Wednesday, August 16, 2017

The Joy of Writing & Old Friends

What do you do when you have a writing assignment and you have ABSOLUTELY no idea what to do?  Well, may a little bit of an idea.  You have been given a direction, but what you do and how you do it is totally up to you.  It shouldn't be a problem -- I've been assigned stories many times as a journalist and even had to come up with most of my own ideas when writing fiction or non-fiction. But this week provides an entirely different concept.

My chore, my torture--and yet it is also my joy for this week--is to come up with at least a chapter of a fiction novel. (Read the story until now at  novelconcepts1blogspot.com

I need to find nearly one thousand words and they better be good.
The other writers have been telling a wonderful reunion story filled with twists and turns determined by readers. That's a great challenge because we have no clue what we are going to write until that moment when the final vote is cast on which way the story should go.

The story is a reunion story about college friends and it should be so easy for me to write -- considering this weekend I will again have a reunion with three close college friends. We met in my third year of college and we have now been together off and on for 45+ years.  Yes, 45 years. We have been through so much fun, pain and enjoyment. And while our jobs and now our retirements keep us in separate towns and often different states, we still manage to get together at least once or twice a year to drink champagne, eat great dinners, argue, discuss politics and remember those who are no longer with us.
We've toured wineries, visited museums, taken train trips together, or just gone to movies and played crazy word games.  We even had to have our own champagne tasting party.



We've had 40+ years of friendship. Celebrated at weddings, endured funerals. Forty plus years of joy and pain. Yes, some relationships can last that long. I'd post pictures, but some are camera shy and the relationship might finally come to and end. We still always seem to find something new to try. This weekend we are all taking in our first major league baseball game together.  

One final thing -- I often even get story ideas from them.  In fact, I think I will throw open my story dilemma from this week out to them. After all, we can always use help with another reunion story.

In the meantime, please join me next Monday at Novel Concepts to see what new turn the story of Lana and her friends take.






Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Unlocking a Summer Romance

We've reached those lazy days of summer where many people are taking time off for vacation and of course that means needing some great reading material.  I'm always looking for something exciting and new to read and often that means I go looking for the latest releases by some of my favorite authors -- writers like Peggy Jaegar. She is a romance writer who says she loves writing about strong women, the families who support them and the men who can't live without them.

According to Peg's biography, family and food play huge roles in her stories because she believes there is nothing that holds a family structure together like sharing a meal or two or more. Her stories are filled with humor and great characters. She says she likes to write romance because she wants everyone to find their own happily ever after. Growing up the only child of divorced parents she says she longed for a family and that she now enjoys creating that sort of family through her books.

Her latest work is Passion's Palette. 

Talented and witty portrait artist Serena MacQuire is successful in everything but love. Her gift for capturing people on canvas is rivaled only by her fiery and legendary temper. A tragedy from the past keeps her heart securely locked away, preventing any man from getting close enough to claim it.

But Seamus Cleary isn't just any man. After he left his professional football career to become a veterinarian, his bitter wife ended their marriage. Now, as he starts his life over in a new town, love is the last thing he's looking for. The more he tends to Serena's horses, though, the more he realizes her own heart needs tender care and healing as well. 

Will he be the man who finally unlocks and claims her heart?

Let's get an excerpt:
            With a hip resting against the tabletop, he browsed through her paints and brushes, lifting one color pot, then another. "So. You’re an artist."
            She nodded.
            "What do you paint?"
            As he opened and closed the pots, Serena observed his hands, silently assessing the length and width of his fingers. Her mind registered the dexterous movements of each action, the deliberate, studied way his hands performed each task.
            "Portraits, mostly."
            His eyebrows rose. "This is pretty big equipment for a portrait. Where do your pictures hang? In castles?"
             "Three do,” she told him, charmed when his neck reddened. “But this stuff will be for a mural I've been commissioned to do for a hospital."
            His eyebrows lifted. "Impressive. You must be good."
            Allowing a smidgeon of playfulness to creep into her voice, Serena gave him a shrug that rivaled his own. "Better than some. Not as good as others."
            He returned her smile with one of his own.
            Serena’s heart giddyapped. 
Sounds like good reading for the summer!  Here are the buy links and info to contact Peg.
Wild Rose Press 
Website • Amazon • Facebook • Twitter • Goodreads
Thanks Peg for being my guest. Any comments or questions for Peg?

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Settle in with Summer Romance Reading

As a reader I am always on the look out for new romances to read and as a fiction and non-fiction writer I always enjoy discovering different authors and learning their personal stories. Today's guest in My Writing Corner is Jennifer Wilck, who has a new book out and another one coming soon.

Jennifer, when did you realize you wanted to become a writer?

I’ve always wanted to be a writer—I have several in my family, so it was always demonstrated as a viable dream—but I never felt confident enough to pursue it, at least, not for a long time. When I was little, my mom used to encourage me to make up stories in order to help me fall asleep. We were always big readers and as a teen, I was given journals to record my thoughts. Ultimately, I started writing “for real” when my oldest was about six.

Please tell us about your road to publication or how you got published.

My first book was published in 2011. I wrote while my kids were sleeping and when my manuscript was finished, I joined RWA, submitted to contests and queried publishers. Eventually, I found a small publisher who was interested in my work and published two books with them. Since then, I’ve worked with multiple publishers and an agent, but I’ve always had my eye on The Wild Rose Press, having heard great things about them from a variety of writer friends. After working with some fabulous critique partners and honing my craft—a never-ending process—I submitted to TWRP and was lucky enough to have them accept my manuscripts. My first book with them, Addicted to Love, was published on July 21 and my second, In the Moment, will be released on September 1.

Where do you get your story ideas?

I usually get characters that pop into my head and annoy me with conversations until I can write them down. At that point, I let the words sit unless I’m inspired to keep going. If I am, I see how far I can go, how much I can flesh out, and what other ideas come to me. If I can get 5,000-10,000 words going, I suspect I have a story and then I buckle down and put it together. Plus, I have an excellent critique partner who is amazing at helping me with the plot.

Tell us about your latest book. Where did you get the idea for it?

Well, for Addicted to Love, I was actually watching House of Cards, which doesn’t really seem like it’s a good inspiration for a romance, since it’s a dark, political drama. But there was one secondary character who intrigued me and got my mind spinning—what would happen if he did this, if he fell in love, if he that happened? He became the inspiration for the hero in my story, Dan, a former painkiller addict who is a widower raising his daughter and exerts control on all aspects of his life so he doesn’t make any mistakes. Then I came up with Hannah, the heroine, who lives with her grandmother and has a brother who was addicted to hard drugs and wants nothing to do with anyone like that—hello conflict! The two characters have great chemistry together and a teenaged daughter and a meddlesome grandmother provide a lot of comic relief.

What do you like best about your characters in this book?

I love the banter. Hannah is able to find the humor in most situations, which helps Dan to lighten up and enjoy spending time with her, even if he is nervous about her finding out his secret. As the mom of two teenaged girls, I was able to use a lot of my girls’ reactions and outlook to make the teenaged daughter in the story realistic yet fun, especially when it comes to her opinions of her dad dating. And the grandma is a great combination of matchmaker, love and great cooking. So even though there is a serious thread in the book, the majority of the story showcases the humor and hot chemistry between the characters, with a little awkwardness thrown in to make life interesting.

Do you always know how your story is going to end when you start writing?

I usually know the black moment because that’s often one of the scenes that pop into my head initially. And since it’s a romance, I know they’re going to live happily ever after. So then it’s just a question of figuring out how to get them to and out of the black moment.

What would you tell writers who are just starting out that you wish you had known?

Write what you’re passionate about, don’t be afraid of criticism, but don’t automatically assume that every critic is absolutely right. Be objective. Step away from your writing for a while and then come back to it. Remove the “personal offense” from what others say and see if their changes make your story better. And never give up!

Let's get more on Addicted to Love. Here's the blurb:

Dan Rothberg struggled after an accident killed his wife and he nearly lost custody of his daughter. He can no longer allow himself to get attached to anything or anyone. Until he meets Hannah.

Hannah Cohen is a young executive with a meddlesome grandmother and a troubled brother. She’d like nothing better than to find her own Mr. Right, after too many Mr. Wrongs. A sexy older man with a teenage daughter was never in her plans.

As they navigate their relationship through adolescent attitudes and grandmotherly interference, they realize age is just a number and love can be right in front of them. But when the terrible truth of Dan’s former struggles is exposed, Hannah must decide if she can get past his deception and allow love to conquer all.

Buy Links:
The Wild Rose Press: https://catalog.thewildrosepress.com/all-titles/5133-addicted-to-love.html?search_query=jennifer+wilck&results=2
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Addicted-Love-Serendipity-Book-1-ebook/dp/B071HZQS4S/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499096714&sr=8-1&keywords=jennifer+wilck
Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/addicted-to-love-jennifer-wilck/1126454796?ean=2940157486310

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/addicted-to-love-13

How can readers reach you or find you online?

I love talking to readers! Here are my social media sites:

Thank you, Jennifer, for being my guest. Any comments or questions for Jennifer?


Wednesday, July 26, 2017

A Journey to Romantic Supernatural Summer Reading

Time travel romances have always been among my favorite genres to read and I've even a attempted several in my writing. That was what immediately captured my interest in the writing of Beth Trissel. She is the guest today in My Writing Corner. Beth says she lives on a farm in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia surrounded by her human family and furbabies.

She describes herself an an avid gardener and uses her love of herbs and heirloom plants in her writing. She says she is also inspired in her writing by the rich history of Virginia, the Native Americans, and the people who journeyed from far beyond Virginia's borders. She's especially drawn to colonial America and the drama of the American Revolution and she loves ghost stories. In addition to Young Adult and New Adult fantasy romance, she also writes historical, time travel, and paranormal romance, plus nonfiction. Beth, please tell us about your latest work.

Thanks for having me on your blog, Rebecca Grace, to share my new release, Somewhere My Lady (Book 1, Ladies in Time). I’m delighted to be writing time travels again. Not that anyone stopped me before, I just took a wee break. Like years. Now I’m back. History fascinates me, and I enjoy researching different eras, but I also love mixing in fantasy and the paranormal. The time periods in Somewhere My Lady change unpredictably, like the staircases at Hogwarts in Harry Potter. Fun to do. There’s also a poignant depth and mystery to this romance.

Two things that most inspired me were Edith's Theme, the hauntingly beautiful song from the Crimson Peak soundtrack, and my love of old homes. I've lived in them most of my life, and visited plenty. I also love gardening and have sprawling beds filled with heirloom flowers and herbs. Some plants have been here for ages and our farm-house was built in the 1870's. Old homes exude an indefinable sense of place, and are never really empty. Perhaps the spirits of those who once dwelt there come back and visit, or leave a part of themselves behind. I don't know, but I like a good ghost story.

Harrison Hall, the colonial era home in Somewhere My Lady, is loosely based on Shirley Plantation, a magnificent 18th century home, built along the James River in Virginia. In the story, this wonderful manor sized house is a paranormal hot spot, concealing a deadly mystery Hart and Lorna must solve.

Lorna Randolph is hired for the summer at Harrison Hall in Virginia, where Revolutionary-War re-enactors provide guided tours of the elegant old home. She doesn't expect to receive a note and a kiss from the handsome young man who then vanishes into mist.


Harrison Hall itself has plans for Lorna – and for Hart Harrison, her momentary suitor and its 18th century heir. Past and present are bound by pledges of love, and modern science melds with old skills and history as Harrison Hall takes Lorna and Hart through time in a race to solve a mystery and save Hart's life before the Midsummer Ball.~

"Somewhere My Lady is a fun supernatural romance that will have you slipping in and out of the past and future as if you were a spirit yourself." -- Colleen’s Book Reviews

Somewhere My Lady is available from all major online booksellers. In Kindle at: https://www.amazon.com/Somewhere-Lady-Ladies-Time-Book-ebook/dp/B071VTNC7V


Author Links:
My Amazon Author Page where all my books reside:

Thank you, Beth, for introducing uss to Harrison Hall, Lorna and Hart.  This sounds like a great summer read. Any questions or comments for Beth?

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Stepping Back in Time with a Special Hero

Who doesn't love reading about knights and legends and escaping back into the medieval world of the Fae on a hot summer day? That's the kind of reading that always catches my interest. Today we're visiting with award-winning author, Mary Morgan, as she takes us into her special places of old Scotland and Ireland. Mary lives in northern California and says she fell in love with books at an early age. She also says she left her soul in the countries she writes about--Scotland, Ireland and England.

Her latest book from the Wild Rose Press is Quest of a Warrior, and it's sure to please anyone who enjoys the world of dragons and knights with magic powers and a wonderful, powerful hero. She also has a special Rafflecopter drawing going on so watch for it below.


Fenian Warrior, Conn MacRoich, has traveled the earth for thousands of years, guarding the realm between mortal and Fae. His deeds are legendary. Yet, one mistake will force him on a journey to fix a broken time-line. However, on Conn's quest he must face a human female who will eventually bring this ancient warrior to his knees.

When Ivy O'Callaghan inherits her uncle's estate, she never imagines there will be more secrets to unravel, including the one she hides from the world. With the help of a mysterious stranger, she learns to trust and step out of the shadows. However, nothing prepares Ivy when she learns Conn's true identity.

As the fate of the fae weaves a thread around the lovers from two different worlds, will the sacrifices they make lead them to love? Or will their secrets destroy and separate them forever?

I wanted to not only know more about this special world and Conn so I asked to interview him. Conn, tell us a little about your long past and exploits?

Conn arches a brow at the term, exploits. “Only a human would consider my life as lengthy, which is understandable. The deeds in my lifetime are as vast as the stars. The events are memorable and others, insignificant. They were all done, so that your world would continue to move forward in enlightenment.”

What is the one deed you are most proud of accomplishing?

"Saving Ivy from death’s door and making her my wife."

Does anything in particular frighten you?

"As Prince of the Fae and a trained Fenian Warrior, I have none. As a husband and father-to-be, there are two. I’ll leave you to come to a conclusion.”

You’ve been around a long time and done so much. What concerns you now about Ivy and her problem?


Crosses arms over his chest. “I was not aware Ivy has a problem. If there is one, we shall endeavor to solve the issue together. Yet, my concerns for Ivy are in assisting her with her new duties among our people, and the birth of our daughter. I wish I could discuss more, but I fear there are readers out there who have yet to read our tale.”

What draws you to her the most?

“Ivy was the only mortal to see through me and into my soul—beyond the hardened warrior. I was drawn to her the moment I heard her whisper the words, ‘He’s an ancient Celt,’ though I did not fully fathom the meaning of my emotions.
What would you wish for her future?

Conn leans back and smiles. “To always see her joyful. Her smile and love radiates throughout our kingdom—one that steals the breath from me each day. I would not wish any sad days for my wife. She has already endured too much.”

What about your own future? What do you want most?

"To continue to build a stronger bond with the mortal realm, and the Fenian Warriors. A new Order is coming. In addition, I want to maintain peace in both realms. My family is now connected to the mortal world, and this holds a greater meaning to not only my future, but also theirs."

Thank you, Conn, and good luck on your journey! And thank you,  Mary Morgan, for introducing us to Conn and taking us into his world.
Here are the buy links for Quest of a Warrior.
AMAZON:
https://www.amazon.com/Quest-Warrior-Legends-Fenian-Warriors-ebook/dp/B072HPBMDM/
Barnes&Noble:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/quest-of-a-warrior-mary-morgan/1126404360/
Kobo:  https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/quest-of-a-warrior
Apple iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/quest-of-a-warrior/id1231868317?mt=11
The Wild Rose: https://catalog.thewildrosepress.com/all-titles/5086-quest-of-a-warrior.html

And here are the links for reaching Mary.

WEBSITE: 
http://www.marymorganauthor.com
BLOG:  http://www.marymorganauthor.com/blog
TWITTER: 
http://twitter.com/m_morganauthor
FACEBOOK AUTHOR PAGE:
https://www.facebook.com/MaryMorganAuthor/
FACEBOOK:  http://www.facebook.com/mary.morgan.564
GOODREADS:  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8271002.Mary_Morgan
AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE:  http://www.amazon.com/Mary-Morgan/e/B00KPE3NWI/
PINTEREST:  www.pinterest.com/marymorgan50/
INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/marymorgan2/
BOOKBUB: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/mary-morgan

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, July 17, 2017

New! Our Novel Concept Goes Live

As a reader I am always looking for a new book or story to reader and as a writer I'm always looking for a new idea to work on. My newest journey starts today with Novel Concepts and you can come join in the fun by visiting us at NovelConcepts1.blogspot.com

Reuniting with friends for a beach vacation, Lana quickly finds herself with a choice to make. What will she do?  Readers decide so vote now!

Read on to find out more about our project:

Haven't you ever wished as a reader that you wish you could decide what will happen next in the book and then tell the author what to do? Doesn't that sound like a great idea? My sister says she doesn't like the idea. Not only does she want to be surprised, but she says she paid to have the book entertain her, not to have to work on the story herself.  But some readers don't feel that way. Some would like to have a say in what will happen.

What about the author? Wouldn't you love to have another author to work with who will help you when you hit a dry spot or can't decide where to go next with a story? I write by the seat of my pants so I often don't decide what my characters will do until they start doing it themselves. I know I would love to have someone else working on the story as well and adding their thoughts. 

Well, putting both these ideas together, I have joined forces with a group of 8 other writers and we are going to write a story based on what the readers wants. The idea is called Novel Concepts and we started on Monday, July17th.

While one of our talented authors began writing the story, readers, YOU will get to make the choices of what our characters will do and which direction the story will take. At the end of each section you will be given a choice of which direction you want the story to go. We will tally up the score and then the next writer will pick up the tale and move on.

Every Monday, you, the reader, will get a new installment, and again get to make the choice on the storyline.


The writers are nine published authors who write everything from Western, to Fantasy to Mystery and Suspense and of course, we all include plenty of romance in our stories and this will be no different. With a wealth of experience in writing stories we will work hard to make each week a wonderful reading experience.

And then YOU, the reader, get to point us in the direction to go next.

If you'd like to take part and have some fun reading a new storyline every week, we hope you will drop in and read the story and vote on what you want to see happen.

As mentioned it is up and running at Novelconcepts1.BlogSpot.com.  I hope you'll stop by and help us write our story. I don't expect my sister to help decide our story direction, but I know she'll stop by for the entertainment.




Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Summer Fun & Romance In San Diego

We are reaching the heart of the summer reading season with hot days spent indoors with a good book, or sitting out on the cool deck of a mountain cabin enjoying a good hot romance. What's a good summer romance without a trip into the past -- a past romance, I mean.  And bring in special spirits that bring together two lovers, well, again,  that sounds like a perfect way to spend a hot afternoon or cool evening. 

Today's guest in My Writing Corner, Donna Simonetta, brings us a new romance with all the best elements of a fun summer romance read. Donna is a Maryland author who spent most of her life in the business world, got her MLS and worked in a school library. She enjoys travelling but she also enjoys curling up with a good book. 

She is also a writer at heart, which is what she is doing now. She says she enjoys writing contemporary romance and fantasy. Today's featured book,  Angels Fly, is a product of that mix and it sounds like a fun way to spend a summer afternoon.

Two years after her husband’s death, Kelly believes her romantic life is done. Until she reconnects with her girlhood crush on social media, and as fate would have it, he lives across the street.
James is over the whole true-love thing. His grasping ex-wife tore that belief out of him, when she left him for a rich, old man. Then he finds out his first love moved to San Diego too, and their attraction burns as hot as ever.
What they don’t know is that Fate didn’t bring them together – the Guardian Angel Corps did, led by two unlikely Cupids – Kelly’s late husband and Zane, a rough and tumble, 19th century cowboy. When a Fallen Angel decides to tear Kelly and James apart, cherubs and harps aren’t going to cut it, and Zane’s unique skills might be just what they need to get a second chance at their first love.

Want more?  As someone who spent several years enjoying the romantic tug of San Diego, I say let's get an excerpt!

She flashed a bright smile at her old friend,  “I sent a friend request to Susie Davidson, and I want to see if she’s responded.”
“Susie Davidson,” Grace’s voice dripped with disdain, “we didn’t badger you into doing this so you could reconnect with Susie Davidson.”
“Hey, what’ve you got against old Susie? She was an integral part of our nerd squad in high school,” David said. “Right, Kel?” 
When she didn’t reply, he glanced over at his old friend to see her frozen at her computer, all the color drained from her face. “Kel, what’s wrong?”
“I didn’t hear from Susie, but I did get a message from James Flynn,” she whispered.
David jumped to his feet and peeked over her shoulder at the computer screen. “Yummy James Flynn from Rye?”
Grace snickered, “Sounds like a sandwich. I’ll have a Yummy James Flynn on rye. Hold the mayo.”
Kelly and David swung their heads in unison to stare at her.
“What? It’s not my fault you two come from a town named after a bread.”
David shook his head mournfully and intoned, “Californians.”
“Native, baby.”  The blonde woman grinned playfully, “And don’t you New England Yankees forget it.”
“What does he say, Kel?” David asked with interest.
Kelly gulped, “He wanted to get in touch and maybe meet for a drink.”  She twisted her head to look up at David, her eyes huge on her pale face, “He lives here, David. In San Diego.”

This sounds like another fun summer read. If you want to read more about Donna or buy Angels Fly, here are buy links and her contact information:





Thank you, Donna, for bringing us Angels Fly. Any comments or questions for Donna?

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Heat up Your Summer Reading

What's better on a hot summer day than reading a story set in the cold world of a winter ski season?  Well, it might just be a HOT story set on the cold wintery slopes. Either way, you're bound to enjoy the reading.  This week's guest in My Writing Corner is author Stacy Gold and her story, Just Friends. 

Taya Monroe is trying to pick up the pieces of her failed writing career and broken life after walking out on her cheating fiance. The last thing she needs is a serious relationship. The last thing she wants is a fling. Then she runs into an old friend and ski partner--the one man she always wanted who never wanted her. 

Ski Patroller Jordan Wiley is a single dad with zero time or energy for dating. When he reconnects with Taya, his attraction to her is even stronger than before she left him behind for a career in the city. But with a young son to think about, he's determined to ignore his feelings. Again. 

After a magical day on the slopes, a snow storm traps them in an avalanche of chemistry neither can deny. Will their friendship survive the weight of their passion or will they surface as more than friends?


 Well, of course these two characters caught my interest so I wanted a chance to question them personally. Let's hear more from Taya and Jordan:

Taya , it sounds as though you’ve been going through a rough period.   What would make you happiest at the moment?


Honestly, at this point it wouldn’t take much. A new job. A new friend. A sense that maybe I haven’t totally screwed up my life and career. Little things, you know?
All I wanted today was a fun day skiing in the mountains with my family. One day when I could forget about rebuilding my career and my life, and how much I owed my sister and her husband for taking me in. Unfortunately, my ski day was cut short abruptly when my brother-in-law injured his knee.

Then again, if Dan hadn’t gotten injured, I wouldn’t have run into my old friend, Jordan Wiley.

What about this sudden re-connection with your old friend, Jordan? 

I’ve been through a lot lately, between leaving my ex, and moving across the country and into my sister’s basement. I needed to make those changes, but it’s been a lonely journey. I could really use a good friend.

Jordan was a great friend when we both lived in Jackson Hole. We skied countless days together, and stayed up late talking about everything under the sun. We shot pool, cooked dinner, and enjoyed each other’s company.

Of course, when I saw him again, the connection between us still buzzed in me like high-tension power lines. Same as always. So powerful I couldn’t understand how, or why, he never felt it too.
Even if he did, which I doubt, Jordan isn’t some random hot guy I can use as a rebound.

Not that I want one of those either. And crushing on any guy is a distraction I don’t need.
I compartmentalized my visceral attraction to him back then. I can do it again now. Tomorrow is going to be an awesome day skiing with a good friend. Nothing more. And that’s enough.

Do you ever hope to fall in love again?

Again? I’m not sure I’ve ever really been in love. I thought I was in love with my Gabe. But it’s been six months since I left him, and I can’t even remember why I was attracted to him in the first place. Though I definitely remember why I left.
If I ever do fall in love, I don’t expect fireworks and a princess dress. I just want to something real. I want to like and respect them as much as I love them, and I need to know they feel the same about me.

What kind of man would you like?

Right now, I don’t know what I want… Other than to spend time getting to know myself, and getting my life back on track.

But if there’s one thing I learned in my last relationship, I’m never dating another man who doesn’t ski or snowboard. Being in the mountains, floating through powder with nothing but the sound of my skis sliding through the snow, laughing on the chairlift with friends—that is a critical part of who I am, and I ignored it for too long because of my ex.

I won’t make that mistake again. Not with skiing, or anything else that’s important to me.

Let's find out more about Jordan. Tell us a little about your life since you last saw Taya?

Let’s see…About six months after Taya left Jackson Hole, I decided it was time for me to move back to Washington, where I’m from.

I spent a couple seasons on ski patrol full time at Emerald Mountain. Then I had a kid, and things changed. I married his mom and moved back to Tacoma. Got a job as a firefighter. Got divorced.
These days I’m a single dad, full-time firefighter. And I volunteer part-time on ski patrol at Emerald, for free season passes—plus free lessons for Peyton. I don’t have much time for a social life, but he’s an amazing kid, so it’s worth it.

How did it feel to meet up with Taya again? Wow. I don’t know. Amazing. Crazy. Awesome. Confusing. I hadn’t heard from Taya Monroe since she left Jackson eight years ago. But the sound of her voice still made my heart clench. And the sight of her round ass still made me hard.
Not that I have any right to think about Taya that way. I’m not twenty-four any more. And Taya isn’t some ski bum college girl I can screw then never see again. We’re friends. And that’s all we’d ever be. That’s all that makes sense.

Back in our Jackson Hole days, I would’ve loved to have been more. Except I’d been smart enough to know Taya was special and I was a mess after Lexi and I broke up. So I’d been a good boy. Done the honorable thing. Then watched her walk right out of my life. Like a f’ing idiot.
I’m not stupid enough to lose her again, though. That’s why I invited her skiing tomorrow.

Do you hope you’ll see Taya again after tomorrow?  Sure. I’d like it if we could be friends again, ski together, maybe meet up for a beer. It’s been a long time since I spent quality time with another adult outside of work. As much as I love Peyton, a man can only take so much Bob the Builder.
I need a friend, and Taya was a great friend. Game for anything. She always supported me, saw the best parts of me, even when I didn’t.

Would you like your friendship to become something more? 
No. Yes. Maybe.
No. I don’t have time for relationships, and I’m not the kind of guy a woman like her goes for anyway. She’s smart. A writer. Went to college. She’s not interested in a guy like me. With no career. No education.

If I make a move and she rejects me, our friendship will be toast. Not to mention my ego. I couldn’t take either of those. Plus, I have to think about Peyton. He doesn’t need to get attached to someone who might not stick around. Or see me heartbroken and depressed. It’s better, easier, if we’re just friends.

Want to read more? I know I do!  Visit Stacy and her characters at 


Thank you, Stacy, for bringing us Taya and Jordan to make our hot summer days even hotter! We've heard from the characters, now do you have any comments or questions for Stacy?

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Cool Summer Reading and Research

The first blast of summer heat really hit this week in Colorado and much as it may get me down, it also brought new energy for writing and for reading. Growing up in a small town on the Colorado plains before every house had air conditioning meant we were always looking for the coolest place we could find. Often that turned out to be the downtown library, so I spent at least one afternoon a week there getting fresh reading material or just sitting in the cool air before the long walk home.


This past weekend took me on a research trip to southern Colorado and while the heat was crushing, the experience was uplifting and invigorating because it included a stop at one of my favorite places -- an old library. Learning about family roots, the Wild West, ranching, the world of cowboys and the like is always a fun experience, but doing it in the cool of a library while the temperature is rising outside makes for an even sweeter experience. When you spend so much time inside writing, it can be fun to also do it in a place where research is quickly at hand.
       My research was also very interesting and I will soon be putting that into a book I am working on.  Imagine the story of a young sheepherder of the 1870s who is suddenly confronted with this hyper visitor from the 2000s? Quite a complication, right?  And imagine that person from the present suddenly having to deal with that summer heat in Southern Colorado without air conditioning or all the modern tools of today.  I won't go beyond that with my story idea, but it's something I've wanted to write for a while.

I love setting stories along the plains of southern Colorado or northern New Mexico. One of my first romances, Home Fires Burning, was set in the area not too far from where I was visiting, and we had time to take a drive through that area while we were there.  If you're looking for a fun summer read, you might try the romantic story of Bonita and her cowboy, Max.

"I'm going to marry that boy someday."
Little Bonita Dominguez made that pledge the first time she saw Max Cameron. Now it's about to happen, but nothing is going the way she once dreamed. Carrying a secret she has kept since she left the family ranch ten years ago, she would prefer to be back in California where she has built a new life--a life that doesn't include Max. 

Now a chic, sophisticated entrepreneur, Bonita certain isn't the same playful girl Max remembers from his past. For the past ten years he has devoted his life to his ranch. Does he have room in his heart for Bonita? Does she have the courage to admit the truth about her life to him
Buy link:

Enjoy your reading! And don't forget those libraries for a cool way to spend the day with any book you might want to read or use for research!


                                                                         


  

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Fun Stories for Summer Reading

This summer has started off too quickly for me. There are so many things going on, and already I have a summer trip coming up. Of course that means I need some good reading material for either sitting around the pool or while I am waiting for transportation. Enter an anthology that grabbed my interest immediately... on so many levels. The title, Hunks to the Rescue, had me wanting to start reading right away, even before my trip.

Fantasizing about being rescued by a red-hot hunk? Indulge in this box set of alpha rescuers with a delicious talent for romance. 18 stand-alone novellas from New York Times & USA Today bestselling and award-winning authors will steam up your nights and leave you begging for more. Whether the hunk you lust for is military, a firefighter, first responder, undercover agent, cowboy, bad boy mafioso, or that sexy, everyday guy who plucks you from danger only to kiss you senseless, this bundle has your hero.

18 hunks. 18 heart-pounding rescues. Brand-new stories. 

I don't know about you, but I am more than ready to dive in! 
One of the authors in the anthology, Katie O'Sullivan, has been a guest in My Writing Corner before so knew I was in for some good storytelling.  Katie is a recovering English major who lives on Cape Cod. She says living in the area near the Atlantic influences everything she writes. She specializes in romances and adventure for young adults, but sometimes, like so many of us, she likes to spread her wings and try other genres.

And that brings us to her story in Hunks: Breaking the Rules. 

Jake Campbell hates rules. Undercover to stop a drug ring at a posh Cape Cod resort, he can’t resist the fiery head chef, Abbie Duncan. She may be on the suspect list, but he can’t keep his hands to himself. With a rising body count, he must keep Abbie safe…but can he trust her with his jaded heart?

Let's get a quick excerpt:

Recognition jolted through Abbie like an electrical surge. Whatever she was about to say to the captain evaporated from her mind while she stared into the most gorgeous blue eyes she’d ever seen.
What w as the hot blond god from the bar doing in her boss’s office?
Her first thought was that he’d tracked her down, but she quickly dismissed the idea. They hadn’t even spoken last night, something she’d regretted all the way home. She cleared her throat and was about to introduce herself when Captain Nickerson interrupted.
“Abbie, I didn’t realize you’d already met my, uh, nephew. He’s on Cape looking for a job. We were discussing the possibilities with John.”
She furrowed her brow and dragged her eyes away from the depths of the blue pools. “I didn’t know you had any nephews besides my brother, Uncle Charlie.”
Nickerson chuckled and twisted his silver watch band. “Jake’s dad is an old family friend, just like your dad and me, Abigail. When the boy needed to get out of Boston for the summer, his dad requested my help.”
Her eyes slid back over to Jake, appraising him. He looked like he was about her age, give or take a few years. Strong jawline, sculpted lips, wide shoulders, capable looking hands… she drank him in from top to bottom, every nerve ending in her body kicking into overdrive. Well-dressed and clean shaven, he certainly didn’t look like some punk kid whose father needed to call in favors to find him a job. And those eyes… she dared another glance at his face and found him looking straight at her, amusement twinkling within that sea of blue. She could happily drown in eyes like those. She wondered whether he was seeing anyone. Not that she’d had much time to date recently but for the right guy she could make time. Maybe. Her gaze slid along angular cheekbones to the scruff on his jawline… yeah, she should definitely carve out some time to get to know this guy.
She wondered what those sculpted lips would taste like, how they would feel on the sensitive skin along her neck… her cheeks blazed anew at the sudden and intimate direction of her thoughts. Nerves jangling, heart suddenly beating faster, she almost missed the rest of what Uncle Charlie was saying.
“…and at least now he’s learned his lesson about making time with the owner’s daughter. Unfortunately, come to find out the man has unsavory connections so we all felt it would be safer for Jake to make himself scarce for a few months. Thanks for offering him a position in the kitchen, John.”

Her eyes widened as she processed the meaning behind the words. “Wait a sec, Uncle Charlie. Let me get this straight. You want to hide a playboy who can’t keep it in his pants at work… hide him from the mob… and put him on my kitchen staff?” 

If you are as ready to buy as I am, Hunks has just been released and here is the website with lots of nice offers as well as the Buy Links:

https://hunkstotherescue.com/

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Hunks-Rescue-Contemporary-Romance-Novellas-ebook/dp/B06XNQ583Y
B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/hunks-to-the-rescue-margo-bond-collins/1125960767?ean=2940154259252
KOBO: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/hunks-to-the-rescue

24symbols: https://www.24symbols.com/book/x/x/x?id=2049791

Thanks, Katie, for telling us about your new story and introducing the anthology. Any comments or questions?

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

A Summer Romance from the Past

Summer is on its way and there is nothing like a good romance to heat up the days even more!  This week we travel to the highlands of Scotland for a romance that introduces two wonderful characters. The guest in My Writing Corner today is Jean M. Grant.

She is a scientist, part-time education director and a mom. Currently living in Massachusetts, she says she draws from her interests in history, science, the outdoors and her family for inspiration. She also enjoys writing non-fiction articles for family-oriented and travel magazines and has an aspiration to write children's books in addition to her novels.

In 2008, she visited Scotland, the land of her daydreams and she found it breathtaking so it is no surprise that she has set her latest book there. The title is A Hundred Kisses, and it has just been released by The Wild Rose Press.

Two wedding nights. Two dead husbands.
Deirdre MacCoinneach wishes to understand her unusual ability to sense others’ lifeblood energies…and vows to discover if her gift killed the men she married. Her father’s search for a new and unsuspecting suitor for Deirdre becomes complicated when rumors of witchcraft abound.


Under the fa├žade of a trader, Alasdair Montgomerie travels to Uist with pivotal information for a Claimant seeking the Scottish throne. A ruthless baron hunts him and a dark past haunts him, leaving little room for alliances with a Highland laird or his tempting daughter. Awestruck when she realizes that her unlikely travel companion is the man from her visions, a man whose thickly veiled emotions are buried beneath his burning lifeblood, Deirdre wonders if he, too, will die in her bed if she follows her father’s orders. Amidst magic, superstition, and ghosts of the past, Alasdair and Deirdre find themselves falling together in a web of secrets and the curse of a hundred kisses…

Naturally I wanted to interview these fascinating characters.
Deirdre, please tell us about your life and your past.

Well, my past…my mother died when I was young. My father keeps arranging marriages for me and my husbands, well…I’d rather not say. I just pity the man he chooses next.

What is your unusual “gift” and what frightens you about it?

Just between us because I could be cast out as a witch and my father’s lands taken away from him, our clan ruined…but I can feel the lifebloods of people. The lifeblood is a person’s aura, their essence, their emotions. As much as Da pretends I don’t have this power, he uses it to his own advantage when the unscrupulous come to Hall.

How has it helped you or hurt you?

I fear that my ability to sense life has the opposite effect on my lovers, my husbands. I feel cursed. It has helped me weed out the righteous from the unjust though. I know who to steer clear from. In fact, there is a lifeblood so evil, so cold and deathly that emanates from an evil Scottish baron; it incapacitates me.

What do you wish most for in your life now?

I yearn to travel to the isle of Uist to learn more about my ability from my mother’s people, the Ancients of the isles. (sigh) And to find out why my husbands keep dying.

What are your feelings about this strange new man who has come into your life?

This man has a red hot lifeblood unlike any I’ve felt before. He baffles me. I sense there is more to his past than he lets on, but I find myself unable to escape his touch, his kisses, his presence…

Thank you, and now, Alasdair,  what about your past and what you want in life? 

I’d rather not talk about my past. My mother’s dead. Died at the stake due to my father’s delusions and fears. Can we just move on to the next question?

What about this new woman who has appeared in your life?

She’s enchanting. There’s just something about her that mystifies me. She’s feisty, determined, and I feel this pull to her that almost seems surreal or predestined. She’s unlike the ladies I’ve met in court.

What draws you to her or frightens you about her?

She seems to know more about things and people than she lets on. It’s like she has this extra sense to know or feel things. It perplexes and scares me. Like I am under a witch’s spell or something. But I don’t believe in such nonsense

Thank you both! We'll have to read the final answers in A Hundred Kisses.
Here are the buy links:
Links on TWRP:


And here is how you can reach Jean:
Twitter: @JeanGrant05

Thank you, Jean, for introducing us to these great characters.  Any comments or questions for Jean?