Archive for the ‘fiction’ Category

When I was little, my mother read to me nearly every day. And I read to my kids as they were growing up. Maybe you had the same experience growing up.

But where do you find someone to read to you now?

You’re in luck! I’ve decided to make audio versions of all my short stories and musings from Vocal.Media. And this first one is one of my favorites–Moonlight and Shadows.

A paranormal short story set in the high desert area of Wyoming, come meet Shade Shadowstalker, a rather unusual individual who works for the DEA.

Nighttime, under a full moon, your eyes can play tricks on you out there. Can you really believe that what you think you see is real? Or is it just a trick of the light.

Go on over to Anchor FM and listen to Moonlight and Shadows. And if you like what you hear, let me know!

Thanks for dropping by!

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No, not like that… I mean as in Vocal.Media, the online place for those of a creative bent to share their work.

I’ve had a few things up on Vocal.Media for a little while now. Sometimes I write about events in the news, or things on my mind. Sometimes I create short stories to share with others.

Either way, it gives people a chance to check out my work without buying one of my longer novels, and for free at that!

Looking for a short fiction work?

How about The Reward, Warrior Priestess, or The Walk?

Maybe something more down to earth…

There’s Diabetic and Confused, What’s Different, and The Digital Age.

Go over, check it out, and if you like it, leave a tip.

Want an excerpt? Here’s something from The Digital Age.

I know many of you have grown up in this digital age, where everything is available online, on your phone, or on your tablet. And I will admit, it can be extremely convenient when doing research, especially thinking back to all the hours I spent in the library before this digital age. College papers would have been so much easier if I could have researched them online.

The thing is, though, that we are now dependent on all things digital. At the moment, I’m having a real problem.

Want to learn more?

Check out my page at Vocal.Media!

Talk to you later, everyone.

And Don’t Forget…

...to Share the Romance…

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I normally write full length novels, mainly because I’m long winded and don’t know when to shut up.

But I do have a few shorter works out there which you might like to check out. Mainly these are thoughts about the world today or sometimes issues I’m dealing with, questions the grandsons have asked.

If you’d like to check them out follow my link to Vocal.Media and see if anything there tickles your fancy. My latest work there is The Walk, because sometimes you just need a walk to help think things through.

If you’re new to Vocal.Media, go over and check it out. Maybe you’d like to publish something there yourself!

Wishing you a wonderful weekend!

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Sometimes I have an idea I like, but it isn’t enough for a novel. Just a brief thought sparked by a conversation, an interesting face, or some musings of my own.

So what to do with them?


I have several article length stories on Vocal from my inner conversations. The first one is about the Digital Age and how dependent we’ve become on our electronics.

The second one discusses how different things are now from when I was growing up on a farm in Ohio. One of our grandsons asked me what had changed since I was his age, which set me to thinking.

The most recent article is called The Box. It came in the form of a dream, touching on the subject of that hidden place in our minds. That place we keep secret from the rest of the world.

What if it were are a real place? What would it look like if you could visit it. And how would you react to what is inside?

The Box, a story about sunlight and shadows, darkness and light.

For the others:

The Digital Age

What’s Different?

You may have to sign up with Vocal to read them, but there are thousands of interesting articles and stories on many topics there.

So go on over and take a peek–not only at my work, but browse around and see what else you can find.

Have a great week!

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CommercialThis novel is the first one I ever wrote, and to tell the truth, it needed a lot of work. Which is why it has taken so long to get it ready for you, gentle readers, to see it. But I love the story, so I’ve been willing to put in the extra time to bring it to you.

A fantasy intrigue, with a little romance elbowing its way into the story, meet Krista Carlisle and Michael Romanoff, who would be perfectly suited for each other if she weren’t his prisoner…

Ready for a peek? Here’s the blurb.

Mistaken Identity

The beautiful spring day, on the world called Felicity, suddenly turn into a nightmare as Krista’s combat abilities lead her to be mistaken for something she isn’t. Now captured, transported and imprisoned on their sister world, her only thought is to escape.

Adding to his problems, Commander Michael Romanoff has to deal with this stubborn female prisoner. Worthless for bargaining, his only choice is to give her slave status, find out what abilities she has, and get her placed and out of his life.

But after three escape attempts, several guards in the infirmary with injuries, and two more in the morgue, he finds there’s more to to her than those beautiful big green eyes. With her hand-to-hand training and her upper-crust university background, she might hold the key to his other major problem.

Can he convince her to work with him, for the greater good of both their worlds, before full scale war breaks out, given their hostile relationship?



In a comfortable study on Novaya Kemlya, two men sat in serious discussion.

“Yes, Old Earth truly made a find in this system,” one man said admiringly. “Not one, but two viable worlds for the taking.”

“It wasn’t easy,” the other man answered. “Felicity had a few lower life forms, so eco-building was tricky. Here on Novaya Kemlya, we had no hindrance. It had water and the beginnings of an atmosphere, but the land was barren. With nothing to work around, our job was easier.”

“The costs must have been enormous. No wonder Earth was disinclined to grant independence to these places. How are our plans progressing here?”

“Tensions are high and have been increasing between the two worlds. I expect to hear news of a military strike against Felicity soon.”

”Here’s to the New Order,” said the first man, raising his glass.

“To the New Order. May it soon rise.”

                                                                                                                                                                          Chapter 1  

Krista’s Account

Under the pleasant warm sun, the sweet, spicy scent of spring flowers swirled through the air on gentle breezes. Krista loved this time of year. Summer would come soon, with sizzling heat to parch everyone and everything.

Finished teaching for the day, her eyes took in the history  around her: the brick streets, stone buildings with wrought iron railings, and the magnificent arches where the old gates had hung. Tall buildings laid out in gentle arcs hugged the street, lending the feeling of comfort and safety. The creamy white stone shone in the bright sunlight as if lit by an inner light. The only blight on this paradise were rumors concerning their sister world, Novaya Kemlya. Whenever tensions began to ease and trade between the two flowed well, something would come along to ruin it all. Tempers would flare over some trivial incident and once again tensions would build toward the bursting point.

Most recently, Novaya Kemlya had accused Felicity, Krista’s world, of substituting counterfeit items for sorely needed goods. Of course this was officially denied. It was only a mistake. Why would Felicity invite the repercussions an action of this kind would surely bring?

Considering the tall, sturdy gates from the past, Krista sighed and thought it was too bad there were no gates to close against enemies from across the heavens.

Though the colonists were similar when the worlds were founded, their paths had diverged through the centuries. New differences aggravated old grievances between two worlds who’d never had an easy relationship. And the further apart they grew, the greater the tensions. Felicity was considered soft, ineffectual and idealistic by its sister world, while they considered Novaya Kemlya militaristic, uncultured dirt farmers. And so the rift grew wider.

As far back as Krista could remember, there had been rumors of conflict. So many in fact that nobody took them seriously anymore. They were just rumors, again. During her entire life, nothing had ever come of any of those rumors. Well, nothing much, anyway.

Both worlds required military service for all their citizens. Krista had taken her training and done her service between secondary school and university. After graduation, she had finished her primary reserve duty and was currently on secondary reserve. This required only a three week refresher course each year.

 Few took it seriously. Felicity wasn’t a warring world. During her years in service, she’d seen a few minor skirmishes, but no major battles or campaigns. She’d received her promotions when due and would have a little retirement money when the time came.

With a degree in music education, Krista had set out to make her mark on the world. During her days at the university, she’d met Thomas. They’d married right after her graduation and had a home in the old quarter here, near the university, where she taught music. Thomas was an architectural engineer with a major firm, also here in the old quarter.

Along the way, Krista had taken a self-defense course for fun. Discovering a new love in life, she’d thrown herself into the training and eventually earned a third degree belt and teaching certificate. Besides being a great way to stay in shape, the training helped ease day to day frustrations and stress.

So what went wrong? What happened on this wonderful spring afternoon? Most likely nobody would ever know the answer, but as she crossed an intersection two blocks from her home, she heard gunfire just ahead. A riot here? Surely not!  But it was coming from the direction of her home.

Running around a bend in the street, she collided with people in a panic rushing to escape soldiers in battle gear. Hemmed in by the houses on either side, there was no place to go as they were pushed aside like so much rubbish by the troops. A few attempted resistance, but small arms fire had little effect on battle armor. They were simply neutralized and left where they fell.

Surrounded by the invaders, Krista’s only thought was to get home to Thomas. She had to make sure he was safe, but couldn’t force her way through the streets. Suddenly, a switch flipped in her mind as she brought all her training to bear against the intruders. Later, she would remember hand-to-hand fighting, the sound of joints dislocating, and bones breaking as she applied techniques learned in the safety of the training hall.

Her last view of Felicity was of the sun shining on the balcony of her home. So very close. And then the nightmare began.

I’ll post updates as they become available. In the meantime, check out my other works.




Ciao, amici miei!

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CommercialThought you’d never ask. Since I joined the Reading is Retro Summer Challenge, I’ve read 11 books, so far, not including some old favorites. You know. Those “go-to” books when you want to read, but nothing new. No surprises.

And I did promise to share in my last post.

So here goes! See something interesting? Follow the link.

  1. Skin Deep (http://amzn.com/0373470509),
  2. Snowed In (http://amzn.com/B007C1WHHO)
  3. Darkness Before the Dawn (http://amzn.com/0989678636)
  4. Suite Dreams (http://amzn.com/0061688061)
  5. Purple Death (http://amzn.com/1499131801)
  6. The Blessing Way—Tony hillerman– http://amzn.com/0061808350
  7. Beautiful, Broken Me– http://amzn.com/1514659875
  8. Book of Night With Moon– http://amzn.com/0446673021
  9. A Cat on a Winning Streak– http://amzn.com/0451180828
  10. Sanctioned Kill—CR Hiatt– http://amzn.com/0976142384
  11. Deadrise by Robert Blake Whitehill– http://amzn.com/1938701399

And of course, there are always the books in the Esperance Series: Jareth, First Lord and Viviane, First Lady.



Not to mention, Gambler’s Folly.


So, what are you reading this summer? You can comment below, or join me on Facebook!


Talk to you again soon.


Jareth Cover art finalmem-gamblersfolly1

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Black and whiteFreedomInk Publishing is once again hosting the Annual Reading is Retro Summer Challenge. What is the challenge? To read ten books during the thirteen weeks of summer.


Now, I know summer is half gone, but there is still time to get in on the challenge. There are a lot of books out there, in every genre you can think of.

Perhaps you’d like to peruse what FreedomInk has to offer.

Darkness Before the Dawn, by Dawn  Miller. One woman’s true story of abuse, neglect and rebirth.

Woman on Fire, by Trinette Collier. Life’s challenges can either refine or destroy. Read this woman’s story of rising above the trials with God’s help.

Angel Eyes, by Katandra Shanel Jackson–A collective memoir of child sexual abuse.

Jareth, First Lord, by Mellie Miller– Esperance Book 1. Fantasy romance on a distant highland world.

Viviane, First Lady, by Mellie Miller–Esperance Book 2. The story continues.

For a look at all they have to offer:


So come on in and join the fun. Reading is Retro. And reading is fun. Who say’s you have to leave the house to go on vacation? Dive into a good book and let the party begin.

What have I been reading? I’ll share that in another post.

Ciao for now!

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Black and whiteWith books 1 and 2 of the Esperance series available, I’ll be working on book 3 soon.

Book 1 is Jareth, First Lord. The story of Jareth and Viviane begins here with their meeting in Clan Belfort. Both alone after having lost their mates, can they open their hearts again to love?

Book 2, Viviane, First Lady continues the story, with Viviane struggling to gain control over psychic talents which have suddenly blossomed. Required to travel back to Clan Belfort for her brother’s trial for treason, can she gain enough control to help spring a trap? Or will her control betray her?

Check out the little video below!


Esperance–Fantasy romance on a distant highland world.

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Black and whiteGet along little…? Can you fill in the blank correctly?

Call it a pet peeve. Call it overly sensitive. Call it OCD. Call it anything you like, but twice in a week I’ve seen this quoted, or something similar, and both times the above line has been finished with “doggie.”


Most people quote it as yippee ki yi yay, get along little doggie, which is doubly incorrect.

The original lyrics were:

Whoppee ti yi yo, get along little dogie.

Now, I realize spell check probably doesn’t like this word, and it is from a different era, out on the range. But dogie is cowboy slang for a motherless calf in a herd.

A doggie is a creature of the canine variety.

The lyrics to this cowboy ballad were first published in John Lomax’s  Cowboy Songs and Other Frontier Ballads. It has been performed by many different people and groups including: Roy Rogers, Tex Ritter, Charlie Daniel, The Kingston Trio, and Sons of the Pioneers.

So, unless you’re herding dogs, the word to use here is dogie.

I smell lunch cooking, so this little dogie is gonna go eat.

Get along little dogies! Talk to you later.

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