Monday, August 3, 2020

Caleb's Destiny: Historical Western Romance

About Carol: Besides being a member and active participant of many writing groups, Carole Brown enjoys mentoring beginning writers. An author of ten books, she loves to weave suspense and tough topics into her books, along with a touch of romance and whimsy, and is always on the lookout for outstanding titles and catchy ideas. She and her husband reside in SE Ohio but have ministered and counseled nationally and internationally. She has found that the traveling and ministering has served her well in writing her novels. Together, they enjoy their grandsons, traveling, gardening, good food, the simple life, and did she mention their grandsons?

About writing the book:
This is book one of the Troubles in the West series. I write Romantic Suspense/Mystery in contemporary and historical, but it's the first time I've written in historical western. Set in the mid to late 1800s, it was a new adventure to me, but a fun one. I'd started it a few years ago thinking I might enter it into a contest, but never finished it then. My husband had given me the idea of the book, so I'd kept it hoping someday to finish it.

Last year was a hard year for me with little writing, but when 2020 came, inspiration came back and I was determined to finish this book, and finish it I did in a little over two and a half months. It's a book about wrongs from the past that children must make right… and in doing that, forgivenness and trust comes into play.

I hope readers enjoy reading Caleb's Destiny.

Description of Caleb’s Destiny: 
Mr. Michael, Destiny Rose McCulloch, and Hunter have a mysterious history. Why were three fathers, all business partners, murdered under suspicious circumstances while on their quest to find gold? Hunter, who is Mr. Michael's ranch manager, is determined to find the answers and protect the precocious young lady who he suspects holds a key answer to his questions. Mr. Michael wants only to be left alone to attend to his property, but what can he do when Destiny refuses to leave and captures the heart of everyone of his employees? Destiny almost forgets her quest when she falls in love with Mr. Michael's ranch and all the people there. And then Mr. Michael is much too alluring to ignore. The preacher man back east where she took her schooling tried to claim her heart, but the longer she stays the less she can remember him. She only came west to find a little boy she knew years ago. A little boy all grown up by now...unless, of course, he's dead.

Book Excerpt:

After he settled into a seat across from her, he picked up his fork and looked at her. “Dig in.”
She hated it, but her cheeks were heating up again. “Do you mind...?”
“Mind?” His first bite headed toward his mouth. “If you eat?”
Why hadn’t she just said a silent, quick prayer? “Uh, I’d like to say a prayer. I've grown used to doing it at sch—uh, home.” And Richard had always insisted on it.
He dropped his fork. “Of course. Go ahead.”
Closing her eyes, she pressed her hands together. “Heavenly Father, we ask for your beautiful—I mean, bountiful blessings on our snack—breakfast, uh, tonight.” Destiny wanted to sink through the floor. She, who was the epitome of gracefulness at school; she who wanted to impress this confident man, was stumbling like a drunken cowboy. Whispering a “Father, forgive me” for butchering what should have been a simple prayer, she hastened to finish it. “Thank you for Mr. Michael’s hospitality, and help us to further our friendship.”
Ugh. He’d think she wanted something more than friendship. Destiny cringed and refused to glance at him. “Amen.”
Had that been a snicker? Surely not. She picked up her fork and shoved a tiny bite of egg in her dry mouth. She chewed and swallowed, but the former delicious-looking omelet refused to go down. She reached for her coffee and felt the food slide down with the coffee.
Ah, reprieved.
“Tell me, Miss McCulloch—it is Miss?”
He was laughing. She could hear it in his voice without even seeing his face. Her appetite vanished just as her temper kicked in. “It is Miss McCulloch to you, Mr. Michael, and I’ll thank you not to laugh at me.”
 “I wouldn’t dream of it.” And this time his voice was serious.

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Saturday, August 1, 2020

Your Family Tree

Learning about your ancestors can be so fun. When it comes to genealogy, you probably wonder where to begin, especially if you’re a beginner. A genealogy website that is free to the public is There are no fees.

After you create a username and password, fill in the information about your parents and grandparents. Remember one thing! Only loved ones who have passed on will be visible on FamilySearch. Anyone who is still alive that you added to your family tree will not be visible to the public until that person passes on. It will only be visible to you. This is for the privacy of that person.

How do you begin? Here are the most important steps in order.
1. Preserve Memories: Record the memories of your parents and grandparents. Talk to your relatives and find out what they can remember. Write down their trials in life, their accomplishments, and humorous experiences. Add letters they wrote to the biography. If you don’t do this, their experiences will be forgotten. Your children need to know their heritage. When you’re done, go to that person’s page and post the biography you wrote in the section labeled: Memories. You can also have it published in paperback to give to your family.

2. Collect Photos: Scan all your family photos at a high resolution such as 300dpi. Then upload them to FamilySearch in the section labeled: Memories. When you upload them, make sure to label them, telling about who is in the photo and the date or their age. Get your children involved and have them help you with this project. The FamilySearch Center allows you to scan your photos free. There’s no charge.

3. Collect Documents: These should be birth certificates, marriage certificates, and death certificates. You can add certificates that they earned during their lifetime such as graduation, competitions they were involved in, sports, plays they were in, etc. When you’re ready, upload them to that person’s page under “documents” in Memories.

4. Record your family for two to four generations and all their children.

There are also free online classes at FamilySearch in the link below that can help you in your research. To see what classes are taught each day online, click on the “Class Schedule.” Classes are taught daily at 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. On Thursdays, there is also a class at 5:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m.

The Classes I teach are in Mountain Standard Time:
Aug 13, 7:00 pm - Writing a Biography
Aug 20, 7:00 pm - Publishing Your Book