Friday, December 27, 2013

Best Character Development-EVER!

     When we're doing our best to evolve a character from bad to good...or...better yet, regress him or her from good to bad, it can be daunting.
     This morning, I caught a glimpse of a movie I'd seen years ago, and I have to tell you it is the best example of the development of a character that I've EVER seen. And instead of from bad boy to good, it is from good guy to downright rotten egg!
     Not Without My Daughter, starring Sally Field, shows the breakdown of a relationship and not for one reason, but for many. An American woman who married an Iranian doctor is the US agrees to travel to Iran with her husband, in spite of many misgivings. Before they leave, we catch glimpses of how he's often mistreated in the job force, but the wife never fully understands what he's been going through. However, once in Iran, the "good 'ol boy" bonding plus the pressure from his family to stay in Iran overshadows any feelings he might have for his wife. He soon falls back into the attitude of "master of the house" where his wife is concerned. And he makes it clear eventually through domestic violence that she WILL do whatever he wants her to.
     WHEW! For someone we empathize with early on, he surely changes before our eyes.
     WHY AM I TELLING YOU ALL OF THIS? Because his evolution or regression might be more apt, takes place brilliantly before our eyes.
     And how do we know this change is done realistically? Because this story actually happened.
     If you want a wonderful look at character personality change...see Not Without My Daughter. Seeing the subtle changes that take place until a caring, loving man does a complete one-eighty into a tyrant, this is the movie to see. Soak it up. This is the real deal for seeing a character turnaround quite literally before your eyes!

Friday, December 20, 2013

 
CONGRATS, MAXIE.  You won Tamera's Book!
Will be sending to your email!
 
Now, folks, I have:
FOUR MORE BOOKS TO GIVEAWAY!
 
            Lisa Lickel: The Potawatami Boy 
Davalynn Spencer: As You Are at Christmas
Karla Akins: The Pastor’s Wife Wears Biker Boots
Rick Barry: Gunner’s Run
 
Give me one good reason why you'd like to win one of these books!
MERRY CHRISTMAS
Leave your email addy by Sunday at noon!!!
 
WISHING ALL OF YOU A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS

Monday, December 16, 2013

Grabbing Some Shortbread and Tea...Putting in the DVD Giveaway!

TAMERA KRAFT'S
A CHRISTMAS PROMISE!
Leave your email addy, don't forget,
in order to have a chance to win Tamera Kraft's, A Christmas Promise.
Unfortunately, I love to eat while enjoying my fave Christmas movies.
And I love sooo many of them.
Nativity Story
Scrooge, all versions
It's a Wonderful Life
The Christmas Story
Christmas in Connecticut
and so many more.
What is your fave Christmas movie and what snacks do you devour while watching?
Move over Chex Mix and The Christmas Card, here I come!
 
DON'T FORGET TO LEAVE YOUR EMAIL ADDY and the name of your fave Christmas movie by Wednesday when I'll draw a name for another freebie!
 
MERRY CHRISTMAS...
 


Friday, December 13, 2013

FAVE CHRISTMAS RECIPES AND FREE BOOKS!


What do these two things have in common?
CHRISTMAS!!!
DON'T FORGET TO LEAVE YOUR EMAIL ADDIES!!!!!! IN ORDER TO ENTER...
Congrats, Melanie B. for winning Polar Bear Plunge on Wednesday! Hope you enjoy!
HOW ABOUT A CHANCE TO WIN ROSE'S BOOK? See below!
Anyone with a favorite Christmas recipe? I’m giving you one here:

Wonderful Chocolate Fudge

2 cups white sugar
½ c whole milk and 1/2c half n half
½ cup cocoa
¼ cup butter
2t (or more) vanilla
Nuts optional

Butter sides of Dutch over or equivalent size saucepan. Mix sugar and cocoa together in pan, add milk and half n half until all is mixed well. Cook over medium heart STIRRING CONSTANTLY!!! Or it will separate. Once it is boiling, turn heat down a tad and stop stirring (just occasionally so that it won’t stick). Once it reaches the firm ball stage (unless you make a lot of candy, you’ll need a candy thermometer) if you can gauge it yourself, you know that a spoonful dropped into cold water, then drain and add more cold, you’ll pick up the glob and it will form a ball between your fingers that is slightly firm. (most recipes call for softball stage, but I’ve found that firmball works much better). Remove from heat, add vanilla and butter WITHOUT STIRRING. Don’t stir or move it around at all, just let it cool so that you can touch the outside of the pan comfortably. Grab a spoon and beat it until it starts to have a creamy look. Pour onto a piece of parchment, spreading out into a rectangular shape. Cut into pieces and seal in a container in the frig until Christmas (if you can wait that long). This is so creamy and wonderful. If it comes out sugary for any reason, it means it was disturbed while cooling, just add new milk and recook.

THIS IS DELICIOUS!!!
HOPE YOU ALL ENJOY! AND HAVE A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!
WHAT’S YOUR FAVE CMAS RECIPE? 

Leave it below by SATURDAY AT MIDNIGHT and add your email addy for a chance to win:

Rose Ross Zediker’s: Wedding on the Rocks

Monday, December 9, 2013

I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas…with lots of giveaways!


Over the next few weeks, I’ll be giving away copies of some of my books and some from friends and clients. So hang onto that proverbial hat and get ready for giveaways galore! Just put your email addy in the comments and tell me why you love Christimas! Be sure and put in your email addy as I won’t search to find you for one. (DID THAT BEFORE TO BE NICE, WHAT A NIGHTMARE!) So be sure you include the addy.

Tell me…why do you love Christmas?

First book giveaway will be Polar Bear Plunge, a Christmas novella from White Rose Publishing. Then:

Rose Ross Zediker: Wedding on the Rocks

Tamera Kraft: A Christmas Promise

Lisa Lickel: The Potawatami Boy 

Davalynn Spencer: As You Are at Christmas

Karla Akins: The Pastor’s Wife Wears Biker Boots

Rick Barry: Gunner’s Run
 
LEAVE YOUR COMMENT FOR POLAR BEAR PLUNGE BY THIS WEDNESAY! I'LL PICK AND WINNER AND WE'LL START ON ROSE'S BOOK!

 

Monday, October 21, 2013

Singular Thinking by Linda S. Glaz




Singular Thinking by Linda S. Glaz

When sitting in an office 24/7, which a lot of us do for the most part, we have to consider that we are being very singular in many aspects.
A lot of writers are outgoing, but then must sit behind a computer for a good share of their day.
Let’s look at a couple things:
First, writing requires life experiences to be able to create ‘real’ characters.
Second, it’s imperative for writers to interact with other people in order to understand what’s going on in the world. And different social media formats don’t replace actual interaction with humans.
As writers, we want that time with our computers. Where else can a person hunt and peck, creating imaginary lives, personalities, and scenarios that will come alive on someone’s ebook or in a printed book?
There needs to be a balance that allows us to keep living as well as bring that incredible life to our characters which requires the long hours on the computer.
How do you balance your time as a writer? What do you do to be sure you are interacting with ‘normal’ people?
How many hours a week/day do you give to your craft?
Do you allow time to learn new aspects of your craft through critique groups, classes, etc.?
OR, are you the 24/7 writer who never lifts his head from the sand to see what’s going on in the world around you?
 

Saturday, October 5, 2013

A Word or an Expression

Has a word or an expression just snapped you awake enough that you thought:
I could write a story around that?
I've been listening to the news or a conversation and suddenly, one word will wake me up. I can see a story as clearly as if I'd already written it.
Have you had one of those 'aha' moments that woke you up?
Wanna share?


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Too Many Folks Too Anxious


There are too many folks too anxious to submit before they’re ready.

I’ve just finished most of my conference schedule for the year, and I have to admit that I’ve seen folks signing up for one appointment after another with first this agent and then that editor. Too many appointments, not enough time in the classroom. After all, that’s why they’re at the conference, right? Apparently not. Because instead of learning their craft, they seem to simply want to shop around manuscripts…some ready…most are not.

I would think after spending anywhere from $500-well over a thousand dollars, a writer would want to learn more about the craft.

Sorry, sitting here a tad frustrated that I saw so many writers with a lot of potential doing nothing but shopping around a tired old manuscript that hasn’t changed in years when they could benefit themselves by sitting in a classroom learning the craft.

Okay, done ranting, but I fear I’ll see the same folks next year doing the same, and they have too much potential to be stuck in a rut.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Giveaway!!! Ukuleles Undercover by Cheryl Lynn Martin

Yes, Cheryl Martin's at it again!
Ukuleles Undercover!
Cheryl's teen aged private investigator, Leilani, gets crushes like I get chocolate cravings, and I thought I'd let you get to know her current heartthrob. Brandon...

So, Brandon, how did you end up involved with The Hawaiian Island Detective Club?

I met Leilani in math class and then discovered that she lived just down the street from me. Leilani got me involved in some mystery thing happening at the music school, but I totally do not like spying and investigating. I’m a surfer guy and I like cars, too, just like Sam. He’s a pretty cool guy. ‘Course Maile and Leilani think Sam’s belching is annoying, but I think it’s pretty cool and wish I had that skill.
So, if you don’t like mysteries, were you able to help Leilani, Maile, Sam and Kimo catch the culprit at all?

(Brandon groans) Yeah, I did volunteer to help Leilani a little, but never again! It ended in disaster.
Hmm . . . that’s not what I heard.

Well, I guess it’s how you look at it. Believe me—I won’t be doing any more snooping or going on any stake-outs again.

(Brandon sighs) ’Course it may not be so easy if I’m hanging out with Leilani. She’s way into this detective stuff.

Oh! So you and Leilani are hanging out, huh?

Uh . . . (Brandon’s face turns bright red) Sometimes we go surfing . . . and maybe get some shave-ice.
You’re new to the island, right?

Yup. Just moved here from Oregon. My mom got totally burned out on all the foul weather there. She wanted lots more sunshine.

I didn’t know they surfed in Oregon.

They do, but you have to wear a wetsuit most of the year. I have a bunch of friends in California so I visited them a lot to ride some great waves and work on my skills.
Thanks for visiting, Brandon, and I hope we’ll hear more from you—maybe even see you involved in another mystery!

Yeah, right! (Brandon waves me off, and I chuckle)
 Well, that's just a taste of the fun Cheryl has with her characters. If you have children or grandchildren in the middle-reader age group, by all means, get a copy of Ukuleles Undercover!
I'm all for giving away a copy because it's such an awesome read, I want to get it into more hands.
Just leave me an email addy in your comment that tells me why you'd like to win a copy.
 YOU WON'T BE SORRY!
Ukuleles Undercover rocks! Adults will love this series as well. I know I'm hooked.  
 The sounds of ukuleles at the local music school blend with warnings and Leilani can't resist gathering the Hawaiian Island Detective Club together in order to discover who the culprit is. One quirky character after another is suspicious. Leilani even considers her dreaded math teacher, Mr. Edwards, who she dislikes because of her mom's crush on him. Things are never what they seem as each character is convincingly guilty. Leilani does her best to keep her mind on the mystery all the while falling for the new guy in class. Another surfer. Grrrrr....she has such a soft spot for surfers. But in no time at all, she convinces Brandon to join the other "detectives" to find out who is behind the threats at the music school.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

GIVEAWAY/ANOTHER BIKER BOOTS!



I just have to give away another copy of The Pastor's Wife Wears Biker Boots. 
An ebook copy!
So if you'd like an ebook copy, please leave a comment and your email addy!
The correct email addy! I won't hunt all over the net to find it!

I read pastor's wife--Karla Akins' book as her crit partner.
I reread it as her agent.
Now, it's my bathtub read 'til it's done.
What a wonderful book! I'm halfway through it again, and wow! What a terrific read.

Sooo...if you'd like a free ebook copy, please be sure
and tell me why you think you deserve it, and I'll pick one to go out this week.
You've got 'til early Friday to let me know; I have a new giveaway going up
for Cheryl Lynn Martin's middle-reader on Friday afternoon.

Blessings, my friends.

Keep watching. I plan to do some writing tips this fall that will help you navigate
the scary road of punctuation marks and editor pet peeves.
 


Tuesday, August 6, 2013

GIVEAWAY! THE PASTOR'S WIFE WEARS BIKER BOOTS! by Karla Akins




You want to be sure and have plenty of tissues, because if you aren’t laughing, you’ll be crying.
Karla Akins is a preacher’s wife and she knows from where she speaks.
With her own life challenges, she writes about a pastor’s wife named Kirstie who faces countless challenges of her own, and she finds herself a tad depressed. Her husband, being a husband, tells her he’ll pray about it.
While he’s praying, she’s headed to the bike shop to pick out a bubble gum pink motorcycle.
You heard right, a motorcycle. She longs to feel freedom blowing through her hair and she has loads of eccentric friends to ride with her.
What will the church folks think? What will her family think?
***
Kirstie loves roaring down a road less traveled by most women over forty, but she’s not just riding her bike for the fun of it. Kirstie has a ministry. However, certain church members have secrets to hide, and when God uses Kirstie’s ministry to fill the pews with leather-clad, tattooed bikers, those secrets could be exposed, and some will stop at nothing to hide the truth.

Kirstie and her motorcycle “gang”—two church matrons and a mouthy, gum-smacking non-church member—discover that road-toughened bikers are quite capable of ministering to others, and faith is fortified in the most unexpected ways.

The book includes a teen with autism. Akins has twin boys with autism. It also addresses the issues of Alzheimer’s.

When she wrote the book, she didn’t realize her mother-in-law would come down with Alzheimer’s. She now lives with their family. Karla realizes that in writing her book, God was preparing her for things to come.

“I think there are several things in the book that people will identify with. There’s a chapter devoted to the Patriot Guard and a fallen soldier returning home from Afghanistan. Struggling to raise kids in a modern world when temptation is everywhere is also addressed. And the pressures of pastoring a church. But the emotions and experiences are universal because they’re human,” she says.

There’s also an awesome mystery attached to the church history and those most adamant about controlling Kirstie are the ones with secrets to hide.


DON’T MISS THIS HILARIOUS NOVEL.
Leave a comment and your email addy (YOU MUST LEAVE THE ADDY, I WON’T GO HUNTING FOR IT) for a chance to win a copy of:
THE PASTOR’S WIFE WEARS BIKER BOOTS! By Karla Akins.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Giveaway Winners!

All right, step right up, here you go, we've got a winner! We've got five winner!
Juli won Rose Zediker's, Wedding on the Rocks!
Janet won Linda's The Substitute Bride
Linda Marie Finn won Karla's Biker Boots
Christina won Linda's two ebooks, Polar Bear Plunge and Miss Fishly
and...drum roll please.....
Bobbe won Davalynn's The Rancher's Second Chance
Way to go, ladies!

I see there was a lot of interest in Karla's The Pastor's Wife Wears Biker Boots.
Tune in later this week for an interview with Karla and another chance to win her book.

BTW JULI, YOU'VE GOT TIL 6 TONIGHT TO SEND ME YOUR EMAIL ADDY SO I CAN LET YOU KNOW, OTHERWISE IT GOES TO SOMEONE ELSE!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

The Substitute Bride

.
You can purchase The Substitute Bride here.

Five Books! Four Authors! Giveaways--Yeah!




Golly Gee, but I love to give away books!


And I’ve got two ebooks and three print books just chomping at the proverbial bit to land in someone’s hands.
Let’s start with author, Rose Zediker.  Wedding on the Rocks. This is Rose’s fourth book for Heartsong, though she’s written many others.
When she traded small-town life for the bright lights of Chicago, Jennifer Edwards yearned to discover a world beyond Faith, South Dakota. So when her father's illness calls her home to run their cattle ranch, she tells herself it's temporary. Then why is she even thinking about a future with archaeology professor Brett Lange—the boy she left behind—whose life's work is digging up the past?
Rose captures the heart of romance in Wedding on the Rocks.

Next is Davalynn Spencer and her novel, The Rancher’s Second Chance. This is Davalynn’s first novel with Heartsong, but not her first rodeo, so to speak. She’s actually been a clown when she filled in for her husband who keeps the bull from the rider. Not many folks can say that!  
Laura Bell is home for good. Twelve years ago she left her home behind—but she could never forget the boy next door. Now, hurting from a broken engagement and fed up with city life, Laura returns to her family's ranch. But her homecoming is bittersweet. Twelve years apart has changed Eli Hawthorne. Yet the bond they once shared has only deepened with time.
If you like a country setting with a handsome cowboy, Davalynn’s your writer. She knows the genre because she lives it! Let’s all experience a handsome cowboy and plenty of conflict in The Rancher’s Second Chance

How about plenty of laughter? Yup, you got it. Karla Akins, The Pastor’s Wife Wears Biker Boots…from Harbourlight, an imprint from Pelican Book Group, and she knows what she’s talking about. Pastor’s wife Karla Akins tells a tale full of tears and laughter. And she understand what it is to be a pastor’s wife and need a bike to occasionally vroooom off into the sunset and calm the tension.
Pastor's wife, Kirstie Donovan, lives life in a fishbowl, so when she hops on the back of a bright pink motorcycle, tongues start to wag at the conservative, century-old First Independent Christian Community Church of Eels Falls. Kirstie loves roaring down a road less traveled by most women over forty, but she's not just riding her bike for the fun of it. Kirstie has a ministry. However, certain church members have secrets to hide, and when God uses Kirstie's ministry to fill the pews with leather-clad, tattooed bikers, those secrets could be exposed...and some will stop at nothing to hide the truth.
If you love to laugh, love a good mystery, and love a few tears sprinkled in like a straight-laced baptism, then Biker Boots is for you!

Finally, I love to give away books, too!!! So I’m giving away two copies of my own books. First: The Substitute Bride.
Rancher Jared Callahan eagerly awaited the arrival of his mail-order bride. But instead of the kindhearted woman who wrote about escaping her constrained city life, the beauty who arrived in his remote frontier town couldn't remember anything. Not him, not their long-distance courtship, not even her own name. What is he going to do with this petite spitfire? 
Find out how his bride discovers her true identity in The Substitute Bride!
Then, because I can’t give away enough to make me happy, I’m going to give away my two ebooks from White Rose Publishing:
Polar Bear Plunge and the sequel Miss Fishly. Both to the same person.
Polar Bear Plunge:
Brice Taylor might not be on Aleni Callan's Christmas list, but she finds him under her tree anyway.Nurse Aleni Callan's anger toward God is fueled when Brice Taylor enters her life. Not only does Brice have no regard for his own life—as evidenced by the concussion and hypothermia he suffers after participating in the Polar Bear Plunge—he escaped the war in Afghanistan and lived to tell his story in a bestselling book, while her precious husband was killed.
Miss Fishfly:
Searching for love everywhere but in the right places, Christie Hayes is confounded when chocolate brown eyes wink at her at her best friend's wedding. A narrow miss of the bedpan, and she discovers old Mr. Hartway's grandson, Colton Keller, and brown eyes are one in the same.

So if you’d like a chance to win one or more of the books listed here, please drop a note by this Sunday at noon about why you’d love to read one. Be sure and leave your email addy!

Blessings to you all!
AND IF YOU DON'T WIN KARLA'S BOOK HERE, SHOOT OVER TO HER SITE WHERE SHE'S GIVING AWAY ALL KINDS OF GOODIES IN HONOR OF HER BOOK LAUNCH:
http://www.karlaakins.com/contest.html

Monday, July 29, 2013

I PROMISED!



I Promised!
At conference and in conversations with a few amazing people who wanted to get healthier, I promised to give out some of my fave recipes. I have included some of my daughter’s crockpot recipes as well. Enjoy, get happy, get healthy, and don’t forget to walk…ever day!!!
Jam your diet every day with as many super foods as possible. There are lists all over the internet. Easy to find, yummy to eat.
 JUST REMEMBER, ALL EATING HABITS SHOULD BE RUN PAST YOUR DOCTOR TO FIT YOUR BODY'S NEEDS. WHAT WORKS FOR ONE WON'T NECESSARILY WORK FOR EVERYONE.

GRAIN FREE/SUGAR FREE PEANUT BUTTER COOKIES
1 cup peanut butter
1 egg, beaten well
1 cup sweetner, if you eat sugar, go for it, but I use Stevia
1 t vanilla
½-1 cup chopped walnuts and pecans
You can also add a couple Ts of flax meal, I usually do, bumps up the health factor
Mix all VERY well, use heaping teaspoonfuls on cookie sheet, press slightly.
Bake 11 mins at 350’
Let cool on sheet 1 min. Slide on wax paper to cool. Put two to a plastic sandwich bag and then put all of these servings in a gal size bag and seal tight. Put in fridge so they’re ready to go when you’re ready for a snack or a take-along meal.
Great blast of protein to carry you through the day.

TEX-MEX CROCKPOT CHICKEN
6 chicken breasts, boned and skinned
1 jar of your favorite salsa
1 cut pepper, any color, red or orange are best
½ c chopped onion, optional
Crushed or chopped garlic
Juice of one lime
Half a bunch of cilantro
Put salsa in first, and then add the rest,
you can also add a can of black beans and or the corn from one fresh ear
Cook all day on low in crockpot.
Take out and break up the chicken, serve in corn tortillas, or on salad, or leave whole and eat with plenty of the yummy stuff spooned on top. Top with fresh cilantro and a little greek yogurt instead of sour cream. Also a few slices of avocado add a fresh taste, and avocadoes are a super food.


SUMMER CREAM CHEESE ICE CREAM
12 containers Sugarfree choc pudding
1 8oz pkg of cream cheese, softened
1 cup pnt btr
Stevia to taste, about 1/2c
1-2T vanilla
Mix all well and divide into 12 small containers.
Throw in the freezer and when anyone's having a treat,
pull one out (about 10 mins) and eat. Really yummy.
You can also mix this fresh and eat, but the frostiness
is really good. For individual gottta have it right now yummy:
1 container pudding
a small spoon pnt btr,
an oz of cream cheese and a few drops vanilla.
Mix and eat. Yummy pudding!

SUPER EVENING SNACK
Take an oz of lite, not fat free-yuck-cream cheese, add a few drops of vanilla, and mix in Stevia to taste. About two teaspoons. Slice an apple and dip it in the cream cheese. Tastes like a big, fat slice of apple cheesecake. Great quickly snack when you want sweets.

NO GRAIN FLOUR, NO SUGAR CARROT CAKE
7 eggs, beaten well
2 cups Stevia
1/2 c light olive oil
1T vanilla
2/3 c almond flour
2/3 c Flax meal
1t salt
2t baking soda
2t cinnamon
3c shredded carrots
1/2-1 cup chopped walnuts and pecan
1/2 c raisins
Mix all well and put in 9x13" pan at 350' for 30-40 minutes, or
into 24 aluminum (they release easier) muffin cups and bake 20 mins.
VERY YUMMY, if you really want that sweet burst, sift 1T powdered sugar over the top, but believe me, you don't need it. These are very rich. Let cool! And eat!