#1 NYT bestselling author Linda Lael Miller
Dreaming of Spring

Our winners are: Marcia White and Edna Dutra.  Congratulations, ladies.  You will each receive an autographed book very soon.

As always, there are is a new contest underway now.  The rules, for those of you who are new to the blog, are as follows: simply comment, and you’re entered.  Two winners will be chosen at random, notified by Jen, and announced here next Monday.  (Approximately.)

You know, I try hard to be positive, but I’m definitely getting tired of all this snow.  I’m dreaming of spring–of flowers and fawns and chicks, both quail and turkey.  (Sigh.)

I write this at the end of a long work day, and I am quite tired, but happy with what I’ve written.  I do love writing about the Civil War in general and these characters in particular.  :)

What I’ve been listening to: “Brat Farrar”, by Josephine Tey.  I was inspired by a book I just finished, “The End of Your Life Book Club”, by Will Schwalbe, a touching memoir about a man’s relationship with his amazing mother, and the books they loved.  The mother was undergoing treatment for pancreatic cancer, and her son went along to offer support.  Both were great readers, and they began exchanging books, discussing them.  I was fascinated by their insights, and by the mother’s commitment to her many charitable causes.  In the playlist, waiting to be heard, are: “Crossing to Safety”, by Wallace Stegner, also recommended by the Schwalbes, “A Dog’s Purpose”, by W. Bruce Cameron, “General Joseph Warren Revere: the Gothic Tale of Paul Revere’s Grandson”, by William R. Chemerka.  (He fought in the Civil War.  Who knew?)  and “Fess Parker: TV’s Frontier Hero”, also by William R. Chemerka.  You spring chickens probably won’t remember Parker, but we Baby Boomers will never forget the man in the ‘coon-skin cap, who played both Davy Crockett and Daniel Boone, in addition to appearing in numerous Disney productions. 

I must admit there are other books, as well.  I’m an addict.

Tomorrow is my mother’s birthday, and my brother Jerry’s, too.  He’ll be coming to town, and we’ll all go out for a little celebration.  Mom will be 86, and though she is fragile, she is as quick-witted as ever.  Interesting thing about our family; just as Mom and Jerry share a birthday (January 31), so did Dad and I (June 10).  Our two sisters, Sally (May 21) and Pam (January 18), refused to cooperate by being born on family birthdays–they wanted their own.  :)

That’s the news for today, my friends.  Be well.

 

Just a Chat

Someone asked if I’d read the book, THE KILLER ANGELS.  The answer is: YES.   In fact, my good friend, actor/artist Buck Taylor, appeared in the movie, GETTYSBURG, which was based on Michael Shaara’s Pulitzer prize winning novel.  I’m heading back to my favorite town in Pennsylvania to attend the re-enactment of the famous battle, which took place on July 1, 2, and 3, of 1863.  I have costumes and there will be pictures and videos.  :)

I’ve been writing and writing, and loving the process.  Yesterday, my keyboard went haywire, and I was so frustrated (even though I’d done the damage myself, by spilling something on the keys), because I wanted to keep writing.  Super Jen picked up a replacement, but it was too small.  Nevertheless, I wrote my current quota of 10 pages, but this morning, I remembered my art computer down in the basement, and asked Kat to attach the keyboard to my Mac.  Voila!  It worked, and I wrote another 10 pages.  

My eyes are pretty tired by the end of the day, so I listen to audiobooks instead of reading.  I just finished a second book by Jonathan Franzen, FREEDOM, and am now listening to DISPATCHES FROM PLUTO, by Richard Grant.  This is a memoir, my favorite kind of book, except for Civil War histories, and it’s a real education.  Grant, a British journalist, moved from New York to the state of Mississippi, and the book is a fascinating account of his experiences there.  The level of poverty in that part of the country is heartbreaking, worse in some ways than parts of West Virginia.  

It’s dark now, and the dogs are outside, barking at something through the back fence.  I’d better go and make sure they’re not challenging a pack of coyotes.

Send me questions, and I’ll do a Q&A blog.

 

The typical Pony Express rider was nineteen years old and made $100-$150 per month plus room and board.

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