As a child I wanted to save the planet, but the problems seemed so large, so many.  I am one of ten children and my father attempted to calm me by telling me not to try to save the entire world, but instead to light one candle.  I was too young to understand the wisdom of that advice. But now I do.  In modern parlance it is “Think globally.  Act locally.”

The problems of the environmental crisis seem sometimes overwhelming.  It’s easy to tune out.  To give up. Please don’t! Never before has it been so important for each person to ask: What can I do, right here, right now, to make a difference? How can I help?

Each book I write is my way of lighting one candle.  I use my books to bring awareness to the beauty, fragility, and threats facing our planet.  It started with THE BEACH HOUSE (Book 1 in the The Beach House Series).  In this novel I shared my love of loggerhead sea turtles and my experiences as a member of the Island Turtle Team in the Lowcountry of South Carolina.  I’m still a “turtle lady” today, and loggerheads will always be my first love in the Lowcountry wildlife.

Since then, I’ve lit candles for monarch butterflies (THE BUTTERFLY’S DAUGHTER), the native sweetgrass plant,(SWEETGRASS), wild American shrimp (LAST LIGHT OVER CAROLINA), Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Lowcountry Summer Series), mountain trout (TIME IS A RIVER) and migrating shorebirds (BEACH HOUSE FOR RENT) to name a few.

We all have the power to light one candle.  It doesn’t have to be a big project to make a positive difference in our world.  If  you recycle today, you lit one candle.  If you stop using plastic straws, you lit one candle.  If you turned off the lights of your house, you lit one candle.  Put all our lights together and we can create a powerful beam of enlightenment that will help preserve the diverse beauty of our planet for generations!

On that note, I’m kicking off a fun campaign with my readers. #LightOneCandle.  Each week on my FacebookTwitter, and Instagram pages, I’ll highlight people I know who are lighting a candle. But, I want to hear from you too. What can YOU do you do to light one candle? 

Each week I will select one reader’s suggestion to highlight and will offer her/his choice of one of my books as a thank you. 

Share your thoughts, photos or videos and please include the hashtag #lightonecandle.   I hope this will be a fun and inspiring conversation. Together, we will be illuminating!


  1. Leslie Schuck on October 5, 2018 at 9:27 am

    Our state was devastated by Hurricane Florence and I am lighting a candle by helping those who lost so much. I am cleaning out my closet and donating to the shelters for those who still cannot return home. I have donated to the American Red Cross and other organizations to help those affected try to rebuild their lives. I have worked together with a local organization to fill a truck of cleaning supplies, food, water and other supplies to be sent to the areas deeply affected by this hurricane. My candle is shining bright and my heart is full.

    • Mary Alice Monroe on October 9, 2018 at 12:30 pm

      Yes, you are lighting a candle through your generosity. Thank you for all you are doing to serve others and spread the light, Leslie. #LightOneCandle

  2. Elaine Benner on October 5, 2018 at 12:44 pm

    Habitat for birds and butterflies, bees is very important to our family. During the winter months evergreen shrubs provide a safe place for birds during our fierce snow storms and below freezing temps. We feed the birds like everyone else and many of our ornamental trees have berries to give them nutrition. Spring and summer we plant as many flowers as we can to attract and feed hummingbirds, bees and butterflies. In return, we are entranced by the beauty of nature as they fly around our home.

    • Mary Alice Monroe on October 9, 2018 at 12:29 pm

      Nature rewards you when you take care. Thank you for all that you do for the wildlife right in your backyard! Great comment, Elaine.

  3. Barbara Vollen on October 5, 2018 at 8:25 pm

    Volunteer at your local animal shelter and while you’re there be sure to check into animal fostering or better yet adoption!

    • Mary Alice Monroe on October 9, 2018 at 12:28 pm

      Yes! A wonderful and important way to #LightOneCandle. Thank you for your comment, Barbara!

  4. Dee Clark on October 7, 2018 at 11:10 pm

    I #lightonecandle to you Mary Alice, you are my inspiration❣️ You have instilled the love of reading in me❣️ I am constantly spreading the word of your books to whoever I can❣️ I go to used book stores or libraries and purchase all of your books they have and then I gift them to friends who are willing to read them hoping I can get them hooked on your novels just as I am❣️You are truly a wholesome person as I can attribute that to when I was fortunate enough to meet you at your book signing in Charleston, SC July 28, 2016❣️ Your hospitality was above and beyond❣️ I am so looking forward to your next release “Summer Guests”❣️ You again will #lightonecandle❣️

    • Mary Alice Monroe on October 9, 2018 at 12:27 pm

      You are so special, Dee. Thank you for your kind comment.

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