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.”
“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.
“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:
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:
Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00T8E5LN0
For Peggy, writing is oxygen!