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Archive for August, 2011

Hi there. Most of you probably know me. But, just in case, I’m Laurean Brooks, writer of inspirational romance with a big dash of humor.

You may look at my picture and say, “Surely this is a woman schooled in social graces.” But to the contrary, this woman would never win an award for implementing Emily Post’s Rules of Proper Etiquette. Instead, in my circle, I’d likely receive a statue portraying a contorted woman with one foot shoved in her mouth.

My desire to make people laugh was inherited from my dad. The difference is he specialized in playing silly pranks and telling funny stories; my humor relies on seizing the right moment to implement a snappy reply. There is nothing more rewarding than hearing folks laugh. But sometimes these “supposedly” funny remarks are taken the wrong way.

“A soft answer turns away wrath but grievous words stir up anger.” Proverbs 15: 1

Now there’s one I often apply. Sadly, it’s usually after the fact. The scenario goes like this. I say something (I think is) funny, a harsh voice replies in anger, and I apologize. Most of the time the person accepted my apology. A few didn’t. That’s when I promise to try to keep a stronger hold on my tongue.

“Proverbs 25:11 puts me to shame. It reads, “A word fitly spoken and in due season, is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.” Know why this verse makes me cringe? Because it was probably written to admonish someone whose mouth shifts into gear before her/his brain engages. Someone like…uh…me.

I could give example after example of embarrassing scenarios, results of my impulsive quips. But that would take all day. I’ll confess only two.

The most retold incident (by my family) occurred when my niece and son were toddlers. “Aunt Laurie” (or Mom) was in great social demand in those days, especially at the supermarket. Why? Because I loaded the little ones into the shopping cart and whizzed through the produce aisle, cutting figure-eights around the banana stalks and watermelon rack. The squeals from Jeremy and Mandy kept egged me.

So, it came as no surprise while on a trip to the local IGA, two-year-old Mandy peeled her mother’s fingers from the cart and yowled, “Want Aunt Lau-rie ta’ push!” My three-year-old, Jeremy, joined in protesting from his seat at the bottom of the cart. “Mom! We want Mom!”

Miffed at her daughter and my nephew’s rejection, my sister stepped aside and huffed, “Well! I know when I’m not wanted!”

I grinned impishly and gripped the cart while Emily followed. I pushed it a few feet when a sassy jibe came to me. I craned my neck to look behind, fluttered my lashes, and oozed in a sultry voice, “M’dear, are you feeling lonely and forlorn?”

Before the words left my mouth, a brick wall smashed against my cheek. I whirled to find a 6′ 4” college-aged guy gaping down at me. His face registered something akin to “horror” and “Woman-you-are-crazy!”

I slapped a hand to my burning face and hurried to explain. “No-no! I wasn’t talking to you. I was talking to my sis–” I scanned the area, but Emily had vanished! Coward!

The young man jaunted away, shaking his head and rolling his eyes. Emily stole out from the canned vegetables aisle. The hand over her mouth and tears streaming down her cheeks gave her away. My sister was laughing at me! She squealed, “That was hilarious! You had your head against that…that guys chest…gazing up into his eyes. What did you say to him?”

When I relayed my humiliating indiscretion, she shrieked, “You mean…you propositioned that guy?”

What could I say? “Uh-h…it did sound that way.”

The second embarrassing moment occurred when a couple of men waltzed through the doors of the textile plant where I worked. Both men were casually dressed. The older, a distinguished, gray-haired gentleman, paused in front of my work area and asked, “You don’t mind if we walk through, do you?”

My retort? “As long as you aren’t salesmen or politicians. All others are welcome.”

The older gentleman walked past, but the younger man stopped in front of me and whispered, pointing to the older man. “I’m not a politician. But he is. He’s the county judge.”

When he spoke the man’s name, I slapped my hand over my mouth.

The judge must have noticed my embarrassment because he traipsed back to me and placed a consoling arm around my shoulders. “Honey, is something wrong? Anything I can do to help?”

All I could do was shake my head and murmur, “No-o.”

At our family get-togethers, much to my chagrin, Emily brings up the supermarket incident, then adds, “Going shopping with Laurie was always fun. You never knew what would happen.”

There, you have it. I have “Foot In Mouth” disease. What about the rest of you? Have you ever committed public blunders? Oh come on, ‘fess up! I hope I’m not the only one.

Here are links to my books. In Journey To Forgiveness, http://www.whiterosepublishing.com/ my sassy heroine has the same problem with her tongue. Jenny gets into some interesting predicaments as a result.

E-books:
OVER THE COALS- http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/44638/
JONQUILS IN THE SNOW- http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/9341/
SEVERED HEARTS- http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/73123/

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With great joy, I am finally able to share the cover of my second book in the Sterling Lakes Series, “Angels of the Heart”.

The cover was ready on time and the book released on time…but my computer decided to…go on vacation. Not in good time, in my opinion!

This was so not easy, being on the dark side of the moon! And with the third manuscript in the series due September 1st. I almost can’t talk about it, because as soon as I start, you just know I won’t stop.

Suffice it to say all seems to be in order now. But I will be backing up my current ms on a disc, as well as my flash drive, that’s for sure!

To be continued.

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Today I am so happy to welcome the wonderful Gail Pallotta to the 2011 Summer Blog-String Fest! She is a fantastic writer and a kind, caring friend – understanding, too, when my computer crisis delayed getting her posting up ! Thanks for being you, Gail and thanks for visiting today!

The July 4th Spectacular at My House
by
Gail Pallotta

This past July 4th, I got up and dressed in blue jeans and a three-quarter-length shirt, attire a bit warm for the day. But perfect for the fireworks display that night, because there was less of me exposed for the bugs to bite.

During the afternoon it rained, but my husband, Rick, said, “It’s supposed to clear up. I don’t think we’ll have a problem going to the show tonight.”

We’d been to the fireworks before when it rained, even got caught in a storm there one year and waited an hour or so for the event to start.

The rain stopped. Rick and our daughter, Laurie, who always comes home to go to the July 4th fireworks, dressed in jeans. At twilight we grabbed a can of bug spray and our stadium seats and started out the door. A loud crack of thunder roared. We slinked back inside like wet puppies to wait until the sky cleared. It grew darker and the thunder louder. Lightning danced around our front yard.

Rick turned the television to a weather station. The radar showed red and yellow patches in a line of dark green headed right for us. “This should be gone soon. We’ll leave then.” More thunder boomed and lightning flashed.

In the background of the thunderous roar I detected faint pops. “Did you hear that? One of our neighbors must be shooting fire crackers.”

“Yes, but the thunder’s so loud I can barely hear them,” Laurie said. “I wonder if we’re going to make the show.”

“We still have time. When it lets up, we’ll leave,” Rick said.

But another line of storms showed up on the weather station. Rick’s lips turned down. “I’m not sure when this storm’s going to end.”

Trees fell in the neighborhood. It wasn’t safe to go out. We watched a clip of the fireworks show on the eleven o’clock news. I couldn’t help but wonder if this was God’s way of saying He wants to be part of our country.

BIO
Gail’s husband, Rick, says she’s the only person he knows who can go in the grocery for a loaf of bread and come out with the cashier’s life story. That’s probably because she enjoys talking to people. In her spare time she swims or bargain shops with her daughter. Sometimes they try on garments so wrong for them, they laugh for fifteen minutes. When they finally find a treasure, they’re so pleased.
After writing articles for years Gail’s friends and family encouraged her to write books. In 2004, the year her first book, Now Is the Time, was released, the American Christian Writers Association named her a regional writer of the year. Last year a scene from Love Turns the Tide won the Clash of the Titles competition in the best setting / weather category.

Now Gail is on the staff of Clash of the Titles. She wants to write books of faith that show God’s love.

About Gail’s Book, Love Turns the Tide

Feature writer Cammie O’Shea suffers through a heartbreaking split-up with her fiancé. She wants no new relationships when she moves to Destin, Florida, to take a job at a newspaper. But she has to interview real estate developer Vic Deleona. He’s quite smitten with her and arranges extra meetings in an attempt to court her. Cammie resists his advances. However, after several mysterious break-ins occur, including one at Cammie’s condo, she and Vic launch their own investigation into the crimes. Then Cammie grows fond of him. She gets an opportunity to return home to her old job. Will Vic solve the crimes and win Cammie’s heart or will she leave Destin?

Read more about Love Turns the Tide on Gail’s Web site at http://www.gailpallotta.com and visit Gail’s blog at http://wwwgailpallotta.blogspot.com

Love Turns the Tide is available at http://www.awe-struck.net in the inspirational category.

Check out the latest review of Love Turns the Tide at http://gabixlerreviews-bookreadersheaven.blogspot.com/2011/07/heartwarming-inspirational-story-leaves.html

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