Wednesday, December 31, 2008


At this time of year, I think it's perfectly normal to look both back and forward, thinking of the things we've accomplished, the goals yet to be met, the blessings that have come into our lives as well as the blessings we hope for.

Some search for professional success, others for good health or happy relationships, or perhaps you're looking to find the path to your dream.

I wish for you in 2009 all the joy, peace, love and success that will bring you great satisfaction and the energy to offer a hand to the next person in line.

Happy, happy New Year to one and all!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

It's Time to Celebrate

It's the time of year we get to spend many hours with family and friends, enjoying the camaraderie of intimate evenings for two, dinner with those we hold near and dear and gala events with plenty of guests. It's one of the best seasons for those who love to socialize!

Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza or Solstice, I wish you great joy and happiness in the time you spend with those you love.

And because we celebrate Christmas, I'll take this moment to say Merry Christmas!


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

A Time to Give Thanks

It's a time of year to consider the bounty we enjoy in industrialized nations. When we have to lease rental space to contain the overflow of stuff we have, it is an embarrassment of riches. And we're all guilty of letting accumulation outweigh thankfulness sometimes.

Many, many people are very generous--giving to those less fortunate, offering a hand up to those who want to change their lives, organizing fund raisers in their communities, giving hope to those who've been so challenged they've forgotten what it is to look to the future with anticipation.

This year there are more financial challenges for so many with the global economy being fragile. But this is a time to be generous with our gifts -- a kind word, a genuine smile, letting someone ahead of you in line, paying for a coffee for the guy behind you at the drive-thru, dropping off a bag of dog or cat food at the local shelter...all cost nothing but time or a very few dollars.

No, we can't change the inequities in the world with the snap of a finger, much as we might wish to. But we can choose to help someone close to home -- and maybe someday our embarrassment of riches will be in blessings.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Reading an EBook

A few years ago, there wasn't much choice available if you wanted to read a non-traditional book. I had one of the original Rocket eBooks and I loved it. But, alas, parts became hard to buy. Since I edit also, I opted for an iPaq Pocket PC so I could read for pleasure, or work on a manuscript and sync back to my computer. Eventually, it's battery wouldn't recharge, and you know how hard it is to find batteries for technology more than a couple of years old!

I can read on my laptop, although it is a little less transportable than either of my first two readers. Now there are Kindles (available at this point only in the US right now) and the Sony eBook Reader (already with a new version), the eBook Reader from Bookwise and coming soon a new reader from Plastic Logic. I can also download and read on a Palm device, mobile phone of some kinds (like iPhone), and I'm not sure about the new netbooks.

There are plenty of options to the traditional book, although many still like it. I find, especially with a hard cover, that my hands will ache after holding a book for a while, and reading in bed with the light on is a worry for me since my SO has to get up quite early each weekday, so a backlit reader device is a good bonus for me.

Time to look around for a replacement!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Remembrance Day

November 11th is a day to stop and remember that we live in a free country because others were willing -- and are still willing -- to protect and preserve our way of life. Thousands of men left families, friends and loved ones behind. Many didn't return; some returned injured in ways from which they never recovered. We thank them for their service in Europe, Korea, the Pacific and North Africa.

Today, young men and women stand on the wall that protects us from terrorists who would do us harm. We thank them for their service around the world.

There are also those who stand as peacekeepers, giving democracy and freedom a chance to grow. We thank them.

Take a moment today to say thank you to someone who keeps our country safe and and yesterday.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

A Short Excerpt

People have asked about my upcoming Race to Win, so I wanted to give you a short excerpt. Meg has been working in Florida and got a call her grandfather had been hospitalized with a heart attack. This is what happens, after she visits him in hospital, when she gets to his Thoroughbred operation.

Meg’s head was pounding by the time she turned into the driveway to Forrestholme, her grandfather’s three hundred acre “homestead.” A state of the art broodmare operation, Forrestholme had a foaling barn, two separate mare barns, a stallion barn, artificial insemination lab, hundreds of acres of pasture, an indoor riding arena, a training track and a custom designed, four-bedroom stone home. He had worked hard to attain his dream, and now, like a cold shadow over it all, there was something seriously wrong.

Meg rounded the final bend in the driveway and stood on the truck’s brakes. With a scattering of loose gravel, the pickup skidded sideways and Meg had to do some quick steering to keep from sliding into one of the huge maples that lined the drive. Less than a foot from her front bumper loomed a twelve-foot high wrought iron gate. It was closed and locked. From its top, two video cameras panned the driveway area, and at the bottom to the left of the gate, an intercom stood silently, its unseen operator waiting to grant whomever approached entrance or exile.

She stared, frozen in stunned shock, for a moment or two. That fence had not been there when she had left for Florida in between Christmas and New Year’s. But it was very definitely there now. Putting the pickup in reverse, she straightened it out and angled up to the intercom. As she rolled down her window and leaned out to figure out how to call its control center, the intercom coughed to life as a nasal voice challenged her.

“Who’s there?”

“It’s Meg,” she said slowly. “Meg Forrest. I live here.”

There was a momentary pause before the disembodied voice responded coolly, “I’ll open the gates. Drive through slowly and straight up to the house. Don’t get out of your truck and don’t deviate from the road to the house.”

She could only stare at the intercom.

With a clank and a thud, the double wrought iron gates began to swing open in front of her. Meg put the truck in gear and started through the opening. As soon as she cleared them, the gates swung back into place. Something was definitely weird. Meg looked around as she started slowly towards the house. The tall fence extended in both directions as far as she could see, curving off around the house and down past the barns out of her sight to the pasture areas. She checked the broodmare barn automatically. Noting the lights still on, she started to turn down the lane leading to the barn when she remembered her directions to go straight to the house.
It’s still my farm to go where I want. And I think I’ll just check out the ladies on my way to the house. With that rebellious thought, she quickly twisted the truck’s wheel to the left and headed to the broodmare barn.

After easing to a stop in front of the main entrance to the mare’s barn, Meg turned off the truck and was about to step out when she happened to glance to her right, up the grade toward the house. Racing at full speed, eyes pinned to the truck, were two of the largest Dobermans Meg had ever seen.

By the time she’d registered their existence, they were at the side of the truck. Silently, they sat beside the driver’s door and fixed her with cold stares. No barking, no jumping, and definitely no tail wagging was going on here. More than a little rattled, Meg shoved the key back into the ignition, started up the truck, and turned for the house. She glanced in her rearview mirror and, sure enough, the two Dobes were trotting up the driveway behind her.

What the hell is going on here?

By the time she got to the house, Meg was furious. The last time she’d looked, Forrestholme had been their property. She was sure her grandfather would have mentioned it to her if he had sold it, so she was mystified by what was going on here. When she put the truck in park at the house, Meg was in no mood for the Dobermans. She leaned on the truck horn until someone ran out from behind the house. She kept on sounding the horn until the man hurried to the window of her truck.

“What’re ya doin’, lady?” The man had the look of an ex tackle on a professional football team. “Are ya tryin’ to get the dogs all ticked off?”

“Am I supposed to be worried about your dogs?” Meg’s tone sliced at the man’s arrogance. “I suggest you get those dogs back in their cages or kennels or wherever they live, and I suggest you do it now.”

Accustomed to obeying orders, the guard gave a quick whistle and a couple of hand signals. The dogs obediently trotted off behind the house with their handler following. As soon as they were out of sight, Meg wearily shoved open the truck door and climbed down onto the interlocking stone driveway. She pushed her hair back and straightened her shoulders. Time to beard the lion in his den.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Posting on Make Mine Mystery

Today, I blogged on Make Mine Mystery at about the settings in mysteries. Please, drop by, check it out and comment.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Over on the Make Mine Mystery blog at, there's a post about having lots of books around and it got me to thinking about my books and their place in our life. Books are everywhere -- family room, living room, bedroom, office, bathroom -- often the dining room as well. I have them on shelves, in book cases, on tables, on vanities and nightstands, even a couple in a lovely woven basket, some in drawers and on desks! There are magazines, books, catalogues -- if it's in print, it's reading material. I've read a cereal box while eating breakfast!

I come by it honestly -- both my parents read a lot -- my Dad read to me before I was born. And to this day, Mom and I tell each other about good books we think the other would like to read.

I like fiction, but have a sizeable collection of non-fiction, too; mostly related to the crafts of writing and editing.

I have books I'll re-read, authors I wait for their next release and books I'm willing to share with others. I have a box already packed to take to my sister's cottage next time we go because the whole family reads, and a cottage is a great, guilt-free reading zone!

I'm getting a lot of books from the library these days, but I live in a small town and our indie bookstore closed. To me, a very sad day. But I order books online and usually have a few books in my shopping cart or on my wish list at the online bookstores!

And ebooks make it super-easy to get all the reading I can long for! My publisher, Amber Quill Press, regularly runs discounts on their books -- a nice perk in this economic climate to get something on sale!

To be honest, about the only thing I don't care to read are instruction manuals!!

It's cool and chilly with overcast skies -- perfect reading-by-the-fireplace weather.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Sharing the Mystery

I've started blogging with Make Mine Mystery, and I'm thrilled to be a part of such a wonderful group of fellow authors. They inspire me to write better stories (and hopefully more often) and I really enjoy reading their blogs. They have great stories, tips, memories, etc and it's fun to spend some time there.

I'm also blogging at Blood Red Pen, which is a terrific spot for authors who'd like to get to know some editors, how editors think, the rules they have to follow (yep, editors have to toe the grammar line), tips and guidelines.

I hope, of course, you continue to drop in here to see what's new in my world, and I thank you for your interest in my Musings.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Autumn Evenings

I love autumn's dark earlier, so it's an excuse to have the fireplace on, to snuggle up with a book or tv, sip lemon tea with honey and milk, and indulge myself just a little. As a bonus, maybe I can hear rain on the roof.

I just finished reading a couple of mysteries by favorite writers and am reading some chick lit these days. And one of these evenings, with the fireplace near my laptop and desk, I'm going to have a chance to work on Race to Win. I can hardly wait to see where the characters lead me next. Since I'm a seat-of-the-pants writer, I do get to be surprised, too!

However, I'm not a seat-of-the-pants editor (self-editing or otherwise), so I know I'll soon be going over what I've written with a fine-toothed comb, but part of the joy of writing is that chance to dive into the lives and stories of your characters with abandon, letting them play, figure out the clues to find the bad guy and fall in love. It can be chaotic, like life, but unlike life, I can go back in and smooth out the rough edges!

So, please, make a cup of your favorite coffee, tea or hot chocolate, grab something off your TBR stack and indulge in an autumn evening of relaxation and reading.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Fall's Here

For some reason, it's harder for me to keep seat in chair to work in the autumn! It's my favorite time of year with the drop in temperature and humidity, with the changing colors, the days that invigorate me with the sun's brightness.

In the winter, easy to stay indoors -- too easy!! I've never been a cold weather person, so the idea of bundling up and heading out for a walk isn't really appealing. Sure, I'll go to the barn to clean and to feed and water my horses, but I don't even remember the last time I rode in the winter.

I do like spring as the cold weather fades and I enjoy getting outside -- watching for the forsythia to bloom, for the spring bulbs' sprouts to appear and I really enjoy the days getting longer.

Summer is great -- but too much heat and humidity leaves me feeling limp and without ambition. However, I do like to swim, which really helps beat the heat and humidity.

But autumn is the best -- so, please, get out and enjoy when you can!

Monday, September 15, 2008

A New Day

I've been doing some research on Race to Win, my upcoming novel, and it's started to germinate! The research was a result of an accident and spending time with an expert in the field -- my vet. One of my horses was badly injured in a freak accident and I've spent more time with my vet in the last month than I have in the last couple of years!

But my horse is steadily improving and I've found some answers to some holes in the plot line of Race to Win. It's the story of a young woman who must discover who is attempting to sabotage her grandfather's Thoroughbred stable by killing the horses for their insurance values.

As a horse lover, it's very hard to write, and that may have been what's stalling me a bit. I want the emotion to be right and honest. But it's hard to do!!

As I get going, I'll post some excerpts on my blog and you can see how it's progressing. I'm hoping for a spring release from Amber Quill Press, and I'll keep you posted. Now it's that matter of hitting my self-imposed deadlines, so I meet the publisher deadline...I like to get it in early because I've been an editor for almost as many years as I've been a writer, so know the crunch of deadlines, that's for sure.

Until next time, keep reading!


Sunday, August 17, 2008

Welcome to Libby's Musings

So, have you been watching the Olympics? I've had a chance to catch some of my favorite sports, and learn more about ones I don't see much.

I was amazed that badminton players can hit the shuttle at 200 mph! The endurance of the distance runners is remarkable. And can you imagine training for the triathalon--swimming, biking and running? Although, apparently one of the sponsor's of the Australian Snowsill who won gold in women's triathathalon is a chocolate company. Now there's a sweet reward for training! Michael Phelps was absolutely beyond incredible in the pool. And more water sports -- the beautiful dives are incredible, and then with the synchronized diving, two athletes moving as one! Wow!

I'm looking forward to Tuesday morning's Dressage Freestyle Final--watching those horses and riders perform to music is just amazing, and knowing a bit about the sport makes me appreciate it even more.

I hope you take a few minutes to cheer on your country's athletes, watch your favorite sport and maybe one you've never watched before to see learn a bit more about something new.

Talk to you later!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Test Post

This is just to test the colors and formatting. Enjoy your new blog, Libby!