The Scarecrow Snuff Out A Lily Sprayberry Realtor Halloween Novella

The Scarecrow Snuff Out A Lily Sprayberry Realtor Halloween Novella

It’s fall, y’all and it’s time for the annual It’s Fall Y’all Festival in Bramblett County Georgia!

And that’s a big deal!

The It’s Fall Y’all Festival is the biggest festival in the tri-county area, and everyone in Bramblett County is geared up for a great time!
Pumpkin carving, bobbing for apples, a petting zoo, and of course, a good old-fashioned BBQ are just a few of the events scheduled at Abernathy Farm.
But the big event, the one Lily Sprayberry is most excited about, is the haunted corn maze.
When bad things happen to scarecrows scattered throughout the maze, county residents run screaming, threatening the success of the festival. Determined to figure out what’s going on, Lily decides to check it out for herself and fears the corn maze just might actually be haunted.

Available on Amazon here

Decluttered and Dead A Lily Sprayberry Realtor Cozy Mystery

Decluttered and Dead A Lily Sprayberry Realtor Cozy Mystery

 

Every time the Bramblett County Georgia body count rises, so does realtor Lily Sprayberry’s popularity

And these days, she’s very popular.

When a member of her decluttering and staging class winds up dead, Lily takes it personally and sets out to find the killer.

Saddled with guilt, she struggles to accept that the killer just might be someone from her past.

The problem is figuring out who before the killer catches on.

Available on Amazon here

 

Deal Gone Dead A Lily Sprayberry Realtor Cozy Mystery

Deal Gone Dead A Lily Sprayberry Realtor Cozy Mystery

Meet Lily Sprayberry. Selling homes is her career. Solving murders, her calling.

There’s money buried somewhere on Myrtle Redbecker’s property, and people are dying to find out where.

Literally.

When Bramblett County, Georgia’s number one realtor Lily Sprayberry finds her cantankerous older client dead on the kitchen floor, she lands herself smack dab in the middle of a long-running property battle and a one-hundred-year-old rumor.

Lily made a promise to sell Myrtle’s land whether her client’s alive or not. But whoever wants that money doesn’t want the property to sell and will do whatever’s necessary to stop her. Can Lily keep her promise, or will she wind up another victim in this deal gone dead?

Available on Amazon Kindle  here

Mommying is Hard

Mommying is Hard

Writing fiction is fun, and any seasoned writer will tell you one of the first things to success is writing what you know. I’ve always added a little bit of my reality into my writing, but I’ve decided to try something different. Instead of working what I know into my fiction, I’m writing non-fiction.

I won’t bore you with the details, (mostly because they’re fleshed out in the book!) but I dove straight into mommying when I met my husband. He came equipped with two of the cutest little pieces of baggage in desperate need of a mom. So, I went from single, professional and dating to full-blown mom (while still a professional outside of the house) in a matter of (what felt like) minutes. Toss into the mix an airport full of other baggage, and a baby on the way and life really took a turn!

I can’t say I’ve rocked it. Most days I’ve failed miserably, but I’ve given it my best shot.

Flying by the Seat of My Mom Jeans is me writing what I know. It’s filled with short (some a big longer than short, too) essays about situations in my life…situations all moms can relate to. I’m including one here (don’t judge, it’s not yet edited) just to give you a glimpse into the book!

Stay tuned for a release date! 

That Time I Did the Parking Lot Walk of Shame

You know that expression, kids say the darnest things? It’s Murphy’s Law. It happens to every parent, at the most inappropriate moment, without any sign it’s coming at all. Why? Because kids, especially ones under five, are little parrots. They listen to everything and store it to use as a weapon when we least expect it. Like when you’re walking out of Target with a curvy woman with just a touch extra on the backside three feet in front of you, and your son suddenly belts out the words to a song that was popular seven years before his birth.

Let me set the scene for you.

The sun was shining as I pushed my cart full of Target crap—well past the whole, did you find what you’re looking for today thing—out the electronic door, Justin tucked into the little seat snug as a bug in a rug. Like many moms, I’d forgotten where I’d parked.

ME: Hmm, I can’t remember where I parked.

JUSTIN: (Turns around to look, grabs hold of the back of his seat and sees the woman in front of us. He then props himself up onto his knees, and in a voice loud enough for her to hear, says) Oh my God, look at her butt, it is so big.

ME: (Jaw hanging in complete and utter embarrassment, pulls him back into the seat, facing me.) Justin, shush. That’s not polite.

The woman in front of us had turned around just after he belted out his opinion and fire daggers shot out of her eyes, straight for me. I flinched and ducked, though I’m not sure I ducked to dodge the daggers or hoping she wouldn’t see me. Probably a little of both.

While I hid behind Justin, leaving him open to the death daggers, I doubled my speed and prayed to every Saint I could think of (I’m not Catholic, so it was many) to find my car, and quickly. Justin, however, went unfazed. He propped his little body back up into the seat, faced the woman and sang out with pride. “I like big butts, and I cannot lie. You other brothers can’t deny.”

I tilted my head to the right, taking a quick peek at the woman to see if she’d turned around again and sent additional daggers our way. We made eye contact, and when her eyes glowed bright red, I broke the contact and saw my car—parked right next to hers.

Bent on saving our lives, I pushed past the woman and our car, intending to come back after she’d left, when Justin, all young and clueless, screamed out, “Mama, there’s our car, right next to the lady with the big butt.”

I now refer to that incident as the parking lot walk of shame.

The Inn at Laurel Creek Zoe & Daniel’s Story

The Inn at Laurel Creek Zoe & Daniel’s Story

Do Miracles Really Happen at The Inn At Laurel Creek?

With a broken heart and a bruised ego, best-selling romance novelist Zoe Mayfield retreats to The Inn at hoping to recharge her muse, and finally finish her two months too late romantic comedy novel for the biggest publisher in NYC.

Zoe’s heart just won’t let her write what it doesn’t feel, and when your best friend—make that ex-best friend, steals your boyfriend—make that ex-boyfriend, from you, it kills every romantic bone in your body, making it impossible to write a happily ever after ending.

Crumbled paper and blacked out lines won’t cut it in romance writing, and if Zoe’s heart dies, her book deal might just die right along with it.

The night Daniel steps through The Inn’s French doors, sparks fly.

Will he be the miracle The Inn’s owners promised, the one that revives Zoe’s broken heart, or will Daniel’s story leave Zoe’s heart crumbled in pieces like the pages of her unfinished romantic comedy?

Available on Amazon here

SUPER SUMMER BOOK GIVE AWAY! ENTER TO WIN FREE BOOKS!

BOOKHUB is sponsoring a massive giveaway and I’ve joined along in the fun! If you enter, you’ll have a chance to win these fabulous books plus free sample chapters to some other great books by excellent authors!

What’s not to love about that?

Entering is easy, just go here:

Super Summer Giveaway

Make sure to share this with your friends!

Happy reading!

Unexpected Outcomes Coming in October!

Unexpected Outcomes Coming in October!

Angela, Mel, and Fran are Back for Another Exciting Adventure!

                 When a frantic 911 call stumps a suburban Atlanta police department, psychic medium Angela Panther steps in to assist. With the help of her best friend and celestial super sleuth mother, Angela soon realizes things aren’t as they appear. Now Angela must choose between trusting her instincts or following the clues. If she chooses wrong, she won’t be crossing the dead over to the other side, she’ll be one of them

Unexpected Outcomes will be available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle, and paperback via all other online outlets. Read for free on Kindle Unlimited. 

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Book Release! Goodbye,  My Love By Paranormal Romance Author Maggie Tideswell

Book Release! Goodbye, My Love By Paranormal Romance Author Maggie Tideswell

Today is release day for paranormal romance author Maggie Tideswell and her book, Goodbye, My Love. Check out the blurb and first chapter! I love supporting other authors, especially those who write paranormal stories! To purchase the book on Amazon, go here.

Roxanne’s Ghost Saga, a new mystery series from internationally acclaimed author Maggie Tideswell, is set against the stunningly beautiful backdrop of modern day South Africa. It is a compelling ghost story of identical twin sisters’ love for the same man, and the magical connection the women share.

And the theme?  Nothing is what it seems.

Here, we move into the realms of the mists of time that could either reveal or conceal.

Book 1, Goodbye, My Love, sets the scene. It introduces country vet, Ben, his four-year-old autistic daughter and the would-be nanny, Jessica James. Jess’ interview with Ben for the nanny position takes place on Friday the 13th. An attraction between the two is immediate, which by all accounts isn’t entirely normal.

Ben’s three oddball sisters-in-law descend on him for the anniversary of his wife Roxanne’s death. They try to convince Ben that Roxanne isn’t dead, more than likely to put an end to whatever might develop between Ben and Jessica. But Ben knows that no one could have survived what led to Roxanne’s death.

His daughter, diagnosed as autistic, only sometimes does she display the symptoms that led to her diagnosis. Autism is not a disease, it’s a condition. A condition with symptoms that can’t be turned on and off at will. So…what is the child really suffering from?

Ben’s wife’s twin sister, Millicent, is accompanied by an over-board caricature of a psychic to Ben’s home in order to help them find Roxanne. Of course, Millicent isn’t happy to find Jess already in Ben’s house—trouble is imminent. But only as far as Ben’s ancient housekeeper, will allow her to. What does the housekeeper know that will keep Millicent’s ruffled feathers under control?

More importantly…

Where is Roxanne?

Chapter One

Does anyone live here?

The house looked deserted, kind of spooky. Jess couldn’t see any other houses nearby. Sally had not been kidding—this was a rather isolated place.

Dilapidated outbuildings behind the sprawling house looked as unused as the house itself. Some sort of creeper-covered most of the buildings except the house—it looked far too fragile to bear the added weight.

There were what looked like turrets on each end of the house, and a domed one in between. That might be a skylight. Jess worried her bottom lip. What century was this place built?

Lightning played over the majestic mountains behind the house, silhouetting it against the darkening sky, but down here in the valley, the late sun cast long shadows over the overgrown garden.

It all fit so well with Friday the thirteenth because this was creepy. What had she been thinking? She should have postponed the interview until Monday. One weekend surely wouldn’t have made that much of a difference.

Jess studied the map on her tablet, which she held propped up against the steering wheel. This could be the right place, but she had thought that about both the previous two places, and neither had turned out to be Weltevreden. Neither had been as eerie as this place, either.

No, this couldn’t be it. Tapping her finger against the edge of the tablet, she studied the house again. This whole thing smacked of a Friday the thirteenth Sally-prank.

Sally, her bestie since high school, ran a very successful employment agency. The professional image notwithstanding, she still loved pranks of any kind—she would never outgrow them.

Her eyes had lit up that morning when Jess sat in front of her desk, mugs of coffee steaming on the polished wood between them. The platter of doughnuts had been for Jess’ benefit. Sally and her perpetual dieting.

“Something different,” Sally mused, tapping her pen against her front teeth, then pressed a button on her laptop, and reached for the sheet of paper the printer spewed out. “This might be just the thing. It came in just now.” She’d tossed her platinum curls over her shoulder, grinning at Jess.

Another thing Sally would never outgrow, her Barbie-doll looks.

“It has my name on it, then.” Jess leaned her forearms on Sally’s desk. “Tell me, tell me, tell me.” She grinned back, barely able to contain her excitement. “Does it involve a man?”

Neither Sally nor Jess had found their Mr. Full Potential yet, although both had been ready for wedded bliss, the kids and the house in the suburbs thing, a long time ago.

“As a matter of fact it does, but he doesn’t seem to be in the market. It says here that a nanny is required for a four-year-old autistic girl. Dr. Arnold specifically requested that only older women be put forward for the position.”

“How old-fashioned. Where is this job?”

“In the Wellington area.” Sally frowned at the monitor.

“There you go. He won’t find anybody qualified to work that far from Cape Town. It is his child, I presume?”

“It is, but do you seriously want to give this a go?” Sally looked worried as only she could. It went with the Barbie look. “I’m intrigued. What kind of doctor is he?”

“A veterinary surgeon. And a widower, it says here. That is all the information I have for you, I’m afraid.” Sally sat back in her chair. “I shouldn’t disregard so specific an instruction, Jess, but just this once, I’ll make an exception. Then it’s up to you to change his mind for him. It’ll be in his own best interest in the end.” She passed an information sheet across the desk. “I’ll tell Dr. Arnold to expect you at four. I’d pack an overnight bag if I were you. Call me, okay?”

Now, sitting in front of the house that might or might not belong to Dr. Ben Arnold, Jess didn’t feel all that confident anymore. And it didn’t really sound like a prank, unless Sally had kept some information to herself.

There was only one way to find out, and that was to knock on the door and ask.

If there was anybody in the house to ask.

Switching the engine off, she consulted the rear-view mirror to apply some color to her lips and pat her shoulder length bob into place. She took a moment to admire the rich auburn color in the late afternoon sunshine and sighed.

I don’t know about this. It was a long way from Cape Town.

What did people do around here for fun?

Trying her best to ignore the goose bumps on her forearms, she opened the car door and stepped out. Her heels sank into the gravel, her shadow stretching all the way back to the gate.

Only when she turned toward the house did she see the man sitting on the top step in the shadows, his shoulder against the railing, one knee pulled up with his arm resting on top of it. He wasn’t wearing a shirt, and it looked as if his feet were bare, too.

Was he there a moment ago? Why didn’t I see him?

Smoothing her palms down her red pencil skirt, she started toward the house and the man on the steps. If he wasn’t Dr. Arnold, maybe he could give her directions.

Taking a deep breath, Jess reminded herself that she wasn’t superstitious about this Friday the thirteenth nonsense. People liked to scare themselves with the silliest things. What was supposed to happen on this day? It was a day like any other.

That certainly looked like a real man on the steps. He wasn’t going to bite her. Today being a Friday and the thirteenth meant nothing, but now that she’d thought of it, the idea would stick with her like the taste of garlic.

Leaving the car door open for a quick escape should she need it, she’d gone no more than a few steps when she heard something other than the crunch of her shoes on the gravel. It sounded suspiciously like a dog whining.

She slowly turned her head, curling her fingers into the fabric of her skirt. It couldn’t be a dog. She hadn’t seen any dogs when she drove through the gate.

I don’t do dogs!

Her breath hitched in her throat when she saw them. They were right next to her car, beside the door she’d deliberately left open, a whole pack of them. Their lips curled away from their teeth, their tongues lolling out the sides of their mouths, dripping saliva onto the gravel. Yellowish eyes watched every move she made.

Where did they come from?

How many were there?

They cut her off from the safety of the Fiesta!

Now she had only one way to go—into that house. Why hadn’t that man called them off? Why wasn’t he helping her?

Slowly, making no sudden moves, she took another step toward the porch. The dogs followed her. Her heart hammered against her ribs. Another couple of quick steps toward the house. The dogs did the same. She broke into a trot, her scream shattered the still of the afternoon.

Missing the first step, she stumbled, recovered her balance, and took the rest of the stairs two at a time. The dogs were on her heels, whining and yelping, their breaths hot on the backs of her legs.

Just as a sharp whistle rent the air, but looking at the dogs, she careened into the man before the noise had even died down. Her momentum sent them both crashing to the floorboard. She landed on top of him, but with the dogs all around them, she hid her face in his neck. Another whistle— right in her ear—made her cringe, but the dogs were gone.

He lifted his head off the floorboards to glare at her, his hands at her waist, as if he was about to lift her off him. Stubble covered his jaw, his lips pressed into a tight line. A muscle jumped in his cheek. He dragged his eyes out of her gaping blouse to meet her stare.

They had to be the greenest pair of eyes she’d ever seen, and he was clearly not amused.

Then she noticed how much leg was exposed by her skirt bunched around her hips and she quickly scrambled to her feet, pushing her skirt back down her legs.

“Sorry,” she muttered, her face on fire. She couldn’t bring herself to look at him, but from the corner of her eye, she saw the stranger slowly unfold himself from the floor. Up and up he went, until she felt him looking down at her. Even in her heels, the top of her head barely reached his nose.

With fists on his hips, he glared at her. Tucking her hair behind her ears, she lifted her chin and stared back.

Despite her bravado, she was intimidated and she had no idea if she had reason to be. She didn’t have a clue who he was. For all she knew, he was a vagrant taking advantage of an abandoned house.

She quickly looked him up and down, hoping he wouldn’t notice. A vagrant—looking like that? This man looked too strong, too well-fed, and clean, to be homeless. He smelled good too, of soap and sunshine. Wide shoulders tapered to a flat stomach and slim hips in a pair of well-washed denim cutoffs. The button was undone and the zipped half down. And he had a hard-on!

Jess swallowed with difficulty, forcing her eyes to the garden. Maybe he was the gardener or something.

If he was the gardener, he wasn’t very good at it, judging by the state of the place. The flowerbeds were overgrown with weeds, and grass seeds reached for the sky. With a bit of care, it could be a rather pleasant garden.

Her attention whipped back to the man when he spoke. “What’s wrong with you, woman? Those are lap dogs.” His voice was deep, the timbre vibrating on her skin. “They thought you were playing with them.”

She’d forgotten about the dogs. Erections did that to her, they made her forget everything else. She took another look at the animals. There were only four of them, and now that they were at a safe distance and there was a man on hand whom they seemed to obey, they didn’t look all that fierce, or even very big. By panicking, she’d unnecessarily gotten them both in a rather embarrassing situation.

The veranda was shadowed, despite the lightning dancing over the mountains, yet the peeling paint was clearly visible. She should ask this man for directions so that she could be on her way, but at that moment her nose itched and she sneezed instead. She just barely managed to get her hand across her nose. The dust from the floorboards, and she most likely had it all over her face now. She needed to freshen up before she met with Dr. Arnold. Rubbing her hands over her face was probably making matters worse.

“Bless you,” the man said, his jaw clenched. “Explain yourself.” Fists planted on his hips, his bare chest rose and fell. Jess’ fingers itched to test the contours more fully before she realized that the man was actually angry.

Who was he? And what was he so angry about? Knocking him over had been an accident, which he could have avoided it if he’d controlled the animals sooner. His annoyance didn’t stop him from giving her a thorough inspection, though.

Barely suppressing the urge to stamp her foot, Jess snapped, “Those animals should be locked up.” The hand she pointed at the dogs was streaked with dust. Dropping it, she rubbed at the smudge with her other hand.

“They were, until a few minutes ago. When the visitor I expected didn’t show up, I let them out again. Who are you and what do you want?”

“How rude!” Jess gasped. “Do you welcome all visitors half naked?” His arousal was disturbing her.

“Uninvited visitors never come into the yard,” he growled. He knew she knew about his condition. “That’s what the clinic entrance is for. And I’m not half naked, I’m shirtless because I took it off when my visitor failed to show up for her four o’clock appointment. In case you haven’t noticed, it’s hot. If you’re Jessica James, you’re way too late—”

“The directions weren’t very clear,” she interrupted. “I got lost.” Hesitating only a moment, she stuck her hand out to him. “You’re Dr. Arnold?”

He ignored her hand and question, reaching instead for the shirt draped over the railing behind him and shrugged it on. Doctor or not, the man has no manners.

Buttoning the shirt, he leaned in closer. “So, it’s my fault you can’t follow a set of simple instructions? Look, miss, you might as well go back to wherever you came from. The position has been filled. Good day.” He started to turn away.

“What? When? I had an interview for this afternoon!”

He glanced at his wristwatch. “You missed the appointment. You wouldn’t have gotten the job anyway. Sorry for the inconvenience. It was nice meeting you. Goodbye, Ms. James.”

She noticed his eyes on her lips as he dismissed her. “Just a minute. You’re going to disregard my application because I’m a few minutes late? I have excellent credentials, and the agency—”

“Had been told that only older women need to apply.”

“So you’re dismissing my application because of my age, is that it?”

“Yes. And you’re more than a few minutes late. The appointment was for four o’clock sharp, and it’s nearly six now. Take your gripes up with your agent, Ms. James. Your timekeeping actually has very little to do with it. Now, if you’ll excuse me, you’re wasting my time.”

Jess narrowed her eyes. “I pity the person you’ve employed, if that is in fact the truth. You are a very rude man,

Dr. Arnold.”

He wasn’t exactly what she’d expected—in his early to mid-thirties and attractive, in a wildly blond caveman kind of way. And hot.

If only he had some manners.

It had sounded quite romantic when Sally first told her about this position, but the reality was far from romantic. She didn’t need this man or his job, and especially not his erection. There had to be other positions available in Cape Town. Sally would find her a good job, with interesting work. She would get into her car and drive away without a backward glance.

Not being given a fair interview had nothing to do with Friday the thirteenth. A damp gust of wind blew her hair into her eyes as she turned toward the stairs. It had everything to do with him being turned on by her.

Jess remembered the dogs when they jumped to their feet, tails wagging.

She froze, clutching her skirt. They might be small, but they were dogs. They had teeth. Damn it, she was going to need his help to get back to her car. Gnawing the corner of her mouth, she glanced at him. Would he help her, or would he cross his arms and enjoy the spectacle from the veranda?

Before she could do anything, the door behind them creaked open and pale, gnarled fingers curled around the edge of the wood. Jess took an involuntary step closer to the doctor, goosebumps covering her entire body, her hand to her throat.   Oh, God.

 

You can purchase the book here.

About the Author

Maggie lives in Johannesburg, South Africa with hubby Gareth. Over the years she’s worked in everything from nursing to catering, and then she started writing love stories. With three kids, a girl and two boys, and eleven cats at that time, life could become quite interesting.

The paranormal, things that happen for which there are no logical explanations and ghosts, are of particular interest to Maggie. What events in a person’s life would prevent that person from ‘resting’ after death? The ‘Old Religion’ is another special interest.

And love, of course. Why do people fall in love? What keeps them together for a lifetime when so many relationships fail?
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