Music has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. My mother was a true, hard-core country music lover. I mean shows like The Grand Ole Opry, and Hee Haw was ALWAYS on at our house. The radio only played classic country artists like Dolly Parton, George Jones, Loretta Lynn, Johnny Cash and Tammy Wynette. I didn’t even know there was any other kind of music until I was a teenager.

The summer I turned 14, my mother allow me to start working part time at a cafe downtown that served true Cajun food as well as hamburgers and french fries. There was a small jukebox and dance floor in one corner of the building. I really enjoyed my job because I got the chance to work with my sister. 

One day while I was serving a customer, someone decided to drop a dime in the jukebox and selected a song that would change my life forever. Aerosmith’s “Dream On” started playing and it literally stopped me in my tracks. 

That voice.

That guitar.

Those drums.

The lyrics were hypnotic to me, and I spent the remaining time I worked at that cafe spending half of my paycheck each week on that jukebox. I was never told anything but you would think the owners would have gotten tired of hearing that song. Maybe they thought some other customer was dropping all those coins in the machine. Or maybe they loved the song as much as I did.

Either way, more than forty years have passed since I first heard that song, but even now, when I hear the first chords of that tune, I’m transported back to that little cafe, dropping nickels in the jukebox and dreaming on…




HM Hunting Gris-Gris Epub cover



Eleven-year-old Emma misses her father who’s serving in Europe during World War II. He left behind a treasure box with six secret compartments to be opened during her birthday week. He also told her to watch out for the gris-gris while he was gone. Looking out for swamp creatures and dealing with wartime rationing was hard enough, but now there’s a British refugee coming to stay at the house! How will Emma enjoy her birthday and keep her decision to hunt for the gris-gris a secret with a stranger hanging around?

Coming to a bookstore near you in the spring of 2020!




donna - Copy


Best selling, award-winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna is a BOOK NOOK REVIEWS host providing the latest book reviews on all genres of children’s books, and the host of WRITERLY WISDOM, a resource series for writers. Donna is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. She is a lover of dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection. Donna’s latest chapter book series is called HISTORY’S MYSTERIES. Book three, Hunting Gris-Gris, is scheduled to be released later this spring!

2 thoughts on “TALES FROM THE BAYOU: Dreaming On…

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