The Perfect Love Story…with Ghosts

boonesboro

Those of you who know me at all know I am a huge fan of Nora Roberts (duh, I’d have to be dead not to be), but my absolute favorite series of hers is the Boonesboro Trilogy. When I say favorite, I mean, OBSESSIVE. Favorite. Love of all time.

I’ve listened to all three audiobooks at least twice. I have all three print books in hardcover, stacked on my nightstand (my good vibe writing mojo). I’ll admit, I’ve listened to books 1 & 2 the most, straying by the time I get to book 3.

This week was book 3’s turn. The Perfect Hope. It really is my favorite because not only does the haunting of “Lizzy,” the resident ghost at Inn Boonesboro, play a bigger part than in the other books, but it’s because I fell in love with Ryder right off the bat. I’ll summarize quickly for those not familiar…

Justine Montgomery is a widow with three sons: Beckett, Owen, and Ryder. They live in Boonesboro, Maryland, and Justine has made it her mission to renovate the crumbling downtown district. It all starts with Inn Boonesboro, which dates to the Civil War era. Her sons are expert craftsman at carpentry et al. It doesn’t take long for the brothers to figure out they aren’t alone working in the old Inn. It’s haunted.

Lizzy–a name Ryder gives her–is mischievous and always signals her presence with the smell of honeysuckle. In the first book, Beckett falls for Claire, the local bookstore owner. In the second, Avery, who runs the pizzeria across the street, falls for Owen. In the third, Ryder, who is an ill-tempered, short-wired smartass, falls for the new innkeeper, Hope Belmont.

This is probably only my second go-round with Ryder and Hope, but the story–from all three books–comes together in this book with a heart-melting romantic roller-coaster that for me, is unsurpassed.

If I ever grow up to be a real romance author, I’ll be able to write a story like the Boonesboro series. The characters are so real I miss them. The conflicts so believable my blood pressure spikes. The history comes to life in a way that is unforgettable.

Like I said, the stack of three hardcovers lives on my nightstand. I’m hoping I can channel Nora organically, in my sleep. From my lips to the patron saint of writers…please.

hope

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A Sneak Peek at ELECTRICITY – #MFRWHooks

My new release, Electricity, is the latest installment in my Haunted Voices novels. This one was especially exciting to write, since I work where it is set: the location used to house a State Mental Asylum. There’s still one building that’s never been renovated, and it is a spooky place indeed.

 

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Here’s a sneak peek inside ELECTRICITY: A Haunted Voices novel:

Mercy crept down the steps, shivering as the chill of underground air crawled over her. Just as she reached the bottom step, something tickled her cheek and she swatted frantically before realizing it was just a fragment of spider web waving from the rafter. The sound of Daniel’s snort behind her made her bristle. She shot him a contemptuous glare.

The passageway was low ceilinged, forcing Daniel to stoop, and so narrow a man could almost span the width with outstretched arms. Rough fieldstone walls, joined by random patches of mortar, rose from a cracked concrete floor. The hall disappeared off at right angles to the steps in both directions. Conner strode boldly down one way, then the other, pulling the tattered, hanging cords to bring yellowed bulbs to life, one at a time. Some were dead, but those that still fired bathed the space in an eerie, amber light.

Mercy studied the bench lining the outside wall. Heavy planks formed a shelf about two feet above the ground. Every ten feet or so, a pair of round iron rings hung from the wall, mortared between the fieldstones.

“I’ve read about places like this,” Daniel mumbled. “This was their holding area.”

“What do you mean? Like in a prison?” Even to her own ears, Mercy’s voice sounded squeaky and unsteady.

Daniel tipped his head, pulling his fingers through his short, tawny beard. His gaze glanced off hers. “Guess you could call it that. Back then they didn’t ever know what they were getting into when a new patient came in.”

You can watch the book trailer HERE, and buy on amazon HERE.

And check out our other #MFRWAuthors #MFRW Hooks by clicking the image below!

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The Final Countdown

Shatter

In three short days, my next Haunted Voices novel will go live on Amazon. I can’t believe this all happened so fast. After a loooong dry spell in my writing life, The Great Muse finally smiled on me again.

Of course, it helped that I took a week’s vacation from my day job with the sole intention of finishing the book. Oh, how I loved life that week. I rose at my usual early hour, but instead of cramming words into the hour before I have to get ready for work, I stayed in my jammies until nearly noon. The words literally bled out of my fingertips–such a difference when there is no clock ticking in the background. I worked more hours that week than I ever do at my day job, and I loved every minute of it.

In one short week, I wrote over 50,000 words, then did two rounds of edits. I designed a cover, and a book trailer. If I didn’t have to work a day job, I could put out three or four books a year, no problem.

Of course, I’d also have nowhere to live, nothing to eat, no wine to drink . . . *sigh* I digress.

So, get ready, world for ELECTRICITY: A Haunted Voices Novel. The eBook goes live on June 8th, and it’s available now for pre-order on Amazon. The paperback will go live on June 16th. I have a special connection with this book because it’s set on the campus where I work, which used to be a State Mental Hospital. All of the other buildings have been renovated and repurposed except for one. It sits high atop a hill, massive and brooding, crumbling. I drive and walk past it every day.

It was the perfect place for a ghost story.

My hero and heroine are electricians working to rewire the building, and soon discover that some of the tortured souls who resided there never left.

The cover, I might add, is up for an award at AllAuthor. Please vote for it! How exciting it would be to discover on release day that the cover made it to the final round!

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So now, what’s next? I have several story ideas in various stages of development . . . decisions, decisions.

Kindred Spirits! Welcome Author Terri Reid!

I’m very excited to have a “kindred spirit” author, Terri Reid, visiting with me today to talk about herself and the first in her Mary O’Reilly Paranormal Mystery Series: “Loose Ends.”

LooseEndsDying is what changed Mary O’Reilly’s life. Well, actually, coming back from the dead and having the ability to communicate with ghosts is really what did it.
Now, a private investigator in rural Freeport, Illinois, Mary’s trying to learn how to incorporate her experience as a Chicago cop and new-found talent into a real job. Her challenge is to solve the mysteries, get real evidence (a ghost’s word just doesn’t hold up in court), and be sure the folks in town, especially the handsome new police chief, doesn’t think she’s nuts.
Twenty-four years ago, a young woman drowned in the swimming pool of a newly elected State Senator. It was ruled an accident. But now, as the Senator prepares to move on to higher positions, the ghost of the woman is appearing to the Senator’s wife.
Mary is hired to discover the truth behind the death. She unearths a connection between the murder and the disappearance of five little girls whose cases, twenty-four years later, are still all unsolved. As she digs further she becomes the next target for serial killers’ quest to tie up all his loose ends.

Buy Now!

~~~

Terri is going to chat with me today so we can get to know a little more about the author.

Claire: I know this isn’t your first book, Terri, but the first of a long book series! What an accomplishment.

Terri: I’ve written over 30 books and a number of novellas and short stories. My Mary O’Reilly Paranormal Mystery series has 20 books, and is my main series.

Claire: Wow, I’m tired just thinking about how much work that has been. Tell me, do you read your reviews? I see you have a ton of them…Do you respond to them, good or bad? Can you offer advice on how to deal with the bad reviews? How do you respond to your readers?

Terri: I used to read reviews religiously, but I found I never focused on the many 5-star reviews, but I would always stress over the occasional 1-star reviews, so I stopped obsessing over them.

I only responded to one review, where a reader thought that I was prejudiced in my portraying of a character.  I had to respond, politely, but firmly that I was not prejudice, but that the character was patterned after a dear friend who actually looked and spoke the way the character in the book also did. 

My favorite 1-star review of all time was when a reader was reviewing “Loose Ends – A Mary O’Reilly Paranormal Mystery.”  She wrote, “This is nothing like a romance at all – this is more like a paranormal mystery.” I’m still shaking my head.

Claire: Are you a plotter or pantser?

Terri: I am a total pantster – and I was grateful when I read in Stephen King’s book “On Writing” that he was a punster too.  It made me feel less alone.

Claire: I am the same. Outlines and charts and sticky notes on a white board KILL my creative muse! So tell me, how important are names to you in your books? Do you choose the names based on liking the way it sounds or the meaning? Do you have any name choosing resources you recommend?

Terri: Name are so important to me. I know what my characters’ personalities are and I want to choose names that fit them well.  I usually look for names and then I look for photos of who I think my characters look like.  Then I put together a page of faces with names underneath that I can glance at as I write my stories – it really helps me keep their voices and personalities clear when I see their faces in front of me.

The oddest thing that happened to me with names is when I was about to publish my first book, “Loose Ends.”  In the book, there is a woman who dies by being drowned in a swimming pool.  I took her name out of the clear, blue sky – so I thought.  Just before publishing, I Googled her name – just to be sure I wasn’t naming one of my characters after someone who was notorious. I discovered her name was the same as a young woman who had drown in a local swimming pool ten years earlier. I immediately changed the name because I would never want someone who was reading for pleasure to suddenly be reminded of a tragic event like that. Although, I have often wondered just who might have whispered her name to me.

Claire: Wow, that’s pretty freaky! What “other” secret talents do you have?

Terri: I actually live in a haunted house and have seen and heard ghosts in my home. I’ve also always loved collecting true ghost stories. Through my own experiences and the true stories, I’ve been able to create ghost characters that I feel are more realistic.

Claire: I’ve visited many haunted places, and did live in a haunted house for a brief–VERY brief!–time. Okay, so, what do you want your tombstone to say?

Terri: “She finally got a nap!”

Claire: LOL! Well before that tombstone gets carved, Where is one place you want to visit that you haven’t been before:

Terri: I would love to go to Ireland.  I have always thought that it was a magical place.

My ancestry is Irish, and I’ve heard people say that when a person with Irish ancestry visits Ireland they feel like they’ve finally come home. 

Well, thanks for sharing a little bit about yourself and your work with me here today, Terri. And now, a little more about Terri Reid.

I would love to go to Ireland.  I have always thought that it was a magical place.

My ancestry is Irish, and I’ve heard people say that when a person with Irish ancestry visits Ireland they feel like they’ve finally come home. 

~~~

Well, thanks for visiting we me here today, Terri. Now a little bit more info for our readers:

author photo april 2018

Terri Reid is the author of the Mary O’Reilly Paranormal Mysteries. An independent author, Reid uploaded her first book “Loose Ends – A Mary O’Reilly Paranormal Mystery” in August 2010. By the end of 2013, “Loose Ends” had sold over 200,000 copies and, has consistently ranked as one of the top selling books in its genre.

She has nineteen other books in the Mary O’Reilly Series and several other series including The Blackwood Files, The Order of Brigid’s Cross, and The Legend of the Horsemen. She has also written a number of stand-alone books and short stories and has been featured in several anthologies.

Reid has enjoyed Top Rated and Hot New Release status in the Women Sleuths and Paranormal Romance category through Amazon US. Her books have been translated into Spanish, Portuguese and German and are also available in print and audio versions.

Reid has been quoted in a number of books about the self-publishing industry including “Let’s Get Digital” by David Gaughran and “Interviews with Indie Authors: Top Tips from Successful Self-Published Authors” by Claire and Tim Ridgway. She was also honored to have some of her works included in A. J. Abbiati’s book “The NORTAV Method for Writers – The Secrets to Constructing Prose Like the Pros.”

She was the keynote speaker for Book ‘Em North Carolina Writers Conference and Book Fair in Lumberton, N.C., a guest presenter at Love Is Murder in Chicago, a guest lecturer at a number of universities in Illinois, and has been the opening speak for the Illinois Paranormal Conference.

Prior to writing full-time, Reid was the owner of a small public relations and marketing company. She is the past president of the Freeport Downtown Development Association and The Stephenson County Historical Society. She has also worked as a freelance writer for the Journal Standard and wrote a weekly column as well as my feature articles.

Reid lives in northwest Illinois near Freeport, Illinois, the setting of the Mary O’Reilly series.  She has a background in marketing and public relations and attended Brigham Young University.

She writes a weekly blog called Freaky Friday through her website at www.terrireid.com and can be reached at author@terrireid.com.

 Don’t forget to check out all of Terri’s exciting novels at her Amazon Author Page.

 

Love & Ghosts! Welcome Carrie Pulkinen

I love getting to know other authors who write romance with ghosts!

Today I’m honored to welcome one of my favorite authors, Carrie Pulkinen to Haunted Pathways. I can’t wait to ask her a few questions and get to know her better. So let’s get started!

Carrie

Q: Were you already a great writer? Have you always liked to write?

Carrie: I have always been good at writing, but I haven’t always liked to write. When I was in junior high, I made a 100 on my first all-essay test, and then the teacher signed me up to write a little column for the small-town newspaper. Words have always come easily to me, but I didn’t start to enjoy writing until I began writing fiction in 2009.

Claire: You know, I have a similar story. In the seventh grade, after I’d agonized over a creative writing assignment, my heart sank when Ms. Prather called me to the front of the room. I stood there in shock as she handed me back the paper with 100 written in red ink at the top.

Q: Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Carrie: I would call myself a plantster, I suppose. When I first started writing, I was a total pantser, but writing that way was stressful for me, because I was ALWAYS thinking about my work in progress, worrying I would forget where I wanted it to go next. Now, I jot my general ideas and major plot points down on notecards to keep everything in order in my mind. It’s just a loose outline, and I’ve been known to scrap the cards and write new ones when the story starts taking me in a new direction, but it works for me.

Claire: Me too! A detailed outline kills my muse, but if I totally pants it, the book never gets written.

Q: When did you realize you wanted to write novels?

Carrie: I was at a Twilight convention with some friends in 2009. We spent A LOT of time waiting in lines for things to start, so I kept them entertained by making up fanfiction stories on the spot. They asked me how I came up with the ideas, and I said that I do it all the time. When I’m bored, I tell myself stories to pass the time. I thought everyone did that. Apparently, they don’t. My friends convinced me I should try to write a book, so when I got home from the convention, that’s what I did. Six weeks later, I had a rough draft of my first novel!

Claire: Wow! Six weeks. I don’t think I’ve ever written a rough draft that fast.

Q: Is silence golden, or do you need music to write by? What kind?

Carrie: Silence is definitely golden. I need complete silence to write. Sometimes I put on headphones and play white noise to drown out the sounds of my dog snoring!

Claire: Ha! Too funny.

Q: Real settings or fictional towns?

Carrie: I have done both, but I prefer real settings. A lot of my books (Love & Ghosts included) are set in New Orleans, which is my favorite city in the world! I love describing actual places I’ve been to and bringing them to life for my readers. Sometimes people tell me that, after reading my books, they feel like they’ve been to New Orleans, even if they’ve never visited in real life.

Claire: I’ve never been to New Orleans either, but look forward to experiencing it through your books.

Thanks so much for chatting with me today, Carrie. Now, as a special treat, Carrie has agreed to share an excerpt from her latest release, Love & Ghosts.

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Excerpt

Her gaze traveled up and down his body, and when she met his eyes, he smiled.

Her pulse quickened. She could definitely burn for this guy.

He sauntered toward her with a cocky gait—completely in character—and his playful grin and full, kissable lips sent her stomach flipping.

“What’s the Queen of Hearts doing all alone at a party like this?”

Emily sat up straighter. “I could ask the same question of you, Dread Pirate Roberts. Where is your Buttercup?”

“I’m currently interviewing for the position. Would you like to apply?” His devilish grin widened; her heart pounded harder.

“And how many applicants would I be competing with? It must be a coveted position.”

He chuckled. “So far tonight, ma’am, you’re the only candidate.” He cleared his throat and whisked her glass from the table. “Your drink is empty, and that’s a shame. Let me get you another one.” He examined what was left of the contents. “Gin and tonic?”

“Yes, but…”

“I’ll be right back.”

He strode to the bar, and she got a view of his backside as he moved. Nice. Everything about the man was scrumptious. She inhaled a deep breath to calm the swarm of butterflies in her stomach. What on earth was she thinking agreeing to a dare like this? She didn’t go around kissing strangers.

“One gin and tonic for the beautiful queen.” He slipped into the chair next to her and set the drink on the table.

“Thank you.” She could do this. It was just a kiss, and he was just a man. An incredibly sexy pirate tonight.

He leaned an elbow on the table. “You know, you’re the first person who’s gotten my costume right.”

“Really? The Princess Bride is a classic. I can’t believe people don’t recognize you.”

“I know. It’s one of my favorites.”

“And you look so authentic. You’ve got the mustache and everything. Is it real?”

He smoothed the thin strip of hair above his lip. “Of course. But everyone thinks I’m—”

“Zorro?”

“Nailed it. By the way, my name is—”

“Westley.” She stirred her drink and swallowed before raising her gaze to his. “Your name is Westley tonight.”

“Oh, we’re being mysterious?”

She shrugged. It was better if she didn’t know his name. Trish was right: she didn’t need to attach herself to the first man she met. And this guy was way too magnetic.

He smiled. “I get it. It’s a masquerade. We can reveal our identities at the stroke of midnight.”

She tilted her head. If she was still talking to him at midnight, she’d be in trouble.

“Okay. Westley, it is. Can I call you Buttercup?”

Covering the tip of the straw with her finger, she brought the other end to her lips and released the contents into her mouth. “I’ll let you know.”

Buy Love & Ghosts Now!

She refuses to believe in ghosts.

He makes a living on their existence.

Love in the Big Easy shouldn’t be so hard…

Trying to add some excitement to her life, Emily Rollins accepts a dare to kiss a masked stranger at a charity ball. Fireworks ignite with that simple kiss, and she longs to learn more about the enchanting man. But Emily has lost so much of her heart already…

Succumbing to his charm will turn her world inside out.

Sean LeBlanc is a medium who runs the most popular haunted tour company in New Orleans. When Emily shows up on his ghost tour, with no idea he’s the mystery man from the ball, the long-buried emotions she unearthed in him are rekindled, and he’s convinced he can learn to love again.

The problem is Emily doesn’t believe in the supernatural.

Just as Sean begins to open her mind to the existence of spirits and the possibility of love, a mysterious wooden box with a sinister power arrives on Emily’s doorstep, threatening her sanity and her life.

If Sean can’t convince her ghosts are real, her disbelief will doom them both.

If you like a swoon-worthy hero and the magic of New Orleans, you’ll love this steamy, heart-melting romance.

Buy Love & Ghosts Here Now!

About Carrie:

Carrie Pulkinen is a paranormal romance author who has always been fascinated with things that go bump in the night. Of course, when you grow up next door to a cemetery, the dead (and the undead) are hard to ignore. Pair that with her passion for writing and her love of a good happily-ever-after, and becoming a paranormal romance author seems like the only logical career choice.

Before she decided to turn her love of the written word into a career, Carrie spent the first part of her professional life as a high school journalism and yearbook teacher. She loves good chocolate and bad puns, and in her free time, she likes to read, drink wine, and travel with her family.

Find out more about Carrie and her fantastic line of books at her website

or Amazon Author Page.

 

 

Uncovering Buried Secrets

I was thrilled to finally discover a kindred spirit in reader/writer Elizabeth Meyette, who writes stories set in haunted houses! I’m pleased to welcome her here today on Haunted Pathways to discuss her second Finger Lakes Series book, Buried Secrets. Take it away Elizabeth!

Buried Secrets Cover Pic - 9-19-16-2

 

When I finished writing my first mystery, The Cavanaugh House, I hadn’t planned on a sequel. But my heroine, Jesse Graham, is Irish and stubborn and had another story to tell. Thus began Buried Secrets, book two in The Finger Lakes Mysteries series.

From April 30-May 5 you can order Buried Secrets for only 99 cents on Amazon. It’s also available for free on Kindle Unlimited.

Buried Secrets blurb:

Life seemed so routine.

Until the ghost appeared.

When Jesse Graham almost runs over a “body” in the road one night, she is plunged into a labyrinth of secrets, lies and murder. All Jesse wants is a simple life teaching at St. Bart’s… and a chance at love with Joe Riley. She realizes that plan has been thwarted when puzzling occurrences at St. Bartholomew Academy for Girls get increasingly dangerous. The danger doesn’t just spring from the ghost who haunts the grounds of St. Bart’s, but from a sinister presence that is not ghostly at all. As she digs into the mystery, threats on her life and the life of her student escalate.

Which danger threatens her life the most? The ghost haunting her student or the secrets buried in the school?

Buried Secrets excerpt:

Labor Day, Monday, September 2, 1968

Jesse Graham squinted through the windshield wipers at the rain-swept road ahead of her. In her twenty-eight years, she had never liked being out in a thunderstorm, and this one was a doozy.

“NASA plans to put a man on the moon next year, but nobody can invent windshield wipers that work in a downpour,” she grumbled.

She hadn’t meant to work until after sunset, but she’d obsessed with putting up creative bulletin boards and adding final touches to the course guides to be ready for the first day of school tomorrow. Though she had taught in Rochester for five years, no doubt her obsession stemmed from the fact that she was the newest faculty member at St. Bartholomew Academy for Girls.

Adjusting to the late-summer darkness was hard enough, but add this thunderstorm and visibility was nil. At least upstate New York didn’t suffer through tornadoes or hurricanes. She gripped the wheel, concentrating on avoiding the deep ditch carved out along the shoulder.

A flash of lightning revealed a shape sprawled in the middle of the road ahead. She leaned forward, as if that would help her see if it was a deer someone hit and left to die. Another bolt of lightning illuminated the shape again, revealing blonde hair spread out on the wet pavement. In a moment of clarity—at least she could always count on that oddity in the midst of panic—she knew it was not a deer. Downshifting, she slammed on the brakes, her 1965 Volkswagen Beetle skidding sideways. She broke out in prickles of sweat as her car thudded against the form and halted.

“Oh my God! Oh my God! Oh my God!” she cried out.
She was pinned to her seat. Her legs shook, then her whole body. She fumbled for the door handle, unable to find it at first. Finally, she grasped it, threw open the door, and scrambled out onto the road. The sky strobed as a lightning bolt slammed into a nearby tree. Her nose stung with the acrid smell of sulfur. Her knees buckled, but she recovered, stumbling toward the immobile form. Slowing her pace, she neared the cloth-draped figure, afraid it might leap up and attack her. Afraid it might not move at all.

Trembling, she dropped to her knees beside the form. Bile rose in her throat at the sight of long, blonde hair streaming out from beneath the gray wool blanket that covered the shape. Pulling the blanket back, she gasped.

Have I just killed someone?

A blonde wig was perched atop a dummy fashioned from burlap stuffed with hay. What the…? Slowly, she realized what she was looking at. She breathed with relief. But her relief was short-lived.

Son of a bitch. This prank could have sent someone flipping end over end. Storms weren’t known to improve traction.

“Who the hell would pull a rotten trick like this?”

She looked around—was the perpetrator standing just off in the trees beside the road? Rain spattered against her hair. As she brushed the clinging ringlets from her eyes, she pulled up the hood of her nylon poncho. Heart pounding, she leaned back on her heels, inhaling deeply to still her trembling. Hot breath escaped through her flared nostrils. Grabbing the dummy, she wrapped the blanket around it and lugged it to the car.

Order your copy of Buried Secrets on Amazon now.

Elizabeth Meyette

 

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Strange Meetings

Does it ever happen to you? Do you ever encounter a person, or a situation, purely by chance? One that seems to mean more than it appears on the surface? Today it happened to me.

We had just completed my husband’s pre-surgery appointment at the fantastic St. Vincent’s Hospital in Worcester, MA, and decided to stop and grab a bite. One of our favorite hangouts, The Heritage, is located in Auburn, MA. It was packed when we arrived, but we managed to find a table off in a corner.

About halfway through our meal, a friendly looking woman about my age pulled out the chair at the table next to us. She was alone, and did not busy herself with a smartphone or a book. Instead, she just sat quietly, drinking her brew, until her meal arrived.

In the meantime, I had finished eating and was (my bad!) scrolling through the emails on my iPhone. My eye caught on the message from Author Seelie Kay, who was hosting me on her blog today. I’d totally forgotten about it. I opened the page and showed my husband the post.

“Read it to me,” he urged as he continued to enjoy his meal. So I did.

I tried to be quiet, but the tables were so close together. I was concerned I was disturbing the lone diner sitting nearby, but she did not appear bothered.

When I’d finished, she leaned towards me and said, “I don’t mean to eavesdrop, but I couldn’t help hearing what you read. Are you really an author?”

An animated discussion ensued, and when my husband received a phone call, I moved to sit across from her. “Patty,” as it turns out, lives in the next town over from ours, writes poetry, and has always wanted to write a book. About her mother.

Her mother, Nellie Twardzik Thompson, hailed from Webster, MA – where we now live – and “gained national recognition in the 1930’s as the only girl in the U.S.A. to play on a high school boys’ baseball team.” The 1930s! Patty also told me that her mother is listed in the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y. What an amazing accomplishment.

In any case, our conversation was cut short by the interruption of life in general, errands to run, things to do on this day before Easter weekend. We exchanged phone numbers (since Patty, like my husband, has eschewed the modernity of internet communication). I fully intend to connect with Patty again, maybe over a cup of delicious brew at Booklover’s Gourmet, a wonderful bookstore/coffee shop which is convenient to both of us.

As we said farewell, Patty hugged my neck and said, “I’m so glad I met you today. You know, God brings people into our lives with purpose, at just the right times. Do you believe that?”

“I do.”

“And on Good Friday. This is a blessing indeed.”

I couldn’t agree more.

I gained a new friend today.

Happy Easter, to all of my friends and fans who celebrate the holiday. Happy Passover to those of the Jewish faith. And for those whose holidays may coincide but I am not aware of, well . . . God bless us all.