Wednesday, January 1, 2020

New Year! New Goals!

It's hard to believe we have survived the first decade of the new millennium, but opening your eyes this morning was the first step. With each new year, we can begin our lives on a new page. For me, this year is all about getting myself organized, keeping life manageable, and living my dream of writing.

To write is, of course, a verb. It is something all of us do. I am hoping to do it with a little more pizazz than I did last year. I plan on tweaking some old stories and creating some new. In that end, it is important that I read. The more one reads, the more diverse your sentence structure and word use becomes. So, I am planning to spend an hour a day reading.

How many of you received gift cards for the holidays? Those gift cards are your tickets to old reliable friends and new acquaintances. With the birth of E Readers, you can store so many more books on your devices and carry them any where - as long as you don't forget your passwords.  One of the many on my device that I haven't read is Hoppy Holiday Homicide by Molly Fritz. I'm going to begin this story.

Who will join me?
One book a week will equal 52 books in 2020.
I think it's a due able goal.



Saturday, September 21, 2019

Is Saturday still your chore day?

Happy Saturday, Y'all!

It's going to be a busy morning on the farm. I've fed the horses, but there's about 5 acres of grass to mow and some laundry to do. Of course, I've got some ideas jotted down for the story. How many of you remember your parents having designated chores for each day of the week? My mom was a stickler for:

  1. Wash on Monday
  2. Dust on Tuesday
  3. Clean woodwork on Wednesday
  4. Mop on Thursday
  5. Groceries on Friday
  6. Grass had to be done on Saturday
  7. Sunday was for church and family. 

Of course that was before work days were seven days long. Growing up we had blue law days. Stores closed on Sunday except for grocery and pharmacies. Some days I wish we'd go back to that. Everyone needs a day of rest. I think the chasing of the all mighty dollar has gotten a wee bit out of hand. That being said, I'm off to do my best to contribute to the economy.







Sunday, September 15, 2019

National Women's Friendship Day!

National  Women's Friendship Day says a lot about each one of us. Friendship is important in life. A friend is someone who makes work comfortable. They know you well and still love you for your faults, your accomplishments. They are a supporter, a sympathizer, and extension of your inner self or who  you strive to be.

A good friend will also tell you what you don't want to hear. They pick you up when you fall down. They let you cry, moan, shake your fist at the sky, then they tell you to pick up, put on your big girl panties and let's get it done. I'm so luck to have so many who I can count on.

Thank you -

Melissa Storm
Angi Demonti Heger
Aliyah Burke
Elsa Keyston
Sandi Fehr
T.B.Bond
C.L. Marconlini
Allie Marie
Julie Cerniglia Lence
Leanore Elliott
Wendi Jones
Nicole Andrews Moore
Alexandra Christie
Beth Muth
Angelia McClain
Bradlee Jennings
Susan Tisdale
Hannah Carey

So many more. I thank you from the bottom of my heart.


Monday, June 10, 2019

Meet the Brides of Rattlesnake Ridge

Last week the wonderful folks at Sweet Promise Press released the last of six books in the first wave of mail order brides that venture to the mythical town of Rattlesnake Ridge.

Six books:


Arriving from Arkansas


Coming from California






Moving from Maryland















Riding from  Richmond

















Drifting from Deadwood

















Traveling from Texas

I hope you'll take time to go to Amazon to check out these fantastic, sweet reads,  over at Amazon.

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=pioneer+brides+of+rattlesnake+ridge&crid=1TA3P0YIZJDZ9&sprefix=Pioneer+Brides%2Caps%2C165&ref=nb_sb_ss_i_1_14



Saturday, December 29, 2018

New Release

Just released yesterday, December 28th, my newest sweet contemporary for Sweet Promise Press.


Vivyane Scott dreams of being on the silver screen. Unfortunately, life seems to have other plans. The death of her beloved grandfather brings her back home, where she learns he has purchased the Lone Star Movie Theater for her. The theater, like her dreams, is in tatters.

Bo Walker loves to renovate aging buildings from Sweet Grove’s past. He agrees to look at a building for his brother and a group of investors, when a chance meeting turns his hopes around leading to something more wonderful than he could ever image. It pays never hide your light under a bushel basket. Who knows, maybe, Vivyane's passion for the arts will be big enough for both of them. All he has to do is hold on to his Lucky Star.


I just love the cover. I hope you'll enjoy the story. You can find the book at these locations:


Or here :


Saturday, October 6, 2018

So you want to travel by Stage...

In early America, travel happened by foot, by boat, or by stage. We all know 'a stage" is a four wheel driven vehicle powered by horses or mules. They run on established routes, following a regular schedule. Early stage routes trans versed the early colonies and later the west shuffling people in a simplified, lighter coach than their English counterparts. These coaches were often referred to as a stage wagon or a mud coach. Navigation was done by a driver or coachman accompanied by a guard called a shot gun messenger.
                       Example of a mud coach from the Wells Fargo History Museum in San Diego.

The role of travel was slow five to seven miles per hour, however over a day, they might cover sixty to seventy miles. Breaks occurred at places called swing stations or home stations. Stages began running regular routes in 1744, between the budding metropolis of New York and Philadelphia. The distance took three days to cover until the year 1766 when a new more trustworthy coach was implemented. These coaches carried not only letters, but packages, merchandise, and in some cases - money. By 1832, Boston alone had over 77 lines.

While these vehicles were great in moving the masses, they were not comfortable. Iron and steel springs did not allow the body of the coach to compensate for the pot holes by moving side to side. They instead bounced up and down jostling the passengers and often tossing them against their co riders. In 1829, a major innovation came through the use of leather straps that allowed the body to be somewhat suspended and move not only up and down, but also side to side. In Twain's book, Ruffing It, he described his travels by stage as "riding a cradle on wheels".

Space meant money. People were often crammed inside on three hard seats. If riding in the middle they held on to straps suspended from the ceiling to keep from pitching back or forward. Others decided it was safer to be perched on top of the stage. If you think about it, you can understand why. Imagine, if you will, nine passengers, layered with dust, boots covered with animal waste, perhaps bodies and/or clothing unwashed for months - yeah, it's a good thing Hollywood made it glamorous.

 Notice in this picture from 1868, Buffalo soldiers guard the stage. Their posts on top depict where passengers might sit. Photo from the American West 1861-1912 National Archives


So how much did this 'luxury' travel cost. Remember, no coke and peanuts. Nope. Meals were extra and cost $1.00 for each meal consumed. Our passengers could chose their travel. First class, cost $7.00 and they rode for the whole trip. Second class passengers were required to walk when the road was bad. And those economy seats in third class, they  not only had to walk, but if the coach was going up hill, they were required to push. Something to write home about for sure.

Most stage routes followed the Pony Express examples. Stages stopped in intervals of twelve and fifty miles at two types of stations, a swing station or a home station. Home stations would be at the fifty mile route marker. These would be run by families and served hot meals and allowing their 'guests' to sleep over night on the hard floors. Home stations would also be where drivers changes occurred. A swing station came at the twelve mile markers and would be run by bachelor stock men. Their accommodations would be a cabin or barnc. The stage would stay long enough to change teams and allow passengers to stretch their legs. From Kansas to California there were one hundred and fifty of these type stations.

All good things do come to an end. Railroads pushed the stage lines from the most prominent towns. Routes they followed, now took them to towns the trains didn't service. However, the death blow to the stage lines came with the invention of the automobile in the early 1900's.

Famous stage lines were:
Buutterfield's Overland Mail Company
Wells Fargo and Company
Holladay Overland Mail and Express Company.

              The more iconic stage. Again from the Wells Fargo History Museum in San Diego.


Until next time

Nan O'Berry


 

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Spring brings changes

Who can believe that May is upon us! So much is going on here on the farm. 
Since I began my newsletters lots have changed. First, let me say I am so grateful for those who have signed up for my newsletter. I'm honored that you would take the time to follow me and join my newsletter.
Now, because I respect everyone's rights, I am mindful of the new The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which comes into effect on 25 May 2018. I would have loved to continue those little shout outs. However, it would have had to ask you to confirm again your wish be on the mailing list. Unfortunately, after hours of searching for a button that would confirm or opt you out, I have learned the little shout out does not have the capacity to do this. It would have placed two mailing addresses for your address on a newsletter list. For that reason, I am putting my newsletters on my website. This will enable the reader to follow me without me loading up their emails. I know how quickly they can become cluttered and how we all hate to sit at the desk an click delete, delete, delete.
You may be asking, how will you get my posts on new books being offered. If you are following me on Facebook or twitter, those will be where I put my release information. My first blurbs, covers, and snippets of the stories. then, the information will come to this website. I want you, the reader, to be the first informed. I hope this will be less intrusive and easier for you to follow.


Until next month,
 Nan 
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