Loom Knitting This Week

  • January 27, 2020
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While recuperating from dental implant surgery (lucky me, it hit me harder than others I know who had it done), I might have gone a little overboard at a yarn sale. I’m on my third hat with two more promised to friends.





Valerie’s Beauty Treatment

  • January 20, 2020
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Sometimes my characters allow me glimpses into their lives that are outside the stories they’re in. And just when I was thinking that retired demons Jonas White and Valerie Brodsky acted somewhat benign as citizens of Hell, they popped up in this snippet and reminded me that a demon is a demon is a demon.


Valerie’s Beauty Treatment

“You’re wearing a headband. With Polka dots and a big bow?” Jonas stared.

“Brilliant deduction, genius.” Valerie waved him into the apartment.

“Dare I ask why?”

“Follow me.” She brushed past him and led the way to the bedroom.

He stood in the doorway with her and stared. Blood was splattered everywhere, from the walls to the bedding to the carpet.

There was no body.

“Still—why the fluffy headband?”

“Look up.”

Jonas raised his eyes obediently and noted blood dripping from the light fixture. “Still don’t get it.”

“Are you kidding? Blood from a probable murder? It’ll do great things for my skin and all I need to do is stand there and let it drip.” Valerie’s eyes gleamed red for an instant before reverting to their more human shade.

“Of course. Silly me. Beauty treatment.” Jonas’s voice lowered to a register deeper than normal. “You don’t need a beauty treatment, you know. Your body is doing very well.”

Valerie shifted restlessly. “Yes, for a middle-aged human. I want to keep this body as long as I can, but really, the possibilities here are too good to overlook.”



Jonas and Valerie can be found in the following anthologies:




The Scary Printer

  • January 13, 2020
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It was after 2 a.m. and I needed to print out a few pages so I could edit them. Instead of starting its normal hum, my printer began screeching a banshee’s cry of death—one that didn’t stop even after I switched it off. (If my neighbors are reading this, major apologies.)

Quite frankly, it scared the shit out of me. I turned it off! It should have stopped! At 2 in the morning, thinking “possession” is a perfectly logical possibility. I yanked the cord from the outlet and finally there was silence. And a dead printer.

Trying during daylight hours had the same result. And I felt stuck, in both writing and editing. I need to see the print on a physical page with pen in hand.

A new printer arrived but hasn’t been hooked up yet. I admit to still being a bit freaked by the demise of my old one. Prior printers passed away peacefully (aside from swearing, on my part) and the fact that this one protested so stridently has left me hesitant to just get on with it.

I will, I will.


Happy New Year!!

  • December 31, 2019
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happy new year photo

Happy Holidays!

  • December 23, 2019
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chanukah photo

No matter what you celebrate this time of year, may it be a good one!

Beating the Winter Blues (Again)

  • December 16, 2019
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It’s that time of year so here are a couple of posts:

5 Steps to Deal with the Winter Blues

5 Steps to Deal with the Winter Blues (Part 2)

Stay healthy and keep writing.


Advice for People Stressed Out During the Holidays

  • December 09, 2019
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If you’re not allergic:

1. Pet a cat.*

2. Let cat snuggle in your lap.

3. Take breaks (because cat is lying on book/papers/whatever you need to work on at that moment).

(This is Jake, who thoughtfully helped while I was trying to study at his house.)

Frankie and I want to wish everyone who celebrates a Happy Holiday!

*May substitute dog (or any pet) for cat.

Philadelphia Miniaturia 2019—Part 2

  • November 25, 2019
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Last week I showed miniatures featuring animals, reptiles, modern furniture and amazing houses. This week I’d like to present three more aspects. For those who love the macabre as well as the cute, keep reading.

First, books from Here Today Gone Tomorrow:

They also had an amazing display of furniture and pottery:

Next, painter Sue Veeder displayed her magnificent artwork. I have to admit, I saw the paintings in person and still couldn’t believe they were in 1:12 scale:

All right you fiends of horror, this is what struck both terror and glee in my heart, from Magic-N-Miniature, a wonderfully crafted guillotine (body sold separately):

Incidentally, this is where I bought the chef’s knife in the first picture.

Unfortunately for those of us who prefer the Internet, not all miniaturists have websites to sell their wares. Below is contact information for the miniaturists featured here.

Here Today Gone Tomorrow: Chris and Holly Wood (270) 622-1629/hollywood13@windstream.net

Sue Veeder: (608)242-1600/sue_veeder@hotmail.com

Magic-N-Miniature: csharville@hotmail.com








Philadelphia Miniaturia 2019—Part 1

  • November 18, 2019
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I love dollhouse miniatures. There’s something enthralling about creating a tiny world and letting others inside (a lot like being a writer so maybe I shouldn’t be surprised). Though there are different scales to work in, I prefer one-inch scale (1:12), which means that one inch in miniature equals one foot in real life.

One of the best things about this hobby is that it unleashes creativity and allows me to see things differently. I once saw a thin twig on the ground. Cut into pieces, it became logs for a mini fireplace.

Another great thing about this hobby is that there’s a price range for everyone. It’s not necessary to break the bank to put together a wonderful scene.

This year I was able to attend the Philadelphia Miniaturia Show, the largest miniatures show on the East Coast, and I was blown away by the artistry and kindness of the people I met there. Here are some of their works. There will be a part two next week because I couldn’t decide which pictures to post (they’re that wonderful). Keep in mind that this is the barest fraction of what was displayed.

Many people think of dollhouse miniatures as old-fashioned, with recreations of homes from the Victorian era and earlier. While that exists, there’s a lot more diversity now, as shown by Designing Ways:

The next miniaturist is Kristin Castenschiold, from Heart Felt Canines and Companions, who creates all her own products. I was completely captivated by the mountain lion:

And finally, outside structures can be as simple or ornate as the ones from Karen’s Dollhouse Shop:

Tune in next week for more.


Next Week!

  • November 11, 2019
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This weekend I went to the Philadelphia Miniatura Show, the largest miniatures show on the East Coast. I took pictures of some amazing work and will start sharing them next week.

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