The Decade Birthday

on May 31, 2023

Dear Readers,

Some people don’t like to tell their age, but I have made it to 70 without being convicted of a major crime. It isn’t that I didn’t do major crimes, it’s that I didn’t get caught! A wiser woman would take that win and learn to behave, but that isn’t in my cards. Bad to the end is my motto.

I celebrated my big day with a water balloon fight, corn hole, jambalaya, pimento cheese and chicken salad sandwiches, some bodacious cheesecake brownies and an incredible red velvet cake. Yum! Don’t tell anyone but alcohol was involved. As my dear friend Eugene Walter used to say, it isn’t a party without chicken salad (and bourbon). And Eugene was the ultimate judge of a good party or a bad party.

This has been a really busy month for me. TELL-TALE BONES dropped May 16. I was at a terrific book signing at The Haunted Book Shop downtown when a friend texted me to tell me the book had hit #1 on the Amazon Southern fiction list. What a day! Alchemy Tavern, next door to the book store, made some specialty drinks for the occasion of the book signing. I was only a little bawdy, but I think everyone had fun. I sure enjoyed my Tequila Sunrise and the very special Mandy and Carolyn drink that Casey made for us.

photo collage from book signing

photo collage from book signing

My wonderful neighbor helped me with my lawnmower. It is a huge mower and it just stopped. Tommy came over and picked it up with his tractor. He lifted it on the forks like a boxcar or something and took it home, worked his magic, and fixed it. Now I just need it to stop raining so I can mow.

It’s rained almost every day. Often thunderstorms, which the dogs hate. But the rain keeps the planet cooler. My theory is that the cool rain knocks down the heat, cooling the ground and pavement, and the cooler water finally drains into the ocean, keeping it cooler too. I hope it cuts down on hurricanes, because we are there again. Hurricane season starts June 1. I am in a safe place 38 miles from the water, but the possibility of wind shears, tornadoes, etc., make it a dicey time. My friend Dorothy has told me some magic to work to help protect my place and the animals I love. I’m on it.

The long summer stretches out. I have loads to write and plenty to do. Since Mandy Haynes moved onto the property, we’ve been planting trees and shrubs and flowers. It’s good exercise and fun. She has Albert the turtle (a yellow-bellied slider) who adores earth worms. I can’t feed him that (I know, I am a fool), but I buy him cantaloupe and cherry tomatoes. He likes those too, but not as well as worms! JAWS BONES will be the next Sarah Booth book, set for May 2024. And I’m working on TENDER BONES (working title) for a Christmas book for 2024. Life is busy, and I am so lucky to be able to work hard and write hard. photo of doggos

The critters are doing okay. The horses are hot, and Piper is being a real evil sister to Flicker. I don’t know what bee is in her bonnet, but she is being a b-itch. It could be the time of year, or the heat, or the fact Piper is a little bit of a bully. I’m keeping an eye on her. The dogs are good. Cissy Hartley’s little pup Izzy stayed with me a few days while she took care of some business. Izzy gets along with everyone. And the cats. Well, they are the cats! Lording it over everyone, being finicky, playing pranks. In other words, just normal cats. Scooter will be 19 June 1. That’s scary. And Sorrow the dog just had her 16th birthday. Fingers crossed they continue with good health. Or as good as it can be.

Thanks for all the support for TELL-TALE BONES. If you’ve read it, please take a moment and leave a review. That really matters. Just say your honest opinion.

I was only 9 when this song came out, but I loved it. And I love it to this day. I am so lucky to have friends and readers who truly do “Stand by Me.”

Happy listening until next month!

Carolyn and the critters