Monday, December 23, 2013


 Using Your Imagination to Write about Places You've NEVER Been         (originally published [changes added] at 13, 2009)
I like to write about places I’ve never been.  It’s liberating to use your imagination and take real chances, and it’s an experience I recommend to other writers, both beginning and more experienced ones.  You don't have to write only about what you "know." You can write about places in this world (and others) you've never visited.  Have faith in your abilities and don't second-guess them all the time.
ASAOBweb_Cover (2)                                        Visit my website at

But wait a minute, you ask.  Don’t you have to visit places you write about?  Don’t you have to step on another country’s soil, smell the air, mingle with the inhabitants and interact with their culture in a thousand different ways in order to write about it authentically?  Otherwise, isn’t the process no better than a well-crafted, well-researched lie no matter how believable it seems to be?
Well, maybe.
And then again, maybe not.
The fact is, research, imagination and empathy can carry you a long way.  Also, while it’s nice to visit another place, it’s sometimes expensive, time-consuming, and may not always be practical.  One does have to make a living, after all.  Besides that, some countries may not let you in, for political or other reasons.
I teach at a historically black university.  I sometimes ask my students, “I’m an old white guy.  Could I write about life in the hood if I did a lot of research?”
Some of my students say no.  Others say yes.  I say, if I can make it believable to those who know firsthand about life in the hood and pull them completely into my fictional dream, why not?  As Samuel Taylor Coleridge said, what’s primarily necessary is to create “that willing suspension of disbelief . . . which constitutes poetic faith.”
Okay, here’s a couple of examples from my own writing experience.
One day years ago I started to read Chinua Achebe’s novel, Things Fall Apart, which is about the often destructive influence of English colonialism on Nigeria.  That book, plus its sequel, No Longer at Ease, and other research inspired my longest novel, A Senseless Act of Beauty, which is available at Crossroad Press (  A Senseless Act of Beauty focuses on a beautiful African-type of planet that more civilized worlds seek to conquer and exploit in a brutal, oppressive fashion.  History repeats itself, in other words.
images (1)
One of the stories in the novel, “Eyes of the Leopard,” stems from an idea that I found personally intriguing.  What if a radical, impressionist painter or artist were born into a Nigerian village circa 1900 and fell in love with the chief’s daughter?  Here is the way I began it:
One day, Ekwefi, the proud daughter of the tribal chief, decided she wanted to be especially beautiful for the Feast of the New Yam.  She thought and thought, and then she smiled.  Perhaps Amadi, the odd boy who drew such strange pictures, could help her.
            So she told her doting father, and a servant went to summon the boy.  Now the name of Amadi’s father is not important, for he was an efulefu, a lazy, worthless man who neglected his crops and preferred to drink palm wine and fashion flutes from bamboo stems.  Of all the huts in the Nigerian village, his was the meanest and poorest kept.  Indeed, it was considered a disgrace by others even to visit it.  So when the servant, a tall man of aristocratic bearing and many airs, announced himself and entered the cramped hut, he looked about in distaste, his nose crinkling at the dust and odors.
I hope I’ve captured the flavor of such a place and time, and discouraged the reader from wondering how a Jewish boy from Ohio could write such a thing.  The tribal story-telling style (e.g., “Now the name of Amadi’s father is not important”), and the local dialect (efulefu) contribute, I trust, to the local color and verisimilitude of the story.
Here’s one more example: several years back, I became fascinated by Nauru, an island in the southwestern Pacific.  Again, research was key, as well as imagination.  I wrote and published three stories that take place in that area, and recently, one of those stories, “Bagonoun’s Wonderful Songbird,” was republished by Gypsy Shadow Publishing (  The improbable love story involves a fifteen-year-old girl and a man who is nearly seventy.  Emet wakes Bagonoun up and asks him to tell her a story.  Annoyed, Bagonoun finally has an inspiration, one involving local lore and tribal astronomy.
Ah, he remembered!  “Once there was a young girl,” he said, “who lived in the sky.  She—” 
             “What was her name?  You must say it!”                   
              Bagonoun made a face.  “Eyount.”
              “Pretty!”  She made a pleased sound and moved closer so her arm grazed his.
              “Anyway,” he went on, “Eyount’s parents decided to gather together some young boys so their daughter might choose a husband.  And when they came, there were many.  They all stood in a row so she could see them.  Being young, they were mischievous and liked to play games, especially the one in which they switched magic headbands made of stardust.  When they did this, they switched faces and bodies as well and tricked their friends into thinking each was the other.  Now two of these boys decided to play a prank on her.  One of them was named Demagomogom and the other . . . ”
So that’s how I write about places I’ve never been: I do research, use my imagination, and try to feel sympathy and even empathy for my characters, try to see the world through their eyes.  Granted, being born in a place or visiting it is better, but being creative and willing to take chances can accomplish miracles.  Fellow scribblers, I urge you to take chances and to be willing to fail.  Don’t reject that fictional idea just because it occurs in a place you’ve never been.  Go there in your imagination and make it real to your readers.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

“I’m Too Stupid!”

Zora Neale Hurston

by John B. Rosenman

I’m a teacher. Have been for a long time. It’s not as important to me as my writing, but it’s pretty close, largely because it involves writing. Now, I’m not talking about those student essays, term papers, and tests which I have to mark up and grade. To tell the truth, I’m sick and tired of them. After forty years, you get weary of wading through garbled research papers without a thesis or sixty tests in which students all answer the same questions in pretty much the same way.

No, besides teaching itself, which can be downright fun and exhilarating, what makes my job most fulfilling are the courses I’ve taught in creative writing. I’ve been fortunate enough to teach them at two institutions of so-called higher learning. At Norfolk State University in Virginia, where I teach now, I’ve had the opportunity to create and teach my own course in writing Science Fiction and Fantasy, which can stretch to include Horror and the Outright Bizarre. Needless to say, it can be a blast to expose young minds to brave, strange, even demented new worlds, to make them see that Shakespeare, Chaucer, and Faulkner aren’t the only ones who have written classics.

Above all, I’ve had the opportunity to awaken their imaginations and help them explore and develop their talent. How good can they be? Is that pasty-faced kid in the corner a future Stephen King, Poppy Z. Brite, or Ray Bradbury? You never know for sure.

Which brings me to my point: I’d like to tell you about a student I once had. This was about thirty years ago at a small black Southern college. I had expressed a desire to teach Creative Writing, a course, which to my knowledge, had been in the curriculum for years but never offered. It was an orphan sired by some idealistic or deranged administrator, then forgotten. I was the first who volunteered to adopt it.

To my surprise, I was assigned the course. And also to my surprise, students actually enrolled, all of them women. As I recall, that made me even happier. The day I walked into my first creative writing class and saw twelve young beautiful women looking back at me, I thought, “By God, I may have chosen the right profession after all!”

Besides being giddy, I don’t remember much about that first class. But I recall well what came after it. One of my students brought a friend up to my desk, hoping to convince her to enroll in the course. The friend differed from the others in being older, perhaps fifty. When I urged her to take the course, she said, “Oh, I can’t do that, Dr. Rosenman. I’m too stupid!”

Now it’s one thing to have low self-esteem and to think you’re stupid, but to proclaim it to a stranger with other people watching is . . . well, memorable. In all the years since then, I’ve wondered, “Who told you that you were stupid, and what made you think that way?” Later I learned that the woman (I’ll call her Carol) made $100 a month as a cleaning woman. It was subsequently increased to $100 a week. Whether Carol had other employment, I can’t say, but at the time it seemed her lack of self-confidence was due largely to being black and poor in the South.

Anyway, Carol came into my class and the first day she turned in a poem. I didn’t read it until the next day. And then I reread and reread and reread it.

It was a sonnet on love, written in iambic pentameter with an ABAB CDCD EFEF GG rhyme scheme. In it Carol used a variety of poetic devices such as alliteration, assonance, similes and metaphors.

While the poem itself was not flawless, it was damned close. Perhaps two or three professional poets out of a hundred could have equaled it. Needless to say, it didn’t seem to fit the self-abasement she had displayed on our first meeting. If this was being “stupid,” it was nothing to be ashamed about.

I wish I could tell you that Carol is known today as Toni Morrison, Maya Angelou, or some other world-renowned African-American writer, but that didn’t happen. Nor did she rise to the top of the class on a wave of creative genius. Truth is, she was an average student and received a “C” in Creative Writing. While that may not seem remarkable to others, it still seems impressive as hell to me. After forty years of teaching, Carol remains the most amazing student I’ve ever taught, the one who continues to have the most profound impact on me. All the brilliant “A” students down through the years fade in comparison despite their gifts.

I like to think we can learn certain things from Carol’s example. First, when it comes to writing, talent may exist in what seems the most unlikely or unpromising of places, so we should never prejudge. A bum or homeless person might delight us, whereas a Nobel Prize winner will leave us cold. Second, a superficial gift does not a writer make. I’ve taught many students over the years who could construct a story with a fair plot and good characterization, but a flash-in-the-pan glitter didn’t make them writers. They might have skills or a knack, but not a calling, and not the desire to practice and practice and practice their craft and develop as writers. For all I know, Carol did become a poet or writer, and a damned good one. But because (mea culpa!) I’ve long since forgotten her name, I wouldn’t know. Then again, perhaps she’s like Emily Dickinson, who consigned most of her superb work to her trunk, and it will remain to someone after her death to discover her.

Last, I’ve tried to learn confidence from Carol or at least develop a tendency not to judge my own writing talent too harshly. And that ain’t easy, folks, since I tend to be negative, self-critical, and full of doubts. Sometimes, when I write a story and I’m slogging through the fourth or fifth revision, it seems to me it all sucks, that everything from my style to my characters to my lack of logic contributes to the worst piece of dreck in the western world. At such times I shout, “I can’t do this. I’M TOO STUPID!”

But then I remind myself there isn’t a simple litmus test for talent, that it’s more complicated than that. Besides, I’m too close to the words and perhaps my story is better than I think. Indeed, it might even be the equivalent of Carol’s brilliant poem. And even if it isn’t, it’s ultimately the writing that counts, isn’t it? Not the quality or critical acclaim. Not even all that potential money.

In the end, this is what Carol taught me most: that we should write primarily because we want to and because we must. We should write because the greatest miracles of all occur within our own minds.*

* Previously published before I retired, but I thought it was worth a blog. :)

Saturday, September 28, 2013


A man sacrifices everything to save humanity, politics and emperors be damned. 

Book 1                        Book 2
 Cover by Delilah K. Stephans          Cover by Kaytalin Platt                                          
Sometimes your worst enemy is on your own side . . . 

     When I wrote the first novel Inspector of the Cross, I never planned or intended to write a sequel.  Now I'm halfway through the third novel in the series, Defender of the Flame.  Does this happen to many writers of fiction series, or am I in the minority?  Do most writers intend to write a series from the beginning, or is that an accident?  Just wondering.  Either way, it's an exciting process.
Available at MuseItUp Publishing:                                              
         Also available at Amazon and other major vendors.

Friday, September 20, 2013

The Best Class I Ever Taught

Photo courtesy of Tch  Teaching Channel

by John B. Rosenman

Nearly three years ago, in November 2010, I sat before my World Literature class. For all I knew, I was dying. The only thing I did know for sure was that I couldn't go on.

I had been teaching for nearly forty-five years and had enjoyed basically good health. Physically, with arthritis and other problems, I began to deteriorate during the preceding summer. When I had returned to teach at Norfolk State University in the fall, things turned spooky. Standing in front of a class, my brain seemed disembodied from the rest of me and felt like it was floating five feet above my shoulders, near the ceiling. Soon after, starting at 150 pounds, I began to lose weight.

Finally, I went to my doctor. He ran all the tests, which turned up nothing. He concluded that my symptoms "screamed depression" and referred me to a psychiatrist who gave me pills. My weight dropped. One forty-five . . . one-forty . . . When it reached one-forty, my system began to shut down. Forget about having an appetite or going to the bathroom, and hello to a half-body hideous scarlet rash and eventually no damned energy whatsoever, especially when I later reached 120 pounds and could barely walk.

I'll skip some painful details. A CT Scan, some more blood tests, and a gastroenterologist would eventually nail it down. I had Celiac disease, a severe allergy caused by gluten, a protein found mainly in grains such as wheat, rye, and barley. One out of 133 people has this condition, but more and more are finding themselves affected in this age of processed foods.

Anyway, I looked at my class of students that I loved so much and told them I could not continue. We had begun this literary journey of the creative imagination together, I said, and I wanted so much to complete it with them, but try as I might, I would not be there to reach the finish line at their side except in spirit.

It was painful to say this.   I knew it wasn't my fault, but I still felt I had failed them.   And then . . .

Then something happened that had never happened before in all my years of teaching.

Every student in my class rose to his or her feet and formed a line around the room, waiting patiently to hug me.

Some of them even hugged me twice.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Sex, Drugs, and Cheating: Can We Trust Anyone Anymore?

by John B. Rosenman

              Maybe it’s my imagination, but it seems there’s a lot more lying these days, especially when it comes to sex and drugs.  When these cheating rascals are caught, they lie and lie and self-righteously deny.  It gets so after a while we think those who are innocent must be guilty, too.
              Here’s a few who recently entered the Hall of Shame.
              Bob Filner, Mayor of San Diego, denied groping and worse when it came to over a dozen women, one of them a great grandmother.  Though he resigned, he not only denied his actions amounted to sexual harassment but said his resignation was the result of a “lynch mob mentality” because he challenged the city’s power elite.  It’s always someone else’s fault.
             Anthony Weiner resigned from Congress in 2011 when he was caught sexting his, uh, not-so-private parts on Twitter to numerous women.  He lied and denied until finally, driven to bay, he was forced to come clean.  He promised he wouldn’t do it again and recently entered the NY City mayoral race, only to be busted a second time.  Is Sexting cheating, especially if his wife stands beside him and swears she loves him?  We may sympathize with his sexual addiction, but Weiner does appear to be a serial liar with a politically crippling problem.  One constituent shouted, “How can we trust you?”   
             All too often these people lie about sex.  They make me appreciate someone like General David Petraeus, who promptly admitted his affair and wrote to a friend, “I screwed up royally.”
             As for drugs, Lance Armstrong is at the top of the list.  He broke my heart.  A cancer survivor, he not only won the Tour de France seven straight times, he established a foundation that has helped thousands of victims.  Ah, but he also lied repeatedly about juicing and organized a massive team doping scheme.  And when some folks told the truth about his using drugs, he brutally attacked and damaged their lives.  After the International Cycling Union investigated Armstrong, it stripped him of all his titles.  Lance’s own foundation dropped his name, and he lives now in disgrace.  His defense of his lies and drug use?  Everyone was doing it, and he had to do it too in order to win.  
             Besides cycling, drugs affect other sports.  Juicing has rendered performances and new records in sports such as track and baseball increasingly suspect.  Mark McGwire.  Sammy Sosa.  Barry Bonds.  Are Maris’ 61 home runs or Bonds’s 73 home runs the true record?  Of course, Bonds denies he juiced.
             Then we have Alex Rodriguez, denying it for the second time after he'd been caught dead to rights before.  Rafael Palmeiro.  Ryan Braun.  They all denied any use of PEDs and swore they were as pure as driven snow.  I keep thinking of Pinocchio, whose nose grew a little every time he told a lie.  If that happened to these guys, their noses would reach the moon.
             Some folks may say we’ve always had lecherous men and women who take advantage of their power, and that today’s media just call it to our attention more readily and in a more spectacular fashion.  I guess that’s true.  Before TV, the Internet, Twitter, Google, etc., guys like Filner and Weiner could do their thing in comparative secrecy and not be "forced" to lie about it so much.  Now there’s a good chance their vulgar antics will go viral and be replayed endlessly on CNN.  As for baseball and other sports, well, they just didn’t have PEDs a few decades ago.  If they had, those sports would be as dirty as they are now.       
             Maybe so, but I still think we as a society have deteriorated.  I believe Armstrong’s fall from grace, while painful, is justified.  Though redemption is possible, Bob Filmer and Anthony Weiner probably shouldn’t hold office again.  A-Rod richly deserves his 211 game suspension, and Ryan Braun should thank his lucky stars he was given the boot for only 65 games.
            As a society, Americans tolerate and forgive lying and sexually immoral behavior too easily from their spoiled rich heroes who don’t appreciate their good fortune or their responsibility to be role models.  To quote Luke 12:48: “For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.” 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

The Writer's Curse of Posthumous Success

ONE AND DONE.  It's a legacy that belongs to remarkable writers such as A.S.A. Harrison, who died of cancer in April, only weeks before her book was published.  She was 65.

Like last summer's blockbuster thriller Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, The Silent Wife is about a crumbling, destructive relationship between a man and a woman.  Harrison spent much of her career as an editor and writing nonfiction.  She described her two earlier novels which never sold to a publisher as "cozy mysteries." The Silent Wife was more successful.  As Julie Bosman notes in her article "Novelist's Debut Will Be Her Legacy," by the time of her death, Harrison "had read early sparkling reviews of her novel." According to her husband, "she had a sense that it could be a success." (The Virginian-Pilot. 08.06.03. 2)

But oh the waste, oh the cruelty.  It's not for nothing I use the word "curse" in the title.  Some readers may say she at least enjoyed the success of being published by a major publisher and knowing she had written a good book.  But why couldn't she have seen her publisher, Penguin Books go "back to press seven times" in rapid succession and print "a total of 144,000 copies"? (Bosman) Why couldn't she have lived to see The Silent Wife "make its debut on the New York Times' combined print and e-book best-seller list next week at No. 11"? (Bosman)  How would it have harmed the Cosmic Plan if A.S.A. Harrison had lived just a few months longer?

As many of us know, writing good books and finding publishers for them is hard enough without battling a deadly disease and poor health on top of it.  At times it seems the gods just roll their loaded dice and laugh at us.   

Perhaps the supreme case of this "curse" is John Keats, a supremely gifted nineteenth-century Romantic poet who died of consumption (tuberculosis) at the age of twenty-five.  Talk about injustice.  The guy had perhaps the greatest poetic gift since Shakespeare.  All he wanted (besides the chance to marry Fanny Brawne) was "ten years" to "overwhelm" myself "in poesy; so I may do the deed/ That my own soul has to itself decreed."

He was to have barely three years before ill health destroyed his hopes of any meaningful literary success either in this life or the next one.  The epitaph he composed for his own grave reflects his bleak expectations: "Here lies One Whose Name was writ in Water."  Yet today this very young man who did not even begin writing poetry until he had turned seventeen is regarded as one of the great poets of the English Romantic period. Fortunately, we have his masterpieces such as the "great odes," The Eve of St. Agnes, and La Belle Dame sans Merci.  Yet what might John Keats have achieved, what heights could he have attained, if he had lived to the modest age of fifty-two, as did William Shakespeare?  The Norton Anthology of English Literature states, "What he [John Keats] might have done is beyond conjecture; what we do know is that his poetry, when he stopped writing at the age of twenty-four, exceeds the accomplishment at the same age of Chaucer, Shakespeare, and Milton."

Sometimes the curse is self-inflicted and takes a most unique, unexpected turn.  Because of severe emotional problems and the repeated rejection of A Confederacy of Dunces, John Kennedy Toole committed suicide at the age of thirty-one. End of story, right?  Except that according to Walker Percy, the author's mother discovered the "badly smeared, scarcely readable carbon" manuscript of the novel, pronounced it great, and repeatedly demanded he read it, even coming to Percy's office with the book in hand. ("Foreword," A Confederacy of Dunces, Grove Press, Inc. 1981).  He grudgingly gave in, hoping to read a few pages and return the "hefty" mess, telling her it was so bad he could not "in good conscience" read any farther.

Well, the exact opposite happened, and the rest is history.  What Percy describes as "A great rumbling farce of Falstaffian dimensions" went on to knock the critics dead and was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1981. All this happened because the author killed himself and his mother believed in his book.

What can we learn from these three writers and others like them?  Basically, when we feel sorry for ourselves, we should count our blessings. While we have breath and reasonable good health, we should write, enjoy, and be thankful for our life. There are worse things than not being a commercially or critically successful writer.  Also, we should not count on good luck too much.  In addition, let's be humble and avoid the sin of pride whenever and wherever we can.  After all, just about everything except our character can be snatched away at a moment's notice.

And one last thing.  For God's sake, let's take time out to smell the flowers.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

"Killers" Receives an Editors Top Pick at Musa Publishing

I'm happy and more than a little humble to announce that my SF time travel story "Killers" has been chosen as an ETP (Editor's Top Pick) by Musa Publishing.  The announcement can be found at the publisher's site.

Celina Summers, the publisher, informed me that "Only 7 titles were selected as ETP from our catalog of 500 books, including yours."


This makes me feel awfully good, especially since a few hours later, my system crashed, wiping out my C drive completely.  There's got to be a moral in this somewhere.  Anyway, I'm deeply honored.  If you go to the link above, you'll see at the top of the page that "The ETP designation is given to books with that little extra piece of magic -- extraordinary books in every genre."  I hope my story of a fearless but love-stricken female time cop who travels into the past and meets Mozart, Socrates, and John Keats meets that vital requirement.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Welcome Susan A. Royal, MuseItUp Author

                                                * * * * *

Susan A. Royal lives in a most unusual old farmhouse (see below in her personal bio), and In My Own Shadow is her newest novel.

Talk about the worst day ever! Lara lets her friend Carrie talk her into a blind date, only it turns out the handsome stranger waiting for Lara after work isn’t Carrie’s cousin after all. And, when they’re chased through a portal to another world, Lara realizes Rhys really is out of this world. 
    Lyra, her alternate in another dimension, has left clues to the whereabouts of the Book of Secrets that explains the mystery of time travel in Lara’s subconscious.  Or so Rhys thinks. Power-hungry telepaths pursuing them will stop at nothing to get it, even if it means breaking Lara’s mind. To complicate matters, Lara gets tangled up in her feelings for Rhys while exploring her connection with Lyra.
     With Rhys as her guardian, a bear of a man named Azle to guide her, and the spirit of Lyra haunting her dreams, Lara must find the Book of Secrets before it falls into the hands of those who want its power.  Only then can she return to her world safely.

 In My Own Shadow (fantasy, adventure, romance)

Susan's first book, NOT LONG AGO, is time travel, adventure, romance, and is available at


 *** See the MOVIE TRAILER
- just click on the link below ***

                        Both books are available at MuseItUp, Amazon, B&N, Goodreads!
                        Visit Susan's sites at . . .

                                 A Conversation with Susan A. Royal
Susan, what if anything makes you unique or different as a writer?

That’s a very good question. I’d like to think I’m unique as a person, and that I have certain traits that make me stand apart from the crowd. I really don’t mind being that quirky, follow the beat of a different drummer because I'm comfortable with the kind of character I've become. The funny thing is, most writers seem to be just like that. At times my life is solitary—just me, my computer and my   music. Other times I’m more social, meeting and promoting my work, spending time with family and friends. I’m a private person and it takes me a while to decide whether or not I want to share personal things with acquaintances. Before I was published I would have said that one of the things that made me different was that I started writing so late in life, but I’ve discovered that’s simply not the case. There’s a bunch of us out there, enjoying doing things we always wanted to do, but couldn’t find the time for before our kids were grown and gone.
Has anything about the writing experience surprised, shocked, or disappointed you?

It’s been a roller coaster experience. And now I understand why it takes so long from the time a book is signed until it is on the market. It’s a hurry up and wait procedure, and I had no idea there were so many steps involved. I don’t know how other small presses operate but Muse is VERY thorough with their editing, and even though it is tedious and makes me want to never, ever read another word of whatever I’m working on again, I’m grateful for my editors’ keen eyes. I was delightfully surprised at having some input on my book cover, and after talking to other authors, I can truthfully say MuseItUp nurtures their authors by always looking for ways to showcase their work. The people there have given me much more than just the chance to see my book published.

     I’ve learned I write character driven stories. I love the idea of taking my characters, putting them in entirely different situations and seeing how they react. Another thing I’ve discovered is that secondary characters are lots of fun to write. My primary characters drive the plot, so that leaves the secondary characters the freedom to be off the wall.   

Where and how do you get your ideas?

My ideas come from anywhere and everywhere. Ideas usually come to me in the form of a scene and I’ll build around it. I might be listening to a romantic song, or watching a video. The way a particular movie portrays a character or a situation might spark an idea. My first published book, Not Long Ago, is a time travel adventure. The idea of being able to travel to another time in history and getting up close and personal with how it was has always intrigued me. That started me thinking what would happen if it happened to someone accidentally and they were sent back in time to the 1400s. How would they cope without modern conveniences?

     For my second book, In My Own Shadow, it was the idea of what would happen if an alternate reality actually existed. And not just another world, but someone in that world who is just like you. Someone who knows that you exist and uses your mind to hide something that ruthless people in her world will do anything to possess.

BIO: I live in a 100-year-old farmhouse in a small east Texas town that comes complete with a female ghost who harmonizes from time to time with my youngest son when he plays guitar.  I’ve never heard her, but at sometimes on a cold winter night, I’ve felt the covers moving across the end of the bed as though she’s making sure my feet stay warm. Sounds like a story, right? Some day…

     I’m married, with three children and four grandchildren who have been a wonderful support in my efforts to be a writer. I couldn’t have done it without them. My family is rich with characters, both past and present. I spent my childhood listening to my grandmother’s stories of living on a farm in Oklahoma Territory with three sisters and three brothers and working as a telephone operator in the early 20th century.  My father shared stories of growing up in San Antonio in the depression, and through his mother’s eyes I was able to experience how it felt to be a teenager during WWII.

     My current book, In My Own Shadow, is a Fantasy adventure/romance. My first book, Not Long Ago, is a time travel adventure/romance.Both ebooks are available through MuseItUp/Amazon/B&N.  I am currently working on the sequel to Not Long Ago, because my daughter insisted there was still more of Erin and Griffin’s story to tell. And know what? She was right.

                                                                   * * * * *