Happy 4th of July! I was sick for a month and am finally back to my normal self. Normal being a relative term for a girl who receives messages from spirit guides and sees auras.

I’ve been reading and re-reading Gayle Forman’s Sisters in Sanity and If I Stay. I think she is a genius and hope to convince her to mentor me as I work my way through my novel.  I’m going to use If I Stay as my guide book- to help me get out of my own way and finish this draft. She has the ability to make me savor each word and scene as she feeds me her beautiful stories. Her writing is delicious and she’s made me cry more than once and giggle too.

My friend Lisa is also on my case to get this draft done- so is my man-candy husband. But being sick and uncreative for a month has made it hard to find my way back into the story that kept me up at night with story ideas and characters conversations. Ironic hu? I think my best recourse is plug away for 10,000 more hours and just start putting some of what I’m working on out here for you to read, you are my editors. What do you think?

Without further ado, here’s a little snippet of a chapter I’m working on. Olivia, my protagonist is telling her story.


Even though I wasn’t completely used to the idea of having an undead mother, my life went on. Mom tried to foster normalcy by insisting we sit and have breakfast every morning. Like the familiar smell of coffee and toast could erase the weirdness and make me forget she could possibly rot.

Buttered toast was an inch away from my salivating mouth when he walked in. I didn’t see him at first, but I heard the front door open and the tread of nonchalant footfalls on the oak floor.

He acted as if he’d been here before. Casually stepping over the creaky floorboard in front of Mom’s stacked canvases in the hallway and around her while she stood still with her hip leaning against the kitchen counter. Then he sat down next to me. A pretty girl followed him in.  I could tell by the expression on Mom’s face she’d never seen them before.

The man rubbed his fingers along the top of the table toward Mom. The girl stood behind him. He was casual like he knew how the scratches got etched into the distressed pine kitchen table.

“Good morning Maude,” he said smiling at us. “We’re here to help you with your current situation.”

“Who are you?” I asked spitting crumbs as I spoke.

“I’m Robert. You’re not supposed to be here Maude,” Robert said. He looked directly into Mom’s eyes.  His expression wasn’t mean but it certainly wasn’t friendly either.

“Here is where I am exactly supposed to be,” Mom countered. Her head leaned to the left. She’d been awake since Sunday.


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