Who I am and how the book came to be.
My name is Laura Elizabeth. I am a 45-year-old divorced mother of two boys. They both live with me in North Carolina. My oldest son Josh is 25 and my youngest J.R. is 12. I spent two years trying to get divorced and it was finally done.
In 2004, I had been working at Annabelle’s Restaurant in the Asheville Mall for two years. I was well known to all of the staff, clientele, mall employees, friends and neighbors as “Coo”. It is a nickname that was given to me by one of my brother’s when I was young.
That’s when my dilemma began. I had been slowing down and losing my train of thought. My memory was beginning to fade, I gained weight at an alarming rate and I was having trouble with my vision. It was to the point that I was having trouble functioning on a daily basis, therefore I began to see doctors. Along with a low functioning thyroid, I began to have problems with Hypo-glycemia. That’s when I found Dr. Dan Cannon of Asheville.
Soon after he began studying me I had a slight stroke. Dr. Dan immediately ran a check on my carotid arteries and discovered the left side blocked. He sent me directly to a specialist named Dr. Michael Douglas who could not believe that the tests were conclusive that the left artery in my neck was seriously blocked.
He said I was too young for this critical of a condition. He set me up for surgery on October 31st. During the surgery he found it to be 100% blocked and ulcerated. He expressed that I could have died at any moment, which was a chilling thought for myself as well as my family.
The healing process was slow and every day was a struggle because I was so weak by the time it was discovered. I was in bed for almost 17 hours per day and had gained 50 pounds. I stayed away from work and rested for a year trying to regain my normal strength.
Though I suffered through some long term memory loss such as not knowing some people or places that I knew before, not knowing that I had seen certain movies or remembered songs or memories from my childhood. Even some foods I liked before were no longer interesting in my menu and others that I was told I didn’t like were now on my menu. The doctors have said it may all come back or it may not. I can honestly say that some has and some hasn’t.
According to the neurologist, I am having a slight problem with short term memory but as a joke I just reply by saying, “It’s okay, I usually remember what I forgot, sooner or later.
I knew somehow I had to find a place in my life that gave me peace as well as find a way to help support my family and start over. Not an easy path to have to take. I had already given up my past life and divorced and totally started over in North Carolina and I wasn’t sure if I was prepared to handle all of this, especially not knowing a lot of things that I knew before.
I began dabbling with writing as a release. I had been having dreams and things were just popping into my head like movies playing. It seemed stories and scenes of things were happening in such vivid realistic measure. Some of it good, some of it bad and some of it is simply frightening. It wasn’t very long after writing things from my head that I had chapters of what I was told by my mother and my fiancé were very interesting material.
The stories in the book just seemed to continue and appear in my mind and grew with every written word until finally I wrote “The End”. Then they asked me what I was going to do with it. Suggesting that I get it published. The idea scared me at first, but then became an exciting challenge.
During the process of writing, my son Josh was in a serious car accident that could have killed him and he had to have plastic surgery on his ear and stay in the trauma unit at the hospital for a few days. He came home and seemed lost for a long time and didn’t work for almost two years. I believe the head trauma affected him much more than the doctors knew. I felt it was a miracle that he even stayed alive as the truck was mangled.
My niece moved in with us because she didn’t like her life and her parents thought it would be a good move for her and she spent three years with us trying to sort out her complicated life and I was the beating board for her. She moved out when she turned 18 and I’m proud to say I did something right with her because she’s headed on to further her education. I’m proud of her for that.
During this time my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer and we went through two years of surgeries, appointments, radiation and chemo. She is ready to get the port out coming up this Friday and that situation is looking so much better. I’m proud of my mother. She’s a fighter.
My fiancé and I were in a car accident where our vehicle rolled when an oncoming car hit us during that time which left me with a serious concussion and it seemed to foil my brain a little more but I trudged on. Thank God my fiancé Steve has been a police officer for 30 years and is very well trained in defensive driving, I believe he saved our lives.
A close family relative had been in prison for serious drunk driving offence, which ultimately, was caused, by the pain and guilt over death of my youngest brother. He had tried to save his life for about an hour but to no avail he could not save him. It caused him such turmoil and pain he found some kind of refuge in the bottle.
For years he sat in that prison rotting so to speak. Knowing he was guilty of his crime and finally trying to deal with my brother’s death, he asked for my help and I took on the task of trying to help him get to a half way house to begin to heal and reinstate his life into society. It seems that even though he’s through with me, I have succeeded in that and he is headed in the right direction.
Also during this time, I found that my father was seriously ill and things don’t look good there. He is terminal. Also a very close family relative whom I love dearly had a major stroke while in surgery for blockage to her heart and it changed life again. Also around this time my fiancé’s brother passed away mysteriously after a major surgery on his liver. Curious thought that he served in Vietnam. It was very traumatic for all of us and seemed to stunt our lives for a while, he was good man.
Through my illness, my surgery, my recovery, my niece moving in and out, the trials and tribulations of getting through the paper work for the prison release program, my family members serious stroke, through my son’s recovery from a car accident, my father being ill, my fiancé’s brother’s death and my mother’s breast cancer surgery, radiation and chemo and not to mention the financial burden that has been placed on this family we have muddled through.
I thought the worst was behind us years ago when my brother and my cousin past away. Somehow I found peace in parts of my day to write. It’s probably why it took me two years to write it. I thank God for those of us who are here together. Our loved ones who are gone? I’m sure they are watching over us. Everyday is a true blessing.
How many people can say, “I had a stroke and it changed my life for the better”. Even through all the bad times and tragedy I was lucky that my memory and my sight were not completely destroyed. I’m lucky they were the only things that have been affected. The fact that my heart has been broken a million times has only made me stronger. It’s too bad life deals that way. I feel as if God has given me a second chance and opened a door to a new world for my family and me.
Anyway, the book is a paranormal murder mystery. It is called “541 Hucklebee Hound”
The story is about; a girl named Shane May T. Bellefonte, better known as Shanie. She is a sweet southern girl who has inherited a gift. It is an unwanted gift of seeing the past and some of the future. She fights the visions daily and feels she is learning to control them until she is pulled into the life of a serial killer. At first through thee eyes of a small child, and then the many victims follow the child’s lead, dragging her mind through their terrible ordeals as well as their deaths. Shanie struggles to make sense of the fragmented pieces before the killer can strike again and push her over the edge of reason.
This is an insert from the book:
Sondra thought back to the first experiences that she could remember. She was a little girl about 5 years old and she lived with her parents on the peanut plantation. She had a large room that felt like it was part of a castle and a nursery was connected to it. In the nursery were all kinds of beautiful dolls and stuffed animals, building blocks and even a dollhouse with wood people and furniture to play with. A wooden rocking horse that her father had sent away for that was painted white with pink ribbon reigns. By the bay windows in the room sat a small round wooden table with four chairs and a set of play dishes made of china. She would sit down at the table and announce tea and pretend others were sitting with her. One day she walked over and sat down saying, “Okay everyone it’s tea time.” She watched as a small boy with short blonde hair dressed in knickers, a white shirt with suspenders and white socks and black loafers walked over to the table from behind the rocking horse and sat down next to Sondra. Then an older girl with tight blonde curls and bows in her hair, in a pink dress that was all frilly with ribbons and lace came from behind the curtains that hung on each side of the bay windows and walked over to the table and sat down next to the boy. Sondra didn’t think a thing of it. She was happy to see someone to play with and she poured make-believe tea for everyone and introduced herself. The little boy seemed to be about the same age as Sondra and introduced himself as being Theodore and he wanted to play and he was glad she had asked him. Theodore had moved into the house with his parents when he was 5 and he loved to ride horses. He had been given a new horse for his sixth birthday and the first time he rode it with his father on a horse
his side he was thrown off when his horse bolted seeing a snake in the creek near the house. He woke up and no one could see him. His father and mother packed and moved away separately after that and he hadn’t seen them since. The older girl seemed about ten and said she had had been in the house as long as she could remember and she was happy to have someone to play with. She said her name was Darla Waters and she was concerned that her parents had gone away and had not come back. She had fallen down the stairs while playing one day and all she could remember was that she was in bed a long time and then no one could see her anymore. She followed her parents and younger sister through the house day after day till one day they left and didn’t return. Soon after men came to the house and packed everything up and hauled it away and she was left there in the house alone until Theodore came. She said she watched him from afar and when his parents left she came out from behind the curtain so that he would not be alone. Sondra played with the two till she was older and grew tired of it. She went to the mammy in the kitchen and asked her how to get rid of ghosts. Sondra remembered that the exact thing her mammy said to her was, “Child, you got what your momma gots. Go speak ta her. She be getting um on fer ya” Sondra’s mother took her hand and they went to the nursery which Sondra never visited anymore and told her to sit quiet at the small table and explain to the children that her mother could help and to come out. Sondra called Theodore and Darla but they didn’t come at first but then she invited them for tea and they came out and sat down at the table with Sondra and her mother. They asked Sondra why she didn’t come anymore and Sondra’s mother stepped in telling them that Sondra was growing up and that they would not. She carefully explained to them that somehow they had passed away and that judging by the dated clothing they were wearing that their families had probably went to heaven long ago. She asked them if they ever saw a light behind them and they both nodded their heads as if to say yes and Sondra’s mother explained to them that if they would turn and look into the light that their families were waiting for them there and they should go to them. First Darla stood up and turned around and said, “There is a light. I see someone; I see my mother and my father. There’s my sister. Oh Theodore, she’s right they have come for me.” She started to walk toward the edge of the room and turned and said, “They’re smiling, don’t be afraid Theodore your momma and poppa will be there too! I’ll find you!” With that she disappeared. Sondra urged Theodore to look into the light too and he stood up from his chair and turned around. He stood quiet for a moment and then he said, “Momma, I’m tired!” He rubbed his eyes and said, “Yes poppa.” He turned back to Sondra and her mother and Sondra’s mother nodded her head and whispered, “Go, go with Mommy!” as she motioned him to scoot with her hand and Theodore turned and Sondra said, “Bye Theo. Thanks for playing.” Theodore quickly turned back and waved at Sondra and then he walked towards the wall and disappeared into thin air. That’s when Sondra first let it be known to her mother that she had a curse on her. Her mother explained it wasn’t a curse and that she was not crazy and that it ran in the family. She told Sondra not to tell anyone because they may call her a witch or something and her mother explained it was not being a witch but that it was a talent that everyone had it but some people have it stronger and those people don’t get the choice of knowing or not about the after world. She told her the others whose gift is not so strong need to develop it to have it work and be controlled but most of them choose not to.
End of excerpt…
The book is so many things rolled into one bind of paper. Pouring out of my thoughts and my heart. It is a story of unconditional love, off hate and romance. There are some very explicit stories of murder that to me are unbelievable that I could even write such things, but they seem as if they didn’t come from my mind, somehow seeming not to have gotten their by my own will. Parts of my journal, as it were. It includes lost spirits looking for answers and then finding them, as well as others on the same path, finding the light of the lord and going home. People making a choice and heading down the right or the wrong road of life. It’s true raw emotion, pain and healing. Finding God as a result.
Grammy award winner Linda Davis has been a friend of mine for 24 years and she allowed me to talk about her in my book. She was very excited when I asked. She said, “As long as I’m rich, famous and beautiful! Then she laughed. I love her dearly for it. She was the first person and probably the only to every make me crab cakes and salmon cakes. I love her.
I involve Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, South Dakota, South Carolina, North Carolina and Tennessee. I talk about local landmarks and the cities they’re in. I write some history into the book speaking things such as old southern mansions and the lives of people who inhabited them from Civil War to modern day.
I would just be so excited if you would read my book. I wanted you all to know how this book came to be and who I am. Thank you for taking the time to read this.