What a delightful surprise! Made me smile all day.
Thank you, Liam. I'm so glad you enjoyed reading My Dog, Me.
I wrote it especially for boys and girls like you.
I hope you'll check back and read my next young readers book,
A Reindear Tale about the year Santa's team was all girls. What??
You didn't know that Santa has a different team every year? Yes, he does. We only know about Rudolph, but there were others. But this year, the lead reindeer is Ruby and the "boys" are not happy. I hope to have A Reindear Tale available by Christmas, which Christmas depends on the lucky agent who agrees to represent this book to publishers.
Fan mail is always welcome!!
Hello, there! I've been AWOL for way too long, but busy writing, of course! I'm excited to share with you that one of my short stories was selected as a finalist for Stories Through the Ages Baby Boomers Plus 2022 published by Living Springs Publishers. The story I wrote is my personal account of my month-long, eye-opening trip through Europe in 1972 ALONE. Even I wonder if I was truly that naïve and would I EVER do something like it again?
My story, “An American in Paris, Tales from a Brothel and Other Adventures,” was selected from entries by authors around the world. In the story, a 23-year-old woman (moi) travels to Europe alone with a roundtrip plane ticket and a 30-day Eurail pass. Set in 1972, there are no cell phones, Euros, ATM’s, GPS, or internet. I was a gutsy, though inexperienced traveler. The story includes harrowing and hilarious true accounts of my month-long travels ‘cross the pond. Some adventures include being harassed by two young Russian men on a Russian aircraft; arriving at a friend’s Paris apartment unaware the friend has moved; and freaking out after seeing my exact likeness in a Botticelli painting at the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.
The anthology is available through Amazon, or contact me for an autographed copy.
Great News! My Christmas story, A Reindear Tale, is a quarterfinalist in the ScreenCraft Cinematic Book Competition. Over 700 submissions were under consideration. I am now in a pool of 175 candidates. I will keep you posted, of course. Very exciting possibilities here!
Meet Ruby, one of the Czarina’s team at the Winter Palace who gets lost and eventually found by Santa’s elves. Because starlight reflects off her ruby pendant, our girl is chosen to lead the first all-girl team for Santa. (The boys are not happy…)
My thanks always for all your encouragement. Let’s hope to see Ruby on the big screen in the future!
Frohe Weinhachten from Germany!
Visiting Stuttgart with the Henry Clan. Seven adults and four little ones – all age four and under (the little ones, that is.) It's cold and rainy with no Christmas Markets! Covid rules! Not a German nutcracker to be found…
But great breads, pastries, chocolates, and Gluhwein (hot spied wine) and great fun with family. Hope your family celebrates in a special way during this pandemic. Cheers to 2022!
I was thinking about the debate the other night and it reminded me of a scene in my yet to be published novel, Bitter Sugar. Jacques, a Cajun, and Marcus, an army deserter, are having a discussion.
“We Cajuns figure most disagreements can be settled while drinking beer in a pirogue in the bayou. If they can’t come to a verbal agreement, they arm wrestle.”
Where is this going? “Tell me more, Jacques,” encouraged Marcus.
“See, the man who loses at arm wrestling gets tipped over the boat. Then he gets to grapple with an alligator. How’s that for a real loser? So most men, unless they have chicken shit for brains, figure they’re better off solving their problems before it gets to arm wrestling. Alligators sure ain’t much for talking.”
My friends, this is from my unpublished novel, Bitter Sugar. It’s a conversation between lovers: Fawn, a slave, and Marcus, an army deserter before the Civil War. I woke up thinking about it and how appropriate for these uncertain times. Perhaps it will speak to you. Gotta love the birds! Love to all, be safe and Carpe Diem.
As if attempting to diffuse the emotionally charged situation Fawn mused, “Mae Liza says that life constantly changes a person. Every day it’s a new person in the same old body based on what happened the day before. Sometimes it’s a good change. Other times, it’s not. But regardless, every day when the sun comes up, the birds sing.” She paused and bit her lip. “One might even sing while the day is still dark.” She turned toward him and touched his arm. “Do you understand what I’m saying?”
The soldier was confused and sat waiting for more of an explanation.
“You see, birds don’t care about what happened the day before. The new day allows them to start all over again and their songs remind us to do the same, to start over. That doesn’t mean that we forget what happened, all the sadness or heartbreak, sometimes we can’t. So, the birds sing for us when we’re not up to it.” She leaned back on her hands. “So, when the sun comes up, I wait to hear the birds welcome a new adventure. They’re singing little songs of love, of healing, of anticipation, whatever we want to call them.”
“And that stray bird that sings while the day is still dark?” Marcus asked.
“That one sings of hope.”
Yours truly at The Sundance Film Festival in Park City. Steven Spielberg, Ron Howard, even Vigo Mortensen were there. Alas, they missed meeting me! 🙃 I was hoping to make some contacts with a film agent for A Reindear Tale. Didn’t happen, so, just enjoyed some great and not so great movies with good friends.
PS - Word on the street: It’s harder to get a film into Sundance than gaining admission to Harvard. Who knew?
Happy New Year, everyone! I caught a nasty virus at Thanksgiving and missed nearly the entire Christmas holiday season. Better now. Hooray!
I'm so excited to be participating in the upcoming author panel, "So You've Always Wanted to Write a Book?", sponsored by Best Self Atlanta magazine. The event is at the magazine headquarters on W. Wieuca Rd. So, if you are in that area on Wednesday, January 29, from 6-8pm, please consider stopping by to hear my other writer friends and moi discuss the agony and the ecstasy of publishing. Lite bites and bubbly will be served, plus a chance to swap a book with a fellow participant. Bring a second book to donate to a women's shelter. What fun!
Soon, I'm off to the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, taking a treatment (animation film synopsis) for my new Christmas story for kids, A Reindear Tale. It's about the year Santa's team was all female. What? You didn't know Santa has a different team every year? This particular year the lead is Ruby, a Russian reindeer from the Winter Palace in St. Petersburg, who gets lost. Santa's elves find her, along with her pesky "friend", a wolf she names Vulfie. As you can imagine, the male reindeer are not happy, and they seek to sabotage the entire Christmas Eve delivery. Great fun. Sundance is a chance to network, network, network. Wish me luck. Will let you know.
I appreciate your support so much. Wishing you all the best in this new year - health, love, peace, and happy surprises.
Check out the other panelists below, and stop by to meet us!
Happy Thanksgiving y’all, especially to our military who are far from home and eating an MRE (meals ready-to-eat) while being ever-ready to defend all we hold dear. I am thankful for you!
A Holiday Special - purchase your copy (copies) of My Dog, Me at a special price of $9.00 with free shipping (eat your heart out, Amazon). Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to order. Thank you in advance.