Ann Gabhart is our guest today on Thyme for Writers. Ann is the bestselling author of over thirty novels, has been called a storyteller. That’s not a bad thing for somebody who grew up dreaming of being a writer. Ann’s historical novels have Kentucky backgrounds like her popular Shaker series and her new release, These Healing Hills set in Appalachia. She also writes about family life, love and sometimes mystery (as A.H. Gabhart) in small towns like her Kentucky hometown. She and her husband have three children and nine grandchildren and enjoy life out on the farm.
THYME TO THINK AND DREAM
by Ann H. Gabhart
Here we are almost to November, a month of thanksgiving when we consider our blessings. At my little country church, each Sunday we take a few minutes to mention blessings. Sometimes these are what you might think of as everyday blessings. Things like sunshine and rain. Birds and flowers. A child’s smile. A good sermon. An appreciated card. Being alive. So many reasons to be thankful. A good day at work. A restful night’s sleep. Maybe a baby sleeping through the night for the first time. A new rosebush. An old rosebush blooming.
These days we’re also blessed with numerous electronic ways to be entertained. At least I think that’s a blessing. Not long ago, I came across an article about how we are swamped with electronic means to avoid the uneasy condition of being bored. You’ve seen people with a phone in their hand continually. We can watch movies and shows with the touch of a finger on various devices. We keep up with what everybody else is doing on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter while sharing our own doings.
But if we continually look to some device to keep us entertained, we lose those times when our minds are just idling. Times when we might be bored. But those times might be our best daydream opportunities when our thoughts can wander while new ideas surface.
When I started writing for publication, I had two young children, so time was at a premium. That was back in the dark ages before clothes came out of the dryer ready to wear. I had to iron every week. Trust me, nothing is much more boring than pressing a pile of pants and shirts. Yet, at the same time, while my hands were busy with smoothing out wrinkles, my thoughts could take flight. I had time to think up story ideas and imagine characters I might want to meet on my writing page.
Of course, you don’t have to pull out the ironing board to have quiet time for creative thoughts. How about sitting on the back deck as the sun comes up and letting your thoughts meander? For my new book, These Healing Hills, I let my mind wander right over to the Appalachian Mountains as I considered the history of the Frontier Nursing Service. Then my character, Francine, showed up to take those mountain trails to being a midwife. One thought led to another and on until soon my fingers were on the keyboard coming up with yet one more story.
A person needs quiet moments now and again and a little boredom never hurt anybody. Unless of course you grew up on a farm and made the mistake of telling your dad you were bored. Then you might find yourself out in the field picking up rocks or chopping thistles! So hope you have some restful moments this Thanksgiving season to gather your thoughts, count your blessings and come up with some great new ideas.
To find out more about Ann’s books and to check out her blog, One Writer’s Journal, visit www.annhgabhart.com. You can also join in the conversation on her Facebook page, www.facebook.com/anngabhart or Twitter@AnnHGabhart.
When Francine’s plans for her future fall apart at the close of World War II, she discovers new purpose as a nurse midwife in the beautiful Kentucky Appalachian Mountains. Will she also find healing and perhaps discover the birth of new love? RT Book Reviews says, “Gabhart’s latest historical novel intrigues, inspires and entertains. . . Humor, grace and, of course, romance give the characters life and breath, and the message of faith is gently organic and sincere.” These Healing Hills is available at bookstores or online book sites. Find more information about the story and buy links at http://www.annhgabhart.com/books/these-healing-hills/