“Mercy is required.”

-The Good Shepherd: Volume One of the Werewolf Warden Series by D. Marie Prokop.



Leona Schaeffer is more. More than a seventeen-year-old girl. More than a lonely orphan.

She’s a Werewolf Warden. Inheriting an ancient strength and an ancient burden.

Summoned to the frantic streets of Gilded Age Boston, Leona must enter a world as unfamiliar as it is wondrous. A world of danger, populated by sheep in need of a shepherd.

Without the benefit of a mentor, Leona struggles to continue the noble legacy of her parents: Help the weak. Protect the innocent. Exact mercy. Maintain the peace.

Sadly, not everybody wants peace.

Despite the burden of her heritage, Leona is headstrong and pure-hearted. But can she resist the forces threatening to tear apart everything and everyone she cares about? Death, failure, heartache, responsibility, and family trouble conspire to tarnish Leona’s good intentions.

Mercy is required.



It is all for the bright!

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This one’s dedicated to my darlin’ Clementine, from The Good Shepherd.

With love, Charles Fitzgerald.

Find more NeedtoBreathe!

Pre-order their upcoming Acoustic Live album, which will be released on Nov. 16, 2018.


Get the first volume of my new historical fantasy series, Werewolf Warden… The Good Shepherd today!

St. Lucia “Wait for Love” | Sidewalk Sessions

I can’t believe what I saw yesterday
Too many people trying to walk away
Now I believe that you may disagree
That there’s a reason right in front of me

When are you going to start
Making up your heart?
It is never too late for love to come back
I don’t know where to go
I don’t know who to show
There’s nothing left but to wait for love…

Get St. Lucia!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Books make great gifts. Read my new novel, The Good Shepherd, and travel to 1905 Boston this winter…TGS-Cover-Final-cropped-for-kindle

I Do Not Fear…

Prompt- Write a poem that starts with “I do
not fear”
I do not fear your pain, wrenched from experiences
I do not fear your anger, righteous indignation
I do not fear your laughter, reflected tomfoolery
I do not fear your intellect, mused facts
I do not fear your attraction, biological response
I do not fear your dreams, goals awaiting acceptance
I do not fear your tears, humanity’s glue
I fear your assumptions, walls to empathy
I fear your pride, fists balled to face
I fear your greed, war begetting ownership
I fear your hatred, blind bloody binges
I fear your addiction, puppet strings
I fear your nightmares, prophesied vengeance
I fear your rejection, abandonment at the precipice


It is all for the bright!

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Flowers – Diane Prokop

It’s still Winter, but Spring is on it’s way!

I wrote this song years ago and it still remains one of my favorites. It’s an ironic play on the mantra “everything’s going to be okay.” Okay is pretty subjective. Besides, sometimes it’s not going to be okay. Sometimes that’s good. We are forced to change and grow. This song reminds us of what we can do in the midst of this not-okay-ness. Flower. Grow, wait, look pretty. Survive as long as possible, doing what you were made to do. Everything, including flowers, is temporary.

In Days of the Guardian, the Captain advises Ainsling to do what is necessary and what is possible. In time, she’ll find herself doing the impossible. On my best days, I believe this is true. Do you?

Follow my musical flowers on YouTube and Reverbnation


Happy Lunar New Year!

Shu Rui’s house is not far. There are no sidewalks, but the streets are wide. They’re filled with people because everyone comes home for the fifteen-day celebration of Chinese New Year. It’s The Year of the Tiger, 1998.

I was born in 1989, The Year of the Snake. Everyone says that’s why I talk so much. Grandma always tells me,

Child, you were born under a sign of wisdom. Remember, wisdom is attained by three methods: first, by reflection, which is noblest; second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third, by experience, which is the bitterest.

Learn more about Chinese New Year in The Baiji!

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The Spring Festival / Lunar New Year

“What’s your favorite animal?” I ask her.

“I don’t know . . . a cat?” She shrugs.

“How can you not know which animal is your favorite? Mine is the baiji.”

“The river dolphin? But the baiji are all gone!” Shu Rui says.

“Maybe, but my grandma says the baiji is the Goddess of the Yangtze. She says the baiji will come to visit at special times, like the Spring Festival. Seeing a baiji brings good fortune.”

“Our teacher said the baiji is indignant.”

“Not indignant, silly, endangered.”

February 5, 2019 is the first day of the Lunar New Year (Spring Festival Day). Learn about this celebration and the Chinese River Dolphin in this short story for middle-grade readers, The Baiji.

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