Gail's Book Nook

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Looking Out the Window: Paula Mosher Wallace Shares New Year's Advice and Talks about Her New Book, Bloom in the Dark



 
 
 
 
 
A Warm Welcome to Paula Mosher Wallace
 
Paula will give away a print book and a t-shirt. To enter to win leave a comment and an e-mail address below. (U.S. residents only)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 




About Bloom in the Dark
Have you ever experienced a hurt that didn't qualify for a sympathy card? Did embarrassment or shame keep you from getting help or support? Do you have a loved one who's been abused?
Many women face trauma and abuse. In these pages, you will read 30 stories, poems, and letters that tell these testimonies. Without sugarcoating her situation, each woman shares her pain, how she made it through, and how God met her. Our journeys to healing are different. Your story may not be reflected in the pages of this book, but you will see that you are not alone. We can all reach out to the same God who helped each of these women. Christ will meet you, carry you, hold you, and heal you, too! Warning: best when read with tissues and a box of chocolates.

What readers are saying about Bloom in the Dark
“No other book has impacted me with emotion more strongly.”
L. G., Special Education

“I could NOT put it down. Gripping and encouraging.”
M. B., Christian Counselor

“Very heartbreaking and inspirational all in one.”
J. H., President of Career Women’s Network

Through the ministry of Bloom in The Dark, Paula focuses on writing and speaking to female abuse victims—raising awareness about abuse, bringing hope to victims, and partnering with ministries to help victims recover.

“Incredible speaker.”
Martha, business executive

“Stunning presentation. Thank you.”
M. T., business owner, artist

Buy Bloom in the Dark on Amazon
Barnes and Noble



Paula's New Year's Advice

The "Easy Button" does not Teleport you to the top of Mt. Everest!

As 2015 comes to an end, we start assessing what goals and successes or failures we've had this year. Maybe it has been an amazing year of goals reached, health reclaimed and relationships healed. Maybe it has been your year to conquer Mt. Everest. Maybe you are thrilled with your personal, spiritual and professional development. Or, maybe not....

Will your New Year’s resolutions work any better in 2016 than they did in 2015, 2014, 2013.....? So many of us have pushed the “Easy Button” and wondered why it hasn’t worked. We want different results without the pain of change. We create a wish list rather than structured goals with accountability. We dream of success without the plan, team, tools, and discipline needed to make it happen. We boast about how we’ll climb Mt. Everest--without applying for a passport, without checking transportation costs, without buying climbing gear, without training, and without even finding out if we’re healthy enough to climb.

Do you even know what you really want to accomplish? Do you know what your Mt. Everest is? Do you know why it is worth the effort? Do you have a purpose and motivation? I spent a lot of years getting nowhere because I didn’t have any goals I was passionate about reaching. At 42, I’ve finally identified my Mt. Everest. I am passionate about reaching it. I’m willing to change. I’m willing to sacrifice. I will overcome the obstacles. I will reach the top, or die trying!

Instead of continuing to push the “Easy Button,” I’ve found my reset button. I'm changing my approach. I’m finding the people who have already climbed Mt. Everest. I'm asking them what is involved. Pros and cons. Skills and tools. Abilities and training. Sacrifices and rewards. I’m recruiting my team to cheer me on. Then, I’ll set a date to arrive at Mt. Everest and start climbing. I’ll announce it. I’ll lay out my timeline for reaching the top and finally putting my flag in the snow. I’ll quit talking about how I want to climb Mt. Everest, and actually climb it.

What is your Mt. Everest? What is the one thing you want to achieve, but have never been successful in doing? My Mt. Everest is spreading a message that inspires broken women to become vessels of honor. I will do this through a successful writing and speaking career. God has called me to this mission. Broken women are my purpose. My boys are my motivation. The One who's chosen me to do this will empower me to succeed.

I’m taking the B.L.A.S.T. Mentoring class with Shannon Ethridge, an extremely successful Christian author and speaker. I’m investing in Michael Hyatt’s “Five Days to your Best Year Ever.” I’m gathering a team of experts in the field who have courses, tools, and skills to help me. I am surrounding myself with Christian executive women who truly want to make a difference. I am using the damage and healing in my life to bring glory to God by helping others achieve the same hope and healing. My first book, Bloom in the Dark:True Stories of Hope and Redemption, was my first step in 2015 toward reaching the top of my Mt. Everest.

Find your reset button. It will never be easy to make all the changes you will have to make to be successful at reaching your mountain top, but you can do it. Start a fresh journey. Make sure you have the experts you need guiding you on your way. Make sure you've counted the cost and are prepared. With purpose, move forward and accomplish your God given mission. Don’t let your past failures stop you. Push your reset button and start succeeding today!

About Paula
Author, Speaker, Blogger, and Advocate
Born in the jungles of Peru to missionary parents, Paula’s beginning in life was anything but typical.
Raped at the age of 5, Paula was caught in a cycle of damage and abuse which lasted into her thirties. From sexual abuse to later mental, emotional and even spiritual abuse, Paula developed a victim mentality, which fueled decades of continued abuse. The trauma she experienced caused her to develop a variety of psychosomatic illnesses which, at times, left her bed-ridden.

Broken beyond endurance and suicidal, Paula cried out to God for help. He miraculously intervened, faithfully walking with her through a dramatic healing process. Along the way, Paula learned to stand up to her abusers and stop attracting predators. She now knows, from personal experience, the healing, deliverance, and hope that only God can bring.

As an ex-victim, Paula’s passion to help others resulted in her writing Bloom in the Dark, a compilation of true stories shared by women who have walked through personal darkness and abuse. Each story tells how God met, healed, and restored an ex-victim. Readers discover that they are not alone and that there is lasting hope and healing!

A single mom living in Nashville, Paula homeschools her three sons, ranging in age from six to fourteen. The boys are a key part of Paula’s support team and her biggest fans. Together they enjoy swimming, hiking and roller skating.

Read more about Paula and Bloom in the Dark at www.bloominthedark.com

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Looking in the Window: When Is Christmas?

Some say that Christ wasn’t born on December 25th. They claim that Christians took the date from a Roman holiday honoring the sun or a sun god. The Britannica Encyclopedia says Christians took the date to rival pagan feasts taking place during the Winter Solstice, which honored a new age brought by the sun. Depending on location, the Winter Solstice occurs on or around December 25th. Even though it lasts only an instant in time, many cultures have held festivals marking it as midwinter. According to some, Christmas simply grew to be one of the most popular events.

Nonetheless, every year by the time we’ve celebrated Thanksgiving, festive decorations acknowledging the birth of Christ appear in overwhelming numbers across the American landscape. A majority of homes have wreaths on their doors, candles in their windows, lights in the yards. And jolly old Santa Claus sits in the middle of the mall to greet youngsters. And this country’s biggest celebration continues until after December 25th, so when is Christmas?

While many open their presents on Christmas Day, we open ours on Christmas Eve after we stuff ourselves with turkey. Usually I rush to put away the dishes and clean up our great room so we can make the midnight service at church. Then, we hurry out the door into the brisk, cold night. After a short drive I see the church lit up like a beacon in the still, quiet darkness. We park and walk quickly inside to find three seats on the back pew.

I settle myself and try to hush the thoughts of shopping, baking and wrapping that linger in my head by gazing at the green wreaths, poinsettias and brilliantly lit Christmas tree around the altar. When I turn in my hymnal to “O Come All Ye Faithful” and the choir and congregation start singing, the loud, joyous sound of the season captures my heart. After a family lights the Christ candle on the Advent wreath, which symbolizes Jesus as the light of the world, the minister reads the story of Jesus’ birth and proclaims once again his gospel of love.



At the end of the service the ushers dim the lights, give each parishioner a candle and light the first candle on each row. One by one we tip our flames to the candle of the person beside us and sing “Silent Night.” The flickering lights gradually illuminate the sanctuary and the sweet melody takes me back to the first Christmas, when the angels announced Christ’s birth, the shepherds left their flocks and the wise men started their journey to the manger. After we blow out our candles the service ends with the powerful sound of the choir singing Handel’s "Messiah," and it is Christmas.

Sadly, someone had to crucify Christ to atone for the sins of all of us, but triumphantly he rose to give us salvation. And he lives today. Christmas is when we open our hearts to him.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Looking Out the Window: Award-winning, Best-selling Author Nancy Mehl Talks about Her Latest Suspense, Rising Darkness


A Warm Welcome to Nancy Mehl
 
Nancy will give away a print copy of her new book, Rising Darkness. To enter to win leave a comment and an e-mail address below

Hi Nancy, first, tell us a little about yourself.

I was born and raised in Wichita, Kansas. Two years ago, my husband and I moved to Missouri to be near our son, daughter-in-law, and our precious grandson.

I’ve worked in a lot of areas, including Christian radio and banking. But most of my working life was spent doing social work. I loved it!

I’ve been married 43 years this month, and I have a 36 year-old son, Danny. He’s been married for 4 years and has a 2 year-old son named Aidan. Aidan is such a blessing. We just can’t get enough of him!

Since my husband Norman and I have no more children at home, we spend a lot of time parenting our puggle, Watson. Watson is part pug, part beagle. It seems he got the most rambunctious qualities of each breed. LOL!

When I’m not writing, or watching Doctor Who, I spend time doing embroidery. I just recently took it up again after a thirty year break.

Lots of writers love to read as children. Were you an avid reader as a child? If so, what did you read?

Oh, yes. I read constantly. In fact, I volunteered at the school library just so I could find out what new books came in! I could read 3 or 4 a day – even staying up late at night, reading with a flashlight under the covers.

Let's talk about your writing. Why do you write?

I believe it’s what I’m called to do. And I love it.



Tell us about your latest book.

Rising Darkness is about Sophie Wittenbauer, a character in a previous series. It was great to have the chance to finish her story. Here’s a synopsis:

Sophie Wittenbauer left her strict Mennonite hometown under a cloud of shame and regret. After a rough childhood, her teenage poor choices harmed others, leaving her with no choice but to change her life. Her entry-level writing job at a newspaper puts her in the right place at the right time to overhear office gossip about a prisoner who has information on a decades-old unsolved crime. While the other reporters write off the tip as the ravings of an angry criminal, Sophie can’t ignore it because she knows the name of this prisoner from her old life.

Upon learning from the man that one of the other suspects is hiding out in the Missouri town of Sanctuary, she takes on a false identity to investigate and meets the young pastor of a local church–the very man she’d loved as a troubled teenager. As she gets closer to finding the suspect, will the truth of her own past come out before she discovers the identity of the criminal–or the very person she’s seeking puts a fatal stop to her investigation?

What inspired you to write this particular book?

When the Road to Kingdom series ended, I couldn’t get Sophie out of my mind. I wanted to finish her story. When my editor gave me the green light to bring her back, I was thrilled!

What do you love about this book? And what do you hope readers will tell others about it?

It’s a story of redemption. I hope readers will identify with Sophie and through her story will see God’s loving hand on their own lives. With God, nothing is impossible!

Where do you get ideas for your books?

Most of them just come to me. Sometimes a real life situation will spark an idea.

What themes do you write about?

Although my books contain suspense and mystery, I always add a theme of hope to each story. Usually, it’s the ability to overcome adversity and find God’s good plan for your life. This has been an important part of my own journey, so I like to share it with my readers.

Does your faith affect your writing? If so, how?

Absolutely. I wouldn’t want to write if I couldn’t put faith into my stories. I want my readers to leave with more than a good story. I want them to walk away with hope. With the knowledge that God loves them and has a wonderful future planned for them.

What are you working on right now?

I’m working on a new series about the U.S. Marshals Service. The first book, Fatal Frost, will release in 2016. I’m very passionate about supporting law enforcement, and I get to do that in this series. I believe we need to stand up for our men and women LEOs. They are willing to put their lives on the line for us, and lately they’ve been unfairly attacked. My story will address this current attitude. Maybe it will change some minds.

I'll look forward to that. Thanks for visiting.

Nancy Mehl – Short Bio

Nancy Mehl lives in Festus, Missouri, with her husband, Norman, and her very active puggle, Watson. She’s authored twenty books and just finished a new series for Bethany House Publishing. The first book in her Finding Sanctuary series, Gathering Shadows was released in May of 2014. The second book, Deadly Echoes became available in February.  The third book, Rising Darkness released in November. Now she’s working on a new series based on the U.S. Marshals. The first book will release in November of 2016. She is also working on an Amish cozy mystery series for Guideposts. The first book, Blessings in Disguise was published in June, 2015. She will write at least three more in this series.  

Readers can learn more about Nancy through her Web site: www.nancymehl.com. She is part of The Suspense Sisters: www.suspensesisters.blogspot.com, along with several other popular suspense authors. She is also very active on Facebook.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Looking Out the Window: Renee Blare Talks about To Soar on Eagle's Wings, Gives Away an E-book


A Warm Welcome to Renee Blare


Hi Renee, thank so much for stopping by to share your personal story, Grace Under Fire and tell us about your latest book.
 
Renee will give away an e-book of To Soar on Eagle's Wings to enter to win leave a comment and an email address below.

Grace Under Fire

 

Life…everything’s spinning along perfectly one day and the next? A freight train slams into your world and shatters it into a million pieces. And then a tractor comes by and grinds the shards into powder. Has this ever happened to you? It’s not fun, is it? How did you react?

When my life turned upside down, I didn’t respond well. Yes, I’m a Christian. I know who God is. I know He’s faithful and true. I pray, and He answers. But you have to understand. What happened to us wasn’t fair. And I was mad. This time, praise and worship wasn’t good enough. It wasn’t sufficient to meditate on the Word and soak up His power and strength. I needed to know why He’d let this happen…He wasn’t talking.

I can hear the questions. What happened? What kind of Christian is she?

Since Christmas is near and it’s the one I get the most, I’ll address the last question first. I’m a real one. I share my whole life with Him not merely the elegant parts. After all, God came to this earth, walked as a man, and sacrificed everything for me. And I believe God hears my fears, tears, anger, and my praise.

As for what tipped my world? Early one morning, I awoke to the second half of my soul at the bottom of the stairs. A crumpled heap of a man, unconscious, his body broken and bruised. Humpty-Dumpty would have been easier to piece back together again. He’s on surgery thirty-nine.

How did I respond? I’m not going to lie. I’d like to say rationally…NOT. I’d prefer to admit that I hit my knees and prayed for direction and strength like a dutiful child of God. Sorry, but I can’t. After the shock wore off and reality hit me like a two-by-four, my reaction wasn’t pretty. In fact, you could call it ugly…real ugly.

But my awesome Father didn’t waver. He stood beside me and took the abuse…and loved me anyway. Much like I’ve done with my own child. As to the “why”? That’s the question for which I can piece together only one answer. Freedom. He gave me liberty to rage, whine, mourn, and yes, even to sin. He forgave me when I lashed out at Him and, through the redeeming love of his Son, Jesus, held me close while I cried.

This battle’s not over and life isn’t easy. But my husband’s an amazing man and by the grace of God, he’s still alive. Although pain’s a constant companion, he continues to serve the Lord with a joyful heart and determined spirit. Free from sin, free from judgment, free from expectation. He’s a shining beacon of God’s saving power to all who gaze upon him, including me.

Our love’s stronger than before that fateful trip down the staircase. It grows within the heat of the flame much like the metal in a blacksmith’s furnace. God breathes His strength into us with each strike of the hammer.

As we celebrate Christmas, we remember God’s perfect love, and the birth of His Son, Jesus Christ. Through Him, we can do all things…even take on a freight train.



About To Soar on Eagle's Wings

Spring’s in the air. While the sun shines in Timber Springs, snow falls on the Snowy Range, and trouble’s brewing in the meadows. The area’s new game warden, Steve Mitchell launches his first wildlife investigation of the season but the trouble follows him—straight to town.
Rachel Fitzgerald’s on Spring Break. Or at least she’s trying. Between paperwork, and harassing phone calls, she may as well have stayed in her classroom. So much for relaxation. A ‘chance’ meeting with her brother’s old roommate offers her weary soul a shred of hope, but she discovers love, like life, isn’t easy.

He talks with the wisdom of the Lord but rejects the future. She wants to soar with the eagles but walks alone. And trusting God proves to be more of a challenge than ever before…

An Excerpt from To Soar on Eagle's Wings

A shadow darkened the pages of her book. Shielding her eyes against the late afternoon sun, Rachel followed the bird soaring over lake. She caught her breath as he dove in a sudden display of power and skimmed along the surface, its reflection a shimmering echo. When the eagle climbed back to the heavens, his piercing cry echoed off the white-tipped crags above the high mountain valley.

“What’d I tell ya?”

Her foot vaulted into the air, sending a spray across the water. Rachel peeked over her shoulder and spied her twin brother. He stalked toward the lake, a stranger in tow. She closed her novel with a snap and sighed. He would find me.

Well, she shouldn’t be surprised. After all, today was their sixteenth birthday. She touched her cold ankle with a grimace. Although numb due to its icy bath, the injured joint still appeared puffy. She winced and peeked at the guy with her brother. Now this is embarrassing…

“You ready to head down the mountain? Mom and Dad want to start supper.” Michael propped his hands on his hips and shifted from one foot to the other.

At her twin’s look of expectation, all frustration dissolved. So much like her own, his hair curled around his head. He appeared almost comical. She suppressed a laugh. But when her gaze skimmed over his companion, an unexplainable warmth spread through her.

Her heartbeat thumped in her ears. With her lashes shielding her gaze, Rachel studied his broad shoulders and wavy brown hair. She tore her eyes away from the man and pushed her ankle back into the frigid water with a hiss.

“Rachel?” Michael’s brows sunk low over his eyes. “What are you doing up here anyway? Dad’s not gonna like it.”

She ducked her head. Great. Heat worked up her neck. After rummaging through her backpack a few minutes, she sucked in a deep breath and cleared her throat. The cool mountain breeze blew at her bangs, and she cut her gaze to the stranger. “I love it up here. I can sit and listen to the wind in the trees for hours.”

A low chuckle reached her ears, and she glanced at her brother. A slow smile spread across his face. His shoulder lifted, and he gestured at the pines. “So…what are they saying today?”

“Oh, stop it.” Rachel waved off Mike’s teasing and tipped her head back to track the flight of the golden eagle. “Do you see him? He’s a regular around here. I named him Max. It seemed to fit.”
Michael’s companion bumped him and pointed. “He’s a beautiful bird, that’s for sure.”

A clap shot through the pristine stillness, and Rachel jumped. She glared at her brother when he grinned at her.

“Hey, sis, you met this guy yet?” At the shake of her head, he continued. “This is Steve Mitchell, Paul’s roommate. I guess they’re both gonna be new this semester.”

The University of Wyoming freshman flashed his gorgeous smile, and her cheeks ignited once again. She pressed her palms against her face with a groan. Could she crawl underneath one of these boulders…or push her brother under one?

“Rach? You ready or not?” Michael’s annoyed tone drew her attention away from Steve, and she pulled her foot out of the water.

She bit her lip. “Well, not really.”

“What’d you do now?” The disgust in his voice was palpable.

“Nothing,” she mumbled. Michael’s rough grunt grated along her spine. She crossed her arms in front of her chest. So what if she’d twisted her ankle hiking into the valley? It didn’t matter if she couldn’t—

Rocks and pebbles cascaded down the hill into the lake, and she lifted her head. Steve’s wide shoulders were coming toward her. Snagging her sock, she wiped the water from her toes.
In a flash, Steve hopped the boulders and landed in front of her. “May I?”

“What—no really, it’s fine.” Rachel cradled her injured foot close. When he squatted at her feet, she found herself mere inches from chocolate brown eyes. Oh…does he know how much I love chocolate?

Buy on Amazon

Visit Renee's Amazon Author Page Here

Bio

Raised in Louisiana and Wyoming, Renee started writing poetry in junior high school and that, as they say, was that. After having her son, a desire to attend pharmacy school sent her small family to the University of Wyoming in Laramie, and she's been counting pills ever since. While writing's her first love, well, after the Lord and husband, she also likes to fish and hunt as well as pick away on her classical guitar.

Nestled against the Black Hills with her husband, crazy old dog and ornery cat, she serves the community of northeastern Wyoming as a pharmacist and pens her Christian stories, keeping them interesting with action and intrigue, of course. She loves to interact with readers and invites you check out her website, blog, and social media.

·         faithwalker007@gmail.com

·         Website: www.reneeblare.com

·         Facebook

·         Google+

·         LinkedIn

·         Instagram

·         Twitter

·         Pinterest

·         YouTube

·         Tumblr: The  Journey

·         Amazon Author Page

·         Group Blog: The Diamond Mine of Christian Fiction

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Looking in the Window: Inspirational Gift Book - Just in Time for Christmas






Messages

Poems and Short Stories to Live By


Just in time for Christmas, a collection of inspirational poems and short stories
 

About Messages
Find inspiration for our hectic times in these straight-forward poems for happy and sad days.

Find history, warmth and a touch of the paranormal in three stories.

Getting the Goat peeks into the early 1900's when mountain life was tough. Does Mama's advice hold true today?

In Stitches in Love Rose's deep love for her grandmother motivates others to share their gifts. Does Rose reap her reward?

Robert Horner is tempted in The Stranger, but does he succumb to the lure?

Print copies coming soon!

Excerpt from the Poems

"...Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.
This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself." Matthew: 22: 37 - 39

Refreshed
Sometimes life
uncovers a sharp, ugly snare
snarling, like a grizzly bear.
Reluctantly we confess
we’re in a forest of distress
where, hopes, like leaves
have fallen off the trees.
Winter icicles we see
hanging on a barren tree.
Life seems hard and cold,
and we feel very old.
How our life has past.
"Where did it go?" we ask.
Then like miracles untold,
new joys unfold.
Love brings blossoms of spring.
The forest begins to sing.
Empty branches
bear new leaves.
With promise, our heart dances,
and our soul no longer grieves.
Looking up, toward the sun,
we say, “My, my life’s just begun.”

Excerpt from Stitches in Love
"Hi. I'm home for the whole month of June. I'm coming to visit you every day."
Grandma Jackie lifted her head ever so slightly toward Rose, but she didn't utter a word, and no signs of life flickered in her eyes.
Rose stood and weakness swept over her like a hurricane coming ashore. She let herself out and locked the door with the key Grandma Jackie had given her seven years ago—the year Rose had turned sixteen. Sobs erupted from the depths of her soul as she slipped into her two-door coupe and drove to 143 Broadway.
Within minutes she walked toward the white-columned two-story home while she bent double holding her stomach. It was a hot, dry day in Springdale, Georgia. No breeze stirred, and the humidity as high as a kite. Air conditioning caressed Rose's face when she opened the front door. Clearing the foyer, she hurried up the oak staircase to her room. Tears flooding her eyes blurred the flowers on the pink and green comforter as she stepped to it and fell face-down on the bed.
Amy, Rose's mama, had called last week about Grandma Jackie's health. Rose could hear her distressed words now.
"Mama hasn't been the same since Dad died. She's been slipping away little by little. The doctors say nothing is wrong other than high blood pressure and cholesterol, but she's just not herself I've hired Miz Mary Clark, a local caretaker, to come during the day to make sure she takes her medicine and to tend to her personal needs."
That's why Rose had come home to see Grandma Jackie. It was worse than she had suspected. There must be something someone could do. She sat up and wiped her cheeks. What if she picked the peaches off the tree and told Grandma Jackie to make a pie? No. The last time Rose talked to Grandma Jackie on the phone she'd told Rose cooking at the homeless shelter wore her out.
Doing things for others pleased Grandma Jackie, but maybe she'd reached a time when she needed others to do something for her. What? She liked to read, but that wouldn't make her want to live. Sweat popped out on Rose's forehead. What did Grandma Jackie love enough to get up and do every day?

Excerpt from Getting the Goat
What was wrong with this animal? Why did Father think he could handle her? His heart pounded as he stood. He raced after the unruly creature, blood flowing from a cut on his leg. She ran in a circle, Norman behind her panting until she halted and let him clutch the leash hanging by her side.
He led her to the tree, secured her, and brushed off his hands. Anger at the goat for her meanness festered inside him, but ire in the boy who wanted to be a man boiled over because she'd gotten the better of him. He hurried to the house and charged inside.
"Mother, look what the goat did."
His mother's eyes filled with compassion. "Sit down." She guided him to a straight back chair at the wooden kitchen table, grabbed a cloth, cleaned his wound and applied iodine. "I'm sorry. Leave the chore for today and try again tomorrow after school."
Norman gasped. "You want me to go back?"
Eleanor hugged him. "If you don't graze the goat, she won't eat, and we won't have milk. We must all do our part while Father's sharing the Gospel."
Norman knew better than to argue. He gritted his teeth. Why did they have to suffer to hold body and soul together on the side of this...what had his grandmother called it? This desolate mountain so Father could save heathens in the hills?
Eleanor patted his shoulder. "You'll feel better tomorrow."

Excerpt from The Stranger
Stress shot through every muscle in Robert's body. "That's ridiculous, Mac. No one turns down money."
"I've been perfecting the design of these nails for years. I painted the tops to keep them separate from my regular supply." He picked up a nail and rolled it around in his hand. "I'm going to market these. Then you can have some for exactly what it costs to manufacture them."
Sweat popped out on Robert's forehead. "What's so unusual about them?"
Mac raised his dark, thick eyebrows. "I'll tell you and everyone else after my final test on Monday."
Robert tried to sound pitiful. "I need to put them in an old green table."
Mac laid down the nail and lifted a small box off the shelf. "Paint the tops of these nails." He handed them to Robert. "You can have them. The box is nearly empty."
"I'll give you a thousand dollars for the green-tipped nails."
Mac's mouth gaped. "I should make quite a bit of money if they stand up to my test, but I can't imagine why you'd want to pay so much."
"This is instant cash. Think it over, and I'll call later." Robert trudged through the sawdust on the floor and left, wringing his hands. His anger over Mac's refusal pounded in his temples. If Mac rejected his offer again when he called, he'd up his price to two thousand."
Fresh air whipped around him, cooling his ire, un-jumbling the thoughts popping around in his head like popcorn. "Hmm. Maybe there was something else he could do. Mac told him to take those other nails. He could paint them, but that creepy stranger probably would know the difference. He'd take the green-tipped nails. Yeah. He had a right to make a living.

On Amazon here