Thursday, August 17, 2017

Best. Night. Ever. Blog Tour

(BTW - this cover is huge because I love it! Just saying)

Best. Night. Ever
By Rachele Alpine, Ronni Arno, Alison Cherry, Stephanie Faris, Jen Malone, Gail Nall, and Dee Romito

Press Kit


Love Actually meets Adventures in Babysitting in this hilarious novel written by seven authors about seven classmates who are preparing for a crazy night at their middle school dance.

Lynnfield Middle School is prepped and ready for a dance to remember, including an awesome performance from Heart Grenade, the all-girl band who recently won a Battle of the Bands contest. Seven classmates—Carmen, Genevieve, Tess, Ryan, Ellie, Ashlyn, and Jade—intend to make the most of the night…or at least the five of them who are able to attend do. The other two would sacrifice almost anything to be there.

One thing’s for sure—this entire crew is in for one epic night! Gail Nall, Dee Romito, Rachele Alpine, Ronni Arno, Alison Cherry, Stephanie Faris, and Jen Malone have created a charming, hilarious, and relatable novel that’s perfect for anyone who can’t wait to dance the night away.

Buy Links:


One of Rachele Alpine’s first jobs was at a library, but it didn’t last long, because all she did was hide in the third-floor stacks and read. Now she’s a little more careful about when and where she indulges her reading habit. Rachele is a high school English teacher by day, a wife and mother by night, and a writer during any time she can find in between.  She lives in Cleveland, Ohio where she writes middle grade and young adult novels. Visit her at

Ronni Arno Blaisdell is the author of Ruby Reinvented. She has written for several magazines, blogs, and websites. In a previous life she worked as a publicist in Hollywood, and eventually built a home in Maine. She is a keen SCBWI member and contributor to the blog. Visit her online at

Alison Cherry is the author of the YA novels RedFor Real and Look Both Ways, and the middle grade novels Willows vs. Wolverines and The Classy Crooks Club. She is a professional photographer and spent many years working as a lighting designer for theater, dance, and opera productions. This whole “writing books” thing is just a cover for the international crime ring she runs out of her Brooklyn apartment. (Shhh, don’t tell.) Visit her online at

Stephanie Faris knew she wanted to be an author from a very young age. In fact, her mother often told her to stop reading so much and go outside and play with the other kids. After graduating from Middle Tennessee State University she somehow found herself working in information technology. But she never stopped writing. When she isn’t crafting fiction, Stephanie is indulging her gadget geek side by writing for online technology sites. Her work is regularly featured on the small business blogs for Intuit and Go Payment and she is a featured columnist for She lives in Nashville with her husband. Visit her online at

Jen Malone is a former Hollywood publicist who once spent a year traveling the world solo, met her husband on the highway (literally), and went into labor with her identical twins while on a rock star’s tour bus. These days she saves the drama for her books. Jen is also the author of the middle grade novels At Your Service and The Art of the Swap, coauthor of the You’re Invited series, and wrote the YA novels Map to the Stars and Wanderlost. You can visit her online at

Gail Nall lives in Louisville, Kentucky, with her family and more cats than necessary. She once drove a Zamboni, has camped in the snow in June, and almost got trampled in Paris. Gail is the author of the middle grade novel Breaking the Ice, the coauthor of You’re Invited and You’re Invited Too, and the author of the young adult novel Exit Stage Left. You can find her online at and on Twitter as @GaileCN. Visit her online at

Dee Romito lives in her hometown of Buffalo, New York, where she and her family are steadily checking items off their own bucket list of adventures. You’re likely to find her at the local ice cream shop, writing at a cafĂ©, or curled up on the couch with her cats. And while she does her best to be a grown-up most of the time, giggling with her BFFs is still one of her all-time favorite things. To join the fun and create your own bucket list, visit

The Rafflecopter giveaway is for a free hardback copy of Best. Night. Ever. (signed by Stephanie Faris). The HTML code below can be entered into the HTML code on your blog. Scroll down if you’d just like to link to it.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

There and Back Again

This particular hobbit has been on a long road trip, has returned, and plans to go on another short road trip next week.

This means that I am:

blogging rarely,

in between multiple projects,

and a bit behind on comments.

My sincere apologies to all party guests who feel that they have been turned from the door despite having party business.

And yes, I am trying to be funny and reference The Hobbit. Key word: trying.

Quick images to share where/what has been going on:

Our canoe and kayak team took 28 athletes to USACK Flat-Water Sprint Nationals in Clermont, Florida. We weathered humidity and storms (the races were cancelled for two afternoons of a four day regatta due to weather) and our team took second place in the nation (breaking our five year winning streak). My oldest came home with two medals (silver and bronze) and my youngest came home with one medal (a gold).

My youngest daughter (in the green dress, fourth girl from the left) was named as one of the 30 athletes who made it onto Team USA for the Olympic Hopes Regatta in the Czech Republic this September.

My husband and I volunteered to drive home 15 gently used (via a rental company) kayaks for our team (one is for our youngest daughter who has already grown out of her first kayak).  If you've never driven to Florida from the Washington peninsula and back, I recommend taking more time than we did and seeing some sights. We drove up to 14 hours a day with only 5-20 minute breaks every time we needed gas or a pit stop. Between my hubs, my daughters, and I we read at least eight books - some out loud and some shared.
My husband and I celebrated our 21st anniversary with a shared head cold and the last day of our drive - but I'm sure we'll make up for that soon.

Next week, we get to go again and come back. 
We are dropping off our oldest daughter at Montana State University.
Cue: Random weepy-ness in odd places like Target. (Really, it hit me there.)

Writing much? Well ... I'll report on that with the goals post in a few weeks.
Until then, I have a book shout-out coming out next week and I wanted to share this quote with you from one of my daughter's books for her first semester at MSU:

"Stories are for joining the past to the future. Stories are for those late hours in the night when you can't remember how you got from where you were to where you are. Stories are for eternity, when memory is erased, when there is nothing to remember except the story."
from The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien

Hope everyone is having a great August!

Friday, August 11, 2017


With the summer sun just peeking over the horizon, the swing set was empty. She sat down uncomfortably on the narrow seat that wrapped around her thighs and pushed off. She didn't want to go too high, but she wanted a chance to feel what the other kids seemed to feel, flying above the ground with their hair streaming out behind them. During the day, she didn't go to the park because ...

Tuesday, August 8, 2017


Road trips always sound like fun in the planning state, but what can you expect when you stuff two adults, three sweaty teenage boys, a dog in need of a bath, and me in a car? It wasn't a pretty vacation, that's for sure, even though I tried to keep my hair decent when I found out that my brothers invited my crush along for the trip. The possibilities for disasters were endless and we didn't even make it out of the driveway when the trouble started. We ....

Monday, August 7, 2017


Around the campfire, we roasted marshmallows and waited for the stories to start. Who would tell the best story this year? Could it top Grandpa's rooster story? The story told by my Aunt Bee surprised us all.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

#IWSG August 2017

I love this awesome team!

But, this month I'm on the road in Florida to watch my daughters compete at the Flat-water Sprint Canoe and Kayak Nationals Regatta so I may/may not be by to comment.

Please consider this a super-short post simply saying:


And, if that doesn't encourage you - check out these quotes:

If you have other things in your life—family, friends, good productive day work—these can interact with your writing and the sum will be all the richer.
– David Brin

First, find out what your hero wants, then just follow him!
– Ray Bradbury

People on the outside think there’s something magical about writing, that you go up in the attic at midnight and cast the bones and come down in the morning with a story, but it isn’t like that. You sit in back of the typewriter and you work, and that’s all there is to it.
– Harlan Ellison

The unread story is not a story; it is little black marks on wood pulp. The reader, reading it, makes it live: a live thing, a story.
– Ursula K. Le Guin

Exercise the writing muscle every day, even if it is only a letter, notes, a title list, a character sketch, a journal entry. Writers are like dancers, like athletes. Without that exercise, the muscles seize up.
– Jane Yolen

If you write one story, it may be bad; if you write a hundred, you have the odds in your favor.
– Edgar Rice Burroughs

Bonus (because I'm not sure I agree, but it made me laugh): 
Science fiction writers, I am sorry to say, really do not know anything.

– Philip K. Dick (Do Robots Dream of Electric Sheep? AKA Bladerunner)

What do you think? Do any of these quotes work for you this month?

A small report back on last month: I lost my own pictures (this takes some special user error ability after eight years of blogging) and I have changed passwords at 99% of the sites I use - some of them twice. I haven't had any more odd login attempts and the extreme interest that seemed to show up from a particular follower has finally slowed after some minor changes. However ... facebook is not a primary place for social media for me anymore. I recognize that I have family and friends there, but I'm beginning to hesitate about sharing there except in private groups. I experimented more last week, so ... it's on trial. 

All my goals and such were updated in last week's goals post. 

Friday, July 28, 2017

Do You Have Goals?

Love this hop! 
Come Join Us Here

July Goals Report
1. Finish Eclipse: Greenling Chronicles Book 1. NO. But I did make some progress.

2. Continue marketing efforts with hootsuite. YES!

3. Make some social media changes. (Will report more fully next month.) Reporting more in September.

4. Keep house clean, more yardwork (as physically able). Tiny amounts.

5. Scrapbook/photo project. Umm

6. Encourage family and friends. Hmm. Maybe.

7. Practice Storytelling. Yes!

8. Write all ideas down for school prep in the fall, but no major work allowed on this. (15 per day, tops) Well, I think I did this three days only.

9. Get outside! Yes!

10. Walk, hike, bike, kayak? More exercise and fewer carbs. Walked several times, Biked (3 miles total) and kayaked twice. Too many carbs.
11. Continue super short writing prompt posts. Yes!

12. Continued Bible Study and reading Cling to God. Yes!

August Goals
1. Finish Eclipse or get within 10% of finish line.

2. Cheer daughters and their team at Nationals in Clermont, Florida.

3. Marketing via hootsuite.

4. Scrapbook project.

5. Encourage others.

6. Practice Storytelling.

7. Prep for school year (exciting news on this at the bottom of the post).

8. Get outside, walk, bike, kayak. (Fewer carbs, again)

9. Continue Bible study and reading Cling to God.

10. House and yard - as much as I'm able to do so. 

11. Try not to bawl my eyes out for the entire return trip after helping my oldest daughter move in at Montana State University.

News: I am returning to teach at a homeschool cooperative by request from the board, parents, and students. :) 
And, I'll be teaching a continuing education class through the continuing education program at Tacoma Community College (this is a non-credit class) - Flash Fiction 101.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017


From the sunburned sidewalk to the ultra-cool of the air-conditioned mall, Sandy knew the chill she felt could be natural. Still, she noticed tension in the eyes of the parents at the play area, in the way one teen girl shepherded her little sister towards the open door of an old lady's handbag store. With her danger sense hitting her hard, Sandy ....

Tuesday, July 25, 2017


Trixie climbed out onto the roof from the attic window with her super-cape wrapped around her shoulders. Placing her feet carefully on the roof shingles, she ...

Friday, July 21, 2017


When his mom "accidentally" bumped open his door with the vacuum cleaner, Dustin decided he should get out of bed before she "asked" him to help with any of his brother's leftover chores. He really wished ...

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Three days and an apocalypse later ... #writing #publication

Mostly joking about the title up there. Life has been roller-coastering, per usual, but I'm healthier these days so that's good.

I had a publication three days ago at The Drabble and I just realized it.

Check out: "Post-Apocalyptic Gardener" for a fast, free read. Votes are greatly appreciated!


When ladybugs invaded our home that summer, I never expected to ...

Friday, July 14, 2017


She felt guilty wasting the summer sunshine, but she ducked into the library to find ...

Thursday, July 13, 2017


When my dragon ate my homework, I knew my professor wouldn't be pleased but I never expected him to ...

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Monday, July 10, 2017


The rumbling buzz of a plane overhead turned heads and made the conversation stop. Why was the pilot flying so low?

Friday, July 7, 2017


The cardboard carcasses of old fireworks washed up onto the beach after the fourth of July, and they reminded her of ...

Thursday, July 6, 2017


His dog went missing on the fourth of July and he had to get her back or ...

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

#IWSG July 2017

Started by Alex J. Cavanaugh, this sweet hop has encouraged me many times over 
and I'm thankful for it!

IWSG News!

IWSG July Optional Question: What is one valuable lesson you've learned since you started writing?
There are many things, but to tie in with last month's question my answer is going to rely on three famous movie quotes.

"Never Give Up!
Never Surrender!"

"Do or Do Not. There is no Try."

"Just Keep Swimming."

Writing is its own reward. Just writing, just continuing to write, refusing to give up when things get hard, and writing beyond the "try" stage are all part of the continuance of the dream that gets real when the pen hits the paper or the fingers hit the keyboard.

On a separate note, my insecurity this month (other than the usual ups and downs of writing) is that I seem to have lost my ability to post pictures on my blog, which is frustrating, and I am having a bit of a mild stalker issue as well as repeated notifications that someone is trying to hack the account on another social media platform (okay, not sure it's stalking, but it's odd behavior, so I am changing some things in my social media practices). So, basically, even after eight years of using various forms of social media, I still feel like I don't know what I'm doing. However, I'm going to just keep swimming - maybe in a different stretch of the ocean or with a few different strokes - from forward crawl to breastroke - but I'm going to keep going. I'll keep everyone notified of any changes here ... probably next month or September. 

BTW - I had a super short publication on July 3rd at A Story in 100 Words. "At the Lake" is ... I guess angsty romance? Does that mean I write romance now? I don't know. It's something different for me, anyway.

Happy 4th of July and Independence Day!!!

Monday, July 3, 2017


July 3rd is a day we'll never forget because that's the day we ...

Or ...

Under the boom and glow of fireworks, we ...

Happy Independence Day!

(What does it mean to be independent as a nation, an individual, or ...?)

Friday, June 30, 2017

Do You Have Goals? July 2017 Update

This awesome, encouraging hop was created by Misha!

Reporting on June
June Goals: 
1. Heal, renew, walk, and take tiny bike rides. - I walked, healed, and rested.

2. Continue to Market Hero Lost: Mysteries of Death and Life and other works. Some, yes, mainly through hootsuite.

3.  Watch my oldest graduate. Have a party! Celebrate! - Definitely did this!!!

4. Go to a Montana State University Registration and Orientation session with my oldest daughter. - Yes!

5. Watch both daughters race at the Ted Houk Regatta in Seattle. - Yes!

6. Clean up the yard and house. (as able) - Yes!

7. Go barefoot. Some.

8. Continue working on The Greenling Chronicles. -YES.

9. Keep reading Cling to God. - Yes!

10. Sort through job and teaching stuff. Prepare for next fall. - A tiny amount.

11. Practice Storytelling. - only once.

July Goals
1. Finish Eclipse: Greenling Chronicles Book 1.

2. Continue marketing efforts with hootsuite.

3. Make some social media changes. (Will report more fully next month.)

4. Keep house clean, more yardwork (as physically able). 

5. Scrapbook/photo project.

6. Encourage family and friends.

7. Practice Storytelling.

8. Write all ideas down for school prep in the fall, but no major work allowed on this. (15 per day, tops)

9. Get outside!

10. Walk, hike, bike, kayak? More exercise and fewer carbs.

11. Continue super short writing prompt posts.

12. Continued Bible Study and reading Cling to God.

How are you doing on your goals this month?

Writing Prompt: If the villain/antagonist of your story created a "honey do" list, what would be on it? Does your villain/antagonist have a significant other?

Wednesday, June 28, 2017


She dug into the sand, from the hot top layer to the lower cool dampness. There, she found ...

Tuesday, June 27, 2017


The graduates threw their caps in the air ... well, all except for one graduate who ...

Monday, June 26, 2017


At the family barbecue, Uncle Joey roasted mystery meat. We were too afraid to ask him what it was, so we ...

BTW - I had a drabble of fiction published at Friday Flash Fiction last week!
"Old Roses and Failing Eyesight" 

Friday, June 23, 2017

Thursday, June 22, 2017


Sitting in the sun with her friends at the lake, she hoped that ...

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Monday, June 19, 2017


One time, when my cousins and I were playing pretend Star Wars in our grandpa's barn, we ...

Friday, June 16, 2017


Write about an ulikely group of friends making dandelion necklaces.

Kickstart your summer writing with free prompts found on my blog throughout the summer or pick up a free copy of A Jumble of 500+ Writing Prompts this week (only) at Smashwords with the coupon code: BE23A

Smashwords Link (Remember to use the coupon code!)
Coupon is good thorugh the 16th!

Thursday, June 15, 2017


From morning to night, we spent all day outside in the summer until ....

Kickstart your summer writing with free prompts found on my blog throughout the summer or pick up a free copy of A Jumble of 500+ Writing Prompts this week (only) at Smashwords with the coupon code: BE23A

Smashwords Link (Remember to use the coupon code!)
Coupon is good thorugh the 16th!

Wednesday, June 14, 2017


What happened at the car wash last summer?

Imagine a scene at a car wash where something unexpected/different/noteworthy happens.

Kickstart your summer writing with free prompts found on my blog throughout the summer or pick up a free copy of A Jumble of 500+ Writing Prompts this week (only) at Smashwords with the coupon code: BE23A

Smashwords Link (Remember to use the coupon code!)
Coupon is good thorugh the 16th!

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

#Writingprompt Unexpected Item on a Bucket List #FREE #writingprompt

Create a bucket list for the main character of your story. Include something unexpected.

Kickstart your summer writing with free prompts found on my blog throughout the summer or pick up a free copy of A Jumble of 500+ Writing Prompts this week (only) at Smashwords with the coupon code: BE23A

Smashwords Link (Remember to use the coupon code!)
Coupon is good thorugh the 16th!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Kickstart Your Summer Writing with #FREE Prompts

I'm kickstarting my summer writing projects today and want to encourage all writers to kickstart their own summer writing goals!

To do this, I'll be doing two things:

I'll post simple writing prompts here at least four days a week for most of the summer, starting today. So, stop by and grab a prompt each day. Comments aren't necessary for blogging politeness with these super short posts, just grab a prompt and run with it!

For this week only, I've generated a 100% off coupon at Smashwords for A Jumble of 500+ Writing Prompts. Coupon code: BE23A 

Smashwords Link (Remember to use the coupon code!)

The coupon is good through Friday.

Today's prompt: If you're main character of your WIP, or a new character you just met in your imagination, were to take a journey, what would he/she pack? And, how would he/she travel?

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Good News!

The results are in - I don't have breast cancer!!!

Woohoo!!! Praise God!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

#IWSG JUNE - "I Quit," Double Graduation, and Summer Schedule

A database resource site and support group for writers and authors. Featuring weekly guests and tips, a monthly blogfest gathering hosted by Alex J. Cavanaugh and co-hosts: , a Facebook group, a book club, and thousands of links – all to benefit writers! #IWSG

OPTIONAL June 7th IWSG Day Question: Did you ever say “I quit”? If so, what happened to make you come back to writing?

I've said "I quit" more than once.
  • When a "friend" shared one of my short stories without my permission ... I quit sharing and I quit writing for a while. 
  • I quit when I couldn't seem to concentrate long enough to write more than 15 minutes at a time when my children were toddler and pre-school age (I truly appreciated If You Give a Mouse a Cookie and If You Give a Moose a Muffin - those books represent early motherhood to me - all the joy and all the messes.)
  • I quit for three months at a time when I waited for magazine editors to respond to some of my early short stories - "Dragonfold" and "The Crystal Sword."
  • I quit for a few weeks in 2015 after a particularly bad book fair - rain all day, books dropped in mud, when painful social anxiety had me huddled in a corner and I couldn't seem to shake it off and I was landed between an ultra religious group that chased people down with their flyers and a young man who self-published his book in found materials that he bound together himself. That particular day, I was told that I "really should write about dragons." That I "had obviously stolen" my author name (it's my real name). That I "shouldn't write Christian fantasy" (once from a fantasy reader and once from a Christian who abhors fantasy). I know I wasn't the only one having a bad day - the lady across from me cried on her husband's shoulder after someone said something rude about her poetry books. (I bought one a few hours later and it was good.) I'm not sure I'll ever attend that fair again since it seemed to be occupied by trolls - or maybe it was just a bad year.
  • I almost quit last year after I had invested time into a new novel project that died a slow, painful, plot-plodding death and I felt like all my marketing efforts were worthless.
  • This year I almost quit during the first waiting part between my first biopsy and the first results. (This week, I'm on my fourth biopsy of the year for a new health concern - it's getting to be a new normal.) Good News as of Thursday - I don't have breast cancer!!!
So, what made me come back?
  • I'm stubborn, hard-headed, and determined.
  • I like to play with words and now and then in my hardest moments, I find it ironic that I've had poetry published when it's my "go-to" for my off writing days, but that irony keeps driving me forward as much as the fun I have with poetry writing. (And I have gratitudefor a particular 10th grade writing teacher who told me to give poetry a chance - Thank you, Mrs. Bee Evans.)
  • I daydream stories all the time and I love writing them down.
  • I write because it helps me process my thoughts, my emotions, my faith, and all my crazy ideas.
  • I came back because I want my daughters to know that it's worthwhile to work hard at a dream, even if it isn't a financially successful dream (yet). 
  • I came back because I refuse to let fear to conquer me.
  • I came back because of the awesome encouragement I receive from family, friends, and IWSG.

BTW - "Dragonfold" found a home at Mindflights in 2009 and "The Crystal Sword" became my first self-published novel Champion in the Darkness in 2013.

Double Graduation?
Is it possible to graduate twice from high school?
Yes, it is - if a student is a home-schooler in Washington State and attends Running Start classes at a local community college.
My oldest went to her first graduation ceremony at Harbor Christian Homeschool Cooperative on Saturday, June 3rd. (She's in the center of the top pick in this photo collage):

Earlier that day, she walked in the Gig Harbor Maritime Parade and that night she went to Senior Prom hosted by the high school with friends:
Anna is in the black skirt.

The next day, she helped lead Youth Sunday Worship at our church - which included roles for every young person in worship, in the short film that we created "High School Parable," in a presentation of a Veggie Tales story, and in a beatifully choreographed dance about the Prodigal Son. The worship ended with an amazing gift of encouragement for all of the high school seniors in words, prayer, and gifts of Bibles which had been highlighted by members of our church with notes and prayers. Of course, the only photo I took comes from a goofing off moment of worship rehearsal before everything started:

It was a jam-packed weekend. 

In two weeks, she'll graduate from Tacoma Community College with a general associates degree and another high school diploma  (this one from an accredited insitution and not just "mom").

So ... I'm headed into my Summer Schedule early.
But, what does that mean this year?
IWSG - first Wed
Goals Hop - last Friday
Potentially a fair number of extremely short writing prompt posts with some off weeks/moments. I won't expect or hope for comments on these, but I plan to put them out there in the hopes that they will be "of service" to my fellow writers.

Hootsuite will have tweets, google+, and facebook author posts on auto-pilot most days.

Have you ever "quit" writing for a while? How do you celebrate the end of the school year? And, do you have a summer schedule?

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Wandering and a Late Interview Link with #CarolinaReads

Inspired by Jen Chandler's posts on Wandering with Intent, I've decided to do some of my own purposeful wanderings and possibly post about them. If you don't know Jen, check out her blog and/or read her story "Mysteries of Death and Life" in Hero Lost: Mysteries of Death and Life.

To preface this, I am not wandering far these days since although my official intense recovery time is over from my second surgery this year, the doctor told me that I could expect another six months of slow-going until I get to full recovery. I'm only walking up to 2 miles on a "big" day so the walks aren't super long or strenuous. These images are from Penrose State Park (Washington - on the Peninsula):

I love the doorway appeal of the branches arching over the end of the trail to the sea.

I didn't actually hike the trail the first time I went, but I did the second time. Either way, I find trails leading off into the woods a great inspiration for stories.

Here's another view of those arching tree branches, but from farther back.

I thought this shell looked like a hand in skeletal form. My daughter thought it looked like a skull. What do you think it looks like?

The reflection ... 

The crane kept teasing me and I tried to get a closer image by zooming in my phone camera - which is far from a great camera.

Looking down fencelines is interesting. I feel like there's a story in these lines that lead into a horizon. Plus, fencelines always seem to have some kind of story behind them. I wondered why this one was even there other than for decorative purposes because the park extends beyond it on both sides. I guess it is near the walking trail that leads to the shore and beyond it is a bit of shoreline with a 4-5 foot drop off to the shoreline. Maybe it's for decorative safety?


The one bit of "hike" I did on my first walk. This literally ended just five feet further around the bend.
What do you think is around the bend?

I wanted to capture the young Pacific Madrone tree (with reddish bark) also called a Madrona tree by many in the area. The Pacific Madrone is declining so it's always nice to see a young one. (We have an older one in our yard.)

The birds had breakfast before I arrived. Many clam shells littered the gravel beach.

There is something about the edge where the land meets the sea that has always struck a chord in my imagination.

Have you wandered lately? Have you ever wandered with intent?
Get any story ideas from these images?

I admit, my main intent was to get outside, get fresh air, and see a different place.
I seem to need a jolt of fresh air to find creative inspiration.
Plus, in places like Penrose State Park, I can see the amazing wonder of God's creation and just feel blessed to be able to experience the outdoors. (And, it was easy - near where I was that day and with a parking lot near the shoreline. I was only there for forty minutes and it felt like my whole day was filled with beauty.)

And, I have a late link to an interview at #Carolinareads last week - somehow, I missed it even with it on my calendar so I feel like I have egg on my face. If you could stop by and give Terri some love, or go check out my post a week late, that would be awesome. Plus, she has an ongoing interview feature that I highly recommend checking out!

Tyrean reads .... #CarolinaReads hosted by Terri A. Wilson

And - I hope you all had a Blessed Memorial Day! Here's a tiny image-poem I wrote on that subject last year:
The wind rolls out our flag’s colors
then stills
red lines dripping down

Whenever I think of Memorial Day, I hear flags snapping in the wind and see rain clouds parted by sun because for many Memorial Days I visited my Grandpa's grave in the windy little town where I grew up. We didn't celebrate it "right" according to all the experts - my Grandpa was technically a veteran who joined the US Army to gain American citezenship. He became a sargeant in the calvary and then a tank mechanic during WWII. He lived a full life and did not die serving during war-time, but I (unlike those who are sticklers for the rules of all things) have always taken time to remember him and all those who have served on Memorial Day, even though I know it's meant only for those who have died overseas during active service. I think it's sad that legalists have decided to make Memorial Day unaccessible for all others. I remember when we used to meet at the cemetary for a service that included everyone - all the graves (even non-military ones) were covered in flowers - and the military service members didn't seem to mind that. What's happened that to make us so legalistic in all things?