What is the Ultimate Gift?

In the dark snowy woods, the old trees with snarled and arthritic fingers reach for the sparkling red box that illuminates the small clearing. They want the Ultimate Gift, too.

“Tender and hopeful, painful and sad…”

“The struggle Brianna experiences is all too real.”

Find out in my New Year’s Eve romance

The Garden Collection on AMAZON

The Garden Collection on BARNES&NOBLE

Year End eBook Sale

In the dark snowy woods, the old trees with snarled and arthritic fingers reach for the sparkling red box that illuminates the small clearing.  They want the Ultimate Gift, too.

YEAR END EBOOK SALE $0.99

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During the Korean War, Dearest Mother and Dad brings to life the history of two Navy corpsmen fighting with the Marines.  These best friends debate whether to share their horrific experiences in the letters home.

YEAR END EBOOK SALE  $0.99

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Within a blink of an eye, Samantha is entangled in a plot to assassinate the U.S. President.  Stranded in the middle of nowhere, she asks a trucker for help.  Can they trust each other to prevent the unthinkable?

YEAR END EBOOK SALE $0.99

From Pen to Needle

Setting aside my pen and paper, I picked up a needle and worked on a few Christmas presents, infusing each with positive energy to be released into their new homes.  As a former holistic practitioner, I will forever instill love and gratitude into all my creations—crafts, books, food—Reiki’s hands on healing through Universal energy.

Why am I sharing the pictures now? My adult children don’t follow my blog. (On a side note, I’m okay with that.)

Crafting also gave me a chance to meditate about what I wanted to accomplish next year.  The biggest writing project I’m considering is deconstructing the novel that follows Chemical Reaction, the fourth book in the Chemical Attraction Series.  I wrote the story years ago.  It requires an overhaul.

2021 may be the year I rip it apart, deleting characters and adding new subplots. I think I need to be brutal and strip it to the bare bones.  How difficult will it be?  Will my characters let me change their future?  Do I have the energy to tackle it?  I have no idea.  

Are there any writers out there who have done something similar? Any advice?  Are you a fan of the Series? What would you like to see happen with these characters?

Thankful For This Family of Dorks

My mom, my siblings, and I have been sorting through boxes of old pictures.  We haven’t made any progress because we’re too busy mocking each other.  I love this one taken in 1978.  That’s me on the left in the back row.

So much weird in one picture!

My youngest brother looks like he has his shirt on backward. He said it was the style of shirts back then, but I have my doubts.  My other brother has his eyes crossed.  What a goof!   He’s still a goof.  My sister is hiding her face.  “Yeah, sis, I should have, too.”

My dad’s whole ensemble is quite the fashion statement from his red socks to his crazy shorts.  He always had his pack of cigarettes in his shirt pocket or rolled up in his sleeve.  He gave up smoking cold turkey in the late 80s.  We were banned from giving encouragement or talking about his decision to quit.  (I guess we all grieve in our own way.)

My mom has on her iconic 50s cat eye glasses. She didn’t change that look until the 90s when she went with the round owl style…similar to mine in this pic. Apparently, I was a trendsetter.  (Correction: I wasn’t a trendsetter. My siblings laughed too hard at that comment.)  Standing in front of our beast of a car, we had the makings of a 70s sitcom or as my brother put it, “A 70s horror story.”

We’re a family of nerds, and I wouldn’t want it any other way.  Is it any wonder I grew up to be a writer? Embrace your Weird!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Only Love Remains

“It all happened within minutes. For some, it would last a lifetime.”

As many of you know from previous posts, my dad was a Navy Corpsman with the Marines during the Korean War.  He never shared his experiences.  After he died, I read the letters he wrote to his parents during the war and finally understood (reading between the lines) why he was hard and emotionally absent.  I think the war had affected him more than he had let on.

Although Dearest Mother and Dad is historical fiction, I believe my dad was beside me as I wrote it. You may love the story.  You may hate it.  This healing process dissolved my anger and pain. Only love remains.

I’ve shared some of my dad’s pictures from Korea in my book trailer photo album.  I used them to visualize and create the story.  Take a look.

To all our Veterans, thank you for your service and sacrifice.

Dearest Mother and Dad on AMAZON

Dearest Mother and Dad on BARNES&NOBLE

Photographs by Margaret Dugan #poetry #poem

My fifteen-year-old niece wrote this poem and agreed to let me share it with you. I’m proud of her creativity.

Photographs by Margaret Dugan

We hang up happy pictures.

Those are the only ones you see.

All the sad and ugly ones are hidden from you and me.

If you want to find them, dig up the past.

Here’s a list of things to do to help you find them fast.

Lift up the carpet, making sure there is nothing in you view.

Move the floor boards one by one, making sure each nail is removed.

Now you have to dig, deep beneath the earth.

Making tons of piles made from dirt.

All your hard work is coming to an end.

You hold in your hands, a box so dear.

You open it to find nothing in its keep.

Then you realize those photos have been burned years ago because…

We only hang the good ones.

Review: The Last Breath

The Last Breath: True Stories of Mediumship, the Afterlife & Messages from Heaven written by mediums from around the world, compiled by medium Alyson Gannon, and published by Franklin Rose Publishing.

BLURB

Join us on a magical journey of the soul, where professional mediums from around the world share their experiences of the afterlife and spirit communication. The stories in this book provide validation that our soul continues to survive, long after the death of our physical body. Our departed loved ones are not gone; they are alive and well in the Spirit World. They continue to watch over us, supporting and guiding from the Other Side. You can learn to connect with them through mediumship, spirit signs and synchronicities.

Whether you are a believer in the afterlife or an open-minded skeptic, these stories allow you to experience loss and grief from a different perspective. Death and dying are not final, but a spiritual transition to another realm. When your divine time comes, know that your loved ones will be there to greet you. Love Never Dies!

MY REVIEW

Five Stars

This collection of short stories has an amazing outlook on the difficulties of healing after loved ones breathe their last breath. Some of the stories were tougher to read than others because they hit home to me personally with such heartache.  The Last Breath teaches and inspires us to connect to the Spirit World and our departed loved ones. They never really leave us. I highly recommend this book.

AMAZON

GOODREADS

The Butterfly

The Butterfly emerges

from its silken shell-

Reborn, it arises,

no longer bound to earth.

Free at last, the butterfly glides

to heights unknown before.

So do our loved ones find

a beautiful release

as, earthbound no more,

they leave our sight and joyfully rise

to a garden of matchless beauty,

a place of light and peace.

by Evelyn Phillips

 

I miss you, Kimberly Ann.