Writing is easy say some, just sit and stare at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead . . .

OMG, I have to read in order to be a writer!

I like to give you something juicy right away. I make a point of opening my novels with a violent scene, with action, which then reveals a major change in the life of my character(s). Right away, the reader gets complexity, layers and a surprise shift of frame of reference.

By the time I finish writing, I realize that my outline had fallen out the window, the window slid shut, never mind outlines. Without my plan, who knows what my characters next move would be. Characters surprise me, they don’t follow the outline. They know what they want and how to get it, even if I don’t. The point is, write, relax, flee from friction, don’t stop. It’s your inner genius that’s writing, not you. Don’t worry about impressing agents or editors, there’s always time to rewrite. Trust me! Not once, not twice, but who’s counting.

I asked myself, why am I writing this book. Is it informative, evocative, life changing? Nope, history, I taught history, writing gives me a chance to write history. I love a fairy tale romance, like Romeo and Juliet. Is that reason enough to torture myself? Evidently, because here I am writing historic romance, my second book is evolving.

All writers are vain, selfish, and lazy, and at the very bottom of their motives there lies a mystery. Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand.

–George Orwell, “Why I Write,” 1946







Tom on the left, and my two sons, Rick & Paul by the window

Tom Claus, my hubby (hung this show, and all shows here) on the left, and my two sons, Rick & Paul Ingis by the window.

Coney Island Nathan's Backyard 24x36 Oil/Linen

A portrait of Coney Island Nathan’s Backyard 24×30 Oil/Linen

Sunday past my friend and colleague, Louise Forester, said, “Your paintings of Coney Island  — so powerful and evocative of a special time and place!”

The Big Swing (my ride) 24x24" Oil/Aluminum

The Big Swing (a favorite ride) 24×24″ Oil/Aluminum

How lovely a statement.

Coney Island Crowds 36x36 Oil/Anodized Aluminum

Coney Island Crowds 36×36 Oil/Anodized Aluminum

I painted each work, my heart and head filled with memories. The project began about six years ago when painting with my portrait artist mentor, Laurel Boech, who said,

Gail & Laurel in front of the Wonder Wheel Oil 48x60"

Gail & Laurel in front of the Wonder Wheel Oil 48×60″

“You love painting portraits of architecture. Why not make this work of Coney Island a theme and paint images from your memories?” I grabbed my brush and off I went.  Within this time frame, writing a romance got between my brush and ability to paint and write simultaneously.


Book Signing

Book Signing at my party–September 8th, Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum

Soul Mate Publishing accepted my book, Indigo Sky–then I finished painting my project . . . finally!





Gail & Henry Swing

This party was a completion celebration of both the paintings and my published book, Indigo Sky. We rounded out the evening with a book- signing and dancing to the musical sounds of the 1960s.



Investmark Financial band (great investment advisors, terrific musicians)

Investmark Financial band (great investment advisors, terrific musicians)

Judy, Gail & Marjorie, all of us artists

Artists Judy, Gail & Marjorie

Catered by Susan Kane, bartender Ivan, music by Investmark Financial (Yup, our financial advisors are also great musicians). Dancing.

Son Rick and me dancing

Dancing with my son Rick

Sons, Rick & Paul, Daughters-in-law, Joanne & Tammy, guests too numerous to count, volunteers with the mansion,

Susy Gilgore, Executive Director

Susy Gilgore, Executive Director, Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum



Monika & Henry

Monika & Henry


Special thanks to Monika & Henry for their talents!

Thank you to photographer, Alan B. Weaver, for his impromptu photographs, and to my son, Paul Ingis, for the video, on youtube. Thanks to Susy Gilgore and Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum, an outstanding venue for any event.



fwFireworks fwFireworks-History-Gear-Patrol-Lead- fwfourth-of-july-fireworks-statue-of-liberty fw1Fireworks fw4th_fireworks sofliberty fw0701_fire_crop fw1024px-Artilleryshells1 fw1024px-Hogmanay_Party fw1024px-Miamifireworks fw1280px-1_epcot_illuminations_2010 Inspired by the fireworks, and my painting project of Coney Island, I’m writing a few memories. Those fireworks bring back more than my youth at the beach. They bring up the history of our freedom and the celebration of it all.

Enjoy this reblog. It was the mid-20th century, Tuesday night. The day and sunshine used up . . . riding, swimming, volleyball, handball. Time to cuddle on a beach blanket. Uh oh, wait a minute . . . did I say cuddle? No, it was time to watch the fireworks. Didn’t you say that’s what you were doing Tuesday night after a day at the beach? Who watched the fireworks? Did I? Did you? With my friends in many summers — I did watch the fireworks, a privilege of living close to Brooklyn’s Coney Island, a short train ride away from where I lived in Boro Park. Coney Island was the last stop! The sky was filled with color. The sounds filled the air with the fragrance of the fireworks powder wafting under our noses, magical. No one knew where to find anyone. Maybe on the sand, maybe on blankets, maybe in shadows under the boardwalk. That’s what Tuesday night was about. After a full day of fun, we all hung around to enjoy each other and the venue.

What started this thing called fireworks? The earliest records of fireworks dates back to 7th century China where they were first used to frighten away evil spirits with their loud sound and to pray for happiness and prosperity.

America’s earliest settlers brought their enthusiasm for fireworks to the United States. Fireworks and black ash were used to celebrate important events long before the American Revolutionary War. The very first celebration of Independence Day was in 1777, six years before Americans knew whether the new nation would survive the war; fireworks were a part of all festivities. In 1789, George Washington‘s inauguration was also accompanied by a fireworks display. This early fascination with their noise and color continues today.

In 2004, Disneyland in Anaheim, California, pioneered the commercial use of aerial fireworks launched with compressed air rather than gunpowder. The display shell explodes in the air using an electronic timer. The advantages of compressed air launch are a reduction in fumes, and much greater accuracy in height and timing.

The Walt Disney Company is the largest consumer of fireworks in the United States.

NOW: Friday Night Fireworks – Luna Park in Coney Island lunaparknyc.com/events/friday-night-fireworks-5/

Luna Park, Coney Island

Join Coney Island for Friday Night Fireworks. The show starts at 9:30pm every Friday night during the season. Friday Night Fireworks start the last weekend in June and conclude the Friday before Labor Day. Friday Night Fireworks are brought to you by the Alliance for Coney Island.

Who doesn’t love to see and hear fireworks? What do you think of fireworks?

Thanks to Wikipedia for all the links. Below, is the link to Independence Day, but all are Wikipedia.


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