I’m Back !!

It should not be news to anyone that I am a first generation Italian American. My dad, a naturalized citizen was my I-tie John Wayne, my real life paesano cowboy. He loved American sports, loved our country, and most of all loved Westerns and cowboys.

Buy it at amazon.com

Oddly, decades after he passed through my life, my son spent summers on a ranch camp in Brandywine, Pennsylvania.

It was there he met the man who saved him from being a hoodlum. The ranch where my city boy discovered horses and rodeos and learned the ethics of the old West. The ranch where he learned to love a bow-legged, crusty old cowboy named Billy Graham.

Gene Autry the quintessential cowboy was a hero to my dad and the three of us … and later … me and my ever-rebellious son. Yes, Laura Drake … I identified more with Travis and JB Denny than Bella and Russ. 

Hot stuff those cowboys!

They believe in a work ethic that many think is gone and forgotten. It’s not gone, and certainly never forgotten. It’s still kicking hard and strong. You just need to know where to look.

My self-imposed deadline to return to my “real” work was the first week of November.

Real work? Yes, that’s when I put butt in chair and remember what all this is about.

Sun streams in from all windows. The weather is getting cooler, dryer and the days grow shorter. On October 28th I came to a dead-end and looked longingly at the door of my new office.

Construction goes on around me … a beautiful screened patio, the car port, and a utility shed as large as the storage unit I used to rent, will be dropped on the cement foundation by Home Depot some time in the next two weeks.

Yes, I’m back in the saddle again and loving it.


The end is near and I’m having a good time!

Billy introduced my son to Gene Autry and later my son introduced me to REM.

I love the relationship between music and writing so much, I look through my music library to find the right message to attach to some of my posts.

Can’t use random photos and graphics? Try using book or magazine covers and music videos.

Time magazine link.

For me … the end of the world as I knew it … came when I made this magical move into my own lovely cottage in semi-tropical heaven.

The end of my first mystery has been written, the edits are almost finished, and I will soon begin the query of it all and go forth into agent-publishing never-land.

The reason I am having such a good time with the end is simple. It means I can get back to my women’s fiction book.

It means I can begin the second in the mystery series.

It means I can sit here until my butt freezes over and write all I want and that, dear friends, is having a darn good time.

If all else were taken care of, how would you spend all your time?

Ever wonder what might have happened if you decided not to show up for compulsory work one day and did the work you “wanted” instead?

fOIS In the City



Filed under City Scapes

30 responses to “I’m Back !!

  1. Your life sounds like it’s almost exactly where you want it to be with regard to your living situation, Florence. Thank goodness, eh? And good for you in your writing. I remember that query letter (was that it?) that you sent me to read way back when. Your book is going to be a hit!


    • Thanks, Patti. Yes, I am exactly where I want to be in so many ways. I love that I am finishing the book and will send out soon. Hope springs eternal … from your lips to God’s ears re the book being a hit 🙂


  2. Florence – I love these eclectic, nostalgic posts – they tell us so much about who you are, and what’s happening with you. Thank you again, sweet friend, for reading my pre-pubbed book (and for liking it!)

    I too, am exactly where I want to be – alone all day to play with words. I feel like instead of retiring, I feel like I died and went to heaven. SO lucky!

    Enjoy every minute!


  3. I’m glad things are going so well for you, Florence. It sounds like your new place is just what you wanted and that things in your writing world are moving right along. Enjoy this time!


  4. Can I sit with you in your semi-tropical paradise? It sounds great and you sound energized. If I make it through November with my sanity, I may get a second wind. This Sat=niece’s wedding at my house. See…I couldn’t even write a complete thought on that one. Next week, I’ll be doing two television interviews, helping to host a public program from my writer’s group, and then a book signing on Saturday.


  5. vicki batman

    Hi, Florence, I love westerns too. Seems like that was all that was on tv when I was a kid. LOL

    You new place sounds fab and congratulations on all the writing you are doing. Obviously, the change has been inspiring.

    If all were done… I’d do my needlepoint, put on a good Western (or any other good movie), and stitch away. And cram in some reading on the side. My two favorite things.


    • Vicki, yes when we were kids that’s all that was on … westerns … and my dad watched all of them with my by his side !! I’ll think good thoughts that you will be able to do the needlepoint and write in your perfect world 🙂


  6. annerallen

    Welcome to the West! Oh,yeah, and happy trails to you….:-)


    • Ah Anne … go West young girl … go West !! That song … Happy Trails is the song the cowboy sang when a kid was drummed out of ranch camp 🙂 Me? I see nothing but clear skies and happy trails and loving it !!


  7. What a charming story, Florence! I hope one day you can visit LA because we’ve got the Gene Autry Museum here. My husband and I visited it for the first time a few years back. I remember thinking, “This is probably going to be cheesy.” It’s not. It’s stunning, and my favorite exhibition was the one devoted to the era of the singing cowboy. So nostalgic.Welcome back!


    • Debra, Gene Autry lived up to his cowboy image both on and off stage. He was a gentle-man and a fine person. I’d be thrilled to see his museum. Kind’a have a weak spot for singing cowboys although my fav country males were Eddie ARnold and The Silver Fox … Charlie Rich. I spent many a happy Sunday afternoon watching those old western movies and still have a soft spot for them 🙂


  8. Hi, Florence,
    Is it cool enough for you to write on your screened patio? If so, that must be heaven (as long as the construction around you has stopped). Congrats on making it through the upheaval of the move and finishing the mystery. Congrats, too, on getting back to the WF. Cowgirl up!


    • I can surely Cowgirl up, Pat … I’ll saddle an Italian Stallion and visit Laura Drake … then we’ll mozy on down to your spread for a spell 🙂

      Yes, the weather is great for sitting out and working. Most of the noisy work is done and now I am left with our glorious fall/winter months in the south 🙂


  9. Oh, my dad was a John Wayne admirer. I don’t think he missed one movie the Duke made. Great post. So happy you’re life is where you want it to be and how you want it to be. Write well. Be happy and Happy trails to you… 🙂


  10. Such a happy post. Full steam ahead, now.


  11. Florence,
    I enjoyed your post!
    Love that you find the connections between music and story…that’s one of my favorite things, too. 😉
    So glad you can get back to your writing!!


  12. Congratulations on getting to the end of your book, Florence. If everything was done and taken care of, I’d spend every minute writing and dreaming. 🙂


  13. Hello friend – Oh yes – I grew up with the cowboys and the wide open ranges and my Dad was my own special John Wayne…You can still stop at a dusty cafe in Cambridge, Kansas where not a single business is still open but the cowboys know where the key is and they can go in and make themselves coffee and often someone’s wife has dropped off dessert of some kind or perhaps a platter of sandwiches. I’m not actually ‘back’ at the keyboard — but I asked Tom to find your blog for me as I was going to read it. I’ve missed your words and am so happy you’ve ‘arrived’ in your nest.


    • Glad to hear from you, Sheri. Thank Tom and take time getting stronger !!

      I think “cowboys” are so important to our history, that we connect with them … from Kansas to Brookyn … they are the foundation of who we are. The Duke was the symbol of all that for millions of us and thank goodness, he still is 🙂


  14. What a lovely post to read on this cold grey morning in England 🙂



  15. christicorbett

    Yay Florence is back!

    *does happy dance*

    If everything was taken care of I would write, followed by more writing, with a healthy dose of even more writing 🙂

    Christi Corbett


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