Introducing Brenda Ratajczak, author of Snippets of Heaven

“I have been thrilled with my experience under the guidance of your self-publishing company Outskirts Press from day one. Also, you have such a fantastic array of packages that would help anyone promote their book. When my book was delivered and I held it in my hands I was so overwhelmed, I cried.”

Brenda Ratajczak was born during the “Great Appalachian Storm” in the winter of 1950. It was a long and difficult labor at Saint Joseph Hospital in Buckhannon, West Virginia. Nuns prayed for the family. Just a year later her sister was born. Brenda’s mother suffered with severe schizophrenia and her father was an alcoholic. The illnesses of her parents were life-threatening. “There was so much abuse, fear and neglect”. Brenda started writing at a very young age. Her writing was her way of dealing with this life. “Glimpses of Hell” is a difficult work in progress. Thank God for summers on her grandparents’ farm. She wrote of the adventures and happiness she experienced in this loving and nurturing environment. Her book “Snippets of Heaven” is her first to be published. Brenda has been married three times, in her words “to very different, exciting, and interesting men. Each taught me so much.” “I very deeply loved them at some point in my life.” The men that she loved prompted her latest book “Loves Passion and Pain”. Motherhood was her greatest joy, expressed in her years of poetry. “I was blessed beyond words to be the mother of four wonderful children.” Two of her children have passed away long before their mother who loved them. “I often feel that I have to live for three, myself and my two children gone before me.” “I refuse to be broken by their loss. I thank God that I had them and draw strength from my memories of them.” Brenda has taken up golf and shooting sporting clays in the last few years. “You have to step away from computers. Sunshine and fresh air are my elixir.” Most recently she has added hula hooping to her exercise and weight training regimen. “Life is so short. Stay active, healthy, try new things and thank God every day.”

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Book description…

This book of stories, “Snippets of Heaven”, is a labor of love, a project of the heart. I visited my grandparents’ farm every year of my young life until I was well into my teens. My visits inspired these stories, and these stories influenced my life. When I was a child, there was no electricity connected to the farm or running water into the farmhouse. There was no furnace to keep the house warm during cold winter nights or an air conditioner to cool the farmhouse when the summer days grew hot. I wanted to share these stories with my grandchildren. My grandchildren live in a very different world than what I knew as a child. I will travel back in time and visit the farm I so loved. I will meander up the road and down the holler. I will wander through the yard within the white picket fence and visit each room of the house again. I will remember the animals and explore the acres in that wild and beautiful farm country. I will simply tell the stories that I recall or retell stories that were told to me by my family. The stories are true. I did change the ending to three of the stories as one was too graphic, one was too heartbreaking, and one was just so violent. There are so many stories that come to mind that I would like to share. The stories are dear to my heart. These stories are a part of who I am and why I am.

Introducing Tabbie Chamberlain, author of Living at the End of the Road

“I knew nothing about publishing a book and my computer knowledge is very limited. So when I held my first book, Living at the End of the Road, in my hands, I was so excited. Thanks to Outskirts Press for making this possible and especially to Lisa for her kindness and patience with me.”

Tabbie Chamberlain was born in a little shotgun house in 1940 at Winnsboro, Louisiana. “Living at the End of the Road” will lift your spirit, put a smile on your face and a song in your heart. Inspired by the author’s early childhood, it is a sharecropper’s saga set in the 1940s and reveals it is the simple things that mean so much and how they can fill your life with pleasure.

Product description…

Set in the 1940s, Living At The End Of The Road will lift your spirit, put a smile on your face and a song in your heart. Inspired by the author’s early childhood, it reveals how simple things can feel your life with pleasure. Now, let’s take a look inside the book: Enjoy a ride with Daddy on the tractor as he pulls the disk over freshly plowed soil. Find a seat at the kitchen table and relish the smell and taste of Momma’s hot biscuits and brown, flour gravy. Follow the six Winborne girls as they pull cotton sacks down long rows and pick fluffy, white cotton from prickly burs. Grab a string and hunk of salt meat and make your way to the crawfish ditch. Join in the fun of catching fireflies on a hot summer night, or building a toad frog house in the back yard. Sit cross legged in front of the fireplace and savor the smell of pinecones burning, while eating a sweet potato, baked to perfection by the heat from the fire. Visit the little country church in rural Louisiana. Your soul will be refreshed as you become involved in praising and worshipping Jesus. LIFE IS A FLEETING WONDER. DO NOT DISPARAGE IT. DO NOT MISUSE IT. DO NOT SQUANDER IT. GRAB HOLD OF IT, EMBRACE IT, LOVE IT AND, MOST OF ALL, LIVE IT. The good things in life do not come easily. You have to reach and dig beyond the surface. You have to endure the thorns and brambles of life, come out scratched and bleeding. But when it is over, you will have found the sweetness and beauty those who settle for surface things never have. “When the bleak, cold, harsh winter has passed, the refreshing spring will come, bringing hope, beauty and new life.” It is my pleasure to take you back to the 1940s, and to share the real life experiences of a sharecropper’s daughter.