Friday, April 1, 2011

Surprise Guest Blog

Well, hello. You’re probably a little surprised to have me here today. Pat asked if I would fill in for him and I was happy to oblige. My name is Anika Henry, call me Ana, and thanks to Pat, my story will be out next week. Oh my God, what a relief!
I’ve been crammed into this guy’s brain for all this time and had begun to wonder if I’d ever see the light of day again. Let me tell you, there are some strange characters creeping around in that man’s head. Some you don’t dare turn your back on, if you know what I mean. Oh, some nice ones too. Don’t get me wrong, I know Pat’s no pervert. Just saying…
Anyway, he asked me to fill you in on what happened in my life before this adventure began. Hmm, that covers a lot of territory since I’m nearly forty. I married the boy of my dreams when he graduated from the Air Force Academy. J.P. (John Paul) and I had known each other since grade school and I watched him grow up into a fine specimen of a man.
I was so proud of him in his dress uniform. Tall and wiry, he was built perfectly for his Air Force mission, flying fighter planes. I’d gone through nursing school and become a registered nurse but since he got transferred quite often, I never worked that much at nursing. Did I love him? Oh yes, I did. I adored watching the boy I’d teased in school grow up to become a manly hero.
Was our marriage idyllic? No, I have to confess it was anything but, but not because I didn’t love J.P. with all my heart. Then, when he was killed in a silly flightline accident, I was left with our son Paul Joseph. I called P.J. Joey and he became the center of my universe. But I still remember the long nights when I’d have given anything to have had a man sleeping beside me.
We’d lived in Arizona when J.P. shipped off to war one time too many, but when he was gone I couldn’t stand the sound of those planes taking off and landing. We moved to Colorado, to Ft. Collins and my first real nurse’s position. It was a lovely place and I thought I’d solved our problems.
Wrong! That’s when my problems really began.
My job at Front Range Hospital was wonderful. Check that. It should have been wonderful. I was assigned to the children’s ward and worked the night shift. It became a way of life to bring a little cheer into the lives of all those kids who found themselves in a strange place at a very bad time in their lives. Within a short time, I’d gained a reputation as the kids’ smiling nurse.
Joey was not so happy. He’d had to leave his friends at the Air Base and at eight, with no school experience in the new town yet, he had no friends. He nagged me into getting him a puppy so he’d have some companionship. Molly is a little German Shorthair pup with such a positive air about her, it’s impossible to be around her and not smile. Now. After she led him out into the street where he was hit and killed by a car, I wished her dead for awhile.
God, thinking back on that gives me shudders! As I already said, he’d become the center of my universe and, with him gone just like that, I had no one to turn to; no place to go. I honestly considered ending it all. But I didn’t follow through. Oh, there was one time later I almost did it again, but that’s part of the story and Pat just came back in and threatened to do bodily damage if I spoil my, uh, his story.
Anyway, now you know something of what happened to me before SLEEPING WITH HER ENEMY begins. Enjoy the story; I’m sure you will. Pat may be a taskmaster but he’s one heck of a storyteller as you’ll find out next Friday, April 8th, when Muse Publishing releases ‘our’ story. Happy reading, all!

Hello, folks. I hope you enjoyed hearing from a truly gutsy gal. You're going to love her, I'm sure. Now for the fifth installment of excerpts. Remember, after next week and the sixth one, there will be a CONTEST to see who can guess the correct order of them. Don't worry if you've missed one or two. I've got a hint next Friday that will get you caught up. The winner gets a free paperback copy of my romantic suspense novel, A GIRL'S BEST FRIEND. And everybody who enters will get a free online 'unedited' chapter of a new romantic comedy I'm finishing now. Here's the ex:

Ana was about to step out of the shed when she looked back. The windshield was smudged on the right side. She wedged herself past the side of the car so she could get a better look at the front of it. On the right side, the molded headlight was cracked and there were tiny dark flecks on the fender. When she bent to get a closer look, her breath caught in her throat. Blood!
Old and dried, black with oxidation, but it was definitely blood. On Dan’s car. With a broken headlight. And a slight indentation in the hood above the light.
The combination of the headlight, the blood, and the dent were too much. Her mind rewound the horrible accident where Joey’s body would surely have done this kind of damage as he bounced off the speeding car that killed him. The shed shimmered and went dark.
“Ana! Ana! Please wake up. You’re scaring me!”
She sensed rather than saw the little blonde girl leaning over her where she’d passed out. When her eyes opened, she tried to smile but couldn’t. “I’m sorry, Sherry. The damage on the car reminded me of something.”
“It must have been pretty awful, the way you screamed.”
“I screamed?”
“Enough to scare the elk in the meadow clear to the other side of the mountains. What scared you?”
“Nothing, really. I’m okay now.”
Sherry shook her head. “I don’t think so. You’re white. Are you sick?”
“No, honey. I’m fine. Really. I’ll tell you what it was that scared me, but I’d rather your father be here when I do.”
“Okay. Can we go back outside and play with Molly now?”
“That’s a good idea. You go on and play and I’ll close up the shed.”
She waited until Sherry was out of sight and glanced at the car again, sure it was identical to the one she remembered. But there’s no way it could actually be the car. Could it...

Now if that doesn't get you wondering, nothing will. As you might guess, this is the jumping off place where Ana's life really goes into the tank. 'Nuff for now. Cheers everybody, and happy reading!
Pat Dale


  1. Okay...Ana says there's nothing going on between you two but I'm not so sure. Ana seems pretty irresistible and frankly somewhat provocative...hehehe. Seriously, I'm glad you let her out. She seems engaging and entertaining. Congrats and I love the title of this book.

  2. Quite the hook, Pat. You must be a very strong woman, Ana. I look forward to reading your story. It sounds like something that's going to keep me on the edge of my chair until I finish it. I only hope it's a happy ever after ending for you.

  3. Awesome post, Dale! Ana sounds like great character. The kind that really draws you into a story. Good luck with with. It sounds like a winner!!!

  4. Hey Karen, Kay Dee, and Anne! Thanks for your comments. Actally, Ana is a composite of one of my former teaching colleague's wife and another cool lady I knew early in life. Both were tall, blonde, and somewhat stoic in nature, but emotion ran deep in them and inspired me to emulate them.
    Wow! I just got a shock. My psychological suspense CROSSED LINES is due to be released by Whimsical Publishing and the editor just emailed me with the release date: May 2nd. Holy release date! That's next month, and I thought I had at least three months to work up some kind of PR for it. Gotta get busy!

  5. Great blog. And just enough of a tease to draw you in. Thank you.