My Books

Sea-Devil: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 1
Sea-Devil: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 1

You never get over your first love...how about your first murder? When a man is murdered in her bookstore the night before her grand opening, island newcomer, Delilah Duffy, makes a name for herself as prime suspect. If Delilah Duffy hopes to create a life on the island, she must navigate through a vicious family feud, shoddy police work and the mistakes of her past. Will Delilah uncover the truth before her past and her present destroy her?

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Luna-Sea: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 2
Luna-Sea: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 2

We're all just one pain away from lunacy. A seaside inn. An elegant party. A black dress. What could go wrong? For Delilah Duffy, just about anything. With her bookstore failing, the last thing she needs is a party or another mystery to solve. With nightmares, anxiety, and panic intensifying, Delilah doesn’t know what’s real and what’s in her head. With everything at risk, Delilah discovers what’s worse… becoming a lunatic or facing one.

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Sea-Crossed: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 3
Sea-Crossed: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 3

Some secrets are kept to be kind. Torture, pain, misery - that’s all someone else wants for her. When a dinner party turns deadly, Sam goes missing, and Delilah realizes she's being watched, the “book queen with a thing for crime scenes” must battle to get her life and love back. Can love and determination save them or will dark secrets ruin her chances for a normal life? With mysterious messages taunting her and a killer eluding her, what lines will she cross to get to the truth?

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Pyra-Sea: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 4
Pyra-Sea: A Delilah Duffy Mystery Book 4

Everything can change in seconds. Bookstore manager and crime-solver, Delilah Duffy knows that better than anyone. When her Happily Ever After Valentine’s Day Bash ends in fiery destruction, everything she’s worked for burns with it. Pregnant and brokenhearted, Delilah fans the flames of her anger toward what she’s good at: solving crimes. Hot on the trail of an arsonist while her nemesis is on hers, Delilah fights to get her life back. Will she turn ash to treasure before the pyromaniac strikes

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My Vella Story

Water World
Water World

After a tough move with his Mom and sister from his beloved country home, Ethan isn't adjusting well to city life. In trying to escape his problems in this world, he opens another, dropping him and his sister, Abby, into Water World. This trip is no vacation, not with legendary monsters and deadly sea creatures to battle. But teaming up to help the merpeople through their home-related crisis might help Ethan and Abby navigate theirs, if they survive long enough to make it home.

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  • Jessica Sherry

Pumpkin Carving & Writing

Pumpkin carving ranks among our top seasonal traditions, up there with baking Christmas cookies and hosting big Thanksgivings. While we bring creativity to all these ventures, our individuality is best expressed via our Halloween pumpkins.


Well, except for Abby’s very expressive murderous gingerbreads.


Gingerbread Cookies

Pumpkin carving originates from an Irish myth. To scare off a wandering spirit called Stingy Jack, they carved demonic faces in turnips. Irish immigrants to America used pumpkins instead, as they were more plentiful. And later, Jack-o-Lanterns merged with Halloween. Combining all things spirit-related into one holiday makes sense.


These guys wanted to say hello...


Not all of our carved pumpkins scare away spirits. Last year, mine was a jellyfish, and it’d be super-weird for that to cause ghosts anxiety. Video game symbols, Star Wars, and superheroes have been featured over the years, depending on what the kids are into. Once, many years ago, we had the cutest Blue’s Clues pumpkin. It really looked like Blue, too. Once, in an homage to Twilight (sort of), I did a vampire about to bite into a neck, which turned out to be an artsy favorite. Those pics are lost to time… and perhaps an old thingy that we store pics on?... but they live on in fond memories.


This weekend, we will scour the internet for inspiring templates to copy—the perfect balance of easy and challenging. Then, we’ll cover the dining room table with a vinyl cloth, conjure our inner artists, and get to work. Hours of concentrated effort and elbow grease will deliver memorable Halloween masterpieces like these….





Carved Halloween Pumpkins

It’s always fun seeing our picks and how they turn out. We do surprisingly well for non-artists. Last year, we even purchased actual carving tools instead of the plastic ones that come in kits.


Pumpkin Carving Tools

Years of successful pumpkins have taught us essential skills and encouraged us to up our game.


Besides, Joe has set a new bar with this one from last year.


Charlie Brown Pumpkin

Not only is pumpkin carving fun, but it’s also meditative. Hours at the table, eyes on task, moving step by step to a finished product—the focus required pulls you into the project. It’s like painting or knitting, but with more action and goo. And once you begin, you must follow through… or you’ll be left with nothing but a mutilated pumpkin. It may still work okay for capturing the Halloween spirit, but you’ll know that you only gave it partial effort… and perhaps Stingy Jack will know it, too.


If you see it through to the end, you put a light inside, and it glows. Bonus. Who doesn’t like mood lighting?


In my effort to get in the mood for pumpkin carving (because I really must bring it this year, thanks, Joe), I’ve considered that it’s a lot like writing.


You start with a big idea (one that feels right). That is, you pick your pumpkin.


You envision what you want it to look like and make a plan. Your story-carving template can be as detailed as an outline or as scattered as sticky notes.


You break out your tools. The better your tools, the more serious you are about your project. A writer’s toolbox should be heavy.


You enact the plan step by step until it’s finished. Starting with that first cut, you’ve committed. Then, you dig and scrape and saw and etch until it resembles what you wanted. Sticking with it during this long stage is the true test. Things get dirty. The creator gets tired. So many things cry for attention. In the mushy middle, you may ask… Is it worth it?


Resoundingly, YES. The difference between a finished project and one left undone or done poorly is far more significant than you’d expect on the ol’ ego. Unfinished things haunt our consciousness, nagging at us and making us feel bad. While accomplishments boost and encourage us. It’s much better to say, “I did that,” than to think, “I wish I’d done that.”


And if you mess up your pumpkin, try using toothpicks. Or call it avant-garde. Or a haunted Picasso pumpkin.


Mess-ups or not, the more focus, precision, and care you give, the better it will be. With pumpkins and manuscripts and, well, life.


Then when you’re finished, stick a light in it and hope people enjoy it. For writers, this could be querying or publication. For pumpkin carvers, it means the front porch on Halloween night—a tradition kept and spooky (or non-spooky) vibes honored.



I’m on the hunt for the perfect pumpkin stencil. What are your pumpkin carving plans? Share your big pumpkin ideas below.