Sight Unseen

Confessions of a Tea leaf Reader

Leave a comment

Some Times a Cigar…The Silly Shit Story

When I started writing these stories, I decided to add a class of story that’s part of every psychic’s experience: the silly shit story.

It’s not like they’re an invention. They really happen. Someone comes in and tells you something that really has to be silly shit. Except that sometimes it isn’t. It sounds like it couldn’t have happened but I would have to take my socks off to count to the times it really was true in that person’s viewpoint.

I’ve always taken great joy in those moments when you find out what went bump in the night was really the cat. Much simpler. You can even go back to sleep.

So I’ve put some of those moments in my book, Tea Room Tales, as well.

Cosmic Lift Off is about a boy convinced he saw a ufo. The tea room I was at actually had a reporting station for ufo siting. I’ll make no comments of belief about this. To my knowledge, we never got a report, but we did have an air force officer who stopped in monthly to see if we had gotten a report. This story is spun from there. Did it really happen? Pretty close, actually.

You’ll find Cosmic Lift Off up on the story page available for you to read for free! If you like it.

Tea Room Tales is up on Amazon, available in Kindle and paper.


Leave a comment

Ghost Stories Just for Halloween

grave mattersDo you like a great ghost story? Need to have those shivers every so often? I have three ghost stories selected from my Sight Unseen series. You can read Grave Matters, The Liberation of the Loo, and Margaret and the Priest now for free!

These stories were based on some true things that happened and then, like all good stories, were embroidered a bit. Guess which parts are true and which parts are embroidery. If you guess right, I’ll tell the truth.



tea room tales w

Tea Room Tales

Read Margaret and the Priests, The Liberation of the Loo and Grave Matters for free. And if you like those you’ll find Tea Room Tales already available at

Leave a comment

The Art Behind the Cups

READERWhen I began to write Tea Room Tales,  I realized the stories needed one thing to make them make more sense. I was proud of the stories I’d written. But I knew from my experience as a tea leaf reader that everyone wants to see inside the cup.

I’m not a fabulous draftsperson. My fiber art depends on physical movement from the shoulders. If I draw well now it’s because I drew poorly until I drew better.

But these cups were created in Photoshop.

I love Photoshop! It allows you to put layers of images together, manipulate them and mold them until you have the image you want.

It also allows you to create brushes. It sounds like that would be regular art brushes, but you can make a brush out of any image and then size and position it any way you like. It’s like a moveable sizable rubber stamp.

In the story Reader, Rita gives Marlene a reading so she can show her what her life in the tea room would be like. Here’s how the cup for Reader was made.


1Old cup picture made into a brush and filtered with the stylized

2. Add Moon brush ( All readers are governed by the moon)

3. Add Mouse brush (from Blackpaw)

4. Add mermaid brush (yes! One of the readers is a mermaid. Guess which one?)

5. Add Swirls brush as tea leaves

6. Add Egyptian images as brushes. (One character in the tea room worships Egyptian gods._

7. Add Owl brush, Marlene’s alter ego.

8.  Add R and E as text (two men interested in Marlene)

9. Add Parrot as a brush (from What the Parrot Said)

Would you like to sample Reader? It’s posted online here where you can read it for free.

Or you can read it in Tea Room Tales, available at

Like it? Please leave a comment here or a review at Amazon.


Leave a comment

Where Do the Stories Come From?

Marlene in Flight

Stories come from the oddest places. Something happens in your life, or a phrase runs around your head like a mouse in the kitchen and you have to deal with it somehow.

When I decided to write these stories, I chose to write them as fiction, not so much to spare my privacy as to spare those people who have shared these stories with me. That only works up to a point. What makes a story compelling is that it has a ring of truth somewhere. Then you can stretch as a writer, and embellish a little.

So even though everything is fiction, there’s a glimpse of someone or a circumstance you feel you heard of somewhere.

The Inverted  Cup is a story in the second volume of the Sight Unseen Series. It’s about a gay man and the way he’s perceived by others. It is close to the stories of several friends I knew who were gay and who either were priests or should have been.

The bottom line about all of these people is that they were spectacular priests, and were one by one, cast out for people’s worst and stupidest fears.  In spite of that, when push came to shove, and I was desperate and frightened, they acted as Christ to me in my need.

My friend Donna Hinman says that science fiction isn’t good at predicting the future, but it’s excellent at exposing the now.  We all have people we fear in a knee-jerk way, for things they really can’t help. Who you are is not what you do. So with love and humility for the people who have stood in my corner and helped me, who are so often feared for no reason at all, I offer this story.

The Inverted Cup is available on this site for you to preview now, for free.

Leave a comment

Wrestling with Elephants

walzing with elephantsI’ve just put up both the hard copy and Kindle copy of Tea Room Tales. You know what they say about wrestling with Elephants. Don’t. Just don’t.

This is not a fight you’re going to win. I just reread Barbara Hambly’s book The Shirt Off His Back which was about mountain men in the 1830s. They wrestled with bears, wolves, wolverines, Native Americans and each other. You’ll notice elephants aren’t in that list. You can’t wrestle with an elephant. If it doesn’t like what you’re doing it simply steps on you and that’s that. No matter how big or stubborn you are, if the elephant says no, you’re not going to win.

I love Amazon. I love Kindle. And I love the idea that anyone can put up a book. That we can share stories is an amazing thing that I take great pleasure in. Having dealt with publishers, I appreciate the freedom that comes with not having to please an editor, although we all know I can’t spell and can’t correct punctuation to save myself. Far too dyslexic.

I also may not be the most stubborn person in the world, but I have my moments. So I thought I could get my pictures into the Kindle version of my book, even if they told me they weren’t set up for that.

Now I’m professional at getting around the rules. Not illegality. Just making things the way I wish to be. And that is when I ran into the Amazon elephant.

I had originally designed a teacup for each story. When I was a reader, everyone wanted to see what you were looking at. I thought I could get them in.

gifted (1)


Paper book, no problem. The Kindle book I simply couldn’t make it work.

So if you would like to see Marlene’s  cups, please purchase the paper copy of Tea Room Tales on Amazon.  You can purchase the Kindle copy of Tea Room Tales on Amazon as well.






I’ve wrestled with the elephant, and the elephant has declared that there will be no pictures in self-published Kindle books. The elephant won.  But you can see the teacups on the front page in the side widget.

Leave a comment

Tea Room Tales is up on Amazon!

Tea Room Tales is now available as a Kindle book on Amazon!

tea room tales wAfter years of writing how-tos and art statements, I’ve written a collection of stories just for fun.

Meet Marlene, a normal college girl who’s about to land in the world of psychic readers. After finding no college job anywhere, Marlene starts reading in a psychic tea room as a tea leaf reader where she meets other psychics, voodoo practitioners, witches, and other clairvoyants. Marlene must master her own gift to help her clients and survive herself.

Read Tea Room Tales today!


Past the add, this is the work of three years. The stories are fiction, but there is some biography in there. I’ll leave you to guess where.  They’re the tales I couldn’t tell teaching quilting. I wrote them for me, but I wrote them for you, too.

Leave a comment

Psychics and Ghosts

In the Sight Unseen books, Marlene deals with a number of ghosts. They kind of become a specialty of hers. Why are psychics plagued with ghosts?

Imagine a world where no one can hear you or speak with you. Imagine how it feels to be in pain, frightened, abandoned and alone. What would you do to get anyone’s  attention? How desperate might you feel? Then imagine you can find someone finally who can hear you, see you, and speak to you.

You don’t have to be psychic to experience ghosts. But most psychics I know do. Perhaps it’s because the walls between the dead and the living are just thinner for psychics. I think it’s because they can see or hear ghosts and the ghosts need to be seen and heard.

For myself, I’ve always experienced ghosts. But that’s not a bad thing. My experience of ghosts is that they’re just people for one reason or another who haven’t been able to move on. Usually it’s because of an injustice or because they’ve felt unworthy, or because they’ve been afraid. Or because they’ve felt massively unloved. Or  because they really don’t know they’re dead. The problems of the dead look very much like the problems of the living. I think it’s very hard to walk towards the good of the next world without resolving the problems we’ve had here. Mostly someone who understands and doesn’t judge can be a huge help to someone stuck between here and there.

Marlene’s job with ghosts is to listen, to respond with kindness, and to help them move on. She does that in many ways, mostly when the ghosts have become unsettling to the people living in their space.

There are also ghosts connected with something evil and that takes a whole different approach. My response to that is through my Christian faith, but I understand there are other ways of looking at it. And since Marlene is my character, so, eventually is hers.

Marlene also deals with demons because they are part of the psychic world. In her case, she makes a bad bargain and has to find her way out of that. It’s resolved over the three Sight Unseen books, but it takes some direct choices on her part. In my experience most psychics have to choose what they believe and have to stand strong in it. If you stand for nothing, then there’s nothing you can do.

These stories are all fiction, but they reflect the ghosts I’ve dealt with over the years. If it doesn’t match your experience or theology, don’t be offended. Remember it’s just a story.