Today is Christmas Day, and it is best spent relaxing with friends and family, enjoying laughter, food, gifts and games. Beyond these satisfying activities, it is also the perfect time to reflect on your accomplishments, goals and… More
Whew! I made it out of LA and landed home with a bag full of books, new connections and a whole lot of inspiration. As a first-time attendee at the 2017 InD’Scribe Author/Reader Con, I was apprehensive, curious and completely excited to be a finalist and participate in a live convention with other authors and readers.
So, did I win? Nope. But making it as a finalist was pretty darn thrilling nevertheless. I had a fantastic weekend, dressing up as a Renaissance princess, getting books signed by authors, and meeting countless industry professionals. What fun!
I enjoyed the workshops of course, learning plenty along the way. The evenings were a hoot, mingling with other costumed party-goers, and the red carpet? Oh. My. Splendid.
I plan to attend next year (hopefully as a finalist/winner) and re-connect with people I met and make new acquaintances. To borrow InD’Scribe’s tagline, I really did ‘Fall into the World of Extraordinary’.
As an author, I’ve been asked many times, “What makes you want to write?” Hmmm . . . good question! I’m pretty sure most authors write first and foremost because they feel a story bubbling beneath the surface. Often, following an encounter (or a memory resurfacing), a character takes shape, along with the roots of a setting and plot. We water and feed this precious seedling, sitting at the computer as we watch our story grow. This passion is similar to a professional athlete, who plies the track or the ski hills, in all weather, taking risks and spending time and money, pursuing something they love. Writing is the same. It’s tremendously hard and often singly focused. The rewards, though infrequent and hard to obtain, are wonderful, serving to reinforce that what we’re doing is worth it.
Authors set their individual goals and I had mine set from Day One. Here are my past, present and future goals with regards to writing:
- Get published.
- Become a finalist or win an award.
- Join a professional writers’ group.
- Attend a writer/reader conference.
What’s that you say? What about #’s 5 and 6? Well, some things are meant to be kept secret!
My list of goals may look similar to yours, or somewhat different. What’s important to note is my journey has been long, in accordance with most authors I know. Any amount of success or recognition with writing does not typically happen overnight. But most authors I know write not for the recognition as much as they do for the sheer necessity of putting stories to paper.
Goal #1 was finally reached after a long journey (literally and figuratively) and a year of submissions. My first manuscript took over a year to write and that moment when Soul Mate Publishing notified me that my manuscript had been accepted was like falling over a cliff into a dream world. Those of us who have achieved this realize the degree of determination and hard work involved.
Goal #2 has been a dream come true. One of my books (Hands Full Of Ashes) made it as a finalist in the 2016 TRR Readers’ Choice Awards and my time travel romance, A Time For Love In Paris, is a finalist in the 2017 RONE Awards. My novella, The Snow Bird (included in the anthology Sizzle In The Snow: A Soul Mate Christmas Collection), became a Night Owl Review Top Pick and a lucky member of Amazon Canada’s Top 100 Anthologies.
Goal #3 occurred when I decided to apply to be a member of the RWA.
Goal #4 will become reality this Fall when I venture to Burbank, California to attend the 2017 RONE Awards. Down the road, I hope to attend more conferences.
Goals #5 and 6? Who knows. I’m still waiting . . . and writing!
Writing has been evolutionary for me, and over time, I’ve learned a tremendous amount from the editors (and fellow authors) at Soul Mate Publishing. It’s true what they say, ‘a good editor is worth their weight in gold’.
As I continue to strive for my goals, I hope you reach your goals with writing, and know that with hard work and determination, you’ll eventually succeed.
It’s been too long since my last blog, and so much has happened lately! Like many of you, I’ve struggled with juggling several things at once and have learned a great deal about compartmentalizing my life. In addition to running a household with a husband and two lively teenagers (and a couple of pets thrown in), managing and owning a successful design business, and paddling alongside a crew of dragon boaters, I’ve kept up my writing with lots of results! Writing is a labour of love, but the truth is, it’s often labour with little love. But as any author knows, the act of writing can’t be easily separated from the writer. It’s in our blood. I admit, however, that keeping a balance in my frenetic life is difficult, but I’ve got a tremendous amount of energy and have always been goal-oriented.
First off, I’m so thrilled that my manuscript, Concealed Love, has been accepted for publication with Soul Mate Publishing! I can’t wait to introduce you to Brooke Anderson, a young, determined heroine with a lot of challenges thrown in her path. This story was inspired by previous trips to San Francisco, and the footprint of the city has always mesmerized me (think Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman’s Wharf, Alcatraz Island, Nob Hill, and so on) and fueled my desire to write a romantic suspense amidst this historical, urban setting. I look forward to sharing the cover release with you.
Secondly, my time travel romance, A Time for Love in Paris, is a finalist for the 2017 RONE Awards happening this October in Burbank, Los Angeles, and (hands clapping enthusiastically) I’ll be there in attendance! Hosted by InD’Tale Magazine, this is a prestigious, industry-recognized award to be nominated for and I can’t wait to mingle with other authors and readers. I’ll be signing copies of my book, and giving away some Paris-themed gifts for readers. You’ll fall in love with Elise Sutherland and her whirlwind romance with the artist Michel, set against the backdrop of turn-of-the-century Paris.
What else? Along the way, as I’ve published my novels with Soul Mate Publishing, I’ve had the chance to make the acquaintance of some amazing authors. These are people committed to great writing, and who also have lives behind the scenes. Some of these authors are young parents, others are retired, some are professional lawyers, teachers and doctors by day. One thing we all have in common, no matter where we are from, is the pursuit of writing that next novel as we sit by our screens and check the novel rank of our current releases. Writing is a passion, a job, and for most of us, a joyous obsession. We continue writing because it’s fun, or we feel the need to, or we’re faced with a character that just won’t leave our minds until we begin the process of constructing a storyline, giving life to this character. But there’s also the social side of things, sharing new releases with other authors, celebrating their successes as we hope for our own, and bouncing advice and tips off each other. It’s a community of like-minded people.
One of the first authors to host me, Samanthya Wyatt, is featuring past guest authors on her blog, and I invite you to stop by her website, where you’ll have the chance to view a host of authors and their books and win a free e-book of mine!
Here’s Samanthya’s link:
I hope your summer brings as much adventure and happiness as I expect mine will this year! With my summer earmarked for racing, wedding design, travel and of course writing, I’m sure it’ll be over before I know it!
Yippee! I am thrilled to share with you the news that my latest release, A Time for Love in Paris, is a finalist in the prestigious RONE Awards! Join me and several authors at the reader/author con/RONE Awards Gala, happening October 12-15, 2017 at the Los Angeles Burbank Marriott Airport hotel. This event is sponsored by InD’Tale Magazine.
I’ll be offering signed books, and gifts, while I hob-knob with readers and other authors. This 3 day event promises a whole lot of fun and excitement for writers and readers alike, culminating in the final gala on Saturday, October 14th.
You can purchase your tickets at http://www.indscribe.com.
Almost every writer has a dream about breaking out—or achieving best-seller status. Many of us think it’s an impossibility, but recently I read something to change all of that. I joined Roman…
Source: You Can Write a Best-Seller
I know all about the excitement of having a new book released and I love jumping on the bandwagon to celebrate other authors and their new releases as well. Today I’m super excited to feature romance author, Erin Bevan and her latest release – Wedding Day!
The cover is absolutely gorgeous and truly epitomizes the symbols of a wedding day – a stunning gown with pastel roses and ribbons make this book stand out right from the start.
Erin also shares a bit of information about how she got her start writing romance novels and it’s worth reading!
Let’s welcome Erin and find out about her book and how you can get yourself a copy!
Famous Bull Rider Dallas Day met Cassie Bailey briefly in high school, but her plain looks and quiet personality left no lasting impression on him. Cassie, however, couldn’t say the same about Dallas.
Their paths cross again ten years later when Dallas is home recovering from an injury, and Cassie is the only veterinarian who volunteers her services at the home-town rodeo. She’s jump-starting her new practice, and every eligible man within a ten-mile radius is trying to land a date with the attractive vet.
Dallas’ older brother bets him that, even with all his charm and fame, Dallas can’t land a date with the reserved lady vet. Not one to turn down a challenge, Dallas makes it his mission to win a date with Cassie. After seeing her, he realizes they’ve met before, but he doesn’t remember her being so pretty. His persistence pays off, but when Cassie finds out about the bet, their new love is put to the test.
Now how about a little snippet? Read on . . .
“Is there anything I can help you with?” A deep voice asked from behind her.
“No, I think we have it.” She hopped down from the pen. Glacier blue eyes locked with hers. She would know his eyes anywhere. Her heart quickened just as it did the first time she’d ever laid her gaze upon him, and a tingling sensation shot through her.
Dallas looked older than she remembered, broader, gruffer, but still sexy.
Tucker, you have Tucker.
Where was he, anyway? In her haste to get ready, she’d forgotten to call him.
“Dallas? Yeah, we can use a hand.” Chevy still fumbled with the lock. “Can you come over here and help me with Knuckle Head? Dr. Bailey wants him to walk around so she can get a closer look.”
“I really don’t think that’s necessary–”
“I would love to help. That’s why I’m here.” Dallas jogged to the front of the bull and grabbed the lead rope with his left hand. A plastered cast circled his right wrist and rose halfway up his forearm.
She turned to Spencer and furrowed her brow.
Spencer stared back at her and displayed her pageant winning 2005 Miss Frisbee smile, her thumb up in the air. Some friend she was.
Dallas and Chevy led the bull out of the pen while she observed the bull’s gait.
“Let’s get him over by a water hose. I want to get a closer look at his foot.” She pointed toward a washing station and followed behind the men as they led the bull, sure to steer clear of Knuckle Head’s hind legs in the event he wanted to kick her.
From her position, she had a clear view of Dallas’s backside. Everything appeared to be as tight as she remembered, which did nothing to settle those distracting tingling sensations.
Want to get your hands on a copy of this romance?
Want to get in touch with Erin?
Erin Bevan was born and raised in Southwest Arkansas. She spent her teenage years working for her aunt at the local gas station flipping burgers and making milkshakes, dreaming of the day when something better would come her way, and it did in the form of a five foot six, one hundred and fifty pound engineer.
Fast forward ten years later, she found herself stuck inside an apartment in South Korea while her daughter went to preschool and her husband went to work. Alone and unable to speak the local language she turned to books for a friend. After reading a few hundred in such a short time, she decided to try her hand at writing one.
That first one sucked, but by the fifth and sixth book, Erin started to get the hang of this writing thing. Getting the first contract in the mail was a dream come true. Now, with three babies at home, she squeezes in stories one word at a time, one sentence at a time, one day at a time.
She’s a full time mom, a full time wife, with a little writer sprinkled in whenever she can get the chance. And the laundry? Well, it’s best not to open the washroom door!
Reblogged on WordPress.com
Welcome author Rachel Sharpe to The Power of Love blog series!
Rachel is sharing 10 romantic places she’s visited. I’d love to visit New Orleans, as it’s long been on my bucket list. What places have you visited?
Rachel is the author of the Jordan James PI Series, now available on Amazon.
10 Romantic Places I’ve Visited
I was fortunate enough to meet my soulmate the beginning of my senior year of high school. We’ve been together for almost fourteen years now and have two beautiful children. In that time, we’ve taken many trips and, although we’ve never travelled abroad together, we’ve been to some pretty romantic places in the States. Many of these locations have shown up in the Jordan James, PI series. To me, anywhere can be romantic if you’re with the right person. Below is a list of my top ten:
10. New Orleans, Louisiana – as native New Orleanians, it may not seem very romantic to visit your own hometown. But New Orleans is one of the most unique and beautiful cities in America. The mixture of French and Spanish culture and architecture provide for an exotic look and, in a city that doesn’t sleep, there always seems to be something to celebrate and tons of people willing to join in the fun. You don’t have to visit during Carnival season to enjoy the Mardi Gras atmosphere. It’s like that all year round.
9. Wolf Creek, Colorado – one of our favorite ski resorts is a small place in southern Colorado called Wolf Creek. They boast getting the most snow annually of all the resorts in the state. After an exhilarating day on the slopes, there’s nothing more romantic than curling up by a fire with the one you love.
8. Warner Brothers Lot, Burbank, California – if you’re ever in California, it’s worth it to take a studio tour. One of our favorites was the Warner Brothers tour. To me, there is something so romantic about old Hollywood. Actually visiting the last remaining piece of the set of Casablanca and seeing the bungalow where Bette Davis took her breaks is worth the price of admission.
7. Creede, Colorado – a small mining town just south of Durango, Creede is a place you may never notice and pass right through. But it is a scenic masterpiece with gorgeous mountain vistas and a box canyon. There’s something about mountain views I find breathtaking and absolutely romantic.
6. Santa Monica, California – it goes without saying that southern California is romantic, especially the beaches and especially at sunset. If you’re planning to go to Santa Monica, try to get there and watch the sun set over the Pier. There’s nothing quite like it.
5. Boston, Massachusetts – my husband and I are both history buffs which is why New England is one of our favorite repeat vacation spots and Boston is always on the top of the list. There is so much history in Boston from the Freedom Trail and Paul Revere’s house to Faneuil Hall and the Bell in Hand Tavern. No matter how many times you visit Boston, there is always something new to see and do.
4. New York City, New York – come on, now. It’s New York! Need I say more?
3. Peak’s Island, Portland, Maine – in southern Maine just across the bay from Portland is a small island accessible by ferry called Peak’s Island. It’s a tiny but beautiful place to visit in the summer. My husband and I ate gulf shrimp while overlooking Casco Bay before renting bicycles and biking across the entire island, which took less than two hours to do. Heading back to Portland, we watched the sun set over the bay. Again, the setting is always more romantic with the one you love.
2. Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts – another gorgeous setting is Martha’s Vineyard. There are so many beautiful places to see on the Vineyard from the painted cottages at Oak’s Bluff to the Gay Head cliffs. It’s no surprise Martha’s Vineyard is a popular summer destination for New Englanders.
1.Disney World, Orlando, Florida – maybe it’s the part of me that never wants to grow up, but I absolutely love Disney World. No matter who you are, being there brings you back to a simpler time, childhood, and always puts a smile on your face. Going there as an adult with my husband was romantic and fun, but taking our son there for the first time was even better. I can’t wait until we can go back again with both of our children. There’s nothing on earth quite like Disney World.
Check out Rachel Sharpe’s amazing series, Jordan James, PI
“What started out as a star-studded vacation has turned into a sensational avalanche...”
When private investigator Jordan James decided to join her best friend on the set of her hit television series in the Rocky Mountains, she had no idea she would become a key player in a murder mystery more suited for the big screen than the slopes. With one actor dead and a killer on the loose, can Jordan uncover the culprit before another victim makes headlines on Hollywood Minute?
“BITTER RETRIBUTION” Available Now on Amazon!!! http://www.amzn.com/B015YS0O94
Also Available in the Jordan James, PI Series – COLD AMBITION and LOST DISTINCTION!!!
BITTER RETRIBUTION EXCERPT
“Don’t let your tears flow,” she insisted passionately from the screen. I glanced up and saw Roch and Nikole embracing while the KGB closed in on them. Slowly, a crescendo of brass arose as Roch and Nikole fought gallantly to their deaths. The credits began and I glanced at the clock. It was ten.
“What garbage,” I laughed aloud, grinning at the thought of meeting Roch Turner the next afternoon. I turned off the television and stretched. Yawning, I walked into my bedroom. After doing one more double-check, I was satisfied I had not forgotten anything. I got ready for bed before climbing beneath my heavy, down comforter and closing my eyes. Sighing contentedly, I thought with excitement about seeing Heather for the first time in six months, skiing in the Rockies, and watching a hit sitcom being filmed. This is going to be the best Thanksgiving ever, I thought happily. pushing images of Rick from my mind.
As I succumbed to the tranquility of slumber, eagerly awaiting a much-needed vacation, I had no idea of the depth and complexity of the situation in which I would soon be enmeshed. I had no idea of the sheer magnitude of the vendetta in which I would find myself, a senseless dispute which began years before my own birth. If I had, I would have ripped my flight itinerary up into a million tiny pieces and stayed in the warm haven of my bed.
“It was my life-long dream to become a private eye. Little did I know that with my very first case, that dream would become a life-threatening nightmare…” When Jordan James decided to embark on a career as a private investigator, she never could have imagined that a chance encounter would lead to her staring down the barrel of a gun on the roof’s edge of a high-rise building. As she begins to investigate her first case, the puzzling murder of a prominent businessman that has left Boston’s finest mystified for more than two decades, she finds herself suddenly immersed in a treacherous underworld brimming with betrayal, raw greed, and political subterfuge of international proportions. In the midst of this, she discovers she is falling for her mysterious client despite the hints of his dark past. Can this feisty Southern girl with a penchant for trouble solve this baffling case or is she doomed to become another tragic chapter in an international conspiracy? “COLD AMBITION” Available Now on Amazon! http://www.amzn.com/B00L2OLQPG/
“It all started with a favor…” When private investigator Jordan James agreed to search for the missing son of a U.S. Ambassador, she didn’t realize she was walking into a case one hundred years in the making. The deeper she delves into this unusual assignment, the more shocking, and the more dangerous, it becomes. With time running out and lives at stake, Jordan must race to identify the culprit of an elaborate plot while also uncovering a far more personal truth too intimate to ignore… “LOST DISTINCTION” Available Now on Amazon! http://www.amzn.com/B00Q5OGCS4
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Rachel Sharpe is the author of Cold Ambition, Lost Distinction, and Bitter Retribution, all part of the Jordan James, PI series. Although born and raised in the South, “Yankee” relatives first led Rachel to historic New England, which she has come to consider her second home and is the setting for the series.
After obtaining a Bachelor of Arts in English, Rachel began dedicating her free time to her childhood passion, writing, and in the fall of 2013, she signed with Soul Mate Publishing. An active member of Sisters In Crime, Rachel currently resides with her husband and children in the Greater New Orleans area.
Check Out Rachel’s Sites to Keep Up with Jordan James!!!
Welcome author Maggie Mundy to The Power of Love blog series!
Maggie is sharing ten great love quotes. What a great idea! The one by Dr. Seuss is my favorite and anything to do with Paris (as with the quote from the movie Casablanca) gets me every time.
Which quote resonates with you the most?
Ten Great Love Quotes
“I came here tonight because when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.” — When Harry Met Sally.
“Love is composed of a single soul inhabiting two bodies.” — Aristotle
“You complete me.” — Jerry Maguire (Also: the infamous “You had me at hello.”)
“Love thy neighbor — and if he happens to be tall, debonair and devastating, it will be that much easier.” — Mae West
“Doubt thou the stars are fire; Doubt that the sun doth move; Doubt truth to be a liar; But never doubt I love.” — Hamlet
“You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.” — Dr. Seuss
“All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.” — Charles M. Schulz
“If you remember me, then I don’t care if everyone else forgets me.” — Haruki Murakami
“We’ll always have Paris.” — Casablanca
“You come to love not by finding the perfect person, but by seeing an imperfect person perfectly.” — Sam Keen
Maggie is the author of the Midworlder Trilogy.
Available November 18th 2015 from Soul Mate Publishing.
Angels and demons are not what you think. They are aliens, and the Midworlders are their representatives on Earth. An Angelic Midworlder called Heath goes to the aid of Evie who is about to be attacked by Demonics. He soon discovers she can see the angels and demons around her and is in grave danger. He is captivated by Evie who has physical and mental scars like him. They are tortured souls who are deeply connected by his past. There is an evil lurking inside Evie that could kill them both.
Two things have helped Nicole cope since the murder of her husband. One is running her detective agency, and the other is her guardian angel Mira. When Mira is killed by a demon, Nicole accepts the help of a Ridge, a long haired, cigar smoking diamond in the rough with wings. Things go from bad to worse when a replacement guardian cannot be found. She has to trust Ridge, which is tricky when she realizes there are no demons or angels, just parasitic aliens that humans have built the myths of these celestial beings around. Ridge isn’t an angel or a devil, but an alien half breed known as a Midworlder. He is also way too sexy for his own good, or is it her own good.
To get in touch with Maggie Mundy, or buy her books go here:
Amazon buy link for Scarred Protector
Amazon buy link for Unknown Protector
Valentine’s Day! Hooray! I made a quick trip to my local bookstore—Chapter’s. Wandering about the store, a salesperson approached me, handing me an in-store coupon. The salesperson politely explained that if I purchased a greeting card in the store, today, I could have my coupon scratched at the cash counter for a discount ranging from 5% to 100% off my purchase. I considered this for a moment. Most likely I’d get 5% off which might not even balance out the cost of a greeting card (let’s be honest, cards are expensive these days).
I asked the salesperson, “What if I get a 5% coupon, can I then change my mind and put the greeting card aside?”
The salesperson smiled in surprise. “Well, I’m not sure, no one’s ever asked that before.”
Of course not.
Fast forward. I finished shopping and lined up for my turn at the cash counter. The cashier waved me over and as I presented my coupon, I went through my spiel.
Her response? “I’m not sure if you can do that, no one’s ever asked that before.”
Of course not.
Suddenly, the cashier smiled. Bigger and wider than before. Her eyebrows shot up in delight.
“You get 50% off your purchase today!”
I smiled, bigger and wider than before.
On my way out of the store, I tracked down the salesperson who kindly gave me the coupon, informing her I’d been duly caught off guard and actually received 50% off my purchase.
Her response? “I know!”
“How do you know?” I asked.
She laughed. “The whole store knows! You’re the only person today who received 50% off!”