Posts Tagged ‘rescue mission’

My Latest

December 18, 2019

cover jpegMy latest novel is now published and available on Amazon, both in paperback and in ebook format. Those Who Seek is the third in my Rescue Mission series, following Those Who Hope and Those Who Dream.

Combined, I hope they tell the story of drug addiction.

Those Who Seek is my favorite of the three books, because  Elvis, the main protagonist, is a funny, off-the-wall character. There is nothing  funny about his meth addiction, but Elvis is a lovable person tormented by drugs. Here’s the story synopsis:

Elvis Sebastiano’s father was “lost at sea” when Elvis was only ten. Left to himself by a grieving mother, Elvis drifted into drugs and crime. By the time his mother emerged from her fog, he was in prison.

Now almost forty, Elvis attends his mother’s memorial service. A colorful, funny meth addict, he is two years sober, but feels the shadow of a relapse hanging over him. Elvis got clean after the firestorm that swept into Santa Rosa two years before; that night galvanized his desire to hang on to life. Now he hopes that connecting to his past will enable him to get back on the path.

After the service, Elvis is approached by a stranger who claims to be his father. This launches Elvis into an adventure, untangling an eccentric family history. His addiction throws him down time after time; with the help of his partner, Angel, of AA and church, he stands up again while the mystery of his family unwinds with increasing, bewildering complexity.

There may still be time to get all three books for Christmas, but if not, they make a wonderful New Year’s present.

Here’s the link for Those Who Seek:

Have a very Merry Christmas!

Big Day!!!

November 2, 2018

Today I’m celebrating the publication of Those Who Dream, the second of my rescue mission novels. It’s now available at, and will be on Kindle shortly.

The series was inspired by my home-town rescue mission’s drug-and-alcohol rehab program. As a volunteer, I get to know men in the program extremely well. They are all addicts. Many of them have been homeless. Many have criminal backgrounds. Many have become my good friends. It’s been a fascinating, eye-opening experience for me, exposing me to worlds I did not know. I’m writing these novels to offer you entrée, too.

You might expect a grim and dark world, but that’s not how I experience it. There’s a lot of humor, a lot of hopefulness, a lot of personality. The men in the program have come out of darkness into the light—and they are trying like mad to stay there. They fight against powerful addictions, and all the problems that addiction has created.

Those Who Dream focuses on the staff who make the mission possible. Many of them have come out of addiction themselves. The main character in Those Who Dream has suffered other losses, and struggles to find hope again.

Kent Spires heads the drug and alcohol rehab center, but he stands to be fired if he can’t turn around the finances. Once before he lost his family, his job, his sense of self—and now he fears losing them a second time. He is isolated and lonely. He barely knows his adult children. Then Kent meets Meg. She’s a strong woman who picked herself up from a divorce, started a business, and created a happy life. She’s not sure she’s interested in Kent, but she’s willing to give him a try. Then Kent’s ex, the mother of his children, is brutally assaulted. Kent and Meg and Kent’s children meet at the hospital, where Alice is in a coma and not certain to live. As Kent goes searching for the homeless man he suspects of assault, Meg studies each isolated member of Kent’s family, wondering whether she wants anything to do with them.

Those Who Dream is a love story set against the disappointments of modern life and the challenges of drug addiction. It’s a story of second chances, showing the strange juxtapositions of conservative faith meeting liberal culture in the Sonoma wine country.

I hope you’ll buy a copy! Here’s the link. If you do read it and like it, I’d be grateful if you would spread the word. The best way to do that is to write a review for Amazon.

If you’d like to start with the first novel, Those Who Hope, here’s a link for that. I’m already at work on the third novel in the series, Those Who Seek.


Those Who Hope

November 21, 2017

Today is a big day for me: my novel Those Who Hope is finally released. You can buy it on Amazon ($13.99) or Kindle ($4.99). I hope you’ll  read it and give copies to all your friends and family for Christmas. If you do read it and like it, could you do me a favor and review it on Amazon? Those who know about these things say that has a big impact on spreading the word. 

Also, if you are really excited you can post on Facebook about it. Much appreciated!

Those Who Hope is the first in a series of novels set in a rescue mission drug and alcohol rehabilitation program. I’ve tried to capture the intersection of a very conservative Christian program (the rescue mission); the anarchy of addiction and homelessness; and the liberal environment of California wine country. Conflicts that speak to our times!  I’m planning to write at least 3 books in the series. In fact, I’m in the process of re-writing the second one right now, and hope to publish it early in the new year.

I sent out some pre-pub copies, and here’s what people said:

The stories of “bluff, leathery, riotous realities” in this book are riveting. Maybe they’ll move us into our own acts of compassion. —Luci Shaw, Writer in Residence, Regent College

I treasure books that make me laugh and books that make me cry. This novel by Tim Stafford did both. It offers unsentimental hope: the true craziness of the gospel. —John Wilson, Editor, Books & Culture (1995-2016)

The thing I love most about these characters is that they seem real. They are ordinary, everyday people, with the same flaws I observe all around me–and in myself. And now these characters are in my mind, and I can’t quit thinking about them. Joyce Denham, Author, Dragon Slayers and Secrets of the Ancient Manual Revealed

An emotional roller-coaster ride that is a must-read for anyone concerned about the growing problem of homelessness in America  – and the challenges, spiritual and otherwise, that face those trying to do something about it.” —Paul Gullixson, Editorial Director, The Press Democrat

Many of us, walking down a city street, try to avoid the eyes of the homeless. Those Who Hope allows us to look in the eyes of these men and see lives with humor, dignity, sorrow, and even joy. —Dean Anderson, Author, Bill the Warthog Mysteries

Tim Stafford’s beautifully layered story will keep you reading, but long after you finish, it will keep you thinking.” —Scott Bolinder, Executive Director, Institute For Bible Reading

I find my thoughts returning, as the days pass, to all the novel’s characters. Here are characters real enough to be lost and, in good time, found. —Peter Lundstrom, Author, God: The Short Version

 The descriptions in scene after scene just grabbed me. A sharp-eyed view from a master storyteller into a world of addiction, loneliness and hope. Robert Digitale, Author, Horse Stalker and Blaze and Skyfire