Sunday, October 27, 2019

A Thanksgiving Historical Tale

 Coming in November...
The Gift of the Songbird
Hannah Cummings has big plans for her future. An invitation to sing at the mansion of the dashing Elisha Spielman on Thanksgiving Day promises to launch her music career and help her raise funds to receive further vocal training. It’s a most fortuitous invitation, and Hannah is grateful and excited to accept. However, one man seems to stand in her way.

Daniel March won’t have it. Hannah has always sung for their village’s Thanksgiving festival to support the orphanage, and this year should be no different.

Friends since long before the terrible war separated them, Hannah feels there is more to Daniel’s determination to change her mind than simply his need to get his own way.

 Can a songbird help them count their blessings and come to see each other in a different light?

Thursday, May 09, 2019

Off To MARcon!

We're off  this weekend to see our friends at MARcon. It's been two years since we've attended the convention, so we're excited to visit and catch up.

For a "gift" for those attending the con (and anyone else who happens across this page), I thought I'd share a short short story I penned just today. I wrote it alongside some students at an after-school program where I tutored this past semester. See if you can guess what was in the photo I had for the 15 minute writing prompt. 

Belly Flop

How could I say no? To say no would have hurt Aunt Maribelle's feelings and she had already been through so much this summer what with the chemo treatment and all. So, I said yes--yes, I'd go with Uncle Jeff to that fancy pool club that his boss had given him a couple of summer passes to in reward for all of his hard work. 

Don't get me wrong. Uncle Jeff is a great guy. He's a good employee and a great husband to my mom's sister. This past year had been tough for both of them after my aunt received her cancer diagnosis. If anyone deserved a break from the stress, it was my favorite Uncle Jeff.

The thought that I might run into some of the snooty rich kids from school didn't occur to me until  we arrived at the gates to the pool club. Oh no! That cute guy who 'd been in my science class was there--and so were half the cheerleading squad and the football team. Suddenly, I felt inadequate in my hand-me-down bathing suit with my faded and ragged beach towel on my arm.

But my embarrassment over my outfit was nothing compared to the sheer horror I felt when Uncle Jeff decided he couldn't wait to get into that cool water. I forgot to tell you that Uncle Jeff is more than a great guy--hes a great big guy. He's huge with a capital H.

Also, once Uncle Jeff gets an idea into his head, there's no turning him back. He will carry through with his plan no matter what. 

"Race you to the middle," Uncle Jeff yelled above the roar of the crowd. And then he took off.  For a large person, he's surprisingly fast on his feet.

"No, wait! It's too crowded. Don't go there yet. It's full of people, Uncle Jeff! Nooo!!"

It was too late. He'd already dove into the shallow end of the pool and displaced more than half the water and terrorized more than half the pool-goers in a split second of belly flopping. My face turned redder  than a third degree sunburn.

I thought I'd never live this stunt down.

But the rest of our swim turned out better than expected. The traumatized moms and dads and kids seemed to take belly flop in stride. Soon I relaxed and enjoyed myself and forgot my embarrassment over Uncle Jeff 's enthusiastic splash.

You know, even your craziest relatives love you. They invite you to the pool. We gotta cut them some slack now and then and let them be their crazy selves. Uncle Jeff taught me that.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

My last orphaned book has found a home at last

My last orphaned book (that lost its home at Desert Breeze Publishing when it closed its doors) has found a new home at Devine Destinies Books. If you've never read this contemporary romance set in the Texas Hill Country, then why not give it a try now?  ;-)

Preachin' to the Choir

Jonathan could do nothing to stop his wife’s losing battle with cancer. With twenty years into the ministry, he can't believe the Lord would leave him with both an empty nest and empty spot on the other side of the bed.

Kat, music teacher and mother of grown twins, feels settled in small town Texas. Life may be dull, but it's predictable, unlike her life with her late husband. Kat concludes a happy, committed relationship with a male is impossible, so she makes peace with herself and with God. If nuns can live celibate, why can't she?

One Sunday, Jonathan spies a golden beam of light descending upon Kat while she is directing the choir. Why hasn’t he noticed how beautiful she was before? From here on out, Jonathan knows he’ll be preachin’ to the choir, but will Kat—and his congregation and their children—let him?

Read an excerpt at my blog by clicking here.

Click on the link on the bar above to read more about my contemporary releases.

Friday, January 25, 2019

Yes, I'm still writing fiction...

I've been derelict in updating my web pages, and for that I do sincerely apologize.  Here are my latest two releases, one an original story in the Divorced Divas series from eXtasy Books (written as Celine Chatillon), and the other the re-release of our YA sci-fi tale in the BloodDark series from Devine Destinies.

Olivia's Escape
(BloodDark series, Young adult- PG rated)

Seventeen-year-old Olivia Brown is abducted on her way home from a night out and wakes up to find herself imprisoned by a vampiric race in a dark city bathed in eternal night. Hernando, a handsome half-human slave, reveals what is intended for her-they want her blood for the upcoming festival. Together they escape, and find friends and allies in unexpected places.

Joining a resistance cell, they help plot a revolution and fall in love. Their group plans to take control of the Portal, a teleportation device that links Earth to the world of BloodDark. Getting into the City of Night is a challenge. A narrow window of opportunity opens-but what awaits them in the caverns located deep beneath the city?

What Money Can't Buy
(Divorced Divas series -- R rated)

Francesca has had enough of her dead-end marriage. She walks out with no regrets and in hopes of discovering what will make her life more fulfilling. Following her passions for gardening and sustainable living, she enrolls in a course to learn more and collides head-on with a handsome Irishman, Callan O'Toole. Callan challenges her to apply for a summer internship at the Bouncing Butterfly eco-village. She does and is overjoyed to be accepted.

Working so close to a man who fills her every erotic daydream is a bit more than Francesca can take at first, so she tries to avoid Callan. He won't cooperate—and soon they are in each other's arms and in Callan's bed. Their summer lovin' is approved of by all, but Francesca doesn't want to become a permanent villager simply because she’s Callan's partner. She wants to be invited to live there on her own terms. Besides, her parents and her boss are waiting back in the city for her to return and take up her former existence. Can Francesca have it all—a lover, a career, and most importantly, what money can't buy?

Sunday, December 23, 2018

The Tinsel Timewarp is here!

 For your holiday reading pleasure...

Cici and John experience the true meaning of love when they help their friend Chandra deal with her grief on Christmas Eve by creating a tinsel time warp.

Cici wants everyone to have a perfect holiday, but she discovers things don't always work out that way. When a crying Chandra shows up at her home, Cici asks her alien boyfriend, the time traveler John Smith, if he can help mend Chandra's broken heart. John creates a time warp for Chandra where she can spend one more Christmas Eve with her late grandmother doing all the holiday things they loved to do, but, as usual, things quickly go south. The tinsel time warp grows and expands and threatens to take over the entire planet, and Cici is forced to go up a ladder when she's afraid of heights. Will time travel heal all wounds and make for a Merry Christmas for Cici, John, and even the melancholy Chandra?

Featuring characters from the Loving Who series (PG rated). Click on the series link above to find out more. And happy holidays!

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