Great Summer Reading: “Summer of the Rose” – now in hard cover! #TimeTravel #Southernhistoricalfantasy

“Is ‘The Wind in the Willows’ a children’s book? Is ‘Alice in Wonderland?’ Is ‘Treasure Island?’ these are masterpieces which we read with pleasure as children, but with how much more pleasure when we are grown-up.” – A. A. Milne 

2014-01-15_14-05-07_194 - Copy (3) - CopyGreat news for all you summer book readers! Book 1 in the “Secrets of Rose River” Time Travel Trilogy, is now in hard cover edition on B&N.comIf you liked “Tuck Everlasting”, you will love this one! A Southern Historical Time Travel Fantasy, with just the right amount of romance, and even a bit of mischief, this is a “coming of age” story being told by “Anna” who’s now 87, that will be enjoyed by young and old alike! Pull up a chair, Anna’s just getting started! The River has secrets she will never tell, but Anna just might know a few of them…

Summer’s just around the corner, and “Summer of the Rose” will make a great addition to your list!

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A RIVER OF SECRETS…Anna Brownfield is 12 the summer of 1877, when she and her twin brothers, Jed and Josiah, 15, set out to find the secret place in the river, hidden in the forest near their little dirt road southern town, where folks say that if you touch the water there, you will look around and realize you have traveled forward or even backward in time. Little do they know what the “Enchanted Lady” winding her way through the forest, which Anna refers to as “Lady River”, has in store for them.

ROMANCE…Did she find her true love because of a secret place in the river, like others claim they did? Anna is now 87 years old, and she has some stories to tell, but none quite like the “Summer of the Rose”. There are others who have stories to tell, and Anna knows who they are. She also knows that there are few who have ever been able to resist the River’s call…

TALES OF TIME TRAVEL…So pull up a chair and sit for a while with Anna, Sam “Tater” Jenson, Mattie Turner, and the others, along with “Flapjack”, the town hound dog as they take you back to a time of early southern America, when the town storytellers sat out in rocking chairs in front of the old stores and told stories of days gone by. Go back to a time when you saw the world through the eyes of a child and dared to imagine the impossible. You might hear a story you just wouldn’t believe…

A truly heartwarming, yet daring romantic adventure you won’t soon forget! Get it now on Amazon in Print (Paperback) and Kindle, and now on B&N.com in Hard Cover, as well as Paperback and Nook! If you liked the movie, “Tuck Everlasting”, <— (Click here for my “Interview” with “Anna” and a special treat at the end!), you will love this book!

Be sure to subscribe to my email so you won’t miss Book 2, “Scent of the Rose”, and my other future releases! If you know someone who would enjoy this book, please share to your Facebook or Tweet, via the buttons below! Get yours today, and I hope you enjoy it! Be sure to stop back by the Amazon or B&N pages and leave a review!

 

 

 

All Writers: Hats off to the Late, Great Natalie Babbitt! #childrensauthor #tuckeverlasting

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In memory of Natalie Babbitt, 1932 – 2016

I write for children because I am interested in fantasy and the possibilities for experience of all kinds before the time of compromise. I believe that children are far more perceptive and wise than American books give them credit for being.  ~ Natalie Babbitt

You may remember from my past posts that my 2nd book, “A River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose”, was in part, inspired by the movie, “Tuck Everlasting”, which was actually adapted from a children’s book by Natalie Babbitt. To be honest, it was also inspired largely by a walk I took one day. I came back in and sat down and felt it coming to me. It has been more than a few times that the ideas for the projects I have been working on so far have come to me from the Great Author Himself, and such was the case this time. It has seemed that this has happened right at the times I was about to just give up and “throw in the towel” on it all. But, I also know that I wouldn’t be the author and writer I am now if it weren’t for the inspiration I have received from other authors.

As writers, they are our teachers, and we can learn much just from reading their work. Natalie said as much in an interview I was able to find. You can read it here. Indeed, she has been one of my greatest teachers. I was doing an internet search for something pertaining to what I was working on and happened to see the news headlines that she left our world on October 31, 2016. She was 84. Read it here.

Although she did not start out wanting to be a writer, but rather, an illustrator, she wrote several books in the span of her writing career and illustrated many others. Here is a listing of her books as well as a bio about her.  You may have seen this movie that was adapted from her book, “Tuck Everlasting”. Here is the movie trailer:

I think I can speak for all writers, who aspire to be great authors one of these days, that we can say, “hats off”, to one who has truly been a great teacher and inspiration to us all. Thank you, Mrs. Babbitt, for all you have taught me as a writer myself, and for the great works you have left us. May they continue to inspire future generations of young readers, as you have inspired us! In one of her quotes from the story, I believe it was the father in the “Tuck” family who says, to “Winnie Foster”, “Don’t be afraid of death; be afraid of an unlived life. You don’t have to live forever, you just have to live.”

I choose to live, live my life to the fullest and to celebrate the gifts I have been given, and what all I can accomplish with the time I have left on this earth. After all, there are plenty of teachers who have paved the way before me, and the Great Author Himself, to guide my way.

I also took advantage of the anniversary edition of her book, “Tuck Everlasting”. I may not be a child reader, but then, there is still a little bit of our childhood left in all of us, I think. Besides, to all of us as authors, reading the works of those who came before us is how we learn. To quote my character, “Anna”, who also narrates the story in “A River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose”, I think this is probably one of my favorite lines in the whole book:

“They say there is a path that winds through the forest that exists deep within our imaginations, in that childlike part of our minds…but that gate is only open once. After this, the adult mind somehow closes it.” – “Anna” 

Why not take a journey back down that path, if but for a little while…

Click here to read a sample of the 40th Anniversary Edition of “Tuck Everlasting”. 

FREE DOWNLOAD!:”A River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose”, Oct 24 -28!! #freekindledownload

Secrets…Adventure…Romance…Time Travel…If you liked the movie, Tuck Everlasting, you will love this book!

The River has secrets she will never tell…

This week only! October 24th  – 28th, the Kindle version of this Southern Historical Romantic Tale is available to download for FREE! It is also a coming of age story that will take you on a journey you won’t soon forget! From a time when the town story tellers sat in the rocking chairs in front of the corner store, a time that should never be forgotten, pull up a chair and sit for a while, and Anna will tell you a tale you just might not believe…

CLICK HERE to view my “Interview” with “Anna”! 

CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE BOOK TRAILER (Cover has been updated since.)

Click here or click the picture to download!

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Anna Brownfield is 12 the summer of 1877, when she and her twin brothers, Jed and Josiah, 15, set out to find the secret place in the river, hidden in the forest near their little dirt road southern town, where folks say that if you touch the water there, you will look around and realize you have traveled forward or even backward in time. Little do they know what the “Enchanted Lady” winding her way through the forest, which Anna refers to as “Lady River”, has in store for them. Anna is now 87 years old, and she has some stories to tell, but none quite like the “Summer of the Rose”.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoy it! Be sure to subscribe to my email so you won’t miss out on Book 2, coming some time in the near future! Click the “Books Coming Soon” tab to read sneak previews of other upcoming books, and if you like this one, be sure to stop back by the Amazon page and leave a review!

Download “A River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose”

Remember, it’s FREE this week only, October 24th – 28th!

Know someone who would like this book? Please share!

1 Day Left! FREE Kindle: A Southern Historical Time Travel Fantasy

cropped-cropped-kimg15561.jpgHi all, hope you had a good weekend! Just a reminder, only 1 day left, that’s today, Monday, August 22nd, to get your FREE download of “A River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose”! The FREE Kindle download promotion ends today! But the good news is, if you buy the print version of either of my books, both of which are in the Kindle Matchbook Promotion, OR if you have in the past, the Kindle version of that book is free for you to download. That way, you can read it on the go. (Just don’t try to read while driving, lol)

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Click to download on Amazon

I also have some sneak previews of other projects I am working on, which you can check out via the ‘Books Coming Soon’ tab. Meanwhile, if you know anyone who would like to read, please share!

I also have a couple of major projects I have been working on, which I am very excited about, so subscribe if you haven’t so you won’t miss out! Lots going on, so, I am getting ready to roll up my sleeves, quit procrastinating (see my last post on that here, for any of you writers out there), and make it happen!

Have you ever heard of a writer interviewing their characters? Well, this author did! Somewhere in the forest lies a secret…not many in Anna’s little dirt road town somewhere in the South (she won’t tell us where) know about it. Folks say there’s a secret place in the river out there in the forest somewhere where if you touch the water there, you will look around and realize you have traveled forward, or even backward, in time! Of course, not many of the folks in town will admit it, but then, there are those who have a story to tell, and Anna knows who they are…

Click here to read my interview with her!

Just a fair warning, it’s been a while since Anna and her twin brothers set out to try and  find the secret place back in the summer of 1877, when she was 12 and they were 15, so let’s just say she says what’s on her mind. She may be 87 years old now, but she knows how to tell a story! She has some stories to tell, but none quite like the “Summer of the Rose”!

Well, that’s it for now, more to come in the very near future, I will be sure to keep you posted! If you happen to be reading this after Monday, Aug. 22nd, which was the last day of the FREE Kindle promotion, both of my current 2 books are regularly $2.99, and they are also in the Kindle Unlimited program, so if you are a member of that, they’re free to you anyway! Head on over to Amazon for more details on that. Also, remember, you don’t have to own a “Kindle” device now to be able to download books, most smart phones have the app already loaded onto them, or you can download the app right from the Amazon page. Oh, and if you happen to be a writer, or if you have thought of writing a book but don’t really know where to start, be sure to see my last 2 posts, loaded with tips and resources for writers, and a little advice on what has worked for me, ways to learn from the pros, quit procrastinating, and get started on writing that best seller!

And be sure to link back to me when you’re book comes out so I can celebrate with you! Until next time, hope everyone has a great week!!!

 

 

FREE Kindle Download! Aug 18-22!A Romantic Southern Historical Time Travel Story You Just Might Not Believe…#historicalfantasy #timetravel #greatreads

“All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.” – Walt Disney

Hi everyone!


thickpaperbackfront_604x964I just wanted to post this little update letting you know about a FREE Kindle Promotion I’m having for my book, “A River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose”, the 1st book in the “River of Love’s Rose” Time Travel Trilogy. Now through Monday, August 22nd, you can download the Kindle version FREE! Also, both of my current books are in the Kindle Matchbook Promotion, so if you purchase the print version of either of them, or have in the past, the Kindle version is FREE for you to download. This is a truly enchanting and romantic Southern Historical Time Travel Fantasy that will take you back in time, to a charming little dirt road town “somewhere in the South” as “Anna” puts it, in the summer of 1877, where she’ll tell you a story you just might not believe…about a secret place in the river somewhere in the forest, where folks say if you touch the water there, you will look around and see that you have traveled forward or backward in time! There are others around town who have stories to tell and Anna knows who they are…

So mark your calendars so you won’t forget to download your copy, starting this Thursday, August 18th and running through Monday, August 22nd! Be sure to get yours, and share this post with anyone you know who would enjoy this wonderful little story that will take you on a truly heartwarming and romantic journey you won’t soon forget!

Here is the book trailer for it…

Click here to download it on Amazon.

The story was inspired by the movie, “Tuck Everlasting”, which was adapted from a children’s book by Natalie Babbit. It’s a long running favorite of mine, which my son introduced me to. Want to meet “Anna”? You can! Click here to read my “interview” with her!  But I’ll have to warn you, she’s 87 now and she’s something else! She says what’s on her mind; I’ll put it that way.  A lot has happened since that summer of 1877, when Anna was just 12, and she and her twin brothers set out to find the secret place in the river. A coming of age story in a sense, I feel it will appeal to young and old alike!

And one more time, just for you, here’s the movie trailer for the movie that inspired the series! If you have kids, this is a rather enjoyable movie they will enjoy watching with you. Here you go, enjoy!

It is my sincere hope that this book will take you on an enchanting and inspirational journey you won’t soon forget! Meanwhile, whether you are an author or a reader or both, I also want to tell you about a great club I am a member of, called Author Marketing Club. If you are an avid reader, you can subscribe with your email and receive daily emails of free books that are currently in free promotions to download. If you are an author, they provide some pretty awesome tools and resources to promote your books. Some of the resources are available to (free) members, others are only available to premium subscribers. I am a member, and definitely planning to become a premium member soon! Just thought I’d share! Click here if you’re interested…

Book Marketing & Selling Tips for Authors

For now, like many of you, I am an Indie Author working my way to the top, although like most of us authors, I am working towards finding a literary agent for some of my upcoming works, which I feel really excited about. Hey, we all know it’s hard work trying to make it as an author, especially with all of the competition we have out there. Click here to read my last post which featured links to some very helpful resources for authors, along with tips from learning from the pros, which I am sharing from my own experience. Now, if you’ve been procrastinating, like many of us have done at times (hey, I’ve had times I could be the queen of procrastinators, I explain more in the post linked above) check out that post and some of the tips I’ve shared, and get to writing that best seller. If you’ve ever dreamed of writing a book, you can! See you at the top! Believe it, dream it, and you can do it!

Know anyone who would love this book or find this information helpful? Please share! And if you enjoy the book, don’t forget to stop back by my Amazon page and leave me a nice review! Be sure to subscribe so you won’t miss out on any of my upcoming books! Remember, the free download dates are Thursday, August 18th through Monday, August 22nd! I hope you enjoy it! Thanks for stopping by!

 

Book Writing for Procrastinators… 8 Ways to Learn from the Pros, Get Started, and Write that Best Seller! #writingtipsfornewbies

There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you. — Maya Angelou

I think of myself… as a troubadour, a village storyteller, the guy in the shadows of the campfire. – Louis L’Amour

Do you have a story to tell? Is there a future best seller trapped inside you? Do you want to write it, but have problems with procrastination? If so, you have come to the right place! I have had times I could be the queen of procrastinators! So, let’s help each other!  Even if you don’t have a problem with procrastinating, do you have an idea for a book, but just don’t know how to go about it? Then read on. Here are some tips from my experience that might help you. But first…

A Little More About Me…

If you’re anything like me, I went for years never even imagining myself writing a book. Maybe you’ve thought about it, but just been putting it off. Or maybe you’ve wanted to, but just don’t know how to go about it. For starters, let me just say, for the record, I certainly don’t claim to know everything there is to know about writing books. As a matter of fact, I am somewhat of a procrastinator. That said, I also had to put everything on the back burner for a while when my husband had his second kidney transplant a couple of years ago, plus I am a grandma to 3 very active little boys I like to see when I can. Then too, life can be just plain hectic these days. So, at this point, I am still playing catch up, but I am finally making progress, and my husband and I are very excited about the projects I have in the works right now. I currently have two books available on Amazon, you can check them out here. Although I have taken the self publishing route thus far, hubby and I are very optimistic toward pursuing the traditional route for my current projects, which are in the proofreading/polishing stages now. One is a book on faith, which will have my testimony of my near death experience in a horrific automobile accident in November of ’85, you can read more on that here. Be sure to subscribe to my email so you don’t miss out! Also in the works is my “Sadie’s Love” Duology (so far 😉 ). Next up is rolling up my sleeves to write those query letters! But enough about me already! Today, we’re going to talk about you! So what’s your story?

So What’s Your Story?

So, what’s your story? I will admit, writing comes to me naturally, as my mother was also a writer, and she has been one of my greatest teachers, as well as my dad, who inspired in me a love for reading. I can be watching a movie or listening to a conversation and get an idea for a story. But it didn’t always come to me that easily. For years, my tendencies to procrastinate alone kept me from feeling that I could ever sit down and write a book. I simply didn’t have the self discipline. But now, with two books down and more to come, I want to share with you some of what has worked for me, what I’ve learned from “the pros”, and even a few links to resources I have found helpful along my journey. I’ll share with you what I have found helpful, and in turn, if anyone knows anything I haven’t listed here that has helped you, feel free to comment and share. After all, we’re all writers helping writers, right? …

1. Traditional or Self Publish? Learning From Rejection… 

Let’s face it. Most of us as writers start out with dreams of hitting that coveted New York Times Best Seller List, and maybe even eventually having our books made into movies. But we quickly find it isn’t that easy. So do we just give up? Certainly not! Quite the opposite. The best way to get started on that path to becoming a NYTBS Author is to do just that, get started. Write that book. Carve out some quiet time to sit down and write. Then, do your online search for literary agencies, midsize publishers (some of which do not require an agent), and follow their instructions to send in a query letter and/or a synopsis of your work. But if your first book is rejected, don’t get discouraged. My first book was more or less a story I had “trapped in me” as Maya Angelou said, and wasn’t really in a popular genre, so after multiple rejections, I finally decided to self publish it through Amazon Createspace. That being said, although sales for it and even my second book have not been quite what I would like them to have been, I look back on the experience and learn from it, and keep writing. After all, that future best seller isn’t going to write itself! A good example of a pro we can learn from here is Jack Canfield, Co Author/Creator of the now ever popular Chicken Soup for the Soul Series, who went through something like 144 rejections before he found a publisher. Did that stop him? No! And just look where he is now! But don’t just take my word for it. Click here for some of Jack’s tips and author training on writing a book and making it a success!  So write that book and send those query letters. If it gets rejected 10 or 20 times, don’t just give up. Use the experience to learn ways you can improve, and study the examples of success stories, like Jack Canfield and others. Your story might just be that diamond in the rough!

2. Read! Other Authors Are Our Best Teachers…

The best way to learn the art of writing is to read. Reading the works of other authors not only gives you plenty of exposure to different writing styles, but it also provides a good way to learn about character development, irony, symbolism, dialogue, personification, as well as the flow of the story itself. The best place to start is with some of those favorite best selling authors you like. As you’re reading, notice how the story is set up. For fiction, what literary agents want to see is: hook, conflict, and resolution. Here, Rachelle Gardner explains more of what literary agents are looking for in a query letter. In a good, best selling fiction novel, you should be able to see how well the author has set this up. There is usually an exciting, romantic, or heart-pounding beginning that “hooks” you as the reader, the ensuing “conflict” between the characters or with one character and their situation, and then how the conflict is resolved, the “resolution”. Another benefit of reading the work of other authors is that it gives you insight into sentence structure, setting up dialogue, punctuation and so forth. I got started early as far as reading, since my dad has always been an avid reader. Being one who especially loves Westerns, he has read every book Louis L’Amour ever wrote. As early as first grade, I found myself reading them from time to time. I especially love the way he writes so as to make you feel you are actually there. I also got my son started on reading at an early age. He is a dedicated fan of the Lord of the Rings Series, ever since my dad gave him his old copy of “The Lord of the Rings”. I have learned a lot just from reading those best sellers by my favorite authors, taking a little something from each of them, combining it all over time as I develop my own style. Best of all, you can set your own “class” hours!

3. Meet Other Authors! Inspiration is the Best Medicine for Encouragement…

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Me, (L) and my daughter and grandson at Nicholas Sparks’ book signing for “The Last Song” at Barnes & Noble in Cary, NC. Yes, that’s been a few years, that cute little baby’s 8 years old now!

Another of my greatest teachers and one who has been a big inspiration to me is Nicholas Sparks. I have learned a lot from reading several of his books and have seen most of the movies. The turning point in my deciding to pursue a career in writing came the day I met him at one of his book signings at a Barnes & Noble in our area. It was for his book, “The Last Song”, although at the time, I had just finished reading “A Bend in the Road”. I found it to be a very inspiring experience and walked out of that B&N store that day thinking to myself, if he can do it, I can! I haven’t stopped since. I may not have gotten there yet, but then, the turtle won the race with the rabbit, simply because he refused to give up (or waste time and procrastinate, ha ha)! As a matter of fact, Nicholas Sparks also has a page on his website dedicated to those who want to be writers. One of the tips he gives? Just as I said above, read!

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Me with Mary at her book signing for “Lessons…” at the Barnes & Noble in Lynchburg, VA

I have also had the great honor of meeting actress, author, producer, and life coach, Mary McDonough, whom most of us older folks may remember as “Erin” from “The Waltons”, which ran for 9 seasons (and in my opinion, is only one of the best family shows of all time, hands down). In addition to her book, “Lessons From the Mountain, What I Learned From Erin Walton (read my review here), she also has two fiction books now available. Click here to visit her website and check them out! I can honestly say, both of these experiences were greatly inspirational and exciting experiences for me. After all, they have been some of my greatest teachers. So who’s the next best selling author coming to a book store near you? Go! Meet them! For anyone who wants to be a writer, there is nothing quite like the adrenaline rush of getting to meet a best selling author! A learning experience in and of itself!

4. Watch a Good Movie

Hey, you never know when you’re going to get another idea for a great story. That’s what happened when I got the inspiration for my 2nd book, “A River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose”, which is the first book in the “River of Love’s Rose” Time Travel Trilogy. It is a Historical  Fantasy with a Southern flair, as well as just the right touch of romance and some Time Travel. I got the idea after a walk one day, and part of my inspiration for it was a movie called “Tuck Everlasting”, which my son introduced me to. It was adapted from a children’s book by Natalie Babbit. I actually did an “interview” with my main character, “Anna”, who is actually telling the story. Here is my previous post featuring the “interview” with “Anna”, along with the movie trailer for the movie that inspired my book. As for the series, of which I have begun work on the 2nd book, the story and characters are all my own, and, as it is also a bit of a coming of age story, it is one that I feel will be enjoyed by young and old alike. As for Anna and her sisters, there is a little of my late maternal grandmother and her sisters in it as well. If you have a “writer’s imagination” like I do, you have probably found it’s not hard to get ideas. Just make sure that if you do, your ideas and story are all your own! Of course, it helps if you happen to be writing in the more popular genres, but for me, it has to come from the heart and be something I enjoy writing about. Then too, it has to be something that will sell. So there are already a gazillion werewolf stories or Time Travel Romances. What is it that will make yours unique, and better than the rest? Again, as I have learned from my first experiences, I like to think each successive book I publish will be an improvement from my previous ones. That is how we develop into experienced and seasoned writers. Next stop, best selling author! (Hopefully, lol)

5. Join a Writer’s Group – Writer’s Groups and Best Selling Author Fan Pages as Learning Tools

With the convenience of social media these days (and hey, for us old dinosaurs, we are still learning how all of that works, but then again, we all did all of our stupid stuff before the internet, hee hee), more and more authors, especially best selling ones, can be found on Facebook,  Twitter, and other places. Joining a writer’s group or “Liking” or Subscribing to a best selling author’s fan page can be especially helpful. As you watch what works for them as far as their posts and how they advertise, you will gain insight as to how this whole thing works and that in itself can be a big confidence builder.  I am in a writer’s group on Facebook started by Beverly Nault, who worked with Mary McDonough on her book, “Lessons…”, called Fresh Starts Writing Room – Advice for Emerging Writers. As a seasoned traditional as well as self published author, Bev shares a lot of helpful advice and interesting posts/articles, plus we all just kind of help each other. Writers helping Writers, right? Oh, and Mary McDonough is also on Facebook, as well as Debbie Macomber and others. So go find them, watch, and learn!

6. Learn from the Pros – Informative Websites, Webinars, Blogs, & Training Programs

Many authors who have been successful are now doing a lot of webinars, podcasts, and training programs to help other writers by providing active hands on demonstrations of what has worked for them. Here are a few who have helped me:

  1. Another Author who has a wonderful blog filled with articles and helpful resources for writers is Joanna Penn, whose blog, The Creative Penn, has been a big help to me.
  2. Shelley Hitz also has a lot of helpful resources, podcasts, webinars, and training resources.
  3. Derek Murphy, who has a PhD in Literature, has tons of helpful resources, including this page, with info on designing your own book covers, and book cover design templates.
  4. Joel Friedlander offers a training course on successful self publishing as well as professionally designed templates for you to use, among other valuable resources.
  5. Jane Friedman also has a lot of helpful resources for writers and self publishers. You can check out her blog here.
  6. Kary Oberbrunner is an author, coach, and speaker who offers some very helpful resources. I have listened to one of his webinars.

Those are just a few suggestions as to resources that have helped me in one way or another. As I said before, if you know of other resources I haven’t listed here, please share!

7. Take a Class

Hey, when it comes to writing, no amount of education is too much. With the increasing ease of self publishing now, more people than ever are turning to self publishing to tell their stories. But you do want your readers to know you made it past the eighth grade, right? So, if it’s been a while, it certainly wouldn’t hurt to enroll in a class or two, whether it’s a writing class or just to brush up on punctuation, grammar, sentence structure, subject-verb agreement, etc. Although as for the writing itself, my “teachers” have mostly been other authors, like Mr. Sparks, Louis L’Amour, Debbie Macomber, and others, I actually lucked out as for the rest, as I have an Associate’s Degree in Office Systems Technology, which involved a lot of Text Editing and Formatting, Keyboarding (okay, the “dinosaur” term is, “typing”), and the like. However, I have also found that you can find all kinds of instructional pages online written by literary agents and other professionals on subject-verb agreement, commonly misused words that sound alike, setting up dialogue with your characters, etc. So educate yourself. Yes, it is incredibly easy to self publish, if that’s the route you want to take. But if you want it to ever have a chance of achieving best seller status, it needs to look like an adult wrote it. Still, we are all human, and if possible, that future best seller will need a professional editing job. But for those just starting out, who haven’t quite raked in enough money from all those awesome sales to afford that option, we need to at least educate ourselves. I still find myself searching the internet at times for one of those “five minute” brush up sessions on something. It’s an ongoing process as we work to hone our skills and become best selling authors. But then, when you finally get a literary agent to represent you, if they are legitimate and do things the way they are supposed to, unlike those vanity publishers, then you won’t have to worry about it. Until then…educate yourself. And keep writing.

8. So Stop Procrastinating, Sit Down, and Write that Best Seller! 

So, what’s your story? Are you tired of walking around with that best seller trapped inside of you, yet? If you’re anything like me, well, life just kind of gets in the way sometimes. As for me, I suffer from PTSD from a horrible car accident, as I mentioned above, and my journey to healing and telling my story hasn’t been an easy one. It’s an ongoing process. But, like that turtle, I am not stopping. We will fall sometimes. But then, we get up and keep trying, and keep helping each other until we get to where we’re going. So, sit down and just start writing. In addition to MS Word, there are also programs more suited to writers that you can check out, like Adobe InDesign and Scrivener, among others. Whatever you use, just sit down and start writing. As for that procrastinating thing, I have found that working to put myself on a schedule, like I do my grandsons when I keep them, has helped me. Work to eliminate the time wasters or other projects that can wait until later, assign yourself a schedule, and stick to it! Reward yourself for doing well! One of the main reasons I think I have tended to procrastinate stems from a lack of confidence, which I suffered for a long time, due to issues surrounding my PTSD. But thankfully, with my faith in God that has brought me through the hard times, and the love and encouragement of my sweet husband, who is also my biggest fan, I’m getting there. So, if you tend to have problems with procrastinating, talk it over with God, your spouse, or a family member who can help you get to the root of the problem. Then, instead of letting the problem continue to be a road block, He will take those “lemons” life has handed you and turn them into the best “lemonade” you have ever tasted. That is when you can finally stop procrastinating, sit down, and start writing that story. Whether it’s your life’s story or the next best selling fiction novel, it isn’t going to write itself!

As for that story of the Rabbit and the Tortoise, in the end, it wasn’t about who ran the fastest. It was who kept on going, despite his limitations, and won the race. As for us writers, it’s not about who writes the fastest, or the most books. It’s just writers helping writers. It’s you, finally sitting down to write that story that no one is ever going to read unless you write it! And, it’s getting up again when you fall and pressing on, with the help and encouragement of those who believe in you, and believing in those who will be touched by your story, even though you haven’t met them…yet.

So, what’s your story?

Click here to read the 2nd post on this: Book Writing for Procrastinators, Part 2: Overcoming Distractions & Mind Blocks

 

A Southern Historical Romantic Time Travel You’re Going to “Love”! #ValentinesDay #sweetreads #romanticnovels

 

“They say there is a path that winds through the forest that exists deep within our imaginations, in that childlike part of our minds…that gate is only open once. After this, the adult mind somehow closes it.” ~ Anna, “A River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose”

First book in the “River of Love’s  Rose” Time Travel Trilogy!
A RIVER OF SECRETS, SUMMER OF THE ROSE
– A Southern Historical Time Travel Fantasy with just the right touch of romance, this one is sure to appeal to young and old alike!
Timeline_Cover_doNotRename73
In Print and Kindle versions on Amazon!
Get it now in ebook for only $2.99!
And now, just to “sweeten” the deal, here is a short sneak preview excerpt!

(Anna is now 87 years old, and is telling the story reflecting back on her childhood. Here, in this scene, she was 12 years old, and her twin brothers, 15.)

Now, looking back, all I can say is, it’s just as old Sam said. It’s hard to really know because at first there is no change that you can notice around you—no obvious ones anyway. No one was ever really certain that it could be pinpointed to one exact location. But then, the folks around here had always known that the river has a kind of personality of its own. It was like the way things happened, it seemed to keep everyone guessing. After all, we all knew that the river had secrets it would never tell.

We got off of our horses and tied them to some nearby trees, then just walked around admiring the beauty of the place. All we were really thinking of at the time was that it was a nice place to stop. It didn’t seem a possibility in our minds at the time that we might have found the secret place. But then, the river itself wouldn’t have told us if we had.

We ran through the trees and climbed the rocks like silly children, laughing the whole time. But then, as we looked down into the water, once again, something about it seemed to beckon us.

I stood there, looking at my reflection in the water as we let our horses drink their fill of it. I looked every bit of my twelve years, although I had often been told I looked older than I was. But then, something in the water seemed to beckon me to come a little closer. It was like it suddenly seemed to take on a life of its own, like some sort of magical rippling effect in the water, making you want to reach down and touch it. Perhaps it was just that curiosity that seemed to have taken ahold of each of us. I would never know for sure. It was when I reached down with my fingers and touched the water that I knew immediately that something had changed.

The wind blew a little differently, somewhat stronger. All of a sudden it was late in the day. I looked around. The horses were gone. My brothers were gone. There was no one but me. It was later in the afternoon. At first it seemed nothing around me had changed that much. But then, as I looked around, I began to realize what my mind did not want to accept. I had somehow gone to another time.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

You’ll want to be sure to add this one to your summer reading collection! Then, check back soon for the second book in the series, “Return to the River, Scent of the Rose”! Subscribe to my email via the tab above, so you’ll be sure to get email updates and be sure you don’t miss out! Also, be sure to click the link on the side to follow my Facebook Author page! Know someone who would love this? Please share to your Facebook or Twitter, or  Email it to a friend!

Interview With “Anna”: “Summer of the Rose”#characterinterviews

“Don’t be afraid of death; be afraid of an unlived life. You don’t have to live forever, you just have to live.”
Natalie Babbitt, Tuck Everlasting

An INTERVIEW with your STORY CHARACTER? Why not?!

This is an enchanting Southern Historical Fantasy that is also a bit of a Romantic Time Travel story that will take you on a journey you won’t soon forget! It was inspired by a movie that my son got me onto, which is a favorite of ours, adapted from a children’s book and starring Sissy Spacek, called “Tuck Everlasting”. The first book is available now, and the 2nd one is coming soon! Once more, since I’ve updated some things, I’ve decided to repost this one more time, for those who don’t know about my “Secrets of Rose River” Time Travel Trilogy. The first, book, which “Anna” is here to tell you about, is now available in print and Kindle versions on Amazon   Great news! It’s now available on B&N online in hard cover edition, as well as paperback and Nook, click here! So, here you go, and if you know someone who might enjoy this, please share the page to your Facebook or  Twitter!

Feature Photo (above): Dancing Stones Cabin, Cherokee, NC If you’re looking for a great retreat in a truly rustic atmosphere that will take you back in time, click here! Arizona Jane will make you feel right at home! I went on a personal retreat there and my husband and I spent part of our honeymoon there! You’ll love it!

!SummeroftheRose_Bk1_5-27_KindleCvr

Barnes &Noble

Amazon

Here is the interview with “Anna” and I hope you enjoy it and tell a friend! But now, I have to warn you, she’s 87 now and she’s something else!

It is late in the summer of 1952, in this little town “somewhere in the south”. I am here, sitting out in front of the store with “Anna”, our story teller from my “Enchanted River of the Rose” series, the first of which is “A River of Secrets: Summer of the Rose”. Meanwhile, why don’t you go on into the store here and get you a drink and come back out and sit down here with “Anna” and me and we’ll just let her tell you a little of what to expect. I told her it would be nice if we gave everyone a little of what it’s all about so she agreed to let me interview her. Now, let me just say, before we get started, “Anna” is one of the best story tellers around, and folks here in town will tell you, she knows how to tell a story. So, without further ado, let’s see what she has to say..

WHAT IS IT?
ME: So, Anna, tell me, what is this “Secrets of Rose River” all about?

ANNA: “Well, you see, folks say there’s a place somewhere along the river that runs deep into the woods here alongside our town that holds a secret. They say the water there in that place is like magic. It can take you places. The story goes that if you were to find this place, and touch the water there in that certain place, you will look around and see that you’ve gone forward in time, or even backward. But now, as far as I know, nobody’s ever found it, at least that would admit to it.”

WHERE IS IT?
ME: So, nobody you know of has ever found this place?

ANNA: “Well now, that all depends on how much of this story you want to believe. Of course, not too many around here ever told their stories, but then, who would believe them anyway? So, you just have to read my story and then decide for yourself. But, if you are willing to look through the eyes of a child once again, there is a little place somewhere down that little path in that forest of imagination you took as a child, where you could believe that just about anything’s possible. But of course, you know too, that I’m not going to just come out and tell you that. Now, that would spoil the magic of the whole story, now wouldn’t it?

ME: OK, I can understand that. So, if you don’t mind me asking, how old are you, Anna?

ANNA: Oh, naw, I don’t mind a bit! I’m eighty-seven. I was born Anna Elizabeth Brownfield, the youngest of eight children. I was born in 1865 just as the Civil War was ending.

ME: Anna, what is the name of your town here?

ANNA: “Wouldn’t you love to know? Of course, I’m not going to tell you that! Then all you folks would be a tryin’ to get here and see if you could find that place, now wouldn’t you?”

ME: (Laughing) OK, well, that makes sense. I can understand that. So, tell me, why do they call it a “river of secrets”?

ANNA: “Folks have called it that because that river, well, they say it’s like this enchanted lady that’s out there just a windin’ her way through the forest. The way we all put it, old Lady River has secrets she will never tell. That’s the truth too. I can tell you that river’s got secrets she will never tell. One thing I can tell you for sure is, ain’t many ever been able to ignore her when she comes a callin’.

ME: So, the river has a way of calling you?

ANNA: Oh yes! That’s how she gets you. See, there’s just this way the water kind of takes on this sparkle to it that just makes you want to go just a little farther, until before you realize it, you’ve done and gone too far.”

ME: You talk about Tater telling his story after a while. So, what do folks around here think of his story?

ANNA: Now, that’s a mighty interesting question! Of course, now, you know I learned from the best. Old Tater knows how to tell a story. Course, now, everybody around here knows he’ll knit you a yarn a mile long if you’ve got time to sit and listen to him. But now, old Tater, he loves to tell tall tales. So, there again, you just have to kind of take what he says and put it through the strainer, if you know what I mean, and just decide for yourself what you believe and what you don’t.

ME: So, tell us a little bit about Flapjack.

ANNA: (Laughs) Oh, that old dog, he’s something else. He’s always just kind of belonged to himself in a way. All I can say is, he plays a big part in our whole story, and I know a few things about old Flapjack that you don’t, so you just have to come back and listen to the story and see.

ME: Alright. So, tell me, what do you mean by “summer of the rose”?

ANNA: “Oh, well, that’s the whole romantic part of the story. Most of us have some kind of interesting story of how we met our true love. The rose plays an important part of my story. But then, I can’t tell you much more than that, you see. It would spoil the story. So, just come on back sometime and I’ll tell it to you. Well, I’m getting tired. I’m gonna go on back in there and rest a bit. But now, come on back, you hear? Come on back sometime soon, and I’ll sit here and tell you the whole thing. Believe you me. It’s a story you won’t soon forget. But now, just remember, if you mess around here long enough, Lady River out there, she knows you’re here, and she’ll soon come a callin’. If you’re like most folks have been, you won’t be able to ignore her. Everybody around here knows she’ll keep on a callin’ until she gets what she wants out of you.

ME: Well, Anna, thank you so much for taking the time to talk to me and answer my questions. I’m sure folks will enjoy your story!

ANNA: Oh, you’re quite welcome! Come on back now, and I’ll tell you all about it! You be careful going back through them woods, now. That old river, she’ll take you on a trip you won’t believe if you mess around her long enough! Bye now, y’all come back!

ME: Good bye, Anna! We’ll be back for more of your stories!

We close that gate for now, and return to the present. Be sure to look for the second book in the series, coming soon, titled, “Scent of the Rose”. But don’t let “Anna” fool you. She’s just getting started!

Interested in reading more? Preview & purchase the book here!

And now, here is the movie trailer for the movie that was the inspiration for the “Secrets of Rose River”  Time Travel Trilogy. Adapted from a children’s book by Natalie Babbit, it is a lovely little story that I found enjoyable. My son, Joshua, got me onto the movie, and I guess you could say it is one of those you could watch again and again and never get tired of. So here you go, enjoy!

Again, I have already started book 2 in the series, “Scent of the Rose”, which will be coming in the near future, but right now, I am still playing catch up, as my husband and I have had a lot going on, plus I am also a grandma to my awesome grandsons. Also, I am in the planning stages of some neat stuff for you to include here on the website for download in the near future, so check back, and be sure to subscribe to my email so you don’t miss out! As always, thanks for stopping by!

If you know anyone who would find this interesting, please share!

Repost: Interview with “Anna” – River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose #NewCover #Update

Hi everyone! I just wanted to repost this in case you missed it before, especially since I have a new cover on it! This is my “interview” with “Anna”, just to give you a little idea of what the story is about. Here is the original post (with the new cover pic of course)…

Oh, and I am including at the end of this one, the link to the post I did on my inspiration for this story, which you might find interesting, along with a special treat for you at the end of that one. Link is at the end of this post!

My latest, first in the "Enchanted River of the Rose" series, now available in Kindle (Amazon) and Nook (B&N) versions for $1.99!
My latest, first in the “Enchanted River of the Rose” series, now available in Kindle (Amazon) and Nook (B&N) versions for $1.99!

It is late in the summer of 1952, in this little town “somewhere in the south”. I am here, sitting out in front of the store with “Anna”, our story teller from my upcoming “Enchanted River of the Rose” series, the first of which is “River of Secrets: Summer of the Rose”, which is now available in book and Kindle versions on Amazon.com and in ebook (Nook) online at B&N . Meanwhile, why don’t you go on into the store here and get you a drink and come back out and sit down here with “Anna” and me and we’ll just let her tell you a little of what to expect. I told her it would be nice if we gave everyone a little of what it’s all about so she agreed to let me interview her. Now, let me just say, before we get started, “Anna” is one of the best story tellers around, and folks here in town will tell you, she knows how to tell a story. So, without further ado, let’s see what she has to say..

WHAT IS IT?
ME: So, Anna, tell me, what is this “River of Secrets” all about?

ANNA: “Well, you see, folks say there’s a place somewhere along the river that runs deep into the woods here alongside our town that holds a secret. They say the water there in that place is like magic. It can take you places. The story goes that if you were to find this place, and touch the water there in that certain place, you will look around and see that you’ve gone forward in time, or even backward. But now, as far as I know, nobody’s ever found it, at least that would admit to it.”

WHERE IS IT?
ME: So, nobody you know of has ever found this place?

ANNA: “Well now, that all depends on how much of this story you want to believe. Of course, not too many around here ever told their stories, but then, who would believe them anyway? So, you just have to read my story and then decide for yourself. But, if you are willing to look through the eyes of a child once again, there is a little place somewhere down that little path in that forest of imagination you took as a child, where you could believe that just about anything’s possible. But of course, you know too, that I’m not going to just come out and tell you that. Now, that would spoil the magic of the whole story, now wouldn’t it?

ME: OK, I can understand that. So, if you don’t mind me asking, how old are you, Anna?

ANNA: Oh, naw, I don’t mind a bit! I’m eighty-seven. I was born Anna Elizabeth Brownfield, the youngest of eight children. I was born in 1865 just as the Civil War was ending.

ME: Anna, what is the name of your town here?

ANNA: “Wouldn’t you love to know? Of course, I’m not going to tell you that! Then all you folks would be a tryin’ to get here and see if you could find that place, now wouldn’t you?”

ME: (Laughing) OK, well, that makes sense. I can understand that. So, tell me, why do they call it a “river of secrets”?

ANNA: “Folks have called it that because that river, well, they say it’s like this enchanted lady that’s out there just a windin’ her way through the forest. The way we all put it, old Lady River has secrets she will never tell. That’s the truth too. I can tell you that river’s got secrets she will never tell. One thing I can tell you for sure is, ain’t many ever been able to ignore her when she comes a callin’.

ME: So, the river has a way of calling you?

ANNA: Oh yes! That’s how she gets you. See, there’s just this way the water kind of takes on this sparkle to it that just makes you want to go just a little farther, until before you realize it, you’ve done and gone too far.”

ME: You talk about Tater telling his story after a while. So, what do folks around here think of his story?

ANNA: Now, that’s a mighty interesting question! Of course, now, you know I learned from the best. Old Tater knows how to tell a story. Course, now, everybody around here knows he’ll knit you a yarn a mile long if you’ve got time to sit and listen to him. But now, old Tater, he loves to tell tall tales. So, there again, you just have to kind of take what he says and put it through the strainer, if you know what I mean, and just decide for yourself what you believe and what you don’t.

ME: So, tell us a little bit about Flapjack.

ANNA: (Laughs) Oh, that old dog, he’s something else. He’s always just kind of belonged to himself in a way. All I can say is, he plays a big part in our whole story, and I know a few things about old Flapjack that you don’t, so you just have to come back and listen to the story and see.

ME: Alright. So, tell me, what do you mean by “summer of the rose”?

ANNA: “Oh, well, that’s the whole romantic part of the story. Most of us have some kind of interesting story of how we met our true love. The rose plays an important part of my story. But then, I can’t tell you much more than that, you see. It would spoil the story. So, just come on back sometime and I’ll tell it to you. Well, I’m getting tired. I’m gonna go on back in there and rest a bit. But now, come on back, you hear? Come on back sometime soon, and I’ll sit here and tell you the whole thing. Believe you me. It’s a story you won’t soon forget. But now, just remember, if you mess around here long enough, Lady River out there, she knows you’re here, and she’ll soon come a callin’. If you’re like most folks have been, you won’t be able to ignore her. Everybody around here knows she’ll keep on a callin’ until she gets what she wants out of you.

ME: Well, Anna, thank you so much for taking the time to talk to me and answer my questions. I’m sure folks will enjoy your story!

ANNA: Oh, you’re quite welcome! Come on back now, and I’ll tell you all about it! You be careful going back through them woods, now. That old river, she’ll take you on a trip you won’t believe if you mess around her long enough! Bye now, y’all come back!

ME: Good bye, Anna! We’ll be back for more of your stories!

We close that gate for now, and return to the present. Be sure to look for the second book in the series, coming soon, titled, “Return to the River, Scent of the Rose”. But don’t let “Anna” fool you. She’s just getting started!

Now, here for you is a short excerpt from the first chapter of “River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose”. Remember, here, Anna is talking to you:

“…The truth was, probably everyone had wondered about it at one time or other, maybe even talked about it. But they kept it quiet if they did.
As I sat there listening to Tater’s story, I began to think back to when I had been sitting on the river bank by the bridge earlier. That’s when it hit me, something I think I’d known, and probably everyone around there had, but no one wanted to admit. Or maybe most of us were afraid to. There were times when the wind would pick up a certain way, that there was just something about the way the water moved down stream that seemed almost as if it were enticing you to follow it. It was just something no one could really put their finger on, that made it seem the water itself had taken on a mysterious way about it that almost seemed to beckon you…
No one else seemed to notice when Flapjack suddenly lifted his head up, looked around, then got up and walked off, headed in that same direction he always took—no one but me that is…”

And now, click here to read the original post I did on the movie that was my inspiration for “River…”

If you’d like to read the first two chapters free, click the link below…

Click here to read more…

Again, I have already started book 2 in the series, “Return to the River, Scent of the Rose”, which will be coming in the near future, but right now, I am still playing catch up, as I was pretty busy this past summer with my husband, who finally had his kidney transplant, and then we were back at the hospital when he went through a slight case of rejection, but he is better now and doing great. Also, I am in the planning stages of some neat stuff for you to include here on the website for download in the near future, so check back, and be sure to subscribe to my email so you don’t miss out! As always, thanks for stopping by!

If you know anyone who would find this interesting, please share!

River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose: New Cover!/End of Summer Back to School Splash Out #greatweekendreading #endofsummer

New Cover, New look, available on Amazon, in print and Kindle versions. Kindle, $2.99, free with purchase of print version
New Cover, New look, available on Amazon, in print and Kindle versions. Kindle, $1.99, free with purchase of print version. Click to purchase.
Just couldn’t wait to share this with you all: “River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose”, the first book in my “Enchanted River of the Rose” series, now has a new cover, as well as a new and improved, and hopefully more informative (without giving away too much, wink, wink) back blurb (description/summary). (Please note: for now, until it has time to get into the system, you may still see the old versions when you click onto the Amazon listing, but you would receive the newer version.)

For those who may have been wondering why I haven’t posted in a while, my husband just recently finally got his kidney transplant, and he just recently ended up back in the hospital with a mild case of rejection, but the awesome doctors and specialists on his care team at UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill, NC have done a wonderful job, and we are back home now. (If any of you are reading this, much love and hugs to you all for the awesome expertise and care you have shown us during Keith’s surgery and recent hospitalization! We appreciate you!) So, it goes without saying that we have been pretty busy, and for the first few weeks after the surgery, I have been busy taking care of him, making sure he gets his meds, especially his anti-rejection meds, which are important to keep him from rejecting the kidney, weekly follow up visits, etc. After all, he is my high school sweetheart, and has in return been my closest confidant and advisor, and a big help to me with advice concerning my books, marketing, plans, and all of that good stuff AND he has read both of my books!

Meanwhile, now about my End of Summer, Back to School Blow Out! The Kindle versions of both of my books are now only $1.99! That’s right, I have just lowered the price for the Kindle version of this book, as well as the Kindle version of my first book, “Return to Freedom, Voices in the Wind”. It may be a day or so before they are available at the new price because of course, any changes we make have to go through their approval process, but check back in a day or so and they should be up. So, the new price for the Kindle versions of both of these books is now only (insert drum roll) $1.99! Also, both of these are in Amazon’s Kindle Matchbook Program, meaning if you buy the print version of a book, the Kindle version is free. The print versions are still $9.95, I have gone as low as I can on them (we can’t list them below the minimum cost to produce them, etc.) If you don’t have a Kindle device, that’s okay, you can now download the Kindle app to your smartphone or device. There are links on the page to download the app.

Amazon Createspace eStore link: Click here for Createspace eStore Listing (Shows new cover).

Amazon Kindle: Click here to preview and purchase “River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose”.

Amazon Kindle: Click here to preview and purchase “Return to Freedom, Voices in the Wind”.

As summer comes to an end and everyone is getting ready to go back to school, what better way to unwind on the weekends than curling up with a great summer read for one more last minute summer adventure? Both of these stories involve events happening in the summer time, making them great summer reads. In Return to Freedom, Voices in the Wind, mysterious winds are blowing at Windy Mountain Campground and Resort, and, in the latter half of the book, the Wilkerson family is getting ready to go on a vacation that will take them on a journey they will never forget! Read the first two chapters free here. In River of Secrets, Summer of the Rose, well, the title says about all I can give you without giving too much away, wink, wink. I’ll just say that Anna’s story will take you down a summer road on a journey you won’t soon forget. Read the first two chapters free here. Get yours now and if you know a friend who would be interested in reading these, then by all means, feel free to share this post, Facebook it, Tweet it, or email it!

Oh, and I hope everyone has had a truly great summer, and wish you all the best in whatever road you choose to take! Hopefully, by next summer, Anna will be back to take you on another journey back in time in book 2 of my “Enchanted River of the Rose” series, “Return to the River, Scent of the Rose”! I hope everyone has a great school year! Study hard, drive safe, and when you need a break, read!

Please share this with anyone you know who might enjoy reading these! Also, be sure to subscribe to my email through the tab above, so you will be sure not to miss out on my upcoming projects! Stay safe and enjoy whatever is left of your summer break!

Reader Reviews:
5 Stars 
* * * * *
A wonderful book. October 8, 2014
This book is a wonderful and inspiring story. It takes you back to a simpler time and surprises you with unexpected twists and turns. A must read for everyone. Keith
* * * * *
By R Byrd  December 28, 2014
Great story