Friday, December 12, 2014

Old Father Time Lives On

Winter Solstice is only 9 days away. I realized I'd better wish you all "Io Saturnalia!" That's Latin for Merry Christmas, except that it was pre-Christ's birth, so Christmas didn't really exist yet.

 Saturn was the "grandfather" of the Gods, having been the father of Jupiter (Zeus in Greek) who was, in turn, father of most of the rest of the gods in mythology. I find it interesting that old Saturn still shows up this time of year, as Father Time, portraying the Old Year who is going out when we welcome in the Baby New Year. So perhaps I'd better amend my post to say Io Saturnalia and Happy New Year! The count off to that is 16 days!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Looking Forward

Only 12 more days until the days start getting longer again! Right now we're losing about a minute of daylight each day. 

On the even better side, I have been having fewer migraines since mid-November. Come to think of it, that's about when I started this countdown to the Solstice. Must be some kind of benefit in having something to look forward to.

I find it strange that some of the benefits of the holiday season and also the detriments.  We enjoy the hustle and bustle and the idea of getting ready for something special.  But at the same time, those things can get us stressed out, too.  I don't have any sage answers about this, though.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Winter's Clouds and Chill

The following verse from one of the many hymns written my John Newton, seems to strike a 'chord' (sorry for the music joke) in me.  Newton is best known for his hymn 'Amazing Grace', and for the story of his conversion from slave-trader ship captain to preacher of the Word.

There are times when the winter of our souls is a reflection of the cold weather we see in northern climes this time of year.  Well, to be more truthful, the chill in our soul can be much worse that any blizzard that is howling  outside our windows.  But Newton has an answer for that, too. As St. Paul put it, It's between staying and keeping our friends happy, or going to be with the Lord, which is far better.  Yet, Paul did stay, until the Lord called him home--in his good time.  And I know the same was true for Newton.

Dear Lord, if indeed I am thine, if thou art my sun and my song,
          Say, why do I languish and pine, and why are my winters so long?
          Oh, drive these dark clouds from my sky,
          Thy soul-cheering presence restore:
          Or take me unto thee on high,
          Where winters and clouds are no more.

                                      John Newton, 1725-1807

Monday, November 24, 2014

Giving Thanks

Ebooks are the best bargain, especially for independent authors like me. But if you don't have an e-reader, don't despair. My books are also available in paperback, either from or directly from me. By the way, sorry I haven't been on the blog much. Have been having trouble with an inflamed eye.
With Thanksgiving coming up on me really soon, I want to say I'm most thankful for family and friends who have been especially precious to me in the past year.  Sometimes, though, I get so caught up in the food preparation, and (I'll admit it) the Black Friday shopping, that I forget to truly give thanks to the Lord for all his many blessings.  Hope that each of you finds time to truly give thanks this season. 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Summer Flies

So here we are in the deep freeze and according to the calendar there's still a month of autumn left.  But we all know (or should remind ourselves) that in these northern climes four four seasons are June, July, August and Winter!  So I have decided to post a poem I wrote about summer about 40 + years ago.

          It only happened once –
                             In a warm summer,
                   A new place where I’d always dreamed of being:
                             With sky and stars
                             Mountains and trees
                   And that glowing person
-      the embodiment of all my dreams.

                   And so, with wings of clouds
                             And sparkling sun on water,
                   I took flight toward heaven -
                             And the embodiment of all my dreams.

                   But all this faded and disappeared –
                                      As grey clouds of flatland closed in.
                             Never has it come again.

                   Perhaps that childish, dream-colored,
                                      dancing part of me
                             just continued its flight on
                                      above the mornings and the mountains—
                             For the rest of me wonders where it went.

                                                                             MFE, 1971


Friday, November 14, 2014

Countdown continues...

Only Zero this morning. That's moving the right direction...Like what my neurologist said when I went from 10 migraines a month down to "only" 8. Unfortunately the total has gone back up to 10, and he didn't seem to have much to say...
Okay on to the Countdown: 38 Days until the Winter Solstice. And here's a good quote from St. Augustine that I came across this morning:
"Beware of despairing about yourself. You are commanded to put your trust in God, and not in yourself."
I can't add anything more profound to that at this point in time.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

The Unofficial Countdown to the Winter Solstice

 I guess I need to start the countdown to the Winter Solstice...40 days today!--Nov.11 - 7 degrees this morning.
Nov. 12:
Temperature this morning was one Below! Yes 39 days...
In case you're wondering, it was just by chance that I started the countdown at 40 -- or was it? A Biblical number is 40-- Jesus spent 40 days in the wilderness, after his baptism in the Jordan.
 ISRAEL spent 40 years in the desert. after their escape from Egypt.
Lent has 40 days. Sounds like 40 is the number for times of testing and trial. I think that really fits this time of year in northern climes!
But hope is on the horizon, even if it is distant right now.

Friday, November 7, 2014

One More Chance!

Okay, this is your chance to get my newest Book, "Beyond the World" for FREE on Kindle--Nov. 7-9 only.

 And if you don't have a Kindle, no worries, it's also available in paperback on soon will also be out for Nook, IPad, etc.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Winter is Coming...

Fall/winter has officially arrived in Northwest Montana, snow on the mountains and the foothills--almost to the valley floor. No wonder one of my books is titled "When the World Grows Cold"--I wrote it during the long winter. The snow is beautiful, tho--just look at the fantastic picture my hubby took, which he allowed me to use on the cover. This book is only $3.99 for Kindle, and $12.99 in paperback--a steal at today's prices. And coming this weekend, Nov. 7-9 the NEXT book, "Beyond the World" will be on a FREE Kindle promotion--and it's paperback is also a steal. Paul also took the amazing pictures that were used on this book's cover , too!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Check Out the Spirits for All Hallow's Eve

More FREE promotions of books in The Peaks Saga are coming! "Mountaintops and Valleys" will be free for Kindle this weekend, starting on Halloween. An unusual blend of science fiction, spirituality, and romance. Unlike any other book you've read!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Even More Deals on "The Peaks Saga"

Black Friday- type deals are coming earlier every year. As far as Peaks Saga books, that's a good deal. You can start shopping for yourself, even. Book 1 just completed a Kindle countdown, but is still available for a low price of only $3.99 

This coming week will feature a Kindle Countdown on "When the World Grows Cold" the fourth book in the Saga (and you don't have to have read the earlier ones before to read it!). The sooner you act, the lower the price on this one.

Also, this coming weekend, Oct. 24-26, Book 2, "Searching for Maia" will be availble for Kindle FREE!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Special Celebration

Perfect chance to get started on The Peaks Saga - Book 1 will be offered on Kindle at 74% off, beginning on Oct. 14--but the price will rise by $1 every two days, so act fast!

Watch for other special offers to celebrate the publication of Book 5.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The Sequels Can Stand Alone

If you are wondering if you have to read Books 1,2,& 3 before you read book 4 or Book 5. The answer is NO! Book Four can stand on its own because it's the story of the next generation, and any "backstory" is reviewed. Same for Book 5! That's why I call it "The Peaks Saga", instead of a 'series.' There are links, but they aren't totally dependent. Yes, Books 1, 2,& 3 are definitely linked, but the ones that follow have a specific tale of their own.
Watch for FREE offers in the next week on Books 4 and 5 on Amazon. And coming next month, the first four books will be available on Nook, IPAD, and all other ebook platforms.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Giving Birth to the Next Book.

I know... I've been neglecting this blog.  Sorry!  I have been busy all summer with editing and doing final proof to Book 5--and now it's here.  If you go to Amazon, Kindle, or other ebook formats, it will be there:  "The Peaks at the Edge of the World"  Book 5: Beyond the World.   Hot off the press!

It's been a lot more labor this time--I feel like I've given birth.  Well, in a way I have.  Some might think the writing/publishing thing would become easier as you go along, but I find the opposite.  With each book I publish, I learn more of the pitfalls to watch out for the next time around.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Father's Day Special

Okay, if anyone out there has been debating about getting a Kindle edition of my first three books (all in one Trilogy) here's your big chance! Starting Monday it will be only $.99 That's right ninety-nine cents! 

It's on a Kindle Countdown, which means the price goes up $1 about every other day, until it returns to the list price of $8.99 on June 23. Just go to and search "The Peaks at the Edge of the World". Kindle and paperback editions are also available of all four individual books in the Peaks Series. 

Better get going, so you'll be ready when Book Five comes out this fall!

Saturday, May 17, 2014

An Option for Everyone

Some people like short, silm books--others like thick ones.  Some like ebooks, others like the old-fashioned paper ones.  Well, I'm out to try to please them all!  Now you have lots of choices (and good prices, too) for The Peaks at the Edge of the World Series:

Get it before the price increase! There I am shamelessly promoting myself, but that's because the "Peaks Saga" books have a spiritual message, besides being an exciting read.

All four of the books in "The Peaks at the Edge of the World" series are now available as single paperbacks through
If you purchase a paperback copy, you can also buy a Kindle copy of that book for only $.99! (Thru the Matchbook program).

Books 1,2,&3 are still available under one cover--and this is the best buy--It's like getting all three for half price...

But you'd better hurry before I have to increase the price (due to printing costs). 

AND Book 5 will be coming out at the end of this summer, so it's time to get reading, so you'll be ready for the surprises it will offer! (4 photos)

Sunday, April 20, 2014

I'm Back--Can You Believe It?

Hey there!  I can't believe this is working again!  I guess I am just not techy enough.  And of course the people I know who are, are always too busy to help.  Anyway, welcome back to Mary Frances Erler's Blog.

By the way, The first three books in "The Peaks at the Edge of the World" are soon to be available as single paperbacks, in addition to as a single book, "The Peaks Trilogy"  By the Book Four is also out, and Book Five is in the works.  They are also a "steal" as e-books for Kindle.  Just check them all out on Amazon. com

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Music Is My Therapy

Music is becoming the best therapy for me--again. I am 're-reading a book titled "Amazing Grace-366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions" ©1990 by Kenneth W. Osbeck. It's been several years since I last read it, and I'm finding that the old hymns really lift my spirit. Like yesterday's, by an obscure lay preacher named George A. Young--"Some through the waters, some through the flood, some through the fire, but all through the blood. Some through great sorrow, but God gives a song, in the night seasons and all the day long."

Hymn for today, by William Cowper (1731-1800), a gifted English poet and writer, who suffered from bouts of mental illness all his life. But between his times of depression and attempted suicide, he gave the World some great hymns about God's care of us. Here's one you may recognize:
"God moves in a mysterious way his wonders to perform...
Blind unbelief is sure to err and scan his work in vain;
God is his own interpreter, and he will make it plain."
Isn't it interesting that someone who has been in the greatest depths of despair can remind us so well of how much God loves his children.

More music to come later.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Starting With a Clean Slate

I usually make some kind of New Year's resolutions, and I don't ever seem to keep them for a whole year.  One year I made almost six months, tho!

But this year is different.  I am purposefully closing the door on all the turmoil and trauma of my past year, and setting my mind to look ahead with optimism at the year ahead, as a clean slate.  The following saying has been around a long time-- (I first encountered it painted on someone's canoe paddle in the Boundary Waters of northern Minnesota in 1970.)-- but it is still true nevertheless:

"Today is the first day of the rest of your life."

More than usual, I am seeing the new year as an opportunity to confess the failures of my past and leave them behind me.  Now I'm going to take up some of the things I have read and been told in 2013 and begin to apply them to my life--looking forward, instead of back.  I've come up with a list of ten guidelines for my life (not resolutions):

1.  Always remember that despair is a lie.
The only ones allowed to despair are those who know without a doubt what the future holds.  If we don't know the future, then there is always hope.  (Gandalf, the Wizard, in "The Lord of the Rings" by J.R.R. Tolkien)
"God will make a way when there seems to be no way..."  (song by Don Moen)

2.  Look for the good, instead of dwelling on the bad:  the glass is half-full, not half-empty.

3.  Bad things in my life are only temporary, not permanent.  Things will not always stay as bad as they seem.  "Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning."  Psalm 30:5b

4.  Your feelings are real--don't deny them, or you will become emotionally numb.  Tears are good--they cleanse the soul.  I know this because I went through a time when I couldn't cry, even when I wanted to.
Let your emotions pass through you, and when they have gone by, you will remain:
"Fear is the mind-killer.  Fear is the little death that brings obliteration.  I will face my fear.  I will permit it to pass over me and through me.  And when it has gone past me, I will turn to see fear's path.  Where the fear (anger, depression, etc.) has gone there will be nothing.  Only I will remain."
Bene Gesserit Litany Against Fear, from "Dune" by Frank Herbert.  (Italics mine.)

5.  Because of Christ and his redemption, I am completely forgiven and fully pleasing to God.  I am totally accepted by God.  From "The Search for Significance" by Robert S. McGee.
Romans 5:1 - "Through the Lord Jesus Christ, by faith, we are judged righteous and at peace with God."

The next four are adapted from "The Four Agreements" by Don Miguel Ruiz:
6.  Be honest in your speech:  speak the truth in love, say only what you really mean.
7.  Don't take everything personally!  (I really need to work on this one!)
8.  Don't make assumptions:  you don't see the whole picture, only God does.  It's alright to ask questions.
9.  Always do your best:  or as I say it, 'Do the best you can, and leave the rest to God.'

The last one is definitely not the least.  I can't remember where it's from, but I think I first heard it sometime in college:

10.  If you see me in despair, remind me that I have a risen Savior.

As I said before, these are guidelines, not resolutions.  I won't always keep to them, but when I stumble I have a Savior who knows my weakness.  He laid aside his godliness and walked this earth fully human.  He not only knows my human weakness, he experienced it for himself--but he didn't fall into sin, like I do.

And so I don't have to walk this path alone--he walks with me.  My destiny is not to lose myself in the 'oneness' or nothingness of some Nirvana, but rather to find the true 'self' that God created me to be--and this is done by walking alongside him, and letting him take my hand and lead me, one day at a time.

(This walk of faith is what I'm trying to depict in my own life, and in a fictional setting in my books, The Peaks Series.  I feel it is the most important story there is to tell, for God has put it in my heart.)