Welcome to "Showers of Blessings" which is a blog for writers and their readers! It is my prayer you will find many blessings in these humble words as you open your heart to hear about my best friend, Jesus Christ. He has called me to write for Him and though I remain stunned by this, wondering how He could use someone like me in this competitive industry, I know He has equipped me to do the job or He would never have opened all the doors He has to a career in writing. He gets all the glory for such an awesome plan, believe me!

Below each post there is an indication of the number of comments for that post. If you click on that it will bring up the comments for you to read and allow you to leave a comment for me if you would like to do so. I look forward to hearing what you have to say and thank you for taking the time to step with me into the showers of blessings He shares with all of us through His Word!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Part Five (Continued from Post on 11/21/10)

The Sheriff just shook his head in wonder. What on earth happened in those nightmares to create this monster sitting here in front of me?
“And what about after that?”

“I ran out of money eventually. So I decided to get me some more. I met up with a cowboy about that time who seemed nice enough at first, I mean, not at all like the men I’d known. Told me he’d just robbed a stagecoach and how easy it was, even though there were a few moments when he’d wished he had a partner. And then he asked if I’d like to join him in robbing another one. So I thought why not? And we did, shot everyone on board.”

“Oh, Cherokee, why? They wouldn’t have hurt you. Okay, take the money if that’s what you need. But don’t kill people, too. They were just minding their own business, not hurting you a bit. I’m sure they wouldn’t have fought you for the money, so why not just let them go?”

“You’d never understand. Don’t know if you are just stupid or what. Actually, I don’t even understand why I need to kill, just that it’s there. You know, that’s just what it is, a ‘need.’ To kill until the nightmares stop.”

“Well, they’re going to stop, that I can guarantee you. The moment your neck snaps at the end of the rope, they will stop. But a far greater one will begin.”

“You mean in Hell?”

“Yep, in Hell. I can see that you were paying some attention at least in those tent revivals you mentioned attending while you were growing up. That’s precisely where you are going, because you certainly cannot get into Heaven with that attitude.”

“Ah, that Heaven stuff sounds too ‘nice’ for my tastes, anyway. Bet I can gun down anyone I come across in Hell. I’m faster and meaner than any of them!”

“Yes, I’d say you are, Cherokee Star. You certainly don’t stand for any of the values your people have always lived.”

“What do you mean by my people?”

“The Cherokees. Now you are the one being stupid. You said your mother’s mother taught you the lullabies. She must have taught you something more than that, about respecting other people and being honorable. The Cherokees don’t take a breath without that thought being foremost in their minds. I’ve known Cherokees all my life. And they do not live their lives like you have chosen to do. That’s why they are called one of the civilized tribes, because they have chosen a different path.”

“Well, you forget, I’m also my father’s little girl,” she said, her words frosty with sarcasm. “And he taught me well. My mother may have been a Cherokee but she sure never acted like the ones you’re talking about.”

Suddenly Cherokee stood up and turned her back to the Sheriff. He could taste the tension in the room but wasn’t sure if he should remain quiet or demand that she sit back down. He didn’t trust her when he couldn’t see those eyes. They might be made of ice but at least he had studied them enough this day to feel certain he would know if she was about to grab him by the throat and squeeze the life out of him before Stanley could get the door unlocked and get her off him. He shuddered at the thought, not out of fear but out of sadness at the waste.

To Be Continued . . .

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Hope you all are enjoying this story. Wish I could have posted the whole thing at once but it was too long. Let me know what you think!

Part Four (Continued from Post on 11/14/10)

“What about your dreams, Cherokee? Surely you had them from time to time. Don’t they ever come back in the darkness, making you wish things had been different?”

“Only nightmares come in the darkness, unless I’ve had enough whiskey to drown out the voices. And then I can sleep in peace. Dreams are for sissies, not for people like me.”

“Yeah, I remember. Hard. Well, you are hard all right. But you are going to have to face the fact that very soon you will confront Someone you cannot fool with your tough act.”

She frowned. “Who? What are you talking about?”

“God, Cherokee. You are going to hang for your crimes, you know that. And when you die you will have to face God and explain all this to Him.”

“He doesn’t care about me any more than anyone else. What, are you going to preach at me now? I’ve had my share of that, too. Went to a couple of tent revivals when I was a kid, hoping that I’d find some way to escape the monster living in my house. But there was no escape. Only empty words, fine for those who don’t have to fight off a monster every night in bed.”

“Cherokee, there is no doubt that you have had a tough life. But life wasn’t supposed to be that way. Besides the singing, what else did you hope for that never happened?”

She closed her eyes for a moment as though in deep thought, then popped open those deep blues which were so captivating the heart of her jailer. “That someone would love me for who I was instead of for what I could do for them. Read that somewhere one time, that there are those who do that. But I never believed it. Again, empty words designed to lure you into the reach of that serpent’s sharp teeth.”

“Not empty words, Cherokee. True ones. I can see deep down under all that hardness and hatred you’ve built up around your heart that you are scared. You are worried about facing God with what you’ve done, even if you won’t admit it out loud to me. But you cover it up with all this talk about snakes and with all your efforts to be so tough, just so that no one will see.”

“See what?”

“That you are real. That you hurt, deep down inside. That you don’t really want to be like this.”

“Of course I do! I could have changed. Just chose not to. What’s the point? After I killed once, there was no turning back. Besides, it felt good.”

“What do you mean, ‘good’?”

“Just that. I was terrified the second before I pulled that trigger the first time, but the moment I did I found courage for the first time. I had power and I used it to stop him. And to take what I wanted. And I felt good for the first time in my life. I liked that feeling of power and the thrill of seeing his body lying there and knowing I caused it. I never imagined I could feel that way. And I couldn’t wait to feel that way again.”

“How soon before you killed the second time?”

“About two days. I was out on the trail and a cowboy came riding up, claiming that he was lost and asked if I knew how to get to Santa Fe. I knew all right because I’d just come from there. But I wasn’t about to tell him. It was his fault that he was lost. And he wanted me to help him? Hah! Where was he when I needed help? So I shot him, just for the fun of it. I took his horse and some money and left him there for the vultures. Serves him right for getting lost.”

To Be Continued . . .

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Part Three (Continued from Post on 11/7/10)

Deputy Olson came running to the cell door at the sound of the banging and yelling, and Cherokee eased back a few inches but didn’t take her seat, as the Sheriff also pulled back instinctively.

“You okay, Sheriff?” the Deputy asked, his hand on his gun in the holster, ready to use it if need be.

“Yeah, yeah, I’m fine, Stanley. Go on back up front.” He did as told but obviously was not happy about it.

“Sit down, Cherokee.”

She just glared at him for a moment, then without further words took a seat, those blue eyes daring him to order her around again.

“Didn’t you ever have any goals for your life while you were growing up? No child, not even one who has been mistreated the way you were, grows up wanting to roam around robbing and killing and terrorizing decent folk. Wasn’t there something you wanted to do with your future?”

She chewed her lip for a moment while studying the Sheriff’s face. Finally she said simply, “I wanted to be a singer.” The Sheriff stifled a laugh at this idea and she went on. “More than anything else, I wanted to sing. My mother’s mother taught me some Cherokee lullabies when I was very small and I loved the sound of those mysterious Indian words set to such haunting music. She gave me the only love I’ve ever known and when she died, something in me changed.”

Another moment of silence passed. Finally she said, “Hard.”

“Excuse me?”

“Hard. I became hard, in my heart and in my mind. Had to, to survive. Wasn’t what I wanted but no one ever asked me what I wanted. Generally just told me what they wanted and then took it. Or beat me until I gave it to them.”

“I guess you did have to protect yourself like that, Cherokee. What about all those people you murdered, though? Didn’t that ever bother you? They were someone’s mother, friend, grandfather. Can you honestly tell me that didn’t get to you?”

“Just thought of my father every time and that made it all right. I could do it then. As I said, I made my heart hard and it never meant anything to me. Like killing a snake out on the trail who gets too close to your bedding. You’re not about to let him in, no matter how cold it is. Pure survival. Kill or be killed.”

The Sheriff just shook his head.

“What? You don’t believe me? I could shoot you between the eyes right now and it wouldn’t mean a thing. “You’re a snake to me, wanting to get in my bed.”

“Oh, Cherokee, for heaven’s sake, grow up. Not every man wants to do to you what your father did.”

“Maybe. Maybe not. What difference does it make? You would eventually. Admit it. And I’m going to stop every man from even thinking about that before he has a chance to do it. Snake, remember? Slithering up close to you, hoping you won’t notice, hoping you’ll think it’s okay that he’s just warming himself close to the fire instead of planning to crawl in next to your warm body as soon as your head is turned.”

“You’ve spent too many lonely hours out on the trail, young lady. You don’t even understand what the simplest kindness means any more.”

“They all mean the same thing, Sheriff. And I won’t give anyone the chance to get the better of Cherokee Star. She’ll give them what they deserve before they have a chance to take anything from her ever again! That’s why all the robbing and killing. It meant nothing to me, except money to buy more whiskey and bullets.”

To Be Continued . . .

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Cherokee Star
Part Two (Continued from post on 11/4/10)

“So you finally just had enough one day and shot him?”

“It was for the money.”


“Yeah. He had a bunch of it stashed in an old pair of boots he kept in the barn, and he didn’t think we knew where it was. But we knew. We all knew. Ma told me to take it one day after he rode out toward town, to take it and get out before he killed me.”

“Sounds to me like she cared about you, even though she never did anything to help you when it really mattered. At least you have that.”

“Yeah, I suppose. Mostly, she thought if I was gone he would settle down and quit being so angry all the time. So I did what she told me, grabbed a couple of things—didn’t have much I could call my own back then—and went out to the barn and took the money. Saw his old pistol lying there, too, so I grabbed it as well. Good thing, because as I turned to saddle my horse, he walked in. Like to have scared me to death, seeing him standing there in the doorway like that. His face was white as a sheet and for the first time in my life, he didn’t have nothin’ to say. Just stood there, all quiet like, studying me kind of like a snake studies his prey before striking, figuring out the best angle and all.”

She stopped and stared down at her boots, as though lost in her thoughts for a moment. The Sheriff hesitated, not sure if he should push her to talk or just wait. Again, the blue eyes met his brown ones evenly, unafraid, almost cocky.

And suddenly, she laughed. He blinked, startled for a moment.

Her voice stronger this time, she continued. “I had a jacket thrown over my arm, hiding my gun in my hand. I remember my hand was shaking so badly I didn’t think I could pull that trigger even if I could get it aimed before he shot me. But then he just lunged at me, screaming at the top of his voice such horrible words, most I didn’t even know what they meant. He’d called me a lot of names in my life but these . . . well, I just reacted, you know? I just plain shot him before he got two steps in my direction, without even thinking about it any more. My mother came running in a moment later, followed by my little brother.”

“What did she say to you? Was she upset?”

“She made this funny little gurgling sound in her throat for several moments and just stared at his body lying there. Then she told me to get out and never come back. So I did. I took that money and I rode as fast and as far as I could straight south. Thought maybe I could make it to Mexico eventually and they wouldn’t come after me there.”

“Cherokee, you were only twelve and you shot him in self-defense. That’s not a crime. Why didn’t you stay and explain to the Sheriff what happened instead of running away?”

“He was my father’s best friend. What kind of justice do you think he’d give a half-breed like me? Besides, he was one of the ones who . . . ”

She stopped and stared at the boots again.

“Who, what?”

“Oh, never mind. I don’t like to think about that part of my life. I was born that morning as a new person and I’ve never really looked back. Cherokee Star knew then she could take care of herself.” She suddenly jumped out of her seat and pounded the table with her fist, her face so close to his he could smell her rancid breath. “And she didn’t need no man to tell her what to do any more!”

To Be Continued . . .

Thursday, November 4, 2010


The great news right now is that I have finally completed the manuscript for my historical romance novel, From Now Until Forever! Now I’m finishing up the Proposal on it for a prospective agent, in the hopes she will agree to represent me in marketing the book to publishers. Pray for her heart to be receptive and for wisdom for my mind as I try to market myself as well as my book!

Today I’m trying an experiment so let me know what you think. It is a serial of seven parts called "Cherokee Star". Set in the Old West it is a short story about the harsh realities many women faced back then and explores the choices one in particular made in order to cope with them, yet it offers hope even at the end of life.

Part One

“Well, come to stare at the condemned woman, have you? You won’t be the first man to have stared at me, so go ahead – stare away. I don’t care any more.” She set her chin and glared at him, the hatred in her blue eyes causing even a hardened man like him to have to work at fighting back the shivers running up his spine. He was grateful she didn’t have a gun.

“Sit down, Cherokee. I didn’t come to ‘stare’ as you put it, just to talk to you a bit. Occurred to me that you have never really talked about your crimes and I would really like to understand you before it’s too late.”

“Understand? What is there to understand? I killed ’em all, pure and simple.” The young woman stalked over to the tiny barred window and gazed out at the gallows being hastily constructed in the courtyard below. “People are going to have themselves a party in a couple of days, aren’t they?”

When she didn’t move, quietly the man sat down at the table and with his boot shoved the other chair toward her. “Sit down, Cherokee. Let’s talk.”

“About what?”

“About your life and how you got to this point. Perhaps you should start at the beginning.”

She whirled around to face him defiantly. “You mean, when I was born?”

“No, not that far back. Come on, sit down, will you? When was the first time you realized that your life was taking a wrong turn?”

“The first time I shot a man.” And she plunked down in the chair with a smug smile on her face. “But it definitely wasn’t a ‘wrong turn’. I knew what I was doing and I’m glad I did it.”

There was silence as the man tapped the key to the cell on the table, turning it over and over in his hand. He just stared at her as he waited, hoping she would continue.

“I was only twelve years old. It was my father. Hated that man more than anyone I’ve ever known. And I guess I do have to start when I was born, because as long as I can remember I had suffered from his drunken rages. If he came home giggling like a kid then we knew we were safe, he’d just go to sleep without lifting a hand against any of us. But if he came home sullen . . . ”

“That’s when the beatings would start?”

The blue eyes bore into the man’s heart until he felt like a tomato plant withering in the hot sun and he had to look away. Quietly, so the words could barely be heard and he had to strain his ears to be sure he caught each one, she continued.

“No, that’s when he’d drag me out of my bed and into the lean-to, while my brother would cover his ears with a pillow to shut out my screams. Or, so he told me later.”

“What was your mother doing?”

“Same thing, I guess. At least, she never tried to stop him. Why didn’t she at least try?”

“Wish I could answer that, Cherokee. But I can understand you’d like an answer, deserve one, too. So you finally just had enough one day and shot him?”

“It was for the money.”

To Be Continued . . .