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What is "Under the Silvery Moon"?

"Under the Silvery Moon" is an award winning children's book with a message for all ages written in honor of our military personnel and their families.  This book won the 2016 Best Book Award for Children's Non-Fiction!

Why was this book written?

"Under the Silvery Moon" was written when the author could find very few books to which children of military families could relate, as she searched for books for her Marine son's first child.  


Here is my take on "Under the Silvery Moon".  First I have to admit that it made me cry. As a Marine and combat veteran there is not much left that can do that, so thank you. I have never seen or heard of a children's story that comes from the perspective of a child with a deployed service member as a parent. Not only does this story speak directly to these children, but it gave me as a parent and veteran a unique look into my own children's lives. Also, providing the perspective from more than just one culture was inspiring! With so many children, parents, and families going through the burden of military deployments it lifts my heart to know there is finally something out there that speaks directly to them. I have personally been working to help veterans and their families for almost three years. One of the key issues I hear about is how few the resources are for the immediate family members of veterans. The life of a veteran is very taxing, not only for the veteran but their spouse and children as well. These families quietly carry a very heavy burden and yet I have never heard of anything that speaks directly to them until now. Thank you so much for having the heart to write for them! I truly hope to see more books from you and hope that we can raise awareness regarding the price our military families pay. God Bless!        Justin Howard (USMC)  Chief Operations Officer  Operation Stand Down KY  1888-574-1736/270-606-2422  "Executing the Promise"

"Under the Silvery Moon" by Diana Hankla, is a book that is  unlike any other I have ever read.  When I read the book for the very first time, I was overcome with emotions.  I personally related to this book as military spouse and the mother of a young child.  Military children are a part of “a club”.  It is not something that they choose or have a say in changing.  They serve their country every single day no matter what that requires of their family.  Can you imagine as a child what that must be like?  To constantly have questions, to lack the ability to understand the problems of the world that even as adults we cannot understand.  Not only does this book personally tell a story to me, but it does to anyone who picks it up to read.  I work every day with members of the military, Veterans, spouses, children and Gold Star families who have lost their service member in action.  I have helped numerous groups in our area sponsor this book for military children.  I believe in this story because I have witnessed the impact through the eyes of so many children and families.  I assist families that have service members deployed and have children who struggle or experience the birth of a child into the military lifestyle. Immediately, I provide them with a copy of "Under the Silvery Moon".  Children connect with this story on such a deep level and the illustrations help them see the world in the eyes of their service member.  At the age of two, my daughter sat down with a copy of the book for the first time.  She flipped through the pages and she looked intently at each page.  She kept flipping slowly and then she stopped, looked up at me with a grin and said, “That’s my daddy”.  She kept the page open and hugged it over and over again.  Still, almost two years later, that is the first page she flips to, smiling when she sees the picture of the soldier staring back at her.  Military life is not an easy life and it is very difficult to explain to a child.  Mrs. Hankla has bridged that gap for military families all over the world.  I have shared this book with every branch of service and children of all ages.  Each family is different. They have deployed to different countries, been away for different lengths of time, traveled to those countries in many ways, but the same is true for all of them.  This book has shown hundreds of children that they are special, they are not forgotten, they are brave and their service member misses them.  Although they are far apart in distance, all they have to do is see the moon to know they are always in the heart of their service member.    Danielle Rice Family Assistance Specialist (Contractor) Glasgow, KY

Free copy of "Under the Silvery Moon" to all Veterans!

If you are an active duty member of the military, or a veteran and would like a copy of "Under the Silvery Moon", please contact the author to receive one.

Retreat a Success

CONGRATULATIONS!                     Authors & Artist Retreat           Heart to Heart Publishing, Inc.         A Great Successful Event at Barren River Lake                On June 9, 2018, Heart to Heart authors gathered for a Saturday full of teaching, tips, and ideas on the subject of marketing. The weekend was hosted by award-winning author and owner of Heart to Heart Publishing, Inc., Linda J. Hawkins. The beautiful, Barren River Lake venue, where attendees were welcome to relax, learn and enjoy, was provided by author & poet, Donna Hix Bewley. Every author invited was asked to bring a copy of their book for a surprise activity by the end of the day.        The morning began with a lavish breakfast of Donna Bewley's made-to-order omelets with choice of vegetables, meats, and cheese filling as attendees began to arrive in groups and pairs. Also available were toast and pastries, granola and every sort of breakfast beverage. Multiple trays of fruit with nearly every kind imaginable, including New Zealand yellow kiwi, were brought by the author, Donna G. Hankla. Everything was delicious!        After breakfast, the whole group moved out to the covered deck as Linda demonstrated many tangible marketing tools, such as banners, printers and multiple varieties or signage. Many of the tall, standing displays were able to fold down as a carry-on for travel. Every guest received a gift package, as well, full of many kinds of marketing & publicity items like bookmarks, postcards, calendars, and catalogs—all available on order from Heart to Heart. Throughout the day, there would also be generous door prizes drawn for many author attendees.        Diana G. Hankla's topic was focused on her experience at a New York author summit, what to expect, and whether it was worth it. She handed out materials on her books: Under the Silvery Moon & Hope Island, as well as a press sheet sample, demonstrating how authors need to print these on thick paper for a memorable impression. Many tips for authors were tucked into the narrative of her trip to New York. She also spoke on her passion for helping the children of military servicemen and women through her children's book for military families, and everyone was moved by her message on these “invisible children” who provide our nation's freedom.        Writer and editor, Nicki Bishop, shared marketing tips focused on connecting with the reader. The topic included how to define the reader of each book, how to determine the core message which will enrich the reader's life and combining the two to develop a creative marketing plan. After a potluck lunch featuring barbecued pork and sides with yummy desserts and more luscious fruit, Nicki concluded her talk by focusing on social media tips, extended learning as well as article writing opportunities, and a quick overview of the GDPR regulations and where to find information on it.        Megan Durham, Instructional and Educational resource Designer for Heart to Heart Publishing, Inc., brought valuable information for authors on education. She takes her experience in classrooms and her concrete knowledge of Common Core Standards to provide Heart to Heart authors with lesson plans and educational materials to get their books in schools. She challenges students to think critically and comprehend with age and grade-specific questions, activities, and worksheets. Megan passed around samples of a lesson plan based on author, Laura Grail’s Blue Dust Days. Her resource design, used to generate a wider influence on each author's work, are available for all Heart to Heart authors upon request.        Author & photographer, Susan J. Mitchell was next to take the floor with valuable experience on hosting a book signing. One special tip was that even if an author thinks they don't have a mailing list, they probably have many more people than they think. She shared for authors to send printed postcards with a handwritten message to each author's “nearest and dearest list.” “Not everyone who I sent a postcard to came,” Susan said, “but everyone who came was one I sent a postcard to.” Other tips included were to always find out what the venue provides to make the list of what you will provide. Next, always bring more books than you think you will sell—you may be surprised! Last, but not least, make sure to send the bookstore owners a thank you card!        Linda Hawkins wrapped up the eventful day by sharing a list of all the many places she has been invited to speak and sell her books. Complete with stories, there were many “nuggets” to glean from her wealth of experience on places to go, opportunities to seek out and magazines to review the books of each author. The strangest place, Linda shared, she has ever been asked to an event was to a graveyard for a historical tour hosted by the D.A.R. (Daughters of the American Revolution). It was both an interesting and memorable experience!        And what was that surprise activity involving every author's book? A live elevator pitch, of course! The “elevator pitch” or “elevator speech” is a great way to condense the theme of a book down to a sentence or two, roughly thirty seconds. Each author was able to practice giving this short speech while holding their book for everyone to see in no more time than it takes to ride in an elevator. This little gem is a practical tool for authors anywhere—from school visits to theme events to book signings, being able to speak concisely on the theme of a book is one of the best marketing tools for any author!     And the exciting highlight of the day was the $3000.00 dollars in door-prizes given away throughout the day.     We only wished every author & artist could have been there.           Editor: Nicki Bishop

Facts About Military Children

There are nearly 4 million children of military families in the United States under the age of 18.  These children are often called the "invisible children" because no one thinks of the sacrifices they make in order for their parent or parents to fight for our freedom.


Check out this great interview with Ric Bratton on         "This Week in America".

Author's Video

Check out this great author's video