About Me

Yes, there is an “About Carrie” page on my website, but it’s a general overview relating mostly to my publishing career. I figured the first month of the year would be a good time to reintroduce myself and give more insight and details to make it easier to find out more of what you’re interested in.

The most personal information on that biography page is the line:

When Carrie’s not reading, writing, browsing bookstores/libraries, or homeschooling, she can often be found knitting or attending concerts.

Obviously, I love reading and writing, plus bookish things. I’m a book collector (more about that below) and I’ve been a homeschooling mom for a dozen years. I knit sporadically–most often when watching TV/movies, which is rare. The last concert I attended was two years ago this month, but I did try to go to a live event at least twice a year before things went sideways.

Here’s a visual I created a few months back with a couple more fun facts. Keep scrolling to learn the details.

I’ve been in Mobile, Alabama, for a quarter of a century, but I’m still not considered local–and the summer humidity is as oppressive as ever.

Most of my stories (novels, shorts, etc.) are historical Southern Gothic, but I have written other things. For example, be on the lookout for news about my contemporary coming-of-age novel being brought back into print.

I love “treasure hunting”, which is what I call trips seeking vintage/antique books. I go to thrift stores, estate sales, flea markets, used bookstores, and more to add to my collection. I try to focus on my favorite authors (who write books that make me cry), but I have been known to adopt mid-century novels just for their pulpy cover art. I post my new finds and random collection photos on my Instagram account. On Instagram, I also share all things Mobile like architecture and nature photos, typically relating to my books. This time of year, you’ll see several camellia pictures.

My fandoms! I’ve been called a geek, and that’s fine with me. I’m on Twitter, which I use primarily for current information about my Marvel favorites (Thor and Daredevil), plus some C.S. Lewis related quotes and news, among other things. Of course, I’ll also tweet about my books and such.

I will also share bits of my Marvel Comics collection on Instagram, but that’s not something I share on my Facebook page, though I will post something like this visual on FB because Stan Lee was a creative genius and inspiration to the end of his life.

In closing, besides this blog (and don’t forget my monthly newsletter), you can find me on various social media sites, with certain focuses on each one. There are also private Facebook Groups I host/co-host. Dalby’s Darklings is where I post lots of exclusive and sneak peek things, plus host online discussions for my new releases. POSSESSED: Timeless Gothic Reads group is where I discuss all things Gothic literature with Gothic readers and writers from around the world. Gothic romance, horror, Southern, classics, family saga–we cover it all.

Find me where it works best for you. Questions and comments are always welcome through any of these options.

Literary Tree

Our homeschooling plans have taken a literary turn this month. In a fit of Pinterest inspiration, I purchased a tree kit from the local teacher supply store. Isn’t it cute?
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Now, for every book the kids read independently (or with little help) they get to write the title on a leaf and add it to the tree.
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We started with a winter bare tree in the middle of summer and it’s turning to spring even as the temperature rises. Come winter, we’ll be in full summer glory here.

Diva of the Day

As noted in the previous post, my family attended a wedding in June. We drove 800 miles to central Illinois to see my sister-in-law’s union to her boyfriend of several years. Hooray for them!
A family road trip with three kids is one thing.
Having your four-year-old diva surpass half a dozen meltdowns in one day is another!
I warned them, truly I did.
But I’m not sure they believed the level of Drama Queen perfection my child can reach. Then the wedding day struck. I sent her ahead of me with her cousin so she could keep her hair appointment with the other girls in the wedding party.100_3102
A few hours later there was a phone call during the worst—not the first—fit asking for me to try calming her down while in the back ground I heard “someone needs to get her to breath so she doesn’t start hyperventilating.” Needless to say, I arrived soon after.100_3121
I will say that she did well during the ceremony, it was just those meltdowns before—and one or two after—that brought out many “candid photo ops” as the professional photographer called them.
The wedding wouldn’t have been complete without the cake and flowers. My in-laws are fabulously talented.100_3148
One of the good memories of road life is the down time on the way there and back. In closing, here’s a photo of the oldest (autism spectrum son) doing what he loves best at bedtime.100_3226

Photographic Evidence

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I’ve been playing hooky
Running away from stress
Enjoying the weather
And forgetting my whole mess

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I’ve been playing hooky
And seeking out beauty
That comes this time of year
While running after cuties

I’ve been playing hooky
I have my proof, you see
All that I’ve been doing
Is inspiration for me
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Three Confessions

Confession #1: I have a lot of books.
Confession #2: I have a lot of bookshelves (but I could always use more.)
Confession #3: I keep my most treasured books behind closed doors.

I first started hiding my books after my eldest child started to “wear out” his own books. Lift-the-flap books with no flaps to lift. Using books as bridges, literally walking on them across the floor, was a favorite activity. And with his books, spines were optional. I feared for my beloved books, as well as my husband’s collection.

Our favorite books went from the top shelves—he could scale the bookshelves—to high levels inside cabinets. I could hear the cabinet doors opening, but I didn’t always hear him at the bookcases until it was too late.

In the past three years that I’ve been homeschooling, the book population has hit overdrive.

The main wall of books--about a third of what we have.

The main wall of books–about a third of what we have.

The non-fiction area has doubled and the sum of the middle grade novels that my oldest son reads every night is greater than anything I ever held as the lone reader of them. My youngest has a two shelf bookcase of picture books and all things pink while the middle child hoards The Magic Tree House and military history.
Last year I wrote a post about my oldest turning into a reader and he hasn’t slowed down. The other night, when he came looking for another book amid the post holiday explosion, I realized he hasn’t read Bridge to Terabithia or A Wrinkle in Time. All of the Katherine Paterson, Madeleine L’Engle, Laurie Halse Anderson, Terry Brooks, and Orson Scott Card books are behind closed doors. Not to mention Narnia, Green Gables, Hogwarts, and The Shire.
Parenting fail!
So, my goal this month—hopefully this week—is to get these books out and into circulation among my household. No more restricted section in the family library. I’ll document this effort with photos, so stayed tuned!