Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas

If a picture is worth a thousand words, 
what is the exchange rate for music?

Put them together, and you get 
this priceless piece from The Piano Guys.

He came,

bringing light,




eternal life.

He will come again.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Holiday Reading

Post image for 2012 Christmas Story Posts Start Today 

Are you ready for some Christmas stories?  
(You know, besides the ones in these awesome anthologies?)
LDSP has begun posting the entries in this year's contest.  Click here to read a couple of stories each day.  Then remember to return and vote on your favorites beginning Monday, December 17th.


Monday, December 3, 2012

At Etude

Object to be Destroyed by Man Ray

One, two, one, two
Piano teacher's watching you
One, two, three, four
Practice that a few times more

One, two, three, four, five, six
She knows all of your tricks
five, six, One, two, three, four
She's pulled them all before

One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight
No excuses, now, don't be late
Listen to the metronome:
you always play it better at home!


Friday, November 23, 2012


Squall, 1986, by Andrew Wyeth
     Mack looked forward to heavy weather. Whipping wind, lashing rain--the elements were his element. It was no good hanging around inside all day.  He had to admit he was getting a little old, a little stiff.  But he revived at the touch of salt spray whenever he went out with Jem on the troller. 
     He'd seen those city slickers, trying their luck at sport fishing.  Sure, they looked bold and smart as they pulled away from shore.  Out at sea, though, their thin skin showed.  In a real squall they absolutely went to pieces.  Mack was stalwart, impervious.
     Mack would do anything for Jem, of course.  They'd been working together for years now.  No words were necessary as they sailed, set the lines, hauled in the catch.  Mack moved with Jem, always supporting, protecting him.  They were a perfect fit, like good partners should be. 
     There was one thing Mack did not understand.  He had been with Jem through thick and thin.  He was no fair weather friend.  He'd endured the worst storms that the sea could throw at a boat, without a tear or complaint.  After all that, how could Jem call him "yellow"?
     Mack didn't ponder the question long as he hung from his hook.  He watched the sunlight slide across the whitewashed wall, across the scrubbed floor.  He felt the breeze through the open door, and set himself to figuring when the next squall would blow in, when Jem would take him out again.


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Makin' a List? Add Checkin' It Twice!

Need a holiday gift idea?  Checkin' It Twice & Other Heartwarming Holiday Tales is a book full of prize-winning, original, fun, uplifting Christmas stories.  And if you buy between now and  December 15th, the publisher will throw in more fun!  Look here for all the details.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Advent Event!

'Tis the season to get ready for getting ready for Christmas!  I know, it's not time to open your advent calendar yet, but you should make sure you have one ready.  How about Sing We Now of Christmas, with a new story for each day in December?  You can take a peek inside now.  Head over to Michael Young's place for twelve days of Christmas story previews and giveaways.  There are some great prizes waiting to be won, like this cozy hat:

My main character would have been much better off with a hat like this.  Wouldn't you be, or a friend?  Enter to win the hat, or a basket of Hawaiian goodies, or a fabulous book, now through November 18th!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Perfect Storm


bring on the rainstorm
your love is my umbrella
you blow me away
hold me in a gale-force hug
save me with a big wet kiss

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Cheap Date


The shaking stopped.  Kelly opened her eyes, one at a time.  She unwrapped her right arm from around her own shoulders, but left the left cradling her belly.  It didn't feel so well.  Tyler opened the door, and pale light seeped into the cramped chamber.

"Here we are," he announced.  "Welcome to Ancient Egypt!"

Kelly stood, hoping her dizziness would subside soon.  She'd thought it was a joke when Tyler offered to take her for a ride in his time machine.  But something had definitely happened after he spun those dials and lifted the lever.  It didn't look like Tyler's garage out there.  She stepped through the door.

A pyramid occupied an otherwise empty landscape.  "Why is it so . . . green?"

"That's how you know these are Ancient times," Tyler explained.  "You know, before the world was even black and white, it was black and green."


Tyler shrugged.  "Why not?  Let's go check out the pyramid."  He took Kelly's hand and led her forward.

As they approached, Kelly could see some markings on the base of the pyramid.  "Are those hieroglyphics?  Wait--no, they're letters.  'MDCCLXXVI.'  What could that mean?"

Tyler glanced at the letters.  "They're Roman numerals.  Um, 1776."  He looked upward again.

"1776?  That was a while ago, but I wouldn't call it Ancient."

"1776 BC?"

"Yeah, right."  Kelly pulled her hand out of his, and folded her arms.  "What is this really?"  A shadow fell over her.  Kelly looked up.  "Giant eagle!" she yelped.

Tyler put his arm around her.  "Don't worry.  His beak is full."  He pointed to the bird as it flew away.  Kelly relaxed a bit.  "Come on," Tyler urged, "let's climb it."  He led her to some smaller steps on the side of the pyramid.

Kelly looked up.  "Whoa.  The pyramid has a big eye at the top.  That's kind of creepy.  I don't think we should climb something that's looking at us."

Tyler had already climbed several steps.  "It's all right."

"How do you know?"

"Look up there."  Words appeared in the sky.

"Okay, Mr. Roman Scholar.  What do they say?"

"Annuit cœptis.  It means 'He approves.'  Come on!"

Kelly took two steps, and looked up again.  The eye blinked, but the words didn't change.  She followed Tyler to the top.

"Great view, huh?"  Tyler spread his arms wide.

Kelly looked.  The desert extended around her for a short distance.  Beyond a certain circle, she could see a blank space with tall stone blocks upon it.  Straining her eyes, she could see that they also formed letters.  "O-N-E.  One.  One what?"  She turned to look behind her.  The desert seemed to be surrounded by giant webs.  The eagle was soaring far above.  The strange green landscape seemed familiar somehow.

"Tyler, this isn't Ancient Egypt.  This is a one dollar bill."

Tyler shrugged.  "Well, you've never been here before, have you?"

"One dollar!  This is the cheapest date I've ever been on!  You and your 'time machine.'"

"Time is money, right?  And we travelled."

"Hmph."  Kelly folded her arms again, and turned away.

"We can still have some fun on a dollar," Tyler said, touching her shoulder.  "Let's slide down."  He sat on the edge and pushed off down the smooth front of the pyramid. 

Kelly sighed, then sat down and followed.  Air whooshed by as she flew down the side.  She landed in the soft sand. 

Tyler gave her a concerned look.  "Are you okay?"

Kelly tried to look stern, but a giggle betrayed her.  "That was fun.  Race you to the top?"

They slid until they were laughing too hard to climb.  The eagle flew over again, shaking a branch in his claw.  Kelly caught some of the berries that fell from it.  "Olives!  My favorite." 

They talked and slid and ate green olives.  After a while, Kelly felt a chill.  The sky was no darker, but thirteen stars appeared.  "Maybe it's time to go," she said, shivering.

Tyler took her hand and walked her over to the edge of the desert.  Reaching just outside, he picked up a string of pearls and fastened it around Kelly's neck.  Then he wrapped a long ribbon around her like a shawl.  She started to feel warmer.  There were letters on the ribbon, too. 

"E pluribus unum?" she read as they walked back toward the time machine.

"Something like 'and they twain shall be one,' I think."  He bent down on one knee.  "Shall we make it legal?" 

A tear came to Kelly's eye.  "Oh, Tyler," she said, blinking, "I feel so tender."


Be sure to see my interview, over at Checkin' It Twice!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Holiday Photo Contest


So, did I mention my stories will appear in two anthologies this season?  Here's a peek at the cover of Checkin' It Twice & Other Heartwarming Holiday Tales.  It will be released soon, but the website is already up and running, full of information and fun.

What kind of fun?  How about the Christmas Capers Holiday Photo Contest?  The holiday season can be joyful, fun, and a little bit crazy.  Have you captured some of these moments in pictures?  Enter your favorite holiday photos to win fabulous prizes! Check it out here, then come back and tell me how adorable the sample photos are.  Particularly (ahem) the first and third ones in the post.  Go, on, do it.