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Lucky Valley Press July Newsletter


OUR MISSION: to help authors get their books into print and worldwide retail distribution; to provide inspired solutions for editing, design and layout; and to maintain the voice of the author and the integrity of the concept.


The Little Bach Book by David Gordon

160 pages, 6 x 9, softcover, 82 illustrations, maps, bibliography

Bach specialist David Gordon has created a richly illustrated and amusing collection of his favorite anecdotes, historical explanations, timelines, bits of pathos, gritty vignettes of everyday realities, and colorful stories about J.S. Bach and everyday life around him in early 18th-century Germany. There’s no other book like it. Learn More…

The Little Bach Book

The Soup Kit

The Soup Kit
by
Ginna BB Gordon
color photos by the author, 208 pages,
8.5 x 8.5, softcover

Everything a cook needs to know about soup: a little history, a lot of spice and herb combos borrowed from other cultures, notes about thickeners and other additions, the right vegetable cut for the right end result, when to add which ingredient, 55 recipes, and more. Learn more…

WHAT WE DO

All our services are available for print books and ebooks. We edit and proof manuscripts, design books from cover to cover, acquire ISBNs and deal with other book registration duties, process and edit photos and images and prepare the material for uploading to the distributor. Throughout the entire process we work closely with you by phone, email, snail mail and text to make sure your book has the look and feel you imagined.


Looking for John Steinbeck

Released in 2016

Deke Interrupted

Released in 2018

Humming in Spanish

Coming Sept. 2020!!

Ginna BB Gordon’s Lavandula Series

Set in Carmel Valley, California in the 1960s, The Lavandula Series is based on the fictional journals of Stefani Michel. It’s the life stories of Stevie and her two cousins. Learn More


Soul Companion: A Memoir

by Judy Hilyard

230 pages, 6 x 9, softcover, hardcover, ebook

After a 47-year career as an ICU nurse, Judy Hilyard took a completely different road and became an Anam Aira, a soul companion, for those who have died or are in the final stages of dying.

Soul Companion is the story of what Judy has learned as she cares for souls on both sides of the Veil. Learn More…

Soul Companion

AT LVP YOU ARE THE PUBLISHER

With digital print-on-demand publishing you have complete control over your book before and after it is released.

We provide all necessary design, account management and pre-press services and we partner with you every step of the way from the preliminary editing stages through the actual release of the book for international retail distribution.

OUR FEE is based on the length of your manuscript and the ultimate complexity of your book. After an examination of your manuscript and a discussion with you about your goals and ideas, we prepare a multi-page Project Evaluation with a detailed breakdown of services and costs and a project timeline. We also discuss the book size and retail price and explain how the book size, paper and price will affect your revenue.


Joseph Meister

Aunt in the Amazon
La Tia en la selva Amazónica

A True Adventure Coloring Book
by Diane Wallace

Illustrations by the author, 80 pages, 8.5 x 11, softcover

This coloring book story in Spanish and English takes you on an expedition down the Amazon by canoe. It’s the perfect book for bilingual families with kids of all ages. The engaging and true story will inspire curiosity about the world, interest in other cultures and a desire to travel without fear. Learn More…


Scherzo’s Magical Musical Adventure

by Nancy E. Bennett

This is a story about a little dog, Scherzo, with a great desire to sing. If a child is musical and loves animals, this humorous book will educate and inspire while providing an intuitive understanding of musical terminology. This is the perfect book for little ones and grown-ups to share. Learn More…

Scherzo

54 pages, 11 x 8.5, softcover,
with 23 oil paintings by the author.


Penitentiary Tales

Penitentiary Tales: A Love Story

by EA Luetkemeyer

404 pages, 6 x 9, softcover
Illustrations by the author

In the 1980s, Dean Davis, a 30-something, educated, straight white male from affluent Sausalito, California, is sent to an Illinois prison filled with inmates from the mean streets of Chicago. What challenges does he meet? How does the experience affect his social and political consciousness? Learn More…


LVP

GINNA has been reading two or three books at a time ever since she can remember. Her love of books led her to a life as writer, editor and publisher, while her love of cooking led to a parallel career as chef and cookbook author.

At Lucky Valley Press, Ginna is project manager and art director. With her artist’s eye she creates the look and personality of each book, cover to cover.

An experienced editor, she has worked closely with more than 30 authors to help them develop and refine their work.

Ginna’s first book, A Simple Celebration, the Nutritional Program for the Chopra Center for Well Being, was published in 1997 by Harmony Books, a Division of Random House.

Since then Ginna has published nine more titles including cookbooks (First You Grow the Pumpkin and The Soup Kit), memoirs about cooking (The Honey Baby Darlin’ Series), and novels (The Lavandula Series, the story of three girls growing up in the 1960s in Carmel Valley, California.)

DAVID is a life-long professional musician, writer, lecturer and historian.

At Lucky Valley Press, he is the layout and typography designer and manager of tech and pre-press. He likes to design with type and has typeset the interiors of nearly all the books we’ve produced during the past decade.

He and Ginna collaborate on the concept and design of book covers.

In 2015 David published Carmel Impresarios, a 400-page cultural biography of the two extraordinary women who helped establish Carmel, California as a major hub for the arts. It is the definitive history of the growth of music and theater in Carmel’s early years.

His second book, The Little Bach Book, describes daily life in the era of J.S. Bach. To date, it has sold more than 1,500 copies worldwide.

Learn more about David’s musical career at www.spiritsound.com.

Follow this link for a list of books by Ginna and David.


Collage of book covers


Since 2012 Lucky Valley Press has designed
and produced 65 books for 34 independent authors.
Visit www.luckyvalleypress.com to learn more.


Lucky Valley Press News April 2020

Download (PDF, Unknown)

Tibetan Temple #6

I build Shrines to the Divine entirely for my own enjoyment. There is no goal, no show in mind, no beginning, middle or end of the project. I am just creating temples, exploring the skills learned, both as an artist as well as a human.

And what amazing discoveries I make along the way. So far with the Tibetan construction, I have learned how to: make a tiny tile floor out of polymer clay, a

Lucky Valley Press author/friend, Sharon Mehdi

 When I first met Sharon Mehdi, I thought she was a stand-up comic. She made me laugh until  my jeans burst at the seams.

Then I discovered all kinds of interesting things about Sharon: labyrinth walker, healer, teacher, writer, public speaker.

She told me she wrote a book, so I ordered it and, after I read A Curious Quest for Absolute Truth, my respect for this woman grew. Not only was she funny, but she could write, and express deeply felt things.

As the Board Member in charge of books and authors at Art Presence Art Center & Gallery in Jacksonville, I asked Sharon to read from Curious Quest several years ago. It was such a hit, we ask her back every year.

Not only that, Lucky Valley Press (David & Ginna) helped Sharon re-publish A Curious Quest for Absolute Truth, as well as the Great Silent Grandmother Gathering and, my favorite, Eleanor Bobbin.

One morning, over coffee at the Good Bean in Jacksonville, Sharon asked if she could read this little manuscript to me. “It’ll only take a few minutes,” she said

I love to be read to. And she’s so funny. And, Eleanor Bobbin really does have the potential to save the world.

Here’s what Sharon wrote for the back cover of Eleanor Bobbin and the Magical, Merciful, Mighty Art of Kindness:

“As this book goes to print, the world is once again in chaos. Rancor and retribution rule the day. Greed, fear and demagoguery have been crowned Kings of All That Is.

“And yet… and yet… hidden beneath the helplessness there is a glimmer of light. So faint it can be seen only in the darkest of dark night.

“If this tiny flicker had a name, it might be called forgiveness, compassion, kindness or love. Such little words. But the one thing I know for sure is that they can create miracles. They can make the impossible possible. They can heal lives. And sometimes, whole communities. Just ask Eleanor Bobbin.”

If you’re looking for a book to send to all your friends
around the world to remind them, Eleanor Bobbin is it.

Buy all three books. The ride inside the mind of Sharon Mehdi
 is worth it. She should be President.

Love, Ginna

P.S. Eleanor Bobbin kindly includes an uplifting Apple Dumpling recipe.

Charles Osborne’s "Boss" is just in time for the Pebble Beach Centennial

 “Without Sam Morse, Pebble Beach would be a West Coast Coney Island.”   – Bing Crosby

“A newspaper dubbed my grandfather “The Duke of Del Monte” and although he pretended to be embarrassed by the title, I believe he liked it. Del Monte was more than a chunk of some of the most beautiful land on the planet. It was a style of life that included golf, tennis, polo, beautiful mansions and beautiful people having a good time. He enjoyed being in charge of that. In fact he wanted people to damn well know he was in charge. Damn was one of his favorite words.

“He died when I was 22 years old while I was studying art at the University of California at Los Angeles, living above a merry-go-round on the Santa Monica Pier and working as a cue-card boy at NBC, none of which really met with my grandfather’s approval. Still, the man was a big influence in my life and in the lives of many others, a benevolent despot who ruled the Monterey Peninsula.

“His friends called him Sam and his employees called him Mr. Morse. People referred to him as S.F.B., and that is how he stylishly signed his paintings and documents.

“The family called him Boss.”
– Charles Osborne, from the dust jacket of Boss


Sculpting Polymer Buddhas #4

I am not well-set, nor do I have the bandwidth for, taking pictures of my hands while creating.

Following are all the photos of my Buddhas over the course of three days. All the facial features are exaggerated, not on purpose.


The top not and hair aren’t right proportionately and you can see from this side view, he has a flat face.


This guy looks like a cross between a British peer (doesn’t it resemble a powdered wig?) and Deepak Chopra. The bindi on his forehead helps the overall look.


Last night’s sculpture looks like Yul Brynner as Mongkut, King of Siam. And my latest student still doesn’t have much of a face, and without armature, she’ll always have to be sitting down.


The week’s work. Self-imposed Polymer Sculpture Class 101.

Sculpting Polymer Clay Buddhas #2

Just Buddha’s Head.

In the interest of keeping my self-imposed sculpting lessons simple, I scrunched up a ball of foil and rolled out some clay to cover it for a head. (I learned the hard way not to bake any polymer clay thicker than about 1/4 inch; it takes forever, you’re never quite sure if it’s baked all the way through and it smells if it gets scorched.)

I stuck a quilter’s straight pin into a cork for something to hold onto. I scrunched the foil head down over the pin with a dollop of hot glue. With a small ball of clay, I pressed out a disk to cover the foil and form a head, making it slightly oval in shape.

I marked the lines for eye, nose, lips and chin, and made about 24 little pieces for these additions.

Polymer clay is so forgiving. After its warmed up (conditioned) it stay supple for a long time an can be worked over and over again before it is baked.

These eye sockets turned out to be a bit much. The instructions called for little clay eyeballs, but I toned them down with Tibetan slits for eyes.

The facial features on my first Buddha turned out a little exaggerated; next time I’ll make my tiny body part pieces tinier.

Not bad for a rank beginner.

Sculpting Polymer Clay Buddhas #1

In typical DIY style, I took up the challenge of building my own Buddha for the Tibetan Shrine to the Divine. Ah, well, more of a dare, really.

It was my girlfriend, Eunice.

She said, “You’re going to make it yourself, right?”

I laughed. “No, no,” I said. “I draw the line at sculpting a Buddha.”

“I dare you,” she said.

Well. To the left here is my very first attempt at modeling polymer clay, beyond rolling balls and sticking holes in and calling them beads.

Once again, I followed a YouTube video. Everything here was made with little logs of clay – legs, arms, torso, head.

I was pleasantly surprised. Although these two figures (the teacher and his student) have no discernible faces, they do have shapely bodies and good posture. If you get too close, the student looks like a cat and the teacher resembles a Martian from a 50s movie, but I like the wrinkled pants and the fat cushions on which they sit.

I modeled these two little figures while listening to an audio book in front of the fire. Everything I needed fit on a paper plate. I have abandoned knitting until the fall, imagining spring is around the corner and soon I will be planting seeds, but meanwhile, why not teach myself to sculpt?

Now, Buddha here looks more like Caspar the Friendly Ghost with a bad Gibson Girl hair do. Holding an empty cereal bowl.

More work to be done.

Love, GB

Tibetan Temple #5

Even though I did not complete this Buddha head out of Basswood, I am posting the idea to show the sacred geometry of drawing  a Tibetan Buddha.

Just the geometry itself is beautiful to me. These images are posted all over my studio. They calm my spirit.

I have been attracted to Tibetans and their teachings, as well as their good-natured selves, since the early 90s, when I first heard Lama Tarchin Rinpoche speak on a friend’s houseboat in Sausalito. One of my most memorable stories (another post) is about the daily goings on at Steven Seagal’s home during the year I was his personal chef. I used to say I was “surrounded by monks, music and poetic musings,” as a steady selection of starlets, stars and sycophants sat down to table with Steven, his family, his entourage of assistants and his monks.

Tibetan Temple #4

Each of the Shrines to the Divine has a 12 x 12 inch footprint, for uniformity and to fit on shelves for display. The Zendo on the left is the first true completed shrine. By the time I built it, I had made several single walled messes before I figured out how to do tiny double wall construction.

The Japanese Tea House to the right of the Zendo was my first foray into tiny construction. The faerie tableaux in my studio history don’t count. Faeries have a very free sense of scale and construction, with a sort of “anything goes” attitude. This is to scale, 1.12, as much as possible.

On the lower shelf is the final selection for the size of the tipi for the shrine honoring my Native American blood and my two years of tipi living. I made five paper models before settling on this size – had to fit the 12 x 12 inch footprint. (My tipi was 400 “square” feet).

I made the tea house following a YouTube video exactly. It is made entirely with craft (pop cicle) sticks and coffee stirrers. The best thing about this construction is the sliding shoji screen doors. And the tiny backroom with the piece of Japanese fabric that started this whole shrine thing.

During the creation of Faerie Junction in 2016, we received all kinds of interesting materials and gifts into the studio, from tree branches and leaves to stick pins, beads and fabric. A small piece of Japanese quilter’s cotton with a tiny design passed through my hands. I thought, “Oooh, a Japanese Tea House in my future.”

I will re-create that Tea House one day, in honor of my bookbinding teachers, who opened my eyes to Japanese art and culture. Everything I know about making clean corners, from paper to fabric to wood, I learned from them. I will rebuild it using improved construction skills. And better tiny lumber.

The cut out tiles (making room for the 1 x 1 inch pillars that hold the roof over the open temple) make perfect little finishing touches for the base.

And, of course, I stained the base red with Unicorn Spit. I expect this red to darken quite a bit after several coats. I’m going for more of a mahogany look. The tiles are also painted with Unicorn Spit, but after brushing on the blue, I dabbed it with coarse patterned paper towel to create a mottled look.

I am really excited to begin the pillars. It entails carving clay.

Love, GB