Romance Expo in Mt. Dora, FL
The 3rd annual Romance Expo at the W.T. Bland Public Library was held on August 13 in Mt. Dora, FL.

  
Almost twenty romance authors who write in a variety of genres including contemporary, paranormal, historical, and romantic suspense were represented.
  


Here's my table, featuring my contemporary and historical titles:


The library is a generous supporter of romance, and the organizers of the event gave away gift baskets, book bags, restaurant gift cards, plants and just about anything that might inspire a little romance in a relationship!


If you missed the fun this year, the library plans to host the event again next year. I’ll keep you posted on the date. My thanks to Judy, LaJun and Cathy for making the Romance Expo such a successful event!

Leigh



Silver Fox Romances - Coming Soon
I've blogged before about ageism and the lack of characters above the age of forty in romance novels. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy a good romance with young, fresh characters discovering life and love together. But love happens at any age and it's just as wonderful, just as passionate, and even more complicated for men and women who have more life experiences to draw from, more family to interfere, more baggage to carry around. And I've been talking to many readers who aren't twenty-five any longer, in fact could be considered "of a certain age", and would like to read about characters they can relate to.

I'm happy to oblige. I'm really enjoying writing characters closer to my own age. I understand them better than characters who are younger than my children. And I'm even happier for them when they find a second chance at happiness. And besides, I have quite a soft spot for those sexy silver foxes. So that's why I named my series, Silver Fox Romance. My talented cover artist, Lacey Savage, designed a sassy logo - isn't it great?


So you can look for the logo on the upcoming books in the series which will begin releasing this fall. And OMG we're almost out of August, so you'll be able to enjoy them sooner rather than later! If you'd like to follow along with the news on the books, the characters, giveaways, and swag with the sexy Silver Fox logo, you can sign up for my mailing list.

I've also started a Facebook page. There's not much going on there at the moment, but I'll be posting info there soon, so click here to LIKE now.

The Silver Fox Romances are set in Best Bay, a fictional lakeside village in western NY. Most of the heroes are members of the Best Bay Volunteer Fire Department, guys who put their lives on the line and often dinner on hold to respond to emergencies in their community. With titles like Choose Me, Rescue Me, Trust Me they are sexy, emotional, character driven stories with humor and passion.

I hope you'll look forward to starting on the Silver Fox Romance journey with me!

Natasha


Fog in Texas and Scotland is Beautiful
Fog before sunrise, summer
Fog at Dawn
 Fog at Dawn, spring
fog, purple butterfly bush, bumblebee 001 (800x533)
Fog after sunrise, summer
bend in the road in fog (640x479)Fog in Scotland when we drove around a bend in the road, October.
fog 005 (800x533)Fog in Crawford, Texas, winter
fog and peach orchard pastel (640x427)Fog in a peach orchard, my next door neighbor’s, pink flowers blossoming in spring.
Terry Eilean Donan (800x452)magical rainbow Eilean Donan (427x640) pretty rainbowFog bow over Eilean Donan Castle, Scotland, September.
Fog is beautiful. Evocative, mystical, spooky, beautiful.
Foggy Days Remind Me of Fall
Foggy Days Remind Me of Fall.
Fog in Scotland, Morning Sunrise
Fog in Scotland, Morning Sunrise, September
Fog is fall, winter, spring and summer. spooky fog loch at Eilean Donan Castle (640x427)Reflection of the fog in the lake. Beautiful.
Terry
“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears http://www.celticbears.com
Killer Perspective
As a writer, I live in the world of "things are not always as they seem." It's standard operating procedure for those who make things up as a living, so there are some conversations that make perfect sense to me that make no sense to others, or, worse, send a different message than intended. However, these can be good for helping people gain a sense of perspective.

For example, I had lunch the other day with a couple of friends, one a writer and one a fairly normal person (ha ha). My writer friend, whose specialty is thrillers, has been married for 25 years this last Saturday. My non-writer friend, whose specialty is stained-glass and swing dancing, has been married for 19 years. Each is happy in her life, but they way she expresses it is completely and utterly different, and, for me, quite entertaining.

Somehow the conversation--perhaps it was the red wine or maybe the trout sandwich--turned to our spouses and how we knew they were the "one," or at least not "one of the 'not the ones'." My non-writer friend wove a lovely tale of a two people caught up in a flurry of passion, separated by jobs in different parts of the US, who found that their long distance romance struggled under the weight of individual responsibilities to their families and to their individual dreams of success. She wanted to be a rock star accountant to prove to her family that their "baby" could make it on her own; he wanted to make it in graphic design because of his passion for art and technology. They dated all through college and decided to let fate guide them as they applied for jobs during that ever so important senior year. Those "dream" jobs took them miles apart.

Fast forward six months and their relationship is feeling the strain, as do most long distance connections. Like many couples, the came to the conclusion that being so far apart had helped them discover that maybe their relationship wasn't meant to endure, and they decided to break it off. After many tears, they both choose to move on with their lives...alone.

Fast forward another six months. All is going well with his job, although something seems to be missing. All is also going well with her job, although something for her is also missing. They dated others, trying to move forward with their lives based on their belief that their love for each other wasn't strong enough to sustain a long distance relationship. They were living the dream, but they were both miserable.

Then along comes election day, which was the day that he first kissed her outside of their polling precinct years before. Apparently, that moment of nostalgia was overwhelming for both of them (there is nothing like a presidential election to get the ol' romantic juices flowing). He called her, just wanting to hear her voice, and she had already texted him but he hadn't seen it before he called. Their conversation went something like this:

HIM: Are you dating anyone?
HER: No, are you?
HIM: No.
BOTH AT THE SAME TIME: I'll move!

So they had both decided that they'd give up their jobs to move to where they other person was, and that was how they knew they wanted to be together. In the end, the both decided to quit their jobs to find one in a completely different city they had both decided on, and it worked out. That's how my friend explained how they got together, and I have to admit, it got me teary-eyed. So then I tell my story, which you've all heard, and then my other friend tells how she knew her husband was the guy she'd spend the rest of her life with. In short...

"I never once tried to come up with a way to kill him."

Now, I realize this might seem odd to you, but to me, it made perfect sense. My writer friend writes thrillers and spends a lot of time plotting out heinous crimes and all kinds of mystery stuff, and she often--because she's sassy--includes people she knows as her characters. To date, in her novels she's killed off several people who, in real life, had offended her. It's cathartic, she says. However, not once did it--or has it--crossed her mind to try to find a way to off her spouse. My non-writer friend sat there staring and then gulped some of her wine. Not quite the response she was expecting, I guess.

In any case, we had a great lunch and I was reminded of how, sometimes, different perspectives can expand your world, or at least remind you to be more cautious around thriller writers. Happy Reading!
You Know Know You Need Rain When...
Everywhere you go–the grocery store, the post office, the bank–everyone’s talking about it. The woman behind me in line at the grocery store said she’d just texted her husband: It’s going to rain!

Yep. It wasn’t supposed to until Sat night, so I looked at the forecast and it changed it’s mind and said this morning at 4 am. Well, it rained at 7 am. And you know what? I don’t care! Just as long as we get it. But no flooding. Thank you very much. We have heavy thunderstorms starting in 15 mins, and it was nice out, cool even, so I was out pulling grass in the light rain. Yes!

We’re supposed to have rain for around ten days. Yay! But please don’t flood.

airliner storm clouds 016 name (800x533)

Do you see the airliner next to that cloud? That shows just how big that cloud is.

storm clouds 023 anvil white and gold (800x533)

This is an anvil cloud. I kept trying to get around to get a better angle of the clouds, but the houses were in the way. I considered going around to take a picture around the block, lightning was flashing and it can strike from 10 miles away, so I thought better of it.

storm clouds 009 beautiful (800x533)

So the houses just needed to be moved. But on the other hand, I think it’s kind of interesting. Like the tip of the iceberg. Not knowing what lays beyond. The mystery. And as you can see, the system started out at the last picture shown, and then ended up in the massive one way above the homes.

Today, it’s just gray. But that’s okay. Because rain is coming! And I’m 2,000 ahead on word count again! And I have 2 bears orders to get out. And more critiques to do. And…I need to get to work!

Have a wonderful day! It’s cooler here!!! Woohoo!

Terry
“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears http://www.celticbears.com
The Ultimate Compliment
Today is my anniversary.

I’ve been married a good long while, but I always get to celebrate the day with five special people. Actually six, if you count me. You see, we all got married on the same day. Not the same year, but the same day.

It started about seven years into my marriage. My friend Suzy said she thought I had such a great marriage that she wanted to get hers off to a (cosmically) good start by holding her wedding day on my anniversary.

And as if that wasn’t compliment enough, three years later my girlfriend Denise did the same thing!

Many times during arguments with my hubby over the years I’ve thought of those girlfriends. I had to set a good example for a happy marriage, right? So hubby and I always ended up kissing and making up.

It helps that every year on my anniversary hubby gives me 22 red roses because I was 22 when we met and he says I’ll ‘always be 22 in his heart.’ Aww… who can argue with a man like that? Gotta love him.



Marriage has its ups and downs, its problems and its challenges. But if you can still say that you like your partner, that you respect him, even after years of togetherness, I think that’s the mark of a successful marriage. I can certainly still say that about my hubby!

Both my girlfriends are still happily married, too. That makes me proud.

My yoga teacher gave the best advice in class one day. She said, “It’s better to be kind than it is to be right.” 

Think of that next time you argue with your hubby, LOL!

Jenna

www.jennaives.com


Review This...
I have a dear friend who is committed to growing her writing career. She loves what she does and is ready to do whatever it takes to promote her work. That includes seeking out reviews.

In her case, she went straight to the big boys, whose name rhymes with "irk us" which is kind of how I felt after reading her review (seriously, are they trying to irk us with this?). I've always had a problem with pay-per-review businesses, but this is one of the most trusted names in books, and it should be, given its longevity in a business where starts-ups get five minutes to publish a best-seller or die.

However, based on the review I read of my friend's work, I'm a little irked at this company and the whole idea of paying for a review when major publishers don't have to. It feels discriminatory to me, but my friend wouldn't listen to my insights and proceeded. She's thrilled with the results. I, on the other hand, am disappointed for her.

The review she received was truly mediocre, and, to be honest, that's accurate. Her book is totally mediocre. Nothing to write home about. Another cliched addition to an over-booked (no pun intended) genre. She told me this herself, and since I've read the book, which I enjoyed but was not wowed by, I have to concur. She doesn't care that her book, which is her first attempt at a novel, is not the most exciting thing since the 2016 presidential election. She plans to write bigger and better books. She's totally aware of where her book falls in the food chain, and totally wants to market the hell out of it because it is, if not Pulitzer material, completely enjoyable and worth reading. And it is. And the review says as much.

The problem I have with the review is not that it was uncannily accurate (my friend read it and guffawed about how dead on it was about her plot being a little worn), but that it cost hundreds of dollars (more if you want an expedited review) to get a review that was, in my opinion, worth about twenty-five dollars. Even if it had been glowing and starred and made of the sweat of Brad Pitt, it was still worth about twenty-five dollars worth of work on the reviewer's end. And that irked me.

What about you? How do you feel about pay-per-review businesses? What about reviews in general? Please do share in the comments if you have an opinion.


My Notorious Highlander Audio Book!
My Notorious Highlander is now available in audio book!  Dave Gillies is the narrator. He also narrated My Brave Highlander and My Daring Highlander. He has a great and authentic Scottish accent (because he's Scottish) and he is very talented with expressing emotion in his voice. His sound and narration style is a perfect fit for my books. Here is a 5 minute sample...



Chief Torrin MacLeod vows to possess and wed the spirited lady who stole his heart the previous winter. But Lady Jessie MacKay wants naught to do with the dangerous warrior, no matter how devilishly handsome and charming he is. When Torrin arrives unexpectedly at Jessie's home, along with Gregor MacBain, a man Jessie was formerly handfasted to, she is thrown off-kilter. She never wanted to see either man again, but now they are vying for her hand. Torrin promises to protect her from the devious MacBain, but how can she trust Torrin when she has witnessed how lethal he is?

The more time Torrin spends with the strong and independent Jessie, the more determined he is to win her heart. Once she allows him a kiss, he feels her passion flame as hot as his own. After she knows Torrin better, Jessie finds herself falling for the fearsome Highlander. But the odds are stacked against them. The sinister MacBain is bent on kidnapping Jessie, making her his bride and killing Torrin, while Jessie's conniving younger brother, Haldane, is determined to use Jessie to take over the castle in his older brother's absence. Jessie fears she can never be with the man she loves, while Torrin will do everything in his power to ensure they are together forever. In his heart, she is the only lady for him. The audiobook is available at Audible, Amazon and iTunes. It is only $1.99 at Amazon and Audible if you have purchased the Kindle version! A great deal!

Thank you for checking it out! :)
Vonda
www.vondasinclair.com

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