Prude Approved Reads: Dandelions on the Road


‘Dandelions in the Road’ tells the story of fourteen—yes, 14—people and their search for true love via a local TV station’s version of ‘The Bachelorette.’
After enjoying success with a program called ‘Accept This Dandelion’ (also Ms. William’s first book in the series) centered on a bachelor and a dozen potential female significant others, the producer decides to try his hand at a spin-off with a spin. For ’Dandelions on the Road’ he chooses Eva, one of the runners-up from the first show, to sort through a bevy of eligible and hopeful men. The twist? They’ll shoot various competitions at various locations in America’s heartland.

Eva is beautiful and loves animals and is a great friend and ideal employee but for some reason has not connected with true love. Now she gets to choose from twelve handsome men. She should be able find a heart-mate among the bachelors on ‘Dandelions on the Road,’ Right? You’ll have to read the book to find out. Besides, you’re just itching to know who the 14th love seeker is, aren’t you?

PRUDE APPROVAL: Brooke Williams does an excellent job of keeping the love scenes wholesome with just a sprinkling of spice.

PRUDE PEEVE: While not a raging feminist, I wonder why we found it necessary to adopt the French term meaning ‘little bachelor’ for unattached women. While the French have shared many worthwhile words ending in the suffix ‘ette’ such as
‘barrette’ (little bar to keep one’s hair tidy)
‘dinette’ (a dining set newlyweds with little money can afford)
‘cigarette’ (because a little cigar is infinitely preferable to a ‘megacigar’) and
‘videocassette’ (meaning ‘good luck finding something to play that in’);
but ‘bachelorette’ has no place in the enlightened New World.
PRUDE APPROVAL: Instead of choosing glamorous locations like Vegas, Hollywood, or New York City (all of which, when I was growing up, were referred to as ‘Sin City’) the author has her producer bring his cast and crew to hiking trails and adventure parks and ranches in Nebraska and Iowa and Texas. What these states lack in flamboyance they make up for in solid common values and sense.

PRUDE APPROVAL: The author has imbued each of the bachelors with distinct personalities. There are some flaws—not every male is a perfect male—and Eva is all the more likable because she is willing to overlook little idiosyncrasies to discover the worth of each man.

I asked Brooke for a short autobiography and then gave her some questions to answer. (Those of you looking for potential mates feel free to use any of these questions. Knowing the answers could save you a lot of grief down the road.)
Brooke Williams is a former radio producer turned freelance writer/author. When she’s not writing, she’s playing with her two little girls, Kaelyn and Sadie, ages 6 and 2. Brooke has been married to her husband Sean since 2002. Today, she specializes in romantic comedies and some of her titles include: Someone Always Loved You, Wrong Place Right Time, Accept this Dandelion, Dandelions on the Road, Mamarazzi, and Backwards Christmas.


Why do you write?
To me, writing is like breathing. You know how the doctor tells you to exercise in order to stay healthy? That’s how I feel about writing. On the days when I don’t get a chance to write, I don’t feel as good! It’s become a necessity in my life. So I write because I love it and because I can’t NOT write! I never start a novel unless the idea and/or characters are bugging me so badly I HAVE to write it to get rid of them!

What book made the biggest impact in your life?
Yes. Haha. I honestly can’t pinpoint one single book. I absolutely love to read and as soon as I finish one book, I’m on to the next one. I enjoy fiction of all different kinds and like books that surprise you in one way or another.

If you had to change your first name, what would you change it to?
In grade school I wanted to change it to She-Ra. Luckily I matured and settled on Christine later in life. But my parents named me Brooke for whatever reason so I’ll just stick with that!
You’ve been writing all day. You don’t want to cook. You do want to get out of the house. Do you get pizza, burgers or Chinese?
Burgers. But I never get to write all day. I have a 2 and 6 year old that are constantly on the go!

What is your favorite sport?
What is your favorite song?
World’s Apart by Jars of Clay

What three items would you take if you knew you were going to be stranded on a tropical island for a year? (FYI: It has fresh water and plenty for you to eat and a flush toilet)
My phone. 🙂 It has endless books on it for entertainment. Chapstick. I can’t live without it for an hour, much less a year. My girls. They’d love the sand and water!
If you could learn any new skill, what would it be?
I’d love to be good at a musical instrument. I used to play the marimba and other mallet instruments, but they are expensive and since I don’t have one I can’t do it anymore.
You are offered a huge contract to write a ‘How To’ book on your area of expertise. What would it be about?
How to play with two little girls. 🙂

You can choose any author you want, living or dead (well, they wouldn’t be dead when you met them), to be your writing coach. Who will it be?
Richard Paul Evans
What chore do you absolutely hate doing?
Cleaning in general. So I write instead… 🙂
What is your favorite form of exercise?
Walking, but I run on my elliptical machine most days

Do you personally find yawning contagious?
Oh heavens yes. I just yawned from the word, believe it or not!
Where do you write?
At my computer in the desk in the kitchen.
Music or silence while you write?
I prefer silence but my youngest has music playing in her room when she naps so I hear that through the monitor.

Skittles or M&M’s or…carrot sticks while you write?
M&M’s—are you kidding me?! Obvious choice there! 🙂

Could you toss me that roll of ellipsis tape?

Writers have a host of tools at their disposal*
In their box of power and hand tools, writers may use any or all of the following:
– The Synonym Screwdriver, with interchangeable tips, also called bits.
– The Sneer Quote “Hammer”
-The Adjustable Active Voice Wrench by which passive voice sections are removed
-The Comma Unsplicer is a great tool, it helps even the most novice of writers look as though she passed her grammar classes.
-I would also recommend that the Unnecessary Words Extractor should be found in any writers’ toolbox as it is very useful for tightening up sentences that drone on and on.
-This particular writer refuses to get rid of her Nuts and Bolts of Miscellaneous Adverbs no matter how vociferously anyone pronounces them obsolete.
Oh, and my up and coming favorite—I highly recommend this one—the Em dash Staple Gun. Holds sentences together.
But today we will examine one of my favorite tools of all time.
A roll of Ellipsis Tape. To cover something that for some reason we don’t want to write out.
An ellipsis is easy to use. Look:   …
3 dots. On the computer it is even easier than by hand.
Just depress the period key 3 times.
If you want to make more than one ellipsis, you can, but you have to refer to them as ‘ellipSES’ and you run the danger of over-kill taping.
Ellipsis Tape can also cover something we want to imply without really saying it.  ‘OK, honey, if you think that shirt you bought in 1984 still fits you…”

Ellipsis Tape can extend a grievance indefinitely. “Even Wilma Flintstone and Aunt Bea have garbage disposals. Why I still don’t have one, I have to wonder…”

Ellipsis Tape patches together the disparate thoughts that zing simultaneously through our heads as we struggle to communicate. “Drive carefully, watch out for deer and drunk drivers, and…you’re wearing THAT to go out tonight?”

Ellipsis Tape is a temporary fix for faulty memory. “I could have sworn I had enough gas to get us there…”

Ellipsis Tape can make one look more intelligent than one really is. We can appear to mull over a significant notion when really we just totally lost track of what we were about to say. “I was just reflecting the other day that…ah…hmmm…yes…deep reflection. Deep…deep…”

As a chatterer and a long-winded writer, I use my Ellipsis Tape all the time because I never know how to close out a conversation or a scene.
A period puts a direct and speedy end to a thought, idea, comment, or statement.
But the ellipsis lets me put that thought, idea, comment or statement on limitless hold until I return with something else to stick onto it.

If anyone wants to borrow my Ellipsis Tape, let me know…


I See Your Lek and Raise You a Qindarka


How do you like those fracti?


You immediately knew what is wrong with the title of this post, don’t you?

Since a qindarka, as anyone in outer Albania knows, is equal to 100 lek, this would be a pretty lopsided game of poker.

And you no doubt had a pretty good yock at my expense.

But does it hurt my feelings that you laughed boisterously at me? Nah. I’ll just boff heartily along with you.

Your ordinary man-about-town may not recognize the above bold-faced words, but a devoted Scrabble player who is eidetic (possessed of vivid recall) will have at least a nodding acquaintance with some.

That which is pyic is often xanthic, which means pus-ish stuff tends to be yellow.

If you see a chacma in a cwm on the side of a jebel you are, in the non-Scrabble world of language, looking at a baboon in a hollow on the side of a mountain.

You want to write a scathing commentary on the state of humankind via analogy using the chacma stuck, through no fault of its own, in the cwm which is stuck, through no fault of its own (but rather the fault of a cold and heartless glacier) in the mountain.

But with one thing (preparing to celebrate the yahrzeit—anniversary of the death of an ancestor celebrated by Jews) and another (you are part of a busy and creative krewe, a private group participating in Mardi Gras) your magnum opus has shrunk to the size of a opuscule (a minor work).

Fracti are ragged clouds and gjetost is hard brown cheese and a fyke is a bag-shaped fishnet and all are acceptable in Scrabble.

pfft and psst and sh and hm? Legit.

Alif, bubu, and a thousand others have no meaning but are still recognized. No doubt some ambitious Scrabble player with connections in the Scrabble Word Approval Department begged for them.

The Prude plans to cozy up to someone with clout at the Scrabble Dictionary and get ca approved. It’s the sound made by the chacma trapped in the cwm.