Promo: Emily’s Stories by Malcolm R Campbell

Emily’s Stories is three short stories that will delight and entertain readers (and listeners) of all ages, with the tales of the young girl, Emily Walters, as she explores her world and that of the world around her… both mundane and temporal.

Emily Walters is a sharp, inquisitive fourteen-year-old north Florida girl who loves maps, her rusty old bike, and the forest behind her house. Sometimes her dreams tell her the future and sometimes her waking hours bring wise birds and other spirits into her life. In these three short stories, join Emily in adventures and mysteries.

When her family vacations in the mountains in “High Country Painter,” a wise Pine Siskin tells her she must quickly learn how to paint dreams into reality to prevent an afternoon hike from becoming a tragedy.

In “Map Maker,” she’ll need her skills—and the help of a Chuck-will’s-widow—to fight a developer’s plans for from bulldozing the sacred forest behind her house and replacing it with a subdivision.

In “Sweetbay Magnolia,” she’ll learn the secrets of her grandmother’s favorite tree, the crumbling almost-forever house down on the river, and why some ghosts would rather visit than haunt.

Emily’s Stories by Malcolm R. Campbell is now available in All Ebook Formats and as an AUDIOBOOK on Audible, iTunes, and on Amazon!


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Emily’s Stories

By: Malcolm R. Campbell | Other books by Malcolm R. Campbell
Published By: Vanilla Heart Publishing
Published: Mar 16, 2013
ISBN # 9781301503223
Word Count: 14,500

From High Country Painter

Fresh and sweet off the glacier at the end of the valley, the cold wind teased the fir trees in the golden grace of morning’s first light with whooshes and whispers before tugging at Emily’s tightly wrapped Hudson’s Bay blanket. She slouched deep into the cushioned chair on the balcony outside her room while her parents slept off their jet lag. Since the wind treated her 16¾ by 21¾ map like a sail, she hid the blue lakes and dotted red trails beneath her blanket and listened to the voices of a trembling of finches across the lake.

Emily had already found what she was looking for.

Moments after checking into the hotel yesterday, Emily’s dad set off on a brisk hike while her mother relaxed in the writing room with post cards from the gift shop. The hike offered more promise. Within the shade of evergreens, she heard bird calls far different from those of her Florida world of chinkapins, palmettos, and titi thickets.

“Pine siskins,” her dad said. “There’s no mistaking their chattering ZZZzzzrrree, ZZZzzzrrree, rree rree ZZZzzzrrree.”

“They sound like the squeaky wheel in the hamster’s cage at Judy’s house,” said Emily. “They’re too high up for me to see.”

“They’re similar to other finches,” her dad said. “The old timers call these flocks a trembling of finches or a charm of finches.”

Now, on the windy balcony, Emily pondered last night’s dream and decided charm—as in magic charm—was more apt. She had fallen asleep watching the stars fly with owls across the mirrored surface of the dark water below her window.

Her dream was contained within the rough branches and prickly needles of an Engelmann spruce. She hung by her legs from a limb as though it were no higher up than the trapeze on her backyard swing set. An upside down pine siskin hung from the pointed tip of a cone, extracting a seed.

“I am Paiota,” he said.

“Good evening, Paiota. I am Emily.”

“Emily, would you care for a seed?” he asked.

“No, thank you,” said Emily.



“Wait here,” said the pine siskin as though Emily had a clue how to get out of the tree other than by the intervention of: (a) loggers, (b) wind, (c) lightning, or (d) tired legs.

The bird returned while she was yawning without covering her mouth and, viewing her like a fledgling, poked a sweet-tasting red flower petal into her mouth. She swallowed it with the same lack of enthusiasm reserved for anything resembling salad.

“My goodness, what did I just eat?”

Paiota’s wings ruffled the moonlight as he flew back to the cone and regarded Emily with curious brown eyes that probably saw more than her brown eyes.

“Indian paintbrush.”

“What a pretty name.”

“You will find them while eating lunch at the small, icy lake tomorrow where you must paint your dreams into the world.”

“Paiota, I don’t know what that means.”

“For your father’s sake, you will learn,” said Paiota.

He dropped away from the cone into the river of night flowing between the spruce branches, leaving behind a goodbye chirp—or, possibly a warning.

2 thoughts on “Promo: Emily’s Stories by Malcolm R Campbell

  1. What a delicious beginning to Emily’s Stories. You’ve painted your way into my heart, Malcolm.

  2. I had fun writing these stories, Chelle. They’re set in the town where I grew up, so they stirred up a lot of memories.


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