An Introvert’s Dirty Little Guide to Getting Along With People (when you’d rather be at home with a book.)

The world is full of people, and each person is carrying a load of memories, experiences, and concerns that make them see the world differently from you. Even when a person was raised in the same house and has the same parents and attended the same church and school, they’re going to approach the world differently from you.

In fact, even you are going to see things differently tomorrow than you will today. So, given that we can’t even count on ourselves to behave in a consistent, normal manner, how do we deal? Here are a few pointers.

  1. Give up on normal. Nobody is normal. In fact, if someone was normal—we’d find them odd. And boring. Celebrate that everyone is unique and therefore, everyone has something to teach us. Whether you’re learning that you want to be like them, or that you don’t want to make their mistakes, everyone is a teacher. And if you’re open, you can be the student.
  2. Recognize that you aren’t everyone’s favorite flavor of ice cream. Not everyone is going to appreciate your quirkiness. That’s okay. Actually, that’s good, because they are one less person you have to devote your energy to. Don’t stew over why they may or may not want to sit at your table and laugh at your jokes. Let them go and find their own crowd.
  3. Let people grow up. Just because your little sister used to gallop around, toss her hair like it was a mane, answer questions with a neigh, and act like a pony twenty years ago, that doesn’t mean she’s going to embarrass you today. (Although, she might.) But we need to allow people to grow up and out of their immaturities…or accept them even when they don’t.
  4. Be a buffalo and brave the storms. When buffalos see an approaching storm, they run into it, while cows run away. But because cows are notoriously slow, they stay in the storm longer…and they don’t live as long as the brave buffalos. This is a great analogy on how to handle conflict in an important relationship. Learn how to have those crucial conversations. Say what needs to be said. Be honest.
  5. Lean into your emotions, but don’t be dominated by them. When someone close to you hurts you (and they will) or when you hurt them (and you will), sit with the emotion, study it, and observe it before you react. Ask yourself, what can I do with this? Where do I want this relationship to go? Who do I want to be?
  6. Always be the hero of your story. Don’t play the victim. Try not to be the villain (although, sometimes that might happen, even when you don’t want it to.) Every moment of every day, you’re writing your life story. Make it a good one. Fill it with colorful characters. Be the hero who is not only saving herself but doing her best to help those around her write their own very best life stories.

And when it all get’s too exhausting, find a good book, curl up in a corner with a cup of cocoa, and take a breather until you’re ready to face the world and all its people again.

Kristy Tate is a USA Today bestselling novelist, a mom to six, a grandmother to many, she has too many nieces, nephews, in-laws, and cousins to count (mostly because she hates math, but also because she has a lot) and she tries to love them all. You can sign up for her newsletter here.

Half-Baked, A Better Late Romance

CHAPTER ONE

Halfway across the parking lot, Robbie stopped and pulled at his bowtie. “I hate these things.”

“The tie or the gala?” Maggie straightened her brother’s cheap clip-on tie and had a vivid flashback of decades past to the senior prom where she’d tried to smooth down Robbie’s cowlick. Balding had long since cured that problem.

The prom had also been held at this place, the Rancho Allegro Country Club. It seemed like a lifetime ago, and yet, here she was with her brother—again—in fancy clothes. It was as if she was on a spinning wheel revisiting the same places with the same people over and over again.

“Both,” he growled. “All these pompous posers looking down on the rest of us peons.” He shuddered.

She thought about pointing out that with his generous salary, he was probably richer than most of the people attending the party—not to mention in the world—but since she knew he hadn’t gone into medicine for the money, she pressed her lips together.

“I like your costume,” he said, his gaze flicking over her. “The blue wig should make you look like a smurf or Marge Simpson, but somehow you pull it off.”

Maggie fluttered her wings. “It’s beautiful, isn’t it? Tessa made it.”

Robbie’s lips tightened and a closed expression like a hood passed over his face.

“Why don’t you like her?”

“I never said I don’t like her.”

“You clam up whenever she’s around.”

He shrugged. “It’s weird you’re friends, that’s all.”

“Why?”

“You’re nothing like each other. You’re you and she’s…she drives a Mercedes.”

“So?”

He shrugged again.

“A Mercedes isn’t a sin-mobile.”

He elbowed her. “Come on, I have to show my face.” As head of the pediatric department, he was right. He looped his arm through hers and led her through the parking lot. “Thanks for being my date tonight.”

They passed the valets milling around the Teslas and Land Cruisers. Because Robbie didn’t believe in valets, they had parked in the neighborhood adjacent to the club. The lights from the party flickered in the distance and a honky-tonk jazz band began to play.

“No problem. I love free food.”

He smirked and shook his head. “I don’t get you.”

“Yes, you do.” She slid him a glance. “If not you, then who?”

“You’re right. I do get you, but I just don’t understand how you can spend all day around food and never get tired of it.”

“Do you get tired of saving people?”

“No, but it’s different.”

“No, it’s not. You save people, I feed them. We’re in the same line of work.”

They passed the valets—young, lean men in button down white shirts and tight black pants—without looking at them. Their parents had taught them that trick—never make eye contact with someone who might expect a tip. Of course, since they hadn’t actually parked in the lot, they didn’t tip the handsome young men, but Maggie felt their questioning glances on her back as she followed Robbie up the stairs.

Originally, The Lodge, as locals called it, had been constructed for hunting back when Rancho Allegro had really been a ranch and coyotes and mountain lions were nearly as plentiful as the bunnies that currently terrorized gardeners. Strange how the gentlest of the creatures were the ones who actually survived urbanization.

In the lobby, several people vied for Robbie’s attention all at once. Maggie, a baker without food, and therefore a nobody, wandered off to peruse the refreshment table, not necessarily because she was hungry, but because she liked looking at beautiful food displays.

She had to stop herself from whistling in admiration. The caterers, men and women dressed in black, moved like perfectly choreographed dancers around the room bearing trays that looked more like portable art than appetizers. Edible art, the phrase came to Maggie’s mind and rested there. Could she try and copy any of this in her bakery?

Her fingers itched for her phone, but she’d left it at home. She wished she could take pictures of this. Who were the caterers? Maybe she should skirt around outside to catch a glimpse of their van. Hopefully, it would have a logo on it.

Her nose wrinkled when she spotted asparagus spears wrapped in a flakey crust and a piece of bacon. She would never understand the compulsion to ruin perfectly good baked goods by partnering them with vegetables.

“What, no donuts?” Tessa, dressed as Florence Nightengale, appeared at her side. “They should have hired Maggie’s muffins.”

Maggie turned and gave her friend a hug. “Maybe next time.” Robbie was right, they were an unlikely pair. Tall and curvy Maggie dominated over pixie-like Tessa. Maggie was a red-headed buzzard while Tessa was as blond as Tinker-bell.

“Really?” Tessa asked.

She nodded. “Robbie said he’d recommend me.”

Tessa smiled and said, “that’s great,” but her gaze darted around the room. Was she looking for Robbie? Or someone else? “The costume looks really good on you.”

“Thanks to you.”

Tessa flushed and straightened Maggie’s wings. “I love making beautiful things even more beautiful.”

“It looks great here, doesn’t it?” Maggie said, glancing around.

“Yes,” Tessa said with a touch of pride. “My dad wondered if they were going to cancel because of yesterday’s earthquake, but the Lodge wasn’t damaged. Thankfully.”

“Any damage at your store?”

“Nothing I couldn’t take care of myself. How about the bakery?”

“A lot of rattling pots and pans, but not much else.”

Tessa bumped her with her hip. “We’re lucky.”

She wished that were true. Maggie’s parents used to say she was their lucky penny, and she’d always felt that way…until Peter got sick. Sometimes she felt like she’d been trying to win her way back into Lady Luck’s good favor ever since.

The band, playing on a soundstage across the patio, began Conga and a line formed.

Tessa took Maggie’s hand. “Want to dance?”

“Sure, but first let me check my purse.”

Tessa winced when she saw Maggie’s old beat-up leather satchel. It matched the costume like paper bag accessorized a tuxedo, but Maggie refused to be embarrassed. She loved her purse—she’d had it for nearly a decade. And yes, it looked like the poor country cousin among all the Coaches and Kate Spades on the shelf, but she didn’t care.

#

Steven strolled into the country club and sought out Tessa. Because of her diminutive size, she was often easy to miss. Most of the guests were wearing masks, but Tessa had told him she’d be wearing a Florence Nightingale costume. He spotted her dancing with a tall, blue-haired yet beautiful butterfly.

Because he was new to Rancho Allegro, he only knew a handful of the guests. His uncle, Tessa father, was the president of the St. John’s hospital chain and had insisted he attend. Even though Steven was probably now worth more than his Uncle Jack, it was still hard to deny Jack anything. The family still kowtowed to the rich uncle…even when there were, now, richer cousins.

As he crossed the patio, something crinkled beneath his shoe. Given the noise—the music, the chatter, the clattering cutlery—he almost missed it. What was it that people said about the sound of falling coins—everybody heard it because people heard what they wanted to hear? A hundred-dollar bill. Steven stooped and picked it up. Someone must have dropped it.

He glanced around at all the bejeweled people in their fancy costumes. Only one man wasn’t in a costume—although he was wearing a bowtie. Did he think that was costume enough?

In most crowds, someone would be frantically searching for the lost bill, but here, no one seemed to notice. Still, it had to have been an accident. He held it up and slowly turned, hoping someone would take note. Someone did. His cousin Mitch.

“I’ll take that.” Mitch, dressed as a pirate, moved to swipe it from his hand.

Steven tightened his grip on the bill and shoved it into his pocket, away from his cousin’s greed.

“Hey,” Mitch complained. “This is a fund raiser. I’m just trying to raise funds.”

Steven tried not to roll his eyes. “If I can’t find the owner, I’ll give this to someone who needs it.”

“The hospital needs it, you loon.” He waved his saber at the party. “That’s why we’re here.”

“This is a hundred-dollar bill. It cost, what? Three-hundred dollars to get in here? Besides, I already made a generous donation. I’m going to give this to someone else.”

Mitch scowled.

“I’m going to give it to…” Glancing around the room, he debated: a valet? One of the servers? He could wait and donate it to one of the regular charities on his list: the Red Cross, St. Judes Medical Research, or Orange Wood Foster Homes.

But then it would weigh on him and Mitch would harass him. His gaze landed on the coat check. One scruffy leather satchel stood out from the rest. He strode over to the bored-looking girl behind the counter.

“See that purse,” he pointed at the satchel.

“This one?” Surprise for a moment overrode the girl’s bored expression. She obviously didn’t think a man in a Zorro cape would be interested in a scuffed leather satchel. “It belongs to my girlfriend.”

“And now you’re a liar,” Mitch whispered in his ear.

The girl narrowed her lids and tightened her lips. “I can’t give out any of the purses unless you have a ticket.”

Steven hurried to placate her. “I just want you tuck this into it.” He pulled out the bill and showed it to the girl. “Can you do that?”

“You’re a crazy person,” Mitch said.

“Crazy like a fox,” Aunt Miriam said from behind him. Approaching eighty, she looked and acted like someone nearly half her age. Tonight, she was dressed as a flapper. She snaked her arm around his waist and looped the other through Mitch’s arm. “A silver fox! How did two of my favorite boys ever grow to be so old and yet so handsome?”

Mitch flushed. “The same could be said of you, Mom.”

“Hush!” Aunt Miriam she shook her long cigarette holder in Mitch’s face. “I don’t want anyone to know I’m old enough to belong to you.” She dropped her voice to a whisper. “You could pretend I’m your date.”

“I could,” Mitch said, pulling away. “But I won’t.” He gave Steven the stink eye. “Let’s ignore her.”

“You can ignore me, but you better not ignore your wife,” Aunt Miriam said, nodding at the approaching Lydia, who was wearing a Queen of Hearts costume.

Mitch audibly groaned, but also grinned.

There were lots of things Steven didn’t admire about his cousin, but he did envy him his long and happy marriage. Mitch had married ten years before him and hopefully would be married for many years after. Lydia had been good for him.

The butterfly he’d noticed earlier approached the coat check and handed the girl her ticket. He watched as the girl handed the butterfly the beat-up purse that now carried his one-hundred dollar bill.

His gaze met the girl’s.

“Your girlfriend, huh?” the girl asked.

Surely, this was a breach of some sort of hired-help etiquette.

Aunt Miriam perked up. “Your girlfriend?”

Mitch grinned. “Yeah, about that, Steven?”

Steven rubbed his chin and decided to go along with it. “There you are,” he said. “I’ve been looking for you.”

“For me?” The butterfly put her hand on her chest. Most of her face was covered by a jewel-studded mask, but her lips were full, red and her skin creamy and white. Definitely girlfriend material.

Steven braced his shoulder, determined to carry through with his charade. “I want to introduce you to my Aunt Miriam and cousin Mitch.”

The butterfly blinked and took Mitch’s extended hand. “I’m Grace,” she said.

“Come on, Grace,” Steven said, taking her hand and pulling her toward the dance floor and away from his aunt and laughing cousin.

Grace stumbled after him until they reached the dancing couples. “I don’t know who you are or what you’re thinking,” she began.

He silenced her by putting his finger on her lips. “Just go along with me, please. There’s a hundred-dollar bill in your purse for your trouble.”

Then he kissed her.

#

His warm lips spread a flurry of emotions through Maggie. Should she slap him? Push him away? Scream at him…but…oh…was this what kissing was all about? How long had it been since she’d been kissed like this? Maybe never.

She’d loved Peter. She had loved kissing Peter. But near the end, the kisses had been so mixed up in grief and pain, they’d just as soon make her cry as curl her toes in pleasure…like this one did.

What must this person think of her? What made him think he could just kiss her like this? Maybe he kissed everyone like this. She couldn’t be someone special in his life since he had only just met her…but he hadn’t really met her, had he? It wasn’t as if they’d been properly introduced.

And she’d given him her middle name.

But this kiss, though…

She really should end it. This was exactly the sort of privileged behavior her brother and parents were always spouting off about. Rich people who thought they could do whatever they wanted with little or no regard for who they stepped on…or kissed.

Oh, this kiss. It was like kissing Clark Gable, or Gary Grant, or…Zorro.

He pulled away. She was grateful to see he wore a dazed expression.

Maggie touched her lips. “What was that?”

“That,” he said, “was worthy of an encore.” And he kissed her again.

This time, Maggie, forgetting all about social injustice, leaned in and gave herself into pleasure. It rocked her world. Shook her to the core. Made her legs shake.

It took her a moment to realize that not only was her world rocking, but the lights stringing above her were wildly swinging. The band had stopped playing. Pillars bearing lanterns fell with a crash and glass shattered. The hospitality tent collapsed and one of the curtains fell into an open fire pit.

And still Zorro held her in his arms. In fact, he tightened the embrace, making it more protective than sensual.

The lights went out. Women screamed and men shouted. All around her, panicked people pushed and pulled. Zorro grabbed her hand and pulled her through the chaos. She staggered after him, barely seeing through the smoke and din.

The damp and cold seeped through Maggie’s flimsy shoes as she crossed the lawn. Zorro took her elbow and steered her through the parking lot, passing the valets who had gathered into a tight bunch beneath the now catawampus awning. Here, away from the party, the moonlight shone clearer.

Maggie blinked when she realized it wasn’t Zorro who had led her through the chaos, but her brother.

“Rob! What the heck?”

He stopped and stared at her. “What’s your problem?”

“I don’t have a problem,” she said.

“You sound like you do.” He stepped closer. “Who was that guy you were kissing?”

She floundered for an acceptable answer and finally came up with, “I don’t know.”

“And I have a problem with that,” Rob said.

Monday Motivation-The Why and How of Housekeeping

HOW TO ORGANIZE YOUR HOME

Because I’m not great at housekeeping but I love a clean house, I recently took a class on home organization class from guru, Marie Ricks. I loved it much more than I thought I would. These are my notes.

You can find her book on Amazon

Only keep what we truly need and trust that the Lord will give us what we need when we need it. Be patient with the process. If you’re right-handed, begin at the right side of a room. Start at the top and work down.

Set up a plan

                List every room. List closets, cupboards, drawers, and shelves (in each room). Pull everything out and sort items to share, discard, put elsewhere and keep.

               Create A, B, C, and D closets. As are highly visible and accessible and are for usage, not storage. Ds are for storage, usually off-site.

                And each closet has A, B, C and D areas. Don’t put anything on a shelf—use containers for the shelves. Create tabs out of duct tape and stick them on the containers so they’re easy to access.

 You only need one of everything.

Get rid of everything weak and un-useful.

Aks yourself, do I need it?

Can I get by without this?

What if I need it again?

Who can I bless by sharing? (Be overly generous)

Be objective, ruthless, courageous, and don’t look back.

Put what we use most in the most convenient places

When we have less, we can better bond.

Keep enough, give away abundance

Store useful items.

I came across this scripture, and it took on a new meaning:

And now I would that ye should be humble and submissive and gentle; easy to be entreated; full of patience and long-suffering; being temperate in all things; being diligent in keeping the commandments of God at all times; asking for whatsoever things ye stand in need, both spiritual and temporal; always returning thanks unto God for whatsoever things ye do receive. … And now, may the peace of God rest upon you, and upon your houses and lands, and upon your flocks and herds, and all that you possess, your women and your children, according to your faith and good works, from this time forth and forever. Book of Mormon, Alma 7:23-26

You might also like these posts:

How to Clean a Condo

The Corn Kernel Principle

Random Advice on Marriage and Housekeeping

Ten Steps on How to Be Happy

I’m so lucky to be at Brigham Young University’s Education Week! Here are the notes from one of my favorite classes.

Happiness, Justin B Top

Science, Psychology, Saints & Scriptures

You can’t use happiness as a gauge for your righteousness

WHAT IS HAPPINESS?

Emotions fluctuate/sleep/hormones/ health

Happiness is your perspective, a way of thinking, a state of mind ELEVATED PERSPECTIVES that leads to optimism, greater confidence,

To view the world, we all have our own unique world glasses: experiences, social influences, biological factors, genetics, gut bacteria, relationships. But we are not our glasses.

Consumerism is a huge factor in unhappiness.

Community and community celebrations increase happiness.

Happiness factors

50% genetic/biological

40% what you do

10% circumstances

Can you influence your bio? Yes, with sleep, exercise, healthy nutrition.

WE AREN’T GOING TO BE HAPPY IF WE’RE JUST ALONG FOR THE RIDE. WE NEED TO CREATE OUR OWN HAPPINESS

All we have to do is take steps. Be intentional about doing things to make our lives better

TOP TEN FACTORS OF HAPPINESS

  1. Freedom

Some people look at commandments as restrictions, but addictions and sins are the true restrictions.  A BIG PART OF HAPPINESS IS UNDERSTANDING THE CORRELATION BETWEEN SELF CONTROL AND FREEDOMS. Act for themselves and not to be acted upon, 2 Nephi 2:26  Every time we make a choice, it influences the future choices available to us.

  • Choice

Happiness is a choice. Abraham Lincoln, folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be. Freedom and choice relationship. When you choose to live a healthy life, you have more freedom to do things. Use choice wisely. Finances, relationships,

TAKE CONTROL AND CHOOSE TO BE HAPPY between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our power to grow. Frankl

You do not find a happy life, you make it—Thomas S. Monson

No one sees the world exactly the same

  • You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step. Emotional hygiene: taking daily steps to emotional steps. Take action. Chase after being good.

Life satisfaction: Ideals vs our behavior. The goal of life’s satisfaction is to get our ideals to match our behavior. The further they are a part, the greater our internal conflict. You can raise your behavior or lower your ideals. You can leave the church, but you can’t leave it alone, Joseph Smith. Unrealistic expectations. Comparisons to others. Acknowledging progress. Are we pushing to be better? Do you recognize God’s hand in your life? Do you give room for the atonement? Direction is more important than speed. Where do we find feelings of self-worth? It has to come from inside ourselves. It can’t be dependent on others. Does being more perfect make us feel closer to God and happier? Be compassionate with yourself

  • Pursuing Meaning choose one’s own way. Find something that gives us roots rather than being a tumble weed blown around by life. Stop and find a sense of joy. Marriage is about making us more like God. It’s a process. What brings joy? And what is the purpose of pain? Embrace pain and its meaning. Don’t try and avoid pain. Stability.
  • Direction and purpose: Where do you want to go and how will you get there? Everyone’s task is unique. We need to create our own path. It’s so easy to get off track. Every step ask yourself, does this line up with my purpose and goals?
  • Spirituality: A personal light that makes everything clearer. How is religion different from spirituality? The goal of religion is to lead us to spirituality. But you can be religious without spirituality and you can be spiritual without being religious. Oddly, being religious without spirituality is mentally dangerous and will cause unhappiness.
  • Live with passion: Flow. Finding the right reason for doing the right things. What makes you feel alive? What fills you emotionally? Find things that fill you, not drain you.
  • Gratitude: Gratitude can transform common days into Thanksgiving. Express gratitude to others. Write letters to people. We can refuse to remain in negative thought.
  • A sense of awe: Be content in whatever state we’re in. Be overwhelmed by the earth and its beauties.  Nature is the best medicine. Celebrate the sacred in your life. Remember the life moments that changed you forever. There’s beauty in everyone’s story.
  • Truth: Man should look for what is, and not for what he thinks should be. Einstein. Finding truth is a process, it’s getting to better know God. The nearer man approaches perfection the clear are his views and the greater his enjoyments, till he has over come the evils of his life and lost every desire for sin. Joseph Smith What truth really matters?

Truth about me

Relationship with others

My relationship with God

Truth is about peeling away all that doesn’t matter and facing who and what we really are. Identify the distortion of your lenses. 12 Steps of addiction are about identifying truth within ourselves, digging it all up and exposing all the lies.

Admit wrongs

Ready yourself for change

Seek God’s help

We create stories, we think we understand the truth of things, but often we really don’t. Like the apostles sitting around the table of the last supper, we need to ask, Lord is it I? What can I learn from this? Posture says something about our happiness. Take a receiving posture in life. Happiness is a butterfly—Hawthorne Let yourself be lived by life Lao Tzu. The more you fight against God’s plan for you, the unhappier you’ll be. Trust the journey. Go forward.

Monday Motivation: Mind Management

“We came to earth to learn how to control our bodies and our minds.” Mom Tate

I’m rereading Dennis Deaton’s The Book on Mind Management. I first heard Dr. Deaton speak at BYU’s Education Week. (I LOVE education week- I have a post about education week that you can read somewhere on this blog.) And I’m gearing up to be attending next week!

Anyway—love and highly recommend this book. If you need some motivation, read this book. If you don’t have the time, the money or the wherewithal to read his excellent book, here are a few quotes for your motivational Monday. 

“We alter our destiny by altering our thoughts.” 
“The moment you start thinking differently, your world changes.”
“The power of thought is the power of creation. Thoughts exert direct effect upon your body, your behavior and even the external world around you.”
“You can alter circumstances and events at will by first creating a vision of what you want to have happen and then giving yourself permission to enact it.”
“Moment by moment, thought by thought, you author your own script.”
“The consummate truth of life is that we alter our destiny by altering our thoughts. The mind is our most crucial resource, our crowning asset, our ultimate battle arena. If we will master the power of our minds, we may do or be whatsoever we will.”

I’m not a follower of The Secret, by the way but I am a devoted follower of Him that said, “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.” And so today, as I start a new week, I’m asking myself—what am I thinking?

What’s going on in your head?

Share a Hunk, Score a Book

Share a picture of your favorite hero (dogs and cats count) and I’ll send you free ecopy of my new release Verity and the Villain.

What’s the best part about writing? Creating new worlds? Plotting twists and turns? Summoning my inner ee cummings? Playing God with a cast of characters of my own creation? Getting to stay at home in my jammies while the rest of the world scurries around me with to-do-lists? Yes, yes, yes and sometimes. But for me, the very best part of writing is hanging with my heroes.

I know. Embarrassing to hear from a (young) grandma. But I find that for me a story really doesn’t find its legs (or chest or whatever) until I have sufficiently fallen for my hero. Hard. It’s not always easy.

Romance writers in my writing group complain that my heroes are too real. They bake bread, cut hair, and raise vegetables. They like children and play with dogs. They’re witty…they have to be witty.

Who are your favorite heroes? Gregory Peck as Atticus Fitch? Clark Gable as Rhett Butler? Cary Grant in North by Northwest? So many men…I have to fall in love with my heroes. Because that’s the very best part of being a writer.

I just noticed something. All of these heroes have my husband’s coloring, height and build. Go figure. Since all of these movies were made before I was born, then it stands to reason that I loved these men even before I met my husband. How sad for my family if I had fallen for a beach blond surfer dude. But I don’t think that would have happened. I think I knew from the very beginning, even as a young girl watching old movies, that I knew exactly what I was looking for.

I think of all the heroes I’ve loved in the books I’ve written. Some of my favorites aren’t even the heroes, per se. One of my very favorite characters is Uncle Mitch in Witch Ways. He’s basically my husband. In fact, some of my favorite Uncle Mitch lines came from my husband.

This is a picture of my husband passing out books at my first signing. The fact that he’s oh so supportive of my writings is just one of the things I love about him.

Book Review–Rhys Bowen’s Murphey’s Law

A glimpse of 1900 Ellis Island and New York City! The historical detail in this book is fascinating. Absolutely loved it. And I loved the book. My only complaint was the characters were rather flat. If Molly had an Ah-ha! moment, I must have missed it. Despite her change of location and all the happy just at the right moment occurrances, she was pretty much the same person when I started the book as when I finished. So, although it wasn’t much of an emotional upheaval, I’ll definitely more of Bowen’s books. I can spot a fellow history geek when I see one.