For Good

I spent my first decade growing up in the small Mississippi Delta town of Doddsville, population 304. Oxford, home of esteemed writers William Faulkner and John Grisham, was an hour-and-a-half northwest of our little farming community. Grisham and I are the same age. Later, I remember reading, then watching, The Firm, and thinking maybe someday I could write a novel just like Mr. Grisham did. He was an inspiration, one of many.

So, when I read that he said this “is the most important book I have ever written,” I was compelled to download it. I was surprised when it was FREE!

It’s a quick read and like the title says, non-legal. Grisham uses his storytelling brilliance to convey facts — facts about brain tumors. As some of you know, I had my own tumor scare in 2001. Fortunately, it had not invaded my brain. Despite trying to stay current on all things tumors, I was not aware of the developing new treatment described in the book.

I love it when influential people use their talents for good. In this story, John Grisham does that as an advocate and call to action for funding this new treatment for tumors.

I recommend to all my readers and friends downloading and reading The Tumor. You never know if or when YOU or someone you love will be impacted directly or indirectly by something like this. Together, each doing just a little something, we can make a difference.

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Happy 2020!

Upcountry Maui, May 2018

Just a little over a year and a half seems like a lifetime ago when my wife, Rebecca, and I were in Maui celebrating a job well done with our eldest daughter and her family. Rebecca and I had just completed caring for our granddaughter weekdays during her first year when her parents had to return to work following her birth. As I have often mentioned, it was one of the most glorious and wonderful things I’ve ever been a part of. Yes, EVER!

While sipping Mai Tai’s poolside one afternoon, said eldest daughter arrived at our cabana. Her face bespoke of surprise, perhaps even shock. Katherine had been feeling a little off with symptoms that seemed somewhat familiar. Secretly snagging a test kit when we were all at the local store, the results were in. PREGNANT!

Like that news, every moment of our time together on the island was charmed. When we returned, I put together and published Madeleine’s Midday Updates. Then I plotted and started writing Thin Places: Dallas.

Genevieve Garrett joined the family a year ago in January, 2019. Rebecca and I knew then we desired to do for her the same thing we did for her older sister. It’s been another magical year, two in the last three now, with the responsibilities and joy of caring for an infant 10 hours a day, 5 days a week.

After doing it once, I had the grandiose notion that I could write when she napped. WRONG! Parents, grandparents, nannies, and others who care for little babies know what I’m talking about. Doing it well is work. And it’s exhausting. When it came time for me to write, the ole brain was tired and fried. Putting even two words together that made any sense whatsoever eluded me. Consequently, I made the decision to give writing another rest, like I did before, and dedicate myself to providing this baby the best care I could possibly offer.

Genevieve’s Daddy Ben Loves Her to Pieces!

So, that’s where in the world Ben Coleman has been for the last while. Now, our little bundle of joy has transitioned into full-time daycare. And I’m back, back to doing what makes me come alive. Writing.

Initially, I’m refreshing myself on the plot, characters, and what was already written. After making a few adjustments, it will be back to butt in chair, head in story, putting words on the page. I’m looking forward to an awesome 2020 and hope YOU have the best New Year yet!

If you want to be updated on when new books publish, join my email list by clicking here.

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The Inspiration


I thought I’d share about how my latest release, Madeleine’s Midday Updates, came about.  But I’ve already done that in the Introduction.  So, here it is:

When our daughter and son-in-law had to return to work following the birth of their first child, my wife, Rebecca, andI offered to keep our granddaughter.  I had no clue what I was getting into, but my wife was sure this would be a wonderful thing, not only for the baby, but also for her parents and us.  She was spot on!

Having Madeleine with us for so many days this past year hasbeen one of the delights of my life. Exhausting?  YES!  I’m sure glad we had our children when wewere in our 20’s.  I completelyunderstand and sympathize more than ever now with older parents.  Still, it’s worth it.

I was on duty in the mornings, my wife afternoons.  Madeleine arrived at 8:30am and left around5:45pm each weekday.  What follows is acompilation of text messages I sent to her parents most days.  Where you see breaks means we didn’t haveMadeleine.  I took some time to visit myother daughter (referred to in these messages as Aunt Margarett) and her familyon the East Coast.  Madeleine, becauseshe was breastfeeding, accompanied her mother to New York City on multiple businesstrips.

This idea evolved after getting several telephone calls eachday inquiring about the status of their little Miss M.  Babies require a lot of attention, in caseyou didn’t know.  Truth be told, I didn’trealize how much.  But I sure do now.  Invariably, those calls would come during adiaper change, feeding, or some other necessary task.  It sure is challenging holding a phone anddoing any of those things simultaneously. So, I had this idea of sharing about our day.

The messages were originally written as text messages via telephoneand sent to our little group of four.  Theyare written in Madeleine’s voice and there is a lot of repetition.  Even so, most people we shared them withloved the idea.  More than one suggestedthey should be compiled and published. That was never my intent when I started. Now, however, with her parents’ permission, that is what I’ve done.

In the back of this book, you’ll find a resource page.  Occasionally, someone asked what a certainitem was that I mentioned.  Kids thingsare a lot different than forty years ago. That section describes many of the items and provides links if you’reinterested in learning more.

This book’s cover design is inspired by the white boarddrawing my wife did for Madeleine that is mentioned in various updates.  I’m grateful to my mother and Madeleine’sgreat-grandmother, Bonnie Bailey Hall, for her careful proofreading.

Now, I hope every time you pick up this book and read a fewpages, it brings a smile.

Ben Coleman (aka Daddy Ben)

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My Magical Year

Looking back, these last twelve months have been among the most magical of my life.  When the parents of the newborn little girl in our life had to return to work, my wife and I decided we wanted to help.  So, beginning in July Miss Madeleine spent five days a week with Granmama (spelling intentional) and Daddy Ben.  And let me tell you, I now completely understand why we’re designed to have babies when we’re young.

I had morning duty.  My wife held down afternoons, since that is my most productive writing time.  After the first few days, I got back to writing.  It was then I realized after numerous head-banging sessions, that I was simply too mentally and physically exhausted to turn out a great story.  It just wasn’t working.  This mid-60’s man learned first hand that taking care of a little baby is WORK!  (I know.  I know.  You moms already know that.)

We made the decision to set writing aside for this season.  My wife emphasized how special this time was for us and how quickly babies grow up.  Goodness, how right she was.  That season has ended.  Baby Girl is in day care three days a week and we are helping with that transition keeping her just two days for now.  I’m soon to be back to writing.

BUT, I will not be finishing “Thin Places: Dallas” as a first project.  Despite being nearly complete, I don’t like where the plot took the story.  It needs work.  I hope to revisit Buck and Liz soon.  Something else has captured my attention more — children’s books.

Following a trip with Miss M and her parents to Maui to celebrate our year, my birthday, and the wife’s and my 42nd wedding anniversary, I will be working on the first project.  My wife, Rebecca, and I have ideas for more, too.  But right now, the direction is to get the first one done.

We enjoyed so many incredible moments with our granddaughter this past year.  I wouldn’t trade that time for anything.  Now it’s time to share some of the magic.  More about that soon.

Aloha~

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Thin Places Box Set

My First Box Set!

I’m excited to soon be publishing the first three books of my Thin Places series as a box set.  It will be available as an e-book download exclusively through Amazon.  The $6.99 price will save readers who purchase the set almost $2.00 were they to buy each individual title.

Currently, I’m in the formatting stage.  Recently, a fellow Indie-author and publisher turned me on to a new Apple app geared toward formatting from a document file.  I like what Vellum does so much that I am busy learning how it works.  Hopefully, the Udemy course I found will help on that front, too.

Once formatted, my launch team will have a first-look.  We’ll then publish two weeks later.Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedin

Welcome!

We just wrapped up a two-day promotion of Thin Places: Santa Fe.  I’m WOWed by all the hundreds of new readers who downloaded it.  THANK YOU!  I hope you thoroughly enjoy meeting Buck and Liz… the story, too.  And, by the way, WELCOME to my website.

Now it’s back to pushing through writing of Thin Places: Dallas.  Honestly, it’s taking longer than I planned.  Life happens.  I choose to make the best of it and not conjure up a bunch of excuses.  It is what it is.  I’m reminded of a song my Mom used to sing at challenging times:  Life is Just a Bowl of Cherries.

(My Mother)

Hmmm?  I’m dedicating this novel in her memory.  I wonder if there’s a connection?

One of the joys in writing this current tale has been bringing in my daughters and their husbands to collaborate.  When it was time to flesh out Liz’s best friend, Anna, and her husband Britt St. Claire, I decided to seek their input.  The two people are essentially the creation of Katherine & Mark and Margarett & Kris.  Anna and Britt will be making regular appearances, along with the other cast of characters, in future books in the series.

Over on Facebook and Twitter, I post more regularly.  Writing, however, is my top priority!  You can click the links to the right if that’s part of your gig.  Please know how thankful I am for YOU, my readers.Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedin

…In With the NEW!

I rang out 2016 with boundless JOY!  Mind you, I do come alive when my head is in the story and I’m in full write mode.  Those closest to me can attest to the truth of those words, for sure.  That dims though, when compared to holding my first grandson, now six months, for the very first time.  Needless to say, everything author/novelist was pushed aside for the two weeks this over-the-top adorable lad joined us in Dallas — along with his parents, of course.  😉

Already, the New Year seems to be propelling forward at ever-increasing speed.  The rewrite of Thin Places: Santa Fe, my first novel, has been published.  And I am back to completing the first writing of Thin Places: Dallas.  Then it’s to the back-and-forth editing process.  Fortunately, I have awesome editors who respect the tales I conjure and possess a strong desire to make them pop… make them better.

Beginning in 2017, my titles are published exclusively with Amazon.com.  Apologies to those who purchased my books at and prefer other mediums.  For now, Amazon works best for me.  Also, the first book in my Thin Places series, Thin Places: Santa Fe,  is no longer free.  I am, however, offering it at a significant discount with hopes of motivating readers not yet familiar with my work to check it out… see if it’s for them.

And, YES, I’m already toying with ideas about the next book in the series.  I’m hoping to be a bit more prolific and timely in publishing this year!  All of this said, THANK YOU for stopping by here.  I am so, so grateful when YOU find some delight and enjoyment in my stories.

Cheers to YOU in this New Year!  May 2017 be YOUR best year yet…Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedin

Welcome to My Website

Thank you for dropping by and checking out my website.  One of my writing mentors, a best-selling author, drilled into my head that to be a successful novelist, my mantra had to be:

  • Butt in Chair
  • Head in the Story
  • Putting Words on the Page

In fact, were you to call me, you would probably get my voicemail which says you didn’t reach me because I’m likely doing exactly those three things.  Writers must write!

Celtic Oak CoverThat does not mean, however, I don’t make time to communicate with my readers.  I do!  The best way to keep abreast regarding what I’m up to is to subscribe to my VIP Newsletter.  If you do, expect an email every other week with behind the scenes information about my stories and me.  You will also be among the first to hear about new releases.  But that’s not all.  Celtic Oak is a short story prequel to my Thin Places romantic suspense… with a touch of fantasy book series.  It is available as a free download exclusively to my subscribers.  You read that correctly.  It is not published in the public domain.  It is not available for purchase anywhere.  Once confirmed, subscribers receive an email with the download link.

I’m also somewhat active on Facebook and Twitter.  I welcome you to follow me if either of  those are your thing.  You’ll find those buttons on the right.

Now, back to writing…

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