Posts Tagged ‘Sandy Hook’

Thank you…

Wednesday, December 26th, 2012

My family and I wish you and yours a wonderful holiday week.

christmas vintage

And I wanted to say a special thank you to all who’ve supported Christmas on Mimosa Lane’s release. My first women’s fiction/contemporary romance hybrid was quite a risk to take. My emotional, angsty voice is something you dig, or you really REALLY don’t. Going with Montlake and their primarily digital plans for the book was a scary shift in publishing paths, too. But to all my readers and fans I wanted to say, OMG, your response to the book has been overwhelming. I couldn’t be more blown away.

COML Front 240x360

At the time of this blog post, COML has 69 Five Star reviews, is still the #1 Family Saga on Amazon, and has sold more than 40,000 copies in just two months!

What can I say, except that you guys ROCK!

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart for embracing this special book and the series I’ve been lucky enough to begin at Montlake. Now, I’m off to finish Book Two, aiming for a late Summer/early Fall release ;o)

Here’s to an exciting 2013!

Holidays and Healing: “Unable are the Loved to die…”

Tuesday, December 18th, 2012

“Unable are the Loved to die, for Love is Immortality…” ~~ Emily Dickinson

When you write a Christmas book about loss and grief and recovery…and love, you’re walking a tricky path full of obsticals and blind paths and possible pitfalls you can’t see coming.

It’s kind of like navigating the holidays while you’re missing loved ones or dealing with the emptiness that’s left behind when someone who should still be here is gone from your life for good. Except that the holidays are all about hope and healing and believing in a better tomorrow, regardless of what’s troubling you today, so I guess that’s why I tackled such deep and personal subject matter and characters in my first ever holiday story.

hope etching bird

It’s too easy to focus on only the loss of someone.

It’s too easy to ignore it entirely.

What’s harder is remembering and loving and wanting them here still, once they’re gone, and believing that what’s best about them is still with us.

It can be nearly impossible this time of year to feel hopeful that a lost love’s future in our lives is still possible. But it is. And if we give ourselves a chance to believe that, what a bright and ever-expanding future that can become.


The loved ones we’ve lost, no matter how painful their passing, are immortal. They’re forever  part of who they’re helping us to become.

We honor them by remembering and hoping during the holidays and beyond, even when some memories may at first be too painful to process. (more…)

Safety… What defines yours: hope or fear?

Monday, December 17th, 2012

Be honest, had been Mallory’s wise advise–a woman who hadn’t felt safe enough to be honest about who she really was with anyone in their community, no matter how much she clearly wanted to belong in their world.

Safety, he’d learned from both his job and the last six months as a single father, wasn’t something you waited to come to you. You had to make your own safety happen…

~~ Pete Lombard, Christmas on Mimosa Lane

It’s an interesting paradox–the interplay between what makes us feel safe and what challenges us to step outside our comfortable lives.

No one in this country is really feeling comfortable today, I wager, so it seems like the perfect time to tackle this reader guide question for Christmas on Mimosa Lane. Because this book ( all my books, really) is about feeling safe and feeling like you belong and finding the community and family and personal confidence you need to keep that feeling, no matter what happens.


But here’s the thing. We are our own safety. How we see the world and the past and the danger we perceive and what’s really there, that’s a choice. We can be tied to what’s damaged in us, or we can focus on what we choose to become despite what’s broken. It’s entirely up to us. We can be afraid or we can be be fearless, regardless of any other variable, no matter how tragic.

Fearlessness isn’t stupidity or naivete, mind you. Pretending we don’t have a problem is another kind of fear. In fact, it’s the worst kind. It’s how we’re guaranteed never to move forward. So that’s another choice we make to say we only deserve the brokenness that scares us.

We are the only change we can control.

we are our own safety

Not the outcome. Not the threats. Not the determined evil that will find us if it truly wants to, no matter how hard we fight or how much we prepare. But what we chose to make our future about–the next minute, day, week, year, decade of our lives–that’s our victory or our failure. It’s all that we are, a series of determined realities, a perspective that says we either hope or we fear.

Hope or fear?

Which will control you?

Which do you suppose ends up controlling my COML characters? ;o)

The end of the innocence. The beginning of healing.

Saturday, December 15th, 2012

Our nation’s at a crossroads, where we must stop not looking at what is difficult and deadly, we must begin grieving again, and then we must heal ourselves by doing whatever is needed, no matter what it takes, to prevent future pain. Denial is part of the healing process. It comes after shock, as we process our grief. Next: anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. If left unchecked, denial can lead to unspeakable consequences.


For too long, we’ve allowed ourselves to stay stuck in denial, which gets us nowhere except to 20 children and 6 faculty slaughtered yesterday before morning snack break. For too long, we haven’t wanted our country to go through the growing pains of anger, bargaining and depression required to accept the challenge before us and the laws that must be changed in order to stop this. Whatever laws must be changed. Whomever has to compromise in order for that to happen.

We must reach a place where our children and teachers and heroes and families are safe, and where our mentally ill are properly diagnosed, cared for and, yes, contained, if they’re deemed a threat to society. Otherwise, we’re doing this to ourselves and our loved ones and neighbors, and we’re saying that’s okay. It’s worth the sacrifice, as long as we don’t have to look to hard or work to hard or face what we don’t want to.

guilt images

A common complaint about my fiction writing is that, though I’m a generally happy and entertaining person, my stories are heavy, my characters are flawed, and my plots are neither light nor easy to digest–no matter the happy ending a reader gets to enjoy once I’m through with them.

Yes, I ask my characters and readers to move past the easier issues and see the anger, bargaining and depression that is human nature when the hard stuff comes. I ask this of myself and my own family every day: that we process the difficult things instead of looking away; that we strive for acceptance and refuse to submit until we’ve arrived there.

This won’t be an easy journey. This path will take everyday heroes to complete. Just like my characters, my family, my readers and you are all capable of being either heroes or blind, passive, in denial quitters.

We cannot stay innocent and ignorant of the reality we’ve created in this country, where a madman with four guns and a burning need to kill children can smash through a window and a security system and destroy until his heart’s content and only stop when a SWAT team responds and corners him.

We cannot ignore the epeidemic of mental illness in this country that isn’t being dealt with because insurance companies aren’t required to fund treatment.

We cannot allow guns to be purchased in mass and not tracked and their use not curtailed in any way, because we’re so afraid and in such shock and denial and are bargaining for our our own personal security at the expense of innocent lives who cannot speak for themselves and shout their worth to us.

Can you hear the children screaming that they are worth more than our unrestricted freedoms and or corporate profits, and that they deserve to live longer than our carelessness, and that they would still be here if we’d accepted the job before us sooner…after the last public massacre?

I can.

Can you?


This is the end of the blind innocence that led us here. This is the beginning of the pain and the healing. This is the hope that gets me through and helps me process and shows me a way forward. This my challenge to you.