I have two books on the market—now, that’s a phrase I thought I’d never type. I must admit, it feels pretty good. And with summer upon us, everyone needs at least one of them to read. Both would be better, right?
One is a romance set primarily in the Texas panhandle where I was born and raised. As I was writing The Cowboy and the Executive I fell in love with my male protagonist. Barton Young is good looking, he can sing, and he likes to dance. What more could a girl want? But does D’Aun Gilman dare fall for him when doing so might cost her the job she loves? This tale is definitely on the spicy side.
My first novel, Mayhem at the Happy Valley Motor Inn and Resort, follows the adventures of newly widowed, Paula Jean Arnett, and her best friend, Cassie Campbell, as they attempt to get to the bottom of why Paula’s husband bought a rundown fishing resort in East Texas from a mysterious woman who might have been more than a business partner. Part cozy mystery, part road trip, Mayhem is a lot of fun, and definitely sweet.
So, take your pick. Or make me really happy and pick both. Now excuse me, I’m going to go drool over Barton—just don’t tell my husband, Studly Doright.
The threat of rain lingered as we made our way to our granddaughter’s high school graduation on Friday evening. But as the senior class of Wylie East high school took their seats on the football field, the darker clouds were replaced by some rather mysterious ones that appeared to be sending a cryptic message.
I added a filter to make it more visible. Am I going crazy or does it look as if there’s a message there? Too bad I don’t read cloud language.
These two fellas greeted us when we arrived in Dallas.
That’s Ryder in the foreground and Milo behind him. It’s difficult to tell just how large Milo is from this photo. But in the one below it’s fairly obvious.
Our son and daughter-in-law originally were going to foster Ryder, but about a week before they went to pick him up he ran away with Milo in tow. The two dogs went on a wild romp for over a month before they were picked up by animal control in a town about 100 miles from where they’d started.
Thank goodness they’d been microchipped and the animal control folks contacted the rescue group, and they in turn contacted Jason and Liz. And, the dogs had definitely bonded, so instead of just taking Ryder they adopted both dogs.
They are sweethearts and seem very happy in their new home. And they like me, so that’s in their favor.
Studly Doright and I are traveling to Dallas to attend the graduation celebration of our eldest grandchild. As we crossed over one of the many bridges on our route, It occurred to me that I hadn’t posted anything today, so I created some art.
I give you Still Life from the Passenger Seat. I’m sure it’ll soon grace the halls of the Louvre.
People are buying my first romance novel, The Cowboy and the Executive, and I couldn’t be more delighted. So far, though, there have been no reviews. Yes, I know it’s still early. The book went live just last week, and it typically takes a few days for Amazon to post reviews. Still, I’m getting antsy.
To an author no review is almost worse than a bad one. We begin thinking readers hate it and are just too kind to say so, or they didn’t finish it or are currently using it as a coaster or as kindling. It’s torture.
Okay, back in the day I didn’t always leave a review even on books I really enjoyed. Is this karma? I promise I’ll do better!
The title of my first novel is long. So long, that at times I kick myself for using it. How many minutes of my life have I wasted typing out the entire thing? Why’d it have to be Mayhem at the Happy Valley Motor Inn and Resort? Why not Adventures with Paula? Or Goodbye Cal?
When typing on my phone, as I always do when writing blog posts, predictive text helps a lot. As I begin typing the title, the next words pop up on my screen—to a point. If I went totally with predictive text, the title would be Mayhem at the Happy Valley Page on the Page. Well, that doesn’t work.
Why doesn’t it go ahead and complete the title? After all, I’ve typed it hundreds of times in the past few years. This is a mystery that I feel no driving need to solve.
Predictive text can provide hours of silliness, too. On Facebook there are several “complete this phrase using predictive text” games.
Yes, I occasionally indulge in these activities. I’m not proud of it, but I’m hoping if I play my cards right my text will automatically type the entire title of my novel next time.
Peace and peace in east peace talks. Silly predictive text.
Who hasn’t dreamed of being back in a classroom and finding oneself completely unprepared for a test? For years I had those kinds of dreams fairly often, but it had been a long time and I guess I thought I was finished with them. I guessed wrong.
Last night I dreamt that I was in a class for sports broadcasters and the final test consisted of doing the play-by-play for a major league baseball game. In the dream I watched my fellow students step up to the microphone, and with varying degrees of success, put their own special spin on the broadcast. I wasn’t worried even a little bit. Then it came my turn.
First. I lost the microphone. It was right there, and then, poof! Gone. I searched and searched, all while the instructor tapped his foot and looked pointedly at his watch. Finally I found it—under my shirt of all places. I plugged the mic in and began my broadcast, only now there weren’t baseball players on the field, there were chickens.
I looked helplessly at the instructor. He just said, “Banter and schtick!” Or maybe he said “banter and chick.”
So I launched into a weather report interspersed with a great many “ums” and “uhs.” The chickens were running about cackling and clucking as chickens do, and the instructor made a slashing motion across his throat. “Cut!”
I curled up on the baseball field in the fetal position and cried.
Now, it doesn’t take a genius (thank goodness) to interpret this dream. Having just launched my second book—and my first attempt at a romance novel—I’d had a failure dream. One could say my field of dreams was a massive cluck-up.
The book’s doing okay, though. I’m anxious about first reviews, but hopeful, too. Mainly I hope the chickens don’t come home to roost again tonight.
There’s nothing quite like holding one’s newborn baby in one’s arms. But holding one’s book comes kind of close. And to be honest, the book won’t keep me up all night or need to be fed on a regular basis and poop its diaper multiple times a day. But a book can’t hug you or snuggle with you, so I guess there’s really no contest. But that pooping thing is almost a deal breaker…
Unfortunately I don’t get to keep this book. It’s earmarked for my editor. I just didn’t have time to put it in the mail today. My copy won’t arrive for a few weeks. So until I send this copy off to its new home I’m going to pinch its little cheeks and play peek-a-boo. Kootchy-kootchy-koo!