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….

Sign up and read my novel for free.

All Blog Posts

Waiting For Santa

December 23, 2013


This illustration was the companion piece to the Hanukkah picture I painted and posted the day after Thanksgiving. Both were commissioned for a greeting card company, but I can’t remember which one.


I want to take this opportunity to wish everyone a happy Holiday Season. Your wonderful comments, along with your support and encouragement, have meant so much to me this year. Take care and think of me if anyone hands you a platter of fudge.




Merry Christmas!



(aka Chubby Chatterbox)


I like that picture, it stirs up a bit of Christmas spirit in me, Merry Christmas Stephen, Wishing all the best to you and your family.
By: Ken on December 23, 2013
Thank you for the holiday wish and I'll think of you while making fudge this afternoon. Have a merry jingle time, Oma Linda
By: Oma Linda on December 23, 2013
Happiest of Holidays to you as well. Your art always has that touch of humor.
By: Tabor on December 23, 2013
If those kids are waiting for Santa they should really douse that fire.
By: PT Dilloway on December 23, 2013
laughing at the fudge note. bless you, CC!
By: TexWisGirl on December 23, 2013
Doggie! Big Doggie! I love big doggies. Merry Christmas! Love, Janie
By: Janie Junebug on December 23, 2013
Fudge... too sweet for my sweet tooth. I prefer Plum Pudding as one of the Christmas desserts. Merry Christmas to you, your wife, son and of course your mother. All of which we got to know in your story-telling.
By: Daniel LaFrance on December 23, 2013
Lovely illustration Stephen- love those kids warming themselves by the fire with their rather large dog! Merry Christmas to you and your family-thanks for sharing them wih us. I'll be thinking of you while I make orange marmalade today- never could master the art of fudge making. Cheers!
By: Kathe W. on December 23, 2013
Being a Great Dane lover,I think that is a wonderful picture. Hope your Holidays are perfect.
By: Akansas Patti on December 23, 2013
Stephen: Just a stop by before going to the airport to wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas. I always appreciate your visits to my site! :)
By: Michael Manning on December 23, 2013
Merry Christmas to you, Mrs. C., CJ, and your mom. I love that painting. The glow from the fire is making me sweat!
By: Val on December 23, 2013
Beautiful illustration, Stephen. I have enjoyed your posts and your illustrations so very much this year. However, if a plate of fudge comes my way . . . sorry . . . I'm not sharing!
By: Catalyst/Bruce on December 23, 2013
Lovely warm and sweet illustration. Almost as sweet as fudge. May you and yours have a wonderful Christmas, Steve.
By: Hilary on December 23, 2013
Happy Christmas, Steve! You and your family are in my prayers.
By: mimi on December 23, 2013
wishing you and mrs c a very happy christmas and i hope 2014 is very good to you both. i've enjoyed your lovely blog so much this year so thank you for all of the great stories and art
By: Fran on December 23, 2013
Thank you! Season's greetings to you! Your blog is certainly appreciated here at Hiawatha House.
By: red on December 23, 2013
Your painting evokes great feelings and touches some nostalgic place in my heart. Merry Christmas to you.
By: Tom Cochrun on December 23, 2013
Merry Christmas to you and your family! I've never made fudge, though I really like it. Tomorrow I will try to make it for the first time ever. I shall think of you!
By: Pixel Peeper on December 23, 2013
What a lovely picture! Wishing you, Mrs. Chatterbox, and your whole family a wonderful Christmas!
By: Lexa Cain on December 23, 2013
A beautiful image of Christmas. Love it! Merry Christmas, Steve. :)
By: Scott Cody Park on December 23, 2013
Warmth radiates from that painting, as it does from all of your writing. Merry Xmas to you and Mrs. C. xoRobyn
By: Robyn Engel on December 24, 2013
What a great image, I cannot help feeling that the dog is thinking about Christmas dinner.............. All the best to you and yours!
By: John on December 24, 2013
Stephen, this one is so beautiful. I love the detail and the rich colors. So glad we connected this year. Merry Christmas to you and Mrs. C.
By: Bouncin Barb on December 24, 2013
How funny, I received some fudge this year for the first time. Quite yummy too. It is fun to know, or sorta online in blogland know, a person behind the greeting card illustrations. Merry Christmas to you and your family.
By: CiCi on December 24, 2013
I like the painting too. A Merry Christmas to you and your family! It's been great getting to know you this year.
By: LL Cool Joe on December 24, 2013
Merry Christmas. Ours was myself and a Cat, but I seem to remember a few Christmases just about sitting that way!
By: Cat on December 24, 2013
Wonderful representation!! I love the 'old time' feel of this. Merry Christamas... ~shoes~
By: redshoes51 on December 24, 2013
Thanks for your wonderful stories and art! Wishing you a very happy Christmas!
By: Mitchell is Moving on December 25, 2013
What a great painting. Has a very nostalgic feel to it. Hope you and your family had a wonderful Christmas day.
By: Cheryl P. on December 26, 2013

Leave a Comment


Return to All Blog Posts Main Page

RSS 2.0   Atom