Friday, July 29, 2016

Pesto Time

Fortunately the deer don't seem to like basil so I had a gracious plenty to harvest and turn into pesto.

4 cups basil leaves (tight packed- you can substitute Italian parsley for one of those cups)
3/4 cup olive oil
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (not the unrefrigerated sort)
1/2 cup pine nuts or almonds or hulled sunflower seeds)
4-6 large cloves of garlic, peeled.

Whir in food processor or blender. Pack into half pint jars.  This recipe makes 2 1/2 to 3 half pints, depending on how tight you packed those leaves.

This stuff freezes exceptionally well. Two or three years and it's still good. Keeps well in the refrigerator too - weeks, maybe months, but not years.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

My Own Southern Strategy

There are so many great Southern summer sandwiches -- pimento cheese, BLTs, plain old mater and mayo -- I love them all but yesterday it was a cucumber sandwich that called my name. Cold, crisp homegrown cuke on homemade light bread with homemade mayonnaise. Absolutely perfect.

One step toward feeling cooler.

Another step was to vow not to engage in Facebook arguments with people who comment on political things I post with zingers like "Killary should be in jail," or "Obummer is a Muslim," or "Michelle is really Michael."

My own Southern Strategy is, henceforth, to reply to such comments with a simple "Bless your heart." (This is the time-honored passive-aggressive response of a Southern Lady who chooses not to use bad language and say what she really thinks. I seem to remember my Yankee sister-in-law using "God love him" in much the same way.) 

In extreme cases, I may comment that I'm praying for the person.

In this heat, argument is tiring and with folks so far gone, it's futile. I could block or ignore them but the Bless Your Heart makes me feel better.

Maybe there should be an emoticon . . . maybe there already is.

Monday, July 25, 2016

How You Can Help . . .

The manuscript is in my agent's hands. It will be several weeks before she gets to it -- I'm far from her only client.

I mentioned that there were some ways you all could help me as my agent begins the task of shopping my book around. 

The thing is, I'm switching from mystery to what I fondly believe is literary fiction and I have no track record there. Plus it's been five years since my last book. 

Still, it would be wise to assume that potential editors/publishers might look at my online footprint and other places to get some idea of what sort of following I might have.

I am awful at asking for stuff but I'm going to do it anyway.

Here are some things that would be helpful:

Reviews (if you liked one of my books) on Amazon or Goodreads.

A LIKE on my Facebook author's page. Friend me on my personal page.

Comment on my blog now and then. Or just click on it.  My post on the 20th soared to almost 2,000 clicks -- when the blog normally perks along at less than 500, I haven't a clue what happened on the 20th.

Buy one of my books. DAY OF SMALL THINGS, being not really part of the series, might make a nice holiday or birthday gift for a friend. A new book, it should go without saying.  The resale of used books does nothing for my "numbers." (I am a great fan of used books but we're talking here of what will make my tired old self look like a desirable property.)

If you are a library patron and they don't have my books, ask them to order some. 

These are off the top of my head. Other things may occur to me but any of these would be gratefully received.

I really appreciate those of you who offered to help! I'm in unknown territory now . . .

Sunday, July 24, 2016


Yesterday I typed those magical words to my Shelton Laurel novel -- years in the making.  I have to proofread the last three chapters I just finished and by this afternoon should be sending the manuscript off to my long suffering, patient agent as a Word doc attachment. 

Justin and Claui came up with Prosecco and flowers to help in the celebration.  I'll talk more tomorrow about what comes next. (Hint - It will be slow, glacially slow. And I could use your help.)