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October Release – WATCH FOR THE DAWN

  FROM CYBER DUST TO PUBLISHED By Sandra Elzie/Sandra McGregor How many of us have written stories in the past that we hope will never see the light of day? Come on, at least a few of you must know what I’m talking about. We wrote them in the beginning of our careers and thought […]

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Marilyn Baron - October 15, 2014 - 4:44 am

I love your new story concept and the cover and the fact that you dusted it off to see the light of day. And I love the giveaway. I won one of yours before and it was so nice. I’ve written serial killers on a college campus in my novel Homecoming Homicides and it even scared me. It’s like going to the dark side. I had a cute dog in mine too. Most of my stories feature my late dog, a Bichon Frise.

You are encouraging me to dig out one of my own stories, a paranormal, that is hidden in my computer.

I also like the fact that today, we as writers can go from dark to light.
Best of luck with the new book.

sandra Elzie - October 15, 2014 - 6:28 am

Hi Marilyn,
Hope you enjoy using the Flash Drive you won on the McGregor blog. I also hope you read and enjoy Watch For The Dawn. Yes, it’s an exciting time for writers. I have several other old, dusty stories that I thoroughly enjoyed writing that I might bring to the light of day sometime. Stay tuned !! :)

Piper - October 15, 2014 - 7:47 am

Congrats on your release Sandra! I love the look of the ornaments–so historical. Thanks for showing the way in excavating your work. I have some contemporaries that may see the light one day–I’ll have to think about it!

Maxine Davis - October 15, 2014 - 7:58 am

Sandy, this sounds like a book I will definitely read. Good luck on, yet another, release this year. Way to go!

Connie Gillam - October 15, 2014 - 12:13 pm

Congratulations on your new release, Sandy.

I’m overhauling a previously written thriller that I hope will be ready by the first of the new year.

Carol Burnside / Annie Rayburn - October 15, 2014 - 2:49 pm

Congrats on the new release, Sandy. It’s fun to dust off dusty stories, make them better and release them. Best of luck with your book launch!

Walt Mussell - October 15, 2014 - 9:11 pm

Sandy, I don’t think never see the light of the day should be the issue. I think it’s now that it can see the light of day, when we think it’s ready.

sandra Elzie - October 15, 2014 - 9:14 pm

Hi Piper,
Sure hope you share your other stories with us some day.

sandra Elzie - October 15, 2014 - 9:15 pm

Hi Maxine,
Thanks, I hope you enjoy it. It’s already showing great sales, so hope everyone likes it.

sandra Elzie - October 15, 2014 - 9:16 pm

Hi Connie,
A thriller? I can’t wait!

sandra Elzie - October 15, 2014 - 9:16 pm

Thanks, Carol. I have a couple of other dusty ones that might…..just might….see the light of day sometime.

sandra Elzie - October 15, 2014 - 9:18 pm

Walt, what a wise thought. You’re right. This is this particular book’s time for release. :)

Trudy - October 15, 2014 - 10:24 pm

I’ve been waiting for this one because I love dogs in stories. This has been sitting on my Kindle bookshelf for days waiting for me to finish Behind Door 2.

sandra Elzie - October 15, 2014 - 11:11 pm

Hi Trudy,
Sure hope you enjoy Watch For The Dawn…and Rusty, the canine wonder. :) Yes, I know you love dogs…don’t you have four of the little critters? Anyway, thanks for dropping by.

Your Character’s Emotions by Constance Gillam

    The key, in my opinion, to a great reading experience is to establish an emotional connection between the reader and the characters. I struggle with bringing that emotion to life on the page and would be interested in how others do it. How do you as the writer tap into emotions? Sometimes I use music […]

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Marilyn Baron - October 14, 2014 - 5:40 am

Music is a great way to tap into emotion.

Piper Huguley - October 14, 2014 - 8:18 am

It’s hard to get music to tap into emotions for historical characters, but I often find that the words of a song can be very expressive in tuning in to that character’s feelings at just that particular moment.

Sandy Elzie - October 14, 2014 - 9:38 am

I close my eyes and spend a few minutes thinking through the ENTIRE situation my character is in. For instance, I was writing my hero being furious beyond words with his father and…with the control of a military soldier…he executed a turn and left…but I wanted something more. After thinking about it, I added that his father’s demands for him not to leave faded as he strode down the hall and exited the back door. It took putting myself literally in his skin to realize that he was distancing himself not only physically from his father, but from his father’s verbal tirade. When he stepped outside and quietly closed the door, it was finished.

Pam Asberry - October 14, 2014 - 10:18 am

For my NaNoWriMo novel I am filling out character worksheets. I am hoping that knowing more about them will help me tap more deeply into their emotions.

Connie Gillam - October 14, 2014 - 12:10 pm

I agree with you, Marilyn. The trick is finding the right music for your character.

Carol Burnside - October 14, 2014 - 12:14 pm

When I’m writing, I have to step into the character. I have an empathetic stream a mile wide, so it doesn’t take much to put me in their shoes, especially with their backstory reminding me how they would feel. After that, it’s a matter of body language and judging how they’d react to the situation.

Connie Gillam - October 14, 2014 - 12:19 pm


I think you can do it for historical stories. You’d select classical instrumental pieces rather than a piece with vocals that express contemporary sentiment.
But you’re right, a music can only speak to the character’s emotions at that particular moment or scene.

Connie Gillam - October 14, 2014 - 12:23 pm

That’s a nice touch, Sandy. I could feel that scene.

Connie Gillam - October 14, 2014 - 12:24 pm


Using music as a way of tapping into their emotions should be very easy for you.

Connie Gillam - October 14, 2014 - 12:28 pm

Carol, you are so lucky. Send some of that empathic ability my way.

Piper - October 14, 2014 - 2:59 pm

Maybe for a certain type of historical Connie, but classical music does not take me there for mine. To me, it’s more difficult to tap into the emotions of the characters–hence my use of contemporary music that expresses the same emotion. I’m transported back into the time period far easier–I don’t need the music of the time period for that.

Maxine Davis - October 14, 2014 - 4:02 pm

Music helps – sometimes classical with ocean sounds o sounds of he woods. I like having the “movie’ play in my head” and “seeing” what happens.

Connie Gillam - October 14, 2014 - 4:22 pm

You’re so right, Piper. I was focused on the historical part not the fact that classical music would not fit 19th African American life.

Connie Gillam - October 14, 2014 - 4:24 pm


Background music can clear your mind so you can visualize better.

Tanya A. - October 14, 2014 - 8:03 pm

Connie, Thank you for making me think about how music can help create emotional strings that help that character resonate with the reader.

Sometimes this is hard for me since I’ve had characters who go places where country music is played while I love alternative and big band music. But I can definitely see how music can help not only provide a positive environment for the author to write but also provide characters with more endearing qualities and more sensory opportunities (hearing the music and any touching during dancing).

Thanks for the thought provoking blog.

Connie Gillam - October 14, 2014 - 9:24 pm

Thanks, Tanya for commenting. I’m glad the blog helped you and your writing.

Walt Mussell - October 14, 2014 - 10:18 pm

Since I write a lot of Japan-related stuff, I tend to use music on Japanese classical instruments as a way to keep myself going when I’m writing. It helps.

God’s Timing–a Call Story

By Piper Huguley I never thought that when I got “the call,” I would have to chose between two offers.  I always assumed that I would have no choice—I would just have to go with whomever offered to me. It didn’t happen that way. Also, if it weren’t for Twitter and Facebook, no contract. Both […]

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Marilyn Baron - October 13, 2014 - 4:12 am

What a great story about when you got “The Call.”

Pam Asberry - October 13, 2014 - 4:19 am

That’s fantastic Piper! Congratulations and continued success! I can’t wait to see your books in print!

Piper - October 13, 2014 - 7:57 am

Thank you for your kind words Marilyn!

Piper - October 13, 2014 - 7:58 am

Thank you for stopping by Pam and for your kind words! I appreciate it!

LaTessa Montgomery - October 13, 2014 - 8:05 am

Wow, great story about this phase of your journey Piper! “The Call” stories are always inspiring. So happy for you and the home you found for your series. Congrats!

And it was wonderful meeting you this past weekend at M&M 14!

Louise B - October 13, 2014 - 8:05 am

You’re right. I love to read call stories, and I am SO glad your series will be published. If I remember correctly, Champion’s Heart was one of the Bledsoe sisters. Will this one also be published.

I can very much understand the not ready feeling. I had that until I wrote my GH final book which eventually sold (long time ago). But until that book, I knew I wasn’t ready–and I wasn’t.

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 8:10 am

So glad to hear I’m not the only one, Louise. Thank you so much for your support! I signed for the first three and hopefully they will do well enough for them to want Delie and Champion too! We will see! Thank you for stopping by!

Joanna Shupe - October 13, 2014 - 8:16 am

Loved this story, Piper! Looking forward to reading them and watching all your success!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 8:16 am

I knew I wasn’t the only one who loved call stories, LaTessa! Thank you so much for stopping by and it was great meeting you this weekend as well!

Kennedy Ryan - October 13, 2014 - 8:16 am

Piper, I could not be happier for you! And to have seen how your path has unfolded has been a testimony of your strength, patience and confidence in your gift! And your confidence in God’s timing! Congratulations, my friend! So glad we got Ruby “off the corner” and into the perfect home! :-) Love!

Caroline Warfield - October 13, 2014 - 8:18 am

That’s a great story Piper. God’s time isn’t always our time, but in your case, I think it was.

Farrah Rochon - October 13, 2014 - 8:20 am

Wow! What a fabulous call story. It gave me chills to read how everything fell into place. Certainly God’s timing. Congrats, Piper!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 8:21 am

Thank you my fellow Lucky, Joanna! I’m very much looking forward to your trilogy as well–here’s to 2015 for the both of us! Thank you for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 8:22 am


Thanks to your steadfast support and words of encouragement, I see Ruby warm and safely inside a home. :) I always appreciated the lifting up–even when you might not have thought the words mattered–they did!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 8:24 am

You just never know, right Caroline? I have a very vivid memory of Latoya behind that door and wanting to walk inside. It’s always best to go on faith. Thank you very much for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 8:28 am

I know right, Farrah? Thank you for your kind words and for stopping by! I’m looking forward to your post here on the Petite Fours and Hot Tamales on Oct. 29!

AE Jones - October 13, 2014 - 8:35 am

Piper -

So happy for you. Perseverance pays off! So glad to see you a role model for hybrid too!


Julie - October 13, 2014 - 8:45 am

Love, love, love this story! I also see it as you knowing that God also requires us to take a RISK in faith, to do the work as God works on the timing.

Continued blessings, buddy!

Peace, Julie

Shelia Brown - October 13, 2014 - 8:51 am

Good story Piper. It looks like God was ordering your steps. God’s timing is always right. I enjoyed reading The Preacher’s Promise. So happy we got to read about Virgil and Amanda—a wonderful story.

Belle Calhoune - October 13, 2014 - 9:01 am

I love your call story, Piper. You are such a fantastic writer and this was bound to happen, unless of course publishers are crazy. I have loved your two books so far and I know I will love these three upcoming books published through Samhain. YAY for Piper.

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 9:05 am

Thank you A.E.! So glad to see you zooming up the charts with your great stories! Congrats and thank you for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 9:07 am

Thank you Julie, for reminding me of my word for 2014! Leaving it all in God’s hands is a leap of faith that has to be taken, for sure. Thank you for stopping by!

Delaney Diamond - October 13, 2014 - 9:07 am

Hi Piper,

I’m happy for you that things worked out just the way you wanted. I can’t wait to see what Samhain does with your books. Wishing you much, much success!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 9:08 am


So glad that you stopped by! And please know I’m not abandoning Milford College–there will just be more stories in another part of Georgia. Thank you for your kind words about the Preacher’s Promise. I appreciate them!

Leslie Wright - October 13, 2014 - 9:09 am

What an inspiring story! Congrats. Latoya is awesome! Can’t wait to read!

Miranda Liasson - October 13, 2014 - 9:14 am

Great call story!

Miranda Liasson - October 13, 2014 - 9:16 am

Great call story, Piper! Congrats! Perserverance pays!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 9:18 am

Belle, your support and role modeling has meant so much to me on this journey. Thank you so much for your kind words and for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 9:19 am

Thank you so much Delaney! I have admired the way that you have put yourself out there and I appreciate the care in how you have approached your career. So thank you!

Unoma - October 13, 2014 - 9:23 am

Love this story. Congrats Piper!! Now I know you are in Atlanta, we have to get together!
Way to go.

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 9:24 am

Thank you so much Leslie! I’m looking forward to working with her. Thank you for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 9:25 am

Thank you Miranda! You inspired me!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 9:26 am

Yes we surely do, Unoma! Thank you for your kind words and for stopping by!

Kay Hudson - October 13, 2014 - 9:35 am

Congratulations, Piper! Great news and great story, all about the right place and the right time.

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 9:37 am

Yes indeed Kay! And the opportunity happens in strange places. I refused to get a Facebook account for the longest time. I’ll always wonder about how wise that was. Thank you for stopping by and for your kind words!

Jessica Ruddick - October 13, 2014 - 9:51 am

Congrats, Piper! I bet it was actually stressful to have multiple offers–a good problem to have, but stressful nonetheless. It sounds like you made a great decision, though. I wish you much publishing success!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 9:54 am

It was more difficult than I thought it would be to tell the truth, Jessica. As you said, people say “a good problem to have” but then it means that someone is going to be hurt and there’s a loss there. So you are right. I’m looking forward to your publishing success, though, my fellow Dreamweaver! It was good to see you this week end and big congrats on the Maggie win!

Mary Curry - October 13, 2014 - 10:03 am

Congratulations again, Piper. I loved reading your call story, but this –

One more thing about God’s timing– 2015 was my target date all along—it is the one hundred year anniversary of the start of the Great Migration–the historical event that is the backdrop of the “Migrations of the Heart” series.

That just makes me smile.

Enjoy this new stage of your journey.

Laura Trentham - October 13, 2014 - 10:09 am

Call stories are my favorite! I love reading about how other people have achieved publication or nabbed agents, because everyone’s path is so unique. So happy to be at the same house! (And, my second book with Samhain is coming in November 2015 too!)

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 10:10 am

Thank you so much Mary. It is amazing how things work out isn’t it? I had this idea in 2011 to commemorate the historical occasion and it worked out! Thank you for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 10:12 am

Everyone’s path is unique Laura, but people can get ideas from them as well, which is why it is important to share! Thank you so much for stopping by my Dreamweaver and Samhain sis! :)

Velmer - October 13, 2014 - 10:16 am

Hi Piper,
What a wonderful story. I’m so glad the sisters found a home. I feel as tho I’ve been waiting on my sister to come home ever since I found your blog and heard about Ruby….

Dana R Lynn - October 13, 2014 - 10:21 am

I loved reading your call story Piper. What a terrific ending/beginning for you! I can’t wait to read them. You know I’ve been a fan since SYTYCW 13.

Connie Gillam - October 13, 2014 - 10:22 am

Congratulations, Piper!

What a great story. I’m happy you found a home for your Migration series and you couldn’t have made a better choice. LaToya is a great editor.

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 10:25 am

I know that’s right Velmer! So true! Thank you for your kind words and for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 10:26 am

Thank you Dana! It’s so important because we can learn from these stories to keep on, and not to give up! I know I learned from your call story as well! Thank you for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 10:27 am

Thank you Connie, for the kind words and support! I appreciate it very much!

Vanessa Riley - October 13, 2014 - 10:47 am

Congrats Piper. I am so glad your series has a home. God’s timing is the only one that works.

Lenora Bell - October 13, 2014 - 11:06 am

Piper, that’s such an awesome story! Obviously, your new editor believes in you and your stories. I’m so excited for you. Congratulations!

Elaine Manders - October 13, 2014 - 11:08 am

Piper, super congrats and so deserving. I got all weepy reading your story. I’ll be cheering you on and I still say you’re going to be the name in inspiration African-American history.

Amy Patrick/Amy DeLuca - October 13, 2014 - 11:44 am

Yay Piper! I do believe in God’s timing and that all things happen for a reason. I’m so proud to call you my Lucky Dreamweaver sister and so happy for you!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 11:46 am

Amen to that Vanessa Riley!! Thank you for all you do and for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 11:47 am

Thank you Lenora! I’m glad that she does after hearing for so long how niche I am! Thank you for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 11:48 am

Thank you Elaine! Not to make you weepy, but your support over the past few years has meant so much. It was good to finally meet you in person, as well as your lovely daughter. Thank you for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 11:49 am

Thank you for your kind words Amy DeLuca and for joining me in this journey my Lucky Dreamweaver sister! I’m happy for you too!

Pat Simmons - October 13, 2014 - 12:51 pm

Piper, my heart is full of rejoicing for your blessing, because readers and other authors share in your blessings.
God is good!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 12:54 pm

Yes He is Pat! And I’m rejoicing that you’ve left a comment on this blog post! Thank you so much for stopping by–you are amazing!

Sonali Dev - October 13, 2014 - 1:02 pm

Oh Piper, this is such a great story! And totally something I knew was going to happen.

Many hugs and here’s to many many sales.


Darcy Woods - October 13, 2014 - 1:13 pm

What a WONDERFUL story, Piper!!! I have sometimes found that when you release something, it can return to you even bigger than you imagined. You and your editor sound so very meant to be. It makes my heart smile. :)

Missy Tippens - October 13, 2014 - 1:46 pm

So exciting!! Congratulations, Piper!! :)

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 3:28 pm


Thank you my dear Lucky! Hugs to you as well and looking forward to your big splash soon!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 3:28 pm


It is exciting isn’t it? Thank you for stopping by the blog today!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 3:31 pm

Darcy my lovely Lucky. I know from whence you speak and trust me, it will happen for you with a cosmically-appropriate enormity. Because you deserve it so. Thank you for your kind words, which made my heart smile, and thank you for coming by the blog today!

Preslaysa Williams - October 13, 2014 - 4:28 pm

Love it! Congratulations again!

Sandra Owens - October 13, 2014 - 4:52 pm


That’s a fantastic story, and I’m so happy for you. Congratulations, and tons and tons of yahs!!!!!!!!

Sheila Athens - October 13, 2014 - 4:52 pm

Great story, Piper! So happy for you!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 5:01 pm

Thank you so much Preslaysa! I appreciate all of your support!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 5:02 pm

Thank you for the yahs and congrats, Sandra! Thanks for stopping by the blog!

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 5:03 pm

Tomorrow’s the big day for you Sheila, so I’m especially grateful you took the time to stop by! Thank you!

Carol Burnside - October 13, 2014 - 5:13 pm

Congratulations, Piper! This is awesome news and I know your series will do well. I love your stories and am looking forward to reading more.

Piper Huguley - October 13, 2014 - 5:48 pm

Thank you so much for your support Carol! I appreciate that you took the time to share your kind words with me!

cilla - October 13, 2014 - 7:06 pm

Piper… Patience is a virture. You showed that you were patient and not expecting an answer right away.. just moving on to the next plan. I love hearing how authors are notified or receive “the call”. Congratulations.

Tanya A. - October 13, 2014 - 9:54 pm

Congratulations, Piper. I admire your hard work and persistence. Loved your story, and am looking forward to more great writing from you.

Melissa Scriven - October 13, 2014 - 10:12 pm

Piper, that was a great story, congratulations!

Sandy Elzie - October 13, 2014 - 10:22 pm

Congratulations! You deserve the fantastic opportunity. Go Girl!

Walt Mussell - October 13, 2014 - 10:25 pm

Piper, this is wonderful news. You deserve it!!!

Natalie Monk - October 13, 2014 - 10:26 pm

My word, Piper!!! This is beyond awesome! Can’t wait to see these amazing stories in print! I love the part about 2015 being the 100th anniversary of the Great Migration. How amazingly providential!!!

Piper Huguley - October 14, 2014 - 8:13 am

Me too Cilla! Thank you for your kind words and for stopping by today!

Piper Huguley - October 14, 2014 - 8:15 am

Thank you so much Tanya A. It’s hard sometimes, you know? It’s a lesson learned for sure. Thank you so much for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 14, 2014 - 8:15 am


Thank you for the kind congrats and for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 14, 2014 - 8:16 am

Walt, I appreciate what you say, but I feel more than me, the story deserves it. If Historical Romance is to survive, there has to be more than one story. That’s why stories like ours must get out there one day. Thank you for the support!

Piper Huguley - October 14, 2014 - 8:47 am

Thanks Natalie! And I just couldn’t help but marvel at the timing. That’s amazing too. Thank you for stopping by!

Piper Huguley - October 14, 2014 - 8:47 am

Thank you so much Melissa! I appreciate it that you took the time to stop by and comment! Thank you!

Piper Huguley - October 14, 2014 - 8:49 am

Thank you so much for the kind words and congrats everyone! I appreciate the support and love!

The winner of the $10 Amazon gift card is Velmer Killensworth!

Sean Young - October 14, 2014 - 10:18 am

What a wonderful story. LaToya is a beautiful person and a very talented editor. Congratulations to you!!

Piper Huguley - October 14, 2014 - 10:37 am

Thank you, Sean for stopping by and conveying your kind words. I appreciate it! Please come by again!

Carrie Padgett - October 14, 2014 - 8:05 pm

I love this story, Piper! I’m soooo thrilled for you!

Piper - October 15, 2014 - 7:48 am

Thank you so much Carrie! I appreciate it! Thank you for stopping by!

Sherida Stewart - October 17, 2014 - 6:00 pm

Love your “call/email” story, Piper! I hadn’t heard the FABULOUS news until last Sunday, so I’m late with my congratulations to you. Yes, sounds like God’s PERFECT timing and a perfect home for your stories. Blessings, prayers, and CONGRATULATIONS!

Piper Huguley - October 17, 2014 - 6:56 pm

That’s fine, Sherida, Congrats are always okay. I appreciate all of your words of support and encouragement over the past few years and I cannot wait to do the same for you! Thank you for stopping by!

Day Trips in Georgia – The Science

by Sandra Elzie Okay, so I admit it…I tricked you guys.  I wasn’t visiting a NASA location…although I’ve been to Cape Canaveral as well as NASA in Houston, but that’s for another day..  When I took the picture of Apollo 6,  I was right in Atlanta at the Fernbank Science Center.  A group of us […]

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Piper - October 10, 2014 - 2:38 am

A good trick! And I should have known, as many times as I’ve been there! I am looking forward to the Andersonville trip. I need to get myself down there.

Marilyn Baron - October 10, 2014 - 6:28 am

Being from Florida, I naturally guessed Kennedy Space Center. I have been to Fernbank but only to supervise a photoshoot so I didn’t really see the museum. I’ve never been to Andersonville either so looking forward to the trip. Love the cover of your new book.

Carol Burnside - October 13, 2014 - 5:19 pm

Congrats on your new release, Sandy!

Earrings are cute, too. :-)

Book Reviews by Carol Burnside

Yep, that’s right. I’ve been reading again. Here are a couple more I recommend. MAYBE SOMEDAY by Colleen Hoover (New Adult) At twenty-two years old, aspiring musician Sydney Blake has a great life: She’s in college, working a steady job, in love with her wonderful boyfriend, Hunter, and rooming with her good friend, Tori. But […]

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Marilyn Baron - October 9, 2014 - 9:49 am

Great reviews, Carol. The book I’m reading and enjoying now is “The King’s Curse,” by Philippa Gregory.

Piper - October 9, 2014 - 12:02 pm

I read the King’s Curse too Marilyn. Great book, but I love anything Plantagenet. I wonder what Philippa is going to do from here. I’m mourning.

Connie Gillam - October 9, 2014 - 12:44 pm

I’m currently reading “Stepbrother Dearest” by Penelope Ward. A very hot New Adult book. The next read for my book club will be “Red, White and Screwed” by Holly Bush.

Carol Burnside - October 9, 2014 - 9:54 pm

Thanks, Marilyn. Glad to hear you’re reading an enjoyable book.

Carol Burnside - October 9, 2014 - 9:56 pm

Connie, let me know how you like your current read, okay?

Get Off My Property, Bambi!

By Marilyn Baron                                           I  never cared that much about my front yard. It pretty much consisted of a collection of hardwoods, some pines, some overgrown junipers, grass that was starting to yellow—a wild look. […]

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Ashantay Peters - October 8, 2014 - 9:34 am

i understand more “deer resistant” plants and shrubs are now available. Sounds as if some transplanting is in your future…although natural repellants are sold – give them a try if the deer won’t listen! Good luck!

Carol Burnside - October 8, 2014 - 10:36 am

Oh, Marilyn, good luck with those pesky deer. We have a lot around us too. But we live surrounded by woods, so they have more to forage than our flower beds. I’ve heard from friends with the same problem, that none of the remedies they tried worked. The neighborhood might consider putting out a feeder with corn away from high traffic areas and keep it supplied. If they have ready food, they won’t be so prone to enter your space to forage.

Looking forward to seeing you at the book signing at M&M.

Alicia Dean - October 8, 2014 - 12:15 pm

Haha, oh my, Marilyn. Sounds like a definite issue. It seems to me that I would love having all those deer around, but maybe not that many. The new book sounds fabulous! Best wishes.

Marilyn Baron - October 8, 2014 - 1:29 pm

Ashantay , my husband did find some product at Home Depot that seem to keep the deer away from some of the plants. Even though they are eating some plants I still love watching them.

Marilyn Baron - October 8, 2014 - 1:31 pm

There are some people in the neighborhood who put out food for the deer which just attracts more of them. But I love looking at them.

Marilyn Baron - October 8, 2014 - 1:35 pm

Thanks for commenting, I love the deer just don’t want them eating my hydrangeas.

Connie Gillam - October 8, 2014 - 4:19 pm


I have the same problem with deer. I have a hydrangea that didn’t bloom at all this year because the deer ate the plant down to nubs.

Good luck with the new book.

Marilyn Baron - October 8, 2014 - 5:47 pm

My hydrangeas are looking beautiful since they were planted and I would hate to come out and see that the deer had eaten them. They did eat some plants at my mailbox, but not flowering plants. I’m keeping my fingers crossed. Thanks for your good wishes.

Piper - October 8, 2014 - 6:01 pm

The deer are dear, but they are pests. And whomever is putting out the food in your neighborhood is not helping any! I hope it all works out, Marilyn…:)

Marilyn Baron - October 8, 2014 - 7:03 pm

I know. Several people in the neighborhood have salt licks and other food for the deer. I’m sure it will be okay because it’s a toss up. I really like the deer but now I like my landscaping, too.

M.J. Schiller, Romance Author - October 8, 2014 - 9:55 pm

Nice post! Fresh and humorous! And your new yard looks great. In the Midwest (or at least Central Illinois) deer isn’t that plentiful so I think it is so cool whenever I do see one. In fact, I saw two New Year’s Day a while back and took that as good luck for the coming year. I’m guessing your thoughts would be different on that. Landscaping is so expensive, I can understand being upset. I wonder if there are any online tips you can take advantage of to keep the deer at bay?

I love the premise of this book! I wish you much success with it!

Walt Mussell - October 8, 2014 - 10:59 pm

Sprinkle human hairs around the flowers you wish to protect. That should help (at least according to one of my favorite movies).

Marilyn Baron - October 8, 2014 - 11:36 pm

Thanks so much for visiting and commenting. Actually, I take deer as a sign of good luck, too. Although there really are a lot of them in our subdivision. They are just standing around in yards as the cars go by. They’re usually in groups. When my daughter was visiting from out of town we saw six right outside our front door. Yes, he landscaping was expensive but I still delight in seeing the deer. Thanks for your good wishes about the book.

Marilyn Baron - October 8, 2014 - 11:37 pm


I never heard of that remedy but it sounds interesting. Thanks.

susan coryell - October 9, 2014 - 8:31 am

Marilyn: I can sympathize with your deer problem. An entire family lives under our deck and they enjoy regular picnics on our lawn. As for STONES, I read, reviewed and loved it–a great story for us “mid-lifers” with lots of life left in us! Good luck with your signing.

Marilyn Baron - October 9, 2014 - 9:21 am

Susan, thank you for commenting and thank you for reviewing Stones.

Brit - October 9, 2014 - 1:14 pm

On a popular real estate show on Brava, they used coyote urine to deter the deer.

Marilyn Baron - October 9, 2014 - 2:10 pm

Thanks for visiting the blog. I think I’ve heard of that solution. Now where to find a coyote.

Joy Lennick - October 12, 2014 - 11:19 am

Such a natural, enjoyable post Marilyn! I’d love to watch the deer too. However, why are there so many ‘buts’ in life?! I also appreciate nature and would be upset to see my plants gobbled up. Surely there’s a solution? Hope you find one that works. On to your book – sounds an exciting premise. Wishing you every success with it. I write too and my first faction novel ‘The Catalyst’ is due out soon (Amazon and Kindle). Whenever a book ‘goes out there,’ it’s rather like walking outside naked isn’t it!

Marilyn Baron - October 12, 2014 - 1:56 pm

Thank you for commenting. So far the deer repellent product is working. Thanks for your kind words about my book

Marilyn Baron - October 12, 2014 - 2:05 pm

Joy, good luck with your new release. Yes, it is exciting and at the same time makes you nervous.

Changing Styles

Normally, when I post here, I post about family-related topics. Today, I going to talk about something I seldom discuss: writing. I don’t mind answering questions about writing. It’s my favorite hobby. For me to write about writing, though, is a step out of my comfort zone. On this blog, we often discuss writing in […]

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Pam Asberry - October 7, 2014 - 12:09 am

You will find your way, Walt. As I hope I will too!

Sandy Elzie - October 7, 2014 - 6:20 am

Walt, you are definitely not alone. I tried to break into the Inspirational genre and it didn’t click. Whatever that thing was that they were looking for, my book didn’t have it, so I changed it to family friendly and sold.

Each writer must determine what they’re willing to change and where they will draw the line in the sand. It sounds like you’ve thought this out and you’re on your way. God speed, my friend.

Walt Mussell - October 7, 2014 - 7:03 am

Pam, I am trying. However, I’m realizing that I really need to rehearse pitching for the upcoming M&M conference.

Walt Mussell - October 7, 2014 - 7:09 am

Sandy, like I said above, it doesn’t mean my work won’t have inspirational elements, but that targeting inspirational just isn’t working.

Marilyn Baron - October 7, 2014 - 7:43 am

Walt, don’t give up. You can try another genre but you obviously have a passion for your inspirational historicals. Maybe you are a trendsetter. You are obviously a good writer and you got an agent which many people haven’t done. I agree with Piper. If you have a niche that is hard to market then self-publishing may be the answer for that particular genre. You can do that and still pursue traditional publishing. And getting a traditional contract isn’t a panacea. You still have to work hard to market yourself. Nobody is going to do that for you. Best of luck at your agent editor appointments. I know you will be successful .

Maxine Davis - October 7, 2014 - 10:31 am

Walt, Congratulations onhaving the guts to say you’re going to try something new. I wish you success. However, I’m with some others, self-publish and keep looking for an agent. Here’s hoping you have much with your e/a appointments!

Tina Radcliffe - October 7, 2014 - 10:31 am

There are many writers out there who write books with a Christian world view who don’t write for CBA houses. Lisa Wingate comes to mind.

The important thing is to write. God put this in your heart. Then ask him to find a home for your God given dream. I can’t wait for the answer.

Walt Mussell - October 7, 2014 - 10:47 am

Marilyn, I know that I will be doing the marketing regardless. It’s just everything else that I’m hesitant on.

Connie Gillam - October 7, 2014 - 11:05 am


I don’t want to push self publishing if you’re not comfortable with it, but there are people who can take a lot of the work off you. There are great cover artist, formatters and editors.

These days a writer shouldn’t put all their eggs in one publishing basket. I’m self published but I’m still pitching at M&M looking for a traditional publisher also.

Best of luck.

Walt Mussell - October 7, 2014 - 11:31 am

Maxine, I’ve greatly considered self-publishing. I just haven’t embraced it yet.

Walt Mussell - October 7, 2014 - 12:24 pm

Tina, I am familiar with Lisa Wingate’s name but not her books. I’ll have to check that out. Trust me, I will keep writing.

Walt Mussell - October 7, 2014 - 12:27 pm

Connie, I know there are great people out there who can help. I’m studying and I’m learning.

Marilyn Baron - October 7, 2014 - 1:22 pm

Kim Killion is a great resource. She designs covers and does formatting. She’ll even upload the book and she’s very reasonable. Go to her workshop at M&M and you’ll be sold. Attend some of the self-published workshops. We’ve been so indoctrinated not to do it for so many years that we’re afraid to take the leap. But like Connie said, you can do both. You can be in control of your career.

Walt Mussell - October 7, 2014 - 2:14 pm

Marilyn, it’s definitely on my to-do list.

Piper - October 7, 2014 - 4:18 pm


I appreciate the shout out–so kind of you! I do know that you’ve been praying about this and that you will do the right thing for your awesome stories. Please know that I remain in support of you whatever you decide and I will always be available to answer any questions that you may have about the process. I agree with the others, it has been brave of you to talk about switching gears and how wonderful that you have chosen PFHT to do it! I’m looking forward to your next move!

Walt Mussell - October 7, 2014 - 7:03 pm


Thank you for your support. I will get these stories of mine out eventually.

Carol Burnside - October 8, 2014 - 10:01 am

Walt, it may be that you have to break into traditional publishing with another, slightly different or more contemporary setting, gain your audience, then introduce them to your medieval books. From what I’ve seen with other authors, many readers follow the authorial voice, not the genre. Best of luck!

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