MAXINE BILLINGS, Photographer & Author

Fine Art Photography Inspired By Natural Creation & Wholesome Reading For Your Family's Entertainment


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“REGAL CAMELLIA” CELEBRATION

CAMELLIAS (WET) 14 (NF)

In celebration of my “Regal Camellia” having recently been displayed on the Web site of Healing Photo Art, I have added four new products to my VIDA collection which contain this beautiful image. Each piece is uniquely designed and custom-printed.

  1. Modal Scarf – Made with soft, luxurious fabric, this scarf will add a bold, modern statement to any wardrobe.
  2. Accent Pillow (Luster Square) – Each modern, bright accent pillow is cut with 100% cotton and makes an elegant addition to any room.
  3. Men’s Silk Pocket Square – Men can elevate their look with this standout, stylish pocket square made from pure silk.
  4.  Tote Bag – This gorgeous, all-over print, all-season bag features sturdy, weather-resistant fabric and dual 100% natural cotton bull denim shoulder straps. Make a beautiful, artful statement whether on an afternoon stroll around town or a weekend out of town.

To order these one-of-a-kind products for yourself or someone else, just click on the links above. To order from my entire collection, click here.

As always, this is from my heart ❤ to yours ❤ !

Maxine 🙂

http://www.maxinebillings.com

http://www.naturesartblog.wordpress.com

http://www.askeevie.wordpress.com

http://www.pearlspearlsofwisdom.wordpress.com

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CLASSICS–A STEP BACK IN TIME

ROBERT & CARI love classic cars!  The picture here is of my late uncle Robert.  I think the car is a Dodge Charger.  Uncle Robert was one of my favorite uncles because he always took time to try to help me in whatever way he could.  When I was in school, I had a really hard time learning division.  I recall him spending many hours trying to help me, and with his patient assistance, I finally did!

Then when I got older and had graduated from technical school, he was the one who encouraged me to apply for a job with the State of Georgia.  And that is how my nearly 34-year career as a secretary with the State began!

His wife Angela was also very encouraging to me as well.  I recall one time I either wanted to go to Brunswick, GA, to visit my author cousin Jacquelin Thomas during our summer break from school or to annual staff camp.  Of course, I wanted some extra spending money, but my mama and stepdad did not have the funds available to give me as much as I wanted.  Even though I was babysitting for my uncle and aunt at the time and it would have meant that they would have to find a replacement babysitter in my absence, Aunt Angela did not hesitate to offer me an advance for babysitting so that I would have the money I wanted.

Even though this post started out about classic cars, talking about them made me think of my uncle and aunt and how supportive they were of me and my family.  As many of you know, I love writing stories about family and relationships.  And I also like to add flavors of things that I enjoy, and classic cars are included among those things.  For instance, in my first published fictional novel A MEASURE OF FAITH, AMOFI had Lynn take her husband Robert to a classic car show in the parking lot of a nearby grocery store.  That idea came to me because where I live, these car shows are sometimes held in such locations.  Also, in my novels ONE OF A KIND and DH COVER 4_8.25.14DESPERATE HEARTS, Brad is the proud owner of a classic car.

My husband, son, and I love classic cars, and often when we travel, weOOAK stop by muscle car museums to see them.  One of our favorite ones is Floyd Garrett’s Muscle Car Museum in Sevierville, TN.  Also, if we’re visiting the area around July 4th or Labor Day, we can usually come across car shows along both sides of Tennessee Highway 441 in Pigeon Forge.  Of course, these are free, and you just walk around and look at the ones you want to see.  During all of these times, I have taken many pictures and would like to take this time to share some with you.  Enjoy, and have an awesome day!

From my heart to yours,

Maxine

http://www.maxinebillings.com

http://www.maxinebillings.wordpress.com

http://www.askeevie.wordpress.com

http://www.pearlspearlsofwisdom.wordpress.com

MUSCLE CARMUSCLE CAR 2MUSCLE CAR 3MUSCLE CAR 4MUSCLE CAR 5MUSCLE CAR 6100_0690100_0689100_0687100_0686100_0684

 


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RELEASE OF DESPERATE HEARTS!

DH COVER 4_8.25.14

MY SECOND BOOK IN THE ONE OF A KIND SERIES IS HERE!!!  MY NINTH FICTION

INSPIRATIONAL NOVEL, DESPERATE HEARTS, IS NOW AVAILABLE

ON AMAZON AND CREATESPACE.

AS ALWAYS, THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR SUPPORT!  FROM MY HEART TO YOURS!  🙂

MAXINE

http://www.maxinebillings.com


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LOSS OF LIFE’S MOISTURE

desertRomans 2:15 helps us to appreciate that God gave us the gift of a conscience in order to guide us.  When our conscience is troubled, it can wear us down and torment us.  King David experienced this after taking another man’s wife.  In Psalm 32:1-5, he said that his strength had evaporated from him like water in the dry summer heat.  In other words, his attempted repression of a guilty conscience wore him out and reduced his vigor like a tree that loses life-giving moisture in a drought or in the intense dry heat of summer.  Only when he confessed his sins did he finally gain much-needed relief.

I recently shared a blog that I had finally finished my manuscript to my soon-to-be released novel, DESPERATE HEARTS.  This story will begin nearly two years after where ONE OF A KIND ended.  OOAKI am now in the editing process and also recently made a few minor revisions to the cover which I designed and created myself.  Although in our age of modern technology where many people are now reading books on their electronic devices, I realize that there are still some who really prefer to hold the actual paper copy of a book in their hands–including myself :).  Therefore, I am happy to announce that my current plan is to release DESPERATE HEARTS in both Kindle and paperback edition.  I have included at the bottom of this post a copy of the revised cover so that you can see it as well as read the back cover for a more detailed description of what the story is about.  If you are interested in reading a sneak preview of the first chapter, please click here.

Now, to the title of this blog.  I chose it because I wanted to write about one of the themes that is central to the story in DESPERATE HEARTS which pertains to the conscience.  Since our heart is the center of what motivates us, it only makes sense that the conscience affects it.  When under stress, our heart can become desperate.  As one dictionary defines the word desperate, when in this state, the heart can become reckless or dangerous because of despair or urgency.  Hence, the title of my new novel, DESPERATE HEARTS.  And it is during these moments that we can feel like King David as mentioned above.

Since I am so fascinated by the way that we imperfect humans interact with one another (especially when under stress), I love writing stories about family and relationships dealing with real-life issues.  So as many of you probably already know, my stories contain some drama but also include a little humor and flecks of tasteful romance.

Oh, and by the way, my ONE OF A KIND contest is still ongoing.  The prize is a Walmart gift card valued at $25.00.  For more details, please visit my website BOOKS page.  Plus, upon the release of DESPERATE HEARTS, I will be running another contest.

Well, that’s all for now.  HAPPY  READING!  And as always, this is from my heart to yours.  Good night.

Maxine

http://www.maxinebillings.com

(Moroccan Sand Dunes Photo-Courtesy Office.com Clip Art)

 

 

DH BookCoverPreview 3

 

 


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INTRODUCING EEVIE!

WELCOME, MISS EEVIE!

Hello, everyone!  Today, I have a very special guest who I would like to introduce to you.  Her name is Evelyn Faye Randall, but most people call her Miss Eevie.  Many of you will probably remember her from my short story, ONE OF A KIND.  She is the incredible aunt of Paula.  Well, Miss Eevie has just launched her very own Web site called ASK EEVIE, and I thought it would be nice to sit down with her for a few minutes on an interview.  And since I love her cheery, melodious, Southern accent and way of talking so much, I decided to script the typed interview in the exact manner that she speaks.  So here she is, everyone, the lady we all know as Miss Eevie!

M:  Well, first of all, Miss Eevie, I would like to welcome you to my blog site and to the worldwide web.

E:  Well, thank yuh very much, Maxine.  Um so excited to be here!

M:  We are just as excited to have you.  So tell us, Miss Eevie, what do you plan to do on her new Web site, ASK EEVIE?

E:  Well, it’s a advice column where folks can submit problems they need help wit, and I tries to share thangs wit ’em that hopeferly will help ’em deal wit what they going through.  But it’s also a inspirational column.  Everbody’s going through sumpthin’.  Yuh know, we’s living in critical times hard to deal wit.  Now, that ain’t me talking.  That’s the Bible–2 Timothy 3:1-5.  I tries to base everthing I tell people on what the Bible say.

M:  Thank you, Miss Eevie.  We appreciate your sharing that Scripture with us.  Now, we understand that you’re a spiritual woman, so does that mean your column will be preachy?

E (laughing):  Well, that depends on what some folks call preachy.  Like I said, I try to base what I say on God’s Word, so from time to time, I will throw in a Scripture or two, but I’ll try to do it in a way that hopeferly leave people feeling like um trying to build ’em up instead of tear ’em down.  I just know everbody need encouragement from time to time, and I just wanna add some ‘freshment to folks’ lives.  That’s how Jesus was, yuh know–he made folks feel refreshed.  And that’s what I wanna do.

M:  He did indeed, and thank you for that very timely but friendly reminder.  So, Miss Eevie, a lot of people would like to know if you’re originally from North Carolina where you live now.

E:  Well, I was act’lly bone and raised in Savannah, Georgia.

M:  Ah, so you’re a Georgia peach.  No wonder you’re so sweet.

E (laughing again gregariously):    Well, thank yuh, honey.  That’s mighty sweet o’ you to say that.  Yes, I was bone in Savannah in 1931.  Me and my brother, Paula’s daddy, worked in the cotton field from sun up ’til sun down.  I only got a fifth-grade education.  We did’n have the opportunity to go to school like these young chil’ren today.  Poppa made us stay home from school and pick cotton.  What I learned, I mostly learned from reading and teaching myself.

M:  Miss Eevie, thank you for sharing that because, you know, a lot of people feel that just because a person is up in years and seems to be uneducated in a secular, worldly way that he can’t teach anyone anything.  Now, you’re a mature lady  who, even though you only have a fifth-grade education, seems to have a lot of wisdom and knowledge.  I know you said that most of what you learned, you learned from reading and teaching yourself, but is there something else in particular that accounts for the knowledge you’ve obtained over the years?

E (her expression turns serious as she presses a fist to her chest):  I owes it all to God and my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  (Her eyes appear to well up with tears as she continues.)  If’n it was’n fer them, I’d have nuttin’–I’d be nuttin’.  I cherishes my relationship with God.  A lotta what I know–the thangs that matter most in life–I learned from His Word the Bible.  It’s got the answers to all our problems, if’n only we’d read it and obey.

M:  That’s nice, Miss Eevie.  Thank you for sharing that with us.  I can tell that your relationship with God is extremely important to you.

E (nodding):  Yes, it. is.

M:  So, Miss Eevie, how can folks get in touch with you when they need some of your godly, motherly wisdom or just want to chat with you?

E:  Well, my Web site address is  www.askeevie.wordpress.com(She adds, giggling):  Wow, that was a mouthful.  Um surprised I ‘membered it, but I been practicing.

M:  Well, you did good.  Thank you.  I have just one last question before you go.  Do you ever plan to write and publish any books?

E (releasing a quaint giggle):  No.  I thank I’ll leave the writing to you and all the other writers out there.  But yuh never know–that could change one day.

M:  Well, I sure hope so.  I would love to read some books written by you.

E:  Well, we’ll see.

M:  Alright, Miss Eevie.  Well, thank you again for visiting me on my blog and allowing me to be the first to interview you and welcome you to the worldwide web.  And congratulations!

E:  Thank yuh, Maxine, and thank yuh kindly fer having me.  I really enjoyed it.

M:  Me, too.  Well, this is Maxine Billings signing off and wishing you all a very blessed and awesome day!


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EVERLASTING LOVE–IS IT POSSIBLE?

LOVE EVERLASTINGI just finished my manuscript for my next book to be released, DESPERATE HEARTS, which is my sequel to ONE OF A KIND!  Even though I now have to start the editing process, I always feel a huge sense of accomplishment whenever I complete a manuscript.  And since DESPERATE HEARTS is a sweet yet dramatic love story, I felt compelled to write this blog about love.  As to its release date, I’m not sure yet, but hopefully sometime this year (preferably in October.)DH

Song of Solomon 8:6 says:  “For love is as strong as death . . . the coals thereof are coals of fire, which hath a most vehement flame.”  (The Holy Bible in the KJV)

As most of you probably know, I love writing stories about relationships.  I also enjoy not only adding touches of humor to them, but I like to add a little romance as well.  God created humans with the capacity to express love.    However, in our imperfect human society, love is disintegrating.  Therefore, some may wonder, Is it gullible or naïve to think that enduring, mutual love can last forever?

OOAKTrue love between a man and a woman can be exceedingly strong, firm, and unyielding.  The Bible well demonstrates this in The Song of Solomon 1:1-14 and 8:14 where it tells of the unwavering love that existed between a shepherd boy and a country girl.  This song also reveals that despite all his splendor and riches, the king could not gain the love of that beautiful girl, for she was saving her heart and her love for her one and only true love.  She thus showed that genuine love cannot be bought with material things.

God purposed that love and marriage bring joy to humans, yet that does not mean that we will not experience adversities in association with the two.  But as long as we do things His way, our problems will be fewer.

Well, good night, and HAPPY READING.  And as always, this is from my heart to yours.

Maxine

http://www.maxinebillings.com

(I’ll Love You Forever! Photo – Courtesy of Office.com Clip Art)