Welcome to the Chubby Chatterbox Newsletter, where I’ll be posting favorites from the Chubby Chatterbox archives. In addition, my complete thriller Return of the Mary Celeste will soon be serialized here for those who have asked for something beyond a regular post.

My novel is based on a true event, arguably the greatest maritime mystery of all time. In 1872 the crew and passengers of Boston brigantine Mary Celeste abandoned their seaworthy ship and its valuable cargo, vanishing in the middle of the Atlantic. Speculation over their fate has never abated. History records that after the Mary Celeste tragedy no one from that fateful voyage was ever seen again. History is about to be rewritten…

Return of the Mary Celeste


Tragedy struck the brigantine Mary Celeste on the morning of November 25, 1872. The hourly log was later recovered from the deserted vessel; At 8 a.m. the last notation was made. By 9 a.m. no one remained aboard to chalk the next entry.

Something had terrified Captain Benjamin Briggs and his crew, prompting the seasoned skipper to make a decision certain to affect not only himself, his ship and crew, but his family as well—his wife and two year old daughter were aboard Mary Celeste. Much ink has been spilled in fanciful and scientific attempts to explain the calamity that engulfed this perfectly seaworthy ship, yet all that is known for certain is this: in a matter of minutes Captain Briggs became convinced that the only way to save their lives was by ordering everyone into a hastily launched lifeboat. By giving the order to abandon ship, he also launched the greatest of all maritime mysteries.

On December 5, 1872, a month after leaving New York Harbor, Mary Celeste was found drifting on a calm and empty sea. The ship was in fine condition, perfectly intact with valuable cargo safely stored in her hold, but the crew and passengers had vanished. None were ever seen again.

Until now….

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Merry Christmas!

December 25, 2013







 Maxfield Parrish

American Illustrator (1870-1966)





Seasons Greetings. I hope everyone has a wondrous and very Merry Christmas.















Happy Christmas! May you and your family have a blessed and beautiful day!
By: mimi on December 25, 2013
Merry Christmas, Stephen! It's been a beautiful morning here.
By: Nancy Felt on December 25, 2013
Merry Christmas to you & yours!!
By: fishducky on December 25, 2013
Interesting how the front of the picture is in shadow and the back is in sun. I hope you have a wonderful day.
By: red on December 25, 2013
hope your Christmas is happy and full of smiles! Cheers!
By: Kathe W. on December 25, 2013
That's beautiful. Love, Janie
By: Janie Junebug on December 25, 2013
merry Christmas Stephen and family
By: Fran on December 25, 2013
Merry Christmas to you and your family. I made fudge, and it was delicious!
By: Pixel Peeper on December 25, 2013
That's so pretty! It speaks to me. Merry Christmas.
By: Val on December 25, 2013
Merry Christmas
By: Izdiher on December 26, 2013
Hope you had a good day. Here in the UK it's Boxing Day so the celebrations continue, and the family arguments. :D
By: LL Cool Joe on December 26, 2013
Wonderfuyl image particularly as it gives off a feeling of warmthdespite the snow! Hope you all had a wonderfilled time.
By: John on December 26, 2013
I did have a great Christmas, how about you? Things are back to normal today, heading to senior center for lunch and then on to some errands. Happy Day After Christmas!
By: CiCi on December 26, 2013
Hope you had a nice Christmas and got everything you wanted.
By: Cheryl P. on December 26, 2013
Hope that you and yours had a wonderful Christmas.
By: Hilary on December 26, 2013
Those paintings look like photos. Happy holidays!
By: PT Dilloway on December 26, 2013
Hope you and your family have a great Christmas and New Year.
By: Bryan Jones on December 27, 2013
Hope you had a great time and I'm wishing you a very Happy and wonderful New Year.
By: Rum Punch Drunk on December 27, 2013
Hope you had a great Christmas. I drove to spend Christmas day with my father, brother and my two grown sons. Whereas the Mrs. spent Christmas with her mother at the nursing home. May 2014 be filled with joy and good health.
By: Daniel LaFrance on December 28, 2013
What gorgeous pictures! I'm wishing you and your family a happy, healthy, and prosperous 2014!
By: Lexa Cain on December 28, 2013
Oh, Stephen, you could have done so much better an illustration! Happy 2014!
By: Franklin Bruce Taylor on December 28, 2013

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