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… More
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!”
HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!
Valentine’s Day is a day to celebrate your significant other. What better way to show your love than by giving a unique gift, one filled with meaning? There’s nothing wrong with a bouquet of flowers or a box of chocolates, but gifts with a bit more meaning attached may be remembered and enjoyed far longer.
Here’s my list of Top Ten Valentine’s Day gifts:
- Handmade card
Cards today are ridiculously expensive and often get tossed away shortly afterward. Have you ever received a handmade card? Perhaps it’s the labor that went into making it, or the thought, but either way, a handmade card is always treasured and personal.
- Travel book
If you and your partner love exploring and traveling, why not gift him/her with a beautiful photography travel book? You can choose a book focusing on a specific country, or one that encompasses the world. A book is always a great gift and in this case you can sit down together and plot your next destination!
- Personalized treat bag
Fill a bag with candy your loved one prefers. If they’re into white chocolate, caramel, marshmallows, licorice, etc. fill it with sweets of their liking. Attach a note with your own message.
- Mail delivery gift
How about a gift that keeps on giving? You can arrange a monthly gift for your loved one, whether it’s monthly delivered chocolates, cookies, flowers, or a magazine subscription. Your other half will have something to look forward to each month and your thoughtfulness will keep on giving for months.
- Write a love letter
Sound corny? Your loved one won’t think so. No one writes letters in cursive script anymore. But imagine writing down your thoughts about the person you love. List the reasons you fell in love or recall past memories. A love letter will only take a few minutes of your time but will be entirely unexpected—which is a feat unto itself these days.
- Art work
Does your loved one have a passion for something? Have you visited museums? Why not gift your spouse with a piece of artwork they’ve always coveted. It doesn’t have to be Van Gogh! Maybe it’s a colorful piece that reminds you of your tropical honeymoon. Or a team photo of your spouse’s favorite team.
- Unique flower arrangement
Flowers are popular gifts for Valentine’s Day. No wonder. They’re beautiful and often expensive. But how about a unique floral arrangement? Maybe a wreath of flowers or an unexpected arrangement. Does your spouse love desert climates? Your florist can arrange cactuses in a pottery bowl or box. Visit your florist, they have great ideas.
- Camper couch
Whether you like to camp or not, a camper couch is a nifty idea and a great excuse to lounge close together. Put it in your yard, or on your deck and it will be a great conversation starter.
- Personalized gift
This is easy to do nowadays with online printing services. You could create your own wine bottle label and attach it to a favored bottle. This gesture is no longer reserved for wedding gifts only. Or how about a personalized pillow, with a mug of your loved one’s favorite pet? The possibilities are endless.
- Event tickets
Sometimes your spouse may need a kick of motivation to take a night off from work. What do they enjoy? Movie night, concerts, opera? Splurge on some tickets and take them out on the town. If mainstream venues are too pricey, consider buying tickets for a community theater production or orchestra event.
Soul Mate Publishing has a celebration happening February 13 – 15th! Several authors have joined together to share deals with readers! Many great romances are on sale for a short time. Check out these great novels!
Photo post by @JoanneGuidoccio.
Source: Fun Friday
Welcome author Mandi Benet to The Power of Love blog series!
Mandi is sharing ten things she’d tell her younger self about love and relationships.
I love this list! I’m partial to #1 and #10. What do you think?
Mandi also happens to have a new release about love, titled To Rome With Love!
Ten things I’d tell my younger self about love and relationships
- Time changes everything. And everyone.
- Treat your romantic partners and the men who would like to be your romantic partners the same: kindly.
- If he’s interested in you, he’ll call. If he doesn’t, it’s not because he’s saving the orphans in Africa or lost in Sudoku.
- The right guy won’t make you feel dumb and won’t let his friends do it, either.
- You can’t trade sex for love.
- NEVER settle for a guy. NEVER.
- Do your best to communicate. If he can’t, leave. It’ll never work.
- Every guy who hurts you leads you to the one who won’t.
- Practice saying, “No.” Then say it.
- Don’t date a married man. If you do, remember the words of the late Sir James Goldsmith: “When a man married his mistress, he creates a vacancy.”
Mandy Behbehani w/a Mandi Benet
Author | To Rome With Love | Release, February, 2016
When Gaby Conte’s Italian husband, Danieli, abandons her for a young Peruvian waitress at a restaurant they co-own in San Francisco, Gaby seeks refuge in Rome with her best friend Maria. There, she swears off romance for a long while and Italian men forever. That’s until she meets Silvio, who belongs to an old, aristocratic Roman family and lives in a palace alongside the best private art collection in Rome. Silvio, who is the cousin of Maria’s husband, is going through his own divorce. He’s gorgeous, of course, which Gaby doesn’t tell him. And arrogant and condescending, which she does. The last thing Gaby needs is more Italian trouble, but the attraction is instant and powerful, and against the backdrop of one of the world’s most romantic cities, both try—and fail—to resist the chemistry between them. But both Gaby and Silvio have made a rule never to make the mistake of trusting in love again. Will they realize some rules are made just to be broken?
Author | The Blasphemy Box |
Welcome author Yolanda Ashton to The Power of Love blog series! Yolanda is sharing her 10 favorite romantic movies.
February is one of my favorite months. Love is in the air and it’s a perfect time to watch chick flicks and romantic movies. I’m a romantic at heart (what romance author isn’t….lol) and in celebration of the Month of Love I’m sharing my Top Ten Romantic Movies.
- Love and Basketball
- She’s All That
- Maid in Manhattan
- Fools Rush In
- High School Musical
- Sex and the City
- A Walk to Remember
So throughout the month of February watch one, two or all of these love conquers all movies. Leave a comment below and let me know what’s your favorite romantic movie or movies? I’m always looking to add to my collection.
Lanya gave her love and trust to a man, only to find out their relationship was a lie. Shattered, she decides she’s never give her heart to anyone again. But when her ex, Mikael LockRidge, offers her a proposition she can’t refuse, Layna finds being with him makes it impossible to resist the sensual pull between them. Blackmailed to commit an act that still haunts him, Mikael accepts his current loveless relationship as karma. But when he receives unexpected help from the grave, Mikael realizes he wants back what he lost. He just has to convince the ex he hurt to let him back in her life and her heart.
Follow me on www.twitter.com/YolandaAshton
Check out my site at www.yolandaashton.wordpress.com
Source: My 10 Favorite Writing Websites
Readers expect stories to include heroes and heroines. Naturally, in order to make things exciting, antagonists are also required. I’m often asked about the characters I create, and whom they may be based on. They want to know, for example, if a heroine is based on a friend, or perhaps a relative. They ask if my antagonists are actually colleagues, employers, or neighbors, in disguise. Chuckles and sardonic laughter aside, that is an intriguing question!
Let me first state that, as a rule, I do not create any character from one individual. I draw certain behaviors and characteristics from a myriad of people I’ve known in my life —and somehow mash them all together like a pot of potatoes—and the end result winds up as a character with real, multidimensional aspects.
My characters are motivated by their goals but they must be well-developed, with likes and dislikes and quirks. In other words, I strive to portray my characters as believable as possible. This is sometimes challenging when conceiving dangerous antagonists, as I’ve (fortunately) not had the experience of spending lengths of time with hard-core criminals. With the exception of a tour to a maximum security prison while I studied Criminology in college, I’ve avoided gaining insight into the mind of a psychopath or sociopath.
But I’ve witnessed plenty of unruly (and sometimes violent) antics of people in the past: maniacs on the road who resemble Hannibal, fingering randomly as they weave in and out of lanes; shoppers engaging in hair-pulling and fist-fighting over a parking spot; rowdy drunkenness and drugged ranting at a bar or festival; and long-ago neighbors who demonstrated manic tendencies with alarming regularity (how many times a day does the lawn need to be cut?). I’ve known people who’ve shown narcissistic behaviors— wanting attention and making choices that never benefited anyone other than themselves, and so on. I think we’ve all had similar encounters. I’ll admit, I prefer writing about my heroes and heroines, but the bad guys/gals can be fun to dream up and cultivate.
If my antagonist must be made more frightening than annoying, then my imagination must be stretched. I’ll watch a particular movie, read a certain book, research criminal histories online, etc. I don’t have to pull from direct experience if it involves a person I have no familiarity with.
I glean specific traits for antagonists from behaviours I’ve witnessed somewhere. Such as the baffling and frightening antics of a parent who screeches continuously at their wayward child in a store (maybe the kid has finally tuned out the yelling parent or he/she is hungry or tired). I’ve also observed rude behavior of people in line-ups at airports or restaurants. On the (mostly rare) occasions I’ve seen these disappointing displays, I make a mental note, filing it away in my memory bank. I should point out, however, that while I may forget the specific location or name of the person in question, what registers is the emotion I’m feeling while bearing witness to these interactions. As a writer, I’m aiming to capture the mindset behind the misbehaviour and the impact it leaves on people. To enrich an antagonist’s believability, I’ll strive to keep his/her behavior consistent (speech tone and pattern); drinking or eating habits; routines, etc.
Either way, dreaming up malevolent, murky characters is an engaging part of the job. I like to wink at those who invariably ask, “So, you’re not writing about me, are you?” and remind them to buy my book to find out.