Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Some Like it Hot

BRANDED by Emma PetersenComing from Cobblestone Press September 22, 2006 Jenny and Ty have known each other most of their lives and have been attracted to each other since they've been old enough to know what attraction meant. A tragedy has bought Jenny back home to Parsons' Pass and into Ty's arms. The heat between them is as hot as ever, but the scars he carries from his parents' relationship and his own failed marriage keep Jenny at bay. When Ty comes close to losing the most important person in his life, he knows it's time to bury the past and fight for their love.Click here for excerpt.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

In the Pressure Cooker

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

I think I've been wearing a "kick me" sign lately. Seriously, just because my buns look like a couple of spandex-wrapped soccer balls doesn't mean I'm waiting for your boot. Oi. I went to a Marine College open day and had the girl organizing the simulator tried to skip me in the queue when there wasn't room for everyone- after my kids and I were the second lot to join the queue and thousands came later. We just looked like a soft touch. Then I had the organizers of an on-line group I belong to mistakenly slip me in with the pile of slackers they were sacking as moderators. Me, who always does the job. Hah! Turns out it was just a slip by the overworked organizers but gee, why me? I'm feeling really picked on. Then the neighbors dumped a huge snake-attracting, fire-risk pile of timber next to my fence which is a stone's throw from my door. AND they bought a mini bike which they ride all weekend up and down the piece of driveway that flanks my house. I tell ya, I'm a mild-mannered, peace loving person but I am fast reaching blow point. Ten, nine, eight....

Friday, August 25, 2006


1. One book that changed my life:
most of the books by Max Lucado

2. One book that I have read more than once:
The Lord of the Rings- I've read the set so many times and each time the story and writing suck me in. I even read the whole thing out loud from cover to cover to my son. It was our sharing time of an evening and he never wanted me to stop. He also reads it over and over for himself, and though we went to see the movies and even have the films on DVD, both of us prefer to read the book. The language is just so poetic and visual.

3. One book I would want on a deserted island:
the biggest one I could find so I'd have shelter, fire starters and entertainment all in one

4. One book that made me laugh:
any of Evanovich's Stephanie Plum books. That girl blows up more cars and has more junk in her hair than anyone I know. Always makes me giggle.

5. One book that made me cry:
a lot of category books make me cry (laughing) mostly because of the cliches and poor writing

6. One book I wish I'd written:
pretty well any of Jennifer Cruise's later books- hey, what can I say, I'm a sucker for a smart mouth. I like wit.

7. One book I wish had never been written:
I'm glad I wrote all my books, even the first one which needs bulko work before it comes out of the dust bunnies. They each taught me a lot and said something I wanted to say.

8. What I am currently reading:
my composting manual. I just got an aeropost and I'm learning to use it, having mastered the skill of putting it together. Not exactly stimulating reading, but there you have it. Saving the planet, one garden at a time.

9. One book I have been meaning to read:
I'd like to read Nina Bangs' latest release, "Wicked Pleasure"
10. Who's next?:

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Mad Cows

Moo-ve over? Is it true that the Crabby Cows have hoofed off for greener pastures? I herd that they had their hairy rumps tanned because someone had a beef with their raw hide crit style. Puh-lease! It's not like they went out snatching scenes from under the writer's pillow. If you don't want to have your weakesses milked, don't shove your M.S. in their dairy-air. It's a sad day when folks ask for the truth, you give it to them, and you're in trouble because it was a different truth that they were seeking. That's really asking for a faceful of pat answers of the cow pat variety.

But the cows are gone, huh? Sad. I guess it was inevitable someone would roast them or a least drive a steak through their heart . Anyone outstanding in their field, as is the usual bovine want, is targetted for the abattoir from the moment they chew their cud in public. Death to rumination, er... ruminants. What I want to know is, if it's a zoo out there as everyone so often claims, why aren't animals protected? Bring back the bull, er.... cows.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

The Spoken Doughnut

Today I'm going to plead Agnes Allen's Law - "Almost anything is easier to get into than out of." How true!

On one of my loops I opened a can of worms with a comment I made about a moral issue close to my heart- a woman's right to choose what happens to her body versus the right of the aborted child. Now anyone who knows me will attest my mouth goes off without thinking about the wisdom of remaining silent sometimes. Just because I have an opinion doesn't mean I should share it. Of course if I was pro-abortion it would be safe and even lauded to share my opinion. Sigh.

Not that I am against women owning their bodies- heck no. But the time to make their choices is when they want to have sex. No contraception is foolproof. Are the risks acceptable? No? Then don't have sex right now. We're not amoebas- we do have a choice. Expecting some innocent baby to pay with its life for you to be able to do whatever you feel like is morally wrong to me, and besides, I think it hurts the women who choose it, too. I don't say these things lightly and there is always the exception/extenuating circumstances etc. I won't judge you if you choose to abort your baby. No one died and made me God. But I would like to say as someone who has studied embryology that these are people not cells. (Unless you are talking morning-after pill- that to me is a judgement call)

As someone who has cared for premature babies I beg you for compassion. Most of us would not accept having a puppy torn to pieces and the bits sucked up so why is it okay for a baby? I once helped save a 32 week abortion. Yes, that is ridiculous and too late to even consider termintation but it happens. Where do you draw the line? We can save babies as young as 23 weeks gestation and that age keeps getting pushed back with technology. These little people are precious. It makes my heart sick to hear others who have never studied these wonders much less seen or cared for them talk about abortion so flippantly. "If I fall pregnant before I'm ready I'll just abort it." Oi. I'd like to take them with me to a birth, then show them on an ultrasound just what they have inside them before they make such choices and statements. At least they should know the seriousness of the choices they make.

But you know, whatever I say it will just label me as a bigot or religious nut or something else derogatory because this view is not the one they want to hear, it is not popular and probably also not PC. Perhaps I should learn to be a word doughnut instead, just spinning round and round, never making a point and with nothing in my heart. At least then I would not offend anyone by disagreeing with their POV.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Writing Larger Than Life

Today I'm feeling whimsical. Must be all the carpet-shampoo fumes going to my head. But you see, flanking my new front door are two Japanese holly, otherwise known as sky pencils for their tall, thin growing habit.

Their poetic name got me thinking. What must it be like to create your own dark velvet parchment and write across it in stars? Awesome? And what language do those stars speak that universally people from every nation and time look up and are inspired by the beauty written there? What does their writer think about the bad reviews and commentary that give credit for his work to un-manned chance and time? Talk about plagiarism at its worst!

I know I can write words on the sky with a sky writing plane (well, after I rob a few banks to pay for it), but only with as fine a control as a child trying to write with an old fashioned computer mouse. Then my message would linger in the sky for minutes not an eternity. Somehow I don't think people in the future will be looking at the plane english and gasping with awe as they read "Eat at Joe's." Nope. I'm not going to inspire a million poems and proposals. A ticket for air pollution maybe.

I'm looking forward to writing again when all the work and hassle of moving house settle down some, but it will be with computer keys, not sky pencils. Pity. Every time I come through my front door I’ll be reminded of my limitations. If I can capture and preserve a whiff of the greater work happening around me in the stories that I write then I'll be exceedingly fortunate and happy.

Thursday, August 17, 2006


In the last two weeks since I bought my new house I have been scrounging everything from used newspapers to polish my windows with to plants and plant cuttings to get my garden underway. It is humbling to need the help and kindness of others, but need it I do. If I get to the point of sitting on street corners rattling my cup for coins I'll let you know. Why is there never enough- time, money, energy, heck everything? Gee, we are told that Christ came to give us abundant life yet sometimes I feel that I must have misplaced my abundance somewhere.

Then again, abundance could be a relative thing. I look around me. I have more rooms in my house than people living in it, more food in my pantry than we can eat today, more clothes in my wardrobe than I'm likely to wear out this millennia (of course most have shrunk to a size too small since I had kidlets so they are in no danger of ever being worn out.)

Recently, in the middle of moving chaos, my kids and I put together Christmas boxes. Nothing surprising in that, we do it every year. Last year's went to Thailand I think. Anyway, the organizers have a list of things to put in the boxes- everything from soap and toothbrushes, to clothes, hard candies, school supplies, something to love and something to play with. Apparently the box recipients are delighted by a rubber ball or skipping rope, and get excited by toiletries/school stuff and clothes! Can you imagine our kids if that was all they got for Christmas? Sort of puts things into perspective, doesn't it?

So I got to thinking, maybe what I am most short on is gratitude. How much we in Australia and America have and take for granted. (We don't have tanks rumbling down our streets for starters.) Maybe what I should be scrounging for is enough grace to live the way God intended for me, and enough wisdom to make the best of all he gives me. What are you most grateful for?

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Gotta love those spoofs!

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Hope that was all he left on the bedpost. :-)

Thursday, August 10, 2006


Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting See, my house could be worse. :-)

Monday, August 07, 2006

Mail and Fee-mail

This has been quite a week for me. For the enlightenment of those who don't already know, I've just bought a new house. Well, actually it is a very old house with enough dirt left inside its walls that if I trained the hose in through one of the windows I could cause a large enough mudslide to take out Tassie's north end. Why do folks live in such squallor? Gee. It's not like it's African mudbrick or anything interesting. Cleaning up after the last owners is a trial, especially since I left my last house spotless. I hate housework at the best of times. The double dose in one week has my fingers pruny. (And everyone knows that prunes are only good with rice pudding.)

Also this week I had my birthday and turned really old. You know, that secret figure in your head that you consider is an old person. Yeppers. I turned that on Sunday. I spent the day scrubbing, vacuming and siliconing my leaky bathrooms and kitchen. Hey, I had to get the work done before this ancient body decays and slips into total ruin. Parts of me are already heading south, and from Australia that means Antartica. Brrrr!

Anyway, when my family didn't bother with my birthday I presumed no one would. Then one fantastic CP sent me an amazing gift- membership in RWA. You read that right! She believes in me and in my writing that much. Yes, I sobbed. I am blown away and humbled by the generous gesture. I still can't quite believe it and only hope I can live up to the faith she has in me and make her proud. You better believe she's going in the dedication of my first print book. As soon as this horror move is done, I'll make the most of that RWA membership. (as God is my witness) First I'll go for my pro pin and maybe even turn contest whore for a time since I can now enter them freely. Well, free with a lot of entry fees, anyway. Somehow I doubt the house will leave much in my pocket for entry fees, but I'll have to squeeze out dollars for a few at least. And when those contest entries come back full of glowing praise (cough, cough) I intend to be standing at the mailbox to recieve them, ready to be fortified by the outstanding results and gushing comments.

Which brings me to the leading topic of my post. Today an irate mailman beeped outside my door while I was inside half-drowning in cleaning products. Seems I don't have a mailbox and he didn't know where to shove my letters. Given they were bills, I was tempted to tell him where to shove them, but I smiled sweetly and told him I'd have a box up by tomorrow. Another job to keep me from writing this week. I just presumed a house came with a mailbox, same as it has doors and windows. Maybe I've been spoiled. Sigh.

But the whole surprise birthday present and missing mailbox thing got me thinking. How often do we take things for granted, so much so that we don't even look to check they're there. Seems I've made a lot of faulty assumptions. Now I'm finally opening my eyes and seeing things around me more clearly. Just cause you expect something to be there doesn't mean it will be, and just because it seems something is lost, doesn't mean some precious soul won't help you find it again. Not everything is how we think it. Perhaps with my advancing years I am finally gaining new insight. That's almost worth growing old for.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

The Tim Tams Go To

.............Heather! Congratulations! Enjoy the chocolate, girl. Thanks to all who entered. Hope you enjoyed the taster of Brides Maid in Heaven.