Thursday, December 30, 2010

Puppy Love

What do we want from relationships?
I think most of us want someone or something that make us feel good about ourselves, that make us feel like we are the center of someone's universe. Do you have someone that makes you feel that way?That you are their center, their core. A significant other? A daughter? A son? A parent? A sib? A friend? Often times relationships start that way, but somewhere along the line they fizzle out. The newness wears off. The effort is no longer put forth. Budgetary concerns, time and distance strain it. Too often we end up feeling secondary to almost everything, other people, sports, jobs, etc. I think that's why animals are so important in our lives. They give us unconditional love. It doesn't matter to them if we aren't at our best, have gained a few pounds, aren't sterling conversationalist or dress to impress.
Maybe there's something to be said for puppy love after all.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

With us today is Charlene Wilson, author of Cornerstone Deep. Welcome, Charlene. Tell us about your current project.

Right now, I’m working on Fostered Souls. It’s book two in the Chronicles of Shilo Manor series, Cornerstone Deep being book one. Where Cornerstone Deep laid the foundation, Fostered Souls dives deeper into the obsession the Nemesis has with the heroin and the relationship between him and the hero. Families are united, albeit dreadful for some, truth from the past threatens peace, and revenge proves to be more dangerous than expected.

Are you a plotter or a pantster?

I guess you could call me a plotter to an extent. Though my characters tend react to the situation in their own, my muse and I plot out what the storyline will be. There are times, however, that the characters just won’t cooperate and we have to adjust the flow a bit.

Do you have critique partners or work alone?

I have some very helpful critique partners. I find having extra eyes on the work helps iron out the wrinkles. I read over my manuscript so many times that things get missed and my dear friends with the clear minds spot holes or repeated information.

What is your zodiac sign and what characteristic of your sign aids you as a writer?

My zodiac sign? My sign is Aquarius. I heard somewhere that Aquarians were like the absent-minded professor. Hmm, yes, that pretty much sums me up. Lol. But, I guess my sign’s main characteristic that would help with my writing is creativity.

Tell us something that would surprise us about you.

Being a romance writer born on Valentine’s Day may not be surprising. But to be shy about it? It’s surprised some.

What books of yours are currently for sale and where can a reader buy them?

Cornerstone Deep is available in paperback an e-book formats at and Class Act Books. My website, can keep you posted of future releases and where to find them.

Thank you, Sandra, for having me here today.

Cornerstone Deep


She stepped onto the sidewalk and looked around. Humor faded. Vapor loomed over the empty streets like phantoms gathering warmth from the asphalt. She briskly rubbed her sleeves. The slight warming did nothing to ease her insecurity. Street lights blinked on but offered little comfort as the newscaster’s announcement flooded her mind. “After much deliberation, the new curfew of 2024 has been set into place. Lord Kyle Dressen, Grand Marshal of the courts, announced the bill’s passing, and urges all to adhere as strict measure will be taken to ensure vandalism of the East Side is eradicated.”

What a ridiculous notion. The impoverished East Side getting aid from the lawmakers. Yet now, unease filled her. Her co-workers’ gossip on the matter didn’t help her anxiety. An apprehensive tone caught her voice as she repeated the warning. “Curfew breakers will never be seen again.” Her whisper sent mist through the chill. She wished she hadn’t spoken.

Anna hurried across the open court and down an adjacent street. Awnings rustled in the wind. Neon signs that once invited late-night commerce hung dead behind barred windows. Her rushed steps echoed through the air.

She looked to the sky. A blanket of stars covered the firmament. She’d worked too late. Again. “God, I’m not going to make it.”

Her steps quickened, and she caught her breath as she approached the shortcut through the park. The wide corner entrance stood closed. The ancient stone griffin perched high on the gateway glared down at her. She shook the bars with disbelief. “When do they ever lock Shilo Park?” Scanning the long gates that fortified the urban green, fear clutched her stomach.


She whipped around. The sound was like a whisper to her mind yet clear as if spoken. Her gaze intensified as she studied the shadowed pavement. Beneath the dim light of a street lamp, dense smoke billowed and rose, taking the form of three men. Her throat clenched. “What…in…the…world!” She spun around and ran.

Don't forget the great blogs at: Amarinda Jones', Julia Barrett's, Molly Daniel's and Anny Cook's.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Cassandra's Eyes

She always did take everything in,
Possessing as she does
The power to gaze upon our landscape
And find a port of entry that is
Hidden to the rest of us.

She takes it all in,
Every calamitous exhale,
Every furtive misgiving,
Every desperately hushed moan.
She takes it all and sets a torch to it.
And waves the roasting embers in front of us,
Intending to sear our cataractic vision.

She thinks she can reach
Through our blurry headed
Notions and find some insight,
Some purpose, some justified end
For all the meanness that
Permeates our vision.

She finds us wearing disguises
Carefully constructed to reveal
The dry river bed of our tears,
The ragged bark of our tongues,
The slick porcelain of our skins.

Cassandra sets her sights on next week
And goes about her business of grinding optic lenses.
Such optimism can only be the
Result of chronic reverse miosis.
Mike Cox

And don't forget the blogs at: Amarinda Jones', Julia Barrett's, Molly Daniel's and Mona Risk's.Links on right.

Monday, December 27, 2010


Well all the two-legged guests have left. Christmas was cut a bit short because of the weather. My son and his wife were going to NY for the holidays and had to leave before brunch because of the weather Christmas day. Then my brother and his significant other left directly after the brunch because of the weather.
I had my lovely daughter for an entire week. One which passed much too quickly. We dropped her off at the airport today. She was headed for Minnesota and 40 inches of snow. Burr...Since, she was flying she was limited on what she could take back. She did, however, manage to cram all her chocolate in her carry on:) I will miss her and miss having my own personal chef. I'm the nuke queen. I'll nuke a vegee entree and call it dinner. My daughter is a bit of a gourmand. While she was here I quickly got spoiled. She fixed one Thai meal, a blackberry cobbler and for Christmas dinner homemade tomato soup and gourmet grilled cheese on sourdough bred with pears and caramelized onions. She even notched up the scrambled eggs:) I probably won't eat as well again until her next visit. Miss you, baby girl.
Now we just have my son's dog and cat, along with our six cats and dog, which has been quite exciting.
But enough about me, how did you spend Christmas? Hope it was wondrous.

Don't forget the great blogs at Amarinda Jones', Julia Barrett's, Molly Daniel's and Anny Cook's places.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Another White Christmas in NC

I was going to load the rest of the pics but my camera died. sigh.
Heading outside to help the hh shovel.

Don't forget the great blogs at Amarinda Jones', Julia Barrett's, Anny Cook's and Molly Daniel's place.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas

Wishing each and everyone a Christmas filled with wonder, close friends, family, and delight.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Richard Whitten Barnes

With us today is Richard Whitten Barnes. Welcome Richard. Tell us about your current project.
I’m about ten thousand words into a thriller about a terrorist attempt to sabotage the Great Lakes shipping locks between Lakes Superior and Huron. I’m toying with the idea of a series for my heroine and the area of Northern Ontario.

What will I as a reader like best about your hero?

My heroine is a 47 year old divorced cop, recuperating from being wounded on the job. She returns to her childhood home on St. Joseph Island, Ontario, where her old beau still resides. I like her and I hope you as a reader will for the same reasons.

How will women identify with your heroine?

Like all of us, she has doubts about herself, her relationships, even her motive for returning home. Her need to live on her own terms clashes with her feelings for a very independent man.

Is your muse currently sitting on your shoulder or is she illusive?

She’s off somewhere now, waiting for me to be done with promoting two books, both published since November of last year.

Who is your favorite author?

Don’t really have one. I like the sparse writing of Stephen King and Elmore Leonard. Recently read two books by Markus Zusak, an Australian writer with a bit of a flair.

What books of yours are currently for sale and where can a reader buy them?
THE FAIRCLOTH REACTION – on most book seller websites; www.iuniverse..
THE CORYDON SNOW – www.wings-press, Amazon, etc.
BRINK – (Feb. 2011) –
All of the above are linked to my website

By Richard Whitten Barnes

Ben Posner is at the top of his scientific career when a change in CEOs drastically affects his lifestyle. Before anyone realizes, Ben is using alcohol to cope with his problems. This downward spiral finds him homeless and eventually rescued by the woman he has secretly loved. Together they begin to patch his life back together, only to face a charge of murder.

Warning-Explicit Language
The blow came as he was crossing a narrow alley that bisected the block. He never saw the clenched fist with the tattooed fingers emerge from the darkened alley to hit him on the back of the neck.
“Dropped him like a stone, the long haired one complemented the bearded one, as he dragged Ben back into the alley.
Ben groaned, rolled over onto his hands and knees in an effort to get up. A vicious kick to the ribs dissuaded him of that.
“Get his wallet,” Longhair said.
A tattooed hand with I-R-O-N spelled out on the fingers was already extracting the wallet.
“Get his keys.” Fingers instructed. “Mother fuck!” he hissed. “The shit ass’s got fourteen bucks!” he expertly removed the Wells Fargo debit card, ignoring the Visa card. “Get him up!”
Longhair grabbed Ben, who was throwing up, under the arms, and stood him up, face pressed against the bricks of the building.
“Okay, Honolulu, can you hear me?” Fingers asked Ben, who nodded.
Ben’s debit card was pushed in front of his eyes, the tattooed fingers now in view. Ben hesitated. Fingers nodded to Longhair who brutally bashed Ben’s face into the bricks. Blood spurted from his nose. Pain shot through his left cheek bone.
“I ain’t gonna ask you again, Honolulu,” Fingers instructed.
Ben believed him. Uh … three, three, two … uh, four, one.”
Fingers nodded to Longhair an Ben was released. He fell into a rain puddle, rolling over on his side.
“Three, three, two, four, one,” Fingers repeated. “Better be right, ‘cause we come back, and whack you if it ain’t.”
Long hair kicked hard at Ben’s exposed stomach, then at his kidneys when Ben doubled over.
Benjamin Posner, PhD. in physical chemistry, esteemed scientist and lecturer lost consciousness in a filthy puddle of water in an Oakland alley. He did not hear the engine turn over or his Toyota Camry speed away. It began to rain again.


Don't forget Amarinda Jones', Julia Barrett's and Molly Daniel's blog.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Poinsetta Myth and Legend

This beautiful flower originated in Mexico. Around it myths and legend abound.
The myth that has recently been busted is that they're poisonous. Until just a few days ago, I thought they were poisonous. In fact, you can still find them listed on some animal poison lists. If an animal ingests a whole plant it can make them sick but its not fatal. The label of poisonous originated when a young girl was misdiagnosed with poisoning from a poinsettia in 1919.
The poinsettia was named for Mr. Joel Poinsett, an ambassador to Mexico, who was quite taken with the plants and sent them to his greenhouse in South Carolina.
Legend has it that a poor child had nothing to give Christ on his birthday but a bouquet of weeds and when he approached the altar the weeds were transformed into brilliant crimson blooms.
The Aztecs used the leaves for dye.
And today...we give them to friends to let them know we care and place them on our mantel and marvel at their beauty.
Happy Holidays.

Don't forget the great blogs at Amarinda Jones, Julia Barrett and Molly Daniels

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Francis P Church

The last two posts are my favorite paragraphs from Francis Church's famous editorial published in The New York Sun on September 21, 1897 in response to young Virginia O'Hanlon. She had originally ask her father if Santa Claus was real and her father responded, ' if you see it in The Sun its so.' So she wrote to the Sun and asked 'Please tell me the truth, is there a Santa Claus?'

Francis Church answered her letter. He was a lead editorial writer for The New York Sun, a paper owned by his brother. Mr. Church was also a war correspondent during the civil war. Church was born in 1839 and died in 1906 without any children.

What amazes me about his reply was that it contained so much heart. This was no cut and dry editorial. He must have had unshakable faith in the innate good of mankind to respond as he did. And how can you do anything but believe after reading it?

Don't forget the great blogs at: Amarinda Jones, Julia Barrett and Molly Daniels.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Yes Virginia

No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives and lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay 10 times 10,000 years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.
Francis P. Church

Don't forget the great blogs at: Amarinda Jones, Julia Barrett and Molly Daniels.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

"Yes, Virginia,

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished."
Frances P. Church

Don't forget the great blogs at: Amarinda Jones, Julia Barrett and Molly Daniels.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful. Norman Vincent Peale

Don't forget the great blogs at: Amarinda Jones and Julia Barrett.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

24 Shopping Days Till Christmas

Christmas won't be Christmas without any presents.
Louisa May Alcott

Its December 1. Where are you with your Christmas Shopping?
Just starting?
Almost done?
Or waiting till Christmas Eve?
I'm embarrassed to say I've barely started. I just haven't been bitten by the Christmas bug. We don't even have our tree up yet. blush blush. Hope you're doing better than I am.

Don't forget the great blogs at: Amarinda Jones and Julia Barrett.