The Elemental Press

Write from the Inside

is an e-zine for writers with heart


Yes, that means YOU!

We  are all writers, we all have heart and there are many forms to practice ...

letter writing, journal writing, story writing, your own "story tale" 

and much, much more.


The intention of this e-zine is to provide inspiration, information and stories to aid in: 




Published by Lissa Ann Forbes

You can look forward to the next issue of Write from the Inside on August 29,  2004


ISSUE #10: August 6, 2004

Present Your Own  “Hero” Awards

  • Are there people in your life you have not given appropriate acclaim to? Family members, friends, nameless mentors, folks you meet in the grocery store who bring so much cheer to a transaction that you leave with a bounce in your step that wasn’t there before?

  • Are there actors, writers, speakers, singers you admire? Have their performances inspired you to change your life, try something new, end a behavior that no longer serves you?

  • Have you ever given a stellar presentation? Did you let it go unnoticed or even diminish its value? Yes, you can be your own hero.

At times it doesn't take much to inspire me. The subject of this issue was triggered as I watched a rerun of 7th Heaven not long ago. You may remember it. Ruthie Camden was pen-paling with a Marine in Afghanistan in early 2002. Sgt. Dwight J. Morgan died in our efforts against terrorism shortly after 9/11. Yes, he was a real person. I was touched by the way Ruthie chose to honor this man. She asked her father, a minister, to hold a memorial service at their local church and she sang a song she was sure Sgt. Morgan would have like, "Don't Back Down."

  • I encourage you to think about those who have made an impact on your life. 

  • Write a story about them, how they effected you. Paint the picture of the moment you realized they made a difference specific to you.

  • Write a letter to them. Maybe you need to send it in care of a production company or a publisher. Do it. You'll feel great and they'll love it.


The difference between a moral man and a man of honor 
is that the latter regrets a discreditable act, 
even when it has worked and he has not been caught.

H.L. Mencken (1880 - 1956), 'Prejudices: Fourth Series,' 1924




Lawrence G. Forbes Receives 

the Lifetime Achievement Award


by Lissa Ann Forbes


She sits beside her father, Lawrence Forbes, as they listen to stories about ordinary, yet very extraordinary people. She’s beaming because she has something to share.

Finally, it is her turn. The announcer began, “Lissa Ann Forbes will present The Lifetime Achievement Award to Lawrence Gordon Forbes for outstanding service to the USA and being the best Dad she has known.”

 Lissa walks slowly to the podium gaining her composure, as she has never addressed a crowd this large beforeover 400 attendees. Her father sits in the audience waiting to hear his daughter speak, just realizing he would be the focus of her attention.


            Today I present the Lifetime Achievement Award, a gift of recognition, to my Dad, Colonel Lawrence Gordon Forbes. I recently realized that there are many fathers out there, but mine has truly earned the title “Dad.”

            What did it take?

            From the time I can remember, I was proud to call this gentle man “Dad.” He did not actually “father” me, but from the age of two when I was adopted he never wavered from calling me his own, his daughter.

            He held me on his knee and helped me put socks and shoes on. He splashed water on me as I learned to play in the plastic inflatable pool. He stood near as I gained balance and confidence to pogo stick and walk on stilts. He engaged in a fair duel of tennis. He helped me with homework. He attended plays and choral and dance recitals.

            I learned from my Mom to be proud of him for the role he played in our world history. My Dad graduated from West Point with honors and served 27 years in the US Army. He was active duty in WWII and had achieved the rank of full Colonel by the time he retired in 1966.

            Because of his military service, I learned to have pride in our country, respect the American flag and feel the words of the Star Spangled Banner and God Bless America. To this day these songs bring tears to my eyes. They remind me that my father is a symbol of duty, honor, courage, and survival.

            Larry Forbes, at 87, is one of the lucky ones. He survived a war, was married to a woman he loved for 56 years, found fulfilling work, raised two children he can be proud of, and after eight years alone found another companion to love and was married just this past May.

When my mother died in 1996, Dad started talking, like never before. I always remember his quiet presence. But suddenly I felt I was his confidante. He told me what he was doing, where he was traveling and discussed finances and health issues, subjects never before discussed openly with the children. I felt important—valued.

            Recently, I realized I’ve been honoring my Dad in an unusual way. First, let me give you a small detail that will help you understand the story. USAA is worldwide insurance and financial services association, providing insurance and financial services to the US military community and their families. At Borders, where I work part-time, I easily notice USAA credit cards. When I see one I ask, “Are you a dependent or did you serve?” I take a moment to thank them or their family member for their service to our country. I didn’t even realize what I was doing for some time, but now I recognize that I’m honoring and acknowledging the contribution made one individual at a time. I’ve also been honoring my Dad every time I do this.

            I want to close with my favorite story about my Dad and me. One we still laugh about from long ago—the day I moved into the dorm at the University of Arizona 30 years ago. We had finished lugging what seemed like a hundred boxes up the front steps to the dorm, stacking them in the elevator, and carrying them down the hall on the fifth floor to the fourth room on the left. As I stood on the sidewalk, having said my thanks to Mom, I turned to Dad and gave him a hug. At that moment, two young college boys drove by in the red convertible Mustang and shouted, “Dirty old man!” My father turned to me with the trademark twinkle in his eye saying, “Don’t young girls have fathers anymore?”

 Thank you all for allowing me to recognize the hero in my Dad.


            Applause exploded. Lissa noticed a lone tear run down her father’s face. She was proud of him all over again. She called him up to the podium to present this special man she calls “Dad” to all who had come to recognize their heroes. The room shook with the thunderous clapping . Sweet music to her ears.



Reading Resource: All But My Life  by Gerda Weissmann Klein


Gerda Weissmann Klein is a hero. A moving memoir covers the three frightful years she was a slave laborer of the Nazis and her miraculous liberation. She is a courageous woman who now lives in Arizona with her husband and enjoys their children and grandchildren.


Phenomenal book; I was engrossed; I cried; I held the book in my arms as though I was holding the young girl who lost precious years of her life; it touched my soul and my heart ached to think no human being should have to endure what she did; I want to meet her.


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Copyright © 2004 Lissa Ann Forbes. All rights reserved.

laf (Lissa Ann Forbes)
Publishing History, One Life at a Time
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