#TBT #CleaningHouseNovel #AppalachianElementals No. 5

Yes, I’m well aware that it’s only been a few months since the release of Cleaning House – An Appalachian Contemporary Fantasy, but I’m spending the month of November featuring it in my #TBT (Throwback Thursday) series because of the recent release of the second title in the series, the novella Mama, Me, & the Holiday Tree. It’s generally good to relive the past, even the recent past, so I’ll be sharing Chapter One from Cleaning House throughout the month.

The section in orange comes from last week’s #TBT post.

  Maybe I should take up gardening.

     Being close and sweaty, their hands touching as they worked side-by-side. Cent shivered as she scrutinized the envelope. “It’s too thin to be a summons.” She went to the kitchen for the scissors but couldn’t find them, so she opted for a paring knife, sliding it beneath the taped flap to open the envelope, pulling out a single, handwritten page.

 Dear Centenary,

     I need you to come home to help me clean up the homestead for sale. I’ll keep you fed, and you can stay there or at my house until it’s sold.

     Mr. Jones at Dryler’s said he could use you ten hours a week, so that’ll give you some money too.

     And some collections service man came by the other day to serve you papers. I gave him a fake address in Carter County so he’d go away.

     Never mind him or what your mama said last time you spoke to her.

     Just get yourself home.

     I need your help.

     Love,

    Aunt Tess

      P.S. Quit changing your phone number.

     Cent read the letter twice more, smirking when she realized she’d read it in Aunt Tess’ thick, Southern Appalachian accent.

     “I’m not going back to Hare Creek, Aunt Tess, but I’ll give you a call just the same.” Cent pulled her phone from her pocket and clicked the contact list, praying her mother or another family member didn’t reach the phone before Tess did.

This marks the end of my November Throwback Thursday from Cleaning House.

Why not treat yourself or someone else to a holiday gift of Cleaning House and/or Mama, Me, & the Holiday Tree? The buy link for Cleaning House is to your right and the one for Holiday Tree is below.


A dozen handmade holiday ornaments, that’s all, but it might be an impossible task.

Centenary Rhodes and her mother are at constant odds. It’s one of the many reasons Cent left home when she was eighteen. Mama’s difficult for anyone to manage, but now that Cent’s back home, she has to try. Mama, however, won’t acknowledge who Cent’s become, even though she’s repeatedly been shown the truth.

It’ll take more than popcorn strings and paper snowflakes to heal the rift that’s formed between Cent and Mama. It’s going to take bushels of patience, heaps of magic, and assistance from everyone on both sides of Embreeville Mountain to reset the Balance between them.

But with Yule and Christmas just around the corner, it might already be too late.

Mama, Me, and the Holiday Tree is available in both print and ebook formats.

AMAZON     BARNES & NOBLE    and elsewhere

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