[[Welcome to my weekly writer’s diary where I’ll share my “Woot Woot!” moments and the not so “woot woot” moments of my writing world. And, yes, I might even share the occasional musing or two about reading and writing, two of my favorite things!]]
It’s Thursday ~ 12/13/12 ~ and…
I’ve had an exciting and fun filled couple of weeks. If you’re a regular reader, you know I didn’t post a diary entry last week because I was in the hospital getting a new knee. Now, one week later I’m doing extremely well, using a cane, and wondering why in the world I waited so long to do this. 🙂 I’m already looking forward to getting the other knee done in about six weeks. But, that isn’t even the best part of what’s happened since my last diary entry.
I am happy to introduce my daughter, JM Kline, and her first YA (Young Adult) story!!! She’s working on a complete paranormal (shape shifter) series that promises to be spectacular but, for the holiday, she’s releasing a short Christmas story that will give you a taste of the world she’s creating. And, yes, I may be biased, but I think you’re going to love her stories.
THE CHRISTMAS SHIFT, Now Available on Amazon!!!
It’s Christmas Eve, and Holly Barry’s seventeenth birthday. This is the year she will shape-shift for the first time, and she is terrified of what she may change into. The holidays are already a hard time for her, missing her mother’s Christmas cheer. Her embarrassing seasonal name doesn’t help matters. Her dad doesn’t seem to understand Holly’s reluctance, and decorates to his heart’s content.
When Holly shifts into something truly grotesque, she has to find the Christmas spirit. Will she discover it in time to make dreams come true?
JM Kline was born in Colorado, and was raised to love books by her mom, a published author. While she grew up reading many different genres, anything with paranormal or fantasy elements caught her eye most often. She grew up writing fantastic stories about Rindercella and her Prince, talking monkeys, and fairy princesses.
I sat up in bed and held my breath. I waited to hear the noise again.
Thump. Thump. Jingle.
Yup, that was it. I got out of bed and pulled my curtains back. The sun was just beginning to come up from behind downtown Denver in the east.
Thump. Thump. Jingle.
“Seriously, what is that?” I threw my fuzzy pink slippers on my feet and ran downstairs. I opened the front door and walked sideways down the walk so I could see the roof.
Then my dad’s head poked up over the peak. “Good morning, Holly! Did I wake you?”
I rolled my eyes. Dad loved Christmas. He was constantly moving the decorations around and adding new ones. Last year, he added a giant snowflake on the roof on Christmas Eve. Apparently this year wasn’t going to be an exception. It looked like he had a new life-sized Santa to go with the almost life-sized reindeer and sleigh.
“Geez, Dad! It’s not even light yet! What is it, like six-thirty?”
Dad checked his watch and grinned. “No, it’s six forty-five already. Early bird catches the worm!”
“Very funny.” I rubbed my hands on my arms.
The last few years, I just couldn’t get into Christmas. Not like Dad did. The decorations and songs and everything just seemed so pointless.
I guess it had something to do with Mom. I remember how she used to decorate the whole house with twinkling lights. Our tree always sparkled more than anything I’d ever seen.
Every year, hundreds of people would drive by our house. Mom would always hand out candy canes to the kids who came up to see her handmade Polar Express train.
She loved the holidays – the sparkling lights against fresh snow, the looks on the kids’ faces when they watched the moving elves on the train. I missed her so much. She was always so generous with her time and love.
I didn’t mind Christmas back then. I probably even enjoyed it a little. But now, I was just reminded of how my mom was gone.
Dad took over decorating after she died. I think it made him feel like she was still around.
He stood up and looked around. He saw something he didn’t like and reached down to grab the lights to re-arrange them. As I watched, his foot hit a patch of ice and he slipped. His arms flailed around and around. His upper body rocked back and forth. Finally, he just fell over the side of the roof.
I crossed my arms and sighed as the air around him shimmered and he changed into a little black bird with white-tipped wings. Lark Bunting-Dad flew to land on the sidewalk in front of me.
“Seriously, Dad. It’s a good thing we don’t live in town. You would get into so much trouble, changing like that in public,” I said. “Sometimes I wonder if you have wings just because you can never stay on your feet.”
The bird shimmered into Dad again. “Thanks for the concern, Holl, I’m fine.” He kissed my forehead. “I guess I’m done up there for now anyway, huh? Why don’t we head inside and get some breakfast?”
I followed Dad through the front door. I hadn’t realized it would be so cold outside, and I sat on the heating vent in the living room to warm up. I stared at the over-stuffed brown armchair Dad loved and thought about what my life might be like after I turned seventeen tomorrow.
This was one birthday I’d be happy to skip.
Dad didn’t tell me that we were shape shifters until I started high school. Dad had changed into a bird so many times over the last two years, I’d kind of gotten used to the idea. I wish I’d had a chance to see my mom change. Dad always told me she was the most beautiful swan he had ever seen. It was part of why he’d fallen in love with her.
Really, it wasn’t the shape-changing that scared me. The truth is, I was terrified I’d change into something weird.
I’d been thinking about the worst case scenarios for a while. What if I changed into a shark or something and I suddenly couldn’t breathe? I know they have precautions, like having a nearby pool or something, but what if they didn’t get me there in time? I moved through other terrible possibilities. A cow – I can imagine the taunts now. A vulture – has to be the ugliest bird on the planet. A giant snake. I shuddered at that one. I know a couple of snakes. One of my teachers is a rattlesnake, but they still give me the creeps.
I shook my head. Thinking about these things was completely pointless. There was no way of knowing what was going to happen tomorrow, so there was no point in getting worked up about it.
FREE on Amazon December 13 & 14!!
Not to steal the thunder from my talented daughter, I also wanted to tell you that today and tomorrow I’m sharing some of my Christmas joy with more readers. SATIN PLEASURES will be **free** exclusively on Kindle December 13-14. If you haven’t had a chance to snag a copy, now is the time to slip this cute, romantic comedy into your Christmas stocking. If you already have a copy, I hope you’ve enjoyed Dan’s and Tess’s story. I hope you’ll feel inclined to share the luv with a review. Tell your family and friends. This has been a spectacular, debut year for me and I’d love to share the smiles with all of my readers.
See you Thursday, December 20, 2012, for another rousing entry in Karen’s Diary Drop-In….