WARNING: Writers, Do Not Act Out Your Characters In REAL LIFE…You May End Up Like This Author.

You all know Cat pretty well. If I come across something literary I feel is worthy of sharing? Then I will!

Please, authors, if you are going to be a writer and publish your books of romance suspense novels? Don’t act out your storyline and characters in REAL LIFE!

Actually though, not funny but ironic as someone in real life died… The Author’s Husband by her hands. I feel a new book in the making…CAT

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Nancy Brophy’s Amazon Author Profile and Published Books. Now Charged With Murder.


About The Author:  Nancy Brophy grew up reading and writing. Her imaginary friends have rich lives and less self-doubts with stories that have beginning, middles and happy ending all within four hundred pages. She lives in the beautiful, green and very wet Northwest with her husband, two naughty dogs, PB and J, and forty rowdy chickens.

Novelist Who Penned ‘How To Murder Your Husband’ Essay Charged With Husband’s Murder.


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(Nancy Crampton-Brophy has been charged with the murder of her husband, Daniel Brophy. She is the author of romantic suspense novels and, in a 2011 blog post, outlined various motives and methods of killing a husband. Credit: Portland, OR Police Bureau and NPR and The Oregonian)
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“How do you get away with murder? Maybe don’t write a blog post about getting away with murder.”

Last week, police in Portland arrested 68-year-old Nancy Crampton-Brophy. She is charged with the murder in the death of her 63-year-old husband, chef Daniel Brophy.

At 8:30 a.m. on June 2, police and medics arrived at The Oregon Culinary Institute after students and instructors arriving for class found Brophy suffering from a gunshot wound. The first responders attempted to revive him but weren’t successful. In a press conference that day, police said that they were investigating the death as a homicide and that they had no immediate suspects.

Crampton-Brophy is a self-published author of romantic suspense novels, many featuring chiseled ex-Navy SEALs — books with “rugged men, strong women, and a good story,” she touted on her website. There she described her home life — part of which read like the satisfying last pages of a romance novel:

“I live in the beautiful, green, and very wet, Northwest, married to a Chef whose mantra is: life is a science project. As a result there are chickens and turkeys in my backyard, a fabulous vegetable garden which also grows tobacco for an insecticide and a hot meal on the table every night. For those of you who have longed for this, let me caution you. The old adage is true. Be careful what you wish for, when the gods are truly angry, they grant us our wishes.

“… I can’t tell you when I fell in love with my husband, but I relate the moment I decided to marry him. I was in the bath. It was a big tub. I expected him to join me and when he was delayed, I called out, ‘Are you coming?’

“His answer convinced me he was Mr. Right. ‘Yes, but I’m making hors d’oeuvres.’ Can you imagine spending the rest of your life without a man like that?”

But in 2011, for a blog called See Jane Publish, Crampton-Brophy wrote an essay titled “How to Murder Your Husband.” (The post is no longer public.)

“As a romantic suspense writer, I spend a lot of time thinking about murder and, consequently, about police procedure,” the post read. “After all, if the murder is supposed to set me free, I certainly don’t want to spend any time in jail. And let me say clearly for the record, I don’t like jumpsuits and orange isn’t my color.”

The essay described a range of possible motives for murdering a husband, ranging from avoiding the financial hit of a divorce to infidelity by a “lying, cheating bastard,” and even the possibility that the wife is a professional contract killer. It also weighed the pros and cons of different methods: “Guns — loud, messy, require some skill. … Knives — really personal and close up. Blood everywhere. Eww.”

She warned against committing a crime of passion: “Most of the time there is a trail that leads directly to you. Each type of murder leaves clues. A crime of passion does not look like a stranger was involved.”

The couple had been married for 27 years, according to The Oregonian, and were reportedly inseparable. Brophy was a lead instructor at the culinary institute, where he was remembered as “the resident encyclopedia of knowledge” with “offbeat sense of humor and creative approach to teaching.”

The day after her husband’s death, Crampton-Brophy posted an update to Facebook.

“I have sad news to relate. My husband and best friend, Chef Dan Brophy was killed yesterday morning. For those of you who are close to me and feel this deserved a phone call, you are right, but I’m struggling to make sense of everything right now,” she wrote. “While I appreciate all of your loving responses, I am overwhelmed. Please save phone calls for a few days until I can function.”

But a neighbor, Don McConnell, told the Oregonian of an odd interaction with the widow. “She never showed any signs of being upset or sad,” McConnell said. “I would say she had an air of relief like it was almost a godsend.” He asked whether the police had been keeping her updated. “She said, ‘No, I’m a suspect,’ ” without emotion, McConnell said.

The news was a jolt to others. “It’s a big shock. It’s a big shock,” Brophy’s mother, Karen Brophy, told The Washington Post. “But we’re not making any statements.”

“Everyone that knows her, especially those close to her than myself are sick at heart,” Anna Brentwood, a writer who says she has known the couple for two decades told the Oregonian. “We are hoping the police are wrong and just going after the easiest target.”

At a candlelight vigil a week after his death, Daniel Brophy was remembered as being gruff on the outside, compassionate underneath. Attendees recalled a cow costume the instructor used with Velcro labels to illustrate cuts of beef.

The costume was hand-sewn by Crampton-Brophy, who spoke of her late husband. “He loved teaching, he loved mushrooms, and he loved family,” she said, according to the Portland Tribune. “Not only was life a science experiment, but sometimes it was an adventure.” Near the end of the blog post imagining how and why to kill one’s husband, Crampton-Brophy wrote that she finds “it is easier to wish people dead than to actually kill them.”

“I don’t want to worry about blood and brains splattered on my walls. And really, I’m not good at remembering lies. But the thing I know about murder is that every one of us has it in him/her when pushed far enough.”


Crampton-Brophy was arraigned in Multnomah County Circuit Court on Thursday. The judge approved a request by prosecutors to seal the court document outlining the case against her. She wore a blue jumpsuit.

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BUT WAIT, READERS!!… Here is the CRAZY PART of this…I went to her Facebook page here Author, Nancy Brophy and her Readers are leaving her Supportive Posts for her there??? WHAT? This lady shots here husband and readers are supporting her? WOW! Now I have seen and READ it all! Now I am not a heartless person, but you are supporting a murderer, people.

There is also another Facebook page; Remembering Daniel Brophy by her husbands’ co-workers of “The Culinary Institue” in Portland, Oregon. Let’s remember a man died in this tragic event. I guess will see if Nancy is or is not his killer as she moves through the court proceedings. Yes, I know, Innocent until proven Guilty…

“I just heard on the radio here in Arkansas that Chef Brophy was shot and killed at the culinary school I attended. He was an amazing man, teacher, and friend. He and his class are the best memories I have when I think back on my time there. Flavors of the World taught me so much about spices, herbs, and of course, mushrooms. You will always have a special place in my heart and you will be missed by so many culinarians that you influenced in your life and theirs.”

 

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Delighted and Had An Amazing Interview on “What’s Your Excuse” Show! With Host Max Ivy Jr. – The Blind Blogger.

Yes, I will confess I am a media hound when it comes to sharing all I do with those who invite me to be a guest on their show! On the recovery side of things, I will speak and advocate at any chance I can get. On the book promoting side, I just enjoy sharing all that I do to help new and seasoned authors. Max did a great job pulling out some of my marketing secrets!

It was a delightful interview I know all authors and writers will enjoy listening to. So have a pencil and paper ready to take notes.

What’s Your Excuse Show With Author, Catherine Lyon


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About Author and Show Host Maxwell Ivy Jr.

“While Max may not be able to see with his eyes, he opens the eyes of everyone around him. ”  ~ ‘Super Joe Pardo Show”

 

Hello; My name is Maxwell Ivey, Max to my friends; and that is what I hope we will become.

 

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I am a 49-year-old  blind gentleman who grew up in a family of carnival owners. All I ever wanted to do was to continue in my father’s and grandfather’s footsteps and be part of the family business.

As you can tell by reading this, that isn’t where I ended up. I did help in the business over the years, but couldn’t sustain it after the early death of my father (who had lung cancer). I then turned to helping people sell their amusement equipment. I do that on my other site, The Midway Marketplace.

I started blogging to promote that site and met a lot of wonderful people in the blogosphere. They told me that I had an amazing story and many commented on how I inspired them. They finally convinced me that I had a bigger purpose in store for myself.

So, I started this second blog, and in it I share more of my personal journey, struggles, and triumphs. I also got noticed by a lot of people and have appeared as a guest, an interview subject, and a motivator on many different sites. My As Seen Online page lists these places.

I do my best to help others and do so mostly by encouraging them to take steps towards their ultimate goal or to continue on the path they have started. I am now offering coaching to help people who are stuck and frustrated with not being able to find their passion or follow their dreams once they have determined what they want in their lives.

I am also available to speak to groups. I believe that by sharing the story of my personal growth and transformation, it will motivate and inspire anyone who hears it. In addition to starting a new business, I have also lost over 250 pounds through a combination of gastric surgery, diet, exercise, positive attitude, meditation, and prayer.

I believe I can help you. If you have questions for me, just ask them via the contact form. If anything, I am known for being too forthcoming!

I want to get to know you and become friends. I want to hear about your dreams and aspirations as well as your fears and concerns. I want to help you to grow to be that person you were meant to be.

I look forward to speaking with you. Let’s talk soon.  Thanks and take care out there.

Max …

 

The Blind Blogger’s NYC Adventures: + How You Can Make YOUR Dreams Come True  Leading You out of the Darkness into the Light: A Blind Man's Inspirational Guide to Success  Now on Amazon!

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I Will See You and Help You

Because I listen with my heart, I will see all of you. I will see those hidden abilities, possibilities, and opportunities.

I will see the roadblocks you put up between you and success. I will show you the lies that you tell yourself. I will correct those lies that the world has told you.

Why Me?

Because I have already done this in my own life.

When my father’s death resulted in the closure of our family’s small traveling carnival, I had to figure out what to do next.

I started by doing the only thing I thought I knew how to do. I helped other people sell their surplus amusement equipment.

Every day brought a new challenge. I had to learn so much. The amazing thing was that every time I accomplished something new, it gave me the confidence to believe that I could do even bigger things.

Since then, I have come so far and still have much farther I want to go.

My Accomplishments

I went from a morbidly obese, failed carnival owner to respected amusement equipment broker in the best health of my life.

I went from a frightened radio show guest to being a prolific online media guest to hosting my own podcast called the What’s Your Excuse Show.

I went from writing my first book on a dare to competing for and winning the Amtrak prestigious Writers In Residence Award. I’m now working on my fourth self-help book.

Are You Ready?

If you are ready to finally accomplish those big goals and dreams, then what are you waiting for?

If you want someone who has been there and done that… and who will see through your bullshit, and challenge you, then who else could you get that would be better than me?

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Max Ivey headshot

Take a chance on yourself and Visit My Website to schedule a call with me. You have nothing to lose, and everything to gain!
“Life Coaching With The Blind Blogger.”

Please do visit Max as he would make an exceptional dynamic motivational speaker for your next event or conference as he inspires everyone to be their best. Maxwell Ivy Jr. Speaking and Life Coaching.

How Do You Write? Are You a Spiritual or Straight Forward Writer? Either One Is Fine …

I wanted to share with you today a good friend and his amazing writing. His blog is one of my favorite sights. Even though I mostly guest share every now and then some of his posts on my recovery blog, this particular post is about how he writes and felt it was more appropriate to share here on my book blog because as writers write for many reasons. We also write for many different purposes like for a book, a publication, an article, or just to write a new blog post.

But whatever the reason or what motivates you as a writer, we can share the process behind it. Tony Roberts does this in a unique way. His site is amazing, interesting, and informative. I surely know once you visit, you will know you are in a special place.

He is like me, he to battles with mental health challenges, but it does not stop his creative writing process. Let’s read just how Tony gets prepared! … Catherine *Cat* 🙂

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~ Courtesy & By Author, Tony Roberts ~

 “Careless or Carefree Speech” 

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With [the tongue] we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God. (James 3.9)

Each time I sit down before a keyboard and stare at a blank screen, I say a quiet prayer that my words glorify God and encourage God’s people. There is so much hate speech in the world today. I count it my ministry to say something not only truthful but uplifting.

Speak the truth in love, as Paul writes in Ephesians. When we do, we make a tremendous impact on those who hear us, many of whom have been beaten down for years with messages that they are no good, that what they do is not worthy, that they will never measure up, that they are not loved.

I had a high school tennis coach who knew the power of encouraging speech. He knew next to nothing about tennis, but he knew how to inspire us. He taught us that we each had an integral role to play on the team. He made us want to improve to become as valuable as we were in his eyes. He brought in talented community players as his assistants to teach us the game.

He had nothing to pay them except his uplifting words that they were making a major difference in the lives of young men. And that was more than enough In just two years, we went from being the laughing stocks to perennial conference champs, the team to beat filled with confident young men who had someone who saw their value not just in sport. but in life.

Each of us has immeasurable value as ones created in the image of God. This image has been stained by sin, no doubt. But we don’t restore this goodness with damning speech. Too often, as James shows, we allow careless speech to slip through our lips. We beat people up with what we say and the way we say it.

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Often this is with the best intentions. We say things we think will be helpful. We talk about people under a thin veil of concern, when in fact, we are just gossiping in such a way that we tear them down.

As one who has a severe mental illness, I have experienced first hand how debilitating speech can be. When I got out of the hospital after my first episode, I found there were many more talking about me than talking to me. By God’s grace, I did receive a great deal of encouragement from some who counterbalanced the ill effects of the gossip. But it still hurt. And left permanent scars.

Instead of careless speech that tears down, we are called to a sort of carefree speech that comes from a faithful heart. When genuine faith lives in the heart, it will be connected to the tongue and impact what is said. Love, peace, and joy will be seeds of hope sown to produce hope in the lives of the hurting.

““For the rest of his life, Oliver Twist remembers a single word of blessing spoken to him by another child because this word stood out so strikingly from the consistent discouragement around him.” ― Charles DickensOliver Twist.

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Who will you encourage this week?

What will you say?

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I Hope You Will Join Me. Trump Needs To GO! I’m on Board …

It’s Time For The People To Take Back America. Time To Impeach Donald J. Trump and Send Him Back To The Golf Course Where He Belongs –Not In The White House. I Signed, Will YOU?

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“Donald Trump has brought us to the brink of nuclear war, obstructed justice, and taken money from foreign governments. We need to impeach this dangerous president.  ~By Tom Steyer and The Folks of Need o Impeach

 

 

July 17, 2018

BREAKING NEWS
Barack Obama warned of “strongman politics” and leaders who “double down” on lies, a day after President Trump met with Vladimir Putin

Tuesday, July 17, 2018 1:13

Without mentioning President Trump by name, former President Barack Obama delivered a pointed rebuke of “strongman politics” on Tuesday, warning about growing nationalism, xenophobia, and bigotry in the United States and around the world, while offering a full-throated defense of democracy, diversity and the liberal international order.

A day after Mr. Trump met with President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia, Mr. Obama delivered his highest-profile speech since leaving office, at an event in South Africa marking the 100th anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s birth.

Read More »

Donald Trump has obstructed justice over the investigation into Russia’s interference in our 2016 election. He has brought us to the brink of nuclear war through his reckless tweets. He has taken — and continues to take — money from foreign governments for his own personal enrichment.

He is, without a doubt, a clear and present danger to our nation. In December 2017, a panel of constitutional lawyers convened and agreed that there is more than enough evidence to begin the impeachment process. They argued that Congress has an obligation to act now.

Enough is enough. It’s past time for lawmakers to put country first. Our president is unhinged and must be removed from office. But too many members of Congress are afraid to take this necessary measure. They need to hear our voices and see the strength of our movement if we want them to do what’s right.

Will you join me and millions of your fellow Americans and add your name demanding impeachment? Add your name here by visiting this page: Sign The Petition for Need To Impeach Trump.

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ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!
Just a few of the reasons WHY he needs to be impeached!! (Courtesy of Founder, Tom Steyer and “Need to Impeach” )

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Tom Steyer: Donald Trump has committed “treason”

(SAN FRANCISCO, July 16, 2018)—Need to Impeach Founder Tom Steyer released the following statement following the meeting between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin and subsequent press conference in Helsinki today: More

Tom Steyer Statement on the Indictment of 12 Russian Intelligence Agents in the Mueller Investigation

(SAN FRANCISCO, July 13, 2018)—Need to Impeach Founder Tom Steyer released the following statement following the indictment of 12 Russian intelligence agents by Special Counsel Robert Mueller for the cyber attack on the Hillary Clinton Presidential Campaign, Democratic National Committee, and Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee: More

Tom Steyer at the California Democratic Party Meeting: “The American people are getting played by the D.C. establishment.”

(OAKLAND, CA, July 14, 2018)—Tom Steyer today called out the Washington, D.C. establishment for “playing” the American public and for failing to respond to Donald Trump’s repeated attacks on our democracy, including his meeting on Monday to befriend Russia’s Vladimir Putin, who masterminded cyberattacks on the 2016 Presidential election. More

ALL 8 offenses are listed here: Impeachable Offenses!

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"Daily Show" interview with Ta-Nehisi Coates.

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If You Feel The Same As Me?

Visit “Need to Impeach” and sign the petition today so your voice can be heard as an American. America was always Great …Until Trump!

~CAT Proud Democrat!

Special Guest Article and Blog Share Celebrating July 4th Weekend. By Tony Roberts Who Gives Us Something to Think About.

The Cost of Freedom ~ By Tony Roberts Blog ~ Delight in Disorder

 

I went to a fast food restaurant for dinner the other night. The guy ahead of me had just come home from Afghanistan. He was buying dinner for his son and himself. The total came to over $20.00.  He didn’t have enough. They said they would give him a 10% military discount. Still not enough. He started deducting his order until he could afford it.

Sad.

Then I saw a man who had heard this haggling hand him $100 bill and say, “Thanks for your service.”

The soldier teared up and said, “You don’t know how much this means to me.”

The man smiled and said, “You don’t know how much what you do means to me.”
I posted this story on Facebook and it has gotten nearly 100 likes and 10 shares. It shows that people really want to care about those who wage war in defense of our nation’s freedom. I’ll confess, I was moved to tears watching this happening. There is still hope for human compassion in the face of so much hate.

The soldier could have been a Trump-supporter, the donor a devout Democrat. It didn’t matter at this moment. At this moment, it was one man giving back to another who had given so much to him, so much for all of us.

So what do we do with the hope this engenders?

First, go and do likewise.

There are over two million soldiers in the US. The average income for a front-line private is less than $2,000 a month. Personal gifts (monetary or material) to military men and women you know or can meet is a great place to start. Rather than post a scathing remark against high government wages or benefits of non-US citizens, put your money where your mouth is. Cultivate a culture of caring for those who give so much to us.

Second, watch out for wounded warriors.

Every day, another veteran dies by suicide.

Mental health experts both in the military and in the civilian society desperately scramble to learn more about Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and how to treat it. No solutions are at hand. We may think if the experts don’t even know what to do, how am I going to help? Well, it doesn’t take an expert to reach out and be a faithful friend. And that goes a long way toward healing.

Third, stop celebrating war.

Former 5-star General and President Dwight D. Eisenhower knew the cost of war, both on the soldiers who fight, the families left behind, and the society as a whole. He spoke passionately against the military-industrial establishment with these words:

“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. This is not a way of life at all in any true sense. Under the clouds of war, it is humanity hanging on a cross of iron.” ― Dwight D. Eisenhower

Eisenhower knew better than perhaps anyone how to build a strong military. And he warned gravely that stockpiling weapons of mass destruction was no way to win a battle against enemy aggression. Building a strong military meant investing in the lives of our soldiers and our society as a whole.

 

There is a cost to freedom. What are you willing to give?

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About the Author: 

I am a man with an unquiet mind who delights in the One who delights in me.

“I  first sensed a calling to be a writer at the age of nine when I composed my first poem, “Ode to My Pet Rock.”

I was born and raised in the Hoosier heartland just south of Indianapolis. I grew up worshiping high school basketball and once had the honor of playing in a televised “game of the week.”

I went to Hanover College (alma mater of both Mike Pence and Woody Harrelson – (go figure). After many detours into sex, drugs, and more folk rock than roll, I wound up at a seminary and became a pastor. It was then that symptoms of depression and mania culminated in a psychotic episode that became pivotal in my life, for better and for worse.

After graduating from Hanover, I obtained a Master of Divinity degree from Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary. While there, I did ministry assignments at a state hospital for persons with developmental disabilities, as well as at a women’s prison, and an inner-city hospital.

I served two decades as a solo pastor. I then shifted to writing, speaking, and leading small groups. In March of 2014, I published my spiritual memoir, Delight in Disorder: Ministry, Madness, Mission. Having served in pastoral ministry and gone mad, it’s now my mission to bridge the gap between faith communities and the mental health world.

I now live in Columbus, Indiana, with supportive family and faithful friends who keep me honest and encourage me to be who God created me to be. My greatest earthly delights are my four children and two grandchildren, with one more on the way. “The soul is healed by being with children.” (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)

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Delight in Disorder: Ministry, Madness, Mission
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Delight in Disorder was published in part through a successful Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign.

Exclusive and Coming This Fall by Rusty Blackwood. Sneak Peek Chapter of The Perils of Autumn.

I always enjoy sharing one of my favorite romance fiction authors and writers. I am also honored to call Rusty Blackwood a dear friend of mine and meeting several years ago through social media and became fast friends. She is an amazing author with books like,

 

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Passions in Paris:  Revelations of a Lost Diary  Willow's WalkDerwood Returns

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“Such a talented writer that all her books should be on the NY Times Best Seller List!
Who says authors don’t interact with thier readers? Rusty sure does. Just as she enjoys sharing her process of writing a new book as well.”

So, I am privileged she asked and has given my readers another exclusive look and share a Sneak Peek Chapter of her new book coming out this fall titled; The Perils of Autumn. I know all my avid readers will love reading a good long juicy chapter to prepare you for this amazing new release this FALL …

 


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 Photo of Miss Blackwood by Miss Carson Doan ©2013 Carson Doan Photography, St. Catharines, ON.

 

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The Perils of Autumn ~ Chapter 35

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A Four Course Journey Through Hypocrisy

 
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( This is a working cover only for The Perils of Autumn. Image courtesy of Google Images ©)

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A Note From The Author, Rusty Blackwood:

“Hello Avid Readers. This chapter is fairly long but it helps to set the flow of the story. The chapter centers around a dinner party that Autumn gives with hopes of bringing Cyril and her mother closer together – as Autumn and Cyril are becoming close and Abigail (Autumn’s mother) who is not pleased with their relationship because he is so much older than her daughter. The housekeeper, Agnes – life long friend of Cyril’s – begins to show her true colors” …You may read another chapter from my Official Author Website Rusty Blackwood and make sure you sign up for my newsletter while there for this new fall release, news, and author events too!

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Saturday had arrived and with it growing anxiety for Autumn. She wondered at this for she had everything well planned, dinner would be at six, the menu had been decided, and the weather appeared favorable. Much of the meal would consist of items she and her mother had never consumed, but there was always a first time, and the selection was good. It would also be a feast for Cyril’s pallet, for the menu consisted of many of his favorite foods that he had not enjoyed in quite some time. There was not a doubt he would partake heavily. His assignment was the stocking of the bar which would be left to his choosing. Autumn’s mother did enjoy a nice sherry, or an after-dinner brandy, that of which Autumn had already informed Cyril, and she was certain he would include them in the lineup.

Noon had come and gone. Autumn couldn’t help noticing the cold shoulder she was receiving from Agnes whenever she entered the kitchen, but it was something the older woman must come to terms with, and Autumn was not about to ruin her expected pleasure over someone’s possible attempt at sabotage. She kept checking the time, noticing the hands on the clock seemed to speed faster with each look. Three o’clock finally loomed; it was time to adjourn to her suite. She had less than two hours to prepare for the planned festivities. After a final check in the kitchen, she trod to Cyril’s room to see if he was resting, but he was not there. He did say he was going to exercise Dan for a while; must be where he is. I do hope he’s watching the time, she thought with concern while climbing the stairs to her privacy. Now, what should I wear? She didn’t want to be over-dressed yet wanted to appear festive. It may be a simple dinner for four, but it was a most important one; she wanted everything to be just right, and that included her.

Her wardrobe had grown over time. It brought her comfort when opening her closet doors to find an actual selection within. Both she and her mother could now enjoy nicer clothes, as well as a wide variety. Her mind suddenly flashed to the days when it hadn’t been that way. There had always been clothing, but not always the nicest nor the most recent in style but at least they were clean. She smiled when realizing that sparseness was no longer the case for either of them. She had always admired her mother’s impeccable taste, the way she made a statement with the combination of simple items used with flair, creating her own look, and pulling it off with grace. Autumn’s style was different from her mother’s. It didn’t matter if something was not of the latest trend, in fact, the more flamboyant the better, and aside from wearing conservative riding habits, she fancied her own look with whatever took her eye at the time.

Before long she was attired in a mid-length, long sleeved, crushed velvet coat dress in royal blue, set off with a matching belt sporting a huge square chrome buckle. She wore chunky, three inch heeled knee-high boots of the same color and fabric of the dress, but what set them apart was a spattering of shinny chrome studs around the cuffs, and down the sides. To complete the look, she chose dangly silver hoop earrings. Her cheeks were adorned with a soft pink blush, dark auburn mascara complimented her thick, wispy lashes, and a bold crimson lip gloss finished the look. She decided to wear her shoulder-length hair loose and flowing, and as she stood before the full-length mirror she had to smile, feeling every inch the seventies girl that she was.

The limo, driven by a suit-clad William was Lexington bound to retrieve Abigail Leeves who was expecting its arrival at the time her daughter had given, and she would be ready. A feeling of nervousness touched her stomach, but she shrugged it off, knowing there was no need for such nonsense, and she would not have it. She had always faced uncertainty head on, and this would be no different. She held to her usual conservative look, consisting of a three-quarter sleeved teal linen dress with gold piping, flat heeled, mid-high charcoal leather dress boots, and matching gold necklace and earrings. Her fur trimmed, black shear ling coat fell just below her knees, and was set off by a black leather shoulder bag boasting an elegant gold chain. She struck a stylish figure that she hoped would make her daughter proud.

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Back at the mansion Autumn’s nerves were beginning to get the better of her. Surely things will go as planned, she trustingly thought, picturing everything in her mind as vividly as if it were playing out before her. She couldn’t wait to taste the traditional English fare that had been planned for everyone’s enjoyment, certain her mother would feel the same. She has always encouraged new avenues to try, so this will be no different, but still her nerves encompassed her stomach, as she further thought, what time is it now? Realizing it was almost five, she rushed downstairs just in time to meet her dashing squire of the manor, looking dapper in a light grey pin striped suit over an open-collared apricot colored linen shirt, and in lieu of a necktie, he wore a large silk apricot pocket square tucked loosely in his lapel. It truly was his color, for it set off his silver hair perfectly.

 Sweeping his dancing eyes over her, he exclaimed, “You look exquisite, my dear!”

 “Thank you, Cyril; you’re not a bit shabby yourself!”

 “I suppose one could say we are totally mod.”

 “Mod was last decade, now we are considered groovy.”

 “Then groovy we shall be. Care to cut a rug with me?”


Giggling like an adolescent, Autumn playfully slapped his right shoulder before throwing her arms around him. He grinned at her daring gestures all the while realizing how they affected him, kept him youthful, and wanting to play. However, he didn’t think it wise to appear disheveled when his guest arrived.

Straightening his suit coat, he said, “I so look forward to seeing your charming mother again. How has she been keeping since leaving hospital?”

It took Autumn but a second to clue into the mannerism Cyril was expecting, as she replied, “She’s feeling fine and doing much better, thank you for asking. The new medication Dr. Boxford ordered appears to be helping much better than the previous one. Possibly she had become immune to the prior dosage; that often happens in cases like hers, but her mobility is much improved, and her discomfort has lessened. She’s even walking without the aid of her cane. It is a great relief for both of us,” and letting her eyes again travel over him, she coyly confessed, “You, my elegant horse master, look wonderfully debonair. I just had to say that before my mother arrives.”

He bowed, while sweeping his right arm before him. “My sincere gratitude, Miss Autumn, your charming presence at my side on her arrival can only do me proud,” and sensing her sudden nervousness, he asked, “Are you excited?”

Autumn couldn’t believe the extent of her nervousness, she actually felt nauseous, certain her sweaty hands would slip from within his; that alone increased her anxiety. She took a deep breath, straightened her posture, and then walked hand in hand with him to answer the call of the doorbell now ringing out its usual refrain. The door opened to reveal Abigail Leeves, standing in wait.

Cyril graciously extended his right hand, as he stated, “Welcome to Landon Manor, Miss Leeves, and might I say how lovely you look. Do come in.”

Noticing the grip her daughter had on the Englishman’s left hand, Abigail was thankful he had reached out with his right, but she pleasantly smiled, and stepped into the opulent foyer as he helped remove her coat, and then hung it in the closet.

“It is a pleasure to see you again, Mr. Landon,” Abigail announced, “thank you for inviting me to dinner. I look forward to us becoming better acquainted,” and letting her eyes travel over her daughter, now standing on her own, she said, “You look stylish, my dear. I adore your outfit, it is typically you.”

Autumn said nothing, only smiled as if her mouth had become paralyzed in its present clown-like position while she walked aside Cyril and her mother toward the double parlor. As the trio entered the massive room, Agnes appeared through the dining room door, and appearing to ignore those present, went straight to the bar located at the far end of the room.

“Agnes,” Cyril called out, signaling her total lack of manners, “you remember Miss Abigail Leeves I assume? Do come and say hello. I shall tend to the drink orders directly.”

The sullen housekeeper moved toward the women, extending her hand to the elder of the two, stating, “Hello again, Miss Leeves, it is nice that you could attend our little soirée. I trust your journey was a comfortable one. William does try his best to avoid most bumps in the road,” and she smiled in a sinister way.

As Cyril escorted Abigail to a comfortable heather-toned wing chair, she replied, “It was fine, no bumps, just a smooth ride throughout its entirety. I must say what a pleasant man William is, a most delightful chap indeed.”

Escorting Autumn to a matching chair opposite her mother, Cyril said, “That is our William for you. He enjoys nothing better than a fine conversation. I trust he didn’t bore you with constant horse topics. He tends to forget that not everyone is as interested in them as he. May I offer you an appetizer, accompanied with an aperitif of your choice?”

Abigail looked amused but comfortable as she studied the colorful selections on the silver serving tray, and upon choosing one, she replied, “A glass of sherry would be nice, thank you. Regarding your inquiry concerning William and our conversation, he did not bore me in the least. I find the world of horse racing interesting actually. My daughter has tried explaining different aspects about it during our phone conversations; she is certainly taken with it ever since you taught her to ride. The pony you assigned her is a lovely one, very pretty.”

Autumn, now channeling a bobble head doll, moved her eyes between Cyril and her mother, before stating, “Cinnamon is hardly a pony, Momma, but rather a breed known as Morgan. A small horse – an Indian pony actually – though not a pony. It’s somewhat difficult to explain.”

The expression on Cyril’s face revealed amusement. He found it enlightening that Autumn was trying her best to explain something that she was still a novice about in many ways. He admired her forthrightness in doing her best to clarify things, but he surmised his help was required.

Pulling a chair aside Abigail, he explained, “The majority of horse breed at my stables is thoroughbred, or warm blood, horses bred for professional racing and show events such as open-hunter, show-jumping, and dressage, however I do keep a few different breeds for pleasure, such as Autumn’s mare Cinnamon, whose breed is Morgan. They are solid, tough horses, smaller than a thoroughbred in height and build, not nearly as hot blooded or high strung, but they are perfect for pleasure riding as well as teaching beginners to ride, such as your daughter, whom I understand had never sat on the back of a horse.”

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Setting her half empty glass upon an adjacent table, Abigail replied, “We were never fortunate to be around horses I’m afraid, though I know my daughter has always had an affinity for them but we never lived where having one, even a pony, was possible. However, I am glad that she has been allowed to experience what she was denied throughout her formative years.”

Oh, Mother, must you make us sound like a welfare case? Autumn agonized in thought, doing her best to prevent her eyes from rolling as she continued to listen to the conversation.

Nodding his head in a receptive manner, Cyril remarked, “Yes, I am too, but it has been my pleasure to assist her by teaching her the basics, and she is a fast learner, picking up difficult aspects exceptionally fast.”

“Yes,” Abigail agreed, “that she is, always first to jump into the fray.” Oh, Mother, please, must you be so explicit? thought Autumn with growing annoyance fast boarding on embarrassment. She had to change the subject.

“I’m glad you had a good trip out here, Momma. I knew you would enjoy conversing with William, he is a most interesting dude, always has something delightful to say. Maybe after dinner you might like to have a tour of the stables; even meet Cinnamon — and Dapper Dan!”

“Excuse me, Dapper who?”

“Sir Dapper Dan. That is the official name of Cyril’s horse, a magnificent, dapple grey thoroughbred stallion that is a blue-ribbon winner in his field. Why he simply soars over hurdles, regardless of how high or difficult to maneuver. Then again a lot of that can be credited to Cyril’s exceptional horsemanship.”

The Englishman’s face suddenly reddened, he was actually blushing, as he stated, “Oh my, you must forgive your daughter’s enthusiasm, Miss Leeves, she is rather bias, however the credit she gives Dan is certainly well placed. He is both my stalwart friend, and my champion on the course. We have been together a very long time, and he never ceases to amaze me.”

“Yes, Momma, it was Dapper Dan that saved Cyril the day of his accident. The horse got down on his knees and eased himself upon his side as to allow Cyril to climb on his back, where he then brought him to the stables. It was a miraculous feat, a total gesture of love. I don’t know many humans who would go to that length for another.”

Looking amused, Abigail exclaimed, “My-my, you certainly do have a friend in your horse, Mr. Landon! I would very much like to meet this applauded steed. I must say you were a lucky man.”

“That I was and do call me Cyril. Mr. Landon seems so formal, and I always address my friends by their name.”  “Then you must call me Abigail. I understand you own a Triple Crown winner. That must be thrilling, to say the least.”

“That it is, Abigail! Devil May Care won the Triple Crown in 1969, setting a record for speed along with it. Unfortunately, that coveted series is open to three-year-old contenders only, but nothing can ever erase the memories of his win. I am now hopeful for my newest three-year-old stallion, Fenn’s Fancy. He has what it takes, but it is also up to chance, so we shall see.”

Before another word could be spoken, Agnes, who had previously left the room immediately after acknowledging the company, returned to announce that dinner now awaited them in the dining room. Cyril stepped between Autumn and her mother, and offering an arm to each, accompanied them to the dining room with its emerald green damask walls, and highly polished, colonial-styled walnut table. Six deep maroon-cushioned chairs lined the table either side, capped off with a captain’s chair at each end.

The table, sporting a tapestry runner in maroon and gold, sat beneath a shallow but tasteful flower arrangement consisting of Baby’s Breath, Stephanotis, and trailing English Ivy. Crystal serving bowls lined each side of the runner, each offering an English staple from the designated menu. Autumn and Abigail were seated across from each other on the halfway mark of the table, and Cyril and Agnes took up residence in the captains’ chairs.

To Cyril’s right side, chilling in an ice-filled sterling bucket in its stand was a vintage bottle of champagne. Popping the cork, he walked around the table filling each crystal goblet located aside a gold embellished dinner plate, on which sat a green enameled salad bowl offering a traditional London salad, consisting of assorted greens, walnuts, and apples.

The meal progressed with conversation taking place wherever it seemed to fit. Everyone appeared to be enjoying the assorted flavors of each dish, until the bowl containing Toad in the Hole was passed to Abigail, who awkwardly hesitated, giving the impression she was not sure about what she was viewing.

Agnes was quick to notice. Swiftly wiping a maroon colored napkin across her mouth, she openly inquired, “Is there a problem, Miss Leeves?” It was obvious Abigail did not wish to make a scene, but the pungent look on her face openly revealed her displeasure.

“I am sorry, I don’t wish to seem impartial but …this dish looks as if it contains sausage.”

“It does!” Agnes blurted.

“One cannot make a proper Toad in the Hole without sausage. Why don’t you try it before you turn up your nose? You might find it to your liking instead of jeering at it like you’ve been offered poison.” Abigail sat in quandary, not certain what to say. Cyril could not believe the words emitting from his housekeeper’s mouth. He was totally appalled.

“How dare you speak to my guest in such a disgraceful manner, Agnes? I demand you explain yourself and apologize immediately.”

Autumn sat in disbelief yet knowing full well that the outburst was because of the woman’s growing animosity toward her and Cyril’s blossoming relationship, but she would not sit in silence while her mother was chastised because of it.

“I too am waiting for an explanation, Agnes. If my mother has hesitated to try something there must be a good reason; even if there wasn’t, it does not give you the right to speak to her like that.”

Abigail graciously blotted her mouth, before stating, “I am sorry. I certainly did not mean to cause such uproar, but I cannot eat sausage without it triggering a gallbladder attack. I have not been able to eat sausage since I was a child.”

“No mind, Abigail,” Cyril assured, “you need not explain. Agnes is the one who needs to do that, and if she cannot, she may excuse her presence from my table. Miss Autumn and I can serve the dessert and tea.”

Agnes found it hard to absorb that Cyril would speak to her in such fashion. It hurt, even though she had been wrong to use the tone that she had with Abigail, but she would not be spoken to in this manner, and she would not be banished from the table like an impertinent child.

She abruptly rose to her feet, and began walking toward the kitchen, but stopped, whirled around, and snapped, “I am the housekeeper here, Cyril, until you see fit to dismiss my service! I will clear the table and see to the dessert, but I will not join you!”

The look on Cyril’s face revealed total displeasure. He had always conducted himself with honor, respecting everyone around him, but he could not tolerate what was presently happening before his eyes.

He stood erect, extending each hand toward the women sitting at the table, and in a rather shaken voice, he said, “Would you both please accept my sincere apology I … I do not know what has gotten into her, I don’t understand it at all, any of it. In all the years that I have known her she has never lashed out like that. Abigail, I had Miss Autumn invite you here because she and I have grown close, and you and she are so very close that I want to know you better.

I held such anticipation for this dinner, having you here with me, in my manor at my table with Autumn and me. I hope to have many more dinners with you at this table … Please, I must excuse myself for a moment, if you will both indulge me.” Moving toward Autumn, he added, “Please top up your mother’s glass and keep her company ’till I return. I shan’t be long.”

It was plain to see that the proud Englishman was distraught and had to get out before he lost his composure. It was embarrassing to have an employee – though an old friend – conduct herself in such a disrespectful manner. He would not have it. She had not only spoken to Abigail in the unacceptable manner in which she had, but this was the mother of the woman he had fallen in love with, regardless of whether she had reservations about it or not. She had to be made to understand. He knew he must not be gone long; that would not be acceptable either, but what he had to say could not wait.


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I am enjoying the creation of this novel immensely. The more the story grows the more in-depth it becomes. The characters are raw, bold, and pretentious, yet each carries a certain uniqueness that pulls you in and makes you want to know them more.  ~Rusty Blackwood

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Rusty Blackwood Author

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Romantic fiction author Rusty Blackwood, who chose her plume de nom by combining the colour of her russet hair with her husband’s great, great, Scottish grandmother’s maiden name, was born in St.Thomas, Ontario, Canada on October 5th, and grew up on her paternal grandfather’s farm in the County of Elgin, located in the south-western portion of the province of Ontario.

She acquired her love of literature while still in elementary school where she entered her original compositions into county fairs, school contests, and whatever venue allowed participants in the writing field. She has carried that love ever since and has put it to use many times since becoming a professional writer in 2001.

From the time of youth she has loved the Arts in their many unique forms and is a graduate with honors in Interior Decorating & Design. She spent many years on the south-western Ontario stage performing with her family’s country music band: The Midnight Ramblers, followed by the country – rock – blues band: ‘MIRAGE’ as an accomplished vocalist, bassist, and rhythm guitarist. She now resides in the cultural city of St. Catharines, Ontario.

Please visit her official website  Rusty Blackwood – Bio/Contact for numerous reviews, author interview requests, and information on her work.

 

 

 

 

How To Kick Off Summertime Reading? Do a Free/Low-cost E-Book Promotion Just Like Cat. It’s Just That Simple!

Happy Summer Reading Friends and Authors!

In just a few short weeks SUMMER will be here! Well, here in Arizona it has already has hit as I have been writing poolside in the mornings to get my dose of vitamin D before it hits 100 or over each day …Lol.

It is, however, a perfect time to generate some new excitement for your E-Books as readers will be hitting the beach, lake, pools as it is vacation time too and they love reading to relax. That makes it the right time to run a lower cost promo for e-books. There are many things you can do just as I am with e-books to help readers find your books on sale that don’t cost a thing.

And there are amazingly low-cost places to run ads for it too! You can even add your books to free sites and they offer a self-serve Author Interview to make you and your books shine with large readerships. Here is how I will set up my e-book promotion for my Memoir, “Addicted To Dimes” …

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First: Make sure you have your e-book cost lowered a day or two before your promo starts. That way YOU know it is at the right price beforehand. You do this through your KDP vendor account. If you have a publisher, send the request to lower your e-book price a few weeks ahead of your promotion.

Second: All my authors know you need to have accounts on Facebook, Goodreads, and have an Amazon Author Page which is free and done through Author Central Amazon and at the bottom of your page, there is an area when you are in your author page to add an EVENT. Add your e-book promotion so readers on Amazon can know all about it. Next, do the same on your Facebook page.

Use the Create an Event setting and add an image, a title, and date of the event, and a description of your event: Summer E-Book Promotion! Invite all your FB friends and FB Group members and do posts and share the FB link to the event too! Now, go to your GoodReads account and sign in and add an Event Page there too.

You will have just set up FREE advertising of your e-book promotion on three different venues and it didn’t cost you a thing! Better changes of more SALES and BOOK REVIEWS! It’s just that simple. Here is my Facebook Event so you can see how it’s done! Link: https://www.facebook.com/events/218235278985328/


NOW, 
it is time for your e-book promo to some Free Book Sites to gain more exposure! My first go to place is Vinny of Awesome Gang – Where Awesome Book Readers Meet Awesome …  Just click on “Submit Your Book” and fill out the form. They do give you a low-cost and free option to share the e-book you are going to have on sale. You can choose what works best. Another very low price option comes with nice Book Teaser/Banners to use when you promote the sale for only $10!!! Here is mine they made and you can get yours here: Author Shout Promo Teasers.

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Now, hen you are done submitting your book on Awesomegang, then click here to submit a free self-serve Author Interview Submit An Author Interview and for even more FREE options click here Free Promotion for more book sites they are connected with and submit your sale and e-book there too AND you are DONE! Now use the links form your FB and GoodReads promos and promote them throughout your Social Media!

Your off and running with a free or low-cost promotion for your E-Book Sale and Like a Pro! … I wish you much success, reviews, and Sales!!

CAT