December, Illness, Gold Dreams: Monday Blog Post

Christmas at my House

Newest News:

Are you in full Christmas swing? We’ve completed the outside decorations and lit them up Saturday night, December 1st. They look good. Hubby and I brought in the boxes of Christmas indoor decorations, which also contains the front door wreath so that will be going up shortly. And Sunday it was cold and snowy, so that actually puts me in the mood.

Hubby, Mom, and Me at Halloween 2018

Mom took a turn for the worse on Thursday, falling first thing in the morning. She rested all day, then fell again near midnight, then again on Friday morning. I took her to the emergency room and they tested her for all of the things that can usually be wrong with her causing severe weakness, confusion, and memory loss. By Saturday mid-morning, nothing had been found. They released her and we were home by 11:30am. She was still very weak and confused and after talking to the doc, my siblings, and hubby, I’ve signed my mom up for hospice care. I’ll talk more about hospice another time. I know she’ll get the care she needs. She was better on Sunday, managing to be able to rise from a chair on her own and with the walker, maneuvering around the house a little. This will be an on-going tale. And I hope that you and your family don’t have to go through this. I’m conflicted, as I suppose most people are, with my decision. But in the long run, I think it the best decision.

https://conniesrandomthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/australian_gold_nugget_by_nerodesign.jpg

For the last few weeks, I’ve been posting further adventures of my western, Gold Dreams. I finished the story and sent it off to my editor. I’ll post some more episodes, just know that they’re raw and sometimes, with my editor, I make some significant changes before actual release. I hope to have this done in time to sell the books at the Black Canyon Heritage Park Winter Fest on January 26th. Black Canyon is north of Phoenix off of I17. Check it out, and if you’re in the area, stop by. I’ll have several of my other books there as well.

Next appearance is in December, the Mesa Book Festival. That’s December 8th. You can find all of the details at https://mesabookfestival.com/.

Giveaways:

The Christmas Giveaway is live! We have $120 in PayPal cash as the Grand Prize and from the individual authors, 81 books and 81 prizes. Hoo! Get in on it quickly! You can go here to check it out. https://conniesrandomthoughts.com/giveaways-and-prizes/

From December 3rd to 7th, I’m in A multi-author giveaway with prizes. Check out Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/groups/SuesBookingAgency/. Today begins a week filled with giveaways!! We will also have two author spotlights this week! Be sure to come by to make sure you’re entered….these are truly fabulous giveaways!!

 

Newsletter Sign Up:

Click here to sign up for my newsletter. I’ve put sign-up gifts on the regular and the SciFi/Fantasy and the Cozy Mystery newsletter sign-ups. That’s right. If you sign up for my newsletter you get a free story from me. Be prepared for fun and contests! Click on the video link for a short video from me. Hear what I’m working on. Join my “A” Team to be the first to read my books and hear what new books are coming.

Don’t forget to follow my blog, too. Different material goes in the blog as in the newsletter. You can share both, so spread the word!

Newest Book Release:

The Gulliver Station ebook box set released July 30th, 2018. It is finally up on all of my other retailers in ebook format. You can buy it at Amazon, Apple, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and Smashwords today. You can also see all my books on http://conniesrandomthoughts.com/my-books-and-other-published-work/. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a short, honest, review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads. It’s critical to help me promote the books to other readers. Thanks in advance.

Thank you for reading my blog. Like all of the other work I do as an author, it takes time and money. If you enjoy this Monday blog and the Friday free story and the recipe I put up on the 25th of every month, consider donating to https://www.paypal.me/ConniesRandomThought. I appreciate any donation to help support this blog.

 

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Mystery at the Reunion, National Novel Writing Month, Shout Out: Monday Blog Post

Newest News:

My cozy, Mystery at the Reunion, might be a good fit for you. The InkShares site is new to me and I’m still learning how to use it. I’ve put chapters from the story up over there as well as some alternative chapters that may bring the story even more to life. Since the story is in a contest, I can win the contest by getting people to read the story. Here’s the link. https://www.inkshares.com/books/mystery-at-the-reunion. I’d appreciate it if you’d go over and have a read. The book is open for comments, so if you like something, don’t like something, let me know!

Gulliver Station box set for Smashwords is live. I’ve included links to all of the ebook spots where I sell my books at the bottom of this page. I’m still working on the paperback version. I’m having a fight with Amazon on the cover, a technical glitch of some sort. And in the formatting, I’ve run into a weird hurdle that puts the last page of every chapter in the middle of the page. I thought I had the pagination error beat but no. That’s not working either. At any rate, you can now get it in ebook for a very nice price. Enjoy.

https://conniesrandomthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/australian_gold_nugget_by_nerodesign.jpg

National Novel Writing Month, NaNo for short, has begun and I’m over 7k into my first book, Gold Dreams. I need to finish it up, then start on my All About Bob series. Lots to do there as well.

A reminder that I’ve finished my 2019 calendar. Arizona is such a beautiful place and a calendar of pictures from central AZ fits in so well with my Jean Hays series, I really just can’t resist sharing. Now that it’s completed, you can find the calendar on Lulu. Just click on the link and purchase as many copies as you want for yourself, friends and family. Feel free to share the link, and this post!

Next appearance is in December, the Mesa Book Festival. That’s December 8th. You can find all of the details at https://mesabookfestival.com/.

Shout Out

I want to say a big hi to my author friend Anne R. Tan, also a mystery author. She’s promoting her new book, Smoldering Flames and Secrets, a Raina Sun mystery over on the Books2Read site at https://books2read.com/RainaSun7. Really! Go check it out.

Giveaways:

The 2018 Halloween giveaway is now closed. There’s $80+ as a Grand Prize Paypal cash, plus books and other prizes and as soon as I get the info, I’ll tell you who won! A Christmas one is coming out soon, so stay tuned for that.

Newsletter Sign Up:

Click here to sign up for my newsletter. I’ve put sign-up gifts on the regular and the SciFi/Fantasy and the Cozy Mystery newsletter sign-ups. That’s right. If you sign up for my newsletter you get a free story from me. Be prepared for fun and contests! Click on the video link for a short video from me. Hear what I’m working on. Join my “A” Team to be the first to read my books and hear what new books are coming.

Don’t forget to follow my blog, too. Different material goes in the blog as in the newsletter. You can share both, so spread the word!

Newest Book Release:

The Gulliver Station ebook box set released July 30th, 2018. It is finally up on all of my other retailers in ebook format. You can buy it at Amazon, Apple, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and Smashwords today. You can also see all my books on http://conniesrandomthoughts.com/my-books-and-other-published-work/. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a short, honest, review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads. It’s critical to help me promote the books to other readers. Thanks in advance.

Thank you for reading my blog. Like all of the other work I do as an author, it takes time and money. If you enjoy this Monday blog and the Friday free story and the recipe I put up on the 25th of every month, consider donating to https://www.paypal.me/ConniesRandomThought. I appreciate any donation to help support this blog.

 

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Gulliver Station Box Set, 2019 Calendar, Giveaway: Monday Blog Post

Newest News:

The Gulliver Station box set still has some sort of error that’s preventing it from being distro’d to Kobo, iBooks and other places. That’s on Smashwords. I’ve tried a couple of things to fix it but it’s a no go. Over on Amazon, I’m trying to get the box set up as a paperback. For some reason the cover size isn’t doing what I want in the application. Then in the manuscript, I can’t get the pagination right. I’m about ready to pull my hair out. Still, I may have to make some phone calls to get it all put together correction.

I mentioned last week that I have my notice to transfer all of my paperback book files from Createspace to Kindle. I didn’t get that done because of the fight with the box set. Need to do that before they do it for me.

Hiking where it’s cooler. Willow Lake outflow.

I’ve started picking pictures for my 2019 calendar. The pictures are all from right here in central Arizona. Since my Jean Hays series is set here in central AZ, it seemed only appropriate to use these pictures. All of the pics were taken by my husband, generally on our hikes around the countryside but one or two may have been take right in our yard. It was incredibly difficult to choose just one for each month. This is such a beautiful place. Once I have the calendar completed, I’ll post a link here, my newsletter, and on my website.

Giveaways:

The 2018 Authors/Bloggers Summer Giveaway is over. The list of winners was recently published and again, now that I’m home, I’ll get my winners notified and let you know who won.

The 2018 Halloween giveaway is now open and I had a chance to create all of the links. You can join in the fun at https://conniesrandomthoughts.com/giveaways-and-prizes/. There’s $80+ as a Grand Prize Paypal plus books and other prizes.

Newsletter Sign Up:

Click here to sign up for my newsletter. I’ve put sign-up gifts on the regular and the SciFi/Fantasy and the Cozy Mystery newsletter sign-ups. That’s right. If you sign up for my newsletter you get a free story from me. Be prepared for fun and contests! Click on the video link for a short video from me. Hear what I’m working on. Join my “A” Team to be the first to read my books and hear what new books are coming.

Don’t forget to follow my blog, too. Different material goes in the blog as in the newsletter. You can share both, so spread the word!

Newest Book Release:

The Gulliver Station ebook box set released July 30th, 2018. You can buy it at Amazon today. You can also see all my books on http://conniesrandomthoughts.com/my-books-and-other-published-work/. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a short, honest, review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads. It’s critical to help me promote the books to other readers. Thanks in advance.

Thank you for reading my blog. Like all of the other work I do as an author, it takes time and money. If you enjoy this Monday blog and the Friday free story and the recipe I put up on the 25th of every month, consider donating to https://www.paypal.me/ConniesRandomThought. I appreciate any donation to help support this blog.

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Happy Hour: Daily Blog Post

 

Hey!

Saturday was Happy Hour. This is a get together with a lot of other people to enjoy a pot luck, some music and dancing and a glass of wine or two. In previous years it has been held monthly but this year there just weren’t enough volunteers to do that so it was held last night and we had a ton ‘o fun. I did anyway. I’ve been looking forward to this all summer. Picture above.

I managed some work on my Gulliver Station box set on every day but Friday and Saturday and made a lot of progress. Since Saturday have finished formatting the Smashwords edition and updated the Kindle edition. Monday I uploaded both and they should be available to download now.

It’s just 1 week until the Northern Gila County Fair. I love county fairs and hope that if you’re in the area, you can come by and see the fabulous work our local ranchers, farmers, backyard gardeners and crafters do. The horse show was yesterday, the 25th. You can find out more about our fair at www.NGCFair.com.

That’s it for today! Hope your Tuesday is just fantastic!

The Gulliver Station ebook box set released July 30th, 2018. You can buy it at Amazon today. You can also see all my books on http://conniesrandomthoughts.com/my-books-and-other-published-work/. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a short, honest, review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads. It’s critical to help me promote the books to other readers. Thanks in advance.

Thank you for reading my blog. Like all of the other work I do as an author, it takes time and money. If you enjoy my Monday blog and the Friday free story and the recipe I put up on the 25th of every month, consider donating to https://www.paypal.me/ConniesRandomThought. I appreciate any donation to help support this blog.

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Other Posts, County Fair, Gulliver Station Box Set: Monday Blog Post

Home grown peaches with homemade coconut yogurt

Newest News:

I meant to post my blog titled Life Tips: https://wp.me/p6LAko-1bu, for Sunday, but somehow or other posted it Friday, with another post. No idea why I did that but there it is. Then on Saturday, I wrote and posted my monthly Chicklets in the Kitchen blog, this month on three ingredient coconut yogurt. You can check that out at: https://wp.me/p6LAko-1bz. All of that to say, I thought I wouldn’t have to write another post for Sunday, but nope. Had to write a new one on Saturday. Good thing, I cranked out words on Saturday! LOL!

The Northern Gila County Fair (Sep 6 – 8) set up is in one week. As the Director for the Exhibits (non-livestock), I start working on Tuesday, September 4th. By Thursday, when the fair opens at 5pm, I’m already exhausted. By Saturday at 9pm when the Exhibits tent closes, I’m done but still, have to show up Sunday so exhibitors can pick up their exhibits. Don’t get me wrong. I love the fair. So many people have great talents in so many areas and I certainly hope that if a visitor sees something they are interested in, they’ll contact that exhibitor or the hobby group to get involved and learn more. That’s the best thing about the fair—the chance to pass along expertise! Hope you can come; www.NGCFair.com for schedules of events and operating hours.

This week I’ll be finishing the Gulliver Box set. Sunday I finished formatting the edited version for Amazon. This week will be getting the new one up on Amazon and on Smashwords (https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/conniecockrell) then formatting the paperback version and getting it up on Createspace. Awesome! Done just before the fair. After the fair I’m editing Slave Elf and putting my new covers on the Brown Rain books. Also changing the interior files to add cute little graphics to the beginning of each chapter. That particular project should go quickly as the books are short. Wish me luck!

Giveaways:

The 2018 Authors/Bloggers Summer Giveaway is in progress at https://conniesrandomthoughts.com/giveaways-and-prizes/. There’s $80 as a Grand Prize Paypal Cash and 27 books and 27 prizes available to win.

Newsletter Sign Up:

Click here to sign up for my newsletter. I’ve put sign-up gifts on the regular and the SciFi/Fantasy and the Cozy Mystery newsletter sign-ups. That’s right. If you sign up for my newsletter you get a free story from me. Be prepared for fun and contests! Click on the video link for a short video from me. Hear what I’m working on. Join my “A” Team to be the first to read my books and hear what new books are coming.

Don’t forget to follow my blog, too. Different material goes in the blog as in the newsletter. You can share both, so spread the word!

Newest Book Release:

The Gulliver Station ebook box set released July 30th, 2018. You can buy it at Amazon today. You can also see all my books on http://conniesrandomthoughts.com/my-books-and-other-published-work/. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a short, honest, review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads. It’s critical to help me promote the books to other readers. Thanks in advance.

Thank you for reading my blog. Like all of the other work I do as an author, it takes time and money. If you enjoy this Monday blog and the Friday free story and the recipe I put up on the 25th of every month, consider donating to https://www.paypal.me/ConniesRandomThought. I appreciate any donation to help support this blog.

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Gardening, Community Notices, Gulliver Box Set: Daily Blog Post

Hey!

I meant to post this yesterday but lacked a picture so was waiting for it to arrive from a friend. Then it was dinner, then tv, then bed. Forgot all about it. Anyway, here’s yesterday’s and today’s post.

You know I like my gardening. Above and below are two pics from the garden. Above are a basket full of peaches I picked this morning. There’s still this many and more on the tree. Below is a picture from the melon patch. That’s hubby’s thumb in the picture. The little melon beside the big one are the biggest in the patch. The rest are all tiny little buds yet. The one melon plant is taking up an entire 4X4 foot garden bed and creeping over the sides and across the yard. So glad I didn’t succumb to temptation and plant anything else in that bed.

One of the things that fills the writer’s well of creativity is normal life. We do occasionally venture out of our writing caves and get some daylight. And besides, I mean, really, is there anything more useful to a writer’s characterization of a protagonist or other character than to be aware of the reactions of the people around them? Of course not.

Concurrent with that is being aware of community events. These events provide the little details that can be used in a book to make the whole story come to life.

In that vein, I want to talk about two local events that are coming up that feed that need for my own writing.

 

One is the upcoming Northern Gila County Fair. (I based some of my book, Mystery at the Fair, on my volunteer time with this fair.) This year we’re trying out a talent show. If you’re in the area, come and try out. There are still several dates available to do that. Here’s the flyer. In the meantime, mark your calendar for September 5th – 7th, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, to come and see the fair.

Then, September 15th, is the Christopher Creek Car Show. I plan on being there in a vendor booth talking to readers and selling and signing books! (Sorry, no flyer available yet.)

That’s it for today!

The Gulliver Station ebook box set released July 30th, 2018. You can buy it at Amazon today. You can also see all my books on http://conniesrandomthoughts.com/my-books-and-other-published-work/. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a short, honest, review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads. It’s critical to help me promote the books to other readers. Thanks in advance.

Thank you for reading my blog. Like all of the other work I do as an author, it takes time and money. If you enjoy this Monday blog and the Friday free story and the recipe I put up on the 25th of every month, consider donating to https://www.paypal.me/ConniesRandomThought. I appreciate any donation to help support this blog.

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Gulliver Station Box Set, Brown Rain Series, Slave Elf: Daily Blog Post

 

Hey!

So I put the Gulliver Station Box set up on Amazon Kindle and it went live, Monday morning. Of course, in my efforts to reformat the set for Smashwords, I found some errors. So, I’m going to finish reformatting for Smashwords then copy the file over to the Amazon Kindle site, to correct that file. That means you can buy it now on Amazon Kindle if you don’t mind hyphenated words not being hyphenated and other esoteric errors like that, or wait. I’ll have that file corrected by the end of the week. Then I’ll be working on the paperback version, should you be interested in that.

Then, it’ll be time for the reformatting of the first 3 Brown Rain books. I did interesting formatting in book 4, Tested, that I’d not done before and I want to bring the first 3 books up to that standard. Plus add the new covers. So there’s that.

In the meantime, I’m doing my 1st pass edits on Slave Elf. Since I have a cover, I’m thinking of putting that book up on pre-sale. To decide, I need to estimate when the edits will be done and allow time for the interior formatting. There’s the Northern Gila County Fair in September for me to consider as that’s a week-long time commitment. Lot’s to think about there.

That’s it for today!

Tested released January 31st and I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and Smashwords, today! You can also see all my books on http://conniesrandomthoughts.com/my-books-and-other-published-work/. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a short, honest, review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads. It’s critical to help me promote the books to other readers. Thanks in advance.

Thank you for reading my blog. Like all of the other work I do as an author, it takes time and money. If you enjoy this Monday blog and the Friday free story and the recipe I put up on the 25th of every month, consider donating to https://www.paypal.me/ConniesRandomThought. I appreciate any donation to help support this blog.

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Monsters in the Woods, Gulliver Station Box Set: Daily Blog Post

Hey!

I mentioned that my husband took a group of hikers out on a hike yesterday. When he got home he told me they’d heard a very weird, horrifying noise out in the woods. Here’s a video of what he recorded.  https://youtu.be/trJNvR_R-RY  What would you have done if you’d heard that noise?

 

On to other news. I’m just about done formatting the new Gulliver Station ebook box set. It’s been very tedious but you all may enjoy getting the entire series in one book, right? So it will be out soon. Above is the cover for it.

That’s it for today!

Tested released January 31st and I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and Smashwords, today! You can also see all my books on http://conniesrandomthoughts.com/my-books-and-other-published-work/. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a short, honest, review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads. It’s critical to help me promote the books to other readers. Thanks in advance.

Thank you for reading my blog. Like all of the other work I do as an author, it takes time and money. If you enjoy this Monday blog and the Friday free story and the recipe I put up on the 25th of every month, consider donating to https://www.paypal.me/ConniesRandomThought. I appreciate any donation to help support this blog.

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End of June, Tomatoes, Writing : Monday Blog Post

Tomatoes

Newest News:

Oh my gosh! It’s the last week of June already! I know I’m not the only one wondering what happened to the month. Or the year! Here in central Arizona it’s been hot, hot, hot. We’re all hoping for the monsoon rains to come.

Two of my cherry tomatoes were ripe yesterday so I picked them and ate them, right there next to the garden bed. Delish, all warm from the sun. I have a couple of little zuchini’s, too. Too small yet but I’ll have to check them daily to catch them at the perfect size. Hopefully before the chipmunk finds them. Another month and the peaches will be ripe. Love those fresh from the tree, fully ripe peaches.

Friday’s story was Haunted. Set on a spaceship, we explore a little bit of what happens when parts from a crashed ship are installed on another ship.

Giveaways:

The 2018 Authors/Bloggers Spring Giveaway at http://conniesrandomthoughts.com/giveaways-and-prizes/ has ended. The summer giveaway will begin in a week or two. As soon as the admin generates the winners, I’ll let you know.

Shout Out:

Shouting out today for Lazette Gifford. She’s just released a new book titled, Tales From Elswhere. https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/840466

When Mark killed the sheriff’s son in self-defense, he rushed to escape through the gate into Elsewhere and hide for a while. However, once through the gate, things turned worse, and it has nothing to do with what happened back in the human world.

Originally written as three flash fiction serials on my Joyously Prolific Blog, this new version has been expanded and the inconsistencies corrected.

Where Will I Be?

Check my website, http://conniesrandomthoughts.com/where-will-i-be/ for my future engagements.

This coming Saturday, the 30th, I’ll be at the Payson Farmer’s market with my books and promoting for the Book Festival. Come on down to say hi, enjoy the market and have some fun. https://www.paysonfarmersmarket.com/

My next event adventure is the Payson Book Festival. www.PaysonBookFestival.org. We’re completing the final touches and now heavily promoting the festival. It’s again at the Mazatzal Hotel and Casino ballroom. The organizer there is so wonderful to work with. At any rate, we’ll have 80 authors, entertainment, children’s story times (yep, more than one!) and of course the casino has great food in it’s restaurants. Hope to see you there.

Newsletter Sign Up:

Click here to sign up for my newsletter. I’ve put sign-up gifts on the regular and the SciFi/Fantasy and the Cozy Mystery newsletter sign-ups. That’s right. If you sign up for my newsletter you get a free story from me. Be prepared for fun and contests! Click on the video link for a short video from me. Hear what I’m working on. Join my “A” Team to be the first to read my books and hear what new books are coming.

Don’t forget to follow my blog, too. Different material goes in the blog as in the newsletter. You can share both, so spread the word!

Newest Book Release:

Tested released January 31st and I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and Smashwords, today! You can also see all my books on http://conniesrandomthoughts.com/my-books-and-other-published-work/. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a short, honest, review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads. It’s critical to help me promote the books to other readers. Thanks in advance.

Thank you for reading my blog. Like all of the other work I do as an author, it takes time and money. If you enjoy this Monday blog and the Friday free story and the recipe I put up on the 25th of every month, consider donating to https://www.paypal.me/ConniesRandomThought. I appreciate any donation to help support this blog.

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Phoenix Comic Fest, Wildlife, Writing: Monday Blog Post

Lounging

Newest News:

I’m so excited that Phoenix Comic Fest is coming up in 10 days! I spent some time Sunday getting books sorted and boxed up to take with me. Luckily, I don’t have to order anything. I also bought a red cloth wagon to carry everything. Last year I was using a luggage carrier and I had a heck of a time keeping everything on it as I moved my stuff around. The wagon is much better. I got the wagon at Walmart, this one, https://www.walmart.com/ip/Ozark-Trail-Folding-Wagon-Red/437376731, if you’re looking for something similar. It’s going to be a blast!

 

Just a reminder, Mystery at the Fair is in a book bundle called Cozy Winter Reads and has five other authors in it with me. The Bundle Rabbit link is: https://bundlerabbit.com/b/cozy-winter-reads and you can get the bundle in whatever format you’d like. I can hardly wait to read all of these new to me other authors. Hope you enjoy it. Just $7.99 for six books!

The wildlife in my yard, especially my back yard, has been very active. My hubby got a picture of one of the ground squirrels, lounging on the back fence. Then, a couple of days ago, he spotted a snake, getting a drink from the bird bath.

How, you ask? It had climbed up the rose bushes. He got a quick shot of the snake’s head from the kitchen window, backing up from the water. Then he went out and got some pics of it in the roses. Crazy!

I’m still working on It’s All About the Music. I managed to write a couple of new chapters last week. I like where this story is going. So, for fun, here’s an excerpt that may or may not make it to the final book.

The next day at lunch, Dot showed up at his table. “Mind if I sit?”

Rob didn’t know what the feeling was that shot through him. Relief? Joy? Gratefulness? Whatever it was, he was happy to see she was talking to him. “Sure.”

She sat, putting her tray of bottled water and salad in front of her. “Word is your video is almost done.”

“Yeah. Mister Barry and I saw it yesterday. They have a couple of other things to do with it, then it will be ready. I pick up my still shots today.”

“Good.” Dot opened her water and drank. “Are they making you copies?”

“Yeah.” He put his grilled cheese down on the plate. “A couple of everything. For my records, they said.” Rob picked up his sandwich and took a bite. It was nice sitting with her again. He’d missed her yesterday. “I should have the package for the admissions office out by Friday.”

Dot stirred her salad around in the bowl. “I heard that Ned is bad-mouthing you to anyone who’ll listen.”

The bite of grilled cheese Rob had just taken tasted like ashes all of a sudden. “I heard.”

“What are you going to do about it?”

Rob shook his head. “Nothing. He has a right. I did rat him out.”

Dot sighed heavily and put her fork down. “It’s best for him, you know. You too.”

Rob wiped his hands on his napkin. “I guess.”

She turned to look at him. “It is. You’ll get help. He’ll get help. It will be worth it.”

“Maybe. Maybe not. But he’s my best friend and I,” he shook his head. “I just totally narc’d on him.”

She sighed again. “It feels that way now. But you may have saved his life.”

Rob pushed his tray away to the center of the table and put his elbows on it. “Who knows.” He scrubbed his face with both hands. He’d heard about Ned all morning. It was like everyone in school was enjoying telling him every word. The snide looks, the snickering as he passed in the halls had hurt. Wait until Mr. Barry heard. That wasn’t going to be a good conversation. “What should I do about it?”

“Ask him to stop.”

Rob had to roll his eyes at that suggestion. “You don’t know Ned. He doesn’t like being told what to do. If I ask him to stop, he’ll just shout it out in the middle of the quad.”

Dot pushed her tray away and rested her head on one fist. She studied him. “So you’re just going to let him tell everyone in school about it? What about the teachers. They’re going to hear sooner or later.”

He threw his hands up. “I’ve thought of that. It’s a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. Mister Barry wrote me a letter for my admissions packet. What if he asks for it back?”

She folded her hands on the table. “Talk to Mister Barry.”

Eyes wide, Rob turned to Dot. “Are you kidding?” The very thought made his stomach clench.

She put a hand on his arm. “I’m not kidding. Get in front of the rumors. Fess up.”

Rob covered his face with both hands, fingertips pressing into his eyes. This couldn’t be happening. His hands dropped to the table, his head drooping. What a mess. All because he couldn’t keep his word to himself. He wanted a drink. Bad. “What if…” all the things that could go wrong flashed through his mind.

“What if what? That he finds out by over-hearing a bunch of kids talking about you? How’s that going to look—you hiding it? What do you think he’ll think of that?”

She’s probably right. Look at how Mom and Dad reacted to me hiding my drinking. “Fine. I see him after school. I’ll tell him then.”

“Good. You want support? I can come with you.”

He desperately wanted her to come. To know there would be someone in the room on his side. “No. That would look strange. You’ve never come before.”

Dot nodded. “Okay then. I can walk down with you though.”

A small life preserver. “Thanks. I appreciate it.”

She stood up and grabbed her tray. “Good. I’ll meet you at your locker.”

“Okay.”

“Good. See you at three.” With that she left. He watched as she took her tray to the window. She gave him a wave as she left the lunch room.

At three, he was pulling his flute out of his locker when she tapped him on the shoulder. “Ready?”

He wasn’t ready. His stomach hurt and he felt like he was walking to his execution. “I guess.” He zipped the flute into his back pack and put it on. “Let’s go.”

She strolled along beside him. He realized the top of her head only came to his shoulder. He sniffed. “Lavender.”

Dot smiled at him. “Yeah. I thought you could use a little calming.”

Rob nodded. He did need some calming. “Nice of you to think of it.”

“I figured you wouldn’t want to walk around smelling like flowers. You’ve got enough issues.”

He chuckled. “Yeah. That would be perfect. Getting beat to snot for smelling like perfume.”

At the music room, Dot stopped. “You can do this.”

Rob wiped his sweaty palms on his jeans, staring at the door. “Yeah. I can do this.”

“Good luck.”

“Thanks.” With that, he opened the door. Best to get it over with fast.

Half an hour later, he left. He was surprised to see Dot at the end of the hall. “Hey.”

“Hey. How’d it go?’

Rob took a deep breath. Held it for a moment and let it go. He’d been so nervous he could feel the sweat trickle down his back. “He was disappointed. But he told me he’d been hearing the rumors and was glad I’d come to him and told him the truth.” He stopped at a water fountain and drank. His mouth felt like old leather. He wiped his mouth with the back of his hand. “He didn’t ask for his letter of recommendation back. I’d been afraid he would.”

Dot walked with him out of the building and to the street. She handed him a piece of paper. “You get home, and you want to talk, call me.”

All Rob could do was stand and blink at her.

She waved it at him. “Take it. You can’t talk to Ned anymore. So call me.”

He reached up, slowly, and took the paper. “Uh. Thanks.” He jammed it in his pocket. I might.”

She smiled. “Good. I go this way. Take care.”

He nodded as she walked away. Rob watched her until she got to the corner and lost sight of her behind a building. He turned and headed home, grinning. She was helping him. He didn’t even have to ask for her number. That was good, right? At home he grabbed a quick sandwich and a glass of milk and headed to his room. He ate quickly and turned on his keyboard. Happy tunes made his fingers dance across the keyboard. Maybe everything didn’t suck after all.

Giveaways:

The 2018 Authors/Bloggers Spring Giveaway at http://conniesrandomthoughts.com/giveaways-and-prizes/ has started. So many free books and prizes, you’ll be amazed. Click the link to get to the Rafflecopter.

Shout Out:

Shout out to my friend C.A. Asbrey. She’s getting ready to release Innocent as Sin, book 2 in her Innocents Mysteries series. Like mysteries? This is a western, historical mystery set in Wyoming. It’s a page turner, I tell you. Want to know more? She can be found at:

Blog – C.A Asbrey – all things obscure and strange in the Victorian period http://caasbrey.com/

The Innocents Mystery Series Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/937572179738970/

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/mysteryscrivener/

Amazon – https://www.amazon.com/author/caasbrey

Twitter – https://twitter.com/CAASBREY

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17899618.C_A_Asbrey

Link to https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07BMHFXSJ/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_ep_dp_wTSSAb8J40Q9H

 

Where Will I Be?

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