Welcome to the blog of author Marlo Schalesky!

Friday, December 30, 2011

Happy New Year

Hi Friends,

Wishing you a wonder-filled New Year! May your year be one in which you ...

1) Discover something new and wondrous about God

2) Discover something new and insightful about yourself

3) Discover something new and useful about your life

And may God overflow your life with His breathtaking wonder!

P.S. Only the Wind Remembers, a story about the wonder of God's love where you least expect it, is still available as an ebook for the sale price on Kindle/Nook.)
For Kindle: http://amzn.to/rNRMgy
For Nook: http://bit.ly/vL8AJv


Monday, December 26, 2011

Got a Kindle or Nook for Christmas??

Hi Friends,

Hope you all had a very Merry Christmas! We had a wonderful day here. And, as my Christmas gift to you, I rushed last week to get my book ONLY THE WIND REMEMBERS up as a new ebook for Kindle and Nook at a special sale price! So, if you got a Kindle or Nook (or iPad, or whatever) for Christmas (or if you already had one), I hope you'll consider downloading Only the Wind Remembers for only $2.99. Yay!

Here are some links to the book:

For Kindle: http://amzn.to/rNRMgy

For Nook: http://bit.ly/vL8AJv

You can also download the free Kindle app for your PC and read ebooks from your computer. Here's the link for the free app: http://amzn.to/oNw3fJ

And here's the free Kindle app for your iPad: http://amzn.to/agJ2lC

And of course for a Mac, simply visit the app store and download the free Kindle app there.

And here's a bit about the book itself:

Making peace with the past...

Discovering the only love that heals...

Ishi: the last of his tribe, utterly alone in the white man's world.

Allison: abandoned as a child, haunted by dreams of a mother whose face she cannot recall.

In 1911, the last Yahi Indian walked out of the woods and into modern civilization for the first time. Driven from a life of hiding, Ishi longs for one thing: to tell a secret tale, a fable of his people that only he knows. Allison Morgan understands how important it is to obey the tenets of propriety, especially when her anthropologist husband is entrusted with the care of the last "Stone Age" Indian in North America. Yet something about Ishi stirs echoes of memories long forgotten, compelling her to defy the rules. Secretly, she learns Ishi's language. And then the tale begins, bringing with it the promise of hope long abandoned. But in the midst of renewed dreams, will a tangle of hidden motives, personal insecurities, and long-masked secrets destroy her once chance to discover the truth?

Based on actual historical events, Only the Wind Remembers invites you to a times when everything was not as it seemed, when a simple tale held the key to hope, when only the wind remembered what it meant to be free.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Merry Christmas, Friends!

Merry Christmas, Friends! Wishing you a wonder-filled Christmas and wondrous New Year.

Be watching for news of a new ebook release from me (Only the Wind Remembers) at a special discount for your Kindle or Nook just after Christmas!

And in the meantime, here are the lyrics to a favorite Christmas song that I'm contemplating this Christmas. Do you know this song?...

"Mary Did You Know"

[Originally written by Mark Lowry and Buddy Greene]

Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy would one day walk on water?
Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy would save our sons and daughters?
Did you know
that your Baby Boy has come to make you new?
This Child that you delivered will soon deliver you.

Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy will give sight to a blind man?
Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy will calm the storm with His hand?
Did you know
that your Baby Boy has walked where angels trod?
When you kiss your little Baby you kissed the face of God?

Mary did you know.. Ooo Ooo Ooo

The blind will see.
The deaf will hear.
The dead will live again.
The lame will leap.
The dumb will speak
The praises of The Lamb.

Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy is Lord of all creation?
Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy would one day rule the nations?
Did you know
that your Baby Boy is heaven's perfect Lamb?
The sleeping Child you're holding is the Great, I Am.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Lessons from Disneyland

Hi Friends,

We took a family trip to Disneyland last week (very tiring, lots of fun), and here are some things I learned along the way:

Lesson #1 from Disneyland: You can walk all day and not be discouraged if you're excited about where you're going. So, be excited about where God is taking you in life!

Lesson #2 from Disneyland's Tower of Terror: Scary rides are better if you hang onto someone you love and trust. Cling to God when you feel like the bottom is dropping out of life. He'll see you through to a safe landing!

Lesson #3 from Disneyland: No one likes waiting, but sometimes you have to wait to get somewhere great. Trust God and enjoy those around you in the waiting times!

Lesson #4 from Disneyland: Don't let fear stop you from getting on a really good ride. God is taking you on the ride of your life - jump aboard! (Lesson from Bria who took 2 days to try Splash Mountain, then loved it.)

Last Lesson from Disneyland: Life can seem like endless trudging from here to there, waits that are way too long, exhausting days, restless nights ... but look around you. You are a part of the magic Kingdom. There is beauty everywhere. And the One walking and waiting with you created it all. Take time to catch your breath in wonder. Take time to See and Rejoice!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Christmas Novellas!

Hi Friends,

I have some fun Christmas books to tell you about this week. First, here's a Love Inspired Suspense called SEASON OF DANGER which contains two novellas.

Here's a bit about Silent Night, Deadly Night, the novella by Hannah Alexander:

After the murder of Tess Vance's fiance, Tess leaves her career as a musical talent agent and retreats home to her brother's rescue mission for the homeless in Corpus Christi, Texas. She finds solace helping others, and peace with ex-cop Sean Torrance, who has also endured great pain over the past year. Just as they begin to think life will settle for them, and their friendship will deepen into something more lasting, Tess finds herself the subject of a stalking, and the stalker hurts her by hurting and killing those she loves, including the homeless.

All of Sean's protective instincts rise to the top when the woman he has grown to love finds herself in danger once again. He'll do whatever it takes to protect her and the others he works with at the mission. As the owner and manager of one of the top radio stations in the region, he finds a way to stop the attacks, but it will mean betraying her trust. Can their relationship withstand the conflict?

AND here's a bit about Mistletoe Mayhem, the novella by Jill Elizabeth Nelson:

A romance-shy veterinarian and a widowed health inspector hunt the killer who used mistletoe extract to poison pets and people in a Tennessee mountain town.

After being jilted by her fiancé, Kelly Granger buries her broken heart in her work as a veterinarian in her home town of Abbottsville, Tennessee, located in the Great Smoky Mountains. She and her assistant, Tim Hallock, battle to save community pets from a violent and mysterious illness. Is this sickness a danger to humans? Her question is answered when state health inspector Matt Bennett is sent to investigate local eating establishments, including Kelly’s sister’s restaurant, for the cause of poisoning among the patrons. Kelly refuses to believe that her sister served toxic mistletoe extract to her customers—yet mounting evidence points in that direction. Kelly puts herself in harm’s way, facing down a vicious dog and even more vicious people, to uncover a common denominator between the human and animal illnesses. Matt has his hands full keeping up with her, as well as proving himself worthy of her trust—and hopefully, her love. Unless she has her heart set on her veterinary assistant, Tim Hallock. The question won’t matter if his investigation sends Kelly’s sister to jail. She’ll never have anything to do with him then. They need to uncover the truth. But will the answer cost them more than their romance? Will it cost them their lives?


Kelly Granger stared into Nick Milton’s bloodshot eyes and suppressed a shiver. It wouldn’t do to betray her fear of him, any more than to give that advantage to a wild animal.

Beefy face taut, Nick leaned toward her over the counter of the veterinary clinic’s reception area. “If my dog don’t perk up and shake off that drug you pumped into him, I’ll come lookin’ for you. He’s been layin’ around all afternoon, worthless as a tick.”

The slurred words betrayed the alcohol he pickled himself in daily. How did Chelsea live with this guy?

“Mr. Milton, Brutus’s behavior posed a danger to himself, the staff and other animals. In order to give him his check-up and vaccinations, it was necessary to administer a mild sedative first. I assure you, he will be himself by morning, barring a little stiffness in the vaccination site, which will also disappear.”

There, she’d delivered a reasonable explanation, and her voice didn’t even quiver. If she’d discovered any sign of abuse on Nick’s Doberman, she would have turned the dog over to the SPCA to get the animal away from his disgusting owner.

“Highfalutin, la-de-da doctor!” Nick shook a ham-sized fist in her face. “I’m holdin’ you to them words.”

Kelly gripped the edge of the counter. She would not back away. This creep might have a reputation for temper, but she was not going to be cowed. This was her clinic, and she’d done nothing wrong . . . except send her assistant, Tim Hallock, home early. Tim might be half Nick’s size, but at least he could have called the cops.

Nick turned and stomped out the door, admitting a burst of chill air, which washed over Kelly. She allowed herself a shiver. Some people needed a muzzle and leash more than their pets. She wouldn’t mind calling the police to let them know that Nick Milton was driving drunk again, except he wasn’t driving.

The Milton’s beat-up van sat in a parking spot outside the clinic’s picture window. Nick’s son, Greg, perched behind the wheel. Kelly’s glance met the teenager’s, and kid offered his usual juvenile leer. She marched to the door and turned the deadbolt as the van chugged out of the parking lot, spewing dark smoke from its tailpipe.

Releasing a breath, she looked out the picture window, which revealed a panorama of white-topped mountain ridges looming over the struggling business district. Even with Christmas nearly upon them, traffic was thin this early evening. Vehicle headlights vied with the twinkle of Christmas lights adorning the facades of buildings. Thankfully, no one seemed headed for the veterinary clinic. She’d dealt with enough excitement for one day.

Brutus had been the easiest patient—a routine well-check. Six other pets, cradled by distraught owners—one of them Kelly’s sister—had been presented this afternoon, each animal exhibiting the same awful symptoms. She was keeping most of them overnight on IVs to rehydrate them. Her patients would live, but more by the grace of God than human skill. She’d never seen anything like it and prayed she never would again.

Had Tim remembered to prepare the biological samples for submission to the state lab? They needed to discover what had made the pets so ill.

Kelly headed for the pharmacy, loafers squeaking faintly on the linoleum. Her pharmacy was more like a large closet than a room. The package lay wrapped and labeled on the counter. Kelly smiled. Reliable was Tim’s middle name.

A note in his handwriting sat by the box. She picked it up and read, “Courier service unable to make the pick-up until late tomorrow afternoon. One of the hazards of living in a Tennessee mountain town.”

Kelly groaned. Compared to the frenzy of her Nashville vet school experience, she’d loved returning to the gracious pace of life in Abbottsville, nestled in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains. But around here, tomorrow was soon enough for anything to happen. Might as well get home and put her feet up.

On the drive to her modest bungalow, her thoughts refused to wind down. What if the illness was an epidemic—something bacterial . . . or even viral? Or maybe it was as simple as a contaminated batch of pet food? But what if this was a contagion that could affect people? What if . . . Whoa, girl! No point in stressing over what had hit the pets in Abbottsville until the lab returned results.

Darkness had fully fallen when she turned the final corner onto her street. She accelerated and then eased off the gas pedal. What was up with this? The automatic timer on her Christmas lights should have had her place aglow with festive decorations, but the single-story home was dark. A faulty timer? Better than some expensive electrical issue. It wasn’t a power outage. The porch light glowed on the two-story house next door, but no holiday decorations. Probably because her yet-to-be-seen neighbor had moved in only yesterday.

Kelly wheeled the Explorer into the driveway, and the headlights passed over a scene of Christmas decoration carnage strewn across her snow-dusted lawn. What in the world? She halted the SUV at an angle and scanned the mess of tinsel, strings of lights, straw from the crèche and holly and pine garland. Her stomach knotted. Who would do such a thing? Then she spotted the vandal, and her jaw dropped.

Excerpt. © Jill Elizabeth Nelson, 2011. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Available at fine bookstores everywhere, plus outlets at Walmart and Target, as well as on-line bookstores.

For more information and a chance to win a signed copy of the book, drop by http://www.jillelizabethnelson.com

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0373444699/jillelizabeth-20 CLICK HERE TO BUY THE BOOK NOW!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Tantrum at Disneyland?

Hi Friends,

In honor of our upcoming Disneyland trip with the family, I thought I'd share an experience that happened a few years ago on another trip to Disneyland (plus some pictures from our previous trip too).

It happened like this (names have been changed to protect the guilty :-)):

"No! I don't wanna go!" Katy pushed out her lower lip and drew her eyebrows into a dark scowl. "I want Splash Mountain!" Her face wrinkled into a mask of stubborn fury.

Katy's look was so at odds with our surroundings that I had to shake my head. We were in Disneyland, where laughter and fun were the order of the day. How could anyone be gloomy when Mickey Mouse, Snow White, or Goofy stood on the corner to bring smiles to every face? After all, this was the Magic Kingdom.

"We'll go there next," Katy’s mother whispered. "But first, we're going on the Pirate ride. You'll like it."

"No!" Katy stomped her foot as we got in line for the Pirates of the Caribbean.

Soon, we were stepping into the big boats that would take us on our magic ride through pirate country. The soft music of crickets and water gently lapping against the sides of our boat did not calm Katy's angry spirit. She continued to glower. She refused to look around as we glided through the bayou. Her little sister cried out in delight and pointed to the tiny lights that were meant to be fireflies. Still, Katy didn’t budge. Even the pirate treasures did not interest her. She didn't "ooo" and "ahhh" as we floated through the middle of the big pirate battle, with cannon balls flying across our bow to land on either side. She didn't laugh at the rosy-cheeked man being dunked in the well or the pirates
chasing women through the windows of the town. She wouldn't join in as we all lifted our voices to sing "Yo ho, yo ho, it's a pirate's life for me."

Nothing got through to her. Even as we came around the last bend, still humming the pirate song, her frown had not dissipated. We all tumbled from the boat, the other children laughing, giggling, and excitedly talking about what they had seen. But not Katy. Despite all the magic of Disneyland, especially in the Pirates of the Caribbean, she was still mad.

I again glanced down at her small, grumpy face. Then, I stopped short as recognition whispered through me. She looked – gulp - an awful lot like me. In
fact, I was sure I had worn that same expression just a few weeks ago at church. I remembered the morning well. I had been scheduled to make an announcement about the women’s retreat at the beginning of the service, but the pastor said we didn’t have time. Then the worship team had cut my favorite hymn in order to put in some frothy chorus. And to top it off, the pastor shortened the time when we usually had prayer requests, but he left plenty of time for greeting one another. Nothing had gone the way I wanted it. I wanted Splash Mountain, not the Pirates!

Cold realization formed a lump in my chest as I grabbed Katy’s hand and headed out the ride’s exit. Had I been as silly as her, sticking out my lower lip at all the fun of the Magic Kingdom?

After all, Sunday morning services should be as joyful and fun-filled as Disneyland. I went to church to worship my God and Savior, to learn more about Him, and to enjoy His presence with others who love Him too. What could be better than that? Yet, instead of relishing the special time of gathering together in God's house, I was just as unhappy as Katy because everything didn’t go my way. I, too, had allowed selfishness to creep into my heart, so that I couldn’t enjoy the ride God was taking me on. What a shame!

These days, I try to remember Paul’s instructions: "Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others." (Philippians 2:4, NIV) That way, I can laugh and appreciate God’s Sunday morning Pirate rides, whether I’d rather be at Splash Mountain or not.