Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Best laid plans...

Simple & straightforward:
Set up my laptop & knock off a bit of the rough draft of Chapter One while baking for Thanksgiving.

   The first diversion scrambled across the carpet and into my line of vision.
I slathered feta cheese on a trap which let go twice on my finger.  I moved the laptop out of the room & onto the kitchen counter.

☟☟  This was my goal  ☟☟ 

This was the view through my stove door.

This is the extent of my baking ability. 

This is the extent of my rough draft:
Guccione/New Book                                          1

Chapter One

And there's a far stronger chance of the chaos winding up in my story than cranberry bread making it to a serving plate
or the mouse winding up in the trap.

Friday, October 19, 2012

It's the berries!

 It's Freewheelin' Friday! 
Dedicated to Artistic Endeavors of all Sorts

Once upon a time
When I had black hair and toddlers,
genre romance was full of cowboys & ranches 
penthouses & limousines. 
I discovered it was a whole lot easier to  
write about what was right under my nose in 
coastal Massachusetts.

So I hung around the bogs, strapped on some waders, corralled some cranberries 
& created six hard working siblings. 

                       Mid-October's come around again. 

                      Time to to salute Kevin, Sean, Drew,
                                   Ryan, Jody & Matthew:
                                   my Branigan brothers.

                Yup! The most fun a girl can have on paper.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Sherman the one legged pigeon soars!

 Barbara O'Connor's latest mid-grade delight 
has made its debut. 

I've blogged about the book and the trailer recently so to celebrate I'm reposting my June salute to illustrator Greg Call. His spot on rendition of the elusive Sherman, the one-legged pigeon at the heart of this merry romp, is the perfect image to launch young imaginations. (old ones, too)

Here's what I had to say in June:

I've waxed poetic in past blogs on my love of children's book illustration, illustrators & the influence of the Golden Age (Howard Pyle et al) Now comes a salute to Greg Call, some covers evocative of N.C.Wyeth but so fabulously his own.
Jack Gantos' 2012   Newbery Award winner 


Till now my favorite has been
(full disclosure: it's dedicated to moi)

It's an October release so you'll have to wait but you can oogle & Google Barbara O'Connor's book & Greg Call's design or hit the links right here. 

                                      ♥  ♥ ☛ ☛  

Friday, September 21, 2012

YOU might be the one... make a difference.

 It's Freewheelin' Friday! 
Dedicated to Artistic Endeavors of all Sorts

I share Karen Lynn Williams' blogs often.

I've sung the praises of Galimoto. 

And when she told me the fascinating news 
of her picture book, an e-mail &
        a determined young man in Tanzania, 
         I had to share the story. 

Karen & I have let 
the words of one of her readers  
carry the day.

Can you help?
click  ☟☟

Friday, August 31, 2012

Time & Treasure

 It's Freewheelin' Friday! 
Dedicated to Artistic Endeavors of all Sorts

~~For your reading pleasure~~

another favorite blogpost from friend/writer/teacher 
☝click right there and get started☝

Here's a hint 

 These days she's blogging from the Navajo reservation in Chinle, Arizona. Every post's a reminder of how wide & wonderful this country is.  

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Happy Birthday, Marjorie K. Rawlings~~

In honor of Marjorie Kinnan Rawling's August 8th birthday, 
I'm reposting.  
First, check out this  brand new link to 
who brought this to my attention 
& almost shares the birthday!


Where were we? 
Right. Charles Scribner's Sons Editor Maxwell Perkins, 
the stuff of legend. 

     During the banner years he wrested fiction out of Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Wolfe and other men-with-typewriters, Perkins was rejecting (Gothic romance) manuscripts from Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, a fledgling writer in Cross Creek, Florida, wresting produce out of a struggling citrus grove to support her dreams.  

     Manuscripts (hers) & rejection letters (his) were accompanied by correspondence. Perkins remarked that her Yankee-transplant observations of colorful, impoverished neighbors created more interest than her novels & encouraged her to write what she knew~~the life she lived and the lives she observed.

         The rest is history. 
   The #1 selling novel of 1938
      The 1939 Pulitzer Prize
  •  Despite being brand new, Scribner's launched The Yearling as one of their Illustrated Classics (☚click) & again commissioned N.C. Wyeth who traveled to Cross Creek to soak up the atmosphere.
  • The 1946 MGM film adaption features interior scenes based on Wyeth's illustrations. 
  • Four Academy Award nominations include Best Actor for Gregory Peck's portrayal of  the father, Ezra "Penny" Baxter.

  •      In 1942 Scribner's published Rawlings' autobiographical Cross Creek.  
  •      The film version of Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings' journey, also called Cross Creek, premiered in  1983. 
  •      Four Academy Award nominations include Best Supporting Actor winner Rip Torn for his portrayal of Marsh Turner, the real life inspiration for Penny Baxter.      
  •      In 2007 Rawlings' Cracker style house & grounds were declared a National Historic Landmark.            
 I've visited twice. 

Maxwell Perkins, N.C. Wyeth & Gregory Peck were among her house guests. 
I stood in the guest room & imagined I'd been one.

I glimpsed my first orange trees on my  journey to Cross Creek.
I'm guessing it might have been the same for Ms. Rawlings.

✍   ✍   ✍

Majorie Kinnan Rawlings had stories to tell.
Maxwell Perkins helped her discover which ones. 

Yup, the stuff of legend. 

click ☛CROSS CREEK to get you there☝☝   

“Just get it down on paper, and then we’ll see what to do with it.”

Maxwell Perkins


Friday, August 3, 2012

Trailer time~~

 It's Freewheelin' Friday! 
Dedicated to Artistic Endeavors of all Sorts

Look what's here!

While you wait for October
& the launch of Barbara O'Connor's latest~~

Feast your eyes on what she's been up to:
designing & producing the 
lively, clever, compelling, amusing,


debuted for your viewing pleasure 

Let the chaos begin. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Lilly Considers the Lilies

I first posted this blog last February 
when Sarah Beattie opened Consider the Lillies. 
South Shore Living Magazine's annual 
has just named Consider The Lillies (& Sarah) BEST FLORIST


Freewheelin' Friday
 Dedicated to Artistic Endeavors of all Sorts    


      Floral designer Sarah Beattie moved out of her basement and into her Standish Street shop in time for  Valentine's Day.   Our  seaside town is raving. She'll paraphrase Matthew 6:28 of course. 'Consider the lilies, they neither toil nor spin...' yet so naturally beautiful they need no adornment. Nor should we worry. 

 Sarah trained at The Flower School of NYC  & through Garden Club Federation of MA Flower Show School, but this flower lover comes by it naturally.  She's third generation ~~love for the art & talent nurtured by her grandmother & mother.    

      My protagonist Johanna is third generation,  running the adored family cottage as she searches for inspiration from the women who've gone before her. 

     And Lilly!  

     Any writer will tell you~~whether your heroine springs fully formed from your imagination or she's an enigma speaking to you as you type~~ by the time the book is finished you know her as well as you know yourself. (or your book is not finished)

     "Sugar, this darling shop has my name written all over it," she'd quip, linking elbows with Johanna as they decide on an arrangement for the treehouse. No matter that she was Lonnye-Ronette & plucked her new name Lilly from the label in her summer shift. 

12 Standish Street  Duxbury MA 
Tuesday ~~ Saturday  10 am till 6 pm

 Sarah Beattie's signature floral designs bring out the simple beauty of the flowers themselves. She's the perfect choice for special occasions,  design sessions and workshop presentations.

courtesy of MS Photography 

Follow Johanna & Lilly's example~~
Treat yourself.
Pick up a unique arrangement & settle down with a good read. 

✍   ✍   ✍  ✍  ✍  ✍


Three Dilemmas, Two friends One Deserted Tree House 
during a simmering summer on Lake Allamuchy

Thank you to my readers who shot The Chick Palace onto Nook's eBook bestseller list.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Sizzle Week Sale!

Now through Sunday!
Join Johanna & Lilly in The Chick Palace
for $.99!

✰  Fire up your Kindle  ✭
 Fire up your Nook  

☛ Click onto Amazon or Barnes & Noble 

More than summer is sizzling at Lake Allamuchy 
the week following the Fourth of July.

You should be there, too.

$.99 now through Sunday!