Sunday, December 04, 2005

May your holidays be merry and bright!

The Christmas parties have begun. We had our first holiday party of the season this weekend camping on the beautiful Suwannee River with our friends. It turned out to be a weekend-long feast. Now I'm back to my diet. *burp!*

Many thanks to Kathy Hupp for the photo.

I wish you a joyful and safe holiday season. Here is my greeting to you, a photo of Ginger in her holiday bandana. Many blessings!


Sunday, October 16, 2005

Sporty Car Stamps!

Check it out! The Kaiser Darrin (a green one, no less!) has made a U.S.P.S. commemorative stamp. I'm going to order some from my local post office.


More on the Kaiser Darrin

Here is another view of the 1954 Kaiser Darrin as featured in my upcoming romantic suspense, Restore My Heart.


Friday, September 30, 2005

Restore My Heart--2007 release from Medallion Press

Restore My Heart is a romantic suspense/mystery that involves a restored 1954 Kaiser Darrin. For its time, Kaiser's sports car was highly innovative.

Here is a photo of me standing beside the Darrin I used as the model for my story. Thanks to Mike and Beth Devlin of Colorado for the "use" of their Darrin.


Sunday, September 18, 2005

A Writer's Dream Weekend!

Retreaters at the Stephen Foster museum.

What more could I ask for than a weekend brainstorming with five imaginative and talented authors? How about an offer for my mystery, Restore My Heart?! That's right, Friday, Medallion Press called to tell me they are interested in publishing Restore My Heart as a 2007 mass-market paperback.

All in all, I had a productive, exciting, and chocolate-filled week-end!


Friday, September 16, 2005

Writers' Retreat Weekend

This weekend I will be at an intensive two-day writing session with five other authors. We'll be in a cabin on the Suwannee River. Hence we call ourselves LOTS, an acronym for Ladies of the Suwannee. We "retreat" periodically to brainstorm plots and characters for new projects. It's fun, too. I hope to return with a plan to write my English-professor-amateur-sleuth mystery, Dress Rehearsal.

My wonderful, supportive hubby will be staying at home with Ginger. What a great guy I married!

Hope you have a good weekend, too!

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

What a day for a Jeep ride!

With tropical storm Ophelia off the East coast, we enjoyed a pleasant break from the heat with cloud cover and cooler temperatures. Perfect weather for four-wheeling through the woods!

Now you know why my characters often drive Jeeps. There's nothing like it!


Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Disaster in the South

The news from Louisiana and Mississippi just keeps getting worse. Grim. The footage shown on the news looks like a disaster movie set. I feel guilty for whining about having no air conditioning a couple of weeks ago. No A/C? Thousands have no power, drinking water, or homes to return to. Or jobs.

I pray that the thousands of people who are feared dead are rescued safely. I want to help, but how? Right now, all I can do is make cash donations to charities earmarked for Katrina hurricane relief. Yes, I just shelled out a lot of money for a new heat pump, but hey! I have a comfortable, air-conditioned house. I'm blessed! I think I can dig deep down into my pocket and find something to share.

If you're a Katrina victim, you probably aren't able to read this. But if you can, please know that you're in my prayers. Hang in there.


Monday, August 29, 2005

Storms of the Heart

Ginger and I enjoyed walking outside today, relieved that we were spared Katrina's wrath. But I join all of you in prayer for the safety of those who weren't. What a nasty storm!

A few years ago, I wrote a book that is set in North Florida during a category 3 hurricane called Storms of the Heart. It's a departure from Debbie, Noel, and the gang from the Full Moon series and Last Resort, so you may have missed it.

Anyway, in the wake of hurricane Katrina, my mind returned to Stephanie and Red, who battle not only a hurricane but a killer or two. Then there's the matter of a romance that developes between the two at the worst possible time (isn't it always?).

So if you like romantic suspense and are up for a hurricane story, check out Storms of the Heart at Wings ePress today!


Thursday, August 25, 2005

At last! Rain and Air Conditioning, too!

Hi from steamy Florida! Yes, our new heat pump is installed and working great, so the house is cool. Also, we're having a bit of rain, which we need. All in all it's a good day to sit and write.

No one answered the question of why Dog Days are called such, so I guess that trivia will go unanswered. I still like the idea of the constellations arranged a certain way this time of year. It's a lot more romantic than rabies fears!

Romance is what I'm about, of course, and it's what I write. Right now, I'm writing a time-travel (A first for me) and the heroine's name is Katrina. Lo and behold, that's also the name of the hurricane now headed for south Florida!

It's not my fault!!


Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Dog Days ...

Dog Days
These are the Dog Days of summer. I can't remember exactly why late July and August days are so named. Seems I remember vaguely something from my childhood about rabies. Or maybe it has something to do with the constellation Cirius lining up a certain way this time of the year. If you can enlighten me on why these are called the Dog Days, please add your comment.

Right now, Ginger has her own definition of Dog Days. When it's too hot to be outside--even in shade--she comes in from her walk and collapses on the carpet or sofa. She barely has energy to bark. Today I picked her up from the groomer's and she looked oh!-so-cute. I tried and tried to get her to pose for a picture. Finally, I contented myself with this shot and decided to let sleeping dogs lie.

The A/C saga continues. Yes, we have A/C at the moment, but only until the Freon runs out. Then we'll have to get another shot. The part that was ordered, a cooling coil(?), takes a week to get here and costs 1/3 the price of a whole new heat pump. Today we made the difficult decision to replace the whole enchilada. It'll be Monday before it can be installed, but that still beats the repair date. After suffering through last weekend's mid-90s, we hoped to chill through this coming weekend. Hmm.

Stay tuned . . .

Cheryl, sweltering in Florida

Friday, August 12, 2005

True Story, stranger than fiction!

My sister e-mailed me the story from AP about Melvyn Reed, a British man who woke up from his coronary bypass surgery to find all three of his wives waiting to confront him. Yep, he was a double bigamist! He'd tried to stagger their hospital visits, but the three met up in the parking lot.

This is so much like a Stephanie Bond book I read a few years ago called OUR HUSBAND (which I recommend). Seems truth really is stranger than fiction!

It's 95° here and our AC is on the blink. The AC repair guy can't get here until Monday morning. I've managed to get the temperature down to 82° here in the house by closing all the blinds and curtains and running the ceiling fans on high. I promised hubby chicken fajitas tonight. I have everything cut up and ready to throw in the pan, but even a little bit of heat can sure drive up the temp in the kitchen.

Whew! I look forward to fall.


Thursday, July 14, 2005

Doggone Right!

My little poodle, Ginger, is great therapy. How can I be discouraged or down when this adorable little creature wags her tail excitedly when I come into view?

Ginger is the smartest dog I've ever known. It's scary sometimes! Lately, poodles have made their way into many of my works-in-progress.

Well, we writers are told to write what we know, right?


Monday, July 11, 2005

Rejection Blues

Today I received another rejection letter. :(

The editor made the effort to give me detailed feedback, for which I'm grateful. I can use it to revise the story and make it better. But not yet.

I have to set aside that manuscript and work on something else. Rejections are a part of the writing business but still manage to give me a 24-hour case of the blues. Ordinarily I'd drown my sorrow in a big Hershey bar, but I'm on Week 3 of the South Beach Diet. :

So today I'm celebrating the 5 pounds I lost in 2 weeks instead of the disappointment of yet another of my "children" being turned down for publication.

My critique partners have been wonderful to commiserate with me. However, there's no benefit to prolonged pity-parties, hence the 24-hour limit. Tomorrow I'll begin again with another project and renewed passion. Tonight I'm drinking hot tea and wishing it were a Pecan Cluster Blizzard from Dairy Queen. :)


Sunday, July 10, 2005

Welcome to my blog!

I write a grammar column and often get questions, so I decided to open a blog. I'm open to all kinds of discussions here, except politics and religion! We aren't limited to writing mechanics, but that's where I'll start.

My website has many of my columns; but loading files to a website is time consuming and labor intensive, especially since I have only dial-up.

I also love to talk cooking, especially healthy cooking, which has little to do with writing other than I've written a cookbook. Really, almost anything goes on this blog.

So here is my grammar rant of the day: Near miss. Literally, this translates to almost missed the target. Excuse me, but isn't that a hit? Today I worked the Sunday crossword puzzle and one clue was A close call. The answer? You guessed it. Eight letters: N E A R M I S S. I grumbled as I filled in the spaces, "A near miss is not a close call. The answer should be miss."

I'll try not to let it ruin my day! After all, Hurricane Dennis missed us, although it brought us a lot of rain and wind. It came near but missed us. Hmm. Could I have at last found the origin of this strange expression?