Energy and persistence conquer all things.

I don’t know who penned this quote, but it is so true. My daughter sent it to me. She is such an inspiration, not just to me but to all her friends. The quote reminds me that the power to create the life I desire is in my hands. I just have to do the work and persevere, because in time all things are possible. So keep dreaming, and most importantly, work hard to transform the fantasies in your head into realities.

 
You can do.
I believe in you.
Believe in yourself.

 
And remember you are not alone on your journey. My interpretation of the NASA photo below is that each person is part of a million little lights shining in one beautiful world. It is an image of India's Diwali lights from space.

 
 



We have always had dogs, ever since I was a child and then as soon as I moved out. We've had seven dogs so far. But, a few of them have stood out for something unusual and special. King was one of them.

I will never forget the first day I saw him. He was so sad. With a broken toe on his left front paw, he limped in and approached me. I was sitting on the floor and Chris brought him into my apartment.
He looked at me intensely, his eyes told a story. He had lost his beloved owner and been left outside for quite a while. I don't know what he ate or if he had water, but the first thing he wanted was love.
He laid his big head in my lap and my other female dog lay next to him. As if she understood.

I hugged him and gave him the attention he craved. He turned out to be one of the smartest, loving and most loyal dogs I have ever know. We took the dogs everywhere. Dustin and King were loved by everyone. They were so well trained they could walk down a major highway and stay at your side without a leash. King he was extra special. He could read people. He understood things a dog doesn't usually understand.

One day I had to take them both to the veterinarian for their yearly shots. As I pulled into the lot
I noticed only one other car there. A lady was exiting her car and had the back door open. When I let them out, King pulled out of my hand and ran over to the woman. I didn't expect it and was kinda shocked. He ran to the car, about fifteen or so feet from me. I noticed something on the ground as the woman grabbed her purse. All I could see was King grabbing onto what I realized was a toddler!
He had him by the rear end and it appeared he was dragging him.


I screamed his name and he ignored me. I screamed it louder and the woman yelled to leave him alone. So I thought King was actually hurting a child. I couldn't believe my eyes. I ran over and got to the other side of the car as King dropped his package. The woman ran and picked up her small child, she was crying and thanking me. Thanking me? She pointed to a ledge by the back of her car. There was a ten foot drop into a pool of water, and the fence around it was gone. Apparently, King had seen the child and ran over to pull him from the edge. His mother hadn't known the toddler climbed out.
She didn't now there was a drop off. All she knew was that my King, had saved her child. She offered to pay me, and then she wanted to buy him. I told her he was a family member and not ever for sale. She reported it to the local newspaper and they gave him an award.
Most valuable dog. Which I already knew he was.

That was how he was. He truly earned his name...






Sometimes we forget and others we don't let ourselves remember

Folks, I scheduled two blogs and managed to forget them. I missed the blog I scheduled somewhere else on Mama's birthday and one here on Daddy's birthday. How could I have forgotten?

Well, for one thing I have been working hard to get an anthology edited. Yes, that's the reason. Or is it?

Maybe the reason is that I have been editing for clients and reformatting a book to send to my editor. Sure, that's the reason. Editing takes concentration and changing every indent on my 100,000 word manuscript takes time and no brainer work. Or is that the real reason?

Something tells me I'm not ready to write about my parents without washing the keyboard with tears. Daddy's passing  I could handle, because it was a blessing. Mama's was unexpected. Maybe 13 years isn't enough for me to gain perspective without tears.  But I know they would be proud of my work as a writer and an editor.

Good news! The Gilded Dragonfly Books launch publication is almost here!  We will be signing copies of Carousel Déjà Vu Saturday at Peerless Books in Alpharetta, GA at 7 pm.

Jackson Nighttraveller invites special folks to experience the magic of a ride on his carousel in the north Georgia amusement park, Dancing Dragonfly. Nine stories tell what can happen if a rider catches the magic brass ring.

See my invite at www.MaryMarvella.com.
Check out our blog at www.gildeddragonflybooks.wordpress.com

I suspect my parents, Mary Elizabeth McKeown Overby and James Claude Overby,  will be there watching over me!



   

SAD? Not me.

Posted by Autumn Jordon | 11:57 AM | 15 comments »

Let’s dance. January and February are depressing months for many. Some of you might begin to cry cabin-fever as soon as the ball drops in Times Square. Why is that? If you’re one of the millions who suffers each year from SAD or cabin-fever would you love to not suffer?

I love winter. I’m not one to suffer from SAD or cabin-fever, but my body does slow down and the mind seems to say, “Okay, if you’re not going to move, I might as well rest too.” I didn’t want that to happen to me this year. I’ve set some pretty aggressive goals for 2013, which is going to be a busy, so I decided before the old year was waving Tata to get myself primed for the coldest months of the year here in the NE USA.

I began to dance in the morning as a form of exercise. I love to dance. My husband not so much. So, the minute my feet hit the floor, I’m struttin’ my stuff to any beat I want. Doing this, my energy level has soared. If you don’t believe me that dancing can do this, here are some articles verifying the benefits of shaling your booty. Check them out.

http://www.aarp.org/health/fitness/get_motivated/lets_dance_to_health.html

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/belly-dancing/AN01491

Another great thing about dancing, you don’t need a video or a special piece of equipment. Just crank up the music and dance. Dance in the sunlight. Dance your way through January and February and into spring.

Another thing I've done, just recently, is to plant vegetable and flower seeds. Yes, it might seem early but they do take time to grow to size that you can transplant. Doing something to prepare for spring really does left the spirits.

Do you have a way to fend off SAD or cabin fever you’d like to share? Or have you seen another article on dancing for health? If so, please share the link.

There is a whole lot of dancing going on in the Texas town of Mule Post. OBSESSED BY WILDIRE will make you chuckle and just have a darn good time.
Available on AMAZON.

Forget Valentines Day, It's First Sale Day!

Posted by Scarlet Pumpernickel | 12:37 AM | 12 comments »

It's Valentines day and everyone's mind will go to romance and love and flowers, you know, the mushy stuff. Not me, not this year!

Let me tell you why. I opened my email yesterday and there was a message from an editor. My fingers literally trembled as I opened that message. You see, I've been at this a long, long time and I know that a rapid response from an editor usually bodes ill.

Not this time! The world is cheerful, the birds are singing, and all is right with my world for the moment. My editor, yes, I can now say that! My editor's message was short and to the point. Acceptance of my romantic suspense manuscript, A Matter of Trust. He would be sending a new authors package and contract.

Oh joy! Author! Not writer, but author. I expected to have to wait for at least a few days for the promised contract, but no. Moments later the promised new author welcome packet arrived. When I opened it later, once I arrived home from work, I realized that not only did it contain the promised packet, but my contract.

I immediately took to texting my DH and children, my critique partner, and anyone else I could think of! Success is sweet. This was an over night wonder type of deal. I'd submitted the 19th of January, received a positive response February 8th and a promise of being kicked upstairs for final approval. I told myself to relax this could take weeks or months. But five days later they offered the contract.

Overnight success! It's been a long night though. I submitted my first manuscript in 1984. It was typed on an electric typewriter using carbon paper. For those of you too young to remember, that is a primitive  torture process that is better forgotten.

If you have a dream, follow it, stay the course, believe in yourself and your dream. Hang in there and refuse to give up. If you do, you too can be an overnight success.

Happy Valentines Day or first sale day!


herb garden"The intense perfumes of the wild herbs as we trod them underfoot made us feel almost drunk."  ~Jacqueline du Pre
"More in the garden grows , than the witch knows."
"Sell your coat and buy betony."
"No ear hath heard no tongue can tell, The virtue of the pimpernel"
"Treoil , vervain , st. John’s wort dill
Hinder Witches of all their will."
English country garden flowers and herbs“The air was fragrant with a thousand trodden aromatic herbs, with fields of lavender, and with the brightest roses blushing in tufts all over the meadows…” ~William Cullen Bryant
“Here’s flowers for you; Hot lavender, mints, savoury, marjoram; The marigold, that goes to bed wi’ the sun, And with him rises weeping…”~William Shakespeare, 1611.
"Sow fennel , Sow sorrow ."
"And because the Breath of Flowers is farre Sweeter in the Aire (where it comes and Gose, like the Warbling of Musick) than in the hand, therefore nothing is more fit for delight, than to know what be the Flowers and the Plants that doe best perfume the Aire." ~ Francis Bacon, 1625.
"Plant your sage and rue together,
The sage will grow in any weather ."
"Snakes will not go  Where geraniums grow."
Formal Garden, Flower Bed, Old Ruin, Gothic Style, Monastery, Abbey,  Church, herbs"My gardens sweet, enclosed with walles strong, embarked with benches to sytt and take my rest. The Knotts so enknotted, it cannot be exprest. With arbours and alys so pleasant and so dulce, the pestylant ayers with flavours to repulse." ~Thomas Cavendish, 1532.
"Where the yarrow grows , there is one who knows."
"If ye would herbal magic make
Be sure the spell in rhyme be spake."
herb garden with chair"Woe to the lad  without a rowan tree-god."
"The fair maid who , the first of May
Goes to the fields at break of day
And washes in dew from the hawthorn tree ,
Will ever after handsome be."
"St. John’s wort and cyclamen in your bed-chambers keep , From evil spells and witcheries , To guard you in your sleep ."
"I borage , give courage ."
“Good morrow, good Yarrow, good morrow to thee. Send me this night my true love to see, The clothes that he’ll wear, the colour of his hair. And if he’ll wed me…”  ~Danaher, 1756.
"When daisies pied and violets blue, and lady-smocks all silver white. And Cuckoo-buds of yellow hue, do paint the meadows with delight." ~William Shakespeare, 1595.
"Rowan tree and red-thread
Put the witches to their speed."
“Much Virtue in Herbs, little in Men.”
Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790) Poor Richard’s Almanac
"Faerie-Folks , Are in old oaks ."
***I'm teaching an Herbal Lore Workshop, actually, several this year. The first is with Savvy Authors from Mar 11, 2013 - Apr 7, 2013. For more information and to register for the workshop click:  Herbal Lore and the Historic Medicinal Uses of Herbs


I'm still happy dancing that my dark fantasy, Gemini Rising, won first place in Mainstream Novel in the 2012 P&E Poll.

Gemini Rising is available on Amazon and on other sites including the publisher's web site, Double Dragon Publishing.  http://www.double-dragon-ebooks.com/single.php?ISBN=1-55404-978-4

An excerpt:


Rory rushed him, grabbing his shirt, his fist drawn back to strike.  The horses snorted, hooves scrambling on cobbles.  Aiden Alastair strode into the barn hall, assessing the situation at a glance.

“By all that’s holy,” Aiden shouted, “have you both taken leave of your senses?”

Rory freed Alain with a little shove.  “I’m rearranging your son’s pretty face.  You’ve said Alain is too pretty for his own good.”

The old, familiar humiliation and pain twisted in Alain, but he squared his shoulders, and with blood on his mouth, faced his father.

Rory’s lips curled in a mocking smile.  “I was just trying to help you out, Lord Alastair.”  He gave the title hateful emphasis.

Alastair crossed his arms, glaring at his son-in-law.  “You’re my daughter’s husband and as such this is your home, but I won’t tolerate fighting beneath my roof.”

Rory hung his head, looked down, said nothing.  His rigid posture sagged.

Father’s eyes found Alain.  His expression altered from angry to hurt.  “I would have expected more of you.  Did you start this?”

Of course, his father had jumped to the conclusion that Alain was to blame.  He was always ready to believe the worst about him.  He could tune them out, suppress his feelings and stoically endure.  But not this time.  Damage, like love and hate, came in degrees.  All his life Alain had suffered at this man’s clumsy hand.  He arched an eyebrow.

Rory’s gaze lifted to Alain’s face.  He gasped, “Don’t.”

“You’ve always been disappointed in me, Father.”  The chill in his voice bled into his limbs.  “But frankly, I don’t give a damn.  Never have.  Never will.”

Splotches of anger dotted Father’s face.  “How dare you say that to me?  You’re a damned fine excuse for a son.  If I could, I’d pass the title to Rory.”

The painful attack knocked the wind out of Alain.  To be told he meant less to his father than another man hurt.  He hadn’t believed Father had the power to break his heart.  He collapsed on the wooden bench beside the bridles and stared at the old oriental carpet he used for polishing Spirit’s hooves.  Suddenly, he hated the wealth surrounding him.

“Aiden.”  Mother strode down the aisle, seized her husband’s arm and shook him.  “I overheard.  How could you be so cruel?”

“It’s all right, Mother.”  Alain climbed to his feet.  “It’s no surprise.”

“No, it isn’t all right.”  Mother glared into Father’s eyes.  “You were angry.  You didn’t mean what you said.  Tell him, Aiden.”

Alain unsaddled Prospero, led him into his stall and slid the leather halter off his beautiful head.  Father remained silent as he repeated the performance with Spirit.  The pain hit him like a lightning strike.  His solar plexus blazed into an aching knot.  Clutching the apex of his ribs, he staggered against the door.

Light from the world outside framed Nye.  The old man gazed at Alain as if he was the only person in the hallway.  “Alina.”

At the sound of her name, the pain twisted tighter and hotter.  Agony folded Alain double.  Mother took a step toward him.  He waved her away.

“Hurry,” Nye said, standing aside as Rory shouldered past.

Mother dashed behind Rory, Father at her side.

“How did you know?”  Alain asked the servant.

Nye’s gaze shifted to the floor.  “I heard her cries.”
 
 

Ten Interesting Facts About Oscar Wilde

Posted by Nightingale | 10:08 AM | 5 comments »

1. Wilde was born with three middle names. His full name is “Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wilde” born in Dublin in 1854.


2. His mother, Jane Wilde was a successful poet and Irish nationalist whose pen name was “Sperenza." His father was also an author but more well known for his work as an oto-ophthalmologic and being knighted for his work as an assistant commissioner to the censuses of Ireland.

3. Wilde is an impressive linguist. Home schooled, he was taught French and German and also had working knowledge of Italian and Ancient Greek.

4. Wilde, adding “lecturer” to his array of talents, embarked on a tour of America in 1882 and held talks on a wide variety of subjects from “The English Renaissance” to “Decorative Art.”

5. Wilde married Constance Lloyd on May 29, 1884 and had two sons, Cyril and Vyvyan. Cyril fought and died in World War I in the Battle of Festubert in France where he is buried. Vyvyav changed his last name to Holland, like his mother, after his father’s imprisonment and went on to become a translator for the BBC and author of the autobiography 'Son of Oscar Wilde' (1954). Vyvyans son and Wilde’s grandson, Merlin Holland, published the Oscar Wilde biography 'A Portrait of Oscar Wilde' (2008).

6. Though thought of as an author, he only published one novel, The Portait of Dorian Gray (1891).

7. He was an advocate of socialism and in his only political essay 'The Soul of Man under Socialism' (1891) Wilde expounds an anarchist philosophy.

8. Before his death due to cerebral meningitis he was conditionally baptized in the Catholic Church.

9. Oscar Wilde’s last words were “My wallpaper and I are fighting a duel to the death. One or other of us has got to go.”

10. His famous tomb was designed by Sir Jacob Epstein, whose ashes were placed alongside Wilde in the structure in 1950 per his request. The Angel statue adorning the tomb was originally installed with male genitalia which has since been vandalized.

From:  IRISH CENTRAL:  http://www.irishcentral.com/roots/Ten-ten-interesting-facts-about-Irish-literary-legend-Oscar-Wilde-168254086.html