So you can read my books

Monday, January 31, 2011

PAY IT FORWARD entry for Shelli Johannes's contest

Shelli Johannes at Market My Words is holding an AMAZING contest.

Shelli is agented by Alyssa Eisner Henkin of Trident Media Group and is offering a personal recommendation to her agent to the winner.

Hop over to her blog.

Become a follower of both her blog and twitter and then enter your maximum four sentence pitch on a completed M/G or Y/A novel.

Follow the rules of the contest and you're in.

1. Post a "Pay it Forward" post on your blog or FB notes if you don't have a blog. You must pay tribute to a person who has helped you in your writing or your personal life. (This can be any day this week during the contest).

2. Put your entry in the COMMENTS (Shout Out link at bottom of her post). In your entry, you MUST provide the following information:

first, last name
email address

genre (only for MG or YA)

pitch (no more than 4 sentences)
the link to your "Pay it forward" post (either on FB or blog)

your twitter id (if you have one)
Dates Jan. 31st through February 4th, 2011.


YA urban fantasy


Thirteen year old Victor Standish is repeatedly abandoned and picked up by his unpredictable mother. A mysterious French Quarter Jazz club owner takes him in. Victor learns the Jazz club is actually the Crossroads of Worlds, and the owner has the blood of Death in his veins. They both find love and adventure as Hurricane Katrina approaches.


There are so many people who were and are beacons in my life. But one stands out like a lighthouse on a desolate, storm-tossed shore ... my best friend, Sandra Thrasher.

We all find ourselves in the dreaded Valley of the Shadow at some point in our lives.

I lived there for a short time. It only felt like an eternity.

My mother was dying in the hospital. My book store was dying, too. I had walking pneumonia. Three times someone poured sugar in my gas tank in the Mall parking lot.

Three cars gone. I was reduced to walking to my home, the hospital, and to my Mall store on foot in the worst December in Louisiana memory.

My mother died one lonely night as I sat coughing by her bedside.

I had no money to bury her. No insurance company would cover Mother in her last years with her bad heart.

Poetically, an ice storm shut down the entire city the next day. I sat in a frozen world in my dark, powerless home, shivering and coughing and crying.

I felt as alone as if I were prisoner in a frozen Hell.

There was a knock on my door. Sandra Thrasher. My best friend and fellow Mall store owner was on the porch. Think Bette Midler with pepper and salt hair. She walked in, hugged me, and whispered,

"You're not alone."

From that moment on, I wasn't.

Hurting financially herself, she still used her last untouched credit card to take care of my mother's arrangements. She dragged me to the doctor and got the medicine I could not afford. She gave me a used car.

And though it took long months, she taught me to laugh again.

She led me through the Valley of the Shadow. I shall forever be in the debt of Sandra Thrasher, my best friend, who showed me what wonders one caring heart can accomplish in the life of another person.

She was the wind beneath my bruised wings :


  1. What a lovely tribute to a kind, caring, and giving woman.

    I'm beyond happy she saved you! You are a soul worth saving and she knew it.

    God may not give us what we want, but he always gives us what we need. Sandra was his angel of mercy.

    The more I hear about your tragic life the more I admire your strength to go on.


  2. There should be a warning on this post, bring box of tissues. What a lovely tribute to a woman who sounds just as lovely.

    The pitch sounds GREAT!

  3. Sandra sounds truly special.

    My fingers are crossed for you and Victor during this contest!

  4. A very touching post.
    It is important to have friends, but to be a friend in need, is a friend indeed.
    The movie "Wind Beneath My Wings" is one of my favorites.

  5. Imagery Imagined : Glad to see you. I've been ill for the past 3 weeks and out of the blog loop mostly. Isn't BEACHES a wonderful movie?

    Heather : Yes, Sandra is the only self-actualized person I know and one of the best hearts around. Thanks for the crossed fingers, Roland

    Kerri C : I teared up writing this post, remembering Sandra's great kindness and loving heart. I'm happy you like my pitch!

    Michael : Every one has had a harder time than they appear. Sandra was indeed God's Hand -- which is strangely poetic since she is agnostic! But she is an angel all the same!! I'm glad my tribute did some justice to the great soul she is. I wish us both luck on our pitches!

  6. ok so i just cried. Im so sorry you had that time and glad you had such a great friend. Thanks for coming by :)

  7. Shelli : I'm truly glad you visited and followed. Hate that I made you cry, but thank you for having such a heart that would be touched by my past pains. May your week be healing and uplifting in special ways, Roland

  8. ...glad you're feeling better, take care.

  9. Thanks, Imagery Imagined. Now, with this weather, I have to find a way to run rare blood and stay warm! bRRRR.