Monday, November 23, 2009

Thanksgiving: That Was Then, This is Now

I love this painting, a depiction of the First Thanksgiving in America by a famous artist. That was then.

This is Thanksgving, circa 1942. Everyone dressed up, sitting around a beautiful, well-appointed table.

Twenty-first Century--football on Thanksgiving Day. This is a University of Texas football player, holding a Longhorn banner (actually this is from their win at the Rose Bowl.)

This is now. Since all our family live too far away, we celebrate in our own way, by ourselves, and thoroughly enjoy our day. First, we go to the movies. This year, we'll see The Blind Side. (It's about football.)

After the movie, we'll go to Johnny Carino's and have Italian Nachos. No turkey for us.

And last, the grand finale: University of Texas plays its arch rival, Texas A&M, in Austin, Texas in Memorial Stadium. It's a night game, so we watch it on television. Perfect ending to a great day.
We're thankful for all we have.
Remember our military men and women and their families.
Remember all other service and medical personnel who work on Thanksgiving Day.


Celia Yeary

Wednesday, November 18, 2009



Meet 40 great Texas writers and illustrators! Books will be

available at the event from the Texas State University Bookstore

and the authors themselves. Autographed books make

wonderful holiday gifts for friends and family!


2:15 Diana Castilleja 3:45 Allan C. Kimball

3:00 Jacqueline Kelly 4:30 Shelley Seale

at the San Marcos Public Library

625 E. Hopkins St. 512.393.8200

Book Signings & Readings

Sunday, November 22, 2009
I will be a participant this year in the Texas Author Day. If anyone is in the vicinty of San Marcos, Texas, please drop by our library and visit! This year 40 authors will attend, and all will have books you may decide to buy, or just come by and visit with us. It's a fun time, no pressure, just come and enjoy!
Celia Yeary
Western Historical Romance Author
Book: All My Hopes and Dreams

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Happiness State

What makes you happy? Can your level of happiness depend on your home state? Could moving to another state be good for your soul? Three-hundred and fifty thousand residents of all 50 states were asked the same set of questions to determine their level of happiness.

Don’t expect me to list the happiest states or the least. Not for the world would I step into that argument. Probably, most of us love our home state, and we wouldn’t care where some innocuous study placed it. Besides, many of our friends live in other countries, and I wouldn’t want to leave them out.

However, I can use generalizations and discuss the five types of Well-Being the study used.

1. Overall evaluation of your life.

2. Emotional Health

3. Physical health

4. Healthy behaviors or life-styles

5. Job satisfaction.

You could rate yourself using these five elements. On a scale of one to five, how would you rate yourself—living in the “state” or state you do.

For me, my overall evaluation of my life would be a five. Emotional health, oh, 4.5. (I do worry and fume and fuss over things I cannot control.) Physical health, probably a 4, simply because I’m not 21 anymore and do have a few tiny health issues I can easily control. Healthy behaviors or life-styles, definitely a five. I don’t smoke and never have, I’m not an addictive personality to anything, I eat healthy so that my lab tests always get a happy face (really, my doctor draws a happy face on my lab sheets), and I get moderate exercise. Job satisfaction? I’m retired and happily so. But when I did work, I’d give myself another five. In total, I am a rather happy person.

Right now, I’m reading a novel by Emilie Richards titled “Happiness Key.” I love her books, and this one is about four women living in concrete block ramshackle cabins on a spit of land in Florida called Happiness Key. One owns the cabins, and has fallen from a wealthy life when her husband went to prison; one is a foreigner who finds herself married to a man she doesn’t know; one is a middle-aged woman who yearns for her husband who pays her no mind, so she finds one who will; and one is an older woman who has become forgetful and sad. They come together to solve a problem.

The best point about this novel is the character-building Emilie Richards so capably weaves. I want to keep reading, not to find out how the problem is solved, but to learn how each of these women find happiness.

How do you find your happiness? Surely, it’s not because you live in Vermont, or California, or Utah. Each of us is different, yet all the same. Women in a world of men, finding our own way.

Keep writing. Much of my happiness comes from writing and creating, and I’ll bet it’s the same for you.

Celia Yeary

SHOWDOWN IN SOUTHFORK: eBook available at:

Print and eBook available at:

Friday, November 6, 2009

Slumdog Millionaire--What's the Point?

While on a recent road trip from Texas to Michigan, we stayed in motels along the way and at our destination. Since we do not subscribe to HBO at home, watching it on TV is a treat for us. Our lives do not revolve around movies, in fact, we may see two a year—sometimes not that many. As I checked the schedule one night, I saw that Slumdog Millionaire was a primetime feature. Great! I wouldn’t have to stay up far past my bedtime to watch a movie.

I told my husband the movie we’d see (he doesn’t care, and allows me to be the film critic of the family.) Indeed, we watched the entire movie, enjoying some parts, distressed at others. When it ended, my husband asked: “What was the point of the story?”

Very good question.

Plot: A Mumbai teen who grew up in the slums becomes a contestant on the Indian version of “Who Wants to be a Millionaire?” Because he knows answers he shouldn’t with his non-existent education, he is accused of cheating. The police arrest, interrogate, and torture him. During the interrogation, he tells the story of his life, including specific events that explain why he knows the answers.

Summary: The story is a fairy tale with great imagery and a happy ending—exhilarating, in fact. The movie will invoke pity, sadness, anger, fear, disgust, surprise, and happiness. You will want to cheer at the end. This combination is a perfect mix of emotions for every superb story.

But what is the point of Slumdog Millionaire? It is “How do we come to know the things we know about life and love?” (One comment about the movie gave this reason. I agree.)

The two young brothers in the story had no chance to learn anything about love except from other slum children and each other. Certainly their environment gave them pain, hunger, filth, extreme poverty, and fear. And yet, even after they lost their mother to a murderer, they seemed happy and cocky, fearless in many cases, and accepting of their surroundings. How could such a thing happen to these pitiful, hapless children?

Those of us who write about life and love draw on our human experiences. Each person has a unique story, and our beliefs and memories help shape our novels, our short stories, and us as adults. Even when a normal person like Stephen King can author such horrific tales, something along the way shaped his belief system and his memory bank.

The older brother in Slumdog acted as friend, teacher, and protector to the younger one—the brother who becomes the contestant. But as they neared the teen years, the older brother turned criminal the day he picked up a Colt 45 and realized he had power after all. He turned against his brother—or did he?

Watch the movie.

My published novels are a Western Historical Romance and one Western Contemporary Romance. My Coming Soon novel is also Western Historical. But…I also have several novel-length stories in my files. Some are women’s fiction with a light romance. A couple of them border on Inspirational romance. One is almost a YA novel. Whatever category they may fit, each one contains what I have learned and absorbed in my lifetime.

What I know about love and life appears—to some degree—in my stories. What about yours? Do you agree?

Celia Yeary
SHOWDOWN IN SOUTHFORK: eBook available at:

Print and eBook available at: