Friday, January 30, 2015

46,000 Pageviews!

Dear Gentle Readers,

I am pleased and thrilled to announce Vision and Verse, the Place for Art and Authors, has surpassed the 46,000 Pageview Milestone.

I see those numbers looking back at me, but it is very hard for me to comprehend.  When Texas collage artist Parker Kaufman and Ohio author Carol Kauffman (me) were kicking around an idea for a blog that would be informative and showcase the artists and authors, both the old and the new, that just screamed inspiration and creativity, we wanted a simple white page with text down the middle.  One column.  Crisp and clean.  We wanted our blog to be about inspiration and creativity.

The experts told us it would never fly.  Today's sophisticated online viewer wants three columns, wants color, wants an intricate looking page.  We had none of that.  We wanted none of that.  We did it our own way.

And here we sit at 46,000 pageviews.  A big heartfelt thank you to all of you who stop by on a daily basis to see what's happening here.  Without you, I am entertaining myself.

We are kicking around ideas for a much-anticipated 50,000 Pageview Celebration sometime this year.  So far, we know we will have giveaways with ebooks and paperbacks, and an Amazon gift card.  If there's something you'd like to see, let me know. 

Vision and Verse readers are the best!  Have a great day.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

A Vision of Fire by Gillian Anderson

Review from

"Actress Anderson of X-Files fame makes her fiction debut with this gripping, well-written thriller, coauthored with genre veteran Rovin (Vespers).... Fans of Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child will find a lot to like." (Publishers Weekly)

"A real page turner!" (New York Live)

“This is basically the dream of nerds everywhere.” (Flavorwire)

“[W]e’re quivering with anticipation for Gillian Anderson’s debut science fiction novel.” (

“Gillian Anderson delighted us for years as the skeptical Agent Scully on The X-Files, and now she wants to return to the genre that made her famous, this time as an author.” (

“Gillian Anderson is returning to the genre that made her a cultural icon.” (Entertainment Weekly)

"Famed as X-Files Special Agent Dana Scully, Emmy and Golden Globe Award winner Anderson helps launch the publisher's cutting-edge imprint Simon 451 with the transcendent story of a Manhattan psychiatrist investigating inexplicable behavior by children worldwide that could spell real trouble.... A lot of tension…the mystical elements are further out there than any X-Files episode." (Library Journal)

"Anderson and co-author Jeff Rovin, an established novelist and ghostwriter, have crafted a book that takes a measured approach to the supernatural and wears its sombre apocalyptic mood like a stylish cashmere overcoat." (Financial Times)

"[A] slick, fast-paced page-turner replete with nuclear threat, occult cabals and an epidemic of apocalyptic visions suffered by children worldwide." (The Guardian)

About the Author from

Gillian Anderson is an award-winning film, television, and theatre actress whose credits include the roles of Special Agent Dana Scully in the long-running and critically acclaimed drama series, The X-Files, ill-fated socialite Lily Bart in The House of Mirth, and Lady Dedlock in the BBC production of Charles Dickens’s Bleak House. She is currently playing the role of Dr. Bedelia Du Maurier in Hannibal and is a costar on the television thriller, Crisis. She currently lives in the UK with her daughter and two sons.

Jeff Rovin is the author of more than 100 books, fiction and nonfiction, both under his own name, under various pseudonyms, or as a ghostwriter, including numerous New York Times bestsellers. He has written over a dozen Op-Center novels for the late Tom Clancy. Rovin has also written for television and has had numerous celebrity interviews published in magazines under his byline. He is a member of the Author’s Guild, the Science Fiction Writers of America, and the Horror Writers of America, among others.
Dear Gentle Readers,
While browsing at one of our local libraries, I was thrilled to find a sci-fi book by Gillian Anderson. Being an X Files fan, I scooped it up and have just begun reading it.
So far, a child of a diplomat is having nasty nightmares and violent visions and is sent to see a famed New York child psychiatrist Caitlin O'Hare.  Soon Caitlin discovers it is not this ONE child of a diplomat  who is having problems, but a few.  As she tries to understand these events, she realizes these incidents are connected.
it is a well-written, fast paced story with enough science, sci-fi, religion, and reality to make an X Files episode.  AND it's supposed to be a series.  Woohoo!
I love Gillian Anderson.  She is talented and beautiful and I always imagined her as medical examiner Dr. Kay Scarpetta if Patricia Cornwell ever decided to make her wonderful books into movies.
Have a great day, 

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Artist Erica Hopper

The beautiful work of artist Erica Hopper first caught my eye on her Facebook Page.  She captures an illusive human quality in her paintings without ever showing a face.  

She uses muted tones as well as bright red and blue and the basic human figures to convey beautiful imagery. 

This one is entitled "Italian Marbles."
I love the flashy, daring, red dress and its contrast to the figure's hunched over,
depressed shoulders.  I do not see the marbles.  Maybe she lost them.

 I love Second Thoughts.  I love the way Erica uses colors and the posture of the figure to convey the human being equivalent of Salvador Dali's "The Persistence of Memory." (The limp clock one.) 

You have to look closely at this one to see the red boots in Erica's new giclee on canvas "Red Boots Daughter."
Erica is represented by Blazing Editions. 

None of these images are mine.  I claim nothing but my thoughts this morning!  I found all my information on the internet.  The Piccadilly's Fine Art Galleries website has many beautiful Erica Hopper works of art for sale.  

Also, check out he Facebook Page!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Excerpt from Lord of Blakeley by Carol Ann Kauffman

In Lord of Blakeley, the peaceful farming community of Blakeley is attacked, and Andrew, as the Lord of the Province, led his men in defending their land and people.  Andrew did not return.

“Lady Aleese, it’s Carmine.  Come out.”
“Where is Drew?”
“Lady Aleese?  Please, come out,” he begged.  “I need to talk to you.  It’s about Andrew.  He… he’s been…”
She unlocked the door and looked at him.  She saw the look on his sad tear-stained face.  He didn’t have to say another word.  She knew.
“NO!  NO!” she cried, falling on the floor.  “NO!  Do not tell me he is dead!  NO!”
“I’m so sorry, Lady Aleese.  He died saving all of us, our land, our crops, and our food.  Oh, he was so incredibly brave, My Lady!  He was majestic, even.  He managed to blow them all up.  Unfortunately he was in the middle of that explosion.”
“NO!”  She pulled herself up.  “I feel in my heart that my beloved Drew is not dead.”
“I saw it with my own eyes.  I saw him… get blown up.”
“No.  It cannot be.  Go away, Carmine.  I wish to be alone.”
“I understand you want to be alone.  But, please, let me help you up to your room.  Your ladies can take care of you upstairs.  You don’t want to stay down here in this cold, dark cellar by yourself.”
“Drew told me to stay here and wait for him to come and get me.  And I’m staying right here.  I’m waiting for him to come and get me.  Go away.”
“But Lady Aleese…”
“GO THE HELL AWAY!!!”  She threw a wine bottle at him.  It crashed to the floor and broke into pieces.
Carmine nodded and backed away from her.  She slumped back against the wall, slowly sinking to the floor, screaming and sobbing. 
“Come for me, Drew!  Please, My Love, come for me.  I don’t want to go on without you.  You told me to stay here and wait until you came for me.  I’ll wait for you, Drew.  I’ll wait right here.  Come for me, My Love.  Please, come for me.”  She cried some more and soon cried herself to asleep on the cold, damp cellar floor.
She heard something, someone walking on the broken glass from the wine bottle on the floor.  A shadowy figure approached her.

“Drew?  Drew, My Darling, I knew you would come for me. I knew you wouldn’t desert me.  Drew!”  She reached for him.  The shadowy figure reached out and grabbed her tightly.  The light caught a silvery glint from his wristband.  They both disappeared.

Buy Link:

Monday, January 26, 2015

A New review of Echo of Heartbreak, A Recipe for Life

***** Echo's of This Mothers Heart. January 20, 2015
Format:Kindle Edition
This book broke my heart and healed it all in one sitting. I suggest that all mothers share this book with their daughters and visa versa. It is a story of a young mothers struggle to leave a legacy of knowledge and some tasty ideas. I truly loved this book and will share with my daughters and grandaughters. I hope that eveyone will take the advice of this loving mother. Carol Ann Kauffman truly captures the human spirit in this loving tribute to women everywhere.

Dear Gentle Readers,
I woke up to this beautiful review of Echo of Heartbreak, A Recipe for Life and I was thrilled and delighted.  Echo is available in both kindle version and paperback at at

I will be giving away a few copies of Echo of Heartbreak, A Recipe for Life, as well as Lord of Blakeley, in both kindle versions and paperbacks for our 50,000 Pageview Celebration.  More details to follow.

Have a great week. 

Friday, January 23, 2015

NO WORDS REQUIRED by Heather Sheldon

No Words Required 

Bethany Miller needs to overcome her low self-esteem and mute the looped recording of her mother’s insults playing in the background of her soul.  When out dancing with her best friend, she meets a handsome new man.  But he has a secret.
Dylan Jamison, born deaf, is an avid lip reader.  After Bethany receives a phone call delivering the news of her mother’s near fatal accident, Dylan stays by her side.  Against his protests, Bethany pulls the plug to end her mother’s life and their relationship seems destined to be over before it started.
Will the universal language of love prevail?

Excerpt one:
Beth glanced at her newly named Mystery Man. Dylan. She liked the name. It suited his
strong lean form, and dark steamy gaze. Heat rose in her cheeks. He shrugged palms up
questioning if she wanted to head back out to dance or stay put. A glimpse of the kissing couple
beside her set her feet in motion to the dance floor.
The music slowed and the space emptied for the first time all night. Only a dozen couples
remained. Dylan looked at her and raised his expressive eyebrows.
She grinned and placed a hand on his shoulder. He clasped her other hand, bringing it to his
chest. Air could still circulate between them, but when his other hand settled on her lower back,
sparks of sexual energy raced through her body like sprinters at the Olympics.
She didn’t dare look at his face. If he tried to kiss her, she would dissolve into a puddle, or
pass out, or drop dead from desire.
Slowly grooving to the music, she leaned in to smell him. The scents of sexy cologne, clean
laundry, a man and love filled her sinuses. She wished she could bottle it and take a whiff
whenever she felt un-pretty.
By the second chorus, she relaxed and placed her cheek against his chest. He dropped her
hand and wrapped his arms around her waist. His movements were slow and easy to follow. His
arms were muscular and made her feel protected. She wanted to stay the way they were all night
and sway. But the song ended and the DJ announced last call.
They walked hand-in-hand off the dance floor. At the bar, Cody passed around glasses too
large for shots. They toasted a silent cheer while Blurred Lines played and the dance floor
Ashley choked on the sparkling water they each gulped.
Cody laughed and made the motion of holding a steering wheel to drive. Ashley leaned into
her ear and yelled something she totally couldn’t understand.
She nodded, anyway and watched Cody. He didn’t seem drunk and it was nice to know his
sobriety extended to looking out for Ashley. Usually that job fell to Beth.
Tonight had been the best Friday night ever.
They had fun.
They danced.
They met handsome men with potential.
She couldn’t ask for anything more. Except maybe Dylan’s phone number.

Excerpt two:
The handsome pair stood ten feet away and third deep in a drink line. The blond looked
Bethany’s way and gave her a sexy, bad-boy smile. Butterflies stretched their wings in her
Ashley slid off the seat and waved at the two hotties. The men exchanged glances. After a
mutual head nod passed between them, they walked over.
The dark haired man’s intense gaze moved over Beth. She froze under the caress of his
stare. A sensuality she’d never encountered swirled through the air around him. Her heart raced
faster than when she’d been in full-on cardio-dance mode.
From the makeshift megaphone of Ashley’s cupped hands, “I get the blond,” cut through the
The chiseled features of Mr. Blond model dipped to block Bethany’s view of the tall, dark
mystery man. More muscular than his slimmer and taller brunette friend, Mr. B’s handsome face
came straight off an Abercrombie bag. He flashed a white-toothed provocative grin and one of
his killer bright blue eyes winked. What was it with blonds? She was not about to hope for
potential from another player.
She glanced at his dark-haired friend. The taller man with smoldering brown eyes stared
back. His lips rolled in to moisten. She could not keep her eyes off his mouth. Her mind leapt
into unexpected, naughty scenarios involving his lips. Things she never considered until the third
Her cheeks heated and she inhaled, forcing her gaze on the floor. Wow. This guy’s face
appealed to her on so many levels. His features weren’t as perfect as the blond’s, but he intrigued
her past rational thought.
She sipped her drink and peeked at him over the glass’s rim. His intense gaze met hers and
seemed to offer a silent promise of interesting things to come. He tilted his head, ever so slightly
to his right and studied her, looking past her limp unimpressive hair and borrowed outfit. His
wide pupils penetrated into her very essence.
“You are a fool,” her mother’s voice spat. She pushed aside her doubt, lowered her drink
and raised her head to stare into the dark eyes of her next dance partner. She was here for fun and
nasty memories of her mother’s ridicule would not be allowed to ruin things.
The handsome stranger raised one eyebrow in question. His kissable mouth tweaked up in
one corner. Those warm and spicy brown eyes peered into her soul. Did he have Superman’s x-ray
vision? Was he studying her lace bra and panties? Darn, why hadn’t she taken the time to
find a matched set?
A giggle caught in her chest.
Her hot mystery man’s mouth pulled wider.
Had he sensed her nervous reaction? The bar’s noise level wouldn’t let a jet engine cut
through it. She hadn’t opened her mouth or bent over with mirth. Yet she could tell he
understood her anxiety.
His wide-mouthed, one-sided grin opened to reveal straight white teeth. What would
exploring that mouth feel like?
His smile broadened.
Dear God, he was hearing her thoughts.

Buy Links

Heather Sheldon has loved books from as far back as she remembers.  An avid diary keeper and letter writer, her desire to pursue story telling on a broader scale didn’t emerge until forty.  Now she writes and edits most every day while enjoying the expansive blue skies of California.  Recently relocated from the Midwest, she does miss the change of seasons, but not the snow.  Her three daughters, husband and a handful of pets keep her busy when not at the keyboard or out to a movie.

Please connect with me:

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Crumpets and Cowpies by Shanna Hatfield

Detestable! Arrogant! Insufferable!

He'd been called worse...

Rancher Thane Jordan reluctantly travels to England to settle his brother’s estate only to find he’s inherited much more than he could possibly have imagined.
Lady Jemma Bryan has no desire to spend a single minute in Thane Jordan’s insufferable presence much less live under the same roof with the handsome, arrogant American. Forced to choose between poverty or marriage to the man, she finds herself traveling across an ocean and America to reach his ranch in Oregon.

When Thane paused, Jemma leaned forward, waiting. “And…?”
“I think Weston’s idea holds merit. In the vein of doing what is best for the children, I’m requesting the honor of your hand in marriage, Miss Bryan.”
“You are what?” Jemma rocked back so hard in her chair, it nearly tipped over. A most unladylike grab for the edge of the table is all that kept her upright. “How could I possibly marry you? I don’t love you. I can’t even claim to like you, Mr. Jordan. You are quite possibly the most maddening man I’ve ever met.”
“Don’t flatter yourself, honey. I sure didn’t take one gander at you and fall madly in love. You’re the most opinionated, obstinate, razor-tongued woman I’ve had the misfortune of encountering.”

Link to Amazon:


Shanna Hatfield
Blogger | Writer | Dreamer
Author of the Bestselling Pendleton Petticoats series
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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The Artist Natalie Shau

Natalie Shau is a photographer and a mixed media artist in Vilnius, Lithuania.  Her main interests are portrait photography, digital illustrations, and of course, fashion photography.  

 She gets her inspiration from gothic horror, fairy tales, and the Russian classics, like Gogol and Dostoevsky.  Her creations are more beautiful and strangely surreal.

 Natalie describes her work as             
"at once fragile and powerful."
She has a list of music label clients 
including Island Def Jam, Sony
Music Entertainment, and 
Nuclear Blast.

None of this is mine.  I claim
nothing here.  I saw some of her 
work and thought you'd like it.

Twitter  @NatalieShau
Pinterest - Art of National Shau

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Interview with Poet Shawn Whittington

 Shawn Whittington
 Georgetown, Ohio

Good morning, Shawn, and welcome to Vision and Verse, the Place for Art and Authors, and that includes Poets!  We are happy to have you with us this morning.  What have you written?
 Broken Dreams and Empty Screams: a poetry collection, & Through the Storm: a poetry collection.

What is your favorite genre to write?
Poetry and action/adventure.

What is Shawn Whittington's favorite food?

Tea or coffee?

Pizza or ice cream?
Both, Hawaiian pizza, with chocolate ice cream for dessert. 

Where would you like to visit?
Someday, I’d like to visit England, Italy, and Japan.

Oh, Shawn, Italy is fabulous.  I loved every part of the country.  Go there first.  Favorite music artist?  And do you listen to music when you write?
Marilyn Manson, Saliva, Cypress Hill to name a few. I listen to music when I write, I put my MP3 player on shuffle/repeat, and let it play.

What makes you laugh?
My friends and family.

Favorite work of art.
The Persistence of Memory – Salvador Dali

Ah, yes, that's the limp clocks one, love that one, too.  How long have you been writing?
I have been writing since I learned how, wasn’t very serious about it until I was 14 years old.

Describe your perfect evening.
Hanging out with my family or a few close friends.

Where do you get your inspiration?
My inspiration comes from everywhere, movies, books, songs, conversations, nature, my emotions.

What do you do when you get writer's block?
I work on another project.

Favorite author?
I have many favorite authors, Stephan King, Clive Barker, R.L. Stine.

Favorite book?
I’ve read too many books to choose one as the best, but I liked
Mister B. Gone.

Oh, yes, that's Clive Barker's new one.  I haven't read it, but I've heard  about it.  What would be doing if you were not a poet and a writer?
I’d love to be a pilot.

Who is the one person who has influenced your personal life the most and why?
My mom because she always pushing me to do my best.

Who is the one person, living or dead, real or fictional, that you would like to sit down and have a conversation with and why?
So many people I’d love to have a conversation with, but I think H.P. Lovecraft would be a great choice, because he seems intriguing.

What advice do you have for a young person who wants to make a career of writing?
Always strive to improve your craft.  This advice was given to me and I agree with it: “Not everyone will like what you write, but as long as you can touch one person with what you write, then it was worth writing.”

Do you have some links for us to follow you?