Thursday, March 10, 2011

Wonderful Women with Guest Blogger: Caroline Clemmons

Win a copy of Save Your Heart For Me and welcome author Caroline Clemmons to the Book Boost today!

She's here to share with us the women who have inspired her...

March is Women’s History Month and we each have one special woman who influenced us more than any other, don’t we? Before I disclose that person, please indulge me while I tell you about several women who made a significant contribution at my different life stages.

(1) My grandmother, Frances Josephine (nee Gamble) Phifer Reynolds was an amazing woman who raised four children and outlived two husbands. She made each of her grandchildren feel as if he or she was her favorite. She was shy, but when she spoke her words were worth hearing.

(2 and 3) Several teachers influenced me, but Mrs. Huff during my fourth grade in Morton, Texas and Mrs. Mary Stewart during two years of journalism in Lubbock, Texas especially took time to interact individually with students.

(4) Helen Keller was an inspiration even though I disagreed with her support of socialism. With the help of Annie Sullivan, Miss Keller overcame unbelievable handicaps to make a contribution to too many causes to name here. Who of us could have overcome being both blind and deaf from the age of nineteen months? When I’m discouraged, I tell myself if Helen Keller could do, I had better cowgirl up.

(5) My eldest half-sister, Elsie Lorraine (nee Johnson) Reed, was only two years younger than my mom, and Elsie functioned as the matriarch of our family. She was a classy lady who taught me to be less insular and to embrace deep spirituality, even though we attended different Protestant denominations.

Who was not influenced by his or her mother? You’ve probably guessed that the most influential person in my life was my mom, Lena Mae (nee Phifer) Johnson. She demonstrated devotion to her children daily. Her life goal was to see her children safe, secure, and happy. I was a puny kid doctors predicted would not live to maturity, but Mother determined to see I grew up in spite of any naysayers. Obviously, she followed through. More than just because she gave birth, I owe my life to her devotion.

Which brings me to my current release. Save Your Heart For Me is a novella in which the heroine is named after my Aunt Elizabeth Margaret Phifer Scott and the heroine’s mom is named after my mom. Although my aunt was never called Beth, I used that form of Elizabeth in the story. Mother loved reading my books. The novella was to be a surprise for her, and I knew she would be delighted. When she died before I completed the work, I simply had to put it away for a while before I could finish writing the story.

Now it’s complete and available from The Wild Rose Press.

Kerri, thank you so much for hosting me today.

A Note from the Book Boost: What a lovely post and thank you for sharing all the special women in your life with us. We all should be so lucky to have such strong and inspiring women in our lives, I know I do! Please tell us more about your book.


After fleeing an abusive husband six years ago, Beth Jeffers wants nothing more than to protect her son Davey and to help her mother operate a boarding house. The women in her family have had no luck with men, and she has no intention of letting any man influence her son. Not even Matt Petrov, no matter how much her lonely heart urges otherwise.

Federal Marshall Matt Petrov, also known as Lone Wolf Peters, fell in love with Beth the first time he saw her. Then she was another man’s wife, so he kept his longing a secret he’s saved his love for her for six horrific years. Now, the lovely widow and he have crossed paths again. This time, he intends to risk all for a chance at happiness. First he must rescue his distant kinsman from an assassin’s clutches. Will Matt succeed before his kin is killed? And will his secrets shatter the love he and Beth now share?


The tall younger woman kept her head lowered and all he saw was her shapely backside while she tugged at the corner of her navy skirt caught under one leg of the safe.

“Let me.” He tilted the safe to free the fabric, then pushed the unwieldy block of metal into place.

“Oh, finally.” She shook out her skirt and bent to brush at the stain marring the hem. “Thank you—“ When she straightened and looked up at him, she fell silent and paled as if she’d seen a ghost.

Hell, he figured she had. A phantom from her past.

“Beth? Beth Jeffers?” Matt tried to mask the sensations raised by seeing her again—surprise, longing, heartache—but doubted he succeeded.

She, on the other hand, quickly recovered her composure and turned up her nose as if she’d smelled a skunk. “What are you doing here?”

“Honestly, Beth, I’m surprised at you.” Her mother looked from one to the other. “You two know each other?”

Beth pushed a stray golden curl from her face and raised her chin. “We met long ago.”

She wore her blonde hair in a bun, but wisps escaped to frame her face. Time had been good to her. The years had rounded her a bit in the right places and softened her—except for her ice-cold blue eyes.

She gave Matt a measuring glare and balled her fists at her hips as if challenging him.

“Whatever you want, you won’t find it here.”

Matt wanted to say something sharp to make her think he cared nothing for what she thought, but his mind went blank. Danged if she wasn’t prettier than when he’d known her six years ago, especially without bruises marring her ivory skin from her sonofabitch husband’s fist.

Want More Caroline?

Caroline Clemmons writes romance and adventures—although her earliest made up adventures featured her saving the West with Roy Rogers. Her career has included stay-at-home mom (her favorite job), newspaper reporter and featured columnist, assistant to the managing editor of a psychology journal, and bookkeeper. She and her husband live in rural North Central Texas with a menagerie of rescued pets. When she’s not writing, she enjoys spending time with family, reading, travel, browsing antique malls and estate sales, and genealogy/family history. Her latest releases include The Texan's Irish Bride, Out of the Blue, Snowfires, Save Your Heart for Me and Home Sweet Texas Home.

Visit her website her:
Pick up your copy of her book today. Click here.

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Caroline Clemmons said...

Thanks so much for having me as a guest on your blog.

Celia Yeary said...

CAROLINE--when I saw the title of this post, my first thought was, of course--my mother influenced me the most. And she did, in most ways that count--"don't be tacky, always say please and thank you, don't talk back to your mother, be kind to old people, wear clean underwear, and learn how to properly hang clothes on the line."
Of course, she taught me much more, and I always adored my mother.
However, she nor Daddy encouraged us to go to college, in fact, we were told...just get a good job until you marry. As a result, I married at barely age 18 and then spent my adult life trying to catch up--kids, then a bachelor's degree, then a master's degree, a teaching career, learning to play golf at age 40, and then...writing a novel in my 60s.

I truly love the premise of your new book. Just the kind I like. I'm telling you Caroline, I can't keep up with all the books I want to read. I'll try though!
Excellent post--and I joined the chat group. This is one I've not run across. Celia

Bobbye Terry said...

Very sweet blog about your influential female mentors. My mom is my idol too. Can't wait to read your book.

PoCoKat said...

I had an amazing mother and two wonderful grandmothers...I was truly blessed.

pocokat AT gmail DOT com

Susan Macatee said...

Can't wait to read this book, Caroline! I'm sure your mom's smiling down on you and so proud of your accomplishments.

Caroline Clemmons said...

Celia, I laughed at the "wear clean underwear" bit. My mother always said to mend my underwear and make sure it was clean in case I had an accident and had to go to the ER. LOL I think wearing clean underwear for the comfort would have been enough to convince me.

Caroline Clemmons said...

Bobbye and PoCoCat, thanks for stopping by. We're lucky we had great moms in a world where many aren't nurturing.

Caroline Clemmons said...

Susan, my mom was always proud of me. She had "selective memory" and talked about what how nice I was. I didn't remind her of all my escapades. LOL I know she's smiling about the book, and my Aunt Elizabeth is, too.

Paisley Kirkpatrick said...

This may sound backwards, but I think my daughters have been the most influencial in my life, especially the bravery my daughter showed me as she lost her life to cancer. My second daughter continues to show me her courage and we've learned to lean on each other to face the hardships that are put in our path.

I am sure your aunt will be smiling down on you as she see the joy people will get from reading your novella, Caroline. Best of luck with lots of sales.

Margaret Tanner said...

Hi Caroline,
What a lovely blog. Mothers really are special arent they.



Caroline Clemmons said...

Paisley, I can't imagine the pain of losing a child. My daughters have also influenced me in similar ways. I thank God I have not lost one of them, though we have had close calls. I send special blessings your way, Paisley.

Caroline Clemmons said...

Margaret, thanks for stopping by. For you, it was a looonnngg trip. LOL