Jennifer Tar Heel Reviews Tiger Drive

Tiger Drive by Teri Case review by Jennifer Tar Heeler

photo by Jennifer Tar Heel

Grateful to Jennifer Tar Heel Reader for her review of Tiger Drive.

I found Tiger Drive to be relatable, vividly real, and written emotionally from the heart; a story of utter despair clashing with hope and faith at every turn.

You can read her full review here as well as reach her website to read all of her helpful reviews. Thanks to Jennifer, my reading list has quadrupled.

There’s No Place Like My Hometown

Vitality Stories

Giving Thanks Tiger Drive

There’s No Place Like My Hometown

Where should I even begin about my day and night in Carson City yesterday?

I returned to Carson Highschool for the first time since 1989 to speak to a creative writing class about writing and then seniors about the Tiger Drive Scholarship, my personal CHS scholarship story, and some tips on essays. The CHS team I interacted with yesterday cares deeply about their students. They are inspiring!

And then last night . . . last night!. . . I did an event with the Friends of Carson City Library, and OH MY. I am so grateful for the people who showed up: parents and siblings of friends from long ago, Tiger Drive residents an alumni, Mr. Tobey‘s family (aka Mr. Hill in Tiger Drive!!), new friends, new readers, and some who came because Karsen is my brother (happens every time).  I remain humbled by the feedback many of them shared about the novel. One woman said “Tiger Drive is powerful.”

Let’s just say I was close to tears more than once, shared hugs galore, and my cheeks hurt from smiling so much.

Thanks for being you Carson City, and thank you Friends of Carson City Library and CHS for having me.


Moving and Traveling and Writing–OH MY!

Vitality Stories

Teri Case by Gretchen Lemay

Teri Case by Gretchen Lemay Photography

Moving and Traveling and Writing–OH MY!

Happy Saturday. Whew!

The last two months have been chaotic. Our house sold after a few days on the market. We started purging, packing, unpacking, purging again, repacking, melting down, crying, asking ourselves how we collected so much unnecessary crap, unburied treasures we thought we had lost, questioned what we should do with thousands of photos, and then asked ourselves, “Okay, where to next?”

That’s right. We sold our house before we knew where we were going. Often times when I tell someone we have no idea where we are moving, they will say, “How adventurous.”

Yes, and crazy.

Since November 2013, we’ve made the following moves:

  • San Diego, CA to Annapolis, MD
  • Annapolis, MD to Seattle, WA
  • Seattle, WA to Ithaca, NY
  • Ithaca, NY to . . . wait for it
So with our house closing on August 9th, we handed over our keys to a lovely family, hopped in our car, and headed to Florida because we knew it would be hot and sunny, and we also didn’t know what else to do. Fortunately, we found a one-month rental on the beach in Siesta Key, Florida. Unfortunately, when we arrived, it was Red Tide. (I’m not going to depress anyone who cares about our world by saying more than that.)

And still, with reservations about Florida’s politics (they don’t suit us), we decided to start house hunting in Florida. I know. We are confused. I mean, we are confusing.

But after all of our moves, we are certain, finally, about a few requirements:

  • We need sun.
  • We need the ocean.
  • We need a walkable community.
  • We need to be near an international airport.
And so we are moving to Clearwater, Florida!

Although Clearwater wasn’t originally on our list, it ended up being perfect for us. We found a spacious, top floor condo with balconies and views. I can walk to stores and ride my bike to the marina. Oh, and did I mention my realtor rescues and releases tortoises and has the smartest rescue dog ever? More on that in a few weeks.

An added bonus is I will now be near two “online” friends whose friendship I have greatly appreciated. In October, I will get to meet, at long last, author Carlen Maddux. Carlen authored A Path Revealed: How Hope, Love, and Joy Found Us Deep in a Maze Called Alzheimer’s. I credit him with the idea of adding a tagline to the cover for Tiger Drive: One family. Too many secrets. Four people want to matter.

And I get to meet Dawn. Dawn was a beta reader of Tiger Drive. And get this– she read it in one day while she was getting treatment at the hospital. When her night nurse came in to give her evening pills, Dawn asked her to come back in an hour because she had to finish my book, and she wasn’t ready to sleep. I can’t wait to give her a big hug for her sacrifice.

Believe it or not, during all of this change, I managed to finish the revision of In the Doghouseand send it to the editor a week early!

So In the Doghouseis now being dog sat by the editor. Now I can concentrate on my launch and marketing efforts. If you know any dog loving bloggers or organizations that might want to support In the Doghouse, let me know (did I mention a cat is involved?). For starters, DogTV has already said they are on-board. I’m ecstatic about this one.

So what should we do now until the condo sale closes on September 27th? Obviously we should go hiking in Italy on the Cinque Terre and roam about Italy for the rest of the month.

I’ll send photos.

As for Tiger Drive, I’m just going to park this humbling message I received from my truly lovely younger sister’s client who read Tiger Drive:

Tiger Drive

What have you been up to lately? Tell me all about it.

Until next time, thanks for being you and for your support.


Tiger Drive Wins Best New Fiction–2018 American Fiction Awards

Winner American Fiction Awards

Tiger Drive wins Best New Fiction – 2018 American Fiction Awards.

Wow, wow, wow! Tiger Drive has won! When I opened the below email, I had to read it several times. Could this be true? Yes, it can! I’ve already called my siblings and mother.

Tiger Drive Wins American Fiction Award

If you’d like to read the press release, click here. The American Fiction Awards recognizes publishing in mainstream, independent, and self-publishing. Please check out the finalists in Best New Fiction. I’ll admit, their books are right up my alley:

Thank you so much for being you. It takes a village to write and publish a book. To prove it, here is a video I made that recognizes everyone in the Acknowledgments of Tiger Drive:

Tiger Drive by Teri Case Acknowledgments

Thanks for being you!

Teri, Award Winning Author (Hee hee)

Want to be in my new book trailer?

Vitality Stories

In the Doghouse by Teri Case

Coming to a Dog Park Near You in 2019

Want to be in the book trailer?

Dear Friend,

I’m working on the book trailer for In the Doghouse: a couple’s breakup from their dog’s point of view.

If you’d like to be in the trailer, please send me a picture of one of the following. You need to own the photo:

  • A photo of you with your pet(s)*
  • A happy photo with your partner
  • An argument or discussion with your partner (feel free to stage this one, please don’t really get in an argument)
  • A photo with a family member
  • A photo of your favorite co-workers or clients**

I’m still a starving artist so you won’t be compensated, but you will get bragging rights, and your name will be in the credits at the end. I may not be able to use everyone’s pictures, but I’m going to do my best. To send the picture, email it to me at or tag me on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter*** And please feel free to share this newsletter with friends.

Need some music to inspire you? Here is the song being used for the trailer of In the Doghouse. It’s called “Loves Gotta Look” by Zoetica. They gave me permission to use it for the trailer!

Loves Gotta Look by Zoetica Music In the Doghouse Teri Case

Click image to listen or click here to go to Zoetica’s site

Until next time, thanks for being you!


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*animal variety only please–nothing pervy 🙂
**co-workers or clients you care about

*** Facebook: @tericaseauthor (Teri Case_Author Page)
*** Instagram: @terilcase *** Twitter: @tericase_author


Books by Teri Case

TIGER DRIVE by Teri Case

In the Doghouse cover art by Olya Vynnychenko

Repurposing My Dad’s and Harry’s Blue Watch


Vitality Stories

Tiger Drive Teri Case Blue Watch

Repurposing A Blue Watch

A second chance

Those of you who have read Tiger Drive will recognize the blue watch above, and you will know that the watch is a symbol of ideals, dreams, life choices, and our inability to turn back time and do things differently. And while Harry is not my dad, Harry and my father had things in common such as alcoholism and a blue watch. My dad wore his blue watch all through my childhood. My mom doesn’t know the story behind the watch, only that he already owned it when she met him while she was bartending at a VFW bar in Lakeville, Minnesota, in the 1960s. In her words, “He was always drunk at the VFW, but he sure was charming.”

In 2011, my youngest sister was going through our dad’s keepsakes box and found the watch. It no longer worked and the blue band had shriveled up and crumbled. At that time, I was writing the first draft of Tiger Drive, and when my sister called to tell me she found the watch, it felt like a sign that I was on the right track because I had already used the sentimental watch in the story. She sent it to me in 2014 as inspiration to not give up and to continue editing my novel. And I’d need it because it took me four more years to publish Tiger Drive.

And then, a month ago, I sent it back to my sister. She has become the “blue watch whisperer,” and she had identified someone else who needed the watch for inspiration: her son, Willard, was graduating from high school and preparing for college. But this time, she had the watch repaired. When the watchmaker pointed her to a display to pick a new band, smack dab in front of her was a blue band. It was a sign she was on the right track with this gift and life transition.

When my sister gave him the watch, he cried. She included this quote:

“If our watches were truly accurate the only thing they would ever say is now.” –Damien Echols, Life After Death

Tiger Drive Blue Watch Teri Case

How do you approach or “keep” time? Or have you ever been inspired by a family keepsake? I’d love to hear more. Email me:

As always, thanks for being you!


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What Happened At My First Tiger Drive Book Event

Vitality Stories

Tiger Drive Scholarship Winners

Tiger Drive Scholarship recipients! Linda and Tobias Arreola with Teri Case. Photo by Gretchen Lemay.

What Happened At My First Book Event

I Still Can’t Believe It

Dear Friends,

On June 8th I hosted my first ever book signing event for Tiger Drive and in my hometown, Carson City, Nevada. It has taken me this long to write about it because not only did the event exceed my expectations, but the people who showed up ready to share their personal stories, feedback, tears, smiles, laughter, and strong hugs have humbled me in all the right ways.

Please, take a few seconds to look at all of these photos taken by photographer, Gretchen Lemay–they truly say a thousand words.

The event took place at Comma Coffee. It was slotted to last two hours but it lasted for three, and for most of that time, the line was either to or out the door. Every time I looked up at the line, I swallowed tears of joy and experienced a beautiful vulnerability. I know–I never knew vulnerability could be beautiful and liberating either. In line were people from different times in my life: childhood friends, parents of friends, high school friends, college friends, coworkers, mentors, teachers, librarians, Tiger Drive Scholarship winners, my family, and some strangers I now consider friends—and they were all laughing, talking to each other in line, and connecting with each other. That night, my life was no longer compartmentalized. All of these people I admire and love were getting to know each other and enjoying doing so!

Robey Willis and Teri CaseTeri Case and Robey Willis, photo by Gretchen Lemay

At one point, I looked up and saw Judge Robey Willis. I used to witness weddings with him each Saturday during college. He always bought me lunch and paid me much needed spending money. He unintentionally planted ideas too: he preferred weddings where the bride and groom were in their mid-twenties or older–I decided not to get married before I turned thirty (I’ve been an over-achiever on this point!). And he always asked me about my homework and then left me to get it done. During my senior year of high school, I worked with his wife, Barbara who has since passed. In Tiger Drive, I pay homage to the team at the Nevada State Department of Personnel by giving Carrie a county personnel department student job where she admires and cares deeply for her co-workers. Robey and Barbara Willis were a huge influence in my life (I credit their daughter Liz for the opportunity to meet them). I cried on the spot when we hugged and he told me he came to tell me he read Tiger Drive and that he was proud of me. I’m tearing up retelling this even now.

Here are just a few more highlights from the night:

  • The friend who told me he was glad I could portray how it feels for a man to be afraid to be his true self and find love, and how horrible it is to reject yourself so that no one else can reject you instead.
  • The woman who stopped reading the book until she could meet me and ask me which biker gang I would use in the book because she believed WJ could be her own father who was in a biker gang in the 1980s and she was nervous about what she might learn. (Note: I used a fiction gang)
  • The book club of teachers who told me they are working and communicating with some students in a new way now that they’ve read Tiger Drive.
  • The several Tiger Drive Scholarship winners from the past few years who showed up to tell me how they are doing, including one who is on the deferred immigration plan and is afraid of what might happen to her family, and one who reminds me so much of myself, I felt we could talk for hours. These young people are our better future! (Note, when two winners tried to buy a book, an anonymous donor bought their copies for them–a portion of the proceeds support the scholarship or I would have too!)
  • The young woman who will graduate from high school next year and plans to apply for the Tiger Drive Scholarship.
  • The several women who told me that Carrie’s story in Tiger Drivewas their story as children.
  • The woman who told me that she related so much to Janice as a wife and mother, she was considering making huge changes in her own life.
  • The friends who shared their journeys with alcoholism and addiction.

These are just a few examples of the two-plus hours of discussions I was privileged to be a part of, and these people have forever changed me as a person and a writer.

And all the while I was having these discussions, I was sandwiched between the line of love and support before me and the many books that generous authors signed and donated for the Tiger Drive Scholarship raffle behind me. And we sold over 100 raffle tickets!! I beg you, please check out these authors, buy their books, and sign up for their newsletters.

Tiger Drive Scholarship Raffle Winner of Nancy J. Nordenson's Finding LivelihoodMy niece, Maggie, won Nancy J. Nordenson’s Finding Livelihood,
photo by Gretchen Lemay

The Smallest Thing by Lisa Manterfield and Mercy Street by Pamela D. TolerTom was the happy winner of The Smallest Thing by Lisa Manterfield
and Mercy Street by Pamela D. Toler, photo by Gretchen Lemay

Oh, and did I mention that Sgt. Daniel Gonzales who advised me on the novel popped in to give me a hug?

Sgt. Daniel Gonzales Carson City and Teri CaseTeri Case with Sgt. Daniel Gonzales, photo by Gretchen Lemay

After the event, friends who stayed behind joined me and my family down the street for a late dinner. We laughed together and shook our heads in wonder over the evening. When my brothers who I dedicated the book to would say goodnight, I started crying again (fortunately my youngest sister had already left because, with all three there, I would have done the full-on ugly cry).

The next morning, I would go and visit my mom at the assisted living center. All week I had been showing up by 7:00 a.m. to bring her a jelly donut*. I showed her the pictures that Gretchen had already sent me, and when I told her that Robey Willis had shown up to tell me he was proud, she cried even harder than me. She said, “I’m not crying because I’m sad. I’m crying because I’m so happy.”

Me too, Mom. Me too.

Bonnie CaseBonnie Case with her “bling”

And now, just as I was proofreading this newsletter (expect to still find typos), I found out that journalist, Teri Vance has written about the event for The Nevada Appealand I found out because my mom sent me an email and then called.

“The Nevada Appeal!” she said. She is so happy. And my brother, K, replied, “Now you’re big time in Mom’s orbit. The Appealis her New York Times.”

To read Teri Vance’s article, click here.(By the way, I really enjoyed talking to Teri. If we would have had more time, I might have told her too much. She is someone you instantly want to tell everything.) A similar article is also posted on

I have so much more to share about the week I was in Nevada, the time I spent with family for my nephew’s graduation, and the wonderful people I was able to meet. Special thanks to Gretchen and April for helping me set up the event and for taking photos. And Jennifer Clarke–no one better could have kicked off the event with me–you had me in stitches from the start (as usual). More next week but until then, thank you so much for being you.


*funny enough, jelly donuts come up a lot in my new book IN THE DOGHOUSE

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Tiger Driveis now available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, Kobo, and Ingram. A portion of the proceeds will help fund the Tiger Drive Scholarship. And if you read Tiger Drive, please consider leaving a review on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Goodreads. Your opinion will help readers decided if Tiger Drive is right for them. Also, please tell your friends about Tiger Drive. Word of mouth is everything.

Tiger Drive by Teri Case

And Coming Soon to a Dog Park Near You in 2019!
IN THE DOGHOUSE: a couple’s breakup from their dog’s point of view
subscribe to my newsletter for updates on availability(if you aren’t already)

In the Doghouse by Teri Case