Bellingwood is You … And Your Favorite Character

Book 1-3 Box Set a 100 dpiThe last couple of days have been spent with copies of my paperbacks for Book 15. This process of signing, creating labels, invoices, packaging, etc., gets a little intense for a few days. I’m not out of it yet. Tomorrow will bring another trip to town with tote bags filled with boxes and packages. My poor postal clerk just gives me that ‘I know it’s my job’ smile when I walk in.

You might be surprised to discover I whine a lot through this process … mostly to the cats. Books are heavy, Books in boxes are heavy and bulky. I have enough arthritis that a day of signing and writing and packaging makes my knuckles hurt.

But the funny thing is, I should never whine. I love my job. Every single part of it. And one of the best parts of packing paperbacks is thinking about each name on the list in front of me as I get things ready to go out.

One of the greatest things about Bellingwood is you. There are some of you who are very active on the Bellingwood page and you have no idea how much I grin when I see your name pop up in my notifications. Whether you leave a comment or simply click the like button, I see you. Now, when we’re in the middle of a big giveaway, I don’t see everyone’s name … that’s a lot of comments and likes. But for the most part, I see you and it makes me smile.

As you get more and more active, I get to know you a little better and it’s fun discovering who you are and what you like. You are all quite unique in how you view the characters in Bellingwood. The things that are important in the series vary from person to person. That’s something that makes this so much fun to write.

So I have a question for you today … which Bellingwood character would you like to have coffee with at Sweet Beans? Don’t pick Polly – she’s not an option. Someone else.

I’m watching. It’ll be fun to see how you respond to this.

61 thoughts on “Bellingwood is You … And Your Favorite Character

  1. Karen Lawrence

    Sylvie….she has so much courage.. First she left an abusive husband and changed her life, and now she is a single mom raising two boys. Then she goes back to school and starts her own business which keeps growing. Plus, I just think she sounds like a fun person and a good friend…and I wanna go to pizza night with all the girls!

    1. nammynools Post author

      I adore her. The thing is – she’s not flashy and nuts like Beryl, nor is she the one who is involved with everyone in town like Lydia. She’s solid, caring and has her feet solidly on the ground where they belong. Jason and Andrew are really lucky, even if they don’t know it right now.

  2. Kathi

    I think it would be Lydia. She’s the first one that popped into my head. She seems SO warm and understanding. If you have a problem…..go to see Lydia. I love all the characters, of course. I feel like I’ve known them from the very first book. I hope you never give up on the books. They really feel like family to me. I’ve laughed and I’ve cried and loved every minute of it.

    1. nammynools Post author

      I can’t give up on them – they’re my family, too! Lydia is the soul of Bellingwood. With her in their midst, goodness is always close.

  3. Peg Adams

    I would love to have a conversation with Polly’s friend Sal! We both lived a long time in a big city or its environs (Boston or New York City) and we have both lived in a small town at some point in our lives (Bellingwood and a tiny town outside Rochester NY called Hamlin). Oh, and we both LOVE coffee!!!! I would have many things to talk about with this woman and would love to have her as a friend. Sal reminds me of a little bit of myself when I was young and still in transition–very impatient for life to happen already! But also dealing with whatever comes her way. 🙂

    1. nammynools Post author

      Sal has been pretty protected by Mark and Sweet Beans … she has yet to encounter the intense busy bodies of a small town. I can hardly wait.

  4. Marbeth Carmack

    There are so many … I think Sal because she has known Polly the longest and because of all the changes she has made.

    Then there is Henry, oh and Beryl and Lydia and Heath and Eliseo and … just so many interesting people!

    Just keep writing! Love them all!

  5. Jan

    I would love to have coffee with Beryl. She is my complete opposite – flamboyant, artistic, brash but very kind too. I think she would make a fun friend you could really count on. Hmm OK I do try to be kind so maybe she’s not my complete opposite… 😀

  6. Deb

    Eliseo. He has so many layers to his personality. He can be tough, kind, tender. The animals respond to his gentleness. I love how he loves Sylvie and cares for her boys, especially Jason (adolescent boys can be “unlovable” sometimes!).

    OT: is Sylvie her full first name or is it short for Sylvania or something else?

  7. Deb

    Eliseo. He has so many layers to his personality. He can be tough, kind, tender. The animals respond to his gentleness. I love how he loves Sylvie and cares for her boys, especially Jason (adolescent boys can be “unlovable” sometimes!).

    OT: is Sylvie her full first name or is it short for Sylvania or something else?

  8. Kathleen

    Eliseo is someone I would love to sit down with and get to know. He has been through so much and has come out the other side so very living and strong. Anyone who has a “way” with animals like he does must be a very interesting person to know.

  9. Michele Hicks

    Lydia, she seems so comforting and who among us does not need comforting at times. Plus, she has known all of the others for so long, she would have great insight into their characters.

  10. Cheri

    I think it would be a so much fun to have coffee with Beryl. I appreciate her unique qualities and flair for fun. I could so use some Beryl influence in my life!! The fact that she is an accomplished artist just ads to my admiration of her.

  11. Deb Kampschnieder

    Henry. It always seems to be to be so level headed no matter the circumstance. He is so loving and kind and deals with whatever comes his way. Yes, there are times when he gets upset, but he is always the voice of reason as well.

  12. Mary Reeves

    Today, I would pick Lydia. I need a comforting mother-type who stays mostly unflappable and would give me advice on raising my teenage daughters.

    1. nammynools Post author

      Heh … I’m guessing her advice would be to hold your breath, love them and pray they don’t kill each other!

  13. Laura

    Oh I would love to meet Andy for coffee and a chat!
    I think she’s full of quiet surprises!!! We would become great friends!

  14. Jane

    OMG, how can I pick out just one character? I love them all, and would be thrilled to have a cuppa’ with any of them! I love the young ones who haven’t quite “found themselves” yet. I love the Law! They all are so busy, yet seem so personable…with plenty of stories to tell, I am sure! The guys are always so cute, and confused, by what the women do. Ha! I can’t pick a favorite, except to say, I’m looking on the web, for a real estate listing for Bellingwood homes for sale, just in case DH says we can move there. Of course, he doesn’t have a clue! 😉 Perhaps one of them will tell me of a great buy, that has already been Pollyhabed already! 🙂

  15. Eileen Adickes

    I know you said “one”, but I would love to watch and laugh with the interaction between Andy and Beryl. The way those two characters balance each other with wit and love is delightful. Guess if I had to choose just one I’d want to add more madcap humor to my life and say Beryl. I want to experience her art and way of looking at life.

    1. nammynools Post author

      Isn’t it just the way, though? Relationships like Beryl and Andy happen – just to keep each other balanced.

  16. Jan

    Henry because he has to help Polly keep it together and seems so bewildered by it all lol.
    Beryl because well, she’s Beryl.
    Sylvie so she can tell me why she won’t date Eliseo.

  17. Gail Melting

    Beryl, of course! She is a hoot and we would hit it off immediately. We might even get kicked out for being too rowdy!

    1. nammynools Post author

      Kicked out? She wouldn’t let that happen. She’d stand up, tell everyone off and then stalk out! Hahaha. Of course, that would be after she announced to the whole world that it was you who did everything.

  18. Diana Nunley

    I would love to have coffee with Lydia. She is a loving, caring lady that seems like she would be a lot of fun. She reminds me of the character Olympia Dukakis played in Steel Magnolias (Clairee). She seems to be someone you would want in your corner! Of course being married to the sheriff is a plus as well!

  19. Billie Cleckler

    I would like to sit down with Eliseo but it would probably have to be at the barn instead of Sweet Beans. He seems like he has such a sweet yet strong spirit. Look at all he has overcome. Once people get to know him, it is like his scars just melt away. I also admire his ability to work with the animals and mentor kids.

  20. Lonnie

    Jeff. He has so many ideas and seems to be the backbone of the businesses, but I don’t remember reading much about his background and family and life before Sycamore House.

  21. Bonita Lins

    I would love some time with Sylvie as well. I admire how she has pulled it together and makes sure to take care of her boys!

    1. nammynools Post author

      And the thing is – there are so many of these women around us. They’ve quietly lived their lives and kept things going for their kids.

  22. Blue

    Eliseo. Just to say thank you. My son is a veteran of Desert Shield and Desert Storm. A co-worker who became a friend had been burned on the right side of his head and face. Similar problems. Not that I would discuss that. I’d rather talk about how the renovations were going on the house.

  23. Chris Adam

    Hmmm… thinking…
    In the meantime, I still smile remembering receiving my prize in the mail! A signed copy of book … book… nuts! I’m in the car is can’t go look , no I’m not driving. Was it book 14 or 13?? Signed by you and filled with bookmarks and of course such a great story!! And it came in a beautiful patchwork tote!! Made by my favorite author! 😆

    Now, who would I want to have coffee at Sweet Beans with? I think Henry. That’s the closest one could get to Polly. (and maybe I could talk him into coming up and building me a gazebo. I’d pay him..)😊
    Of course, Beryl would be fun… maybe a bit intimidating or inspiring. Lydia, too, but we can only choose one? Ok…

    I’m glad you love what you do! And appreciate all you do, to accomplish it!
    God bless you! !

      1. Chris Adam

        That’d be fine!
        I have a new spot in my yard with plenty of room for a gazebo! Just can’t talk my husband into it…
        I think it’s fun to see how you develop each character. It’d be great to talk to any one of them!☺

  24. Bonnie

    For me, it would have to be Beryl since I apparently must be like her in so many ways…quirky, qwazee, and kooky but oh, so much fun. My Bellingwood family means the world to me.

  25. Kathy

    I would pick Eliseo. For the sacrifices he has made but still has the strength and heart to be kind, helping, encouraging, loving…well you get it 🙂 I love his heart! And I could talk some sense into him about Sylvie! I was SO overjoyed to hear Sylvie say….”It’s always been Eliseo” Thank you Diane for giving us Bellingwood where we can feel a real part of the story and where we can visit our “friends and family!”

  26. Sally Tarasoff

    Eliseo, because of his courage and empathy. I would love to know more about his back story.

  27. Michelle

    I’d love to have coffee with Elise. There is so much I’d like to know about her. I think she could use a friend and I’d like to be that friend!

  28. Wanda

    Beryl would be my pick , she is so unique and crazy and there is something that just makes me smile when I think about Beryl ! She doesn’t care what people think about how loud she dresses and I love that about her ! Wish I could be like her I prefer to blend in and not stand out .

    1. nammynools Post author

      Haha – I think Beryl realizes she has so much crazy in her that some of it had better come out every day! 🙂

  29. Diane Wendt

    I guess I’ve always related to guys better than girls. I would love to talk to Eliseo over coffee. He’s such a strong man to have overcome the terrible physical pain of burns, and then the mental and emotional pain from the scaring. It’s almost impossible to believe he survived all that and now is happy and doing something he loves. Even if all we talked about was horses, I’d love to spend a half hour with him. Chubby old grandmas can usually get away with monopolizing a rugged young man for that long.

  30. Michele H.

    In this moment, (it was someone else a moment ago), I think I’d like to sit with Bill Sturtz and try to learn more about woodworking from him. It might be a little challenging sitting in a coffee shop, but maybe he could bring pictures or a portfolio. I’d love to hear about the pieces he’s made that he’s most proud of, and the details about those.

    The person I was thinking about before him is Eliseo. I would love to talk to him about the animals and how he’s so easily able to train them. Most importantly for me though, is to thank him for his service.

    I love all of the people in Bellingwood. Each would be so fun to meet and get to know better.

  31. Sue

    Wow, I don’t know and I read the comments….no help! Probably Andrew as he has seen a lot and I love seeing life from a young person’s perspective!

  32. Fran

    I had to think hard about this, then it just popped into my head, of course it would have to be Eliseo Aquila. What a fascinating life he has had and his gentle soul and working with the horses, meh…..had me at horses. Besides, someone needs to push him a bit with his love life, silly man!

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