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April 5, 2015



Vacationing alone, and strong

March 12, 2014

Tonight I’m stayingImage in an adorable B & B in historic Granbury. I’m on my own, no kids, friends, family or significant others. It’s great. Almost didn’t make it. Almost got stuck in the dung of should I go by myself or stay at home…again.

So glad I did ’cause I’m not feeling alone or lonely…,just happy and strong.

I’ll get there soon…

January 4, 2014

Gina Lee Nelson

Though a deadline is on the horizon and my characters whisper my name, I ignore them…for now.

Helpful friends and colleagues say find your process. What if I have? What if my process demands I delay, delay, delay until I sit and the words fly out without strain. For all along the words were incubating in my head, my brain and fingers merely resting until I freed them to deliver the prose to the screen.

All is well…with my soul.

Weaving it all together…

January 2, 2014

As 2014 begins I give a nod to the four things that fill my thoughts and force smaller concerns off the table: teaching, acting, parenting, and writing. Thank God, they compliment each other. . . most of the time.

For doesn’t a parent and a teacher have to act at times to insure those under their influence are inspired and encouraged? Doesn’t a teacher and an actor need to write their creative plans and strategies to ensure success? And, yes, a writer must embrace it all, walking the fine line between the need to teach, entertain, inspire, and nurture while sharing their view of life.

My wish and prayer for this year is that these four streams that careen through my life might converge in peace and nurture my soul.

That I would beLighthouse blessed to be a blessing.


May 24, 2013


Thinking of you.
Hoping you’ll return.
Different, but the same.

A glimmer of our past shining in your eyes, mixing with forgiveness and regret.

Remembering your glow.
Forgiving our mistakes.
Transformed, but familiar.

A dance of what could be weaving through my mind, evoking silent tears and hopeful grace.

I wait…


C.A. Szarek’s Sword’s Call Book Release Giveaway

April 8, 2013

SwordsCall72dpi It’s with great pleasure I introduce one of my friends and critique partners, author C.A. Szarek. She’s on a blog tour promoting the release of her amazing fantasy “Sword’s Call.”

One lucky person who comments will choose their prize: either a SWAG prize pack or an eBook of Sword’s Call.

I managed to snag C.A. long enough to ask her a few questions about her hectic, rewarding writing life.

Hi C.A.! When did you write your first story? Tell us about it.

When I was about 14, I decided I wanted to be a writer. I actually wrote books when I was fourteen, fifteen, sixteen, and seventeen. The only one I finished was the one I wrote when I was seventeen, Dani’s Plight, after re-writing it a few times in my 20s. I might look at it again someday and do something with it. Hmmmm, the book I wrote when I was fourteen was Urban YA/ Middle Grade Fantasy, I guess. It was about a fourteen year old girl who stumbles into a disappearing magic shop in the woods and buys a dragon’s egg. She ends up with a dragon and has her first kiss. I never finished it, but I am thinking that is not such an original storyline these days.

Why do you write fantasy?

I have always written fantasy…in short stories and many unfinished projects. Sword’s Call is the first one I finished; and I suppose it’s the most developed world I’ve done so far. But I don’t see it being my last fantasy world. I love fantasy, I always have, always will. I think I write it because it’s the way my mind works. Magic, dragons, elves, they’re more fun than the real world.

What fantasy writers and books have influenced you?

Anne McCaffrey. I have always loved her and her Dragonriders of Pern series. Now that she’s passed, I am glad that her son, Todd McCaffrey, is carrying things on. It’s exciting that he loves the world as much as I do.

I know you started Sword’s Call many years ago. What was the catalyst that drove you toward publication?

Well, I always knew I wanted to be published. I just didn’t know the how’s until I joined NTRWA in 2011. I visited once in April and knew the awesome ladies of the group could help me learn everything I needed to know about how to get published. They did. I joined in May of 2011 and got my contract for Sword’s Call in Feb 2012.

Thanks, C.A. for dropping by. Good luck to you on your writing journey!

Keep reading to enjoy a book blurb and an excerpt from Sword’s Call.


For generations, the Ryhans, ruling family of the Province of Greenwald have been keepers of a sword rumored to possess enough magic to defeat kings. Lord Varthan, a former archduke and betrayer of the king, covets the sword and invades Greenwald.

Lady Ceralda Ryhan, daughter of the murdered duke, gains the sword and flees, trusting only her white wolf, Trikser—magically bonded to her. Cera needs nothing more to aid in her fight.

Jorrin Aldern, half elfin and half human, left his home in the mountains of Aramour to find his human father who disappeared twenty turns before, but finds Cera with Varthan and his shades on her tail instead. His dual heritage and empathic magic will tempt Cera in ways she never thought she’d desire. But can he convince her trust and love can pave the path to redemption or will the epic battle end in tragedy and evil conquer them all?


Heart pounding and fists clenched, Cera sat in the Dragon’s Lair’s darkest corner. By choice, the candle on the table was unlit. The bowl of stew half eaten, food the last thing on her mind. The door to the tavern swung open. Her white wolf growled low and deep beside her. Cera glanced up, squinting in the sudden flood of sunlight. As the door slammed shut and her eyes adjusted to the renewed murkiness, she took in the newest arrival.

Then she focused on Trikser. She couldn’t have him going for anyone’s throat.

“Shhh, Trik, it’s okay.” She ran a hand through his fur, smoothing his hackles along the length of his spine. The big wolf looked up at her and licked her hand. One corner of her mouth lifted and she bit back a sigh. The only reason the owner of the tavern, Marshek even let him in was because no one else was allowed to enter the Dragon’s Lair if she was inside without him. No one according to Trikser, that is. He’d almost taken the hand off the last guy who’d tried.

“What’ll ya have?” Marshek barked, revealing his instant dislike of the newcomer.

She fixed her eyes on the bartender. Then she took a closer look at the man sitting in front of him. His pointed ears betrayed his heritage, but his height suggested he was not of pure blood.Marshek was known to be tolerant of elves but he hated what he called half-breeds. Cera could imagine what the grumpy, middle-aged tavern owner was thinking, and it wasn’t friendly.

She rose, Trikser also immediately rising, awaiting her move. The white wolf was her bondmate and had been since he was young.
Relax, she thought-sent.

Trik sat, but his body was tight, tense. He didn’t respond to her mental order.
Moving to the bar, her wolf followed, slinking close to the floor, moving in a slight crawl. His belly probably touched the filthy planked flooring of the tavern.

Cera made a face but forced a breath. Detached control. Sliding onto the stool next to the half-elfin man, she was just in time to hear his order. His voice was clear and deep.

Marshek filled a mug with ale and started to put the jug in its place on the shelf.

“Wait, Mar,” she said with a wave of her hand, “I’ll have some of that, too.”

With a curt nod, the older man poured her a mug. She brought it to her lips, glancing nonchalantly at the stranger. His coal black hair brushed the collar of his hooded gray cape, giving him a rather unkempt look, but rugged rather than messy.

Cera couldn’t see the hue of his eyes from her seat but his high cheekbones made his profile appealing, his sleek tapered ears adding to the attraction. His powerful jaw line was clean shaven, an oddity in these parts. She could tell he was aware of her perusal. He was young, not much older than her, and had the stunning beauty of the elves.

His chest heaved as if he’d taken a breath, and he finally glanced at her. Blue. His eyes were a deep, sapphire blue. Her heart skipped a beat but she ignored it. The man said nothing, not that she’d expected him to.

Blog tour schedule link =

GoodReads Link =

Purchase Links

Gypsy Shadow –
Barnes and Noble –
Amazon –
Amazon UK –
ARe –
OmniLit –
BookStrand –
SmashWords –


C.A. is originally from Ohio, but got to Texas as soon as she could. She is married and has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice.
She works with kids when she’s not writing.

She’s always wanted to be a writer and is overjoyed to share her stories with the world.

Author links:

Blog –
Twitter –
Facebook –
Amazon –
GoodReads –

What’s next for CA Szarek?

Collision Force (Crossing Forces Book 1)

Bad boy FBI agent and feisty widowed police detective collide pursuing a human trafficker in small town Texas on their way to true love.

Bad boy, married to his job FBI agent Cole Lucas always gets his man. So when the unthinkable happens and one gets away, Cole grits his teeth and hunts human trafficker Carlo Maldonado all the way to Antioch, Texas, where he collides with Detective Andi MacLaren.

Cole doesn’t do small towns and doesn’t get involved with women he works with, but Andi tempts him in ways he doesn’t want to acknowledge.

Two murders, her partner shot and leading the investigation on her own, the last thing Andi needs a cocky FBI agent that sees her as no more than a tag-along.

Widow and single mother Andi is used to being on her own. When Cole gets stuck without a place to stay, crashing on her couch puts them in dangerous territory.
Attraction and passion bring Andi to a place she’d left behind when her husband died. Her three-year-old son quickly wiggles his way into Cole’s heart, and he starts contemplating things—family, love—that he’d never planned for himself.

Can being forced to work together make them stronger or will their differences jeopardize their case and their hearts?

GoodReads Link –

GIVEAWAY – One lucky person who comments will choose their prize: either a SWAG prize pack or an eBook of Sword’s Call.


Same Old Stew with a Different Sauce

February 10, 2013


I like stew, the fatty meat, stubby bits of carrots, chunks of unpeeled potatoes, and the salty goodness of the soup. It’s the one thing I cook that is perfect for both my temperament and my culinary skill level; and the dish never suffers from my slothful moods or mental gridlock.

Too bad I can’t progress past self-editorializing (yes, I know that’s not a word, but I resemble it too much to change it) and navel gazing to drive to the grocery store or walk into the kitchen. Instead . . . I only think about stew in the abstract, and on clear days I remember the intoxicating aroma and simple joy of eating hearty fare.

I think of stew and breathe . . . first in . . . then out.