2019 Life-Long Learning: Tornado Season – Oklahoma’s Fifth Season

    Spring in Oklahoma!  If you’ve lived here long, or even if you haven’t, you know why Oklahoma was given the nickname “Tornado Alley.”  Some years are worse than others.  The above picture is a free stock photo, not my own.  I am not one of the Oklahoman’s who run out to video tornadoes as they sail over. I have great respect for the giants. The funnel pictured above could cause damage, but at least it isn’t a mile wide like some have been and it appeared with enough daylight to see it, not in the dark.

This weekend has been eventful in some places. May 3, 1999 and May 20, 2013 are examples of why we were awarded the nickname.  We still talk about these tornado outbreaks.  May 3rd still holds the honor of the highest winds ever recorded on the face of the earth, 319 mph.  That will get your attention.  If you weren’t underground that night, you might not have survived in the path of that monster.  It sucked the concrete foundations of homes out of the ground. Luckily we don’t have those often or the state would be deserted.

Last night we had tornados in the state.  A small one in the southwest corner of the state destroyed some homes, there were no deaths.  That is how we count a win, no deaths.  Tomorrow is supposed to be some of the same.  The meteorologists say the atmosphere is unstable.  When warm air meets cold air, there is bound to be a battle.  And when the land is flat and there is nothing to stop the wind, a battle ensues.  Tornados love the plains and will sometimes touch down on a turnpike and follow the path of least resistance. 

But today is beautiful!  The sun is so bright it makes it hard to see.  The air is clean and crisp due to the rains last night.  No damage at least in this area and we are preparing for tomorrow.  May is always the most active month.  In Oklahoma the other thing that is a constant is wheat harvest in June.  You can be sure that it will rain all through harvest and then not another drop until October when storms can start all over again.

But adversity brings people together.  My son says he’s leaving the state, my sister already has.  But the places they go have problems of their own – snowstorms and avalanches, blistering heat and haboob sandstorms that will peel the paint off your car – or your body if you’re caught out in them.

I think I’ll stay home where I know what to expect.  I’m too old to move and start again.  Bring it on, Mother Nature, we can take it.

Advertisements
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

2019 Life-long Learning: Keystone Lake series

    Erin grew up on Keystone Lake and the little town of Mannford, Oklahoma in northeast Oklahoma.  It was an idyllic life for her and her mother until her father died on a cross-country trip.  Then the two became even closer.  Her mother owned a flower shop until the big corporate grocery store with their own floral department ran her out of business. Then she went to work for them.  If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. But Erin’s mother raised her daughter in the small town where she was born and along with help from her sister, a lawyer in Tulsa, the women not only survived but thrived.

Erin worked for her mother at the flower shop after school and on weekends as she waited to graduate and attend college at TU to earn a law degree – like her aunt.  It is a long way from a small town and flower shop to the second largest city in the state and the Tulsa County Courthouse.  But Erin would make it. She had a support system with her mother, aunt and friends.  She was smart and she was determined.

Then she was sexually harassed at the senior prom.  Accepting a date from Todd, a cute boy she barely knew in school, like Cinderella, she borrowed a dress and ran off to a fairytale date only to be made fun of.  She should have gone with her friends.

Determined to put the prom behind her and move on to college, Erin got a part time job working in her aunt’s law firm on days she didn’t attend class and life was good. Erin was growing up fast learning to balance life, school, and a new job.

While in college she began to hear stories about the cute boy who drove the Alpha Romeo Spider to class. Girls talk and the things they said were not good.  Todd’s treatment of his dates escalated and what used to be pressure for sex became rape and beatings.

Erin decided she had to put an end to Todd’s reign of terror. He confronted her more than once on campus. And when he thought she was a threat to his lifestyle he told her to stay out of his business.  Then her best friend disappeared.

Blooming Justice is the first book in the Keystone Lake series.  Check it out on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and fine bookstores everywhere.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

2019 Life-long Learning: OWFI 2019

    Home from OWFI conference I am exhausted.  I always feel this way after spending a weekend with like minds from all over. It was exhilarating and exhausting at the same time. I renewed old friendships and made some new ones.  It’s Sunday and I am supposed to put out my blog.  I will try, but I am tired. 

I assisted a speaker, Rene Gutteridge, from Oklahoma City as she spoke about writing film scripts. Before the conference was over we got our hand signals straight as I sat in the back telling her how much time was left. The great IT team fixed our mic when I tried to in introduce Rene and my voice ended up being heard in another room. 

I got caught in a thunderstorm and the great staff of Embassy Suites sent a van to pick us up.  It was only about a block and a half to the restaurant, so we walked over thinking the clouds were not close. But it’s spring in Oklahoma, so you know . . .

I begged for centerpieces for the Friday night banquet so much that I ended up with too many and they spilled onto the Saturday night banquet.

My phone said I walked almost 4 miles on Friday all over Embassy Suites and up and down stairs with centerpieces and to attend workshops. My old legs kept me up with leg cramps that night.

I missed the workshop given by Meg Gardiner because of a schedule conflict.  I really wanted to see that one.

I picked up certificates for members of my local club who won honors at the writing conference. I ate too much. 

But Sunday morning I got a chance to eat breakfast with some old friends and my editor from The Wild Rose Press.  We had all began to let down a little.  It was fun catching up with them. It takes a village to put on a writer’s workshop.  Now we decide what we can do better for next year.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

2017 Life-Long Learning: Learning to Live With Allergies

    I’ve always been active and able to do what I wanted.  I know I’m not getting any younger but my allergies have been terrible this year.  I’ve had a stopped-up ear for over three weeks now, gone to the doctor, gotten a steroid shot and changed my allergy medications. Something needs to give. I want to work in my garden!

The iris are blooming and so is the nutsedge in the front!  I’ve tried spraying it and so far it is green and lush.  I know not to pull it.  Master Gardeners say it only activates the roots and it grows more. But it is healthy and I’m not.

I long to get out and finish cleaning out my flower beds.  I have two new tomato plants that need more sun but trimming the trees behind them seems impossible at this time.  Maybe they came to the wrong house to live this year. I don’t like old age and being told what I can and can’t do. 

Next week is the OWFI conference in Oklahoma City and writers from four states and beyond come to join like minds. I have more than one job to do at this conference and I am looking forward to it.  I can’t poop out! 

I should grab a mic and start singing “I Will Survive!” Maybe that would scare the allergies away.

How is your spring going?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

2019 Lifetime Learning: Witches’ Cliff Releasing April 24

    When The Wild Rose Press decided on another collaborative writing event for their authors, I thought what fun to give a topic and everyone write something different for it.  I was right!  The idea was to take a setting with a few main characters and all the different authors, with all their different writing styles and genres, and have a ball with it. And we did.

The publishing company came up with the rules of the make-believe place (that’s what fiction is after all) and we all had ideas about how it looked and what feelings we got from the setting.  We were to write around different holidays at the same Vermont inn.  I chose Halloween.  I love to write fantasy (as well as other things) and I thought everyone else would choose Christmas.

So far I’ve read three of the novellas and loved seeing how many different ideas came from one setting.

Witches’ Cliff, releasing this week on April 24, 2019, is a fantasy about a modern-day witch with an age-old problem.  Somethings never change.  Penny goes to the Deerbourne Inn over Halloween weekend to seek advice from an ancestor.  Her ten times great grandmother was put to death during the Salem Witch Trials and since Penny has no relatives to talk to, she decides to conjure up her grandmother.  She has a question that maybe the woman can answer. And since it is Halloween, it is a good time to get in touch with the dead.

Check out Witches’ Cliff and the other Deerbourne Inn series – e-published only.  Novellas tell a story in a short amount of time.  You can easily finish one in a weekend.  They are normally around 100 pages – a short novel or long short story.

Witches’ Cliff and the Deerbourne Inn series are available on Kindle, Nook, Kobo and other e-published formats.  https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07PNK8QMT?pf_rd_p=f3acc539-5d5f-49a3-89ea-768a917d5900&pf_rd_r=KGKMJQCRCRMWVFT3CSGE.

What are you reading this weekend?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

2019 Life-Long Learning: Drenched at the Runestone Park

    It was the best of times; it was the worst of times.  Oh, that’s already been done. But it sums up this weekend fairly well.  It was the weekend of the biannual Heavener Runestone Viking Fest at the Heavener Runestone Park in Oklahoma.  I’ve been a part of this event for several years now but this year Mother Nature did not approve. I should have asked her first.

Please let me explain how much I love this park and the lore that surrounds it.  I wrote two books about it and I love to set up in the pristine forest and breath deeply the magic that surrounds it.  But not this weekend.  The weatherman kept saying Saturday would be an indoor day.  That was an understatement.  Why couldn’t he have been wrong this time?

We got to the mountain Friday evening, tired from the four-and-a-half-hour drive and were planning to set up the canopy the night before.  But we were unsure if we would be there the next morning due to the potential rain.  You can’t set up paperback books under a 10 x 10 canvas canopy in the rain. And it was cold.  My husband and I aren’t getting any younger and both of us struggle climbing uphill (and the entire park is uphill).  So, with arthritis meds in hand we came for the weekend anyway.  I so love the forest. 

We went to the weekend cabin we’d rented and met the cousins who drive up from Texas to join us each time we make this trek.  Thank God for company.  Saturday it poured all day long. Just to find something to do, we looked up wineries in the area and drove into Paris, Arkansas in the rain to a tasting room. Cowie Wine Cellars www.cowiewinecellars.com  was lovely – even in the rain – and we might have bought some to bring back with us. On the way back the GPS took us over unfamiliar territory in the deluge with skies so dark it looked like midnight and we were almost involved in a wreck on a two-lane rural Arkansas road.

It continued to rain all day and into the night.  We munched on snacks back at the cabin to avoid getting back out for a meal. 

Sunday – after a sleepless night trying to decide what to do about the festival – we awoke to cold and drizzle.  The yard outside our cabin was standing in ankle deep water in places.    It would be too cold and muddy to set up at the festival for those of us not as young as we used to be.  Cold, wet and disillusioned, once again we avoided the mountain.  We met for breakfast and the cousins headed back toward Texas and we packed the car for home.  I hate that I missed it, but I don’t think nature meant for me to be there this year.  I miss the forest and telling people about the magic of the place. 

I’m sorry, Heavener Runestone Park.  I’m not as hale and hardy as I once was.  I know vendors camped out and stayed on the mountain all weekend.  We didn’t. Another lesson learned about nature and old age.

When we got home to Enid, we found it had barely sprinkled while we were gone.

What did you do this weekend?  Was the weather bad where you were?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

2019 Life-long Learning: Heavener Runestone Park Viking Fest!

  Twice a year the Heavener Runestone Park https://heavenerrunestonepark.com/ holds its Viking Fest with all things Viking and Celtic.  The park is loaded with costumed characters and families on outings.  Picnics are held as children enjoy turkey legs and corn dogs. Celtic music is heard throughout the park and it is transformed back in time to an era we can only dream about.

The festival is held to celebrate the runestone and dream about a by-gone age.  Vendors come from all across the United States to sell their wares.  Food trucks line the road and there are tables to eat the morsels found along the way.

I was enchanted with the forest the first time I traveled to the southeast part of the state near Poteau to the Heavener Runestone Park.  The idea that Vikings were in Oklahoma before Christopher Columbus found the new world was interesting and my YA book Glome’s Valley was born.

The sandstone monolith sits in the valley with ancient carvings on it claiming the valley for someone named Glome.  At least that is what some people believe.  It is the backdrop for my Oklahoma fairytale, Glome’s Valley.   I wrote a story about a young boy who hiked the trails near the stone and ran into a Viking ghost. They had adventures as only a child could.  They encountered trolls, fairies, and of course Thor and his trouble-maker brother, Loki.

Glome’s Valley and Return to Glome’s Valley are on sale this week on Kindle for $.99. If you haven’t read them, check them out.  I recently wrote a short story based on these two books titled Stone of Thor which will be featured in Okie Comics later on this year. Here’s an excerpt.

Last year when Ethan first came to Heavener with his dad, Glome had given him a rock with the sign of Thor written in ancient Futhark like the runes on the famous Heavener Runestone. He said it would protect him from bad things in the forest. And the worst thing in the forest was Loki, step-brother to the Norse god Thor. Ethan found out that if you needed him, Thor was available to help just by rubbing the stone and calling out his name.  But you didn’t call Thor unless it was an emergency. Now the rock was missing.

After dinner when the fireflies came out and darkness came, Ethan went to his swinging bed and curled up. Dad was snoring in his own bed. Ethan had almost drifted off when something made the bed sway.  He opened his eyes and saw Loki sitting at the end of the bed. He wore green clothing and his long nose pointed down until it almost met his chin on the way up. The inside of the cottage sparkled with the eyes of imps who often traveled with their master, Loki.  They had never visited the inside of Ethan’s house before.

“Did I wake you young man?” Loki smiled an evil grin.

Ethan instantly reached under his pillow for the rock that protected him in time of need.  But it wasn’t there.

“Looking for this?” Ethan’s rock with the sign for Thor dangled between his fingers. 

“Give that back!” Ethan sat up and grabbed for the rock sending his bed swaying as Loki disappeared. 

“You’ll never get this back.  It’s mine now. In fact, I plan to throw it into the forest where it will never be found again. Your days of being protected by my brother are over.”  Ethan saw a flash of green and Loki was gone.    

I always look forward to the festival and this year it will be bigger and better.  The weather should be great.  Bring the kids and pick up a copy of the Oklahoma fairytale Glome’s Valley https://tinyurl.com/ycxychjm and its sequel, Return to Glome’s Valley http://tinyurl.com/ybdsqr6w.

Come see us!

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

2019 Life-Long Learning: Author Peggy Jaeger – Deerbourne Inn series

  I always learn so much by having a guest blogger on my website.  Today I want to introduce author, Peggy Jaeger, and her novella Hope’s Dream.  Peggy was one of the authors who wrote a novella about the fictional Deerbourne Inn in Vermont for The Wild Rose Press.  I think we all loved writing about this place and I am thrilled to have Peggy tell us about her book and how it came to be.

As a writer, I am always looking for new and intriguing ways to tell ages-old stories. For several months a rags-to-riches romance was spinning about in my brain and just when I was set to let it simmer for a time while I finished working on two contracted books, the Wild Rose Press put out its call for submissions to a new novella series titled THE DEERBOURNE INN.

That story I was milling around bounded to the front on my mind and HOPE’S DREAM came to life.

The Willow Springs setting of the Deerbourne Inn books –a tiny town where everyone knows everyone else – was perfect for the story of a small-town girl who’s gone through some rough times and had to make life altering changes, including giving up on her futures dreams and desires. My thought was, what would happen if this girl was suddenly given the chance to have everything she’s ever hoped and wished for come true? What would she have to sacrifice for the chance to make her life, and that of her family, a better one? And what would happen if during this time, she’d fall in love with a mysterious stranger?

Of course, my hero couldn’t just show up and give her money. What a boring story that would be! No, there had to be a backstory concerning the money and a moral decision Hope would have to make in accepting it. Conflict is everything in a romance! (And in life, too.)

Once I worked out the backstory, it took me about two weeks to get the first draft of the story written and my idea submitted. Luckily, I was one of the first authors to get on board and HOPE’S DREAM was the second novella released.

It never ceases to amaze me how things work out in life.

Hope Kildaire gave up her dream of becoming a nurse practitioner when a car accident killed her father and left her mother an invalid. Working two jobs and caring for her mother leaves the twenty-seven-year-old with no time for fun or relationships. When a law firm representing her paternal grandparents sends her several letters, Hope ignores them. She despises the family who disowned her father and wants nothing to do with them.

Lawyer Tyler Coleman’s job is simply to obtain Hope’s signature on a legal document. Getting it is harder than planned, though, when an unexpected attraction blossoms between them. If Ty is honest with Hope about why he’s in Willow Springs, he’ll fulfill his assignment but may risk hurting her.

The opportunity to have everything she’s ever desired is at Hope’s fingertips. Will her dream come true at the expense of Tyler’s love?

Hope stood behind the bar, filling two glasses with draft beer. She hadn’t spotted him approach, so he took the moment to observe her unawares.

A reserved smile graced her face as the guy waiting for his order chatted her up. Early twenties by Tyler’s guess, the kid stared at Hope with a serious case of attraction. He knew how the younger man felt.

During their lesson her hair had been woven into a braid. In the lodge, when she’d removed her hat, he’d likened the colors to butterscotch and honey. Now with it unbraided and freely floating down past her shoulders, the colors burst into life. Gold and red highlights shimmered from the waves framing her face, as if each strand had been hand painted for emphasis. In the tavern’s subdued lighting, Hope was a bright, vibrant beacon, sparkling with health and life.

Tyler was drawn to her light, her vitality, as if he’d spent his existence until that moment in perpetual darkness.

Hope turned, reached for something behind her, and caught his eye.

For a moment her body froze, her hand still outstretched, her eyes widening in surprise when they lit on him. She dipped her chin and regarded him from under her eyelashes as she finger-swiped the hair falling across her face behind her ear. A quick head bob his way indicated she’d be right with him.

With an expert’s finesse she uncorked a bottle of Jameson’s, poured a thimbleful each into two shot glasses, then added them to beer-guy’s order. He slid a bill into her hand and then waved off the change she tried to give him back. He scooped the drinks, then carried them back to his table. Hope slid the change into one of the jelly jars behind the bar marked with several names, hers among them, and made her way over to him.

“Hey, New York.” Sweet laughter warmed with surprise rang in her voice. “How are the legs?”

Tyler groaned and stretched them out in front of him. “Better after a long, hot soak, but I’m betting they’re gonna feel worse in the morning.”

She tossed him a quick, sympathetic look. “Make sure you take some kind of analgesic before going to sleep tonight. It’ll help. Trust me.”

“Will do.”

“What can I get you?”

He spurted off the name of one of the draft beers.

She pulled it and then brought it back to him.
“Anything to eat? I know the inn doesn’t serve dinner.”

He glanced up at the selection board again and asked, “What do you recommend?”

“The soup’s hot and fabulous. Comes with a salad or fresh bread. The burgers here are always great, but I’m biased.” Her open smile charmed him.

“Sold.”

“So,” he said after she came back from placing his order, “you’re a woman of many talents. Ski instructor. Bartender.”

The brighter colors in her hair glistened when she shook her head. “We in the business prefer the term mixologist.”

You can find Hope’s Dream here:

Amazon :https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07HSSYK4V/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i1

Wrp:  https://catalog.thewildrosepress.com/all-titles/6303-hope-s-dream.html

Nook :  https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/hopes-dream-peggy-jaeger/1129675139?ean=2940161540640

Itunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/hopes-dream/id1437725682?mt=11

AUTHOR Peggy Jaeger is a contemporary romance writer who writes about strong women, the families who support them, and the men who can’t live without them.

Family and food play huge roles in Peggy’s stories because she believes there is nothing that holds a family structure together like sharing a meal…or two…or ten. Dotted with humor and characters that are as real as they are loving, Peggy brings all topics of daily life into her stories: life, death, sibling rivalry, illness and the desire for everyone to find their own happily ever after. Growing up the only child of divorced parents she longed for sisters, brothers and a family that vowed to stick together no matter what came their way. Through her books, she has created the families she wanted as that lonely child.

Tying into her love of families, her children’s book, THE KINDNESS TALES, was illustrated by her artist mother-in-law.

Peggy holds a master’s degree in Nursing Administration and first found publication with several articles she authored on Alzheimer’s Disease during her time running an Alzheimer’s in-patient care unit during the 1990s.

In 2013, she placed first in two categories in the Dixie Kane Memorial Contest: Single Title Contemporary Romance and Short/Long Contemporary Romance.

In 2017 she came in 3rd in the New England Reader’s Choice contest for A KISS UNDER THE CHRISTMAS LIGHTS and was a finalist in the 2017 STILETTO contest for the same title.

In 2018, Peggy was a finalist in the HOLT MEDALLION Award and once again in the 2018 Stiletto Contest.

A lifelong and avid romance reader and writer, she is a member of RWA and her local New

Hampshire RWA Chapter.

Peggy Jaeger can be found online here:

Website/Blog: http://peggyjaeger.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/peggy_jaeger

Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00T8E5LN0

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Peggy-Jaeger-Author/825914814095072?ref=bookmarks

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/peggyjaeger/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13478796.Peggy_Jaeger

Instagram: https://instagram.com/mmj122687/

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/peggy-jaeger

For Peggy, writing is oxygen!

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

2019 Life-long Learning: Jean M. Grant and the Deerbourne Inn Series

    Today I am thrilled to have as my guest blogger, author Jean M. Grant.  She is a fellow author writing for The Wild Rose Press and has written a novella for the Deerbourne Inn Series titled Soul of the Storm. Seeing how she goes about writing her books is a learning experience for me.

Jean’s background is in science and she draws from her interests in history, nature, and her family for inspiration. She writes historical and contemporary romances and women’s fiction. She also writes articles for family-oriented travel magazines. When she’s not writing or chasing children, she enjoys tending to her flower gardens, hiking, and doing just about anything in the outdoors.

Soul of the Storm – Will love help her summit one more peak?

Charlotte MacGregor lost the thrill of conquering mountains five years ago when her sister disappeared on a hiking adventure without her. Still guilt-ridden, Charlotte heads for a vacation to rustic Vermont with a friend—where she’s surrounded by reminders of her devastating loss and plagued with unanswered questions.

Matiu Christiansen is an outdoors buff. He works multiple jobs to save for his dream of owning an outfitter in New Zealand. He’s never quite felt at home in the United States and he yearns for his Maori roots, but his attraction to Charlotte puts a kink in his plans to move home later this year.

Thrown together by coincidence, Charlotte and Matiu form a kindred bond through their shared love of the outdoors. Can Charlotte surmount her demons to assist Matiu on a rescue when a late-season snowstorm hits? And can Matiu help Charlotte heal from the pain of the past?

She went to feel her ring on her finger with her thumb…but the ring wasn’t there. That old habit would not die even years later.

A dog bark intruded. The man crossed to the back door. “Reka, sweet girl, take your nap. Only a few hours here and then home, okay?” He spoke to her like a father to a toddler. The dog barked again. “A swim and walk this morning weren’t enough for you?”

He approached the dog, petted it, and whispered affections.

Charlotte made a soundless “Aww” and kept perusing.

The man returned, nearer. Residual sweat traced his brow. He pointed to a selection of books in the middle. “These are the best. Depends on what you’re looking for. Honest reviews or glorified fantasies?”

“Honest reviews, always.”

He stroked a hand through his neck-length black hair, the longer top layer falling over his forehead. He squatted and withdrew a few books from the lower shelf. “You could go with the popular or famous names, sure, but I like these authors.” He handed her one.

A book on South America sat in her hands. She muttered, “Thanks. Don’t need that one.”

“Oh, already been there, eh? All good, all good.” He took it and shoved it back on the shelf. “Where do your dreams lie then?”

She swallowed. No, I wasn’t there in that way. I was supposed to have been there. Five years ago. Instead she said, “Well, Vermont for now.”

“You’re in luck. I’m from Willow Springs.”

Jean loves settings and compared Vermont to New Zealand.

Ten Signatures of Vermont:

  1. Green Mountains
  2. Covered bridges
  3. “Mud Season”
  4. Farms & meadows
  5. Cheese, ice cream (“cremees”), and chocolate
  6. Rivers and waterfalls
  7. Rustic small towns
  8. Snow
  9. The Long Trail, a 272-mile hiking trail that goes from North to South across the state
  10. Cows

Ten (okay, 15…) Signatures of New Zealand:

  1. Golden beaches, teal seas, and the city of sails (Auckland)
  2. Maori culture
  3. Aspiring mountains (e.g. the Southern Alps/The Remarkables)
  4. Volcanic and geothermal wonderland
  5. Friendly Kiwis (the folk) and shy kiwis (the birds)
  6. Nothing scary that can eat you
  7. Adventure capital of the world (Queenstown)
  8. Cool lingo and dialect
  9. Rugby
  10. Green rolling hills (my favorite)

A few bonus signatures:

  1. Hobbiton
  2. Wineries
  3. Pristine, clean wilderness
  4. Southern lights
  5. Glacier hiking

How does she prepare for writing a book?

For Soul of the Storm, I hightailed it north a few hours to the fictional setting of Willow Springs, Vermont. I donned my boots and hiked a trail that’s in the book, explored farms and weaving backroads, walked through the small towns, chatted with townsfolk, and took many visual snapshots of the quiescent region of the Mad River Valley. Also, the hero in the story is from New Zealand, and I was fortunate to visit the “land of the long white cloud” on my honeymoon. I dug into the memory vault for little bits of authenticity, and when needed, I consulted a few authors and readers for cultural accuracy. What do I do when I can’t get to the location in a book? I research. Books, online, or I chat with experts in the region/culture. Setting deserves just as much attention as the characters and plot. Setting IS a character, at least in my books. 🙂

Connect with Jean here: 

Website ~ Twitter  ~ FacebookGoodreads ~ Bookbub~ Amazon Author PageThe Wild Rose Press

Check out Jean’s books here:

Amazon ~ Barnes and Noble ~ iTunes ~ Kobo ~ GooglePlay ~Walmart

Pick up a copy of Jean’s books and let her love-of-setting fill you with wonder. Setting is a character and I learned a lot about how to use it.

Thanks, Jean, it was great having you as my guest today.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

2019 Lifetime Learning: A $.99 Sale!

    Erin was sexually harassed at the prom by her date in front of the entire senior class. But high school was over, and college loomed ahead.  The last thing she wanted to do was tell her mother. She and Mom had been through enough already and all she wanted to do was become a lawyer like her Aunt Toni. She and Mom had little money, but enough love to go around. They depended on each other.  Erin decided she was not hurt, only embarrassed and she’d put it behind her. She had her whole life ahead of her.

Todd embarrassed the nerdy young girl he invited to the prom as a show of power.  He had little power in his own life. His father saw to that. Growing up with money to burn, Todd and his brother relied on each other to get by Dad.  Then his brother left for college leaving Todd at the mercy of a man who showed no mercy to anyone.  Todd was lost.  The only thing he loved was the Alpha Romeo Spider convertible he bought with the first check from his trust – mostly because Mom and Dad hated it.

Who knew the two kids from the high school prom would end up on the same college campus and be thrown together again?  Erin worked part time at her aunt’s law firm on days she didn’t have class and found herself in a grown-up world wondering if law was where she wanted to be.  Todd just hung out looking for the next girl in a string of them. They were just a way to feel good for a short time. But Todd never thought about the fact that someone was bound to talk eventually.

When Erin met a young woman working at the courthouse who knew her pain, the pieces began to fall together.  Todd was the rapist on campus and Erin could get Aunt Toni to help her put an end to it.

The Kindle version of Blooming Justice is on sale at Amazon March 15-31 for $.99.  Pick up a copy set at beautiful Keystone Lake, Oklahoma and if you like it, leave me a review.

What are you reading right now?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments