Xulon Press Staff Editor, Taylor Graham
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Meet Our Newest Staff Editor: Taylor Graham

Whether an author is writing a book that is purely fiction or writing a non-fiction book portraying their lives, the use of setting and imagery is an important part of painting the pictures that the author sees in their mind for their readers.

It’s a difficult part of writing any genre: getting readers to see exactly what you, as the author, see in your mind while describing the scene. Sensory imaging is often an effective tool when describing the setting; using descriptions that will appeal to a reader’s senses, whether it’s describing a smell, sight, sound, taste, or feel.

An example of describing the feel for each one of the cities my honeymoon cruise through the French and Italian Rivera is below, with pictures.

Once we boarded the cruise in Barcelona, we were at sea the first day until the next morning when we arrived in a small port town: Toulon, France. Apparently in Toulon, there isn’t much to see walking around the town other than graffiti-filled brick walls, abandoned warehouses, and small cigar shops. Apparently an excursion was the only way to experience the city and its surroundings.

Toulon France

The next day, we arrived at Nice, France and had to take a small boat into the port that was sprinkled with yachts and sailboats. A torrential downpour had just taken place before we left the ship, but what came after the storm was absolutely beautiful. Nice was our favorite stop on the entire cruise. The city was a French metropolis with lots of shops, restaurants, and a modern cable car that ran through the middle of the streets. The food in Nice was the best meal we had on the entire cruise. A simple ham, mozzarella, tomato, and basil on focaccia bread turned out to be absolutely divine.

Nice, France

The next day, we woke up in an industrial port in Livorno, Italy. About twenty minutes from Pisa and an hour from Tuscany, we decided to splurge and do the one excursion we could not live without: a vineyard tour and sampling in Tuscany. We took a charter bus through the freeways and winding mountain roads, passing the Leaning Tower of Pisa. (Read: not impressed.) After a few times of nearly feeling as if our bus was going to topple down the Tuscan countryside, we arrived at the vineyard and the view of the hills was absolutely breathtaking.

Tuscany Italy

The next day, we docked in Civitavecchia, Italy and took an hour train ride into Rome. I had grandiose expectations of Rome (like, it’s the greatest city in the world, for one) and when we arrived there, I was rather quickly unimpressed. It was Manhattan on steroids as far as the dirtiness, crowds, and insane cab drivers go (no rats, though). We heard every language being spoken except for English, and the lines were filled with tour groups from all over the world with their neon-colored shirts and matching flags.


Our last stop on the cruise was Naples, Italy. There was an option to take an expensive boat ride to the island of Capri, but since we had already splurged on our vineyard tour, we decided to explore the city of Naples on our own. There was a shopping district and plenty of restaurants to try because Naples is supposedly where pizza originated. Of course, we had to try some for ourselves. I got a calzone filled with ricotta, marinara, sausage, and basil. It was a huge though necessary calorie splurge, but absolutely worth every bite.



Taylor Graham comes to Xulon’s editorial team with over five years of experience writing, editing, and proofreading. Prior to joining Xulon, she worked as a freelance writer and editor, a copywriter for NBC Universal, and an advertising rater for Google. She is most passionate about the written word, the great state of California, and the Be the Match National Marrow Donor Program.

2 Comments on “Meet Our Newest Staff Editor: Taylor Graham

  1. Hi there Taylor Graham,


    Jesus came upon the Temple and what did he see
    But nothing out of the ordinary as seen by you and me,
    He saw what had been for many years done and considered right
    Yet what He saw was his Father’s house as abominable in his sight,

    He had just come from his mother’s house where a miracle he did do
    And was filled with the might and power of God with what was new,
    He had been silent more or less over the past few years
    And perhaps when He came to the Temple He felt the tears,

    People did not understand what this man was about and did
    As animals were freed, money changers cast out while others hid,
    And knew not his doctrine or who He was on chastening the Temple
    And in time many would know, perhaps not the wise but the simple.


  2. Hi again Taylor Graham,
    I just write the words, thank you. I really do not have the time to jump through hoops or spend much time at the PC. Well, hope you enjoy the poems — make them yours. Thank you!
    In Spirit and Truth,
    AKA: Sideriver

    He was walking one day along the side of an unpaved road
    Just enjoying the walk and the time with His Father communing
    In response with silent words and silent breath together told
    Of things to be and events to happen though now just walking,

    As He went on His way the dust clouding at His sandaled feet
    He joined with others traveling down the road along His way
    Though they knew not Him yet He did they as they did meet
    In conversation as talked about events the happening of the day,

    They stayed on the road following where it led to a town
    Through the low hills covered with sparse grass and bushes low
    As through small valleys down straights and just winding around
    Just walking and talking about different things as you know,

    Closer to the city toward the little town they neared the outward
    Boundaries with the buildings and dwellings roofs now in sight
    He said He had to depart go another way as to the South toward
    The coast down to the sea to catch some fish for supper tonight,

    Veering off the road slowly leaving the travelers set away
    Across the countryside heading to the shore of Galilee
    And upon approach He saw fishermen working and as so to say
    You fish for fish and I for souls and men come and follow me.

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