Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Happy New Year's Eve Bloggers!
I learned yesterday that the second book in my Chesapeake Heritage series has gone to print! Chesapeake Legacy is the story of a woman caught between two worlds when she is banished for having Indian blood. Hannah, the great-granddaughter of Mary Charles whose history is related in Chesapeake Harvest, becomes Heron and tries to travel North to join the Iroquois, but her band is massacred by a hostile tribe along the Susquehanna River. Heron returns to the Choptank River and finds love and a future with her people the Nanticoke.
The print of for Chesapeake Legacy will be available at Amazon.com and at many ebook sites such as Kindle, Fictionwise, Mobipocket, All Romance Ebooks and from my publisher Write Words Inc. at www.writewordsinc.com.
If you enjoy history and the struggles our ancestors survived to build lives under harsh conditions, the Chesapeake Heritage series offers easy-to-understand history in novel form and a great start for your happy reading in the New Year! Cover art for the series is by Snow Hill artist Dawn M. Tarr. Find her art at www.dawntarr.com
Happy New Year and Happy Reading! Terry
Monday, December 29, 2008
I made a resolution to do my best to promote my Chesapeake Heritage series in the coming year. My series of novels follows one family of women who live and love on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, facing hardship and privation as they helpe build th colony that became a state.
Chesapeake Harvest, book one in the series, follows the adventures of Mary Charles who came to what is now known as the Delmarva Peninsula as an indentured servant. Her great-granddaughter Hannah is ostracized for her Nanticoke Indian blood. Hannah's granddaughter Jane faces the terror of an abusive husband, and her granddaughter Jewel learns a new way of life following the end of the Civil War. Each of these women has a compelling story to tell.
Chespeake Harvest, published by Write Words Inc. is available in print or as an ebook from Amazon.com, Kindle, Fictionwise, Mobipocket, All Romance E-books andmore. Chesapeake Legacy is available as an ebook with print copies available after the first of the year. Chesapeake Destiny is due to be released as an ebook in the spring of 2009. The final book in the series should be available in late 2009. The distinctive cover art for the series is by Snow Hill Marland artist Dawn M. Tarr.
For more about the Chesapeake Heritage series go to www.chesapeakeheritage.blogspot.com
Terry L. White
Friday, December 26, 2008
Good Friday Morning!
Well, Christmas is over and now that the celebration is has subsided, things get a little quieter. Sure, the stores will be crowded with people looking for post-holiday bargains. Then there are the gifts you need to return for one reason or another. The stores are full and all the shoppers are either impatiently looking for refunds or wandering around with a look of vague lunacy in their eyes.
For myself, I look for light. Winter is the season for hibernation - which should be a legal occupation for those of us with seasonal affective disorder. I can't go to a warmer place for the winter, I think we should be allowed to stay in bed until the weather warms up, but you and I both know that can't happen.
The thing remaining is to look for the light. My friend Sue, who has spent much of the free time in her life volunteering to help those less fortunate, collects lighthouses. Book publicist Nikki Leigh uses a lighthouse as a theme running through her wonderfully hopeful novels. Lighthouses remind us to look for the light in the darkest night, and I think the people who collect them have the right idea.
What brings the light into your life? Good friends? Your spirituality? Little kids playing in the snow? Even the darkest of days have a ray of hope. I got a seed catalog the other day, an arrival that always reminded me that spring always comes. All I can say is if we look for the light, it is always there.
Have a great day folks and stay on the sunny side! Terry
Thursday, December 25, 2008
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Well, Christmas Eve us upon us. Today I plan to make some oatmeal cookies and try to stay out of the living room. Up until yesterday, I had boxes and boxes of gifts to be delivered to my pet charity. It looks pretty empty today, but I know there are a lot of senior citizens in towns who had a nice gift they didn't expect.
I remember Christmas Eves as a kid. We went to church and they had a Christmas play when each little class recited parts of the Christmas story. Then we went home with our little box of candy and had one gift to hold us until morning. We sure had trouble falling asleep, and when we got up we could only open the stocking because the grown-ups were sleeping. I don't think we realized it at the time, but those very parents wanted to watch us enjoy our gifts - and they surely deserved the rest.
I wish I had such an eventful holiday to anticipate, but I have had a really great holiday so far. Linda and I had a great time handing out presents yesterday and then we went for lunch. That was fun. Then Jeanne came by and we exchanged gifts. That was wonderful too. Tomorrow I will go to Arline's house and have a big dinner and exhange gifts there. That seems like a lot, when I stop to think about it.
What about the church part? I pray all the time now, and I didn't do near so much when I was young. Talking to God is a big part of my day, and I know it will be a good sized part of my holiday activities. I pray that the people I love have great holidays, that they get the gifts they want and have the wherewithal to purchase those that someone else doesn't think of.
As for my readers, I sure would like to wish them the most merry Christmas they can conceive. Keep it real sunny folks! Terr
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Good Holiday Morning,
Yeah, yeah, I know. Christmas isn't here yet, but 'tis the season to reach out and touch people who mean a lot to you. Some of those people are close by and those individuals get something from my kitchen - cookies, or maybe some of my famous chocolates with macaroon, nut and raisin or pineapple under the dark chocolate. Mmmmmm.
Folks further away will get a call or maybe a card, although I send fewer and fewer cards as time wears on. Techno-Christmas finds me writing long emails to folks I cherish.
There is a lot of yap about how the Internet is free, but who among us does not fork out a sum of money each and every month to keep our computers hooked up to all those other computers? There is hardly a home without a working Internet link. People have cell phones to keep them connected on a daily basis. I don't know, but I cherish that daily call or frequent emails from some special person. They say that the other person cares and sure feels like a blessing to me.
And so, to all of you, I wish you a happy, prosperous and blessed New Year. Have a holly jolly! Terry
Monday, December 22, 2008
Happy Holidays Bloggers!
This morning I am thinking about all the angels in my life - and there have been many. I wish I could seek them out to thank them for the wonderful things they have done for me when I thought hope was gone.
Let me tell you about some of them: There was my childhood friend Janie, who liked me in spite of my differences. There was the English teacher, who encouraged me to write. There was Dorothy, who gave me a job whenever I was between jobs or husbands. There was John, who coached me in shameless self-promotion. There was Arline, who let me sleep in her living room for an entire year until I got my own place. There was Vinnie who helped me see I am a good musician, and Jewel who taught me how to see - period. I guess I could go on, but you get the idea.
Angels don't necessarily float down to decorate my life in clouds of glory. Sometimes, they are just regular people who have common sense solutions to my seemingly insurmountable problems: like Nikki Leigh, who found a way to help me promote my books; Vernon who fixed my roof and painted, and Dawn Tarr, who does my book covers (see today's art). I can't thank any of these folks enough, and I hope they all have a wonderful holiday season - no matter how stressed their lives seem.
So, count your angels and have a happy holiday season. Terry
Sunday, December 21, 2008
I am so excited. I talked to friends in New Orleans the other day and they have facilitated the reading of my book Runaway Hearts on National Radio for the Blind. I don't have a broadcast date as yet, but I will be sure to let you know when you can listen.
Now, you may ask why I am so excited about this particular great incident in my writing career. Well, Runaway Hearts is about Dorchester County, Maryland. If you look on a map of the state, Dorchester County is the heart-shaped area across the Chesapeake Bay from Washington, D.C.
Dorchester County is a unique place with a fascinating history connected to the Civil War. Anna Ellen Carroll, a woman who held great influence on Abraham Lincoln, Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman all came from this area, so when I moved here, I could hear the ghosts of those troubled times calling from the forests and marshes. The result was Runaway Hearts, a volume of poetry that tells the stories of the colonists and the struggle for freedom that originated here.
Yes, the stories are in poetic form, and you may say you don't like poetry, but I have read these stories for people of all ages, and they get it ... the search for love, the struggle for freedom, and the way war affected the lonely souls who scratched out a life on this magical place.
Don and Jewel Banning got the book to the station and lobbied to have it read. I can't thank them enough for believing in me and my work.
So. In the spirit of shameless self-promotion, I give you Runway Hearts and will let you know when you can hear the book on your own computer. That will be my gift to you this holiday season. Keep on the sunny side! Terry
Saturday, December 20, 2008
Happy Holidays Bloggers,
Just a note to tell you I had good news the other day. My new book Chesapeake Legacy is about to go to press and will be available in the new year. It is already available as an ebook at www.writewordsinc.com, Fictionwise, Mobipocket, Kindle and more.
Chesapeake Legacy incorporates the very real history of the Eastern Shore of Maryland with the story of a woman who faces a monumental struggle to survive during dangerous times.
Hannah is banished from her childhood home when her Uncle Percy decides he will not harbor a half-breed child in his home. Hannah's journey takes her to live with the Nanticoke Indians of the area where she finds a good life, albiet not without a great struggle to find safety in a land grown ever more crowded with white settlers.
Chesapeake Harvest is the second in my Chesapeake Series and will be available in print at Amazon.com and local bookstores soon. The cover art is by Eastern Shore artist Dawn M. Tarr of Snow Hill who ran with the idea of a woman living between two cultures and made it a reality.
If you like historical novels and family sagas, I know you will enjoy the Chesapeake series. Have a happy holiday, Terry
Friday, December 19, 2008
Well, today's image shows Santa talking on the telephone. The only thing is, these days a call is most often made on a cell phone. Do you thing Santa has one? I don't see how he can help it, the way the world rolls these days. I wouldn't be surprised it the jolly old elf spends a lot of time with his PC these days too.
All of this is very good, if you are really sure what you want for Christmas, but at my age, I find the intangibles are on more often on my list than the material goods everyone is chasing as the end of the holiday countdown looms ever closer.
I don't think I need any more clothing. There isn't any room in the closet, anyway. I don't need electronics, my chip is an old model and won't support the new technology. I don't need any more books or movies, I think they are multiplying in the corners, but I could be mistaken. I most certainly don't need any more food. Tis the time of year to be jolly - and gain weight. This is a tough one when everyone is putting out their best culinary efforts. I know I look forward to stuffing, and chocolate covered cherries.
What does that leave? I think world peace is on the list, but we have not achieved that particular goal in hundreds of years - I wouldn't take it off the list, but I won't hold my breath either. I would like better health, but here I am in my golden years, and the healing industries depend on senior citizens to keep them in business. I would like to be able to spend more time with the people I love, and here I think I just have to appreciate the time they can spend.
So what do you want Santa to bring to your house this year? I think a better economy is on the list, but I remember being really poor during the holidays, and having more doesn't really guarantee any real happiness.
I think the trick is to be really happy with what we have. Santa is checking his list... what will be in your stocking?
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Good Morning Bloggers,
This morning I watched the news and it isn't good. All sorts of lay-offs are predicted and it looks like a lot of people are going to be out of work. It is funny, though, some of the best Christmas holidays I ever spent were times when I was the poorest.
When I was a kid, my father worked in a factory and my stepmother stayed home. When it came time for the holiday decorations, we went out on the sidehill near the house and cut down a little pine tree. It wasn't shapely like the trees on the Christmas cards, but we had some treasured ornaments - a few glass balls, a string of bubble lights and lots of tinsel, which frosted every branch. There weren't so many gifts, but I remember the holiday fondly.
On Christmas eve we went to church and each of us had a 'piece' to say. When the program was over, Santa gave each of the children a little box of hard candy (which contained one chocolate creme drop!). That seemed like a very big deal at the time.
The holiday board was full of things Mom had baked, she baked for days, and that was one day when we all had as much as we wanted to eat. We had new mittens and hats to keep us warm on the mile-long walk to school and church. Things were good.
This year, I will join friends for a Christmas dinner and then come home and watch television. On Tuesday I will go to a medical facility and distribute gifts I collected from friends to the clients there and sing carols. The Birthday Babes will meet tomorrow for an all-inclusive lunch and holiday gift exchange.
It all seems like a lot, so I know I am blessed to have friends who conspire to make Christmas a good holiday - even as I linger in my "golden" years. I still remember the reason for the season, and I hope you do too. Be an ornament for someone you love. Cheers! Terry
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Wow! I won!
This morning I opened my email only to find I had been awarded the Honest Scrap Award by Nikki Leigh. The rules say I have to pass the Award on by listing 10 brutally honest things about myself and then passing the award on to seven bloggers - all of whom will also be brutally honest about themselves. This sounds a bit dicey to me, but here goes:
1. I collect too much stuff, knicknacks, books, movies, people. I stop just shy of being a pack rat.
2. I don't like rutabagas.
3. I never liked to drive, and don't like to ride with reckless drivers.
4. I believe in a benevolent diety, but I don't care what you might call him/her.
5. I don't mind dirty work. Cleaning is good exercise. (Everything in moderation, though.)
6. I don't like squirrels. They have eaten or stolen everything I planted in the back yard for years.
7. I don't believe in buying on credit. If I can't pay for something, I don't need it.
8. I wonder where the healers are in medicine these days. It appears to me that if a doctor can't bring you back to the office again and again, he or she is not doing his or her job.
9. I believe that everyone is good until they show me otherwise. (Call me Pollyanna)
1o. I think we get what we put into life, and that sometimes we have to deal with some bad stuff from previous lives.
Arline Chase http://www.writewordsinc.com
CJ Scarlet http://cjscarlet.blogspot.com
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Monday, December 15, 2008
Saturday, December 13, 2008
I got a notice yesterday the power company was going to shut off my gas because I did not make a full payment on the utility bill. I am a little confused. I have more than $1100 credit from a HEAP payment intended to help people with low incomes pay for their utilities.
Now, my budget payment went from $140 to $164 this winter, leaving me with $19 to buy food and medicines for the month. Even with prescription relief which allows me to purchase necessary medicines for as little as $2.70 to $5.60 per prescription, that doesn’t leave anything at all for frivolities like food. I am trying to pay my mortgage and utility bills, but this letter hurt my feelings since I did send them $125 last month. To threaten me with a shut-off when gas is what heats my home is completely abusive.
The thing is, I would not have applied for energy assistance to help with heating costs if I didn’t need it. . . I am not wasting fuel. I only heating two downstairs rooms in my home and have no heat at all upstairs where I sleep. I layer up. I count every penny.
Here’s my question: Why can’t some of the grant money alloted to me be used to help pay for my heat?
If you know, I wish you would tell me. You can be sure I intend to call the company Monday morning to find out why I am being threatened with a shut-off when there is so much money available to pay for the heat without using all my available money to pay for a budget so I don’t have a bill next summer. My summer use is negligible. I can pay for that!
You tell me and keep on the sunny side if at all possible.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
I was looking for a clip for this morning and noticed this one with Santa speaking on telephone. It made me wonder if the jolly old elf had succumbed to the trend to the use of cell phones.
When I was a kid, we had one phone for five or more people all living in the same house. We were on what the telephone company called a party line, and that worked out fine too. People hung up if they heard conversation on the line and made their call later. If the cows got out, it was perfectly fine to interrupt the chatters, but otherwise one waited their turn.
Today we see cell phones everywhere. Teachers, kids and administrators all have them in schools, cops wear them as part of their uniform, and some folks carry both business and personal phones so they don't miss a call.
Poor Santa, though. I can't imagine how he can get all the prep work done for the big holiday if he is on the phone day and night dealing with anxious kids who just call instead of writing letters or bugging their parents for the most desired gift of the season. He must have some really boss elves to keep up with everything while the phones keep ringing.
I wouldn't call Santa if I had a cell phone - which I don't. I wouldn't call at all, since I can't call long distance on my phone plan and I guess the North Pole is out of my calling area. I wouldn't call anyway - there is nothing I need so badly that it won't wait.
If I could have Santa's ear, I would ask for peace and a better economy. I would ask for people to get along and be a little more patient with one another. Wouldn't that be nice?
I just thought I would add my two cents. Keep on the sunny side. Terry
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
I have sort of gotten away from sending holiday cards since I got my computer and the price of stamps has gone up so much. Back when I was about ten years old, I went out selling Christmas cards in an effort to raise money to buy gifts. All the adults who saw the cards thought they were nifty, but said they couldn't afford cards because postage went up from two cents to three cents per card that summer. Huh.
These days, I send an email to my beloved friends - and I used to call until my recent go-round with Verizon who now requires subscribers to pay for the privilege of paying for long distance calls. I guess nothing ever really changes.
Christmas cards are nice, and they convey a happy message, but I know that if I only think of a person once a year, they are really not worth all that much. Maybe that tells us something? Maybe we need to pay more attention to our loved ones all year 'round?
Today I am going to make chocolates. I will put them up in holiday bags from the dollar store and deliver them to my favorite people. Nothin' says lovin' like chocolate, right?
I sure hope you are having a good time remembering your favorite people this holiday season.
Take care, stay well and keep on the sunny side. Terry
Monday, December 8, 2008
Saturday I attempted to call friends in New Orleans and learned how much the world has changed in the last few years.
Five years ago, I bought a house using my savings as a down payment. At that time I had friends with cell phones with out-of-area numbers so I chose to add 'unlimited long distance' to my phone services.
Prior to this, I had a local phone account that charged for long distance calls, so adding 'unlimited' long distance made sense with friends around the corner whose phones originated in other cities. I didn't think much of it, since I could afford the service. But times have changed.
I am now on social security, and while I might not look as cute as my picture (it is my favorite!) I am not that dumb either. Like lots of other Americans, the economy has forced me to cut back some of my spending, so I called Verizon and asked them to take the 'unlimited' long distance off my account. I thought I would still be able to make my long distance calls as long as I paid for them.
Little did I know this request removed ALL long distance from my account. It was early Saturday morning when I tried to call friends out of my local calling area when that danged little mechanical voice insisted I had to have a long-distance calling code in order to complete the call. What long distance calling code!
Well, you know I called customer service - only to learn that I had NO long distance service at all on my account. It costs extra to pay for long distance calls. Excuse my lapse into the vernacular, but I ain't buying it!
I sure hope the new administration can fix what is wrong with our economy. This seems like a case of pure greed to me. My grandfather was a lineman and Granny was an operator back in the20's and you got all the long distance you wanted on your reglar line back then.
Today, you plain don't get any service unless you pay for them to charge you. I sure hope someone catches up with all of this stuff because it doesn't make sense.
In the meantime, if you want to talk with me and I'm not home, keep calling because I can't call you back! Keep on the sunny side if you can. Terry
Saturday, December 6, 2008
Good Grief Bloggers, it is cold out there!
Winter has arrived on the Eastern Shore, and lots of hardy souls are going to come out tonight to attend the Cambridge-Dorchester Christmas Parade. I'm staying in where it is nice and warm and shop for books at the new gift guide from Promo 101 Virtual Tours. You can check it out and download a copy at: www.nikkileigh.com/gift_guide_2008.htm.
My gift came yesterday when my friend and book publicist Nikki Leigh sent me my own copy of the gift guide. I was surprised and delighted to be included as her Roving Reporter and featured author! Looks like she got every one of my print and e-books included in the guide and I am feeling hopeful that holiday shoppers will find my books for gifts. Maybe Santa will put some copies under your tree?
I really love to write, and the characters in my books are my sisters - women who prevail through hard circumstances and never stop believing that life is good and love is possible. Maybe one of my heroines will remind you of someone you know? I hope so.
Keep on the sunny side! Terry
Friday, December 5, 2008
Good Friday Morning,
Last night I attended the gala for the 9th annual Festival of Wreaths at Pleasant Day Medical Adult Day Care Center. It was a glittering affair complete with four musical presentations, and more than 125 wreaths hung in the halls of the facility -all of them ready for sale by silent auction. The event was catered by just about every restaurant in the county. What a party.
I was there nine years ago when the boss, Jackie Vickers, told me she wanted a fund-raiser to help keep indigent clients in day care. Back then, it cost something under $70 for the services: transportation, two meals and a snack, medical supervision,activities, shopping, and social worker services. Last night proved the festival was pure gold. The sale of all those wreaths, a couple of raffles and a live auction of wonderful donated items generated thousands of dollars to keep our elders in the program.
I retired from Pleasant Day several years ago, but every Christmas I take time to make some wreaths - for myself, and for others. It is a lot of fun, and I always use up some of the tons of materials that seem to find their way into my craft shelves. Each year, I help decorate one of the 18 trees that decorate the center, and this year a couple of friends from the Wednesday Morning Artists helped. We made a wreath too - with dozens of little paintings by the members.
The gala was so much fun. I collected hugs and reconnected with friends I made during a career as fund-raiser for two non-profits and as a news reporter - one of the reasons I adore Cambridge. People are great here, and they aren't afraid to tell you they love you!
You can't beat a night like that. I hope you take time to do something for others less fortunate this holiday season. It sure keeps you on the sunny side. Love, Terry
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Good Morning Bloggers,
I bet you are wondering why I am writing bats in the dead of winter. Well, I have been wondering about bats ever since I noticed one solitary bat roosting between the screen and glass in a bedroom window.
Never having seen a bat at close range before, I took the opportunity to check out the little guy. Less than three inches long, the small flying mammal had its tiny wings wrapped tightly around his/her miniature body. Looking closely, I could see two tiny ears and the little hands that clutched at the screen. Huh. What an amazing creature.
I understand bats can carry rabies, but my miniscule visitor was a pane of glass away and I was fascinated by its proximity. My little bat was present some summer days, but not others - when the hunting was good for flies, mosquitoes and other flying peskies. Some days he/she roosted on one side of the window, some days on the other side. Some days I didn't see the little guy at all.
Last week the most miraculous thing happened. My bat brought home a partner. Now the two of them are cozied up in tight formation in the right-hand corner of my window. Now,, if I found thse guys in my room, I might freak out, but there they are in blissful sleep (bats enter a state of torpor when it is cold and insects are in short supply) just behind the glass of my window. They say there is someone for everyone, and I guess my little friend proves the point.
Stay warm, peeps and keep on the sunny side! Terry
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
I am a little late getting started this morning. For some reason, the process of posting the blog here changes almost daily. Today I got computer jargon instead of the nifty holiday drawing I hped to post. So... if it doesn't work this time, think of a cute little girl with a teddy bear.
Isn't it funny how life gives you gifts? I know there are times when I decide to do one thing and then life turns left instead of right. That's when learning sets in -- and learning often involves effort. About that time, the gifts creep up on you. Nifty, huh?
I try to stay open when change hits. I mean, why get all upset? None of us are too old to learn a little something new.
Today, my lesson is to be brief. I need to get busy wrapping gifts so I can see who I still need to find something nifty for. I find gifts all year long, so the wrapping is about all that is left by the time December rolls around.
So, happy shopping, wrapping and receiving gifts. The sun is shining, it is going to be a pretty day.
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Monday, December 1, 2008
Have you ever noticed how the eve of a holiday offers an endless vista of time off?
Last Wednesday evening we thought the holiday would last forever. But today? Monday morning is always a bear – today it is even worse. It is a bear with a toothache.
I am pretty sure the difference is relativity.
Think back to when you were a kid. Remember how much fun it was to play in the snow? Remember how you never got cold and it didn’t bother you to move several tons of the white stuff in order to build a fort? At my age, I will deny all relationship with a shovel. Winter is too cold, and my back won’t let me pick up heavy stuff.
Everything is relative.
When I was a kid I could eat a whole batch of cookies. Now, one brownie will put my blood sugar over the top. What kind of a deal is that?
When I was a kid, nine o’clock was too early to go to bed. Today I can hardly keep my eyes open after supper.
It is all relative, kiddo.The thing is, everything is relative. You just have to look at it from the right angle.Well, I gotta go, lots to do. After all, it is Monday morning.
Keep on the sunny side, Terry