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Thursday, May 31, 2012

New York, New York by Leann Harris

I'm going to New York next week to attend BEA and sign my latest book.  I am excited to be in the Big Apple for a week.  I'm going with another author, Pat Davids  We are going to visit the office of our publisher...which is a always a kick.  I've been to New York before, but going there is always a treat and you never get board there.  One time I went to New York, I took the train from Stamford, CT to New York.  I visited my aunts and uncles.  When the train pulled into Grand Central Station I had a long, steep set of stairs from the train to the main reception area.  Well, I struggled up those steel stairs.  Finally, a nice young man offered to haul my suitcase up the stairs.  I was grateful, then worried he'd run off with my luggage.  (Understand, I wrote suspense for a long time.)  I was wrong.  The young man was a champ.

Each time I've been in New York, I've found the natives helpful and nice.  I'm so excited to go. I'll also see my family in Ct.  Any places you like to go in New York?



 

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Ideas Along Country Roads by Marta Perry

Many of my books revolve around the Amish and other Plain people in our part of rural Pennsylvania. One summer morning my husband and I had an opportunity to take a buggy ride along the back roads of a nearby county with an Amish driver, so of course we were quick to take advantage of that fact. As Amos and my husband chatted about their similar experiences growing up on farms, I soaked in the beauty of the surroundings, which seemed so different when seen from the slow pace of the buggy. The pastures, hay fields, and corn fields created a patchwork that reminded me of an Amish quilt.


Only one thing interrupted the pastoral scene—a raw new building along a country lane, its sharp angles and brash colors an annoying clash with the image I had been so happily creating in my mind.

“What is that?” I asked, pointing.

Our driver frowned in the direction of the intrusion. “A new motel, as if we didn’t have enough already. On prime farmland, too.” He shook his head. “Not supposed to be able to get permission to do that without hearing from the public, ain’t so? But all of a sudden that building was going up, with all the permits already granted. I’m guessing the owner just knew the right person.”

I commiserated, but I probably sounded a bit distracted, because his words had already set a plot twist dancing in my mind—a twist that eventually found its way into my newest suspense novel, Danger in Plain Sight, out now from HQN Books.

Ideas, so they say, are everywhere, and sometimes they’re handed to you with no effort at all!

 

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

I bought a Nook for my dad for his birthday

Camy here, and I just bought a Nook for my dad for his birthday. I wasn’t entirely sure how that would fly since Dad turned “seventy-mumble” this year. He’s actually rather decent with new technology, but once in a while it will take him a little longer to figure something out than it used to.

But Dad also loves to read novels. (So does my mom, so I got my love of reading from both sides.) I got him into ebooks several years ago when I first discovered that many science fiction books were available as ebooks, and since Dad had a PDA at the time that could read ebooks, he bought several and loaded them onto his PDA to take with him wherever he went, so he could read any time.

However, at one point his PDA battery got drained entirely and when he rebooted it, he found that he was denied permission to read his ebooks, which was security protected. He tried his password but it just wouldn’t work.

I got him a Nook Color for his birthday since it also has lots of apps he can download so he can play games on it. I called him to ask how he’s been liking it, and apparently he’s been reading a lot more now than he had been for the past couple years. He downloaded his favorite author, Alan Dean Foster, and bought the last few Flinx books in the series. Mom says he’s reading on his Nook every night before bed. He also plays a poker machine game app that he downloaded.

Yay! I finally got Dad a present he actually likes! And thank goodness the Nook was a) inexpensive enough that he didn’t feel bad I was spending money on him, and b) easy enough to use that he didn’t have any problems setting it up. Plus now he’ll be able to find and enjoy the science fiction novels he loves. And as he gets older, he’ll be able to increase the font size if he needs to. (Which, er, his daughter already has to do ...)

So would you get a Nook or Kindle for yourself or your parent?

300x250 - NOOK Simple Touch™ with Glowlight

Camy Tang writes romance with a kick of wasabi. Out now is the third book in her Sonoma series, Stalker in the Shadows. She is a staff worker for her church youth group, and leads one of the worship teams for Sunday service. On her blog, she ponders frivolous things like knitting, running, dogs, and Asiana. Visit her website to sign up for her quarterly newsletter.

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Monday, May 28, 2012

A Memorial for Memorial Day

Hi, this is Margaret Daley. Memorial Day is a time to remember our loved ones who have passed away. My mother would have been eighty-nine years old today, May 28th. She died thirteen years ago and I miss her everyday. But I’m comforted by the knowledge that she touched so many people’s lives.

 After my father died when I was twelve, she moved us to Mississippi so she could be nearer her family. There were three of us and she always was there for my two brothers and me. She’d taught nursing in Kentucky where we had lived. When we arrived in Biloxi, she went to work as a nurse. She filled several different positions in various hospitals over the years and even taught nursing at the junior college on the coast.

 One year she was a school nurse for the Biloxi School District. That was the year Camille, a hurricane with winds over two hundred miles an hour, struck the coast and destroyed a lot of my hometown. She spent hours helping people get back on their feet as a nurse and friend. When something had to be done, my mother was at the front of the line volunteering to do it. When she would talk about one of her patients dying, you would have thought it was her best friend. That was the way she was. She felt deeply another’s pain and was there to help the person get better. She was a caregiver and a deeply religious woman whose faith in the Lord never wavered through loss, illness and destruction (more than Hurricane Camille wrecked havoc on the coast where she lived).

When my mother retired from being Director of Nursing at Biloxi Regional Medical Center, the Board of Directors said: Catherine David has been an inspiration to the nursing profession. She was a moving force and leader in the establishment of Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Coastwide. She had shown genuine concern for the welfare of the patients and has demonstrated support and concern for physicians, employees and people of the community. That was my mother, a caring, loving, concerned Christian.

I miss you every day, Mom. Who do you miss this Memorial Day?

 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

WHAT WOULD WE DO WITHOUT ELECTRONICS? by Merrillee Whren

This photo is a jumble of the cords I use on the gadgets that keep me connected. I have cords for my computer, cell phone, i-Touch, Nook, GPS and digital camera.

What did we do before we had all of these gizmos? I'm fairly certain that I may not have ever submitted a book to a publisher if it hadn't been for the personal computer and the printers that go with them. I can't imagine how authors did edits before the use of the computer. I'm a terrible typist, but the computer frees me from the fear of making a mistake because I know I can easily fix it.

I am also enjoying the Nook I got last year for Mother's Day. It is so nice for traveling because I can have dozens of books with me, and they don't take up space or add weight to my suitcase.

Do you have a favorite electronic device?





 

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Allie Pleiter on birthdays


Last weekend, I turned 50.  Sort of.

Actually, I turned 49 1/2, but we had a party anyway.  Here’s why:  my husband turned 50 last November, and I’ll turn 50 this coming November.  Rather that roust up two parties, we held one party exactly halfway between our two 50ths.  We called it our “50-50%-50 Party.”  Actually, if you want to get technical, we celebrated our 100th--and someone gave us a 100th birthday card.  I hope I get to use it for real one day.

I love to celebrate.  If celebrating were a spiritual gift, it’d be my primary one.  Actually, I think it is...rather like encouragement in a party dress.  



I’ve told people before I think of myself as God’s disco ball; reflecting His light to jazz up any occasion and make everyone feel like it’s okay to get just a little bit silly.  I have a little mirrored mobile handing in my kitchen to remind me of that personal metaphor.

It was comfortable to mark this milestone because it wasn’t really there, and I have to admit I’m okay with turning 50 this year.  

Well, talk to me again in November and we’ll see if my positive attitude sticks....

What about you?  Have you had a milestone birthday recently?  How did you feel about it?

By the way, if you’re in the Raleigh North Carolina area, come see me at the Carolina Fiber Fest this weekend!  I’ll be giving away 100 copies of HOMEFRONT HERO!

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Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Renee Ryan's Wedding Survival Tips

Well, we made it through the wedding. Our son is now a married man and our pockets are much lighter due to travel expenses, wedding gifts, rehearsal dinner, etc. The picture is of our son and his new bride. I think it looks like a romance novel come to life (at least in sentiment). What say you? As a writer of romance novels I've spent a lot of time thinking about weddings. I've included a lot of ceremonies in my books, but always from the bride or groom's perspective. Today, I've decided to give a few survival tips for the guests. There are only two! We'll call them the golden rules of wedding attendance. 1. This is the bride and groom's day, not yours. 2. When in doubt, refer back to rule number one. Okay, maybe I've simplified things a bit. Nevertheless, it's an honor to attend a wedding, a time when we spectators are given a small glimpse into the private love of a man and woman. We have been asked to witness a public pledge by two people who plan to spend the rest of their lives together, in good times and bad, sickness and health. What a blessing.

 

Thursday, May 10, 2012

The Diamond Secret--Lenora Worth

My next release is a Love Inspired Suspense titled "The Diamond Secret." What girl doesn't love diamonds? And especially a rather large chocolate one. I've always been fascinated by chocolate diamonds so writing this book was a lot of fun. It's set in New Orleans and it's part Indiana Jones and part Southern mystery. My hero, Cullen Murphy is an Irishman who really wants to find this diamond. My heroine Esther Carlyle runs an antique shop but she's always longed for a grand adventure. Cullen takes her on a great adventure while they try to put together all the clues that will lead them to the diamond. Of course, they hit a few roadblocks along the way. It all happens this August. Hope you can come along with Esther and Cullen and help them find the elusive chocolate diamond. Have you ever wanted to have a grand adventure? Where would you like to go or what would you like to discover?

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Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Life Changes

May is graduation month...
My oldest will get her PHD on Saturday.  She's been married for 3 years and her husband had never known her when she hasn't been working toward that degree.  I am so proud of her, but she was one of those children that knew her mind since she was born.  All I could do was point in her the right direction.

May is also a big wedding month...
My daughter, again will celebrate her anniversary.
And I will celebrate 41 years of marriage.  It amazes me that time has gone by so fast.  (Of course you know I was a teenager when I got married.)

What are ending and/or beginnings are you celebrating this month?

 

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

A page from Stalker in the Shadows

Camy here! In case you haven’t read it yet, here’s a page from my Love Inspired Suspense, Stalker in the Shadows, to whet your appetite. I absolutely love Shaun O’Neill--I modeled him after actor Karl Urban except with very blue eyes and blond short hair. (photo from Flixster.com)

From the back cover:

"Consider this a warning."

Lately, nurse Monica Grant feels she's being watched. Followed. And then she receives a threatening letter—accompanied by a dead snake. If she doesn't stop her plans to open a free children's clinic, she'll end up dead, too. Terrified, Monica turns to former lawman Shaun O'Neill—who believes the same madman murdered his own sister five years before. She understands how much it means to the handsome, heart-guarding man to save her—and her dream. Even if he has to lure a deadly stalker out of the shadows—straight toward himself.

Excerpt:

Monica nodded, but they were interrupted by a bustling at the front of the restaurant as her aunt, Becca Itoh, hurried into the dining room. Several of the other customers looked up at the disturbance she created in her panic, but Detective Carter rose to his feet and gave Becca a hard, meaningful look and a subtle gesture with his hand. Becca’s gaze flitted around the dining room, then she walked calmly to join them at their table.

“Are you all right?” She gave Monica a hug.

Monica’s hand grasping her aunt’s shoulder clenched once, then relaxed. “I’m fine.”

While she explained what had happened, it gave Shaun an opportunity to study her. She tucked her long, wavy hair behind her ear when she concentrated on something, and her clear eyes seemed to glitter like golden gemstones, framed by her dark lashes.

He could tell that she was aware he was staring at her, but her gaze didn’t waver from her aunt’s face even an inch.

When their gazes had met earlier, his attraction for her had hit him like a train wreck. It was still the same today as it was when they’d first met years ago. Then, there had been an ardent fire in her eyes which she hid behind a cool demeanor. Holding him at arm’s length, like he had Ebola or something.

Today, she’d again tried to be cool when he first came up to her, but for a moment during their brief conversation, before he’d angered her, he’d seen a flash of warmth in her amber eyes, a softening of her mouth. It somehow soothed him in a deep place inside.

He had been confused, so of course he opened his big, fat mouth and ruined everything by getting into an argument with her about Phillip Bromley.

It was for the best. He would be stupid to get involved with a woman like Monica Grant. Any woman, actually. All the women in his life ended up dead.

He hadn’t taken care of Clare well enough. He hadn’t been able to save those illegal immigrants who had been killed by the coyote at the border.

He felt like he’d failed all the people in his life he was supposed to protect, and he wasn’t about to let another one in.

She might end up dead, too.

But sitting here, looking at her, it was hard for him to remind himself that she was better off without him. As he studied the curves of her face, the color of her lips, he had to admit that she was even more magnetic than when he’d last seen her.

“Clare never found out who the stalker was?” Becca asked Shaun, drawing his attention from the glossy dark waves of Monica’s hair.

“He never met her face to face. She kept trying to find out who he was so she could issue a restraining order on him. She tried backtracking the packages he sent her, but couldn’t come up with any proof of who it was.”

He glanced at Monica and resolved to speak privately to the detective about his suspicions. No need to alarm her, but he had to give the police everything he knew so this guy wouldn’t slip away between their fingers. That frustration nagged and ate at him like an ulcer.

Before, after his sister’s death, he’d done too little, too late. Clare was already gone, but he’d been driven to find her killer. And then what would he do when he found him? Shaun had never had to answer that question.

Until now. Because if this were the same man, here was a chance for Shaun to catch him.

He hadn’t yet turned in his application for the Sonoma police department. He hadn’t quite understood why he’d been dragging his heels, but now he was glad because it gave him time to investigate Monica’s letter-writer—assuming the stalker followed the same pattern as he did before.

The man had already taken his sister’s life, and maybe others in the years since her death. He had to stop him from terrorizing any more young women.

He knew who it was. And this time, he wouldn’t let him get away with it.



Camy Tang writes romance with a kick of wasabi. Out now is the third book in her Sonoma series, Stalker in the Shadows. She is a staff worker for her church youth group, and leads one of the worship teams for Sunday service. On her blog, she ponders frivolous things like knitting, running, dogs, and Asiana. Visit her website to sign up for her quarterly newsletter.

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Monday, May 7, 2012

The Mystery of Creating Characters.....

Jenna Mindel here, wondering where characters come from?
Mine usually pop out of a current work in progress with the tantalizing promise of being too interesting to ignore. These characters often show up with their own names - unless my editor requests that I change it. :)

I've attended many a workshop about developing characters that are helpful, but I don't necessarily follow one system, every time. I journal in first person, rough sketch lists of flaws and strengths, filmstrip these characters in my thoughts, and even draw from my own personality along with those of the people close to me.  There's bits of my husband in every hero I've written which he proudly takes credit for! 

Something that helps me really "feel" my characters is music. Certain songs capture a character and give insight into who they are. It's kind of cool - other than I tend to play that song to death...

Do you have any tips or unique processes for developing your characters ?

 

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Family


Susan Sleeman here. As you read this blog, I'll be winging my way over the United States to visit my daughters, son-in-law and most adorable grandson. So my mind today is focused on family and how important family is to me. It's hard to live several thousand miles from my children. Though my daughters are both grown, I miss them every day. In fact, tears are filling my eyes as I write this. I can't wait to see them.

So as I'm thinking about family, it was only natural to write a blog post about a family that I have spent a lot of time with in the last year and will spend even more time this year.

This family is fictional. They are the five siblings that make up the Justice Agency my new miniseries releasing in Love Inspired Suspense. This family is simply amazing. Two sisters, three brothers all former law enforcement officers with hearts for helping those who are unable to help themselves and all adopted into this family.

Though they are fictional, some days they seem very real to me, and I am thrilled that the first two books in this series will release this year. Double Exposure comes out in June and the second book, Dead Wrong releases in November. I'll share more about the first book in my next blog post.

So until then, tell me about your family. Is it big, small? Do you all live in the same area of the country or are you like me, you have to travel to see family?
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SUSAN SLEEMAN is a best-selling author of inspirational romantic suspense and mystery novels. She grew up in a small Wisconsin town where she spent her summers reading Nancy Drew and developing a love of mystery and suspense books. Today, she channels this enthusiasm into writing romantic suspense and mystery novels and hosting the popular internet website TheSuspenseZone.com. Susan currently lives in Florida, but has had the pleasure of living in nine states. Her husband is a church music director and they have two beautiful daughters, a very special son-in-law and an adorable grandson. To learn more about Susan visit her at her – Website
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Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Lyn Cote Reviews Winnie Grigg's Second Chance Family

Second Chance FamilySecond Chance Family by Winnie Griggs
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Winnie Griggs has found her voice--a sweet one, ready to find the humor in every situation and endearingly hopeful in her characters. I enjoyed meeting Cora Beth Collins, a charming widow who runs a boarding house in Texas and loves children (both hers and strays) and Mitch Hammond, the sheriff. Mitch doesn't think he's the marrying kind--we've heard that before! But Winnie uses such subtle changes that his transforming into a husband and father feels believable and very satisfying. If you enjoy a sweet historical romance written with deft charm, you'll enjoy Second Chance Family!

View all my reviews Have you read any LI Historicals by Winnie? Has any other LIH romance stayed with you? Inquiring mind want know!--Lyn

 

Springtime and Roses

Hi! Charlotte Carter here.

I confess I’m not much of a gardener. Instead of green, my thumb appears to be purple if not black. Of course, it’s entirely possible I don’t have great gardening success because I don’t spend enough time in the garden.

But I do have FOUR rose bushes I fuss over. In early April here in Southern California my are rewarded. The bloom of the year is spectacular. Naturally, I decided to share a small bouquet with you so you can enjoy my roses, too. 


How much time do you spend gardening? What’s your favorite flower?


Happy reading.... Char...

From Love Inspired -
Montana Love Letter 10/2012
www.CharlotteCarter.com (Under construction)


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