In CALLAHAN'S GOLD
Where A Lady (Tory) and A Cowboy (Dodge) meet up in Tombstone.
The town too tough to die gives folks a chance to re-live the tough old days complete with dusty streets, 1880's costumed citizens, and a remake of the shootout at the OK Corral – daily.
Is love in the cards for opposites, Tori and Dodge, or it is all hot air? Oh, it's HOT all right! Check it out at half-price now. Here's an excerpt:
Her most vivid memory of her father. . .
was the day he told her he was leaving. She was six years old. Over the years, his face had faded into an obscure vision, reinforced only by a few photos her mother had kept. She did remember his eyes, not just blue, but a deep, almost violet color. And when she looked into the mirror as a child, she'd remind herself she had eyes like her daddy.
Her mother said they had the same beautiful black hair, black as a starless night. It was small consolation to the child who barely remembered him. When Tory Carsen was a lonely teenager, caught between being a woman and a child, she sometimes wondered if this man who'd once been her father were still alive somewhere and if he ever loved her. Her memory of him was foggy, consisting of fleeting glimpses. But one conversation, the last one, was distinct.
"Of course, I love you, Tory darlin'," he had vowed the day he left. "You'll always be my little girl."
Being a child who didn't accept answers easily, Tory followed him down the sidewalk to the rickety old Ford. "Then why are you going away, Daddy?"
He tossed two beat-up suitcases into the backseat. "I know it's hard for you to understand, Tory darlin', but I have other worlds to explore. The city life just isn't for me. I have to seek the sun. Someday I'll come back to you, and we'll be rich, and you can have anything you want."
"Yep. A whole corral full of ponies! And a room full of toys! And . . . anything you want!"
"But I don't want anything, Daddy. I just want you to stay here with me and Mommy."
"I can't, Tory. Your mom and I have grown-up problems."
"Then why can't I go with you?" she persisted stubbornly.
He shook his head and looked away. "It isn't a place for little girls."
"Maybe it isn't a place for daddies, either."
Gazing down at his tenacious daughter, Sharkey Carsen heaved a sigh. "Maybe not, darlin', but I have to find out." He lifted her up in his arms and kissed each chubby cheek. Then he set her down and walked out of her life forever.
Tory perched Indian-style on the sidewalk and watched her father drive away in that dingy blue Ford.
He never returned. Never brought her that pony he promised. They were never rich. By the end of the month, she and her mother had to move out of the neat little house on Beale Street and into an incessant string of apartments on L.A.'s south side.
Her father had claimed he'd gone off to find the sun, and Tory grew to despise him for leaving them.
Twenty years later, when Tory Carsen Talbot received the certified letter informing her of Sharkey Carsen's death, she scanned the letter coldly, with no emotion. By now it didn't matter that they had the same deep blue eyes, the same blue-black hair. He was like a total stranger to her, and she bore no grief for the man who had been her father.
But the second paragraph of the letter captured Tory's natural curiosity. She was named as an inheritor and was urged to attend the reading of the will. A mélange of emotions swept through her— of hate and anger, of curiosity and indifference, of concern . . . but definitely not love.
Spontaneously, she decided to go, not stopping to determine if her decision were a reasonable and logical one. An inheritance ... By God, he owed her that much.
Tory Talbot reached across a paper-cluttered desk and picked up the phone. Her ivory crepe sleeve brushed two unopened envelopes onto the floor, but she ignored them. They were only more bills.
"Megan, do you think you could handle the shop for a few days? Something's come up, and I need to go out of town. Pretty important. Could mean enough money to salvage Tall and Terrific. Incidentally, how do I fly to Tombstone, middle-of-nowhere, Arizona?"
Is Your First Love, Your Best Love?
A LASTING LOVE was my first story (love) in Romancing the West Series. I had visited a friend in Alexandria, VA and fell in love with the entire quaint, historic district along the Potomac River. I loved the old brick buildings, flowering cherry and dogwood trees, and the dynamic history connected to this area so close to Washington, DC. About the same time, we were moving to Tucson, where-the-heck, Arizona. Worlds away! I had never been here.
What a contrast – a woman from the power-based East who falls for a man used to wide-open spaces. As I was learning about the west, so was my heroine, Loren. And with their complicated relationship, A LASTING LOVE was born.
Loren and Reid
He thrills her, loves her and leaves her. Will it happen again? When the sophisticated East meets the rugged West on Capital Hill, Loren and Reid are worlds apart. Smart and sensible Loren realizes it's risky to love this brash man in cowboy boots, but her heart doesn't heed the warnings. Her stable future lies in her career in DC. Reid's life is in Arizona. Can she maintain her independence and follow her heart to the man she loves?
Sometimes, despite everything that comes between you, or maybe because of it all, your first love is your best love.
There. I said it. And by save, I mean… take it any way you want. Rescue. Liberate. Preserve. Protect. Redeem. Redo. Re-write.
Recently, a friend declared that she needed to “Redo Her Life.” Kids grown, divorced, stuck in memories and habits, unhappy with her current situation, old job, unproductive life.
“What do you want?” I asked.
“I don’t know. Change,” she answered.
“What’s keeping you from it?”
As we talked, I realized these are questions I ask my characters. In a book, a goal has to involve change, something we naturally resist. And you can’t blame others. You have to claim it and fix it. That’s the most satisfying way to write a story – or change a life. Your life.
Every movie, every book, every life has these elements:
In case you haven’t guessed by now, this is my Note to self: Get busy, get committed, get going!
Think it, write it, speak it, DO it! (if you write it and speak it, you're committed to doing it) Take up journaling. Write that book! Take that trip. Make that move. Create your new life! Finish what you started.
Now on sale, Claire's Embrace, for 99cents! This is the first book in my Irish Hearts Series and the introduction to Ireland, its green fields, stone fences and the many reasons to love the emerald island. You can follow Claire and her daughters through my four Irish stories starting with Claire's Embrace, Embraceable You, Secret Embrace, and Mystique. See the front page of my website for more details. www.marytateengels.com