Madeleine’s Stone

An excerpt from my kindle short ‘A Day In October’.  Follow the link below to purchase!  Thank you!

A shot of the very spot in this excerpt taken in October 2010

There, we stopped and talked with each other like children curious about each other. Those elementary school infatuations. Madeleine would step up onto the rocks and look down at me with those eyes and that sparkle in them when she’d smile and giggle. Telling me she was now taller than I while pulling her hair back from her eyes, then wrap herself tight in the light blue coat she was wearing that day.
It would only ever take a moment and a look with Madeleine. That captivating way she’d engross herself in me as we talked about nothing at all under the branches of that pine tree from her perch atop one of the stones.
After a bit and a cigarette, I suggested we start to head back.
Madeleine insisted on one more moment. To just…wait…a moment.
She’d been fidgety like a fourth grader hanging out with her crush and just stood there looking at me. This mesmerizing gaze that held that feeling and that moment and hinted there was so much more to be told of this beautiful young lady and that boy nervously staring back at her.
I took her hand to lead her off the stone. Madeleine sliding down into my chest as we embraced there for a time. That burial in each other’s eyes, arms and lips.
Just us. Out there seeing what was.

Purchase ‘A Day In October’ by Joel Buhs here!

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Much love,



Jacob Took A Picture

Little over a week ago, I was standing in the living room, staring at the floor.  There, spread out on index cards was a complete story.  By complete, I mean that there were three acts with plot points, twists, and a resolution that left me satisfied that it was now time to start writing the manuscript in earnest.

I posted a picture of myself with my babies to Instagram, Twitter and Facebook then kicked the Keurig into second gear.

It was time to write.

That first sentence can be a real bitch.  It’s the one that gets readers to move onto the next sentence, and it can be absolutely intimidating to write it.  I spent several hours going over ramblings and scribbles from the past five years that I’d been incubating ‘The Pepper House’, and still don’t have a first sentence.


Because I need to write an entire book, and I can come back to it when the time comes.  This has been a huge obstacle for me throughout my years and attempts to write.  It’s getting off the blocks once the gun has fired.  I have this unreasonable need to obsess on perfection when it comes to telling a story, and knowing the importance of those first few words can be paralyzing.

I did the opposite.  I wrote the worst sentence I could think of that conveyed what I was wanting it to say.  “Jacob took a picture of the Pepper House.”

Looking at it for a time, I was at the point of picking my laptop up and flinging it across the room.  Who reads the next sentence?  No one.  Who buys that book?  No one.

And I couldn’t help but laugh out loud.  It was so absurd to me that it was nothing to write the second sentence and within an hour, I had chapter one.  A really rough chapter in need of a lot of red ink, but that’s a different issue for me than that first sentence.

Editing is a completely different demon that I’ll conquer later.  For now…just keep writing.

A handful of chapters and act one is done.

It’s Sunday morning, ten days in…

I got this…