Jan 12, 2015 Back from the Brink

Yes, I’ve returned. The holidays, miserable winter weather, and a nasty bout with influenza during Christmas week took me away, but through it all, I remembered my promise to blog more faithfully.

The brink could also refer to a close call I experienced the other day. Thanks to my EMT husband’s expertise with the Heimlich manuever, I survived a serious choking episode. I’ve learned to say I’m grateful in Spanish: Yo estoy agradecido . . . mucho!

So here we are again, seizing the day.

And I have exciting news—since my last post, I’ve received my first fiction contract for a women’s fiction book called In This Together. A new online author friend, Elaine Stockhttp://elainestock.com, allowed me to borrow this graphic from a blog article by Edie Melson describing a necessary attitude for writing success.



Believing in yourself and your work don’t always come easily. In This Together is not my first completed novel, but when its heroine Dottie, a widow and WWII Gold Star mother, entered my life, I couldn’t resist writing her story.

Who knew she would win my first contract? I’m very grateful to the Vintage Rose line for considering Dottie and crew worthy of publication.

I think you’ll enjoy getting to know Dottie. She’s come through a lot, and now works at a boarding house owned by a not-so-pleasant curmudgeon.

Losing her only son Bill in a North African battle devastated Dottie. When her husband died at the end of World War II, she began working at the boarding house. Climbing the stairs pains her bum knee, but her job gives her a reason to get up in the morning.

Every morning, she passes her widower neighbor Al’s house, unaware of his unspoken attraction to her—who would think it? After all, Al still misses his wife Nan, Dottie’s best friend.

Dottie would like nothing more than to help her daughter Cora with the two grandbabies she’s never met, but her fear of closed-in spaces and travel keeps her from even considering a train trip to California. Ah, why does life have to be so confounded complicated?

Clearly, Dottie’s challenges intrigue me, and there are more. A new employee at the boarding house could either drive Dottie to her own brink or force her to move past some limits she’s set for herself.

Sometimes, believing in ourselves means allowing for alterations.

Also, I now have a GoodReads author page and would love to have you visit/become a fan. Thanks for stopping by, please leave a comment here, and may 2015 bring you new delights. I hope to see you every Monday morning from now on.



40 thoughts on “

  1. What a nice spruce up, Gail. Kudos to you and your husband. Thanks for the mention and link!

    Congratulations on the sell of your novel. Continued blessings.

    So sorry you haven’t been well–I wasn’t aware of that. I’m happy you’re doing much better.

  2. In my opinion, the purple background is tooooo purple. You like yellow so much, what about exchanging to purple for yellow, and have the lettering in purple?

    Writng that much idi s big project, but nice reading for the rest of us.

    Bitterly cold, but sunny today. Gearing up for a dental appt tomorrow–its always a mind game.

    • Thanks, Bonnie, for coming over. I just went to your site, and am so proud of you for being BACK IN THE WRITING SADDLE – yay for your 2015 resolution. We’re all in this together and I’m cheering for you.

      Please keep me updated – we met a Loooooong time ago, didn’t we…glad to be re-connected.

  3. Luv looking at your new space. I would agree w purple to more of violet or soft yellow. Pastel like …
    So glad you r mending from illness as well. Now, yeah for the contract! Your creative juices are amazing. Would luv to do a women’s conference w you “about pur

    • Hi Nancy,

      Thanks for visiting my site! I would like to do a conference w/you too. . . the end of your comment got cut off, though….about put…what was the ending, please?

      Hope to connect again soon,


  4. Lo siento!!! Glad your DH was there to save you! Scary!
    Be glad you are there, we are still in the deep freeze.
    Your new page looks great. Softer purple, yes. But lately, I keep falling into the lavender trap. You are encouraging me to get back to my website construction, too. Why this scares me so..I don’t know!
    Just put the new linen yardage into the washing machine. Will probably start a linen AND a batiste gown for Johnston baby…let her choose. Then I have one more done. I need to get some doll clothes set together, too…dont know how I let these things slip off the mental work table, but I want to get some done soon.
    wish you were here to hold my hand…Con will… but NEED to clear out basements and organize. Ahhhh… I feel the paralysis coming on!
    love to you both… see you soon!

    • Hey Holly – Scares me too, but here we go, girl! I’m pretty certain this says something about our age and orientation, don’t you think?

      Good luck w/organizing.

      STAY WARM,


  5. It’s pretty. It seems more about quotes than you. I missed seeing the set up for your new book on the books tab–had to read about it from others.

    • Lisa, thanks so much for coming. I’m mulling over your comments–especially the more-about-quotes-than you. I definitely have enough quotes.
      Am not certain what you mean by set up for the new book on the books tab. Do you mean the list at the top? I don’t have it on the books page yet b/c there’s no cover yet, and I don’t yet know the release date. But maybe I should put a description of it there, anyway. Food for thought.

  6. Yo estoy agradecido . . . That your husband knows the Heimlich Maneuver and that several of my Christmas gifts have been decided on for this year. A few of my lucky gal-pals will be receiving a copy of “In This Together”!

  7. New site looks good.

    So proud of you getting a contract. I’m anxious to meet Dottie & share her life.

    See you soon!!

  8. Good job friend……I personally like the lilac (can’t say it’s really purple) but try the yeller and see what you think….. since you have your techie guru at your mercy right now….
    Blessings….my friend and BTW good ideas….. quotes in the blog.

    • I KNOW how busy you are, and really appreciate you taking the time to give your opinion. We’re quote people, that’s for sure!!

    • Thanks, Candy. If you go back to it right now, I just uploaded a new header picture. I think maybe this is IT. Pant! Isn’t it interesting, our passions to create? I have to thank you, too, for yours. Creating Breath of Life Retreat House HAD to be a passion, for you to stick with it, right? And now, you’re enjoying the success you worked so hard for – I’m really glad for you.

    • Thanks, Dana. Glad to be back in touch. I really like your umbrella pic, btw! Hope to see you at the Karen Ball workshop the 24th.

  9. I think everything is perfect. Glad you are doing better and I am so looking forward to your next book. I have enjoyed the other ones. God has given you and amazing talent. Praise the LORD. God Bless. Jo

  10. Everything is perfect. Glad you are better and looking forward to your next book. The other books were so enjoyable. You have an amazing talent from God. Praise the LORD. God Bless. Jo

  11. An easy-to-read website, Gail, and I love the motto, Dare to Bloom! Your goal to blog regularly is an honorable one. I’m sure you have a lot of inspiration to share with others…to help them Bloom!

    • I appreciate you visiting, Sara. It’s taken me quite a while, but things seem to be coming together. I must say, the fiction contract really motivated me!

  12. I’ve always loved the way you write, and your finished product. So much heart and soul. So much to bless the reader. Happy you have a new book being published. Congratulations on that!!

    • Oh Sylvia,

      How great to connect w/you here. Your faith in me certainly buoyed me up during some difficult times–and here you are, lifting my spirits again. Bless you – stay tuned here b/c I’ll post when the book is coming out, and hopefully news of more contracts.
      Bless you!

    • It’s that midwest weather, Normandie. Happens every year, which is why I’m in the ponderosa forest of AZ right now. Miss the people up there but NOT the storms! It’s nice to know someone way out east…practically in the ocean, is celebrating w/me!

  13. Your header of colorful flowers is a charming invitation to see what comes next. I can visualize the sparkle in your heart as you tell us about the characters in your next book.
    I have turned from writing to painting, but feel nostalgia for the wonderful years you guided me in the field of writing.


  14. Oh Bonnie, it’s so good to hear from you! I’d like to try the painting some day, as well. What are you working on (playing with??) right now? Are you still in Decorah?

    How have sales gone for your memoir? You did a fabulous job w/that. And thanks for your kind words re the header.

    Take care-

  15. Yeah, I’m glad you didn’t check out on us. Remember yellow is warm and inviting. Purple or lavendar is cooler and more standoffish (maybe not a word).
    Naturally I love the flowers and the smell doesn’t bother.

    Congratulations on the contract – worth the wait.

    My computer wasn’t feeling well. We couldn’t come up with the right combination of meds to fix it, so in the hospital it went. After three days it was discharged only to get home and have an instant relapse. Back to the hospital it went. This time it spent a few more days under observation.
    Yesterday the discharge finally happened. However, it may be close to terminal–so Jerry is busy backing up my world. It is a slow process and sad to say how much we depend on technology.

    Winter has been interesting but oh so beautiful.

  16. Sorry about your computer, Mary – are you getting a new one? And yes, sort hints are worth waiting for – keep enjoying the stark beauty there.

  17. Alison, you’re FAST!!! I loved meeting you, too and am impressed you already checked out my blog. You can count on learning about Dottie’s story HERE…smile. And now I need to go check out your blog…


  18. I became of a new word (at least to me). Looming and loomed. The grandkids are busy looming. Will you loom with me? This is how they converse when working on their rainbow looms (with the many colors of rubber bands). What we can’t learn from children. Computer is still hanging in there. Happy writing.

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