Category Archives: Poet

Meet Sue and Join The Sue Vincent Rodeo Classic

I’m happy to announce an exciting event in this blogging family. We gather around to cheer and support one of our own – Sue Vincent.

Sue is living in the south of England. She is a poet, a commissioned painter, an accomplished writer, and a director of the Silent Eye, a modern mystery School. She is a supper-supportive blogger at Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo where she hosts the weekly #WritePhoto challenge and posts all the works from the participants, and writes #Midnighthaiku. She invites bloggers to guest post on her “Be My Guest.” Click any link to find more about Sue or participate in her #WritePhoto at https://scvincent.com/2021/01/28/thursday-photo-prompt-guarded-writephoto, or read her #midnighthaiku at https://scvincent.com/2021/01/29/gifts-midnighthaiku-5.

I love landscape painting and chose this as Sue’s sample paintings.

Oil on Canvas by Sue Vincent

Sue has been a caretaker of her son for 11+ years since he suffered from the traumatized attack. Besides the challenge, she was diagnosed with lung cancer. This is the time she would appreciate the support when she can’t run full speed because of the side effect and the exhaustion from the treatment, plus the impact from the Covid pandemic.

Carrot Rach has created a Rodeo Classic to orchestrate the support event. It calls for a 99-words flash fiction contest. To take part, you write a flash fiction story of 99 words or a poem of 99 syllables, using the photo prompt at Carrot Ranch to find the “Hidden” Inspiration, and enter the contest using a form on the post, then you’d be invited take part in a small donation to support Sue.

“Each story needs to have a beginning, middle and end. Poems must have distinctive theme, movement, and rhythm; no rhyme scheme is necessary, but neither will rhyme be punished…” – H.R.R.

There is a $100 grand prize and five runners up will each receive one paperback from Sue’s collection of published books (those who live in a region where the paperback is unavailable may receive an e-Book instead).

The contest will close at midnight on Friday, February 19, 2021. Winning entries will be announced and read at CarrotRanch.com/blog on March 22, 2021.

I hope you would participate and enjoy the fun!

* * *

You may find Books by Sue Vincent and those written with Stuart France available in paperback and for Kindle via Amazon.

Sue Vincent – UK – USA – France – Germany – Japan – and India.

Stuart France: UKUSFranceGermanyJapan and India

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Blog Tour of Magical Whispers by Balroop Singh

I’m delighted to have my fellow poet Balroop Singh here to celebrate the new release of her latest poetry book Magical Whispers. Please join me for the party and share her excitement.

Party Size Cheese Platter - My Sweet Zepol

The book cover is magical. Don’t you think? Now let me have Balroop tell you about her book.

Thank you for hosting me, Miriam

Book Blurb:

I wait for whispers; they regale my muse. Whispers that can be heard by our heart, whispers that ride on the breeze to dispel darkness and ignite hope. I’m sure you would hear them through these poems if you read slowly.

‘Magical Whispers’ would transport you to an island of serenity; beseech you to tread softly on the velvety carpet of nature to feel the ethereal beauty around you. The jigsaw of life would melt and merge as you dive into the warmth of words.

In this book, my poems focus on whispers of Mother Nature, whispers that are subtle but speak louder than words and breathe a quiet message.

Each day reminds us

It’s the symphony of surroundings

That whisper life into us.

Book Information:

Title: Magical Whispers

Author: Balroop Singh

Genre: Poetry

Available at: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08KJQ6K5D


US
UK DE FR ES IT NL JP BR CA MX AU IN

Excerpt:

 Let’s get to know Balroop Singh

Balroop Singh

Author Bio:

Balroop Singh, a former teacher and an educationalist always had a passion for writing.  She is a poet, a creative non-fiction writer, a relaxed blogger and a doting grandma. She writes about people, emotions and relationships. Her poetry highlights the fact that happiness is not a destination but a chasm to bury agony, anguish, grief, distress and move on! No sea of solitude is so deep that it can drown us. Sometimes aspirations are trampled upon, the boulders of exploitation and discrimination may block your path but those who tread on undeterred are always successful.

When turbulences hit, when shadows of life darken, when they come like unseen robbers, with muffled exterior, when they threaten to shatter your dreams, it is better to break free rather than get sucked by the vortex of emotions.

A self-published author, she is the poet of Sublime Shadows of Life and Emerging From Shadows, both widely acclaimed poetry books. She has also written When Success Eludes, Emotional Truths Of Relationships Read FREE with Kindle Unlimited and Allow Yourself to be a Better Person.

Balroop Singh has always lived through her heart. She is a great nature lover; she loves to watch birds flying home. The sunsets allure her with their varied hues that they lend to the sky. She can spend endless hours listening to the rustling leaves and the sound of waterfalls. The moonlight streaming through her garden, the flowers, the meadows, the butterflies cast a spell on her. She lives in San Ramon, California.

You can visit her blog at: http://balroop2013.wordpress.com

Connecting links:

https://twitter.com/BalroopShado

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Emotional-Shadows/151387075057971

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7340810.Balroop_Singh

https://www.amazon.com/Balroop-Singh/e/B00N5QLW8U/ref=dp_byline_cont_pop_ebooks_1

https://www.pinterest.com/balroops

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Author Spotlight: Miriam Hurdle (w/ GIVEAWAY Contest) at This Is My Truth Now

Today I am honored to be featured on the Author Spotlight at James J. Cudney’s beautiful blog This is My Truth Now. He asked me interesting questions in this interview. I invite you to head over to read this interview and you may be surprised with some answers.

James J. Cudney

Today’s post is an author spotlight. You’ll get to know the author and the author’s books, view book covers and marketing campaigns, read an interview between the author and me, and discover where to learn more about the author’s work, including social media contact links. Let’s meet…

Miriam and I met a couple of years ago through our blogs. After chatting about books, life, and poetry, we began following one another and became friends. I thoroughly loved her book, as you’ll see below. I’m thrilled share more about her now…

About the Author

Miriam Hurdle is a multi-genre writer. She writes poetry, flash fiction, and short stories. Her poems are included in Letters to Gaia, Whispers and Echoes Issue 2, Whispers and Echoes Issue 3, and Outcast and More Words.

She is passionate about poetry and her favorite poets are Robert Frost with his poems “The Road Not Taken,” and Linda Pastan with her poem “To a Daughter Leaving Home.”

Music has rooted in her life. Being a soloist as a teenager led her to taking voice lessons and to have ongoing singing engagements. She continues to sing soprano in choral groups. Lyrics have a major influence in the natural flow of her melodic writing. She writes memoir in the form of poetry.

She took photos when the films were black and white. Photography is still her enjoyable hobby. Drawing and painting were also fun activities as a child. Her favorite was to draw a Japanese girl with big eyes, long hair, small lips and chin. She resumed drawing and watercolor painting several years ago. In her poetry collection, photos and paintings are included to illustrate the poems.

She earned a Doctorate of Education from the University of La Verne in California. After two years of rehabilitation counseling, fifteen years of public school teaching and ten years in school district administration, she retired and enjoys life with her husband in southern California. She makes frequent visit to her daughter, son-in-law and granddaughters in Portland, Oregon.

……

Interview Q&A

Hi Jay, thank you for your inviting me to appear on your blog for the Author Spotlight. It’s a privilege to share with you and your readers something about me.

  • What are your real, author, and/or pen names? What is your location?
    • Miriam Hurdle is my real name. I grew up in Hong Kong where I finished college and worked for several years before coming to the United States. While in Hong Kong, I taught Chinese as a Second Language in the Hong Kong Baptist University and the Chinese University of Hong Kong. I was also a Director of Children’s Department for Asian Outreach. At 26-years-old, I published four Children’s books. My boss was the editor. I worked closely with two in-house artists who designed the book covers and did the illustrations. I got in trouble once when I went into the darkroom to watch them developed the films of the photos for the books. My boss said I should be doing my job.
    • In the 1970s, I came to the United States for my graduate studies in the universities on the west coast and started working in 1980. After working for two years as a rehabilitation counselor, fifteen years as a teacher and ten years as a school district administrator, I retired. I have been living and working in southern California until now.
  •  How long have you been published? What titles and/or series have you published and with which publisher? Have you self-published any titles?
    • I published my poetry in October 2018. It was a memoir in poetic form. I underwent cancer treatment in 2009 and took several years to regain the momentum of life. In 2014, I started volunteer counseling, taking classes in watercolor painting, poetry, publishing, and chorale at Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI). OLLI offers non-credit courses with no assignments or grades to adults over age 50. Since 2001, Bernard Osher Foundation launched OLLI programs at 120 universities and colleges throughout the United States. Many of the instructors are retired professionals.
    • I also started a blog in 2014 but it didn’t take off until 2016. For the following two years, I wrote poems and posted on my blog almost every day. Come to think of it, during the 27 years of working, life was a clock perpetuated the clicking. Retirement allowed me to review, reflect, and reevaluate. My poems were overflowing as the results of thoughts and feelings touching many parts of my life. Nothing agreed with my heart better than choosing the title: Songs of Heartstrings: Poems of Gratitude and Beatitude for my book.
    • In early 2018, I thought of publishing a poetry book. I had heard of the rough road of traditional publishing. One author made a presentation about going through ten years of submitting manuscripts to the publishers but received nothing but rejections. By the end of the tenth year, a publisher approached her and wanted her to write a book on Autism of which she had no knowledge. She did a lot of research for that book which got her foot into publishing. She continued to do traditional publishing for many years until people recognized her name. She then republished all her books by self-publishing. I didn’t want to go through that route but checked out some publishers who charge fees to publish. One publisher would cost about $7,500 for publishing plus royalty for the life of the book. Recently, an acquaintance took a $10,000 loan to go with this publisher for her first book!
    • I wanted to learn about self-publishing. I purchased a “How to” package and studied for many months. By October 2018, I had designed the book cover, formatted the book and uploaded to Kindle Direct Publishing. That was the year Amazon transferred from Crate Space to KDP. It was a lot of work, but I had fun learning the process. I published the eBook and paperback. I uploaded the Word Document for the eBook many times, but my formatting got all messed up. Eventually I used Kindle Create to format and upload the eBook. It’s easier for paperback because I uploaded the PDF file. If I publish again, I will trust the professionals to have the job done faster.
  • Describe your goals as a writer. What do you hope to achieve in the next few years? What are you planning to do to reach these goals?
    • I will continue to write in many more years to come. There are two members in their 80s in my poetry class at OLLI. They are my inspiration because they still write new poems.
    • Publishing four children’s books in Hong Kong was an enjoyable experience, and it is still my passion. I took a children’s writing course 15 years ago to learn how to get into the children literature market. My full-time job as a school district administrator didn’t allow me to go too far with that. Recently, I uncovered some stories and started to revise them. I also have several WIP writing projects, but it’s too early to reveal them. These projects will keep me busy for many years.
  • Do you belong to any writing group? Which one?
    • The first year at OLLI, I took a Life Story writing class with about twenty members divided into small groups of five to read and provide feedback to each other. This year I’m in a Writing for Feedback class with members writing in different genres.
  • Do you think that the cover plays an important part in someone buying your book(s)?   Who designs your book covers?
    • I believe the book cover plays an important part to catch the eyes of a prospective reader. Once the cover catches the reader’s attention, the book has a chance to invite the reader to delve into the content. I received comments about my book cover long after the book was published. I designed my book cover by obtaining a free image and did some work to extend to image to the back of the paperback, also designed the front and back text. I played with the title and changed the wording many times before the final decision. Once the title was in a final stage, I searched the image that agreed with the title.
  • What is the craziest/funniest/most enjoyable thing you’re ever done in the name of research?
    • When I did the dissertation for my Doctor of Education, the research professor drew a big circle representing the scope of the research. Then he made a bunch of doodling and dots outside of the circle. He warned us to stay focus on our research. I remember that circle vividly whenever doing the research for my writing and tried not to get distracted. But when I researched again for another subject, I remembered certain information came across my mind in the previous research but was not saved in any folders. Subsequently, I created many subfolders and bookmarked a long list of links which may never be visited again.
  • Do you write full-time or part-time?
    • I do not write full time. I have many interests, such as painting, singing, photography, gardening and traveling. At OLLI, I joined a chorale group which performs three or four times a year. I inherited my dad’s green thumb. My two plum trees produced 1,100 plums last year There are twenty-four rose bushes plus other flowers. Many real estate agents approached us to list our home on the market because of the attractive presentation of the front yard. The photography and painting serve as illustrations for the poems in the poetry book.
  • What advice would you give to your younger and/or older self?
    • My personality is such that I keep looking forward. I reflect on the past but do not regret. Robert Frost’s famous poem The Road Not Taken influenced me. Here are the first and last stanzas:

“Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both

And be one traveler, long I stood

And looked down one as far as I could

To where it bent in the undergrowth;

*

I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.”

  • I believe who I am and what I have become are the accumulations of the past events, decisions, and experiences. Therefore, I could only give advice to my older self. I would tell myself to treasure my family and friends. Right now, I have the freedom to prioritize my life. I no longer need to build my career, so I should spend more time with them with people to build relationship. I don’t need any more fortune so I should focus on giving and not to expect anything in return. I want my family to remember me as someone who loves them and puts them first over myself as long as I could.

2019 New Apple Summer eBook Awards Solo “Medalist Winner” – Songs of Heartstrings

It is with great honor and humility to announce that my book ‘Songs of Heartstrings – Poems of Gratitude and Beatitude‘ was chosen as the solo “Medalist Winner” in the Poetry category of the 2019 New Apple Summer eBook Awards!

http://www.newappleliterary.com/2019ebook/2019ebookCat14.html

 

2019Medalist1000x1000

 

Winner

 

About New Apple – Literary Services for Independent Authors

New Apple was born in 2010 to help the growing number of independent authors in the southern Ohio area find their voice. Initially the venture was a support structure of authors, educators and readers pooling their efforts to share their resources and create local grassroots campaigns. Over the last nine years New Apple has grown and is now offering comprehensive marketing solutions to the world of independent authors.
The New Apple Book Awards for Excellence in Independent Publishing were created in 2013 to provide self-published and independent authors with a chance to showcase their work. New Apple’s Annual Book Awards were established to honor the creative achievements of the unsung books fighting for their place within the publishing world. Medals and Official Selections are awarded to winners in fiction and non-fiction categories as well as E-Book categories and one designation for Audiobooks.
New Apple continues to provide resources for independent authors attempting to navigate the waters of self-publishing. In 2014, New Apple added Book Reviews and editing services as well as the introduction of tweet blasting book announcements and giveaways. In 2015, New Apple launched their summer book awards program specifically targeted toward digital books.

http://www.newappleliterary.com/about.html

 

 

 

 

To a Daughter Leaving Home by Linda Pastan – re-post

linda-pastan

On May 27, 1932, Linda Pastan was born to a Jewish family in the Bronx. She graduated from Radcliffe College and received an MA from Brandeis University.

Among her publications are – Carnival Evening: New and Selected Poems 1968-1998 (W. W. Norton, 1998), which was nominated for the National Book Award; The Imperfect Paradise (W. W. Norton, 1988), a nominee for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize.

Linda Pastan lives in Potomac, Maryland.

I feature two of her poems. The first one makes me laugh and think. When I first read the title, I thought she was writing about her daughter going to college, or at a wedding. When I read on to the last line, I could feel her heart. Yes, our children leave us in different stages and different circumstances.

I found myself letting Mercy go little by little as she was growing up. Letting her go in a way of respect her to become independent but still stay close by to be her support. When Mercy was in fifth grade, she configured my first cell phone. When she was a young adult, she became my friend as remains to be my daughter. At the present, I rely on her expertise and am not afraid to ask.

~

To A Daughter Leaving Home by Linda Pastan

When I taught you
at eight to ride
a bicycle, loping along
beside you
as you wobbled away
on two round wheels,
my own mouth rounding
in surprise when you pulled
ahead down the curved
path of the park,
I kept waiting
for the thud
of your crash as I
sprinted to catch up,
while you grew
smaller, more breakable
with distance,
pumping, pumping
for your life, screaming
with laughter,
the hair flapping
behind you like a
handkerchief waving
goodbye.

The second poem evokes my reflection on the question: when am I most myself? I think it is ever since I had cancer. I reflect on life vs. death, health vs. sickness, essential vs. contemporary, personal right vs. relationship. I accept who I am and no interest in pretending. I’m satisfied with what I have and no ambition to acquire “one more.”

~

Something About the Trees by Linda Pastan

I remember what my father told me:
There is an age when you are most yourself.
He was just past fifty then,
Was it something about the trees that make him speak?

There is an age when you are most yourself.
I know more than I did once.
Was it something about the trees that make him speak?
Only a single leaf had turned so far.

I know more than I did once.
I used to think he’d always be the surgeon.
Only a single leaf had turned so far,
Even his body kept its secrets.

I used to think he’d always be the surgeon,
My mother was the perfect surgeon’s wife.
Even his body kept its secrets.
I thought they both would live forever.

My mother was the perfect surgeon’s wife,
I can still see her face at thirty.
I thought they both would live forever.
I thought I’d always be their child.

I can still see her face at thirty.
When will I be most myself?
I thought I’d always be their child.
In my sleep, it’s never winter.

When will I be most myself?
I remember what my father told me.
In my sleep, it’s never winter.
He was just past fifty then.

~

This is an expansion of Pantoum Poem Form from 4 stanzas to 7 stanzas.

Stanza 1: 1, 2, 3, 4
Stanza 2: 2, 5, 4, 6
Stanza 3: 5, 7, 6, 8
Stanza 4: 7, 9, 8, 10
Stanza 5: 9, 11, 10, 12
Stanza 6: 11, 13, 12, 14
Stanza 7: 13, 1, 14, 3

 

 

Book Review – Sublime Shadows of Life by Balroop Singh

Book Review – Sublime Shadows of Life by Balroop Singh

 

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Sublime Shadows Of Life by [SINGH, BALROOP]

 

Blurb

Sublime Shadows of Life is a comment on life, its turbulent curves and relationships. It envisions people through the prism of poetry. I, you, he, we and they are universal symbols which highlight the fact that happiness is not a destination but a chasm to bury agony, anguish, grief, distress and move on! No sea of solitude is so deep that it can drown us. Sometimes aspirations are trampled upon, the boulders of exploitation and discrimination may block your path but those who tread on undeterred are always successful.

 

My Recommendation

Sublime Shadows of Life is a beautiful poetry collection. Balroop Singh reflected on the painful and distressful past shadows found in unfulfilling desires, disappointment, confusion, discrimination, rejection, grieving, lost passion and loneliness. The poems voice the longing for education, justice, friendship, love and happiness yet life was caged in with clipped wings. The hope and attachment brought anguish and painful fall to cause withdrawal and detachment. The poet resolved that happiness is to smile at the shadows, find positive strength from within, pick up the threads of life, and move on to the success of future.

The poet skillfully depicts her personal and observed experiences which bear universal applications. Readers will enjoy the rich poems with deep emotions.

 

My Amazon and Goodreads Rating: 5.0 out of 5 stars

 

Balroop Singh

 

About Balroop Singh

Balroop Singh, an educationalist, a poet and an author always had a passion for writing. She would jot down her reflections on a piece of paper and forget about them till each drawer of her home started overflowing with poetic reminders, popping out at will! The world of her imagination has a queer connection with realism. She could envision the images of her own poetry while teaching the poems. Her dreams saw the light of the day when she published her first poetry book: ‘Sublime Shadows Of Life.’ She has always lived through her heart. She is a great nature lover; she loves to watch birds flying home. The sunsets allure her with their varied hues that they lend to the sky. She can spend endless hours listening to the rustling of leaves and the sound of waterfalls. She lives in San Ramon California.

 

Contact the Author:

Website: http://balroop2013.wordpress.com

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Balroop-Singh/e/B00N5QLW8U/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7340810.Balroop_Singh

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BalroopShado

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/balroop.singh1

 

Colleen’s Poetry Challenge – Spring Dance

It’s the first of the month! Happy April! Poets choose their own words!

 

 

I visited the nursery this morning to get new flowers. I brought a list with plants that attract bees, butterflies and hummingbirds.

The bees have been working hard to pollinate the plum and orange blossoms. The apple trees just budded. I want to have different flowers to attract the bees to stay around. Besides the fruit tree blossoms, I’ll plant sunflowers for the bees.

For the hummingbirds, there are two feeders, one in the front yard and one in the back. Yet I wanted to get flowers with nectar enjoyed by the hummingbirds. I only have Salvia flowers they like. So, I’ll make hanging baskets with petunia and hang them by the bird feeders.

There were Monarch and Mourning Cloak butterflies flying by my garden, but they visited the flowers in my next-door neighbor. I would like to have flowers attract them to stay longer. For the butterflies, I bought marigold and delphinium. I’ll get milkweed on my next trip.

 

Bitter cold is gone

Fresh fragrance drifts in the air

Chirping, fluttering

Answered the invitation

Creatures joined in the spring dance

~   ~   ~

Colleen’s Poetry Challenge – Spring Dance

Author, Miriam Hurdle | Songs of Heartstrings

I’m excited Author of “The Fall of Lilith” and “Son of the Serpent” Vashti Quiroz-Vega has me as Featured Author on her blog. She did a fabulous review of my poetry book. Her post also featured two of the poems. Please head over to read the entire post and find out about her books.

The Writer Next Door | Vashti Q

Hi, everyone! I hope you’ve had a great start to the new week.

Today I’m happy to introduce a lovely lady who also happens to be a wonderful poet and writer. She has a new release, a poetry book called, Songs of Heartstrings. Please help me welcome, Author, Miriam Hurdle.

miriam hurdle-Poetry-author-vashti quiroz vega-Vashti Q-blog tour-new_book-The Writer Next Door Author, Miriam Hurdle

About the Author

Miriam Hurdle is an Amazon Best-Selling Author. She writes poetry, flash fiction, short stories, and memoir. Her poems are included in Letters to Gaia, Whispers and Echoes Issue 2, Whispers and Echoes Issue 3, Outcast, and More Words.

She is passionate about poetry and her favorite poets are Robert Frost with his poems “The Road Not Taken,” and Linda Pastan with her poem “To a Daughter Leaving Home.”

Music has rooted in her life. Being a soloist as a teenager led her to taking voice lessons and to have ongoing singing…

View original post 770 more words

Colleen’s Poetry Challenge – Poet’s Choice of Words

Colleen’s 2019 Weekly #Tanka Tuesday #Poetry Challenge No. 126, “Poet’s Choice of Words”

 

The last eight weeks, our family went through many special occasions and experienced extreme emotions.

My nephew got married on January 19 this year. He met Summer when they studied for the master’s degree program. Enoch speaks Cantonese and Summer speaks Mandarin. During their courtship, they learned each other’s language. Of course, Summer’s parents speak Mandarin and my sister Yolanda, her husband Patrick and their daughter Eva speak Cantonese. Some family and friends speak English. So, the wedding was conducted in three languages. The vows in the wedding ceremony were done in Mandarin. During the break of the evening wedding banquet, Enoch serenaded Summer in Cantonese. It was the most romantic song I had ever heard.

The wedding was a whole day event. The groom and best men played the games responding to the bridesmaids when picking up the bride in the morning. The church wedding followed by a garden cake cutting ceremony in the afternoon, and the nine-course banquet in the evening.

The family and friends rejoiced with the young couple and celebrated the new beginning of their marriage.

 

IMG_2202 Read more

Colleen’s Weekly Tuesday Poetry Challenge: Origin & Write – A Newborn in the Family

The prompt words for Colleen’s Tuesday Poetry Challenge No. 125 are “Origin & Write” – #SynonymsOnly

Image result for images of new born baby with mother and father

A Newborn in the Family

What

A joy

To welcome

Baby Tori

My niece’s first child

Into the family

Eager waiting is over

Magic of baby’s first cry

Cast away worries and doubts in mind

Mother’s painful labor forgotten

Holding and beholding the miracle

Amazed by life’s fresh beginning

Overwhelming excitement

Shared by parents, grandparents

Siblings, aunts and uncles

New page of a book

Invites us all

To pen in

Colored

Stroke

~ ~ ~

Colleen’s Poetry Challenge – Origin & Write #SynonymsOnly

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