Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Meet Shamira

I introduce you to another character, Shamira:

Don't forget to become a follower. Simply click "Join this site" on the right side of the page and follow the directions. If you haven't already, 'like' my Facebook page at

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Snippets from Charge of the Beast

I'll be posting snippets from Charge of the Beast over the course of... oh, who knows how long. Here's the first:

5/22/16 Update: I removed the snippets due to the massive amounts of edits I've done since 2011. The book is so much better!

Friday, October 14, 2011

My Poem

Ok, I'm laying it all out on the line here. Below you'll find the poem I entered into the contest mentioned below in "What's Next?" Please keep in mind that I am NOT a poet, and the poem is surely flawed. I'd like to post it anyway, simply for the pleasure of anyone who appreciates poetry.

Ascent of the Willow

Under the gaze of the towering Cottonwood Tree,
Grew the will of the willow strong and free.
Residing by the stream so desired the youngling,
To touch the great branches of the Cottonwood Everlasting.

Knowing impossible could he reach so high,
Still continued the willow its fullest to thrive.
Impenetrable by insects its trunk was built;
Long beautiful branches with bounteous leaves were filled.

Whilst surpassing all others in its glorious upward ascent,
Followed by a tempest did an East Wind blow in.
As the faithful willow suffered a fatal blow,
The fight went on; the trunk did not hollow.

Though the branches remained, the leaves slowly withered.
The willow from its life swiftly would be severed.
Nonetheless, it continued its never ending strive to reach
The uppermost heights of the Cottonwood Tree.

As the wind gusted through its branches, and leaves fell one by one,
The willow turned upwards one last time the noble Cottonwood
to gaze upon.
He watched in amazement as the loving branches of the Tree
over him did spread;
His mission had finally been accomplished –
he could lay down his weary head.

The remaining leaves fell and only a lifeless trunk remained,
But the Eternal Cottonwood would recall the fierce warrior
again and again.
Then in sight did appear a fledgling willow of the same kind,
Who in its upward call to duty its fruits shall also find.

In honor and memory of
Second Lieutenant Phillip Neil

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Friday, September 16, 2011

A Year and a Half Later

I began Charge of the Beast in July 2005 and quickly developed writer's block. I got a great start to it though, and when I picked back up in March 2010, the entire story came to me within a matter of 2 hours.

It took me 5 months to complete my first draft, and a year and a month to get to where it is now - 9th and best draft by far. For those who have read it and given me feedback: THANK YOU!! It's been invaluable and played a  huge role in my editing process.

I'm so excited to see what comes of it. The story encompasses a wide range of genres, including suspense, young adult, and romance. I believe it is a unique story that will touch the hearts of all who read it.

Now, I'm going forth in my efforts to find the right agent to represent my work. I do still have self-publishing in mind, but ideally I'd like to go through a publishing house.

Next blog entry: my writing history!

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Saturday, April 30, 2011

What's Next?

On Thursday I entered two pieces into the Writer's Digest annual competition. Here is a brief summary:

Genre Short Story
Title: Healed
Summary: After twelve years of suffering from a life-debilitating disease, a thirty-two year old woman determines that she will never be healed from her affliction. What she believes to be punishment for her malicious behavior toward her dying mother results in a miracle she never expected.

Rhyming Poem
Title: Ascent of the Willow
Summary: This poem is an allegory which brings life to a majestic cottonwood tree and a young willow tree. The analogy can be left to the reader's own imagination. My inspiration was the death announcement at church over four years ago of one of our young war heroes, who after being fatally wounded, continued to fight until his dying breath.

After winners are announced in October, I will post both of these pieces on my blog!

I'd like to mention that I am by no means a poet, and this is the only poem decent enough to merit public exposure. The short story is also a first in my writing career.

Now that I've accomplished this milestone, I'll begin working on the next: my second novel!

More to come...

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

May the K9 Spy

A fellow author friend of mine has a children's book coming out this summer. The title is May the K9 Spy and will be enjoyable to kids of any age!

Visit her website to read the first chapter
"Like" her Facebook page to get updates.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Not Bad So Far

While I've only had a handful of new followers to my blog and Facebook page (thank you!), I have received several personal responses - some who are viewing the blog and FB page but have not joined - as well as others who simply replied to the mass email I distributed.

One biggie is that I have had some networking leads - one, for example is my uncle who personally knows an established author. He is going to put us in contact, which obviously will be of great benefit!

Thanks again to everyone for your interest. If you haven't joined my blog as a follower, please do so! You can easily create a gmail account ( select gmail link) to do so. Please also "like" my Facebook page at

Last but not least, PLEASE forward the email I sent you to your friends and family!

Thanks for your support.

Friday, April 1, 2011

I'm ready to roll!

Some of you may be visiting my blog for the first time due to my email marketing campaign (if I can call it that). By sending a brief synopsis of Charge of the Beast, I am attempting to promote myself through friends, family members and other acquaintances. My hope is that the original email will be forwarded by my contacts, to their own contacts, and on and on.
I’m ready to get going on this. I need to do my part as a new author and establish an audience who will be ready to read my novel once it is published.

With that, I leave you this:

§   Are you interested in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict?
§   Have you ever wondered what is inside the mind of a Palestinian woman training to be a suicide bomber?
§   Has your curiosity about these subjects ever caused you to read an article or book to learn more about the effects that the war has on both Israeli and Palestinian citizens?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, please read the following synopsis for my novel, Charge of the Beast.

NOTE: I have shortened this synopsis from the original blog entry, as I feel that I gave away too much!

Ten year old Eliana frantically awakens in the hospital. The last thing she remembers is shopping with her mother, Rina, at the Machane Yehuda outdoor market in Jerusalem.
Four weeks prior, Ismat, a nineteen year old Palestinian who lives in Gaza, mourns for her father. He was killed by an Israeli soldier almost a year beforehand. Her sorrow turns to anger, and she decides she wants vengeance.
Eliana is forced to go to America to live with her paternal grandparents in Mississippi. While packing to leave her homeland, she discovers a treasure: her mother’s written account detailing the story of her life with Eliana’s deceased father, Aidan.

During her lengthy flight to her new home, Eliana engrosses herself in her parent’s love story, which takes place in Israel.
Eliana’s soul journey, experienced through the life of her parents during their time together, transforms her into a child mature beyond her years.

Eight years later, she finds herself at an elite university. Through what appears to be a band of coincidental encounters, Eliana is able to share the legacy her mother left behind with others who are in the midst of tumultuous circumstances.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Done for now...

I just finished the final draft of Charge of the Beast! It's my 7th edit, and I believe it's well polished. I feel very comfortable sending the manuscript to any agent who may ask for it.

My plan is to set it aside for six months - no peeking! It will be hard for me not to look at it, but unless I feel a critical change needs to be made, I'll wait. Come August, I'll have a fresh set of eyes for another edit. Unless, that is, I get a nibble from an agent!

Now I'm working on a short story for the Writer's Digest annual writing competition. Thousands of people enter each year. While I'm not expecting a win, it certainly doesn't hurt to try! If I were to place, it would be a great addition to my writing credentials.

I'll also start on a new novel soon. I don't have enough details yet to begin, but something will happen to give me an inspiration to write.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Welcome to my blog!

I decided it was about time to create a blog as an author.

I'm currently seeking literary agent representation for my first novel, Charge of the Beast.  This process can take quite a long time, so I'm not holding my breath for anything to happen soon.

I do want to do my part though and continue to research, learn and communicate. This blog is going to play an important part in my communication and marketing endeavors.

This is just a short post for now. I need to learn a little more about this, then I'll get to blogging away!

Hope you enjoy...