Thursday, December 25, 2014

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

6 Favorite Christmas Stories

I love Christmas movies. Christmas just doesn't seem like Christmas without them.

Among my favorites are:
  • A Christmas Carol -- I have always loved this story and almost all the variations it has taken. But I still love reading the novella by Charles Dickens.
  • Miracle on 34th Street
  • A Christmas Story
  • The Polar Express  --  I need to find my copy of the picture book. I want to read the story to my classes before we break for the Christmas holidays.
  • The Family Stone
  • The Santa Clause
What are your favorite Christmas stories?

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Great Time at Weihnachtsmarkt 2014

I had a wonderful time at Weihnachtsmarkt 2014!! I meet a lot of people and made some new friends. Thank you to everyone who stopped by to see me!!!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Five Thoughts for Friday and the Holidays

Thought 1
I can't believe how fast this year has gone by. Even my students have commented on how fast this school year is going. I don't think it's because the days are actually speeding by, but because we are all so, work, extracurricular activities, various obligations, friends, social time, holidays, etc. It is not just the adults. The kids are busy with all of this too.

Thought 2
In a couple of hours, I will be at the Weihnachtsmarkt 2014 (German Christmas market) in New Braunfels. I will have copies of all my books, including the new one, The Monster's Scribbler. If you're in the area, come by and do some of your Christmas shopping.

Thought 3
The holidays are officially here. Yeah, I know. Next week is Thanksgiving, but for me the holiday season officially started a few weeks ago when the Christmas tree tent went up. One morning, the travel trailer was there and then the next, the tent was up.

Thought 4
I'm like my students right now. I'm ready for the Thanksgiving holiday to start. Not only am I ready for the break from the school routine, but I have a crowd coming for Thanksgiving that I have to get ready for, and I'm ready for a little time free from school paperwork to start writing the new book, which leads me into...

Thought 5
The outline for the 3rd book in the Children of Atlantis series is ready written. I'm going to make a few tweaks to it as I type it (yes, it's handwritten on sticky notes). I'm excited!!!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Book Signing at Weihnachtsmarkt 2014 in New Braunfels, Texas

A Christmas Market and Book Fair 

November 21-22-23, 2014
New Braunfels Civic / Convention Center
Castell Ave.
New Braunfels, Texas

I will be a part of the Meet the Author Book Fair.

I will be there:
  • Friday, November 21  
    • 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.  and
    • 1:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, November 22
    • 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and 
    • 1:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
 I will have signed copies of my books for sale, including my newest book, The Monster's Scribbler.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Tuesday Quote

'Tis now the very witching time of night,
When churchyards yawn and hell itself breathes out
Contagion to this world.
                --William Shakespeare

Thursday, October 16, 2014

The Monster's Scribbler: Excerpt 2

The Monster's Scribbler
Wisteria Mountain High, Book 1

Available from 
Amazon | Barnes and Noble | KOBO

“Did the cat get your tongue? Or was it the Boogieman?” Jayla and her small group of cheerleaders laughed.
“The Boogieman doesn’t take children’s tongues. He prefers to scare you, so he can feed on your fear.” Phoebe put her hands on her hips. Jayla’s crap was old and Phoebe was so sick of it and the other stuff she had put up with lately. “Now, the Boogiewoman, that’s a different story. She just absolutely loves the tongues of mean bullies.”
“Boogiewoman?” asked one of the cheerleaders with Jayla.
“Phoebe, let’s go.” Madison tugged on Phoebe’s sleeve.
“You can’t leave. Phoebe was just telling me about the Boogiewoman, and I just have to hear more. This story is so entertaining.” Jayla laughed.
“Phoebe?” Madison’s voice no more than a squeak.
“Madison, I have to stand up to her. I can’t run away. Not anymore.” Phoebe swallowed but the lump of fear stayed firmly stuck in place. Even though she was afraid, she knew she had to stand up. She had done it once before. How was this any different?

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Tuesday Quote

Ghosts, like ladies, never speak till spoke to.
---Richard Harris Barham

Sunday, October 5, 2014

from The Monster's Scribbler

Excerpt from The Monster's Scribbler

Something heavy slammed into Phoebe, knocking her free of the grip.

“No!” Becka’s scream echoed through the pavilion. “The story isn’t worth it. I don’t want it. I want this nightmare to end.”

The lake churned and bubbled ferociously like boiling water.

Terrified Phoebe stared. She knew she should run, but her legs weren’t getting the message her brain was sending.

Out of the depths of the lake, rose the monster that had injured Phoebe’s shoulder and plagued her dreams. It did not glide smoothly out of the murky depths. It dug and clawed its way through the water like a vampire or a zombie digging its way out of a dirt-filled grave. The flesh clinging to the bony limbs stretched under the weight of the waters, making the putrid flesh ooze and drip even more than it did in Phoebe’s nightmares. New exposed white bones glowed in the moonlight. The tattered remains of clothes barely hung on the gaunt frame approaching the shore.

Phoebe could not do anything but stare at it.

The monster stepped into the soft twinkling light of the pavilion. Its face was little more than a skull with patches of rotting flesh clinging to it. The eyes—the eyes were not there. Two large dark holes marked the spot, but deep in their depths, small, blood red embers glowed.

Phoebe tried screaming but nothing came out of her mouth. Wide-eyed and shaking, her legs started working and she backed away from the monster-filled pavilion.

Available from 

Friday, August 8, 2014

Read for Free!

If you have Kindle Unlimited, you can borrow and read Guardian of Atlantis and No Rest for the Spirit and Other Ghostly Tales for free.

The ebooks are still for sale if you prefer to own a copy.

Book to Movie: The Giver

The Giver is scheduled for release next week…August 15 to be exact. The movie is based on Lois Lowry’s book, The Giver, which was published in 1993.

I’m excited. When I taught reading, The Giver was the first novel we read each year. It more often than not, caught the attention of my more reluctant readers. The book deals with a number of topics that lead to great classroom discussions and tie-ins to current world events.

The Giver is a dystopian novel, meaning the society has some major problems, even though at first, you do not see these problems. Jonas (11 to 12 years old) lives in a perfect society. There is no disease, no hunger, no war, no discrimination, etc. The people have embraced a “sameness”. No one is different. In other words, this society is perfect…a utopian society, but in becoming this, the people have given up many things, including music, color, and love.

Jonas is selected to train as the new Receiver of Memory (one person in the society holds all memories of what life was like before). Through his interactions with The Giver (holder of the memories and the oldest person in the society who has not been “released”), Jonas learns about what his community has given up, and the horrors his world truly holds.

I’ve only seen the movie trailer and have read about the movie, but I’ve already seen a change between the movie and the book. In the movie, Jonas is 16 years old. I’m curious as to what other changes have been made…how true will they be to the book.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Sunday Picture: Baby Bird

My two kitties were having a fit the other morning. They kept looking out the window and chattering. I finally went to investigate and found this guy at my front door. Momma and Papa were not happy when I stepped out onto the porch.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Tuesday Quote

The stories we love best live in us forever.

   --J.K. Rowling

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Two Years Ago Today...

Two years ago today, I wrote my first blog as I started my writing adventure.

It's unbelievable how fast time has flown.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Five Things You Don't Know About Wisteria Mountain

Fact One

The town was originally founded as a safe haven for all paranormal creatures and their mates, some of which were human. A hundred years later, there was a battle between good and evil. Neither side won, but the children of both are now suffering.

Fact Two

People who stumble upon Wisteria Mountain find a run-down, dying town. A strong sense of foreboding comes over them and they have to leave as quickly as possible.

Fact Three

Wisteria Mountain wasn’t the town’s original name. When the town was first founded, it was called Mysteria Mountain. After the Great Battle, the name was changed to Wysteria Mountain. The spelling eventually evolved to Wisteria Mountain, though the other spelling is turning up more often.

Fact Four

Wisteria Mountain sets on a source of magnetic energy. Most paranormal creatures are drawn to it.

Fact Five

Wisteria Mountain is a fictional town. It is not based on any specific town or place, but rather is a mixture of a lot of places I have visited, but it is located in Texas.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

More Books to Come in Both Series

The Children of Atlantis

There are several more books planned in the series. I was writing the short story, Ethan’s Trials, when I realized this was actually the beginning of book 4 in the series. So, I stopped writing and set it aside. I need to plot book 4 with this story incorporated into it.

I’m finishing the outline for book 3. I’m one of those writers who has to know what happens from the beginning to the end of the book. The outline is my road map. I have to know where my characters are going on their journey.

My goal is to have book 3 out sometime in December/January.

Wisteria Mountain High series

The Monster’s Scribbler has been out in ebook for a couple of weeks. The paperback is now available at Amazon. In a few days, it should be available in paperback at Barnes and Noble. I’m really excited about this book.

The Monster’s Scribbler was actually written several years ago…a good three years before I even had the idea for Guardian of Atlantis. After I finished The Monster’s Scribbler, I started the search for an agent. I got several partial requests (they wanted to see x amount of pages) and even a request for the entire manuscript. I was ecstatic!

But the manuscript was rejected.

The common excuse was “it’s not right for us.”

During this time, I wrote the second book and started outlining the third and fourth books. As the rejections piled up, I decided to shelve the series and move on to another idea. At the time, self-publishing was not even on my radar.

A couple of months ago, I was sifting through some of the files I had moved from my old computer over 1 ½ years ago. I had not looked at them in years, and had no idea why I decided to move them to my new computer, but I did. Anyway, I found the Wisteria Mountain series file and tucked inside was The Monster’s Scribbler.

I read the story.

I read it again, this time fixing anything I thought needed fixing. I created a cover, formatted the files, and uploaded everything.

The Monster’s Scribbler, Book 1 in the Wisteria Mountain High series was finally published.

Book 2 in the series needs to be read, fix any plot problems, and rewrite. I also need to look at the plots I’ve already done for the next two books and redo them.