Friday, December 31, 2010


WELCOME IN 2011 AND SEE YA 2010...

May your lives be longer, your pocket's richer, and your friend to plentiful to count. Take a drink to the loves of your youth, the prince of your old age and may you have gotten the better end of the deal!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Southern Treats

As most of you know, here below the Mason Dixon Line we rarely get snow. I'm sure by know the tweeters, the Weather channel, even your local news is talking about the blizzard that is occurring in Dixie. Indeed, I believe there must be some law about it because it happens so rarely. Yet, a once every 30years snow is now happening. It has been snowing since 7p.m. last night and with about a foot on the ground, my better half and I began discussing the merits of snow cream.

Now, any southerner worth his salt will tell you, you can't eat the first snow of the season. That snow is loaded with germs and impurities. That's why this snow fall has created such delight. It is actually the 4th snowfall of our season and by afar the most perfect. What makes it perfect?

Well, a perfect snowfall must contain moisture so that it clumps well together. Clump fact is needed to build those lovely snowmen or to make the hardest snowballs. If the snow doesn't clump, its like trying to build a sandcastle without damp sand. It falls.

This snow is just right. You can feel it beneath your feet the push of the flakes beneath the soles of your shoes. It rounds up under the ball of your foot, arching, pushing back against you. With this type of snow, a distinct southern treat can be made. I'm sure Paula Dean has already put out her recipe for this but I'm going to give mine to you now.

Snow cream. ( Yes a frozen custard if you will )

Need the second snow of the season. Damp clumping snow to make cream

In pot, combine
3/4 cup of white sugar
1 can of eagle brand condensed milk
1 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla
2 eggs.
over low heat beat until sugar dissolves in mixture.
Remove from heat. Then take at least a gallon of snow or a huge stew pot filled with packed snow from a source off the ground ( Remember, in the land where the huskies go, don't you eat that yellow snow ) Yes, it must be high off the ground so animals can not have used your um ingredient.
Scoop snow into room temperature cream mixture. Continue to scoop in and stir until all snow has been used up and coated with cream. Then eat.
Nectar of the gods I tell you!


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Playing it safe for the holidays

You hear it said, Most accidents happen near home. It's true.

I used to scoff at that remark. It can't happen to me. I've live here for going on 43 years. I know the people on my street. I'm a careful driver and above all I wear my seatbelt. Yep, all good thoughts until late Saturday afternoon.

As usual during the season, the girls in our writing group get together at a friends house for lunch and exchange gifts. So it was that I went and on the way home, the unthinkable happened. I was driving along and I noticed a car pulling to the end of its drive way. It paused. I don't know if it was a sixth sense or just that I haven't encountered too many people coming out of those driveways. I remember taking my foot off the gas and holding my breath.

I've never been in anything as horrible. I've experienced my father dying in my arms, holding my mother's hand as she went to join him. But this is more a nightmare. I know I will recover. I know that had I not been wearing my safety belt, I would surely have joined the number of red lights on the holiday safety tree. I can not thank the emergency personal enough. Those first responders must treat injuries as well as hand hold. Let me not forget the good Samaritans who came out of their houses to comfort both of us until help could arrive.

So, today, I play your mother. Do not get in a car without buckling up. Click it for Life. Think of it as a hug from your family that will allow you to arrive at your destination safe and secure, then return home the same way. BUCKLE UP and Happy Holidays.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Oh, to be a writer

In school we hated it or rather loathed to be told what to write. But as we aged came the wisdom to know that writing is an unique artistic form and when done well can entertain generations.

I don't know where I was during the grammar part of education. I think I must have been zapped up by alien space travelers and whisked away. For I am so very dyslexic when it comes to commas, semicolons, and dangling participles. (Don't they have medication for that?) Anyway, my family was and is still surprised that it's my dream to write stories. Why? Because what is published today leaves me wanting in some respects.

I crave action, adventure, romance on a grand scale. Take me to another world, another time, transport me to the heroine's point of view,and let me hear the strong voice of the hero in my mind. If I find myself as a writer yearning to see these things in the next sentence or next chapter of my own work, I think I've done it well.

Then, today I had to laugh at myself. A dear friend brought be back to life by sending me "MY AUTOBIOGRAPHY" all ready on UTUBE. Please watch. Perspective writers, please listen. Children the next time you see your mother, do not laugh in her face - behind her back is acceptable.

Thank you.

(You may have to cut and paste. You want to be a writer)

Monday, November 22, 2010

Welcoming Victoria Grey and her latest release!

My new release, Angel in My Arms, is the story of Amanda Emerson, a Union spy undercover in Richmond, and Union officer Steve Dunham, the man she enlists in the daring rescue of a double agent from a Confederate prison and imminent execution. As the danger surrounding them thickens, every moment he’s with her jeopardizes their lives, but they discover a passion that’s worth the risk.

Meet the hero and heroine:

Steve Dunham, the hero in Angel in My Arms, is built like a Viking, has a twinkle in his eye, and he’s got guts. Best of all, he’s the kind of man who’s had his share of women, but when he falls, he falls hard and forever. A seasoned Union operative, he faces danger on a daily basis, but when the woman he loves is threatened, he’ll stop at nothing to keep her safe.

Amanda Emerson, the heroine, is a sable-haired beauty who joined up with a nest of Union spies living in Richmond. She’s skilled at deception, but when she falls for the handsome spy she’s drawn into their latest scheme, there’s no way to hide her feelings. Amanda’s gutsy and tender, a woman who doesn’t even realize how beautiful she is. She doesn’t want to fall for Steve – their love puts both in danger – but some tides are too hard to fight.

What’s Next:
I’m currently finishing Against All Odds, a sequel to Angel in My Arms. The story features Kate Sinclair, a beautiful Union spy who’s part of the Richmond spy ring, and Will Reed, a Confederate officer whose love for Kate draws them both into a web of treachery and betrayal more dangerous than the fields of war.

Other Works:

If readers enjoy Angel in My Arms, I hope they’ll check out Destiny, Steve’s partner’s story. Jack Travis is a by-the-book Cavalry officer until he receives unusual orders: kidnap the daughter of a powerful United States senator. His captive is intelligent, headstrong, beautiful – and forbidden. He risks his neck to protect her. But how can he protect her from himself?

Contact me at:

Here’s an Excerpt:

Amanda closed her eyes and savored his possession. How could anything feel as good as his lips against hers? With his arms wrapped tight
around her, she felt as though nothing could penetrate the tender shield of his embrace.
Wanting him was wrong. He was little more than a stranger. A man she’d teamed with for a mission. He was supposed to be nothing more.
But he’d filled her heart.
His handsome face captivated her all the more for its tiny imperfections. A small scar on his chin. The small bump at the bridge of his nose that told the tale of a long-ago break. Another scar, much more recent, on his jaw that looked to be the result of a man’s ring connecting with his flesh and bone.
He was a warrior. Her warrior. Fierce. Tender. Courageous. Protective.
“You’re so beautiful, Mandy.” His lips trailed the column of her throat.
She nestled against his broad chest. He smelled like bay rum and pine and leather. She’d never realized how tantalizing the scents could be. Mingled with his natural essence, the blend of aromas touched something deep and primal within her. She couldn’t resist the scent. Or him.
He took her hands in his. A sly smile curved his mouth as he studied her. “Such sweet temptation. The question is where to begin.”
She’d wasn’t an innocent, but she’d never experienced the heat of a man’s gaze drinking her in as though she were a fine wine to be savored. When Steve looked at her, she felt wanted.
Ridiculous. He couldn’t possibly love her.
But he hungered for her touch. That would have to be enough. After all, she didn’t love him.
Keep telling yourself that, Mandy.
She couldn’t love a man she barely knew.
Even if she longed for his scent. For his touch. For the moment when he’d claim her.
Even if she prayed he’d come to his senses and leave her before the rebels captured him and dragged him away to prison. Or a noose.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

A worthy advisary

There's nothing I enjoy more than a good villain, unless it's besting a good villain. Often when we right we are so consumed about what our heroine or hero looks like we leave our bad guy or girl to the reader's imagination. Not good. As a writer you want your reader to boo and hiss at the villain just as one would at a penny opera. So, put on your thinking caps and give your readers that mental picture.

His attributes should be as interesting as your hero. Remember not all villains are dark and swarthy. Some may be blonde, blue eyed and cunning. Perhaps they are skilled at getting into a woman's bed or coaxing the information from her lips by plying her senses with kisses and flowery speech.

When I wrote A Ranger's Honor, I wanted a card shark. He needed to be just as glib as Rhett Butler and as dangerous as a rattlesnake. Instead of giving him a dark appearance, I wanted him to be like the blond Adonis with a cold heart. So I painted this lovely picture of a man bent on acquiring an empire off the misfortunes of others. Here is an example of Yellow Jack Anderson the notorious card shark of Cold Creek, Texas.

“Your coffee, sir,” he replied, tipping the metal pot, to poured the cup full, and then disappeared.
In the silence, Yellow Jack spread the white cloth napkin across his pinstriped trousers, smoothing the linen from left to right while making sure both sides were equal. His manner was impeccable. Yellow Jack detested an unkempt man. He knew what image he wanted to give and dressed the part. A second glance out the window caught his reflection. Again, the instinctive motion to smooth any hair out of place took over. He looked good - like a white man, not the half-breed his linage indicated.
A movement stirred and caught his interest. Yellow Jack watched as a wagon moved toward the deed office. His eyes narrowed as they focused on the occupants - a woman with a blue bonnet and a man in work clothes. A pastoral scene artist would claim. Under Yellow Jacks glare, they exchanged words. The farmer leaned over, and beneath the brim of her calico headdress, no doubt, left a kiss. How touching, he thought.
The right side of his cheek twitched. Fools, he wanted to laugh. They wouldn’t stay long. The soil may bend to a plow, but it would not hold the seed past the second, the third or fourth year. This was cattle country, not farmland. Even now, the great cattle companies of Texas were finding it hard to eke out a measurable living in the dry climate.
“Sir, your food.”
Yellow Jack lifted his hands, allowing the man to deposit the platter of steak, eggs, and potatoes before him.
“Thank you,” Yellow Jack murmured, picking up the knife and fork.
Again alone, he pressed the sharp edge of the knife to the darkened meat. A faint tinge of blood oozed to the surface. His tongue darted out, ready to taste the warm red liquid. His nostrils flared at the odor, a smell he would never forget. Spearing the meat, Yellow Jack’s thoughts turned to ways to alleviate the widow from her land. Yes, the game was afoot. With Frank Prentiss gone, nothing seemed to stand in his way.

From A Ranger's Honor by Nancy O'Berry.
Who ever your villain becomes, do him the dignity of bringing him to life! A good villain is a work of art.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

The looming Black Moment.

I hate it.
I know its coming.
I can't put it off any longer.

I've spent the past three months working on rebuilding the budding relationship between my Hero and my Heroine, now, I must destroy it.

How sad that a love just starting to rebloom is about to be ripped from the heart. I know they will get back together because its romance. I need that Happily Ever After. Yet, somehow, it hurts to do this.

It will be public.
It will be degrading, yet it must be done. She has to learn what she holds dear is worth fighting for. How sad her public humiliation. She will lose face in front of her family, his family, and many members of the town. But it must be. I've danced around this now for about 6 weeks. I've tweaked and honed certian scenes. Now, I must face the music.

Bare with me gentle reader. I do have my box of tissues. I am girding my loins to make it strong. Sniff. Into battle I go. For the Black moment must appear as if all is lost.

Friday, October 22, 2010

I'm working on a new character...

I'm finishing up one book and now thinking about the hero in my new novel. He won't be a lawman, this time my hero is a rancher. A good man, good son, and brother but I need things more than just "good". So I pull out some of my little tricks from working with children and writing. I put in the picture and start writing around it what comes to mind when I think of this gentleman.

I use single words first....


Then short phrases

"Not a big talker, saves his breath for breathing"
"Complaining is what quitters do"
"A cowboy is always worth his salt"
"Be a man and give your enemy a fighting chance"
"A cowboy is loyal to his 'brand' his friends, his woman"
"His word is his bond"

Once I know his make up I can work on physical descriptions. I also remember that this is a on going project things can always be added to flesh out his true identity. So this is my goal today to get Shawn McCormick fleshed out. He's got big boots to fill, Tisha Ross is counting on it.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Monday, Monday

The weekend has drawn to a close and with it another week begins. I'm up early. The sweet yellow cat(being so sarcastic here) pounced on my middle about 5:30 a.m since I did not respond to his purring and demanded his food. Rather than go back to bed like a normal person, I've decided to get started and work on revising a chapter in my WIP.
So, I'm up, wiping the sleep from my eyes and getting my life in order to write.

Writing takes discipline. No book is ever written on an idea. Your thoughts can't crawl onto a page without placing pen in hand and applying muscle pressure to move it across the page, or across the screen. So set aside an hour to write. I prefer to write during the day sometimes in the early mornings, but mostly late afternoons. I begin by placing a few new ideas down that I will expand on later. Then I work do my house work or prepare for my other job mulling over the ideas. Later in the day, I will take what I call MY TIME and write.

Those who are able to write as a profession view it as a job. They clock in. I do the same by keeping a day planner open. I write down my starting word count and my ending word count. I take time Saturday evening to add up my accomplishments for the week and at the end of the month, I see progress.

So, if you are contemplating writing, begin with your idea. Write down on paper, note cards, sticky notes what ever works for you. Then set aside time to work. Let your family know this is "Your time" and give yourself at least 90 minutes to be productive. You don't have to put down 5000 words a day. Yes, it would be nice. But remember novels are built on words. Any words put down is progress. It may come in spurts or long drafts but make sure you take time to write, to journal, to think. Its an amazing experience.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Catch my guest blog.

I'm over at Victoria Gray115 today as a guest on her blog. Come on over and have a look see at the stories I'm peddling and leave a comment, follow the blog and you'll be entered in Victoria's October contest.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

A Halloween Collection Anthology

~Sweet stories to satisfy your romantic cravings~

Stimulating stories to satisfy your romantic cravings

The Curse of Tempest Gate by Karen Michelle Nutt
Clarity Shaw, a reporter for Unbelievable Finds, seeks answers concerning the curse of Tempest Gate Cemetery. Warnings from the Bed and Breakfast’s receptionist and an old man only make her more curious. Determined to get her story, Clarity ventures into the old cemetery.
Even though she is tied to the legends surrounding Tempest Gate through her ancestry, Clarity does not believe in the paranormal. She intends to collect the local versions of the stories, take some photos, and be on her way.
A beautiful sculpture in the cemetery, a stone angel warrior, draws her attention and her admiration. Could this be the Archangel Michael? Then she finds out more than she bargains for when she sits in the devil’s chair on the eve of Halloween. Two entities need her for their own personal reasons, but only one will demand her heart.

Always and Forever by Cheryl Pierson
At a children’s Halloween carnival, a Gypsy fortuneteller predicts a new love for both Cindy and Gage. When the two meet over a poorly carved pumpkin, love flickers to life and the stars begin to align.
But the odds of finding a new love later in life seem insurmountable and the prophecy seems too good to be true. After all, Gage has been burned before and Cindy doesn’t believe in fortunes or second chances.
Will doubt overshadow their attraction or has love already been set in motion? Can the star-crossed pair put their faith in the love that was foretold? Can they believe in each other?

Conceived in Darkness by Laura Shinn
Prince Orekon is out of time and out of solutions. He must mate and he only has until sunrise in three days or he will lose his throne. The alternative would be disastrous for his people. The females from his world of Astovia are lovely and willing, but his heart remains cold. There is not even one among them who wants to discover the heart within the beast. And Orekon refuses to mate with just any female available. He wants a female who will join with his heart as well as his body.
Music is Kathryn Schaffer’s life and passion. It’s the only thing in her life that keeps her going, waiting for each performance. When a strange man in a corridor holds her captive from behind, Kathryn is momentarily terrified. Until his touch softens and he whispers words of passion and love in her ear. Knowing she will never experience those emotions in her entire life, Kathryn takes a chance and opens her heart to a stranger.
However, falling in love is never easy and trials and challenges await back on Astovia for the mated couple. Orekon is confident in his ability to maintain the throne, but Kathryn is in a world unlike her own. Will she find a way to win over the hearts of the Astovian people as she did with Orekon?

A Haunting Love by Rebecca J. Vickery
Trudy thinks she must have lost her mind by agreeing to house-sit a huge, old, Victorian mansion during Halloween week. Lights switching on and off along with odd noises lead her to meet a certain, handsome police officer named Simon. The attraction is mutual and undeniable. Maybe the scare was worth the chance to go out with this guy.
When odd things at the old house continue, Mina, Trudy’s best friend and partner in a vintage clothing shop, teases her about having a poltergeist. Deciding she can deal with that better than an actual person out to do her harm, Trudy relaxes a bit—until the ghost takes over on Halloween, revealing a curse and an ancient, haunting love.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

There's a new Anthology in Town...

It's Halloween! And just in time for those ghost and goblins comes a new epress with a collection of delicious stories to make us shiver and keep us on the edge of our seats. Recently I sat down with one of the publisher of Victory Tales Press. This week we'll be seeing what they have in store for us.

A Halloween Collection Anthology
~Sweet stories to satisfy your romantic cravings~

Go on Without Me by Markee Anderson

Lydia Sanders is so lonely she dresses as a cat for Halloween and goes to a bar with a friend. She misses her boyfriend who died in a robbery the year before. Her brother’s new partner on the police force, Ian Thomas, meets Lydia at the bar. Her brother asked him to check up on her. Worried about her depression, Ian takes her for a drive in the rain to talk… But his car dies on a deserted road. They hike to a house where a strange, old woman lets them in to use her phone, but it doesn’t work. Halloween… At midnight…in a scary house? Lydia hopes it’s just a nightmare. But something’s going on, she’s sure, as the hair on her neck rises.
A man enters the room and the woman introduces him as her grandson. Eerily like Lydia’s dead boyfriend, he frightens her even more. Can this strange Halloween get any weirder?

Honor Cafe by Charlotte Raby

Adrianne has made it her life's work to run a non-profit cafe for the homeless because she knows what it means to be hungry and alone. She expects to remain alone until Simon walks through her unlocked door after hours. He intrigues her with his chivalric language and desire to stay hidden in the dark, but she needs to know more if he wants her love.
Living as a cursed vagabond for years has not prepared Simon for his powerful feelings for Adrianne and the danger in which those feelings put them. Their love could be his salvation, or their deaths. To try to save her life, he must leave her with his secret intact, but will he have the strength to walk away?

Halloween Witness by Rita Hestand

When the local town drunk sees a murder committed in the cemetery on Halloween night, will anyone in Haleyville pay any attention to his story? After all, the one he saw kill a woman was George Newman, the most respected citizen in town. Clooney, the drunk, hesitantly goes to Sheriff Joe about it. Knowing Joe to be a stickler for the facts, he figures he’ll investigate at least.
Joe is engaged to George's daughter, Elizabeth, and doesn’t want to believe Clooney. But the old man describes things in such detail and seems so shook up Joe feels it’s his duty to investigate the story.
At the cemetery they do indeed find a grave and dig it up. Joe is suddenly faced with the job of solving the mystery and how to avoid losing the love of his life. It's a harrowing Halloween night in Haleyville.

The Memory Charmer and the Boy Next Door by Christine E. Schulze

Imprisoned in a basement, at the mercies of an oddly powerful incubus, Elissa tries to escape many times. But the giant tarantula guards his master’s toy well. She fears she will eventually cease to exist at the hands of this Musician who steals her memories. The pain increases with every encounter.
Then a glimmer of hope appears. A boy moves in next door who knows things—secrets from the very heavens. The boy speaks of Elementals and Shooting Stars and wondrous things she’s never dreamed of. But the Musician knows of him and guards her even more carefully. Can this boy help her escape on All Hallow’s Eve? Or will the incubus destroy him too?

I Love Pie by Kate Kindle

Tony Gsullo, a burnt-out-on-life New Yorker, takes an unexpected autumn trip to the country with a friend. On the side of the road he sees a haunting sight. A beautiful woman stands poised on the roadside, seemingly in a trance. When the men stop to offer assistance, she flees into the woods.
When they rent a room in town, they discover there are some odd occurrences and secrets in the small town of Saranac Lake. At a large mansion on the outskirts of town, Tony once again meets the beautiful woman from the side of the road. Their attraction is instant, but Darla is married to a doctor, one of the most prominent men in the community.
Something is definitely wrong, Tony decides, when he sees the doctor strike his lovely wife. Then news of a young woman’s disappearance adds to his unease. His concern for Darla and her daughter drive him to take action. Halloween in Saranac Lake will never be the same.

Look for more about this anthology all this week.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Your Biggest Fan by Sharon Donovan

Pages 278) Sensual

ISBN: 1-60154-813-3

Author, Sharon Donovan,has a winner

Her latest book `Her Biggest Fan' from The Wild Rose Press has just released. I'd like introduce you to this fantastic romantic thriller. It is a truly thrilling read, with `edge of the seat' moments, and the thread of a tender romance running all the way through. Reviews have been great! Check out the book for more information by following the link below. It's awesome!

Here's the blurb and a short excerpt:


From the shadows of the woods, he keeps vigil. The stage is set to drive the pretty little princess insane. He's coming for her. And when he catches her, he'll pounce on her like the big bad wolf.

After receiving a disturbing fan letter, New York Times best-selling author Tess Kincaid flees to the New England home she's inherited following her father's death. The manor has been tainted, every room staged to resemble the way it was in its glory days. However when Tess calls the police, the chilling props vanish into thin air.

Ruggedly handsome Sheriff Mike Andretti is called to investigate the reported burning candles, dancing gargoyles and otherworldly events. When he discovers no trace of the eerie setting, he finds himself caught between duty and desire. Is the woman with the bewitching green eyes delusional or is this a trap of twisted wit set by a demented fan?


Cool air drifted out of the ballroom, carrying the scent of burning candles and cigarettes.

Music floated through the corridor, the seductive undertone hauntingly familiar.

The music was hypnotic, mesmerizing. Tess could barely think over the loud beat of her heart. Every sense screamed to beware. She was about to come face-to-face with her stalker, her biggest fan. But over the hammering of her heart and accelerated senses, her will to put an end to this deadly game prevailed. She had to face him, find out who was behind this bizarre masquerade. Anticipation mounting, she made the turn at the end of the corridor and came to a riveting halt.

A female wax gargoyle stood in the doorway, long blonde hair billowing in the breeze. Her glass eyes shimmered with madness, an eerie smile on her face. In one hand, she held a mission bell, the other reaching out for a candle.

Music played from the old phonograph, the plucking of guitar strings laced with seduction. A breeze blew in through open terrace doors, stirring the sweet scent of jasmine from the candelabras.

Two wax nymphs stood at the bar, glass eyes shining bright in the candlelight, pliable fingers wrapped around flutes of pink champagne. Lit cigarettes burned in ashtrays. From behind the bar, a winged monster served drinks.

In the center of the ballroom, two gargoyles held a pose as if they were dancing, their waxy bodies closely pressed together, their reflections glowing in the mirrored ceiling. From the old phonograph in the corner, the hypnotic music played.

Tess gasped, her hand clasping her mouth. "Oh, my God!"

Mike raised his gun, circled the room. "Come out with your hands up. Hancock County Sheriff. Put your hands where I can see them."

Friday, September 24, 2010

Making the Turn by Celia Yeary

Second new Release: MAKING THE TURN- a contemporary women’s fiction novel
Cover Attached

Starting over at age thirty-nine is no picnic under any circumstances, but the task is daunting for Sara Daniels. Living an affluent lifestyle her entire adulthood in Dallas does not prepare her for instant bankruptcy, especially if a philandering husband dies suddenly, leaving her penniless, debt-ridden, and homeless.
Planning on moving in temporarily with her cantankerous mother in the small town of Del Rey, Sara faces more problems than she can handle. During the long, hot summer, she and her daughter, her mother, and a handsome distraught widower and his charming young son learn they can have second chances.


Sunday morning, Sara sat at the kitchen table with one leg bent up and the heel of one bare foot propped on the edge of her chair. She spread the paper before her, but she couldn’t read anything yet because of the commotion down the hall. Instead, she sipped on coffee and laughed to herself. Dorothy stomped around, all in a tizzy, to use her own words, trying to dress for church and share the one bathroom with Laney.
Dorothy rose early, as usual, and made pancakes and bacon, knowing full well Laney wouldn’t eat the meat, but she pushed her anyway to “just try some. It won’t kill you.” Laney quickly ate her pancakes and raced for the bathroom to shower and wash her hair. When Dorothy needed the bathroom to do the same, Laney was still in there using the blow dryer. Dorothy called out to her to hurry up, but either Laney ignored her or didn’t hear because of the noise of the dryer.
“Okay, Gran, it’s all yours,” Laney said. She scooted past Dorothy as fast as she could to go to her own room. Sara watched from her position at the kitchen table, and thought Laney looked a tiny bit fearful.
Before Dorothy closed the door to the bathroom, she stuck her head out and called, “Now, I’m running behind. Laney, tell your mama to wash the dishes. I’m not going to have time today.”
Sara called from the kitchen, “I’ve already washed them! Just take care of yourself!”
“Well, whatever,” Dorothy answered instead of saying thank you.
Twenty minutes later, Laney emerged from her bedroom wearing a pale pink, sleeveless summer dress, with a scoop neck and diagonal ruffles across the lower part of the ankle-length skirt. Her cherry red toenails glared because she wore sandals, and a tiny gold ring circled the second toe of her left foot. Three silver bangle bracelets graced the upper part of one tanned, firm arm, and three silver rings graced the middle three fingers of the other hand.
“Well, don’t you look pretty,” commented Sara. “I like your hair hanging loose like that. It’s become lighter, hasn’t it?”
She shrugged. “Maybe. I don’t know. You’re not dressed yet.” Sara still had on blue drawstring lounging pants and a matching crop-top. “Do you realize I rarely ever saw you like this? You were always up early and dressed for the day.”
“Well, honey, this is the new me. Have a seat. I think Mother’s still fussing with her hair. Anyway, I have no place to go today.”
“I like your outfit. Looks really comfortable.”
“It is and thanks,” she answered with a smile. “So, are you sure you’re ready to face the First Presbyterian Church congregation?”
Laney laughed. “I can’t even imagine. But I’m game.”
“I grew up in that church, you know.”
“I remember, and I’m interested in the…”
“Is that what you’re wearing?” Dorothy asked, as she hurried into the kitchen. She laid her pocketbook and Bible on the table to pat her hair on the sides and back, and while doing so, looked at Laney’s dress, the rings, and the bracelets. “My Lord, people will stare at you. Tell me you’re not going like that. You don’t even have on panty hose.”
Laney threw her head back and laughed out loud. “Gran, you’re a firecracker.” She stood and hugged Dorothy around the shoulders. Whispering, she said, “Do you think you should be taking the Lord’s name in vain on a Sunday morning? Tut, tut, Gran, people will talk.”
“Well. Well,” she sputtered. “We’d better get going.” She looked at her watch. “Ten minutes is all we have.” She continued to talk as she gathered her things and walked to the back door. “If you hadn’t taken so much time in the bathroom, we wouldn’t be running late. Now, I bet somebody’s got my pew, and I’ll have to sit in the back. I hope those flowers haven’t wilted in this heat. With any luck…” and her voice faded away as she slammed out the back door.
Laney winked at Sara and hurried to catch up to her grandmother. Before she left the room, she turned and said, “I’m going to make her ride in the Pathfinder. She’ll have a fit.”
Sara laughed and replied, “Make that a hissy-fit.”


Thank you for visiting today—
Celia Yeary-Romance...and a little bit 'o Texas
New Releases
Texas Promise-eBook-Desert Breeze Publishing
Making the Turn-print & eBook-Wings ePress

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

How I Tackle Writing

How I Tackle Writing
by Celia Yeary

Did you know you can find numerous articles on the internet about how to write a novel? Most of them begin with “think of a good story.” Now that, in my opinion, is the most fascinating bit of advice I’ve ever read. “Think of a good story.” I wonder if Margaret Mitchell said that to herself as she sat down at her typewriter. She certainly had a good story; I’ll admit that.

How did Margaret Mitchell find the novel titled Gone With the Wind? I have no idea, but I don’t imagine she sat down one day at her desk and thought, “I need to think of a good story,” and voila! her Best-Selling Novel was born.

First, for me to think up a good story I need time to DAYDREAM. That’s step number one —time to stare into space and let my mind wander, imagining a scene or a character. This might occur while I’m watching mind-numbing television, or while we’re on a long road trip and I have time to stare at the highway in front of me, or best of all, the house is quiet and I’m all alone.

Second, I need A PROMPT of some kind. This might be an old weathered gray house on the side of the road, and I wonder who lived there and why. Maybe I see unique person walking along the sidewalk, and I wonder who she is and where is she going. Perhaps I read a news article, and something in it turns into a scene with people acting out the story in the article.

Third, I need to ENVISION a character, male or female, doesn’t matter. Who is this character? What is her story? I needed to write a 25,000 word Christmas story, and I thought of a couple who recently married. She is a nurse, very tall, and she married a doctor who is even taller. So, my story is based on a young woman who is to be maid of honor to her brother’s best man. She worries, but when she meets him, he stands even taller than she. And of course, he’s a hunk. In my story, my heroine is a pediatric nurse and my hero is an ex-Army medic.

In a nutshell, that is how I begin writing a story. Let me give you an example. Occasionally, we travel north about 200 miles to visit my mother in the nursing home. On the way, we pass a road sign that points west and says, Thurber 15 miles. I’ve never heard of this town. So when I returned home, I immediately Googled the name. I learned it is a ghost place with only one tall smokestack and numerous cemeteries remaining. Once, though, it had been a thriving town of 3,000 that produced coal. Ah, so Erath County had coalmines. When?

From a little research, I learned all about the town and even found a website with old photos. The citizens abandoned it around 1915, and the owners of the coal mine leveled it. Why? I found a rich history there in that area, which resulted in my imagining a young man who walked away, wandering until he came upon a farm where a young girl lived with her family. From there, the entire story fell into place.
I titled my story Wish for the Moon and is now contracted with Willow Moon Publishing. The story turned out to be a “coming-of-age” novel, which created a problem with getting someone to publish it. I refused to make it into a pure romance, and that dilemma happened more than once. I stubbornly held on to it. While it is an adult love story, romance is not the focus. In a stroke of very good luck, I ran across WMP.

Thank you for reading today. I do appreciate Nancy for inviting me to guest on her blog.

Bio: Celia Yeary-Romance...and a little bit 'o Texas
New Releases
Texas Promise-eBook-Desert Breeze Publishing
Making the Turn-print & eBook-Wings ePress

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Who is Celia Yeary?

Glad you asked. First of all I can truly say she is a friend in pen, meaning she has given me great advice, some great ideas as we talk, laugh, and sometimes cry together on loops. But Celia is more than that, she is a wife, a mother, a beloved grandmother, and writer. As an author, her turn of phrase opens the reader up to a Texas whirlwind of emotions.

Here are some of her other titles.

From the Wild Rose Press
Texas Blue
All My Hopes and Dreams
Showdown in Southfork

The Winged Press
a woman's fiction novel Making the Turn

Her newest from Desert Breeze Publishing
The Cameron Sisters Series Book One
Texas Promise
Book two due out in April 2011
Texas True

check her out :

Monday, September 20, 2010

Come see what Dessert Breeze and Celia Yeary have coming your way!

My good friend Celia Yeary has released a fantastic new historical, set in my favorite place - Texas. Come explore romance in the Lone Star State.

New Release:
TEXAS PROMISE: Book I-The Cameron Sisters
A Western Historical Romance

After two years, Jo Cameron King’s life as a widow abruptly ends when her husband returns home to Austin. Unable to understand his anger and bitterness, she accepts a call to travel to the New Mexico Territory to meet her dying birth father whom she knows nothing about. Her plan to escape her husband goes awry when he demands to travel with her.

Dalton King, believing lies his Texas Ranger partner tells him about Jo, seethes with hatred toward his wife. Now he must protect Jo from his partner’s twisted mind, while sorting out the truth. Jo’s bravery and loyalty convince him she’s innocent. But can they regain the love and respect they once shared?

Digging the key from her reticule, she turned to the door. Startled, she noticed the door slightly cracked open, in addition to the light in the front room. Goodness, Mrs. Thompson really was becoming forgetful. I'd better turn that lamp off, she thought, as she entered the study.

"Might as well leave it on," murmured a deep voice.

Shock slammed through her body and she felt as though she'd faint. She grabbed the doorframe, frozen, and stared at Dalton, her transformed husband, who sat in her Victorian chair on the embroidered damask seat with his dirty, scuffed boots crossed on her desk, sipping whiskey.

"Dear God. Dalton." She stepped toward him.

Holding his hand up to stop her, he growled, "You can stop right there. I don't want you to touch me, and I sure as hell don't want to touch you. Not yet, anyway." The last he said in an odious tone she'd never before heard from him. "Sit down over there." He nodded to a small love seat nearby.

She sat. Mostly because she trembled so much she could hardly breathe, let alone stand up. Leaning forward, she asked, "Where have you been, Dalton? What's happened to you?"

He sipped the whiskey, looked at the ceiling, and back at her. "Ah, you've already noticed. That something happened to me. Didn't take you long. Repulsed, are you?" His voice was cold and hard.

She stood, leaning toward him, holding her hand out, palm up. "What are you talking about? What is this? A joke? Where in heaven's name have you been? We thought you were dead. Dead, Dalton. We had a memorial service for you out at the ranch, for heaven's sake. I applied for widow's benefits. I don't understand."

Suddenly, she felt lightheaded and sank to the love seat. Her body couldn't handle this. A long day with no dinner, and now, his sudden appearance knocked her off her feet. Crossing her arms around her waist, she leaned forward, then back, resting her head on the cushion. Her eyes rolled back.

Even though her body went limp and her mind clouded, she knew he caught her up in his arms. He sat on the love seat with her across his lap, holding her tightly against his hard body.

He trembled with her in his arms.


Thank you for visiting!

Celia Yeary-Romance...and a little bit 'o Texas
New Releases
Texas Promise-eBook-Desert Breeze Publishing
Making the Turn-print & eBook-Wings ePress

Friday, September 17, 2010

Building your story

It is perhaps easier to write contemporary stories for your world about your characters is already set. We know the sun rises in the east and sets in the west. What we don't know is what happens in a given day or time of our story. But when you discuss fantasy, you must take into account that idea of world building. You must describe, create, or at least attempt to bring the reader into that world which rest in your mind's eye.

Are you on the surface of a faraway planet? Does the soil shimmer and glow because of some odd element? Does it have two suns? A single moon with a ring? What is its name? Are there creatures like us or do they have features that need descriptions? This is what movie makers use a story board for. It can be an effective tool for writers as well. Picture your creature or hero/ heroine. Find pictures put them up on bulletin boards, make a scrapbook of your plot.

Yes, it sound tedious. But a well thought out plot often will save a writer from the dreaded writer's block. So get thee to thy story board and see if you can write that next best seller.

People to read:
If you are looking for examples of people to read to get the idea of a well developed plot please check out these authors.

Karen Hawkins
Kaye Manro
Cheryl St. John
Aliyah Burke
Monique Lamont
Amy Clipston
Delilah Marvell
Galeen Foley

Examine your favorite authors. Critique their work and build your story

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

What's in a name?

You've heard your parents say live up to your name. How true it is.

As I sit here and wait for Hurricane Earl's visit, it has come to my attention that how you name things often reflects the outcome. Yes,I'm taking names.

Writing my stories, I pick a name for my hero, heroine, or villain dependent on the characteristics I want them to portray. I wouldn't have an nonredeemable villain with a hero's name or visa versa. Example you say? Ok, Few bad guys are named Robert. Now, I'm not talking Bobby, but the strength of the name Robert brings to my mind someone strong. Bobby might be easily swayed like a child. A villain's name might be Rafe, Leon, or Jack. Yes, to many this is conjecture and I certainly don't mean to say anyone with that name is a villain. Perhaps its just that they aren't my favorite names. So how does this bring us back to the Hurricane named EARL.

Living in southeast Virginia, I've experienced hurricanes for nearly 54 years. In doing so, I've noticed that the storms with the "odd man out" names are usually the worst. Perhaps, we tick them off with their moniker. In the sixties, we had horrid storms like Betsy, Donna, Ion, and the drama queen herself, Camille. When the weather service included male names instead of just girls ( which was started when one bright guy named a hurricane after his girl friend. Yeah you wonder if they got married. ) We include in this list Hugo, Andrew, Felix.

So in conclusion, if they'd name storms Bambi or Candy perhaps it would have been charming or gentleman. Ah, but then, my theory would be blown and what fun is that. So here's to my friends on the East coast, I raise a cup of tea to you and wish you safe harbor in the coming days. I hope to have more after the passage of Earl.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Meet Stephanie Burkhart - Author

Just a little about me: I was born in Manchester, NH but live in Castaic, California with my husband, Brent, and two sons, Andrew and Joseph. I have fond memories of Manchester, but have made California my home. I earned a BS in political science from California Baptist University in 1995. I currently work for LAPD as a 911 Dispatcher.

My writer's journey began when I was five. It was the 1970's and I liked to watch a show called "The Electric Company." They usually had a Spiderman skit on. After the show, I would sit down at the kitchen table and make a homemade comic after the skit. During my teen years, I wrote poetry, short stories, and homemade comics.

My first novel, "Destination: Berlin" was written during my time in the military, but it took me about ten years to really flesh it out and it didn't get published until after I was out of the military in 2001. I enjoy writing romance and I had a short historical romance called "Royal Pretender" published in the Cupid Diaries, a short story about muses called "Matchmaking Amusement" in the Be Mused Anthology by Desert Breeze Publishing, and a paranormal romance called "The Hungarian" also by Desert Breeze Publishing released this year.

My latest story, "The Giving Meadow," is a children's story about a caterpillar who travels through a meadow making friends before he turns into a butterfly. It was written as an Easter play for my church's preschool program.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Sometimes a good book begins with a great concept

I'd like to welcome Stephanie Burkhart who has taken time out of writing in the adult world to give us a children's book entitled, A Giving Meadow is making the rounds. I'm always on the lookout for something different and something new to read to my grandson. I think Stephanie has a winner here.

The Giving Meadow was released in May 2010.

The Giving Meadow is about a caterpillar who hatches from his egg in the middle of a meadow. As he travels through the meadow, he meets new friends who learn the value of sharing.

Buy Links:




We will have more with Stephanie as the week continues. Please feel free to ask questions and check the links about this adorable book.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

RWA Nationals

Wow, I've been home now a bit over a week and finally got the suitcases unpacked. So much went on it reminds me of being in a blender, spun around and spit out. What do I have to say about being at RWA??

First - GO

If you've never been in the company of writers, go. There were over 2100 women, men, agents, editors in attendance. Sitting alone at lunch or with friends, you could learn so very much from what was going on. Small things like discussions of trends, how to format manuscripts, and just the fact that, like yourself, some people were stuck in their manuscripts and brainstorming went on.

Plan to Network

You don't have to drink, but go and sit down in the lobby or the bar and mingle. I over heard several people get asked for manuscripts partials and fulls in this process. Yes, it gets loud with lots of people milling around but that's ok. Remember that is what your room is for, to get away and rest.

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Do take in the literacy signing

I stood in line with a very famous author's mom. We talked about her daughter's work and she hustled me up to meet her. That was so cool. Authors also stop by and greet you, even get that hug. It was a tremendous lift for an ego.

Take time to go to the open house and spotlights.

There you will learn invaluable things for your manuscript and queries. I was able to give the editor that rejected my first work a handshake and thank her for her advice. She actually remembered the story and wanted to know if I had continued to work. That was cool.

What are the lasting memories I'll take from this.

There is never enough time to do what you want to do. You can not take in ALL the great programs. With that said plan to go again.
Do take advantage of mailing your books back and not clutter up the car or pay the extra on the airplane.
Do remember to USE the camera you brought with you.
If a writer asks you to come to dinner... GO. They may want to pass off some great information or you get to rub elbows with others.

Am I planning on attending again.. Oh golly yes. I've already started saving for next year. Now, if the agent can sell the book.. then by golly I'll really be able to go in style.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

It's Wednesday and I'm in OZ

Truly, it feels as if I have awoken in another place and another time. The sunlight shinging off those clear blue Florida skies looks different. You feel different walking through the lobby of the now crowded hotel. There is chatter and shrieks of delight as old friends meet. The smell of pages being turned is everywhere, in the pools, in the resturants, even along the Boardwalk of a Disney venue. Its wild.

We had breakfast today and all around us people were discussing book ideas, trying to come up with titles to submit to their agents or editors, practing their pitches they would give as the week wears on. Its an amazing place. You feel a bit overwhelmed by all the creativity.

I'd hoped to put up pictures but my lap top doesn't have the port for my camera card. So there will be picture posting when I return from Over the Rainbow. For anyone doubting, let me be the first to tell you that the magic of Disney is alive and well. Those who I've met or seen include Laura Robb and Allysa Day. I hope to meet Debbie Macomber before the week is done.

Until I can get to the computer... have fun.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

On the road again....

Oh my gosh, five thirty came bright and early this a.m as we packed the mini cooper and headed out for beautiful downtown Orlando and Walt Disney World for RWA 2010. I can't believe I'm actually getting to go. It is the trip of a life time.

We headed down the road with our navigator plugged to the windsheild and zoomed along through North Carolina, South Caroline, Georgia, and into Florida. The scenery was gorgeous. My roommate for the soiree and I plotted books the whole way. We had an awesome time.

I must say that turning down and entering Disney land resorts was a welcome sight after ten hours on the road. Our room is beautiful. We have been treated like queens returning to the Magic Castle. I can't say Princesses because, well, let's face it I'm a bit long in tooth. LOL.

Well tomorrow will be time to scope out the hotel and learn the layout before we spend Tuesday going to the magical world of Mr. Harry Potter, a true dream. So have fun all and night night from the Magic Kingdom...

Friday, July 23, 2010

Questions and Answers with Victoria Gray

Thanks so much for having me on your blog, Nancy. It’s a pleasure.

1. We've been looking at Destiny this week. Will there be a sequel?

Destiny’s sequel, Angel in My Arms, is the story of a ring of beautiful female spies operating out of Richmond during the Civil War. I enjoyed creating Jack’s partner, Steve, so much, I had to give him his own book. Steve is very different from Jack, with a more lighthearted, Owen Wilson persona, but he shares Jack’s fundamental values of conviction, courage, and honor. Angel in My Arms is due to be released in November.

2. Are there other genres you'd like to write?
Yes – I have multiple personalities as a writer! I’ve completed a historical romantic suspense set during 1896, the Gilded Age of New York, and I’ m putting the finishing touches on a contemporary romantic comedy. I also have a plot idea brewing for a historical paranormal.

3. Where can the public find you ?
I have a website, VictoriaGrayRomance, at . I’m also on Facebook and Twitter (VictoriaGray115). I’ll be at the Romance Writer’s of America conference next week…look for my Twitter updates.

4. Can you give us a hint about your next project.
I’m now writing the third book in the Destiny trilogy. Against All Odds features characters introduced in Angel in My Arms. In this story, a dashing Confederate office falsely accused of being a traitor tangles with a gang of vicious gun runners to save the beautiful Northern spy he loves.

Wow, what great projects you've got going. I wish you much success with your projects. Please come back with each release, we'll be waiting!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Don't you just love a bad boy????

If you love those bigger than life, rugged hero's, look no further than Major Jack Travis in Victoria Gray's Destiny. Check out her blurb below and be sure to run over and get your copy in print and as an ebook.

Emma Davenport was going to be a bride, and no one was going to stop her, not even an outlaw. Bound for a forbidden marriage, her scheme shatters when she is abducted and spirited away to a remote hideout. Any proper young woman would be frightened out of her wits, but she challenges her daring, seductive captor at every turn.

Major Jack Travis was used to the battlefield, not stealing spoiled, sheltered women from trains, but his orders have come from one of the most powerful men in Washington. The by-the-book soldier never doubted his ability to carry out orders until he laid eyes on Emma. His captive is intelligent, headstrong, beautiful – and forbidden. He risks his neck to protect her from the treacherous rake she’d planned to marry. But how can he protect her from himself?

Read an excerpt here:

He traced the curve of her cheek with his finger. “Miss Davenport, do all the men in the novels you read wind up scarred or crippled or alone?”

She pressed her lips together, struggling to ignore the sensation of his touch. “That would seem to be the case.”

His fingertip made tiny circles over her earlobe. “Why do you enjoy reading about tortured men?”

Emma never knew her ears would be so sensitive to a man’s caress. She licked her lips and twisted away from him. “The characters are brooding and romantic. They suffer for love.”

His arm snaked around her waist, dragging Emma against his unyielding male body. “Shouldn’t love bring pleasure, Miss Davenport?”

“You shouldn’t…we shouldn’t do this,” she gasped, struggling to keep her wits about her as his heat and touch threatened to overwhelm her senses.

“Answer my question, and I’ll leave you alone with your tortured hero. Shouldn’t love bring pleasure?”

The note of desire in his husky rasp shredded her meager defenses. “I don’t know,” she whispered, feeling her voice catch in her throat.

“I think you do,” Jack persisted, moving his lips to caress her lobe as his finger had moments earlier. “Shouldn’t love bring pleasure, Emma?”

He spoke her name as a seductive caress against her nape. His mouth burned a trail along the thin line of flesh exposed above her high collar. “Answer me, darlin’. Or should I try to convince you that I’m right?”

She shook her head. “You don’t need to convince me,” she murmured. “Love should bring pleasure.”

He smiled, his mouth curving wickedly as honey-brown eyes raked over her. “You don’t sound completely certain, Emma. I do need to convince you.”

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Introducing Victoria Gray.

A fantastic new historical writer has come to my attention. Meet Victoria Gray. Ms. Gray hails from the south and spends much of her time reading and in pursuit of the elusive novel. She began with paper and pencil, then migrated to typewriter, and thanks to this century as progressed to the computer.

When Ms. Gray is not writing, she has a variety of other wonderful activities that keeps her fit and active. She can be found cycling or walking the beaches of the east coast with her hero, her husband.

Ms. Gray is a a member of Romance Writers of America, Hearts through History Romance Writers, and Kiss of Death Romance Writers. You may find her books at The Wild Rose Press.

Her novel Destiny is set in post Civil War America. With such a divine cover and great premise I'm sure it will be a hit. Join us this week as we welcome Victoria Gray to Romancing the Blog.

Check out the to buy link below for information on ordering this in ebook or print.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

More with Paty Jager

Paty has written a series of Petticoat books. These great reads can be found at The Wild Rose Press.
Maeve Loman has had her heart crushed before; she isn't about to have it happen again. When she takes Zeke Halsey up on his offer to help her discover the truth about her father, she's sure she can control her traitorous body and not fall for the man's considerable charms.
Zeke Halsey has wanted Maeve Loman since he first set eyes on the prickly schoolteacher. Even as she thwarts his advances, he sees the desire burning in her eyes. He knows she feels abandoned and uses bravado to keep people at arm’s length. Offering to help her find her father, he hopes to prove he’s not going anywhere.
Shouldering the burdens of his family and the mining community, Ethan Halsey devotes himself to providing for his brothers' growing families.
However, Aileen Miller, a widow, also looking out for her family’s interests, refuses to part with the land he needs. As they battle- one to push his dream to reality and the other to prove no man will hurt her again- their lives become enmeshed and their hearts collide.
Darcy Duncan is an accident looking to happen. So it is no surprise to her when she shoots a bank robber while buying mining supplies. She wonders at the town asking her to be marshal. However, being a resourceful, resilient young woman, she takes the job with every intention of giving it an honest try. But falling for the handsome enemy, is one accident too many.
Gil Halsey is asked to bring his boss' errant son back to the ranch. He follows the man and his band of bumbling robbers to a small mining town. A corrupt local official runs the town and has pinned a marshal's badge on an accident-prone young woman. Gil believes the two are working together, until the marshal blunders into a bank robbery and is kidnapped. While saving the marshal, he reunites with his estranged family and stumbles into love.
Saloon owner Bas Slocum has never let anyone close. His lonely childhood and scrapes with the law has hardened his heart. Until he meets an angel wearing a Temperance ribbon. Now he must hide the very thing that was his salvation or lose his angel.
Letha Harrison suffered beatings from her alcoholic father and a forced separation from her brother. As she and her younger sister try to survive in a lawless town, she finds the first man she trusts.

Where is Paty today??

My hero Clay Halsey from Doctor in Petticoats is being interviewed tat
Naughty Little Vixen today

And 2009 Golden Heart finalist Autumn Jordan is visiting my blog and
talking about her new release Evil's Witness.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Welcome Paty Jager!

Happy 4th of July!!

My current release Doctor in Petticoats has a scene set during a Fourth of July celebration. The heroine's father is a judge, and her sister is in love with an up and coming state representative. In fact you can read how the sister catches her representative in my free read, Fireworks and Fancies, at The Wild Rose Press.

In Doctor in Petticoats the hero is sent to a blind school to learn how to navigate in the world as a blind person. While there he meets a young man who is the instructor for the broom making class. In order to understand how the blind were taught to make brooms, I had to learn the process as it would have been done in the 1800's.

Broomcorn is actually a species of sorghum. The broom bristles are the stiff tasseled branches of the plant. The plants grow 2-8 feet tall and grows best in hot arid climates. The plane is harvested, dried and the seeds removed. The seed are edible, starchy and high in carbohydrates. They are used in cereals and animal feed.

When humans first started using broomcorn as a broom, they just harvested the plant, dried it, and started sweeping. By the 1800's they started lashing the broomcorn together to make a better sweeping surface and even using just the branches lashed to wooden handles.

The Shakers evolved the broom making process and were the first to use wire to secure the broomcorn to the handle rather than tying or weaving it with string. They also developed a treadle machine to wind the broomcorn around the handle and secure it tightly.

For my story I have blind students learning to make brooms by hand. I used Foxfire #3 book to learn the process that was passed down for generations in North Carolina.

The seeds are combed out of the tassel. The tassels are placed in water to soak and make them pliable. Two nails or wooden pegs are placed in one end of the handle to prevent the stalks from slipping off after they are tied in place. A rope is tossed over a rafter. It needs to be long enough for a loop at the bottom for the broom maker's foot and that is 4-6 inches from the ground. The rope is wrapped once around the broom near the point where it will be tied. When the person steps down with their foot, it tightens the string on the broomcorn. When it seems tight, they take a five to six foot length of heavy-duty cotton string threaded through a carpet needle and weave it through and around the broomcorn, securing it to the handle.

I enjoyed learning about this process for my books and I hope you enjoy this excerpt from Doctor in Petticoats.

Blurb for Doctor in Petticoats
After a life-altering accident and a failed relationship, Dr. Rachel Tarkiel gave up on love and settled for a life healing others as the physician at a School for the Blind. She's happy in her vocation--until handsome Clay Halsey shows up and inspires her to want more.

Blinded by a person he considered a friend, Clay curses his circumstances and his limitations. Intriguing Dr. Tarkiel shows him no pity, though. To her, he's as much a man as he ever was.

Can these two wounded souls conquer outside obstacles, as well as their own internal fears, and find love?

“I’m going to look in your other eye now.” She, again, placed a hand on his face and opened the eyelids, stilling her fluttering heart as she pressed close. His clean-shaven face had a couple small nicks on the edges of his angular cheeks. The spice of his shave soap lingered on his skin.

She resisted the urge to run her cheek against his. The heat of his face under her palm and his breath moving wisps of wayward hair caused her to close her eyes and pretend for a few seconds he could be her husband. A man who loved her and wouldn’t be threatened by her occupation or sickened by her hideous scar.

His breathing quickened. A hand settled on her waist, slid around to her back, and drew her forward. Her hand, holding the lens, dropped to his shoulder, and she opened her eyes. This behavior on both their parts was unconscionable, but her constricted throat wouldn’t allow her to utter the rebuke.

Clay sensed the moment the doctor slid from professional to aroused woman. The hand on his cheek caressed rather than held, her breathing quickened, and her scent invaded his senses like a warm summer rain.

Blog Tour Contest

Don't forget to follow my fifteen blog/twelve day tour. Leave a comment and follow me to all the blogs on my tour and you could win an autographed copy of my June release, Doctor in Petticoats, a B&N gift card, and a summer tote filled with goodies. To find out all the places I'll be go to my blog- to find the list.


Giving in to Charity

From Dark Diva's Reviews Giving in to Charity by Nancy O'Berry from Red Rose Publishing

Deb’s Review:
Nancy O'Berry has captured my heart with her Sweetbrier Academy Series I have read the first two books which include Hope and Faith's stories and I am so happy that Charity finally has a story of her own in Giving in to Charity. As I read along, I seem to lose myself into the time frame in which these stories take place—the formal gowns, society gatherings, and the intrigue that Nancy O'Berry creates

Giving in to Charity is a delightfully sensual story about love, mystery and greed. A man will do anything for the silver running through the mines in Virginia City, and for the love of a good woman, no matter her past.

Nancy O'Berry is magnificently delicious! Come and visit Sweetbrier Academy, then you will know what it is like to relive the past.

From You Gotta Read Reviews
Not only is this book fast paced with beautiful description and intriguing dialogue, it has several twists and turns that will have you reading as fast as possible. The two main characters, Tobias and Charity, are truly amazing individuals to overcome the demons they have deep inside them. Through the book, you see each of them grow individually as well as together. Some of the secondary characters will either have you laughing at them or wanting to kill them yourself. Some of the issues discussed in this book are still relevant today. The one most prevalent in this book and in today's society is racism. I was humbled at how the author dealt with this situation and did so with grace and dignity. I want to thank the author, Nancy O'Berry, for a beautiful and entertaining love story. I'm looking forward to reading the other two books in this series as well as her future releases.

Read an excerpt here...

His strong arms slid beneath her knees and pressured enough that they gave way. Charity clung to Tobias, and he lifted her and cradled her next to his chest as he walked across the room and, as gentle as he would a newborn, placed her in his bed. The light from the fire reflected on the plains of his skin. The strength of his jaw, the well-toned body, made him appear like some golden Greek god. Charity pulled her arms above her head to grasp the metal spirals of the wrought iron, easing her body away from the edge so that he might join her.
The mattress tilted. The springs gave a sigh, and he stretched alongside her. His hands plucked her dark nipples, making them pebble. Tobias’ head dipped, and she knew his lips found the desired morsel. His mouth suckled until she moaned and writhed beneath him. His hand moved along her side, and he grasped the second tip, arousing it in the same manner.
“Tobias,” she groaned, arching against his touch.
Reluctantly, he let go. His lips kissed the sacred valley between the two, and his knees pushed her thighs apart. “This afternoon you begged to taste, tonight I shall dine.”
Charity’s eyes widened. Tobias’ tongue burned a path from her breast, around her navel, and lower. A stroke across, and her legs grew weak. He drew her bud up and teased till her hips rose from the sheet. His arms slid beneath her legs lifting her, parting her nether lips to taste the sweet wine she had been hiding. Cupid’s sweet sweat layered her body while his kisses plundered her core. Breathing became a chore, and she gasped for air, colors swirling above her. Her heat tightened like a spring ready to snap, and he drew away.
“Yes, Charity, I want to hear your name upon my lips,” he commanded, his fingers keeping up the sweet torture.
“Tobias,” she panted.
He chuckled, and Charity took a quick intake of breath. He ran his finger across her bud. Twisting her hands into the excess of the sheets, she cried out.
Before she had a chance to recover, the touch of his member nudged her entrance. Like hot molten steel, he eased in inch by incredible inch. She held her breath, feeling his magnificent stallion riding to her rescue to help her find her release. Slowly he pumped in and out, her body clenching and holding with all its might. His chest slick, her breasts tangled in the thatch, the exquisite tension building.
“Look at me,” he called to her. She resisted the urge to close her eyes. “Look at me.”
Charity opened her eyes and looked into the darkness of his pupils. The thump of her heart beat with the pulse of his motion. Her body clenched tight then went boneless. His name burst from her lips, and she soared into the sky. She heard her name echoing from his lips while the darkness surrounded them, cocooning them from their fall.
Unhurried, her breath returned. Soft, slow intakes soothed the scorch of her lungs. Her hands slid across Tobias’ limp body, spread across to cover hers, and she held him. Charity’s heart twisted. She was in love.
He moved to lie beside her, his hands pulling her body to his to spoon. She said nothing. Lying in the cradle of his arms, she closed her eyes and let his hands cover her breast. Her body became chilled, and he shifted only enough to bring the blankets over them.
“Charity,” he whispered.
A soft smile graced her face.
“Stay with me tonight…don’t leave?” he asked, pressing his lips to her shoulder.
“No,” she murmured. “I will not leave you.” She wiggled back to find his flesh to her flesh even as a tear found its course down her cheek and onto the pillowcase. She would lie. She would tell him anything to savor this moment in his arms. She would become that woman again if it meant one more night in his bed, in his arms. Closing her eyes, holding on tight, she drifted to sleep.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Developing the Characters

When I first conceived the idea of Sweetbrier Academy, I knew that I wanted to tell at least three stories. Each one of the girls would be different. Faith was probably the younger of the three. She believes in true love and love at first glance. Hope is older. She's seen some hard things in life and suffers greatly in her story. She's takes well to the mothering role. Charity had to be a strong woman. She is what they call "Passe Blanc" which meant while she was of African American descent , her skin was light enough to pass for white.

It was a risky gamble. But you can't tell a story about New Orleans and not include this. Charity is a strong willed woman. She does not go easily into anyone's mold. She demands a better life and when she is told because of her skin and her heritage she can't make the step up, her temper is something to behold. Yet, it is her quest for a better life that leads her to Tobias Meriwether. Tobias sees her for what she is a beautiful woman. He is also a wounded soul so they blend well together. I think my favorite line in the story is when they are making love and he tells her, "To forgive this southern his transgressions". I can't write that without hearing a deep southern drawl.

I hope you will pick up a copy of Sweetbrier Academy and take a chance on a new author.
Nancy O'Berry

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Mainstream Romance: Historical/Period, Western
ISBN: 978-1-60435-360-0
Cover Artist: Nancy Donahue
Editor: Michelle Ellis
Word Count: 65,130
In ebook format only

To buy link:

When Opal Benedict offers Charity Wilson a chance to further her horizons, she travels to Virginia City and accepts the job of personal secretary for the wealthy J. T. Merewether. Here she plans to sort out her personal life and better herself.

Unaware of the tension between Merewether and his business partner, Charity is entangled a love affair that may well exact the highest price of all when she falls for the genteel Silver Baron.

Can Tobias Merewether overcome his dark past and fulfill their destiny?

“You’ve heard what they say. Sweetbriar women make the loveliest escorts and the most intriguing wives.”

Treat yourself to a sensual romance from Red Rose Publishing. Come and meet the ladies of Sweetbrier Academy as Faith, Hope, and Charity discover there is life beyond the confines of being a woman of pleasure. Nancy O'Berry, author.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Summer is a comin'

Well her it is nearly the middle of June and we are beginning our second battle with heat and humidity along the eastern seaboard. My vow not to cut on the air conditioner was blown out the water when the temp in the house with fans going went beyond the register. I had just gotten use to all that lovely spring coolness too. Ah, sigh.

I know when I was younger, my parents beat the heat by sitting on the porch and drinking hand squeezed lemonade while we danced through the sprinklers in our bathing suits. Somehow, the weather didn't seem to bother us much then as it does now. Of course we had more green spaces to soak up the heat from the sun.

Now, I find myself drawn to the even coolness of central air. I suppose I'm a wimp, but at my age, I look better with more clothes on than off. So here's to the boys and girls of summer. May your days be warm and breezy without the cares of school. To the older generation, enjoy your porches and sip that cool glass of lemonade while you watch lighting bugs dance on the early evening lawn. Ahhhhhhh youth.

Sunday, May 23, 2010


Today we are going to enjoy another excerpt from the delightfully sensual novelette by Kaye Manro entitled FORBIDDEN LOVE.

I hope you've brought your snacks to enjoy today's peek.


A chilled flute glass
lemon lime jello
vanilla ice cream
chocolate covered graham crackers grasshopper's ( yeah they're green )
ginger ale
cut up cantelope, pineapple, grapes all in chunk style

Ok make your jello following the recipe on the box for gigglers. Cut in cubes and keep refrigerated until you are ready.

While the jello is becoming solid. Dip your flute glass in water then in sugar crystals these can be the colored crystals for cakes and cupcakes. Put in the freezer for about twenty minutes. As long as it takes for you to cut up the cantelope, pineapple into chunks and break the grasshopper chocolate covered graham crackers into chunks.

Now to create your dessert.

In the bottom place some crumbled chunks of your graham crackers. Add a scoop of vanilla ice cream some more graham chunks and a few cubes of your jello. Add some chunks of your fruit and some more sugary sprinkles. Pour in just a bit of ginger ale so that it resembles a float. You can add some cool whip or spray in some whipped creme then place some of the fruit on toothpick and add to the glass. Now, sit back and enjoy your excerpt from CHEEKY LIZARD LOVE OOPS I mean FORBIDDEN LOVE

“So how did you learn to speak our language?” Maya asked, “Not your native tongue I’ll bet.”

He scrutinized her through squinted eyes. A crinkle stretched across her nose where a line of minuscule brown dots scattered down onto each cheek. He had an impulse to stroke the dots, see if he could rub them off. No, he should not touch her again.

“While studying your planet, I picked up words and phrases.”

She leaned across the counter and captured his eyes with hers. “Why are you studying us?”

He did not answer her question. He had told her too much already. The less she knew about him the better. “Take me to my spacecraft,” he said.

She stared at him.

He hissed out more air and then shook his head. “I had not planned contact.”

She scooted around and came to stand close to him. He could tell she wanted to touch him but did not. “Maybe you didn’t plan it but here you are. So why not take advantage of the situation...” her words trailed off and this time she did touch him. She slid her hand over his chest and onto his face.

He caught her fingers in a rough hold. The act caused his talons to unsheathe. “No, I cannot. I will not.” He dropped her hand. A sudden realization—glancing down at his body, he stood naked before her his mating organ erect. “What have you done with my bodily covering?”

“I cut it off,” she answered. “I had to do it so I could examine you to see if you were hurt. Your space suit encased you so tightly, I had no choice.”

He hissed close to her ear. In a display that surprised even him, T’Kon slid a claw around her back hooking her clothing with a talon. In a swift motion, he slashed it from her. The garments landed on the floor in tattered pieces.



T’Kon and Maya are galaxies apart, so different yet so much alike…

Exploring the galaxies at faster than light speed (FTL) is routine for the inhabitants of Asconage. T’Kon’s cool-blood culture exists on a planet in the scorch of binary suns. Yet there are governing archaic rules to prohibit interspecies mating with those from different worlds and evolutionary paths.

When T’Kon crashes his spacecraft on Terrain, a seasonal planet barely on the cusp of space travel, he cannot resist Maya, the warm-blooded audacious female who gives him aid. His desire for her entices him to abandon his species moral code.

There is little time to linger inside their illicit passion. The warring factions of her world are closing in. A quick fix of his spacecraft and a fast exit is his best choice. But can T’Kon leave Maya behind and forsake their emerging Forbidden Love

Bio for Kaye Manro

As a romance author, I lean toward the adventuresome in my writing. I love science fiction and all the enticing quantum theories surrounding it. Where characters rush through outer space at Faster than Light speed, or teleport into another time, and even slipstream into an alternate reality. I like creating sizzling love scenes too with sexy heroes, and captivating heroines. It just seemed natural to combine all these elements together in my stories and write (SFR) Science Fiction Romance.

I hope you enjoy reading FORBIDDEN LOVE my latest SFR.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Forbidden Love by Kaye Manro

We're spending the week looking at a great science fiction romance by Kaye Manro. Now, remember how strange Gene Roddenberry 's characters were, Kaye's hero is somewhat of a mix of human and lizard. Can you imagine the love scenes?! Let's see what our cheeky lizard is up to today?

Forbidden Love Excerpt:

...She was upon him so near he could feel her breath, sense her warmth. She reached out and ran a hand through the air, searching the length of him.

“Maya,” he blew her name on a sigh.

“Take me with you," she implored, as water filled her astounding tawny eyes. "I want to be with you, T'Kon.” She melded her body against his invisible one.

“You know nothing of me or my world.”

“Teach me, show me everything.”

He felt her heat burning inside him, yet the absurdity of her request burned brighter. “What you ask is not possible.”

“Will you please become visible so I can look at you?” She asked. “We need to talk about this before you go flying off into the universe.”

He unshielded his body so she could see him. “I cannot take you.”

“Why not? You can’t say it was coincidence that you happened to crash land in my back yard.”

No, an unfortunate accident. The truthful certainty traced across his mind. Yet his arms enclosed her and he lifted her up. Her legs straddled his waist, and he held her close against his body. A fit so right he could not deny it.

“I wish it were not so, but it is,” he whispered, breathing in her pungent scent. “You would not survive on my world.” He dropped his head to taste her lips before she had a chance to counter his words. “Just one last kiss.” Her mouth opened to allow his tongue entry and he explored the soft moistness, losing himself in her tang.

The stars help him. He did not want to leave her.

Without warning, a sudden and dangerous noise yanked T’Kon from his sexual stupor. He sensed peril approaching. In a rapid-fire move, he raised his palm. A copper arch flashed and shimmered before them revealing the entryway to his concealed spacecraft. He dragged her inside. Tapping a pad the opening closed leaving them hidden behind an undetectable shield..

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