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Karen Pierce Gonzalez

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Family Folktales: What Are Yours?
by Karen Pierce Gonzalez   

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Category: 

Family

Publisher:  FolkHeart Press ISBN-10:  0982288808 Type: 
Pages: 

42

Copyright:  Feb. 23, 2009 ISBN-13:  9780982288801
Non-Fiction

Payload
FolkHeart Press
FolkHeart Press

Folktales: every family's got them and anyone can write them.

This 42-page e-book explores the world of folktale motifs and how they can be applied to original family stories. Easy to follow writing exercises assist writers of all levels with techniques for preserving treasured family memories.

Excerpt
Unlike many other approaches to writing, writing a family folktale is designed to fit into the time you have available. You do not have to spend years on it, writing and rewriting. This work can be captured in small measurements of time. Sometimes fifteen minutes can be all that it takes to write a first draft or compose an initial list of things you recall about a person, place, or item. Because you are often writing about a particular character trait, specific episode, or particular slice of life snapshot, you can quickly jot down what comes to . The next time you sit down to work with your written material you need only spend another fifteen minutes or so polishing what has already been recorded.

Professional Reviews

We Magazine for Women
It gives me great pleasure to interview Karen Pierce Gonzalez, the author of Family Folktales: What Are Yours. She is a delighteful person full of passion and tradition and stories. YOu will enjoy reading her book.
Welcome Karen and thanks so much for inviting WE Magazine for Women to participate in your blog tour!


Heidi, Many thanks for these questions! Karen

Karen, How is a folktale different from a story?

A story can be either fictional (invented characters/events) or non-fictional (based upon substantiated evidence).

A folktale, on the other hand, is a member of the folklore family and as such, does not to be literary. Unlike a fairytale or tall tale, it is personalized account of the specific experiences of real people, places, and things.

Folktales reflect certain themes or categories, known as motifs. The motifs are countless, and can include “lively family holiday dinners”, “children who lie to their parents”, “household pets that save family members”, and “favorite family heirlooms”.
So then, Karen What lead you to write a book about folktales?

I began using folktale motifs to jumpstart student writing projects about 18 years ago. I realized as a writing facilitator (and anthropologist linguist who specialized in folklore) that folktale motifs provided an easy format for writers who wanted to only write about specific experiences of the real people, places, and things of their lives. These writers did not want to create extensive biographies or autobiographies. In some cases they did not want to be included in the telling itself (as is the case with most narrative essay writing). They just wanted the freedom to write what they remembered from the heart. Folktales are perfectly suited for that.

After years of experiencing success with writers who attended workshops, I decided to reach out to larger audiences because I found that people were hungry for connections. They wanted to know where they have been (the past) so that they could better know where they were going (future).

I also discovered that the folktale structure provided writers and non-writers alike access their own folk heroes.

Keep in mind that not all of these folk heroes are whimsical, wonderful, and life affirming. In some cases they are dark or bittersweet. Even so, in all cases folktales give us insight into the many facets of our humanity which includes bravery, cruelty, despair, and hope.

Karen, When did you decide to write a book on folktales?

Over the years many writers have asked me to prepare a manuscript they could work with on their own.

In 2007 I wrote the first edition of the Family Folktales: Write Your Own Family Stories workbook which quickly sold out.

In 2008 I wrote this book Family Folktales: What Are Yours?

This year (2009) I am revising the original workbook to include more information and activities.

Since 1992 I have been writing food-related folktales. The collection Folktales You Can Eat” is still in process.

Karen What are 3 tips you would give to someone wanting to write a folktale?

1) Remember that your memory of a person, place, or thing is all that you need to base your folktale upon.

2) Keep it simple. Some of the best folktales are vignette-length; often no more than a page or two in length.

3) Folktales are not meant to be literary. These are folk records and as such do not require literary training.

Karen, Do you have other classes or books about folktales?

I am preparing a tele-class for the fall for writers and non-writers alike who want to explore their family folktales.

What are some of the Other books you have written?

I wrote the first “Family Folktales: Write Your Own Family Stories” workbook in 2007. As that edition is sold out, I have written a second edition that includes much more information about how to preserve and present folktales, including pod casts and scrapbook-related ideas.

Karen, What swayed you to write an ebook vs a hard copy book?

This e-book is intended to whet the appetite of would-be family folktale writers. I selected the e-book format because it requires of the writer minimal commitment and investment.

The workbook, on the other hand, is hard copy as it covers more territory, utilizing more writing exercises and information about pod cast techniques and scrapbookking.

Our readers want to know how they can purchase a copy of the book?

The book can be purchased online from FolkHeart Press, Payloadz.com and soon on Kindle/Amazon.

Thanks so much for being with us today, Karen and best of luck in your blog tour!


Family, Food, Love
Family Folktales: What Are Yours?
When I was a little girl my Nana Moisson would come and vacation with us a few times a year. I loved her visits because she took me to a world that was new and different - telling stories about attending a French Convent School, visiting France, adventures about her father being a deep sea diver, reading my palm. I remember when she told me I was going to have two husbands, because there were two lines on my hand in a certain place which indicated that. Wow, two husbands! I’ve only had one so far but I’m not dead yet.

When I was a little girl my Nana Moisson would come and vacation with us a few times a year. I loved her visits because she took me to a world that was new and different - telling stories about attending a French Convent School, visiting France, adventures about her father being a deep sea diver, reading my palm. I remember when she told me I was going to have two husbands, because there were two lines on my hand in a certain place which indicated that. Wow, two husbands! I’ve only had one so far but I’m not dead yet.
When I was a little girl my Nana Moisson would come and vacation with us a few times a year. I loved her visits because she took me to a world that was new and different - telling stories about attending a French Convent School, visiting France, adventures about her father being a deep sea diver, reading my palm. I remember when she told me I was going to have two husbands, because there were two lines on my hand in a certain place which indicated that. Wow, two husbands! I’ve only had one so far but I’m not dead yet.
I wish I had her back to ask her all the questions I thought of over the years. Nobody thought to write what she said down so all I have are vague memories of her stories.
Today I read an ebook called Family Folktales, What are Yours? by Karen Pierce Gonzalez. She shares her idea about preserving the triumphs of your ancestors and relatives as family folktales. The best way to write about family history is in a folktale motifs.
Folktales are generally shorter pieces of writing that express a unique or personalized version of a universal theme. We have memories that are pieces of family history we want to pass on to future generations.
Karen makes writing your family history so easy. You can start with just fifteen minutes at a time. You tell the folktale in your perpective. I’m sure everyone has stories in their families that they would love to pass on to the next generation. Your folktales can be given as gifts for all kinds of special occasions.
You can order the ebook at www.folkheartpress.com. I’m looking forward to writing a folktale about Nana Moisson that I can pass down to my children and grandchildren.










Ebook and Book Reviews
On 3.25.09 I was to be part of a book tour for a wonderful eBook, “Family Folktales, Write Your Own Family Stories“, and didn’t have an internet connection for most of the day because they are doing work on Cable along our street, which then turned into not really being related to the work being done on the street at all. We had more issues, and had the cable service come out and fix things for us, so everything is working great…now as promised, let me tell you a bit about this wonderful book.

This book was particularly captivating to me, because I would like to write about some of the things that my grandfather shared with us about his life…he loved to tell stories from his life, in fact he spent hours when he was in his early 90’s sharing on video story after story…I treasure these tapes.

It has been hard for me to know where to begin, and reading Karen’s book has helped me sort through some of my concerns…including how historically accurate I want to make the book, Karen suggests that it doesn’t need to read like history, it can be from my perspective, the way that I remember the story being told. I felt “freed” by these words, and the thoughts began to flow! You’ll find this happens often as you read the book.
On 3.25.09 I was to be part of a book tour for a wonderful eBook, “Family Folktales, Write Your Own Family Stories“, and didn’t have an internet connection for most of the day because they are doing work on Cable along our street, which then turned into not really being related to the work being done on the street at all. We had more issues, and had the cable service come out and fix things for us, so everything is working great…now as promised, let me tell you a bit about this wonderful book.

This book was particularly captivating to me, because I would like to write about some of the things that my grandfather shared with us about his life…he loved to tell stories from his life, in fact he spent hours when he was in his early 90’s sharing on video story after story…I treasure these tapes.

It has been hard for me to know where to begin, and reading Karen’s book has helped me sort through some of my concerns…including how historically accurate I want to make the book, Karen suggests that it doesn’t need to read like history, it can be from my perspective, the way that I remember the story being told. I felt “freed” by these words, and the thoughts began to flow! You’ll find this happens often as you read the book.
On 3.25.09 I was to be part of a book tour for a wonderful eBook, “Family Folktales, Write Your Own Family Stories“, and didn’t have an internet connection for most of the day because they are doing work on Cable along our street, which then turned into not really being related to the work being done on the street at all. We had more issues, and had the cable service come out and fix things for us, so everything is working great…now as promised, let me tell you a bit about this wonderful book.

This book was particularly captivating to me, because I would like to write about some of the things that my grandfather shared with us about his life…he loved to tell stories from his life, in fact he spent hours when he was in his early 90’s sharing on video story after story…I treasure these tapes.

It has been hard for me to know where to begin, and reading Karen’s book has helped me sort through some of my concerns…including how historically accurate I want to make the book, Karen suggests that it doesn’t need to read like history, it can be from my perspective, the way that I remember the story being told. I felt “freed” by these words, and the thoughts began to flow! You’ll find this happens often as you read the book.
Here are a few of chapter titles from this writing instructor’s new book:

What Is a Folktale?
What Do You Do with Folktales?
Folktales Are for Everyone
Let’s Get Started - People; Places and Events; Things; The Process
Warming Up Your Writing Muscles
and there’s more!

Below you’ll find order and other info, and since this is a tour, please stop by and visit the following for more reviews: On 3.24.09 Carolyn Howard-Johnson provided an ebook review, then on 3.26.09 the blog tour continued with Julie McLaws.
Title: Family Folktales: What Are Yours
Author: Karen Pierce Gonzalez
Website: This, and other books available at http://www.folkheartpress
Price: Under $8.00





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