A Writer's Playground

Monthly Activities for Kids by Linda Martin Andersen

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Posts Tagged ‘Joyce Moyer Hostetter’

W is for Wisteria, Wonder, and Writer’s Gifts

Posted by lindamartinandersen on April 27, 2016

A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074


A Writer’s Playground–a place to find wordplay, writing prompts, reasons to celebrate, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart  “W is for Wisteria, Wonder, and Writer’s Gifts” by Linda Martin Andersen

This month I’m sharing photos and blog posts from A-Z.  I’m excited about trying something new.  I hope you’ll stop by often throughout the month.

Check out the participants for the April (2016) Challenge.  There are plenty to choose from http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/

W is for Wisteria

Have you seen wisteria twisting and climbing trees in your area?  I told someone it’s as close to purple mountain majesty as we get in the Sandhills of North Carolina.  Wisteria always reminds me of one of my favorite authors…

Joyce Moyer Hostetter has a new middle grade historical novel that will be launched in October 2016.  It’s called Aim.  It is the prequel to Blue.  Comfort rounds out the trilogy.  Wisteria plays an important role in the setting of Joyce’s books.  So of course, she’s showing off their lovely blooms below.

Joyce Moyer Hostetter's Profile Photo  These Advance Readers Copies (ARC) arrived on Monday.  The launch day for Aim is Oct. 4, 2016.  Congratulations, Joyce!                                   

Why is Joyce modeling wisteria? 

Perhaps she is celebrating that Aim, the prequel, is coming soon!

To learn more about Joyce Moyer Hostetter’s books, check here:  http://joycemoyerhostetter.com/my-books/

Joyce’s blog:  The Three R’s–Reading, ‘Riting, and Research:  http://joycemoyerhostetter.blogspot.com/

I had the pleasure of interviewing Joyce Hostetter for another of her books, Healing Water, a book that includes leprosy.  This post probably received the most comments of any I’ve ever written.


Healing Water: A Hawaiian Story

Joyce Hostetter and Carol Baldwin co-write a newsletter for teachers and parents.  Learn more about “Talking Story” here:  http://carolbaldwinblog.blogspot.com/p/talking-story.html

I hope you’ll check out Joyce Moyer Hostetter and her books!

W is for Wonder

When I hear “wonder,” I tend to think “head in the clouds.”

Copyright 2014. Jim Martin

Copyright 2014. Jim Martin


What do you think of when you hear “wonder?”  I wonder what he/she’s thinking.  I wonder if I’ll ever reach my goal.  I wonder what it would be like to be…or to do… I hope you’ll share something that you wonder.

Amy Ludwig VanDerwater is participating in a poetry writing challenge this month that she calls, “Wallow in Wonder.”  Here’s a post to enjoy.


Visit Wonderopolis here:  http://wonderopolis.org/wonder/what-do-kangaroos-keep-in-their-pockets

W is for Writer’s Gifts

When friends give me gifts, they sometimes purchase something to inspire my writing.  Here’s one example:

Writing Muse. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

Writing Muse. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

Thanks to all who gift me with encouragement, love, friendship, and shared writing tips!  I love and appreciate my writing community.  It keep me going!

What “W” words come to mind for you? I hope you’ll share why they’re special to you.

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  Remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them.  For more fun, sign up to follow my blog.  Thank you!


Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Character Traits, creative play, Family Discussions, Games, History, Homeschool Activities, humor, Interviews, Reading, Social Studies, storytelling, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments »

Read Aloud Memories

Posted by lindamartinandersen on March 4, 2015


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074 “Read Aloud Memories” by Linda Martin Andersen

Happy World Read Aloud Day!–March 4, 2015.  To learn more about this day, check here:  


The theme:  Read Aloud.  Change the World.

Copyright 2015 LitWorld.org

Copyright 2015 LitWorld.org

Some of my favorite read aloud memories include:

  • a teacher who read aloud daily sharing an event that happened that day in history.  As the school year progressed, the teacher permitted students to read from her book.  If you enjoy reading about historical events, consider this website:  http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.  A shout out for Joyce Moyer Hostetter who introduced me to this site.  She writes historical fiction for children.  See here:  http://joycemoyerhostetter.info/
  • my mother reading Heidi and other books to us.
  • poetry readings sponsored by our local public library.  Today’s library offers storytelling programs as a regular part of programming for children.
  • another teacher led my class in choral reading of displayed poems on chart paper.  I can still hear “There was a little turtle.  He lived in a box….” by  Vachel Lindsay 1879–1931.  I wonder if the author or my teacher would ever have dreamed that people would still be reciting this poem in 2015?  “The Little Turtle” is available in song and finger plays too.                  http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/173885
  • Sunday School teachers and Vacation Bible School teachers read Bible stories and discussed them.

A BIG thank you to all those who shared read aloud moments with me!  I created a poster in your honor.


Poster created at Quozio.com

What about you?  What favorite read aloud memories do you have? 

Do you read aloud to others?  Perhaps you could volunteer to read aloud to children.

Please leave a comment.  Thanks for visiting.  Come again soon and bring a friend.

Children 13 years old or older may leave a comment. Read more about the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act. (COPPA) See: http://www.coppa.org/coppa.htm

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Calendar Events, Games, Homeschool Activities, Monthly Activities, Reading | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments »

Winner of Healing Water by Joyce Moyer Hostetter

Posted by lindamartinandersen on February 3, 2013

“Winner of Healing Water by Joyce Moyer Hostetter” by Linda Martin Andersen

“A Writer’s Playground”

A place to find wordplay, writing, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart.

Drum Roll…and the

winner of the giveaway

copy of Healing Water by

Joyce Moyer Hostetter is…

Clara Gillow Clark

Congratulations, Clara!

Please email your mailing address to landersen74@yahoo.com and I will pass the information on to Joyce.  A copy of Healing Water will be sent to you soon.

Thank you Joyce, for providing a giveaway in addition to blogging for World Leprosy Week.  If memory serves me correctly, your guest blog post received the most comments ever made at “A Writer’s Playground.”  Thanks for helping make history.  Appropriate, huh?

Thank you readers for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.” Please come again soon.  Bring a friend. 

Coming soon…children’s author, Bonnie Doerr, blogs about “all things green.”  She is also offering a giveaway.   Hope you’ll join us.

Copyright © 2013 Linda Martin Andersen

Posted in Calendar Events, Careers, Character Traits, Games, Interviews, Math, Monthly Activities, Reading, Science, Social Studies, Uncategorized, Writing | Tagged: , , , | 6 Comments »

Who Would Write About Leprosy? Joyce Moyer Hostetter, That’s Who

Posted by lindamartinandersen on January 27, 2013

“Who Would Write About Leprosy?  Joyce Moyer Hostetter, That’s Who” by Linda Martin Andersen

“A Writer’s Playground”–A place to find wordplay, writing, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart.

It’s World Leprosy Week–January 27–Feb. 2. 

You  have the opportunity to meet an author who says,

  “I write historical novels for young people. Sadly, I am drawn to tragic themes. However, my books do contain humor, and each are populated with spunky characters who tell their stories in a lively voice!”

Today, Joyce Hostetter will provide a question and answer session about leprosy and her book, Healing Water: A Hawaiian Story.

Join me in providing a warm welcome for Joyce Moyer Hostetter


Healing Water: A Hawaiian Story


Leprosy Q & A:  A little Conversation With Myself

Why did you write about leprosy?

Yeah, really.  Because is there a more depressing topic?  And my book, HEALING WATER starts on a real downer, with my character, 12 year old Pia, being deported to the Kalaupapa leprosy settlement in Hawaii.

The Book Trailer will give you a glimpse into Pia’s experience.

I wrote this story after discovering that Father Damien, a Catholic priest, chose to live among Hawaii’s leprosy patients.  He found terrible living conditions and much despair but he loved the people and petitioned the government to meet their needs. Because of Damien, the leprosy settlement became a hopeful community.   And trust me, my book gets more hopeful too!

So, before we go any further, what exactly is leprosy? 

The World Health Organization offers some terrific info on the disease.  IF you take a close look at their site you’ll discover that.

  • Leprosy is caused by a bacterium. Untreated, it damages skin and nerves and can lead to blindness and disfigurement. There are several types of leprosy.
  • Leprosy is not nearly as contagious as we once imagined.
  • Leprosy is spread through droplets from the mouth and nose of an infected person.
  • At the beginning of 2012 there were 182,000 people affected by leprosy – mostly in parts of Asia and Africa.

Is there a cure for leprosy?

Not at the time of my story (mid 1800s).  But, today, yes!  There are several drug combinations for several different types of leprosy.  One type requires twelve monthly doses.  The other involves six monthly doses.

Why are people so afraid of leprosy?

  • Untreated, leprosy can lead to disfigurement.
  • In the past people with leprosy were nearly always separated from their homes and family.  That’s something to fear!
  • The Old Testament (Leviticus 13) called leprosy a plague.  People with leprosy were considered unclean. In the Bible, leprosy typically referred to a variety of skin conditions – not necessarily leprosy as we know it today.  But the stigma followed leprosy down through the centuries.  The term “leper” is offensive; so many people now prefer to call leprosy Hansen’s Disease.

Why Hansen’s Disease?

In 1873 Gerhard Hansen of Norway, discovered the bacteria that causes leprosy.

Where do you go to research a story about leprosy?

How about Hawaii?  Actually I went to Hawaii to research life in Hawaii and also to visit the former leprosy settlement where my story takes place.  Doing so, gave me a feel for the landscape where my character lived.  However, I could only visit the leprosy settlement through a brief guided tour because former patients still live there and the state protects their privacy.  (That’s a good thing, of course.)

So how did you research leprosy itself?

I consulted the World Health Organization and leprosy related websites.  But I especially wanted to learn the kinds of things my character would have believed about leprosy in the mid- 1800s. I read memoirs by people who visited or lived in the Hawaiian leprosy settlement. I also interviewed three doctors who worked with leprosy patients in Africa and Trinidad.  They read my manuscript for accuracy and helped me get it right.

A favorite resource was an old book – The Path of the Destroyer: A History of Leprosy in the Hawaiian Islands and Thirty Years Research Into The Means By Which It Has Been Spread.  You’ve got to love a descriptive title! The author, Dr. A.A. Mouritz, worked with Father Damien.

Where can I learn more about Hawaii’s people and their history with leprosy?

Try these books.

Kalaupapa:  A Collective Memory – by Anwei Law

My Name is Makia:  A Memoir of Kalaupapa By Makia Malo

Molokai – by Alan Brennert – a novel set in the Kalaupapa leprosy settlement

Didn’t you write about some other disease too? What’s up with you and diseases?

Ah, such a good question.  I think tragedy calls to me.   My middle grade novel BLUE is about a girl whose family is affected by polio.  The sequel, COMFORT deals with the after-effects of polio and also post-war trauma.

So what disease are you writing about now?

Surprise – no diseases involved.   My work-in-progress is about fourteen year-old Amber whose mom has died. Amber regrets how she treated her mother and wants to undo the conflict in their relationship.  She goes on a search through some family keepsakes to recover her mother’s story.  Some pretty amazing stuff happened in her mother’s life which leads Amber to discover her grandfather’s story and on back through several more generations.  Each generation is a separate fully plotted story and they’re all threaded together by Amber’s emotional journey.

Thanks Linda for hosting this Q & A.  I’m impressed you are commemorating Leprosy Week.  Would you believe, I didn’t even know there was such a thing until you told me?

Guess what?  Joyce has agreed to give away a copy of Healing Water.  To enter, please leave a comment here before midnight February 2, 2013.  The winner will be announced on February 3, 2013.  Thank you for offering to do this, Joyce.  Please leave your email address on the post so I can contact the winner.  Thank you.

If you’d like to learn about the leprosy hospital in Carville, Louisiana that has now become a museum, check out Joyce Hostetter’s latest blog post at http://joycemoyerhostetter.blogspot.com/2013/01/in-keeping-with-world-leprosy-week-id.html

Copyright © 2013 Linda Martin Andersen

Posted in Careers, Character Traits, Interviews, Monthly Activities, Reading, Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 82 Comments »

A Writer’s Game of Tag

Posted by lindamartinandersen on September 13, 2012

“A Writer’s Game of Tag'” by Linda Martin Andersen

 “A Writer’s Playground”

A place to find wordplay, writing, and monthly   calendar activities for kids and those young at heart.

Earlier this week, I got another surprise.  I was tagged by a friend.  The last time I was tagged was when I was playing on a school playground.  Thanks for asking me to play, Donna Earnhardt http://wordwranglernc.wordpress.com/.  The way the game is played, I tag a few bloggers and ask that they share comments about what they’re writing.  My picks are:  

1. Jean Matthew Hall–Encouraging Words for Writers at http://www.jeanmatthewhallwords.blogspot.com/

2.  Joan Edwards–Never Give Up at www.joanyedwards.wordpress.com 

3. Joyce Hostetter–The 3 R’s–Reading, ‘Riting, & Research at www.joycemoyerhostetter.blogspot.com

4.Joy Acey–Poetry for Kids Joy at www.joyacey.blogspot.com 

I noticed that all my picks have first names beginning with “J.”  How about that?  Writers, please tag others and invite them to play too. I look forward to reading the upcoming posts.
Here are my responses to the questions: 
1. What is the working title of your book? Amazing Grace
2. Where did the idea come from the book? I got the idea in church.  Imagine that! (note the title)
3. What genre is your book? It’s a Christian picture book and I don’t have an agent.  That makes it trickier to find a publisher.
4. Which actors would you choose to play the characters in a movie?  I’d like the roles to be played by actors who could make this book come to life like in “One Fine Day” with George Clooney (Dad), Michelle Pfeiffer (Mom) and Mae Whitman/Maggie (Grace).  Other roles to be determined by Hollywood.
5. What is a one sentence synopsis of your book? Grace can’t go fishing on Sundays with Dad while he is away with the Army, and now he’s asked Grace and her Mom to try out churches until they find one they’d like to attend as a family.
6. Will your book be self-published or repped by an agency? My goal is that it will be picked up by a publishing house. 
7. How long did it take you to finish your first draft? Probably about a week.  Many rewrites have been done since then.
8. What other books would you compare yours to in this genre? Come Sunday by Nikii Grimes. 
9. Who or what inspired you to write this book? A lady at church stepped forward to give a prayer.  Her name is Grace.
10. What else about your book might pique a reader’s interest? The playfulness of the child in church.  It could also be used as a springboard for teaching about “grace.”
Thanks again for asking me to play Tag, Donna.  Please visit Donna at  http://wordwranglernc.wordpress.com/

Thank you, readers,  for joining us at “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend.

Copyright © 2012 Linda Martin Andersen

Next up:   A Book Reading at a Home School Bookstore to Promote Character Traits (Respect)

Posted in Careers, Character Traits, Games, Interviews, Math, Monthly Activities, Reading, Science, Social Studies, Uncategorized, Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

A Blogger Award for A Writer’s Playground?

Posted by lindamartinandersen on September 5, 2012

“A Blogger Award For ‘A Writer’s Playground?'” by Linda Martin Andersen

YES!  A blogger award and here it is…


 “A Writer’s Playground”

A place to find wordplay, writing, and monthly   calendar activities for kids and those young at heart.

 *Applause!  How could this be?

Last night I got a surprise as unexpected as seeing a life-sized cow dressed in an Airborne uniform with a parachute over its head.  (See post on Sunday, Sept. 2, 2012)  I  got a blogger award.  It’s called the Liebster Award.  Thank you very much, Jean Matthew Hall, for recognizing me with this award.  Check out her blog called “Encouraging Words for Writers” at http://www.jeanmatthewhallwords.blogspot.com/

Now, it’s my turn to recognize some fellow blogger friends.  As some of you may have noticed, I listed a few blogs on my home page that I think kids, parents, and teachers would enjoy.  Here are five of the ones from my blogroll that I’d like present with the Liebster Award.


1. Carol Baldwin at www.carolbaldwinblog.blogspot.com (reviews middle grade novels and posts writing tips from classes she teaches.  She has a published writing guide available.  Check her site)

2. Joyce Hostetter at www.joycemoyerhostetter.blogspot.com (reviews middle grade novels, tells about her writing journey and author visits where she discusses her published historical novels.  Check her site for details.)

3.Gretchen Griffith at www.gretchengriffith.blogspot.com (debut author of Lessons Learned who posts stories from school days from 1940s-1960s at Pilot Mountain School in rural North Carolina.  Gretchen has a picture book under contact for publication.  Check her site for details)

4.Joy Acey at www.joyacey.blogspot.com (posts a poem daily and encourages kids to write poems too.  Two of Joy’s poems were recently published in an anthology.  Check her site for details.)

5. Joan Edwards at www.joanyedwards.wordpress.com  (encourages her readers to never give up.  She’s a published author/illustrator of a picture book about a duck who never gives up.  She has an elder care guide under contract for publication.  Check her site for details.)

*Applause!  Now, I’d like to ask these bloggers to please pass the LIEBSTER AWARD to other bloggers. Please note that more than one version of the rules is posted on the internet.  This version contains less rules:

1.  Thank your Liebster Award presenter and link back to his/her blog.

2. Copy and paste the Liebster Award onto your blog.

3.  Present the award to 5 more bloggers with fewer than 200 (300-some sources).

4.  Notify bloggers of their award.  Have fun!

What an honor to be included in this recognition.  I hope those who receive this award as just as delighted as I was.

Thank you for joining us at “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend.

Copyright © 2012 Linda Martin Andersen

Next up:  Meet Laura Reeves, an art teacher who encourages creativity–

September 10, 2012


Posted in Careers, Character Traits, Games, Interviews, Math, Monthly Activities, Reading, Science, Social Studies, Uncategorized, Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

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