew was that they were having a good time.

There were things Horatia knew without remembering how she knew them, such as that the residents down below were “people” and were reminiscent of a “sea of humanity.” It was like the understanding she had about how to put the wires and gears together to create Petri. Just information that seemed to have been preprogrammed into her mind—which was also how she understood that what she was experiencing was a sense of yearning.

Horatia glanced at Petri. “Go down there and find a souvenir, all right? Grab something small and discarded. Something no one will miss.”

Petri cried like a seagull in confirmation and took off, swirling about in lazy spirals until he disappeared down below.

As Horatia waited for him to return, she opened the toolbox again and kept working on her limbs. Unfortunately, there was only so much she could do. They had gradually gotten worse over time, bit by bit, and she feared that one of these days no amount of tinkering would make a difference.

Watching the townspeople helped to alleviate some of her anxiety, though. And she spent most of the day in that one spot, enjoying their vibrancy and ability to move about and intermingle. What did they find to talk about? She wondered. Were they constrained to certain places and tasks just like her? Or could they choose to do anything they wanted?

That would be nice… to be able to do anything she wanted.

Horatia chuckled. “Of course, I wouldn’t even know what I’d want to do if I could,” she murmured to the world in general.

And where was Petri? He seemed to have just vanished, or maybe his wings had broken off somewhere. In that case, she could only hope he was using his talons to scale the clocktower—because otherwise who else did she have for a conversation partner?

“I know there is always you,” Horatia said, patting the roof of The Grand Clocktower, “but somehow it’s just not the same.”

All too soon, the festivities below calmed and quieted. The gathering broke up as people, from couples, to families, to individuals, left to go elsewhere. Horatia watched as the sunlight faded from the skies and the vendors removed their booths.

Petri was still gone.

Without much else to do, Horatia went back to working on her limbs. She could still remember when they had moved swiftly and hadn’t needed to even touch the toolbox for her own needs.

If only she could really fix herself…

If only she was as skillful as The Artisans had been…

The name came from nowhere. It was a sudden static shock she hadn’t expected, perhaps triggered in some small way by the recurring dreams, from some long-forgotten part of her mind. It rattled her thoughts and made her convulse.

The Artisans.

Instantly, she was back there, in The Dream, standing atop The Grand Clocktower, but hearing several voices this time call up to her, begging her to do something specific. Horatia leaned forward as if to hear them better—only to snap abruptly back to reality as her toolbox went toppling into open space. Still lost in a daze, she reached out for it.

Horatia slipped right off the ledge, could feel herself beginning to fall.

She twisted about, sought to latch onto the roof and save herself. But her grip wasn’t fast or strong enough, and her tail acted more like a ball-and-chain, pulling her down faster.

She was plummeting downwards.



Horatia fell past the clockface of The Grand Clocktower just as it tolled the evening—although the bells sounded like cries to despair for her peril.




At some point, Horatia swam out of unconsciousness to realize she laid sprawled across the stones on the plaza, but now she couldn’t feel anything. All she was aware of were images, such as the bits of her tools scattered on the ground, which she watched dissolve into sparkling puffs of purple powder from their impact. Meanwhile, one of her arms rested farther away from her than her toolbox had that morning.

She couldn’t groan.

She couldn’t call for Petri.

This was it, wasn’t it? Horatia thought. This was officially the end, and maybe she would turn into sparkly powder just like her tools and get blown away by the wind. Moisture began to leak down her face.

Then dark boots shuffled into view, and she heard a staticky chirp.


Desperate to see him one last time, Horatia strained herself to the limit and managed to turn her head enough to gaze up—where she spotted Petri sitting on the shoulder of a white-bearded man with wire-rimmed spectacles in a green button-down vest. This man knelt and reached down to gently wipe away the moisture on her face with one finger.

“Don’t you worry anymore, Timekeeper,” the man rumbled softly. “I’ve got you.”

The last thing Horatia was aware of was him carefully scooping her up into his arms before she got swallowed up by darkness once more.

Spotlight Poetry – FREE! FREE! FREE! – Anthology – Just Three Lines – A Collection of Small Poems by Goff James – Coming Soon

Art, Music, Photography, Poetry and Quotations

Anthology Ready for Publication

Volume 1 Part 1

The work published as a downloaded pdf as originally intended published on two different publication days. Each slideshow post can be bookmarked for future reading if so desired.


Volume 1 Part 1 Volume 1 Part 2

Thursday – February – 2 – 2023

Anthology Attribution – Goff James –Just Three Lines

Copyright (c) 2023 Goff James – All Rights Reserved

View haiku poems by Goff James

View senryū poems by Goff James

Art Music Photography Poetry Quotations

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Goodreads: A Few Facts

Coming across sites dedicated to books and connecting bibliophiles from around the world is always a pleasure, and Goodreads ranks among the most famous of them all. Started in 2007 by Otis and Elizabeth Chandler, this website focuses on helping readers to do such things as keeping track of the literary works they have read or would like to read, connecting with fellow book lovers, and even getting recommendations for stories they might like to check out next.

Here are some other interesting facts about Goodreads:

1) They have an Authors Program that allows authors to set up a special page to highlight their words, maintain a blog, and post quotes they would like to share. The application process is easy to complete, and their team is highly responsive if you need any help tracking down your book title (which they can also add to the database if you can provide a link to it online). This same ability also means that you can reach out to well-established authors such as Neil Gaiman, Cornelia Funke, and more with questions and get them answered.

2) With the right qualifications, you can become a Goodreads Librarian who helps to maintain the records of books in the Goodreads database, corrects typos in the information for books, and more. It is a good opportunity to gain some experience while helping out other bibliophiles.

3) You can join groups on Goodreads composed of individuals with specifics interests to help you connect with, for instance, other lovers of particular literary genres to discuss relevant topics or get suggestions for books to read.

4) You can create bookshelves to categorize the books you have read or would like to read for easy access.

Just a few things to keep in mind! ^_^

An Old Clocktower (A Poem)

By Joyce Jacobo

[Author’s Note: This poem is something of prelude to a much larger story on which I’m working. Hope you enjoy it!]




stood so tall

in the valley

its origins unknown

aside from vague legends

of ancient artisans whose

great skills when combined

produced a sacred monument

around the very eve

of their disappearance

which now ticks away

like a mighty beacon

and drew residents

who built homes

watched over by it

residents unaware

of how far its roots

truly extended

or its true purpose

except that it exudes an aura

of protection to one and all

bound by its march of time

Each gong seems to call,

“Should you choose to stay here

please remain close

for the bells that ring true

have averted disaster

and chased away a shadow

darker than any you have known

long before your time.”

Would you stay in such a place?

Watched over by an ancient clocktower

put together by mysterious hands

for even more mysterious reasons?

Journal Entry #42-A Goodreads Author Page

Even though I’ve visited Goodreads occasionally throughout the last few years, and enjoyed getting book recommendations from browsing all the great titles archived on their site, I hadn’t realized how easy they make it for new authors to showcase their works and connect with other authors. This past week, I was able to join their Goodreads Author Program, and now I actually have an author’s page that shows my book Literary Observations, as well as an anthology Seeking Human Kindness, for which I was a contributor.

Here is the link to my author’s page:

I’m just getting started on that front, but it feels like a step in the right direction.

Thank you to everyone for your great advice on ways to promote Literary Observations, including reaching out to local bookstores for signings. It is a nerve-racking but exciting time, and I’ll do my best to share all my experiences, which will hopefully help everyone else.

Journal Entry #41-Literary Observations and Promotion Questions

This past week has been quite busy. We had a lot of rain where I live, and there was even the possibility of snowfall (although it seems to have passed us by for the time being). I have also writing quite a bit every day, working on another much longer story to eventually self-publish.

Literary Observations received another review from a wonderful person who praised it:

Several friends and family members have gotten copies of my book, and it has brought me so much happiness to see the joy the collection has given them. However, I would like to ask for some advice–do you happen to have any ideas for ways to promote Literary Observations and help this work to reach the attention of more people? I know that one thing about self-publishing is the need for self-promotion, but I could use a bit of guidance on that point. ^_^

Hope your weekends are going well!

Opened Wings (A Poem)

By Joyce Jacobo

[Author’s Note: Do you often have dreams were you get to fly? The feeling is remarkable.]

Deep in my dreams. . .

           I learned that I could fly

With opened wings                         fully extended

            I took to the skies with just

                                   a little touch of trepidation

Fearful to fall from such a great height

                   the wind soon swelled beneath my feathers

                                          and carried me across broad vistas

                                               where wildflowers danced for the heavens

I will never forget all those colors

                                  or that graceful performance

I could have flown forever

But even now that I am wide awake

                                it is almost enough to know

         those wings are still there

                                    and they will enable me to see

                                                                   countless wonders

Journal Entry #40–Reviews and Happiness

It felt wonderful to start 2023 with a self-published book on Amazon, Literary Observations, and being able to publish a book has been a huge dream for me. But, what really made me smile during this past week was that two people gave the collection very thoughtful reviews, alongside five-star ratings. One of those people is a writing friend of mine from DeviantArt, known for his love of history; he even published a book called Fog on the Hill, which I would recommend if you’re interested in learning more about the Battle of Bunker Hill.

However, there was another thoughtful review there, written by someone who identified themselves as “T,” that also brought tears to my eyes with its thoughtfulness. But I don’t know who wrote it. If this message happens to reach the person who did, I just wanted to say thank you for the encouragement and lovely review. I will continue to work my best as a writer.

I’m unsure if I mentioned getting a story accepted by Chicken Soup for the Soul in their upcoming cat-themed anthology, Lessons Learned from my Cat. My contributor copies came in the mail a few days ago, and while it was great to see “Furry Angels” among the tales, there are many wonderful stories in there. It was great.

It feels like the journey to become a fulltime writer is finally starting to come true, little by little. ^_^