We rejoin the intrepid couple…
We awoke to the ship docking alongside a park in Speyer, Germany, in the rain.
After what had become my typical breakfast of muesli, yoghurt, and fruit, we set off for a walking tour of the town.
A small section of the ancient city wall still stands.
Our tour guide, Ernst, a retired military man, was a font of architectural knowledge, particularly the history of the construction of the 11th century Romanesque Speyer Cathedral.
We delved into the old Jewish quarter and had the opportunity climb down into a ceremonial bathing chamber, the Mikveh – brrr.
We walked back to the ship for lunch before returning to town on our own. We explored a residential area where everyone seemed to have orchids in their front windows. I could see myself living in Speyer for a few months.
I must disabuse you of the notion that we were in Europe just for fun. Oh, no. Aside from collecting plot and character ideas for future books, we were on the Great Hat Hunt! Mr. S. has long been searching for the perfect chapeau and he found it in Speyer at a hat shop called Beisel Hüte. Started in 1951, it is now run by the founder’s granddaughter. She told us, “hats are my life”.
Once we had hat in hand, we continued our strolling and shared a warm pretzel – yum!
We returned to the ship for a German lesson. Ha! In one ear and out the other, I’m afraid. I did learn that saying prost as I raise a glass is incorrect – it should be prosit.
Following a delicious supper of consommé, German-style spinach ravioli, and an ice cream and cookie parfait, we all retired to the lounge for an evening of music and dancing. Too much fun!
Don't forget - my next book, to be released on June 26th, is available for pre-order. If you like fun, flirty and steamy romance, get it now!
Amazon | Amazon CA | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Nook
I am incredibly excited to share that my next book, Love Proof, will be released into the wild, and onto your e-readers, on June 26, 2019. Huzzah!!! Cue the biodegradable confetti!!! Pop the sparkling wine corks!!!
If you enjoy light-hearted and steamy small-town romance with snappy dialogue, pre-order Love Proof today!!!
Amazon | Amazon CA | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Nook
*there is now a world-wide shortage of exclamation marks
Unemployed photojournalist Raynor Elliot stops at a bakery near the famous Deerbourne Inn. Not only does he get a lead on a job but the bakery’s owner is that awkward kid he knew in high school, only now she has fabulous curves and an irreverent sense of humor. The cozy bakery, with its aroma of sugar, vanilla and spice, has more to offer than tasty cookies.
Fiona MacLeod has been plagued for years by the need to make amends for telling The Big Lie. When the lie’s victim strolls into her bakery with his icy blue stare and killer charm, she feels like she’s standing too close to a hot oven.
Between running her bakery and frosting cupcakes for the Mad River Garden Party, she's pretty sure she's falling in love with this infuriating, sexy man. Can Fiona dredge up the courage to confess, face the consequences, and hope for forgiveness?
I'm always looking for enthusiastic readers who love to write reviews. Apply to be on my review team, Gooseberry Flirts, if you'd like a chance to read the story before anyone else. Stay up to date on my writing and other shenanigans by subscribing to my newsletter.
Thank you, thank you, thank you, for all your support!
Most writers have a favorite writing method. For instance, some swear by Scrivener (me), while others write in Word or Google docs. Some prefer to draft longhand (me as well depending on my mood), using fountain pens with purple ink and notebooks.
Many of us have a favorite writing book, too. I have three shelves devoted to craft books that have helped me understand storytelling, and demystify several aspects of writing. Today I'm helping to usher a new writing guide into the world: The Emotion Thesaurus (Second Edition).
You may have heard of The Emotion Thesaurus before, or even own a copy. The original's lists of body language, thoughts, and visceral sensations for 75 unique emotions made brainstorming character expressions and reactions so much easier, and were immensely helpful in the editing process. It deservedly became a bestseller.
Now, there's a bigger, better second edition. Huzzah! Angela and Becca have added 55 NEW emotions such as Euphoria, Vindicated, and Schadenfreude. So many new ways to mess with our characters! (And that's not all that's new, either...the book is almost twice the size as the original. More words and ideas with which to play.)
Anyway, if you're interested in checking it out, and you really should be, you can read some of the reviews on Goodreads or find information here.
But that’s not all...are you ready for this?
Wish you could attend a free writing retreat, go to a conference, snag a seat at a workshop, or have your professional membership to a writing organization paid for? Of course you do!
Well, at Writers Helping Writers, one lucky winner will get one of the above, up to a $500 US value. How cool is that?!?
This is the giveaway of a lifetime, so hurry over to enter!
Book launch day! Love and Turmoil is available for purchase! At The Wild Rose Press, Amazon and at Barnes & Noble.
Is any day more fabulous than this? Aside from giving birth, of course. And getting married. That was a fabulous day. Also when our kids graduated from high school and university. More fabulous days. But after all that, seeing my book out in the real world is pretty darn special. Knowing that other people are going to meet the characters and hopefully enjoy their antics is thrilling. But also a little nerve-wracking. Like sending your kid off on the first day of school and hoping they make friends. The characters in my books are very real to me and hold a special place in my heart and I want other people to like them as much as I do. Or hate them as much as I do if the character in question is a bad guy/gal. I still think about the characters in my previous books and wonder how they’re doing.
I can’t wait for you to meet Arabella and Sam and discover how they met, why they’re attracted to each other, and witness the troubles they face. Boy oh boy, they face some tough times. <insert maniacal laugh>
I’m guest blogging at Night Owl Reviews today and sharing an old family recipe for the most delicious cookies. Stop by to grab the recipe and whip up a batch. Your friends and family will think you’re more brilliant than usual!
Here’s the last excerpt I’ll be sharing for Love and Turmoil (NOW RELEASED!!!)
“Please stay a bit longer. This will take but a minute, and then we will find somewhere to be alone.” He touched her cheek.
“You haven’t eaten your supper.”
He rested his hand on her waist and pulled her close. “I could survive feasting on you.” He kissed her neck, his warm breath heating her entire body. She leaned into him, turned her head, and captured his lips. He was indeed hungry, and she gave him all she could, teasing his lips with her tongue, biting his lower lip before sucking it into her mouth. She grasped his shoulders and pressed closer, wanting to absorb him into her skin.
He trailed his kiss along her jaw and nipped her earlobe. “Yes?”
She nodded before resting her head on his chest. She’d been seconds away from pushing him to the ground and mounting him like a horse.
Here’s the story premise, aka the blurb, aka the back-cover copy:
Six months after burying her wastrel husband, Lady Arabella Woodbridge has resigned herself to a lonely life in the countryside with only her two adopted nieces for company. Being a young, respectable widow is – frustrating. Then the charming and wickedly handsome Samuel Payn takes up residence in the neighboring manor house.
Retired explorer and occasional pirate Samuel Payn is on a two-fold mission – retrieve buried loot, and locate the father who abandoned his mother to a life of poverty. But a gang of murderous villains is also after the buried treasure. And someone is threatening to tear apart the lovely widow’s family.
Will Sam’s single-minded determination to uncover his true identity threaten Arabella’s happiness - and his life?