A faithful reader of my Pam of Babylon series recently sent me an article about beach glass, aware that Pam is a beachcombing fanatic, and has a vast collection of it which she stores in a clear glass ginger jar on the white marble of the kitchen in her ocean front home on Long Island.
Beach glass is like rock hunting or scouring parks with a metal detector; the lure of the hunt and the excitement when you find something to add to your collection can’t be beat. All of those things appeal to me. I belong to every rock hunting group on Facebook, much to my husband’s amusement because I haven’t ventured out of our yard to hunt.
Collections of anything intrigue me. I once saw a photograph of a collection of small hearts consisting of religious medals, art and artifacts, you name it. Soon after, we were at the beach, and I found a small, stone heart. Now I was hooked. Friends started sending me hearts. I have hearts made of stone, glass, metal, and paper.
Owls are another passion. I have so many owls. The owl thing started with a piece of jewelry Jim bought me when we were dating; in sterling, an owl ring made of turquoise, mother of pearl, and onyx. I forgot I was wearing it one day and went to my OR job with it on my finger. When I had to scrub for a case, I popped it in my pocket and down with the laundry it went, never to be seen again. Over the years, he’s added pieces of costume jewelry, including bracelets, earrings, and necklaces all with owls.
An antique chalk owl once belonging to my mother graces the library in my kitchen. My children are the sources of many of my owls, including a metal sculpture from Jeni, and a canvas bag from Sarah. A friend made me a little needle-felted owl. He’s so sweet, looking down from his perch.
In my stories, I get to collect personalities. I like lots of characters. I’m driven by their interaction, their histories, their weaknesses and strengths. A caveat is that I sometimes get them confused and will change their names inadvertently, having to quickly go back and fix after the fact. It’s a liability of reading my books. An example is in my mystery series, I changed an aunt’s name from Paula to Beth. Hindsight, she was really a Beth. But she’d been named Paula in three prior books, so Paula she remained. Paula is so real to me now after writing about her, but she’s such a Beth!
The first book in my new series, Bittersweets, had so many characters I started taking notes for each couple, and writing a book for each one. The first, Bittersweets – Terry and Alex is included in our new steamy romance boxed set, Love on Fire, six stories by six authors now available on Amazon for 99 Cents.