Thursday, January 23, 2014


Things are changing in Redbud.
And Mrs. Mayor is having a hard time keeping her followers in control.

Ellie and Sam are settling in after their marriage and Ellie's quilt shop quickly becomes a favorite stop for the ladies in town. Sewing classes and quilting bees are great opportunities for the ladies to compare notes and keep tabs on their small town.

If you have ever lived in a small town, or longed to do so, I hope you will visit Redbud in The Substitute Bride. This is Ellie and Sam's romance, but the residents of Redbud are very active. The mayor's wife, fondly called Mrs. Mayor is the power behind the throne and rules with her followers in fun ways. She is a mix of prim and proper and just plain uppity behavior that hides a heart of gold.

We also have Stella Curtis, who runs the Redbud diner with her husband, and we often hear of Roy's famous cooking. Stella has never seen a stranger and her flirty ways and friendly nature make her a fun favorite for all who come to the diner.

Check in next time to learn about the police chief's wife and the libarian and learn what happens with the death of Emma Margaret Cutt, a long time resident and author of Manners for Moderns, Redbud style.

Happy Reading!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Samuel Clay Oglethorpe

     Sam is talked into taking his famous cousin’s place in a wedding staged to give the heiress-bride and movie-star groom some privacy. His reward...regaining control of the property he calls home.
     But much to his surprise, Sam is attracted to THE SUBSTITUTE BRIDE. They discover they’re both from North Carolina, and Sam offers Ellie Gray a ride home. After all, they’re both headed in the same direction, and he suspects Ellie is short of cash.
     When he drops her off and discovers how thin her resources really are, Sam offers Ellie a job making drapes for his home.
     Reluctantly, Ellie moves to Redbud...and falls in love with the town...and Sam.   

Monday, April 8, 2013

Ellie Gray in NY

     Part 3...
     A New York heiress ordering not one big name designer wedding gown but three, exposes Ellie to a new world. A world where money can buy any dream, a world where an heiress doesn’t have to make up her mind about her wedding gown until the day of the wedding. And a world where three gowns are chosen to keep paparazzi from exposing details of her wedding dress.
     Ellie feels she is part of the dream when she’s working on the gowns. Fabrics she thought beautiful on the bolt make three of the most gorgeous gowns she has ever seen, but sadness touches Ellie as well. Only one of the fairy-tale gowns will be worn.
     Even worse, reporters start probing around for details about the wedding gown. When the bride-to-be comes to the studio for a fitting, reporters and flashing cameras surround her. Furious, the heiress demands the designer send someone out of the building in her place.
     And that’s when everyone notices how much Ellie resembles the bride.
     That’s the day Ellie Gray’s life changes...

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Ellie part 2

Living on a shoestring...a frayed one at that...proves doable as Ellie is immersed into the big name designer’s world. Bolts of the most beautiful fabrics Ellie has ever seen fill the workrooms of the studio. Models come and go. Designers, assistants and would-be designers all vie for the attention of the woman in charge.

Ellie is thrilled and terrified every second. This is her dream, a chance to learn from the best in the business. But what if she makes a mistake. What if it turns out she isn’t good enough to work with these professionals? What if she makes a mistake? Ruins a wedding gown...

Worry over her skills soon disappears when the designer approves of Ellie’s handwork and assigns her to work on a big order for one client. The client orders multiple gowns for her wedding, shocking Ellie. This isn’t her world. One dream-wedding gown is all she’s ever imagined. Not three for the same bride.

But more surprises await Ellie...

Thursday, September 20, 2012


Ellie sewes...
...and sews. That's all she knows. All the church bazaars, fundraisers, and for any new baby around, she sews. If she doesn't take the chance, and go to New York, what will she do?
   But she's living on a shoe-string. Renting the shop downtown pushed her tiny savings into the redddddd.
How else was she going to sell her creations? Find people who appreciated her handwork?
   Yet one sad truth remains...Ellie is a product of an earlier time...when people depended on the local seamstress, and not the nearest mall, for their clothing needs.
    Still...Ellie has one secret weapon. She's an excellent seamstress and loves making wedding gowns.
 And she could make them so much better if she learned new tricks from this famous designer in New York.
   There's only one thing she can do...give up her apartment and move into the back of the shop in downtown Asheboro until she starts making money. So...Ellie packs her belongings into the storage room...and drives from North Carolina to New York.
   Do you think Ellie is brave? Or foolish? What would you do?


   Okay, I knew I wanted a Substitute Bride...and groom, but who would my heroine be? Who would make this story exciting? Make it interesting? Who would have be desperate enough to fill this role?
     A foundling. Found on the church steps by two old maid sisters who gave her a home.
The sisters gave the baby their first names and chose her last name from the dingy gray blanket she was wrapped in, and Emiline Anastasia Gray had a home.
    While other children her age were running and playing, Ellie is taught that children were to be seen, not heard. When teenagers in her classes at school are listening to rock-n-roll, playing video games and learning about computers, Ellie is learning the fine art of needle work and how to sew her own clothes. After high school, and the deaths of the elderly sisters, Ellie must find her way alone.
   With sewing as her only skill, in an age when everyone is rushing to buy their clothing, Ellie is a highly skilled seamstress with no place to use her skills.
    When she stumbles on an ad in the newspaper, for a contest to study with a famous designer, Ellie sends in the form to enter. The day she finds out she won the contest and is invited to the designer's studio in New York, Ellie's life changes forever.

The Substitute Bride is now available in paperback at
Thank you for stopping by my blog.


Sunday, June 17, 2012


      This is an exciting time. Now, my hardback Avalon romance novel is going to be available in other formats. Please check back often for updates.
     The idea for THE SUBSTITUTE BRIDE came from seeing repeated news headlines about a famous couple. When I read the bride had ordered more than one wedding gown, my background took over my imagination. What if...
     What if...the famous bride wanted a private wedding and was willing to take drastic steps to make it happen?
     What apprentice seamstress to the famous dress designer closely resembled the bride?
     What if...this stand-in-bride fell for the groom?
     Answers to those questions wouldn't let me rest until I wrote the story. More details later.
     Thank you so much for stopping by to check on THE SUBSTITUTE BRIDE.