At dusk, the Legend sets sail for Bermuda. On my stateroom balcony, I watch below as the ship cuts through waves, the small crests forming shapes reminiscent of the six-inch stuffed polar bear I carried everywhere as a child, until one day at the beach a rip current snatched her out of my hands.

I cried myself violet that day—as I do now, on what was originally an anniversary cruise, until that secretary and her ripped stockings snatched him out of my hands.

In the white foam, I see her little paw reach up and dream for a reunion.

It’s Day 4 of Bloganuary, and the question is: What was your favorite toy as a child?

The real story has a much happier ending. A boy surfing a little further down the beach found her in the water, heard me screaming my head off, and figured she belonged to me. She’s never left my side since.

Yes, Nala was named after Nala from The Lion King. Yes, I’m aware she is not a lion.

Chronicles of a Single Black Christian Female: Episode 2

Pastor says, “No Christian woman should be online dating.” But the only males in church are either married or teenagers.

Granddaddy says, “Do you expect Mr. Right to break into your house?”

Only undesirables, who follow you home and never leave, are available at the bar and club scene.

So I find myself at the Ruby Tuesday, planted in a booth next to the all-you-can-eat salad bar, trying not to look too desperate that I scare away potential suitors, but just lonely enough that a friendly stranger sits down, buys me a drink, and maybe asks for my phone number.

It’s Day 3 of Bloganuary, and the prompt is: Write about the last time you left your comfort zone.

Short answer: I’ve taken myself on a date only twice. Both times were very awkward—people tend to stare at the person eating alone. But that could all be in my head…

Deep down: I first published Episode 1 of Chronicles of a Single Black Christian Female way back in 2018. It was supposed to be the first installment of a new serial story. But Episode 2 never came, until now, because of the long answer: I’m a Christian woman who writes romance fiction, sometimes about Christian people who sometimes have sex, sometimes outside of marriage. Because that’s life, that’s real. And too many protagonists in contemporary Christian fiction (that I’ve read) are “holier than thou” caricatures, and it doesn’t show the truth: that we’ve all fallen short, and that’s okay because there is forgiveness in Christ. And I know some people won’t like that, some will judge me, call me a sinner, that I’m not doing the work of God, blah, blah, blah. And maybe I am and maybe I’m not. And maybe that’s why I hesitate to hit publish for some posts on this topic, and maybe that’s why I go back and edit censor certain love scenes, and maybe that’s why I don’t tell people at church that I’m a writer. And maybe this is a conversation I should be having with God instead of blabbering online.

But at the end of the day, I just hope you can accept my work for what it is, fiction, and me for who I am, human, just out here trying, like everyone else.

Honeymoon Road Trip

He bought a Confederate battle flag from the Civil War Museum gift shop at Fort Fisher, our first stop on a two-week cross-country road trip. Fourteen states by the end of it—all below the Mason-Dixon line.

He hung it in our RV’s living area window. As cars passed on the highway, looks of anger twisted into confusion.

Black girl, Brown guy. Didn’t make sense.

“It’s a symbol of Southern pride?” he said.

“For some.”

“We’ll make it our own.”

“Like the N word?”

That night he took it down, spread it across the bed, then lay between my legs.

It’s Day 2 of Bloganuary, and the question is: What is a road trip you would love to take?

Short answer? Coast to coast with the hubby, honeymooning in every state. 😉

The Girl in Booth Seven

“Ready to order, hon?”

“Cof—” She coughs into her fist. “Just water.”


“Cheesy grits. Can you cut up little sausages in it? Fried egg, medium. Oh…I probably can’t have it runny. Hard then. And can you put that in the grits too? Well, I guess I can do that.”

She turns and gazes out the window at the gray sky and wet asphalt of the diner parking lot.

I recognize that look. I had it at 17, as a runaway and seven weeks pregnant.

“I’ll put it all in the bowl. And decaf works.”

She smiles. “Thank you.”

Saw that a few blogging buddies are participating in Bloganuary. I’m not fully committed yet, but I liked today’s prompt: What advice would you give to your teenage self?