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Monday, February 24, 2014

Birthday Fun

Mondays About Me

This last week I went to a writer's conference (which I will be posting about later) during that conference it was my birthday! I love my birthdays. I don't hesitate to make sure people know it's my birthday - not for gifts or for praise, but just because I want everyone to share in my joy!

So here is what I did for my birthday!

I hung out with my bookstore buddy - the lady, Amber, that ran the money for  our bookstore happened to have a birthday the same day as mine (February 21)

I got to sit and chat with Sarah Eden!

I got to go to the faculty dinner where I was seated with Sarah Eden, Heidi Taylor, Heather Moore, Kenneth Pike, and Peggy Urry. We had a blast! We were talking and laughing so much! I love these people!

Then I went to a protagonist Gala where I dressed up as Robin Hood and go visit with lots of fun people including Taylor Martindale, Deborah Warren, and Raejean Roberts. 

We had a group of wonderful dancers came to entertain us during the Gala

And of course, I spent time with my wonderful ANWA sisters from my area.

Overall, it was a fabulous Birthday! The only thing that would have made it any better is if I had seen my wonderful husband. But when I got home on Saturday, he bought me 3 different types of ice cream and bought me dinner.

So thanks for everyone who made my day so very special and for everyone who is reading this blog so as to make me enjoy the day all over again.


Thursday, February 13, 2014

The Bard's Gift

Today on my Blog I'm featuring The Bard's Gift, by Author Meredith Mansfield!

Enjoy the information below and don't forget to sign up in the rafflecopter for a chance to win some fun prizes.

Welcome to my Blog Meredith!

So here's a bit about the book:

Sixteen-year-old Astrid keeps mostly to herself, finding companionship in the stories her grandmother used to tell. She's too shy even to talk in front of Torolf, the young man she secretly dreams of. Then the Norse god of eloquence appears in Astrid's dreams and forces her to drink the Mead of Poetry. Suddenly, she's compelled to tell her stories. In public. Even in front of Torolf. 

Astrid is meant to use these stories to guide her people from starvation in Greenland to a better future in Markland. A place legends claim is the abode of dragons. But not all of her fierce and independent people are willing to follow a mere girl, even the chieftain's daughter--especially when she counsels peace. Some have other plans for the new land and want to use Astrid and her gift as a tool. 

Torolf never dreamed that quiet Astrid could choose him. Now he's stranded in Iceland as she sails in the opposite direction. To attain the promise of a future with Astrid, he'll have to attempt the impossible--sailing alone across the North Atlantic. 

Together, they might defy the plans the gods have made for them and change the fate of more than just their own people. 

Links to Buy the book and connect with the author:
Facebook Author Page:

Fun Facts from the author and an excerpt:

Sea Monsters

In researching the Greenlanders for THE BARD’S GIFT, of course I ran across their 

legends about sea monsters. One of those monsters was hafgufa.

Translated as “sea mist” or “sea reek”, hafgufa was a sea monster of the Greenland Sea 

between Greenland and Iceland. Hafgufa was supposed to lie on the surface to feed. 

The stench of its belch drew in fish, which the hafgufa would then consume, along with 

anything else in the vicinity, including ships. Only Orvar-Odd had ever escaped, because 

he knew the beast rose and submerged with the turn of the tides and was able to get his 

ship out of range just in time.

Hafgufa was usually seen as only a pair of rocks said to be the beast’s nose. Sometimes 

hafgufa was equated with the kraken. Others attribute the stories of hafgufa to underwater 

volcanic activity and the release of methane gas.

Here’s an excerpt from Chapter 20 of THE BARD’S GIFT. To set the scene: it’s foggy 

and Torolf is alone in a small boat (a faering, or small fishing boat). A few strange 

phenomena (attributable entirely to deep ocean volcanism, not sea monsters) start his 

imagination running wild.


Torolf paused, lifting the oars out of the water. He was closely tuned, now, to the 

background noises of the sea around him. He'd swear he'd heard a sound that didn't fit. 

There it was again. A sort of gurgling noise that wasn't like anything he'd heard at sea 

before. A whale diving? No, he'd heard that before and it didn't sound like this. In fact, 

more than anything else in his experience, this sound reminded him of a kettle on the 

boil--which made no sense at all.

The skiff rocked as a wave struck its side. That was wrong, too. The waves should be 

following from behind the skiff. It wasn't a storm wave; there was still no wind to speak 

of. The wave came from the same direction as the strange sound. 

The air moved slowly in this fog, slower than sound, so the stench reminiscent of rotten 

eggs reached Torolf last. Magni's wild stories about hafgufa came back to him at the 

same instant. They didn't seem so wild right now. 

Sweat ran down his face despite the clammy fog and his pulse raced. What now? The 

only thing he could think of was that the monster only surfaced at the turn of the tide and 

stayed on the surface until it turned again. Orvar-Odd had sailed through safely because 

hafgufa had just surfaced and he had time to get out before it submerged again, sucking 

everything in the vicinity down with it. It wasn't so easy to determine the turn of the tide 

out here in the open ocean. When had it turned? 

He clutched the oars hard. Did it matter? He could hope at least that the splash he'd heard 

was the creature surfacing. Well, obviously. Otherwise, he'd already have been sucked 

down with the monster. So, his only hope was to get as far away as he could before 

hafgufa submerged. 

Torolf drove the oars into the water so hard he almost lost control of them. He drew a 

deep breath and set up a steadier rhythm as fast as he thought he could maintain.

After what felt like hours, but was probably little more than one hour, he had to stop to 

rest a little and eat something, especially to drink water. He flinched at every sound or 

slightest movement. The fog seemed a little thinner and he thought he felt a breath of air. 

He hoped that wasn't only wishful thinking. Being able to raise the sail was his only hope 

of making real distance. The faering could almost fly over the water with enough wind to 

fill its sails.

Another gurgle sounded off to his left and Torolf grabbed up the oars again, pulling for 

all he was worth. He rowed until he thought his heart would burst. When he couldn't row 

another stroke, he shipped the oars and sagged against the gunwale, breathing heavily. 

His throat felt like he'd tried to swallow sand and his shoulders burned. He fumbled for 

one of his precious water skins and drank deeply.

He wasn't far enough. Not nearly far enough. He was sure of that, but he couldn't row 

anymore. Not to save his own life. A breeze ruffled his hair and cooled his sweaty face. 

Torolf looked up. The fog had lifted and he'd been too intent on rowing to even notice. 

The breeze ruffled his hair again. He lifted the little pendant that had been his mother's, 

halfway between a cross and a Thor's hammer, to his lips. It wasn't a strong wind, but it 

was enough to put up the sail. He could rest for a while and still keep moving.

Torolf raised the sail, forcing his aching arms to the task. Then he collapsed in the bottom 

of the boat, too tired to move another muscle.

Thank you for Visiting my Blog today Meredith

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Monday, February 10, 2014

Mondays about Me

Here we are! Enjoy these fun facts

1.   When I was growing up I use to ... act like I was afraid of worms because all the other girls on the playground were, but I have never, ever been scared of worms.
2.   I once ... got stuck at the top of a mountain in the dark and we (me and 3 friends) had to find out way down using our cell phones for lights
3.   Readers would be surprised to know ... my imagination often gets the better of me and I am more afraid of what it can dream up than I am of most things normal people fear.
4.   Everyday I ... put on a movie in my Parrot's room because he is a social bird and by having a movie playing he thinks people are with him all the time. He prefers kids movies and went crazy one day when I put on something with suspense. So Disney it is!
5.   I like to ... Play video games. I did not know this because I was never a gamer, nor grew up with access to gaming systems. But my hubby is, and he introduced me and it stuck. He tells me I'm a closet gamer :)
6.   I have always wanted to ... go sky diving!!!
7.   I will never forget ... the moment I first saw my husband and knew immediately I was going to marry him.
8.   The best thing about writing is ... entering a new world and waiting to see what the characters might do when they are done playing along with my plot and wish to do their own thing.
9.   When I am not writing, I like to ... craft and cook.

10.               I am working on ... a retailing of a fairy tale, a paranormal, and 3 romances at the moment :)

Monday, February 3, 2014

My writing style

Mondays about Me

Today I'm going to mix my two worlds. The world about me, and the world that is my writing. Everyone says to write what you know. Well, I don't know a whole lot about romance ... as much as a normal persona I suppose. I dated a lot - I mean  A LOT - and I was proposed to 7 times before I stuck with my husband. So Yes, I have had some interesting experiences in the dating/romance world. However, I think most of my experiences were not something I would write about as romantic. Tragic, yes; sadly delusional at times, yes; some romance, yes; and some heartbreak, yes.

So where do I draw from to get the romance I write about? Well, it helps that my sister introduced me to romance when I was a teenager. The lovely, clean but exciting world of regency romance. (And trust me, we had to convince my Dad over and over again that I was reading books in the era and same level of cleanliness as Pride and Prejudice because he was not sure he was ok with his daughters reading romance novels.) I ate those books up like I was starving! I loved them. Read everything I could get my hands on. Even now that is my favorite genre to read - though I do branch out a bit and read other genres as well.

So here is my interesting conundrum. The other night I had a dream ... It was an awesome dream! It was a perfect story plot laid out right in front of me with good guys, bad guys, background, situations, hero flaws, downfalls, and of course the resolution! I was ecstatic. I got out of bed at 4 AM and ran to type it all up at my computer. The only thing is .... it was completely paranormal genre. I don't write paranormal and I've rarely read paranormal. So I'm about to jump into something new. One of two things will happen - either it will turn out amazing and I will have found a new level of writing talent I didn't know I possessed. Or I'll succumb to a crumpled, crying mess when I realize that my amazing idea is not going to fit my style. I'm really hoping for the first :)

What is you're writing style and have you ever branched out from it into other genres? How did it work for you?

Saturday, February 1, 2014


Today I'm participating in a cover reveal for Paris Cravings by Kimberly Montpetit!

Let's give you some info on this fabulous book (At least it looks fabulous to me! I'm excited to read it!)

Can life really turn on a dime—
a missed bus— 
or a stuck pastry shop door?

Chloe Dillard’s life has always been complicated. She has a mother who is a neurotic romance novelist and a boyfriend who’s been pressuring her to go all the way. After The Worst Night of Her Life Chloe escapes on a trip to the swoon-worthy city of Paris where she becomes stranded after an accident with high heels and a pastry box.

Saved by a French boy with chocolate-brown eyes, Chloe begins to wonder if being lost in Paris is the chance of a lifetime. But as attracted as she is to the gorgeous and oh-so-kind La Patisserie shop boy—even he has a girlfriend.

The police are tracking her down, Mom’s having a nervous breakdown when she goes missing, and Chloe just wants to have her dream of a happily-ever-after.

What’s a girl to do in the most romantic city in the world?
Buy Links: coming soon!
Now, a bit about the author:

About Kimberley Montpetit: Kimberley Montpetit once spent all her souvenir money at the La Patisserie shops when she was in Paris—on the arm of her adorable husband. The author grew up in San Francisco, another swoon-worthy city, loves all things Parisian and chocolate and lives in a small town along the Rio Grande with her family.
Kimberley has won many awards for her work, including the Southwest Book Award, the Whitney Award, the Arizona/New Mexico Book Award, is a Crystal Kite Finalist (SCBWI) and included in the Bank Street College Best Books of the Year.
She once stayed in a haunted castle tower room at Borthwick Castle in Scotland, sailed on the Seine in Paris, walked the beaches of Normandy, eaten in numerous French cafes, ridden a camel in Petra, Jordan, sunbathed on Waikiki, shopped the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, and spent the night in an old Communist hotel in Bulgaria. 
She adores all baked goodies; brownies, ├ęclairs, donuts, tarts, and pie, and makes a lot of chocolate chip cookies while revising.
Kimberley is, of course, hard at work on her next novel(s).

And if you'd like to learn more about Kimberly, feel free to explore the links below:
Social Media Links:

And now, for the moment you've all be waiting for .....
The Cover Reveal of this awesome new book .....


Isn't it pretty? :)

I'll be sure to let you all know when it gets released too!! I hope you're all looking forward to it as much as I am!

Thanks, Kimberly, for letting me participate in this cover reveal. It definitely made me excited for your book!

Don't forget to join the giveaway rafflecopter below!

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