Sunday, December 18, 2011

Sorry, There isn't A Blog Today

Hi Everyone,

First, I want to apologize for problem with the discount code at Eirelander Publishing for their sale.  I don't know what happened but hopefully they'll have it fixed sometime in the future. 

Just in case, you're one of my followers who visits every Sunday, I want to let you know there won't be one today.  I have a head cold, and it's keeping me down.  Will be going back to bed now. 

Thanks for understanding.  See you again sometime after the 1st. 


Sunday, December 11, 2011

All Books on Sale at Eirelander Publishing

Hello Everyone,

My publisher, Eirelander Publishing, is having a holiday sale today ONLY. Every book on their site is 75% off. You can pick up The Odyssey Trilogies: The Catalyst, Addiction and The Deceived including my contemporary romance, A Fool's Fool.  Just use code S852S10 at checkout. Sale runs until midnight tonight! Great time to fill that e-reader!

Go have some fun.  Enjoy!


Saturday, December 3, 2011

Cruelty to Animals

Hi Folks,

If you've been reading my blog for a long time then you know my hubby and I are lovers of animals; domestic or wild.

Recently, there's been a lot of news on television about cruelty to animals. Last summer there were a couple of little dogs who were tortured and set on fire. Just this week, there was a beautiful black and white cat who was killed and skinned. The killer took the white spots of the hair with him.

I can't imagine what kind of person who can do this to an innocent animal. I'm not getting into the psyche of someone like this in my blog. I'll save this for a book.

The owners of these animals are devastated when their pets are harmed and mutilated. If it were one of my kitties, and I caught someone hurting them they would be very sorry.

Midnight, our little black cat is a talker and a prancer.  She talks, swirls forward and backward to watch you to make sure you are following her.  And did I say she keeps talking the whole time?  lol                                                                                                           
Dory, our little tortie, hardly makes a   sound.  She only gets excited when she sees squirels or another cat.  She can be ferocious, but she's tiny.                        

As you can see these two little girls like each other and are like sisters.  One        minute they're playing and the next they are fighting.  Grin. These two like to     sleep at the bottom of our bed.             
 Remember to always protect the weakest in our society be they animals, children, women or elderly. 

Take care until next week.  You can find me on Facebook; Twitter; MySpace and there's many more.

See you next Sunday.  Have a nice week. 


Sunday, November 27, 2011

Author, Linda LaRoque

Hi Everyone,

Welcome my good friend Texas author, Linda LaRoque. 

A retired teacher who loves West Texas, its flora and fauna, and its people, Linda’s stories paint pictures of life, love, and learning set against the raw landscape of ranches and rural communities in Texas and the Midwest. She is a member of RWA, her local chapter of HOTRWA, NTRWA and Texas Mountain Trail Writers.

Briefly take us on the journey with you – when did you start writing and what hurdles did you have to overcome to get published? I started writing seriously in 1991-92. I've always been an avid reader and after finishing a book made the comment to my husband, "I think I could write one of these books." He said, "Well, why don't you?" I took up the gauntlet and started When the Ocotillo Bloom. Since I was teaching school at the time, it took several years to finish the story. After probably 5 rewrites, many workshops and critiques, it was published by Wings Press in 2007. Do the math. That's 15 years.

What’s been the greatest contributing factor to achieving your goal of publication? Determination.

What has surprised you the most about being a published author? The amount of work involved.

How do you come up with your story ideas? Some evolve from dreams, others ideas are triggered by stories on the history and science channels, or those I hear from friends. Every once in a while one just pops into my head.

Do you have a favorite author? Yes, there are too many to list and have varied depending on my age. Though I love to read romance, I also enjoy mysteries and suspense.

Tell us a little bit about your next book? Will it be a romantic suspense or some other genre? The book I'm working on is a romantic suspense set along old Route 66 in New Mexico. My husband and I have driven the entire old Mother Road, except for a few small stretches that we hope to catch soon.

What did you do when you got the call? You know the one saying they wanted it. Grin. I couldn't celebrate too much as my husband was in the hospital 26 miles away and we couldn't go out. Of course I did email all my friends, relatives, and my mentor.

Would you like to tell us about your release? How did you come up with the idea? A Marshal of Her Own, a short time travel set in 1890s Texas, is a sequel to A Law of Her Own. I had so much fun writing the first story, I decided to write the second, which has led to the third, A Love of His Own. It's under contract with The Wild Rose Press but I don't have a release date yet.

Could you give us a blurb and an excerpt of your story (just a short one)? I'm sure my readers would love to read a little of your story.

A Marshal of Her Own – Blurb and Excerpt
Despite rumors of “strange doings” at a cabin in Fredericksburg, investigative reporter Dessa Wade books the cottage from which lawyer, Charity Dawson, disappeared in 2008. Dessa is intent on solving the mystery. Instead, she is caught in the mystery that surrounds the cabin and finds herself in 1890 in a shootout between the Faraday Gang and a US Marshal.

Marshal Cole Jeffers doesn’t believe Miss Wade is a time traveler. He admits she’s innocent of being an outlaw, but thinks she knows more about the gang than she’s telling. When she’s kidnapped by Zeke Faraday, Cole is determined to rescue her. He’s longed for a woman of his own, and Dessa Wade just might be the one—if she’ll commit to the past.
Dessa stood still and watched as they conversed. Something stank to high heaven about this entire situation. Why were the cops chasing robbers on horseback? It’s not like Fredericksburg was that isolated. She glanced at the captured men. The boy moaned, and she made a step to go over and help him. The Marshal spun, and the expression in his eye froze her in place.
 “He needs first aid.”
 “He’s fine. The Doc will tend to him when we get to the jail.”
  “You could at least call 911 and let them patch him up for you.” She nodded to the man lying so still with his eyes closed. “Your other prisoner doesn’t look so good. He’s going to die on you if you don’t start CPR or get him some help.”
 “Lady, no one is going to hear a yell from out here. Never heard of any 911 or CPR.” He propped the hand not holding the shotgun on his hip and threw her a disgusted look. “Are you blind? That man is dead, shot through the heart.”
Her head swam for a moment, and she struggled not to give in to the sensation and faint. She drew in deep gulps of air. “Well...well..., what about the coroner and the meat wagon, not to mention the CSI folks? If you don’t get them to record the scene, how are you going to cover your butt? The authorities might say you shot him in cold blood.”
He looked at her like she’d sprouted an extra head. “I don’t know what the hell you are talking about woman. No one will question my authority. I’m the law in this county. Now, be quiet, or I’m going to gag you.”
A Marshal of Her Own will be available now at The Wild Rose Press,, Barnes and and other online book stores. It is the sequel to A Law of Her Own available at The Wild Rose Press,, and Barnes and and other online book stores. I’m awaiting a release date for A Love of His Own, the third story in the Prairie, Texas series.
My release contest for A Marshal of Her Own began November 9th. I’ll be giving away this vintage rhinestone typewriter pin. To enter the drawing, go to my website or blog and sign up for my newsletter. Don’t forget to verify your email address. If you already receive it, email me at with A Marshal of Her Own contest in the subject line. Contest ends December 15, 2011.
 Leave me a comment or ask a question today and you’ll be entered into a drawing for an ecopy of A Law of Her Own.
Also, today’s blog post is part of 2 blog tours—this one for A Marshal of Her Own and starting December 4th, one for Born in Ice. Follow along each day and leave a comment to be entered into the grand prize drawing and learn about my Born in Ice contest.
The Blog Tour schedule will be posted on my blog and website. It will last 25 days and the Grand Prize is a Kindle. Leave a comment each day and your name will be entered 25 times. Pretty good odds, huh?
Thank you for having me on your blog today, Sandy!
Tomorrow, Nov. 28th I’ll be on Celia Yeary’s blog at talking about A Little History on Feed Sacks.
Happy Reading and Writing!
Linda LaRoque
Writing Romance With a Twist in Time
It's always a pleasure to have you visit, Linda.  I hope all those who read your post will try your books out.  I have enjoyed many of them myself. 
Until next Sunday have a good week everyone.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

What Are You Most Thankful For?

We have just a few days left before we celebrate Thanksgiving.  It's a day that we give thanks for whatever we are thankful for. 

I'm thankful to have a husband and family who love me. I'm grateful I'm not living on the streets instead I have a house to live in, especially during the cold of winter and heat of summer.  I'm blessed to have food to eat and not to know what hunger is like.    

Last but not least, I'm thankful to be born and to live in America.  I could not have achieved what I have here in any other country.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Best always,
Sandra K. Marshall
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Sunday, November 13, 2011

Remember Our Veterans Every Day

Hi Everyone,

This past Friday, we celebrated Veterans Day.  This one day a year everyone comes together to support our men and women who served in our armed services. 

It's not enough.  We must support them every single day of their lives.  So many of our military come home in body bags, without their limbs, with brain damage and they can't return to their old selves.  Some of these men and women don't have the support of their families; all they have is the V.A., and if they let them down then there may be no one to help them. 

For those soldiers who return home after killing and seeing friends blown up; it's almost impossible to return to normalcy without support somewhere.  Some end up homeless and never find their way back. 

The men and women who do return home seemingly unscathed will never be able to forget the events they participated in or watched unfold before their very eyes.  They may talk about these events or not, but those events will be remembered even though they try to forget. 

Today and every day here is a URL to go to and click on their button to help feed our veterans.  All you have to do to get a reminder every day is ask for it.  My good friends, Joe Hobbs and Sherri Ferguson do this faithfully every day, and I thank you for it.  Joe was very handsome in his uniform as a young man.

Thank you to all of those who serve our country.  You and your families give so much, and I appreciate all you do.


Sandra K. Marshall

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Sometimes Life Throws You a Scare

Hi Everyone,

Over a week ago, my husband had a colonoscopy done.  A spot was found, and the doctor took multiple biopsies.  In face, he nearly scraped the whole thing off.  It was scary for us because the doctor said it could be colon cancer, or it might be an ulcer.  The doctor took hubby off of aspirins in case it was an ulcer.

The doctor wanted a closer look at the area, so he ordered a CT scan with dye.  This showed a spot on his lung, but we aren't too worried about it.  This week, we found out the biopsy came back negative.  We were thrilled to learn it wasn't cancer.  He does have to have another colonscopy in a couple months to make sure he has healed inside. 

Thank you for listening to my story.  I just had to share because it ended so well.

Sandy AKA Sandra K. Marshall

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Trick or Treat

Hi Everyone,

Tomorrow is Halloween.  The question I'm asking today is do you ask the kids who come to your door to show you a trick before you give them a treat?

When I was a kid, we had to perform before we got our treats.  I have to admit we received better treats than just candy.  We used to get wrapped up homemade cookies and pop corn balls and apples along with candy. 

Since, we usually had a foot of snow or more, we often were invited in for hot apple cider or something warm.  The homes we went to were in a farming community, and it was safe to accept homemade items.  Also, we went to town if the weather wasn't too bad.  That's where we got most of our candy, sometimes it was homemade. 

Happy Halloween everyone.  Come by and tell me what your halloween was like when you were young. 

Have a wonderful week. 

Best always,
Sandra K. Marshall

Saturday, October 22, 2011

October is Breast Cancer Month

Hi Everyone,

I don't think there is a person in the world who hasn't come in contact with someone with cancer.  Just in my family alone, we have had to deal with several different types of cancers.

This month is Breast Cancer Month, and I'm going to give you a link where you can click to help women get mammagrams for free.  It won't cost you a penny, and you might save someone's life. 

Go to

I hope you have a wonderful week.  I'll see you next Sunday.

Best always,
Sandra K. Marshall

Saturday, October 15, 2011

A Fool's Fool

Hi Everyone,

Today, I'm posting the first chapter of my short story, A Fool's Fool. I'm also having a contest and only those who have read the book will know the answer.  Or someone might guess right.  Smile.  To answer the question send an email to This story is based on something that actually happened on a dance floor and anyone who knows my husband will have a pretty good idea of what he told his daughter to do about it.  Smile.

The prize will be a digital copy of A Fool's Fool. 

          Kathy O'Reilly walked softly behind Norm Jokes as he crept up the aisle between the cubicles, making sure he didn't know she was near. It was obvious he was planning to sneak up on someone to either scare or do something worse.
          Norm was as obnoxious as any guy she'd ever met, but for some reason her friend, Allyson Metzl, thought the joker just needed attention. Uh oh—Norm sped up, and she saw the reason why.
          Allyson stood just a few feet away, waving her hands as she leaned in a cubicle to talk to a co-worker. Her friend’s back was to him; Allyson's long dark hair covered the derrière of her diminutive figure.
Her pal had just gone through a divorce, and was feeling frail. There was no way Kathy would let anyone hurt her friend again. Kathy called out,  "Allyson."
          Allyson wheeled around, her mouth opened in a big O when she almost smacked into Norm.
          He put his hands on Allyson’s shoulders. Don’t move so suddenly. You almost knocked me down, and I would’ve fell on top of you.‛ He glanced over his shoulder at Kathy.
          With an inward laugh, she joined them. "Stopped you from being an obnoxious ass.‛ She watched him, knowing by his grin that he’d enjoyed himself. "You're going to get into big trouble one day." His right eye ticked knowing he'd been caught in the act. Too bad fellow.
          "Did someone want me?" Allyson asked; her black lashes fluttered as she glanced between Kathy and Norm.
          His face reddening, Norm stuttered, "I wanted to tell you how pretty you look in your outfit."
          "Thank you for noticing, Norm." Allyson peeked up at him. "It's new."
          The skunk, he hadn't even noticed her friend's lime green outfit until he needed to get his ass out of a jam. "Allyson, I wanted to talk to you a moment."
          "Uh, I'll leave you two to it," Norm muttered.
          Kathy glared after him as he slinked toward his office. He had nerve pretending to have noticed Allyson other than her butt. She hoped her friend didn't fall for his Mr. Nice Guy act.
          Allyson's cherry red lips turned up, laughing she showed perfect white teeth and her milk chocolate gaze focused on Kathy. "The way you're scowling at Norm he must've been up to no good."
          "He almost got you, but I managed to save you."
          Allyson laughed, her eyes sparkling. She shook her head, her long straight hair swaying from side to side. "Thanks, but who knows? Maybe I would have liked it.‛
          Her friend hadn’t dated since her divorce, and she constantly defended Norm to the other girls in the building. Why? Kathy couldn’t understand unless Allyson secretly had a crush on him. Kathy hoped not, because in truth, the man terrorized all of them. They were afraid to say anything for fear of losing their jobs. Luckily, she wasn’t in the same circumstance since she worked for the head boss.
          "Next time I’ll let him get you." She grimaced. "You need to get out more if that guy interests you." He almost pinched her friend’s bottom. He liked to pinch the other girls and play pranks on them.
          "Now you’re just being mean." Allyson’s perfect white teeth chewed her bottom lip. "I think he’s cute."
          "To each their own, but something has to be done to stop him from picking on all the women."
          Allyson giggled. "I might be able to help. We could play a trick on him. April Fool’s Day will be here soon and it would be an appropriate time to do something to him."
          "Great. I would like nothing better than to get revenge on the skinny runt."
          Her dark brows rose and Allyson asked, "Has he done anything to you?"
          "He better not or I’ll make his life miserable." If Norm ever pinched her, she would bring a harassment lawsuit against him and the company, Gagsters, Incorporated.
          "You won't do anything to hurt his feelings, will you Kath?" Allyson’s brows knit together slightly.
          Well, on second thought not against Gagsters, just Norm. She didn't want to hurt her boss, Jason Barrone. As his administrative assistant, Kathy was treated courteously and as an equal. Not only was he a perfect gentleman, he was a very handsome one. She liked his cleft chin and green brown-flecked eyes. Besides, he often told her he couldn't do without her— she was his right arm.
          For some reason, she was drawn to Jason even though normally, she went for the tall, dark, and dangerous bad boys. Jason was the exact opposite with his light brown hair streaked blond from the sun. The one time she accidentally bumped into him he was solid as a rock and just as dependable.
          A veil lifted from Allyson’s face and a light shone in her eyes. Her friend’s hound dog nose twitched on the scent of a mystery. She’d better say something quick.
          "Feelings. I doubt if Norm has any, he's such a dope. His antics have to be stopped." She leaned toward Allyson with her hands fisted, but at the widening of her friends eyes, Kathy drew back, took a deep breath, and relaxed her hands.   
           "You know the other girls won't step out of their cubicles when he's around, and when they go to the lunchroom or bathroom they're constantly looking for him over their shoulders."
          Allyson nodded. "I know. Some of the younger girls have even talked to me about it."
          "Then you’re completely with me on this?"
          "I have an idea of something we can do that would get the message across without hurting him."
          "What?" Kathy watched excitement build on her friend’s face.
          "I’m an artist. I could make a poster to put in his office or hang overhead somewhere."
          Smiling, Kathy said, "Okay."
          "Later. My phone is ringing." Allyson hurried away to answer the call.
         Kathy wondered what kind of drawing Ally would come up with. She hoped Norm could take a joke. After all, he dished out plenty of them. It was time for him to have some pranks pulled on him. Besides, it was going to be April Fool’s Day in a week.

* * * * *

          Jason stood in the doorway of his office pretending to read some papers while covertly watching the women scurrying excitedly from one cubicle to another. They whispered for a few minutes, giggled, and looked nervously around as if afraid of being caught.
          He'd been traveling on business for a month, and when he came back from his trip he’d noticed a difference in the office. He’d watched the women for days and the ringleader appeared to be assistant's friend, Allyson.
          His gaze turned to Kathy, noting the freckles sprinkled across her pale cheeks while a couple more dotted her nose. She tried to hid them with makeup, but he thought they were cute. She seemed immune to the activity outside her window.
          Ever since she'd started working for him, he'd wanted to grab a handful of the thick red, blonde-streaked hair that fell around her shoulders. He wanted to rub his face in the strands. Whenever he was near her he would inhale her fresh citrus scent, and he wanted to get closer to her, nibble on her neck, and see what she would look like naked.
          There was something about this matter-of-fact woman that fascinated him. She drew him to her on a sexual level. He couldn't help wondering what she was like away from work or in bed.
          She looked fantastic in anything she wore but this top fit her lovely shaped breasts like a second layer of skin. Would the buds be pink or brown, he wondered.
          Kathy raised her head and turned to look intently at him. "Do you want something?"
          Oops, he'd been caught staring. He gazed into her topaz eyes then turned to look out her window before saying, "I'm wondering what the girls are up to."
          Her eyebrows rose and her head tilted to one side. "What makes you think they're up to anything?"
          Ah ha, he'd surprised her. She glanced at her desk, and he realized he was right, she knew more than she would admit. "They're all abuzz about something. Kind of like a bunch of busy bees in their hives."
          Lowering her chin, she gazed at him with a smile on her lips and in her light yellow-brown eyes. "Well, you know a special day is coming up for us."
          "Ah." Jason leaned more comfortably against the doorframe. "You're referring to April Fool’s Day." Just as he thought, they were planning a practical joke for one of them, either Norm or himself. He hoped it wasn't his friend.
          Jason didn't know how Norm would react to someone pulling a stunt on him. He'd always been a jokester. He used it to defend himself against school bullies and to hide the fact that he didn’t have a normal family. If he thought they were tormenting, him, he'd get even.
          Kathy nodded her head. "The girls thought it might be time to take a more active part developing pranks, and what better way to start than on April 1st?"
          "Just as long as no one gets hurt," he said, turning back into his room. Jason knew Norm was sensitive, even though he didn’t show that side of himself at work. He needed to understand that other people might have those same feelings.
          "Oh, not likely," she said.
          Her annoyed tone warned him that there was more going on than Kathy was telling him. He just hoped it was nothing that required him to fire someone.

* * * * *

          Kathy watched Allison sketch swiftly at a worktable by the sliding glass doors, sunlight streaming in through them. She leaned over a large piece of pale pink paper sketching a pig snorting around a bunch of females.
          Sticking the pencil between her lips, she gazed at the caricature with Norm’s face. She giggled, dropped the pencil as she gasped and giggled again.
          Kathy laughed. "It’s a perfect likeness of Norm." Shaking her head, she added, "I’m not so sure we should do this. I don’t want you to get fired."
          "I’m not backing out now, Kath. This is the one all the girls chose, and it really is the nicest one." Ally giggled. "I was afraid they’d pick the one of the stallion mounting the mare."
          "No, you didn’t draw something like that." She covered her mouth laughing as she watched her friend nod her head. "Well, I’m glad everyone had sense not to pick that one. We would all get fired then."
          "I have some other ideas, too. If I can get them drawn in time, I might use one of them instead of these." Picking up the pencil, she drew a tail on the main caricature. "Since I’m the artist, I get the last say in what I display."
          Allyson would put her plan in place in two days. Kathy knew Allyson planned to wait until everyone left work. She would hide in the bathroom until Jason left then place the picture on Norm’s desk.
          With her thoughts on Jason, she remembered how his gaze on her had warmed her body while he’d watched her. She’d caught his reflection in the window and caught him off guard when he’d thought she didn’t notice him staring at her.
          What had he been thinking? She hoped he wasn’t suspicious of them. He was certainly curious about what the women were up to. Could all of them be terminated? Jason was a nice guy, but he must have limits.
          Originally, the plan was to have all the women sign the poster. She’d changed their minds because she didn’t want anyone to get into trouble. If the worst happened, she would take the blame for the whole episode rather than have Ally or one of the others get fired.
          Kathy could think of any number of ways this could go wrong. If Norm was as sensitive as Jason claimed, he could be hurt. She just had an intuitive feeling this little joke would backfire on them.

Remember if you want to enter the contest all you have to do is email me at Good luck everyone. 

See you next week. 

Sandy aka Sandra K. Marshall
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Sunday, October 9, 2011

How Many Friends Do You Have?

Hi Everyone,

On one of my loops, a lady lost a friend of twenty-five years, and she was devastasted at losing someone who had been a special part of her life for so long.

This made me start thinking of my own special friends.  I got to thinking about how long we've been friends and some of us go back a long ways.

Mary Ellen and I met as sophmores in high school and have never lost touch with one another after over fifty years.  She lives in Canada, but we talk to one another four or five times a year.

Janice, I met in high school, too.  Even though we were friends there; it was my sister who brought us together again a few years ago.  We keep in contact through email and get together once in awhile.  We've known one another over fifty years.

Pat worked as a nurse's aid at Lawrence Memorial Hospital with mom. One day, mom brought her home one day to meet us so Pat would have someone her own age to be around.  We always keep in contact by seeing, emailing or calling one another. It's been fifty years since we first met. 

When I first started working at TWA, I met a special person named Perkie, and we later became roommates.  We worked together, partied and lived together. One of the nicest people you could ever meet.  We have remained friends for over forty years.  We never lose touch even though she lives out of state. 

Another long time TWA friend is Linda B.  The stories I could tell you about Linda would have you laughing.  She was one of my party friends when we were younger. We still get together frequently, and we've been friends over forty years.

Also, Susie was another TWA party friend when I was younger.  We talk a couple of times a year and send letters.  We've been friends over forty years.

Linda H. is another old TWA friend that I keep in contact with, but I didn't meet until almost ten years after I started my career at TWA.  We have been friends for over thirty years and still keep in contact.

There are many other friends, some newer that I keep in contact in with, but we don't have as much history.   The closest friends in my life have been my mother and sister.  They keep me grounded. 

Now, I have men friends including my husband but for this blog I'm only talking about women friends.  Smile.  These are the ladies, I have shared a lot of history with and I would miss them terribly if they weren't here. 

Do you have friends you keep in contact with no matter what happens in your lives?

Have a good week everyone.

Best always,
Sandra K. Marshall

Sunday, October 2, 2011

There is no post today

Hi to those of you who come to visit my blog every Sunday.  I will not be blogging today. We are having our roof replaced due to hail damage we received a few weeks ago. 

They've already started hammering and thumping everywhere, so it will impossible to get anything done today. 

Thank you,
Sandra K. Marshall

Sunday, September 25, 2011

New Book Cover

Hi Everyone,

We've had a couple of sunny fall days here in the mid-west, but next week it will turn warmer again.

This is my new book cover for A Fool's Fool.  My publisher decided to separate the two stories in Fool Me Twice. My story can be found at Eirelander Publishing,, Amazon on Kindle and Barnes and Noble on Nook.

Here is a blurb:

Pranks are carried too far.

Kathy O'Reilly, a strong-willed woman doesn't allow men to walk over her or anyone else.  When one of the co-owner's of Gagsters, Norm Jokes, is allowed to get away with playing pranks, she speaks up to her boss. 

Jason Barrone, co-owner of Gagsters is attracted to his assistant and will not allow his best friend to cause him to lose her.  Jason wants them to be friends because he doesn't want to have to make a choice of who goes and who stays. 

For those of you who would like to read more you can click on the title of my and read an excerpt at my website, or go to my publisher, Amazon and Barnes and Noble to read even more.

Thank you for visiting my blog today.

Best always,
Sandra K. Marshall
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Sunday, September 18, 2011

Computer Burnout

Hi Everyone,

Today, I'm talking about computer burnout.  This is something a bit new, but for those of us who spend a good portion of our time on the computer it can happen.

Writing, promotion, sales and nearly everything else is done on the computer these days.  I'm a writer, and I haven't written a word for at least six weeks.  Why?  One word says it all--email.

I haven't been on email since last Monday, so I know I have hundreds of emails.  Most of them, I can delete but even that takes time.  Some of them I want to read, but I should just delete all of them and start over again fresh.

I have made a real effort to keep up with my blog, but even it has been difficult because I hate my computer right now. 

Does anyone else have a love-hate relationship with their computer?

Thank you for listening to my rant this week and please come back next Sunday.

Best always to all my readers.

Sandra K. Marshall

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Do You Remember Where You Were on 9-11-2001?

Good Morning,

Today is 9-11, ten years later after one of the worst terrorist acts on our country.  Do you remember where you were on that day? 

On 9-11-2001, I had just finished breakfast for my husband and myself, cleaned up the dishes, poured myself another cup of coffee. I turned on CNN to catch up with the news while warming up my computer before starting to write.

In moments, I learned about the hi-jackings of at least two planes and there were thought to be more.  I watched the first plane hit the first tower in shock, and I yelled at my husband to turn on CNN. A few minutes later, I saw the next plane hit the other tower.

Stunned by what we were seeing, we watched and listened to the news in silence. We heard about the other planes and our fear grew not knowing where they were headed.  By then loved ones were getting calls from their family members on the hi-jacked planes.

We heard about the plane that crashed into the Pentagon and the brave people on flight 93 who gave up their lives to save others.  For days, I watched the news and heard about the brave firemen and policemen who helped to save others and all of the many people who came to help.

I wept at the scenes I saw.  I asked why like many others.  I was proud at the way the people of our country pulled together.  I pray, we never have anything like 9-11 happen on our soil again. 

Already, our children are being taught about the date 9-11-2001 in our schools.  This date will be a part of our history forever.  

Bless our country, The United States of America.

Sandra K. Marshall  

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Happy Labor Day

Hello Everyone,

First, I want to tell my contest is up at Coffee Time Romance & More. You can find it, along with my new book cover for A Fool's Fool, here:  Thank you for visiting and entering to win some goodies.  There are several other authors who have contests posted for the month of September as well.

Now, for my question of the day: Do you think our country has become more service oriented than a manufacturing country?

Bless America and the people in our country.

Have a great holiday!


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Would You Evacuate If Told To?

Hi Everyone,

This year has been a bad one for tornadoes, and it looks like it's going to be the same for hurricanes. Tornadoes hit around my area so much this summer that I cringed every time we had a tornado warning. There's no way I wouldn't take a threat like that seriously.

In New York City, a reporter was speaking to a person who had decided not to evacuate.  The reason he gave was that Bloomberg had messed on winter storm and was trying to make up for it by exaggerating the seriousness of Hurricane Irene. 

My question to all of you is would you go to a safe place if told to?

That's all for this Sunday.  Have a great week.

Best to all of you.


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Do You Come Back to Read Responses to Your Comments?

Hi Everyone,

The reason, I'm asking this question is because I'm curious to know if it's even necessary to leave a response to those who leave a comment. 

Another question, I have for you is do you read the comments after reading the blog?  I personally find many of the comments more interesting than my blog. 

Thank you for reading.  I'll look forward to reading your comments on this topic. 


Saturday, August 6, 2011

Should Social Security be considered an Entitlement?

Hi Everyone,
I don’t know about you, but for months I’ve been listening to the politicians talking about Social Security being an entitlement program. Its made me furious. I started paying into Social Security at sixteen and have paid into it ever since.  Of course, I’m entitled to Social Security benefits, but the politicians make the word entitlement sound like a dirty word.  They try to make everyone believe the people who draw entitlements are free loaders and not responsible hard working folks.

It’s no wonder seniors are upset by their elected officials.  Below is a definition of entitlement.

Definition of entitlement by Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary:  1a: the state or condition of being entitled: Right  b: a right to benefits specified by law or contract  2: a government program providing benefits to members of a specified group; also : funds supporting or distributed by such a program.

Okay, so Social Security is an entitlement, so why is the word being smeared and used in such condescension? Below is a little history about how Social Security was started.

The Social Security Act was signed by FDR on 8/14/35. Taxes were collected for the first time in January 1937 and the first one-time, lump-sum payments were made that same month. Regular ongoing monthly benefits started in January 1940.

Medicare was passed into law on July 30, 1965 but beneficiaries were first able to sign-up for the program on July 1, 1966.

Under the 1935 law, what we now think of as Social Security only paid retirement benefits to the primary worker. A 1939 change in the law added survivors’ benefits and benefits for the retiree's spouse and children. In 1956 disability benefits were added.

Keep in mind, however, that the Social Security Act itself was much broader than just the program which today we commonly describe as "Social Security." The original 1935 law contained the first national unemployment compensation program, aid to the states for various health and welfare programs, and the Aid to Dependent Children program. (Full text of the 1935 law.)

Social security earns interest.  By law, the assets of the Social Security program must be invested in securities guaranteed as to both principal and interest. The Trust Funds hold a mix of short-term and long-term government bonds. The Trust Funds can hold both regular Treasury securities and "special obligation" securities issued only to federal trust funds. In practice, most of the securities in the Social Security Trust Funds are of the "special obligation" type. (See additional explanation from SSA's Office of the Actuary.)

The Trust Funds earn interest which is set at the average market yield on long-term Treasury securities. Interest earnings on the invested assets of the combined OASI and DI Trust Funds were $55.5 billion in calendar year 1999. This represented an effective annual interest rate of 6.9 percent.

The Trust Funds have earned interest in every year since the program began. More detailed information on the Trust Fund investments can be found in the Annual Report of the Social Security Trustees and on the Actuary's web pages concerning the Investment Transactions and Investment Holdings of the Trust Funds.

Much more information can be found at:

Yes, Social Security is an entitlement program.  It covers a huge amount of programs under its umbrella.  Should there be some cuts?  I’m not going to answer that question because I don’t know.  No one can afford cuts, but something has to be done.  I do believe our government should stop using Social Security for every program they can come up with.  In my opinion, social security and Medicare should not include welfare and some other entitlements under its umbrella. 

I’m not against helping people, but I just think welfare should be under some other program.  What do you think about our social security?  Frankly, I don’t think social security is the problem.

Have a great week, and I’ll see you all next week. 


Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Flawed Hero

Hi Everyone,

What is a flawed hero?  He is a man with flaws.  Simple! Everyone has flaws even our men. Even a hero in story if people are to relate to him.

In Webster’s Dictionary flawed means this: 1a. A defect in physical structure or form  1b. An imperfection or weakness and esp. that detracts from the whole or hinders effectiveness (vanity was the flaw in his character)

In the stories, I write none of my characters are flawless.  I need to know my characters flaws and strengths before I start a story. All movies and television shows have flawed characters the same as books.

One of my favorite shows, Covert Affairs on the USA channel has a flawed hero named Auggie.  Auggie is with the CIA, and he works with agents in the field from his desk.  He’s a computer nerd and he feeds information to the heroine who is out in the field. Sometimes, he even appears beside the heroine to help her. Auggie has two flaws, he’s blind and he’s a womanizer.  Being blind doesn’t stop him at all with the women or from doing his job.  Women are attracted to him because of his appearance (good looking), but doubly so when they realize he can’t see them.

One more thing about Auggie, he is not able to do everything that a person who sees can do, but his other senses are heightened, so what he does do is realistic.  One thing this program does is show that a blind person isn’t necessarily helpless. 

Another show, I enjoy is White Collar.  The hero is a con man, and he’s been in prison, but he’s released to the CIA to help solve other white collar crimes.  His flaw is he’s a con man (grin), but he has another one. He lost a woman, and he kept hunting for her until last season he learned the truth about her. Now, he’s moving on, but he’s got a secret, which could bring his life down again. He has decisions to make, and I hope he makes the right ones.

I’m going to use one of my books, The Catalyst, as an example of a flawed hero. His name is Walt. Walt is strong, was in the CIA but now works as head of security at a riverboat casino.  He has been in love with the casino owner since she was a kid, and he has never married or gone on with his life because of her.  This is his flaw to remain in a time warp waiting for her to come to him. True, she’s married, but what hero doesn’t take control, or is he right to wait. Patience is a virtue, isn’t it?

Jake, the hero in Addiction, is judgmental. He doesn’t like alcoholics and doesn’t believe the heroine can change. As the story unfolds, he grows to understand there are other reasons for the way she is, and vows to protect her from the serial killer who is after her.

In The Deceived, Mike has a lot of baggage going back to the loss of his parents. It is the reason he became an FBI agent. He works alone since he lost a partner he’d been involved with on a case.

Sometimes, the hero has minor defects in their character and often they have more than one.  To make our characters real, we must give them characteristics of real people. We give them strengths and weaknesses to deal with just like we do in our lives.\

Until next Sunday, enjoy your week. 

Sandra K. Marshall
Twitter - @SandraKMarshall