Saturday, August 3, 2013

Hey guys and gals

So, I hope everyone is enjoying their weekend.

It's been HOT here in Dacusville.

Still, we BBQ'ed and it was delicious.

Now that the "free" time is over with, I guess I'm going back to work.  As soon as I can, I'll update on the particular projects I'm working on.  I think (or I hope, at least) everyone will be pleased when it comes out.

Have a fantastic Sunday!!!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


First of all, I swear I have the most loyal readers in the world.  Many of you have emailed, facebooked, or tweeted me to see about my extended silence.

I am alive, never fear ;o).

Life, as usual, seems to have sidetracked me.  I get caught up in homeschooling my daughter, completing freelance work, and working on the latest novel to grace my desk.

But I know it gets frustrating to have blog-silence for so long, so I will attempt to amend that.

I'll post tomorrow about the various projects I'm working on--for those who are interested.  Until then, I bid you all a good day until we chat again tomorrow.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

A post a little less on writing and a whole lot more on life...(warning, not suitable for children)

Some may have noticed the social media blackout on my part lately.

Whenever I'm mired in a project I try to avoid (not always successfully) anything like facebook, twitter, etc., because I'm super good at using any excuse to procrastinate.  (No, really, I absolutely must read every single blog in my blogroll before I can even hope to create something magical myself...)

I'm still mired in a project.  And I'm gearing up for the Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers' Conference.  But so much has been happening lately in the news that I had to post something.

Little known fact:  While I always wanted to be a writer, I also wanted to be a lawyer.  I interned with attorneys in high school.  I was accepted to Rutgers University with an eye to eventually acquiring my law degree there.  The reason behind this is simple.  I'm a justice junkie.

My two uncles (my mother's brothers) were murdered in NC by a man named Clinton Ray Rose.  We found out the awful truth the day of my 6th birthday.  I learned then that some people are evil.  There's no excuse.  There's no mitigating factors. Clinton Ray Rose walked into the campground where my uncles were staying and shot them multiple times.  I read somewhere that it took my uncle Larry minutes to die.  My uncle Richard had an expensive ring on his finger that Clinton Ray Rose couldn't pry off--so the murderer cut off his victim's finger to slake his greed and acquire a new-to-him piece of jewelry.

The man was caught--for a large part--because he was seen around the campground after the murders wearing my uncles' clothes, holding on to their possessions.

Clinton Ray Rose sits on North Carolina's death row.

I'm not okay with that.

I'll be 29 this June.  Even in the long, drawn out appeals process, twenty-three years dodging a well-deserved lethal injection is ridiculous.

People seem to feel the need to make excuses for why they support the death penalty.  I don't.

I remember so clearly reading a piece my mother did for the paper during Rose's trial.  In it, she talked about how the defendant would look at her, at my grandmother, and smirk when he was in the courtroom.  Smirk.

And for those who would argue that life in prison is just as effective, I feel I have to point out that Rose has 22 infractions (with presumably more to come...) while in custody.  This is not a man for whom rehabilitation is working.

I beg you'll forgive me because I've spent more time on our family tragedy than I intended.  I wanted to reference the upcoming death vs. life debate in the Jodi Arias trial.  I wanted to talk about the mother who lives two miles down the road from me and shot her 5-year-old son and 7-year-old daughter, and then her husband.  I was hoping, perhaps, that by blurting the painful thoughts out they'd lose a little of the power of despair both crimes have inspired in me.

I see perhaps now that thinking was foolish.

The Alexander family, the Arias family, and the Simpson family (the aforementioned mother...both children are with God now, and the husband remains in critical condition) are forever changed.  My family is forever changed.

I won't apologize for wanting the ultimate justice in each of these situations.

We're charged as Christians to forgive.  After 23 years, I'm still working on that for Mr. Rose.  I might have been a child and unaware of the more heinous aspects of his crime at the time.  But I've seen the ripples the violence has had ever since.  One moment can change the entire course of a life...of a family, of a community's life.

North Carolina appears to have an unofficial moratorium on carrying out death penalty sentences, and for the life of me, I can't help but imagine Clinton Ray Rose thinks about that every day...and probably smirks.  I hope if/when it finally happens that I can be there.  Not out of a morbid desire to watch a man die, but so that I can be the voice for those who have been untimely and cruelly silenced.

In the meantime, I know that my God is sovereign.  His forgiveness covers and expunges the most egregious and unthinkable of sins.  And He knows much better than I what it will take to heal the holes, the ragged places in the hearts of those who have been left behind while loved ones have passed on.

11 Because the sentence against an evil deed is not executed speedily, the heart of the children of man is fully set to do evil. 12 Though a sinner does evil a hundred times and prolongs his life, yet I know that it will be well with those who fear God, because they fear before him. 13 But it will not be well with the wicked, neither will he prolong his days like a shadow, because he does not fear before God. 
  Ecclesiastes 8:11-13 ESV

Monday, April 1, 2013

Our Regency Picture for the Day

While, of course, I have never seen the Prince Regent--the ruler of England during the madness of King George III and before the man's death--I tend to believe this is a very flattering portrait.

Flattering and most likely inaccurate.

Many sources I've read on dear Prinny (as he was sometimes called by those close to him) indicate he would  not create a realistic portrait that was nearly as...well...unlike his corpulent self.

I suppose no one wanted to infuriate the almost-king by painting sometime realistic and lifelike.

Oh the days before photography...

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Holy Saturday

Holy Saturday is the day impacts me the most during holy week.

Holy Saturday breaks my heart.

To even the most ardent, the most believing followers, Saturday had to look like the end of their world.  The man, the God-man they had listened to, abandoned all to take up their collective crosses and follow, was gone.  The stone stood firmly in place.  No sounds came from within the tomb.  Jesus was dead.

The disciples had anticipated Jesus would be an "earthly" king.  That he would vanquish the ruling Romans and lead the Jewish people in a long-awaited victory over their enemies.  Earthly kings aren't supposed to die.  They certainly aren't supposed to go without putting up an epic fight and killing thousands of shoulders with the power contained merely in his finger.  The meek, suffering Son of God they watched hang from the cross now truly seemed gone...without any intent to return.

Holy Saturday, to me at least, represents the darkest days in life.  Everything we've put our hope in has been ripped out from under us.  People we believed in have disappointed us.  Often it seems that God has broken his promise to give us life and give it to us abundantly.  The depressive pall that hangs over the day between Good Friday and Easter Sunday permeates to this day.  We wander through life, feeling betrayed and leaderless.  What we believed in is gone.

We go to bed...expecting another day of grief ahead...

Fortunately, God wasn't/and still isn't through writing this story...

So, today, I'm going to use Holy Saturday as a day to come before God and be honest in my emotions, in my sorrows.  He knows them anyway, so hiding them from Him is pointless.  I'll lay my concerns at the foot of an empty cross, pouring out my heart and grief for the sins I've committed that made Calgary necessary in the first place.

But luckily, I've read the next page.  I know it doesn't end here.

And, tomorrow morning, my sorrows and sins will be cleansed by the blood of the cross.  And I'll celebrate a savior who loved me enough to endure a hell he, in his perfection, never deserved--but one he took in my place.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Sneak Peek into a New Project

Today's post is brought to you by unarguably the most talented member of the Goff house.

My five-year-old daughter Brie.

Like Mommy, she wants to be a writer.  Unlike me, she's not going to write romance...because, in her words, "Romances are boring and ridiculous."

So, she'll be writing unicorn epic novels.

Here's Brie's current WIP (which will be published under the pen-name Brie Celt--because my maiden name of Kellett is really tricky for a five-year-old to sound out ;o)

Brie's pushing for me to send this off to my agent to see if he'll considering repping it.  Honestly, I'm afraid she'd outpace me in sales by the end of the year.  Who can resist a delightful unicorn story?

Should I be offended that she wants to distance herself from me and my "boring...ridiculous" romances by taking on a pseudonym?