Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Guest Blogger - Jeannie James

Wow! What a crazy couple of weeks we just had!

Southwest Washington had an amazing storm. The power was intense, something I’ve never experienced before. We had winds clocked at 159 mph at a nearby weather station. Five people died, and hundreds of farm animals were killed. Interstate 5 was under ten feet of water for about a week, and many, many homes and businesses were destroyed or badly damaged.

My own family escaped the full brunt, ending up with only a smallish patch of shingles off our roof, and three downed trees. Though I have to tell you, nothing is quite so unnerving as lying awake in bed, hearing the shingles being ripped off the roof, and wondering what we’ll wake up to in the morning.

Now my heart goes out to all the people in the Midwest, who endured the brunt of the storm after it passed over us. What heartbreak!

I hate to spout off clichés, but adversity bring does bring out the best in people. And in some of the most unexpected ways. Let me quote from our daily newspaper, Aberdeen’s The Daily World.

“Hungry horses, survivors from Chehalis River flooding, received deliveries of hay Monday through efforts of back country horse enthusiasts
responding to the crisis.”
“A group of five diesel mechanics from the nearby Trans Alta power plant
were working their way through the flood-ravaged county and volunteering to
repair tractors and other machines needed by rural residents so they can be
used to clear logs and debris from fields. The mechanics have already helped
area fire departments start emergency vehicles.”
There were state and local responders working round the clock. Donations came in from all over. Friends and neighbors of mine staffed emergency food kitchens.

In our own rural neighborhood, people checked up on each other, they lent out their generators for a few hours to keep other’s freezer food from spoiling, they cut trees that were blocking their neighbors’ access, and bought food to deliver during their daunting trips to town, through floods and blocked roads.

It really lightens the soul to hear these stories, doesn’t it? I love the human spirit. I can actually feel tears pricking at my eyes as I write this.

But enough of this crying nonsense. I’ve got some writing to do. I’ve left my latest heroine, poor Nikki, waking up with a fiancé she doesn’t remember, a bullet hole in her side, and complete and total amnesia. Apparently, her last words to her fiancé before she passed out were, “Don’t call the police!”. I simply have to sit down at my PC and rescue the poor woman.

May you all have a joyous and happy Christmas season, and a fabulous New Year. Most of all, may you and your loved ones be kept very, very safe!!

Jeannie James
http://www.jeanniejames.com/
jeannie@jeanniejames.com

43 comments:

Amy said...

Hi Jeannie, Your book sound's like a winner!
I think it is wonderful how people do band together and help each other in times of adversity. My thoughts and prayers are with the people in the Midwest.

tam said...

I think this book would really hold your attention and you would have trouble putting it down. I know I would.

Jennifer Y. said...

Happy Holidays!

I think it is great to see that people are still willing to help each other out when help is needed.

lidia said...

Jeannie,

So nice to hear about folks stepping up and helping others out in their time of need. It will certainly help those families in time for the holidays.

I love amnesia stories and will be on the lookout for yours. Any idea when it will be published?

Maureen said...

Your poor heroine definintely needs some help. I'm glad you and yours had no major damage and it is always heartening to read of people helping others when Mother Nature is on a rampage.

Cryna said...

Your book sounds great.

It is so heartwarming to read how people have banned together to help one another. Thank you for sharing that with us. Thoughts and paryers with all of that require them, and so glad that you and yours are all right.

Estella said...

I think it it great that people are still willing to help out their neighbors.
Saw some of the storm coverage on tv. How awful!
I live in Oregon and our damage was nothing compared to yours.

Cherie J said...

You are so right about tragedy bringing some of the best out in some people. When I was a little girl our house burned down. I remember how kind people could be. Some people we considered friends as well as some relatives disappointed us with little or no support. However, some people who we barely knew showed us great kindness. I still think of them with a fond smile. Their kindness warmed up a little girl's heart and helped her believe in the goodness of humanity.

Eva said...

The story sounds great, thanks- Happy Christmas!

Autumncat said...

Your book sounds very intriguing. ;-) I'll be watching for it! Happy Holidays!

Joyce said...

I really liked the way your story is going.

CrystalGB said...

Hi Jeannie. Your book sounds good. I am glad that you and your family escaped the brunt of the storm. It is heartwarming to know that people will come to the aid of others in need.

Janie said...

I am glad you and your family excaped the worst part of the storms. Your book sounds like a winner

Janie said...

I am glad your family excaped the worst part of the storms. Your book sounds like a winner

Lucy Monroe said...

What a neat post, Jeannie. I love seeing the best brought out in people and I'm a big fan of amnesia stories too. :) Cherie J...how neat to have the good memories. Unfortunately, tragedy brings out the best and the worst in people - we can always hope it will bring out *our* best, yeah? :)

Tina said...

wow! your a busy lady

mammakim said...

I have seen how nice people have been in my little town when my house burned down on Halloween night. It is amazing how people that you don't even know come together to help. Your book looks great Jeannie

Nathalie said...

Happy holidays to you too!!

Lily said...

I have a sweet tooth for amnesia stories...

Merry christmas :)

Stacy~ said...

As much as we sometimes complain about how rude and selfish people can be, when it really counts, we pull together to help our friends, neighbors, or even complete strangers when they need it the most. It's an amazing thing.

Happy holidays to you as well :)

jeanniejames said...

Thank you all so much for the kind comments on my new book.
I've always been a sucker for amnesia stories myself, and it's great fun to be writing one!
Unfortunately, I don't have a publication date yet, but if anyone cares to leave their email address with me at jeannie@jeanniejames.com, I'll let you know more details as soon as I do.
And Cherie and Mammakin, what a tragedy to have your home burn down! How strong you both are to use that to reaffirm your belief in humanity...

My best to you all. Have a fabulous Christmas!

Jeannie James
jeannie@jeanniejames.com

Jeanette J said...

Book sounds great. Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

Brandy said...

Jeannie, you'll have to let us know more about your book, I'm already hooked! *g* Best of luck with it.

Pamk said...

your book sounds good and your neighborhood sounds like our little neighborhood everyone works together and helps out

LDee said...

Hi Jeannie,
That picture you sent looks scary. Glad you didn't have any serious damage to your place. I'm looking forward to hearing more about your new book. Do you have a title yet?

traveler said...

Wonderful book. Loved your story and all the best for the season.

jeanniejames said...

Hi guys,
Thanks to everyone for the interest in my next book. I'm quite excited about it myself.
The "working" title I have in mind is "Forgotten Fiance", but it may morph into something completely different by the time my editor is done with it!
I'd be pleased to send a notice of a publication date to anyone who cares to send on their email address to me at jeannie@jeanniejames.com. And I promise I won't spam!
Take care, everyone.
Jeannie

Kate Davies said...

Hey Jeannie!

Glad to hear you escaped the worst of the storm, too. We stayed dry, but so many of our friends and colleagues didn't. It was an odd feeling being trapped by a closed Interstate!

Glad to hear you're at work on your next book -- and it sounds excellent! Can't wait to hear it's available for purchase. :)

Happy Holidays!

Sue A. said...

I'm glad you came out those harrowing two weeks virtually unscathed. And it's good to hear the stories of people banding together to help those less fortunate.

Angie-la said...

LOL!! You better rescue that heroine!

My best friend's husband works for Georgia power and he and his crew have been in the midwest for the last week helping to restore electricity to those areas that lost power during the ice storms. My heart goes out to those folks, some of whom will not be able to provide any holiday at all for their families. :(

jeanniejames said...

Katie,
So glad to hear you escaped unscathed. But so very sorry to hear of your friends.
It really must have been weird, surrounded by water, with I-5 closed all around you!
And Angie-La, kudos to your friend and his crew, and to all the workers who go out in this weather to provide for others.
A great, great round of thanks to them!
Merry Christmas,
Jeannie

jeanniejames said...

Katie,
So glad to hear you escaped unscathed. But so very sorry to hear of your friends.
It really must have been weird, surrounded by water, with I-5 closed all around you!
And Angie-La, kudos to your friend and his crew, and to all the workers who go out in this weather to provide for others.
A great, great round of thanks to them!
Merry Christmas,
Jeannie

jeanniejames said...

Katie,
So glad to hear you escaped unscathed. But so very sorry to hear of your friends.
It really must have been weird, surrounded by water, with I-5 closed all around you!
And Angie-La, kudos to your friend and his crew, and to all the workers who go out in this weather to provide for others.
A great, great round of thanks to them!
Merry Christmas,
Jeannie

jeanniejames said...

Oops.
Sorry for the triple posting, guys.
In fact, I almost made it a fourth posting!
All by accident, blame it on klutzy fingers and a foggy morning brain!
Jeannie

Susan said...

Oooh, this sounds like my kind of book!

Have a Merry Christmas and a wonderful New Year!

Jennifer said...

Jeannie -

Wow, sounds like an intense time. I'm glad you're all ok. It's always so sad when there is tragedy- but it seems the best actions and stories about human kindness and compassion also come out then. I'm looking forward to reading your book!

Virginia said...

Hi Jeannie, Your book sounds like a fantastic read, my kind of book.

deseng said...

Hi Jeannie,

Your book sounds fantastic! I can't wait to read it!

That is just wonderful to read that people are so caring. The world would be a better place if everyone would pitch in and help.

Have a wonderful holiday!
Remember to save room for pie and christmas cookies!
Michele L.

Eva S said...

Hi Jeannie,
your book sounds great, I'd love to read it right away!

Terri said...

Hi Jeannie, Your book sounds great. Can't want to read it. Hope things get better. I live on the coast so we usually have hurricanes to deal with. None this year, which was fine. But could use the rain.

Kimberly L said...

Hi Jeannie, what a great post. Your books sounds grreat to me.
Hope you have a very Merry Christmas!!!!!

faechilde said...

Hi Jeannie:

I love the sound of your book already. Ya got some suspense going on there. LOL

I hear you about the storms. I'm in Portland. Watching the local news was pretty sad. At those people going out towards Banks, OR and further, as well as Lincoln City, Seaside and Astoria got hit pretty hard. Lots of flooding. Many people have lost their homes for the second time in less than ten years. Then to watch those hit even worse in Washington. It was sad. What I couldn't believe was that although this storm wasn't as bad as the storm several years back, this one flooded and closed off a twenty-five mile stretch of I-5 freeway for almost a week. Wow!

Jennifer L. said...

I always am suprised when the worst circumstances bring out the best in all of us. I'm gald that you all are banding together during this difficult time.