Character Reveal: Miranda Clarke

The character reveal is a feature on my website. Characters from my books (in print or works-in-progress) answer questions from a standard personality assessment test. Today’s character reveal: Miranda Clarke, the protagonist of the My Soul to Keep series. Who Miranda Rose Clarke was about to turn twenty-five when she appeared in the first book, My Soul to Keep. Daughter of the Fellowship’s premier preacher-politician, Counselor Donald Clarke and his wife, Kara Louise Lancaster Clarke. She made a break from her parents and the Fellowship in My Soul to Keep. Now, twenty-seven at the beginning of If I Should Die, she is the captain of the Lady Angelfish and the Freedom Waterway.  1. Who is your role model? When I was in grade school I found and read a banned book about Harriet Tubman. Brave, resourceful—she escaped slavery then went back and saved other slaves. And when the Civil War broke out, she was a nurse, spy, and scout. And she rescued more slaves. I can only hope to be as successful and brave as she was. 2. Who knows you the best? My crew—Aunt Beryl and Wanda. You can’t live 24/7 on a smallish yacht and not know each other.  […]

When a Department Store was an Experience

Department Stores, they ain’t what they used to be. There was a time when a trip to the department store was an experience. You had a nice meal, you got personal service, and you were pampered. Before department stores came about, upper- and middle-class women didn’t go shopping. Door-to-door salesmen brought their wares to the home. Or servants went to stores for groceries and such. People thought it was too dangerous or risqué for a woman to be on the streets alone. The First The first department store opened in London in 1796. They sold furs, fans, haberdashery, jewelry, clocks, and hats. It was called Howell & Co’s Grand Fashionable Magazine  Macy’s opened in 1878. Department store owners sought upper- and middle-class customers. Everyone else lacked the time or the money to shop at their leisure.  Whoever said that money can’t buy happiness simply didn’t know where to go shopping. — Bo Derek The Experience Aimed at women with money, most stores had elegant tea rooms or full restaurants. The buildings had high ceilings, luxury fixtures, and beautiful views. They had lounging areas, personal assistants to help you shop, and weekly fashion shows. Women loved the freedom that shopping gave […]

An Early Draft Outtake from My Soul to Keep.

Outtake: An Early Prelude

Long ago, I wrote the first draft of My Soul to Keep. It was a fantasy with dragons. What was I thinking? My next draft or two or three were just as far afield as the fantasy, though they were closer to a science fictional approach. Then, after many discussions with my husband and friends, I came up with the alternate world in which the story now takes place. I thought readers might enjoy a look back at some of the outtakes from those earlier drafts. So, without further ado, here’s an outtake: an early prelude to My Soul to Keep. ~~~~ A Testament for Modern Times The New Book of Samuel Chapter 3, verses 1-17 1. Now it came to pass, in the days after the Great War, that the children of the world did evil in the sight of the Lord. 2. And the anger of the Lord was kindled against the people and He delivered them into the days of darkness called the Great Depression.  He overthrew the tables of their moneymakers and money changers; and gold became as water. 3. Thieves, drunkards, and  murderers ruled the land known as America.  The American leader, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, was […]