Donna Everhart

First Sentence Friday! CHAPTER NINETEEN

When writing a story about suffering, hardship and deprivation, there needs to be a balance of good with bad, or readers will be slap worn out (and as the writer, so would I) if it was all negative, with nothing good happening.  I love, love, love stories where characters are thoroughly challenged, where they go through some really tough times, but I also realize for a story to have balance, and to convey something of a realistic, true to life experience, there must come a turn towards something positive.  A reprieve, if you will.

The Stampers finally have that, if only for a while.

Chapter Nineteen

We stood a few minutes soaking in the applause and feeling right proud of ourselves.


Publishers Lunch BUZZ BOOK Fall/Winter 2017, and a SIBA (Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance) Trio Pick for 2018, THE ROAD TO BITTERSWEET releases December 26th, 2017.  

***I’m using #FirstSentenceFridays on Twitter and tagging @Kensington Publishing Corporation.  Follow along and tweet out/share if you’d like!***






14 thoughts on “First Sentence Friday! CHAPTER NINETEEN”

  1. Both of your books are the perfect juxtaposition of good and bad, despair and hope, somber and lighthearted. It’s the strength and resiliency in your characters that uplift your stories.

    1. Thank you for saying that! What a great compliment. I’ve never been one for the “fainting couch.” 🙂

      1. Nor have I…I don’t shy away from difficult subject matter, but there needs to be something hopeful, something uplifting to keep the stories from becoming maudlin. Neither Dixie nor Wallis Ann felt sorry for themselves…they didn’t wallow in self-pity. Both of their circumstances were dire, but they never gave up, they never stopped believing that better times were ahead,

        1. That’s it. Exactly. If the character has no hope, no fortitude – where’s the story? And what’s a reader to think? Personally, I wouldn’t like the characters if they were the “woe is me,” sort. There are some stories out there I think try too hard to be dramatic/show personal crises that soon become overblown. (no names being mentioned here! 😉 ) I.e. shock scenes for the sake of that…shock. I like realistic, what if this happened, and is it possible to get out of it, types of stories. I really appreciate your input on my work. It means a lot!

  2. What you’ve said in this post is so wise, Donna! But I’m not surprised because you are brilliant. And you are right, as always. 🙂 I love today’s sentence! <3 <3 <3

    1. Thank you, as always Lilac, for your kind words! (I don’t know about that brilliant part though… 🙂 ) <3 <3 <3

  3. The Stampers should capture a good mental picture of this moment. Cuz I don’t imagine it stays much past chapter 19. Not that I know anything about the book, but just about life…

    1. Ha, you made me go look. I have several of these already set to publish and I was like…hmmm, wait, Chapter Twenty? What’s that about? Turns out, they’re still doing okay, but you’ll have to wait and see for yourself. 🙂

    1. I like realistic endings – endings that are satisfactory, but maybe a little unexpected too. And I love what you said – hardship and hope. That’s exactly this story.

  4. “If only for a while”… You cruel, cruel woman! But you are so right. The comedic beat, the smile in the darkness, that spark of optimism. Life (and stories) need them. ESPECIALLY when you know it’s only a temporary reprieve–ya big meanie. ; )

  5. Take yourself a bow too, my dear. With all that must be going on you managed to update your website with one that works consistently.

    You also set up this week’d “first sentence” in a way when you can almost hear the chain drive of the roller coaster cart as it climbs toward the crest of a hill.


    1. I wish I’d known folks were having issues. Shout if anything runs amok! I actually had the website guys fix it – they rebuilt the blog page without some sort of loading stuff it was doing…long as it works, I don’t care!

      There is a lot going on – none of it fun, but I’m trying to go about “business as usual” to the best of my ability.

      That chain drive thing you mention – gosh, that and that pause at the top of the hill? Whew, those two things used to get me all amped up for the downhill swoop! I love roller coasters.

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