Friday, December 30, 2011


Happy New Year Everyone!

With 2011 coming to a fast close, why not spend the weekend with THE LEGEND OF VICTOR STANDISH by Roland Yeomans.

Not since Mark Twain's Tom Sawyer or Huckleberry Finn has there been such an exciting young male hero. Not even the magical Harry Potter has escaped more times from mortal danger than Victor Standish.

Set in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Victor arrives in New Orleans. Here he meets Old Suz and his life changes forever. Little does he know for the first time in his street existence, he will encounter a figure so larger-than-life: Captain Sam McCord.

Sam, an enigma all of his own, can only protect Victor one way ... by bringing him to Meilori's ... the crossroads of multiple worlds.

Roland weaves a fabric so tight and intricate, the reader is swept away. Dozens of historical characters intertwine with the lacy iron work of Meilori's classic architecture.

At Midnight, Victor is dropped into an eerie cemetery right in front of the crypt of Marie Laveau. Waiting for the Angel of Death to swoop down upon him, something extraordinary happens. Can you guess? Not likely. Only Mr. Yeoman's imagination could possibly create such a scene.

Through the mist, an unearthly voice calls to Victor in his mind. Hungry, so hungry, Alice Wentworth announces herself. With neon blue eyes ablaze, she subtly appears. But Alice hungers, for what, we are not certain, Could it be love? Or her next meal.

I thoroughly enjoyed THE LEGENDS OF VICTOR STANDISH. And now so can you. It is just a quick click away. Roland is so kindly giving all his royalties to the Salvation Army this holiday season. Why not use that shiny new Amazon gift card and download it today. It will be such a fun way to ring in the new year with some new friends...

I would also like to take this time to wish everyone of my blogger friends and their families a happy, healthy, and very prosperous new year. Many of us had lots of ups and downs this year and I sincerely hope the downs will be much fewer in 2012.

I have been so fortunate this year. Although my writing career is still on its long journey, I am happy to say I am in such good company. Many of my friends have novels circulating the globe and I am SO happy for them. My turn will come soon ... hopefully this year.

If not, well, I will still keep plugging along. You all give me strength to take another step. You will never know how grateful I am for that little push I need every now and then.

Have a WONDERFUL weekend and stay safe. Many party goers will be celebrating a bit too much so PLEASE be careful on the roads.

I am SO looking forward to another wonderful year sharing life with all of you.

HAPPY 2012 my friends!

Sunday, December 25, 2011



First I would like to wish each and over one of my wonderful blogger friends a happy, healthy, and special day. Christmas is a time to spend with family and friends sharing in one of life's most special and cherished days.

I had planned to post an amazing movie short I had created, but because of technical difficulties and time restraints I couldn't get it to post. BUT, since I am currently in one of the most amazing cities in the world.... I am sending you holiday greeting from THE BIG APPLE.

Here are a few pics of Christmas in Manhattan. I home you enjoy them!

Have a MAGICAL DAY everyone!

The stunning arcade in Rockefeller Center, leading to the star....



Tuesday, December 13, 2011


Hi, all,

Sorry it's been a while, but I've been experiencing lots of Christmas mishaps ...

You know it's happened to all of us: the tangled Christmas lights. But this post isn't about that, although we all need to have MAJOR patience and have several glasses of wine for that yearly event.

This lovely little tale began on Saturday. After agonizing over finding the perfect Christmas tree, a new pre-lit, I was finally ready to set up the new seven foot beauty.

One good thing about pre-lits, NO TANGLED LIGHTS... lol. Had to mention it again. After piecing it together and connecting the lights, I was ready to "Fluff the tree." As many of you know, these trees are hideous coming out of the box. "Fluffing" is THE new art form. It took me a little over an hour to separate every branch and open up the hundreds of needles.

Standing back, I had realized this tree was WAY too skinny. Tall and thin it disappeared in my oversized living room. Moving from point A to point B, I found a spot that would work.

Now for the fun ... decorating. I had spent most of the morning dragging up about half a dozen massive plastic storage bins from my storage unit in the basement of my building. Yes, there is an elevator, but my storage unit is on the other side of the building... of course.

After several more hours of painstakingly placing each wonderful ornament in it's place, I was ready to tinsel the tree. This is a most important step... you can't just throw it on, it has to be "drizzled" expertly so it looks like cascading snow. Another hour and it was done.

Although still looking quite slim, the tree looked beautiful. I grabbed a glass of wine and with the Christmas music on, I sat on the new comfy sofa to admire my many hours of work.

So what's the point of this post, you ask?

Twenty-four hours later.

Sunday was a friend's birthday, so before I left for the afternoon, I had turned on the tree. I couldn't wait to see it from the street that evening. I live on the second floor and my living room has five wrap around windows, so the tree is quite visible from several angles.

As my friend drove up to my building to take me home, he had commented on how pretty the tree looked. I had glanced up, finding my neighbor's STUNNING nine-foot beauty twinkling in the next set of windows.

"Not mine, my neighbors. My tree isn't lit. Hmmm, I wonder why?" I had said.

I raced up to my condo, opened the door, and sprinted into the pitch-black living room. "Not good."

The tree was lifeless. I thought perhaps the socket blew... nope. I changed the extension. Nope. After a good half an hour trying everything, nothing worked.

"Great!" I had exclaimed. "All this work and stress for nothing!" I went to bed fuming.

Yesterday, after another several hours of collecting the hundreds of strands of tinsel, dozens of ornaments, etc, a thought popped into my head.
"Hey, don't lights have those little fuse things for when the trees lights blow out?" I found the little package and crawled under the tree. Using tweezers to get to the little suckers and I replaced the fuses.

"It's a Christmas miracle," I grumbled.

Looking all around at the explosion of Christmas on every hidden surface, I shook my head. "Why couldn't I have thought of this before I tore apart the tree..."

Has anything like this ever happened to you? I'd love to hear about it.

So my dear bloggy friends.... Remember we ALL need to have a sense of humor durning this wonderful time of year.

Have I redecorated the tree, you ask? Nope.... I decided the tree really is too thin and is going back. So now back to step one... locating the perfect tree. Time is running out.... Wish me luck.

Have a great day everyone!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


As Christmas approaches, fond memories of past Christmas's have been flooding my memory. When I was in my early teens, many was the time I gave handmade gifts for friends and family. I had loved all kinds of crafting and had a talent for creating beautiful and unique gifts.

TIme passed and I grew older with high paying jobs. My gifts turned to the more extravagant and commercial. Hey, I could afford the best and I wanted to share my success with the people I loved. For many years, my time was limited so the love and time I had put in my handmade gifts were certainly a thing of the past.

Now that life has slowed down for me, those fond memories returned. I realized that I still LOVED to create handmade gifts. A close blogger friend is having a baby, and I created my first handmade gift in years for that new life. IT FELT AMAZING.

So this year, I have decided to return to an old fashioned Christmas. I plan to make most of my gifts. I sew, knit, crochet and bake, so I have all bases covered. How about you guys? Don't you feel the commercial part of Christmas is getting out of hand? Wouldn't it be fun and show the true meaning of Christmas to give a gift from the heart?

How would you feel to receive such a gift? I know if someone spent so much of their time creating something for me, I would be thrilled. Time is such a precious commodity these days...

If you have some free time, why not try to give something hand made. Believe me it will make you feel so good. Not to mention the wonderful aromas of baked goods wafting through your home.

What are your thoughts? Do you have anything special planned for your loved ones. I'd really love to know...

Have a terrific day everyone!

Monday, December 5, 2011


Hi everyone,

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend. With Christmas just around the corner, Chicago is a buzz with bright lights and Christmas cheer.

Lincoln Parks ZOO LIGHTS officially opened last Friday and it is AMAZING. For anyone in Chicagoland it is a MUST!

Michigan Ave is beyond spectacular with stunning store windows and thousands of shoppers. Although the weather hasn't been cold, but it has been rainy and WINDY, but it isn't stopping anyone from buying their Christmas trees and presents.

As you all know by now I did make my 500 friends THANKS to all of you. As I had promised I will be awarding three Amazon gift cards as a special THANKS to all of me dear blogger friends. Without all of you this year would have been down right depressing. You have been my strong hold and for that I am truly grateful.

These past few months I have been on pins and needles waiting to hear for a publisher. I haven't shared this information because I wanted to make that happy announcement once I had the coveted contract...

Well, it wasn't what I had expected, but the news was a nice surprise never the less. The acquisitions editor told me she new the book wasn't right for her almost from the beginning. AND, as we all know how buys editors are, most would have dropped the manuscript like the plague, BUT, she didn't. She actually was compelled to finish reading it, intrigued by the MC and wanting to know what happened to him.

She stated that the ROMANCE element wasn't strong enough. I had a feeling it might not be, but I tried anyway. So you see even a rejection can be good news. If my novel can keep the interest of a busy editor even though it's not right for them, just think what it might do for the right agent/publisher! So I am not too bummed.

Back to querying though.... Let's hope The Blinded Gardener will find a home soon.

Have any of you had a "good" rejection? We've  all heard about the negative ones. Let's focus on the positive. I'd really like to hear about them.

NOW for the winners....

A special Thanks to Alex Cavanaugh for getting the word out. OF course there were many of you tweeting and Facebooking and for that I am most appreciative.

Out of the 128 entries picked the lucky ones.

Congratulations    Theresa Milstein

                             Robyn Campbell

                             Sheri Larsen

You each won a $10.00 Amazon gift card.   Happy reading.... Ladies send me your email ASAP so I can send them out to you.

HAVE a GREAT MONDAY Everyone....

Thursday, December 1, 2011


Thanks to all of my wonderful that I have made this year, I have made it to over 500. Your tweets, posts, and Facebook links have put me over the top.

A special thanks to Alex Cavanaugh who really went beyond the call of duty... THANK YOU ALEX!

Now that my internet service has been restored I can formally welcome ALL my new friends. It has been a while so the list is extensive. Some twenty-five plus I think. Well her goes...

Daina, Lyn, Patti, Khle, Anne, Mish,  Jeremy, Kristen, Laura, Jenna, Nadh, Cassie, Abby, Farawayeyes, Basil, Anna, Bonnie, L.C. Andy, Angela, Angela A., Stacy, Alexandra, Nisa, Jessie, Jennifer, The manic, silversolara, Gillian, Laura, latisha, Tania, Elizabeth, Colleen, CD, Cathy, Septembermom (500!), and my newest young friend, Lenny... How could you not smile when you see that smiling sun.... Thank you all. I can't wait to get to know all of you better. It will take time, but I will get to all of your blogs soon.

Can you believe how awesome these people are? Imagine also, that WE all have a love of writing, a passion for life, and a bond that could NEVER be broken.

This past year has been the most wonderful time I have had in a LONG time. I have learned to laugh and cry again. Thanks to all of you.

Now don't forget to leave a comment so that I can enter you in the drawing if you haven't yet. You have until Dec. 2nd midnight. So click onto those funny little lego dwarfs to comment.

Have a WONDERFUL Thursday everyone.

Also Don't forget to check on my friend Roland's blog and his contest... It is BEYOND awesome. Click here for the details and delve into the amazing writing of this man. Treat yourself to an ebook. He has many to choose from and check on my favorite. THE LEGEND OF VICTOR STANDISH. You won't be disappointed.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Technical problems with my internet.... We HATE it!

Hi everyone,

Posting by iPhone is not fun , but I had to post thanks to all of you for getting the word out... You guys ROCK!

I am only four friends away... I will welcome all new friends properly when I get back my Internet.

Keep up the good work. I hope to make it by Friday.

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend. Did you do any Black Friday or Cyber Monday shopping?

How do you shop? Up close and personal or on line? Let me know...

Christmas is just a mere few weeks away.

I miss you all and want to visit ... Hopefully later this evening. I am waiting for technician as I write this post, one letter at a time ... I MISS my computer!

Have a great day all and there is still time to leave a comment, tweet, etc. for my blogoversary.

Thursday, November 24, 2011


Happy Thanksgiving my wonderful friends!

I appreciate all of you EVERY DAY!

I am forever thankful for your friendship ...

Have a peaceful and loving Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 21, 2011


Greetings everyone...

Well, now that I am finally back and am able to catch up with all of you, I can officially give THANKS to all of you.

What can I say about this year? Not only have I forged some AMAZING friendships, I have learned so much! Not only about writing, but about loyalty, friendship, and yes, even love. Is there anything more amazing than that?

How awesome is life that we can connect with friends from all over the globe. Bonding together through our journey as writers. This year I am thankful to see many of my blogger friends with agents, published books, and incredible stories.

Through challenges like the A-Z and Campaigners, many of us have written some of THE most amazing pieces of prose. Also through these challengers we met some friends for life. I can't begin to tell you all how special you are to me.

These past few months have taken me away from you and I haven't been the best blogging friend, but I will try my best to get back to your blogs and keep in touch. Life whisks us away at times, but it is always reassuring to know that our community is always waiting for our return.

As many of you know, I have just had my one year blogoversary. And, I promised I would do something special for all you.

I think this is the perfect week to give back, since it is Thanksgiving week. As a token of my affection I would like to award a few AMAZON gift cards! What better gift, than the gift of reading. You can buy some of those e-books, you've been dying to read!

All you have to do, for entry is be a follower and comment on this post. Tell me what you have learned this year from our amazing community.

For extra entries, twitter, facebook, and spread the word on your blogs.... leave links if you can, but I do trust you.

On Saturday, December 3rd, I will announce the winners. I will be awarding three gift cards! So you have until Midnight Dec. 2nd to enter.

I hope to meet some new friends and finally make 500. I know I can count on all of you. I would really appreciate you displaying a button.... Isn't it cute?! This is made from LEGOS!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


Greetings from Mickey's Christmas party in Orlando! I thought we can all use a bit of Christmas cheer this week. Why not? In a a little over a month it will be here!

Did you all finish your holiday shopping yet? I know I haven't. Just a few more things to pick up and I'll be finished.

What are your plans? Waiting for BLACK FRIDAY?

I must say that visiting the Magic Kingdom during this holiday season definitely put me in the mood. How could it not? The decorations were AWESOME. It even snowed! 

SO cool to see it snowing in Orlando.

I posted of few pics of the fantastic parade/party... I hope you all enjoy them.

How incredible to see Main Street USA, decked out for Christmas.

Scrooge Mcduff looks cranky, but he waved to us just the same ....

Pooh and friends joined in on the fun!

Nothing like a soldier marching band to add to the festivities!

By far THE most amazing sight... Cinderella's Castle ICED....

Does this put you into the Holiday spirit? I sure hope so! Have a great day everyone....

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Hi Everyone,

Greeting from Hogsmeade ...

I know it's been a while since I've posted and visited. So sorry for that, but time has been flying. On Monday, I met the amazing  Jen Daiker. Jen and I found each other in the blogosphere because we are both INSANE HP addicts. SO naturally this would be THE most PERFECT place to meet! 

Since I've been to WW several times, I had the pleasure of showing Jen, her hubby, and sister around. I LOVED experiencing it all over again through Jen's widened and excited eyes.

The weather was perfect and the crowds were minimal as we whisked ourselves through Hogwart's and the many exciting rides. 

By noon we had lunch... where? The Three Broomsticks, of course. Jen sampled her first butterbeer! SO DELICIOUS!

After lunch, we had to get Jen her wand, so off to Olivander's we went. Lines formed with many of witches and wizards clamoring to get inside. Mr. Olivander only had time to chose one lucky witch or wizard and normally picks one of Hogwart's age.

As he descended the staircase his eyes locked on Jen! SHE GOT CHOSEN! Another magical moment! Deep down I knew she would be chosen. How could she not be? She was by far THE most excited person in the shop.

Here's a pic of Jen ... her face says it all!

As you can see Jen DOES believe....

The fun continued on Tuesday when Jen and her family met up with me. After a quick tour of the castle and flying broomsticks ride, we headed over to the lost continent. We had just finished the Poseidon show, and a text from non-other-than PK Hrenzo flashed. 

YAY! PK had the time to join us! She arrived shortly and we all had another great lunch at The Three Broomsticks. She, too, is a HP freak!

Could this trip get any better?!!!!!

Here is PK and I in front of Shrivelshaftts... Need a quill anyone?

As you can see, PK has one of those fantastic butterbeers.  She and I spent the rest of the afternoon touring Hogmeade, while Jen and her family scooted off to Universal.

I have to tell you all, meeting blogger friends is the ULTIMATE HIGH!

Tonight I am off to Mickey's Christmas Party at the Magic Kingdom.... The magic continues ... stay tuned.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


Hi, all,

Thanks for all the great comments on my Halloween post. I am glad you enjoyed my pumpkin illustration and excerpt from my first novel.

I would also like to welcome my new friends who joined my blogging family.  Laura, Jenna, Nadh, Cassie, Niki, Abby, farawayeyes, Basil, Anna, and Bonnie... I am looking forward to getting to know you all.

Today is also the first Wednesday of the month and time for another Insecure Writers Support Group post. The founder Alex Cavanaugh has created this group for all of us to vent, support, encourage, and find out much needed information in our fantastic community.

Today I would like to reassure all our new and old writer friends that feel overwhelmed and alone, that you are NOT. Many is the time when we are at our wits end. Nothing is working. Our plot is weak; out characters have no substance; too much backstory; and the list goes on and on. What to do? Step back, take a deep breath, and put it away for a while. Drop by you favorite blogging haunts. Immerse yourself for an afternoon, morning, or late evening ... it will do you a world of good.

Sometimes escaping is the best way to clear the mind to face the trials and tribulations of writing once more. I myself have found so much tension release by visiting my blogger friends. I laugh, learn, and disappear into other worlds. How could you not relax and feel motivated after that?

So the next time something isn't quite right ... you'll know what to do. Also don't be afraid to post you problem. HELP is always there. Another writer's eyes might spot the problem in an instant...Just think how great that will make you feel.

Most of you all know how I feel about you and our WONDERFUL community. SO let your friends be there for you ... they will NEVER let you down.

Now...  for some fun news,  Halloween was my ONE year Blogoversay. Since I will be out of town for a few weeks, the celebration must wait until I return. But I want all of you to know I am planning something special, so stay tuned. Also I almost at 500 friends! YAY! I hope to get there by the celebration... then I will really be celebrating! Some special giveaways are planned. Once I figure out what date, I'd appreciate your help to spread the word... I know I can count on all of you for sure.

Thanks for stopping by today and don't forget to drop by Alex's site for the list of other support group posts.


Monday, October 31, 2011


Happy Halloween everyone.

Today is the day that Elizabeth Mueller's novel DARKSPELL launches. Elizabeth is an amazing author and blogger friend so do drop by her blog here and find out all about DARKSPELL and check out the wonderful illustrations that she's created for it. Order it here from Amazon.

In honor of Halloween and Darkspell, Elizabeth is hosting a SPOOKFEST! And it is such a fun one too. "If I had all the magic in the world, I'd ... " Could you imagine the fabulous possibilities. SO for today what would you answer? We'd all like to know...

If I had all the magic in the world, I would definitely use it for good. I would cure the people of the world... NO cancer, NO aids, NO diabetes, NO high blood pressure, NO crippling arthritis, NO mental illness, NO ___ (fill in the blank). And lastly, NO anxiety for my writer pals. We'd all have best selling books.  So everyone in the world would be happy and healthy and therefore create peace....

As a special treat for Halloween I would like to share with all of you an excerpt from my first book AMBER AND THE WHISPERING WILLOWS.

Like Elizabeth I also illustrated my novel This excerpt and illustration is from chapter 13, Nina's Revenge.

Amber gaped at the former gymnasium. Dozens of carved pumpkins flickered; each one illuminating a different expression: some scary, and some smiling. Life-sized scarecrows guarded the haystacks and the straw covered floor. The spider-webbed ceiling attracted hundreds of black bats accompanied by dozens of waving ghosts. 

Justin combed the crowd for his friends. 

“Have a good time, kids,” Uncle Paul said as he left to chat with the other chaperones.

Amber and Nina searched for Elise, Cindy, and Denise. As they hunted, the “Monster Mash played over the loud speakers. Amber spotted Cindy’s zebra mask and took Nina by the hand, weaving through the crowd toward her. 

“Hi, Cindy. I just love what you and the others did to the gym ... it looks amazing! I’d like you to meet my best friend, Nina Landau. She danced in the recital with me.”

“Hi. I remember you — you did that sweet solo.”  

Nina blushed. “Thanks, Cindy. It’s nice to meet you. I’m so glad Amber has met some friendly girls at school ... it’s such a nice change from Lucy Carpenter.”

“Oh, so you know Lucy?” Cindy cringed. “That’s right, you’re in the same ballet class.” 

A few minutes later Amber introduced Nina to Elise and Denise. They had a wonderful time bashing Lucy and the wannabes. Mr. Easterbrook soon joined the group and complimented them all on their costumes.

“Amber, can we get something to drink?” Nina asked.

Amber nodded and they excused themselves from the others. At the far end of the gym four large tables set with orange and black tablecloths seemed to groan under the weight of all kinds of sweets: cupcakes, cookies, brownies, cakes with orange and black icing, candied apples, caramel apples, trays and trays of candies, apple cider, fruit punch and sodas.

They each took a frosted cupcake and some punch. Students as well as teachers chatted and danced to the upbeat music. 

Amber and Nina munched on their cupcakes and were just about to return to the others when Nina heard a familiar sneer.

“What are you doing here, mouse? You don’t go to this school,” Lucy said, stepping into their space. 

“I invited her!” Amber glowered. “We’re allowed to bring a guest.” 

“Vermin don’t count,” Lucy chided. Heather and Colleen burst out into fits of laughter.

“So why are you here, princess? If I’m a mouse, you’re a rat!”  

“Come on, Nina, let’s go ... they’re so not worth our time.” 

As the turned, Lucy clutched a handful of flowers, ripping them off Nina’s leotard. 

“They’re way too pretty for the likes of you.” Lucy laughed. 

Nina didn’t react at first, but Amber’s face flushed.

Lucy, Heather, and Colleen continued laughing as a thick green vine sprouted from a nearby jack-o-lantern. It crawled along the straw covered floor toward the three girls. Within seconds it wrapped itself around them, binding them before they could react. Amber heard three muffled screams as they hit the floor, disappearing under the table. The orange tablecloth covered up the incident. 

Amber marveled at Nina’s skill. Her timing couldn’t have been better. No other people happened to be at the table and the music played too loud for anyone to hear. 

“If I hadn’t seen it. I never would’ve believed it,” Amber whispered. 

Smirking, Nina lifted the tablecloth, and smiled at the three girls with a gleam in her eyes. 

“Enjoy the rest of the party, girls ... I know I will.” She waved to them and dropped the tablecloth back over them. 

Well everyone I hope you enjoyed my Halloween excerpt and illustration ... please let me know what you think.


Friday, October 28, 2011


Happy Friday everyone.

Once more I must apologize for posting my entry later than I should have. I wanted it to be something special, so I took my time and even added a hundred or so extra words. Since I am no longer in the competition and took creative license. Don't forget to read the other bloggers entries. There are some amazing stories in this blogfest. Drop by J. C. Martin's blog.

Also my dear friend, Denise (L'Aussie), had asked to write an entry for this week's Romantic Writers Friday Challenge. Theme ... HAUNTING. So drop by her blog for the more exciting entries to read.

If you would like to read the first three segments here are the links...

Part One: The Escape ... here.

Part Two: Renaissance ... here.

Part Three: Resurrected ... here.

And now for the conclusion. I hope you all enjoy it. "We meet again sonny boy."

Aidan joined Tanya in the early morning hours. He flashed a smile before taking a seat at the kitchen table. His eyes lingered a second longer than usual on her curves as she maneuvered between the stove and sink.
Tanya’s face flushed and matched the freckles that sprinkled across her nose and cheeks.
Aidan grinned. He tore his eyes away from Tanya’s tight butt, craned his neck around the room like a submarine periscope, and then cleared his throat. “Ah, where’s your dad?”
Still flushed, Tanya faced him. “He went into town to pick up supplies.” She moistened her lips, “He should be gone most of the morning.”
Aidan raised a brow and his eyes brightened.
A moment later, the lights flickered before blowing out. Only a faint stream illuminated through the window from the street lamp.
“What the hell just happened Tanya?” Aidan tensed and twitched like a nervous cat.
“Relax. A circuit must’ve blown.” She shook her head. “Do you always get this freaked when the lights go out?” She stepped around the table and over to the counter, opened a drawer, and pulled out a flashlight.
A few drops of sweat trickled down Aidan’s back, sending icy shivers up his spine. the memory of his dad locking him in a dark, mildewed cellar penetrated his mind. “For two days the sadistic bastard left me there,” he grumbled.
“What was that, you said?”
“Er, nothing.”
“i’ll be right back.” She stepped toward the cellar door, opened it, and disappeared. 
Aidan’s eyes stared at the beam of light glowing softer with each of Tanya’s steps. 
I really should go with her. Willing his foot to move, it remained glued to the same spot. Several more drops of sweat mingled with the first ones and saturated his t-shirt.
A muffled scream raised the hairs on the back of his neck. “Tanya!” he called out.
She didn’t answer.
Lead-like legs managed to reach the cellar door. “Tanya!” His voice cracked. 
A trace of a snicker echoed up the stairs and into the kitchen. 
“Cut the crap Tanya ... this isn’t funny.”
Once again, silence louder than gun fire assaulted his ears.
Aidan’s breath caught in his throat. His mouth dried to sawdust. Only one drop coated his throat as he tried to swallow.
He inched closer to the opening, straining his neck. Widened eyes searched the gaping dark hole.  
A lit flame from a candle caught his eye. “Tanya?” His raspy voice whispered into the chasm. 
Moving ever so slowly onto the landing, a deep voice vibrated the rickety wooden steps. “Join us, sonny boy.”
Aidan froze. Sweat poured down his face. “No? I-It can’t be? Y-you’re dead. I killed you.”
“Guess again.” His voice cut like a razor into a vein. “I’ve got a friend of yours. She’s quite a babe. Ah, to think what I can do with her? Care to watch?”
Aidan’s stomach churned. He sucked in a deep breath through gritted teeth. “Let her go, you bastard. It’s me you want.”  Racing down the stairs, he came to a halt on the last step. 
The captain’s right hand covered Tanya’s mouth, the other cupped her right breast. Tears streamed from terrified eyes and collected on the captain’s broad fingers.
Adrenaline pumped through Aidan’s veins. Think fast. 
His eyes set on the flickering candle just behind them. 
Tanya cried out. Aidan’s eyes darted, locking onto to his father’s.
“Let her go, Dad.”
“I don’t think so.” He ripped her blouse, exposing her breasts. “Nice. Very nice.” 
Tanya kicked and screamed. As his father tried to control her, Aidan grabbed a can of W-D 40 sitting on the side shelf. He ripped off the top and aimed the aerosol at the candle flame.
It ignited with a sizzle. The flame shot, setting his father’s jacket on fire. Cursing, he released Tanya, who ran behind Aidan. 
Aidan continued to douse his father. Within seconds the cursing turned to screams of torment. The captain desperately tried to put himself out, but the flames engulfed him. 
“Let’s get out of her before the place blows.” Aidan dropped the can, grasped Tanya’s hand, and sprinted up the stairs. 
He pulled off his shirt and handed it to her as they ran out the front door.  
Seconds later, the house exploded into flames.  
Tanya jumped into Aidan’s arms, trembling. 
“It’s over now. He’ll never hurt either one of us again.”

*     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *  
 And now for the Casting Call blogfest. This was is truly fun. Chose characters from your novel and show a picture of them either through photograph or illustration. Drop by our host's site Carrie Butler.

For this blogfest I chose my first novel: Amber and the Whispering Willows. This middle grade fantasy was a pleasure to illustrate. As I wrote about each character, I had a visual, so all I had to do was create them visually. Most of you know I illustrate as well as write, but for those who don't here is an introduction I hope you enjoy the visuals.

These images are from the cover that I created. And please remember this is an original work of art, so please don't reproduce it without my permission.

The full cover.
Click to enlarge.... Center is Amber. To the right, Nina, her best friend, Jasper the rabbit, Uncle Paul, and Justin.

To the left of the tree: Dak, Commander-in-chief of the fairies. The blue fairy is Liah, princess of the fairies.

For more fun illustrations check out the top of my blog. In the banner click onto My Illustrations.

Have a wonderful weekend everyone! What fun plans do you have?  I plan on catching up with my blog friends and reading lots of Rule of 3 segments and checking out some other fun characters.

Monday, October 24, 2011


Hi, all,

First, I would like to thank all of you for the encouraging support on my last post. Your comments meant so much to me and my friend. She couldn't believe what an amazing support system our community has. You are all SO special to me.

Since my time with her was constant, I never had the chance to finish my third segment for the Rule of 3. It saddened me to be disqualified, but my friendship means more to me than any prizes. Friends should be cherished.

So for all of you who have supported me by dropping by for the first two segments, here is the third. I hope you enjoy it. I will definitely have the fourth on time for those of you who might want to wait until Wednesday.

Thanks again for your friendship and patience.


The captain stirred from a throbbing pain exploding inside his temples. A trembling hand wiped the dripping blood away from his eyes as he rolled onto his knees. 
His lips twisted into a sinister grin. “The kid’s got balls.” He spat out saliva mixed with blood. “Let’s see how long it will take for me to catch up to you sonny boy.” A maniacal laugh escaped through his stretched lips.
Standing on weakened legs, he straightened up to his full height, stepped into the hall and opened the linen closet. He grabbed the first aid kit tucked away under the bath towels. 
A moment later, he entered into the bathroom and flipped on the switch. Hallowed eyes stared at the crusted bump and congealed blood clinging to the side of his face.
After a quick wash, he swabbed the wounds with peroxide, smeared on anti-bacterial cream, wrapped his head with gauze, and then taped up the ends.
“This should do ... now where did my little mouse go? This cat’s hungry.” His eyes lit for a brief moment as he tore out of the bathroom and down the stairs.
He glanced at the clock. Cursing, he flung open the front door. Panes of glass rattled within its frame from the sheer force of the slam after he darted through over the threshold.. A sleek black Volvo awakened with a toot and a flash of headlights.
Out of the corner of his eye, he spotted a rusted red pick up. Releasing the accelerator, the car coasted past the gas station and boarding house. He spotted a dirt road, turned onto it, and continued into a thick mass of Elm trees.
With the cunning of an alley cat, he slinked out of the car and moved toward the structure.
He hid in the shadows, only the meager lamppost cast an single beam of light. Peeking into the grungy window, he spotted his prey. Moistening his lips, he grinned. “I hope you enjoy your meal sonny boy ... it will be your last.”
Dark, brooding eyes flicked to a teenage red-headed girl. Hmmmm. Tasty. I hope he got some of that. It would be a shame to leave this world without one last roll in the hay.
The captain’s eyes swept the scene once more, zeroing in on the layout of the interior. A plan rippled through his brain like waves to a shore. 
“In just a few short hours, sonny boy, we’ll meet again.” He inhaled a long, deep breath and disappeared into the darkness.

Click here for part one.

Click here for part two.

I hope you enjoy them everyone.