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Posts Tagged ‘Soul Mate Publishing Authors’

I have been busy lately, and not had much time to invite guests to stop in at the blog. Fortunately for me, Jeri Bronson has been holding her invitation and patiently waiting for me. So I am very happy to welcome Jeri now, to come, sit down, have some tea and cookies, and talk to us about her book, “Seeking Perfect”. Might I say, it has a lovely cover. Welcome, Jeri!

SeekingPerfect600

What is this book about?  My book is a YA Contemporary about a 17 year old girl named Jesse Barnes. She lives in a small town in Oregon with her alcoholic mother trying to stay invisible until one day Derek Aames sits with her at lunch.  (Cue scary music) He’s so perfect, can she trust him with her secrets?

Why did you write it? I didn’t have a choice it wouldn’t leave me alone. I also thought it was good way to look at the choices people can make.

How long did it take? The first draft took me a summer and the edits like 7 years of learning how to write.

Seven years? That’s some dedication and education.

Any special inspiration? The world is full of inspiration. I took some from me and other brave people that choose survival.

Where do you write? Photos optional— Haha! It’s a mess always so no pics, but actually my dining room table. We only eat here on special occasions now.

Describe the path to publication? I never intended to publish. I thought I was never good enough and no one would want to read it. This was only supposed to be a way for me to help process emotions and thoughts that never ceased to be quiet.  I got brave in 2012 and I sent it out to agents and someone wanted it after I made some more revisions. She was very excited about it and I freaked out and I never sent it back. You see I fear success I know it doesn’t make sense.  I didn’t touch it again for another 3 years; talk about hiding out in a cave. Finally, in 2016 I joined RWA and sent it out once again and was offered a contract in 2017 by Soulmate Publishing. I found some courage finally.

Fantastic story. Loads of people fear success. I’m glad you sent it out again.

Are you working on anything else right now? YES, I have a romantic suspense that I’m editing now hoping to send out by the end of the year. I am also working on another YA that’s partially written, but some more plotting is needed.

Hardest part about writing? The never ending self doubt even with a published book I wonder if I’m good enough.

Biggest surprise about being a published author? People are always so surprised when I tell them that I write and their always so supportive.

Yes, I’ve noticed that too.

How do you beat procrastination? I walk. It works for writers block too. Once I go for my walk then I need to sit down and write. It engages my brain for whatever reason.

Okay, I’m convinced, this sounds like a terrific book, for young adults and us older adults too. Now, can we talk a little about you as an author and a regular person?

The most recent movie you’ve seen or book you’ve read? (or both) I went and saw The Incredibles 2 (so funny) I just finished rereading Tears of the Moon by Nora Roberts. It’s a comfort story for me.

What is your favorite past time? I love to watch tennis and of course I read a lot.

Would you rather have the ability to be invisible or have x-ray vision? I would totally be invisible and go in all the places you’re not allowed in like Buckingham Palace.

I like that.

What ‘s a typical day like? I drop my son off at school, he’s 16 working on the license so not for much longer yay! Then do house business stuff and writer business then go walk for about an hour. I will write or edit for a few hours eat lunch work some more till the boy gets home. Then writing will put aside till after his swim practice, dinner, dishes etc. I might work for another hour before bed then read a little. Boring, day, I know. 

Boring to some, blissful to others. We should never envy someone else’s life.

How do you like to spend a rainy day? I live in California what rain?

Good point.

Do you know any foreign languages? I could speak Spanish fluently when I was little because my grandmother was Hispanic. Now I get by with necessity Spanish like asking for food or the bathroom.

What one item would you grab if the house was on fire? (assume no living beings are  inside) Pictures of my kids and probably all the computers with the pictures on them.

Describe one moment in time when you took a huge leap of faith. How did it turn out? I sent my book to a publisher and worked out pretty well.

Indeed.

What’s one favorite thing you do by yourself? Going to the library and the movies. First no one will rush me at the library I can peruse as long as I want and then I don’t have to share the popcorn. Notice both places are silent.

Silence is a good thing, right?

Favorite food to cook? I can’t cook my husband does it. I’ve burned things and not only food.

Oh-oh.  Let’s move on to less incriminating topics, shall we?

Favorite animal? Cat

Favorite color? Green

Favorite book? Pride and Prejudice

Favorite sport or physical activity? Tennis

Favorite kind of music? Alternative

Favorite song?  U2, Where the streets have no name

Favorite place to visit? The mountains, any of them.

What makes you laugh? My husband constantly

What three adjectives describe you? Loyal, quiet, compassionate

Favorite season? Summer

Strangest thing you ever ate? Tofu it was fried but squishy in the middle.

Strangest thing you ever did? I asked my favorite tennis player for his autograph and he offered to take a picture with me. Remember I’m the quiet one hoping to be invisible.

That could qualify as a leap of faith too.

Which do you prefer for a second home? Mountain cabin, beach house or big city condo? Mountain cabin definitely.

What dessert do you order most often? Chocolate cake/brownie ice cream combo thing.

Oh my…YES!!!!!!!!

Whom do you admire? (living or dead) Why? I think Jane Austen because she wrote about women doing things they weren’t allowed to do.

What is your favorite type of art? Music always music

If you had a magic genie, what would your three wishes be? Hmmm…world peace you know like the pageant ladies really that would be nice. I would like to be able to speak every language in the world and an all access pass to See’s candy.

Favorite vacation spot? Hawaii

 Jeri, it has been an absolutely pleasure to have you visit today. Let’s wrap up our conversation with a few parting thoughts so we can share how readers can connect with you and check out “Seeking Perfect”.

What three items would you take if you knew you were going to be stranded on a tropical island for a year? (enough suntan lotion is a freebie) Books, a boat and wet wipes. Sometimes sand is not your friend.

One quote you love, that keeps you going in life? Happiness can be found in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light –Albus Dumbledore.

What would you do in life if you knew you couldn’t fail? Play the piano

One thing few people know about you? That I can speak Spanish.

Do you believe  in love at first sight? I’m not sure anymore because no one ever looks up from their phones.

Excellent point. Jeri!  How many first’s do we miss because of that?

Anything special you would like to share with readers?   My story is about hope and choices people have to make on a daily basis.  I think sometimes young adults think they can’t do anything about their circumstances and to certain extent it may be true, but there is always help if you’re willing to ask for it.  You also have to do the hard work it’s definitely about the hard work in this life.

BLURB for “Seeking Perfect”:

Jesse learned early not to trust a soul, but what if he was her soulmate?

Senior year of high school should be about friendship, boyfriends and graduation, but for seventeen-year-old, Jesse Barnes, it’s about escaping the shame of life with an alcoholic mother.

Jesse’s goals are clear, keep a roof over her head, avoid the revolving door of leering men her mother brings home, graduate from high school, and do everything possible to keep her home life secret. Friends, boyfriends, not an option. Who would understand?

Then, perfect, popular Derek Aames, sits with Jesse at lunch. How can she discourage him? How can she keep him from intruding on her life and discovering her secret? And most of all how can she keep him out of her heart?

Will his persistence finally break down her walls, or just break her?

Connecting with Jeri:

Jeri is a native Californian that found her storytelling voice while walking home from elementary school. Long walks with a hyper imagination led to all sorts of wild ideas. Her debut novel, Wildflower, finally came to fruition after she was laid off from her full time job as Human Resources Manager.

She now works part time as a substitute High School teacher, which is a constant source of fabulous material. She lives in Orange County, California with her husband of 28 years, her teenage son, their dog Sam, and cats Sparky and Lilly. The whole time missing her daughter who’s away at college. Jeri does her best writing still while walking, but now Sam goes as well.

When not writing she is an avid reader, of course. She also is an equally avid tennis fan and can be found watching the Tennis Channel most nights. Definitely, do not bother her during Grand Slam tournaments. She is currently working on several Romantic Suspense novels, plus another Young Adult book is brewing. Stay tuned she’s just getting started.

Links:

https://www.facebook.com/JeriBronsonauthor/

https://twitter.com/jeribronson

www.jeribronson.com/

 

Book Links:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/38472691-seeking-perfect?ac=1&from_search=true

https://smpauthors.wordpress.com/meet-jeri-bronson/wildflower-by-jeri-bronson/

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/seeking-perfect-jeri-bronson/1128622457?ean=9781682916674

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I am excited to have Highlander and Romance author Madelyn Hill visit today, talking about her Wild Thistle Trilogy.

 

 

First, let’s get to know a little about ‘Highland Honor’. Madelyn, what is this book about?

Lady Honor can heal everything but a broken heart . . .

Highland Honor is the final book of the Wild Thistle Trilogy set in the Scottish Highlands. The entire series came to me while in the shower of all places! The dialogue from the heroines’ dying father popped into my head and the story begged to be written. The father’s pledge was; “Through Hope, Faith, and Honor, ye can rule.”

The trilogy follows each of the heroines as they try to live up to their father’s parting words. The pledge cause uncertainty and conflict with each of the sisters.

For Honor, she is the clan healer and strives to never cause another person harm. Which creates quite the conflict with Bryce, a clan warrior who trains the men with fierce dedication. His goal is to protect the clan to his best ability, even if that means injuries or death. Bryce and Honor are thrown together after a stranger is detected in the area and Bryce is assigned to protect Honor as she gathers herbs in the woods.

Fantastic. I can see lots of conflict brewing there. Okay, let’s get to know you better.

   Madelyn Hill, author

Any special reason why you chose the character names and location that you did?

I choose the Highlands because Scotland has always fascinated me. As for the character names, they were derived from the father’s dying pledge. Luckily, the words he chose to speak were perfect for my heroines. For one of my other novels, Heather In The Mist, I named the heroine Rogan. I had a bit of pushback from my critique partner because she said it was a male name. However! I recently ran into a little girl named Rogan!

I love that name! And I’d certainly give it to a female character. What’s the hardest part about writing?

The hardest part of writing is keeping focused and not allowing social networking or writing minutia to get in the way. I find that time flies when I’m on Facebook or Twitter, so much so, that it eats into my writing time. Also, there is a lot of marketing and writerly stuff which needs to be done that also eats into writing time.

How do you beat writer’s block?

If I just can’t keep the story going, I revisit my Pinterest board for the novel or read over research to see if that will spur my muse. If this doesn’t work, I will start working on something new or take a short break.

The most recent movie you’ve seen or book you’ve read?

We just saw the Avengers: Infinity War movie. It was great! I love super hero movies and this one did not disappoint.

Your favorite town/ city in the world? Why?

I love Quebec. The history and beauty along with the food is a fantastic experience. The town is small enough to be quaint and the shopping is great too.

What is your favorite past time?

Besides reading, I love to cook and bake.

Would you rather have the ability to be invisible or have x-ray vision?

I think the ability to be invisible would be great. Just think of where you could go and what you could hear without being seen.

Indeed! If you had to give up one of your five senses, what would it be? (common sense does not count here) Most likely the sense of smell or touch. I’d hate to lose sight, hearing or taste.

How do you like to spend a rainy day?

I do not like rainy days and I prefer to cuddle on the couch with a blanket and watch movies.

Do you know any foreign languages?

I can understand Spanish and speak very, very little. My husband is fluent in Spanish.

What one item would you grab if the house was on fire? (assume no living beings are  inside)

The bins with my children’s pictures. I’d hate to lose them.

Describe one moment in time when you took a huge leap of faith. How did it turn out?

I packed up and moved to New York to be with my boyfriend. It turned out great! I end married the guy.

Yes, that’s a leap of faith. Glad it worked out so well. Okay, some short Q & A. Favorite food to cook?

Pasta

Favorite animal?

Horse

Favorite color?

Red

Favorite kind of music?

Country

Favorite place to visit?

My hometown in Michigan

Favorite season?

Spring

Strangest thing you ever ate?

Octopus

Which do you prefer for a second home? Mountain cabin, beach house or big city condo?

Beach

What kind of car do you drive? Color?

            A White GMC Yukon

What is your favorite type of art?

The Impressionist – Mary Cassatt to be specific

Maddy, I am so glad you stopped to visit today. In our parting thoughts, what three items would you take if you knew you were going to be stranded on a tropical island for a year? (enough suntan lotion is a freebie)

Assuming my family would not be considered a thing and would be there with me;

  • Tons of books, including one that details what is okay to eat on the island
  • Coffee
  • First aid kit

Now those are some good, solid choices. What would you do in life if you knew you couldn’t fail?

Be an actress.

I like that. Do you believe in love at first sight?

Yes!

Anything special you would like to share with readers?

I appreciate your interest in my books!

Buy Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07CSY4PGY/

Social Networking connections:

Website: http://www.madelynhill.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/madelyn.hill.94

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorMaddyHill

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/madelynhill68

GoodReads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2919194.Madelyn_Hill

Amazon Page: https://www.amazon.com/Madelyn-Hill/e/B00ELRG34U/
Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/authormadelynhill

Madelyn Hill, thank you for stopping by. Best wishes.

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Crossing Realm Series Promo Image

So far I’ve read two of the books in this fantastic series and can’t wait to get the third one. I am thrilled to have Rebecca Neely here to share some news about her Crossing Realms books. Welcome, Rebecca!

BN: The CROSSING REALMS paranormal romance series ~ Sacrifice or salvation? A chosen psychic few may be both. As Keepers battle Betrayers to save the human race, all’s not fair in love and war.

THE KEEPER, Book 1 – A tortured leader of human guardians must join forces with the one woman in the city who can save his clan from destruction: an anxious – and psychic – accountant who has no memory of him. http://amzn.to/2fOZEIC

THE WATCHER, Book 2 – Can a Keeper hell bent on avenging his own death find the answers the clan so desperately needs in the seven days he’s been given, or will he be forced to abandon the woman he loves and his clan, leaving them all to face imminent destruction? http://amzn.to/2j1ethN

THE BETRAYER, Book 3 – Can a Betrayer with a mysterious ability, ousted by her brood and left for dead, fight alongside the Keeper who saves her—and falls for her—in the throes of the second rebellion, or will she forsake herself and the man she loves as the clan wages what may be its final battle to save the human race?

Welcome to my world, er…realm!

RJS: Ha, that’s good, Rebecca. Now, when I read The Keeper and The Watcher, some of the language seemed confusing. Like, for example, who everyone really was, and what their roles were. Also, the various terms like vitality stone similitude stone, and such. Can you please explain some of this stuff?

BN: SURE. SOME JARGON TO GET YOU ACQUAINTED  

WATCHERS – Beings that exist in their own realm, guiding and guarding the Keepers through missions called Compulsions.

KEEPERS – ‘close to human as you can get’ beings who guard humans, live in the human realm and exude and exist on light energy.

BETRAYERS – Keepers turned bad. Banished from the Watchers’ realm after the Rebellion, they too live in the human realm, wreaking havoc on humans, from which they harvest dark energy to feed on.

VITALITY STONE – a bright green stone hewn from the Watchers’ realm that gives the Keepers their amazing powers, and defends against Betrayers dark energy…

SIMILITUDE STONE – The antithesis of Vitality stone, this deadly black stone is a conduit for dark energy that enables Betrayers to drain Keepers’ energy…

The Geary clan of Keepers lives and works in Pittsburgh, PA as carpenters. They’re almost exactly what they appear to be: blue collar Irish Catholics, born and bred in the ‘Burgh. Their M.O.? Humans forget their interaction with them, so they’re able to go about their Compulsions more easily…

The Pittsburgh brood of Betrayers lives in the recesses of the city, and can be found wherever human pain, violence and suffering exists…

SOME CHARACTERS YOU’LL MEET ALONG THE WAY

Haenus Vickery – brood master of the Betrayers, who’s hell bent on destroying both humans and Keepers, and reclaiming the Watchers’ realm as his own…

Nick Geary – Jaded clan leader of the Keepers, who seems doomed to love a human woman who’s forgotten him, time after time, for thirteen years…

Libby Klink – a skittish accountant who’s as terrified of her recent and strange intuitions as she is of her mundane existence…

Dev Geary – a former Keeper, hell bent on avenging his own death…

Meda Gabriel – a cagey, street smart bar owner with a unique skill set…

Curtis Geary – A Keeper/computer guru whose neat, logical world is about to tilt on its axis…

Jordan – A Betrayer with a mysterious ability, ousted by her brood and left for dead…

Tan – Meda’s German Shepherd, a rescue who’s got an uncanny sense about people…

TATTOO, MOTORCYCLE OR GERMAN SHEPHERD FAN? I also blog about cool stuff from each story. I invite you to stop by and have a read. https://rebeccaneelysite.wordpress.com/

RJS: Oh, I’m totally a German Shepherd fan and loved reading about Tan! Tell us more.

BN: THE KEEPER, Book 1 in the series, is a finalist for the RONE award for Best Paranormal short, sponsored by InD’Tale Magazine.

Both Book 1 and THE WATCHER, Book 2 are out now and available in Kindle and print, on Amazon.

Stay tuned for news about THE BETRAYER, Crossing Realms Series Book 3. My Street Team will have an opportunity to read it before anyone else does – JOIN NOW! https://www.facebook.com/groups/142874226198888/

 

REN headshot

REBECCA E. NEELY, AUTHOR  ~  Romance. Paranormal. Suspense.

A sucker for a happy ending, Rebecca strives to write the kind of stories she loves to read—gritty, suspenseful and featuring authentic, edgy and vulnerable characters, smack dab in the middle of action that explodes from page one.

Careers, past and present, include freelance writing, accounting, mother, problem solver, doer and head bottle washer.

Rebecca is a member of Three Rivers Romance Writers (TRRW), a PAN member of Romance Writers of America (RWA), and is proud to serve as a judge for several writing contests each year.

CONNECT WITH REBECCA

Website: www.rebeccaneely.com

Blog: https://rebeccaneelysite.wordpress.com/

Mailing List: http://eepurl.com/bqiDi5

Facebook    https://www.facebook.com/rebecca.mullnerneely

Twitter   https://twitter.com/Rebeccaneely1

Amazon   https://www.amazon.com/author/rebeccaeneely

Goodreads  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/9857158.Rebecca_E_Neely

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/rebneely/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rebneely/

 

 

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                                        Romance for the Ages

 

Catherine Castle is visiting today. Her newest book, a sweet romantic comedy entitled A Groom for Mama, released September 2017 from Soul Mate Publishing. And isn’t this cover just too cute? I think so. And Catherine has included her list of the top ten signs you might be headed for a really bad date. It’s included at the bottom of the page.  So, with no further adieu, welcome, Catherine!

                                               About “A Groom for Mama”:

My new release, A Groom for Mama, is a sweet romantic comedy, with a touch of drama.  The book has a number of bad dates the heroine endures as an agreement with her mother, who wants her to find a husband.

* * *

Beverly Walters is dying, and before she goes she has one wish—to find a groom for her daughter. To get the deed done, Mama enlists the dating service of Jack Somerset, Allison’s former boyfriend.

The last thing corporate-climbing Allison wants is a husband. Furious with Mama’s meddling, and a bit more interested in Jack than she wants to admit, Allison agrees to the scheme as long as Mama promises to search for a cure for her terminal illness.

A cross-country trip from Nevada to Ohio ensues, with a string of disastrous dates along the way, as the trio hunts for treatment and A Groom For Mama.

Excerpt:

Allison snapped her suitcase shut and shoved it under the bed. “I don’t want to talk about the one who got away, or any other man, Mama. They grab your heart and break it—just like Daddy did to you . . . to us.”

“Not all men are like your daddy,” Mama said. “There are good ones out there, too.”

“Not in my experience.” Allison gave her mother a hug. “I don’t want to talk about it anymore, okay?”

Mama’s silence told her she hadn’t heard the last of this subject. Her mother’s stomach growled, easing the way to a subject change.

Laughing, she asked, “Are you hungry, because I’m starving. Come on, I’ll fix you some lunch. How does your favorite—tuna salad—sound?”

“Lunch,” Mama echoed. “Oh, I forgot to tell you—Jack’s bringing something over.” The doorbell rang and Mama smiled sweetly. “You’d better run and answer the door, dear. I’m not taking the stairs too good, what with my arthritis and—”

Allison cut her off. “Please don’t say it, Mama.”

With a nod, Mama said, “Hurry then, before whoever it is thinks we’re not coming.”

“Do you need me to return and help you downstairs?”

“No thank you, dear. I can manage.”

Allison didn’t doubt that for a minute. Her already-stubborn mother grew more stubborn every day, if that was possible.

It’s just the situation. I won’t lose my temper when we’re both so stressed, she promised herself. Time is too precious to waste on arguing.

Bounding down the stairwell as the bell rang, she shouted, “I’m coming! I’m coming. Keep your pants on!” She threw the deadbolt off and jerked open the door.

Jack Somerset stood in front of her, his chin perched on top of a stack of Chinese take-out cartons. Shoving down her tingling gut reaction, she commanded her heart to stop jumping like an over excited puppy.

Except for a few more laugh wrinkles around his eyes, Jack hadn’t changed a bit since college. His brown hair still dipped over his forehead in a shaggy mane. A lopsided smile spread across his face when he saw her. He winked at her, his green eyes twinkling.

“Well, if it isn’t the bride-to-be. Nice to see you again, Allison.” He jiggled the cartons balanced in his arms. “I brought Chinese. I remember it was your favorite. Moo shu pork, right?” He pushed past her and headed toward the kitchen, apparently as well acquainted with her childhood home as she.

Grabbing her head between her hands, she squeezed her temples.

Chinese. Of all the things he could have brought, he brought Chinese.

She’d broken it off with him in a Chinese restaurant . . . over moo shu pork. Very loudly and very violently. The pork and the pot of hot tea had landed in Jack’s lap when he tried to keep her from leaving the table. Did his choice of entrees mean Jack hadn’t forgotten the incident? She hadn’t, and she’d been unable to eat that particular Chinese dish since.

Trailing behind him into the kitchen, she said, “You can put the boxes on the table.”

He obliged then started taking plates out of the cabinets.

A frisson of annoyance crept up her spine at the familiarity he showed in her mother’s kitchen. “Why don’t you just make yourself at home?”

“I will.” He shot a boyish grin at her. “Been doing it for some time now.” He set three plates on the table then turned and dug into the silverware drawer.

Stunned, she watched as he laid the silverware out on the table just the way Mama liked them—the knife, fork, and spoon lined up on the right-hand side of the plate. He hadn’t been joking when he said he been making himself at home.

What in heaven’s name had her old flame been doing in her absence? Courting Mama?

                            Want to read more? I sure do. Check out the book on Amazon.
Connect with Catherine!

Catherine’s website: http://catherinecastle1.wordpress.com
Catherine’s blog: http://catherinecastle1.wordpress.com/blog/
Catherine’s Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/author/catherinecastle
Catherine’s Goodreads page: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7085414.Catherine_Castle
Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorCCastle    @AuthorCCastle
Facebook: http://facebook.com/catherinecastleauthor

 

 Group blogs where you can find Catherine:
Stitches Thru Time: http://stitchesthrutime.blogspot.com/
SMP authors blog site:   http://smpauthors.wordpress.com/
Book Links:
A Groom for Mama: www.amzn.com/dp/B074SZSGB1The Nun and the Narc: Amazon http://amzn.com/B00CHU9DH2
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-nun-and-the-narc-catherine-castle/1116942061?ean=978161935296
                                            About Catherine Castle:
Multi-award-winning author Catherine Castle has been writing all her life. Before beginning her career as a romance writer she worked part-time as a freelance writer. She has over 600 articles and photographs to her credit, under her real name, in the Christian and secular market. Besides writing, Catherine loves traveling with her husband, singing, and attending theatre. In the winter she loves to quilt and has a lot of UFOs (unfinished objects) in her sewing case. In the summer her favorite place to be is in her garden. She’s passionate about gardening and even won a “Best Hillside Garden” award from the local gardening club.

 

Her debut inspiration romantic suspense, The Nun and the Narc, from Soul Mate Publishing was an ACFW Genesis Finalist, a 2014 EPIC finalist, and the winner of the 2014 Beverly Hills Book Award and the 2014 RONE Award. Her most recent release, A Groom for Mama, is a sweet romantic comedy from Soul Mate Publishing.  Both books are available on Amazon.

     Bonus: Ten Signs You Might Be Headed for a Disastrous Date List:

(My apologies to Catherine. She gave me her list with the countdown in chronological order. My system automatically renumbered them upwards and will not play nice with Catherine’s system.)

Considering the context of the book’s humor, I thought it might be fun to do a countdown of ten signs that you might be headed for a disastrous date.  Here’s my list:

  1. You can smell him before you see him, and the odor is not his aftershave.
  2. When he arrives, he turns his empty pockets inside out.
  3. He has more holes in his shirt than you have in your designer jeans.
  4. He looks nothing like his dating site profile picture.
  5. The flower he presents to you looks suspiciously like the prize-winning rose from your front yard flowerbed.
  6. He greets you with the words, “Can you hurry up? The meter’s running.”
  7. His online profile lists him as a world-renowned chef, yet he pulls in at the Golden Arches to take you to dinner.
  8. If you don’t end up at the Golden Arches, when the waiter offers up a $17 bottle of artesian water for your drinking pleasure, your date asks, “Do you have tap water?”
  9. He orders the cheapest thing on the menu and says, “Bring two plates. We’re going to share.

And the number one sign you’re headed for a disastrous date . . .

  1. He goes to the bathroom after dessert and never returns, leaving you with the check for dinner and a taxi cab bill to get home.

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This is a well done romance with plenty of twists and turns. I am not sure whether Ms. Gilmore is personally knowledgeable about London’s social scenery or if she researched it thoroughly. Either way, the London scenes were most believable. The story spans three countries:, England, USA, and Mexico.

Taylor Fairchild’s dad persuades her to take a vacation from their music insider business, and fly to London, England. Begrudgingly, she complies. While there, she discovers a rock band called Fury. She is convinced they could become hot in America and she starts the pursuit to suggest they create a demo recording for her.

Once she and lead singer, Craig Phillips, join up, the chemistry is undeniable. They spend a large amount of time together. However, Craig and another Fury band member have a secret side-job: being the drop men for a underworld drug kingpin.

Taylor, Craig and the Fury band go to Los Angeles, and indeed they become the next big rock group. Craig thinks he’s left his undesirable side job behind him, in the past where it belongs. He focuses his attention on building his dream with the band, and creating a serious relationship with Taylor.

It all goes smooth for a while, until Craig’s past returns to haunt him. His kid brother, Shaun, disappears, and Craig is summoned to Mexico to get him. There, Craig’s past and present collide, caught in the clutches of a vile, heartless drug lord.

Meanwhile, Taylor grows tired of waiting to hear from Craig, and launches her own investigation to find him. She tracks him to Mexico and soon finds herself caught in the dangerous and mysterious web of his past as well.

With thoroughly despicable bad guys and sizzling chemistry between Taylor and Craig, and plenty of unexpected plot twists; I can only say one thing for Diane Gilmore’s “Perilous Pursuit”: Well done!

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I am delighted to have another contributing author visit, and bring their story for the Soul Mate Tree Collection of stories. Today I have the pleasure of hosting Steven Mitchell. His book is a delightful and fun Science Fiction Romantic Comedy, called “Between Venus and Mars”.

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An ancient legend spanning eras, continents, and worlds. To some, it’s nothing more than a dream. To others, a pretty fairy tale handed down through the generations.

For those in critical need of their own happy ending, a gift.

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HEAT LEVEL: Steamy **  An intergalactic adventure filled with laughs, love, and adventure.

Once Upon a Galaxy . . .

Zana Starchild is on a mission to restore her tribe’s livestock and save herself from one more meal of kelp. Sure, it’s technically illegal to visit Old Earth, but to a rim rat like Zana, galactic laws are really just guidelines. Her wrecked starship just means she’ll need to use her backup plan to get off the abandoned world, an old Earth legend her uncle passed down to her.

Pulled from a relaxing shower, across the galaxy to Old Earth, Galactic Marshall Kyle Kepler finds himself naked and marooned with a quirky rim rat. Zana’s broken more laws than Kyle can count, and he plans to arrest her, just as soon as he can find transport off the planet and a pair of pants.

A junk heap of a starship, a magical tree, and a roving gang of mutant kangaroos are just the beginning of rollicking intergalactic journey filled with laughs, love, and adventure.

Book Videos:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rV0BQCcwhfk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdtFXXlGvbk

Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.com/Between-Venus-Mars-Soul-Mate-ebook/dp/B01N7OXSND/

Author S.C. Mitchell has this to say: When series collide: Between Venus and Mars is not only set the multi-dimensional worlds of the Soul Mate Tree legend, but also ties into my Hearts in Orbit series, a futuristic universe filled with starships, aliens, and new technologies. And, of course, romance. The Soul Mate Tree project offered me a great way to play with some new characters and further develop my universe, while partnering with some of the best authors in the business.

The Hearts in Orbit universe is a place where galactic marshals keep the peace in the cosmopolitan Core Worlds as well as the wild-west type rim world planets. While this book works as a standalone, and you don’t have to have read any of the others, I consider it Hearts in Orbit 2.5, fitting nicely between Pirates of the Dark Nebula and my soon-to-be-released Hearts in Orbit 3 novel Captives of the Kratzen.

Series Link: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B016DF63JM/

 

                              Hidden strengths, adventurous hearts.

S.C.Mitchell grew up an avid reader of comic books, science fiction and fantasy literature. He’s been writing stories for over thirty years. In 2010 he left his job as a computer desktop support specialist to pursue his passion for writing full time. He is a member of the Romance Writers of America as well as the Wisconsin chapter.

As a writer of paranormal and sci-fi romance, fantasy, and science fiction, Steve crafts unique and wondrous worlds where his characters explore, romp, and fall in love. Whether traveling through dark, demon filled dimensions, the edge of wild space, or ancient mythological heavens, his heroes and heroines, guided by their adventurous hearts, discover hidden strengths on their pathway to enduring love.

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You’ll find him at:

http://scmitchellauthor.com/

Blog: http://scmitchellauthor.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorSCMitchell

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorSMitchell

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B007D0Z1MW

Videos:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rV0BQCcwhfk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdtFXXlGvbk

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Today Madeline Hill is here for a visit to share her story, “Highland Hope“, a part of the Wild Thistle Trilogy. Welcome, Madelyn.

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Madelyn, in a few words, can you tell us what your story is about?

Madelyn: Sure can. Highland Hope is a Scottish Historical and book 1 of the Wild Thistle Trilogy. The Trilogy features 3 sisters, Hope, Faith and Honor. When their father dies, he says, “Through Hope, Faith and Honor, ye can rule.” This single statement affects each character in a different way.

Tag Line: Her clan was her everything, until he walked into her castle.

Personally, I think my blurb sums it up really well—

Remember, lasses. Through Hope, Faith and Honor, ye can rule,” were the last words Lady Hope MacAlister’s father spoke before dying. Those very words direct her every action and thought. Sword fighting and leading the men of her clan was second nature to Hope and she has little time for herself or any thoughts of love. Until Aidan MacKerry is captured spying on the clan.

She is beautiful, strong, and quick to pull a sword. But when he kisses her, all thoughts of the lairdship Aidan MacKerry seeks flee his mind. When the enemy continues to undermine Hope, Aidan is determined to aid her—only he didn’t think he’d lose his heart to the Laird of Wild Thistle Keep. When the enemy reveals Aidan’s secret, he must fight for his right to be laird and prove, despite their differences, he loves Hope.

The enemy refuses to back down and continues to threaten not only Hope, but the security of the entire clan. Only together will they be able to save the clan and save their love.

Why did you write it?

The line the father spoke came to me (in the shower, no less) and I just started writing the trilogy. I think the father’s statement really led to the growth of each character in a different way.

How long did it take?

I started the story several years ago and was working on many other projects. I finally focused and finished book 1 and 2 and I’m steadily making my way through book 3.

Any special inspiration?

I love Scotland and strong heroines, however the father’s dying words really inspired the book(s).

Where do you write?

During the winter, I write in my small office and when weather allows, I’m on my deck, blaring my iTunes playlist and writing away.

Any special reason why you chose the character names and location that you did? The father’s dying words inspired the names of the characters.

Describe the path to publication?

This is my fourth book with Soul Mate Publishing. I have been actively writing for years and submitting to big houses with no luck. After some prodding from my critique partner, I sent Wolf’s Castle (the first book published by Soul Mate, the fourth full manuscript I’ve written) and the rest is history!

Are you working on anything else right now?

I’m working on Highland Honor – Book 3 of the Wild Thistle Trilogy and gathering research for my next series – Highland Rogues. Highland Rogues will be about 5 books long and feature a group of Highlanders who are like modern day gym rats. The series will be influenced by Shakespearian themes. The first book is Much Ado About A Highlander.

Hardest part about writing?

Keeping focused and not letting the internet snag my attention. I’ve been known to set a timer and when it dings, I’m allowed to look at Facebook and Twitter.

Biggest surprise about being a published author?

That people actually buy, read and review my books!

Do you write in other genres?

I’m dabbling with Young Adult. I have one book done and I’m working on others.

How do you beat procrastination?

I know my personality and I have to keep to a schedule, so I write every day.

How do you beat writer’s block?

If I’m stuck, I’ll pick a future scene to write and that can help with inspiration. Or, I’ll do some research. If that doesn’t work, I’ll start at the beginning of the book and start editing. When I get to the point I was stuck, I’m usually okay to continue.  I also add notes at the end of the spot I just stopped writing so I know what direction I was moving toward. For example, Hero will make one last pledge while heroine is doing . .

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01I06XNX6

Awesome, Madelyn. I get surprise inspiration in the shower or car too. And I keep a notebook and pen in a basket just outside the shower for those times. I love how one character’s final line can bring so much flesh and blood to cover three volumes. That’s great. Now, about about some ice-breaking questions, to really get to know you (beyond the writer)…

The most recent movie you’ve seen?

We are huge movie fans! The last movie I saw at the theater was Marvels: Civil War. We watch a lot of movies at home and I love old movies.

Your favorite town/ city in the world? Why?

I love Venice. Such an amazing city with energy, history, can baroque architecture. My husband and I went on a gondola ride and ate pizza. The pigeons flocked around us in the Piazza San Marco. It was magical!

How did you meet your spouse/ significant other?

I met my husband in my hometown, Rochester Michigan. He was from Rochester New York! It was destiny!

If you won the lottery, what is the first thing you would do? Would you keep your day job (if you have one?)

I would pay off my kid’s student loans. Then travel to every city I’ve ever dreamed of visiting. And yes – I’d quit my day job. I love it, but as a teacher, I wouldn’t be able to travel as much as I’d like.

What is your favorite past time?

Cooking and baking, watching cooking shows, holding events so I can cook and bake!

Would you rather have the ability to be invisible or have x-ray vision?

I think invisibility would be a great ability so I can do research and not be detected.

If you had to give up one of your five senses, what would it be? (common sense does not count here)

Wow, this is a tough one! Maybe touch? I’d hate to lose my sense of taste, sight and hearing.

What ‘s a typical day like?

Driving my son to school, servicing the school districts I work with and then home to cook dinner, attend sporting events and spend the evening with my family. Then as we watch TV at night, I write.

How do you like to spend a rainy day?

Reading or watching movies.

Do you play any musical instruments?

No.

Do you know any foreign languages?

I understand Spanish, speak it horribly. I also understand a bit of French and Italian and sometimes I mix them all together!

Which person do you admire most in life? Why?

Wow, I’d say persons. My husband is such a hard worker and dedicated person. He always puts others before himself and he makes me laugh.

Also, my mother who valiantly fought stage 4 breast cancer and she lived fighting, living, and giving to others during her 7 year fight.

What one item would you grab if the house was on fire? (assume no living beings are inside)

Photo albums. All of my books are backed up online, so I’d be fine without my computer.
If you could invite four people (living or dead) to dinner, who would they be?

Not including family, John Wayne, Lucille Ball, Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt.

Describe one moment in time when you took a huge leap of faith. How did it turn out?

I moved from Michigan to New York on my own.

What’s one favorite thing you do by yourself?

Hmmm. I love to be around people. I guess reading or watching the shows no one else likes.

Growing up, what did you want to be?

A writer then an engineer.

Favorite food to cook?

Anything Italian

Favorite animal?

Horses

Favorite color?

Red

Favorite sport or physical activity?

Swimming

Favorite place to visit?

Rome

Favorite season?

Spring, Fall is a close second.

Which do you prefer for a second home? Mountain cabin, beach house or big city condo?

Beach house

What dessert do you order most often?

Tiramisu

What kind of car do you drive? Color?

White Yukon

What is your favorite type of art?

Impressionism – Mary Cassatt is my favorite artist.

Favorite vacation spot?

Any beach!

What three items would you take if you knew you were going to be stranded on a tropical island for a year? (enough suntan lotion is a freebie)

I’m assuming family is a given, so books, coffee, and pot to cook with.

One quote you love, that keeps you going in life?

“Love is the irresistible desire to be desired irresistibly.”

Robert Frost

One thing few people know about you?

I show my horses and rabbits in 4-H

Do you believe in love at first sight?

Yes!

Two things you wish people would ask you about your book?

About the writing process and how characters speak to me.

Anything special you would like to share with readers?

Each book holds a part of the writer. It may be a character, a conflict, or the setting, but as we write the book, there is the indelible mark of ourselves on every page.

Madelyn, thank you for your candid responses. Tell us a bit about yourself professionally, please.

Madelyn’s Bio:
Madelyn Hill has always loved the written word. From the time she could read and all through her school years, she’d sneak books into her textbooks during school. And she devoured books daily. At the age of 10 she proclaimed she wanted to be a writer. After being a “closet” writer for several years, she sent her manuscripts out there and is now published with Soul Mate Publishing. And she couldn’t be happier! A resident of Western New York, she moved from one Rochester to another Rochester to be with the love of her life. They now have 3 children and keep busy cooking, watching their children’s sporting events, and of course reading!

Madelyn Promo-Photo

Social Networking Links:
Click to order your copy of “Highland Hope.”
Thank you for a great visit, Madelyn. Best wishes for every success.

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If you are an artist, reading this book will make you want to get your easel, paints and brushes out. Rich details, both in art, location, culture and more, make this a realistic trip to the past. If you are not an artist, but just like romances, or time travels, with a bit of history, this book will not disappoint you.

A time for love in paris

Meet Elise Sutherland, born in Scotland, and now residing in Paris, France to study art. We see Elise at two stages of her life– two ages–and in three time frames. Living as a young mademoiselle in 1975, she borrows an enigmatic book which mysteriously transports her back to 1895. There, she meets master artist Michel Flaubert. Their attraction is mutual, and fast.

Michel is accustomed to nude women, begging to model for his art. Elise is different. He’s never met a woman like her. She’s confident, opinionated, and mysterious. Then she tells him an outlandish tale. Except, she can prove it. Time travel? Incredible. Everything about her lights him on fire. Elise just knows she loves Michel and traveling between her time in 1975 and his time of 1895 is wearing her out. Their passionate love-making leaves her breathless and her time juggling challenges leave her grappling for control.

A choice must be made, a sacrifice offered, a passion of art foregone for a passion of the heart. Who shall be the one to concede?

The answer may surprise the reader. This story will completely immerse the reader in 1895 Paris, in the world of artists, painters and writers in the time before WWII. History comes alive, both 1895 and 1975, and meet up in our present day now, taking the reader along for all of it. Smells, sights, rituals of the time, and more wait in the pages of A Time for Love in Paris in this page turning romance.

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Today I get to welcome author Cerian Hebert to the blog to discuss her release. “The Staying Kind.” Must say, I love the cover. Turns out we have a shared love, admiration and background of being around horses. So, Cerian, take it away!

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Cerian: Here is my back cover blurb for “The Staying Kind”:

Rio Presley isn’t looking for a place to fit in when she finds a job at a stable in New Hampshire. Travis Lithgow isn’t expecting to discover a drifter taking up residence in his hunting cabin and working for his aunt. Just back from a tour in the Middle East, he’s rebuilding his relationship with his rebellious teenage daughter. He’s sure Rio’s presence in their lives won’t make things easier, but he admires Rio’s strength facing the adversities in her life.

As Rio fights the urge to get back on the road before she becomes too comfortable with her newfound love of horses, her feelings for Travis become stronger than the need to flee. Both he and his aunt are offering Rio everything she’s ever been afraid to want, but staying could bring her past crashing into the happy life she’s begun to build.

Sounds super. What is this book about? You know…genre, plot, characters— The Staying Kind is a Contemporary Romance. Rio Presley isn’t looking for a place to fit in when she finds a job at a stable in New Hampshire. Travis Lithgow isn’t expecting to discover a drifter taking up residence in his hunting cabin and working for his aunt. Just back from a tour in the Middle East, he’s rebuilding his relationship with his rebellious teenage daughter. He’s sure Rio’s presence in their lives won’t make things easier, but he admires Rio’s strength facing the adversities in her life.

As Rio fights the urge to get back on the road before she becomes too comfortable with her newfound love of horses, her feelings for Travis become stronger than the need to flee. Both he and his aunt are offering Rio everything she’s ever been afraid to want, but staying could bring her past crashing into the happy life she’s begun to build.

How long did it take? I actually started writing this back around 2010. It sat on a shelf for a while as I worked on other projects. Finally, it was time to have this one published.

Any special reason why you chose the character names and location that you did?  I love setting my stories in small towns in New England, particularly New Hampshire, where I’ve lived most of my life.  I’m not really sure how I chose the name “Rio”.  I needed something different, and of course a certain Duran Duran song gave me the idea.

Describe the path to publication?  It was a long and winding path. I started, like many writers do, at around the age of 12.  I wrote on and off (more off than on) until I reached my 20’s and then became more serious. This was before the age of the internet so I had to rely on “how to” books and writing away to publishers like Harlequin to get guidelines.  Finally, once the internet came along everything opened up for me. It still took several years until I finished a manuscript worthy of publication.  I’m still learning though. Learning about self-publishing and marketing.

Um, I think we’re all still learning, regardless how many books we’ve had put out. Are you working on anything else right now?  Yes, I always have several projects going on at once. I’m trying to get some sequels out on books I’ve self-published, and for the first time I’m working on a manuscript that’s already been contracted. That’s a first for me and a little scary.

Hardest part about writing? Hands down it’s finding the time to write. Between a full time, job and four kids, I can’t sit down whenever I want and write. I have to steal moments whenever and wherever I can.

Do you write in other genres? Yes. I love writing ghost stories. They must be romances, but I have no problem throwing a ghost or two into my stories. And I wrote one book (hoping to write a sequel) about a witch with a matchmaking goddess hanging around her.

Now that sounds interesting! Okay, how about some non-writing questions? This is where the fun usually begins. What is the most recent movie you’ve seen or book you’ve read? (or both) Last movie I saw in a theater was the latest Star Wars (which was awesome). Last book I finished reading is Sweet Salt Air by Barbara Delinsky.

Your favorite town/ city in the world? Why? Washington DC. While I wouldn’t want to live there it’s my favorite city to visit. I am a nut for museums and there’s none better than the Smithsonian Institute of Natural History. One of my goals in my teenage years was to become the curator of that museum.

How did you meet your spouse/ significant other? Jim was the roommate of a high school friend of mine. I had just gone through a divorce when we met, so while there was some attraction, I was not ready for any kind of relationship. Not to mention he’s seven years younger than me, which at that time in our lives, he was barely old enough to drink.  After a year, however, we had a whirlwind affair, and got married. That was 20+ years ago.

If you won the lottery, what is the first thing you would do? Would you keep your day job (if you have one?) I would give 2 weeks’ notice, pay off all my bills and those of my family members, buy a couple decent cars and a nice house (nothing over the top). Then go on vacation to England, Scotland, Wales, and Ireland.

What is your favorite past time? Though I haven’t done it in many many many years, horseback riding was my all-time favorite thing to do, be it trail riding with a bunch of friends, or showing my horse at the small 4-H shows in the area.

Do you play any musical instruments? I played the coronet, the clarinet, and the piano. All badly. I’m probably the only kid who had to “practice” the coronet in the back seat of a Rolls Royce while it was in the garage.

Which person do you admire most in life? Why? My big sister, Lesley. She is an amazing, brave, and strong woman. For the past many years she’s lived out west as a firefighter for the US Forestry service. She’s been a Hot Shot in Alaska, a Smoke Jumper in Wyoming, she’s gone to schools all over with Smoky Bear to talk to kids about fire prevention, and she’s gone to Africa on three occasions to teach firefighting there. She’s humble and always supportive of me and my writing, but as you can see, she is my true role model and hero.

What one item would you grab if the house was on fire? (assume no living beings are inside) My laptop, with my thumb drives.

Growing up, what did you want to be? I wanted to be (in no particular order) 1. An Olympic horseback rider (closest I came was grooming horses for a future Olympic rider), 2. An actress in Hollywood (majored in theater in college until I decided I didn’t want to live in Los Angeles or New York). 3 A paleontologist (but I was horrible at science). 4. The curator of the Smithsonian Institute of Natural History. And 5. A romance writer. At least I can say I’ve achieved one of my goals.

That’s pretty good, I’d say. How about some quickie Q & A? 

Favorite food to cook? Seafood chowder

Favorite animal? horse

Favorite sport or physical activity? Horseback riding

What makes you laugh? Funny animal videos, Monty Python, Kate McKinnon doing Hillary Clinton on SNL.

Favorite season? autumn

Strangest thing you ever ate? Cow tongue or haggis (I’m not very adventurous)

Can you dance? Sing? No way, and Kind of.

Which do you prefer for a second home? Mountain cabin, beach house or big city condo? Beach house. On the Maine coast if we’re being specific.

What is your favorite type of art? The kind that I know exactly what I’m looking at without having to tilt my head or have someone explain it to me.

If you had a magic genie, what would your three wishes be? 1. Enough money to live comfortably without having any financial worry for my family and me. 2. For a world free of hatred, war, disease, and poverty (I had to say it.) 3. Three more wishe

One quote you love, that keeps you going in life? “You don’t always need a plan. Sometimes you just need to breathe, trust, let go, and see what happens.” Mandy Hale

What would you do in life if you knew you couldn’t fail? I would quit my day job and do what I truly love to do, and that’s write. Put the time I need into making myself the best writer I can be.

Do you believe in love at first sight? I most certainly do. It’s happened to me on several occasions. But love at first sight is the easy part.

Anything special you would like to share with readers?  Yes. I love feedback. I want to know what you liked, what you didn’t like about my stories. Without feedback it’s harder to work on what needs fixing.

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BIO:

At the age of twelve Cerian was going to be a great mystery/adventure writer with her friends and her as the main characters and their adventures in their rural neighborhood the basis for the stories. As the years went by, adventures in the neighborhood gave way to an enduring interest in horses and boys. So, instead of writing about twelve year olds solving mysteries regarding old, empty houses and strange gusts of icy wind she started writing about romance. And horses.

While growing up in New Hampshire, Cerian dreamed about becoming an Olympic horseback rider, the curator of the Smithsonian Institute of Natural History in Washington DC, a paleontologist, and a famous actress in Hollywood. While none of that worked out, she kept up the writing. While either mucking stalls at a New York horse farm, or taking reservations for cruises, she never stopped writing in her ever growing pile of notebooks.

Currently Cerian lives in southwestern New Hampshire with her husband, two of their four children, one dog, one cat, and three geckos. Her mundane job keeps her busy working as a customer satisfaction rep, until she makes enough at her writing to retire from the glamorous life of data entry.

Excerpt

As sleep began to pull her down, she heard a noise from inside the house this time. She sat up in bed, now wide-awake. The noise repeated, coming from out in the kitchen.

Rio sat still for a long time, listening. Her bedroom door was shut so the sounds were muffled, but constant.

Slowly she climbed out of bed, padded to the door, opening it a crack, enough to peek out. She couldn’t see the entire kitchen from her vantage point, so she stepped out, creeping further down the narrow hall, with only her fists to defend herself.

The sight of Travis standing by the sink surprised her, followed by a flood of relief. So the rain had apparently driven him in and cut his hunting trip short.

Beyond the comfort of having someone home at last, a not-so-new emotion wound its way in. Thick, undeniable attraction came on much stronger, much headier than before.

The fact he stood there bare-chested, in the soft illumination of the light over the stove, did nothing for her resolve to keep those damned lustful thoughts at bay.

I should turn around. Slip into her bedroom, climb into bed and be glad she wasn’t alone. That was what she should do.

Instead she couldn’t tear her gaze away from him. So much about him remained unknown. He’d spent years in the service and she could see it in his build. His tanned skin stretched taut over the muscles of his chest, his abdomen tight.

Rio flexed her fingers and balled them up. The desire to go to him and stroke her hand up the smooth, hard expanse of his back overwhelmed her. She’d struggled with this misplaced attraction for too long, and seeing him this way only made the battle harder to fight.

Damn. Why couldn’t she leave? Go to bed? Why did she have to be so transfixed by him?

Just a second longer, one more glimpse. Then she’d have enough to dream about for a good long while.

Finally, she found the will to leave, but she didn’t even take one step before his voice stopped her.

“Rio.”

Too late to escape.

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Buy Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01H5WVIBU

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Ceriansbooks/

Twitter https://twitter.com/CerianHebert

Website: www.cerianhebert.com

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Today I am pleased to introduce author Linda Bradley. Her second women’s fiction novel, “Maggie’s Fork in the Road” of the ‘Montana Bound’ series is releasing July 6th with Soul Mate Publishing. This is the follow up to her critically acclaimed multi-award finalist, “Maggie’s Way“. Welcome, Linda. Can you share what this book is about?

Linda:
Maggie Abernathy learns that pesky neighbors, John and Chloe McIntyre are moving to Montana. The only problem is…she can’t fathom living without them now that they’ve stolen her heart. While trying to digest the news and accept John’s decision to leave Michigan, Maggie ventures to Chicago with Chloe to see Chloe’s Hollywood mother in a photo shoot, where the three kindle a quirky bond making it even harder to say goodbye. With the support of Maggie’s meddling mother, best friend Judy, and a surprise visit from Montana rancher, Winston Ludlow McIntyre, Maggie begins to wonder which fork in the road leads home.

Ryan: Um, very full of twists and supporting characters. Why did you write it?
When I wrote, Maggie’s Way, Montana Bound Series: Book 1, I intended it to be a single title, but when it was time to type “The End” something inside me told me Maggie’s journey wasn’t over. One book morphed into three, each with it’s own premise. Maggie’s Fork in the Road is the second book in the series.

How long did it take?
It took me about four months to have my first draft.

That is not too bad. Where do you write?
I write at my desk in an office that I share with my husband. I write at our dining room table, in bed, on the sofa. It depends on my mood. When it’s summer, I tend to find myself of on the deck or on our porch with my dog, Maisey.

LB MaiseyShe’s a beauty!

Some days her friends from the neighborhood join us, so writing becomes a group effort.LB Group effort dogs

Are you working on anything else right now?
Yes, I am. I am working on edits for Maggie’s Montana, Montana Bound Series: Book 3 due out this fall. I’m also working on another Montana based series and a Women’s Fiction book with a thread of Spirit.

Thread of spirit? Sounds great.  Okay, here are some ice-breaking questions to get to know you better, beyond the writing hat you wear.

1.    Most recent book I’ve read: Palmetto Moon by Kim Boykin
2.    Favorite town: Positano, Italy. It’s the place I traveled to with my husband in celebration of getting married and being cancer-free.    (Hey, big congratulations!)

LB cancer free w hubs

3.    Be Invisible or x-ray vision: Invisible.
4.    Typical Day: I teach second grade full time, so it’s a lot of hustle and bustle during the school year. The summer is different. I own that and it’s a time to rejuvenate, get projects done around the house, travel, and write.
5.    Rainy Days: At home writing or hanging with my hubby and dog.
6.    Musical Instrument: I played the cello up until college. Some days I wonder if I’d be able to rekindle the connection.
7.    Foreign Language: None, fluently. I wish I did though. I took German in high school and French in college.
8.    Four people for dinner: Only four?
This is tough, but today, I’d have to go with Julianne Moore, Sam Elliot, Robert Redford, and Nicholas Sparks. Julianne Moore because I’ve had people tell me that I look like her, even ask me if I was her, although I believe she is much more elegant than I am. I have this crazy idea to write a book in which the main character, me, spends a day in her shoes. It has comedy written all over it. Sam Elliot because I’ve always been intrigued by him and if someday, one of my Montana Bound books should find its way on a big screen, he’d be a perfect Winston Ludlow McIntyre. Robert Redford, well because he’s Robert Redford. And my fourth guest would be Nicholas Sparks because I’ve read many of his books and I’m intrigued by how his writing fuels the big screen.

(Great choices, and some very good looking ones too. I’m an Elliot and Redford fan)

9.    Growing up, what did I want to be: I wanted to be an artist. I knew my main character, Maggie Abernathy needed a hobby, so I depict her painting photographs. Here’s a hand colored photo I did in college. This one was done with colored pencils. The photo was taken on Belle Isle here in Michigan. LB Belle IS MI

Ok- now how about a speed round?:

1.    Favorite Food to Cook: Chocolate Chip Cookies
2.    Favorite Animal: Maisey, my rescue dog, but I think she really rescued me. (they usually do)
3.    Favorite Color: Green
4.    Favorite Book: The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd
5.    Favorite Sport: Tennis
6.    Favorite Music: 70’s
7.    Favorite Song: There are too many!
8.    Favorite place to visit: Petoskey, Michigan. My grandparents lived there so we took many treks to northern Michigan. It’s the only place I can find Penuche. Penuche is a kind of maple fudge and my grandmother used to make for my siblings and me every time we visited.
9.    What makes me laugh:  A good joke or a classic rerun of Match Game.
10.    3 adjectives: Creative, Resourceful, Determined
11.    Favorite Season: Summer
12.    Strangest thing I ate: caviar
13.    Strangest thing I’ve done: Oh boy, not sure I can divulge that information.
14.    Dance or sing: Definitely not dance, but I can carry a tune on a good day.
15.    Second home: Mountain cabin for the summer and a beach home for the winter.
16.    Dessert: Anything chocolate.

17.    Whom do you admire: My dad. Here he is in Panama City, Panama on December 7, 1941. LB dad inpanama

 

18.    Car: Silver Malibu
19.    Favorite Art: Impressionism
20.    3 wishes: 1) Retire early 2) Make a movie 3) Beach house
21.    Favorite Vacation Spots: Montana, Italy, Ireland, the beach. LB favor vacation Ireland the beach

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wonderful, Linda, thank you for sharing such great photos. How about some parting thoughts?

1.    What 3 items would I take if I were stranded on a tropical island for a year: 1) A bag of books. 2) A friend 3) Bug spray
2.    Quote I love: “All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know.” -Ernest Hemingway
3.    Real life situation in which you stood up for someone or something: At the age of fifty-one, I’ve stood up for a lot of things, students in my classroom, and especially myself. My husband always tells me that doing the right thing doesn’t always feel good. He’s right, and I try to remember that when it’s time to pick a battle that should be addressed.

I am happy to announce that Linda’s debut novel,  book 1 “Maggie’s Way”, is a finalist in the Greater Detroit Bookseller’s Best Award 2016 and was a finalist for The Romance Reviews Readers Choice Award.  That’s pretty cool! Congratulations and not a bad start for 2016.  I’d love to share an excerpt of book 2 “Maggie’s Fork in the Road” now.

John’s news knocked the wind out of me leaving me breathless, speechless . . . paralyzed.

Breathe, I told myself.

The dim room grew foggy as my eyes searched John’s face. “Really,” I said. “Why now? And why here?” What was it about delivering bad news in a restaurant? First, Beckett, now John. For the love of God, I wondered if breaking a woman’s heart in public got them into a secret men’s club.

Letting my guard down proved one thing. Hurt was inevitable. John and Chloe’s absence would leave a hole in my heart, a gorge of sharp edges. We were more than neighbors. We’d become friends that navigated life’s ups- and-downs together. And now they were moving. I’d have new neighbors and I didn’t want new neighbors. I wanted John and Chloe. I needed John and Chloe. We bonded last summer when I dealt with breast cancer. Their craziness made mine seem normal. John and Chloe weren’t any ordinary neighbors; they were family, eccentric misfits, like myself that conformed to the beat of life while traversing the bumps in the road.

Massaging my temples, I caught my breath. The throb pierced my skull. Since John and Chloe’s arrival, there’d never been a dull moment. Mom came around more often. And Chloe’s mother, Brook. Jesus, she flitted in and left like a summer storm leaving sky-high humidity and heat that scorched everything in its path.

Broken-hearted, Chloe had wept over false promises, her bags packed, her hopes magnanimous. And God, Beckett.

My ex-husband found his footing with a new lifestyle that didn’t include me, or any other woman. I’d heard through the grapevine that he was dating and wondered if his better half was as handsome as he was.

I searched John’s face for an answer.

“I didn’t know how to tell you. I’m sorry, Maggie. I don’t belong here,” he said, lowering his voice. “I can practice medicine in Montana and my dad could really use the help.”

Montana was one hell of a long ways away. I swallowed the sting of disappointment. John’s eyes searched mine. His news left a bitter taste at the back of my throat. “You can’t leave. I love you,” I whispered.

The pressure behind my eyes burned something fierce. How was it possible that I felt so much for someone I wasn’t romantically involved with? I certainly thought about it enough and the few recent kisses we shared established a deeper connection spurring buried promises that I’d made to myself. Moving forward in the wake of waiting for perfect timing proved difficult.

The corners of John’s mouth drooped. His jaw clenched.

“I can’t believe I said that.” I stared into my half-empty glass of Merlot, my cheeks smoldered from the realization that he didn’t return my sentiments. My chin quivered as he touched my hand from across the table.

“I want to put the house up for sale when Chloe’s school year ends.”

My forced smile hurt. It was the kind that everyone knows is fake and by John’s expression, my attempt to lighten the moment had failed. He squeezed my hand. I sipped my wine trying to avoid eye contact with the waitress. Her return with the dessert tray came at the most inopportune moment. After listening politely, John asked for the check. I wrapped my shawl around my shoulders trying to hold myself together. “I’ll meet you outside,” I said, fumbling with my purse.

“I won’t be long,” he said. “Maggie—”

The leg of my chair got stuck on the carpet. I shook it loose in disgust, studying the face of a man that I thought just might be a permanent fixture in my life. His eyes sadly apologetic.

“Damn, you’re beautiful.” With a heavy sigh, he paused. “I’ll be out in a minute.

The cool spring breeze sent shivers down my spine as I exited the restaurant. I caught my breath. How could I have told John I loved him? Why now? I wrapped my arms around myself. If I could survive cancer, I’d survive this. Hearts mended. Beckett taught me that lesson the hard way, but this was John and Chloe. Our attachment was the seam that mended that wound, made it invisible.

Okay, here are Linda’s social media links to stay in contact to see what is next:

website: http://www.lindabradleyauthor.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Linda-Bradley

twitter: https://www.twitter.com/LBradley/author

Buy links to start your own set:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Maggies-Way-Montana-Bound-Book-ebook/dp/B00ZSOX4BA?ie=UTF8&keywords=maggie%27s%20way&qid=1434509844&ref_=sr_1_2&sr=8-2

Barnes & Nobel: https://www.amazon.com/Maggies-Way-Montana-Bound-Book-ebook/dp/B00ZSOX4BA?ie=UTF8&keywords=maggie%27s%20way&qid=1434509844&ref_=sr_1_2&sr=8-2

Linda, thank you so much for stopping in today. It has been a great visit. Before you go, you did say something earlier about a giveaway. What are your giving away?

I would love to giveaway two Amazon e-books. Winners decide which of my books they want. Just leave a comment below.

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