Thursday, March 27, 2014

Time Out

I haven't been posting as often in the last couple of months. Weather, life, whatever gets in the way. I still have the same amount of time, I just don't have the same amount of motivation. I'm tired, kids, so for now, we're taking a little break in the blogging game.

There are still a few guest posts I had scheduled coming up in April, so I'll post those on the social media sites to remind you. I hope you'll stop in a see them.

Until next time, when I feel like I have something worth talking about, I give you a pug, because when I'm blue, I just read pug memes until I feel like myself again.

Monday, March 24, 2014

The Steampunk Sale of a Lifetime...Maybe

We had a death in the family, so I'm here, but I'm not here. This is your Monday morning blog post--it's basically an advertisement, but you should be thrilled because it's 3 highly entertaining steampunk romances for slightly less than $3.

The Turncoat's Temptress came out a year ago on Wednesday. In honor of that, and for the first time ever, the entire Legends & Lovers series will be available in ebook format for 99 cents each from April 7-13.


You can check them out on Amazon right now!






Tuesday, March 18, 2014

A Haunting We Will Go

On Saturday, March 15, we had really beautiful weather. Okay, it was kind of cloudy, as you'll see in the photographs, but it was warm and enjoyable compared to, you know, 90 feet of snow. It seemed as though spring was upon us at last (it wasn't, the lying cow).

So Saturday afternoon, we're trying to figure out how to spend the rest of the warm day when we decide to hit the road. To one of our favorite places ever--you guessed it, Eureka Springs, AR! Little did we know they were having a St. Patrick's Day parade. So when we turned to go downtown, we got stuck. And then something awful happened.

This is the courthouse built in 1908.
We had the windows rolled down because, well, I was hanging out of mine to take a picture of the courthouse and on the other side of the truck, it was a beautiful day. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a guy in a kilt on a horse charges out of the parade line, swinging a mace. He bolts toward the truck and slam! catches my husband in the eye with the mace, then rides away maniacally.

Okay, that didn't really happen. Actually, what happened was a guy in a Mustang (who may or may not have been wearing a kilt), threw beads at the truck and the beads caught my husband on the edge of the eye. He was not happy. He complained about it for like two hours. All I could say was, I know, it hurts when you get hit in the eye with anything. Anyway, I told him the rogue parade horseman was a way better story than the real story, so that's the one we're going with.


Some old buildings

It must be tourist season, the parking lot was crowded!

Do not play the piano, or else the ghosts will get you. See the orb
in the right corner a few inches above the carpet? Guard ghost on duty.

Patio furniture, anyone? It was a lovely day to sit outside.

St. Elizabeth of Hungary Catholic Church, built in 1880, finished in 1882

Doe, a deer, a female...now that that's stuck in your head.

We saw a herd of small deer eating from yards.

The home of Carrie A. Nation, moved to Eureka Springs from Medicine Lodge, Kansas.
I've talked about Carrie Nation while doing blog posts on Wildwood Spring. She was anti-drinking to the point of going into saloons with a hatchet (thus the name Hatchet Hall) and breaking them apart. She lived in this house and rented rooms to widows and children.


This is Nation Spring, but as you can see, is boarded up so you can't get to the spring anymore. It's directly across from the house on a very narrow street. Husband was complaining because of how tight the streets are. Back in the day on a horse or with a buggy, it would have been a lot easier to navigate the road. He has no sense of adventure...except when I was all, go down a country road. And we went, and went, and went, and had no idea where we were going. I told him to turn around, but he was all, we're adventuring. Eventually we did turn around. It was scenic, but didn't really seem to go anywhere. Just to some houses and some cabins that were for sale. If they weren't so far off the beaten path, it seemed like a really good opportunity to buy cabins and rent them to tourists.

But what I really want to direct your attention to is this photo:

Doesn't look so special, does it? Just the back of the Crescent Hotel. Until you zoom up to the 3rd story window.


You still don't see it?

Oh, hai lady with a baby! Hai! Oh...wait...you guys don't look right...
Here they are as a negative. That's not a reflection of the trees, people.

I'll make this easy for you.
I didn't take that picture going, "hey, look, ghosts!" I was just snapping away, hoping for a ghostly encounter, because it only seems fair that I get an actual ghost instead of orbs. It wasn't until we got home and I uploaded the photos to my computer on zoom that I noticed the spectres. Then I got excited, because I've caught orbs with cameras, but never actual faces. Granted, they're a little short to be peering out that window, but when you think about it...ghosts don't necessarily have to bend to the rules we understand. I tried to make it bigger still, but of course, the more you zoom, the more distorted and pixelated it becomes.

So worth the trip down there. Not to mention I spent $8 at a gas station on scratcher tickets and won $26. That paid for the gas. The weather was great, the meal we had and ice cream after was great, the ghosts didn't seem to want to harm us (unless they actually made those beads flying into Husband's eye), so we made out okay. Let's don't talk about the sleet and snow that followed on Sunday. We'll pretend that didn't happen. From upper 60's to 20's with wintry mix overnight--ridiculous.

Have a happy Tuesday, kids!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Lucky in Love Blog Hop


Good morning, people of the world! Unless it's not morning where you are, then...good whatever time it is where you are!

You're just in time to help me celebrate the Lucky in Love Blog Hop hosted by the fine folks at Breathless Press. There are prizes, yes there are. A gift card from them and...wait for it... Your very own, one of a kind,  100%, grown from my very own yard* and mounted in plastic so it will never crumble and be destroyed FOUR-LEAF CLOVER!

*I find most of them in my yard, but I've found a few when I was out walking. I don't keep them separate because that's just silly. But on my (somewhat questionable but not about this) honor, it is a real and true four-leaf clover found by me and hoarded because I need all the luck I can get.

Yes, I will send one lucky** person a four-leaf clover just for commenting here between today and St. Patrick's Day.

**I cannot guarantee the actual luckiness of the four-leaf clover. I may have used all the luck out of it. Sorry. But it's still pretty and unique!

As for luck, in my newest release Wildwood Spring, Turner Wildwood is wondering what really brought Celia Landry into his life. Luck or fate? Here's an excerpt to help you decide.

They settled on the sled and Turner pushed them off. He held her tightly, prepared to use the excuse that he didn't want her to fall if she protested. Cold wind made it hard to breathe, but it was worth the thrill of speeding down the slope.

At the bottom they hit a bump and the sled flew out from beneath them. Celia squealed when they landed, her on top of him. The air rushed out of his lungs and he gasped for breath.

"Are you all right?" She turned, placing her hands on his coat. She sat across his legs, twisted so her stomach pressed against his.

"Fine, just winded. You?"

Celia laughed, her voice loud and clear in the frosty evening. "In perfect condition."

"I'm relieved to hear it." He shivered as snow fell into his collar and dampened his hair. "I'd forgotten how dangerous this can be."

"Oh, let me get up. You're sure you're not hurt?"

He gave her a solemn look. "I think the bruised ego is fatal. At least I was able to catch you. That's worth a few bumps."

The laughter on her face slipped away. She straightened, but Turner wrapped his arms around her, pulling her closer. She yanked off one glove and pressed her hand to his cheek.

He lifted his head, ignoring the snow pushing under his collar. His blood felt hot enough to melt a pool around them. She couldn't know how beautiful she looked with bits of snow clinging in her hair and a flush covering her face. Privilege afforded him many things, but never dropped a woman like Celia into his life. Whether it was luck or fate remained a mystery. His lips touched hers—soft, warm, pliable. For a second, she stiffened, but her surprised faded and she leaned on him, her bare fingers caressing his face.

The faint taste of bergamot lingered on her lips—like him, she must've had Earl Grey this afternoon. She was everything right in the world, smiling despite her loss, brightening Wildwood after its long years of darkness. Livening his heart. He would have laid in the snow until spring, letting her kiss him if she hadn't drawn back.

The blurb:


No one goes to Wildwood Manor, a hulking stone house on a hill outside town. Legend has it crazy old man Wildwood owes his life to the magical water of the spring at the back of the property. Celia Landry needs that water to save her mother, and she’ll brave anything to get it.

Turner Wildwood, the son of the house’s eccentric builder, is growing as reclusive as his father. When Celia turns up at his door, he’s drawn by her beauty and bravery. Wary of strangers, he doesn’t reveal his identity, but agrees to her request. When she returns to Wildwood in wake of personal tragedy, he's waiting there with a stunning change in his heart. He knows he should tell her the truth, but he doesn't want to ruin their budding friendship.

Celia's curiosity leads her to part of the frightening answers hidden behind Wildwood's doors, but her own troubled past may lead Turner into danger neither of them suspected.
Get it at Breathless Press || Amazon || ARe || Bookstrand


To win the gift card from Breathless Press, you need to hit up the BP blog and leave a comment there. Be sure to see the list of other authors who'll no doubt have more great posts!

To win a four-leaf clover from me, you need to leave a comment and your e-mail address here.

Got it? Okay! Best of luck to you!


Thursday, March 13, 2014

Haywire

You may have noticed (although no one would blame you if you didn't) that it's been a while since we had a post. And today is Thursday, so that's got to really be messing with your mind. I thought I'd better keep that one fan updated, as for the rest of you, go on about your business.

You get it.
photos by: Gölin Doorneweerd - Swijnenburg & Alessandra Favetto
Things have been a little haywire lately. It throws everything else off. I haven't got a ton of writing done these last two weeks, which is unusual for me. I have been drinking more water, though. Proud? You should be.

I've been beta reading some really fantastic stuff. I just hope I help the ladies I'm reading for. At this rate, I feel like I'm losing my mind, so who even knows if I'm making sense when I comment on something.

Sorry I didn't schedule any guests to keep this week interesting. I'll work on that, but I've been busy trying to get blog posts done for Wildwood Spring and The Wrong Brother's Bride. My minion forgot to fill out my calender and it's hard to keep track of what post goes where if you don't write that stuff down, minion. Oh, wait. I don't have a minion--that'll do it every time.

One thing that's super-duper awesome though is that my friend Wanda Fittro signed a contract with Breathless Press for her contemporary romance Beyond the Horizon. I'm so happy for her, because she worked hard to get that book into tip-top shape.

That's all I know, kids. Go, be, do (better than me).

Friday, March 7, 2014

Playing Ketchup...I Mean Catch Up

I'm here, I'm here. I think.

Things you didn't know about that I did in the last two weeks:
- Sent an MS out the door. Yay!
- Hit 6k on my contemporary romance.
- Got sleeted in with about 5 inches of sleet and about 6 inches of snow on top of that. Our yard is a muddy, icy mess.
- Started a new historical romance. Yeah, yeah, I thought I would take a little break from those for a while. The muse will do what the muse will do.
- #Amplotting the next and last book in the Heckmasters series. I'm 10k in on it from last November, but I kind of don't like the direction it started going in. I love, love, love the very beginning, but it veered wildly off course. Camp NaNoWriMo starts in April, so my goal is to figure out where this thing is really going. Not to mention I really need to fill in the plot holes in the second book. I should be doing that, not writing, but the muse will do...well, you get it.
- I'm also taking on some formatting jobs. I do mostly fiction and will do poetry, shorter works of non-fiction and fiction. I have pretty standard pricing, but you can email me for a quote or if you have questions. I'm totally willing to work with you on pricing. Put something about formatting in the subject line, I'll get back to you.
- I finally got that kink worked out in whatever was going on with the healthcare thingy website. We now have health insurance. I'm sorry if we made your premium go up. That makes me sad. Of course, I can afford anti-depressants now, so I won't be sad for long. Hopefully.
- The Wrong Brother's Bride is officially coming out on April 7, so watch for updates on that!

That's all I can think of, except I'm very, very tired despite three extra days off this week. Oh, and we saw The Lego Movie, which is brilliant, so go see that if you need some serious laughs.

Otherwise, go, be, do, kids.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Book Feature & Guest Post - Reap & Repent by Lisa Medley

OMG, OMG, OMG, I hardly ever introduce an author on book feature/guest post/interview day or whatever we call this, but today, I have the thrilling privilege of giving you the author of an incredible debut novel, the first in series, and a very good friend of mine, Lisa Medley. She's been a cheerleader for me so many times, I'm excited to let her have a day on the blog. Without further ado, your new favorite author...


Reaping What I’ve Sown: How I Wrote the Reapers

I didn’t originally sit down to write a book about reapers. Reapers aren’t sexy. Reapers are death. And skeletal. And…grim. I first tried writing about vampires because, well, VAMPIRES. When I gave my first 30K of my first real novel attempt to my BFF, her reply was, “It’s good, but what makes it different?” 

Erm, nothing. Same old story. Same old (okay, old but HOT vampires). I needed something that hadn’t been reincarnated for the umteenth bazillionth time. Something that might stand out in a crowded field of paranormal monsters in love.

I chose reapers. And then I set out to make them better. Still human-looking but human DELUXE! Lots of dark potential there. I sat down and got to work making a world for them to live in, threw in some demons, an evil fallen angel and the Reaper Series was born.

Reap & Repent is Deacon and Ruth’s story.

Once I started writing, it didn’t take long for Deacon and Ruth to take over. I wasn’t telling their story. They were telling their story. About halfway through, I realized we all three needed a plan and finally sat down and organized all of the sticky notes, which had previously been decorating my car dashboard, writing cave desk and notebooks. I typed them up and printed them out.

HOLY COW, I had a plot! So THAT’s how that happens.

From that point on, I put Deacon and Ruth in peril, threw roadblocks in their way, and let their love grow until I reached the end, some eighty thousand words later.

And THE END ends with one of my favorite things.
BACON.

If you’d like to see how it all plays out, here’s your chance. Book one of the reaper series, Reap & Repent, is available now. Here’s a taste.

Blurb:
Deacon Walker is a burned out loner, whose two hundred years as a reaper have left him empty inside. But when he meets Ruth Scott, a gorgeous shut-in with unusual gifts, he’s forced to set his career complacency aside to train her for a destiny she never knew existed. Soon the two will face the ultimate test: a battle against demons determined to destroy humanity, one soul at a time.

Excerpt:

Prologue

What does a guy have to do around here to get some service? Deacon Walker marveled as he glared at the undulating queue of grotesque reapers in front of him.

For all that’s holy, move the hell along already.

It had been a long week, and it wasn’t over yet. He needed to make at least one more pass through the hospital circuit before he could call it a day. He could already feel the tug of a freshly departed soul. Again. People were dropping like flies lately.

He massaged his brow, trying to soothe his exhausted patience as the line inched forward at a snail’s pace.

He was worn thin. Over the past few weeks, three demon soul poachers had popped up in his fair city of Meridian like poisonous mushrooms after a hard rain. While it wasn’t unheard of for one to slip out from Hell every now and then, three was a nightmare.

When it got topside, a demon’s M.O. was to steal a human body, poach a few souls from the dead and dying, and then make its merry way back to Hell, taking its host’s soul along for the ride. The only way to save the souls a poacher was carrying was to behead the host with a scythe. Not a pretty thing to do, but the poor suckers were too far gone by then to survive anyway. No human could withstand the pressures of being ridden by a demon. And it was worth it to save a handful of souls, not to mention inconveniencing the demon.

Deacon refused to lose any souls from his territory. At all.

So far the score was Deacon, 3. Demons, 0.

As a reaper, carrying souls to Purgatory for judgment was his job and he wasn’t about to cede his territory to poachers who used up their hosts like they were disposable Tupperware. So now, in addition to his normal day job, he also had to keep an eye out for more demon invaders.

While demons burned through most human hosts in a matter of days, some in a matter of hours, they had discovered long ago that under the right circumstances they could ride a reaper. Of course, they couldn’t just worm their way in like they did with humans—they had to be invited. But once a deal was struck? They were in.

And reapers? Yeah, they could hang on for decades inside a reaper. Deacon knew that fact firsthand.

His stomach twisted at the thought, but he shook it off, looking ahead with a heavy sigh.

Seriously, this line? Still. Not. Moving?

God, he needed a freakin’ vacation. Extended. He dragged a hand through his hair in frustration as his mind flipped through postcard-esque locations of reapings past. He snarled at the thought of New Orleans in summer. He would definitely want to go someplace cool—cool as in frigid, not hip. He was sick of the heat, and it was only the beginning of summer in the semitropical Midwest.

Come to think of it, he was sick of a lot of things.

This place was high on the list. It was as hot as…well, Hell actually. Or at least what he imagined Hell to be, although he’d never actually been there. Thank God.

Steam rose from random cracks in the stone floor of the underground station, veiling the place in a humid sulfur stench.

He pushed forward, finally making his way to the front to deposit his cargo of souls. He didn’t bother chatting. In. Out. Move on. It was a motto that served him well.

Mission completed, he hustled through the crowd, forgoing the bar-side frivolity of some of the more socially inclined reapers and their small talk about their glory days in the field or—even better—the missteps of the newest reapers. Newbies often tested their limits to humorous if not disastrous effect at least once in their early careers. That was exactly why new reapers had mentors or at least worked in teams. From all the laughter, he could tell that the stories were good ones. It didn’t tempt him.

He slapped his palm against the black granite monolith and flashed out of Purgatory to what he prayed was his last stop of the day.

Get it at: 
Reap & Repent is available March 3, 2014 in a Harlequin E Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance Box Set with the works of three other amazing new Harlequin authors! Reap & Repent will be available for single-title release June 2, 2014.


About the author:
Lisa Medley writes reapers. The grim kind. Her urban fantasy romance, Reap & Repent is available now in a Harlequin E Box Set with three other Harlequin debut authors. A lover of beasties of all sorts, she has a farm full of them in her SW MO home including:  one child, one husband, two dogs, two cats, a dozen hens, thousands of Italian bees and a guinea pig. Not so in love with the guinea pig. She can do ten pushups IN A ROW and may or may not have a complete zombie apocalypse bug-out bag in her trunk at all times. Just. In. Case.

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