Sunday, January 24, 2016

Meet the Nurses

I just realized that many of my strong female characters are nurses. I'm not sure what that means, but I'm also not sure it needs to mean anything.

First is Kamisha Jackson. She appears in Four Seconds on the Clock and in The Trip to Helen Gawne. She'll also make an appearance, maybe many appearances in The Head Game. All three are part of the Gulfside City Series.

Kamishaa Jackson is in her fifties. She is relatively short and weighs about three hundred fifty pounds. She lives in Stoneport, Florida, where she is the only medical practitioner for miles around. She has been a nurse practitioner for several decades.

Kamisha's nephew, Antoine Jackson, is Logan Matthews' best friend (Four Seconds). She was instrumental in convincing her brother to move to Stoneport from New York where the school system had Antoine pigeon-holed as learning disabled. On his arrival she ran a few simple exams and learned that he was mostly deaf and dyslexic. Simple surgery restored Antoine's hearing, and the local school district (and Logan, his tutor) addressed the dyslexia. He turned out to be the brightest kid in school.

Kamisha is a power in the Stonegulf African Methodist Episcopal Church. Most of the area's African-Americans belong to the church, with a few attending the local Catholic church. Kamisha's friend, Jake LaPierre (Heen Gawne) and his family attend the church as well. Jake's deceased wife had been one-quarter black, his only daughter is one-eighth black and his grandchildren are one-sixteenth black. They go to to "black" church in any event because it's family tradition and, most importantly, they feel like family at the church.

Kamisha and Dr. E. Percy Bramble, DDS, (Helen Gawne) take care of most of the Stoneport residents' medical needs. For more than fifteen years Kamisha has been having an affair with Dr. Gil Martin, a white retired clinical psychologist. They make an interesting couple: Gil is about five-ten and maybe a hundred fifty pounds.

Kamisha gets help occasionally from physicians in Gulfside City, the nearest population center of any size. These include Logan's uncle's college roommate, Rick, who visits several times a year. Rick (Four Seconds) is a proctologist (and, yes, he's gay, enough with the snide comments). Rick works as a volunteer general practitioner a few weeks a year in the Stoneport Free Clinic.

Kamisha is central to Four Seconds on the Clock. When Logan Matthews comes out as gay he leaves home knowing that his father will disown him. Logan's best friend is Antoine, Kamisha's nephew, and they consider themselves brothers. So, Kamisha is Logan's aunt as well. Logan moves in with her.

When Tommy West, Logan's former best friend and biggest enemy, also comes out his parents order him out of the house. Kamisha offers to take him in as well. And she is instrumental in helping the two young men deal with the aftermath of terrible trauma three years earlier. Tommy calls her "Aunt Scary Lady." Logan and Antoine are in agreement.

Before you jump to conclusions, most of the characters in Four Seconds are straight. It was helpful to the story, athough not critical to it, that Logan, Tommy and Rick all be gay.

If you have any questions for Kamisha, please write to and she will try to answer them.

Next up: Chief Trauma Nurse Cheryl Longfellow of St. Swithin's Hospital in New Orleans.

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