Mill Park Publishing of Eagle, Idaho was created in 2003 by author Elaine Ambrose.
The company facilitates fee-based book publication and marketing for local authors
and organizes writer's retreats.

Monday, 13 February 2012 18:09

Cowboy Poetry: Using Imagery to Write a Poem

Written by Elaine Ambrose

Cowboy Poet Ernie Sites brought his energy, humor, and talent to Boise over the weekend,
and Mill Park Publishing sponsored his workshop titled “Writing the Songs of the West.” Participants were entertained and enlightened as he discussed the various ways to write and recite
poetry. He added some lively guitar playing to demonstrate how he turns his stories into songs.

For one exercise, he showed the group various western paintings: agitated horses in a corral, a medicine woman, a Conestoga wagon crossing a river.  Then he allowed 15 minutes for the attendees to write a poem. We all were amazed as each one stood to recite her or his poetry. Clearly, the assignment sparked some creative writing within the group.

Ernie instructed us to use free verse or rhyme, and I chose to write a poem about the
river crossing. I wrote in iambic tetrameter, a style I have used since my high
schools days (which happened about the same time as the wagon trains coming
west on the Oregon Trail.) Here’s my poem:

 

Crossing Over

 

The raging river shoved the wagon.

Pa yelled at us to hang on tight

but Samuel fell into the water.

He screamed and then slipped out of sight.

My mama held the baby close

and glared at Pa to save their child

but he was struggling with the horses

to get across the river wild.

We reached the bank, he jumped back in

but all he found was Samuel’s shirt.

My mama didn’t smile for years

‘cause life was hard, and she was hurt.

Saturday, 31 December 2011 19:05

Writing the Songs of the West

Written by Elaine Ambrose

Mill Park Publishing of Eagle recently donated $3,000 to organizations that promote
writing, music, and job placement for disadvantaged women. The donations resulted from proceeds earned from the sales of three books published in 2011.

Mill Park Publishing, owned by author Elaine Ambrose, focuses on books written by
and for women. The Backyard Chicken Fight by Gretchen Anderson is in the second printing, and Mother Knows Best compiled by Patti Murphy is fifty percent sold. Little White Dress edited by Liza Long features 25 women authors and was written and produced in six weeks. That book is almost sold out.

“Mill Park Publishing provides opportunities for women to write their stories,” said
Ambrose. “Our books offer authentic, captivating, often humorous writing in a quality product. We’re excited to give back to the community through the proceeds.”

Dress for Success Treasure Valley received $1,000. The organization provides job placement services, career counseling, and professional attire for women looking for work.  The Idaho Writers Guild received $1,000 as seed money to create a writers conference in Boise in May.  Ambrose is a member of the group’s advisory board and is assisting with logistics for the conference. The third recipient is the University of Idaho School of Music. Ambrose is on the advisory board for the University’s College of Letters, Arts, and Social Sciences. As a student, she sang with the Vandaleer Concert Choir and the Jazz Choir.

Mill Park Publishing intends to publish more books in 2012 and donate the proceeds
to organizations that promote the arts and support disadvantaged women and children. Find more details on the web site, www.MillParkPublishing.com

 

 

Mill Park Publishing presents

A Workshop with Cowboy Poet Ernie Sites

“Writing the Songs of the West”

Saturday, Feb. 11, 2012

The Cabin – 801 S. Capitol, Boise, Idaho

9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

$50

Includes writing workshop, time for readings from participants, lunch, materials, and foot-stomping musical performance.

Ernie Sites recently completed a residency in the schools in New York and is coming through Boise on his way to another national Cowboy Poet Festival. Ernie combines traditional and original western singing, songwriting, storytelling and cowboy poetry with his own brand of country humor to enlighten, educate and motivate audiences of all ages. Ernie is a hit at corporate functions, guest ranches, schools, Cowboy Poet gatherings, and festivals throughout the country. Don’t miss this opportunity to lasso your inner cowboy (or cowgirl) poet! Ernie’s books and CDs will be available for purchase.

 

Registration Form

“Writing the Songs of the West”

Featuring Cowboy Poet Ernie Sites

Saturday, Feb. 11, 2012

The Cabin – 801 S. Capitol, Boise, Idaho

9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.



 

Name________________________________________________________

 

 Address______________________________________________________

 

City ____________________________State___________Zip Code______

 

 Email________________________________________________________

 

Vegetarian meal?  Please select one:  _____Yes     _____No

 

Registration includes writing workshop, time for readings from participants, lunch, materials, and foot-stomping musical performances. 

Please print, complete and mail with $50 check payable to Mill Park Publishing. No refunds after February 6, 2012. Gift certificates are available.

Mill Park Publishing

PO Box 1931

Eagle, ID 83616

 

For more details, email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Workshop for Amanda Turner,

Idaho Writer-in-Residence



Grassroots Celebrity: Making a Name for Yourself from Scratch

Guest Speaker: Elaine Ambrose,
Author, Owner, Mill Park Publishing

Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

  1. 1. Platform is Key
    1. a.If you have to ask “What’s a platform?” please go research and then come back.
    2. b.Wrong platform: I write for everyone! This week,I’ll try children’s books!
    3. c.Right platform: Readers like my books for middle-age women. Bingo.
    4. d.List the genre that most captivates your reading and writing:
  1. 2. How to Build on Your Platform
    1. a.Write regularly.
    2. b.Join writing groups and associations. Volunteer for their activities. Blog and update.
    3. c. Establish a Facebook page, a logo, and a web site. Twitter is optional. Don’t waste time.
    4. d. Continue your education about computers, cell phones, classes, the latest resources.
    5. e.Understand print options: e-book, self-publish, promotional materials, wine labels.
    6. f. Attend writing events, conferences, workshops,social functions. Hang out with writers.
    7. g. Listen to and get on Amanda Turner’s radio show. Try on-line writing activities.
    8. h. Become media savvy: News Releases, promotional events, keynote speeches, signings.
    9. i. Prepare to invest in yourself: time, money, book proposal marketing, book trailers.
    10. j. Yes, you need an editor. Yes, you need an editor. Repeat.
    11. k. List how many of the above you have done – and will do:
  1. 3. Write your 50-word bio for introductions and author identity:


 

Elaine Ambrose left the family potato farm in southern Idaho to travel the world, write and publish books, and encourage lively reading and writing. She is an author of six books, and her national bestseller is Menopause Sucks. Her author web site is www.elaineambrose.com  and her business web site is www.MillParkPublishing.com.

  1. 4.Believe that you are (or will become) a recognizable and dynamic personality.
    1. a.List why not:
    2. b.List why:
    3. c.List how:
    4. d.Go home, write, and practice Googling yourself….

Thursday, 06 October 2011 14:52

Book Created in One Day Features 25 Women Writers

Written by Elaine Ambrose

A simple message on Facebook captured the attention and creative skills of 25 women who spontaneously gathered on August 8th to write their stories about “The Dress.” Mill Park Publishing of Eagle compiled the stories into a book titled Little White Dress – Women Explore the Myth and Meaning of Wedding Dresses. The published book took six weeks to produce and premieres at a festive party and reading with the authors on Thursday, October 20, 20ll at Hillcrest Country Club in Boise from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. The public is invited to attend, and proceeds from the sale of the book will be donated to Dress for Success Boise Valley®.

            “My friend Liza Long wrote a brief but poignant message on Facebook about observing used wedding dresses in thrift shops,” said Elaine Ambrose, owner of Mill Park Publishing. “The message prompted immediate responses from women who wanted to share their own thoughts about their dresses. The result, six weeks later, is a book full of tender, funny, heart-breaking, and irreverent stories.”

            Long, a college professor and single mother of four, designed the cover, edited the stories, and wrote the Foreword to the book. She noted that the little white dress is a symbol of self, and that if a man really wanted to know a woman, he should try to understand her relationship to her wedding dress. Award-winning author Alan Heathcock agreed and wrote this review for the back cover:

            “If I learned something about women from this awesome little book, it’s that each has her own dress, her own story; some of hopes fulfilled, some tragic, some funny, all compelling. Little White Dress holds the truths of humanity stitched into every poem and story. It sometimes made me laugh, sometimes made me somber, but always made me consider how the value of the dress has little to do with the fabric.”

            The book’s 25 contributors include physicians, photographers, television producers, best-selling authors, filmmakers, professors, stay-at-home moms. They are never-married women, happily married women, divorced women, conservatives, liberals, and a few who regularly change their minds. They range in age from a teenager to grandmothers. Some preserved their dresses in museum-quality, acid-free, pH neutral boxes. Others eagerly donated them to thrift shops. The 120-page book sells for $10 and is available from Mill Park Publishing, Amazon.com and local stores. Some of the authors are available for readings and social functions. For more information, contact Elaine Ambrose at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Monday, 26 September 2011 18:37

Liberals, Laughter, and Larry the Cable Guy

Written by Elaine Ambrose

 I had intended to write about the recent Elizabeth Warren quote that many of my intelligent, creative friends are promoting as “the best thing ever written. Possibly ever.” I had intended to gently but respectfully explain how this Marxist philosophy of class warfare seeks to take from the hard-working job creators, the achievers, the entrepreneurs, the risk-takers, inventors, and major tax-payers and give in larger proportion to the underachievers, the mediocre, the government, the lawyers, and the constant complainers. In my opinion, Comrade Warren is the Pied Piper of the new Proletariat.

But then my brother gave us tickets to see Larry the Cable Guy in Jackpot, Nevada. I laughed until I hurt, and now I feel so good that I don’t care if my friends become dedicated followers of the teachings of Mao Tse-Tung. (Just don’t take away my factory, if I choose to build one.)

The world is bloated with chronic stress, angst, and anger, and the only cure is a massive enema of laughter. It truly is the best medicine. Last night, the audience sat in cheap, plastic chairs in front of a bare stage as a chubby guy in combat shorts and a sleeveless, plaid shirt made them cry and howl for ninety minutes with his irreverent jokes and saucy humor. And, they paid their money in exchange for the joy of being happy. Last night, Larry the Cable Guy made thousands of dollars and flew away in a Lear jet. He earned every penny.

During the show, more than 3,000 people in the audience didn’t care if they were the boss or the employee. They didn’t care that it’s the factory owner who takes the risks to create jobs and pay the salaries that are taxed so that roads and schools can be built. They came to forget the political and social manipulation of organizations on the left (and the right) that seek only to divide, distract, and destroy our country.

I can’t convince my liberal friends to understand why I believe organizations such as MoveOn.org are promoting the Elizabeth Warren speech in order to penalize and diminish entrepreneurship and to advocate dependence upon the government. Conversely, my liberal friends can’t convince me that the individuals who created great inventions and took risks to start businesses should pay even more to those who didn’t try or sacrifice as much.

Instead of wasting time and energy on unproductive debate, friends should go to comedy shows and laugh until milk (wine, beer, water) runs out their noses. Friends who laugh together can acknowledge and honor their individual differences. Then they can walk away lighter, happier, and momentarily stress-free. And, if someone continues to argue, in the immortal words of Larry the Cable Guy, "Just call 'em a peckerhead." 

Monday, 26 September 2011 16:15

Hand Gestures as Dialogue

Written by Elaine Ambrose

 We took the bus to Noussa, a dusty old fishing village on the Greek island of Paros. The travel guide had warned of primitive conditions, so we weren't shocked when we noticed a group of fishermen casually talking to each other as they urinated off the public dock into the water. Their catch of the day hung from wooden racks: flat silver fish with sharp teeth, round black fish with white eyes, squid with wispy tendrils of upended suction cups.

 We walked through the narrow maze of stone streets past whitewashed buildings, tiny shops, lazy cats sleeping in the sun. The air was heavy with the smells of incense, tobacco, and wild roses.   We stopped at a sidewalk cafe near the ocean and ordered sharp cheese, crusty bread with olive oil, and beer.

 When traveling, I try to locate water closets (bathrooms) with the same zeal that I search for ancient castles and new wine bars. Noussa was becoming a bit of a challenge, and by late afternoon, I regretted   the second beer. We entered a small grocery store tended by a matronly, black-toothed woman. "Toilet?" I asked. The woman shook her head, apparently not understanding. to

 "Bano?" I implored, holding both palms up. No response. Words from my Greek phrase book were useless.

 Finally, with a bit of urgency, I showed my travel packet of toilet paper and plunked down a euro coin on the wooden counter.

 "Ah," she replied, nodding her head. She took a broken pencil and drew a simple map on the back of my book. I smiled and hurried to follow the map like an eager explorer with directions to the Holy Grail. I found the water closet, a tiled room with two foot rests and a hole in the ground. I'd seen these before, and can attest that strong thigh muscles are necessary to be successful. There was no sink, so I washed my hand with the wipes I carry - almost as necessary as my passport.

 Later, as we hiked back to the port, we passed the woman's shop and I waved to her.

 "Good-bye," she called in English. We laughed, and then turned toward the bus stop.

Friday, 02 September 2011 13:16

Here Comes the Bride's Wedding Dress Book

Written by Elaine Ambrose

Today with the simple click of the send key, 133 pages of our new book, Little White Dress, are magically traveling through cyberspace to the printer, less than one month from the evening we gathered to write about “the dress.”

Technical details: The book will be 4-3/4 inches by 7-7/16 inches, with a perfect binding, black ink on 60# white paper, and have a four-color cover with gloss UV coating. ISBN is 978-0-9728225-7-2. Price is $10.

Creative details: The book shares cheers, tears and fears from 24 women whose relationship with a wedding dress (or two) made a profound impact on their lives.

The book’s authors include physicians, photographers, television producers, best-selling authors, filmmakers, professors, and stay-at-home moms. We have never-married, divorced, gay, and happily married women, and even a former nun. Ages range from a high school teen to grandmothers. The stories will touch, inspire, and surprise.

Little White Dress will be printed, bound, packed into cartons, and delivered in October, less than two months after Liza Long wrote a post on Facebook about finding used wedding dresses at thrift shops. Liza’s message prompted powerful responses from women who wanted to write about “the dress.” So, of course, we decided to write a book and invite other authors to contribute. With an added hook, we decided to write it in one day and complete publication by October. Done.

Liza set up a Facebook page and sent a call for entries. Then we met at my house on August 8 for the initial writing. Some of the authors are from out of state, so they emailed their stories and poems.   Liza formatted the text and designed the cover with a dynamite photo from local photographer Amber Daley. I secured a printing bid and other publication details and then laughed and cried my way through the stories. Our talented friend Amanda Turner assisted with copyediting. We expanded the book by 33 pages, and decided to donate a portion of the proceeds to Dress for Success. We finished the final edit at Liza’s house on September 1.  

Our stories and poems about wedding dresses incorporate our passionate dreams, some fulfilled, some destroyed. The stitches of our dresses create significant pieces in the fabric of our lives. (Cue Carole King singing “Tapestry.”) Stay tuned for book signing events and festive holiday parties. Wedding dress, optional.

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