Sunday, August 20, 2023

When Life Throws Lemons at You...

 When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.

I’ve heard this proverbial phrase most of my life. It’s the idea you can succeed even when life happens and you have to face a tough situation or some sort of misfortune. I hate this saying, because sometimes all I want to do is sit in a corner and cry.

The last few months have been a rollercoaster ride. On the ups, I published Onyx

(Brimstone Heat #3) in June, created several outlines, and started writing the first chapter in Wild Wolf (Starlight Bar #5). On the downs, writing has been slow. A few months ago, DH had heart bypass surgery and was home recuperating until he went back to work with restrictions. For financial reasons, I had to go back to work. It’s been tough and adjusting to a new normal. Like many authors, I wish I made a full-time income with my writing.

But I’m trying to make lemonade out of the lemons.

I don’t have control of my day schedule, but I’m working to carve out some writing time in the evenings, at least on the evenings I don’t sit down with my writing notebook and fall asleep. Yeah, the day job is kicking me.

My goals are to write and publish Wild Wolf by the end of this year, create outlines for the rest of the books in the Brimstone Heat series, outline a new series, and start writing the three book Christmas series that will come out in 2024. Maybe I’m being a little too ambitious, but I have a plan.

I’m trying to make lemonade, but I’m thinking of tossing out the lemonade and grabbing a bottle of whiskey instead. What do you think?

Side note: Maybe I should create a story about a whiskey drinking older woman. Hhhmmm.


Wednesday, April 26, 2023

The Real Bryant Station: Backdrop for Bryant Station Curves Series

Cover design: RA Kirschke-Cole

The Bryant Station Curves Books 1-4 box set release yesterday in both ebook and paperback. I’m excited about the cover of this book and its sister book, which releases at the end of May because for the first time, I used one of my photographs on the cover.

The bridge on the cover is the real Old Bryant Station Bridge built over the Little River.

Yes, there is a place called Bryant Station, and at one time it was a thriving town in Milam County in Central Texas. Today, the only things left of the town are the old camelback bridge, the cemetery, and a new modern bridge.

How do I know this? I grew up in Milam County. My hometown of Buckholts is about four miles from Bryant Station.

Photo credit: RA Kirschke-Cole
Old Bryant Station Bridge is a camelback bridge that was built in 1909 by C.Q. Horton of Austin, Texas. There is a metal plate on the top rail of the bridge. The bridge is a one lane bridge. As a child, riding over this bridge didn’t just scare me, it terrified me. Even as a teenager, I couldn’t drive over the bridge. In fact,
the bridge starred of my nightmares for many years.

Byrant Station got its start in the 1840s when a fort was built near the Little River to protect the settlers/area from attacks. Because of its location on the river and a stage line that used it as a stopping point, the community grew. Around the 1880s, the railroad bypassed Byrant Station and went through Buckholts instead. As a result, Bryant Station started dying. 

By the 1940s, most people had moved away from Bryant Station and the school consolidated with the school in Buckholts. Bryant Station turned into a ghost town.

Photo credit: RA Kirschke-Cole

After the county built a new bridge over Little River, the old bridge they closed to traffic. For a time, you could walk across the bridge. The last time I visited there are and took pictures, the bridge had been closed to foot traffic. It has been a few years since I’ve been back to see the area.

I have set all of my stories in Texas. I’ve used several of the ghost towns as the backdrop for the towns in my stories, creating what I think the towns would look like. I’ve also used some of the area to create new towns.


Photo credit: RA Kirschke-Cole



For more information, you can search for Bryant Station, Texas, search Bryant Station Bridge, or visit the Texas State Historical Association.


Byrant Station Curves, books 1-2 box set

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