Importance of Community: Civic

IMG_0190Do I have a civic duty to my country, my state, my local community? I think I do. As a teacher in the public school system, I see part of my job is to help the students become valuable citizens. As a civilian, there are many ways to volunteer to better the community. That can take the form of a few hours or a major commitment of years.

Through the years, I’ve been a part of many civic endeavors. One of my favorites was the building of Kid’s Towne in Clinton, Mississippi. The community came together with funds, skills, ideas and sweat to make the dream of a creative, safe, fun area for our children. I can still see the joy on the faces of the kids and adults when the plan became reality.

Many other projects centered around libraries, gazebos, civic centers, neighborhood gardens, Lion’s Club, Rotary Club, museums, United Way, hospital drives, fundraisers of all kinds. The time I give freely means the most to me. I want my community to thrive.

IMG_6006The desire to be good, productive citizens spans the centuries. There’s a part of the human soul that wants peace, camaraderie, and beauty. Sometimes the cost is great, as in time of war. In my Revolutionary Faith series, the citizens of Charles Town, South Carolina in the 1770s joined groups like the Sons of Liberty, the Daughters of Liberty, and even the South Carolina militia. The other projects such as the theater, music hall, museum, college, and library, though important, took a second seat to the war.

Hold me Close front (1)Oh, the decisions they had to make.  Here is a brief conversation between Louis and Elizabeth from Hold Me Close.

Louis: “I’m here for you when you need to talk—as a neutral party, of course. I don’t know about the future of this town or the colonies, but I do know I would like to be your friend.”

Elizabeth: “I do need a fried. I’ll try not to grumble too mush. I know where you stand—a Frenchman with no involvement or attachment to any place or people.”

Can we really live like that? Not for long. I believe in the importance of civic duty in the community.

Hold Me Close–Amazon

What do you enjoy about local civic involvement?

Sale–Hold Me Close eBook!

Hold Me Close ebook saleHey readers! I am so exited about this great news. My book Hold Me Close, Book One in the Revolutionary Faith series, is being featured in the International BookBub email blast. This means the book is just $.99 from September 26-30. If you have friends outside the US who you think would enjoy a fictional account of why the American colonies chose to break from England, please share this with them! It’s a rare price reduction, and I wouldn’t want anyone to miss out!

Oh, more great news! At the same time to celebrate this exciting sale, Hold Me Close is also available for our US readers for just $.99. How awesome is that? If you’ve wanted to read this book, now is your chance.

Purchase Hold Me Close here!

Please share with your friends over the next few days. Offer ends after September 30.

I would love for you to leave a review of Hold Me Close on Amazon.

Happy Reading my friends……

Beginnings…

IMG_0185Joy comes in the morning. Psalm 30:5

I love the morning, a new beginning. I cherish my front porch time to study and read. To muse. To relax. Beginning are exciting and full of anticipation, whether for a new, full day or an adventure with family, friends, career, or mission. I do admit it is nice to arrive at the middle and see the end and then to complete a task and say well done. But the beginning always has such potential and so many challenging, unanswered questions.

IMG_0186My most recent beginning was the beginning of summer–I’m a teacher. Need I say more? Eight weeks to regroup, renew, rest, and rev up for a new year. Now I’ve seen what I accomplished and set my eyes on the finish line which turns into another beginning.

Another place I love beginnings is with a novel. The beginning leaves me with 300 pages to figure out the answers, to meditate on the circumstances, to fall in love with the characters, and to soak up new knowledge.

Hold me Close front (1)Here is the beginning of my novel Hold Me Close (Hold Me Close link) in the Revolutionary Faith Series, Book One:

Charles Town, South Carolina

September 1772

Louis Lestarjette stepped off the ramp onto dry land after weeks on the Sainte Claire. A line of carriages awaited weary travelers on the other side of the dusty boulevard. But none were waiting for Louis. With his luggage stored for the day at the dock, he set out with an address in hand. As he headed down Bay Street toward Church Street, he tried to adjust his legs from the rolling ship’s deck to dry land.

He was here. After five weeks and four thousand miles, he wanted to believe success lurked around the corner.

Turning onto Tradd Street, Louis breathed in the humid air of Charles Town. He walked for several blocks at a brisk pace, looking to his left and right. Finally, he spotted Wilson’s Mercantile. Welcome or unwelcome, he had finally reached his destination. Nothing he had seen looked familiar or even remotely similar to Paris. Even the tree-lined streets with mansions hiding private gardens paled in comparison to his homeland…

Talk about a beginning: a new country, a new job, an unknown environment. I don’t quite want that dramatic beginning, although I have moved before, taken a new job, started over without friends in a new city. Exciting and scary…

Do you have a new beginning story? 

 

Hold Me Close plus a Giveaway

Promo 3 Hold Me CloseWe all have a lot going on this month. I hope you can find some time to relax and pick up a book. I have a suggestion–Hold Me Close. With the release of Bring Me Near is a few weeks, now might be the time to read Book One in the Revolutionary Faith series. The journey in 1772 Charles Town, South Carolina is an adventure that poses many questions about loyalty, comfort, conformity, dreams, and hopes. Order your copy today and begin the journey with Louis Lestarjette and Elizabeth Elliott.

Opening paragraph:

Louis Lestarjette stepped off the ramp onto dry land after weeks on the Sainte Claire. A line of carriages awaited weary travelers on the other side of the dusty boulevard. But none were waiting for Louis. With his luggage stored for the day at the dock, he set out with an address in hand. As he headed down Bay Street toward Church Street, he tried to adjust his legs from the rolling ship’s deck to dry land.

Hold me Close front (1)

Also, I have a giveaway opportunity on Goodreads. Enter for your chance to win one of five print copies of Hold Me Close. If you know someone who might like the book, please share the giveaway and my website.

Hold Me Close Giveaway Hold me Close front (1)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Have you read Hold Me Close?

Have a great weekend!

 

 

What’s in a Cover?

Do you buy a book because of the cover? Or does it influence you only a little bit? I love covers, but all book covers do not have to have the same style for me to like them or to buy them. Here are the latest two covers for my Revolutionary Faith books. The cover artist is Roseanna White. I think she does an awesome job bringing my heroine to life. What do you think?

Of course, I am going to admire my own covers! Yet, there are so many more than I can study and appreciate for their own beauty. I do like an idea of what the author wants to portray about the heroine or the hero, as in Keely Brooke Keith’s Uncharted series or Tamara Leigh in her Middle Ages novels. The colors, costumes, houses, flowers, hair styles all draw me to participate in a visual image. Also, I can formulate my own picture through the author’s words.

Here are two other favorites: one takes me into the fairy tale world in Melanie Dickerson’s The Orphan’s Wish and another into the 2nd century in Lynne Gentry’s Healer of Carthage. In both I obtain a glimpse of the foreign worlds and times.

Does the cover have to be a photograph or realistic drawing with a person or people for you to enjoy the cover? Not for me. An example is Kristy Cambron’s Lost Castle novel with a view from an old stone window. Diana Gabaldon’s early covers for her Outlander series did not have the photo of Jaime on the cover for them to sell. I would buy anything by her no matter what was on the cover.

Other books, especially older ones or ones focused on an image the reader would conjure in his/her imagination, include Jane Austen’s novels and C.S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia.

I love a nice aesthetic cover, but the words are what truly mesmerizes me.

What do you like to see in a cover?

 

 

Hold Me Close 2nd Edition!

Hold me Close front (1)I’m so excited about the 2nd edition release of my book Hold Me Close with a new publisher, Celebrate Lit Publishing. This has been a long process to take this novel on a new journey. The cover is so beautiful–a creation by Roseanna White.  I’ve rewritten and edited this edition in order to smooth out any wrinkles from the first edition.

img_6217.jpgJust in time for Christmas! If you have read Hold Me Close, you might consider giving this novel as a Christmas gift. In December you can find it on Amazon, Celebrate Lit Publishing, or order an autographed copy from me. Please contact me on my website or message me on Facebook for any additional information. I’m waiting for exact dates of the release for the print edition. I’ll send a link later when available. The eBook is available at Amazon on December 4–preorders now. Amazon eBook Hold Me Close . 

img_6218.jpgSurround Me, Book Two of the Revolutionary Faith Series, will release in January 2019. And finally, for those of you who have patiently been waiting, Book Three, Bring Me Near releases in February 2019.

Please share this information with your friends and family.

Merry Christmas (early)!