Importance of community

Ian and I are waking up from a winter break and starting to get active again. I just came back from the spring Maine Authors Coop seminar where we had the opportunity to share ideas and connect with fellow members of our community.

Perhaps because I live just minutes from the start line of the Boston Marathon, the importance of community was already on my mind. It also seemed to be on the minds of the other attendees as well. Many of us, including myself, have a renewed commitment to stay in touch more actively between conferences.

I am also reminded of how important the extended community is to us as writers as well as people engaged in many communities. Writing and publishing a book are just the first steps on a lifetime journey as an author. We rely on the support of our readers and local business owners to first invest in our work and then to pass on the word if they like the product and their engagement with the author. I am very grateful the support I have received from my community and, in the spirit of Heart Hound Stories, have a strong commitment and intent to pay the support I have received forward to other authors and my communities.

Collecting Stories for Next Book

My next book is in progress. It pertains to the role of stories in reinforcing or undermining business culture. I am looking for stories that reflect strong and successful business environments and those that suggest the business culture is not aligned with the mission and objectives.

If you are interested in sharing stories for professional publication, please let me know!

Press Release for Close up Talk radio

Close-Up Talk Radio

Press Release for
Cheryl Anne Lampshire

Show dates:
Wednesday, February 6th at 12pm EST
Wednesday, February 13th at 12pm EST
Wednesday, February 20th at 8pm EST
Wednesday, February 27th at 8pm EST

Contact: Close-Up Talk Radio, (631) 421-8500

Close-Up Talk Radio spotlights Cheryl Anne Lampshire

Upton, Massachusetts – When telling a story, all the elements must work in harmony for the story to be truly effective and elicit the desired response.

The same is true of the work we do; business processes are simply another way of telling a story. Cheryl Anne Lampshire is an author and business consultant specializing in quality assurance and business process management and improvement.

“I would describe myself professionally as a problem solver and a story teller,” says Lampshire. “The bigger the problem, the more interesting it is to me. I address everything as an opportunity to help people succeed because deep down everyone wants to succeed.”

In the last decade, work has become so complex managers are challenged to understand what their employees actually do on a day to day basis. As a result, the modern work environment frequently fails to provide incentives for employees to emerge into leadership. According to Lampshire, the new role of a manager is to be a collaborator and a facilitator, keeping the work path free from obstacles and to create environments where ideas are freely exchanged among all team members.

Management in companies for which Lampshire consults typically know they have a problem but they usually don’t know what it is. More often than not, their stories aren’t aligned with their culture or with desired cultural changes. They want employees to assert themselves as leaders and share their innovative ideas, but the existing business processes don’t promote that kind of engagement. Lampshire will enable development and appropriate usage of communication technology channels to enable teams to feel safe and empowered such that innovation, creativity and leadership will emerge.

“Respect is the only cultural value all humans share,” says Lampshire. “In the culture of successful, innovative teams, all the team members feel respected; they feel listened to and trust the other members of the team. When they have all of those things, they share their creativity and innovation runs.”

Close-Up Talk Radio will feature Cheryl Anne Lampshire in a four-part interview with Doug Llewelyn on February 6th and February 13th at 12pm EST and with Jim Masters on February 20th and February 27th at 8pm EST.

Listen to the show If you have a question for our guest, call (347) 996-3389.

For more information on Cheryl Anne Lampshire, visit

The word ‘suo’ means ‘swamp’ in finnish and forms

New England Book Festival

I  am finding that most discussion is now happening on Facebook, however I am so proud and happy to share the news that Heart Hound Stories was recognized by the New England Book Festival I am bragging on all media forms! Jeff Foltz, a fellow Maine coop author, was also recognized in the fiction category for his book Ten Men Ten Suns.

Jan Kaslosky, my book photographer, will be accompanying me to the awards ceremony in January. Her work is now being displayed in Gallery G in Hopkinton. I attended an open house last week and was pleasantly surprised at the range of quality artwork on display,  including sculpture, pottery, photography, and pen and ink drawings.

Savings by logging, where are the decaying forests, where are the dense woods anyway.

Creating community

Lots has been doing on this month! I attended a coop conference in Maine. Not only did I learn a lot about publishing and marketing, I really enjoyed the sense of support provided by the coop.

The experience prompted me to get more active in setting up social networks. Heart Hound Stories now has a presence on Facebook and NAPW. Perhaps more importantly, Lisa Stratton (proprietor of A Little Common Sense) and I were motivated to explore founding an author’s community in our area. Our first authors meetup is Planned for November 27 at A Little Common Sense, at 7 pm. We are inviting authors of all stages, from those wanting to write a book to those who have already published, to attend. Our hope is to frame a community that will provide support and networking for authors and potential authors.

The publishing world has changed greatly in the last few years, in large part due to e-books and social networking. A community is one way to help stay on top of these changes, which are also opportunities.

Please contact me or Lisa if you are interested.


Dog Halloween Costume Event

Yesterday I was the judge for a dog Halloween costume contest hosted by Angel’s Garden Center and Cafe. A number of dogs turned out dressed for the event. While most of the dogs were more interested in socializing, a few embraced the role and a couple suffered for their art – inspiring much sympathy and compassion. All of the human contest participants and many spectators were very supportive of the canines and all had a wonderful time.

The event was well convered by the media. The  contest received coverage by the Hopkinton webcam and Jan Kaslosky also took many photos of th event. She plans to have photos delivered to Angel’s this coming Friday. Please come by to pick up photos of your canine!

Our hostess, Dale, declared the event a great success. Plans are afoot to make this an annual event. I was very pleased and honored to be included this year.

Philosophy of forest economy, protection of the circle of life, carbon balance of the globe and?

What is your personal brand?

I have had several interesting disccussions over the past two weeks with regard to the importance of stories in building personal values as well as corporate values.  Stories have been traditionally important to all cultures. Shared stories help to build shared communities. The stories told provide examples of heroes and ethical standards to strive for. Stories can be used to reinforce existing values and ethics and they can be used to challenge them, inspiring change.

While  most stories carry a strong central theme, they may also carry multiple messages. The importance of one or more of the messages may change depending on how the story is told. The stories we embrace as a person or culture, whether the culture is a national or business culture or social group, are reflective of the values and ethics we hold. What do your stories say about you?

In this survey, I haven’t said a word about the basic.

October 6 book signing

Last Saturday Angel’s Garden Center and Cafe hosted a book signing from 9 to 1 p.m. It was a great success and, more importantly, a lot of fun.

The cafe has a wonderful, welcoming atmosphere and it was no surprise to me that the traffic was steady throughout the time frame. A surprisingly large number of people were interested in stopping to talk and quite a few purchased one or more copies. Several even pulled up a chair and delighted me with stories of their own, some of them hilarious, others pulled at your heart, and all were warmly welcomed. I had a wonderful time and enjoyed every minute spent in the cafe.

The customer response was so positive that Dayle, my gracious hostess, asked me to leave a few copies to fill  latent demand. All but one copy was sold the next day. Angel’s is now keeping a small stock in the cafe, at least through the holiday season. I am thrilled!

First book signing

My first official book signing took place last Saturday as part of the Harvest Festival in Upton. The raw, rainy day kept the crowds down, but fewer people meant that there was more time to engage in conversation with those who did venture out. Several excellent dog stories were swapped on the front porch of a Little Common Sense. Lisa Stratton, the hostess of our local event, took many pictures of the participants, including alpacas, and posted them to Facebook.

I also gained some needed experience in how to arrange book displays to make the stop a bit more inviting, especially when the space is small. Next practice session is this Saturday at Angel’s Hilltop!

If I could read people’s minds I would disguise myself as an interviewer from the center of.

E-books, events and catalogues, oh my

The month has been busy with planning events. Two events are firmly in the calendar, the last week in September and the first week in October are scheduled for book signings and three more are in the planning stages. Heart Hound Stories is now listed on the Maine Authors Publishing Catalogue.

Cheryl from Maine Publishing did a great job helping me navigate the e-publishing route. I finally decided to initially publish e-Kindle only, as 70% of readers use this device. Once the decision was made, the upload was surprisingly fast.

Early reader feedback has been very positive. I am delighted when readers let me know of their favorite stories.