Monday, April 30, 2018

MAKE-UP MONDAY - Review & Winner!

Okay.. so I'm on the slow side today. I got so caught up in creative business stuff - which is my official day job, I failed to get a review posted for Caroline Clemmons' Texas Lightning and to officially announce the winners of her giveaway last week.

Let's start with congratulating:


Judy, please contact me via the contact for on my sidebar or connect with Caroline via her website. Enjoy your copy of Texas Lighting! I know I have.


I fell in love with Texas Lightning the moment Penelope Terry rode like the wind, shooting her daddy's colt over her shoulder at her cousin Charlie. Caroline Clemmons didn't waste any time dropping us into the action and sending us from 1896 to 2017 right along with the heroine.. and into the arms of hero Jake Knight. 

As Jake and his family come to terms with the fact that Penny has time-traveled, they are fighting to save their ranch... Penny's ranch... just as she had been doing when she began her journey.  Penny's not having much of a picnic either. She finds her ranch no longer belongs to her and she isn't sure where she fits in.

Like all good hero's, Jake discovers he'll believe anything to keep this woman in his life. But will being her savior cost him the ranch they both love? 

Descendants from both families create for a gripping read and a sweet romance you won't want to put down. 

I look forward to the rest of the Texas Time Travel series from Caroline Clemmons!

Follow any of the links below to purchase your copy:

You can visit Caroline on various social media platforms:

Friday, April 27, 2018


NOTE from my desk: While I have not attended most of the conferences I showcase, I have heard excellent comments regarding their offerings. Please check their website thoroughly and if you have any questions, use the contact information on their page. 

If you attend any of the conferences or enter the contests I list, I'd love to hear your thoughts. Please share your review in the comments section of that conference's post.

Know of a great conference you'd like me to share? Please use the contact form on the right to drop me a note. 

Thank you!

If non-fiction is your gig, then this looks like a great conference to attend.
NOTE! EARLY REGISTRATION ends Monday April 16th.  offering a savings of $70!

The website has some great recommendations for this conference. If you attend, please come back and share your experience... or link to a blog/ web post telling us about this opportunity.

Safe Travels & Happy Writing!

Thursday, April 26, 2018

WRITER'S TIP THURSDAY - Caroline Clemmons

Caroline Clemmons offers up stellar advice this week:
Don’t let negative people discourage you. Hone your craft and write what you enjoy reading.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT - Caroline Clemmons + Giveaway!

This week we shine the spotlight on author Caroline Clemmons


Through a crazy twist of fate, Caroline Clemmons was not born on a Texas ranch. To make up for this tragic error, she writes about handsome cowboys, feisty ranch women, and scheming villains in a small office her family calls her pink cave. She and her Hero live in North Central Texas cowboy country where they ride herd on their rescued cats and dogs. The books she creates there have made her an Amazon bestselling author and won several awards
Subscribe to Caroline’s newsletter here to receive a FREE novella of HAPPY IS THE BRIDE, a humorous historical wedding disaster that ends happily—but you knew it would, didn’t you?

Thank you for joining us today, Caroline! Let's find out a bit more about you!

I ask our guest 5 questions. Then I give them a list of more questions for them to select 3 of their own.

Here's My Five:

I’m always asked ‘where do you get your ideas’. So, where do you get yours?
They spring up from everywhere—a snatch of conversation, a news story, a bit of history I’ve read, the recesses of my subconscious. A friend says she buys hers from a small factory in Ohio. Wish I could think of an answer that clever.

 Which comes first, the story, the characters, or the setting?
That depends on the story. Usually, the characters come first and play like a movie in my head, which also means they’re in the setting.  What they’re doing/saying ignites the plot. Once in a while, I come up with an idea for a series and start with a different angle. For instance, I decided to write a series about seven women who came to North Central Texas as guests of a widow and called it the Bride Brigade. After the concept, then I created the characters. 

Which of your heroines most represent you, or the ‘you’ you’d like to be? Why?
Each of them represents a tiny part of me, just as each character does—including the villain. In my opinion, everything that happens to us and how we react becomes a part of our core. We can’t keep from using that in our writing. Why would we want to?

What is the single most important part of writing for you?
Keeping in mind that writers are entertainers! We can’t have an axe to grind or preach to readers.

What’s the most romantic thing a guy can do (or has done) for you?

Since he retired, my Hero cooks, cleans the kitchen, mops, and does his laundry. You can see why I call him Hero!

Caroline's Three:

What is your writing routine once you start a book?
I do background research, make a loose outline/premise sketch, open a Word document, and start putting down words. Recently, I’ve added Dragon Speech Recognition Software. So far, my Southwestern twang is sometimes a puzzle for Dragon but we’re both learning. J I am not a morning person, so I check social media in the morning, stagger around looking for my hot tea or a Dr Pepper, and do little chores like my laundry or play with the pets.  Sometime in early afternoon I focus on my story. If I’m not too tired, I go back to my office when Hero goes to bed after we’ve spent the evening together. (He’s one of those who wakes cheerful and energetic but turns in at a reasonable time.) I’m most productive from eight or nine in the evening until about three in the morning and those hours don’t mesh well with most of the population’s time schedule.

If money were not an object, where would you most like to travel?
Hero and I have wished the next time we go to Ireland/the UK we could rent a one-story cottage for a month or two, get a rail pass, and travel to the places we haven’t seen.

City Girl or Country Girl

I prefer city life, although Hero and I lived in a rural area for many years. Doesn’t even have to be a city--could be a small town as long as there are stores, paved streets, city services, etc.

Now, let's talk about your book:

How can two people from different eras own the same ranch?

Penelope Jane Terry is determined to send to jail the rustlers who believe they can steal what is hers… until she is caught spying on their dirty works and must ride for her life. What Penny doesn’t count on is being hurtled over a 120 years into the future.

Jake Knight believes the attractive woman who stumbled into his home one rainy evening either has amnesia or is certifiably insane. Unless, that is, she is in league with whoever is trying to drive him out of business. Someone is trying to force him to sell his ranch by staging a string of damaging incidents. Even if he were stupid enough to wish to sell, the ranch is so firmly entailed that no one can break the conditions.

Jake gradually learns Penny is who she claims, no matter that time travel is supposed to be impossible. They’re locked into a clash that it seems only one of them can win. If an outsider weren’t trying to kill Jake as well as bankrupt him, perhaps he and Penny might be able to reach an agreement. Then, there is that mythical treasure… or is it real?


She should have gone around to the back door, but she couldn’t walk another step. Weariness and sore muscles overwhelmed her and she wanted nothing more than to shuck out of her wet things and lie in her nice bed—if she could summon the energy to walk upstairs. She heard footsteps approaching and raised one foot. Eyes closed, she leaned back against the stairs.
“Had me a passel of trouble, Jake. Help me get these danged boots off, would you? Then I’ll tell you all about it.” A dog’s cold nose pressed against her cheek. She jumped and pushed her hair out of her eyes. A black and white dog stared at her. “Who are you?”
“His name’s Rascal.” An unfamiliar baritone said, “He’s mine.”
She looked up.
Whoa! The man who faced her wasn’t Jake. In spite of her wariness, her mouth dropped open in awe. Instead of her arthritic middle-aged cook, this man was young and tall and definitely fit. And handsome. Unbelievably, mesmerizingly handsome.
He might be as comely as a fairy tale prince, but the regal disapproval on his face appeared anything but friendly.
Energized by fear, she jumped to her feet and grabbed her rifle. “Who the heck are you?”
He crossed his arms and ignored the Winchester pointed at his middle. His dark hair glistened in light that seemed too bright. Dark blue eyes had tiny creases at the corners, as if he laughed a lot.

He sure wasn’t laughing now. 

Two lucky visitors today will WIN an eBook copy of TEXAS LIGHTNING

You may purchase your copy at any of the following links:

AmazonUSA     AmazonUK     AmazonCanada        

To connect with Caroline, you'll find her at the following Social Media locations:


Friday, April 20, 2018


NOTE from my desk: While I have not attended most of the conferences I showcase, I have heard excellent comments regarding their offerings. Please check their website thoroughly and if you have any questions, use the contact information on their page. 

If you attend any of the conferences or enter the contests I list, I'd love to hear your thoughts. Please share your review in the comments section of that conference's post.

Know of a great conference you'd like me to share? Please use the contact form on the right to drop me a note. 

Thank you!


This conference grabbed my attention for multiple reasons. 
1) Indie
2) Colorado
3) about the time I hope to be traveling that direction

You can check out the great prices HERE. The next price bracket is March 17-May 21. 

From their Media landing page:

Georgetown Indie-Con is a great place to find your writers community, hone your craft, learn from others and share your own experiences as a writer

Whether you are Indie-publishing or not, there looks to be plenty of material at this conference. I hope to attend and that you will too. Have something to share about this conference? Please post a link or tell us about your experience in the comments section below. 

Safe Travels & Happy Writing!

Monday, April 16, 2018

CURRENT PROJECT - Another Option?

One thing I've learned from author Velda Brotherton is to not put all of my eggs in one basket. Velda is published with Oghma Creative, Wild Rose Press, Indie published and was once published with big traditional publishers early in her career.

While I'm still wanting to publish some of my books as an Indie publisher, having different streams of income isn't a bad thing. I figure the Indie is a good place to kick in the cash flow while I work at other areas for some things. Like my western with Tiffany Schoefield (someday).

One of my strongest support systems is a group of gals I've been sprinting with for almost twelve years. J.D. Faver, Pam Labud and Tara Manderino are three with books to their names. While J.D. has been Indie-published for some time, she also holds a multi-book contract with Sourcebooks, with her first one releasing in September.  J.D. aka June is one of the most supportive people. She has her fingers on the pulse of what's going on and is always happy to share her finds with the rest of us.

Last week she pointed us to a Call for Submissions from Harlequin DARE. They are looking for New Authors and taking submissions through April 20th. We'll hear back by May 4th. That's quite a turn around time and a high-jump over the slush pile.

My challenge is that while I might have something in the tickler file, I'm not sure I can write that depth of 'naughty' I have story lines in my head, but I can't seem to put it on paper. I'm not a prude but I've never been able to talk dirty. Just let me enjoy the experience.  But with a chance like this, I have to at least see if I have something to submit. I've downloaded one of their books but have battled a sinus headache and then music stuff. Hopefully, this afternoon I can curl up with the book to see what they are looking for. From there I'll determine if my file drawer holds any possibilities.

The good thing is that on short notice, they only want a clean first chapter and a synopsis. Easy to pull off if I buckle down.

Oh, and Bob may be home on Wednesday. LOL Going to be a fun week!

As to A Christmas To Remember...  I finally made it through the first rough revision in Chapter 1. I started working on the keyboard again rather than writing longhanded and things seems to be moving at a more focused pace.

How did we write and revise before electronics?

Choose your path and write from your heart!

Friday, April 13, 2018

CONFERENCE & CONTESTS - Northern Colorado

Beginning this week, Conference & Contests are moving to Fridays. Wednesdays will be reserved for Reviews either of books by Spotlight Author or one of my choosing.

NOTE from my desk: While I have not attended most of the conferences I showcase, I have heard excellent comments regarding their offerings. Please check their website thoroughly and if you have any questions, use the contact information on their page. 

If you attend any of the conferences or enter the contests I list, I'd love to hear your thoughts. Please share your review in the comments section of that conference's post.

Know of a great conference you'd like me to share? Please use the contact form on the right to drop me a note. 

Thank you!



This looks like an amazing conference! Makes me wish I could move my CO trip  up a few weeks. They even provide you with a 90 page program that includes all the handouts! 

Fort Collins is a lovely town full of history as well as contemporary sights - something for everyone!

As always, if you attend - or have attended in the past, I'd love to hear from you!

Safe Travels & Happy Writing!

Thursday, April 12, 2018


Kryssie Fortune's  best advice:

Get the first draft on paper then polish it until it shines. You can always improve your writing, but you need something to work with. 

Wednesday, April 11, 2018


First off, I'm in love with the cover. Though the hero and the cover model have some differences, who wouldn't want that man defending them? Yes, please! Add in one feisty heroine in need of rescuing in more ways than one and you have the perfect elements for a book you won't be able to close til the end - or in my case, til the kindle hits you in the nose. hehe

When archivist Harriet Mortlake lands the job of a lifetime at the historic de Ferrers castle, she gets more than she bargained for. After all, who expects to find a drop-dead hunk of a vampire in the twenty-first century? In a nano second she goes from being the 'ice queen' her ex claimed her to be to molten lava in the hands of Blaxton de Ferrers. 

Blaxton de Ferres had his share of women in his eight hundred years. Over the course he's amassed an obscene amount of money, allowing him the philanthropic opportunities and continue to grow his fortune. One thing that has eluded him is love.. until he goes toe to toe with Harriet. the woman is a spitfire he can't resist.. nor seem to feed on. 

Like all good romance novels, there's always a twist - that one moment of  'will she or won't she?' In this case we get it from both the hero and the heroine's point of view, adding that extra element that makes this a 'must read' for anyone who loves strong characters, hot sex and a happy ever after.

While the writing could have been a bit tighter in spots, I enjoyed this book. I'm giving ONE KNIGHT STAND - 


You may purchase your copy at any of the following links:

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT - Kryssie Fortune

This week we shine the light on author, Kryssie Fortune.

Kryssie Fortune writes the sort of hot sexy books she loves to read. If she can sneak a dragon into her paranormal books she will. Her paranormal heroes are muscular werewolves, arrogant Fae or BDSM loving dragons. 
Kryssie likes her contemporary heroes ex-military and dominant. Her heroines are kick ass females who can hold their own against whatever life - or Kryssie - throws at them.

Kryssie's pet hates are unhappy endings, and a series that end on a cliff hanger.
Her books are all stand alone even when part of series. Plot always comes before sex, but when her heroines and heroes get together, the sex is explosive and explicit. One review called it downright sensual.

Thank you for joining us today, Kryssie. Let's find out a bit more about you.

I ask our guest 5 questions. Then I give them a list of more questions for them to select 3 of their own. 
Here's My Five:
I’m always asked ‘where do you get your ideas’. So, where do you get yours?

 I start with one scene and work from there.

Which comes first, the story, the characters, or the setting?
It varies. Mostly I see the place and set a story there. I’ve done that twice, but both times, I cut my starting scene from the edits. Sometimes I start with the hero or heroine and work out what happened to them.

Which of your heroines most represent you, or the ‘you’ you’d like to be? Why?
This is a hard one. Each one has a little bit of me in. Ellie, in To Mate a Werewolf, loves to bake. My cakes have won prizes. That was the same day my jam entry had set so hard it broke the judge’s spoon. Meena, in To Break A Warrior King’s Curse, is a witch. I’m fascinated by all things Wicca. Viola, in To Seduce an Omega has a bad knee. Mine’s nothing like as bad as hers, but somedays it’s not good.   

What is the single most important part of writing for you?
All of it. I love getting a story down on paper. I spend ages honing it and making it into something I’d like to read. The hard bit is when someone else edits it. I can see it get better, but sometimes it hurts. 

What’s the most romantic thing a guy can do (or has done) for you?
I married the most unromantic man in the universe. After over 40 years, I still love him as much as when I married him. The most romantic thing he’s ever done is buy me a bunch of my favorite flowers – daffodils. For him, that’s huge. Hang on. He took me to Paris for my birthday once. How wonderful is that? 

Kryssie's Three:

If I was a first time reader of your books, which one would you recommend I start with
       and why?
All my books are stand alone, even when they’re linked to each other. My Scattered Siblings series is paranormal. My Heroes of Westhorpe Ridge series revolves around former military men building new lives in Westhorpe Ridge  

 City Girl or Country Girl
I’m in the middle. I lived in Leeds, England for most of my life. That’s city life. Two years ago, we packed up and retired to Bridlington on the Yorkshire Coast. I get everything here. I can walk on the beach with my husband, or we can travel 300 yards down the road away from the coast, and we are in the country. 

Favorite TV show
Any quiz show. I love to quiz. Recently we formed a team with two friends, and we’re doing well. If we don’t come in the top three, none of us are happy. Touch wood, that hasn’t happened yet

Now, let's talk about this fabulous book!

Crusader knight, Blaxton de Ferrers rises as a vampire after the Knights Defender steal his soul. Murdered by his cousin, he preys on the people he once swore to protect. His emotions leach out of him. Gradually, he forgets how to feel. 
Eight hundred years later, he meets Harriet.
Harriet Mortlake’s a strong, sassy woman who battles her weight and her temper. She’s the modern-day archivist in the castle which was Blaxton’s childhood home. She’s supposed to ferret out the castle’s secrets. Instead, she finds the love of her life.
When danger threatens Harriet, Blaxton steps in. Harriet and Blaxton are a match made in heaven. Except… he’s a vampire and he’s destined for hell. 

Note: Previously sold as Knight’s vampire

“How dare you embarrass me like that?” Harriet Mortlake planted her hands on her hips and glowered at the man she’d cornered outside the cafe. Her normal iceberg cool deserted her, and she wanted to slap the condescending smile off his face. Around this stranger, she felt as though lightning bolts flashed from her eyes.
“It’s a temple, not a chapel,” he insisted.
Stubborn. Damn. Male. She’d been showing the big guns from the Castles’ Management Trust around the building. They’d already made it clear they thought her too young for the archivist’s role. This know-it-all had infuriated her when he sounded off in the chapel. Now he antagonized her all over again.
 “As if!” Harriet snorted. “No way would medieval Christians build a pagan temple on their grounds. Superstitious locals would have accused them of devil worship. They burned heretics at the stake, remember?”
Despite Mr. Condescending’s interference, she’d impressed the big bosses—she thought. Now the sexiest male, ever, clung to his ridiculous belief the chapel had been a pagan temple.
He flashed her a smile which would have lit up the underground chapel where he’d embarrassed her earlier. He should keep his mouth shut and let her admire his looks. Everything about him radiated sex appeal. Looking at him almost made her anger evaporate, but he gave her the know-it-all look that made her bristle.
“You need to get your facts right,” he told her, determined to have the last word.
Stupid, arrogant male. She couldn’t decide whether to show him her diplomas and degrees or kick his shins. She’d reined in her temper while the higher-ups carried out their inspection. Now they’d left, she felt free to vent her rage. Hands still on her hips, she tapped her foot at him.
“Lost for words without an audience? Or don’t you have any facts to back up your cock-and-bull story? Put up or shut up, Mister. Tell me why you think it’s a temple.”
Mr. Condescending sat outside the castle’s tearoom as if he hadn’t a care in the world. His interference when she’d shown the bigwigs into the chapel could have cost her the job she loved. Whitborough Castle’s extensive records needed cataloging, and Harriet couldn’t wait to get her hands on them.

Sounds like a great read. 
You may purchase your copy at any of the following links:

To connect with Kryssie, you'll find her on these Social Media locations:
Website     Blog     Twitter       Facebook   Pinterest     Goodreads    

Monday, April 9, 2018


I'm afraid I did very little on the revisions last week. I spent the first part of the week doing some deep cleaning - both in the laundry room and in my office. The laundry room got the deep clean because that was its week in my Fly Lady and the space really needed a clean out.

The office was for good reason. I was determined to find my sofa so that I could sit there and write in the evening. Not the prettiest thing but it's comfortable. I did get a couple hours in on Tuesday and Wednesday. I also discovered this isn't going to work writing by hand. Maybe as a first draft, but not with revisions. So the clearing of the sofa for the purpose of writing was for naught LOL

Tuesday afternoon, I realized Bear, my Great Pyreneese/ Chow mix wasn't feeling well. He had good and bad days all week. Friday I thought sure I was losing him so asked the vet to stop out Saturday morning. Guess who ate and was wagging his tail by the time Doc Mike showed up? Yep, that would be Bear.

He still isn't himself but he's almost 14 years old. Doc said he seems happy and that I should let him be happy as long as he has left. So every day I spoil him with wet food, warm milk and lots of lovin'.  While I was worrying about him, I just could not get my mind on the revisions. Nothing mattered except keeping my baby comfortable.

I hope to be back to working on the revisions again tonight with the new plan in place. I'll let you know my progress on Friday.

In the mean time, I'm shining the Spotlight on author Kryssie Fortune. Stop by and say hello, won't you?

Creative Blessings

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

CONFERENCE & CONTESTS - Ozark Creative Writers

The current Conference and Contest information has been posted to the WEBSITE. There is an excellent line-up of speakers for our 52nd Annual conference... myself included.

Okay, while I'm not touting myself as an 'excellent' speaker I am on the roster and hope to bring you valuable information about choosing the social media avenues that are best for you.

Aside from myself we have

Tess Gerritsen - (NYT best selling author) Keynote both Friday and Saturday
Linda Apple - Your Stories Matter
Johnny Boggs -
Ally Robertson - Wild Rose Press Editor - Crimson Rose (also taking pitches)
Doug Grad - Doug Grad Literary Agency  (also taking pitches)
Tamara Hart Heiner - Author - speaking on Social Media/ Newsletters
Max McCoy - speaking on the non-traditional western
Jan Morrill - Poetry
Tiffany Schofield - Two Sessions!
Ruth Weeks - Paranormal

There will also be entertainment on Friday night provided by Tessa Kate -2014 American Idol Contestant

There are 23 contest categories this year, plus the On the Spot contest. The contests are open to everyone paying the conference fee. Write your best pieces and submit by the deadline.

Aside from informative workshops, Contests (with prize money!) and great entertainment in this beautiful Ozarks community, you'll find great accommodations at Best Western Inn of the Ozarks. But book your room now as they fill up fast!

I've been attending this conference for twenty-plus years and have ALWAYS come away with valuable information, amazing network opportunities and a new lease on my writing.  I hope you'll join us

Monday, April 2, 2018


While the kiddos have to wait until mid-June for Camp, writers get an early start on the season. Camp Nano is an extension of the infamous National Novel Writing Month  aka NanoWrimo.

Camp Nano runs in April and in August, giving us the opportunity to finish up partial projects so we can start NanoWriMo in November with a shiny new project.

I joined Camp several years ago.. around 2011, but didn't enter a project until 2013, join a cabin until 2015, maybe (when I supposedly was going to work on the same project as this year ... hmmm.) In 2016 and 2017 I'd planned to work on contest entries.. but never made it back to my cabin after my first hike. I must have gotten lost somewhere along the way.

Getting lost is not my plan for this camp season. I started a cabin and have five incredibly talented sprinter buddies to keep me in check. I'm hoping if I plan 'fun' virtual things to bring to the cabin each week, at least that will keep me checking in.

To complete about 85 percent of what I need of revisions to A Christmas To Remember.

While the meter bar on the sidebar looks full of progress, that is where the current manuscript sits in 'completion' before I begin the revisions. I'm figuring I need about 15,000 words in the revision process.

Personal Camp Location:
Sofa in my office. I can shut the animals out, turn on my pretty strobe light and music to write by.
I have a husband pillow as well as a softer pillow, depending on my back at the time, an ottoman for my feet and a couple of different weight throws - since Mother Nature can not decide what type of weather we need from day to day.

Camp Supplies:
leatherette legal pad folder
pencil pouch of multiple of all the same type of Pilot pens
notebook paper
cash and punch cards for when I go to the coffee shop
at least 2 chapters of the print out with my editing notes.

Are you at CampNano this month? If so, post your camp name and I'll pay you a visit. If not, why not? Come join the FUN!

I'm off to bake cookies for my campers!
Happy Writing!