More Characters!

I didn’t have enough time and space to introduce all the characters from my series a few weeks ago, and since I’m so excited about them, I wanted to share more! I have my second book coming out on September 15, so it’s important for you to meet more of the main players! Book Two, I Just Can’t Say I Love You features Kim Drake and Carl Bishop, so I’ll start with them, but just remember, all of my characters are in all of my books, so pay attention to all of them. Even if they have bit parts in one book, they’ll have a lead role in another! I hope you enjoy their bios, as well as the hours I poured into developing my gorgeous AI pictures (don’t worry, I’m not going to sell anything with these images on them!)!


Kim was born on February 28, 1986 to a single mom. She and her mother are very close. Kim was an only child until she was seven and she gained step-siblings, then baby half-siblings. Kim has a lot of confidence, and has been the leader of her friend group since second grade, when the social structure changed between boys and girls, and she lost her best friend. She can at times be bossy and directive. Kim’s greatest gift is her ability to tell a captivating story. Her friends all stop what they are doing to listen. Kim is very petite and very pretty. She is a good schemer, and knows what she wants. But sometimes, she doesn’t know what to do once she gets it. Her closest friends are Darlene Feinman, who she has known since birth, and Michelle Gorman. The three of them have been together since kindergarten, and have forged a tight bond. They become even closer after Kim experiences a tragedy at age 10. She depends on her friends and her strength to get her through. Kim wants to go places in life, and she will. She will go a lot of places, and learn a lot.


Carl was born on September 15, 1968. He is the youngest member of all of the friends. Carl is part of a famous Eastboro, Massachusetts family, which sometimes makes things easier, sometimes harder. Carl is very close with his cousin, Chris Mahoney. They have been placed together since birth, and all of their family pictures include them both. Carl easily fits into the roll of Chris’s lieutenant in their bad boy “posse,” a role he enjoys. Carl has an older brother who he hardly sees, and a mother who is bitter and angry. His father is around sometimes. Carl learns to fend for himself and his orange tabby cat, Tiger. Carl sometimes appears helpless and dependent on his cousin, but he has a strength that no one can see, a strength that will serve him going forward in life. Carl is very close to his grandmother, Gram Missy, one of two identical twins that are a large part of his and Chris’s life. Gram Missy will help to guide him and try to make the path easier for him, since no one else seems able or up to that task. Carl will learn great lessons about love and loyalty, and about sometimes having to walk away from your old self to find your true self.


They were born Melissa and Cecelia Farmer, but now they are affectionately known as Gram Missy and Gram Cissy. They are the matriarchs of the biggest and most famous family in all of Eastboro, Massachusetts. They were the daughters of a very well-known and respected leader of the community. They are part of a family of nine children. They married into a family that was also prolific in the area, and everyone has had many children. You can’t walk down a street in town without running into one of the Grams’ nieces or nephews. The Farmer Twins are very strong and opinionated, and fiercely loyal. They look after their family members and make surethey are taken care of in every way, and that they feel as special as they should. They make a point of being present at all the milestones, and they have often been the planners of all of the family celebrations. It is unclear where they get the funds, but they never do anything half way. Their younger family members tend to come to them for advice, and the Grams have seen it all. They know how to point their kin the right direction. The Grams have led charmed lives, but they still have their lot to contend with. No matter how much love they give to their children, sometimes their children are just not open to that love. It’s a very difficult fact to accept, and the Grams will never give up trying.


Chris Mahoney was born on March 15, 1968. If you look back, you will see that Chris, grandson of Gram Cissy, and his cousin Carl look an awful lot alike. This is not by mistake. They are second cousins, but there is a good reason that they look so much alike, but not completely alike. There is one big difference. Chris was charismatic and charming at birth, and he has a tremendous memory for names and events. His extended family, which is very large, all adore him, because he takes time to get to know them, remember important details, and question them about things the next time he sees them. Chris is the natural leader of his group of friends starting in elementary school. They all follow him and respond to his commands. His bond with his “posse” grows stronger each year, and they all tend to get in trouble together all the time. But Chris can charm himself out of most situations, since everyone likes him. But the truth is, not everyone likes Chris. There is actually one person in his circle who not only dislikes him, but also blames him for everything that has gone wrong in her life for years. And this person is about to make things difficult for Chris, and change the dynamic between him and his cousin and best friend, Carl forever. When this happens, Chris will discover that maybe he hasn’t been quite as much in control of what was going on in his life for a very long time.

“May I Have Your Attention Please”  is available now on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and anywhere that ebooks are sold. Please check it out, and if you do read my book, please leave a review on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, or whatever other platform you are using. It would mean a whole lot!

I Just Can’t Say I Love You will be available on September 15, 2023, staring Carl and Kim and the usual cast of characters.

Here again are the links to my Facebook page, Debby Meltzer Quick Author, TikTok, @dbmquick and Instagram, quickdebby_author. Please follow me on these pages. And please explore my page here at

Introducing My Series

McKinney High Class of 1986

A series by Debby Meltzer Quick

April 27, 1984:  The McKinney High Junior Prom.

Six young couples, one fateful night.

A limo, a high school gym, a small hotel room. Twelve formally clad teens.

A night that none of them will ever forget.

By the end of the night:

*One friend will bravely confront her bully.

*One will make a romantic gesture that sets a standard for his friends for decades to come

*One will tearfully share her deeply hidden secret

*One will feel betrayed by his closest friend.

*One will realize that her quest for revenge was horribly misguided

*One will realize that some secrets shouldn’t be kept from the people you trust

*One will go the whole night without realizing that her future lover is in the same room…with another girl.

*One will come close to breaking a solemn promise he made to himself years before.

*One will have her long-time crush realized in a very big way

*And something very bad will happen to one of the friends, but she will keep it to herself for years

Seven stories, ten friends, one special night

McKinney High Class of 1986. You never forget your high school prom.

Who Is In My Book?

I’ve gotten much better at this artificial intelligence thing. I don’t like saying AI because it looks too much like my husband’s name, which is Al if you haven’t guessed already. Isn’t that weird?

Anyway, a friend from Facebook turned me on to Midjourney, which is on Discord, and I’ve fallen down a proverbial rabbit hole. It’s making me late for things. But it’s SO COOL! I have made a bunch of character sketches for my, uh, characters. Which is really good, because most of them are in all of my books, so you can get a better idea of who to expect to become your best friends while reading my series. The image above is how I picture Sally and James’s first kiss. It’s not perfect. James is supposed to have blond hair, and Sally, brown. Sally’s hair should be down, and she should be wearing a navy-blue mini dress and a denim jacket. But it’s close.

So I will start with James, and then move on to Sally. I probably won’t do all the characters today because it could be a book in itself, but I’ll get to the important people.

Introducing James Newell. He was born on January 12, 1968. He is the youngest of 3 children. His sister is a genius and his brother is a major troublemaker. James is still trying to figure out where he fits in with his family. His best friend, Pete goes to a different high school, but he still has his close friends Chris and Carl, cousins from a famous Eastboro family. James, Pete, Chris, and Carl are former bad boys, but they’ve cleaned up their act. James loves to play the guitar, and enjoys being able to chill at home when he’s not with his friends. He is not expecting to see Sally Bachman at his school on the first day of junior year. He is also not expecting how he will feel when he first lays eyes on her.

Sally Bachman was born on August 1, 1968. She is the youngest of 3 children, and she has an infant niece named Josie. She is very close to her older sister but struggles with finding common ground with her brother. She loves cats, Rock and Roll, New Wave, writing, and especially the Boston Red Sox. She is majorly into all Boston sports. Sally decided to leave her friends at public school and go to a private school sophomore year. But things didn’t go too well there. She returns to public school for her junior year, much to the delight of her best friend Michelle and her other friends from Randall Junior High, Darlene and Kim. The first person she sees at McKinney High is Jamie Newell from the group of bad boys she knew back at Randall. Sally has always had a soft spot for Jamie and his friends, and is happy to see him, especially when she gets lost in the hallways of her new school. Little does she know that this chance encounter is not only going to change her expectations for her junior year, but most likely far beyond.

Michelle Gorman is Sally’s best friend. She was born on St. Patrick’s Day, and already had a full head of flaming red hair at birth. She and Sally met on the first day of junior high in art class and bonded over their love of New Wave music and camp. Michelle is very petite, and she is very self-conscious about her size. When she realized there was no magic serum to help her grow, she settled on learning to be strong in every sense of the word. She is fiercely loyal to her friends, and she loves a good tidbit of gossip, especially from her friend Darlene. Michelle is smart and clever, and she would go to the end of the world to protect her older sister, who was born with an intellectual disability.

Pete Cooper (on the left…the guy on the right doesn’t show up until book 5, and you’ll be very happy that he does!) is James’s best friend. They have lived three houses from each other since they were 3. Pete is also the most athletic and most attractive of the friend group. He’s almost 6 feet tall at the start of high school. Pete is devastated when he found out that James is transferring to McKinney High, and they’ll no longer see each other in school every day. But the two boys stay very close and confide in each other often. Pete has a younger sister that he dotes on, and a girlfriend named Carolyn. He still hangs out with his junior high friends on weekends and vacations, even as he makes new friends at Murphy High. He has a secret he needs to tell James about Sally, and although he worries it will cause issues in their relationship, it only brings them closer. Pete then becomes the voice of reason when it comes to James’s relationship struggles.

J.D. and Julia Newell are James’s parents. J.D. works as a manager at Aries Corp, where everyone’s dad seems to work. Julia is a special education aide in the public schools. They have three children, Erin, who goes to Brown University, Howie, who they had to kick out last year, and James, their baby who tries really hard to meet their expectations. Julia is Italian. Her parents were the children of immigrants. J.D.’s father was an alcoholic who died young. His mother took the kids and left him due to abuse when J.D. was young. Julia loves all of her children and worries about them constantly, especially her boys. She also makes a mean cannoli. J.D. wants to be there for James, his namesake, and gives him advice when it comes to love. Both of his parents enjoy joking around and have their own little comedy routine for Sally when they first meet.

Phyllis and Jacob “Jake” Bachman are Sally’s parents. They both work full-time. Jake works in printing, and he has to be available anytime something he’s working on goes to press, which means that he had to go out of town a lot. Phyllis works in “computers,” and she is very tech savvy. The Bachmans are Jewish, and they have raised their children with Jewish traditions. Phyllis enjoys lighting Shabbat candles with Sally every Friday night and having a special family dinner. The family celebrates all of the Jewish holidays together. Phyllis’s mother had a lot of troubles when she was a child, and Phyllis is very affected by this. She credits her father for raising her and her sister. Jake loves Boston sports and has instilled this love into his daughter. There is nothing he loves more than watching the Red Sox or Patriots with her on TV or in person. The Bachmans are very welcoming and friendly people who enjoy having intimate parties in their home.

There are a few more friends to introduce you to, but I haven’t discovered their pictures yet. Kim and Darlene are Sally’s friends from junior high, and Traci joins them in high school. They each get books of their own later but have bit parts in book 1.

Carl and Chris are second cousins, but they are as close as brothers. They are from a large family. Their grandmothers are identical twins, and their grandfathers are brothers. Chris’s mother and Carl’s father were very close growing up. Chris is famous for having a cousin for every occasion and need, and Carl does his best to be funny. James, Pete, Carl, and Chris made up the DeMarco Elementary and Randall Junior High Bad Boy Posse. But they were the type of bad boys that you can’t help but cheer for, and they’re finally trying to find their way in the world.

All of these characters have their own unique stories, and all of them will be told. One thing they all have in common is one night in April, 1985: the Junior Prom. What happens to each of them on this night changes their individual lives forever. And most of them are so caught up in their own stories, that they aren’t even aware what’s going on with everyone else. But eventually, years later, all is revealed, and sometimes, friendships are tested.

 “May I Have Your Attention Please”  is available now on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and anywhere that ebooks are sold. Please check it out, and if you do read my book, please leave a review on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, or whatever other platform you are using. It would mean a whole lot!

I Just Can’t Say I Love You will be available on September 15, 2023, staring Carl and Kim and the usual cast of characters.

Here again are the links to my Facebook page, Debby Meltzer Quick Author, TikTok, @dbmquick and Instagram, quickdebby_author. Please follow me on these pages. And please explore my page here at

How To Handle the Let Down

Here I am again at Prince Coffee shop in NE Portland, eating my chia pudding with granola and drinking my hibiscus tea. I took my book out of my bag earlier to show to another patron who was interested. She was very excited, and even took a picture of me with the book. The funny thing? She has a very unique, old name, and thought I had never heard of it before. But it turns out, I actually used her name in my book! I opened it to the correct page, showed her, and urged her to take a picture to show her friends. She did. But I doubt she’ll buy my book.

That’s how it’s been feeling lately. There was a lot of excitement about my book before it came out. Everyone was impressed by the fact that I wrote a whole book, and that I was going to share it with the world. They all wanted to know what it was about, how I was inspired, what my process was, etc. So I told them. And when the book came out, I sold many more than I expected in the first two weeks. I was so happy. I kept checking my sales, like all new authors do when their book comes out. In the meantime, I kept plugging away at social media. I just knew, just knew that it would only take one social media influencer to read my book and rave about it to their followers, and then I would sell many, many books. I have been keeping at it for months now, every since my book was in pre-sale. I was getting a lot of likes, and a lot of people telling me my book sounded great. So where did those people go?

Last month I sold 64 books from March 4-March 31. This month, I have sold 9. Yes, there is still more than a week to go, but I have gone several days in a row without a sale, and it’s bringing me down. I mean, it feels like it’s momentum, you know? If it slows down, it will stop. I mean, that’s not really the way it works, but it sure feels like it. And to top it all off, I got a nasty comment on a post on TikTok that was completely off about my work. I deleted it, unfollowed the person, and then blocked them, but I’m worried that maybe they reported me to the TikTok police, because now I’m getting hardly any views on TikTok.

Now, views are not the same as likes. Views mean that the video was put in front of someone on their phone or computer. They don’t have to push like if they don’t want to, but they see the video and are given an option to engage. As we all know, if people do not see something, they cannot like it or engage. For some reason, my posts are not being put in front of people. They have never gotten a ton of views, but now, it’s close to nothing. And my posts aren’t horrible. The views and likes I’m getting are from people who already follow me, or people who know me. So, maybe 35-50 per post for the last four posts. It’s so discouraging. I decided to do another add on Facebook to try to get the momentum going again. But strangely enough, for some reason, if you clicked on the ad, it called my cell phone instead of going to my website. There was no way to edit that, so I had to go back and delete the whole thing and start all over. Now I have it going to the site that has buttons that lead you to the online stores where my books are on sale. But so far, no sales have come from the ad. And it’s so hard to understand the stats they send you. What the hell is an “impression?” I seem to get a bunch of those. Does that mean view? I don’t know. Anyway, blah. Yeah, that’s the way I’m feeling. So much for all the excitement leading up to my book release.

I know there are things I need to do. I think one of them is to take an online class on Facebook ads so I understand them better. Maybe I can do them better and attract more people. I really have the feeling (and my brother backs me up) that if people would just read the book and pass on the word, the book would sell itself. That’s the frustrating part. I think most indie authors feel this way. I saw a TikTok video today about how making it big in the indie world is purely based on luck. Like, an influencer reads your book, and… like I said before. So maybe in addition to ads, I need to buy a luck amulet. I am also working on contacting local bookstores. Last weekend, I emailed my information to all the bookstores I could fine online in Portland. I have already heard back from one that is actually in North Carolina and politely declined, but I told them that my book would probably be enjoyed by their audience, too. No reply. I have two books in a local store because I know the owner. I don’t think either one of them has sold. Another thing I’m gonna do is lower the price of my first book when it gets near the time to release the second book, since it is a series. They can be read independently, but they are better in order. So maybe that will help. Or I could start promoting number two, and hope that people think, oh! I forgot to buy number one! I had better get to it before number two comes out! Huh. Maybe.

Okay, I know there are a lot of authors out there in blog land. If you are reading this, and you have some information for me, please share it in the comments. Please, I would love to hear from people who went through this and then came out on the other side. I want to know there is a chance to break through. I need to know that there are things I can do to make this NOT be only about luck. I want to have some control.

In the meantime, I’m just gonna plug along. I’m gonna do things I enjoy. I’m gonna write. I’m gonna read. I’m gonna try to teach my spell check that gonna is a real word so I have less red lines in my post. I’m not gonna eat ice cream because I’m cutting back on sugar. Oh. Maybe that’s my problems. Maybe instead of cutting back on sugar, I should increase my sugar. Yeah. That would make me feel better. I’m gonna increase my sugar, and go hang out with my good friends, Ben and Jerry.

My book, “May I Have Your Attention Please” can be found on my new universal link, in both paperback and eBook! Check it out! I plan to release my second book, “I Just Can’t Say I Love You,” in September 2023. Please check it out, and if you do read my book, please leave a review on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, or whatever other platform you are using. It would mean a whole lot!

Here again are the links to my Facebook page, Debby Meltzer Quick Author, TikTok, @dbmquick and Instagram, quickdebby_author. Please follow me on these pages. And please explore my page here at

Blast From the Past

Does anyone know what this is? It’s a Nothing Book. It was given to me at a gift when I was probably in eighth grade, as indicated by some of the entries I made at the time. It was either a birthday or Bat Mitzvah present, and I loved it! The pages were so crisp and clean, and waiting to be filled with God knows what! But I would figure it out. As time went on, I had many such books, or journals. Some had quilted covers, and lined pages and were meant for writing. The Nothing Book had unlined, rainbow colored pages, and was so neat! I was almost afraid to write in it, to ruin its pristine-ness! But I did anyway. I wrote, I drew pictures, I made lists, and I professed my love to whoever I had a crush on at the time (if I had been consistant with keeping up with my list, the book would have been pretty much filled, just with crush names!). I would put the book down, sometimes for months, sometimes for years. There are huge gaps in my entries. I picked it back up in college and wrote poetry in its pages. I have whole soliloquies of my relationship with my boyfriend when I was in my early twenties. Will I get back together with him? Will I not? Will we live happily ever after together (we will not)? That’s the last thing I wrote in my Nothing Book, as I soon moved to Houston, Texas, leaving my Nothing Book behind somewhere in my parents’ house in central Massachusetts. Only to be found again last year.

Here are some pictures I drew in my Nothing Book in junior high:

The first one is an illustration from a story I wrote about a girl who thinks she turned into a frog but then realizes that she just forgot to take off her costume for a play she is in at school. Everyone thought she was a real giant frog for some reason. And then at the end, she eats a fly. So go figure.

The next one is a picture of an area in my kitchen. Notice the two phones mounted on the wall with really long cords. One was my mother’s business phone. The other one conveniently reached all the way to the cellar steps, so you could have your own personal phone booth to chat in. You just had to hope that no one would trip over the extended cord. I actually portray this in my recent book when Sally wants privacy while talking to her friend Michelle about things she doesn’t want her parents to hear. Note the analog clock on the wall, plugged into an outlet. That clock is long gone (yes, my family still resides in that house) and replaced with something digital I think run by batteries. Then there are the two alien looking creatures on top of the phones. Those are Weeples. They were very popular at the time. They were little pompoms with googly eyes and antennae, stuck to large feet. They were sort of stickers. I had a ton of them. They all had names. These were Willy and Weepy. Businesses used Weeples for advertising purposes. Very 1980s.

Last year, I got into a conversation with a friend who is also from the 80s about what we called denim articles of clothes back then. I was specifically referring to jackets, which were prolific. I thought they were jean jackets, and we agreed on that, or maybe denim jackets. We both could not recall anyone calling them dungaree jackets. Then I was looking through my trusty Nothing Book, which I had just brought back with me from Mass to Oregon, and what did I find?

Aside from the hysterical context, I clearly called Jeff’s jacket “dungaree.” End of discussion. I have absolutely no recollection of who Jeff was, except he was wicked good looking, wore a dungaree jacket, and had a Sony Walkman. How cool could one guy (10th grader) be? I am guessing this was in 1982. I wonder if Jeff is still wicked good looking (all my friends would have to agree). I doubt it. But does he still have the dungaree jacket? They’re back in style now!

Okay, I’m not going to share all of my thoughts and creations of the 80s, but I did find a poem that I wrote that I want to share. I can’t recall when I wrote it, in high school or college (both were in the 80s of course), but it did end up getting published, unfortunately anonymously since I forgot to put my name on it, in my college literary journal. It’s called “The Rose Thorn Of Love” (I know, I know).

The fragrance drew me near.
I inhaled deeply,
The sweet addictive scent.
I reached out to the sea of red,
To touch the velvet shining bright,
But my harsh touch to delicate flesh
Burned, as it fell, rained to the ground.
I stood back, appalled,
Stunned by my dastardly deed,
By my streak of passionate violence.
Lying dormant, so very long.
But still the fragrance remained,
And drew me even closer.
Again, I reached out to grab hold of the stem,
So not to harm the precious bud,
But I did not anticipate obstacles,
Looking so willing but bearing thorns.
My blood is a small price to pay for 
The deal of innocence.

My book, “May I Have Your Attention Please” can be found on my new universal link, in both paperback and eBook! Check it out! I plan to release my second book, “I Just Can’t Say I Love You,” in September 2023. Please check it out, and if you do read my book, please leave a review on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, or whatever other platform you are using. It would mean a whole lot!

Here again are the links to my Facebook page, Debby Meltzer Quick Author, TikTok, @dbmquick and Instagram, quickdebby_author. Please follow me on these pages. And please explore my page here at

One Month In-How it’s Going

This was my first attempt at making my own cover. Luckily for everyone, I decided to go with a professional cover designer. I highly recommend it!

So now I’m one month in. I published my book on March 4, and now, I’m just sitting back and watching the royalties roll in. Ha! That would be nice, wouldn’t it? No, it’s not quite that easy. I have to admit, the first few days were exciting for sales, as people I know and knew I was writing a book purchased it, all on the same day, driving up my numbers, and actually putting me in a few top 100 lists for new releases. That was really cool. I took a lot of pictures on my phone when that happened. This was about the highest I got:

Number 64. Not bad (it’s also the number of books I sold in March)! I enjoyed it, I posted it on Facebook, and texted it to my friends. I am sorry to say that a few days later I was off all of the lists, and probably about 4,000 in most categories. I didn’t expect to come out of nowhere and become an immediate best seller. I knew it would take time. People don’t know to buy your book if they don’t know about it, and really, I don’t have a publicist. I wish I did. So I have to do my own marketing. And it’s hard! I’m just not young and hip enough to advertise to the young, hip kids and young adults out there! Just ask my daughter. Apparently, I appeal to older adults, and they seem to be the ones not only buying my books, but also reviewing them, and giving them five stars! So thank you, 48–59-year-old men! Who knew you would like a coming-of-age-romance/love story taking place in the mid-1980s? I bet they didn’t even know they would. Hey, I think it’s a story everyone can enjoy. I enjoy it. Haha.

I’ve been working on finding more ways to get the word out there. I have embarrassed my teenager so much by approaching women on the street (not really on the street. Maybe in line in the grocery store where I am also in line) and asking them if they remember the 80s. Then there are the college age girls I’ve run into and asked if they like a nice love story. I thought everyone was supposed to be so into the 1980s right now?!

I did a group promotion, which was kind of cool. It finished up at the end of March, and there was a winner, and all I had to do was mail out the signed book. It went to Tennessee. That was also cool. The winner got 29 romance books. I can venture to say that my book might be a bit different. There is for sure some romance. But it is pretty tame. Tame enough to let my mother read it. I mean, I was embarrassed to have her read it, but not horrified. Had my father still been alive, I wouldn’t have let him within 15 states of my love scenes. Uh uh. No way. My brother wasn’t embarrassed, and he even told me when certain things didn’t seem realistic. Anyway, all this to say that my story is a love story, a story that tries to prove that love can last forever. So if you know a great way to get the word out there, please let me know. I really think that it would sell well if the people knew it was there. Plus, there are six more books after this one. I want them to do well.

So here is what I have done the past couple of weeks. I decided to publish on Barnes and Noble. I know some people don’t like to shop on Amazon, so I thought a choice would be good. Then, I lowered the price of my eBook. I ran an ad on Facebook letting folx know that the book was cheaper. I quickly sold three copies! A friend sent me a notice from our local library letting me know that they are taking submissions for eBooks from local indie authors for the month of April. All I had to do was put my eBook on Draft2Digital and fill in a form. I completed that today (I had to get a new library card to do it, but the new card is really cool looking!). They will select a certain number of books, and then one lucky author will actually be eligible to have their book published in print! I haven’t researched the publisher yet, but I will. But I think it’s wicked cool to have your book in the library. That’s my reader geek showing. I have also been pursuing local bookstores. I have a few books in one, but I learned from another that I didn’t have the right settings online for my distributer. I needed to give a bigger discount to retailers, and also allow returns. I went on Ingram Spark and changed my settings. I emailed a few places and told them I made the change. Now all I have to do is find a few spare hours to go to every bookstore in Portland and talk to them about carrying my book. My brother is also trying to get the book into a Massachusetts bookstore I shopped in as a kid. Maybe the promotion winner in Tennessee will get into stores there. Who knows, anything could happen.

I’m also still at it on the social media pages, trying to chip away at the folx who follow me so they will finally give in and buy the book. I think my algorithm is majorly flawed on TikTok, though. I just can seem to get my videos even seen, let alone liked. I’ll keep trying. I’ve gone headfirst into Instagram, and still plugging away at Facebook Pages. People have recommended that I do a Spotify playlist for my book, but that would mean I have to join Spotify. It might be worth it.

Here is my most recent TikTok video. It did pretty well. I think people want more smut. I might have to give in and post some. I was hoping to leave that alone so they could read about it in the book, but I guess, give the people what they want, right?

My book, “May I Have Your Attention Please” can be found on my new universal link, in both paperback and eBook! Check it out! I plan to release my second book, “I Just Can’t Say I Love You,” in September 2023. Please check it out, and if you do read my book, please leave a review on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, or whatever other platform you are using. It would mean a whole lot!

Here again are the links to my Facebook page, Debby Meltzer Quick Author, TikTok, @dbmquick and Instagram, quickdebby_author. Please follow me on these pages. And please explore my page here at

Is it real…or it is AI?

Is it me writing this blog post right now? Are you sure? I mean, someone at my house might have borrowed my computer and decided to pretend to be me for a few minutes and write a blog post. That’s pretty unlikely, though, since the computer scans my face for security. My child looks kind of like me, but not enough to access my computer. And my husband would just, well, never do that. So it’s probably me, right? Sure. I assure you today that it is me. But what if someday, it’s not? I could go to an AI app and put in a few key words about what I want in my blog, and the AI would spit out a full article, most likely saying the gist of what I want it to say. Boy, that would save me time, wouldn’t it? I could be a writer, but I wouldn’t even have to write! I wish they had AI for social work, too. I could just stay in bed all day while the AI counsels people and provides them with resources. Oh, what’s that you say? You say that you can do text therapy now, and the AI therapist just responds appropriately to what you tell it? Uh…

I like the idea of AI for some things. It’s kind of fascinating. It would help for some of the drudge work of research, for one thing. I mean, do we really even need to learn how to do research anymore if there is a mechanized way to do it? It would open all sorts of time for other scientific projects and thing. But I draw the line at the AI writing up the paper after the research is done. There is, and always will be, a human side to experimentation and learning. I don’t want to read a paper that was produced by a machine. I want to know who it was that wrote it, and I want to know a bit about their background. It would be like I decided to become a writer, plugged an idea into AI, let it take off and write the story, and then let it market the story on its own, by producing ads and videos. Then all I would have to do would be to show up to book signings. Maybe. I mean, maybe the AI can somehow make that work, too. Does this sound appealing to you? Because it doesn’t to me. My brother Jonathan decided to give it a try recently. He plugged the main premise of my newly released book (May I Have Your Attention Please, found on Amazon) into an AI app and set it free. The idea was, a boy and a girl are reunited after being in different schools for a year, and they fall in love. It is 1984. They both have some issues they are dealing with at home, and they are also dealing with the ups and downs of growing up and falling in love. So my brother read me what the AI wrote. And it was pretty close to my story. Not perfect, but close. It took the story in another direction, but it probably just needed a bit more information to get it right. Ok, that scared me. Is my talent as a writer going to be obsolete in a few years? Are writers going to be a thing of the past? I can see committees sitting in a room coming up with story ideas, and then passing them off to AI. I really, really don’t like that idea.

What else can AI do? It can produce images from key words. So that means that pretty soon, once everyone has access to these resources, stock photos will be a thing of the past. We can all create our own images, and they will belong to us. So far in this post, I have shown you two pictures of girls. These are images that I produced with AI yesterday in an experiment. I plugged in a description of my main character, Sally Bachman. Here is what I asked for:

“Sixteen-year-old white, Jewish girl in 1984, pretty, full length image, blue eyes, shoulder length brown hair, solid pink button-down shirt with puffy sleeves, wearing blue jeans, 1984 style hair and makeup, 34-inch chest. Show all of the girl.” And here is what I ended up with (in addition to the two photos above):

The first girl, on top of this post, looks like a mannequin. There is no escaping that fact. The second one looks like she is at her own murder trial. The third looks like some sort of weird portrait from the 1800s, the fourth is missing a face, and the fifth is most definitely possessed by the devil. NOT ONE OF THESE GIRLS LOOKS LIKE A REAL PERSON!!!! And none of them are wearing the clothing I specified. And what is the AI definition of pretty? Apparently not the same as mine. I might have been able to be a bit more specific, but not one of these girls has a 34-inch chest, amiright?

The next picture still isn’t right, but it’s at least, right-er:

She doesn’t look like I’d imagine Sally, but she looks more in the area of what Sally would look like. And why no blue jeans??? Maybe AI just can’t make real people. I have seen some drawings and other images that were pretty cute with cartoons. I might be asking too much. Just for funsies, I’m going to show you a few I got of James. The clothing is pretty good, but, ugh, the boys:

What, may I ask, is going on with those eyes? ALL of those eyes!

These next two are pretty decent. I changed James’s age from 16 to 17 and specified wavy hair, which made it a bit longer.

But still, someone needs to work on making the AI eyes a bit more realistic. These two guys look like people I might have actually gone to junior high school with. And James’s appearance is actually based on one of those people. Okay, so one win for AI images.

So that is all I am going to show you. I also tried to make some images for my future book covers (although I have an excellent cover designer. I was just goofing around) and they weren’t bad. I am thinking, AI just not good at faces. At all. But I’m glad a had a chance to play around. With Dall-E, you can get a free account with fifteen credits and month. I used up all my credits just trying to get Sally and James right, so no more credits until a month from now. If I want more, I have to pay. That doesn’t seem right. Maybe for fifteen results. You couldn’t have to use your credits for an image that doesn’t come out anything like what you were looking for. Heavy sigh. I just hope that AI keeps having problems. I guess it will be really good for my job(s) security. Small blessings.

Here again are the links to my Facebook page, Debby Meltzer Quick Author, and TikTok, @dbmquick. Please follow me on these pages. And please explore my page here at

Thank you for making it to the end of my blog post! Have a great week!

Animal House, You Say?

Okay, so I dragged my 54-year-old butt on two 90 minute college campus tours this weekend. That’s an hour and a half each time, for those of you that are averse to math problems. Three hours of walking over two days. With a 17-year-old. Nothing makes you feel older than the point where you grab your lower back and moan, “I’ve got to sit for a minute.” Oh, no, actually, I’m wrong. There is something worse.

We were walking around the University of Oregon on our tour, and our charming and wordy tour guide stopped to let us know that the building we were standing in front of was featured a great deal in the 1978 super comedy, “Animal House.” All of the parents made OOH and AAH noises, and we all squinted at the building to get a glimpse of something that looked familiar. Then we all looked at each other with expressions that spoke of great coolness in our general vicinity. Then I heard a mom say to her son, “that’s so cool that they filmed ‘Animal House’ here, and his reply? “What’s ‘Animal House’? Of course, much discussion ensued where this mother and I told him all the wonders and beauties of this classic movie, and told him that he needs to (choke) stream it when they get home. So I looked at this kid and I said, “Surely you’ve heard of ‘Stripes,’ right?” And he looked at me in confusion. At that moment, my age caught up to me and I turned to gray dust on the ground and later was blown in all directions by the four winds.

What? Kids don’t know about “Animal House?” What kind of world do we live in where this is not mandatorily shown to all Americal children when they enter high school? Like, they should be holding assemblies, and passing out hot buttered popcorn! I can sort of understand never seeing it, but never even having heard of it? That’s just outrageous. So, anyway, in my shock and dissolving into powder state, I still managed to market my new book to the mother. Here’s my line:

“So, you look like you might remember the ’80s…”

I’ve been using that one a lot. I went to a concert the other day with my husband, and I would say the average age of patrons in the place was 71. Not kidding. So I was pretty sure that most of the people there remembered the ’80s, or were in their 80s, either one. So I felt more safe saying it to them. But I’ve also been trying that line at other places. At the ramen place. I asked a woman if she was from the 80s, and then I realized that that statement might have been slightly offensive to her. It turns out she was, and I gave her my bookmark with all of my information on it and told her to buy my book. I’ve gone through quite a lot of bookmarks in the past two weeks, but I don’t know if they have let to any sales. Marketing is tricky.

I’ve tried other things, too. The picture above was taken at Oregon State University. I have apparently learned to photo shop, sort of. I have learned to create stickers to put on my pictures, and one of them is my book. So I am putting them everywhere. Not too bad, if you ask me. Looks like a sandwich board, right? I’m looking forward to what else I can stick my book into just for funsies.

I’ve been doing lots of videos on TikTok. I love it, it’s lots of fun. Then I also share the videos on Facebook and Instagram. I still don’t get Instagram. Out of all the social media platforms, Instagram is the only one where I have gotten tons and tons of solicitous messages trying to sell or review my book, in addition to the “hey beautiful, I couldn’t help but notice your smile” messages. I don’t really enjoy looking though Instagram either. Maybe it’s an old person thing? But I love TikTok. I don’t even care if anyone in China gets information on me about my book. Maybe I’ll have a market in China for my book. Probably not, though.

I’ve also been walking around with my book everywhere. I take it on walks, so I can pose it with the scenery. That’s fun. I’ve also posed by Kindle, open to my book cover. I take my book on the bus and train and when anyone asks me what I’m reading, or tries to talk to me in any way, I manage to ask them if they know who wrote the book I’m reading. Then I show them the author picture on the back. Then they get confused, because I’m wearing a mask and they can’t see my face, so I hold my breath and lift my mask for 5 seconds. Then they’re impressed? Impressed enough so they’ll buy my book? I don’t know. Jury’s still out. But it’s still pretty cool. I had two guys in the train talk to me for 15 minutes and then tell me they were proud of me for publishing my book. Someone else told me they wanted to tell me they were proud of me, but it would be weird. I immediately told them it wasn’t, and made them say it! Hey, I’ll take pride from strangers any time I can!

So, all that being said, I’ve sold 55 books on Amazon in the past two weeks. I’m not sure how I feel about that number, but I think it’s pretty good. There was another book released in the Coming of Age genre at the same time as mine called “I’ll Stop the World,” and it was published by Mindy Kaling. So it was number one for two weeks. How could I compete with that? Mindy Kaling? How do I get Mindy Kaling to publish MY books? But I was number 77 in coming of age new releases for about two hours, so that was nice.

So, how do I tie all of this information together? Well, here’s the thing. I’m old. I should retire soon, right? So I can write full time, and enjoy my happy “golden” years (I guess golden years come in about 10 years) but at the same time, I have a kid I need to send to college for the next four years. And right before I started to write this blog post, I looked up how much it would cost to send my daughter to college for four years, at an in-state rate. And guess what? It’s a whole lot! So, in conclusion, buy my book. Buy a few. Buy one for yourself, and one for your sister. Buy one for your mother, your aunt, your daughter (over the age of 16 please) and even for your uncle or son. People seem to like it. All sorts of people. You’ll buy 10-12 copies of my book for Christmas and birthday presents this year, and then when I put out book 2, you’ll be looking forward to buying that one too. And just think, the more you buy, the more you’re helping put my daughter through college without me having to get a third and fourth job. Wouldn’t that be nice? And it’s really a good read. Check it out on Amazon. I’ve already got 6 five-star reviews! Okay, maybe I might know most of the people who reviewed it, but some of them, not too well. They didn’t have to do a review, and they did. And I’m also on Goodreads. Just so you know.

As always, thank you for reading my blog to the end.

My book, “May I Have Your Attention Please” can be found on Amazon, in both paperback and ebook! I plan to release my second book, “I Just Can’t Say I Love You,” in September 2023. Please check it out, and if you do read my book, please leave a review on Amazon or Goodreads. It would mean a whole lot!

Here again are the links to my Facebook page, Debby Meltzer Quick Author, and TikTok, @dbmquick. Please follow me on these pages. And please explore my page here at

Have You Ever Heard of a Reverse Harem?

I had never heard of this genre before I started communicating with Meg Stratton a few months ago. We met in a Facebook group for independent writers, and we decided to check out each other’s work. Meg has given be some great information about self-publishing and has been instrumental in helping me get to the point of being able to publish my book. So I decided to ask Meg for an interview, to learn more about her writing process and her genre. The following are the questions that I sent Meg, and she was kind enough to send back to me, all answered!

Tell me a little about yourself.

So I am a mom, coffee lover, native Washingtonian. I have lived in Washington my whole life and even though it gets more crowded every year, I still enjoy my drive to work where I get amazing views of Mt. Rainier when it’s out, or Lake Washington or even downtown Seattle. This is home for me. One thing I don’t enjoy is my two hour commute back and forth to work every day. I could get so much more writing accomplished with that time!! But I have 4 kids to take care of and a wonderful husband who actively encourages me to write and publish. So I do 12 hour days and then come home to write in the night and on my weekends. Other activities I enjoy is baking, gardening, and reading. Oh my reading that is where this all started for me. The reading.

I had never heard of your genre before. Can you tell me a bit about it?

So I started my Covid lock down reading romance novels at a very rapid rate. Somewhere in that manic reading frenzy I found the reverse harem section. Just an FYI, many people want this genre to change to ‘why choose’ romance. I agree for the many reasons people say the word harem means in other cultures. So you may see more ‘why choose’ usage in the future but today reverse harem is the most common name for my genre. Regardless, I read a book by Stacy Jones that was something new to me. Sci-fi, why choose, romance with aliens!! Oh my goodness I was hooked. I read everything she wrote for that series, book 5 just came out last month, read it in 2 days, on working days! So good.

So ‘why choose’, is when multiple mates partner with one female. MMFM is an abbreviation that is used on Amazon. My book has MMFMMM, so there are a lot of guys with one lady. Sometimes the men are intimate with each other but many times the focus is all on the lady. My books are that way. Each guy in my story brings a quality that my main character needs to move on in her role as the Oracle. The Sci-Fi part in book one of my series is that aliens attack, the world is challenged, and my main female character is part of the action with her guys.

When did you start writing? Is it something you always did, or did you just start recently?

So I haven’t always written. I wrote a blog thing while on a trip I took about 5 years ago, but I never posted it anywhere. It’s was just for me. I didn’t even have my husband read it and he went on a trip with me.  So this is new to me. I will say that I didn’t intent to write a book or publish anything. I just started writing.

I read your book, Oracle: Mia, and I loved it. Tell me about what gave you the idea for your book.

Well, I was reading all those romance books and had finished a few of Stacy’s books and my overactive mind sent me a dream. Honestly the dream was only a tiny snapshot of my overall story, but it got me started on my book. I am a pantser, for those that don’t know it means there is very little planning for my books, I just sit down and write. So, I started with that kernel of a dream idea, by the time my husband suggested I self-publish, I had 300,000 words down. Don’t get me wrong, not all of it was good and I had too many words for one book. But I wrote and had a good start.

How did you get started with writing your book?

Well, it started with me just writing down the dream I had. I wrote first in OneNote, I like this as I can add pictures of my characters to help me describe them and give them life. I can add multiple chapters as pages and graphs, charters to keep track of my characters. As a pantser that is important because I forget who I have where without this structure. when I had too many words to be one book, I split up my main characters into books.

How did you organize your book? Did you have an outline, etc.?

Ugh, structure, outlines, charts. I wish I could give you some magic sauce here, but I’ll just be honest and say I am a hot mess with that all. My suggestion: try everything! My first way of building a book in OneNote, adding a new page for each chapter didn’t work out so don’t do that, but OneNote is still a great way of getting a visual on your characters in the same place that you rough draft. Then I copy and paste it into Word where I do edits, cut the fluff and add more as needed. I know I am getting better and more efficient with each edit and book that I write. Just remember that there is no perfect way to do this. Every one of our minds works differently. Just sit and write into Word if that is something you are comfortable with. Some authors have said that they write into a note on their iPhone, whatever gets the words out of you and into the black and white for later reviewing.

How long did it take you to write your book? Was it straight through, or stop and go?

Holy smokes, the first year was amazing for writing. June 2021 to the end of April 2022 was when I wrote 300,000 words. That was when I decided to self-publish. Then it all slowed way down. I was no longer writing. I was editing, revising, learning the self-publishing rules, trying to find new people to mentor me, setting up my business (because when I do something I go all in), made websites, found artists for my covers, and a million other small things. It took me from April 2022 to November 2022 to get my book published. So for the first part of actually writing in a rough draft format took almost a year. To get it to a place where I could launch was 7 months later.

That being said, I still write. Almost every single day. But I have to sit down now and think about it. It has not been as easy as that first year was.

How did it feel the first time you held your book in your hands?

Oh my goodness! Well that was great but what was amazing for me was when you, Debby, sent me the first picture of someone holding my book in their hands ready to read it!! That was the most special moment for me. I think I told you that I squealed when I got that picture, well I did much to the concern of my husband because I am not known for squealing. But wow all the feels in that moment.

What was it like for you after finally pushing the publish button?

So no one knows that I write books, especially spicy romance except for 3 people in my immediate family. 3 of my kids only know that I write, not what I write about. (too young for all that). So pushing the button was a quiet affair. But I will say that there was a LOT of relief. While writing is fun and meeting new people is fun, pushing your words out there for other people to read is the scariest thing I have ever done. But it was such a relief to say it is done, it is gone, I have published something.

What is your most effective means of marketing your book?

So I would say BookFunnel promotions. If you don’t know what that is, I will give a bare bones break down. It is a site that for a cost will keep your completed work on file for your Beta readers, Arc readers and their group promotions. Honestly you can send a copy of your book to anyone you want to review your work if you wish through BookFunnel. They have a sales portal too, but I haven’t looked into it. The thing with BookFunnel promotions is that you can’t give away your book if your book is in Kindle Unlimited (KU). So then you have to have a free prequel that you upload like you would your book that you enroll into promotions to get people interested in your writing and joining your mailing list. Once you join a few of those promotions, people look at your style and see if it is interesting to them and if they want to go get your other book. My book that is free on BookFunnel is my prequel to Mia’s story. It is called Power of the Moon, is about 12k, and set in the early 1900’s.

You are working on your second book. Are you doing anything differently with this one than you did with the first?

So many things!! I am starting earlier with Beta readers. Beta Readers are the best thing ever!! I had 4 Beta readers for my first book. One 1 is a fabulous first-time author for England who put out her first book 2 weeks before me, we have learned so much from each other in that time and keep in touch regularly still. One turned into my editor. She is a great lady in South Dakota who I have recommended a few people to for her services. She put up with all my new kid questions. And one who gave me the best advice on the genre I am in and how my book could be better aligned with that genre, she was from Australia and is a new writer too. But wasn’t afraid to dish out the real talk.

I am more active on social media than before. I will continue there to build my brand. Including new promotions in BookFunnel and trying some other areas to promote my book as I find them.

What advice would you give new or aspiring authors?

Get some 3rd party people who aren’t connect to you as a person, to read for you. They will be the most honest and then take whatever they give you and grow. Are they maybe saying tough stuff about something you spent a year or five years writing? Yes, they are but they as readers that are further away from the work and can see the flaws that you have decided to overlook. They aren’t out to hurt you; they are telling you need to grow.

MORE social media!! I have been working hard since my first book launched to build up my social presence. There are some awesome people in the Bookstagram world. There are some wonderful authors who will help lift you up as you are growing your audience. Get out there and meet them and ask questions! This will help you when you launch your next book. But it takes time, start it early.

  1. Are there any items on your bucket list that you can’t wait to get to?

Oh man this is tough. I want to write books for a living. But I don’t make any money doing this. So that is why this is a great hobby with good feels when you get a positive review, it is not a living. So I want to get my books out there when I can and be supportive of other authors as they seek this world with me. I want to lift up others and help with their questions. I want to see all of this series and my next one (yes, I already have a next series in mind) grow and mature like fine wine. Other than that, live one day at a time.

Anything else you would like to tell the readers?

First, I appreciate that you gave me this time to talk about my journey to self-publishing and writing strategy. My greatest advice so far is to find that one person you can talk about your writing. Even if they don’t understand everything you are talking about, that you have a support person is so very important. Then get on FaceBook, Instagram, or TikTok, join a writing group, another author’s page, or Bookstagrammer engagement groups. Look for other people at your level or beyond to ask questions. Promote yourself earlier than you are ready to. I know that it seems as if you don’t have much to contribute but you need to be able to share your story when you are done writing, then again when you are done editing, then again when you need betas, etc. Before that, be an advocate, share others wins when they are happy about something, find your book friends.



I can be found on FaceBook, Goodreads, Instagram, and TikTok. Email me, I will do my best to answer questions!!

1st Book: Oracle: Mia (The Oracle’s Journey Series) Available for free on KU

Thanks so much, Meg, for sharing all of this great information with us! I can’t wait to read your second book (full disclosure, I already BETA read it!)! I wish you all the best going forward with your writing!

On another note, my book, “May I Have Your Attention Please” is now live on Amazon, in both paperback and ebook! I have a great launch party last night, and now I am looking forward to more sales and more writing, with plans to release my second book in September, 2023. Please check it out, and if you do read my book, please leave a review on Amazon or Goodreads. It would mean a whole lot!

Here again are the links to my Facebook page, Debby Meltzer Quick Author, and TikTok, @dbmquick. Please follow me on these pages. And please explore my page here at

Have a great weekend!

May I Have Your Attention Please (Excerpt included!)

Order my book at:

It’s finally here! The launch date of my first book, “May I Have Your Attention Please” is March 4, less than one week away! And I have finally gotten everything ready to go for the actual launch, such as the book being able to be ordered and printed. Now I’m working on my launch party, which will be on March 4 at a really cool book pub in Portland. If you’re in the area and you want to come, it’s the one on Fremont Street, and it’s from 3-6pm. I guess I’ll be doing a short reading, giving away some books and prizes, and generally having a good time. And there will be cake. You can’t turn down cake, can you? No.

Now what? Deep breaths for one thing. Thinking of all the things I might have forgotten. Finding typos and reloading my manuscript. Over and over (but it’s all good). Inviting people to the party. Other marketing things. Oy, I’m so tired of marketing by now, and I’m just at the starting line! It’s fun, but sometimes, I run out of ideas. I’ll come up with something, I’m sure.

In honor of the pending launch, I’m going to include an excerpt from the book. I try to be so careful about my excerpts not giving anything away, but I have to remember, it’s out of context. You will still have to read it in context.

This excerpt is during a dinner that James and Sally have with Sally’s adult sister, Andrea, and her Army husband, Derrek. He’s in town on leave and wants to see his favorite (albeit only) sister-in-law, and meet her new boyfriend. Here it is:

They reviewed the menus. When the waitress returned with their drinks, they were ready to order. Everyone ordered shellfish and salad. When the salads arrived, they paused momentarily from their conversation to dig in. Then James turned to Andie.

“So Andie,” he said, dabbing the corner of his mouth with his napkin, then putting the napkin on his lap like his mother taught him to do in fancy restaurants. “I met Sally in Junior High. We were both totally awkward back then. No offense Sally.”

“Oh, none taken,” Sally said enthusiastically. “I completely agree. I was totally awkward back then. Well, until like a month ago!”

James smiled fondly at Sally and turned back to Andie. “So what was she like as a kid?” he asked. “I bet she was a cute baby.”

“Oh, she was!” Andie agreed. “I was seven when she was born, so she was my little baby doll. She had these springy curls and round pink cheeks that always looked like they needed to be pinched! Mom was still pretty busy with our brother Nathan, who was two when she was born, so I would entertain Sally with my stories and songs and puppet shows. She had such a laugh, so I was always trying to do things to make her laugh. She had a short attention span so I had to come up with new things to do to make her happy all the time. If I didn’t, she would cry.”

“Is she like that with you, James?” Derrek joked. 

“I’ve never seen her cry,” James admitted.

“Take her to a sappy movie,” Derrek advised him. “But bring Kleenex. And bring Andie too, she could use a good happy cry.”

Andie nodded. “It’s true,” she confided. “I really could.”

“Sally may have been awkward at school,” Derrek said, “but at home, she was always the life of the party.” He looked at Sally. “Remember? You were always singing, dancing around, trying to get everyone’s attention.”

Sally blushed. “Oh God, that was such a long time ago!”

He turned back to James. “And she loved to bake with her  Mom and Grandma.”

“Yeah,” Sally said, “So you always had cookies and brownies to eat.”

Derrek grinned. “Can you still bribe her with chocolate?”

James raised an eyebrow. “What?”

Andie laughed. “We learned that if we gave her a chocolate bar or a cookie, she would let us watch whatever we wanted on TV.”

“Or give us some alone time when we needed it,” Derrek added.

Sally gave a little shrug. “Well, I guess I still respond  pretty well to chocolate.”

James caught her eye and smiled. “Good to know.”

He remembered the shy version of Sally at Randall, who was separated from her friends in class, and relied on him and his friends for some friendly interaction each day. He thought about how easy it would have been for them to ignore her, and how grateful he was now that they didn’t. She must have brought out the best in them, even back then. 

“Sally has been a godsend for Andie too,” Derrek continued, “I was deployed in Germany for a year before I was assigned to Fort Benning, so Andie really needed her family. And when Josie was born, Sally was really there for her. She’s more like a second mom to Josie than an aunt.  Sally, even if Andie had another sister, you would still be my favorite sister-in-law.”

James looked at Sally, and noticed her wiping a tear off of her cheek with the back of her hand. On the other side of the table, Andie sniffed. He was struck by how similar Sally and her sister looked, with their brown hair and sparkling pale blue eyes. They had similar facial expressions, and both appeared to wear their emotions right on the surface. “Well,” Derrek said, reaching out to take Sally’s hand, “now you’ve seen her crying.” They smiled at each other affectionately.

The entrees were served, and they all composed themselves to eat.

James took a bite of shrimp, and felt it melt like butter in his mouth. Everyone else was quiet as silverware clinked on plates. 

Well, if that doesn’t make you hungry, I don’t know what will! Thanks for reading this far, and I hope if you buy the book, you will enjoy every scene!

To order my book:

Here again are the links to my Facebook page, Debby Meltzer Quick Author, and TikTok, @dbmquick. Please follow me on these pages. And please explore my page here at