Monday, April 11, 2011

Have a Heartstone Monday

Good morning everyone! Due to unforeseen circumstances, our guest wasn't able to appear today so I'm filling the void ;-)

On my personal blog, (found at I'm running a contest and showing excerpts from my book, Heartstone. For this particular excerpt, Keriam, who's just opened her new store also found a stray dog, a large black stray dog with crystal gray eyes that her cousin insists Keriam take home until they find its owners. The excerpt starts there. Enjoy!

    While they hadn't had hordes of customers exactly, the turnout had been respectable. Keriam grinned at the big dog sitting in the passenger seat of her six-year-old Ford pickup. "Whaddaya think, Wolfgang? Is The Treasure Chest the neatest antique shop you've ever seen?"
The plumed tail thumped against the door.
    "That's right. It's been a great day." She flicked a glance at him. "Well, for me it has. You're still a lost puppy, aren't you? But don't worry. We'll find your family and, if not, I'll find you a good home."
    He licked her hand.
    "No, you can't stay with me. You need a family. With a big yard and kids to play with." She turned onto the long stretch of highway leading out of town. "Janna would take you in a heartbeat but she lives in an apartment. Besides she'd probably deck you out in a frou-frou collar and you don't look to be the frou-frou type...I know what you're thinking. I've got a big yard, true. But I'm not home a lot and I don't have kids. You'd get lonely."
    He lay on the seat and rested his head on her thigh. Keriam laughed and dropped her hand onto his silky head. "You're a charmer, all right. Don't even think this is permanent, Wolfgang," she warned. "I don't have time to take care of a dog, let alone one as big as a house."
    The dog's tail beat against the seat.
    "I'm serious."
    The dog grinned.
   Turning her attention back to the road, Keriam made a mental list of what she wanted to accomplish the next day. The first thing, of course, would be to contact the newspaper and place a Found Dog ad. Wolfgang sat up, pressed his nose to the window which Keriam had left open a crack. A low rumble vibrated in his chest.
   "Oh, don't be silly. There's nothing out there to worry about." She darted a glance at him. "You're probably the most dangerous thing for miles around...unless you count Mrs. Kitchen's Pomeranian...or one of Mr. Mountley's emus."
    The dog turned his unnerving crystal gaze on her.
    "Yeah, I know. You'd make a great watchdog. You don't have to convince me. But I am not going to get attached to you because we're going to find your family."
    The problem was she liked animals. Always had. When her folks had been alive, she'd had all kinds of pets. Dogs, cats, chickens, cows--they'd all been her best pals. Even the one obnoxious sow her dad had kept penned had been friendly to her if no one else.
    She pulled into the long gravel drive and parked beside the narrow sidewalk leading to the wide wrap-around porch. When Mom and Dad had been alive, the windows had always been bright. The kitchen had always smelled of hot, fresh bread. And, no matter how bad their day had been, they'd always greeted her as if the sun rose in her eyes.
    God, she missed them.
    Keriam slid out of the truck with Wolfgang right behind her. He stood, nose to the wind, then, satisfied, gave her a broad canine grin. She stroked his silky ears, the slight dome of his head. He responded by tilting his head into the palm of her hand. "What a flirt!"
    Wolfgang nuzzled her palm, then slurped it with a wet, doggy kiss. She made another mental promise not to get attached to the big, friendly animal. "Bet you're hungry. Let me get the kibble and we'll go inside."
    As she hauled the thirty-pound bag out of the truck bed, the dog gave an uneasy whine. "What? You want to go potty? Well, go ahead. Just so you know, we don't do that in the house."
    At the mention of potty, the dog looked downright embarrassed. Keriam laughed, shook her head. "Well, you've got better manners than the last guy I brought home. I'll give you that."
    He rumbled a noise that sounded like a highly affronted groan. Keriam carried the bag onto the porch. "Not that Marc was all that bad. He just didn't understand... Well, never mind that. Whoa! Slow down, Wolfgang. I've only got one hand, you know."
   The dog had stood on his hind legs, front feet pressed against the door. He slanted a sideways look at her, woofed softly, and then stared at the door intently. Keriam turned the knob and pushed the door open. Wolfgang leapt inside immediately and Keriam let go of the long lead attached to his collar. "Impatient, aren't you? Hey, where you going?"
    Wolfgang trotted through the kitchen then into the front room. Keriam put the kibble in the corner and flicked on the lights. "Just make yourself at home but remember what I said about deposits on the floor. And no marking the territory either."
    She set about making dinner. Spaghetti sounded good. The phone rang and she picked up the cordless handset. "Hello?... Hello...Last chance, hello."
   When no one answered, she clicked the phone off. "Change your mind before you dial, dummy."
    Wolfgang materialized beside her, his cold nose nuzzling her hand. "Don't worry, fella. It was just a wrong number."
    She pulled a rug out of the back closet and laid it beside the table. "That's your bed. You'll have to eat out of mixing bowls. That's all I have that's big enough to hold the amount of food the bag says you'll need."
    He lifted his nose toward the simmering sauce on the stove. Whined softly. Looked at her. She put her hands on her hips. "No way. Dogs don't eat spaghetti."
    This one did. He didn't eat the kibble though.
 When I wrote this, my inspiration was our dog, Zuzu, who is so unlike 'Wolfgang' you're going to can you use her for inspiration? Zuzu is just a big happy girl who smiles and grins and has a myriad of facial expressions that let me know precisely what she's thinking. Her tail was docked when she was a puppy but anyone who's ever been close to a dog knows that the tail is a vital part of the dog's body language and Zuzu's tail is no exception. So I used Zuzu's body language to create Wolfgang and his 'dogginess'.(You can see Zuzu and Wookie on my website at )

If you enjoyed this excerpt and would like a copy of Heartstone, enter the Heartstone Drawing.
1) Send an email to with Heartstone 
     in the Subject line
2) Put your name and address in the body of the email.

You may enter once a week until April 30. Then my alien kitten, Wookie, will select a winner for a signed copy of Heartstone. Good luck to all!

If you want to make sure you get your very own copy, you can order it from Mundania Press 

Have a Blessed Day!

1 comment:

Jacqueline Seewald said...

Congrats on the new novel!