Saturday, July 30, 2022

Dresses or Pants? by Liz Flaherty

Since I got out of high school and it was no longer a requirement to wear a dress every day, I have always worn pants. As a yoyo dieter whose size varies every single year of my life, the kind of tops worn with said pants varies, but...yes, always pants. 

I wore jeans for a long, long time. They were comfortable and warm in the winter, comfortable and not hot in the summer. I went from tapered Levis to bell bottoms (where I stayed until I was the only person in a 50-mile radius still wearing them) to mom jeans to...well, no, I stopped there. I never warmed to low-rise--not enough coverage. Skinny jeans, while they look wonderful on some people, don't look wonderful on others. Guess which category I fall into.

During the years I worked in an office, I wore dress pants. Gabardine was my closest friend. It was loose and comfortable and feminine-looking, and you could dress them down or up and everywhere in between. 

Capris replaced bell bottoms in my heart as my most beloved pants. White capris have become the "little black dress" of the time. And then...and know what I'm going to say next, don't you. 

Leggings. Leggings are a gift from God. Even if your legs are veined and wrinkled--who, me?--leggings can improve their look. Although I have token pairs of jeans, white capris, and dress pants, mostly I have leggings.

Photo from Garden Gate
But last night we went to an event at Garden Gate Greenhouse. It is the most beautiful place, if you haven't been there, with the nicest people. We watched the Barrel Scrapers play bluegrass (wonderfully) and talked to people we hadn't seen in a long time. Garden Gate CafĂ© catered. It was a good time. 
Barrel Scrapers Bluegrass

And some of the women there had on the prettiest dresses. I have a few. I wear them to church and to weddings and graduations. But mostly, you know, I wear pants. Shaving your legs isn't actually necessary in them, and you don't have to put on tanning stuff to keep your white skin from blinding people. 

But those were so pretty. Maybe 50-some years is long enough to just wear pants, no matter how much I like leggings. So this morning I ordered three dresses for myself. I'll let you know how it goes. What do you think?

Have a great week. Be nice to somebody. 

Excitement on the book front. Reinventing Riley, the second book in the Second Chances Series, is available in paperback. While I read almost everything on my Kindle, I have to admit there's just something about a book. 

I will have a limited number of books available, and Anita will have them at Anita's Boutique, too, but not yet. Here's the Amazon link. I hope you order and enjoy!

He’s afraid a second time at love wouldn’t live up to his first. She’s afraid a second round would be exactly like her first.

Pastor Jake McAlister and businesswoman Riley Winters are in their forties and widowed. Neither is interested in a relationship. They both love Fallen Soldier, the small Pennsylvania town where they met, even though Rye plans to move to Chicago, and Jake sees a change in pastorates not too far down the road. Enjoying a few-weeks friendship is something they both look forward to.

However, there is an indisputable attraction between the green-eyed pastor and the woman with a shining sweep of chestnut hair. Then there’s the Culp, an old downtown building that calls unrelentingly to Rye’s entrepreneurial soul. And when a young man named Griff visits Jake, life changes in the blink of a dark green eye.

Wednesday, July 27, 2022

"Maybe I can Learn..." by Cathy Shouse

When people talk about gardening, I have a feeling of envy. It seems I’ve nurtured my brown thumb my whole life. To be fair, working with the soil never held any positive impression for me from the beginning. I grew up on a small farm and my mom had a large garden. My main memory of being in it is standing there with a hoe when I was in elementary school, hitting the metal hoe blade against the rock-hard soil to keep the weeds out from between the plants. I’m not sure if it never rained in my childhood but the ground always seemed hard.

My paternal grandmother had a passion for plants, especially African violets. She had them everywhere, on racks with multiple shelves in front of her windows. On window sills. On her coffee tables. And they multiplied. All it took was one leaf plucked from an existing flower and placed into a small dish for her to start another violet, and she always had a leaf—or five-- starting to grow.

When I got my first apartment, which was in another city, she gave me violets, more than one, she had so many. She planted them in those small plastic butter tubs. They held on for a while. I did what she instructed as far as watering them. They came with pretty purple flowers but, before long, the leaves would be brown and it was downhill from there. I guess I just didn’t have a knack for it. When I would go home, I might bring one I had about given up for dead. She could nurse that thing back to health. She encouraged me, always giving me more violets to try. Eventually, I must have told her I would simply like to enjoy them at her house. I had given up. But, I had a good life, and it wasn’t the end of the world. I always enjoyed seeing hers, and my relationship with her was my favorite thing about discussing her plants.

I didn’t really think about my “relationship” with plants until my daughter was in the third grade. I had volunteered regularly and read to her class. At the end of the year, the teacher gave me a gift. It was a plant. In the hallway of the school, as we were walking out after the last class, my daughter looked at me without any intention to be mean and said, “She doesn’t know you very well, does she?” She had spoken the truth.

Year after year, I would hear people excited about what they were growing, though. I have aunts and cousins in the local garden club. Secretly, I felt I was missing out on something.

Fast forward to a few years ago, when I saw a poster at my library for a class that would be taught by a Master Gardener and attendees would go home with seeds they had planted. I thought, “Maybe I can learn.” The informal approach might not work for me but getting educated by an expert seemed to hold potential. I went to the talk, which I enjoyed very much, and felt as though I was part of something bigger. I was joining a club I had never quite belonged in and was excited. We went to different stations and were give the correct types of soil, and pebbles to put in the bottom of little pots, and told how to keep the seeds warm so they would sprout.

I brought mine home and used an oblong piano light to keep my pot warm. I watered as I was told. When my piano light’s bulb went out, I invested in another one. (This wasn’t cheap). I kept the lightweight plastic pot on the dresser in my bedroom, which was crowded a bit by the TV on it. After weeks of this, looking for that sprout that didn’t appear, I went in and the pot was on the floor, the dirt spilled out onto the carpet. It had accidentally been knocked off, not even realizing. I knelt down to put the dirt back in. There was absolutely nothing growing and I sifted through it all. My seed had apparently not grown and gone back to dust? I wasn’t exactly upset, but mystified. I might have even seen the humor in it.

In 2019 during the pandemic, I learned that a friend from years ago was married to a man who grows vegetables from seeds and sells the plants. I love tomatoes. I love her. It had been too much isolation. My daughter and I would visit her an hour away and I would have plants that were specially tended. What could go wrong? I bought some tomato plants (a plant of kale and pesto too.) Lo and behold, the tomato plants grew! To be fair, it was my husband who watered them daily. I had a tendency to forget. (Maybe this was the problem all along?) They produced wonderful, healthy tomatoes. At the peak time, I made instapot salsa from scratch, there were so many, some of them very large, weighing more than a pound!

In 2021, I bought tomato plants from my friend’s husband, and the result was pretty meh, (as my daughter, who was in college by then, might say). Bursting with confidence, I had changed strategies, putting the plants near the house so they would stand straighter. But there must have been too much shade, and the plants grew quite large, but didn’t produce many tomatoes.

This year in 2022 will be my third season of growing tomatoes. I got a late start and ended up having to buy plants from Costco. I know it’s a long shot, given my history. But I have high hopes! And my husband is watering them faithfully every morning. 

How do you feel about gardening and/or planting flowers? I’d love to know your experience. Just hearing from other gardeners makes me feel as though I’m in the club.

Cathy Shouse writes inspirational cowboy romances. Her Fair Creek series, set in Indiana, features the four Galloway Sons of Galloway Farm. Much like the characters in her stories, Cathy once lived on a farm in "small town" Indiana where she first fell in love with cowboys while visiting the rodeo every summer. Please visit for more information on discounts and new releases and to receive a free copy of the prequel, Her Billionaire Cowboy's Twin Heirs: Christmas in Fair Creek, in exchange for signing up for her newsletter.

They were best friends in high school just beginning to date when he abruptly left. Now Wyatt Galloway is home to help on the farm and raise his toddler son, since his wife died in childbirth.

The last person Wyatt wants to see after sixteen years is Sierra Delaney. He hurt her once and never wants to again. But Sierra has returned home to save Delaney’s diner, which she inherited. She’s catering at the farm when she unexpectedly meets up with Wyatt.

In addition to struggling to keep the diner, Sierra faces a recent health issue that makes everyday life more challenging, and has her questioning her purpose. When Wyatt shares his reasons for leaving, and she sees a little boy in need of a mother, her attitude softens. Besides, he's also helping her to accept and even embrace her new normal.

As Wyatt and Sierra lean on each other and look toward the future, can they find their way back to one another?

Monday, July 25, 2022

Take Me, Take My Bonnie Edwards


Take me, take my kids. Simple. Unless the woman of your dreams has the best reason in the world not to.

Single dad Jesse Carmichael met the perfect woman in Last Chance Beach, but when she heard about his three children, she bailed. Hard.

But Jesse has a plan.

Eva Fontaine has stepdaughters in the custody of their grandparents. She’s the only mother they remember, and she moved across the country to be near them. Her life is centered on staying in their lives while avoiding handsome, caring Jesse.

Eva refuses to get involved with another single dad. Falling for Jesse means loving his children. She’s done that once and her heart can’t take another beating if she should lose them, too.

But Jesse has a new plan to help her and desperate Eva’s onboard with it.

Until his children throw another insurmountable obstacle in their paths.

Now, Jesse has a plan for that, too.

At Last Chance Beach love takes a stand…

Excerpt: Take Me (and My Kids)

A Last Chance Beach Romance

Copyright Bonnie Edwards


July 4 Last Chance Beach

“But you promised I could see them this weekend.” Eva Fontaine clutched her phone so hard she thought the screen would crack. She eased her grip and held her breath. Her dead husband’s mother-in-law held all the cards, and she knew it.

“I don’t recall promising any such thing,” Estelle Morgan responded. “We’re taking Sophia and Jillian to visit their uncle and cousins. Their real family.” The girls’ grandmother never missed a chance to slash Eva’s heart open. That organ bled out, down her chest to the ground beside her fun Italian scooter as she stood in her sun-drenched driveway.

Her driveway. Her scooter. Her children. Eva stood outside Rook’s Nest Cottage, her new home in Last Chance Beach and wanted to scream.

But of course, she didn’t. Grown women in a battle of wits and cunning didn’t scream in despair. No. They handled their problems. Like a boss.

Estelle had no idea who she was up against. Yes, the older woman had won a major legal battle, but Eva had brought this fight clear across the country and it wasn’t over yet. She’d sold her SoCal family home, quit her job, and followed the Morgans and her stepdaughters to the East coast.

Custody. She wanted full custody of her girls and she wouldn’t stop working for it. Not ever. Maybe the Morgans had won legally, but morally? They were contemptible.

“They’re Sophie and Jilly,” she corrected, desperate to keep their names in her heart.

These conversations were always the same and had been since her husband had been killed in a car crash. What had once been a cool but reasonable relationship had become a series of emotional skirmishes, tactical ambushes, and legal attacks.

Sophie, nine, and Jilly, six, despised visiting their cousins. They were emotionally abusive bullies who had reminded them constantly that their real mom was gone, and they had to suffer having a stepmother. Now that their father was gone, too, Eva could only imagine the cruelty the boys dished out.

Estelle gave a long-suffering sigh on her end. “If you’re finished interrupting our day…” And the call disappeared. Estelle had hung up on her again. Soon, Eva suspected her calls would go unanswered.

Numbly she wondered how she’d live every day if Estelle and Bernie cut off all contact. Estelle could get a restraining order if Eva started showing up at their door. As it was, she’d barely controlled her urges to follow her girls just to catch glimpses.

Eva had kept herself busy the last few months by moving here, buying her cottage, and deciding to open a daycare. She even found a new friend in Farren Parks. She was heading to meet Farren now and maybe it was time to confide a little more. She had to do something to ease the pressure she lived with daily.

She slipped her phone into her backpack and then stowed the bag on the rack behind her seat. Eva was due at The Landseer Motel for a morning of lifeguarding, a joyful pursuit that kept her mind off her troubles.

Hoping to patch her heart by keeping busy amid a crowd of single parents and happy children, she settled herself for the short trip. Her little Italian ride was all she needed here on the island and the breeze on her face helped dry her tears and blow away the pain she lived with every waking moment.


Bonnie Edwards has been writing all her life, starting with a poem about Santa suffering with gout. She was seven, Santa was a thousandteen years old. Delighted with writing, she went on to write family sagas, humorous contemporary romance, romantic suspense, erotic paranormal ghost romances and more.

She may jump around within romance, but all her stories come with a tear, a laugh, and a happy ending. Published by Kensington Books, Harlequin Books, Carina Press, and Robinson (UK) Bonnie’s stories stretch from short stories to novellas and novels. Now, she's happy to be publishing her work herself.

With 40 titles to her credit, she has been translated into several languages and sold books worldwide. Aside from standalone romances, she has six romance series that include Christmas romances and beach reads. Contemporary family sagas find a home in Return to Welcome. Learn about more exciting releases and get a free romance by subscribing to her newsletter, Bonnie’s Newsy Bits

Cheers and happy reading!

Bonnie Edwards

Follow her online:  Amazon     Website     BookBub    Twitter     Facebook     Instagram

Saturday, July 23, 2022

Free with the Tree by Liz Flaherty

I've written about music before, which with my tin ear, two left feet, and appalling voice, isn't necessarily expected even though music is as important in our house as any possession we might have. Experts insist you should write what you know, and what I know about music is how bad I am at every facet of it.

Except listening. I'm a good listener.

And feeling. I'm good at that, too. (And dwelling on what I feel, but we're not talking about that this week.)

Terri & John Bond - Photo by Sarah Luginbill

We were at an open mic session at Gallery 15 this week and Terri and John Bond sang "Mr. Bojangles." It's an old favorite and I hadn't heard it in a long time. I sang along almost silently--at least, no one gave me any dirty looks--and the lyrics and the tempo of the song created one of the most overused terms of the century, a soft place to fall. With the sounds of Circus City Days as a suitable backdrop, the story in the words and the gentle tune opened the doors of yesterdays and good feelings. 

When I looked up "Mr. Bojangles" this morning to get information on it, I remembered a made-for-TV movie in 1977 called Sunshine Christmas when Pat Hingle sang the song for his granddaughter. It was a sweet, sentimental show that entertained and made my heart ache at the same time. What could be better?

Hearing Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah," watching graduates walk in to "Pomp and Circumstance," and experiencing anyone singing "Amazing Grace" can bring me to tears and hiss "shhh!" to anyone silly enough to talk while the music's entering my heart. 

There are moments that music give us that are like gifts. Bette Midler and Wynonna Judd are singing "The Rose" on YouTube as I write this, and I remember that it was played at my brother-in-law's funeral. Laughing Bill. We still miss him. But, oh, the memories are precious.  

Music is public, it's loud, it's shared; there is music played in cars that can be heard and felt hundreds of feet away (whether you want it to be or not), and yet...and's so intensely private, too. I just listened to Linda Ronstadt singing "Silver Threads and Golden Needles" with the Eagles and danced in the office wishing I had a hairbrush out here to sing into. I would not care for anyone to have seen that, much less heard it. It would leave a mark

I dislike virtually all music--give me a break; I said virtually--released in this century, plus most of the stuff my kids played in the last one, but I know how the music of the 1960s made me feel. And I remember how my mom disliked it. I think there were a couple of years there when the only words she said to me were, "Turn it down!" That is, I guess, how generations roll. What's funny is that the songs from when my folks were young give me all kinds of warm, fuzzy feelings when I hear them. My kids like the Beatles and the Eagles, too, and I'm fairly sure they're all aware that "Good Vibrations" is anthemesque in its importance. 

Sometimes the mistakes are what you remember when you hear a song. I sang, "...just another magic Monday..." for years instead of "...just another manic Monday..." (Even now that I know better, I like magic better.) I just saw a meme on Facebook about an eight-year-old singing "...dancing queen, young and sweet, only seven teeth..." Kari Wilson and Anna Bednarski agreed that they sang it and it flowed. Anna said it might be even better than the original. Just like magic...

Duane sang a Joe Nichols song last night called "The Shade." It's a nice song and has one of my favorite lines of all time. ...the shade comes free with a tree...

We need music, don't we? We need to be better listeners, to have open hearts, to allow ourselves to feel. We also need to be foolish sometimes and sing badly into hair brush microphones, to cherish the memories that music gives us, just like the shade with a tree, free of charge. 

Thanks for listening. Have a great week. Be nice to somebody. 

Wednesday, July 20, 2022

Jazz House by D. V. Stone

I'm happy to welcome D. V. Stone to share #WednesdayattheWindow with us.

  • Who - Hi, my name is D. V. Stone. I host Welcome to the Campfire, a weekly blog. I am also a multi-genre author of two independently published books. Felice, Shield-Mates of Dar is a fantasy romance. Agent Sam Carter and the Mystery at Branch Lake is a mid-grade paranormal. Rock House Grill is a contemporary romance from Wild Rose Press.

  • Interests - My favorite activity is Glamping. That means camping in a 5th Wheel trailer with all the amenities and sitting around a fire with friends and family. Taking my dog Hali for walks. And of course, reading.

  • Network – I’m a member of NJRWA, RWA, Savvy Authors, Contracted with Wild Rose Press, Participant with the Romance Critique Group.

  • Desk – Sometimes messy. Sometimes neat. Never without Post-its. Usually with a cup of tea or cranberry seltzer. The Emotion Thesaurus and a quick guide Chicago Manual of Style writing poster. Also a white-board calendar. 

  • Outrageous – I can make weird animal noises, including an elephant and a dog fighting with a cat.

  • Window – Outside my window, I can see birds, some snow at the moment, and the neighbors trampoline though with no kids at the time. Since there aren’t any leaves on the trees, I can also see the lake near my house.

Jazz House

Book two of the Impact Series

Release Date August 31, 2022

Romantic Suspense/ Sweet

Tagline: One woman’s choices. One man’s impact.

Word count 58672

978-1-5092-4338-9 Paperback
978-1-5092-4339-6 Digital


Jordan Vasilakis is on the run, living under an assumed name. After a disastrous marriage to a notorious Greek business tycoon, she flees to the States and starts rebuilding her life. But her ruthless husband is determined to destroy her…once he finds her.

Michael Machau is drawn to the new singer at Jazz House restaurant, but the guarded woman is harboring dangerous secrets. The dedicated police officer may have to risk more than just his heart to forge a connection with the woman he knows as Madeline Cielo, especially when he discovers she’s living a lie.

Wrlds collide. Lies entangle. Survival, much less love, is in question. They must quickly distinguish friends from enemies or risk losing everything—including a future together.

 Short Excerpt

Jordan scrambled to the other side of the limo.

“You sing good tonight.” He scrolled through his phone.

“Yes, Kyrios.”

Outside the window, massive cruise ships docked in the port. Happy older people made their way up the gangplanks toting bags filled with souvenirs, while the younger ones debarked dressed for the nightlife. Sparkly sequins flashed like diamonds as one young woman twirled on the pier.

God, how had she come to this life? She willed her hovering tears not to fall. Kyrios wouldn’t approve.

When she was offered a place in the touring group ten years ago, she thought it was the beginning of great things. Standing in the cabaret with the lights shining down was her dream come true. When she was the woman in the sparkly dress.

Until he showed up.

Each night, Kyrios Vasilakis, Greek business tycoon, sat at the front table watching her. Yes, he was older but so very handsome. Dark hair with silver at the temples, he cut a dashing figure in his black suits.

Jordan began to sing to him. It was the beginning of the end. After a whirlwind romance, she found herself a prisoner in marriage to a brute.

Universal Link

Author Bio

D. V. Stone is an award-winning, multi-genre, traditionally and independently published author. She writes books people want to read. Whether romance or fantasy, her stories are about the importance of friends and family. About overcoming obstacles while doing it with humor.

Around the Fire is a popular weekly blog where she introduces both established and new authors giving an insider’s look into their lives and books as well as tidbits about her own life.

After retiring, she is now a full-time author and incorporates her life experiences into her books.

A former Emergency Medical Technician, she volunteered in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania. At the same time, she worked as a professional EMT in a women’s state prison. She was the proprietor of a coffee shop and a small restaurant/ice cream stand in the years that followed. The years following were as a manager in an animal emergency hospital, while her last position was in a human medical office.

When not behind the wheel of 2Hoots—a 41-foot long 13.2 feet high 5th Wheel camper, she rambles around town in Northern New Jersey in a white Camaro. She also loves travel and history.

D.V. is wife to an amazing husband, mother to one son, and not your average grandma to three beautiful grands. A woman of faith, she believes and trusts in God.

“My greatest pleasures are spending time outside with friends and family, cooking over the open fire, sipping a glass of wine, and reading.”

Hali, her rescue dog, always reminds her to let readers know, “Woof, woof.” Which is loosely translated as support your local animal rescue.

You can learn more about D. V. by following her on Social Media.

For one-stop connections Link Tree

Around the Fire Blog with D.V. Stone


Other Books by

D. V. Stone


Rainbow Sprinkles by The Wild Rose Press

After the storm come the rainbows.

Amazon  Barnes & Noble  iBooks


Rock House Grill by The Wild Rose Press

One man’s choices. One woman’s Impact

Amazon Barnes & Noble iBook’s  Google Books Kobo

Contributing Author

Australia Burns by The Wild Rose Press



Independently Published

Mid Grade

Agent Sam Carter

The Mystery at Branch Lake

The Mystery at High Pointe Tower

Monday, July 18, 2022


Writing the Guardian Security series has been and continues to be one of my most rewarding projects. Moving Target, Book 1, has been through several revisions. It was the very first book I wrote but not the first one I published. It changed personality several times before it hit the marketplace.

When I was writing it, everyone in the group of authors I belonged to helped me and gave me advice. One of the things they told me was, “Write about things you know and use familiar areas as settings.”

Moving Target is set in a small Texas town just like the one we lived in at the time and the hero’s house is the house we had built.

I struggled to get that first book finished, mostly because the plot I had just wasn’t working. Then I read Cry No More by Linda Howard. I wrote Moving Target (at that time titled Run for Your Life) in an effort to create a hero like Linda Howard’s Diaz. It was successful and inspired me to create the series.

Silencing Memories, Book 2, was based in part of a plot from an episode of CSI. And the Vanetta ranch is based on one just outside San Antonio, Texas, close to where we lived. Killing Lies, Book 3, came from an idea I got from a friend of mine talking about a friend of hers! Running Scared, Book 4, came from some articles I read about the illegal use of digital games in the espionage business. And Finding Redemption, Book 5, was born when I read an article about Mexico’s Quintana Roo Jungle. But mostly, I wanted to base a hero on the man who was my son’s closest friend and who died way too soon of a heart attack.

The latest release in the series, Missing Pieces, features Dino Brancuzzi, the best friend of the star of Finding Redemption, who is based on a friend of my son. Many of Ethan Caine’s characteristics showed up in Dino, and I wanted to tell his story. Also, I have a huge fascination with civilian Black Ops stories.

This entire series hold a very special place in my heart, and I hope you will take the journey through all of the books to meet some very interesting characters and go on some exciting adventures.

Start with Moving Target and end with the latest addition to the series, Missing Pieces.

Enjoy this excerpt!

A suburb of Detroit, Michigan

Jennifer LaCroix took a breath in an attempt to still her galloping pulse and get herself under control. What an unbelievable mess this was. And just how had it all ended up in her lap, anyway? It had to be Sutherland, that jerk, pointing his finger in her direction. She’d never liked him or trusted him, not in all the years she’d worked at the museum, and now she had even more reason not to.

Chaos reigned all around her. A shipment of antiquities, the largest yet, was scheduled to arrive at the museum for a special show. They’d be on display for three months, thanks to the owner who’d loaned them, and the entire shipment had somehow disappeared. Craig Sutherland, the museum director, swore he’d never signed for them, but the shipping company driver insisted he had. Meanwhile, they were missing.

In the ten years Jen had worked here, she’d never seen such pandemonium. But of course, a disaster like this had never happened before, either. When the discovery was made three days ago that the latest shipment of artifacts had gone missing, everyone went crazy. Of course, they did. Those artifacts were rare and uber costly. Some even said priceless. Crazy was a mild term for how it had been since then. FBI agents were all over the place, and the museum board was everywhere, scrutinizing everyone and everything. Giving everyone the third degree.

The board was also doing its best to clamp a lid on things, because if the owners of the artifacts heard, there’d be ten kinds of hell to pay. The blowback might even cause the museum to close. The story was all over the media, the board was in an uproar, the staff was in a panic.

Sutherland was sweating bullets, despite his efforts to maintain control. Major donors were involved in the museum, many of them thanks to his efforts. If they all pulled their support, the place would definitely close. No wonder Roger Welborn, the chairman of the board of directors of the museum, was raising holy hell and rightfully so. He was angrier than she’d ever seen him. It was almost as if they’d been stolen from him personally. Thank the lord, at least, he wasn’t here today, throwing his weight around, telling her how the museum was his responsibility and if she knew anything at all, she’d better tell him or get herself a good lawyer.

Sutherland, who was also her immediate boss, still denied any involvement, of course. Said he hadn’t even been at the museum the day the shipment arrived. That it was scheduled for a different day. The driver was now nowhere to be found, and the signature on the receiving form was totally illegible.

And now, here she was, headed yet again for the room the federal agents were using. Why? She’d already told them everything she knew at least five times. Answered their questions a million times. But the damn suits had summoned her for questioning yet again. Summoned!

Her throat was dry, but her palms were sweaty as hell. Nausea gripped her and she prayed she didn’t throw up. Why did the Feds want to ask her more questions? Was she being targeted to take the fall? Why? And by whom?

What the hell was going on?

Now available at your favorite retailer!


USA Today
best-selling and award-winning author Desiree Holt writes everything from romantic suspense and contemporary on a variety of heat levels up to erotic, a genre in which she is the oldest living author. She has been referred to by USA Today as the Nora Roberts of erotic romance, and is a winner of the EPIC E-Book Award, the Holt Medallion and a Romantic Times Reviewers Choice nominee. She has been featured on CBS Sunday Morning and in The Village Voice, The Daily Beast, USA Today, The (London) Daily Mail, The New Delhi Times and numerous other national and international publications. 





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Saturday, July 16, 2022

In the Center Ring...

This was written in 2015 and last published in 2017. Much has changed in that time and much has stayed the same. It's about writing and about the circus. I thought about rewriting (see? writing again) to make it all about the circus, but since I write about things from the heart, I decided I'd leave it in. I hope you enjoy the visit back. May all your days be circus days!

Photo by Dianne Stoner Gustin

Ladies and gentlemen, children of all ages...welcome to Peru, Indiana, the Circus Capital of the World, and Miami County's own permanent big top! -
Michelle Enyeart Boswell, Ringmaster

Peru, Indiana is the county seat where I live. It’s also the Circus Capital of the World. It’s the home of the biggest amateur circus anywhere, has had a TV special made about it and books written about it, hits USA Today occasionally, and has an ever-evolving band I could listen to all day long. There is an annual circus parade—one of the largest seasonal parades in the state—and sometimes it seems as though every kid that’s not on a baseball diamond or a soccer field is in one of the circus building’s three rings. When I wrote for the newspaper, my favorite assignments were always interviewing performers. If you want to find out more, go here and if you want a nice place to spend a few days next summer, go ahead and make plans—we don’t have a lot of motels around here, and they fill up fast.

Commercial over, and circus week is over for the summer, too, but those three rings make me think of not only raising kids—yes, it was a circus, the most fun and exhausting one in the world—but of writing books. Specifically romance novels.
The Center Ring, obviously enough, belongs to the protagonists. It is the story of how they meet, overcome conflict, and live Happily Ever After. But then there are the rings to each side, too. The ones with—you know what they are—subplots! Where you get to have secondary characters with stories and pains and glories of their own. The rings aren’t as big, but they either bump up against or intersect with the edges of the center ring to where things are moving all the time and the performers are dependent on each other—and on you, their audience—to make it a good show.
The Center Ring garners the most attention, it’s true, but the acts in the side rings require as much work, as much thought, and as much heart as the ones in the middle. You get to add some idiosyncrasies to those performers that might not fly with the hero and heroine, which can sometimes make them more fun to write but they must not be more fun to read! This is a rule I’ve heard my entire writing life. It’s one I still don’t like and, as a reader, don’t entirely believe, but I admit I’m probably wrong about it. So, as I undoubtedly said to those kids I was talking about raising, Do As I Say And Not As I Do.
There are gaspers in the circus, things like human cannonballs and doubles from the trapeze, just as there are black moments and aha moments in books. They are the connecters that keep you going from act to act or chapter to chapter.
There are the clowns. In the amateur circus, there are tons of them. Peru, after all, is where Emmett Kelly, his sons Emmett, Jr. and Pat, and his grandson Joey—clowns all—are from. If you’re scared of clowns, you didn’t learn it here, because Peru Circus's jesters are fun and funny and heart-melting. The late Doc Sprock’s day job was as a physician—he delivered a good many of the audience! The Kiddie Clowns are so cute you spend a lot of awww time when they’re in the rings. They choose their own faces and names and they work hard at their craft.
Back we go to secondary characters. While their primary job may be bringing attention to the Stars of the Show you’re writing, their faces and names need to be distinctive. Avoid stereotypes. Let me say that again for the 400th time this week, avoid stereotypes.
At the end of the show, and the book, it all comes together. It’s the big payoff. You leave the arena, or close the book, with both pleasure and regret. Oops, that’s important, too. Circus performances are long—there are 200 performers in the Peru one—and books are often long, too. Sometimes because that’s how long it takes to tell the story and sometimes because publishers have length requirements. So it’s up to the ringmaster and the writer to make sure there is more regret than relief that it’s over. Because the circus performers want their audience to come back next year and the writer wants her readers to look forward to the next book.
Have a great week. Read a great book. May all your days be circus days! Be nice to somebody.

Monday, July 11, 2022

Christmas in July with Pamela S. Thibodeaux

I love Pamela S. Thibodeaux's personal tagline: Inspirational with an edge. Because of this and because Pam's both a good person and a good writer, I'm always glad to have her visit the Window. She's here to celebrate Christmas in July! Make her welcome. - Liz

Do you LOVE Christmas in July or like Keri Jackson, despise it? Find out why Keri has so much angst around the most special holiday of the year and how God reveals His truth about when Jesus was born to her in Pamela S Thibodeaux's book, Keri's Christmas Wish.


Controversy and Inconsistencies are thieves of holiday joy for there any hope for a happy holiday season?

For as long as she can remember, Keri Jackson has despised the hype and commercialism around Christmas—especially with the controversy over the time of Jesus’s birth. Will she get her wish and be free of the angst to truly enjoy Christmas this year?

Jeremy Hinton thinks Keri is a highly intelligent, deeply emotional, and intensely complex woman and he’s as fascinated by her aversion to Christmas as he is of the woman herself. A devout Christian at heart, he’s studied all of the world’s religions and homeopathic healing modalities. But when a rare bacterial infection threatens her life, will all of his faith and training be for naught?

Fans of near death experiences will enjoy this woman’s mystical journey into spiritual Truth.


An image began to form in her mind…a young girl being led around on a horse by an ethereal figure. As the trio came closer, Keri felt as though she looked in a mirror. Her heart swelled. Tears clogged her throat, filled her eyes, and slipped down her cheeks.

“Hi, Keri!”

The childlike voice reverberated through her entire body. Keri smiled and whispered, “Hello.”

Excitement lit the youngster’s eyes. Brilliant colors vibrated around her. “Do you know who I am?”

“You’re me as a little girl. That’s Spark, my horse who died when I was a teenager.”

Spark nodded his head as the girl giggled—a joyous melody that rang through the atmosphere. “No, silly, I’m your big sister. Only, I didn’t live very long.”

Tension seeped in, a mixture of shock and awe.

“Don’t be afraid. Ask mom.”

And then the mirage disappeared.

Keri’s Christmas Wish, Pamela S Thibodeaux, inspirational with an edge, NDE, heaven is for real, miracles from heaven, Christmas book, Christian, romance, Christmas in July,

Christian Theme:

The power of faith to heal  

Thanks for coming to the Window today, Pam. How about some Q & A?

Question:  What inspired you to write Keri’s Christmas Wish?

Answer: When I look back on the beginning I can honestly say Keri’s Christmas Wish was totally inspired by God. I’d finished a short story and sent the collection off to my editor when a vision of a young woman scrolling through her newsfeed came to mind with the words: Bah Humbug…. The entire story evolved from that one image and I completed the manuscript within a very short time. Since this was the first, original fiction story I’ve written in its entirety since 2009 I’m very excited to see it come to fruition.

Question: Why should people buy this book and who is your potential audience?

Answer: Keri's Christmas Wish will give readers an enjoyable fiction story that shares the miracles and magic of the books and movies made over the last several years based on a true account of someone's visit to heaven. Those who love reading, hearing about and watching a true account of someone's visit to heaven as well as those who wonder if heaven is for real and what it is like, will enjoy Keri's Christmas Wish.

Question: Is there anything else you feel is relevant to this story?

Answer: True accounts of heaven, angels, miracles as well as Energy Medicine, and meditation/self-help techniques are huge topics of interest in the world today. This story combines all of the above in a manner sure to entertain as well as enlighten.

Question: What is the message you hope to get across in this story?

Answer: That regardless of where you are in your faith journey God and His angels are always there to guide and guard and that He loves you in spite of your doubt and fears.

Purchase links:

Keri's Christmas Wish is part of NN Light's Book Heaven's "Christmas in July Fete" where a $75 Amazon gift card is up for grabs. Check it out HERE!

Author Bio: 
Award-winning author, Pamela S. Thibodeaux is the Co-Founder and a lifetime member of Bayou Writers Group in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Multi-published in romantic fiction as well as creative non-fiction, her writing has been tagged as, “Inspirational with an Edge!” ™ and reviewed as “steamier and grittier than the typical Christian novel without decreasing the message.” Sign up to receive Pam's newsletter and get access to a FREE short story!

Social links for Pam: