Friday, June 30, 2017

Celebrate the Small Things: A Fun and Safe 4th of July

I want to wish everyone a fun and safe 4th of July. I expect a lot of you will take today off, and Monday and Tuesday too. That makes for a nice five-day holiday. I remember those times. Working hard five days a week, with never enough vacation time. But when the calendar fell just right, we'd take a trip and go camping somewhere. Or barbecue at home, buy 'illegal' fireworks at the reservation, and have some old-fashioned fun.

Not sure what hubby and I will be doing. Company is coming, so I suppose that means hamburgers and fireworks at the park. We may participate in the annual golf cart parade. We live in a semi-retirement community, so there are a lot of golf carts!

Meanwhile.....I'm still promoting my new book, The Shells of Mersing, and could use some serious readers and Amazon Reviews. A FREE eBOOK COPY to anyone interested!

Did you know the story starts in Seattle in 1995? Email and the internet were brand new then, and cells phones were practically non-existent in the U.S. However, in Malaysia, where half the novel is set, cell phones were definitely in use and becoming rather popular. 

It was fun introducing my main character to Email and Cell phones for the first time, having lived in Malaysia myself in 1995. I remember my writer friends in the states were nervous about sending their manuscripts half way around the world over the internet for critiques (as was I). Our worries ranged from worrying about losing our work entirely to getting an enormous internet bill!! Boy, have things changed.

Sharon M. Himsl

Writer/Author. Blogging since 2011. 
Published with Evernight Teen: 
~~The Shells of Mersing

Thursday, June 22, 2017


 Finish line. Made the Goal. Here at last. The Tortoise won the Race. The Big Tuh-duh!!   

SERIOUSLY, this is a big deal. My FIRST work of fiction published. HOLY MOLY!!

Party anyone? NOT. I'm a writer. I hole up in my office and play with words. That's what writers do. I never did learn how to party.

Butfor being here to Celebrate with me.

Okay, enough chatter. This is THE SHELLS OF MERSING'S big day. Callie is dying to tell her story and I'm going to let her take it from here ....

"I have a gun frozen in my hand, and a scream welling up inside. No one would believe me in a million years if I told the truth..."

25% off for two weeks starting today at Evernight Teen. Also available on Amazon. Print copies available in August. Pop on over and take a look and give me a CHEER. I'm over the moon, doing cartwheels, releasing balloons, filled to the max excited!!


When notorious Uncle Azman disobeys his boss’s orders, and sends Callie and Lucas to meet their mother's long lost family in Malaysia, fourteen-year-old Callie Davis believes their troubles are over. After all they've endured, what more could go wrong? Their American dad is dead, Mom is missing, and their foster dad in Seattle was murdered, with Callie falsely accused. If that wasn't enough, Callie stowed aboard a sailboat with her eight-year-old brother to escape, only to be targeted by their uncle’s boss in Hawaii upon arrival for immediate sale in Thailand’s human trafficking market. Disguised in Muslim dress, in case Azman’s boss sends someone after them, Callie believes it’s simply a matter of time. They need to find safety with family in Mersing and begin the search for Mom, but a shell box, a ruby, and a boy from Chicago named Sam are about to change everything.  

More Fun Facts at Author Page  


Friday, June 16, 2017

Poof! A Book is Born: Teaser Excerpt and Update

Happy to announce my novel The Shells of Mersing is ready for release June 23. Uhh.....that's next F-R-I-D-A-Y! It's really going to happen! I dreamed a story and POOF....a book is born.

The Shells of Mersing will be featured at 25% off on the landing page of Evernight Teen's website for one week upon release, but I'll remind everyone again when it happens. I made the below image and thought it might work in a book trailer  but I'm still working on the details. 

A teaser excerpt - The Shells of Mersing:

Groaning, his eyes flicker open. “What happened?”

“Don’t move, Mr. Pirone. I’ll get Judith.”

He grabs my wrist. “You’ll do no such thing. Help me up.” His face softens. “Please, I hurt my back.” I pull him to his feet.

He staggers to the door and stops mid step at the threshold, hanging there for the longest time. “What are you doing here?” he finally says.

“Benjamin, my old friend,” a male voice replies.

Benny inches backward. Glancing back at me, he speaks in a low deliberate voice, “Run, Callie.” He mumbles something else, but all I really hear are his first words. Run, Callie.

A muffled pop pierces the air. Benny falls to his knees and collapses face down. I cover my mouth, stifling a scream, afraid to move as blood gushes from a bullet hole in Benny’s temple. A crimson pool forms on the floor.

A flashlight beam travels over his face and the wound. I gasp, recalling the glowing moon eyes in my dream. The beam of light shines on my face next and goes out, blinding me at first.

“Who’s there? Please. Who are you?”

A cold, unmistakable chill travels down my spine, and then I see him, a man clad in black. He steps over Benny’s body, entering the room. A gun hangs loose at his side in his black gloved hand. I step backward. He flicks his black hair away from his face and moves closer. Two sunken cheeks dominate his long face. A red scar zigzags across his nose. He’s young, in his twenties, maybe thirties. He eyes Benny’s body, snickering to himself.

A toilet flushes upstairs. Please let it be Judith. I step to the side, eyeing the door and the stairs behind him. I can run for it. I can do this.

He snatches my hand. “Not so fast.” His steely eyes are those of a cobra’s. I can almost hear the hiss when his bony fingers clamp down, pinching me. He forces my palm over the gun handle, curving my index finger around the trigger. “You tell anyone about me, and I’ll kill you. Your mama too.”

My mouth goes dry. “My mother?”

He smiles, a cruel deliberate sneer. “That’s right, your mama in Thailand.”

My heart rips apart, a scream building inside. This horrid man knows my mother. He knows her!

His cobra eyes gloat. “Yeah, that’s right. I think you understand. Now don’t forget.”

I struggle to move the gun wedged in my hand. No, I’ll never forget your warning and cruel voice, or your snakelike stare and jagged scar.

He snorts. “Tell them it was self-defense.” He kicks Benny’s body as he leaves.

My knees shake as I watch him disappear. The soles of my feet are molded to the floor. I have a gun frozen in my hand, and a scream welling up inside. No one would believe me in a million years if I told the truth, because the only truth I could fabricate is an outright lie. Tell them it was self-defense, he said. But I can’t lie, nor can I live with the deadly consequences of the truth.

Judith rushes into the room. I have no idea when. Seconds, minutes, hours could have passed. I’m standing where the stranger left me.


Celebrate the Small Things: Repurposing the A-Z

Well, I'm coming to the end of the week rather exhausted but pleased with myself. I completed an aviation display for our airport's annual Desert Aire Fly-In this coming weekend.

Pilots will be flying in from all over to have breakfast, show off their planes to the community, and talk about aviation. Some Fly-Ins are huge, but being a small community, ours will be held in one hangar, large enough for a small crowd and three or so displays. And of course, there will be plenty to see on the tarmac with all the planes. The kids love seeing the planes.

The display looks great. I made a collage of photos on poster board of all the "Pioneer Women in Aviation" pilots from the 2016 April A-Z, and copied the blog posts into two notebooks. Love that I could repurpose my favorite A-Z theme thus far. It's something I've always wanted to do.

Enjoy the weekend!

Sharon M. Himsl

Writer/Author. Blogging since 2011. 
Published with Evernight Teen: 
~~The Shells of Mersing

Friday, June 9, 2017

Weekly Celebration, Cover Reveals, and The Classics - CLOSING LINES: Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton

"Mrs. Hale drew a deep breath, as though her memory were eased of its long burden, and she had no more to say; but suddenly an impulse of complete avowal seized her.

She took off her spectacles again, leaned toward me across the bead-work table-cover, and went on with lowered voice: “There was one day, about a week after the accident, when they all thought Mattie couldn’t live. Well, I say it’s a pity she did. I said it right out to our minister once, and he was shocked at me. Only he wasn’t with me that morning when she first came to... And I say, if she’d ha’ died, Ethan might ha’ lived; and the way they are now, I don’t see’s there’s much difference between the Fromes up at the farm and the Fromes down in the graveyard; ‘cept that down there they’re all quiet, and the women have got to hold their tongues.” "

(Published 1911)

We biked on Richland's Riverfront Trail early in the week. A tire blew on our friend's bike, which meant finding a bike shop and delaying the bike ride by 2 hours, but we managed to have fun despite the heat. It got up to 92 degrees. Usually too hot for me, but snow cones along the way helped!

A huge Thank you to Senco Cat Herder at for hosting a Cover Reveal of my novel, The Shells of Mersing last week.

I want to Thank Heather Holden for a super nice job at this week for also sharing a Cover Reveal.

July ?? 2017 is still the launch date. Finally have an Author Page I like. I really struggled with the right colors and theme. Click here for a looksee or the page link above.

Vince and I will be attending a wedding next week, happy our nephew has found happiness at last. After losing a girlfriend a few years back, who had died suddenly, we all kind of wondered if he would. All the best this weekend. Set your sails and go for it!

"Come celebrate with us
To join "Celebrate the Small Things, visit Lexa Cain's blog
Co-hosts are: L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

IWSG: Did You Ever Say "I Quit?"

Purpose: To share and encourage.

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time - and return comments. This group is all about connecting! 

 Huge thanks to Alex Cavanaugh and his awesome co-hosts for the June 7 posting of the IWSG will be JH Moncrieff, Madeline Mora-Summonte, Jen Chandler, Megan Morgan, and Heather Gardner!

June 7 Question: Did you ever say “I quit”? If so, what happened to make you come back to writing?

I've never experienced the Hollywood version, where you make a loud announcement, yelling "I quit," and march out the door in triumph. I have a stubborn streak in me a mile thick that keeps me committed when others around me are shaking their heads and wondering why I haven’t quit. For me in general, giving up on anything or someone when you believe in their potential is a bad thing. It carries over to my writing, and so, barring family emergencies, loss of health, or nuclear war, it would take a lot to discourage me.....although the latter would send me hunting for a pencil to record everything.

I've had my share of startups and slowdowns, but never a full stop. I’m this way with characters too. Total commitment once established, when it might make sense to remove them. I once had a secondary character attempt to take over a story. I finally removed her so I could tell the story, but brought her back after a while. She was well behaved at the point, I might add. My husband, who read the manuscript and liked this character, still thinks her story is worthy. Meanwhile, I wrote my current novel three times, trying to get it right. “I quit” was never an option. 

My degree of commitment may change over the years but I see myself writing for the rest of my life. Once it gets into your blood, we appear to be permanently hooked.


Friday, June 2, 2017

Celebrate the Small Things: Photos of Bangkok's Floating Market

Well, it really is true. We write what we know and experience in life, and our stories are richer by far when we do. I'm celebrating a memory and the inspiration behind writing The Shells of Mersing. 

My husband and I spent nine wonderful months living in Malaysia in 1995-96. Our trip to Thailand was one of the highlights. Here are some photos of the Floating Market in Bangkok. It was fun popping my characters into this setting. 

Celebrating another Cover Reveal for The Shells of Mersing...... over at Tamara Narayan's blog.  Thanks, Tamara!!

Check it out and ALSO Tamara's new book!

One collection, four stories, 171 pages of suspense...

Heart Stopper: The disappearance of random household items baffles Dallas Radner and his eleven-year-old daughter, Tessa. Ten plastic bags, nine ballpoint pens . . . what's next? This odd countdown should end on November 1, The Day of the Dead. That's also Tessa's birthday and the one-year anniversary of her surgery, the day her heart stopped on the operating table....

Happy Weekend


"Come celebrate with us" 
To join "Celebrate the Small Things, visit Lexa Cain's blog
Co-hosts are: L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge 
Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits Blog

Sharon M. Himsl

Writer/Author. Blogging since 2011. 
Published with Evernight Teen: 
~~The Shells of Mersing

About Me

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You could call me an eternal optimist, but I'm really just a dreamer. l believe in dream fulfillment, because 'sometimes' dreams come true. This is a blog about my journey as a writer and things that inspire and motivate me.