Friday, December 27, 2013


Hi, All.

Now that another Christmas has come and gone, we are now faced with the closing of yet another year. 2013 certainly has had many exciting moments ... ecstatic as well as devastating. Many of us have been published ... Congrats to all of you! And, sadly, many of us have lost treasured family members. Our hearts go out to all of you ...

Many of us have had health issues, accidents, and trauma, BUT through it all ... WE HAVE SURVIVED. With the grace of God and our treasured community we have stuck together and have been there for one another during our greatest triumphs and sadnesses.

I expect nothing less for 2014. As we enter into the unknown it is so comforting to know that I have all of you to face my hardships and ESPECIALLY my successes, because without you the joys are less than amazing.

As you look back over the year, PLEASE don't be hard on yourself if you haven't achieved your goals. Perhaps this was your year for growth. I've had many of them. When it's your time to reap your rewards it WILL happen. Never give up your heart's desire. Continue to write, to learn, to grow. Be the best you can. Keep your heart open, for a closed heart is a sad heart. Allow people into your lives. Don't hide behind your computer screen and dream of the "what ifs ..." That doesn't do any good and only prolongs your ability to soar.  The sky is the limit, but in reality it isn't ...  we have the universe too ... so don't give up.

May 2014 enlighten you. Enrich you. And most of all give you the ability to survive another year with as much love, health, respect, and kindness we all deserve.

HAPPY NEW YEAR and BEGINNING My dearest friends!

Now on a much lighter and FUN note. Today, my co-Knight, David P. King is holding a very festive party at his lair. SO PLEASE, drop by there. You are sure to get a laugh and it will CERTAINLY put a smile on your face.... And he has a fun giveaway too!


Your fellow blogger buddy,


Tuesday, December 24, 2013


Hello my dearest friends ... WELCOME.

At this time of year I can't help but think about my childhood Christmas' in New York with my family. I was the youngest of three boys and believe me my parents had a hand full. Christmas Eve and Christmas day were spent in our cozy home with my grand parents close at hand. Precious days. And beautiful memories.

My present Christmas eve and Christmas day will now be spent with a close friend. My parents' spirits moved on and my two brothers live in different states and have their own lives. I am sure I am not alone in this kind of situation. Many of us spend the holidays with extended family. Friends play an extremely important role. My family memories can never be replaced, but a dark void of loneliness and sadness for my loss is definitely filled with these kind, caring, wonderful people.

Three years ago I was accepted by another family. One that doesn't judge. One that always listens. One that helps without asking for anything in return. One that has enriched my life more than I could ever express in words.

At this special time, I wish with all my heart that all of you have a special, magical, and wonderful Christmas. Jesus Christ was born to teach us love, compassion, understanding, and forgiveness. Traits many of us have in abundance. SO whenever you feel lonely, sad, confused, depressed, anxious, angry, or lost, REMEMBER a family member is just a click away.

May we all have health, patience, prosperity, and clear minds for the coming year. And don't forget to keep you hearts open for only with an open heart can you truly live the life you are meant to live.

Today is the most special day of the year. Hug your children. Smile at a stranger. Release your tension for it is now time to celebrate.

Today many of us are posting for Mark Koopmans' Fifty States of Pray ... if you have a free moment, please drop by his blog and others in this hop and share the Christmas spirit!


Monday, December 23, 2013


HI, All,

Well, thankfully I made it back to Chicago safely. Thanks to all of you and your positive wishes. The weather was a bit sketchy in Indiana with a twenty-five minute mini blizzard, lol. But I managed to get through it fine. When I arrived in Chicago, it was a clear, chilly, 34 degrees. Not too bad.

I arrived last Tuesday and it has taken me all this time to put up a few... and I mean ... FEW decorations. It took me a few days to get through all my mail. But I did have three wonderful surprises waiting for me ...

First, I won a copy of L. Diane Wolfe's book... YAY... Thanks, L. Diane! This book is loaded with fantastic information for those who are self publishing. Make sure you get your copy if you are contemplating that journey in the coming new year!

Second, I received a BEAUTIFUL signed copy of The Ghosts of Aquinnah by Julie Flanders. Julie was kind enough to send me an autographed copy since I designed the cover and wrote the blurb. I was to excited actually seeing it in print. Even thought it's not my book, it's the next best thing! Thanks, Julie... it was such a thrill to work with you on your fantastic novel....

And finally, I received a signed copy of Memories of Murder, by Yolanda Renee'... This was my first profession blurb writing job. It was so cool to see my blurb published on the back of this amazing novel. Thanks so much, Yolanda!

Playing "Catch UP" is taking me quite a bit longer than I had planned. There are just not enough hours to do all the things I need to do. So I do apologize for not visiting. I know you ALL understand and that's why I love you guys so much!


Yes, you've read correctly, lol. I am planning a REALLY fun blog hop. I wanted to do it during this festive holiday season, but since we are all CRAZED with family, shopping, and celebrating, I think it's best to wait a bit for things to calm down. I think we'll ALL need a JOLT of caffeine to jump start our year. So let's plan on a New year's blog hop... sound fun?!!! We will all be dragging by this point .. LOL. I hope to have the badge done and the linky up for the fest within the next few days.

In honor of my trip to Colombia, I plan to give away a few pounds of AUTHENTIC COLOMBIAN COFFEE... For all you coffee lovers, and I know there are LOTS OF US ... you will REALLY appreciate the sensational aroma, rich color, and robust taste of this elixir of life... lol. Seriously though, the Colombian coffee you buy here is NOTHING like what I have sneaked in... lol.

I am really looking forward to sharing my good fortune with a few of you. All you have to do for the hop is state why you LOVE coffee. EASY... EASY.... If you want to add a comment about including chocolate or a homemade biscotti with it, that is fine. I'll also be sharing my amazing biscotti recipe with you, too! Nothing like a cup of Colombian coffee and an Italian biscotti!

So, please stay tuned.

Tomorrow is a very SPECIAL hop, hosted my our wonderful blogger pal, Mark Koopmans ...

Even though it is Christmas Eve, what better way to connect with our blogger family than through prayer ...

So, I'll be seeing you all for Mark Koopmans' Fifty States of Prayer TOMORROW!



Monday, December 16, 2013


HI, All,

Sorry I've been missing in action for a while, but I've been driving around the state of Florida for the past week. On Wednesday, I traveled to South Florida to have lasik surgery on my eye. My astigmatsim came back in my right eye and I needed it ZAPPED to see distance again. On Thursday, I could see again … Thank God!!!

Then traveling back to central Florida for one night. Yesterday I headed toward Tampa to meet a ver special BLOGGER PAL, PK Hrezo… ALWAYS a great time with Pk. I've been fortunate to touch base with her on most of my trips down here. BUT, yesterday was special because I am contemplating moving to South Tampa after I sell my condo in Chicago.

PK was a fantastic host. We traipsed around Hide Park… which is BEYOND special. Hopefully I'll be able to swing one of those sweet bungalows! We had a latte an we were lucky enough to hit upon a Christmas parade on BIKES…. Thankfully none hit me. LOL.

Afterwards we drove around the Davies Islands and then she took me back to my hotel. It was a wonderful few hours with a special writer friend. There is NOTHING like talking writing with a FELLOW writer IN PERSON!

Today I'll be heading home… a very LONG drive. Hope to make Southern Kentucky if all goes well.

But, now it's time to share more about my trip to Bogota …

I found this city quite interesting. With a population of TEN MILLION, one is really AMOUNG the people. They are EVERYWHERE!!!! Kind and inquisitive, this gringo could really see the Indian roots of these sweet people. In the three weeks I was there I had only saw ONE other person with blue eyes and fair skin like myself … and that was my friend's sister-in-law, who is from another city in Colombia.

Heads turned everywhere I went. The children in particular were most intrigued. As I had mentioned before, traffic is one living nightmare. A person could actually walk faster. I'm not kidding.

But what I found the most fascinating is the mix of architecture. In the old part of the city, mission style stucco buildings grace most of the extremely narrow streets. Sadly, most are run down and full of graffiti. This does not only happen in our inner cities. A tourist must be AWARE in these sections. I was warned not to take pics with my new iPhone 5 because it would be ripped out of my hands. I was so disappointed… especially in the AMAZING wooden churches build in the 16-1700's. And no picture taking was allowed. But let me just tell you the gold leafed icons sparkled brilliantly against the rich dark wood aged for centuries. Truly breath taking. During this festive season, wood carved nativites held center stage. Stables were recreated just like one would imagine seeing at the time of Christ's birth. Colombia is a very religious country and Colombians all feature nativites as part of the holiday season.

Even the modern, high-end malls have stunning nativity displays. Luckily once I headed for the north and more exclusive end of the city, I was able to take some beautiful Christmas display pics…  This is the Hacienda Santa Barbara mall… is reminiscent of a colonial era home. Terrace on multiple levels it is by far one of the MOST UNIQUE and STUNNING shopping centers I have ever been to, and believe me I've been to a LOT… all over the world!!!

Their outdoor and open indoor Christmas displays were truly amazing. Let me know what you think!

Yes, this is PART of the mall!

Wonderful place to have a coffee …. when it's NOT raining….

One of the many stunning Nativity scenes ….

Camel ride anyone? …

They certainly love their camels…

Well, the rains interrupted the rest of my picture taking…. and although December is NOT the time to visit Colombia because of the afternoon thunderstorms and evening rains,  a visitor will be AMAZED at how green, lush and surpassingly similar to FLORIDA Bogota is… Yes, you read correctly. Add mountains along with the hibiscus, roses, bougainvillea, and PALM trees and you will see Bogota.

I hope you enjoyed a Bogota Christmas. Have an awesome Monday everyone.

I plan to return to Chicago by Tuesday. Please send positive vibes and prayers that I get home safely. Snow is predicted for Indiana and Chicago on Tuesday. So I hope to get through. 

Thursday, December 5, 2013


The flash of a wing in flight graces the rocky coast as a seagull’s cry pierces the awakening dawn. High over the cliffs a crescent moon shines, casting subtle beams of light on soft, rolling waves, puddling onto the sandy shores of Martha’s Vineyard.

Coral streaks the sky as if an artist’s hand brushes the horizon. The receding waves mirror the aurora , doubling its beauty. Blinding the senses. As each new splash of color blends with the indigo, shadowed clouds define themselves, taking on a more dominant form. 

The wind sighs as a new day begins, just as it has for millennia. Generations have come and gone, yet these visions transcend time.

The peaceful lap of waves ripple as a hooded figure glides silently toward the cliffs and fades away. Not a trace of a footprint is left behind. 

For over a century this mysterious figure haunts the peaceful shores of Aquinnah. 

But, who is she?

What tragic tears mingle with the never-ending salty waves?

Surely someone knows her story?

*      *      *      *      *

A young woman stares into the face of the mysterious cloaked figure. Their eyes lock, and an unspoken conversation erupts between them. 

Hannah jumps back from her computer screen the moment the woman fades into the lingering mist. She closes the webcam. I understand now. I must go to Aquinnah. 

She arrives on the island and soon discovers her identity. The mystical woman is Stella Winslow. Her story as turbulent and crushing as a nor’easter storm. Hannah abandons her current research on lighthouses and unravels the truth about this woman trapped in time.

It’s a story of true love.

A story of sheer determination.

A story with an unfinished ending 

The Ghosts of Aquinnah 

Thank you all for joining in on the launch of Julie Flanders' newest book, The Ghosts of Aquinnah. I hope you all enjoyed the intro and plan on reading the story. Julie has created such an amazing tale of a powerful love that transcends time. Please help spread the word and remember to drop by Julie's blog to wish her well.

I was honored to be chosen by Julie to create the cover, blurb, and intro. It somehow all fell into place so effortlessly. Both of us on the same page. Here's to all the success in the world, Julie! 

During this special time of year, I wish to thank all of you for your love, caring, and support of our wonderful community. We ALL truly created a utopia to spread our wings and soar on our writerly journeys.

Have a special day everyone ...

Wednesday, December 4, 2013


Hi, All,

Well, it's the first Wednesday of the month, and WE ALL know what that means by now. It's time for another IWSG post.

SO much has happened to me over the past several months. In August I was run over by a cyclist and left battered and broken. In one split second three months of my life had changed. I was lucky.

I healed. But the reprecussions linger on.

I did manage to go on my South American trip, but like the Andes themselves, my adventure was riddled with both soaring highs and bottomless lows.

Before leaving for my trip my novel was rejected by the new publisher I had created several logos for … I was surprised because as the process continued all seemed very positive until the end. My insecurities took flight on multiple levels. BUT … as many of you know me … I ALWAYS try to turn the negatives around and remain hopeful.

One of the three editors contacted me and offered her time and expertise to work with me on my novel. She sees the potential and believes in my story. I was blown away. How incredible. SO never give up on your work … your dream. You just never know what your next journey will be.

Traveling to a foreign country off the beaten track should be a concern for every traveler … and I was no exception. I was anxious about the altitude and for good reason. I had been to Colombia before in 2000 and had a very difficult time breathing. So my concerns for this trip were that as well as the concussion I had attained with the accident. With nervous on high alert, I boarded the plane and hoped/prayed for the best.

Sadly, I did have some issues there, but my aggressive spirit pushed on. I tried to stay focused and get through each day. The altitude and constant weather change beat me down. Cold, damp, and rainy with only morning sun greeted me each day for three weeks.

But even though there were obstacles, the beauty of the misty mountains, and warm gracious people kept the smile on my face. Bogota is a fascinating city. TEN MILLION people. Cars everywhere. Traffic horrific. And yet, Colonial architecture blends seamlessly with glass high-rises. The irrisistble aroma of freshly baked goods from charming cafe's and bakeries mingled with car exhaust that in a way  created its own fragrance which was not totally unpleasant.

Graffitied walls of historic buildings shocked me at first, but in some, the artistry was truly remarkable. As a writer we must all keep our minds clear and eyes wide open. Even in the bustle of a very active cosmopolitan city time stands still long enough for us to observe the wonders of another land.

As a stranger to this land where English isn't spoken at all, the poetic spanish language flows through the city like a breath of fresh air. It carries on the mountain breezes. It moves in unison with its lively music. It's on the lips of the native people whose Indian ancestry is carved in almost every face. I a constant curiosity. A white boy from NYC stands out like a blazing moon. But their inquisitive spirit almost always brought on a smile.

My insecurities washed away with each passing thunderstorm. A strong will is necessary to retain ones health. It's not all physical. The brain is a necessary part of our healing process. So remember this. Do let your insecurities take hold of you life. Always think positive. No matter how difficult it is, you will find your inspiration. Take a walk through your neighborhood when your thoughts burden you.

If you have time PLEASE drop in on the other group members for more inspiring stories. Here's the link for the list… As we all know Alex J. Cavanaugh has the master at his blog.

Tomorrow I have a VERY special post. I hope you all can make it so please drop by…

For those of you who had missed my first Colombian post with pics, please scroll down ...

I hope you all have a wonderful Wednesday.

Monday, December 2, 2013


Hi All,

Well, I am finally back and ready to share the sights, sounds, aromas, and experiences of my travels WAY SOUTH of the BORDER.

As I was whisked away south to the top of the Andes Mountains, I had a few concerns. Bogota, with its 9000 ft above sea level altitude, gives even the most "in shape"body an unexpected lung workout. I had visited there in 2000 and did have considerable difficulty breathing, so my concerns were justified. However, this time I was much thinner and in better shape, so I hoped/prayed it wouldn't be too much of an issue.

The first day was going to be a busy one. After arriving at the airport at 4am for a 7am flight,  the Jet Blue departure check in was mobbed with people. The doors were locked. What happened? A potential bomb scare? I was already on "high alert" because of my concerns and flying. One would think, after traveling around the world with my former career, I wouldn't mind flying…. well, back then it wasn't an issue. Now …. Just jitters, nothing too major.

A fire inside had caused all this commotion. Oddly enough there were no fire trucks. I had my suspicions. The truth may have been concealed to keep the masses calm. No one freaks over a fire, but a bomb scare… you bet!

Anyway, checking in wasn't too bad. The lines moved quickly and after stripping through security, I made it through customs. It took about 90 minutes total. For those of you who travel internationally, you know that was a miracle in itself.

My buddy, informed me that his brother had invited us to a charming small village about 90 minutes south of Bogota for the weekend. A place called Boche. If any of you ever traveled on the roads in South America, let's just say they are like heaven in this country, even under the worst construction conditions.

Thankfully the flight was an overall good experience. We landed in Bogota, on time, in hazy 50 degree weather. I had met my friend's brother before on my first visit and he was as gracious as ever. We loaded the luggage into the car and off we went on a the treacherous roads of Bogota. Our first stop …. another brother's condo to repack for the weekend and then off to Boche.

A good thing my breakfast was well digested by this point. The pot hole ridden streets and the rolling hills (imagine more mountains on top of this hilly plateau. San Francisco is prairie land compared to this…)

Unbearable traffic bottlenecked everywhere. I learned that Bogota has TEN MILLION people and each citizen seems to have a car! Imagine they are only allowed to drive on odd or even days, depending on their license plates! And yet, the traffic was still bumper-to-bumper. What is even more distracting … NO LANES…. these drivers create their own, AND, add motorcyclists to the foray, squeezing in between! One really does appreciate our rules and pavement here in the states after THREE weeks of that.

After a few hours of unnerving traffic, we were on our way out of the city. Thankfully the altitude didn't seem to affect my breathing, but the car exhaust certainly did. AKKK!

Motoring through the Colombian countryside was a visual feast. Peddlers selling amazing fruits, arrepas (Colombian pancakes.. sort of), incredibly beautiful flowers, and all sorts of goodies which I could hardly make out. After about an hour we stopped for petrol. Now this was a shocker … full service … with a SMILE …. AND …. free COFFEE! Yup. The charming attendant handed each of us a steaming, aromatic, and unbelievably DELICIOUS cup of coffee. I was blown away.

Most of the small towns we traveled through were old, peeling, and congested. Stray dogs pranced through the narrow streets where the locals sat on their front stoops chatting with one another. It was like stepping back in time. No high rises, no chic business people, not trademark stores. Only an hour outside a major city, it seemed time stood still for decades.

We arrived at Boche. A charming haven of elegant terraced condo homes, dotting the mountainside. Here is where all the wealthier citizens of Bogota have their country homes. We entered the gates of a lushly landscaped pagoda. Bougainvillea draped, palm trees swayed in the cool, humid breeze, and roses of every color exploded to life. Was I still in South Florida? I couldn't believe my eyes. Tropical vegetation flourishing on the top of one of the tallest mountain ranges in the world? Amazing…

As a non-speaking Spanish guest, I was challenged. Although my friend's family did EVERYTHING in their power to make me feel comfortable, I felt like I was in a paralleled universe. They all spoke at once… non stop chatter. My friend did his best to keep me involved in the conversation, but it was just too overwhelming for him and for me.

I sat and observed. The casas were just what one would expect. Terraced, white washed villas with terra cotta tiled roofs. Sweeping oversized tiled terraces, overlooking the lush, green mountains. Stunning. Flowers bursting from terra-cotta pots added vibrancy and incredible beauty. Winter there is misty, cool, and damp… perfect for keeping the mountainside emerald. A sweater is a must. No heat in this country. So layering to keep warm is necessary. Thankfully the aromatic, hot coffee flowed. Truly the elixir of life.

Not soon after, the table groaned with sumptuous Colombian cuisine. My buddy is a gourmet chef. But for his family her went the traditional route. Red beans and rice, fried plantains, spiced ground beef, avocado(no guacamole, that's Mexican… LoL), amazing freshly baked pain, filled with local fruits. I wish I could describe the aromas wafting from the table. It was just incredible.

That evening we played LuLu… a very interesting Colombian card game for MONEY of course. I lost, but had fun.

I was looking forward to the next day for my hike around the town and mountains….

These pics will give you a good idea of just how beautiful nature at its purest can really be … I hope you enjoy them…

Yes, those are birds in the trees…. what a cacacophy of twittering….

Here's a few friends I met along the way …

Well, these are just a handful of pics I took in Boche. I hope you all enjoyed them. I truly enjoyed this part of the trip. the air was fresh and fragrant. The vistas endless. And, the serenity unsurpassed. Escaping the insane activity of Bogota for a few quiet days here was certainly one of the highlights of this trip.

On Wednesday I will delve into the life, sights, and sounds of Bogota. I hope to see you then. On Thursday I have a very SPECIAL POST, so I hope you all can make it then.

Thanks for stopping by today. I MISSED you all terribly, and now that I am back in the states with INTERNET, you will be seeing me.

Have a WONDERFUL day everyone!!!

Thursday, November 21, 2013


HI, All,

Today I am lucky enough to have brief access on the internet and I just wanted to say OLA' to all of you!!!!

This experience so far, has been very enlightening on so many levels and I CAN'T WAIT to share them with you. Like the peaks of this great mountain range, so much has happened, both remarkable highs and incredible lows. The details will be coming next week when I hope to return home.

As we travel through exotic lands we pick up things we wish we hadn't.  I am a bit under the weather these days, but I hope to bounce back with a vengeance. LOL. Nothing serious, so don't worry. I am in good hands.

I am VERY thankful to my buddy's family. They are SO kind and giving. His brother is a doctor... how convenient! One thing I will say about this experience ...

Bogota is a FASCINATING city.  10 MILLION people ... Colonial to modern architecture ... and some of the most INCREDIBLE food you could ever imagine. It amazes me that so many people live here. ON top of a MOUNTAIN RANGE surrounded by more mountains.

AND for those who LOVE coffee .....   YOU can't even imagine. I hope to bring back a suitcase full so that I may share a pound or two with you... I feel a blog hop coming on and there will be a very HAPPY coffee lover!

I miss all of you TERRIBLY!!!!!! I really do feel LOST in a foreign land. I wish I knew more Spanish...

Hugs from your Amigo!


Monday, November 4, 2013


As wisps of wind swirl the falling crystalized snow, the holidays draw closer. Christmas magic ignites the forest glenn.

Sparkling emerald eyes peer through the multi faceted frost. An old family secret with hunger like a ravenous lion gnaws at Ribbon's soul.

A force of unparalleled and breathtaking strength whisks Ribbon into an world of great beauty. A world of mystery. A world of dark magic. THE world of Elves ….

She is followed  …

But, by whom? ...

What does he seek? …

Will Ribbon find the answers?


Will the secret consume her?

Ribbon of Darkness

Decadent Kane

Whoa. Now this has me intrigued. Elves, Dark worlds and a sexy elf. This conjures up all kinds of thoughts. This novella, by author Decadent Kane, does feature erotica, but what a seductive mix. It is written under a penn name by one of our own lovely bloggers, Summer Ross.

Book information:
Ribbon of Darkness is set to release December 13th 2013
Sign up for the newsletter to be notified of publications:
Find out more about the author, Decadent Kane:

~Summer Ross~
Let's give Summer all the support we can! All the best Summer! Please stop by her blog and wish her well.

Thanks everyone. I hope you all have a great Monday!

Friday, November 1, 2013


Happy Friday all,

Such an exciting time! With all that is happening in our lives with work, family, friends, travel, and of course our beloved writing!

But for many of us, we are stale, oppressed, frustrated, and sad. I know I've personally had some downers this year, but we all must remember to pick ourselves up and brush ourselves off. Life is UNPREDICTABLE and FULL of unexpected surprises, both good and bad.

But at times we long for a second chance to go back and correct some the huge mistakes we have made or avoid bad things that have happened to us.

"If only I did ….


If I didn't do …"

So, my question to all of you is … Do you believe in second chances? Is there a time in your life that you want to change?

I'd like to share the story of a frustrated woman who has given up on her life …

For forty years Wilhelmina has nothing but a life time of failed marriages, a job she hates, and an affair with a married man. Slouched in a chair, sipping coffee, she silently prays for an answer.

A bright light blinds her and she is faced with her future self. She offers Wilhelmina a chance to re-do her life, giving her a mission.

Open mouthed and staring in disbelief, Wilhelmina asks her mirror image. "What kind of mission?"

What could possibly be in store for Wilhelmina?

What does she have to do to correct her life?

Time On Her Side

Shelly Arkon

Is this the miracle she hoped for, or, will this lead into a whole new set of problems?

Would you take on this mysterious mission to save yourself?…

Hmm. Interesting thought. But, what a great premise. Shelly really has an exciting premise. Doesn't she?

AND, from today until Nov. 5th, Shelly is kind enough to let us download this intriguing story for FREE!  Thank you SO MUCH Shelly! I wish you all the best with your newest creation!

Here's the link…

Thank you all for dropping by! Please drop by Shelly's blog and wish her well.

Have a GREAT Weekend Everyone! I'm OFF TO BOGOTA, COLOMBIA tomorrow! 

Wednesday, October 30, 2013


Autumn leaves stir with a gentle rustle. A figure appears. Booted feet glide across the fallen leaves, yet all is silent. Moonlight dapples through the hollow as the unshadowed figure awaits.

A lace cuffed hand reaches into glowing silk breeches and pulls out a time piece. The figure shakes his head. He turns, freezing a stare through the towering maple and oak trees. He steps down the glenn toward the rushing water. The Hudson River gleams, reflecting shimmers of moon beams. 

Hooves crunch the fallen leaves, and a chestnut horse snorts as it appears in front of the figure. Its rider, headless, turns his shoulders from side-to-side.

The figure's head jerks. The faint call of his name pricks his ear. It beckons louder, but it's not coming from the headless horseman.

"Appear to us," chants a female voice.

"Washington. We call to you. Make yourself known." The misty words carry on the winds into the hollow.

Washington raises a transparent brow. He turns toward the horseman, bows, and vanishes.

He reappears in a dimly lit room. Faces the medium, Tara, and speaks. "Why have you summoned me from the great beyond?"

"A Twenty-first century writer wishes to speak with you." She glances toward a gentleman to her right. "Michael. You requested a chat with our esteemed guest?" She lock's her eyes on the ghost. "Washington Irving this is Michael Di Gesu'.

Washington bows his head. "A pleasure, sir. What is it you ask of me?

Michael swallows hard, The gulp magnifies through the silent room. "The pleasure's all mine. I, too, hail from NYC, and was raised not far from Tarrytown, NY. So I feel a special bond with you. Your two famous tales hold deep in my heart."

Washington bows his head again. "It pleasures me to know that my tales are still well received young, sir. However, I must bid you farewell. I have an urgent meeting with the Headless Horseman." He waves and elegant hand. "Farewell ye authors of the future. May you never compromise your writings for gold."

And with that parting message, he dissolves into a fine mist. It lingers for a moment and as last dissipates. Tara's eyes flash open.

"What happened?"

"You just contacted Washington Irving! IT was so awesome!" Angela pipes.

Tara shivers. "I did?" She snaps her head toward Gwen. "You do the next one. I feel almost violated."

HAPPY Pre-HALLOWS EVE, Everyone. Today is a DOUBLE blog hop! Thankfully my entry matches BOTH criteria ... For the FROM the GREAT BEYOND BLOG HOP hosted by Angela Brown, Roland Yeoman, Gwen Gardener and Tara Tyler,




I hope you all enjoyed my 401 word entry. If you haven't figured out by now, today's From the Great Beyond hop is about bringing back the ghost of a favored author or celebrity. Lots of fun prizes too! SO HOP around and COMMENT on everyone's blog!


Write a chilling, scary, fun Halloweens story of your choice. Denise is offering a $10.00 gift card for best entry. SWEET!

SO PLEASE drop by BOTH hops and join in the FUN….  Could you ask for ANYTHING MORE!


Monday, October 28, 2013


Hi, all,

I hope you enjoyed your weekend and managed some fun free time. I did make to Florida safely on Friday afternoon and had a restful weekend catching up on sleep and visiting friends. Two days and 24 hours of driving really does take its toll on you.

A change of scenery is often needed. After my accident and several months of healing, I finally am feeling more like myself. Viewing the rolling ocean waters and basking in the sun and cloudless skies is definitely good for my psyche.

So if you feel in a rut, why not take a drive into the country. Autumn is a beautiful time of year to absorb the beauty of the turning foliage and appreciate the last of the comfortable temps before they drop to below freezing and nature falls to sleep for the season. Cloudy skies, icy winds, and crystalized water will keep us hibernating for many months. Thankfully I will be safe for another six weeks in the south. OH, but driving back to Chicago in mid December will be quite the journey. I hope I'll be ready for it.

But why worry about that now, right? It's a sunny and a GORGEOUS 77 degrees today. Can't wait to take my power walk along the beach later!

I have only until Friday to enjoy the beach, then off for another CHANGE… The top of the ANDES MOUNTAINS in Bogota, Colombia… Man talk about a scene change … LOL.

I hope to be posting from there with pics…. But it depends on internet service. I'll be staying in private homes, so who knows…. But at least I hope to get SOME writing done…. Maybe? Yes,… is must. LOL.

I have two other reveals coming up next week, so please stay tuned for those. Wonderful authors with more for us to read…. YAY!!!!

Have a great Monday everyone! AND… Happy pre Halloween! Don't forget Thursday's the day…

What have you planned?

Friday, October 25, 2013


Hi, All.

Another Friday and the weekend is revving up… In the north where the temperatures have dropped and the winds are gusting chilling air, you may want to stay in and curl up with a good book. It doesn't take too much courage to "think twice" about going out.

But it does take an amazing amount of courage to write a novel and even more to write a series. Today it gives me great pleasure to review Carrie Butler's newest novel, COURAGE. It is BOOK TWO of the Mark of Nexus series…

For those of you who relish in paranormal romances you will absolutely go ape over this book. I, myself am not into gushy romantic stories where the heroin's always on fire and waiting for the muscled hunk to satisfy her. Enough already. Give us a STORY that we can sink our teeth into. Dudes don't mind romance if there is action and intrigue.

Butler has totally roped me into to the world she has created. A mysterious secret society … world balance between three races of super beings … and passionate, well rounded characters who are believable. Strength with flaws. Even super beings can be human, and we are treated with a gamut, sucked in by the riveting prose.

Even though this is the second book in the series, the reader can easily follow the story. The KEY elements of STRENGTH (The first novel) are blended in flawlessly.

It takes a certain type of person to face up to their destiny. Whether good or bad, we wake to a new day and crash head on into our lives.

But what if the stakes were set too high? Would you be able to cope? Within your heart and soul, you'd find the answer. Sometimes strength isn't enough. Wallace, the main male lead, has all the strength in the world, but what good is it if fear debilitates you.

Etched lines crisscross the face of a young woman staring into a mirror. Her lower lip trembles as she asks herself these very same questions. Who is she?


She sets her jaw, brushes the streaks of honey-gold hair away from her eyes, and splashes cold water onto her face. As she turns, the bloodline band tattooed around her right arm reflects from the mirror. After one exceedingly long breath, her chest tightens.

It is time ...

Time to face her fear ...

Time to mend broken ties, and join forces with the person she hurt the most ...

Time to live up to her destiny ...

Will she have the courage?

Only time will tell ….

This reviewer very rarely gives five stars. But COURAGE has all the elements of a FIVE star novel. Thank you Carrie for treating us with such an intricate and fulfilling story. I can't wait for your next book!

I hope you all enjoyed my review with a bit of creative licensing.  Please drop by Carrie's blog and congratulate her. She is such a talented and special person. ALL THE BEST, CARRIE!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

Here are all the links …

Carrie Butler
Author of the Mark of Nexus Series & Co-founder of NA Alley
Owner of Forward Authority(Design Services)  

Link to tour page …

Raina Campbell

Wednesday, October 23, 2013


Hi, All,

Happy Wednesday. Today it's a very CRISP, sunny day here in Chicago. I like to give you all a special thanks for all the support you are showing for our blogger buddies during each one of my intros. Seems like EVERYONE is coming out with a new book… YAY, YOU!

I hope to SOON join the ranks, but nothing is definite yet. What is definite is that I have managed to get through the ordeal with my accident from nine weeks ago… to the day. My wrist hass mended, but I still need to SLOWLY build up the strength. I am NOT afraid to look in the mirror anymore; the angry scars are fading and my hair has grown over the NASTY spider one, crawling on top of my head.  A spidery leg does reach down onto my forehead, but in time it should fade more. At least I hope so.

The main thing is I am happy again. I have my life back. Thank you all for you prayers and warm wishes. I could never have healed this well without them!

Tomorrow, before dawn I will be heading south the Florida. Two long days of driving will bring me back to blue, sunny skies and warm breezes. I have a small design job there which I will start and finish after I get back from … SOUTH AMERICA!

I had planned this trip a while back with a friend and since the flights are reasonable and we'll be staying with his family, how could I possibly refuse … right? So, I mainly will be in Bogota, Colombia, sipping DELICIOUS Colombian coffee and watching the wonderful people while sitting at a neighborhood cafe'. I hope to do lots of writing while I am there, but I'm not sure about the internet connections. SO from Nov. 2-25th, I may be scarce from the blogosphere. I will have scheduled post and visit whenever I can.

In Florida I will have access, so I'll surely be around. I get back on the 25th of Nov. and will be in Florida for an additional few weeks to finish up my job. Then back home to FRIGID Chicago for the holidays. Brrrrr.

I had to give you all a heads up and let you know. I do have plans to see PK Hrezo and if any of you are in the ORLANDO area during these weeks PLEASE let me know so we can grab a coffee.

I met with Nicki Elson and her charming sister yesterday and had a blast. Also spent MANY happy hours with Melissa Bradley at Argo Tea on Saturday. SO life is GOOD…. Thank God.

May you all have a wonderful Day. On Friday I have a book review, you won't want to miss. So I hope to see you then….

Monday, October 21, 2013


Hi, All.

What would YOU do if you mysteriously drifted into another dimension? Another world. Imagine. How would you handle it? Would you TAKE CHARGE of the situation? OR, shriek, and faint dead away?

Throughout time, we have read of such stories. Many of us have written books about this very thing. But have any of you ACTUALLY believed it? Considered it COULD happen?

We are often faced with the paranormal. I, myself have encountered ghosts on more than on occasion. This is not something I take lightly. I'd like to think anything is possible.

Even, if a young woman, trapped in an ancient castle, ends up forced through a doorway into another world.

A world enchanted. 

A world with black knights restless for war.

A world where an unsuspecting heroine is ordained to be an ELFISH princess.

A world to be discovered ...

The Vanished Knight


Misha Gerrick

Sounds intriguing, doesn't it? I know you want to know more, so here is the BLURB ...

Since the death of her parents, Callan Blair has been shunted from one foster family to another, her dangerous secret forcing the move each time. Her latest foster family quickly ships her off to an exclusive boarding school in the Cumbrian countryside. While her foster-brother James makes it his mission to get Callan expelled, a nearby ancient castle holds the secret doorway to another land...
When Callan is forced through the doorway, she finds herself in the magical continent of Tardith, where she’s shocked to learn her schoolmates Gawain and Darrion are respected soldiers in service to the king of Nordaine, one of Tardith's realms. More than that, the two are potential heirs to the Black Knight—Nordaine's crown prince.
But when the Black Knight fails to return from a mysterious trip, the realm teeters on the brink of war. Darrion and Gawain set out to find him, while Callan discovers there is more to her family history than she thought. The elves are claiming she is their princess.
Now with Darrion growing ever more antagonistic and her friendship with Gawain blossoming, Callan must decide whether to stay in Nordaine—where her secret grows ever more threatening—or go to the elves and uncover the truth about her family before war sets the realms afire.

I hope you get a chance to drop by Misha's blog and wish her well. She does so much for our community and this is her debut novel... 


If you’d like to contact her, feel free to mail her at warofsixcrowns(AT)gmail(DOT)com, Circle her on Google Plus or follow her on TwitterIf you'd like to see her writer-side (beware, it's pretty insane), please feel free to check out her blogYou can also add The Vanished Knight onGoodreads.


Friday, October 18, 2013


Throughout our lives we play many games. As children we learn many of life's lessons through game playing. We learn math. We learn reading. We learn sportsmanship. We learn how to WIN. We try to learn how to lose gracefully. But as we mature, game playing takes on a different tone.

It can be seductive. It can by exciting. It can be dangerous ...

It can even lead to death.

How many of us have crossed the lines in perilous game playing? As our curiosity leads us down paths to unknown situations, sometimes we can get BURNED ....

On one moonlit night, a young woman enters a smokey nightclub sensing the evil within. The smoke clears. A loner, forced into a corner by a gang, is in need of assistance. His handsome features contort as a glimmer of fear streaks his face like a dull razor.

She steps in and charms her way through the wall of testosterone. Little did she know that moments later she would be chased by this ruthless band of not so merry men.

Who is this mysterious stranger?

Will she escape?

 Who will be the winner of this TWISTED game? ...

I know I'd like to find out! 

Just in time for Halloween, here's the cover of the latest installment of E.J. Wesley's Moonsongs series, Dragon's Game! (New Adult - speculative - Novelette)

You can learn more about Dragon's Game, the Moonsongs books, and E.J. HERE

Be sure to add Dragon's Game to your Goodreads shelf. And for a limited time, you can catch up on the entire Moonsongs series for just .99 cents (regularly $2.99). Moonsongs Anthology 1 (books 1, 2, & 3) is on sale October 15th - 20th at Amazon and Barnes & Noble!

Available Monday, October 22nd!

ALL THE BEST, EJ! I'm really looking forward to reading the whole collection!

Have a GREAT weekend everyone!