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Archive for the ‘humor;essay; perspective;’ Category

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October 24th, 2012

I’ve been tagged by the talented Diane Craver for The Next Big Thing Blog Hop. We’re going to hop from blog to blog to discover exciting books we might not have heard about or that are still WIPs. This is Week 18. The hop rules require me to answer 10 predetermined questions, and then at the bottom of my post, I’ve listed authors who will answer the same ten questions on their blogs next Wednesday. So, let’s get started.

What is the working title of your book?
Light of the Heart (Sterling Lakes Book One) and I am currently finishing Book Five, Reflections of the Heart.

 Where did the idea come from for the book?
Growing up in a small New England town, I loved the experience of living in a community. I realized it would be interesting to share that viewpoint, and explore all it demonstrated about human nature.

What genre does your book fall under?

Light of the Heart is an Inspirational Romance

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
Reese Witherspoon would be able to play Cascade Preston. She has the strength of character and vulnerability that Cascade demonstrates. For Dan McQuay, I would have to go with Rob Lowe.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Stained-glass artist  Cascade Preston has overcome a dark childhood, deeply shadowed by domestic violence, in the town of Sterling Lakes…but when she is approached to design the new windows for the town church, she has to decide if she is going to live in the shadows of the past or if her faith will carry her to the light of tomorrow.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
I am happy to say it has been published by Writer’s Exchange Publishing (www.writers-exchange.com). In fact, they will be publishing all nine books in the Sterling Lakes Series.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
This story was waiting to get out; I completed it in 3 months. At the same time, I was basically writing the story arc for the series. The first 3 books deal with themes of the past, the next 3 deal with themes of the present and the final 3 address theme about the future. In a heartwarming, fun way.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
It’s similar to series books by other Inspirational romance writers in that it has three main characters instead of two: the hero, the heroine and God. Janelle Burnham, Tracie Peterson, Gayle Stattler and Lena Nelson Dooley come to mind as writing similar Inspirational romances.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?
When I witness struggles that people go through in their lives, some at a very tender early age, it seems that faith in God keeps them going. To explore in writing how folks find strength in adversity felt natural to me. That spirit came from the loving example of my parents, who found joy in every day, who led by an example of love and who knew the true meaning of sacrifice. They gave everything to each other, to their family, their community, their country and their God.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
At some point in our lives, we each face a moment of truth, a moment that will forever change the direction of our lives. The courage to make such a profound decision, like the one facing Cascade, rests on our shoulders as individuals – but we do not make that decision alone. God is always there with us, whether we admit that or not. Do you take the leap of faith and trust God? Do you have the courage to try and love again? Do you listen to what God is telling you? Or do you hang on to what you think is the truth? Maybe Cascade’s childhood memories aren’t entirely accurate…and she has to learn the real truth now as an adult.

Also, readers will find the supporting characters interesting and fun. They’ll like the settings and I think the dialogue as well, and they’ll relate to the way the characters evolve and change, developing  throughout the course of the book. All this will be very warm and satisfying – I hope!  Most of all, the romance between Dan and Cascade is a believable, exhilirating roller-coaster ride!

Next Wednesday check out these author’s blogs to find out about their Next Big Thing.

Regan Taylor

Suzie Carr

Nike Chilleme

Sadie and Sophie Cuffe

Christine London

Thanks to everyone for visiting, to Diane for tagging me and my five author friends above for joining the Hop!

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It’s week two of the Best Ever Summer Blog Tour. Nine fabulous authors in mixed genres trading blog space for eight weeks for your enjoyment. It’s a chance to meet great authors and discover exciting new books. Someone on the blog tour is giving a prize every week – I’ll leave it for you to discover whose blog is featured – with more prizes to come at the end of the tour. What will the big prize be – a Kindle, a hefty gift certificate, a unique needlepoint Kindle cover? Enjoy the blogs and leave comments for the opportunity to be the grand prize winner! Today I am thrilled that author Corinne Davies is visiting. Welcome!

Hi everyone and welcome to the second week of the Best Ever Summer Blog Tour. I’m Corinne Davies and I first off want to give Regina a BIG thank you for hosting me here today!
 
One of the things that drew me to this blog hop is that we all write a variety of genres. Touring around the blogs on this tour you get to experience a wide variety of styles and perhaps find something new to tempt you.
 
 It’s very easy to get lodged into reading the same genre. I associate it to drinking wine, (like, I do most things in life LOL). You might love Cabernet Sauvignon and experimenting with one from a different country is fun but every once in a while it’s a nice to have a big rich Shiraz or really shake things up and go for a  Gewürztraminer. You never know when you might find a new favourite.
 
When I started writing I really didn’t have a genre in mind. I started writing and let the characters dictate where they belonged. Because of that, I have a variety of genres in my portfolio that, coincidentally, they reflect my reading habits as well. 
 
The Believing series were my first two books and they’re heavily influenced by my love of Greek mythology. I had a great time working in some of the lesser known or recognized gods and goddess from the Parthenon.
 
Then I tried my hand at a classic romance with Haunted Hearts. I originally planned that Mac and Gwen would have a third. As I started writing, I realized that they were only interested in each other. My obsession with ghosts and ghost stories heavily influenced some of the situations that they faced.
 
          Then came, Steampunked Lust. I’m not sure if you are familiar with Steampunk but think of it as all the glamour of the Regency/Victorian time period with advanced technology. This style/genre has always fascinated me and in the world I’ve been creating the skies over the Atlantic ocean are ruled by pirates and their flying ships. William Wallace was never killed and the New World battle the Old World for moral superiority.
 
          Then while hiking through Algonquin Park one day, I discovered Ecstasy Lake, a small tourist town in Northern Ontario that is home to a variety of shape shifters and other magical beings. 
I’ve loved getting to know the inhabitants of this small town who are free to live their ménage relationships. (Which is why someone keeps vandalizing the sign outside of town by painting a 3x over Ecstasy.) Ever since I was a kid, I loved the idea of being able to shape shift into an animal. Writing stories about werewolves and tigers and bears, (Oh my! ) I get to live that existence vicariously through my characters.  
 
          And that is a little peek into the genres I have found myself playing in. I’m always on the lookout for a new favourite book, to enjoy along with a new favorite wine, of course 😉 I’ve found a few with the great authors that I’m sharing this blog tour with.
 
 
Excerpt from Believing is Seeing.
 
“Pasithea…”
“That’s not my name. It’s Amy or Amaryllis.” If her dream kept going this way, she wanted to hear her own name, not that of a long gone goddess.
 “Little flower, one would never be enough for you.”
Amy stood between the two men feeling petite. At five foot ten, she hadn’t experienced such an unusual feeling before. The hands on her shoulders gently kneaded, as another pair slid over her ribs and down her back in soothing circles. Sighing she could feel the anger and sadness drain out of her. The winds calmed down and the clouds dissipated until it seemed as though the storm had never happened. Color flooded back into the world around them, seeming so much more intense after her eyes had become accustomed to the gray.
She would have commented on the weather, but when she lifted her face and opened her mouth to talk, a pair of lips gently brushed against her own. “Let us take care of you.”
“This is a dream.” The thought floated down to subdue the rising nervousness.
“If you would just believe, it could be so much more,” Hypnos gently kissed her shoulder, his words a soft caress against the sensitive skin under her ear.
“But, I don’t know where to start.”
“Then look at me, Amy.” A finger pressed gently on the underside of her chin tilting her head. She looked over her shoulder and up into Death’s warm chestnut eyes. Hypnos took advantage of her arched neck to slide his satiny lips along it.
“A life time ago, you called us Nos and Than. Why don’t you start there?
 

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It’s the Best Ever Summer Blog Tour. Nine fabulous authors in mixed genres trading blog space for eight weeks for your enjoyment. It’s a chance to meet great authors and discover exciting new books. Someone on the blog tour is giving a prize every week – I’ll leave it for you to discover whose blog is featured – with more prizes to come at the end of the tour. What will the big prize be – a Kindle, a hefty gift certificate, a unique needlepoint Kindle cover? Enjoy the blogs and leave comments for the opportunity to be the grand prize winner!

 

Ann Tracy Marr is the world’s worst book promoter. She has published three, but when it comes time to promote – to urge someone to lay out money for her books – she falls apart.

 

Ann lacks promoting talent but she does have a gift for storytelling. She writes for the love of it and it shows. Her view of life is a little off the wall, sometimes class clown, but with an underlying thread of realism. She likes to read about real women looking for joy, so that is what she writes.

 

Knowing we wouldn’t learn much about her books, I asked Ann questions that would reveal something about her approach to writing and life.

 

Question: Who was the toughest character for you to “get right”?

Ann: The hero in Round Table Magician took a long time to evolve. Brinston started out as a conventional Regency hero, but when I added a paranormal twist to the plot, he demanded he be a magician. Magic fit with his reclusive tendencies, giving him reasons to hide his true nature from the ton. Other than that, I struggled to cleverly convey his motives in ignoring Martha. It was a matter of finding the best tailoring for the story. Once the jacket fit, Brinston himself filled it out.

 

Question: Is there a genre that you love to read but don’t want to write?

Ann: I love the Sookie Stackhouse novels. Funny and all about vampires, you know. But I doubt I will ever write a vampire novel. I don’t have anything to add to their mystique; they scare more than attract me.

 

Question: What profession other than yours would you like to attempt?

Ann: I would make an excellent Rich Bitch. It’s a full time job, but I wouldn’t mind getting up at 10 am, donning the haute couture uniform, jetting past rush hour traffic in my Maserati on my way to a five star restaurant. I’d donate freely to charity and spend money all over the place to keep the economy going.

 

Question: Can you tell us about your books?

Ann: Awestruck published my three book series set in Regency England. King Arthur and Merlin are not myth, but history. They are traditional Regencies with the addition of a splash of magic.

 

Where can readers find you?

Website: www.AnnTracyMarr.com

Purchase the books (e-book or trade paperback) on Amazon.com:

http://tiny.cc/7p0xew

 

And where can readers find Lynn Hones this week?

Head to www.daviesromance.blogspot.com

And, you all can find moi at http://www.regantaylorsworld.blogspot.com

 

Excerpt from “Round Table Magician“: Short, to conserve space!

 

Brinston watched Martha, aware of her every breath. He couldn’t help but smile at the infectious levity. He could see his brother Michael with his beloved through the window. That silly Maria must have done or said something to make Martha laugh so. But when she pulled a handkerchief from her sleeve and wiped her eyes, it shook him to his soul. Just so did the duchess leak tears when she was filled with mirth.

 

It was then he realized how much Martha resembled his adored mother. Brinston could almost feel his heart tightening. They were silken bonds, those bands clenching around his heart, not painful in the least. A man could get used to them, which was a good thing. They didn’t feel like they were going to dissolve any time soon.

 

He heard the echo of his father’s words. “I couldn’t resist the way she laughed.” It was always said with a chuckle and an underlying honesty that couldn’t be doubted. It was why his father had married his mother. They were devoted to each other, but it all started with her laugh.

 

Everyone, including Brinston himself, joked at how much the son resembled the father. He stared at the sky, silently begging Merlin to have pity on him.

 

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Happy New Year, Friends!

If you’re like me, you have resolutions for 2012. Here’s a quick list of mine:

1) Be more promotionally-active! This includes follow-up, like letting you know “Light of the Heart” is up in the Predators and Editors Poll 🙂

Here’s the link: http://critters.org/predpoll/novelsf.shtml

I’m in the link called “All other Novels”

Click on “Light of the Heart” and then you will get an email in your box which you have to confirm — just by clicking — and then the voting is complete.

There are a couple of steps, but all in all, it’s pretty easy! Thank you for helping out!!!

2) Stay in touch with cyber-friends and colleagues
I can’t tell you how I cringe when I see it’s been 2 or 3 months since I’ve been in contact with my virtual friends and writing colleagues. They have been there for me through everything. I don’t know what I would have done without them! And I want to thank them for that! More than that, I vow to be there, actively, for them in 2012.

3) Branch outside the box and travel beyond the comfort zone. As a writer, especially one who is in the midst of a nine-book series, it’s easy to let all your other writing go…but then, how do you grow? Take a pledge with me now to cultivate your own garden and see what you can do that’s outside of the realm you ever imagined — writing-wise. I’ll bet it’s so cool!
Leave me a comment and let me know!

 

 

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Today I am just delighted to welcome the amazing individual and fantastic author Tina Pinson to the Summer 2011 Blog-String Fest! Tina is an accomplished author and has a wonderful sense of humor. Her writings and her posts are always so interesting. Thank you so much for visiting and welcome, Tina!

Just Breathe.

I’ve just had one of those extraordinary weeks. You know… the kind everyone dreams of?

Okay maybe not…

My week could have been better. It started off great. After singing with hubby at church, we rested and had a wonderful day together. Then while cleaning my teeth like a good girl, a chunk of my back molar broke off. OOOh Yay.

I decided I could handle the pain since it wasn’t too strong and of we didn’t really have the money to bother with it. Then Monday, I woke up with a touch of a headache, by the end of the day it had blossomed into a full-fledged migraine. It lasted through the night into the next day taking any chance for a decent night’s sleep along with it. And if that wasn’t enough… my tooth began a dull throb.

The migraine subsided, but the tooth ache hung on and I decided to call a dentist.

Can I just stop here and say UGH… Dentists are not big in my vocabulary, even though it seems I’ve spent quite a bit of time there. And because we are new transplants to Arizona, I didn’t even get to go to my usual dentist.

So I looked on the internet, and called around for an opening, then spun the wheel and headed out to meet my new best dental friend. After getting through a series of xrays (I have a horrible gag reflex so I really love those little film cards in my mouth) and a bit of prodding with the dental pick, I was told that I needed a few thousand dollars-worth of work.

Some crowns and a couple of fillings add up to a few thousand. Amazing. I am in the wrong business.

And boy was I excited. I was looking forward to setting in that ol chair, leaning back with mouth open waiting for the stab of a needle so my mouth would go numb, and I would get to listen to the whirr and hiss of all the drill and such.

But alas, I had to wait. First, I had to meet with a specialist so he could ascertain if I needed anything else. And guess what?

He found another two thousand in the form of root canals to tack on to the bill.

We moved to Arizona because of the economy and still trying to get caught up, so you imagine that this news overjoyed me.

I wanted to cry. I thought about running down and buying a few lottery tickets or maybe go hunt for a money tree.

Instead, I decided to do something constructive to take my mind off everything. I sat down to work on my stories.

I found that every cog in my head was clicking on the beat. I was so focused. Everything came together. The flow was precise, the editing went well and my characters were following my lead.

I was pumped.

HAHAHAHAHA…. NOT

Nothing was coming together. My thoughts were all over the place. My characters were rebellious. I’d start looking at one story and move onto another one because I couldn’t focus. I was ready to pound my head with the keyboard

So I did what many of do… (Throw my computer across the room and watch it shatter on the far wall in little pieces)

Okay so… I didn’t do that.

Actually I stopped what I was doing, turned my mind off as best as I could and breathed.

Just Breathed.

In through the nose and out through the mouth. One… two… three… four… Slowly, I took long deep breaths to clear my mind. And with each breath… I prayed.

In writing, like life, we can get over run with thoughts and frustrated because nothing seems to be working in our story lines, it’s then we need to stop and simply breathe.

Breathe and let the Author of our life and imagination infuse us with peace and clarity.

Life is going to happen. Things don’t always go as planned, when it doesn’t go quite the way it should, I hope you’ll give yourself the break you need and Breathe.

Just breathe.
*****

Here’s where you can find Tina and her writings:

For In the Manor of the Ghost
Desert Breeze Publishing

HTML, LIT, PDF, PRC
Barnes and Noble
Nook
Amazon
Kindle Edition
Sony Reader Store
Sony e reader
All Romance Ebooks
Adobe Acrobat, Microsoft Reader, HTML, Mobipocket
Books On Board
Adobe Digital Edition
OmniLit
Adobe Acrobat, Microsoft Reader, HTML, Mobipocket
Apple ibookstore
iPad, or iPhone/iPod Touch with upgrades to have ibookstore app access.
Borders Estore
kobo

Touched By Mercy

Sony Reader Store

Amazon

All Romance Ebooks
My website — http://www.tinapinson.com/
Twitter:@Tina_Pinson
Facebook– http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=754617103
Purchase my books at:

Desert Breeze Bookstore.
Touched By Mercy http://tiny.cc/0rgkm
In the Manor of the Ghost http://tiny.cc/we4ul

Amazon:
Touched By Mercy http://tiny.cc/k5tgw
In the Manor of the Ghost http://tiny.cc/doc8w

Barnes & Noble
Touched By Mercy—available soon
In the Manor of the Ghost http://tiny.cc/oh767

Christian Books Distributors
Touched By Mercy – available soon
In the Manor of the Ghost http://tiny.cc/4u5h9

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Hi there. Most of you probably know me. But, just in case, I’m Laurean Brooks, writer of inspirational romance with a big dash of humor.

You may look at my picture and say, “Surely this is a woman schooled in social graces.” But to the contrary, this woman would never win an award for implementing Emily Post’s Rules of Proper Etiquette. Instead, in my circle, I’d likely receive a statue portraying a contorted woman with one foot shoved in her mouth.

My desire to make people laugh was inherited from my dad. The difference is he specialized in playing silly pranks and telling funny stories; my humor relies on seizing the right moment to implement a snappy reply. There is nothing more rewarding than hearing folks laugh. But sometimes these “supposedly” funny remarks are taken the wrong way.

“A soft answer turns away wrath but grievous words stir up anger.” Proverbs 15: 1

Now there’s one I often apply. Sadly, it’s usually after the fact. The scenario goes like this. I say something (I think is) funny, a harsh voice replies in anger, and I apologize. Most of the time the person accepted my apology. A few didn’t. That’s when I promise to try to keep a stronger hold on my tongue.

“Proverbs 25:11 puts me to shame. It reads, “A word fitly spoken and in due season, is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.” Know why this verse makes me cringe? Because it was probably written to admonish someone whose mouth shifts into gear before her/his brain engages. Someone like…uh…me.

I could give example after example of embarrassing scenarios, results of my impulsive quips. But that would take all day. I’ll confess only two.

The most retold incident (by my family) occurred when my niece and son were toddlers. “Aunt Laurie” (or Mom) was in great social demand in those days, especially at the supermarket. Why? Because I loaded the little ones into the shopping cart and whizzed through the produce aisle, cutting figure-eights around the banana stalks and watermelon rack. The squeals from Jeremy and Mandy kept egged me.

So, it came as no surprise while on a trip to the local IGA, two-year-old Mandy peeled her mother’s fingers from the cart and yowled, “Want Aunt Lau-rie ta’ push!” My three-year-old, Jeremy, joined in protesting from his seat at the bottom of the cart. “Mom! We want Mom!”

Miffed at her daughter and my nephew’s rejection, my sister stepped aside and huffed, “Well! I know when I’m not wanted!”

I grinned impishly and gripped the cart while Emily followed. I pushed it a few feet when a sassy jibe came to me. I craned my neck to look behind, fluttered my lashes, and oozed in a sultry voice, “M’dear, are you feeling lonely and forlorn?”

Before the words left my mouth, a brick wall smashed against my cheek. I whirled to find a 6′ 4” college-aged guy gaping down at me. His face registered something akin to “horror” and “Woman-you-are-crazy!”

I slapped a hand to my burning face and hurried to explain. “No-no! I wasn’t talking to you. I was talking to my sis–” I scanned the area, but Emily had vanished! Coward!

The young man jaunted away, shaking his head and rolling his eyes. Emily stole out from the canned vegetables aisle. The hand over her mouth and tears streaming down her cheeks gave her away. My sister was laughing at me! She squealed, “That was hilarious! You had your head against that…that guys chest…gazing up into his eyes. What did you say to him?”

When I relayed my humiliating indiscretion, she shrieked, “You mean…you propositioned that guy?”

What could I say? “Uh-h…it did sound that way.”

The second embarrassing moment occurred when a couple of men waltzed through the doors of the textile plant where I worked. Both men were casually dressed. The older, a distinguished, gray-haired gentleman, paused in front of my work area and asked, “You don’t mind if we walk through, do you?”

My retort? “As long as you aren’t salesmen or politicians. All others are welcome.”

The older gentleman walked past, but the younger man stopped in front of me and whispered, pointing to the older man. “I’m not a politician. But he is. He’s the county judge.”

When he spoke the man’s name, I slapped my hand over my mouth.

The judge must have noticed my embarrassment because he traipsed back to me and placed a consoling arm around my shoulders. “Honey, is something wrong? Anything I can do to help?”

All I could do was shake my head and murmur, “No-o.”

At our family get-togethers, much to my chagrin, Emily brings up the supermarket incident, then adds, “Going shopping with Laurie was always fun. You never knew what would happen.”

There, you have it. I have “Foot In Mouth” disease. What about the rest of you? Have you ever committed public blunders? Oh come on, ‘fess up! I hope I’m not the only one.

Here are links to my books. In Journey To Forgiveness, http://www.whiterosepublishing.com/ my sassy heroine has the same problem with her tongue. Jenny gets into some interesting predicaments as a result.

E-books:
OVER THE COALS- http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/44638/
JONQUILS IN THE SNOW- http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/9341/
SEVERED HEARTS- http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/73123/

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With great joy, I am finally able to share the cover of my second book in the Sterling Lakes Series, “Angels of the Heart”.

The cover was ready on time and the book released on time…but my computer decided to…go on vacation. Not in good time, in my opinion!

This was so not easy, being on the dark side of the moon! And with the third manuscript in the series due September 1st. I almost can’t talk about it, because as soon as I start, you just know I won’t stop.

Suffice it to say all seems to be in order now. But I will be backing up my current ms on a disc, as well as my flash drive, that’s for sure!

To be continued.

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