Foto Friday

Okay here's something sharp to go with all Nicole's kilt photos... ;-) This guy looks like he's either on the way to his wedding (arranged marriage) or a boxing match. Not sure which.


You still have time to enter the Under the Kilt contest. Please see my September 15th post for full details. Just tell me what you think is worn under a kilt and you could win books.

Under the Kilt Contest continues...

Hi, everyone. You still have time to enter my Under the Kilt contest. Please see my post below (Sept. 15) for full details. You have two ways to win books...1) answer the question "What's worn under a kilt?" by commenting here or on the Sept. 15 post. If you are shy and prefer not to post your answer here, you can email me at nicole @ nicolenorth .com (remove spaces.) But I warn you I want to post the winning answer, which will be the funniest and most creative. :-) 2) the second way to enter is by joining my mailing list newsletter at
Both easy and/or fun huh? :-)

Kilt trivia

My favorite kilt saying: "a man in a kilt is a man and a half."

The kilt is the national dress of Scotland. This article of clothing started life being entirely confined to the Highlands. The Lowlanders, who have always made up the majority of Scots, regarded what they considered a "barbarous" form of apparel with "loathing and contempt" and conferred the derogatory term of "redshanks" on the Highlanders. Today anyone with the smallest claim to Scots ancestry proudly wears the kilt.

...what happens when a man wears a kilt to work.

Where has all the intelligent writing gone?

Recently, I’ve had the opportunity to spend some time watching old movies and re-reading some of the classics. After a few weeks of swimming in some of the most amazing writing for both the “silver screen” and the printed word, I started to wonder. What caused us drift away from such brilliance? Now, I wouldn’t say that all of the new stories that have come out in the last hundred years lacked luster, but the volume of good choices has gotten less. What’s caused this downslide?

Publisher say they only give the consumer what they want, but is that true? Of course the almighty dollar plays a huge role it what’s available to us, but as consumers aren't we’re the ones that have the control.

So what can we do to give a fertile field for good writing to be published? Well, I know that I for one am going to be more selective in my choices for both movies and reading. My money alone might not mean anything to the publishers or producers, but when it’s added to others it’s a figure that could get some attention.

As a published author, I can also do something that consumers can’t. I can offer quality, not just quantity to my publisher. Making money is important to every author, but if I have to make it at the cost of giving away my creativity, that’s a price I’m not willing to pay.

Contest: "What's worn under a kilt?"

To celebrate my first sale, a novella called "Devil in a Kilt" to Red Sage Publishing for a Secrets anthology, I'm holding a contest for the rest of September.

I know the first question on your mind...what is the prize? Since my TBR (to be read) stacks are toppling over, I'm going to let 2 winners choose 2 books each from a list of 10 books in different subgenres... historical, contemporary, romantic suspense, chick lit, paranormal, etc. In some cases, these books are AUTOGRAPHED by the author. They may possibly have been autographed to me but you can ignore that part, right? The important part is great reads with a possible bonus autograph.

Second important to enter? There are two ways. You can enter by answering the question I posed above, "What's worn under a kilt?" by commenting here on the blog. The person whose answer is most creative, funny or imaginative wins!

The second way to enter is by joining my Yahoo newsletter mailing list here Do both and be entered twice! (Everyone on my list will be entered, even members who joined earlier.) This part will be a random drawing.

My friend, Sloan, gave me the idea for this contest when she answered the question (what's worn under a kilt) with "a blue ribbon." Sounds good to me! Someone else said, "Nothing is worn. Everything is in perfect working order."

What is your opinion?

Once I choose the winners on Oct. 1, I'll send them the list of books which they'll choose two each from. So please make sure you provide a way for me to reach you, either an email address or link to your website or blog where you have a method of contact.

Have fun! And happy kilt inspecting.

Scotland Day 11 Part 2 Western Highlands, Glencoe to Glasgow

After leaving Eilean Donan Castle we traveled south over the Shiel Bridge. We passed the Five Sisters mountains, Loch Cluanie, Loch Loyne, Glen Garry, Loch Garry, Invergarry, the Caledonian Canal (below), and Loch Locky. Wonderful scenery everywhere I looked!

We stopped at the Commando Memorial. Commandos were trained here in Scotland during the 2nd World War. These three Commandos stand proudly looking out toward majestic Ben Nevis, the tallest mountain in Scotland. Snow lies on top of it.

We stopped at Spean Bridge for lunch and to shop, then started traveling south west again along Loch Linnhe. We stopped in breathtaking Glencoe (below), the infamous site where the Campbells masacared the MacDonalds in the late 1600s. Click here to learn more:

The sun was out on this day and the grass glowed vibrant green. It was so beautiful it hurt my eyes. I didn't want to leave this incredible place.
We passed Loch Tulla and Loch Lomond (below), famous for the song,
Bonnie Banks O' Loch Lomond

(This rock has a tree growing out of it.)

Soon we arrived in the Lowlands again. The roads grew wider. Houses and people and cars were more plentiful. We arrived at our hotel outside Glasgow around 5 that evening. Our wonderful tour of Scotland was over. But I have lots of memories and photos of this lovely, inspiring country. And I visit Scotland often in my stories.

Click here for
large photo slide show including Western Highlands, Eilean Donan, Glencoe, etc.