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Rewrites!

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Rewrites!

As an author, more than likely you’ve had to do at least one rewrite. So, you sit down in front of your manuscript looking at all the artwork – circled words, question marks, and even lines throughs. You scratch your head thinking when you finished the manuscript it was the perfect piece of work and now you’re facing ink outs. You take a deep breath and trudge forward rewording, eliminating and rearranging words and sentences or you stare blankly at the page.

Even though, rewrites are a dreaded foe, they are a good thing – a learning tool. Rewrites challenge our mind, patience, strengthen our dialog and give us the opportunity to make a better story.

A lesson from the book of Esther 4:16 I will go unto the King, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish.

Esther called for fasting and prayer because she knew that it was contrary to go into the king at this particular time and if he didn’t extend his scepter, she would perish. Esther was willing to perish in order to rewrite history – the annihilation of the Jews. In Chapter 8 and 9, we find that Esther found favor with the King and was granted to write along with Mordecai a letter to all the Jews in the provinces to come together and stand to protect their life. Esther was able to rewrite history.

In The Chocolatier, Charlene sees her fiancé with another woman on their wedding day. You can imagine how devastating that could be. Thinking she was marrying the man of her dreams, when all along he was cheating on her. She was determined to never let her heart be broken again. Even when, she goes to work at a chocolate company and her new boss was the most handsome man she’d ever seen, she wouldn’t let her heart be tempted. Right here, Charlene has the chance to REWRITE her story but all she sees is the artwork – all the circled words and question marks, the ink outs.

Learning of Charlene’s past, Charles understands her feelings even though, he’d already fallen in love with her. Although, their agreement was only boss, assistance relationship, Charlene finds her heart melting when Charles tenderly kisses her on a chilly snowy roof. Would Charlene begin her REWRITE! Would she or would she not let her heart fall for him?

My hope is that when you see the word REWRITE, you will look at it as an opportunity and not a dreaded foe.

Brenda Scruggs

Author of The Chocolatier

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Christopher Columbus and Chocolate

Christopher Columbus not only discovered America but a boat load of chocolate.

Christopher Columbus was the first European to encounter cocao aka Chocolate. The spread of the cacao tree started during Colonialism, as did the caco beans and chocolate itself. August 15, 1502 on his fourth voyage to the Americas, Columbus and his crew encountered a large dugout canoe near an island off the coast of what is now Honduras. The canoe was the largest native vessel the Spaniards had seen. It was “as long as a galley,” and was filled with local goods for trade — including cacao beans. Columbus had his crew seize the vessel and its goods, and retained its skipper as his guide. At first, the cocoa beans were neglected. Despite the bitterness of the drink produced, Columbus claimed the resulting concoction was a “divine drink which builds up resistance and fights fatigue. A cup of this precious drink permits a man to walk for a whole day without food”.

Later, Columbus, son Ferdinand wrote about the encounter. He was struck by now much value the Native Americans placed on caco beans, saying: “They seemed to hold these almonds (referring to the cacao beans) at a great price; for when they were brought on board ship together with their goods, I observed that when any of these almonds fell, they all stooped to pick it up, as if an eye had fallen.”

What Ferdinand and the other members of Columbus’ crew didn’t know at the time was that cocoa beans were the local currency. In fact, in some parts of Central America, cacao beans were used as currency as recently as the last century.

While it is likely that Columbus brought the cacao beans he seized back to Europe, their potential value was initially overlooked by the Spanish King and his court. Twenty years later, however, Spanish conquistador Hernando Cortez is said to have brought back three chests full of cacao beans. This time the beans were recognized as one treasure among the many stolen from the conquered Aztecs.

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Excerpt from “The Chocolatier”

Read Charlene’s and Charles discussion on the History of  Chocolate.

A smile came to Charlene’s lips as she remembered her first day, the way Charles took his time and explained passionately about the chocolate. Maybe, she would do some research on chocolate to get a better understanding of it. She positioned herself in front of the monitor and typed in, chocolate. There was so much information on the internet that she didn’t know where to begin. She was deep in reading when she heard.

“The history of chocolate, am I rubbing off on you?”

She smiled as she turned. “I just figured I needed a better understanding.”

“Because of work or that you’re interested,” Charles asked?

“Both,” she stated peeking the interest in his eyes.

He adjusted his tie as he sat down. “Etymologists trace the origin of the word ‘chocolate’ to the Aztec word ‘xocoatl,’ which referred to a bitter drink brewed from cacao beans.” He gestured. “The Latin name for the cacao tree is Theobroma meaning, ‘food of the gods.’

Many historians have estimated that chocolate has been around for about 2000 years, but recent research suggests that it may be even older. The Aztecs were so enthralled with the bean that they attributed its creation to their god Quetzalcoatl who, as the legend goes descended from heaven on a beam of a morning star carrying a cacao tree stolen from paradise. In fact, the Aztecs valued the cacao bean so much that they used it as currency.”

Charlene listened closely his tutorial of chocolate was far more interesting than reading it of the screen. Fascinated, she leaned forward not realizing, she had crossed her hands with her elbows on her desk and rested her chin on them giving him all her attention. She listened as he explained in detail how the Aztecs used the cacao beans to prepare a thick, cold, unsweetened drink called chocolatl – a liquid so prestigious that it was served in golden goblets that were thrown away after one use. He stood glancing out the window as he spoke of Christopher Columbus, in the year 1502, being the first European to run across the beans on his fourth voyage to the New World.

“Did you know, Columbus came across a canoe which was the largest native ship that the Spaniards had seen? It was as long as a galley, 8 feet wide, and with 25 paddlers with palm roof, filled with local goods for trade, including cacao beans. Columbus had his crew seize the vessel and its goods, and retained its skipper as his guide. Later, Columbus’ son Ferdinand wrote about the encounter. He was struck by how much value the Native Americans placed on cacao beans, and I quote, “They seemed to hold these almonds referring to the cacao beans at a great price; for when they were brought on board the ship together with their goods, I observed that when any of these almonds fell, they all stooped to pick it up, as if an eye had fallen.” He turned. “Am I boring you yet?”

“Not in the least,” she said. “I’m beginning to see chocolate in a new way. I had no idea of chocolate’s history and listening to you is much more interesting than reading it. Please, tell me more.” She could sit and listen to him for hours, he didn’t just tell her about chocolate, he explained in great detail making it so interesting that she was beginning to rethink her like for the confection.

“Alright,” he said. “Hernando Cortez, however, was a man with his eye on a golden doubloon. While he was fascinated with Aztec’s bitter, spicy beverage, he was more impressed by the fact that cacao beans were used as Aztec currency.

 

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Magazine Game!

Women’s Workout day Magazine game!

Since a lot of people are doing their New Year’s resolution, I thought I’d throw a little game out there for fun. Can you find 33 magazine titles? You can find the answers on my blog- brendascruggs@wordpress.com

Elle couldn’t wait to start her woman’s day with her best friends, Marie Claire and Victoria. It would be a woman’s world of glamour, shopping and fitness to shape their women’s health. Who knows during the bon appetite they might run into Rachael Ray or Paula Dean.

First, on the list would be some muscle and fitness. The Gold’s Gym connoisseur flex his physique. She held a laugh at Victoria bliss. The oxygen seemed to evaporate as her eyes landed on an iron man that could be on the cover of GQ..

It was real simple to be in style as they walked through the cosmopolitan finding the perfect cuisine. The restaurant was rated four star for its food network and today they wouldn’t be weight watchers. The bazaar of people made it hard to find a table but the perfect ending of the day was tea time at sunset.

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Answers below!

Elle couldn’t wait to start her woman’s day with her best friends, Marie Claire and Victoria. It would be a woman’s world of glamour, shopping and fitness to shape their women’s health. Who knows during the bon appetite they might run into Rachael Ray or Paula Dean.

First, on the list would be some muscle and fitness. The Gold’s Gym connoisseur flex his physique. She held a laugh at Victoria bliss. The oxygen seemed to evaporate as her eyes landed on an iron man that could be on the cover of GQ.

It was real simple to be in style as they walked through the cosmopolitan finding the perfect cuisine. The restaurant was rated four star for its food network and today they wouldn’t be weight watchers. The bazaar of people made it hard to find a table but the perfect ending of the day was tea time at sunset.

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Bridle Up!

Bridle Up!

How often do we speak before thinking? Most of the time, we let words flow out of our mouth without thinking of the consequences of our words. Words pierce our hearts and minds. We all have had negative, offensive words spoken to us or about us that we can’t forget. We may forgive, but it’s nearly impossible to forget since they shape our egos and impact our way of thinking. For this reason, we need to Bridle Up and weigh our words wisely.

Psalms 39:1

I said, I will take heed to my ways, that I sin not with my tongue: I will keep my mouth with a bridle, while the wicked is before me.