Friday, January 23, 2015

Looky what arrived in my head this morning: new book blurb

I didn't want to wake up at 4:55 this morning, but that's what happened. Even Attila was sleeping soundly, and I always dislike interrupting his slumber.

What woke me up was a weird dream (is there another kind?) which left me with a strong sense of peace about being a writer. I am blessed to have the task of creating fictional happy endings in a world where the real-life kind is often anything but.

As I lay there feeling all cozy and happy, this arrived in my head--the beginnings of a new book which I estimate will be written and published sometime in 2016:


Serendipity Indiana Book 8 - Auction
Meg's husband is dying, and she needs to raise funds for his care. Thus begins the process of the auction, a community event with results that surprise everyone involved.

You think it might have a touch of autobiography? Um...yep, so do I. This should be a tough one to write, but worthwhile. I have lots of ideas for it already.


Emily's Dreams continues to unfold at its own pace, stubbornly refusing to be rushed. Who am I to question? If I force a book, the result is less than it could be. For my best stories, I'm really just the scribe.

So, yeah, sometimes the Muse works inconvenient hours, and sometimes the Muse takes a day off. I think my job is to be the partner who shows up and types.


Monday, January 12, 2015

In case you are wondering about the next story

I have had some inquiries from readers through the contact form here on the blog and website, concerning the second book in the Serendipity, Indiana series.

(People are anticipating it! Yay!)


The most frequent question is whether or not the second book will also have Melissa Singer and Jim Standish in it, and if we will learn more about...

Well, I guess I shouldn't tell you what it is they want to learn more about, in case you haven't read Small Town Christmas. No spoilers here.

But whether or not you've read Small Town Christmas yet, the answer is YES.

I love Melissa and Jim--and Matthew. (What a cutie!) So, even though the second book focuses on Emily and her guy, these other characters are important in book two as well. The rest of the Standish family is also in it. (How could I not include Lillian Standish and her famous chocolate chip cookies, for instance?)

I love writing series because the characters become like friends and family to me, and I hope it feels that way to readers as well.

Even though I've taken a break from writing the Ladies of Legend series, I can imagine going back and doing more stories there, because Legend, Tennessee and the McClain family are so dear to me.

As always, you can read more about my books on my Books Page.

The first four novellas in the Ladies of Legend series is now available in a pretty new paperback. That's a fun way to start the year!


Monday, January 5, 2015

Listen. Somebody is trying to tell you something--and it's You!

I received a copy of Marie Kondo's book, the life-changing magic of tidying up, for Christmas. Silly me to have thought I knew all there is about decluttering! This little book is a very interesting read.

The first major insight for me: Before starting the decluttering process, visualize your ideal life/living space. Once you have achieved it, you'll never again live in clutter. This helps explain the psychology of why I cannot stand for my apartment to get messy. Before moving here, I visualized it, made a floor plan, etc. It also helps explain why my giant walk-in closet still isn't under control. I have some serious visualization to do there!

One thing the author stresses is that one must hold each item and see what reaction it evokes. This is how one chooses whether or not to keep an item. As an example, sliding hangers along the rod isn't good enough. Take all the clothes off the hangers and pick up one at a time. Does it evoke joy? If so, keep it. If not, out it goes. I know from experience that this works, because I lived it during our major downsize in 2012.

My minimalist lifestyle enables me to do what I love: Write.


Saturday we spent some time in the metro Louisville area, and ate at a fast food place that doesn't exist in our little town. I seldom eat fast food, but when it was suggested, this sounded like fun.

I was sick all day Sunday.

Coincidence? Maybe. I wish I knew what my body's reaction was the last time I ate there. I remember being sick all day a couple of months ago, but don't recall what I had eaten the day before.

Bye-bye, formerly fun fast food shop.

I've also had a recent parting of the ways with my daily-ish glass of red wine. I started the habit several years ago upon reading that a glass of red wine is good for my health. Well, turns out that isn't working for me anymore. Now red wine makes my face and neck red and itchy. No thanks--I will eat grapes and pop the occasional dark chocolate.

Just wanted to share this reminder, in case it might be helpful to you. We're all so busy, sometimes we forget to listen, and most of the time it's very worthwhile.

Have you had any experiences like these?