Saturday, April 30, 2011


Our contribution this week is from I.O.U. SEX:

June is getting ready to go to Denny's garage as the first step in making contact with him.

Showered, buffed, and lotioned, June spritzed perfume over her naked body. I'll wear my most expensive lace bra and panties, she thought, though no one but me will know; they'll give me confidence. She took extra time with her hair, sweeping it behind her ears the way Denny used to like it. Shithead Stan said older women shouldn't wear their hair long, but she still thought shoulder length suited her best. She rejected her ex-husband's opinion as just one more of his many chauvinistic ideas and wondered why she'd tolerated him as long as she had. The day she and Stan parted, she'd decided to let her hair grow long again, her first act of defiance in years. 

For more Six Sentence Sunday snippets (or to add your own), click on this link: Six Sentence Sunday. Thank you, Sara Brookes, for hosting.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


Every author brings a little bit of himself or herself to his/her written words. This old photo shows both Sandy and I when we were in the drill team. It seems like only yesterday that we were sitting in an assembly listening for our names to be called out as new members of the Stockard Strutters, our red & white dream. When I first looked back at this photo, I had to really study it to even find myself, but I was surprised at the memories that came back to me as I also studied the many faces represented here. Ah, the fun, the joy of having a common cause to support - our beloved school, L. V. Stockard, and its championship football team (& boys!).

When Sandy and I wrote I.O.U. Sex, some of those same memories reappeared in the fictional content of June, Kiki, and Peggy's memories of being a "Rayette" at Rayburn High School. It's a fictional work, but it's still filled with memories.
~ Miss Pickles (alias Sandra Allen)

Monday, April 25, 2011


Just a few days ago, I became a grandmother for the first time. And of course, the whole family is over the moon with our new little girl. Me, especially.

But I'm finding myself in an identity crisis. 
Who am I? 
Am I Grandma? (That brings back memories of my husband's rather stern grandmother who, I'm convinced, never approved of me.) 
Granny? (too Beverly Hillbillies)
Sandy-Ma? (like my sister-in-law) 
Mam-Maw? (from my Southern heritage) 
Or how about Nana? Hmmm. With my last name, Nana Nachlinger sounds like a stutter. None of those names seem to fit.

When I asked my husband what he wanted our granddaughter to call him, he said, "Sir." I laughed until tears came to my eyes. I don't believe him for one minute!! He's so in love with the little darling that she could call him Poop and he'd be happy.

Friends have told me that no matter what name I choose, it really won't make any difference. Whichever way this first grandchild mangles my choice, that will be my name for ever more. And I'm okay with that. She can call me whatever she wants and I promise I'll be happy.

In the meantime, any suggestions for grandmother nicknames would be appreciated.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

SIX SENTENCE SUNDAY - April 24, 2011

In this blurb from I.O.U. SEX, our three main characters are having lunch. Here's Peggy's reaction when June and Kiki tell her what they've been up to in their search for their high school boyfriends.

Peggy was so stunned she couldn't answer. While her two friends made plans for an afternoon of shopping, she mulled over what she'd learned. It was almost too much to take in. One of her best friends had rendezvoused with an old boyfriend she hadn't seen in years. And the other planned to seduce a man of God.

Holy crap. 

6 Sentence Sunday is the creation of Sara Brookes. To read other snippets, click on this link: 6 Sentence Sunday

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


Amazon's ratings are as unpredictable as Texas weather in springtime! For a while today, I.O.U. SEX was high in their sales ranking. However, their rating seems to be dependent on number of sales, tag entries, page visits, and perhaps the phase of the moon! We're just delighted to have our book available on Amazon and to get a good ranking now and then.

A big thank you to everyone who has bought the book.

IN THE TOP 100 !!!

Exciting news! I.O.U. SEX is now ranked in the top 100 in two categories on Amazon:

Click here for more information: I.O.U. Sex on Amazon


Here are a few photos sent to us by our friend (and memoir writer) Simon Yang. He took these recently while on a walk near Des Moines, Washington

Thank you, Simon, for the lovely wildflowers! If you're reading this, please add a comment about the trail's location.

Western Skunk Cabbage
Salmonberry Flowers

Saturday, April 16, 2011


... is the brilliant idea of Sara Brookes. To connect to more entries or join in yourself, click here: Six Sentence Sunday

Here's our contribution, a part of the conversation when the three women decide to search for their high school boyfriends:

            “I still think this is one of my best ideas yet.” Kiki jumped up, her arms flailing as she paced the floor. “Not only do we owe those guys sex, but personally, I’d like to make up for all those boring years I spent as a good girl. I say we track them down and see if they’re up for it.”

            “That brings up another issue,” June said, laughing so hard she could barely form words. “They’re older now…do you think they can…still…get it up?”

Thursday, April 14, 2011

It's always a thrill to get a nice review of our book, but recently we got one from an unexpected place - the United Kingdom! We'd noticed sales from Amazon-UK and decided to check the UK website. There we found a really nice 5-star review from a reader. It says:

An entertaining light read. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this and found it hard to put down.
Don't let the title put you off, it's not erotica, these are the intertwined love stories of the friends who get in contact with their high school loves and fall in love all over again.
Nice job!

Those kind words really put the marmalade on our crumpet!

BOOK REVIEW: Cold Sassy Tree

  Cold Sassy Tree   [COLD SASSY TREE] [Paperback]

I just finished reading Cold Sassy Tree by Olive Anne Burns, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The story takes place in the town of Cold Sassy, Georgia, its name derived from the cool shade under the sassafras trees nearby. Set in the early 1900s, after the War Between the States, the narrator (Will Tweedy) is the 14-year-old grandson of the owner of the town's general store. The conflict starts when his grandfather marries a much younger woman only weeks after the grandmother's death. This scandal causes an uproar in the close-knit, Bible-quoting community.

I felt that the story presented an intimate picture of life in that place, at that particular time in history. Some homes still had outhouses and used kerosene lamps, while others had electricity, indoor plumbing, and telephones. The automobile was a novelty. Yankees and "lintheads" (mill workers) were distrusted, and family was all-important. The humor, southern accents, and mispronunciations added charm and realism to the tale, though the dialect sometimes slowed down my reading. And although I found myself skimming the longer preachy sections, the plot kept me entertained and the characters charmed me.

I'd recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Southern tales.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Just a quick referral to a little essay I wrote entitled "Girl Scout Wisdom." It's posted on the Boomers and Books blog.

Click here to read it: Boomers and Books Essay 

Saturday, April 9, 2011

SIX SENTENCE SUNDAY - April 10, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday was so much fun last week that we're doing it again! This week's post includes a little flashback from I.O.U. SEX and it's actually only four sentences. We hope you enjoy it.

Peggy smiled at the warmth in his words, the deep timbre of his voice bringing back vivid memories of late-night conversations during high school. She remembered taking the big black telephone from the hallway into her bedroom closet, stretching the phone cord to its full length. She could almost feel the velvety darkness embrace her now, just as it did when she would shut her closet door and sit on the floor, alone with only Mark's voice. They'd talk for hours, discussing nothing and everything, until her mother followed the phone cord to her room and knocked on her closet door with an admonishment.

To see all the Six Sentence Sunday posts, click here: 

Friday, April 8, 2011


Gray clouds crowd the blue out of the Pacific Northwest sky, hiding the sunshine I'd hoped to see this Friday morning. I need a lift! So, here's a link to a funny video that never fails to makes me laugh. Maybe you've seen it before. It's been around a while, but it's still funny.

What's it about? Jeanne Robertson sends her husband (she calls him Left Brain) to the grocery store for seven items. If you haven't seen this, you'll be surprised at what he brings home.

I hope this gives you a smile, and maybe even a laugh. It worked for me.

Click on this link and enjoy: Left Brain Video

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


Here's my contribution to Teaser Tuesday.
You'll find more here: "Should Be Reading"

(Approx Page 4 on my Kindle) – In that instant, Jessamyn realized they shared a bond that stretched far beyond the sheltered confines of her world. She'd been wrong to scoff at the words of the ancient slave woman who'd told her fortune earlier in the day.

Lace & Shadows

Monday, April 4, 2011

BOOK REVIEW: I Still Dream About You

I Still Dream About You
Fannie Flagg is such a good Southern author. In I Still Dream About You, she creates wonderful pictures of a variety of Southern women, the likes of which I knew growing up in Dallas. As is true of the characters in this book, those moms and teachers and neighbors worried about hurting the feelings of others and would go out of their way to avoid any possible inconvenience to their friends. Of course, Fannie takes these traits to the extreme with her characters, especially protagonist Margaret Anne Fortenberry ("Maggie"). 

Maggie is a former Miss Alabama, selling real estate in Birmingham. In spite of her perfect façade, she's determined to end her life. She makes all the preparations--writing her suicide note by hand ("... the computer would be far too impersonal and certainly not in good taste"), making sure all her bills were paid ("She never wanted to give anyone the chance to say that a former Miss Alabama was a deadbeat."), placing ant traps under the sink, and even emptying her refrigerator to make sure no one had to deal with spoiled food after she's gone. The last thing she wants is to be a bother to anyone. Yet a performance by the Whirling Dervishes, a skeleton in the closet of a home she's trying to sell, and other inconvenient setbacks keep getting in the way of her plans to end her life. 

I won't post a spoiler and tell you how the story ends, but I will say that although the conclusion was predictable, Fannie Flagg entertained me from page one. While the book didn't contain the depth of Fried Green Tomatoes, it was well worth reading. This is a book I'd definitely recommend.

By the way, both of us Sandras are avid readers and we'll post random book reviews from time to time. These reviews will be from books we've borrowed from the library, bought new or used at book stores, received from friends, or downloaded to our Kindles. We receive no compensation for reading or reviewing these books. 

Friday, April 1, 2011


For the first time, we're participating in 6 Sentence Sunday by posting six sentences from our book I.O.U. SEX
Hope you enjoy the sample!

While the nail polish dried, Kiki used a pencil to punch buttons on her cell phone, trying the number she’d copied from the “contact us” section of Greg’s website.
 The woman who answered was not helpful.
 No, she could not connect Kiki to Reverend Houston.
 No, she could not give out his home address.
 No, she knew of no mailing address other than the one on the website—the one where donations should be sent. It seemed to Kiki as if the only question that would elicit a yes from the old broad was “Do you take credit cards?”