2018: SAVOR the Moment

2018: SAVOR the Moment

Happy 2018!!

Thank you to all my faithful readers who still follow this blog ūüôā

What a roller coaster of a year 2017 was. I’m looking forward to things slowing down a bit so that I can savor the moment!

I’m also studying a lot and my writing is on an upward growth curve. I’m back so don’t think that I’ve abandoned this blog that I started back in the summer of 2011. My oh my, how time flies when we’re having fun!

Eva Santiago COPYRIGHT 2018

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Book review: Salsa! The Taste of Life

by Michelle Cutler

February 27, 2013

Local author Eva Santiago’s stories are inspired by world travel and multi-cultural background.

“There are times when a person is called to starve those things that need to die and to feed those things that need to grow,” she writes in Salsa! The Taste of Life. Her second book, a collection of poetry and fictitious short stories set in locations from Bogota to Bavaria,represents the experiences that flavor Santiago’s life.

Salsa! will have a special appeal for young adults and people who are familiar with Colombian literature. Many of the short stories and narrative poetry pieces, including ‘A Burro Named Churro’, incorporate traditional Colombian humor which may go undetected by non-Colombians.Yet, the stories are simple and written to entertain a universal audience. Parents of young teenagers in any culture will identify with her first story, ‘Capers or Sandals?’

The book is also seasoned with lyrical poetry. ‘Smooth’, one of the shortest poems, sharply depicts a deceived lover and packs a powerful punch as Salsa!’s habanero ¬†pepper. ‘Mi Familia‘ was written as a tribute to Santiago’s siblings, who were separated in youth after her parents died. It is a tender, personal piece that Santiago said represents heaven.

While it’s an easy and overall light read, Salsa!boldly critiques a number of social issues including religion, abortion, and racism. ‘The Race Card‘ is a candid commentary that stems from Santiago’s experience of taking on her mixed-race heritage. Recalling a time when her own family members rejected her because of her mixed race, she wrote:

‚Ķ that’s when I packed up my bags;

I threw out the board game,

And burned all of their cards.

I learned to travel light,

And I love all people, and treat ’em the same.

I learned to pray, and that’s how I fight.

Parenthood is a prevailing theme throughout the book. Several stories depict imperfect men who try to be good fathers. Santiago also makes an interesting statement, portraying both nurturing and selfish mothers and prompts female readers to evaluate where they personally rest on the spectrum.

Many of the stories are warm and reminiscent of a mother telling a bedtime story. Santiago’s writings are much like the anecdotal conversations mothers often use to share their memories, wisdom,convictions, and warnings with their children. If you are nostalgic for those mother-child moments, or never experienced them and would like to give them a try, you might consider keeping this book handy and reading it periodically. Indeed, it could be like keeping a mom in your pocket.

Perhaps Salsa!’s most surprising ingredients are a few pieces written by Santiago’s daughter, Esther Starr. Readers will be surprised to learn that Starr was only 13 when she wrote ‘Nightmare in Jerusalem‘ and ‘Don’t Go’, as her writing reveals talent and insight beyond her years.

Eva Santiago and Salsa! The Taste of Life will be featured at a book signing event at Book Boutique, 19 W. Pacific Ave.on Saturday, Feb. 23 from noon to 2 p.m.For more information visit evasantiago.wordpress.com.


Salsa high res cover



I just wanted to share some pictures and a few of the details that went into making my book launch for Salsa! The Taste of Life a hit! I met up with a couple of fellow writers, M Cid D’Angelo and Toni Pacini who really showed love and support. Receiving encouragement from your peers is great!

I had Vital Germaine, another fellow writer read for me in the early part of the day. He did an amazing job too!

Performers Jaelyn Denise and Darla Beaux brought joy to the whole day with their amazing talents.

My neighbor who lives in back of me, offered her artistic skills by doing great face painting, which many enjoyed.

At the end of the day I read 3 excerpts from my book to a full house. I shared the poem I dedicated to my family,MI FAMILIA, and  my own strong emotions caught me off guard , when I gave thanks to my long deceased parents.You never know how your own words will affect you as you share them with an audience.

After my readings several people came up and congratulated me saying that they felt what I wrote and could picture what I describe clear as day. Folks, THAT was the topping to end my wonderful day! That is why I write; so you my amazing readers can feel the music of my heart and picture what I see when I close my eyes. When you read me, I hope to take you places far away and touch your soul all at the same time. If I don’t ,I’m not doing my job as a writer ūüôā

A warm thank you goes to ALL who helped me put my event together and to ALL who stopped in to celebrate my book! You all are the BEST and so are YOU my dear readers!!!

I am still on cloud 9 and not ready to land yet!! Happy Sunday!!!

EVA SANTIAGO copyright 2012

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30 Day Blog Challenge: Day 20

Please refer back to my earlier posts and read what this challenge is about so that the later posts make sense :)

Day 20 Question #20: Besides something directly related to the family (i.e., the birth of a child), what has been the most exciting day of your life?

Answer: It’s Sunday so I looked for an easy question! The day I received the first copy of my first self-published book came to mind right away when I read this question. ¬†I began ¬†writing the book in 2007 and it was the most amazing journey I have ever under taken. ¬†Writing your own life story is very difficult; I had to fight the nagging inner voices that whispered¬†things like: You aren’t famous, who’d want to read about your life when you haven’t gone to the moon or stood on the red carpet? Everyday I had to keep believing in myself and fight all the negative voices of the past as well. Having the support of my husband and kids helped me out tremendously.

Since I was self-publishing, I had to save up my own money to meet my publishing goals. One night after my kids had received their allowance from their dad, one by one they ¬†gave me their allowance and told me that they wish they could help me more. I was dumbfounded and as I’m recalling this right now, I’m getting a little choked up all over again. And so they continued, every time they got money from their dad, they immediately put it in my hand for my book.

I wrote my book for several reasons but the most important ones were: For my own personal healing and closure to my trauma filled past. Secondly, I wrote it in the hopes that others would be helped.  Lastly, I wrote AS CLEAR AS CLAIRE GETS,   A CONVERSATION WITH THE PAST, as part of the legacy I want to leave my kids and my future ancestors.

I compare the writing and birthing of my book to a type of birthing of  a new baby. The pain was there for sure as I revisited some of the most painful memories of my childhood; once I wrote about it though I would feel free.  As I continued to bury those things that tormented me in the pages of my book, I was giving birth to a new, more empowered version of myself. The day the UPS truck delivered my first author copy, I liken that to the same profound joy I felt every time after I had labored for a while only to end up holding a beautiful baby in my arms.

I urge you, whoever you are reading this, whatever you dream of doing, don’t put it off anymore. Fight past the nay sayers and the self doubt and take it step by step. Making your dream a reality is the one and only path ¬†to your destiny. Go and fear no more because the only thing we really fear, is fear itself. ¬†The definition of fear is this: False Evidence Appearing Real. Go make it happen!!

William Shakespeare from Julius Caesar

WRITER’S BLOCK: Myth or Fact?

Le refuge du marais...!!!

A while back my Mama and I were discussing “writer’s block“. My second daughter has also asked ¬†me what I think about it. I ¬†believe there isn’t such a thing as “writer’s block”; I told my Mama and my daughter, ¬†why further torture yourself when you haven’t anything to say. You see this is what I know from my own personal experience as a writer. I write when I have something to say; during those times when I don’t, I know my creative flow is marinading in its own juices, so why not be at peace with it instead of beating your creative being up?

I see it as a time of reflection, when I go out and enjoy life and with my mental camera, ¬†I’m snapping snap shots of life away and filing them for later use. So let me encourage you today by saying: Walk away from the writer’s block that only exists in your head! At times all we really need is rest from our work.

One last thought, we’re not machines that are constantly up and running. The creative process in everyone is as distinct and unique as our own¬†¬†finger prints; I know this to be fact because we are all wired differently so that no two people think alike. Think I’m kidding? Than I suggest you read THE GIFT IN YOU by Dr. Caroline Leaf.¬†


I wanted to share this with you, it was written by one of the members in my writing group yesterday. She asked to be kept anonymous and I shall respect her wishes. One thing I must say is that this lovely young woman has the potential to be a  great writer one day. By coming to my group, I hope to unlock the writer within her. Thanks my friend for allowing me to share this!



This place is very still,

unlike the world around it

which bustles about it impatiently.

It is at rest,

yet somehow searching

like the people inside it:

Peaceful and wondering –

at least for the moment.

-ANONYMOUS 4-7-2011