photo by Sheri Dixon

Friday, September 6, 2013

"unimpressive- the inelegant art of just getting by"

This little book is now for sale in Amazon in paperback or for Kindle, or directly from me as a signed paperback.

Like the first two of my fictitious survival stories, this one is unassuming but important, with characters who are ordinary women quietly acting in extraordinary ways without the violent fanfare and trappings of most of this genre.

Where did this one fall in the elusive categorizing process?

Sustainable living...tucked almost as an afterthought at the end of Home and Garden.


Please enjoy this preview- and I'll let ya'll know when it's officially 'out there'.

The leaves rustled imperceptibly. There was no wind to speak of, and the air was heavy with heat.

Tammy stirred fitfully in the tree stand just within sight of the shack.

Back in the day, the previous owners had had a deer feeder just below this stand and had fed the deer all year long. Just before dawn on opening day of hunting season, they’d stagger out of the lease shack after a night of playing cards and drinking beer, loudly shushing each other, pee off the porch and into the weeds, then precariously climb into the tree stand and valiantly ‘hunt’ the deer that had been basically trained to come for breakfast.

The tree stand hadn't been used for many years, and multiple vines (poison ivy, Virginia Creeper, kudzu and greenbriar) had woven up and around it till it was completely invisible unless you knew it was there.

The only reason Shayla had discovered it involved Olive and a stray cat who scrambled up the tree and then tiptoed along the outer edge of the stand, outlining it with every paw-step. One second it wasn’t there, and the next it was in clear view…it was all a matter of perspective and association.

They all took turns off and on during the daylight hours keeping a watch over the shack and those who used it.

The first nine days there was a steady stream of visitors even though their road was not a main thoroughfare; people were taking the back ways out of the area. All were respectful, if stressed.

They were those who had somewhere to go…if they could get there. They used the shack as somewhere to rest that wasn’t the back seat of their car; somewhere the kids could have a semi-normal night’s sleep. Mostly families, some couples, a few single people…all ate the food and drank the water, appreciated the washing basin and soap, spent the night and moved on after tidying up after themselves.

Those who could replaced the food, and a few left a few dollars and a thank you note.

On the tenth day, Tammy tried calling Ray three times before setting the phone in a drawer and closing it with finality. “Well, no more of that”, she said matter-of-factly and with a false cheerfulness. She stared at the closed drawer as though she’d folded Ray himself up and closed him in there and for a minute she wished she had- at least she’d know that he was safe. She’d know where he was.

Ray had made it halfway through Oklahoma before running out of fuel and running out of luck in finding any. He’d traded the truck for a bicycle and a backpack.

After that there were more people on foot than not down their little road, and more people who looked like they didn’t have anywhere to go, but nowhere to stay, either.

More and more of them were women with children, alone.


  1. I have three of your books and you can be sure I want this one too. Only I'm thinkin' I'll get it from you so you can write me a lovely, personalized note, that I can save for-evah.

  2. I would love that- thank you :)

    PS- our family vacay next year is set to be in your neighborhood...and you're on my list of people to hug while out there :)