2011 NEWS

December 2011

This month I’ve been busy with wrapping paper, flour, eggs, sugar and holiday cards, but not all at once. I was very impressed by the New York Public Library exhibit celebrating their 100th year. The exhibit of rare books and artifacts had to be seen to be believed. One highlight was seeing the actual Winnie the Pooh bear, looking faded and very well loved. Another was seeing an intact copy of Audubon’s BIRDS OF AMERICA. It is huge! As it should be, since the birds are painted to be life sized. The strangest thing I saw was a letter opener that belonged to Charles Dickens which he had fashioned from the paw of a favorite deceased family feline. Taxidermy being all the rage then, I suppose. Here’s the NYPL link so you can enjoy the virtual displays.

I also saw Daniel Radcliffe in HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS on Broadway this month which was a wonderful treat. “The Company Way” is now one of my favorite songs.

In my writing world, I’ve been following blogs, reading reviews and receiving fan mail on my December release SOUL WHISPERER from Harlequin Nocturne. This is the third in the Tracker series and is great fun to have all that going on as I work on the editing the next work in this series.

November 2011

Each November, for the past six years, I have been involved with revisions on one book or another. I am anticipating revisions on my next Western, but as it has not yet hit my inbox, I’m planning to try NaNoWriMo – National Novel Writing Month, this year. I believe the goal is 50,000 words or about 200 pages in one month. Follow me on Twitter or the NaNoWriMo website to see how I’m doing. I’ll be writing fast and looking over my shoulder, hoping that those anticipated copyedits and revisions don’t catch me before I finish the 50K. I love a good race. Don’t you?

This month, I have my nose in a book, reading both Carol Finch’s releases. Her novella in SNOWFLAKES AND STETSONS and her novel, THE LONE RANCHER, which is the first of the CAHILL COWBOYS series from Harlequin Historicals. I have a vested interest in this series, as I wrote the finale (THE LAST CAHILL COWBOY, February 2012). But reading the actual series launch is really fun! Quin is such a great hero and I cannot wait to read Bowie’s & Merrit’s story next month. If you want to follow what I’m reading check out my page on www.goodreads.com.

I’ve been working on a first draft of another Nocturne in THE TRACKER series and fiddling with a new idea for NaNoWriMo. I’m learning more about Twitter and following more folks. One other new thing that I’m trying is a plotting program that helps keep track of the progress of each scene and lets me rearrange them more easily. It is still somewhat confusing to me, but very fun to explore.

The baby quilt I mentioned last month is finished and will be going to my friend who is a expecting her first child in December. The process of piecing and quilting has been very relaxing and such a joy. I think I will dig out one of my many quilting UFOs (Unfinished Objects) and spend some of the colder months quilting. Having a quilt on my lap and a needle in my hand has two nice side benefits, beyond the actual quilt. First, while my hands are busy, my mind is free to wander into ideas and possible plots and characters for future projects. And second, it keeps my hand out of the potato chips, because I can’t risk a grease stain on the fabric.

This month is also the release of my next Nocturne in THE TRACKER series. SOUL WHISPERER arrives November 22nd and I’m anxious to hear what my readers think of my Skinwalker raven, Bess Suncatcher. I’ll be blogging on November 11th at RomCon Paranormal blog about this release, if you’d like a sneak peak.

Enjoy the Adventure!

October 2011

I’m having a fun month. The anthology, SNOWFLAKES & STETONS is out and with it the prequel to the CAHILL COWBOYS, TEXAS’S FINEST series. Carol Finch was kind enough to send me a copy of her story CHRISTMAS at CAHILL CROSSING and book one in the series, THE LONE RANCHER. I can’t wait to read Quin’s story and hope Debra Cowan sends me Bowie’s story very soon! My contribution is THE LAST CAHILL COWBOY, coming in February 2012. Can’t wait.

I’ve been working on a baby quilt for a friend. I love the little quilts as they go so fast! I have the top all pieced and will be basting the layers of batting and backing together with the top this month before beginning my favorite part, the actual quilting. One observation, though. Are the eyes of the needles getting smaller every year?

This month I had a long walk along the Pallisades of the Hudson River. This is one of my favorite places to stroll. This day the water was muddy from all the rain and full of driftwood from the flooding. While studying the cliff face, I spotted a pair of red-tailed hawks and two turkey buzzards riding the currents. They make me jealous. Speaking of birds, my third in THE TRACKER series released in mid-November and I finally get to tell the story of Bess Suncatcher, my shapeshifting raven. She is one of my all-time favorite heroines and I can’t wait for this release.

My web designer and I are working on a new design for the website homepage, something to highlight the two kinds of stories I am telling. Instead of paranormal mist, I’ve chosen a lovely photo of the Northern Lights. I can’t think of anything more spiritual and otherworldly than that view. Seeing those lights is on my ‘Bucket List’. Perhaps by the time you read this that new header will already be in place!

Enjoy the Adventure!

September 2011

The end of this month saw me berry picking and making jam. I haven’t made jam for over 15 years, but the mood struck me and so my husband and I found ourselves in a blueberry patch on the day the earthquake struck Virginia and rolled up the eastern US. I didn’t feel a thing. But we did see every bird in every bush take-off simultaneously, as if on some silent signal. A few minutes later my sister sent me a text message (because the phones service failed) and asked if I felt that. How did all those birds know to go into the safety of the air before the earth started shaking?

My latest release, GOLD RUSH GROOM, is out this month and I am blogging at three sites so far this month about my own adventures in Alaska at the following sites: romanceatrandom.com, literalexposure.com , romconinc.com.

I’m also happy to report that the next two westerns are in and approved. The first, LAST CHANCE COWBOY, releases in February as the final book in the CAHILL COWBOYS: TEXAS FINEST series and the second, featuring the kidnapped daughter of a Texas Ranger and the outlaw he sends after her, is yet to be titled. I’ll keep you posted!

Enjoy the Adventure!

August 2011

Writing News:

I’ve submitted another Western this month. That means two Western releases in 2012. The first is book four of the CAHILL COWBOYS: TEXAS FINEST series, titled THE LAST CAHILL COWBOY and releases in February 2012. The second, just submitted, has no title yet but is set in Texas and is about an outlaw sent back to the rustlers he escaped in order to rescue the kidnapped daughter of a Texas Ranger.

Next month, look for GOLD RUSH GROOM from Harlequin Historicals. This book is set in the Yukon Gold Rush and begins with a greenhorn prospector who is about to lose everything to the surf when a pretty hauler offers to rescue his gear if he’ll agree to be her partner until Dawson City.

If you missed my August Nocturne Bites eBook, FIRST HEAT, it is still available at eHarlequin, Amazon or BN.com.

Personal News:

My vegetable garden is yielding a lot of tomatoes and squash. The carrots are funny, as the shapes and sizes vary wildly (insert your own pun here).

I’ve been busy finishing that next Western this month and am now working on a new paranormal in THE TRACKERS series.

But I did have some free time to bun around NYC, which is one of my favorite pastimes, as many of you know. I spent most of the day in Central Park and finally found that statue of Balto, the hero sled dog that led the team into Nome with the vital diphtheria serum. Did you know he visited NYC and they gave him a parade? I would have liked to see that.

 

 

July 2011

Most of the month of July has gone to completing my latest Western, but I did play hooky a bit, taking a trip to Washington, D.C. Now you might not think D.C. is the place to be in July, but I’ll share a secret—free air conditioning!

I ran myself ragged trying to see as many museums as possible and here is my impressive list for a three day trip and my favorite thing I saw in each place:

  • Renwick Gallery: The sculpture Game Fish was a favorite, a swordfish constructed out of games including dice, Pez dispensers and a neat variety of toys. Love the play on words, a really interesting piece.
  • National Portrait Gallery: Ethel Merman in her ‘Annie Get Your Gun’ costume and all the George Caitlin portraits of Native Americans.
  • National Archives: Great special exhibition, What’s Cooking, Uncle Sam, about how the government influences what we eat.
  • National Museum of Crime and Punishment: Serial killer, Ted Bundy’s battered 1968 VW bug in which at least eleven women took their last ride. Chilling.
  • American Museum of Art: Preamble by Mike Wilkins, a piece composed of license plates that create a clever shortened version of the preamble to the Declaration of Independence. For example, ‘United States’ is on e plates as follows: U NI DIDD ST8S
  • National Gallery of Art (East & West): Special exhibition from Impressionism to Modernism. Fabulous!
  • Hirshorn Museum of Sculpture: Sculpture Barry Flannagan. Love his bunnies! Also enjoyed Max Ernst’s sculptures.
  • Freer/Sackler Gallery: The Peacock Room, painted by Whistler is spectacular, but this trip, I think I liked Monkey Grasping the Moon, a suspended sculpture by Xu Bing Sculpture because of the story that went with it. The artist has created a linking (barrel full of monkeys style) sculpture that reaches down five floors to a pool where the monkey tries to grab the moon, caught in the water, but his touch disturbs the quiet pool causing much frustration.
  • National Sculpture Garden: Barry Flannagan’s Bunnies again!
  • American History Museum: The Star Spangled Banner, the flag that inspired our National Anthem. Also the First Lady’s inaugural ball gowns and Michelle Obama’s Jimmy Choo shoes!
  • American Museum of Natural History: The gemstones and minerals, first, last and always, although I am not certain I care for the new setting for the Hope Diamond. It will take some getting used to.
  • American Museum of the American Indian: The glass raven stealing the sun that welcomes visitors to the myths and legends area. If you visit don’t miss their food court which has Native specialties from each region of the country.

     

  • June 2011

    Lots going on in July this year. I began the month in NYC with the RWA national conference. Wonder to catch up with author friends and discuss business with editors and agents. My favorite moment was day one of the conference, having lunch with author, Debra Mullins at Alice’s Teacup, a lovely ladies lunch spot in NYC. Although I very much enjoyed signing GHOST STALKER at the Harlequin Author Signing, The Harlequin Author’s Celebration at the Ritz Carlton and the lovely outing with fellow Historical author’s. The return trip to the hotel was especially memorable.

    After the conference I visited relatives in upstate NY and enjoyed picking berries, coming away with three quarts of the richest, reddest strawberries and raspberries you have ever seen. They were delicious. I had most fresh with milk, sugar and fresh whipped cream.

    My husband and I have done a little treasure hunting this month and were very pleased at our success at finding fossils in a river in the Southern U.S. (treasure hunters never give exact locations)

    As for writing, yes, I have done some. I finished the revisions and edits on SOUL WHISPERER and sent that in to my editors to production for release in December. I am also working on completion of my next historical and am writing the final draft.

    May 2011

    Writing News:

    I’ve mentioned the Texas continuity series in previous posts. This is my first continuity and I’m excited by the collaboration and what we have created. The series now has a name. It is called: CAHILL COWBOYS: TEXAS FINEST and the first story, THE LONE RANCHER (Carol Finch) is out in November 2011, THE MARSHAL AND MISS MERRITT (Debra Cowan) follows in December, SCANDAL AND THE CAHILL SALOON (Carol Arens) arrives in January 2012 and my story THE LAST CAHILL COWBOY releases in February 2012. This Western revolves around four siblings, Quin, Bowie, Chance and Leanna, all born into a powerful ranching family who has just won a new rail head that will make the town, but the family is shattered by the tragic deaths of their parents. Readers can get a peek at Cahill Crossing and the Cahill family before the tragedy in Carol Finch’s Christmas Novella due out in October 2011.

    My next release is in August, an ebook called FIRST HEAT for Nocturne Bites. Then in September, look for GOLD RUSH GROOM from Harlequin Historicals. This book is set in the Yukon Gold Rush and begins with a greenhorn prospector who is about to lose everything to the surf when a pretty hauler offers to rescue his gear if he’ll agree to be her partner until Dawson City.

    Personal News:

    I’ve put in a vegetable garden this year and am so pleased to see my carrots, radishes, beets, beans and peas all up and thriving. Squash is now making an appearance and I’ve been thinning the seedlings. The flowers in my yard are lovely, especially my iris which are spectacular. Three birdhouses are full. The little brown wren is my favorite. That couple nests every year under the red maple tree. This year they arrived late and had to dismantle the chickadees nest, hauling out beakfulls of fluff, to the other couples dismay. The wren is aggressive but has a very lovely song. We also have a catbird couple nesting again in the forsythia hedge. I snuck up on a ladder to take this photo. Not to worry. The mother is back on the nest and there should be nestlings in about 14 days!

    April 2011

    I’ve submitted the Texas Continuity, book four and learned the name of book one, written by Carol Finch and releasing in November 2011. It’s titled: THE LONE RANCHER and features the story of the eldest of the Cahill brothers, Quin. If you can't wait that long, you can check out Carol’s Christmas Novella coming in October 2011 for an introduction to the Cahills, Quin, Bowie, Chance and Leanna.

    My second Nocturne, GHOST STALKER, is out and I’ve been blogging all over the place. Speaking of Nocturnes, I also turned in my Nocturne Bites, FIRST HEAT, releasing in August 2011. This is one sexy, short read and I look forward to hearing what you think.

    In the middle of April, I managed to get down to Lower Manhattan to meet with my editor for lunch. Afterwards I met my husband at his favorite record shop on Bleecker Street. We had a nice time bumming around.

    Now I’m deep into writing my next Western, set in Texas and featuring an outlaw, trying to go straight, by rescuing the kidnapped daughter of a Texas Ranger. Unfortunately, she's tempting him to be bad--very bad. It’s great fun, so far. I’m also plotting the next book in The TRACKER’s series for Nocturne.

    When not writing, I've been at work in my gardens, pulling out old daffodils that are no longer flowering, weeding and planting my vegetable garden. I’m trying carrots this year and have about 8” of very loose, rich soil for them to put down roots. My favorite summer treat is fresh white mozzarella on bread with balsamic vinegar served with my homegrown tomatoes and fresh basil. What a treat!

    March 2011

    This month I completed my first continuity. This is a series of four books written by different authors and will appear in winter 2011/2012. My story is the last in the group and I am really enjoying the collaboration with the other authors and the process of writing.

    I’ll be blogging at the BORDERS True Romance website on April 19th for the release of my second Nocturne, GHOST STALKER and be running a giveaway for a signed copy of the first two books in THE TRACKER series, DREAM STALKER and GHOST STALKER. Just comment and you're entered!

    If you’d like to meet me in person, I’ll be signing copies of GHOST STALKER at Book Expo America on May 24th between 2:00 - 2:30 PM at the Javits Center in NYC.

    February 2011

    Enough with the snow already!

    Seems l have spent all of February either shoveling snow or running to the store to buy milk in preparation for snow. I’ve also been writing, writing, writing. I just turned in a revision on GOLD RUSH GROOM which arrives on shelves September 2011. I also submitted the next proposal for a western historical set in Texas. I attribute my productivity to my new coffeemaker which uses those little cups and makes awesome coffee.

    We did get away to a nice indoor garden because I just can’t wait for my snowdrops to appear. This bunny was the most spectacular display and I wanted to share it with you all.

    How many days until Spring?

    January 2011

    Happy New Year!

    I have some writing news to relay. My next release will be April 19, 2011. This is my second Nocturne in THE TRACKERS series. GHOST STALKER is the sequel to DREAM STALKER (2009) and features a wounded Native American shapeshifter’s whose efforts to escape three blood-thirsty ghosts, places him at the mercy of an enemy healer with supernatural powers as dangerous as his own.

    The third book in the series will be available in the fall of 2011. I’ll let you know the month as soon as they tell me. The working title is SOUL STALKER and features a Native American shape-shifting raven who needs the help of an enemy, who can speak to the dead, in order to stop a supernatural killer.

    Each story features a different Native American shape shifter (bear, wolf & raven) and their ongoing battle with the ruler of ghosts.

    My next Western historical is in the works and releases in September 2011. GOLD RUSH GROOM is set in the Yukon in 1898 during the Yukon Stampede and features a female hauler and would-be singer who agrees to rescue a newcomer’s supplies if he promises to be her partner until they reach Dawson City.

    What’s Next?

    I’m working on a continuity series with authors Carol Finch, Debra Cowan and Carol Arens. The series is about three brothers and one sister, born and bred in Texas and each struggle with their grief after the tragic death of their folks who owned one of the biggest ranches in the state. The first in the series arrives December 2011 (with a prequel Christmas story in October 2011) and then each month, January through March 2012. My story is the final one in the series. I’ve got the enviable job of writing about the return of the family’s black sheep.

     

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