Please come find me and fly.

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Chloe has had it rough. Shiloh has some secrets. Fate has something up her sneaky little sleeve to make life easier for the both of them. But things don’t go exactly as planned.

Enter an abandoned butterfly garden that needs tending. Chloe needs a distraction and a reason to get out of bed in the morning. They are a perfect pair. With the help of a salty-but-sweet aged fisherman, she learns more about the world than any life-lesson could ever teach her.

Butterfly Ruins is not your run-of-the-mill romance. It’s a story about deep pain and dark secrets and the bumpy road to finding personal resolve. But I believe love and friendship can conquer many demons.

Take a ride with me to the lake where this beautiful love story begins, and maybe you can learn how to unfurl the wings that have been hiding behind your own fear.

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Close Calls and Perennials

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This time of year always gets me right in the feels. If you know me, I hate being cold, and there’s nothing I love more than sunshine and the sweet smell of blossoms blooming in the orchards nearby (so sorry to those who have allergies). One of my favorite things to do is tromp on down to Home Depot and load my basket with flowers (and succulents) to beautify my little patio. I usually attempt a tiny tomato garden but have relinquished that planter to my daughter who has become a succulent specialist with an eye for whimsical and imaginative arrangements. I will dearly miss my three home-grown tomatoes, though.

This year, I have an extra special reason to get emotional when I see all that spring has to offer. My husband is here. I nearly lost him one year ago on April 17th.

I was at work and got an overhead page that I had a phone-call, something that never happens. Usually my family waits until I’m on break to ask me a question. I knew something was wrong.

I picked up the phone and heard my daughter’s rattled voice. “Mom, you need to leave work. Dad’s having chest pain and we’re at the hospital.”

All I remember was grabbing my purse and running through the store, out the door, and to my car. All the while praying “don’t die, don’t die.” I don’t even remember the drive to the hospital, only my thoughts.

My husband was a fourth-degree black belt. He worked out, had a vigorous job, his weight was right on target, he was only 47 years old! How could this be happening? I’ll tell you how. Cigarettes and stress. And quite possibly chocolate (and beef but he won’t admit it). Maybe heredity too.

Luckily, by the time I arrived at the hospital, he’d already been taken back. My daughter (and somebody else, my memory is spotty) ushered me to his room. There were people all around him, lines hooked up to this and that, he was bare-chested and bright red. He was writhing in pain—and that scared the bejesus outta me. He’s usually one tough cookie. Unless he has a cold…

I tried to calm him down. “Babe, I’m here,” I said, caressing his arm and saying something completely out of the realm of a thing you’d say to a man having a heart attack. “You look sexy.” I declared. But he didn’t see the humor.

This is where it gets nuts. The nurses swooped in and wheeled him away, leaving me standing there with my girls. They had to clear that widow-maker now.

The waiting game sucks, doesn’t it? I mean, nine people staring at the walls and each other—the hands of time couldn’t slog along any slower. But these people are the breath of my body! And their support means everything to me. (thanks again, guys, so much) And when those big double-doors finally swung open and the doctor stood there like a statue saying “come with me, please” stone faced and somber, it was like walking the green mile to a slow and painful death-by-oh-my-God-this-hall-is-long. But he had good news for us. He was able to clear that nasty 100% blockage and put in a stint, thank God, with minimal damage to the heart.

So here’s the moral of the story. Quit smoking now. Eat right, exercise, and you know the rest. Most importantly, love your family with all you have. And if you choose to not do what’s good for your body and mind, make the most of your life and leave a beautiful mark on this world. It’s not perfect, but it’s all we have. I choose to leave a legacy of kindness and glitter and lots and lots of color and laughter. Be a flower in a sea of thorns.

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This entry was posted on March 18, 2018. 3 Comments

Something new is on the rise!

Whew, we made it through another holiday season! This one was a real doozy…I worked my tail off night and day! And now, as I stare at my lonely, neglected little author’s page, I see it’s been months since I last posted. I want to express my deepest apologies for being so rude. I’ve been busy in my writing cave writing this lovely little story, as you might’ve already guessed. It took me weeks to get the blurb right, and I hope it gets you right in the feels!

We all have emotional scars, and finding the road to healing can be tough. But if there’s someone to walk the walk with you, wouldn’t that be a start?

Blurb:

All Chloe Anderson wants to do is spread her wings, but her fear of rejection has her cemented to the ground in a mundane, colorless life. Her cynical family has no time for her exasperating childlike nature, and self-harming is the only way she can cope with the distance. She’ll never be free if she doesn’t let go of the past. And Shiloh Duncan might be her one-way-ticket out of isolation.

Drifters, however, are hard to hold on to. Shiloh only plants his feet long enough to construct butterfly gardens along his path to reconciliation, and soon he’ll be off to another monarch habitat without her. Nonetheless, Chloe’s seen the magic of his remarkable hands working the soil, and he might be the one person who can bring her caged heart out into the great-wide-open.

But Shiloh has his reasons for running, and a new one just arose from the ashes of his own scandalous past. And his instinct to fly runs bone deep.

Can the love of a damaged outcast change the ways of a born wanderer? Only the butterflies know for sure.

 

 

Coming February 2018

 

 

 

 

New Faces

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My first novella published has been a real learning tool. Lesson one: Check and recheck to make sure the proper file has been loaded. If that means combing through every sentence and every word (again) then so be it. Even though you’ve read it a hundred times already! Even if you have a publisher and an editor. They are human too, and ultimately you wrote it, your name is on it, you made the mistakes, and it’s your responsibility to make sure it’s as perfect as it can be. Lesson two: Getting cover art is exciting, but it’s the face of your story forever. Make sure it’s exactly what you envision because it’s not easy to change later. Lesson three: Make sure you have several people beta read your manuscript before you submit. Having no experience writing books, I was clueless. Having unbiased people read my story would’ve saved me tons of work later on.

So, ta-da! Three years later I’m giving Lizbeth a new face! Some people say let the old books on your backlist go and focus on new creations. I just couldn’t do that with this story! She deserves a second chance. The paperback is second edition, and I want to say pretty clean. I’ll let you all know when she’s loaded and ready. We are just in the process of finishing up the details. Have a GREAT JULY, everyone. You’ll definitely need a copy for your beach bag. It’s full of colorful underwater (and above water) magic, and of course, it’s a telling young love story. And who doesn’t like love and magic?liz new cover

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Lizbeth by Ellen Cummins

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This book has been described by my readers as “brave and kind, daunting and beautiful, packed with twists and wonderment.” It was my first novella, and I admit the first edition was flawed. Sadly, the unedited file was published by accident, and before we knew what hit us, several had been sold, read, and given five star reviews! So with that said, edition number two (only in paperback) is close to perfect. Take a ride with me to a world so dark only the strongest of hearts will survive, but never fear because within this world is some of the most colorful magic you will ever come to know!

Also, if you know me personally, I have paperbacks on hand!