Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas!

We're having a quiet Christmas this year. Our older daughter and her family are in South Dakota for the week, spending time with their other grandparents and family there. We'll have all of our kids and grandkids here later in the week when they get back.

So I'm taking my time, cleaning out one area of the house at a time, and getting out my decorations, and making gifts. But I wanted to wish every one a happy, blessed Christmas. May this holiday be one of magical memories, wherever you may be.

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Please Welcome Author Felicia Rogers

Felicia Rogers is here with a special gift for us - a brand new historical novel! Here's the info:

The Ruse, Andrews Brothers, Book One
The fix is in…but her heart can’t be fooled.

Luke Andrews, Baron of Stockport, is in trouble. He needs a wealthy bride to secure future funds for his financially shaky estate, but the belle of the London season is a spoiled terror with an arrogant father. They’d try the nerves of a saint and Luke can’t quite bring himself to make an offer he knows he’d regret.

Meanwhile, Luke’s half-brother Chadwick never could resist a good game of Faro, or anything else, for that matter. With the baron away, Chadwick will play — gambling the estate’s remaining funds into oblivion. He needs to devise his own scheme to replace the money he’s lost, before his brother returns. 

In Stockport village, Brigitta Blackburn doesn’t have two sticks to rub together — literally. With the estate in financial distress and rents high, food and wood are scarce. When she sneaks onto the baron’s land to steal some firewood, she’s caught, hauled before the play-acting “baron,” Chadwick, and offered a solution to her plight… and his.

But Chadwick’s ruse embroils them all. How can Brigitta accept what she thinks to be true, when she really yearns to follow her heart?

--a traditional Regency novel

Buy it Now:
Amazon UK:

On sale for 0.99 from Dec. 24th to Dec. 29th!!!


See what one reader said about The Ruse:

By Kivey on Amazon: I honestly LOVED this book it was so awesome. Luke is a hunk and his brother well you all will see if you read it :). This book was very suspenseful. I was on the edge of my seat and laughed the heroine is just sooooo spunky. She is truly one heroine I wouldn't want to mess with.

Fountains bubbled and birds landed in the baths. Luke took the long trail and walked by the fishing pond and hunting grounds. A rock jutted out from the mountain and Luke paused, blocking the sun from his face.
From his high perch, the ruins of Stockport Castle tumbled across the green below. He remembered being a lad and staring at the ruins while holding tightly to his father’s hand. His father’s vivid descriptions had almost made him feel as if he’d walked through the hallowed halls that lay destroyed.
Reality of how things that stood the test of time could still plunge into nothingness gnawed at his innards and he wished his father was around to offer wisdom.
Downhearted, he shoved his hands in his pockets and turned. Upon approaching the manse, he knitted his brows. A line of people gathered. Behind them, carriages lined the road almost as far away as the village.
He strode toward the crowd and joined them. Raindrops fell and he tugged his top hat lower. The throng groaned and waved umbrellas aloft. Before them the manse doors parted and they entered the east wing of the estate.
Tourists dressed in fine frocks with plumed hats filed into the main room, staring avidly about at his home. An individual Luke had never seen acted as a guide, lifting his hands and pointing at one side of the curved staircase. There a woman of refined grace descended.
The guide announced, “Introducing Baroness Stockport, Brigitta Andrews.”
Luke blinked rapidly as the woman turned, smiled, and waved. The crowd returned her actions. She continued to descend until she reached the landing, where she stopped.
From the opposite set of stairs, his half-brother Chadwick, dressed in regal attire, descended. The red coat emphasized his broad shoulders, which he held back. His face scrunched, he didn’t look at the crowd, but instead focused a look filled with unrequited hatred toward the woman on the landing.
The guide lifted his hand toward Chadwick and said, “Introducing the Baron of Stockport.”
Luke covered his gasp and huddled deeper into his coat. What is the meaning of this?
Before any further thoughts could drift through Luke’s mind, Chadwick stopped in the middle of the stairs and shouted, “And just what do you think you’re wearing?”
The woman bristled. “I’m wearing the yellow today, my lord.”
“The yellow? Blah. I’ve told you I detest yellow. Get thee upstairs and change this instant.” He pointed his finger above and the lady cocked a brow and glared.
“You will not tell me what to do! I’m the baroness and I can do as I please. If I want to wear yellow, then I shall wear yellow!”
Chadwick didn’t waver and Brigitta hitched her skirts and ran upstairs. Chadwick faced the crowd and apologized for his wife’s behavior before casually turning on his heel and leaving himself.
Shocked, Luke blindly followed the crowd. The guide led them through the entire east wing. They studied the wall of family portraits, swooned over the ancient family heirlooms, and ended with a riding tour of the grounds.
With each new sight his ire increased. While he’d been strangled initially by feelings of cold, blind rage, the trip on horseback through the grounds cooled his temper and now he was naught but confused.
The event ended and the visitors left in their carriages. Discreetly, Luke sneaked into the house through a downstairs window and raced on tiptoe to his chambers. He sat at a desk and pondered until his head ached. Finally, he pulled the servant’s rope that led directly to his personal valet’s room. He paced, his mind jumbled with nonsensical thoughts. The door opened and he blurted, “Jarvis, I have a problem.”
The valet entered and closed the door. A blank stare covered his face as he blurted, “My lord, we weren’t expecting you. Welcome home.”
“There is something foul at play here.”
Jarvis squinted, lifted his nose, and sniffed.
“Not an odor, Jarvis.”
He lowered his chin. “Excuse me, your lordship, but I fail to understand your meaning.”
Without pretense, Luke said, “In the east wing, Chadwick is pretending to be me!”
“Are you sure?” asked Jarvis, his voice lending to a squeak.
He rounded on the servant. “Yes, I’m sure! They called his name as the Baron of Stockport and last I checked that was me!”

Buy The Ruse on Amazon:
Buy The Ruse on Amazon UK:

Felicia Rogers
Felicia Rogers is an author of eight novels and two novellas. When she's not writing, Felicia volunteers with the Girl Scouts of America, teaches at a local homeschooling group, hikes, and spends time with her family.

To find out more information about Felicia Rogers use the links below. She loves hearing from readers.


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Christmas Cookie Time!


I realized that it's been a LONG time since I've posted anything about any creative endeavors other than writing. So I decided to change it up a little. Yesterday I went to my monthly scrapbooking club, and following a several year tradition we had our annual Christmas cookie exchange. Since I do very little cooking in this house it's been quite a while since I've done anything in the kitchen (well, I do help out with the Thanksgiving carcass soup, but in the past few years Dear Hubby has taken that over too) I did my annual fretting about what to make.
First, I tried a recipe I'd found online that the poster promised would taste like a Butterfinger bar. Since I love those, I decided to try it. I made one batch and promptly decided I was not going to repeat the recipe enough times to make the four dozen I needed. And then I remembered a fabulously easy recipe shared by a marvelous flute player in the community orchestra I play in. This amazing treat isn't really a cookie, but it's close enough – and the best part is it has only THREE ingredients! Ha! I quickly ran to the store and bought enough for four batches (I wasn't sure how much each batch would make.

          So here's what I got for each batch: one bag of Oreos, one brick of cream cheese, and one bag of chocolate chips – that's it!

I crushed up the Oreos (store brand, of course) and then mixed it with the softened cream cheese. Then I rolled up the mess (using a sandwich baggie as a glove) into little balls. I put these out on the back porch to cool down for a few hours – no room in the fridge, and it's colder on the porch anyway! After that I melted the chocolate chips in a double boiler and rolled the balls in the chocolate.


I set them out all night to harden and then packed them in these cute boxes that I learned how to make at the last scrapbooking retreat – so I not only made the "cookies" – which are made out of cookies and actually taste like cake pops – but I made the containers I gave them away in!
I am so proud of myself – I can't wait till my schedule calms down later this week so I can make more stuff! When I do I'll share.
In the meantime, I'm finally listening to Christmas music. Making those treats put me in the mood!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Please Welcome Author Moriah Densley

It is my pleasure to introduce you to fellow EsKape Press author Moriah Densley! Moriah is the author of one-third of the books currently available from EsKape Press. She writes regency romances with strong, dynamic heroes and and equally strong, determined heroines. There's also a paranormal romance series due to release at Entangled Publishing next year.
Today Moriah is sharing details from her newest regency, The King of Threadneedle Street. Read on to find out about this treasure, and then be sure to enter the rafflecopter to win some of her fabulous jewelry!

BLURB for The King of Threadneedle Street:

He owns three shipping companies, a diamond mine, and his own castle.
He knows Portuguese, Hindi, Mandarin and Morse code.
His assets net thirteen million.

Everyone thinks Andrew Tilmore, Lord Preston, the financial prodigy dubbed “The King of Threadneedle Street,” has it all, but he wants the one prize money can’t buy: his childhood sweetheart.

Alysia Villier can’t say if it’s worse having Andrew’s father in control of her inheritance or Andrew in control of her heart. He’s ruined her for any other man, but she simply can’t give in to him. She knows he’s destined for great things — marrying a courtesan’s daughter would jeopardize everything he stands for.

Keeping Alysia out of trouble and away from eager suitors becomes a cross-continental quest for Andrew, and he won’t be stopped by his old-fashioned family or the disapproval of the ton. After all, he’s a man with the power to play newspapers and investors like pawns, tumble world markets and incite riots… but can he win the biggest gamble of his life?

EXCERPT: Seeing her “old flame” again

Author's note: Alysia Villier always knew she could never have Andrew Tilmore, her childhood sweetheart. A courtesan’s daughter is no match for a financial genius and peer of the realm. Alysia sees Romeo and Juliet’s story as a cautionary tale. Besides, who is truly in love as an adolescent? She expects to oversee the wedding preparations for Andrew’s sister, perhaps wave at Andrew from across the room, then never see him again.

A long shadow blocked the sun, accompanied by broad footsteps trampling the grass.
“What have we here, a unicorn caught sunbathing? Prime hunting,” came a familiar voice. A sonorous chocolatey bass, somehow deeper than when she had last heard it, and his Lancashire accent replaced by a genteel inflection she found jarring.
“Not at all,” she replied without opening her eyes, rattled by the jolt in her pulse. “Such plodding footsteps could only belong to a troll. Easily outrun by a unicorn. But trolls are really quite harmless, if you keep them fed.”
“On unicorn meat?”
“No. Pomeranians.” An old joke stemming from their mutual love of mastiffs and disdain for yapping small dogs.
His laughter almost stopped her heart. She distrusted the easy, boyish, tone tempting her to believe all would be well now that he was there. She opened one eye, unsurprised to find their years of separation had rendered him not at all like a troll. Over six feet of Gallic demi-god sharing the same body with the most bookish man she ever met. Andrew Tilmore, Lord Preston, heir to the illustrious Marquess of Courtenay. Drew, to her, or when he deserved it, Troll.
“Lisa,” he said in a tone he should reserve for a hot bath or rare cognac, and sat beside her on the grass. “As lazy as ever, I see.” Adolescent teasing which meant, So you managed to sneak away. Bravo.
“You weren’t expected until Friday next, Drew. Unfortunate timing you will no doubt regret.”
“Why? Is something amiss?”
“Only the apocalypse.”
Andrew snorted, waiting for her to explain. She would not. Lady Courtenay trying to run her household for the first time — while pretending to arrange a ducal wedding, which Alysia was truthfully in charge of — would not mix well with the problem Andrew’s presence would bring. Specifically, his being in the vicinity with Alysia.
She pushed herself up on her elbows, mindful of the buttons she’d loosed on her bodice. He wasn’t looking, but fastening them would draw his attention. She sat up and wrapped her arms around her bent knees.
Andrew leaned in to catch her gaze, and she suppressed her shock. She knew that expression he wore, as plainly as if she’d heard his thoughts. Still it made her stomach drop and her lips tingle with longing. Alysia pulled away, not trusting herself to look him in the eye.
If she had any hope of surviving two weeks under the same roof with Andrew, she had best set the precedent now for their behavior. She had just finished her last private conversation with him. Their last kiss had been more than two years before. After his sister’s wedding, she would never see him again


Bestselling author Moriah Densley sees nothing odd at all about keeping both a violin case and a range bag stuffed with pistols in the back seat of her car. They hold up the stack of books in the middle, of course. She enjoys writing about Victorians, assassins, and geeks. Her muses are summoned by the smell of chocolate, usually at odd hours of the night. By day her alter ego is your friendly neighborhood music teacher. She lives in Las Vegas with her husband, four children, and two possibly brain-damaged cats.
Moriah has a Master’s degree in music, is a 2012 RWA Golden Heart finalist, 2012 National Reader’s Choice Award winner, and ’12 NRCA “Best First Book” finalist. She’s the author of the bestselling “Rougemont” Historical Romance series from Eskape Press, and the “Network-One” Paranormal Romance series coming 2014 from Entangled Publishing. Moriah is represented by Courtney Miller-Callihan of Greenburger Associates.

BUY LINKS: The King of Threadneedle Street is available at AmazonBarnes & NobleSmashwords, Kobo, All Romance eBooks, and  Amazon UK.

AUTHOR LINKS: Moriah can be found at her Website and blog, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Goodreads.

And now for the giveaway! Moriah has some wonderful jewelry she's made in honor of her new release! Here's a picture of what you can win - just enter the rafflecopter below! Good luck.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Monday, December 2, 2013

Jillian Jenkins: Music to write to

       As a musician, I'm always interested in how music inspires creativity as well as other skills. Author JF Jenkins took the time to share how she used a playlist to help her plot her latest release, Displaced.

Buy link: POST: I'm not a writer who writes to music. I plot to music, though. Here is a list of songs you can find in the unofficial "Displaced" soundtrack.

"The silence isn't so bad 'til I look at my hands and feel sad, because the spaces between my fingers are right where yours fit perfectly."

"And I will stumble and fall. I'm still learning to love, just starting to crawl."

"Hold still right before we crash 'cause we both know how this ends."

"'Cause I don't want to know what I'm walking away from if you'll be mine."

"Behind your Broadway show, I heard a voice say 'please don't hurt me'."

One lucky commentor will win three songs from the list! Tell me which one is your favorite, or if you've read the book, which song is missing that should be on the list.

Then enter the official Rafflecopter giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Please Welcome Author Amy Mullen

Today's featured author is Amy Mullen, who's celebrating her latest release with Astraea Press. Redefining Rayne is a Medieval Romance, and I find the premise absolutely fascinating. Please read on:

Tag Line: Will her most painful secret be the key to her greatest joy?

Rayne de Latham, cousin to King William Rufus, should be enjoying a life of privilege. Instead, she has only known misery. Her disastrous first marriage yielded nothing but pain, suffering, and three stillborn children. She believes she is cursed and is certain another pregnancy will end in another tragedy. When the king seeks to get rid of her by sending her to marry one of his knights, she will do just about anything to get out of her betrothal.
Widower Andre de Grelle is father to two small boys who came to him by marriage. When his first wife jumps off the castle walls in a fit of madness, he keeps the boys he has grown to love as his own. When king sends him a new bride, the lovely but troubled Rayne, he vows to have more patience with her than he had with his first wife.
Once Rayne arrives at Cuxton Castle, Andre realizes there is much more to her than meets the eye. She does everything she can to force him to send her away, but nothing works. Frustration grows as Andre discovers his betrothed is hiding something from him about her past, something so devastating she cannot speak the words out loud.
In the midst of a siege on nearby Pevensey Castle, a truth comes to light that changes everything. As the real story of Rayne’s past emerges, lives change forever. Will love be enough, or will it be easier to walk away?

Andre moved closer to her. His body was mere inches from hers as he lifted his other hand and slowly tilted her face toward his. Cupping her cheek, he wiped away a tear with his thumb. "You have no idea how fascinating you are," he whispered.
Involuntarily, her eyes closed and she tilted her chin up. She felt his soft lips brush hers and she started to tremble. The short, light touch of his mouth stirred something in her. A young maiden's dream of love, of being loved and cherished, welled up from a place where she had hidden her hopes a long time ago. She returned his kiss, but just for a moment.
Her eyes flew open, and she pulled her head back. This was all wrong. This was not how this was supposed to happen. In a rush to break the spell, she stammered out the first thing she thought of, "Someone will see us! Odo may come."
An expression of disbelief washed across his features and was replaced by irritation. "Odo? What has he to do with this? He is my guest but hardly has a say in what I do with you."
"You…" she stumbled over her words, "you… he is your…"
Andre stood and stepped away from her. He stared down at her, but she could no longer read his face. "Do your affections lie with Odo, Lady Rayne?"

Redefining Rayne can be found at Astraea Press, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and most other ebook outlets.

Amy Mullen is a freelance writer and romance author living in Corning, NY, with her husband, Patrick, her two children, and an orange cat named Steve. She has written two medieval romances called A Stormy Knight and Redefining Rayne.
Amy has been writing about love both lost and regained since she was old enough to have her first broken heart. Her love of history and her intermittent jaunts into amateur genealogy led her to a love affair with writing historical fiction. When not writing, she snaps pictures, gets nutty over football, enjoys the company of her family, and when time allows, loves to bury her nose in a good book.

Amy can be found at her website, on Facebook, and on Twitter.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Best-Selling Author Sherry Gloag: Winter

Fellow Astraea Press author Sherry Gloag has been a past guest here at Creative Hodgepodge. Today we are trading places, so to speak, because we each have a Christmas book we want to share. Sherry's new book, Name the Day, was released a few weeks ago and it sounds as wonderful as her other romances. Please welcome Sherry as she shares her thoughts on the seasons:

Don’t get me wrong. I love the springtime when everything begins to waken and the birds start arriving from Africa, and the snowdrop, crocuses and daffodils appear. And the snow disappears! I love the summer warmth, and the colourful flowers, and the chance to spend as much time as possible out of doors. I love the autumn/fall because of nature’s gift of abundance, whether it for the spectacular colours as the trees turn from green to gold to red and to brown before they finally hibernate for the winter.
While I don’t like the cold that comes with winter, I do enjoy it when the birds congregate in the garden waiting for their food. I like giving myself permission to snuggle up with a good book in front of a cosy fire. And, of course, I can also give myself permission to get lost in my writing without feeling guilty because of all the other distractions calling for my attention… And then there is December – a month of celebrations, including a wedding anniversary, birthdays and Christmas.
Winter feels like a cloak that wraps around me when I am in front of my computer. I can forget about the outside world and immerse myself in my characters and their adventures. At least that’s my excuse!
What is your favourite season, and why?


Renowned portrait artist Samantha Brown is through with men. After dealing with an overbearing father and cheating ex-fiance, Samantha is not in the market for romance, of any kind. Give her a blank canvas, some paints and brushes and she’s in charge of her life. There was no room in her life for love, so why did she find herself giving in to Rafael Santini’s outrageous demand that she paint his portrait?
Satisfied with his upcoming marriage of convenience Rafael Santini isn’t in the market for love. So, how come he finds the pint-sized artist stirring up emotions he didn’t have time for?
An accident forces Rafael to re-evaluate his life and wonder whether he can teach Samantha the art of love.


Why couldn’t the stubborn man get it? She wasn’t giving him any favours at the expense of her other clients. In his case, money would not talk. Almost all her clients were well-heeled, but most understood the time restraints. After all, as she told each person, including Rafael Santini, who contracted a commission they wouldn’t want her to rush their painting and offer them a sub-standard product, would they?
“Give me the names of your clients and I will arrange to exchange places in your queue.” His unequivocal belief pulsed across the airwaves. Did the stupid man expect her to break the confidences of her clients?
“Tell me, Mr. Santini,” she asked in her most dulcet tone, “if I asked for a list of your clients would you hand them over, simply because I wanted something?”
“Don’t be stupid woman. It’s not the same thing at all. I’m a businessman.”
Would someone please save me from stupid arrogant men, Samantha offered in silent plea to the ether without expecting any response.
“I may not deal in electronics and communications systems, or equipment for the world of espionage, secret agents, and private investigators, Mr. Santini, but I do maintain a strict code of integrity and honour and customer confidentiality.”
“Why would you need confidentiality to daub a few colours on a piece of paper?”
Is this guy for real? Does he think insults and condemnation will get him what he wants?
“Let me get this straight. You want my agreement to let you queue jump the rest of my clients, who, incidentally have all signed contracts to be here on specified dates at specific times, and then you will be quite happy for me to go around publicising the fact you are not only having your portrait done, but that you bullied, harassed and threatened me into agreeing to your terms? I don’t think so. Not to mention that in many cases the commission is usually a gift for someone special and total secrecy is not only expected it is essential.”
The silence at the other end of the phone was almost deafening.


Author Bio
Best-selling author Sherry Gloag is a transplanted Scot now living in the beautiful coastal countryside of Norfolk, England.  She considers the surrounding countryside as extension of her own garden, to which she escapes when she needs "thinking time" and solitude to work out the plots for her next novel.  While out walking she enjoys talking to her characters, as long as there are no other walkers close by.
Apart from writing, Sherry enjoys gardening, walking, reading and cheerfully admits her books tend to take over most of the shelf and floor space in her workroom-cum-office.  She also finds crystal craft work therapeutic.
Sherry loves to hear from her readers.


You can find Sherry at her website, blog, Facebook, Amazon, Goodreads, and Twitter


To Purchase Name the Day, simply click on any of the company names below:

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Character Interview: Once by M. S. Kaye

Today I am thrilled to introduce you to romantic suspense author M. S. Kaye. She's brought with her Jonathan and Rebecca, the two main characters from her recent release Once. Let's find out a little about them:

What do you do for a living?
I’m in seminary. I have three days before I take vows.
What is your vivid memory of your mother and father?
I grew up in foster care and have no knowledge of my biological parents, but I consider Father Thomas to be the only father I’d want. I remember the day we met. I was a child in the hospital with a badly broken leg. He saw I was alone and came in to sit with me. I didn’t understand what he expected of me, what he wanted me to say, but he didn’t make me talk. He allowed my silence as I watched the autumn leaves outside the window. It was the most comfortable I’d ever been with an adult. I couldn’t understand how he did that.
What is your greatest fear?
That people will discover the circumstances behind the scar on the side of my face.
What is something no one knows about you?  Why do you keep it a secret?  And what would happen if everyone found out about it?
I want to be a writer. My father wants me to be a lawyer and take over the family law firm—he doesn’t believe writing is a worthwhile career.
What embarrasses you?
How I sometimes control men to get what I want.
What do you find most appealing in men?
I hadn’t really thought about it until I met Jonathan. I admire how strong he is—he’s tortured by his past but has decided to dedicate his life to others.

by M.S. Kaye
Her first and also her Once.
 Jonathan is studying to become a priest. He is three days from taking vows. He will not be a priest.
 Rebecca’s major is pre-law. She is supposed to take over her father’s law firm. She will not be lawyer.
Their paths cross at exactly the right moment, when each most needs to hear what the other has to say. Jonathan’s structured life is turned sideways, but Rebecca also helps him learn how to forgive himself. It was self-defense, not murder.
Rebecca finds the strength to stand up to her father, to be the real her. If Jonathan likes her writing, it must be worth pursuing.
They must each struggle to forge a new path without each other’s comfort and strength, with only memories of the one day that changed everything.

Once Excerpt:
"What's the answer?"
He paused. "A switchblade."
With my fingertips, I reached out and traced the scar across his cheek. “Did you win?”
He removed my hand and closed his eyes. “Yes.”
I slid his Book back to him. “This says we can find forgiveness.”
His eyes still closed, his jaw clenched. He bowed his head. “It also says ‘Thou shalt not kill.’”
I took his hand in both of mine, petted his rough skin, and then brought it to my lips. He had a talent for guiding invisibly, but I didn’t know how to do that.
He watched me again. His eyes were intense, like the black of the night sky, and his forehead was furrowed, as if his emotions were scattered, as if he was shocked at my reaction, as if he had been sure his answer would drive me away. But I knew him. Already, I knew him.
“You’re still a good person,” I said.
His jaw clenched. “I’ve been trying to believe that.”
“I have faith in you.”
He continued to watch me. His forehead never smoothed, as if he was fighting for strength, but his eyes softened. He slid around the booth, closer to me.
I didn’t move, not sure what to do, what was right, what he wanted.
He leaned closer.
I only watched him.
He touched his lips to my cheek, the faintest pressure. I struggled to sit still, to keep my hands in my lap, not to grab hold of him. And then his lips were gone, such brief contact that I couldn’t be sure if he had actually kissed my cheek or if I wanted his contact so much that I imagined it.
He spoke in my ear. “You must be some kind of final test.”
My heart pounded into my ribs, against the point of the blade. “Are you going to pass?”
His lips brushed against my jaw. “I don’t know.”
He trailed to my neck, his mouth softly pressing. My hand curled into his hair, the other on his shoulder, holding, clutching. His mouth found mine, barely touching. His warmth invaded my head.
“God give me strength,” he murmured.
The door slid open, and the compartment filled with laughter.
He closed his eyes. Then he slid away from me.

Buy Link:

Author Bio
M. S. Kaye is a 4th degree black belt and certified instructor of Songahm Taekwondo. A transplant from Ohio, she resides with her husband Corey in Jacksonville, FL, where she does her best not to melt in the sun.
Contact M. S. Kaye at:
Twitter: @mskosciuszko

Also available from M.S. Kaye:
Fight Princess: Caught in an investigation of a mysterious murder, a female underground fighter from a high society family learns how to accept love.
iBooks -
Barnes & Noble -
Liquid Silver Books (publisher – all formats) -

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Rue Allyn: Procrastination and the Author (well, this author)

I am honored to have fellow Michigan author Rue Allyn here as a guest today. She addresses one of my worst habits—procrastination!

Thank you very much Patricia for allowing me to share some thoughts with you and your followers. I like to slant my guest blog posts in the direction of the host’s blog. That wasn’t as easy as I expected here at Creative HodgePodge. I have personal reasons for not wishing to review other author’s books or even comment on them casually. I’m not a crafter (although I have done a crafty thing or two in my life). My lack of skill as a seamstress is only exceeded by my lack of talent in the kitchen. (I managed to scrape through with a D the sewing semester of Home Ec when I was in high school. I flunked the cooking semester completely.) I began to wonder if this blog would be a good fit. Then I noticed procrastination. Now that I am an expert at. So, Procrastination and the Author.

If you aren’t an author, or you’re just starting out, let me tell you that procrastination is a career killer. Publishing used to move at a glacial pace. An author would contract for a book with a publisher and it might be three years or more before that book made was released for sale. (Some publishers still operate this way, most have seen the electronic light.) With the advent of e-books and e-readers and the increasing costs of producing ‘paper’ books, publishing (and thus authoring) has moved into the 21st century and now operates at the speed of the internet. All of which means an author who does not have a large established readership may no longer indulge in procrastination.

Thank heaven I’ve been in this business to figure out what kind of damage procrastination can do before I contracted to write One Day’s Loving for Crimson Romance Publishing. One Day’s Loving is the first book I’ve ever contracted for before it was written. Yep. I signed on the dotted line with no more than a short blurb and 4 page synopsis to indicate what the story would be.
Crimson’s production timeline is extremely tight. I signed in February. They wanted to book for editing in June. Five months sounds like a long time right? Believe me it isn’t. I spent 30 days drafting the book. I spent sixty days revising that draft into shape good enough to send in for edits and I just made it. You’d think I still had sixty days left. Not so. In between drafting and revising One Day’s Loving, I went through edits on two other books, did at least three blog tours, took two short trips (2-5 days) with my hubby to show him I still loved him, and procrastinated (I discovered Jigsaw World on FB and I love Jigsaw Puzzles). 

I did turn my contracted manuscript in on time. However, I had moments—as I searched for the right piece to complete a puzzle—when I wondered if I was serious about my author career. It was that thought which got me through on time. I take my career very seriously. That doesn’t mean I never procrastinate. It does mean that I recognize my bad habits and allow for it when I schedule things. I knew that life activities and procrastination together would eat up a good two months of writing time. When I signed that contract for One Day’s Loving, I made sure I had a minimum of five months to deliver the book. By the way, procrastination isn’t bad (or not completely so). My mind is very active when I’m working puzzles which helps me work out story problems. What is bad is not understanding yourself and making commitments that you fail to fulfill as a result.

Leave a comment and tell me about procrastination in your life.

One Day’s Loving

Persephone Mae Alden is the invisible Alden sister, quiet, industrious, generous, kind-hearted, loyal and reliable.  The words used to describe Mae remind her of a well-trained dog.  She’s not happy about it, but what can she do?  She likes her quiet life and would be seriously upset if she had to defy convention like Edith or act on instinct like Kiera. But everything changes when necessity forces her to bravery and she must choose between love and family.
A horrifying bequest convinces Boston attorney James W. Collins V that Mae Alden needs a husband, and she’s just the type of wife he wants. The two of them will be a perfect match. Refusing his offer makes no sense, so why won’t the woman accept?

About Rue Allyn

Author of historical, contemporary, and erotic romances, Rue Allyn fell in love with happily ever after the day she heard her first story. She is deliriously married to her sweetheart of many years and loves to hear from readers about their favorite books and real life adventures.  Learn more about Rue at