It’s already been nearly two weeks since I welcomed the new year with my to-do list in hand. I’ve been busy taking down Christmas, setting 2020 goals and getting organized. But it hasn’t all been work. My sister and I did make time to go see “Little Women” (more about that in a later blog).
I usually take a little break from writing toward the end of December and this year was no different, so I have a lot of catching up to do. I’m still learning to navigate Windows 10 and how to self-publish with Amazon. Lots of trial and error and throwing myself across the keyboard, muttering obscenities. But I won’t give up.
As you can see in the photo above, it’s been been been cold, gray and rainy for the past few days, so I’ve spent a lot of time in front of the computer with mugs of tea or coffee, homemade Cheesy Vegetable Soup and Zucchini Bread to keep up my strength. Tomorrow I’m going to try Cabbage Soup.
Sometime soon, I’ll post an excerpt from the next book I’m republishing, Xander’s Tangled Web, a fun little Romantic Fantasy.
My Christmas tree is an eclectic mix of ornaments. All different. All unique. Seeing this little Santa on the tree every year brings back a special memory. Some years my husband and I exchanged gifts and some years we didn’t. One year we celebrated with our kids early, so on Christmas eve we went to a local gift shop to get a little something for each other to wrap and put under the tree. This is what he got for me. Every time I look at it, I remember that day and the time we spent together.
I’ve seen some great author logos. Clever and inspiring. Just right for their genre. Naturally, I wanted one of my own. Simple and not too cliche. Something my readers would remember. So, when I came across the crescent moon and star and found out it stands for progress, light, and knowledge. I knew it was the one for me.
Many thanks to my incredible cover artist, Suzannah Safi, who always sees my vision.
A small, ugly troll stood in the shadows at the edge of camp, his grayish skin glowing in the dark.
Owen jumped to his feet. “Who are you? What do you
“I am Olog-hai the Uruk,” he said with a proper
British accent. “I’ve come to kill you.”
“Izzat so?” Floren gave a belly laugh. “Why don’t you
run along while you still can? I’ve squashed bugs with my thumb that are bigger
than you, little worm.”
“Blimey. Is that supposed to scare me?”
“It should. Especially if I lose my temper.”
Olog shook his head. “You’re just an overweight dwarf
with anger issues.”
“You’re no beauty queen yourself.”
Their insults continued, and they began to circle one
another while Owen, Misa, and Calebth watched. Olog pulled up a small tree by
the roots and knocked Floren down. He grabbed the dwarf by the head and was
about to punch him when Owen drew his sword and started slashing away. Mowg ran
over and started chewing on the troll’s ankle. But Misa was the smart one. She
put a spell on him. He stumbled around the camp. “Blimey, I can’t see a thing!”
Calebth helped Floren to his feet. “Are you all right?”
“Of course.” The dwarf wheezed. “I’m indestructible.”
They heard a splash when Olog fell into the river. “I’ll get you for this and your little dragon
Floren spat into the water. “Take that, you ugly
Later, when they were all sitting around the fire, Calebth
turned to Owen. “Do you think I’ll ever learn to be as good with the sword as
* * * *
Between chores, and cooking and training with Owen
twice a day, Calebth’s next few days were busy ones. One afternoon Floren and
Misa watched him practice.
“I think Calebth is improving, don’t you?” Misa said.
Floren snorted a laugh. “He’s got a long way to go. I
saw him lop the head off a wildflower the other day. And probably only because
it was rooted to the spot.”
Misa narrowed her eyes at him. “Give the boy some
Later, they were sitting around the campfire after a
stew of roast rabbit and wild onions.
Owen finished his and reached for more. “What was in
Calebth ducked his head. “Aww, it was just one of
Granny’s recipes I happened to remember.”
Floren smacked his lips. “I have to admit it was right
The compliments made Calebth warm all over.
After supper, they lounged around the fire. Mowg was
snuggled up in Floren’s lap, chewing on his beard. “Are we going to talk about
the elephant in the room?”
Owen frowned. “What do you mean?
“First, we have no gold, second we have no boat to
take us to Dragon Island, and third, we have a baby dragon gnawing on me like I’m
Floren shook his head. “I guess we should have collected
the bounty on the dragon.”
“That would have been cruel,” Misa said. “We couldn’t have
done that to Mowg’s mother.”
“You got any better ideas?”
“Mowg is in danger. We have to find a way to take him
home to his family. He’ll be safe there.” Calebth thought about his own father
and how much he missed him.
My author page on Amazon is a little bare these days. And will be for a while. I’m doing something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. I got the rights back on all my books and plan to self-publish from now on. Needless to say, there’s a lot more work to it than just taking my books down off Amazon and putting them back up listing me as a publisher.
I’ve been working with Suzan Safi, the brilliant artist who did the cover for my first book Not Long Ago. She’s doing a fantastic job revamping my old covers and creating new ones. I highly recommend her. She’s easy to work with and does her best to see your vision. Check out more of her work. http://www.suziedesigns.net
You can teach an old dog new tricks. It just takes longer. So, please be patient. I have a lot of work, but once I’m done, there’ s more to come. Erin and Griffin’s story is far from finished. I have a ghost story that takes place in the sixties. And a a fun story about a family of witches living in a small town in east Texas.
A 1998 film based on the 1995 nove by Alice Hoffman. A great cast. Sandra Bullock, Nicole Kidman, Stockard Channing, Diane Wiest, Aidan Quin and Goran Visnjic. It takes place in a ficticious New England town. Bullock and Kidman play sisters Sally and Gillian Owens, who have always known they were different from other people. Raised by their aunts after their parents’ death, the sisters grew up in a household that was anything but typical—their aunts fed them chocolate cake for breakfast and taught them the uses of practical magic. But being a member of the Owens’ family carries a curse: the men they fall in love with are doomed to an untimely death. Now adult women with very different personalities, the quiet Sally and the fiery Gillian must use all of their powers to fight the family curse and a swarm of supernatural forces that could take away all the Owens’ lives.
A lovely movie I love to watch at Halloween.
A great recipe given to me by a friend, and the pancakes are truly to die for.
1 C whole wheat flour
1 ½ C oatmeal
3 T Brown Sugar
2 T Baking powder
¾ T salt
1 cup milk
1 cup buttermilk
3 T sugar
1 T vanilla
1 T cinnamon
Chopped pecans or almonds if desired
Add all dry ingredients together. Gradually add the rest,
stirring as you go. Sprinkle nuts on top when you are cooking pancakes.