HOW DO YOU STOP CABIN FEVER? (AND A GIVEAWAY!) by Cheryl Pierson

When the cold weather starts up, I’m all too ready to just hunker down and get out of the Oklahoma wind—the older I get, the more I feel that way. But one thing I’ve discovered: If you have plenty of food (for both humans and the big dog), running water, and firewood, it’s not terrible. Well, until you have to go out for MORE food!

In Oklahoma, we don’t normally get a lot of snow, but we do get some. The worst problem is the ice. It seems, here in Oklahoma City, we sit on the very cusp of the jet stream—and I can’t say how many times we’re told, “It COULD be just rain, but if the temps drop even one degree, it’ll be FREEZING rain and ice.”

I can’t even imagine how the men and women we write about in our novels survived those long, cold winters. They must have been chopping firewood every day, year-round, except when the freezing rains hit in the winter. With books so scarce, I’m sure the ones that were available must have been memorized by those who read.

Thank goodness we live in a day and age when we are able to read as much as we want—online (if the electricity stays on!) or the old-fashioned way—a paperback book in hand. I do a lot of reading for my work at Prairie Rose Publications, but I have books I read “for pleasure” when I get a chance—and in the winter months it seems I get a lot more time for that than in the summer. This is how I keep cabin fever at bay when the weather is too awful to venture out.

One of the few stories I’ve written that takes place in winter!

Here are some of my picks I read while I was waiting for spring to roll around. How about you? What do you do to stave off cabin fever in those winter months? Read any wonderful books lately? Please share! I’m always looking for more reading material!

I just recently started reading the COLLECTED COMPLETE WORKS OF CHARLES ALEXANDER EASTMAN and THE ESSENTIAL CHARLES EASTMAN (OHIYESA): LIGHT ON THE INDIAN WORLD (SACRED WORLDS). Here’s the blurb from Amazon about the latter:

This revised and updated edition contains the most important writings of Charles Eastman (Ohiyesa), the first Native American author to live simultaneously in both the traditional world of the Santee Sioux and the modern civilization of the white man. Dr. Eastman also attended the injured at the Battle of Wounded Knee. Ohiyesa’s works represent a complete explanation of the philosophy and moral code of the Plains Indian. Ohiyesa’s message speaks to every person who seeks a spiritual way in the midst of a society increasingly dominated by materialism and industrial technology. Sun Dance chief, James Trosper writes, It is a small miracle that these important spiritual teachings have been preserved for us. This new edition contains 10 sepia photographs from Eastman’s life and a thought-provoking foreword by Raymond Wilson.

There are a LOT of books of writings by Charles Eastman—very interesting, poignant, and just downright wonderful, in my opinion.

Another excellent book—not really a romance, but a true western, is by my friend Robert Randisi—THE GHOST WITH BLUE EYES. It’s a story of how one mistake can make a person sink to the depths of a whiskey bottle, and what it takes to make him climb back out of it.

HERE’S THE AMAZON BLURB: Lancaster hangs up his six-shooter and grabs a bottle after accidentally killing a young girl in a gunfight, but when another girl needs his help, he will fight to regain his soul and his honor in order to save her.

 

 

 

 

Okay, not a western, but a ROMANCE– THE MADNESS OF LORD IAN MACKENZIE is book 1 in the “Highland Pleasures” series, or what is known as The Mackenzies. This is an excellent tale by Jennifer Ashley, a shorter piece, and it has a hero you will not likely forget. Ian Mackenzie is afflicted by something—because of the time period this story takes place in, we don’t really know what it is, but it could be autism, could Asperger’s Syndrome—and he is very different. This is the first in a series and I would like to read the others!

 

 

 

I must confess, I did some re-reading of some old favorites, as well. GOLDEN NIGHTS by Christine Monson…speaking of “different” heroes—and heroines—Christine Monson’s characters are always intriguing and no matter how many times you read her stories, the next time you read it again you will find something you didn’t see before.

Here’s the Amazon blurb: Abandoned by her weakling husband on their wedding night, beautiful socialite Suzanne Maintree sets out to track him down in the wilds of Colorado, but is quite distracted by her guide, a handsome English adventurer.

By the way, this blurb doesn’t do this book justice at all. It’s like saying your grandma’s homemade chicken and dumplin’s and cornbread was “good”—there’s so much more to this story!

 

 

I could go on and on, but how about a MOVIE to break the cabin fever monotony? Have you ever seen this one? PURGATORY is one you will want to watch. Refuge is a small town in the west where no one carries weapons. There’s no jail, and neither the sheriff nor his deputy even carry a gun. It’s an odd assortment of citizens, who know the rules, and to kill someone else for whatever reason means their mortal soul. It’s not gory, but does have some supernatural elements that are very well done. Stars Sam Shepard, Eric Roberts, Donnie Wahlberg, Randy Quaid, and JD Souther, among others.

I will leave you with an excerpt from FIRE EYES that takes place in my heroine’s cabin. FIRE EYES is part of a 6-book boxed set, UNDER A WESTERN SKY! I’m so proud to have my story in this set with 6 different authors (Agnes Alexander, Celia Yeary, Kaye Spencer, Patti Sherry-Crews, Tracy Garrett and Cheryl Pierson). The best part is, it’s only .99 right now!

EXCERPT FROM FIRE EYES:

THE SET UP: Jessica Monroe is living alone with her adopted daughter in the eastern part of Indian Territory. Her husband has been murdered by Andrew Fallon’s border raiders. Now, the Choctaws have brought her a U.S. Deputy Marshal who has been badly wounded by the same band of outlaws, in the hope that she will be able to save his life. Here’s what happens:

“You waitin’ on a…invitation?” A faint smile touched his battered mouth. “I’m fresh out.”

Jessica reached for the tin star. Her fingers closed around the uneven edges of it. No. She couldn’t wait any longer. “What’s your name?” Her voice came out jagged, like the metal she touched.

His bruised eyes slitted as he studied her a moment. “Turner. Kaedon Turner.”

Jessica sighed. “Well, Kaedon Turner, you’ve probably been a lot better places in your life than this. Take a deep breath, and try not to move.”

He gave a wry chuckle, letting his eyes drift completely closed. “Do it fast. I’ll be okay.”

She nodded, even though she knew he couldn’t see her. “Ready?”

“Go ahead.”

Even knowing what was coming, his voice sounded smoother than hers, she thought. She wrapped her hand tightly around the metal and pulled up fast, as he’d asked.

As the metal slid through his flesh, Kaed’s left hand moved convulsively, his fingers gripping the quilt. He was unable to hold back the soft hint of an agonized groan as he turned away from her. He swore as the thick steel pin cleared his skin, freeing the chambray shirt and cotton undershirt beneath it, blood spraying as his teeth closed solidly over his bottom lip.

Jessica lifted the material away, biting back her own curse as she surveyed the damage they’d done to him. His chest was a mass of purple bruises, uneven gashes, and burns. Her stomach turned over. She was not squeamish. But this—

It was just like what they’d done to Billy, before they’d killed him. Billy, the last man the Choctaws had dumped on her porch. Billy Monroe, the man she’d come to loathe during their one brief year of marriage.

She took a washrag from the nightstand and wet it in the nearby basin. Wordlessly, she placed her cool palm against Kaedon Turner’s stubbled, bruised cheek, turning his head toward her so she could clean his face and neck.

She knew instinctively he was the kind of man who would never stand for this if it wasn’t necessary. The kind of man who was unaccustomed to a woman’s comforting caress. The kind of man who would never complain, no matter how badly wounded he was.

“Fallon.” His voice was rough.

Jessica stopped her movements and watched him. “What about him?”

His brows drew together, as if he were trying to formulate what he wanted to say. “Is he…dead?”

What should she tell him?

The truth.

“I—don’t know.”

“Damn it.”

“You were losing a lot of blood out there,” Jessica said, determined to turn his thoughts from Fallon to the present. She ran the wet cloth lightly across the long split in his right cheek.

His breathing was controlled, even. “I took a bullet.” He said it quietly, almost conversationally.

Jessica stopped moving. “Where?”

*****************************************************************************************************************

I’M GIVING AWAY ONE FREE DIGITAL COPY OF UNDER A WESTERN SKY TO A LUCKY COMMENTER TODAY! Just answer the question below in the comments section to be entered for a chance to win!

Spring is on the way and winter is on the run! What did you do this winter to keep sane and keep cabin fever at bay?

Can’t wait to see if you won? Here’s the BUY LINK for AMAZON: http://tinyurl.com/y7nz3whj

 

Cheryl Pierson
A native Oklahoman, I've been influenced by the west all my life. I love to write short stories and novels in the historical western and western romance genres, as well as contemporary romantic suspense! Check my Amazon author page to see my work: https://www.amazon.com/author/cherylpierson
I live in Oklahoma City with my husband of 37 years. I love to hear from readers and other authors--you can contact me here: fabkat_edit@yahoo.com
Follow me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/cheryl.pierson.92
http://petticoatsandpistols.com/sweepstakesrules

38 Comments

  1. Iread andI also crochet. I exchange granny squares with a few people each month.

    1. Debra, I love to crochet, but I confess I’m not a “pro” or anything like that. A co-worker taught me very basic stitches MANY years ago, and I made afghans for everyone one year at Christmas–but I’m not good enough to follow patterns to make clothing or anything.

  2. Hi Cheryl. I don’t usually have a problem with cabin fever because I like to read, write, do crafts and watch movies and British TV. But this winter almost did me in. It was a rough one in the Northeast. Can’t wait to get out in my yard, which really took a beating this year.
    Speaking of how our forefathers and foremothers survived winter, the worst account I remember is Laura Ingalls Wilder’s “The Long Winter.” Don’t know how they did it.
    Have a nice Easter,
    Kathy Bailey

    1. Hi Kathy! Like you, I find things to occupy myself pretty well and the only thing that worries me is if my kids have to get out and try to drive to work when the roads are bad. Here in OK, we get more ice, sleet, freezing rain, etc. than we do actual snow. I’m a native Okie, but lived in West Virginia for about 10 years, and the weather was one major factor that my husband and I wanted to move back to Oklahoma.

      I don’t know how our ancestors survived, either. I’m sure there were so many frightening times when they weren’t sure they were going to! I remember that story, The Long Winter. So much hardship that we have no inkling of in today’s world.

      Hope you have a wonderful Easter!

  3. Cabin fever, I didn’t have to worry too much about it until about 2 weeks ago lol. We’ve had two snowstorms since then, each one over 10 inches. But they were gone in a day. The fun of Southwest Virginia and it being March. But since now should be spring, it was colder than it should have been. To ward off cabin fever, I write, edit, and crochet. It’s been a great winter since I got to make a snowman, but it’s time for spring.

    1. Hi Sally, my husband is from West Virginia, and we lived there for about 10 years, so not too very far from your state and neck of the woods. We’ve been having some strange weather in OK, too–warm one day, freezing the next, etc. I’m hoping by week after next it will level out better and stay warm longer! I’m sooo ready for spring to be here!

  4. I moved around Christmas time so was busy all winter getting apartment set up the way I wanted.

    1. Oh, Kim I remember you mentioning that you were going to be moving. So glad you got that behind you and are settled in! Christmas is a hard time to do something like that.

  5. I done some reading, washed down a few walls in the house and some inside cleaning. I tried to stay busy.

    1. Reading and writing are usually what I do to stay busy, Quilt Lady. I sometimes cook stuff so we’ll have it to eat on, but I’ve never really enjoyed cooking like my 2 sisters always did–so it’s not really something I do as a hobby. Still it’s comforting to have food ready to eat and also not worry too much about if the power goes off–which thankfully has not happened here for a while!

  6. Reading always keeps me sane and I did a lot of it this past winter. And thank goodness that we very rarely loose power during winter storms. I keep in touch with family and friends a lot on social media and by my landline. Of course watching TV keeps me sane and listening to music.

    1. Yes, Kathleen, I hear you! Reading is such a lifesaver, isn’t it? Don’t know what we’d do without that ability. I love to watch movies, but hubby is not one for that too much. He’ll usually go off and watch sports and I like to watch movies and shows like The Voice, etc. And thank goodness for social media and the internet!

  7. I confess I hibernated a goodly part of the winter since it was so bitterly cold here–unusually so. I just couldn’t seem to get and stay warm. I read more non-fiction this winter than fiction–mostly a favorite author who is New Testament scholar and historian of early Christianity.

    1. Hi Eliza, I’ve found as I’ve gotten older it IS harder and harder to stay warm! I would have a fire going all the time if it were up to me. But we have a dog that’s half Great Pyrenees and half Anatolian Shepherd, and he gets hot easily. I don’t like to put him out for long when it’s cold because his joints and muscles get sore and stiff, so the only solution is to just keep the house a little cooler than I would like.

  8. I read, read, & then read some more. Should if soring ckraned, but what’s the fun in that!! Lol
    ???
    Happy Easter Cheryl!!!

    1. Hi Tonya! Yes, reading is the answer, isn’t it? And it’s no wonder that “back in the day” with so few books available, many people memorized passages from those that they had.

      Happy Easter, my friend!

  9. Reading is what keeps me sane no matter what the weather is. I’m on the look out for new authors to add to my go to authors list and a giveaway is an awesome way to find new authors to add to my favorite authors list. Reading is my adventures, I’m living on disabilty income so I do not get to go on many real adventures. Another way to pass the bad weather is to be an ID addict or to find a good benge on Netflix. My newest authors on my go to list are Kari Lynn Dell, Shanna Hatfield and Hebby Roman.

    1. Stephanie, I’m like you–reading is what keeps me sane–and I do a TON of it because I am the editor for Prairie Rose Publications, but also have things I want/need to read outside of the workload. Reading can take us on so many vicarious adventures and open up worlds we never dreamed of. You’ve got some excellent stories to look forward to with the authors you mentioned!

    2. Stephanie, thank you so much for mentioning me! I’m so happy you’ve read and enjoyed my books, and I love your reviews, too.

      Oh, and let me mention, how do I deal with cabin fever if I can’t get out: I write, I read, and I try new recipes. I love to garden, too, but when it’s cold out, not much of an option. I also love online bridge! I’ve played bridge since I was a teenager, and for me, it never gets old.

      Great post, Cheryl, here at the dead end of winter and the “official” start of spring, as everyone has been cooped up!

      1. Hebby, my aunt was a lifelong bridge player. I always wanted to learn–I used to love card games when I was younger. I wish I had a green thumb but everyone else in my family got it but me! LOL My dad was a wonderful gardener, but I didn’t get that gene from him. Thanks so much for stopping by today and commenting. I’m soooo ready for spring, and I bet everyone else is, too!

  10. reading is my best way. I also keep busy with my youngest and his sports–the older two are in college.

    1. Denise, I remember those days so well–sports can sure take up a lot of time and keep the kids (and parents!) busy. Sounds like your family was like mine, growing up. My sisters were 10 and 12 when I was born and had both gone away to college by the time I was 8.

  11. Winters are very mild near me… so no cabin fever… enjoying putting my garden together and adding some new trees to the yard.

    1. That is wonderful, Colleen! You must really be thankful for that–I know here in OK when we have a winter with very little ice or freezing rain, we are just so thankful–it’s actually sometimes more destructive than snow because it weighs the tree branches and wires down and causes power outages and some really dangerous situations. I wish I had a green thumb!

  12. Read, of course. We had some unusually cold times this winter for our area, so wrapping up and trying to stay warm.

    1. Linda, I think I could be happy with a fire blazing day and night in my house in the winter and it’s not always just because I get cold easier than I used to–I get the winter blues, and a fire just helps me feel better emotionally! LOL Especially with a good book to curl up with in my favorite recliner.

  13. Hi Cheryl, what a great blog. We kinda have the same weather, so I sure understand. It’s brave of you to pick out some of your favorite books; I’m adding a few on my “to buy” list. And, thanks for letting us know about the boxed set. I’m on my way to Amazon right now. Thanks so much, my friend, for a great blog that made me smile. Big Texas hugs, Phyliss

    1. Hi Phyliss! OMG, I could have written soooo much more on this subject. I have a LOT of fave books as do we all, I’m sure–and I’ve indulged and broken out some of the ones I’ve read and loved before and re-read them again during this winter season. Cabin fever “ain’t” gonna get me down! LOL Glad you enjoyed the blog post and hope you love UNDER A WESTERN SKY! Hugs back atcha!

  14. Hi Cheryl, I enjoyed your post. My four year old granddaughter was with me most of the time so there’s not much chance to get too bored. I read several books and participated in several book launches so that helped pass the time also. I am, however, looking forward to warmer weather and being outside!
    Happy Easter!
    Connie
    cps1950(at)gmail(dot)com

    1. Right, Connie! If it weren’t for our books and book-related activities we would be lost, wouldn’t we? LOL That is a big factor in keeping our sanity! And how neat that you got to spend so much time with your granddaughter! I know that has to be such a great gift–one she will always remember, too!

      Like you, I’m looking forward to warmer weather (I would be glad to bypass spring and go straight to summer!)Hope you have a wonderful Easter!

  15. I read. Alot. haha! That and walking the dogs on any day where it’s sunny and decently warm.

    And goodness lady — how on EARTH am I to get through my tbr pile and tbrr pile when you talk good books?! lol

    1. LOL Hi Michelle! There’s always room for ONE MORE BOOK…RIGHT? LOL You should get that movie and watch it for a break in your reading time. It is sooo good. Thanks for stopping by, and hope you have a very happy EASTER!

  16. I never minded winter when I was a child, but now I’m beginning to hate winter because of the cold and fear of falling on ice, which I did on Valentine’s Day, 2001. So much for dining out. Spent the next week in the hospital with a broken leg and ankle. So I hate being stuck inside and suffer badly from cabin fever. Chatting on-line with FB friends and exploring all the wonderful articles on the Internet passes the time. Getting back to my writing has been a life saver and makes me forget about missing the outdoors, sunshine on my face, because reading and writing transports me into another world. I’m enjoying Fire Eyes very much, Cheryl, and plan to finish it over the weekend. This was a great article and books to check out.

    1. Oh, Elizabeth, that just makes me cringe. I have a huge fear of falling–especially now that I’ve gotten older. As a kid you don’t think much of it but lordy, getting older you really have to keep it in mind all the time. Our weather wasn’t as bad as it can be, so that was a blessing for sure–and it’s almost over–we still have a few cold days ahead–tomorrow being one of them. But today it’s supposed to be in the mid 70’s and I’m really thankful for that! Glad you enjoyed the post, and if you’ve never watched Purgatory, that is a movie you will long remember.

      1. I’m pretty sure I watched Purgatory on Netflix last year….Wasn’t the town named Purgatory? And was it a town that only had women or am I confusing that with a different movie? Now I’ll have to ask Doug or look for a trailer on Google. Things bug me when I can’t remember something.

        1. No, you’re confusing it, Elizabeth. The town’s inhabitants are unique but there are both men and women. It’s really different and very good!

  17. I looked at the trailer and it didn’t ring a memory, so perhaps I just WANTED to watch it. I love watching westerns for research of clothing, interiors, grammar, but also realize one still has to do other research because Hollywood likes to take license with historical facts. But I did watch a movie where the town only had women, and how they rallied together to shoot the gang that rode in and wanted to take over. This will bug me until I solve it. My son teases me and asks, Why do you do this to yourself, Mother? He has a terrific memory…now, but I tease him, just wait until you’re my age and you’ll understand we’re trying to hang onto our sanity, lol. These young people lol. Maybe I’ll have to ask Suri 🙂

    1. I bought it so I’d have it whenever I wanted to watch. It has a young Donnie Wahlberg (Bluebloods) and J.D. Souther in it, as well as others you’ll recognize.

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