for Sam, Penelope, Jake, Brad, Rosabel, Mary Lynn, Harry, Shana, Peter, Mike, Millie, and all the inhabitants of tiny Amaryllis, Arkansas. The final book of the Penelope Pembroke Cozy Mystery Series, Sam's Last Stand, has debuted on Amazon.com. You can find it here.
Am I sad to see them go? Well, I hope they'll hang around a bit longer so far as sales go, and that seems to be happening. But I'm very relieved that they are all UP and out of my hair! It's been a long summer trying to learn all the ins and outs of formatting and meeting self-imposed deadlines.
So what's next? Several volumes of short stories, The Kate Chronicles, which began as fan fiction for "The Big Valley" site and have been mainstreamed. Just before Christmas 1880, a passing hand discovers a newborn baby in the arms of her dead mother in a line shack on a Texas Panhandle ranch. On Christmas Eve, an older couple, Olivia and Dan Bancroft, see the baby and fall in love with her as quickly and as completely as they fell in love with each other only a few months earlier. They adopt her and take her home to Galveston, where she is raised with the best of everything--including love, discipline, and devotion. The stories focus on the highlights of her century-long life.
After that (and with some luck and hard writing) I'll complete The Dreamland Series. In the first book, Meet Me Tonight in Dreamland, thirty-year-old Trixie Collier Blake, widowed when her husband Major Ned Blake died in an Air Force training accident, returns to her hometown, Dreamland, Arkansas, to look into disposing of the building left to her by her grandfather, Quimby Loyd. It's empty since the departure of Stella and Letha Drake who ran a dress shop on the ground floor. And the town is changed. It's almost as if the people are afraid of something--or someone. As she investigates, she doesn't realize she's opening up a closed, dark chapter in the life of her estranged mother, Lorraine. She also meets Mitch Langworth, son of the mayor-elect and Lorraine's lover, and also a widower. Reconnecting with school chums, Rudy James and wife Delores Jefferson James, Trixie gets an unpleasant lesson in dirty politics--and murder. Two more books, Under the Sil'vry Moon and Come with the Lovelight Gleaming will complete the series--if Trixie survives that long!
But I'm ready for life to settle down a bit and to do some traveling, so I'm not setting any self-imposed deadlines on getting these books 'up'. They'll be there when they're there and not a minute sooner.