Happy Monday! What do snakes, broken bones, heroes, and Valentines have in common?

What a weekend!

First mow of the season revealed this handsome fellow.

He’s a very angry racer snake. Not poisonous. Definitely not as happy to meet us and we were to meet him. I shared the teaching moment then let him return to his business.

Same day, my daughter fell and broke her right wrist in two places and sprained her left wrist while carrying the baby’s highchair back into the house.

My poor baby is the mother of three, including my youngest granddaughter who is only 1-year old.  Try explaining to a one-year-old that Mommy can’t pick her up because her arm hurts. 🙁

But on the UP side, my friend Teresa Hill has put together this fun collection of heroes from books that currently are FREE or 99¢. Take your pick from Donna, Fasano, Lisa Mondello, Patricia Keelyn, Kathryn Shay, Judith Arnold, Patricia McLinn, Teresa Hill and me. You can’t go wrong–on the hero or the books. Here’s the link: ValentinesHeroes.

In LOVE, AFTER ALL – West Coast Happily-Ever-After #5, Arley, the hero in the meme above, is a great guy with a big heart. (He’s also a trust fund baby who is a bit bored and a little lost.) His current windmill-worthy mission is helping a sweet old woman fight the Powers That Be to keep her pet pig, Cuddles. Arley’s “1%er” parents aren’t amused. And they’re even less pleased when Arley is photographed kissing his attorney, Gwyneth–the woman Arley knows is his one and only true love. But convincing Gwyneth they’re destined to be together might be the biggest challenge of his life.

I hope your VALENTINE’S DAY is delightful–or,  in my case, less eventful!




FIRST KISS=TUESDAY (from Judy Does Christmas by Debra Salonen)

First Kiss= TUESDAY

Christmas in July-DS

Debra Salonen-4358-Color-SmAll year long, I look forward to the fun and sun of summer. Through the brutal winter months, I dream of relaxing on the beach and smiling as the summer sun shines down. That’s why it’s so strange that when summer is in full swing, I’m thinking of winter. Not just winter, but the month of December and all of the warmth and comfort of the holiday season.

 Christmas time bring out the best in people. It’s a time of kindness, joy and the occasional Christmas miracle. If that’s what you’re looking for, look no further. You can find all of those things right now, while avoiding the cold, the snow, and the shopping.

I was lucky enough to be invited to join 10 other fabulous (rock star!) authors in a month-long promotion called Christmas in July! I’ll share their titles and links at the end of this post, but first, here’s a first kiss snippet from my contribution:

Judy Does Christmas

The Judy Chronicles, Book 2 –

“Old enough to know better, still too young to care!” 


As much as she wanted to blame the mid-day wine for her fatigue–aggravated by the hard cider she’d had with her pizza–in truth, she hadn’t been her usual perky self for weeks. Some mornings, she had to drag herself to the gym. Normally, she could count on an endorphin high after a workout, but not tonight. Even the promise of delicious sex with the man she loved more than life wasn’t enough to keep her eyes open.

“Damn holiday stress,” she muttered, hoping to grab a quick catnap…fully dressed…on their bed until Wiley got home.

She must have dozed off because the next thing she heard was Wiley’s voice calling out her name as he walked down the hallway.

“Judy? Honey? Are you okay? Don’t you want to get undressed?”

The effort it took to open her eyes made the process feel like slow motion. “Are my eyelids glued shut?”

Two soft lips kissed her cheekbones. “Nope. You’re just tired. I know how much you hate to shop for clothes. And it is the holidays.”

She held out a hand for his help sitting up. Her feet hit the thick carpet like bags of cement. Thunk. Thunk. “Remind me to make an appointment to see your doctor. I’d hoped to wait till our new marriage warranty expired before somebody confirmed my long list of flaws, but if I don’t perk up, you’ll trade me in for a new model anyway.”

He sat and looped one strong, reassuring arm around her shoulders. “You goof. Life doesn’t come with any guarantees.”

“You already had one sick wife…”

He nuzzled her neck. “Different circumstances completely. Apples and oranges.” His lips felt warm against her cool skin. “Your life has changed in a hundred different ways over the past few months. By all means, get a check-up. Maybe a B-12 shot. But the holidays wear everybody down.”

She took a deep breath, ignoring the voice in her head that sounded a lot like Alvin and the Chipmunks singing, “Hurry, Christmas, don’t be late.” The damn season couldn’t get over fast enough to satisfy her.

She turned into him and hugged him fiercely. “Have I told you today that I love you?”

“Once or twice. But I never get tired of hearing it.” He kissed her lips. “By the way, I got a text from Carla as I was leaving the gym. She asked if you liked everything.”

Judy tensed. She couldn’t help herself. “What did you say?”

“I told her you thought the place looked great, and because we’re both tied up with other interests, we trusted her to handle the details for the party.”

She rubbed her forehead against the hollow of his cheek. “Tied up, huh? Are you suggesting something kinky?”

“Maybe. Shall we discuss our options in the shower?”

Judy took a deep breath and got to her feet. A dozen or more tiny silver dots danced across her vision for a moment, but they quickly disappeared. She grabbed his hand. “Great idea. Turn the steam generator on, too. I’m thinking hot and heavy. And, no, that’s not a reference to my weight.”

He backed her up until she was pinned to the wall. “Your weight is perfect. How many times do I have to tell you that?”

A million and two. Just enough to make up for hearing people call me fat most of my life. “I’ll let the doctor be the judge of that, Judge. Come on. Let’s get naked, steamy and slippery.”


Buy links:  AMAZON    Barnes & Noble   iTunes Store   KOBO

And don’t miss any of these SURE-TO-BE holiday faves:

514fsz6DpZL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_A Mommy for Christmas by Maggie Shayne

Originally released in 2005 and titled, Feels Like Home, A MOMMY FOR CHRISTMAS has been substantially revised and contains brand new scenes never before published.

All Tyler wants for Christmas is a Mommy.

Not to walk without his crutches, or to skip his next surgery. Just a mommy.

 His father, Chicago Cop Jimmy Corona is determined to find him one in his hometown of Big Falls Oklahoma. But trouble follows him there, trouble that could get them both killed.

 Once shy and awkward, Kara Brand has blossomed into a graceful beauty with the biggest heart in the state of Oklahoma. Jimmy thinks she’s the perfect mommy-candidate, and she falls in love with little Ty at first sight.

 Jimmy plans to win her and wed her, not to love her. But he never intended for her to get caught in between a murderous criminal and his little boy.

A heartwarming, tear-inducing, holiday miracle kind of story you’ll never forget…
Amazon Barnes & Noble iTunes Kobo


Angel Be Good by Kathy Carmichael

“Heartwarming, Sexy and Fun”

Billionaire CEO Nat Danvers has good looks, money, power, prestige—everything—except the one thing he really needs. But only in the loneliest corners of his frozen heart is he aware something is missing. Christmas Eve arrives to find Nat alone in his penthouse office, filling out layoff notices while his employees unknowingly celebrate at the office holiday party. In breezes the most incredibly beautiful woman he’s ever seen. Daphne, part angel, part human, has been sent by the Angelic Council to teach Nat some tough lessons in the hope his hardened heart will melt. She has only one night in which to help him.

With the clock ticking before she must go, can love find a way to touch them both?

Amazon  Barnes & Noble  iTunes  Kobo


Christmas With The McRaes by Teresa Hill

Spend Christmas with the McRaes, Books 1, 2 and 3 in the series plus a brand new, bonus novella: Welcome Lizzie



BED OF LIES — Book 3


Amazon  Barnes & Noble  iTunes


Comfort & Joy by Judith Arnold

In the season of miracles, the greatest miracle of all is love.

For Robin Greer, Christmas is about tradition and family. After her army-brat childhood, she wants nothing more than to plant solid roots and create a stable, permanent home for her young son, Philip. Christmas is a time to celebrate that home, and she and Philip celebrate in style, decorating their house, baking treats and listening to holiday music.

Jesse Lawson’s view of the holiday is quite the opposite. Growing up in an oppressively pious family, he has rejected religion. To him, Christmas is about hypocrisy and commercialism. A legal aid attorney, he can’t enjoy the spirit of the season when his inner-city clients are facing eviction in the middle of a cold New England winter.

 Yet he can’t resist Robin and her open-hearted embrace of all things Christmas. And she can’t resist this thoughtful, questioning, complex man who seems to understand the true meaning of the holiday better than she does.

Amazon  Barnes & Noble  iTunes  Kobo


510q6OLnNwL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_Dakota Wedding by Lisa Mondello

If you’re a fan of western romance, contemporary romance, stories full of angst and emotion, and sexy cowboy and military heroes, then you’ll enjoy the Dakota Hearts.

Ian McKinnon was just getting steady on his feet, looking forward to the opening of the Wounded Veterans Center and a big McKinnon wedding celebration, when tragedy struck again. The soldier who’d saved his life while in the military has died. He’s charged with his most important mission: find his friend Carlos’s family in Mexico or become guardian and raise Carlos’s children. The only mandatory stipulation of his friend’s will was that Ian live under the same roof with Abby Townsend, a firefighter from Carlos’s firehouse. Abby knew the kids well and she could help ease them all through the transition of becoming a family. Okay, so Ian may not be daddy material, but he’d grown up with a whole lot of McKinnons running around. He could handle the kids just fine. The beautiful Abby Townsend was another story.

Amazon  Barnes & Noble  iTunes  Kobo

 51vvjQ94T7L._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_Home for Christmas by Kathryn Shay

HOME FOR CHRISTMAS was formerly published as A CHRISTMAS LEGACY, part of a series for Harlequin. The book has been revised to be a stand alone novel in its own right.

When Jacob Steele returned home after fifteen years, it wasn’t to reconnect with the town that loved him. Instead, his motivation was purely financial. He needed capital and he wasn’t above claiming the inheritance bequeathed to him by the father whom he felt betrayed him. Unfortunately for the man who now calls himself Jay Lawrence, the inheritance comes with conditions. These conditions will keep Jay in Riverbend for a month working in the family bookstore. If he decides not to fulfill the terms, the bookstore and the farmhouse he used to cherish, go to the manager, Kate McMann. Jay isn’t about to let a woman, whose ambiguous relationship with his father is questionable, get her hands on his inheritance. He sets out to confront her never knowing that she and her twin daughters would change his plans, not to mention his life, forever.

Amazon  Barnes & Noble  iTunes  Kobo


Still of the Night By Dee Davis

In the still of the night…

Christmas is coming and Jenny Fitzgerald couldn’t care less. She’s getting divorced, and her life is in tatters. And just when she’s thinking it couldn’t possibly be worse, her husband is killed on the job, an undercover operation gone bad. In the midst of her grief, Jenny is confronted with a killer. A hunter who will stop at nothing to see her dead…

Award winning author Dee Davis’s holiday romantic suspense novella is re-released with a new epilogue!

 Amazon Barnes & Noble  iTunes  Kobo

51oncdjib0L._SX311_BO1,204,203,200_Texas Christmas Bride by Jean Brashear
From New York Times and USAToday bestselling Texas romance author Jean Brashear.

It’s the first Christmas in Sweetgrass Springs, Texas for several newcomers who have found a real home for the first time—or found home again. As Jackson Gallagher works to save his hometown from withering away by relocating his business empire there, the only gift he really wants is to marry the teenage sweetheart he thought he’d lost forever—but Veronica Patton Butler has other hearts to care for, however much she loves Jackson.

Come join the fun…In eccentric, lovable, unforgettable Sweetgrass Springs…where hope never fades and love never dies.

Amazon  Barnes & Noble  iTunes  Kobo

51X7fdNmr1L._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_The Games by Patricia McLinn

Medals can be won, careers can be made, hearts can be lost.

From the pomp of Opening Ceremonies to the good-byes of Closing Ceremonies, join three remarkable women during the Winter Olympics. Tessa Rutledge, once an Olympic champion figure skater, returns as a coach, encountering her first love – and heartbreak – and testing her ability to forgive. Alpine skier Kyle Armstrong has made a mistake that could cost her Olympic gold and any hope of reconciling with the man she loves. Biathlete Rikki Lodge is just happy to be at the Games, until she meets a hockey player who demands that she puts everything on the line

Let The Games begin!

 Amazon  Barnes & Noble  iTunes  Kobo

51Q83Y8G5uL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_The Christmas Princess by Patricia McLinn

A Princess for a few weeks …

The coming Christmas season isn’t looking great for April Gareaux. Her job is uninspiring, her engagement is off, and she has nowhere to live.

Then comes an extraordinary offer – spend the holidays in Washington, D.C., with King Jozef of Bariavak as his possible long-lost granddaughter. Even more extraordinary is the man behind the offer and the one who will be beside her through the coming weeks, Hunter Pierce.

King Jozef has known tragedy in his life. Now, comes this lovely young woman bringing joy to his holidays. How can he resist dabbling in some royal matchmaking. Wouldn’t it be delightful if he could give April a Christmas gift she will never forget… Her Prince for a Lifetime

Amazon  Barnes & Noble  iTunes  Kobo

And a special treat…
61+5iEmbiwL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_Wyoming Wildflowers – The Beginning by Patricia McLinn

One look, a passionate love . . . and then they part . . . Forever?

Before the bestselling and award-winning Wyoming Wildflowers saga began, there was another love story, one that laid the foundation for all those that came after. A love between a cowboy and an unexpected woman. A love at first sight … Ed Currick’s and Donna Roberts’ worlds couldn’t have been any more different – a rancher from Wyoming and an up-and-coming Broadway musical actress on a national tour. What could have been a momentary encounter sparks desire . . . and more. But can there be anything but heartbreak ahead when they have only days before their dreams pull them apart?

Amazon  Barnes & Noble  ITunes  Kobo


Enjoy Patricia’s entire Wyoming Wildflowers collection
Wyoming Wildflowers: The Beginning (Snowberry) – prequel
Almost a Bride (Indian Paintbrush)
Match Made in Wyoming (Fireweed)
My Heart Remembers (Bur Marigold)
Jack’s Heart (Yellow Monkeyflower), new release in 2015

Merry reading, my friends!


Just made this meme–so fitting, don’t you think?

HEA Judy Does Christmas

EAT=LOVE=TUESDAY Lisa Mondello’s Awesome Crock-Pot Stew


Food=love in my books.

To start the new year out right, I asked my writer pals to share a recipe that is a family favorite or has a connection to one of their books. The most awesome Lisa Mondello mentioned the following yummy, warming recipe on FaceBook and I jumped on it. I love Crockpots, but I often think about using mine too late. Not this time! It’s going in today! Yum!

Best Crock Pot Beef Stew recipe evah!!
Recipe Type: main dish
Cuisine: American
Author: Lisa Mondello
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6
This is crock pot weather and I use my crock pot at least twice a week. There never are any leftovers when I make this. Enjoy.
  • 2 pounds stew beef
  • 3-4 potatoes peeled and cubed
  • 3 carrots peeled and cut
  • 1 sweet potato peeled and cubed (substitute butternut squash if you want)
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 package Lipton Onion Soup mix (the extra beefy one is the best)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 2 cups of water.
  1. Throw it all in the crock pot (using a liner makes easy cleanup!) Mix it well. Cover and cook on low 8-10 hours or high 5-6 hours.

Now, get the stew going and grab HER DAKOTA MAN, Lisa’s awesome new book, so you can sit down and read while it’s cooking.

Purchase Links:






Her Dakota Man final


One look on Logan McKinnon’s face told Poppy that his foul mood had very little to do with the devastating destruction all around the Badlands of South Dakota…and everything to do with her showing up in town after nearly ten years.
     She didn’t have to be standing next to him to feel his anger simmering just below the surface of his composure. Sitting in her rental sedan was close enough. What the hell was she thinking coming back home? Why had she made that ridiculous promise to Kelly?
     She parked the car next to his truck and took a deep breath, mumbling under her breath as she pulled the door handle, “This may just turn out to be the stupidest thing you have ever done, girl.”
     Truth was, even as pissed off as Logan looked, he was still an amazing sight to see. Part of her had hoped that she was wrong. That she’d gotten over him a long time ago. That she’d take one look at him, make sure he and Keith were okay, and be able to get back in her car and drive right to the airport in Rapids City.
     He turned to her, standing tall and proud. His thick dark hair blew in the March wind, fluttering around his face and making him all the more strikingly handsome.
     Yep. Stupid.
     He was taller than she’d remembered, and he’d long since lost that too-lean teenage body that had driven her crazy in her youth. He worked hard on his ranch and it showed in how much his arms and chest had filled with muscles.
     Despite the cold, he’d taken off his jacket while he worked in the yard and Poppy had a clear view of just how much his male body had filled out in places she’d dreamed of touching.
     Lord, help her. She was in trouble. And she hadn’t even stepped out of the car yet. She pushed the door open and stepped outside to get it over with. It was either going to be the shortest visit on record…or the life changing experience she’d been dreaming of ever since she was a teenager.
     “Hi, Logan.”
     Logan starred at her for a long, agonizing moment. She read the emotional tug of war playing on his face as the sudden chill from the South Dakota winds bit into her exposed skin like a whipping.
     Then his expression turned hard. “What are you doing here?”
     He must have heard the car drive up. But Logan’s four-year-old son, Keith, remained so focused on the mud puddle he was poking a stick into to even notice anyone was around. That was good. The next few minutes would go easier for both of them if Keith weren’t aware of the tension.
     Logan stared at her as if he’d been startled. Or maybe too focused on making sure his son was safely playing nearby to notice her car had driven up.
     Or perhaps he’d been too pre-occupied with assessing the damage the recent angry South Dakota weather had done to his property. Poppy had seen just how Mother Nature had shown no mercy to her childhood town as she drove from the airport to the ranch. She couldn’t exactly blame Logan for being in a foul mood because of that.
     Seeing her was just the icing on the cake.
     “What the hell are you doing here, Poppy?” he repeated.
     She took in a deep breath, smelled the muddy earth and decay all around her, and said, “I came to help.”
     He took one long look at her, from her high-heeled boots, up the length of her legs, pausing at her hips. She could almost feel his eyes as if he were staring at the flesh beneath her fresh pair of blue jeans. When his gaze finally reached her face again, she slid her sunglasses to the tip of her nose and stared right back at him in challenge. A slow smile played on her lips. She could never last as long at this as Logan before caving into laughter. But she knew Logan was in no laughing mood.
     “Poppy Ericksen. Rudolph was practically washed off the map from all that rain we had. After all this time, what makes you think I need anything from you?”
     Even though his voice was even, she could tell he was still pissed. But he’d never show it. Keith was still poking at the mud and puddles on the driveway just a little ways away, completely unaware of present company.
     “What’s the matter, Logan? You don’t look happy to see me,” Poppy said, pulling her sunglasses off her face with a wary smile.



Cool Friends/Hot August Snippets – LOVES ME, LOVES ME NOT



My August CONTEST opens up a whole lot more choices of great books to pick from, PLUS, you’ll still receive a $25 gift card from #Amazon, #BN or #iTunes.


To introduce you to these authors and their awesome books, I thought I’d give you “snippets” pulled straight from the stories. ENJOY!


Today’s awesome choice: Karen Sandler’s sweet romance LOVES ME, LOVES ME NOT. This book is one of the three books bundled in On Fire Fiction’s UNSUITABLY PERFECT.  So, if you pick that choice, you’ll get to read Karen’s book PLUS two other fab reads!

Live, Love, Laugh


Chapter 1

STEVE WALKER PLUNGED his hand into the murky depths of his daughter’s backpack. As Corazón regarded him with her coffee-colored eyes, Steve probed past fruit snack wrappers and pencil stubs, fingers encountering a soft, sticky lump.

He dislodged the gooey mess and held it out to his almost seven-year-old daughter. “What might this be?”

“Might be peanut butter an’ jelly.” She leaned closer and sniffed delicately. “Starbaby jelly.”

How many days ago had that particular sandwich taken up residence in the bottom of her backpack? With trepidation, he reached again into the black hole. His imagination displayed Technicolor fantasies of first his arm, then his entire body being sucked into the bottomless pit.

His mouth widened into a slow grin. Real potential here for his next smart phone app. Backpack Abyss. Hapless parents battling globs of bread and peanut butter, skewered by pencil stubs.

Finally, he struck pay dirt. He pinched the edge of the crumpled piece of paper and pulled it free. He held it out to Corazón’s earnest face.

“When did Mr. Harper give you this note?” He tried to be stern, but he wanted to hug her, and feel her thin caramel-colored arms wrap trustingly around his shoulders.

She shrugged, the gesture an imitation of his own. He brimmed with parental pride, marveling at how quickly she’d adapted in the eighteen months she’d been his.

With an effort, he returned to the matter at hand. “The message is from the principal and your teacher wanted you to give me this right away.”

She nodded solemnly. “Yes, Daddy.”

He lay the jelly-smeared sheet on the kitchen counter and picked up a damp rag. “I bet Principal Tipton thinks I ignored this note. She’s probably angry at Daddy. ”

“Ms. Tipton is always mad anyway.”

As Steve wiped the note clean, he had to agree. He’d never met the woman, only spoken with her on the phone after each of Corazón’s spirited antics. The Jell-O in the water fountain, the corn snake in the teacher’s desk drawer… Okay, the haircut she’d given her friend Jenny would take a while to grow out, especially the spot Cora had colored with permanent marker….

But where he saw high spirits and harmless experimentation Ms. Tipton saw signs of budding juvenile delinquency. The woman had no sense of humor. Her tone was judgmental, her attitude unforgiving. Talking to her, he felt the urge to pull on a sweater to keep warm. After a half-dozen rancorous phone calls with her, he was convinced she had snakes instead of hair.

Now there was an idea—Gorgon Schoolmistress. He could program each writhing snake on the Gorgon’s head with different venoms, and the hero would have to find the right shields to protect himself. Maybe Ms. Gor—Ms. Tipton would agree to model for the graphic artist.

When he’d swiped enough strawberry jelly off the paper, he read the appointment time penned neatly on the note. She’d expected him at the school at three o’clock. An hour-and-a-half ago. Principal Tipton would be furious.

“Daddy!” Corazón gasped. He looked up and saw her staring in fascinated horror out the front window. “She’s here!”

Steve moved behind his daughter, settling his hands on her shoulders. “Who’s here?” He squinted through the cut glass of the window, glimpsing the lines of a severe navy suit. The face above the suit shifted and fractured Picasso-like through the ornate glass.

Corazón craned her neck up at him, excitement bursting in her dark eyes. “Ms. Tipton!”

He heard the sharp tip-tap of steps on the porch then the doorbell rang.

“Daddy, what’re we gonna do?”

Even the doorbell sounded angry as it trilled a second time. “We let her in, mija,” he answered, using the Spanish endearment like a talisman. As he sidled to the door, Cora wrapped her arms around his legs.

“Tell her our dog ate the note, Daddy.”

“But we don’t have a dog, mija. Cousin Denny is allergic.”

She gripped him tighter. “Then a time-morpher took it. Came out of the ‘puter and gobbled it up.”

“I don’t think Ms. Tipton believes in time-morphers.”

“What’re we gonna do?” Corazón said again as her tight grip cut off the circulation in his legs.

“I’ll think of something, mija,” he soothed as he gripped the doorknob.

By the time he opened the door, he’d come up with several creative excuses, each sillier than the last. But it turned out not to have mattered. Because when he saw her on his doorstep, her slim ankles in navy spiked heels, the dangerous curves at hip and waist, the milk chocolate brown hair framing a delicate heart-shaped face—all coherent thought fled.

As a tantalizing scrap of red—red!—lace peeked from the edge of her skirt, he realized he was wrong about one thing. Ms. Tipton was no Gorgon. But he was absolutely right about another. She was blazing, spitting mad.

 Ah, yes, a wonderful start. Love the hero already. Poor Ms. Tipton doesn’t stand a chance, does she? Check all of Karen’s eclectic list of books here!

Good luck to everyone who signs up for this CONTEST. I hope your friends are as COOL as mine, and your hot August nights are filled with fun and good books! Look for more Snippets all month long.



More Bang! For Your Buck

Just released! Click HERE to buy:

More Bang! For Your Buck – A third short, erotic encounter of the Judy Banger kind

Kudos to my wonderful cover artist Kim Van Meter. She found the perfect “vector” to represent my heroine Judy Banger, tweaked the image as needed added the great lettering and special accents–notice the handcuffs. And lips.

When I showed the first draft to my husband, he said, “Where are the lips? You gotta have lips.”

Be still my heart. He noticed. 🙂

I may have mentioned that when I started this series, I assumed there’d be three books. Who doesn’t love a good trilogy? But when I came to the end of this book something amazing happened. Someone unexpected showed up and took Judy’s–and my–breath away. Suddenly, I knew Judy had a chance at her very own HEA (happily-ever-after, for you non-romance junkies).

Here’s Judy’s first glimpse of the man (from More Bang! For Your Buck):

Fletcher’s annoyed snarl gave way to a sigh of resignation. He swallowed a big gulp of wine then said, “Hello, Dad. Imagine meeting you here.”

He made a sweeping gesture with his free hand. “Gang, let me introduce you to my father, Judge Wilson Canby.”

“Judge?” Lewis repeated before levitating off the bed to disappear into the bathroom.

Pru, Judy noticed, had apparently snatched her purse and hightailed it at the first sign of trouble.

Judy shrank against the cushion pinned by the blue steel gaze that surveyed her from toe to head. The man’s expression was as unreadable as his son’s, but tightly clenched fists and the rigid cast of his shoulders spoke volumes. Anger. Frustration. Disappointment. And something else. Grief? Despair?

She’d seen the same look on Buddy’s face when he talked about the pain of losing his wife or the regret he felt over the vast chasm of disconnect between him and his son. Buddy had thrown in the towel and let Lewis manage their relationship. This man, Judy guessed, wasn’t the type to give up without a fight. His Armani suit might as well have been made of chain mail.

Poor Judy. Caught in a most compromising position by the man of her dreams. How could any writer write her out of this mess?

That’s a very good question. I’ll let you know as soon as THE BIG BANG! THEORY is published (hopefully mid-June).

In the meantime, please help me get the word out about this series. Every review and social media “share” is greatly appreciated. And please sign up for my May Contest.

You may be the lucky winner of a $25 Amazon gift card,

your choice of any one of these three current Screw Senility titles

AND a free copy of On Fire Fiction’s LOVE ME SOME COWBOY, a box set of five great books by five awesome authors.

So, Happy May Reading, my friends!  Deb

The Magnificent Eleven

As the adage says: There’s strength in numbers.

Like the number SEVEN…as in…The Magnificent Seven.

The Magnificent Seven made box office magic.

Ask Yul Brynner. If he were alive, he’d tell you: The right group of people can make magic happen.

And, it doesn’t hurt if one of the seven is Steve McQueen. (Be still my heart.)

Steven McQueen AND Yul Brynner...where have all the sexy cowboys gone?

So, what does The Magnificent Seven have to do with writing?

Well…um…seven rhymes with eleven…and since I belong to On Fire Fiction, a creative cooperative made up of ELEVEN published authors…okay, that’s a stretch. You’re right. You know me too well. I’ll use any excuse to post photos of Steve McQueen.

On Fire Fiction

But, obviously, the main purpose of this blog is to introduce On Fire Fiction and its ELEVEN members –and to explain about this growing trend in publishing: authors working cooperatively–and creatively–to share the daunting and at times overwhelming task of promoting their work.

Why do authors need to worry about promotion?

We all know publishing, along with book buying habits, has changed. Ebooks, ereaders and online retailers like Amazon, iTunes and B&N make it easy to buy a book. But have you looked at all the titles out there?! Eek!

Smart, well-focused promotion helps your loyal readers find out about your latest release. Promotion raises your “discoverability” to attract new readers. Hopefully, promotion begets sales, which, to be frank, is how today’s author makes a living so he or she can continue to write books to promote.

So, let me introduce my wonderful, magnificent-if you will–cohorts:

  • Linda Barrett
  • Jean Brashear
  • Rogenna Brewer
  • Ginger Chambers
  • Annie Jones
  • Julie Kenner
  • Day Leclaire
  • Barbara McMahon
  • Lisa Mondello
  • Karen Sandler
  • and, me, of course.
    • If you follow me on Facebook and/or Twitter, you may have seen this photo from a get-together of the “West Coast” members of OnFireFiction. We used Facetime and Skype to work with our members on the east coast, Texas and Colorado. We covered a rigorous agenda. But, yes, we did break to eat. I learned that I really like Vietnamese Pho. Yummm. 😉
    From left: Barbara McMahon, Ginger Chambers, me, Karen Sandler

    There is never a shortage of new things to learn in this ever-changing business–especially when it comes to marketing your books.

    But knowing you’re not alone in your efforts really makes a difference. Plus, writers are the most generous professionals I know. We’re eager to share our experiences–good and bad. We’re happy to trade tips on what type of advertising works and what flops. We eagerly share and post the best sites for getting the word out about a new release. And we may be setting up a data base for finding the best Pho. 🙂

    One exciting and very tangible thing to come out of this meeting turned out to be a win-win for both readers and authors. Offering “boxed sets” isn’t a new sales technique, but offering three complete books by three different authors for one super low price is just plain awesome.

    Unsuitably Perfect, OnFireFiction’s first 3-in-1 “Boxed Set” is now available at Amazon for just $.99.

    On Fire Fiction's first Boxed Set!
    On Fire Fiction’s first Boxed Set!
    So, that’s my magnificent news. Our fabulous OnFireFiction team has a whole bunch of exciting things planned. Here’s the link to the OFF Facebook page. Or follow OnFireFic on Twitter to stay abreast of what’s happening.
    Happy reading!

    Spring blossoms with great books…

    Oh, happy day — a very Good Friday!

    Spring has arrived in wild, reckless profusion. The birds are carrying on something fierce outside my window. A small green and black snake just wound his way through my newly planted garden.

    I love Spring. And the Easter Holiday is one of my personal favorites. I have great memories of dressing up in all my newly purchased finery–hats and gloves were a must–to go to church.

    Competitive egg dying is a more recent thing, but when my nephews showed up at Grandma’s, egg hunting became a contact sport.
    Nowadays, I’m seeing all sorts of toys, games, hair ties, kites and non-candy goodies showing up in Easter baskets.

    This Sunday, several generations will gather at my brother’s and sister-in-law’s home to watch the “old” kids hide eggs for  the “new” kids while parents snap pics and grandparents snap pics of their kids snapping pics.

    I will be taking the day to turn the “online” off and reconnect via “face time,” not Facebook. But, since this is a writer’s blog, I thought I’d spread some reading goodness in case you’d like to treat yourself to some fun, spring books for your eReaders libraries. Click on any image to take you right to the Amazon page.

    Now $1.99!

    $.99 Fun read!

    A great Kindle buy at $.99

    LOL fun! $.99

    Double RITA nominee! Now, just $.99

    May you begin next week and the new month with hope renewed.
    Happy Easter! And Happy Spring!

    My Unexpected Blog

    Why “Unexpected”?

    Well, check out what my Thesaurus says about the word:

    amazing, astonishing, eye-opening, fortuitous, from left field, impetuous, prodigious, unpredictable, wonderful.

    I get a little giddy thinking about all the possibilities: guest bloggers, Q&As with characters, super sexy, provocative photos OR pics of my dog, the rattlesnake we just killed, or anything else that might stumble into my corner of the world.

    Snake, you say? 45″, 7 buttons. This big boy (or girl, I can’t tell the difference)    scared the heck out of me while I was writing this blog. (It’s a beautiful spring  day in Debland and my poor old deaf dog nearly got struck not ten feet from  where I was sitting (on my deck).

    What other types of unexpected goodies can you expect?

    Well, for starters: How ’bout a Blow-out Sale?!

    Or, as Judy Banger would say, "A blow job sale!"

    I reduced the price on ALL of my short fiction titles to: $1.99.

    (Price changed at Amazon and Smashwords; other venues should be up soon.)

    Bang! You’re Dead!In With a Bang! GatorA Hundred Years or More

    And here’s another deal: Unsuitably Perfect by Lisa Mondello, Barbara McMahon and Karen Sandler.  Three complete, full-length romance novels from three bestselling authors for $4.99. You’ll have to do the math, but it sounds like a good deal to me. (I do words, I don’t do numbers.)

    Three great authors, three terrific stories for one low price.

    Read. Laugh. And if you’re eligible…Screw Senility. (I’m off to work on book III – More Bang! For Your Buck).