Gardening, One Problem after Another, Masks, Poetry, Giveaways: Monday Blog Post

Newest News:

Sunday I spent some time in the yard, enjoying the sunshine and warm weather. I watered the two flower pots out front that have pansies in them. They’ve been there five days and the javelina haven’t found them yet. They like to snack on the flowers, pulling them up by the roots, eating the flower part and spreading root balls and dirt in all directions. So far so good. I also watered my lavender and my fruit trees. A good long soak to get deep to the roots. Then, my biggest challenge was to repot my jade plant. I’d put it in a pretty but narrow necked jar two years ago and it was definitely looking like it needed repotting. The problem was to get it out of the jar. It wasn’t easy. I soaked the root ball and slid my hand down into the jar and around the root ball to break it up. With a lot of effort, I got it out but minus the lower third of the roots. I repotted it in a wide mouth pot this time and watered it well. Cross your fingers for it to survive the abuse.

Problems. If you own a house or the appliances and furniture in your apartment, you eventually end up with issues. Since Friday my poor husband has had to fix a number of things. First was the ice maker in the refrigerator. True, having an ice maker quit isn’t exactly an earth-shattering problem but I use my ice maker all the time. So, after tinkering with it, then dumping out all the ice into a container to use as needed, then tinkering some more. He fixed it. At the time we both decided the ice maker was broken, all I could see was a giant repair bill. We’d had a repairman come to the house once before for a previous fridge. Hundreds of dollars later, it was fixed. Thank goodness we didn’t have that this time. If a repair person would come out in the middle of a shut down anyway. Second was the Prius. Hubby got in it early Sunday morning to make our grocery run. It wouldn’t start. That’s never a good start to the day. Anyway, he took the second car and when he got home, spent some time with the owner’s manual to try and figure it out. Turns out the 2nd battery, the one that starts the car, was dead. He managed to find a new battery at a local car parts store and got it fixed. Disaster averted, but it wasn’t cheap. New batteries for Prius’ are expensive.

Hubby asked me to make him a mask to wear out in public. So Friday and Saturday I did. It took me three hours to make two camo masks, one for my husband and one for my daughter’s room mate. The next day, I made two more, one for me and one for my daughter. The second time around it went a lot faster. These pleated masks have a pocket to put a filter in them. My sister-in-law, the nurse, told me about these and she uses the best hepa furnace filters she can find to put in the pocket. So, anyway, they’re done.

April is National Poetry month and I’ve been writing a new poem daily with a group on Facebook. If you’d like a quick getaway, I also post the poems on my Facebook page, They’re a quick read and sometimes fun, sometimes thoughtful. You’d like to join in the poetry writing fun? Check out Tell Stephanie I invited you!

The St. Patrick’s Day giveaway is done. I’ll post my winners as soon as I get them.

See below for cancellations and changed dates for my appearances.

Stay safe. Stay well.


The spring giveaway, Spring Flings and Book Things, is now open. You can get to it here, on my Giveaways page. As soon as the winners are announced for the St. Patrick’s giveaway, I’ll let you know.

Where will I Be?

Pine Library, 6124 W. Randall Place, Pine AZ, Friends of the Library meeting, April 27th at 1pm. This event hasn’t been officially cancelled though the library is closed through April. If anything changes, I’ll let you know.

Payson Book Festival, July 18th at the Mazatzal Hotel and Casino, Payson AZ. This event hasn’t been cancelled yet. I’ll keep you posted.

CokoCon 2020, September 4 – 7th, DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Phoenix Tempe, 2100 S Tempe, AZ. This event hasn’t been cancelled yet. I’ll keep you posted.

Phoenix Fan Fusion, September 25th – 27th. This event has been postponed until the end of September. Note that the event is a day shorter, starting on Friday rather than Thursday. For people who have special Thursday passes and other special tickets, check out the Fan Fusion website for details on how those will be handled.

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.

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Newest Releases:

Gold Dreams released May 13th, 2019. It is up on AmazonAppleBarnes and NobleKobo, (Direct link doesn’t work, copy the URL and paste it into your browser, or go directly to and search for Gold Dreams, Connie Cockrell), and Smashwords. The print version is available on Amazon. You can also see all my books on If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a short, honest, review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads or BookBub. Your review is 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 I appreciate any donation to help support this blog.

Indie Books Pulled from Vendor Sites

To my non-writer friends, family and fans, some news to explain why you can’t find my books on sites like Amazon, Barnes and Noble and other sites.

A huge world wide kerfuffle is going on with indie books. It began in Britain with a newspaper pointing out that a British book distributor wasn’t putting a gate between adult listings and book listings for children. Because the story was picked up by major media outlets, the distributors world wide have pulled all indie titles from the bookshelves.  For a more complete story on what’s going on, check out this blog:

Here’s what it means for me. I have my books on Amazon, Kobo, Barnes and Noble and other distribution sites. All of them are handling the situation differently. Some have blocked all indie titles, even if they don’t have any sex in them. Some pull the books, put them back up, only to pull them again. It’s confusing for readers and extremely aggravating for authors like me who are trying to sell our stories.

This will eventually work itself out. Please bear with the process and don’t give up on finding my stories. Keep trying. I just released a Halloween book (Halloween Tales) and am working on getting a Christmas collection out by the end of November. I love being an independently published author. It allows me the freedom to experiment with different genre’s and be in control of my story in ways I wouldn’t if I were traditionally published.

Hang in there if you can’t find my books on your favorite book retailer right now. They’ll be back soon.

I’ve Been Hijacked

Today it was my turn.

While I was on the computer looking at my other email account and checking out blogs, my email account was hijacked. I couldn’t get into my own email. I couldn’t get it to reset because they had changed the password on me. They also built a new email to report trouble on the one they just hacked. How thoughtful.

So I’ve spent the better part of today abandoning my yahoo account, rebuilding email address groups, emailing/posting/calling people to let them know I was hijacked and to change their passwords.

I’m exhausted.

On the other hand, I’ve talked to people I haven’t spoken to in person in months or in some cases years.

My brother is recommending an account on the site. Maybe I’ll check it out.

It’s going to be a long couple of days.