Monday, February 29, 2016

The Seeress and the Stone

Wow! I realized it's been a long time since I posted chapters of my fantasy novel, so here are the next three chapters. Sorry for the delay. You can also continue the series on:

Friday, February 26, 2016

Books to read . . . in addition to mine of course.

Okay, it's been a while since I've recommended a few books. So I have three more to add to the list.
The first is actually a series of four books. I'm on the fourth, but I love them all.

M. Louisa Locke is the author. I've talked about her books before, but here they are.

Locke creates a delightful atmosphere in Victorian San Francisco. She offers mystery, intrigue, with a touch of romance and her stories are clean. I highly encourage you to check out her books.

Next up is a mystery novella by Debra Erfurt.

It Takes a Sleuth is a fantastic mystery to read in an afternoon (during your responsibility vacation.) that will have you turning pages all the way to the end.

Maxine Larabee (Max) owner of Larabee Investigations, needs a big case to solve and she needs it now. Taylor Hodges, field producer of Hollywood’s hottest reality show, Marry Me, hires Max after someone tries to kill her while scouting next season’s filming location in Arizona. Maxine hopes solving the celebrity’s case might end her company’s financial struggle, and at the same time prove to her lead investigator, Jace Atmore, she has what it takes to be a good detective. 

But she has a bigger problem than just trying to prove her investigative abilities to a man with whom she’s attracted and probably falling for. The strongest lead in Taylor’s case trails straight to an ex-contestant of Marry Me, Lemon Beauchamp, a woman who’s engaged to His Royal Highness Prince Dante of Monterra. Getting to question her might be more difficult than keeping Taylor alive, or getting Jace’s respect.

And lastly, a wonderful Christian romance by Carol Moncado.

Good Enough for a Princess is a delightful romance that seems like your typical love story, but there are twists and turns that surprised even me. 

Crown Princess Adeline of Montevaro has her life planned out for her: get her Master's in international relations, marry nobility, produce an heir, inherit the throne. There's no room for romance with the single father she meets when their cars collide on an icy winter night. Parliament - and her father - would never approve. 

Charlie Brewer grew up without roots. The son of an archaeologist father and anthropologist mother, he either traveled along or lived with his aunt and uncle in the States. He's determined to give his daughter the stability he never had. He also wants to give her a mom, but the beautiful European he's falling for refuses to move to Serenity Landing, Missouri permanently. 

He won't move. She can't stay. What will happen when they try to forget each other by dating someone "acceptable"? They find themselves drawn together by one of the girls in the after school program Addie supports - a girl who happens to be Charlie's daughter. How will Charlie, and his daughter, feel when they find out the woman they've both fallen for is a... princess? 

A trip halfway around the world shows Charlie and Addie how much they long to be together - and how impossible it is. Is there any way he can prove he is Good Enough for a Princess?

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Back again . . . for now.

So I've been a major blogging slacker lately. A lot has happened over the last few weeks. I've been very busy flying and writing and editing. But that's life as an adult, I suppose. We have so much busy that we can't get done some of the things that we want to do-like blogging. :)

Sometimes I wish I could just "run away" from everything. With my job that could actually be easy (LOL) but in reality running away doesn't help anything. I actually thought about this a week or so back. I was struggling with my writing, my job, and the everyday pressures of having a home and bills to pay, etc. Running away for a while started to sound like a great idea.

Instead I turned to prayer and the scriptures and decided that running away would be very selfish and hurt the people I care about more than help myself. So, I didn't run away. Instead I took a responsibility vacation.

Sounds silly, I know, but in the end it helped me much more than running away would have. Instead of all the stress of knowing that I would be worrying friends and family, I stayed home. For nearly two days (I was between work trips) I sat on the couch in my comfy clothes or pajamas and read books, watched tv, and did puzzles on my computer. I didn't even crack my files of books open to work on anything or bother cleaning the house at all.

Now, I consider myself very lucky to be able to relax like this. So many people I know have families and jobs that don't allow them to take it easy like that. How do you take a responsibility vacation? My only advice is to trust the people around you. Many of us have an amazing community of friends and family in and out of the church that can help us.

Being Mormon we talk a lot about serving others, but we don't spend nearly as much time on letting others serve us. Something I learned when my mom was very sick with cancer, is that other people want to serve those they love and care about, but it is also up to us to let those people serve. My mom didn't want the Relief Society to bring meals to the house. She was supposed to be giving the service and because she had me and my dad and my good friend and roomie Dawn to help, we didn't need the service.

It took Dawn and me lots of talking to convince her that maybe it was time to let someone serve us. What it came down to was the fact that both Dawn and I were working and my dad was tired. We needed the help. We wanted to let others gain the blessings of serving so we could have a break from the stress of cooking that way we could focus on helping my mom, cleaning, yard work, etc.

So, this brings me back to my earlier point. How can we take a responsibility vacation. Utilize the resources around you. Even if it is only for a day or two. Find a family member or friend who can babysit while you relax. Go shopping (you don't have to buy anything, but you can look around). You might be surprised at what has changed. If you like to read, go to the library and spend an hour browsing. Hole up in your room with a box of chocolates and read or relax or watch a movie.

We all need the time off. As women we think we have to do everything until we collapse or explode from stress and exhaustion. I've been there. Though my life seems very easy to some, I have my own set of trials and challenges and every once in a while even I need to set it all aside and take a responsibility vacation.

Well, that's my rant for the week. Now I need to go clean the house. :)