Guest Author Charles Lemoine #originalitybydesign

Welcome, Chuck! So glad to have you as a guest today.

Charles Lemoine

Charles Lemoine, is a Midwest transplant to the land of cactus, coyotes, and diamondback rattlesnakes. A traveler and collector of fine things, he met his better-half in the City of Angels. 

When he's not trying to save the world, one geriatric patient at a time, he spends his time drinking coffee, eating pizza, and playing with their three, adorable rescue-dogs. 

Having an interest in the arts, he also spends quite a bit of time writing and creating beautiful glass mosaic art pieces, the flashier the better. 

Mostly, he enjoys spending time with friends and family who share his sense of humor and are willing to laugh at the most inappropriate times.

An ancient mystery. A paleontologist searching for answers. A deadly web of lies. 

Dr. Mariska Stevenson has always felt a special connection to the ancient human remains found in the La Brea Tar Pits. Just like the source of her obsession, Mariska doesn't know her own past or where she came from. 

When remains are stolen, Mariska must risk it all in a dangerous game where people aren't who they seem and dark truths put her very life on the line.

Will Mariska succeed in discovering the truth about not only the remains but her own origins, or will the dark forces plotting against her ensure an ending that keeps the mysteries buried...forever?

Charles would love to hear from you!

DREAMING is Free ~ by Kim Hornsby

I am a prolific dreamer.

If I wrote as much as I dreamed, I'd have worn off my fingerprints by now from typing.

Each morning, I wake and try to remember my last dream. I do this because my immediate mood is affected by what I was just experiencing in my dream. This morning I woke slightly amazed because my nephew had discovered how to fly. No one had ever tried this before and he was just brave enough to jump off a tower into the wind to discover if he put his arms out a certain way, he could fly, like skydivers without falling. Like going to one of those skydiving places with a wind tube at the mall. He was able to direct himself over to pick up a jacket he'd left at a park and come back. I woke impressed but worried for his safety.

Dreams are the result of an active hind brain that won't go to sleep when the rest of the brain shuts down for the night. Like an ADD child, this part of the brain keeps going, nudging the rest of you to pay attention. Playing with toys, essentially, while you sleep.

But what if outside forces could penetrate those dreams, your subconscious, to insert suggestions? Like in the movie Inception? Leonardo diCaprio was developing a way to insert suggestions into a business mogul's mind, taking dreaming to a whole new thriller level.

I love the mystery surrounding dreams. Like the weather, it's something that we all have in common whether we are rich people, dirt poor, athletes, housebound, old or young, everyone dreams.

It's with that in mind that I write books that mention dreams. In my Dream Jumper series, dreams are crucial because the heroes can enter other people's dreams and use that to solve a mystery and eventually do good in the world. I wrote this first book before Inception was a movie and thought I had a unique idea. And now, the first book in the series, The Dream Jumper's Promise, is optioned for film with hopes to begin filming in the next year. In my series, Moody & The Ghost, the hero, Bryndle Moody has gone blind but dreams with sight. She’s also a psychic so her dreams can be prophetic and meaningful. I often insert my dreams into my books. Look for a baby owl or a haunted house.

If dreams are metaphorical representations of our waking expectations, I now know I have some degree of concern over my nephew and his life. It's interesting to remember dreams, interpret them and move on to your waking life every morning.
Happy Dreams, Everyone!
Follow Kim on Twitter to read about her #strangedreams 

A Much Kinder Time ~ by Grace Augustine #originalitybydesign

photo: trussevents

When some of you see this, you are instantly transported to the sounds of SOUL TRAIN. The '70's. The best era ever, in my opinion, because that was my growing up years.

We didn't worry about locking our cars or our homes. The worst we dealt with in my tiny Montana town were the men on the street corners on a Sunday morning, sleeping off an all night bender in one of the local establishments.

The '70's brought so many wonderful things to life for those of us who call that era ours. My dream car was a Barracuda.

photos: Pinterest,

Ladies, how could we resist these dapper young men in their wide white belts, cords, and polyester patterned shirts, right?  

photos: Pinterest

And, guys, c'mon...I mean really. Look at this? These were some of the very best fashions the ladies were wearing at the time.

photos: Pinterest, Catie Cordero

In my small town of Cut Bank, Montana, there wasn't much to do. I was one of the lucky ones. The legal drinking age was lowered to 18 and my best friend and I took advantage of that most weekends.  I wasn't...and still am not...a beer drinker. My first drink was a Lime Vodka Collins. I graduated from that to Sloe Gin Fizzes, Tia Maria and gingerale, and settled on my then favorite rum and cola. (I know this makes me sound like a lush, but truly I wasn't. I was of legal age, never was drunk, knew my limit, and today, seldom/if ever drink.)

It wasn't uncommon for us to close down the bars and hit the Big Sky Cafe at 2 am to share a plate of french fries and gravy: still conversing, still laughing, still having a good time.

photo: TripAdvisor

My best friend and I knew one of our favorite bands was playing at one of our favorite weekend spots, so we donned our going-out duds and headed out. The place was packed with stumbling businessmen, Reservation residents, and a lot of rowdy oil men...all imbibing in their favorite beverage. I was enjoying people watching, sipping my drink. My friend, however, wasn't so lucky--two drinks and she was dancing on the table...literally!

The band played many hits from the era. During intermission, these band members came over to our table, sat down, and chatted. They did so during all of their breaks. All of a sudden I heard "Hey, why don't you guys come over for dinner tomorrow night?"  My head whipped around so fast. I'm sure I looked like Linda Blair in the Exorcist!

My friend had just invited six men... to my house... for dinner... before their Saturday night gig. MY HOUSE! Sigh! Well, I took it all in stride. They seemed nice (they could have been ax-murderers) so I thought why not. (Did I mention they could have been ax-murderers?)

I cleaned my apartment, cooked a lovely roast with all the trimmings, even homemade pie for dessert... and on schedule at 5:30 pm, the boys started filing into my apartment. I didn't know their names! (Ax Murderers, I tell ya!) 

I was fortunate these were very wholesome, handsome, talented guys who were polite, funny, and thankful for a hot meal. They took care of their dishes, each thanking me with a kiss on the cheek before leaving, and proceeded to the venue for their final show. (My friend who'd invited them conveniently had to work late!)

I finished cleaning up about the time my friend showed up, so I changed clothes and we headed out the door to go hear this band, whose lead singer's name was Ed. (I never did get the names of the others.) Well, Ed decided at the close of the night, he was teaching me how to shoot pool...which made my friend very jealous. She had a "thing" for Ed, but Ed chose me. He stood behind me steadying the cue stick and showing me how to shoot.  I remember my friend being so upset because his arms were around me not her...when all I was interested in was learning how to shoot pool!   I believe that night was the night for my first real kiss. **blush** (Yes, from Ed.) I've often wondered where the band landed, more importantly where Ed landed.

photo: 70's popphotos 
(this isn't the band, but it could have been since most resembled each other)

I'm not sure if there is a moral to this story... but, back in the 70's in small town Montana, we didn't have to worry about inviting strangers over for dinner. We didn't have to worry about locking our homes and vehicles, or having our mail stolen. It was a simpler time, an enjoyable time, a time where people went out, had face to face conversations, and shared stories and a laugh or two. It was the best era for many things: safety, clothing, friendships... and music. Always the music.

Experiences in Meditation ~ by Cynthia Land, LMT

I think the first time I tried to meditate I was on a Metro bus in Seattle. It was the 1990's, I was working at the ABC radio affiliate KOMO AM 1000 and was exhausted. Rain outside caused heavy condensation on the inside of the bus windows. I was warm and cozy in my seat but my mind was agitated by the stress of working in radio news. Somewhere along the way I'd picked up that meditating would quiet my mind. I closed my weary eyes and imagined I was sitting among fog enshrouded Douglas Fir trees. I slowed my breath and visualized the limbs of trees, the individual needles and the smell they produced. I was amazed at how quickly I calmed down. 

That was just one experience in hundreds perhaps thousands of days of stress and spaziness where I would, instead of meditating, turn to overeating, over-drinking and eventually smoking cigarettes. Slowing down enough to meditate was not yet in my vocabulary. It was something I aspired to but couldn't quite slow down enough to attain. I began a practice of yoga well before I was able to settle into meditation. In the 90's, I lived in a world where self-care still wasn't part of my routine. The notion of self-care is still something I'm defining for myself.  

Nearly a decade would have to go by before I came to a more steady meditation practice and even then I would have stretches where my A-D-D mind would take over with something way more “important”. Meditation takes a level of discipline many in our culture aren’t willing to settle into. The odd catch is that when you do commit and start to feel the effects of meditation, you can’t see your life without it. 

There are many styles of meditation. I tried Zen, Insight, Kriya and probably several others I can't remember right now but finally settled on Transcendental Meditation. I really just stumbled into it because my boyfriend did it and knew a teacher. A group of us committed to go through the training which made it a lot easier. Meditation alone is great but meditating with a group can be even more powerful, especially if there are experienced meditators with you.  

Now your mobile phone can be your meditation teacher. Meditation apps abound. They’re a great place to start and play around with different techniques. 

What does it mean to meditate? For me it's how I get grounded, get centered, get focused and get in contact with my higher power. When I'm going through my day my mind comes across all kinds of negative emotions and thoughts from others, from myself and situations where I find myself. I can then become sidetracked into things that aren't important. Meditation allows me to ask, "What is it I really need to be doing today? Where will I focus my energy?"

Along my travels I've heard that, "Praying is asking God for what you want and meditating is listening for his/her answer." Just recently I've really started to adhere to this notion. I get quiet so I can listen.  I then take note of what messages am I getting and how can I put them into play. When I do this consistently my life just runs better.  

What's happening while I'm "in there?" Getting the mind to settle down takes time. It never truly disengages. I believe we just learn to direct our awareness in other ways. We pay more attention to our breath or how we're feeling in our bodies.  Buddhist teacher Jack Kornfield has a seminal book on meditation (A Path with Heart) where he likens the mind to a puppy we're training to "go on the paper." We must constantly be vigilant to direct it back to where we want. But be vigilant in a kind and not punishing way. I watch my mind go astray dozens of times in a meditation session and gently bring my awareness back to my breath. When I'm successful, I arrive at a sort of "no-place" neither here nor there, a place of no time passing. My mind and body relax deeply but more impressively, my mind seemingly disengages from chasing thoughts hither and thither. To be clear, this doesn't happen instantly for me. I probably sit for a good ten minutes before my mind is finally able to release itself from spin mode. This is probably why I have such a tough time meditating in the afternoons. I am so fully engaged in the day that getting my mind to let go for 20 minutes seems insurmountable. It's my next big hurdle.

I’ve meditated in cars, airports and on airplanes, on ferries and on beaches. Today I often sit in a comfy living room chair, light a stick of incense and meditate while the sun is coming up. I focus on my breathing for a couple of minutes and then consciously make myself available to “hear” my higher power. My mind will attempt to hijack me into something momentarily fascinating and as soon as I notice it, I come back to my breath, maybe visualize one of my chakras, say my mantra and get quiet again. This repeats and you kind of get used to it once you understand how the mind works. 

Here’s what I know; meditation helps me slow down in a world that’s going ever faster with no intentions of slowing down. I have no need to go that fast and when I do I inevitably hurt myself either physically or emotionally or both. When I slow down, I see the world more clearly and make better, more elegant decisions in alignment with my deeper desires and needs. 

SF & Drugs & Rock 'n' Roll Is All My Body Needs ~ by Dennis Green


What Rock & Roll tune tells its story against the background of Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity? And which Sci-Fi themed funk masterpiece was honored by the Library of Congress? Read on for the answers to these and other questions about the connections between science fiction/fantasy and rock and roll music.

In a previous post, I discussed music as it relates to Science Fiction in the movies and TV. In general, a songwriter can reference a literary character in any way he or she likes. But the reverse isn’t true. A writer must pay for rights to quote song lyrics in a book or story, so it’s not always easy to discern what music may have influenced a writer.

But since Bill Haley and the Comets ushered in the Rock 'n' Roll era, we can be sure that hundreds of writers have written to the beat of Rock tunes. Urban Fantasy writers, in particular, like to draw connections to Rock in their writing. An informal survey (Okay… me looking at my own bookshelves)  reveals many Urban Fantasy books and stories with titles that directly or indirectly reference Rock 'n' Roll.

But the connections are there for straight-ahead Science Fiction as well. In fact, found 100 Sci-Fi songs inspired by Rock 'n' Roll. You can visit that site to see the entire list, but here are a few, plus some they missed, that I think represent the best of the lot.

The Brains of Rock ’n Roll

courtesy YouTube

“39” – Queen

The original members of Queen are of the most high degree in all of pop music. Guitarist, Brian May, must be the only rock and roll star with a PhD in Astrophysics. Freddie Mercury had a Masters in Art. You have seen his work on the group’s logo, the Queen Crest. Bassist, John Deacon, possesses a Masters in Electronic Engineering.

Drummer, Roger Taylor, is the slacker of the group. He “merely” has a BS in Biology. If you’ve seen the recent movie “Bohemian Rhapsody,” you may remember a scene where Freddie claims to have saved Roger from a career as a dentist.

In 2015, Brian May was invited to NASA, where he joined the New Horizons team in examining the first photos of the Pluto flyby. So, it might not come as a surprise that one of May’s songs deals with a love story disrupted by the physics of relativity.

“39,” from the group’s breakout album “A Night at the Opera,” tells the story of a group of space explorers dispatched to find a replacement for a dying earth. They return to discover a hundred years have passed, and everyone they know and love has died. Hidden in what at first listen appears to be a cheerful folk tune with a skiffle beat are some of the most plaintive and haunting closing lyrics I’ve ever heard:

For my life,

Still ahead,

Pity me.

The time dilation effects of Einstein’s special theory of relativity are familiar to those of us who read the literature, but it’s unusual territory for pop music. On an album best known for the bombastic anthem “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “39” is just a musical footnote. But with its emotional punch and empirical accuracy, it may be Rock’s only true science fiction story.

Queen would also mine Science Fiction art, choosing a well-known Astounding cover by Frank Kelly Freas as the cover of News of the World.

Heroes and Villains

courtesy YouTube

“Iron Man” – Black Sabbath

“Magneto and Titanium Man” – Wings

The ultimate meta-moment of Marvel’s Iron Man is when Tony Stark wages battle to the soundtrack of Black Sabbath’s song of the same name. Taken by itself, the tune is the kind of a turgid, guitar heavy arena rock tune best listened to under the influence of the chemical of your choice. And it doesn’t have anything to do with the Marvel Comics character.

But that scene was awfully cool.

courtesy of YouTube

Paul McCartney went Ozzy and his crew one better, invoking not one but three Marvel characters in his “Magneto and Titanium Man.” Featuring not only Iron Man’s Soviet antagonists, Titanium Man and Crimson Dynamo, but also the mutant master of metal, the song appeared on the B side of “Venus & Mars Rock Show,” and was a Wings concert staple, accompanied by original Marvel art.

An avowed comics fan, Paul McCartney gave Jack Kirby and his daughter front-row seats during the “Venus & Mars” tour. Kirby returned the favor with a hand-drawn comic.

The Ones On Every List

“Space Oddity” – David Bowie

“Rocket Man” – Elton John

 You can’t do a list of Sci-Fi songs without including these two. 

courtesy YouTube

Even though Mark Watley must engineer his own survival to a disco beat in Andy Weir’s The Martian, what the movie is actually about is proving the 1972 John-Taupin Theorem of Mars climate:

Mars ain’t the kind of place to raise your kids,

In fact, it’s cold as hell. 

“Space Oddity” is another tune that makes just about every “Sci-Fi Rock tunes” list. Bowie would come back to the Science Fiction theme again as bisexual alien rock star, Ziggy Stardust, and even play an alien in his movie debut, “The Man Who Fell To Earth.” He would also eventually tell us the fate of Major Tom, labeling him a “junkie” in the 1980 tune “Ashes to Ashes.”

Bowie also wins the award for providing titles to genre TV shows. “Ashes to Ashes” and “Life on Mars” (both the excellent BBC original and the not-quite-so-good American remake) would have been poorer without their titles. And thankfully, fully licensed to use Bowie's music within the shows.

Speaking of licensing, in a triumph of common sense, Bowie’s music publisher agreed to extend astronaut Chris Hadfield’s license to “Space Oddity,” so the first music video ever produced in space could continue to be seen.

Included here, because that means I can.

courtesy YouTube

Paul is Dead. Or Maybe Just On Another Planet

“Calling Occupants of Interstellar Craft” – Klaatu

courtesy YouTube

This is probably the most obscure tune on my list. Its only chart presence was for a few weeks in 1977, when the Carpenters released a cover version. But the original comes with an interesting story.

The song was written and recorded by the Canadian band Klaatu. So, right off the top, we have a cool "The Day The Earth Stood Still" reference. But when the album was first released in 1976, it was without pictures of the band or even their names anywhere on it. Everything was “Written by Klaatu,” “Produced by Klaatu,” etc.

Somehow, a rumor got started that Klaatu was actually a reunited Beatles, recording anonymously. The band’s record company denied it from the get-go, as did the founders, John Woloschuk and Dee Long, when they finally revealed themselves. But it took quite a while for the rumors to die down.

News Flash: Sixties music was kind of trippy.

“In The Year 2525” – Zager & Evans

courtesy YouTube

Zager and Evans have the dubious distinction of being the only act to top both the U.S. and U.K. charts and then never have another hit.  

The 1969 song stops at 1,010-year intervals, making disturbing predictions about human society at each. Writer Rick Evans is the anti-Roddenberry, predicting that we will never learn from our mistakes.

Life is Cheap and Death is Free

“Transverse City” – Warren Zevon

courtesy YouTube
Warren Zevon is one of music’s most iconoclastic personalities. He began his career penning hits for artists like Linda Ronstadt. In his final years, he was David Letterman’s favorite guest, performing and talking candidly about his terminal lung cancer. His “Keep Me In Your Heart” is one of the most poignant songs ever written, but he’ll always be best known for the catchy “Werewolves of London.” He was well-read, despite dropping out of high school. “Transverse City” was directly influenced by William Gibson.

Zevon was a fan of writers. He dedicated an album to detective novelist Ross MacDonald, and served as musical director and occasional guitarist for the Rock Bottom Remainders, the famous “garage band,” made up of Stephen King, Dave Barry, Matt Groening, and Amy Tan.

At Least There Were No Anal Probes

“Spaceman” – The Killers

courtesy YouTube

Lest you think Science Fiction and music quit cross-pollinating in 1980 (or that the writer is an old fart, although that is probably true) let’s fast forward to 2009 for “Spaceman” by The Killers.

The narrator is kidnapped by aliens, but returned none the worse for the experience, except for one lingering effect.

I hear these voices at night sometimes.

The song may be 21st Century, but the video, while entertaining, is strictly Eighties MTV cheese.

It’s Just Too Peculiar Here

“Two Little Men in a Flying Saucer” – Ella Fitzgerald

courtesy YouTube

I work at a jazz radio station, so I am hardly going to leave off the UFO tune by none other than the First Lady of Song, Ella Fitzgerald. “Two Little Men in a Flying Saucer” exhibit their discriminating taste by fleeing the earth after getting a taste of our culture, notably our television shows. And this was in 1951, decades before TV political ads.

View It, Code It.

“Technologic” – Daft Punk 

courtesy YouTube

Daft Punk is a “must have” on the list, since they’re robots from the future and all. Plus, their guest shot was the best thing about "Tron: Legacy."

“Technologic” is textbook for the helmeted French duo, mixing up funk, techno, rock, and synth pop with vocals that might actually be what my computer is thinking at any given moment.

I Hear The Weather in Transexual Transylvania is Great This Time of Year.

“Science Fiction Double Feature” – Rocky Horror Picture Show

courtesy YouTube

Referencing classic Sci-Fi cinema from Triffids to George Pal, Rocky Horror Picture Show’s “Science Fiction Double Feature” is a smooth ballad whose pop veneer lulls us into complacency before we are thrust into the gender-bending rock 'n' roll fever dream that Brad and Janet experience.

Citizens of the Universe

“Mothership Connection” – Parliament

courtesy YouTube

“We have returned to claim the pyramids,” proclaims George Clinton as “Mothership Connection” opens. Clinton, a fan of Star Trek, put together the 1975 concept album to “put black people in space.” Generally regarded as one of Parliament’s best albums, Mothership Connection was the first to feature Maceo Parker and Fred Weasley, two veterans of James Brown’s horn section, who would go on to be important jazz and funk musicians in their own right.

The Library of Congress added the album to the National Recording Registry in 2011, noting it’s influence on the jazz, rock, and dance music that followed. So, in a way, it predicted the future of music just like Clarke, Asimov, and Heinlein predicted the future of science.

And maybe gave Roland Emmerich the idea for "Stargate," who knows?

Just a Ramblin’ Hobbit

“Ramble On” – Led Zeppelin

courtesy YouTube

“Ramble On" is one of three Led Zeppelin tunes that reference characters and scenes from "Lord of the Rings" along with “Misty Mountain Hop” and “The Battle of Evermore.” Although if your girl left you to be with Gollum, it’s possible you’re better off without her.

Bonus points to Jimmy Page, who designed the mysterious “Four Symbols” logo, which looks to me like Elvish.

 And the Beat goes on…

(This is an expanded version of an article that was originally published in PerihelionSF under the title “More Than Zarathustra.)

The Legacy #originalitybydesign

        by Linda Boulanger

 I was struck by something Lori Roberts said in her post, Plugging Along. She mentioned that beyond just writing because she had characters who wanted their stories told, she also wrote her stories as gifts to her grandchildren… She wanted to leave them a legacy, so to speak.

The use of the term legacy was my word, not Lori’s. It kept popping into my mind, so I looked up the definition. As so often happens, I found one that fit what I was looking for: something handed down from one generation to the next. Lori wanted to leave her legacy in the form of her stories. She wanted her books to be there as her contribution to the world… and more precisely, to her grandchildren. We just get to share them.

I suppose the books I have written and the covers I have designed are a part of my legacy. They are one of my marks on the world, something I am proud to have accomplished and happy to share. It made me think of one of the families in an upcoming series I’m working on and the legacy they shared. I pictured a Christmas Eve with this Medieval family of dragon shifters gathered in the solar of their castle, sharing a tradition steeped in legacy…

"Christiev DuBois folded his tall form into a sitting position in front of the sofa in his family's solar and waited for his grandchildren to arrange themselves around him. This was the only way they could all see the pages of the book he laid on the floor before him. Tracing his fingers over the dragon etched into the wood panel on the front, he opened it up and began to read the words written by his wife, explaining the dragon carving on the front. 

The children listened in awe, especially when he closed the book again and allowed each of them to run their hands over the ancient dragon form. He smiled at their oohs and aahs as their little fingers bumped over the ridges making up the scales and wings. He hadn't been much older than them when he'd first seen this carving. He was pleased Ashlynn had found a way to use the piece in this book—this treasure she’d filled with legacies left by past DuBois generations. They were all pieces that might have been lost forever had she not salvaged them from the old castle his father had abandoned after his mother had died there.

His mother’s death and the years that followed were not a time he wanted to remember. It was a dark time, with too much sorrow and anger, his father taking that out on anyone or anything he came in  contact with—including him. 

The older dragon shifter had practically destroyed the old castle, building this one where Christiev and his family now lived, only after his aunt had stepped in and threatened to have her brother declared mad if he didn’t at least provide a decent home for his son.

By that point, it had almost been too late for Christiev. He’d been following in his father’s footsteps far too long, hatred and anger building, spurring him to where he, too, acted more like the hated Driagaran instead of a protector. He’d forgotten that most important part of being a Druajen—the side of the dragonkind that were sworn to protect the world against the dragon shifters that believed they had the right to take over and rule the humans. Driagaran dragons had forgotten they were part human. Druajen had not… though his father had, for a time, acted like he had forgotten, with Christiev doing his bidding.

He glanced at his wife while the children continued to look at and talk about the dragon carving, each speculating whether they would, someday, have wings and the feather-like scales of the Druajens. 

Ashlynn smiled at him and his heart melted, just as it had the first time he’d seen her buried within the rubble of a wrecked carriage. His heartbeat finding hers had been the only way he’d known there were any survivors, though it would be nearly a decade longer before she would be his. Those were years of change and reformation that hadn’t truly taken hold until after she and their son had come to live with him and his father at Castle Esperanza.

It had taken many visits to the abandoned castle for Ashlynn to unearth all the treasures she’d combined into this book she’d made. Originally, she’d done it as a gift to his father, no one quite sure how Kristoff would react. 

By that time, the old man had taken to spending most of his time in the few rooms he’d designated as his alone in the family wing of the castle. The only thing that seemed to give him joy was his grandson, Christof, though when Ashlynn had presented him with this book, he’d wept openly, his fingers caressing the carving much as the children’s were. 

He’d thumbed through it, lingering on each piece of work left by one ancestor or another chronicling the lives of the Druajens as a whole. Together, he and Ashlynn had added in the words that explained the pieces. It was a glorious memento—a book of legacy, as well as one of healing for his father.

In the days that followed, Kristoff had been more alive, more the gentle man he’d been during the time he’d been married to Hope. He’d wanted to make peace with the people who lived in his land and had begun to do so with the help of his son and grandchildren, though most days he could be found sitting in front of the fire in his quarters, the book Ashlynn had made for him opened to an image of a dragon with icy blue wings made of feathers. 

It had been painted by Christiev’s mother, who had then painstakingly cut a feather from an ice bird and meticulously placed the pieces to create an image of a magnificent feathered ice dragon. It was how she saw his father whenever he shifted. It was glorious, and another favorite of his grandchildren. He knew they would squeal with glee when they finally got to that page.

Christiev’s heart was so full as he sat amidst his grandchildren that Christmas Eve on the floor of the family solar in Esperanza Castle teaching them of their heritage and sharing with them the history of his family through this beautiful legacy—an heirloom, created with love, to be passed down from generation to generation for all eternity."

I hope you’ve enjoyed this little peek into the DuBois family. I am currently working on the books for this series, however, I introduce the Druajen dragons in both A Leap of Faith (historical time travel romance) and Stirring Up Some Love (contemporary fantasy romance). You may find out more about my books by visiting the links on my  page, and, as always, your comments here are most welcome. I would LOVE to hear about your family’s legacy or legacies. What mark do you intend to leave for future generations?

Get to Know our Members ~ Darlene Kuncytes #originalitybydesign

Today you have the pleasure of knowing more about Darlene Kuncytes

Darlene Kuncytes, best-selling author of The Supernatural Desire series, was born and raised in Ohio, and still happily resides there. 

She's a complete smart ass with a wicked sense of humor who has been told on more than one occasion that she is irritatingly chipper in the mornings. And, honestly, she really could care less! 

She is the eternal optimist, and you can usually find her with a coffee mug in hand and a smile on her face ~ causing all kinds of trouble. If you follow her on Facebook, you will find her to be a promoter of kindness to all, but shhh...we won't tell anyone, right?

Darlene is a horror-loving romance writer. 

To learn more about what she writes, please click on the link below.

Guest Author Charles Lemoine #originalitybydesign

Welcome, Chuck! So glad to have you as a guest today. Charles Lemoine Charles Lemoine, is a Midwest transplant to the land of cact...