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Three generations of secrets. Three murders.
And the dead won’t rest until the murderer checks out, too!

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⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐“The plot is intricate, while also being easy to follow…The paranormal aspect is well done. While not the central focus, the ghosts offer just enough to give Mark — and readers — something to think about.” — TOP 100 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Detective Mark Waters tackles an eerie case that raises questions he never thought he’d ask… Is it possible that a woman murdered 80 years ago is working from beyond the grave? READ MORE on CHIRP!
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Lost Girl

Creatus They Exist

Winds of Betrayal

Happiness and goals: gifts we give ourselves

The ‘Wake up in the morning with a smile’ virus

(Dateline: December 22, 2012)
It’s been four years now and I’m still smitten with the happiness virus. Mine is fed by giving in to my love of writing. Such happiness is not to be cured but should be spread. Fortunate is she who has found her love and followed it. My advice to others: if you have something—a talent or maybe just a strong desire—that causes you to awaken with a grin, embrace it, cultivate it, and share it. It might be good for others, too.
Writing is my happiness. Sharing is my privilege. As of December 2012, I have composed four and a half novels (and published two of them), penned numerous novellas, spent a week in and about Greensboro, North Carolina for the sole purpose of research (it’s the home zone of most of my stories), purchased and/or downloaded dozens of research books, and cut and pasted countless rows into my Excel database of storylines for THE FAIRIES SAGA. I compulsively jot random plots, quotes, and themes into notebooks or tap them onto my smartphone, saving them for (possible) inclusion in future works. Writing is still my happiness.
Goals are gifts we give ourselves and my next one is to travel to Australia in January 2014. Part of FAIRIES DOWN UNDER, the fifth in my series, transpires in January 1788 with the arrival of The First Fleet, the ships laden with prisoners transported from England to Australia. I want to endure the climate at the same time of year as did those hardy men and women, touch and smell the exotic flora, tread those historic sites, investigate the museums, and barefoot those seashores. It’s also a great time and place for research since I’ll be leaving Alaska in the icy gloom of winter to spend a couple of weeks in sunny, summertime Sydney.
Give yourself a gift, a small goal, not one of monetary gain, but of seeking happiness. Singing, sewing, serving others: do what truly makes you happy. A song written for the church choir, a cap crocheted for a new baby, a book of poems for your mother, mowing the lawn for the old couple next door. These are simple gifts; gifts to yourself, and also for others.
Happiness is ours to create, culture, and ultimately, to share.
Dani Haviland, author

October 18, 2022
Found recently, I wrote the above blog nearly ten years ago. Reading it was an eerie trip back in time. The feelings remain the same, though. The goals have been modified and the results are even more profound. I made it to Australia (yay!) but haven’t finished my epic, Fairies Down Under. I have written and published a total of forty-one stories now. Quite a leap from four and a half novels in 2012. Back then, I was only aiming for five. THE FAIRIES SAGA series is still unfinished. However, the tale grew in unexpected ways with even more stories. The vibrant characters were so hard to contain, a new separate series (ARLIE UNDERCOVER) emerged. Some of the gang (mostly colorful, dumb crooks) wound up in THAT TWIN THING and TRIPLETS: THREE AREN’T ONE series, too.

In a word, my joy at writing was too great to rein in, so I didn’t.
By next month, I will have achieved another landmark. My little company, Chill Out! Books, will have published one-hundred multi-author sets, too! Publishing the works of others wasn’t even a consideration when I began my little startup. Now it’s a new joy, a guilt-free, calorie-free diversion that also makes me a few bucks each month.
Wow! What a difference ten years make. I’d like to think it was because I had goals that gave me joy when working towards them, an abundance of friends who encouraged me (thanks, husband, Mimi Barbour, and the many ladies in The Authors’ Billboard group), and a positive attitude.

Multitask the FUN way: listen to Alexa read your book!

If life seems a mystery to you, check out my latest Cozy Mystery Collection: MURDER IS SCHEDULED FOR MONDAY. You’re not the only one with conundrums to solve. Read with Kindle Unlimited for your best bargain OR listen to the book with Kindle Assisted Reader when you ask your Amazon Echo device to ‘read my book.’ If it’s not already in your KU Library, just ask Alexa to add it for you. Yes, you can ‘read’ a book and cook or crochet or change diapers at the same time with KU and Alexa (her voice is great, too).

Flying Above the Clouds, Thinking Positive #RachelleAyala @Mimisgang1 #mgtab

Recently, I had the misfortune of watching a highly anticipated movie only to find it utterly disgusting and disappointing. It was supposed to be a comedy, but the sexually abusive nature of the “fighting” ruined the supposedly zany plotline and ridiculous antics of the characters. I bemoaned the movie to my good friend who also had the misfortune of seeing it. You wouldn’t have known about the fight scenes from the trailer which promised a comedy in and out of the multiverse.

Some images cannot be unseen and the best thing my friend and I hoped for was “forgetfulness.” However, it means we have to stop thinking about how horrid the images were. As you well know, as soon as you tell yourself to forget something, you remember it. Like right now, I’m yet again trying not to remember the images but in writing this blog, I have the misfortune of having those scenes flash in my mind’s eye.

My friend then told me to make this a Philippians 4:8 moment. Instead of thinking about the bloody and sexually suggestive fight scenes, I would say, Philippians 4:8 and look for the beautiful, the pure, the good, the lovely, the virtuous, and think on these praiseworthy things. Focusing on the positive will leave no room for negative thoughts.

It’s the same way in life. The news is filled with the bad and the horrible. All around us, fear abounds and outrage explodes. There are plenty of things and events to be upset over, and everyday annoyances large and small. “Did you see that guy cut me off?” “The price of gas is over the roof.” “Sri Lanka just collapsed, are we next?” We can so easily fall into playing the cynic and drag down not only our own mood, but everyone around us.

Being a cynic and dwelling on negative things doesn’t change them one bit. Your circumstances are still the same. Only you’re more upset and anxious. Instead, focus on the positives, and if you can’t find any, do something kind for someone else. Instant positive thoughts and feelings! Make every moment a Philippians 4:8 moment, and soon, you will be flying above the clouds where it is lovely, pure, and free. Try it. Look at the people around you and find the good. Write down a time and place when someone showed kindness to you. Count your blessings. Even in the worst of circumstances, you can find something positive. In Acts 16:22-34 Paul and Silas were thrown into a Philippian jail after having been stripped naked and beaten. Their feet were locked into stocks, and it must have been cold and wet. They were battered and bruised, bloody and hungry. But at midnight they were singing praises unto God. They were singing with joy and hope and thankfulness!

I’m creating an audiobook for Kitty, It’s Cold Outside, and while proof-listening, I came across a passage where the heroine, Katherine Gills, is lost in another world [in another time]. Her new friends suspected she was a fraud or con-woman, and they were watching her carefully when they took her on a ride in a small airplane. I could picture and feel her sitting there when the pilot let her put her hands on the controls and pull the airplane through the cloud bank. What a joyous moment. Even though she was still lost in time and space, by keeping her focus upward, she was grateful and rejoicing, “Hallelujah! Praise the Lord God up High.”

[The audiobook is ONLY 99c available from Google Play, where all my audiobooks are FREE or 99c]

Excerpt from Kitty, It’s Cold Outside:

“It’s so beautiful down there. The trees look so small, and I feel like I’m an angel looking down on everyone. I hope they’re being good this Christmas,” Katherine said.

“I bet you’re nice in Santa’s book,” the pilot said. “Because you’re going to get a real treat.”

“Will we go higher than the clouds?” Katherine asked, swinging her hands like she could reach out and touch the fluffy puffs.

“Even better, let’s go through them,” the pilot said.

“Goodness gracious!” Katherine put both hands on her face as the propeller cut through the cloudbank, and a thick gray mist surrounded the entire plane. “How can you see where we’re going?”

“I’ve got these instruments.” The pilot pointed to the screens. “Here, I’ll let you pull us up over the clouds.”

He put his hands over Kathrine’s and guided them onto the controls, then gently pulled back. The airplane’s nose lifted, and voila! Clear blue skies popped into view above with the clouds below.

Katherine squealed with joy. “Hallelujah! Praise the Lord God up High. We’re in the realm of angels. I wonder if we will see any.”

In case you’re wondering what movie NOT to see, check out this review. It’s hilarious. Of course, you might enjoy it, so to each his own! C’est la vie.

Chill Out in the Garden!

April 11, 2022, Willamette Valley, Oregon (my yard)

In the northern hemisphere, it’s springtime! Or, depending on where you are, summer! Here in Oregon, USA, we’ve had a very long winter. We had snow on April 11 and only last week, there was frost on the windshield in the morning. It looks like I won’t be getting any cherries, plums, or peaches this year. The apples and pears bloomed late, so we may be okay there.

Gardening is great exercise!

What does the warm weather mean to you? To me, it’s gardening season. That also means I need to get in shape. Here’s a chart that should make you happy about spending time weeding and trimming. Need a butt lift? Move loads of soil or compost around!
Before you commit to your garden project, be sure to have your gear. Plenty of water to drink, a hat, sunscreen, gloves, and of course, a camera to take before and after pictures. Stretch all those muscles first, too. I have a five-gallon bucket with a swivel seat on it that holds my tools. Very nice to have portable accommodations. I never have been a fan of the kneeling pads but my chair/toolbox combo with a handle is great.


MOST IMPORTANT: Audio gear! For me, it’s my Echo frames. Not only do they hold the lenses that help me see, these also have little speakers above the ears and a mic somewhere in front. Since they’re linked with my smartphone, phone calls come through, too. Gloved hands are dexterous enough to tap the right temple, and it’s answered. Need tunes? I tell Alexa, “Shuffle music by Led Zeppelin” or Leonard Bernstein, depending on my mood. I wear scrubs so the phone’s nearby in a big pocket.

Tunes are good, but my go-to request while working and always while driving is, “Alexa, read my book.” Whatever book I’ve been reading on my Kindle device, continues. It DOES NOT have to be an AUDIBLE book, either. Alexa’s voice is pretty cool and way better than the first generation of book readers.

Any story that is ‘Text-to-Speech: Enabled’ on Amazon will work on your Echo. You can do so much more work when you’re listening, waiting for an exciting scene to finish. Even when I’m spent and finally go inside, the story follows me. No Echo frames? Any Kindle or Echo device will keep up with your place in the story. Just ask, “Alexa, read my book.” Smart stuff is awesome!

MURDER IS TO DIE FOR: Diehard Dames Amateur Detective Series

Looking for a long read to listen to for the road or a special project, check out MURDER IS TO DIE FOR. This cozy mystery set won’t make you blush (it’s not spicy) but will keep you intrigued.