I'm excited to announce the publication of D.L. Finn's latest book: In The Tree's Shadow. My pre-order arrives today, and I can't wait to dive into the stories!
Most of you know Denise through her wonderful blog and her multi-genre books. She's a writer who believes there's magic in nature and helps all of us experience the same. Recently she shared that she collects rocks, teacups, coffee mugs, wind chimes, books, and record albums. It seems that her world is a storybook re-creation.
Welcome, Denise, and congratulations on In The Tree's Shadow!
Today, I’m sharing the longest story in my collection, “Stranded.” I’m a huge fan of the old TV show Twilight Zone. I never miss a marathon and hope to find one I haven’t seen. Last time there were a few, including one I always loved about the people who live in a retirement community but have grown weary of life. When a person suggests they play like children again, they all get on board except one man who said it would make them sick.
The group playing kick the can is given a new and youthful lease on life. That was my mindset going into this story, to offer a kick the can for my retired couple on vacation. My children’s book “An Unusual Island” had another story waiting to be told, giving this couple their adventure.
Shipwrecked on a tropical island, I’ve never been more full of joy. This feeling has been a rarity lately. You see, I did everything that was expected of me in life. I got married, raised kids, worked hard, cared for my parents until they died, and paid the bills on time. I lived the so-called American dream and couldn’t complain, but something was missing. When my husband and I retired, we finally had extra time to do everything we wanted.
It hurt that the kids and grandkids were always too busy to include us in their distant lives, but we found things to do. We gardened, watched movies, visited national parks, and even saw a whale breach off the Pacific Coast. All those things we never had time for when raising our kids were now checked off our list. Yes, we were lucky we had a full life and were still healthy, but each day became the same. It was like we were sitting around waiting to die as comfortably as possible. Let’s say I wasn’t in a positive place.
One afternoon we watched an old Twilight Zone episode where older people got a second chance at life by playing kick-the-can. I asked Rob, “What is our kick-the-can?”
I got the expected and usually appreciated response. “You will always be my kick-the-can, Gigi.”
But the question got me wondering when my gaze settled on a picture of us smiling against a Hawaiian sunset. It was where we honeymooned, and we went back thirty years later for our second honeymoon. We even talked about moving there but decided we’d be too far from our family—a twelve-hour flight instead of a six-hour one. We’d seen all the islands, but there was one thing we always joked about doing. Rent a boat and experience the islands from a new perspective.
For the first time in a while, there was that spark inside. Something new.
A collection of short stories where dreams and nightmares coexist.
Nestled inside these pages, you’ll meet a couple in their golden years who take a trip with an unexpected detour, a boy desperate to give his brother the Christmas gift he asked for, a girl with a small glass dragon who is at the mercy of her cruel uncles, and a young mother who has a recurring dream about murder. You’ll be introduced to worlds where people get second chances and monsters might be allowed their desires, while angels and dragons try to help. Happy endings occur, but perspective can blur the line between good and evil in these twenty-seven tales. Since the stories vary between 99 and 12,000 words, whether you have only five minutes or an entire evening to settle into reading, there is something that will suit your time and taste.
D. L. Finn is an independent California local who encourages everyone to embrace their inner child. She was born and raised in the foggy Bay Area, but in 1990 she relocated with her husband, kids, dogs, and cats to Nevada City, in the Sierra foothills. She immersed herself in reading all types of books but especially loved romance, horror, and fantasy. She always treasured creating her own reality on paper. Finally, surrounded by towering pines, oaks, and cedars, her creativity was nurtured until it bloomed. Her creations include children’s books, adult fiction, a unique autobiography, and poetry. She continues on her adventure with an open invitation to all readers to join her.