Sunday, April 17, 2016

WeWriWa - A Heart on Hold - New Release 4/17/16


Welcome to this week's edition of Weekend Writing Warriors! My debut novel just re-released and in honor of this, I would love to share with you a piece of A Heart on Hold.

Let's set the scene . . . Charlotte had said goodbye to her childhood love Lieutenant Sanderson Redding as he left to fight for the South in the War Between the States, but not before proposing to Charlotte. A rogue telegram came in from Sanderson, telling Charlotte of his impending return for sick leave. This excerpt begins as Charlotte's father, George, spots Sanderson at the edge of their yard and points him out to her.


Charlotte’s world moved in slow motion as she grasped her skirt in her hands and whirled about.
She gasped as she locked eyes with those, deep and hazel, of her love. He stood, reins in hand, like a statue of perfection. “Sanderson!”

In an instant, she was in his arms, grasping him around his thin waist. She turned her face up to take in every minute detail of the man she had promised to share her life with.

Sanderson’s face was gaunt and pale. Sweat stood out from his forehead in large beads and the dark circles under his tired eyes looked like shiners. 

“Even more beautiful than that day at the station,” Sanderson began as he cupped her chin in his calloused hand and smiled into the face of his beloved.

Before their lips could meet in a much-anticipated kiss, a coughing fit overcame him, leaving his lips bloody as he sputtered, wheezed, and fell to his knees. 

I hope you enjoyed this excerpt! You can get your copy on Amazon for $2.99 here!

I am pretty excited to be writing this post. For the first time in many, many years, a ToRnAdO made an appearance in my little corner of west Texas! My children and I were outside playing basketball and enjoying the beautiful weather when we needed a drink from Sonic. Dinner was in the oven and Sonic is just around the corner, so away we went. We were on the way back, with old fashioned cream soda drinks in tow, when hail began to pound us out of NoWhErE! Between the hail and the sudden onset of rain, conditions were nearly white-out. We pressed on, and noticed all of the other cars were pulling off to the side of the road and the hail was getting larger. Well, as some of you may know,one of my four children is my son with Asperger's Autism. 

From the backseat, I heard the niggles of an impending meltdown. So there was really only one thing to do . . .crank up some rock-n-roll and plow on through, cheering and loudly exclaiming how much fun you're having! Despite being in a complete white out and pummeled by flying boxes and branches and hail, IT WORKED. He was laughing by the time we arrived home, even though my heart was pounding out of my chest! All kids and animals are safe and dry inside, plus two baby white winged doves who were blown into the street and now call my bathroom their temporary home.

On another note, I learned tonight that The Saga of Indian Em'ly is in the running for the 2015 RONE award for best Novella! 
Reader votes are crucial in this first stage, so my publisher has lowered the price of Indian Em'ly to just .99 cents! 
Voting starts May 16th! 
If you would like an ARC, please let me know in the comments! 

Sunday, April 3, 2016

WeWriWa - 4/10/16 A Heart on Hold (Release on 4/14/16)

Hello one and all! I am switching gears today from Missi Wanderin' in the Woods (where we just finished Chapter One) to A Heart on Hold, which will be released on April 14th! This is the first in a four book series that is very near and dear to my heart.

Thank you for all of your kind comments when I debuted the cover.

Now, A Heart on Hold is up for preorder! Yay! Click to get your copy pre-ordered for $2.99!

Follow this link to get back to the Weekend Writing Warriors bloghop!

“Don’t die till we get to have some fun, girl.” Samuel’s whiskey-ruined voice was hot in Charlotte’s ear. 

Somewhere behind her, his Yankee cohort's maniacal laughter pulsated with cruelty. 

The older defector's Bowie knife grew closer to her face, but with her arms lashed behind her, Charlotte could only watch in helpless terror as the promise of death drew nearer. When the icy blade met the skin of her neck, she knew her end had come. 

Sanderson, she prayed, her thoughts swirling like a tempest. Where are you? 

Saturday, March 26, 2016

WeWriWa - March 27, 2016 - Missi Wanderin' in the Woods

On last week's installment of Weekend Writing Warriors, we were in the throes of the Emergency Room excitement in Vicenza, Italy when the life of an unborn baby hung in the balance. Welcome to this eight-sentence snippet. To get back to the other Weekend Writers, click here!  

A favorite Italian restaurant, Il Fauno's -- wonderful waitstaff, great food, and
an American toilet!! 
After a quick, burning shot to stop the contractions and a tub of progesterone capsules to insert nightly, we were released. These people who didn’t even speak my language had just saved the life of my unborn child. “What did the doctor say before he left,” I asked our nurse as she walked us to the front doors of the hospital.
The view from the villa where we lived
The view from the other side of the villa
Our Texan kitchen in Italy
Her lips tilted into a half-smile. “He said Americans and their modesty . . . do they not understand that there is no modesty in life and death?”
I locked eyes with my husband and blinked back unwelcome tears 

as I remembered my nurse's words. No modesty in life and death.

wish I had asked her if dignity followed the same rule.

Our chilly villa where I was on bed rest for four weeks following the ER incident. 

April 14th -- the rebirth date of my debut novel, A Heart on Hold. Cover reveal time!!! 

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

The Sonogram - March 20, 2016 - Missi Wanderin' in the Woods - WeWriWa

Welcome back for this Weekend Writing Warriors edition of Missi Wanderin' in the Woods. 
Weekend Writing Warriors is where a wonderful group of authors, from prepublished to multipublished, share eight-to-ten sentences from one of their works. We welcome critique, observations, and any other comments from blog readers! Find them here!!
We left off in the Italian Emergency Room, where we just learned Sara's (well, my) baby was still alive -- unlike what the Army doctors said. Adrenaline still surging, let's see what happened next. 

Before the words were out of the nurse's mouth, the doctor had the internal probe inserted and located the source of the problem. He spouted off a slew of musical Italian words and, though I didn’t understand what he said, I understood the soft tones of relief that colored them.

“The placenta is detaching,” she relayed, her eyes still on the screen. A fast little heartbeat 

 pounded in perfect rhythm from the speakers. “See the blood clot there? Your body tries to fix it, to save precious bambino.” 

The doctor rattled off something else and patted my naked thigh before disappearing.

Charlie stammered from the other side of the table. “Did um -- well, our -- did we cause this?”

“No," the nurse smiled, "but no more having the sex, okay?”

Researching some pictures to go along with this excerpt, I was glad to find this article

That horrific "birthing center" on the American military base in Vicenza has shuttered its doors. This was the establishment that gave me the advice to "let the miscarriage happen naturally" and that it was "God's will". 

Saturday, March 12, 2016

WeWriWa - 3/13/16 - The Italian Hospital

Hello one and all! It's been about six months since we visited the Italian Hospital in Vicenza, Italy. In the last six months, my family and I have moved from Texas to Oklahoma and back to Texas again. The gypsy blood keeps pumping! I was able to wean one of my sons off of his ADHD medication and another, my baby Bitty, was found (after many tests and hospital visits) to have a GLUTEN allergy! Never, ever a dull moment at my house. Let's see what happened in the wood-paneled Italian hospital room where the bleeding and cramping in a young, pregnant Army wife waited, terrified. I remember it like it was yesterday . . .
Oh dear God . . .  
The doctor barked something in Italian, completely ignoring any shred of modesty I’d retained and any sense of privacy I might have desired.
“He said get on the bed, now,” the nurse translated, grabbing my arm and helping me roughly onto the bed. I held my hand out for the sheet, but she snatched it away. “No time,” she said.
Someone had pulled a tiny sonogram machine into the room. The doctor squirted the cold jelly onto my still-flat belly and dug the probe into my flesh as the nurse manipulated my legs over the candy cane stirrups just as I’d feared. Before I could get embarrassed, a strong, thudding beat pounded out of the speakers apparently attached to this particular machine.
“The baby is alive,” the nurse relayed, relief evident in her strained English. “The doctor must use the internal probe now.”
I hope you enjoyed this ten-sentence snippet from my forthcoming memoir, Missi Wanderin' in the Woods. If you'd like to switch gears a bit, check out the rest of the weekend writers at the Weekend Writing Warriors blog. I have featured debut author Madeline McCandless and her contemporary western (spicy) romance, Silver Sky at Dawn (Silver Sky Ranch series #1) on my Everlasting Heart blog. Feel free to stop by and show her some love! 

Sunday, August 23, 2015

WeWriWa - August 23, 2015 - Missi Wanderin' in the Woods

Welcome back, sorry I'm running behind. Back to school has thrown my schedule askew. Popping back into the Italian hospital room . . . 

Several more people had wandered in and one even left the door propped with his foot.
I glanced at Charlie, nervous, feeling Italian eyes burning through my skin. This was more embarrassing than when I had to give a urine sample at the post clinic and, while trying to manage my four-year-old and two-year-old, wound up spilling the entire cup of pee in my pants. “Ask if I get a sheet,” I begged.

The nurse produced a piece of a sheet, wide as a wash cloth and long as about five of them. I wiggled out of my clothes as he tried to shield me with the sad excuse for a sheet. “I had no idea it would be like this.” Over the sheet, I watched as the nurse unfurled two giant metal stirrups from the end of the exam table; ones that resembled massive candy canes and, if I was looking at them right, my feet didn’t rest in them, but my legs went up and over them. A fleeting vision of King Henry VIII’s torture chamber popped into my mind. A deep cramp bent me over the table. 

Thanks for popping by. To get back to the other Weekend Writing Warriors, click here! 

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

The Final Installment of The Saga of Indian Em'ly: The Journey Home is HERE!

The fourth and final installment of the Indian Em'ly Saga is here . . . and just .99 cents! This is by far my favorite of the series, and I hope it will be yours too. Get yours here! 


Twelve-year-old Knocks Down and his little sister, Cactus Flower, manage to escape the evil orphanage along with a new pale face friend, Kid McCoy. But once they escape, they are set upon by a gang of murdering claim jumpers who steal Cactus and leave Knocks Down for dead. 

Determined to find his little sister, Knocks Down gets to the nearest town where they’ve taken her, only to discover she has been sold as a slave! With Kid McCoy’s help, Knocks Down goes after her. Escaping once more, they encounter an old nemesis, a soldier from the nearby fort that was responsible for their mother’s death—and he’s set on seeing Knocks Down and Cactus Flower dead, as well. 

How can a boy defeat a battle-hardened soldier? Just when Knocks Down is about to give up, the biggest surprise of all changes everything on THE JOURNEY HOME…


    The day passed quickly and in relative silence until Kid realized something. “Say Chief, where is it we’re headed, anyway?”
    I scanned the foreign horizon, an odd feeling suddenly gripping my backbone. “South,” I whispered, “back home, to the land of the Comanche.” Without thinking, I dropped to a crouch and let every sound fade away. Chirping birds, whistling wind, even the breath of Cactus and Kid. Every sound disappeared except the one that had pricked my ear and shot the rash of tingles in the first place. 
    “Something has happened nearby.” 
    Cactus slipped her hand into mine. “I hear it, too. Let’s go.”
    Kid scratched his head. “What’d I miss? I don’t hear nothin’.”

    By the time we arrived at what was left of the pale face camp, Kid heard it too. The dog’s whimpering had grown louder with each step, and more mournful. There hadn’t been but six people in camp, two of them children, and no survivors. The dog, a hulking black beast with pointed ears, low hips and a long tail, lay by the body of the girl. Whining, he licked her face and nuzzled her hands, as if trying to wake her from a deep sleep.