Children’s Hour – Biweekly

Because I’m pressed with time as I write my third novel and am heavily engaged in marketing my first two, I have decided to make my Children’s Hour posts biweekly. I hope you enjoy!

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Old King Cole

Old King Cole was a merry old soul
And a merry old soul was he;
He called for his pipe, and he called for his bowl
And he called for his fiddlers three.

Every fiddler he had a fiddle,
And a very fine fiddle had he;
Oh there’s none so rare, as can compare
With King Cole and his fiddlers three.
~Mother Goose

Pussy Cat, Pussy Cat

Pussycat, pussycat, where have you been?
I’ve been to London to visit the Queen.
Pussycat, pussycat, what did you there?
I frightened a little mouse under her chair.
~Author Unknown

A Wise Old Owl

A wise old owl sat in an oak,
The more he heard, the less he spoke;
The less he spoke, the more he heard;
Why aren’t we all like that wise old bird?

~Old Nursery Rhyme

Blow Wind Blow

Blow wind, blow
And go, mill, go
That the miller may grind his corn
That the baker may take it
And into bread make it
And bring us a loaf in the morn.

Blow wind, blow
And go, mill, go
That the miller may grind his corn
That the baker may take it
And into bread make it
And bring us a loaf in the morn.
~Old Nursery Rhyme

Subscribe to my email list and receive my free eBook, titled Rhymes for a Child’s Picnic Lunch, plus email updates, writing news, and more!

Joshua Reynolds on Conservative Cornerstones – Author of Children’s Books, Young Adult, Historical Fiction / Family Stories – Finding Conservative Thought in Olde Books. Check out my Authoring Conservatism Post. Look up my two books, The Williams House and Treasure on the Southern Moor in my bookstore!

Prudent Forms of Reform

The thinking conservative understands that permanence and change must be recognized and reconciled in a vigorous society.” ~Russell Kirk’s tenth principal in The Politics of Prudence.

The difficulty with most radicals is that they are too quick to destroy enduring truths that have stood the test of time. There are those who desire to destroy the government establishment and become anarchists, and there are those who desire government to be controlling everything a citizen does. Both forms alike can be equally dangerous because of its quick-changing motion in a society. Rather, Professor Kirk argues that healthy society must be influenced by Permanence and Progression: Permanence being “those enduring interests that gives us stability and continuity”, and Progression being “that spirit and that body of talents which urge us on to prudent reform and improvement”.

The Conservative argues that anarchy will descend into either chaos (which dissolves a society into oblivion) or to the rebirth of only a more formidable government. On the other side of the coin, Totalitarianism is impossible to maintain and will invariably lead to rebellion and revolution. Our founding fathers when setting up the Constitution of the United States understood both of these extremes, being well versed in governmental control both ancient and modern to their times. Rather, they set up a system of government that gave the people a republican state that was neither tyrannical nor non-existent, an elective state that held the people accountable but was not controlling their lives. And most importantly, this system of government allowed for slow and prudent reform as the American nation grew and matured.

Since true conservatism is the negation of ideologies, it is impossible to adhere conservatism with fast and rapid change within a society’s structure. This is because conservatism understands that reform does not come through social programs, but rather through a renewed interest in those enduring truths (or “permanent things”, as The Professor called them) that will always live in a healthy society as long as the earth remains.

eBook Release – YouTube Video

Hello everyone!

I know I’ve already done a blog post about my free eBook, but I wanted to showcase a short rundown of the eBook on YouTube as well. I haven’t created a visual YouTube video for a little while because I’ve been trying to research how to create better YouTube video quality and have been experimenting around with a few things there (and have also been busy writing!).

So, I’m finally getting back around to making more videos. The lighting of the scene is what I worked most on here. I hope you enjoy, and please subscribe to my email list below and receive your free eBook!

Subscribe to my email list and receive my free eBook, titled Rhymes for a Child’s Picnic Lunch, plus email updates, writing news, and more!

Joshua Reynolds on Conservative Cornerstones – Author of Children’s Books, Young Adult, Historical Fiction / Family Stories – Finding Conservative Thought in Olde Books. Check out my Authoring Conservatism Post. Look up my two books, The Williams House and Treasure on the Southern Moor in my bookstore!

Social Media and Why I Don’t Use It

So, I know that most people tell you that in order to market ANYTHING online, you MUST be active in social media venues. I’ve read many, many articles on why and how it’s impossible to promote your business online without using social media. I’ve heard it referred to as the oil that makes the engine run, a necessary item without which your online business cannot grow. Friends have told me of its fantastical uses and how it can help stay in touch with friends, grow a following, connect with individuals that can aid your business, etc.

Is this true? Is there any way to grow an online market without using social media? Who is doing this? Is anyone doing this?

Well, yes, the short answer is that there are many people who are having success online without using social media. How? Well, before I get into the how, I must define what social media is. What is it?

In short, I define social media as a specific way of networking with other people. A social media website is one in which (1) sets up a profile of who you are / what you’re doing and (2) allows you to “connect” with other “walls” (i.e. profiles) to stay up-to-date with how those profiles are changing through the use of “friending” them. I have the last phrase of that sentence in bold for a specific reason. The way in which a social media site networks to individuals is different from how, say, a blog “networks”. When someone subscribes to a blog, it’s very much like a newspaper or magazine subscription. It’s simply a way of the individual saying, “I like what you write and want to receive more of your publications.” In no way are the newspaper writers (i.e. bloggers) saying to the subscribers the same thing. It is not a two-way tunnel. The subscribers receive the updates that they wanted, and the writer is not constantly bogged down with having to check up and read every one of his subscriber’s life news (a win-win). Sure, they should be genuinely interested on whether the subscribers are happy or not, but let’s be honest, what newspaper writer, in addition to all the stresses of having to write good content, wants to be bogged down by every single subscriber’s personal life? Social media networking, on the other hand, is a two-way street. When one profile connects with another, a tunnel of communication and update “swapping” is created. It is much like two individuals meeting one another and saying, “we share common interests; let’s keep in touch!” Examples of social media sites would be Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, and Google+. I would not rate YouTube as a social media website, because again, its way of networking is like a newspaper and not like a telephone call.

So, you ask me, “What’s wrong with this? It seems to make the connections more personal, and isn’t personal what we want?”

The answer is no . . . not always. That is, sure, if you want to spend hours every day scrolling through the selfie pics your friends have taken over the last day or two, then yes, social media is just for you. I’m not saying that everyone who owns social media does this, but those who are doing this aren’t abnormal in this venue because they are doing exactly what the social media engine is designed to do. They are using the two way tunnel to swap information back and forth at generally a daily level. Personally, I would much rather enjoy a glass of lemonade with a friend on my front porch than spend my time on a digital screen every day looking at pictures they’ve taken of themselves throughout the day. This doesn’t mean I don’t like to keep up-to-date with my friends’ lives, but how much is too much?

However, I digress because this article is not about personal connections. It’s about business, and that’s exactly my point. For the use of marketing a product, people used to understand the clear lines between business and personal connections. And . . . after all . . . wasn’t the Internet’s original intent designed as a marketplace? Why does “dot com” stand for “commercial”, and why is there no “dot per” for “personal”? That’s because the internet was originally designed for businesses and non-personal information to be easily accessed and connected, and it had an added feature of connecting personally. And, let’s be honest, no business can spend the time (or should even want to spend it) going through personal pictures/notes of what every one of their individual clients has done throughout the day.

Email is convenient because it allows us to write letters to each other without much post problems or waiting-time-duration. This works for both business and personal use, and I think that’s great! You can say to your friends, “Hey! Instead of writing once a month, let’s email once a week!” This is a two-way tunnel that does not come with any of the added pressure of “wall updating” that broadcasts personal information to everyone you have ever connected to through that venue. Or, if you’re a business, you can say, “Hey, let’s share email addresses so that if you have any problems with your product, you can contact us and we can respond the same day!” Again, this is an example that, though using a two-way street of communication, does not come with the constant open connections that you automatically have with every one of your “friends” on a social media site like facebook. The email address is there if they need it, but in no way are they expected to be constantly emailing – quite the opposite, in fact.

The problem is that the way social media is designed is personal – too personal. I find this to be a problem whether or not you are wanting to set up personal or business contacts, but for the purpose of this article, it is especially bad for business. No, I’m not saying that businesses shouldn’t adapt a “personal” flair. After all, businesses are only around because of humans, and humans are . . . personal. However, businesses are being pressured into subjugating themselves to a venue that is just not designed for best business operability. They are doing this because personal conversations are owning the internet right now, and so in order to speak in this marketplace, they think they need to adapt the same style.

But it doesn’t have to be this way!

As stated earlier, there are many who are making an online market successful without the use of social media. I used to have a LinkedIn account, which, by the way, is designed for business use, and do you know what I found? It did not help me overall in the slightest. Sure, I thought it was cool at first to connect with what I thought to be a few celebrities in the field I was then pursuing. But it did not help them find me important enough to listen to my voice. Instead, I spent so many hours attempting to gain more contacts that didn’t know me from Adam and would never lift a finger for me if I wanted them to – nor should they be all-so-interested in what I’m doing because they have hundreds of other connections that are wanting their same attention. This is because the social media market is flooded and people resort to abusing the system, “friending” someone just to increase a number count. Rather, I only want people to follow my writings who are actually going to take an interest in what I say. If they’re not reading me, then we’re wasting time and resources to stay in touch.

If you are having similar unsuccessful results in the business online marketplace, or are tired and rundown with social media (and there are only a very few people I talk with who are using social media and NOT rundown with it) then consider changing tactics to use the internet as originally intended. You can leave your social media sites and find other ways to market online, and there are a great many other, more effective ways!

Below is a list of website types that, given the definition I’ve given above, do not fit in social media. I strongly recommend you do at least several of them if you, like me, are reading this to avoid the pitfalls of social media.

  1. Blogs: Whether it’s through WordPress (what I’ve chosen), Blogger, or some other platform, blogging is a great way to promote your business without the pressures of and wasted time that goes into social media. And the good thing about blogs is that there is not a limited number you can have! If you aren’t getting the following you need on one blog, you can create another that talks back and forth with it. By so doing, you’re creating your own inter-network that allows traffic to explore more, and gives them more opportunities of chancing upon you.
  2. YouTube: YouTube, or any other video provider, is much like a blog except the media format is visual and not textual.
  3. General Websites: It is generally required to have a place that compiles your business together and let’s the customer/client explore what you do. This is like your official front door on the market street, though this website needs to be promoted through other venues listed here as well as word-of-mouth.
  4. Other pre-established marketplaces: These are websites like Amazon, eBay, Etsy, etc.
  5. An Email list: I have this one in bold because I think it’s very important. An email list allows you to send your information on the doorstep of everyone who signs up for it. As previously stated, email is a great tool for both personal and business uses. Here, you allow individuals to personally sign up for your emails, and then you can send them the latest updates and products that you have, and they go right into the customer’s “mailbox”!

A brief note about email: I recently took a webinar with someone who has mastered online marketing techniques (Jeff Goins), and though he uses social media to a certain extent, he admits himself that at least for writers (he is an author) someone who signs up to an email list is 100 times more likely to buy your product then someone who “friends” you on social media, and he had this tested.

If you’re going to succeed online without social media, you must use all the resources you have available. This isn’t bad, though, because you get to succeed without succumbing yourself to the hours it takes to keep/maintain social media sites and the peer pressure that follows, and your efforts will be far more rewarding. Social media is arguably ineffective for businesses when considering the number of connections you spend obtaining, because most of these connections are not consumers. The ratio between connection and consumer in social media can be depressing for the business owner. Yet, if you can market your product online by using more specific tools, why not?

“But, but, but! Marketing online without social media is uncommon these days.” What days? You have to remember that “these days” only refers to the ten to fifteen years that social media has been around, and only in the last few years have businesses been pressured in joining up. The internet has been around longer, and the fact that it is considered “uncommon” to market without social media only means that there is a bigger spot in the marketplace for you to enter if you utilize other, more effective and specific venues.

This is why you cannot find me on Facebook or Twitter. Instead, you may see me in the evening time if you’re driving down my street, and I’ll be on my porch, having completed my online marketing work for the day, drinking lemonade or tea with a friend or a book and enjoying the atmosphere of nature. Would you care to join me? There is always an extra seat.

Subscribe to my email list and receive my free eBook, titled Rhymes for a Child’s Picnic Lunch, plus email updates, writing news, and more!

Joshua Reynolds on Conservative Cornerstones – Author of Children’s Books / Family Stories – Finding Conservative Thought in Olde Books. Check out my Authoring Conservatism Post. Look up my two books, The Williams House and Treasure on the Southern Moor in my bookstore!

New Email List

Hello everyone! So, I have finally created my first email list. As such, I have opted to send the free eBook to those who are signing up for this list. In addition to the eBook, you will receive at least weekly updates on writing news, progress in publications, as well as conservative and virtuous ideas and thoughts that come my way. Sign up for this list now! Let’s see where this takes us.

Free eBook insider’s peek:

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Free eBook! Rhymes for a Child’s Picnic Lunch

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Hello everyone. I have finally made a free eBook for my website! If you desire to get the whole eBook, please subscribe to this blog (on the right side of the screen just under the search feature)! For those who have already subscribed, the link should be in the textbox below the search feature. Below are a few more sample screenshots of the inside. You can also find these screenshots on my Story Previews page. Enjoy and please subscribe!

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Joshua Reynolds on Conservative Cornerstones – Author of Children’s Books / Family Stories – Finding Conservative Thought in Olde Books. Check out my Authoring Conservatism Post. Look up my two books, The Williams House and Treasure on the Southern Moor in my bookstore!

The Voice of Many Waters

This article was originally posted on my Authorsville website, but I thought it fit well here as well. Enjoy!

The Sound of a Waterfall

His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters; ~Revelation 1:15

And I heard a voice from heaven, like the voice of many waters, and like the voice of loud thunder. And I heard the sound of harpists playing their harps. ~Revelation 14:2

When they went, I heard the noise of their wings, like the noise of many waters, like the voice of the Almighty, a tumult like the noise of an army; and when they stood still, they let down their wings. ~Ezekiel 1:24

Deep calls unto deep at the noise of Your waterfalls;
All Your waves and billows have gone over me. ~Psalm 42:7

The Lord on high is mightier
Than the noise of many waters,
Than the mighty waves of the sea. ~Psalm 93:4

What is it about the sound of water that is so powerful and yet so soft, mighty and yet peaceful, shaking and yet soothing, fierce and yet gentle. From the mighty thundering waterfall to the small tinkling stream or babbling brook, the sound of water is often used in Scripture to describe the voice of God. At times, it is thundering and quaking as in some of the examples above, or at other times, it is, “a still small voice” (1 Kings 19:12). His voice is a gentle hush, a whispering trickle, a sprouting stream. His voice is a thundering echo, a hastening river, a torrent of waterfall that is spilling over the edge of a cliff and rushing forward.

Water is not only a substance God has given to us as a means of life. It is also a symbol to us of who God is. He says, “They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters,” Jeremiah 2:13. And again, “but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.” ~John 4:14. And again, “For with You is the fountain of life; In Your light we see light.” ~Psalm 36:9. Jesus says, “‘If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’ But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.” ~John 7:37-39

As the above text says, the Holy Spirit is also compared with living water. “And there are three that bear witness on earth: the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree as one.” ~1 John 5:8. As the Spirit continues to sanctify us, it is very much like the washing with water that cleanses our bodies. This is also a great symbolism in the holy sacrament of Baptism. One of the signs of the covenant uses water to symbolize what the Lord does with His people; He washes them and makes them clean.

As you watch the below YouTube video with a waterfall stream and listen to its sound, think about the below verses:

Ho! Everyone who thirsts,
Come to the waters;
And you who have no money,
Come, buy and eat.
Yes, come, buy wine and milk
Without money and without price.
Why do you spend money for what is not bread,
And your wages for what does not satisfy?
Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good,
And let your soul delight itself in abundance.
Incline your ear, and come to Me.
Hear, and your soul shall live;
And I will make an everlasting covenant with you—
The sure mercies of David.
~Isaiah 55:1-3.

~From the Proprietor ~ Joshua Reynolds

Joshua Reynolds on Conservative Cornerstones – Author of Children’s Books / Family Stories – Finding Conservative Thought in Olde Books. Check out my Authoring Conservatism Post. Look up my two books, The Williams House and Treasure on the Southern Moor in my bookstore!

Children’s Hour Weekend

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Comparisons

Hope is like a harebell trembling from its birth,
Love is like a rose the joy of all the earth;
Faith is like a lily lifted high and white,
Love is like a lovely rose the world’s delight;
Harebells and sweet lilies show a thornless growth,
But the rose with all its thorns excels them both.
~Christina Rossetti (1830-1894)

The Wind

Who has seen the wind?
Neither I nor you;
But when the leaves hang trembling
The wind is passing through.

Who has seen the wind?
Neither you nor I;
But when the trees bow down their heads
The wind is passing by.
~Christina Rossetti (1830-1894)

Caterpillar

Brown and furry
Caterpillar in a hurry,
Take your walk
To the shady leaf, or stalk,
Or what not,
Which may be the chosen spot.
No toad spy you,
Hovering bird of prey pass by you;
Spin and die,
To live again a butterfly.
~Christina Rossetti (1830-1894)

Two Little Kittens

Two little kittens, one stormy night,
Began to quarrel, and then to fight;
One had a mouse, the other had none,
And that’s the way the quarrel begun.

‘I’ll have that mouse,’ said the biggest cat;
‘You’ll have that mouse? We’ll see about that!’
‘I will have that mouse,’ said the eldest son;
‘You shan’t have the mouse,’ said the little one.

I told you before ’twas a stormy night
When these two little kittens began to fight;
The old woman seized her sweeping broom,
And swept the two kittens right out of the room.

The ground was covered with frost and snow,
And the two little kittens had nowhere to go;
So they laid them down on the mat at theh door,
While the old woman finished sweeping the floor.

Then they crept in, as quiet as mice,
All wet with the snow, and as cold as ice,
For they found it was better, that stormy night,
To lie down and sleep than to quarrel and fight.
~Anonymous

A Clip of my Unfinished Book

So, with The Williams House and Treasure on the Southern Moor now written and published, I am now working on my third book that will take place somewhere in the Victorian/Edwardian time-period in England. A very rough draft of chapter 1 has been written, and I am currently in chapter 2. I thought I would share just a couple paragraphs to give you all a very small preview into this coming book. I hope you enjoy!

.     As the children spoke, they reached the top of the hill Ellsworth had spoken of, and they found a rocky descent that led down to a narrow place with rich, downy turf. They had already been through the kitchen gardens, rose gardens, flower beds, and between most of the rows of hedges. These gardens expanded a long way out in many directions, surrounding the large manor house with rich vegetation. Bowers arched up and over the stone pathways, and early June flowers were dangling down from them. Rainwater was currently splashing down their pedals and stems and dripping onto the path. It had dripped on the children when they had passed by that way, as some of the bowers were short enough that the children had to collapse their umbrellas to pass. The mansion stood as a shining center in the midst of all the gardens.
.     [They] had passed the gardens, walked around a small winding trail that led to the croquet grounds, past that and on through a small set of trees with a river in it, and then up a rising hill. Most of their clothes were now soaked with water spray, and their hair was blown askew by the wind, yet color was in their faces from walking and running.