Monday, March 16, 2015

Refilling the Bucket

My life is probably similar to that of many authors, published or not. It’s crammed full, with little room for down time. Because I haven’t made any bestseller lists, and didn’t have the foresight to marry a millionaire (just a wonderful man that I’m still in love with 30-some years later), I work a day job that helps support my family in modest comfort.

I write when I can on evenings and weekends, but those breaks also have to fit in time for husband and kids and grandkids, as well as promo for books I have out, exercise, my volunteer responsibilities for various chapters and organizations, and even an occasional dinner with friends.

I also like to get in a bit of reading as well – usually for half an hour or so before I go to bed.

I don’t take a lot of time off, but I recently spent a week at the beach with just my husband and sister-in-law. No kids and no obligations for seven whole days. It was wonderful. I read five books, spent a lot of time walking on the beach, paddling in the water, and soaking in the sunshine.

I can’t remember the last time I had an entire week with no obligations other then my turn at cooking or cleaning afterward. I’ve done vacations before, but there was always an agenda, flights to make, places to be, things to do.

Those can be great, too, but I’ve just rediscovered the joy of real retreat and relaxation. The thrill of being able to read a book all the way through, stopping only for meals and a walk on the beach. The delight in doing nothing but staring at the sky, listening to the surf, and watching the clouds drift by.

I came back feeling rested and refreshed in a way I haven’t for a long time. I’m ready to plunge back into writing and finish the book that’s been taking me forever. And I realize that sometimes the best thing we can do for ourselves is take time out to do nothing.


Karen McCullough’s wide-ranging imagination makes her incapable of sticking to one genre for her storytelling. As a result, she’s the author of more than a dozen published novels and novellas, which span the mystery, fantasy, paranormal, and romantic suspense genres. A former computer programmer who made a career change into being an editor with an international trade publishing company for many years, she now runs her own web design business to support her writing habit. Awards she’s won include an Eppie Award for fantasy; three other Eppie finals; Prism, Dream Realm, Rising Star, Lories, Scarlett Letter, and Vixen Awards, and an Honorable Mention in the Writers of the Future contest. Her short fiction has appeared in several anthologies and numerous small press publications in the fantasy, science fiction, and romance genres. She lives in Greensboro, NC, with her husband of many years.

Blog: http://www.kmccullough/kblog
Blurb for A Question of Fire

When Cathy Bennett agrees to attend an important party as a favor for her boss, she knows she won't enjoy it. But she doesn't expect to end up holding a dying man in her arms and becoming the recipient of his last message. Bobby Stark has evidence that will prove his younger brother has been framed for arson and murder. He wants that evidence to get to his brother's lawyer, and he tries to tell Cathy where he's hidden it. But he dies before he can give her more than a cryptic piece of the location.

The man who killed Bobby saw him talking to her and assumes she knows where the evidence is hidden. He wants it back and he'll do whatever it takes to get it, including following her and trying to kidnap her. Cathy enlists the aid of attorney Peter Lowell and Danny Stark, Bobby's prickly, difficult younger brother, as well as a handsome private detective to help her find the evidence before the killers do.

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