The Stuff in My Office—5

BKSHELF1Yep, I’ve got even more stuff to tell you about now that our short pause is over. The four pictures in this blog are of the wall length bookshelves opposite the corner where my desk sits (desk stuff in a later installment). There are six shelves (I couldn’t fit the top self into the camera frame, each roughly 10 feet in length and completely filled with paperback romance novels (and yes, those novels absolutely get included on the list of stuff I like that makes me happy). I won’t describe any of the books, but I will mention some of the other items.

In the foreground of the picture at the left you can see a couple of the items I discussed in the 4th installment of this series. You can also see part of the floor lamp that stands between the table (see installment 4) and my reading chair (also installment 4). I love that shade because it turns this lovely glowing gold color when the bulb is on, and it gives terrific light for reading.

Moving on to the next picture (below right) you see the rest of the lamp. The small needlework pillow peeking out from behind the lamp is another gift from my mother in law. That pillow was sitting on her royal blue sofa in her living room the first time my sweetheart brought me to their home for dinnerBKSHELF2 and to meet his folks. I was scared spitless because I knew about her upper crust Boston background. Mom was everything that is gracious. Nonetheless it took me several years to get over being intimidated, mostly because of my personal fears. I like to think that we now have a very friendly relationship. She certainly remembered that first visit, because one of the few things I managed to say was how lovely the pillow was. Who wouldn’t like a pillow with irises (Mom used to grow award winning Iris blooms) in varying shades of blue, including cobalt. On the shelf above the pillow are four framed covers from my books. Below those is yet another gift from my mother in law. This gift is more recent (just this past Christmas), yet I treasure it almost as much as the pillow. The seascape set into the tray is one of my favorites, and since I love the sea (add that to the list too) I keep the tray where I can see it.

The third picture (at left) shows the enBKSHELF3tire tray, and above that the remaining four covers from my books. If you look closely you can see a small two-tone brown box at the end of one of the shelves. That is a recipe box that my own mother gave me. It holds my grandmother’s recipes for Swedish coffee bread, dream cookies, and depression era frosting (made with flour, milk, butter and granulated sugar). The confectioner’s type of sugar that is usually used in frostings was nearly impossible to get during the depression, so flour was substituted. Even granulated sugar was expensive, so frosting on cakes was a real treat. The Dream Cookies are another depression era recipe, requiring only flour, granulated sugar and butter. Preparing Dream Cookies requires careful attention because the butter must be melted and browned to a point just shy of burning. The caramelized bits in the melted butter create the delicate flavor of these cookies. Once baked they have a very crumbly texture. My grandmother called them dream cookies because they practically melt in your mouth and disappear so fast that you feel as if you imagined eating them. Dream Cookies (along with homemade pecan sandies) are my favorite cookies, so they go on the list too. I’ve made the Swedish coffee bread—which is an all day project. Grandma used to fill hers with citron (candied dry fruit). I prefer un-candied dry fruit and more nuts—especially pecans. The bread was a daily item in my life while I was in school during the years when my grandparents lived with us (they moved into a small apartment in our house once neither of them could drive). I would come home from school and Grandma and my mother would be sitting at Grandma’s kitchen table having coffee and buttered coffee bread. They always had at least one piece waiting for me. I’d savor the bread and listed to Grandma and Mother share memories of their early lives. That’s how I learned about depression frosting and the origin of Dream Cookies.BKSHELF4

The last image (at right) shows the end of two more shelves, one of the two windows in my office and the stuff that sits below the window. I’ll write about the window stuff next time. Right now, I want to mention that the elephant bookends were a gift from me to my own mother and probably one of the first purchases I made with money I earned. I got elephants for her overflowing bookshelves so she would never forget where they came from and how much we both loved reading. The elephants came back to me when Mother passed away. Below those sits a small basket containing old checkbooks. I don’t know where the basket came from, but I like open containers. I tend to forget things when they are out of sight. I want the checkbooks in plain sight so I remember to throw them out when I no longer need them as tax records.

So those bookshelves contain a lot of stuff ranging from the treasured to the mundane, and as always a host of memories. Do you have memories of your parents and grandparents; stories and/or recipes that have been handed down and treasured for generations; little knick knacks that hold meaning only for you? Please share with a comment.

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World Wide Release Day for One Day’s Loving

Today is a busy and very happy day for me with the release of One Day’s Loving ~ Wildfire Love # 3. I’m a guest at number of blogs including, the Crimson Romance BlogMVRWA’s Blog, and Susana’s Parlour. I’ll be discussing topics as varied as Series Romance Books, Being Whelmed or Overwhelmed, and Life Setbacks. For your convenience, here’s information about One Day’s Loving ~ Wildfire Love # 3Cover Art for One Day's Loving. (Purchase One Day’s Loving ~ Wildfire Love # 3  or read an excerpt.)

One Day’s Loving ~ Book Summary

Persephone Mae Alden is the invisible Alden sister, quiet, industrious, generous, kind-hearted, loyal and reliable.  The words used to describe Mae remind her of a well-trained dog.  She’s not happy about it, but what can she do?  She likes her quiet life and would be seriously upset if she had to defy convention like Edith or act on instinct like Kiera. But everything changes when necessity forces her to bravery and she must choose between love and family.

A horrifying bequest convinces Boston attorney James W. Collins V that Mae Alden needs a husband, and she’s just the type of wife he wants. The two of them will be a perfect match. Refusing his offer makes no sense, so why won’t the woman accept?

About Rue Allyn ~ Author of historical, contemporary, and erotic romances, Rue Allyn fell in love with happily ever after the day she heard her first story. She is deliriously married to her sweetheart of many years and loves to hear from readers about their favorite books and real life adventures.  Learn more about Rue at http://RueAllyn.com

FB: https://www.facebook.com/RueAllynAuthor
Twitter:  http://twitter.com/RueAllyn
Goodreads:  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5031290.Rue_Allyn
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Rue-Allyn/e/B00AUBF3NI/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1
Blog:  http://rueallynauthorblog.com/

Authorial Voice and Style

NOTESA fellow author asked recently what the difference is between voice and style–a questions many authors (and readers) struggle with.I use music [specifically vocal music] to distinguish between ‘Voice’ and ‘Style’.

Voice is a unique and recognizable combination of tone, pitch, timber and resonance. [I’m certain musicians have a more technical definition.] For example, if you think of the song “The First Time, Ever I Saw Your Face” as sung by both Roberta Flack and Celine Dion the voices are absolutely distinct. The song (and it’s style) is almost exactly the same. However, you cannot mistake which voice is singing when you hear it.

Style may, or may not be unique, but is made up mostly of the artist’s technical choices in things like pace, volume, tonal combinations (chords in multi-voice groups, runs, trills etc. for soloists), and arrangement (which notes are placed where, which octaves are selected etc.). Consider the differences between musical styles like jazz, ragtime, blues, gospel etc. Two individual singers can create radically different versions of the same song not only because of each singer’s unique voice, but also because of the ‘stylistic’ choices the vocalist makes. Further, an artist may change his/her style but cannot change his/her voice (not without considerable effort and expertise).


An author’s ‘voice’ is similar to a vocalist’s in that no two authors will develop the same story idea in the same way. The voice is most evident when a work is read aloud, but still very present when read silently. Authorial voice resembles authorial style in that the tools used to create a unique voice and a unique style are similar—pacing, tone, word choice, volume. However, I could—for example—write in the style of Hemingway, Shakespeare, Fitzgerald, Margaret Mitchell, Charlotte Bronte etc. Yet any story I wrote in another author’s style or the style of another age would always be written in my own voice.


One caution. The terms ‘Voice’ and ‘Style’ are also used to identify specific grammatical structures and practices that have little to do with an individual’s ‘authorial voice and style.’ Be absolutely clear when using these two terms that your audience understands which type of ‘voice’ or ‘style’ you are referring to.

An example that illustrates the points above is my erotic romance Off Limits. I wanted to write a story that resembled O’Henry’s Gift of the Magi, one of my favorite love stories. However, I am not O’Henry. I am Rue Allyn and despite similarities of sacrifices exchanged in the name of love, no one would ever mistake Off Limits for The Gift of the Magi or my voice and style for O’Henry’s.

Here’s a short blurb about Off Limits and a link to more information about the book. For Senior Chief Hank O’Mara no woman Off Limits cover artcould compare with the sea until he met Lieutenant Bethany Morton. Only the sea could draw two passionate people of such opposite backgrounds together, and only US Navy regulations could keep them apart. Because fraternization between Officer and enlisted is forbidden, both Beth and Hank do their utmost to resist the passion and love growing between them. However, love proves stronger than either the sea or the USN. If they are to be together, Hank must sacrifice his career, and Beth will risk the destruction of her professional dreams.

Click here for more about Off Limits http://rueallyn.com/2b1OLexcerpt.html, or buy the book at http://www.amazon.com/Rue-Allyn/e/B00AUBF3NI.

Please leave a comment and share your thoughts about voice and style in the stories you read and/or write. Your comments are my greatest reward. Feel free to share the link to this article with your reader and author friends.

 

Jean Drew

Welcome Jean, I’m so happy you’re able to be here. Please tell us a little bit about yourself. I was born in England but live in New Zealand. I once wanted to be the next Agatha Christie but when I read my first romance it was love at first read. But I never say never. I Author, Jean Drewstill might try my hand at a mystery one day.

Please tell us about your most recent release. My most recent release from The Wild Rose Press is called A Man Like Saxon, a contemporary romance set in New Zealand. The hero is a Hollywood movie director who enjoys hot air ballooning, (the ballooning based on my own experiences). He wants to make his movie on the heroine’s land.

And now for Jean’s ‘weird questions.’

1. What is the most distant place you’ve visited (from your home)?AManLikeSaxon_w6532_300

That depends in what you call my home. When I lived in England, New Zealand was furthest from my home. But now I live in New Zealand, England is the furthest. I’ve travelled both ways.

2. If you had to choose between a million bucks and being able to fly, which would you choose?

That depend in what you mean by bucks. If you mean male deer, I’d choose being able to fly. But if you mean dollars, I’d choose dollars.

3. You just got a free plane ticket to anywhere. You have to depart right now. Where are you gonna go?

Monaco, but only if the ticket is first class. I’d like to arrive in the style to which I hope to become accustomed.

4. An angel appears out of Heaven and offers you a lifetime supply of the alcoholic beverage of your choice. “Be brand-specific” it says. Man! What are you gonna say about that? Even if you don’t drink booze there’s something you can figure out… so what’s it gonna be?

Champagne – Dom Perignon

5. Rufus appears out of nowhere with a time-traveling phone booth. You can go anytime in the PAST. What time are you traveling to and what are you going to do when you get there?

Ancient Egypt. I’d spend some time following pharaoh around just to see exactly what he does, see the splendour of his court. Watch the workmen building a pyramid, wander through the markets, really soak up the atmosphere then come back and turn it into a best-selling novel.

6. One night you wake up because you heard a noise. You turn on the light to find that you are surrounded by MUMMIES. The mummies aren’t really doing anything, they’re just standing around your bed. What do you do?

I tell them, “If you weren’t so wrapped up in yourselves you might not have lost your Daddies.” J

Haha! I love your humor and your voice. So, here’s the blurb for Jean’s next terrific book A Man Like Saxon.
Be careful what you wish for. You just might get it.

Danielle Montgomery hides a terrible secret that binds her to a life of loneliness she believes she deserves. She has never wished for anything more from her humdrum life. Up, up and away. Come, fly with sexy Saxon.
When film director, Saxon Wainwright, drops in from a clear blue sky, wanting to make his movie on her property, he blows Danielle’s narrow world apart. Is Saxon the nemesis Danielle is expecting?

Buy Link:
AmazonKindle: A Man Like Saxon

Who’s Your Wildfire Love ~ TRS Release Party

Cover art for One Moment's Pleasure ~ Wildfire Love # 1 Cover Art for The Widow's Revenge Off Limits, cover art Cover Art for Hazard Duty, Sexy Sailors # 2

The first of three posts at http://trsparties.com/2013/03/07/whos-your-wildfire-love/ is live. I want readers to choose which Wildfire Love they like best. Check it out and spread the word please. I’m celebrating all of my hunky heroes in three different posts throughout the day, so please keep checking back at http://trsparties.com/2013/03/07/whos-your-wildfire-love/. Comments at the release party are sincerely appreciated.

 

And the Winner Is. . .

Book, cover, romance, Rue Allyn, Western, historical, novel, author, writer, 1870, San Francisco, chocolate, prize, gift card, vote, word-biteShadowLuvs2Read. In a hard fought race between word bites #1 and # 4, # 1 emerged the victor. From all the votes cast for that word bite, the contributor drawn was ShadowLuvs2Read. Shadow, I’ll be contacting you privately within the next twenty four hours to arrange delivery of your prize. For the rest of you, I have edited your comments to remove all visible e-mail addresses.

I want to thank everyone who participated and who commented. This was my first attempt at running this kind of drawing, and I think it worked out fairly well. I know learned a lot from all the votes and comments. Don’t forget to leave a comment and let me know what you think about word bites and using them in a drawing.

If any of you wish to read these word bites in a little more context please follow this link to the excerpt for One Moment’s Pleasure found on my website.

I’ll be very busy over the next several weeks getting the word out about One Moment’s Pleasure. Please stop by often to learn what I’m up to, or visit the Heart Melting Romance website and check the calendar page.

Which First ~ Book or Chocolate?

 Book, cover, romance, Rue Allyn, Western, historical, novel, author, writer, 1870, San Francisco, chocolate, prize, gift card, vote, word-bite  I know, why not have both at the same time? Sadly some occasions force you to chose. Happily for you, this isn’t one of them. You can have both, but I choose to tell you about the chocolate first.

   You can win a $20.00 Ghirardelli Chocolate Gift Card. Why Ghirardelli and not some other maker of fine chocolates? My first western historical, One Moment’s Pleasure is set in San Francisco, 1870, and my hero, importer-exporter Dutch Trahern, has a fondness for chocolate. He fell in love with the dark, semi-bitter, sweet when one of his clients—a Mr. Ghirardelli—offered Dutch a sample. You’ll have to read the book to discover the small part that chocolate plays in bringing Dutch and his heroine, Edith Alden together. However, all you have to do to win the gift card is vote.

  Below is a list of four out-takes (I like to call them word-bites) from One Moment’s Pleasure. In your comment tell me by list number which word-bite is most likely to interest you in reading One Moment’s Pleasure. I’ll draw the winner’s name from the word-bite with the most votes. Tell me why you voted for a particular word-bite, and if you voted for the winning out-take, I’ll put your name into the hat twice. Sorry only one vote per person and you must leave your e-mail address to be included. I have to be able to contact you to send the gift card. Winners will be notified at my earliest opportunity and announced on this blog http://rueallynauthorblog.com/ by 9:00 AM EST Feb 15, 2013.

   Now a few words (more than a bite) about One Moment’s Pleasure ~ Wildfire Love # 1 available from Crimson Romance Publishing on March 18, 2013.Cover art for One Moment's Pleasure ~ Wildfire Love # 1, Book, cover, romance, Rue Allyn, Western, historical, novel, author, writer, 1870, San Francisco, chocolate, prize, gift card, vote, word-bite, romance

   One Moment’s Pleasure will become a lifetime’s passion when spinster, Edith Alden, embarks on a search for her missing sister. Pretending to be a rich bored woman looking for an interlude with an anonymous male Edith enters the San Francisco bordello where her sister was last seen. She escapes the bordello almost too easily, but she can’t escape the passion ignited by a stranger’s kiss.

  Born and raised in the brothels of the California gold rush, Dutch Trahern worked for years to erase a childhood spent committing petty crimes and worse in order to survive. That past comes back to haunt him in the form of a woman he rescues from prostitution. Now his hard won respectability is threatened by an irresistible desire for a woman he shouldn’t want. woman he rescues from prostitution. Now his hard won respectability is threatened by an irresistible desire for a woman he shouldn’t want.

   Want to know more about Dutch, Edith and One Moment’s Pleasure? Visit my website http://RueAllyn.com. Oh, you just want to vote for your favorite word-bite so you can win the chocolate? Sorry for the delay, here are your options:

  1. He saw it coming, and if he’d believed she’d follow through, he might have stopped her.
  2. She cradled one hand against her waist, using the other to fight a losing battle with the decolletage that slid lower with each step as she backed away.
  3. He couldn’t pull his eyes away. “For petesakes put your clothes back on.”
  4. For the third time in almost as many days, Dutch had a female at his feet. He stared at the woman sprawled before him. She was beautiful. Naked and beautiful and not moving. How had he gotten into this situation, and who would believe it if he told them?

To vote, remember:

  • In your comment identify by number the word-bite most likely to interest you in reading One Moment’s Pleasure.
  • Tell me why you’re voting for that word bite to increase your chances of winning
  • Leave your e-mail address so I can contact you if you win.
  • Example. “I vote for bite # __ , because. . . . You may contact me at .”
  • Only vote once.

Check http://RueAllyn.com for more on One Moment’s Pleasure and about other events where you can find me and chat or maybe win something else.

Kathleen Jabs Brings Mystery to Friendship Friday

Kathleen Jabs at the beachMy guest today is Kathleen Jabs, author of the military mystery Black Wings and a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy. She holds an MFA from George Mason University. Her stories have been published in a number of literary journals and received several prizes, including selection in the NPR Selected Shorts program. She lives with her husband and two children in Virginia. I’ve asked Kathleen to tell us more about herself, her book, and of course, to answer her selection of my weird questions–my favorite is her answer about her worst enemy. Now, here’s Kathleen.

I’m a writer, wife, mother of two teenagers, daughter, sister, friend, public affairs officer, Navy reservist and insatiable reader. I grew up in Boston, left for the Naval Academy in 1984 and have lived around the world – in Japan; Hawaii; Panama; Washington, DC; Miami and New Hampshire. I live in Virginia now, but I love to travel. I served 6 years on active duty and have been a Navy reservist for the last 15 years.

My mystery novel, Black Wings, was published in December 2011. It’s hard to believe it’s been a year! It was published by Fuze Publishing, a small Cover art for the novel Black Wingspress, www.fuzepublishing.com and I’ve had a wonderful experience with them. Fuze is co-owned by Molly Tinsley who was my advisor at the US Naval Academy. It was very inspiring to reconnect with her and work with her to get my novel ready for publication.

1. What’s the color of your toothbrush? Orange.

2. What cd is in your cd-player right now? I’ve got Celtic Women Christmas Carols – it reminds me of my Irish heritage and gets me in the spirit.

3. How much do you use ketchup? (1 – not at all, 5 – on all foods)I hate ketchup! 1!

4. What’s the model of your mobile phone? I have an old Samsung – it embarrasses my kids because it is not “smart” and I need them to look up maps and phone numbers for me.

5. What’s the size of your shoes? 8 ½.

6. Is your middle finger longer than your ring finger? Yes.

7. What time do you normally go to bed on a working day? 10:30.

8. What is the most distant place you’ve visited (from your home)? I’ve been to the DMZ on the border between North and South Korea.

9. How often do you brush your teeth? 2-3 times a day.

10. Do you like carrots? Yes.

11. The size of your hard-disc? I don’t know…

12. What’s your favourite word? Serendipity.

13. If you were a tree, what tree would you be? A Birch!

14. What’s a word that rhymes with TEST? Best.

15. Name the brand of shoes you’ve recently worn. Dansko clogs – I live in them.

16. What were you doing at midnight last night? Sleeping.

17. Who told you they loved you last? My daughter.

18. Your worst enemy? Time! There is never enough.

19. What is your favorite cheese? Machengo.

20. An angel appears out of Heaven and offers you a lifetime supply of the alcoholic beverage of your choice. “Be brand-specific” it says. Man! What are you gonna say about that? Even if you don’t drink booze there’s something you can figure out… so what’s it gonna be? Acacia Pinot Noir.

Friendship Friday~~Please Welcome Author, Nancy Gideon

Cover Art for Betrayed by Shadows by Nancy Gideon

I’ve known Nancy Gideon for. . .well not long enough. She is generous to a fault and one of the most kindly honest people I know. It is an honor and a pleasure to have her as my guest this week. She’ll tell us a little about herself and her latest book then follow up with hilarious answer to a few of those weird questions I like to ask my guests. Read all the way to the end of Nancy’s interview and you’ll find a short treat (I”m not telling). If you don’t know Nancy or haven’t read her books, you’ve got some terrific times ahead of you when you do. If you already know Nancy and/or her books, I don’t have to tell you how much fun she is to be around. Now, here’s Nancy.

Hi! I’m Nancy Gideon. I’m a writer.  I’m a Gemini. That pretty much says everything.  I can’t NOT write.  I love words and I love brainstorming plot ideas.  I was always trying to guess the end of books and movies growing up –  and in many cases came up with a better twist ending. I’m the ultimate multi-tasker (it’s that Gemini thing), thrive on chaos, but admit to control issues (ADD with OCD rising!). I was first published back in the ‘80s (yes, I’m an ‘80s lady!) and have sold over 54 books (and recently 4 more in reissues!) including historicals, contemporary suspense, dark paranormal and even a horror novelization as Dana Ransom, Rosalyn West and now under my own name.  Because writing doesn’t provide health insurance, I’ve worked as a legal assistant for the past 12 years in the same small firm going back to the 9-to-5 after a 15 year ‘real job’ hiatus to raise two boys.  I have a Netflix addiction and feed a menagerie of creature feathered and furred off my 4th floor apartment balcony. For more about me and my books, visit http://nancygideon.com or my blog at http://nancygideon.blogspot.com

I’ve got lots of launch party giveaways going on.

Please tell us about your most recent release.

Gladly!  BETRAYED BY SHADOWS, the 7th book in my “By Moonlight” dark paranormal series with Pocket Books is available on 12-17-12! That’s NEXT week!!  This is my first e-exclusive as part of Pocket’s new Star program and it’s tastily priced at $1.99 for the first four weeks before going up to the regular price of $5.99. You can pre-order at Amazon or Barnes & Noble  What’s it about? I’ll tell you in pictures and music in my book trailer.

 

I just turned in the next book in the series. PRINCE OF SHADOWS will be available on 5-27-13 – my birthday!

1. What would you want to be written on your tombstone?

“Here lies Nancy Gideon, skin and bones at last!”

2. Explain relativity.

What’s in it for me?

3. Who is the person you trust most?

Its persons.  My critique group. These fabulous ladies have seen me through all my major life dramas, both ups and downs.  They’re more than friends . . . they’re family.

4. What’s your favorite word?

If you’ve ever ridden in a car with me or bought me a drink (I’m not a big drinker!), you already know what it is. How ‘bout that drink and I’ll tell you all about it.

5. Who told you they loved you last?

My five-year-old grandson. I never get tired of hearing it.

6. Last furry thing you touched?

Thank goodness it wasn’t something in the back of the refrigerator!  It was Jasper.  He’s my new $800-in-dental-bills free cat. He’ll be working off his debt by being snugly for the next 8 to 10 years!

7. If you had to choose between a million bucks and being able to fly, which would you choose?

I’d take the money and pay someone else to do the flying so I could ride first class.  It’s all about those hot towels.

8. What is your guilty pleasure Disney movie?

“The One and Only, Genuine, Original Family Band” from 1968.  I fell madly in love with Kurt Russell’s singing and dancing! Still very fond of him to this day! Who knew a Disney boy would become such a badass?! Kurt, you aged well.

9. Do you have a secret talent and what is it?

I have a photographic memory that helps me be uber organized (which I have to have since I have ADD! Ooo, shiny!). I know where every file and piece of paper is in the office at any given time.  I’m the go-to person for setting up meal reservations and daytrips on vacations and conferences. I live to make lists! And check them twice.

10. What is one unique thing are you afraid of?

Things that aren’t in their proper order (see above!). . . you know, cupboard doors half open, spoons and forks co-mingling, patterned towels hung wrong side out, mail or money not all facing the same direction, M&Ms not sorted by color and number, anything on my desk that’s been moved since I last sat there. Freaks me right out.  OCD much?

11. You have the opportunity to sleep with the movie-celebrity of your choice. Who would it be?

I would do Jeremy Renner in a heartbeat! Poor guy is probably hiring extra security right now! I can hear my son – “No, Mom, they don’t have a life-sized Hawkeye figure with removal clothing!” Too bad. That’d be on my couch watching Netflix with me and son would be out the door!

12. What is your favorite expletive?

Didn’t I already answer this f-ing question? Oh, sorry, that was favorite word. My bad.

13. Your house is on fire! You have just enough time to run in there and grab ONE inanimate object. Don’t worry, your loved ones and pets have already made it out safely. So what’s the one thing you’re going to save from that blazing inferno?

My laptop . . . duh!  My entire life is on that hard drive. Stuff can be replaced. Ideas and memories can’t be.

14. You accidentally eat some radioactive vegetables. They were good, and what’s even cooler is that they endow you with the super-power of your choice! What’s it gonna be?

It’s always good to get some benefit from vegetables . . . I’d like the ability to clone myself so part of me could sleep in instead of getting up at 5:00 a.m. to write. And so I could send the clone to work for me on those icy winter mornings in Michigan.

Extra Treat for all who read this far, the blurb for Nancy’s newest release, Betrayed by Shadows.

BETRAYED BY SHADOWS

“By Moonlight” Book 7

By Nancy Gideon

Pocket Star * 12-17-12

 

Balancing a criminal empire and a preternatural clan war, reluctant front man Giles St. Clair doesn’t need a problem like Brigit MacCreedy . . . How much trouble can the head-strong and manipulative Shifter beauty get into in two weeks? Plenty when her schemes range from kidnapping to fleeing the retribution of her dead lover’s clan.

With her family’s lives on the line, Brigit is willing to do whatever it takes to save them. The only thing standing in her way is an immovable stone wall of a man she can’t bully or beguile . . . a human, no less, who has promised to protect her from the secrets and dangers she conceals.

Risking her own safety gets complicated when an honorable and annoyingly desirable man puts himself between her and her powerful enemies in a battle he can’t win in this Taming of the Shrew meets Shifter Goodfellas on the Bayou tale of consequences, redemption and finding love in all the wrong places.

 

Friendship Friday ~ Please welcome, author Shelly Bell

ayeartoremembercoverI’ve known Shelly for a little over a year. She is a vibrant, exciting person and makes me feel good just being around her. I know you’ll love her as much as I do. Here’s Shelly to tell us a little about herself, her books and to answer some of thosw weird questions. 

I just turned forty…but I’m not bitter! No really, I’m not. It’s hard to believe that I’ve accomplished so much of what I dreamed for myself growing up in Metro-Detroit. I moved back to my childhood neighborhood, married a man who can fix just about anything in the house plus he sews, and have a boy, a girl, and a dog. By day I’m an attorney, fighting for the rights of…a metal recycling company; by night I’m a mom, wife, and maid. I’m also a published author! So who cares that I never starred on Broadway when I got all How do I fit in the time to write? I gave up the three hours of television I watched every night. I also write when my kids are doing homework, lunch breaks, and occasionally, I hire a babysitter so I can write. I make the time because it’s important to me.

 My book, A Year to Remember, was published with Soul Mate Publishing in January of 2012. It’s about a twenty-nine year old woman who’s looking for her soul mate and vows to marry him before she turns thirty. On her journey, she is forced to confront her addiction to food and to decide what’s most important to her. I’m very proud of it because it was my first book and it was cathartic to write.

 I love reading and writing paranormal, but since the market is saturated with it, I’m currently working on a contemporary romance with magical elements. It’s been a lot of fun to write! Unlike paranormal stories, the magic is accepted as fact and it doesn’t have to be explained. For example, the reader will believe that the cat is actually dearly departed Uncle Al and I don’t have to explain how it’s possible. It just…is. It’s been used primarily in Latin American literature, but my characters are Greek.

1. How much cash do you have on you?

 Absolutely none. I almost never carry money with me. If I need some, I steal it from my husband’s wallet or the kid’s piggy banks.

 2. What were you doing at midnight last night?

 Reading. I always read at night. Lately, I’ve been on a self-published kick and I’ve found a lot of fabulous authors that way. Apparently, I’m not the only one because several of them have been recently acquired by large publishers.

 3. What is your favorite cheese?

 Feta. I’ve been addicted to Greek salad since I was five years old. I used to eat it for breakfast as a kid! We have a high population of Greek Americans in the area, so I’ve been fortunate to grow up on Greek food.

 4. What is one unique thing are you afraid of?

 Only one???? I’m afraid of sharks. I won’t go in the ocean and even though I want to go parasailing, I’m afraid they’ll land me in the water. My parents let me see Jaws at an early age and it became a phobia after that. Which makes this next question and answer ironic…

 5. You just got a free plane ticket to anywhere. You have to depart right now. Where are you gonna go?

 Naples, Florida. Yes, that’s correct. I love Florida. I lived there for three years and I never went in the ocean. My parents are snowbirds and we go down to visit them every winter. I already have clothes there, so if I had to depart right now, that would be simple.

 8. Your house is on fire! You have just enough time to run in there and grab ONE inanimate object. Don’t worry, your loved ones and pets have already made it out safely. So what’s the one thing you’re going to save from that blazing inferno?

 My laptop. No contest. Sad, isn’t it? Most people would save their wedding album or an heirloom. It’s all about the electronics in my house.

 9. The Angel Of Death has descended upon you. Fortunately, the Angel Of Death is pretty cool and in a good mood, and it offers you a half-hour to do whatever you want before you bite it. Whatcha gonna do in that half-hour?

Easy question! I’m going to drink Diet Coke and Jack Daniels, smoke a pack of Malboro Lights, and eat Bill Knapp’s Chocolate Cake with vanilla ice cream and hot fudge. I’ll hang out with my kids and my husband if the smoke doesn’t drive them away.