The complete two part series will be released on April 27, 2021 but is available now for pre-order.
Follow the journey of Cass as she gets another chance at love, not just once but twice. Will it be the forever kind of love or just love in a moment?
Part One- Captain of My Heart Cass never imagined she would be attracted to someone thirty years older than she was. But when Captain Raymond Jackson entered her backyard, she felt as if a lightning bolt struck her. With the face of Sam Elliot and the body of the Rock, how could she not be attracted? They decided to get to know each other better, and Cass soon learns there are a few secrets Ray is keeping from her. Will their relationship be strong enough to survive?
Part Two- The Captain’s Son Raymond Jackson Jr. returns to Palm Hills, California, years after a misunderstanding with his father. His father passed away a year and a half ago, so he feels it’s time to make amends. His brother also suggests Ray make amends with his father’s girlfriend, Cass, as well. He knows it will be a challenge but believes family and friends are worth fighting for. What Ray doesn’t expect is to fall for Cass, whom his father had planned to marry before he passed away. He’s determined to make her his, but will she see things his way?
After experiencing so much personal tragedy, I’ve learned a lot and would like to take a moment to share. It may help someone out there.
I used to get annoyed, angry and hurt whenever I discovered someone I loved kept a secret from me. I have come to realize that their secret really has nothing to do with me. If it did, they would have shared it with me. The reason the person kept it a secret has more to do with them and not me.
I’ve also learned I can not control how other people view or feel about me. When I accepted this, it gave me so much freedom. Here’s a list of truths that may be obvious and cliché but others may not have even realized:
You live for you
You don’t live for others
You speak YOUR truth
You can’t control what other people think, so why would you worry about other people’s thoughts?
You’re own worst enemy is yourself
No one or anything is holding you back from obtaining your goal except for YOU.
You are responsible for your own happiness- JUST YOU- No one else- YOU.
You are NOT responsible for making someone else happy.
Other people’s happiness is their own responsibility.
Treat people the way you want to be treated
You can NOT save anyone who doesn’t want to save themselves.
Own up to your mistakes. Give a genuine and authentic apology.
You have to FORGIVE YOURSELF- you can not control whether or not someone forgives you. You can only control whether or not you forgive yourself.
STOP holding yourself back from doing something that is embedded in your heart and soul.
You have ONE life. ONE.
Be grateful and thankful.
Breakaway from toxic relationships and activities!
Only YOU are stopping YOU from being the best YOU can be.
Do NOT compare yourself to other people. Their path is theirs, not yours.
Say “NO” when you mean it. And guess what? You don’t have to provide an explanation, reason, or excuse.
The thing about grieving is in one moment you are perfectly fine, happy because time has passed and you found your new “normal”, but then out of no where a song, a smell, a word or thought or even a color will slam you back into memories good or bad and you feel this heavy weight on your chest that you can barely breathe. You remember you will never see them ever again in this lifetime. All you have are those moments of memories. It’s bittersweet because you feel their presence in that moment and yet your feel that harsh pain and reality. That’s one reason I think traditions are important. It’s in the tradition where you remember and respect them. Cherish them and in a sense be with them in that moment.
I have a vivid memory of helping my mom make Christmas ornaments when I was four or five. It was this clear ornament with styrofoam and we crumbled up some of the styrofoam to make it look like snow. We cut gold and red ribbons then placed these two miniature reindeer inside. She always let me put the ornament on the tree.
I think that’s why I had a tradition of making at least one ornament each year with my kids when they were younger.
I get crafty around this time of year and always think of Mom and Dad. This year I made my version of a Christmas Gnome. Had flashbacks to junior high school needle point class then flashed to high school when I was teaching a friend how to make “Stumpkins”. Then thought of my sister and a few cousins when we’d start crafting too. But mostly, I thought of mom. Of course, It was soothing.
For anyone else who is grieving… Eventually, the heavy weight is lifted and you go right back to living your normal until the next wave hits. You learn to ironically cherish it and hate it all at the same time.
I am writing this from my phone so there will more than likely be lots of typos and grammer errors but I’m writing it from my heart. I find it so fascinating that there is this controversy about how you write or describe skins tones and hair textures in books or essays. I am a light skinned black woman with a family that comes in so many shades. All of them beautiful and all of them need to be acknowledged and described. I get that some people have issues with describing tones comparing to foods but to me it isn’t an issue. There are caramels, mocha, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, mohogany, brown sugar… so much more. The hair textures are varying too. From straight, wavy, curly, coily, spiraly, bouncing, frizzy and out of control looking like the statue of liberty. The last few books that have been sent to editors have flagged anytime I describe skin tones. I always leave it as I wrote it. For me, as a black woman, it is important to acknowledge the different skin tones. To ignore it or remove it is to ignore or try to remove my culture. I didn’t have many novels, books, essays or short stories that acknowledge the different skin tones. It isn’t the main focus of my stories at all but important to me for people to realize that there are many different shades of black. We are educated. We are romantic. We are funny. We love. We play. We are serious. We are a variety of characters. So, if any one questions why I include skin complexion in my books. I ask, why wouldn’t I?
A few readers who have read Truth or Dare: A Love Story have requested me to write Reggie and Maggie’s story. Twelve Years of Christmas is their story. It spans from their senior year in high school to the moment they finally obtain their happily ever after (or at least, their version of it) when they are thirty. As a heads-up, this novel is a bit steamier and has some colorful language. It’s a roller-coaster journey. I hope you enjoy the ride.
Maggie and Reggie have known each other since they were five. They have been getting on each other’s nerves ever since Reggie poured sand into Maggie’s chocolate milk. They are doomed to hang around each other because each of their best friends insist they all hang out as a group. Just before graduating high school, sparks begin to fly. It begins a tumultuous on-again, off-again relationship. Will they ever get on the same track headed in the same direction? Will they ever have a Merry Christmas together?
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If you would like to receive an advance free copy, there are limited copies available at Booksprout!