Monday, July 5, 2010

Doctor in Petticoats Give Away TODAY!!!

If you're keeping score at home, I'm to stage FIVE of a five part series on how to revise a finished books

Here's what I've done so far:

1) Grinding action to a halt--Read about that HERE
2) Consistency—Feel free to review that HERE
3) Telling--Read about that HERE
4) Dialogue tags--Read about that HERE
5) Comedy

Today is COMEDY.


Today is also the Monday holiday after the Fourth of July.

I know no one is out there. I can hear my words echoing in this empty, empty blog cavern while you're all out grilling hot dogs and eating homemade ice cream beneath a fluttering flag while wearing a swimming suit and waving a sparkler in your hand.

So, I'm taking the day off too. Both literarily and bloggularily.

I'm posting a scene (IT'S A COMEDY SCENE!) from Doctor in Petticoats and giving one lucky commentor a signed copy.

(Lucky is my spin, if yours is different I'd appreciate it if you wouldn't say so out loud)

I'll do the comedy thing later.

Doctor in Petticoats released July first.

Here's a comedy scene
Pa, Alex is a doctor.” She smiled as if she’d done him a favor with her announcement.
“He is?” The look the rancher gave him was as close to shocked as someone so contained could muster.
“No, I’m not!”
“You’re not?” McClellen asked as he and The Spitfire turned off the trail and struck out to the south while the well-traveled trail headed on west. Alex had to hustle to keep up. It was all he could do to ignore the lingering ache left behind by Beth’s—annoyance.
“Yes he is.”
McClellen looked between them. “Well, which is it?”
“I’m not.”
“He’s a doctor but he’s not doctoring these days.”
“Mosqueros could use a doctor.”
“Pa,” she gave him a disgruntled look, “Alex can’t be the Mosqueros doctor. I’m going to—”
“You can’t be a doctor!” Alex cut her off.
“—do it.” She glared at him.
“No, you’re not.” McClellen talked over her this time. “Doctoring’s not a proper job for a female.”
Alex looked at The Spitfire’s father and found a kindred spirit.
The Spitfire, however, wasn’t having it. “I spent the last four year training to be a doctor.”
“A nurse, you mean,” her pa said.
“No, a doctor. It’s true I went to nursing school.”
“Then you’re a nurse.” Alex flinched a bit when she turned her fiery eyes on him.
“But I apprenticed with a doctor. He knew I’d be the only person in the area with doctoring skills. He taught me everything. He let me do surgery.”
“With a knife?” Alex gasped.
“No, I cut my patients open with a carrot, idiot,” Beth snapped. “Of course with a knife.”
“That’s awful. That guy oughta be reported.” Clay’s jaw stiffened with anger.
He ought be arrested and shot and maybe hanged, too, Alex thought. “What all’d he let you do? A woman can’t be examining a man.”
“None of your business, Alex.”
“You’re not gonna be a doctor and that’s that.” Her pa rode right up close so he could tower over her whilst he laid down the law. “You can do some midwifin’ if your ma says it’s okay and she goes along, and maybe a few other little things with women and young children. But you’ll be living at the ranch, and you aren’t going off alone in the night to care for sick people. That’s just asking for trouble.”
“Amen!” Alex slapped his pommel and McClellen looked at him. They jerked their chins in agreement.
“He can be the doctor.” McClellen jabbed his thumb at Alex.
Beth gasped. “He not a doctor.”
“I’m not a doctor.” Alex and The Spitfire spoke at the same time.
“You just said he was a doctor.” McClellen looked between the two of them.
“I’m not.” Alex knew that even if the Spitfire didn’t.
“He’s not.” Now she was just being stubborn because she wanted the job herself.
McClellen shook his head in disgust and kicked his horse into a faster gait, which took him out from between them.
They glared at each other for too long, then Alex got his own horse moving faster. He liked it better when he couldn’t see her pretty blue eyes anyway.

To get your name in the drawing, leave a comment telling me what you're doing (or what you did) for Independence Day.

Mary Connealy


  1. I'm out here. I spent Independence day getting my son off to Scout camp.


  2. Hi, Walt. This is still the fourth where I live. So I feel like I'm time the FIFTH.

    If you'd rather talk about something besides plans for the 4th, you can tell about a time you or someone you know was maimed by a firework.

    Bet we've all got those stories.

  3. I'm here and have the coffee pot set to brew. There are Cokes in the fridge for the non-coffee-drinkers of us.

    I did the fun things while daughteer, son-in-law, and one of the two sons were here. Watched fireworks and made ice cream last night.

    Everybody left late this afternoon. Tonight I watched the Boston Pops.

    Tomorrow I'm gonna play dead.


  4. I honestly can't think of anyone I know that was maimed by fireworks, though I know we try hard each year to do something wrong.

    HAve a mini-writing retreat over the next two days. I'm here. The family's off on variuos adventures.

  5. I took the kids to see the fireworks in Boston. Of course, we never left Richmond, VA because CBS was broadcasting it live, but, hey, they saw fireworks. And we went to bed not smelling like smoke.

    On Saturday night I gave four of my five kids a Miracle Whip facial. One minor warning: it'll turn your face splotchy red. Eitehr that or my kids are all allergic to Miracle Whip. Much better than being allergic to peanuts, I say.

    Never been maimed by a firework or even know anyone who has. I live a rather boring life.

  6. Helen, if I'd known you'd been watching the Boston Pops, I'd have waved at the tv screen. Not that you'd have seen me, but I'd at least felt like I was socializing.

  7. Gina;

    I watched part of the Capitol Fourth and Macy's shindigs before ending with the Boston Pops. Hate that I missed waving at you. Let me know in advance next time.


  8. Helen, next year same time, same place. I'll be looking for you...if I can remember, which I'm not gonna hold out much hope for. I've heard with every child you have, you lose a portion of your brain functioning skills. I'm comotose. Then again, could be because it's 1:45 in the MORNING. What am I thinking?!

    Must. Go. Slumber.

  9. This year I got to see the Blue Angels!! They do an air show every other year in Traverse City, MI. I don't usually brave the crowds, but my hubby was on hand to help me out.

    It was fantastic!!


  10. I went to church on the 4th - very patriotic service. Then shopping and grilled burgers.


  11. We went to church on the 4th ... one of the dads, who lost a son in Afghanistan a few years ago, brought tears to our eyes when he sang "America the Beautiful," especially the verse about "heroes proved in liberating strife, who more than selves their country loved and mercy more than life ..."

    At the fireworks last night the band's backdrop said "Home of the free because of the brave." True.

  12. Hi Helen, The coffee is wonderful. And Helen and Gina, I was waving too. I love the Boston Pops fireworks.

    We have fire danger in the mountains so no fireworks. Thank you very much.

    Walt, I'm with you. A nice quiet writing time scheduled for today.

    Leftover potato salad to nibble on. (The recipe is in the comments of the weekend edition)

    Mary,homemade ice cream. Love it.

    And I'm going to read your next blog about comedy. there is no one who does it as well as you. Go girl.

  13. We celebrated the 4th with friends on Friday night.

    My husbands assembling a gazebo in our yard this weekend while my sister & I continue to pack/sort for Mom's auction....we are making headway though.

    Hubby & I were able to sit in the gazebo and watch fireworks the city puts on last night.

  14. LOVE IT, Mare!!! And I'm overjoyed because I got this sweet book sitting at the top of my TBR pile since you so graciously signed it at ICRS!! Can't wait to dig in.

    And, GINA ... you made me laugh out loud with your comment:

    "I took the kids to see the fireworks in Boston. Of course, we never left Richmond, VA because CBS was broadcasting it live, but, hey, they saw fireworks. And we went to bed not smelling like smoke."

    I actually misread the last line and was under the impression that you did go to bed smelling like smoke. I thought, Wow, talk about virtual reality!!

    How did I spend the 4th??? Well, I got you all beat ... I cleaned the house and did laundry, which is enough in itself for my husband to shoot up fireworks, never mind that it was 4th of July!! Unfortunately, I only clean house when we have company or I finish a book, whichever comes first. Although, I am proud to say, I do do laundry a little more frequently. :)

    But today, we go biking (no, not motorcyle variety, although I wish!!). But just being with my hubby is like a holiday in itself because after 32 years, the fireworks are still there, which is saying something for two people who see each other 24/7. Tip #25 for a good marriage ... write romance!!!


  15. Hey Mary! Won't think about missing Seekerville today--after all, it's as American as apple pie!(Did I kiss up enough to get a book? LOL) But really, miss Seekerville--I don't think so!

    I spent yesterday at the pool, writing a bit on my new project; then to the movies with my husband and youngest daughter. Really a nice day.

    And I've got a Fourth story for you--in our old neighborhood, we always gathered in our neighbors' backyard to watch these people who lived behind them set off fireworks. The trouble was that these folks didn't have the best sense of direction and one year, shot a pretty good size rocket toward my neighbors' house. Thing went down the fireplace and blew out the side of the house! Thankfully, no one was hurt but we kept the fire extingishers(sp?) handy.

    Hope everyone has a blessed day!


  16. We went to church in the morning and the rest of the day we just spent enjoying family. Where I live, just about every other house sets off fireworks so there was no lack there...made it hard to get to sleep though. Maybe thats why I had a dream I was in a war zone...

    Today we are off of work so my hubby & I are taking my Mom to a see a movie..haven't decided which one yet.

    Have a wonderful weekend!

    Smiles & Blessings,
    Cindy W.


  17. We grilled a large meal as we do every year. I guess that's our own family tradition. And, on Saturday evening we went into a neighboring town to watch the independence day fireworks, then spent an hour trying to navigate traffic to get back home.


  18. We went hiking and then watched Independence Day, as we do every year.

    We expected to be out in the culdesac watching the neighbor aim fireworks at our house like they did last year (we ended up with smouldering stuff on the roof but it went out), but, whew, that didn't happen. After reading here about one going down a chimney, I am especially relieved.

    Peace, Julie

  19. Thank you so much for sharing a portion of your new book. I can't wait to read it! :o)

    We actually did our celebrating on Saturday this year. Went to the fireworks in the evening. Yesterday, we went to church in the morning and then spent the rest of the afternoon and evening with our kids. We were able to squeeze some much needed naps in there too! :o)

    sheriberry (at) northriver (dot) coop

  20. We went to church, napped the afternoon away(we must have all been exhausted because we barely woke up in time for evening services), and then we worked together cooking and doing laundry and dishes. Just a normal Sunday :)

  21. Fun scene, Mary!!

    I spent time with the family on the 4th. Just as where Sandra is, no fireworks here due to high fire danger.

    Today is reserved as a writing day! YAY!

  22. Believe it or not, this Canadian watched the Boston Pops as well last night. It's a tradition -- and much more comfortable to celebrate the 4th of July Fireworks than the Canada Day Fireworks on account of my dog not being partial to the sound of fireworks.

    The reason for that, while not a maiming fireworks story is a heartrending one. When my dogs were just pups some no account, thoughtless youth threw a firecracker at them. Of course the noise scared them witless. To this day Simba turns into a quavering mass of shedding fur at the sound of a single 'pop'. At that point the only 'safe' place when the firworks start is my lap and since it's always hot on July 1st and I don't have air conditioning it's a bit of an ordeal.

    So July 4th is when I get to enjoy fireworks...from a safe distance.

    And yay -- my copy of 'Doctor in Petticoats' is in at my local Christian bookstore. I'm picking it up on Thursday. I can't wait!

  23. Hi Mary, It was great to see you at ICRS! On Friday we attended our son's graduation from a special Marine training school. Saturday we saw our daughter and son in law off to Sudan for a 6-month mission trip. Yesterday we attended a picnic and swim party with friends from church. Today I hope to catch up at home and write. : )
    carrie (at) turansky (dot) come

  24. We are such a bunch of fuddy duddies....

    We need to make a pact, A REAL PACT to do next year's 4th up the way John Adams saw it, "The pageant, the pomp and parade! I see Americans, all Americans... free."

    We delivered seven puppied on Saturday, and yes, I was as boring as the rest of youse, (hence the pact for next year) because I wrote, the computer froze, ate two pages, I groaned, ironed summer clothes, put away winter clothes, (yes, I know it's July.... But you KNOW what my June was like, LOL!!!) had a lovely patriotic Mass at St. Lawrence, then did quick coffee with friends, sold a puppy to a darling family whose little girl wanted to see brand new baby puppies, and then dressed like a freakin' Eskimo (not kidding, sweat pants, socks, sneakers, long-sleeved turtleneck, bandanna, gloves....) to pull weeds in my poison ivy-riddled front garden, the one on my website which LOOKED great in that pic....

    Right now it looks like a far east jungle, so we'll see what a week of daily concentrated effort does. And I sprayed around the few remaining intentional plants with Round-Up (I LOVE ROUND UP) this morning.

    And no outbreak of poison ivy as yet, and I'm boiling my clothes in the longest cycle, hottest water, toughest detergent and bleach I could find to see if I can emerge victorious over a noxious weed.

    I will not mention the snake and/or vermin holes I found out there.

    We'll just keep them quiet. ;)

    Next year: Pomp. Family. (We've had family stuff all month, I was actually kind of sick of them, almost). Pageant.

    Does anyone else remember church bells ringing on the 4th of July or was that a Rochester thing???

    I'm eating ice cream today, Abbott's or Lugia's, a banana split in honor of brave, brave people with stamina who fought for us.

    And them I'm taking that same stamina into the snake/poison ivy field.

    I W-I-L-L W-I-N.

    (Of course I had the Yankees game on the radio... that's pretty patriotic right there!)

  25. Picnics, parades, and fireworks--about sums it up.

    My agent said my writing has humorous undertones, but I'm not seeing it. I would love to learn to write comedy, but I sense it comes more from within the author than learning how to write. I don't consider myself a funny person. Sometimes I'm downright unfunny.

    Love the carrot line, Mary!!

  26. Another great Connealy book I am looking forward to. Julie, you brat, getting your copy already!!!! And having the nerve to brag about it!

    We spent the Fourth keeping our doggies calm. We live in a virtual "war zone"--neighborhood fireworks permitted (with city permit, although I have no idea about the compliance rate), and boy, does this neighborhood go wild!

    But we did grill a steak and veggies, then had Braum's chocolate mojito ice cream for dessert. MMMMMMM!!!!!!

    Oh, and we watched Outsourced on Netflix Wii.

  27. Morning everyone.

    Family coming up today so who knows how much I'll stop in.

    No one's been mained by a firework, huh? I'm really proud of you all.

    My neighbor, when we were kids, had one blow up in her hand. Her right index finger was maimed. Still a perfectly intact, functioning finger but it looked wrong. Sort of pudgy on the bottom. She used to hold it up and say it was pregnant.

    I havent' looked at her pregnant finger in years.

    I need to hunt her down and have lunch with her.

    We're so old we'll probably end up worrying about arthritis setting int her finger now.

  28. We went to church yesterday morning and skipped the picnic afterwards. Came home, took a nap, and then did the same thing we do every 4th of July---Celebrated my daddy's birthday! We're a very patriotic family---My dad's birthday is the 4th of July, My brother's is Columbus Day, and mine is George Washington's birthday.


  29. I'm here, too, Mary. I'm just chilling out on the computer. Hubby is home and getting ready to take the big boys to a movie. Maybe I'll get a little writing in today, or maybe I'll catch up on housework. We were rained out of our fireworks. Time will tell if we get rained out of grilling hotdogs or not. We had a good 4th for the most part, though. We had a pastoral candidate come preach, dinner at church, and all around great fellowship. All in all, it was a great day. Even got in a bit of a nap.

    lr.mullin at live. com

  30. Now I'm not bein' critical here, but didja all notice one thing about our somewhat predictable and (Y-A-W-N) 4ths that we've reported????

    None of the younguns of Seekerville are here.

    Does that mean we're old fuddy duddies? And that I should have gone to fireworks last night???

    I'm ashamed of myself.

    Next year I'm going. Without fail.

    Pageant. Pomp. Parade.

    I'm IN!!!!

  31. Mary, the line about the carrot had me laughing out loud! I can't wait to read The "Doctor in Petticoats". Daughter stole Wildflower Bride and took it to camp. Did I mention she's going to be there for SIX weeks? I was going to send her "Doctor" as a surprise, but now, I'm not so sure.

    After church on the fourth, we took youngest daughter to Toy Story 3. I cried like a baby. Yep, right in the middle of the comedic animated film. With a son about to head off to college, it was just too close to home in some places. Of course, I laughed too. I must have looked like a lunatic.

    Later, we joined family for homemade ice cream (fresh peach) and the "big boys" set off fire works. I'd say men, but by the way they act, they can't really claim that. My sister's house sets on hill, so we could see fireworks all the way across the river.

    My word verification says "flusi". That doesn't sound very nice, does it?

  32. No fireworks but lots of watermelon around here! I loved the scene from Doctor in Petticoats.

  33. Only in Texas: The pre-fireworks show included an attempt to set a world record on sliding down a hill on cardboard. Since our kids had some trouble getting their card board to slip, two of us homeschool moms, ever ready for the opportunity to teach our children (no matter if they're in their 20's) hopped on the cardboard and took off down the hill...sort of. I had to peddle with my leg when I got stuck.

    terism at rgv dot rr dot com

    Remember, Mary, you still owe us a post on writing humor!

  34. Cute example! We went to fireworks after I was done babysitting. :-)

  35. Fun scene. I spent the evening with the kids and we did some fireworks out in front of our house--most of the big fireworks were delayed because of the rain.

  36. Fun excerpt, Mary! Looking forward to reading the entirety of
    Doctor in Petticoats!!! And your humor post.

    Sounds like everyone had a great 4th! We had a lovely weekend. Saturday our family toured a firehouse that included lunch and
    2 1/2 fascinating hours spent with the nicest guys, our heroic fire fighters, who made it fun for all of us. We purchased the tour at a MDA fundraiser.

    Our kids hosted a delicious anniversary dinner for us Saturday evening.

    About fifty of us from our first neighborhood held our annual picnic and fireworks display Sunday with no food poisoning or injuries. We gave up Jarts years ago. Anyone remember Jarts? Replaced it with corn hole. Much safer with little kids around.

    Today I'm doing laundry and playing catch up.


  37. Whoever wins the book will be announced on the weekend edition.


    I mean YAY because you'll all have to stop back. It's SNEAKY of us.

    It was Tina's idea.

    I have to watch her every minute.

  38. I'll write a post about comedy someday.

    I think the fundamentals of comedy are just to say outloud the rude things you THINK inside your head all the time.

    I make my characters do it.

    Although, I remember in college, some guy once told me, "You are the most sarcastic person I've ever met. It took me about a year to realize that almost everything that comes out of your mouth is sarcastic because you're quiet about it.:

    I suppose there's some truth in that. So maybe saying out loud the things that are in MY head amount to comedy. But there is NOTHING WRONG with not being like that.

    In fact, it's probably much better if you aren't thinking sarcastic thoughts with every breath.

    I wonder where that came from? Maybe it's rooted in sharing and 10 x 10 foot bedroom with three other sisters. Laugh or cry.

  39. Mary, loved the excerpt! Can't wait to read the rest!

    Our 4th weekend has included a couple of good fireworks displays, but the city's display last night was wonderful. They shoot them off a high river bluff and we can get below the bluff, right by the river, and watch the explosions directly overhead while the bluffs on the other side of the river valley echo back the explosions. The sight of the fireworks with the rolling, thunderous booms echoing back and forth is so thrilling and a 4th tradition for us.

    However, during the daylight hours this weekend, my family tackled an awful job. Our (sewage) lagoon is being drained, dug out, enlarged and new pipe being laid because it was built too small for the house and we've had trouble with it since we moved in. We also discovered that the pipe that always plugged up had TWO 90 degree angles in it! Ugh! No wonder they could never get it snaked out!
    We got equipment longer because of the holiday and guys home to work on it, but, oh man...what a way to spend the holiday!

    No fireworks mangling here and the horses and dogs have handled all the neighborhood fireworks. (At night, it sounds like a young war!)

    Hope everyone has a relaxing day today, before heading back to work tomorrow!

  40. Nobody does humor like Mary.


    I'm here, waving my sparkler and putting sparks between my hero and heroine.

    They are REALLY mad at each other right now.

  41. Hey Mary,
    Looks like there are still lots of us out here:) I wouldn't miss this for anything. I would love to be entered in the giveaway for your book. It looks like a great read:D

    As far as what I did for the 4th? Our church had a fellowship yesterday along with food:D Gotta love it!! Then we pretty much relaxed. How nice to do be able to do that:)

  42. I was maimed for LIFE by Blackjacks!!!

    Picture this:

    I was about 5 years old. I didn't light firecrackers. I was SCARED of them, but I would unravel them so that my older brothers (7 and 15) could blow them up for me.

    My 15 yo brother had to move hay for daddy, so he told me to unravel all the firecrackers and he would blow them up for me when he was done working.

    Does anybody know what a carbide lantern is? Hunters (and coal miners) used to strap them to their forehead to see at night while hunting. We still have one here at the house.

    Well, that's what they used to light the firecrackers, and for some reason, my brother lit the light and it was sitting right next to me on the low block wall of the porch.

    You know where this is going, right?

    What you don't know is that I was unravelling an entire gross of firecrackers in my SKIRT, concentrating on getting the job done.


    The explosion blew a hole in my skirt the size of watermelon!

    Ruined me for life, it did!!!

  43. PAM!!!!!!!!!!

    You are lucky to be alive!!!!

    Even luckier (well, no, not LUCKIER, that's a dumb thing for me to say) that you were able to have children.

    My husband has a lamp like that. He wears it a lot to do car repairs. He can have both his hands free and still see in dingy garages.

  44. So, apparently my sons are the lucky ones.

    I wonder if they would respect me more if they knew....


  45. I don't think there's a man or boy alive who wouldn't respect their mother more if they knew he lap had once exploded.

    That's just one of those Universal Truths

  46. I was in the city of Independence: Philadelphia, for church!!! My family is planting a church there! We had a cookout with our congregation: hotdogs, all sorts of salads, and all the desserts were red, white, and blue themed.
    I then went to see fireworks with friends.

  47. LOL, Julie. We may not have smelled like smoke, but after a day of not fighting, a couple of my kids decided to start a fire. Fortunately, it wasn't a literal fire. Still, I saw smoke and they ran for cover. Their hides are most grateful.

    Since Ruthy mentioned the Yankees game, I shall add my token sports commentary that I adopted during the World Cup: (Fill in name of sport here) is riviting, says Gina while her eye glaze absently at unknown spot behind the person being spoken to.

    Any sarcasm heard was intentional.

    Yankees, blech.

    Although I did read yesterday about the new Mark Walberg/Will Ferrell movie in which Marky Marky's cop character was demoted to a desk job after shooting Derek Jeter during game 7 of the World Series. Could they have come up with a greater temptation to lure me to the theatre?

    I. Think. Not.

  48. Oh, I'm out here, too! I'm a little late, but I'm here.

    Saturday we celebrated mil's birthday, which is actually the 4th, but since hubs had to work today we decided to do it the 3rd to save him driving the distance late at night. Last night we went to my parents and spent the evening with my brothers and their families. We had a great time. Dad smokes the best turkey, ever. And my brothers know how to play with explosions. ;) And hubs sang "I'm Proud to Be An American". LOL Mom held the baby, and I took lots of pictures.

    reneelynnscott at gmail dot com

  49. Hey, Mary, back to the actual subject at hand: comedy.

    I've been reading Patricia Veryan's Golden Chronicles series. Granted the books were written in the 1980s and Veryan's POV shifts have to be willfully ignored, her sense of humor is the slyful one that just sneaks up on ya and slaps you silly.

    I really ought to find one of her humorous passages to share.

  50. Mary,
    Finished Doctors in Petticoats by staying up until 2 IN THE MORNING!!!
    Had to.
    Completly your fault, btw.

    And it was GREAT! can't wait to write my review!
    (are those enough exclamation marks for you? I use them in person too ;-)

    I love placing kids in my stories so I can ramp up the comic relief. They're so much fun to write :-)

  51. Oh, speaking of sparks

    i work in a brain injury clinic with a wonderful bunch of people and...I got two marriage proposals last week. Great for the morale.
    When I explained to one of the guys that I was already married and have FIVE kids, he leaned closer to me and asked, "how is that working for ya?"
    I almost lost control of the tea in my mouth. He started laughing too.

    Every time I go to work, I feel stories (lots of humorous, inspirational stories) bubbling in my head) - not as funny as Mary.
    I agree with Pam - nobody writes humor like Mary
    And one of the things I appreciate the most - the reader is TOTALLY in the head of the POV character. Love it! Fantastically done.

  52. Ohhhhh, Mary!!!!! I can't wait to read this book!!! YAY!!! I still have to get my review of Wildflower Bride written! I promise I will do that ASAP. I'm still in Editland and it's ... dang hard livin'. Excuse my rough language.

    Anyway, I'm here, I was just so consumed with edits I forgot to come by until now. But I'm excited about Sophie's daughters! Woohoo! Love it! Can't wait!

    My hubby took the kids to the water park. Praise the Lord for a few hours of peace and quiet while I sit with my head in my hands over having to change my precious hero, whom I love so much, because he's too dang loveable. It's just not realistic. Sigh.

    Anyway, have a great day, Mary! Love ya!!!

  53. Hi Mary! Thank you SO much for this GREAT excerpt!! I would LOVE a chance to read the whole book ;)

    The past 5 years I've stayed home on the 4th of July because the firework show in my neighborhood is like something out of Disney!! Last night was no different! Everywhere you looked the sky was just exploding with color! One of the guys who works for my dad lives at the end of our street and he always put on the BIGGEST show ever! The grand finale was at 11:00 and WOW, it certainly was GRAND :)

    My whole family and I used to go up my cousin's house of the 4th of July, but stopped that tradition when it became hazardous to out health, LOL! My Uncle (captain lighter-happy) would never set them up right and as soon as they'd go off, they would fall over and explode horizontally- and in our direction! He set off fireworks in our yard once (and ONLY once) and yes, they did tip over and sprayed angry multicolored sparks all over the side of my mom's new car :0 THANK GOD there was no damage to the car- but my mom's little brother almost lost his life at the hands of his big sis ;)

    Thanks again Mary for the WONDERFUL excerpt! Still chuckling over that carrot comment :) Praying you enjoy the rest of your 4th of July holiday!!

    Amanda Stanley

  54. I was supposed to go to a cookout on the 4th, but I didn't feel like getting out so I stayed home and just took it easy. Watched some tv, read a book, and other than that, did absolutely nothing.

    seriousreader at live dot com

  55. I finally made it in today. I'm spending the week at my friend's ranch in North Dakota. I spent the 3rd and the 4th at a rodeo watching her husband ride saddle broncs, and then watched a small town firework display. Good times and great story ideas!


  56. Really enjoyed that scene. I'm not American, so I spent my fourth, reading.

  57. I must say this is the most crowded empty blog cavern I've ever seen...:)

    What did I do? We did more "celebraty" things on Saturday. Went to Murray, KY to their Freedom Fest celebration and saw daughter #1 in a abridged version of "1776," in which she portrayed Abigail Adams beautifully, then we kidnapped her and brought her home for the weekend. Now we have to take her back, darn it. So much for my goal of not leaving the house today. ;)

    Can't wait to read Doctor in Petticoats, and like Lorna, the carrot line was FANTABULOUS! I giggled out loud, causing said daughter #1 to look at me strangely. I didn't dignify it by reading it to her. She didn't deserve it - although she DID sing beautifully on Saturday. She'll just have to read for her sweet little self. So there.


  58. Emily, your fourth of July sounds so perfect it's almost annoying.

    Like you WANT the rest of us to be jealous.

  59. Pepper, thanks so much for those kind words. Everytime someone talks about how good I am, I just shake my head. Seriously, what are the chances? Why would I be good.

    I think you're just somehow under the spell of the fun we have in Seekerville and not reading critically...not that there's anything WRONG with that.

    But I find it extremely unlikely I've got any actual talent. I'm not kidding.

  60. Melanie, I'm so sorry you've got to be unkind to an adorable hero. I've actually got a book going like that right now.

    These two are both wounded but they're so SWEET. They are just perfect for each other.

    And they're married and happy.

    I think we all know I've got to go back and mess them up but I hate it. They soooooo deserve happiness.

    Maybe I can leave them as sweet and just let them dodge bullets.

  61. Amanda, thank you for that tragic and horrifying story about your lighter-happy uncle.

    Now I can truly relax and enjoy American Independence.

  62. Linda, that is my DREAM DAY!!!
    Good for you, girl.

  63. Kirsten? Bucking Broncos? Fireworks? North Dakota? This is everyone's perfect 4th of July, right? Especially the part about North Dakota.
    I've got a book signing on August 6th in Fargo. A terrific town, btw.

    I'm from Nebraska and we're a bustling metropolis compared to North Dakota...state motto...The EXORCISM State.

    Or no, wait, I read that wrong. State Motto...The Haunted State.

    No, yeesh, checking again. State Motto...Catch the Spirit. That's it.

  64. Mary,
    That Seekerville influence sure does last a LOOOONG time. We ought to patton it.
    I read Petticoat Ranch a year and a half ago, before I even knew about Seekerville, and I've been a raving fan ever since.

    Now, I KNOW you're a great writer, but some of the influence might be that I feel a kinship to your writing. The humor. The insanity.

    It's so nice to find a kindred spirit.

  65. SUMMER! Now honey, c'mon, the whole world should celebrate AMERICA?! How can you resist????

  66. And YOU WERE THERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Be proud.

    You were present for Regina's comment which included the first every North American sighting of the word


  67. We went to our home church and for our every Sunday potluck we bbq'd

    I read a book all afternoon and watched some fireworks from our back yard at night.

    Thanks for the comedy section of the book. Looks like more books for my to read list!

  68. Pepper feels a kinship to my insanity.

    That makes complete sense.

    PS, the let me out of the straight jacket to type for a while.

    Must go back now. men in white coats. I've learned to come along quietly, things hurt so much LESS if you don't fight them.

  69. The 4th was spent in quiet labor -- catching up on laundry and cleaning, LOL.

    The day was gorgeous, but right around 4:00 black clouds moved in and we had storms into the night.

    Town fireworks went off as scheduled but had to compete with God's lightning performance. Spectacular combo in my opinion.

    Our family opted to stay home and shoot off our own fireworks...standing in the garage and aiming them into the freshly mown hay field which was drenched by rain.

    Great for the second cutting coming up -- not so great for the cutting already down.

    Power went out about 8:00 pm.

    I can't say I've experienced a 4th with so many variables before.

    Thanks for posting the except, Mary. Can't wait to read the book now!

  70. My sister Tabitha's birthday is on the 4th of July so we always have a dual celebration. For years she was convinced that the fireworks, parades, and national festivities were all in her honor. :)


  71. I spent Independence Day in bed with a nasty summer virus of some kind. My cul-de-sac always has a big block party, so hubby did the rounds for me. We donated the corn on the cob.
    Love the excerpt, Mary. oxoxxo

  72. Late, but here.
    After church, I passed my Scout off to some unsuspecting parent to take up to camp-- Walt, our boys are probably together. Mine's tall & skinny, swimming in the lake & fishing.And eatingeatingeating.
    I went shopping-- had to get shrimp & olives for Sandra's potato salad, which was delish! Thank you Sandra! Still eating it today!
    And then we did just as you said Mary: grilled hotdogs, ate homemade ice cream, & waved a sparkler (between my toes, since my third hand was passing ketchup!) How did you know?
    Between you & Walt & now Sandra's recipe, somehow I'm feeling alot of Seekerville influence here.
    We sneaked into my neighbor's back yard & watched fireworks from the neighbors compete with the city's show...double bang for free!

    Loved the excerpt. I love all your lessons too. Good teacher.

  73. I'll pick a winner around nine pm. And I'll email you, but we will annunce the winner on the Weekend Edition.

    Tina yells at me if I post it here ahead of time.

  74. Mary, I forgot to mention in my last post I love the scene!

    You're right it is a perfect 4th of July weekend in North Dakota! Nothin' better than cowboys, horses and wide open spaces. It's wonderful being back in the West! I grew up in Wyoming lived in Montana for years and now live in Maryland. Every time I come back West I wonder what I'm doing.

    Nebraska is beautiful country, as well. My grandparents came from Nebraska and we were taught from and early age all the virtues of the state, and then took a trip to all their old haunts.

  75. I had a bonfire and my first s'more of the summer with my parents.

  76. Kirsten, all you really have to remember about Nebraska is:

    We are in all ways NORMAL.

    Everyone else is a variation on us.

  77. Swam at the local pool, did a BBQ, took the dog and family to the lake for a family swim, and came to this blog :)
    christi_corbett at yahoo dot com

  78. i spent independence day w/ friends :)

    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

  79. We went to church, had a barbecue lunch at a really great restaurant, took a long walk by the canal with some ice cream. Then we listened to fireworks from our house :)


  80. Hi Kristi and Karen. You got in under the wire because I was distracted and haven't done the drawing yet.

    So thanks everyone for stopping in today.

  81. sooooo late... but perhaps better late than...


    Mary - I do so enjoy your books. Your brand of comedy IS right up my alley.

    Well yesterday - flags fluttering, sparklers waving, friends dropping by, spending time with the family, all in the setting of mountains and lots of 'em.

  82. I signed my new children'e book, "The Hugging Tree" at the conference center.Had a great day celebrating freedom.

  83. I celebrated Independence Day by drinking cold beer!

  84. Hi Mary, I lazed around reading all day, not one of your books, sorry, I need to get to the library. Went to dinner at my daughters and played rummy all night as the rain stopped the fireworks.

  85. I spent my Independence Day housecleaning. It was quiet and peaceful with nobody home!!!

  86. At my Fourth party, I watched out the window as my son and 6yo niece splashed about in a kiddie pool. My niece dumped a small bucket of water on my son's head; he picked up the huge plastic tub they were using as Noah's Ark and dump the entire contents over her head in a massive gushing waterfall. hehehe....


  87. It was almost perfect...except for the 20 mosquito bites I have! :)

  88. I sat home and wrote. I have a book due next month and a ways to go on it, so I worked this holiday. I did turn on a couple of the patriotic shows Sunday eve and enjoyed the music and fireworks on TV.

  89. I went to church on the 4th of July. Then I relaxed, caught up on some phone calls, and took a nap. I had watched fireworks with the grandkids on Friday.

  90. For Independence Day, I went to watch the fireworks with my family and friends and the next day, spent the afternoon hanging out with great friends!! :-D


  91. I got to visit with my family last weekend in Virginia, so this weekend I just spent it relaxing & reading.

  92. I went to a local church and had a great time with my friends, watched the fireworks, and had an adventure which included trying to walk through a drive-through. (Didn't work, btw.) And my hair went into world domination mode. It was a great day!

  93. Mary, Mary, Mary what are we going to do with you about leaving your poor flowers without water, but alas I water mine and they die....

    I would love to win your new book

    I love all of your books you make a days when I read one.

    mamat2730 at charter dot net

  94. we had friends over for a BBQ and roasting marshmallows. then we went inside to watch a movie on DVD that the little one would enjoy 'Bingo'. We all enjoyed it.