First Seven Paragraphs

This is the first seven paragraphs of my current project, The Marshall’s Lady. This is book four in my Winter Creek series with Beachwalk Press. I’m about half of the way finished with it. Be aware this is the first draft, unedited version. Research is still needed to find out the name of the assistant living facility, and to see if I ever gave her grandfather’s last name. It’s the heroine’s mother’s father, but I have it written as her father’s.

First Seven Paragraphs

She wanted to be anywhere but here.

As soon as Kimberley Ferguson walked out of the main building of the NAME OF ASSISTANT LIVING toward the line of apartments behind it, she sensed coming here today might be a mistake. Would her grandfather even remember her? Would he want to see her if he did? Forcing a breath into her empty lungs, she stopped near a bench and wrapped her unbuttoned coat around her. You need to leave, Kim, before Jen or Ed show up—or Dad. Her visiting would only confuse grandfather. He wasn’t well now.

“Ma’am, can I help you?”

The voice tore through her uneasiness, twisting her around and away from the bench. She spied a nurse standing near one of the apartment doorways. Dressed all in white with a stethoscope hanging around her neck and a clipboard in her hand, the woman studied her with suspicious eyes. “Are you alright?”

“Yes, I’m…fine.” Kim traveled her hands down her knee-length coat, wiping the dampness from them. She’d never been this nervous before, so unsure of her next move or word. She hated feeling this way. “I’m…visiting my…grandfather. Edward Ferguson.”

“Oh,” she said, eyes narrowing as if not believing her. “You’re one of Professor Ferguson’s granddaughters? I thought he only had the one, Jen.”

“I’m Kimberley,” she answered, not allowing the nurse’s attitude to upset her. Jen and Ed, as well as her father and her Aunt Mabel, were regular visitors to grandfather’s assistant living apartment. This was her first time. If she’d arrived with her aunt today, she wouldn’t need to go through this nurse’s interrogation. It would be easier on all concerned.

 

The heroine is the younger sister of Jen from the first book of the series, Forgotten Memories. The hero is one of the three working board members, Jack, who plays the Marshall and is an ex-cop.

Want to read Jen and Adam’s story?

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Book Blast–He Takes The Cake–J. Lynn Rowan

BLURB:

Life is good for Tess Gardiner: Her Savannah, Georgia, bakery and cafe is thriving. She’sperf5.000x8.000.indd earned Master Pastry Chef status from the American Culinary Federation. And she’s attending a regional culinary convention in Charleston, where she’s been invited to sit on a small business panel discussion. The opportunity to tout her success will, hopefully, lead to bigger and better things in her professional life. As for her personal life? The relative contentedness she’s enjoyed for years receives a sudden jolt when she comes face to face with Tyler Brinks, the ex-boyfriend she summarily dismissed from her life eight years ago.

Tyler’s success as a highly-trained chef has launched him into the stratosphere. He already owns one ridiculously successful restaurant, and he’s aggressively working on plans for a second. But he’s never quite gotten over Tess, and he’s never really been sure what actually went wrong between them. So when a pastry and baking competition is announced for the week following the culinary convention in Charleston, Ty jumps at the chance to tempt Tess with the challenge of being his partner, giving him the perfect opportunity to remind her how good they once were together.

As the competition heats up in the kitchen, it soon becomes clear to Tess that Ty has more than cream puffs and cupcakes on his mind. And she can’t deny that her feelings for Ty never truly cooled, but have been simmering all these years, despite the way their relationship ended. Now Ty’s attention has her wondering—is this just the path to final closure? Or could this be a second chance at true love?

Excerpt One:

Ty comes to a stop a couple paces away and settles his hands on his hips. “Hey, Tess. Long time, no see.”

“Yeah, well . . .”

That’s got to be the lamest opener ever. I clear my throat, relieved that my voice is working at all, and muster up my pride.

But before I can come up with a real comment, Ty says, “I saw you listed on the small business panel discussion. Must be exciting.”

“This from a featured presenter.” Squaring my shoulders, I tilt my head slightly and jerk my chin at him. “You always walk around in your chef’s coat?”

“Only when I’m hoping to run into my ex-girlfriends at culinary conventions.”

The teasing note in his deep voice has my eyes narrowing. “Tyler—”

He holds up his hands, palms out, and chuckles. “Geez, I’m kidding. Calm down, Contessa.”

“Do. Not. Call. Me. That.” I grind the words out from between my teeth.

“Wow. Still touchy, are we?” He crosses his arms again and tips his head back while he surveys me. We don’t have a big difference between us in height, but whenever he does that, it makes me feel about five inches tall. “I was actually prepping for a demonstration, and was just taking a little break.”

Irritation slides through me, both at Ty as well as myself. I shouldn’t be letting the old hurts bubble up like this. I haven’t seen him in eight years. Even if we parted on the worst terms possible, he deserves the benefit of the doubt, as a fellow culinary professional if nothing else.

“Sorry.” I make a show of folding up the pamphlet, forgotten until now, and sliding it into my bag. The move allows me to break eye contact and re-center myself. By the time I look up again, Ty’s smirk is back in place. Hoisting my bag into a more secure position on my shoulder, I fold my arms in a mirror of his posture. “You’ve probably got a busy few days ahead. Odds of us running into each other again are slim, so . . .”

A knowing light flashes in his eyes, even as he offers a handshake. Against my better judgment and with only the barest hesitation, I accept.

Fires start popping up all along my nerves the instant our palms touch. By the time I realize my mistake, it’s too late to pull away.

Ty gives my hand a gentle squeeze. “Maybe I’ll see you around.”

He releases me, takes a couple steps backward, and gives me a wink before turning to walk away. I stand there, my hand still hanging in the air like a limp fish.

Maybe I’ll see you around?

Coming from Ty, that’s not a possibility.

It’s a promise.

AUTHOR Bio and Link:

MediaKit_AuthorPhoto_jlynnrowan-headshotLynn Rowan started writing stories as a small child, usually starring her favorite cartoon characters. Most of her work through middle and high school was filled with typical teenage angst and melodrama, and usually mirrored the books she loved to read. But eventually she found her own author’s voice and decided to seriously pursue a writing career.

Historical fiction remains J. Lynn’s “first love”, but she has enjoyed the journey to becoming an author of romance and chick lit. She is a member of Romance Writers of America, the Central New York Romance Writers, and the Historical Novel Society. She is also a teacher who tries to instill a love of learning, reading, and writing in her students.

When she’s not writing, J. Lynn enjoys travelling, gardening poorly but enthusiastically, studying various topics in American history for her own expertise, and channeling Julia Child every time she steps into the kitchen.

A native of Oswego, NY, she now lives in Charlotte, NC, with her own Romantic Hero of a husband and their little rainbow, affectionately known as Babycakes.

Email: jlynnrowanliterature@gmail.com

Website: http://jlynnrowanliterature.wordpress.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/JLynnRowan

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/JLynnRowanLit

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/jlynnrowan/

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/channel/UClfsVyA4LQYMA0Cq7T1rb6w

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14191767.J_Lynn_Rowan

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/J.-Lynn-Rowan/e/B012YC8PQ2/

BETTER THAN CHOCOLATE PURCHASE LINKS

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/better-than-chocolate-j-lynn-rowan/1123766258?ean=9781682911235

WHEN IN ROME PURCHASE LINKS

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/when-in-rome-j-lynn-rowan/1125876595

THE ONE I’M WITH PURCHASE LINKS

J. Lynn Rowan is giving away one $20 gift card (Amazon or BN) to one lucky person. Just sign up through the Rafflecopter link.

Enter to win a $20 Amazon/BN GC – a Rafflecopter giveaway

To follow the author’s entire tour, click on the link below.

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The Power of Prayer–Lorana Hoopes

The Power of Prayer
by Lorana Hoopes
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BLURB:MediaKit_BookCover_ThePowerOfPrayer
Life doesn’t always go as planned; sometimes it goes better. Callie Green thought her life was planned out until her fiance leaves her at the altar, upending her perfect plans. She is spiraling out of control when she meets JD, a man who offers a love she has never known, but she is too blinded to see it. When she realizes JD is what she has been missing, she has no way to find him. All she can do is pray and hope that God sends him back to her.

Excerpt One:
What does he mean he can’t marry me? This had to be some kind of joke. My shoulders
slumped forward and my knuckles holding the phone turned white. “That’s it? That’s all? What does this mean? What am I supposed to tell everyone out there?” There were nearly two hundred people waiting in the sanctuary

Shaina lowered her head, unable to meet my eyes and bit her lip again.

My eyes narrowed to slits as I crossed the room and grabbed Shaina’s arm, eliciting a yelp of either surprise or pain. I didn’t know which, and at that moment, I didn’t care. “What aren’t you telling me?” Her eyes narrowed to slits. “There’s someone else, isn’t there? Who is it? If you know Shaina, you have to tell me.”

When Shaina lifted her head, tears glistened in her eyes. “I’m so sorry, Callie.”

I dropped my arm and stared at Shaina. My mouth hung open like a barn door as I tried to understand what she was saying. She’s sorry? What does she have to be sorry for? It’s not like her fiancé left her. It’s not like—Anger flared up in me as the realization set in. The world flashed red, and my nostrils flared. A vice grip squeezed my heart as the loathing flooded my body. I’ll kill her. I’ll strangle her with my bare hands. My hands curled into fists and my lip quivered even as my words came out more like a snarl than a statement. “You? How could you?”

Here’s a book trailer for you to enjoy.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B-O4ksICyXacSGxuTnJvUmM2cjlaSk1PSGZYcThvbkZadTZn

AUTHOR Bio and Links:
MediaKit_AuthorPhoto_ThePowerOfPrayerLorana Hoopes is currently an English teacher in the Pacific Northwest where she lives with her husband and three children. When not writing, she can be seen kickboxing in her local gym, singing at her church, or performing on stage. The Heartbeats series is her first full length novel series. She has also just released the first book in her early reader chapter book, The Wishing Stone.

You can follow her blog at https://twoheartbeats.org
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/loranahoopes
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/loranalhoopes
Get a free novella or audio reading of The Wishing Stone by filling out the contact form at http://authorloranahoopes.site123.me/

You can get the book for only 99 cents right now.

The Power of Prayer is available at Amazon: http://bit.ly/PowerofPrayer1
Barnes and Nobles: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-power-of-prayer-loranahoopes/ 1125014735
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32822493-the-power-ofprayer?
from_search=true
~~~~~~~~~~~~~
And there’s a giveaway. The author is giving away a $15 gift card (Amazon or BN) to one lucky winner through Rafflecopter.

Enter to win a $15 Amazon/BN GC – a Rafflecopter giveaway

Want to find out more about the author and her book? Not to mention more chances to win the prize. Just click on the link below.

http://goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com/2017/04/book-blast-power-of-prayer-by-lorana.html

Claiming the Maverick’s Heart by Debra Holt

CLAIMING THE MAVERICK’S HEARTMediaKit_BookCover_ClaimingtheMavericksHeart

by Debra Holt

BLURB:

“He’s back.”

Words Macy Donovan hoped to never hear.

Trace Cartwright was the maverick rodeo cowboy who broke her heart, leaving her on the steps of the church on the eve of their wedding. Now he’s returned to build his home and to lay claim to her heart … again. Macy barely survived the broken heart the first time. Does he think he can walk back into her life and take up where he left off?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Excerpt One:

Well, she was a take charge kinda gal now wasn’t she? The girl Trace Cartwright had left behind would have shrunk away into a dark corner to lick her wounds. But that’s not who she was anymore. Her eyes flew to the rearview mirror. Then her brain took over, and she spun the truck into a U-turn at the end of Main Street…good ting the sheriff was looking the other way. The element of surprise was on her side, and she would use it.

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

MediaKit_AuthorPhoto_ClaimngTheMaverickHeartBorn and raised in the Lone Star state of Texas, Debra grew up among horses, cowboys, wide open spaces, and real Texas Rangers.  Pride in her state and ancestry knows no bounds and it is these heroes and heroines she loves to write about the most.  She also draws upon a variety of life experiences including working with abused children, caring for baby animals at a major zoo, and planning high-end weddings (ah, romance!).

When she isn’t busy writing about tall Texans and feisty heroines, she can be found cheering on her Texas Tech Red Raiders, or heading off on another cruise adventure.  She read her first romance…Janet Dailey’s Fiesta San Antonio, over thirty years ago and became hooked on the genre. Writing contemporary romances, is both her passion and dream come true, and she hopes her books will bring smiles…and sighs…to all who believe in happily-ever-after’s.

Debra invites you to visit her website at http://www.debraholtbooks.com.  She loves to hear from other aspiring authors or readers via email at debraholtbooks@gmail.com.  Twitter is https://twitter.com/DebraHoltBooks and Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/DebraHoltBooks.

Buy links–

Amazon:  https://www.amazon.com/ Claiming-Mavericks-Heart- reliving-redemption-ebook/dp/ B01LVVAV29

 

Want to win a $10 Amazon or BN gift card? Just click on the link.

Enter to win a $10 Amazon/BN GC – a Rafflecopter giveaway

To find out more about the author (and for more chances to win), just follow the entire tour

http://goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com/2017/04/book-blast-claiming-mavericks-heart-by.html

#MFRWauthor–Social Media Hangouts

I don’t know why I keep forgetting about the 52-Week Blog Challenge, yet I do. Have no excuse except I finished two new books since January, and I’ve got a clear view for a third one. Well, technically I started and finished one of them in about six weeks, but I wrote the first half of the second one way back in 2014. Just finished it a few days ago.

mfrw2017-52-week-challenge-image-300x300Oh, well, at least it’s done.

So this is week fifteen of the challenge, and that means I have to tell everyone about where I hangout on social media.

My two favorite places are Facebook and Twitter. I tend to share mostly political things on my Facebook main page, but my author page is just about books and writing. Lately I’ve quieted down on my political stuff. I’m trying to stay more neutral on things there now, but still… sometimes unbelievable or downright stupid things just have to be shared.

Twitter is my second favorite place. I retweet many different types of things, anything that interest me at the time. I also tend to schedule many tweets for other authors through a Yahoo group called Authors Helping Authors. I enjoy helping other authors get their names out there. Also on Twitter lately I’ve been expressing my opinions on simple truths based on my beliefs. (I’m a sixty-year old white Christian, pro-life women who is tired of being silenced.)

Another place I hangout is Google Plus and Pinterest. Pictures of cats and lovely outdoor settings fill my Google Plus page  as well as promotions for my books. Pinterest is a new place for me to hangout, yet I do add pictures to my boards once in a while. I also just started to set up private boards to help me see some of my heroes, heroines and the places they’ll be spending time in during my journey with them. I have three private boards right now.

I spend time at other social media places also but these are the ones I focus on for my writing.

Appreciate if you would like or follow me. Thank you, if you do.

Oh, and you can also follow me on Author Central. Hopefully will have some new releases soon. #fingercrossed

Purr M for Murder- T.C. Lotempio

mediakit_authorphoto_purrmformurderPurr M for Murder

by T.C. Lotempio

BLURB:

Sydney McCall left behind an ex-fiancé and a New York advertising job to return home to Deer Park, North Carolina and help her sister, Kat, run the local animal shelter, Friendly Paws. Determined to save the shelter from financial trouble, Sydney and Kat organize a cat café fundraising event at a local coffee shop. Things are looking up until their landlord, Trowbridge Littleton, threatens to shut down the event. When Sydney drops by his art gallery to make peace, she finds Kat–along with Littleton’s dead body.

Local homicide detective Will Worthington–who just happens to be Sydney’s old high school crush–is highly suspicious of the sisters’ involvement. Desperate to clear their names from the suspect list, Sydney pounces on the investigation. With the help of one of the shelter cats, a savvy orange tabby named Toby, Sydney begins poking her nose into other local businesses whose owners may have benefited from Littleton’s death–until the killer notices she’s pawing a little too closely at the truth.

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Excerpt Two

Will glanced up.  “Pretty observant of you, Syd. The ME will determine the cause of death.”  He tapped on his notebook with the edge of his pen.   “Why don’t you walk me through what happened.  How did the two of you come to be in Littleton’s shop so early?”

“We had something we wanted to discuss with Mr. Littleton, and we thought the earlier the better,” I said.

“I see.  And just what was the nature of this discussion?”

I shifted my weight to my other foot. “Friendly Paws has teamed with Dayna’s Treats & Sweets for a cat café event to benefit the shelter. For a nominal fee, people can have their coffee and goodies in a room with shelter cats that are available for adoption.”

Will glanced up, and I could see a light of interest in his eyes. “I’ve heard of those cafes. They’re mostly in Europe.”

“There are a few in the States, big cities mostly.  This will be the first event of it’s kind  in North Carolina. We’re hoping to increase revenue for both the café and the shelter.”

“Let me guess. That idea didn’t sit well with Littleton?”

Kat and I both shook our heads in unison and Kat exclaimed, “I should say not! He was in the shop yesterday, and he made his feelings pretty darn clear.  He thought having the cats around would be detrimental to business. Heck, he thinks-thought-the shelter in general was a detriment to the town.”

“A sentiment you two didn’t agree with,” he said slowly.

“I should say not!” Kat returned, her cheeks starting to flame.  “Syd and I tried to reason with him yesterday but he didn’t want to hear it.”

“And that’s why you decided to come here this morning?”

I nodded. “Yes.  I put together a pretty good argument of pros for the event.  I was hoping to appeal to his sense of business acumen.”

“Why did you feel this was necessary? Had he threatened you?”

“Not in so many words,” I said carefully. “But he did say yesterday that he was determined to put a stop to the proceedings, and we hadn’t heard the last from him.”

“Um-hm.” Will murmured, scribbling some more.

“And Leila Addams – do you remember her, Will?  She’s a reporter for the Deer Park Herald now,” Kat chimed in.  “Leila said that she thought Littleton was inquiring about starting a petition against showing the shelter cats – and the shelter in general.”

Will made another notation in his book. “So when was the last time you saw Littleton?”

“Yesterday around one-thirty.” I cleared my throat.  “If that’s all the questions you have, we need to get going.”

He snapped his notebook shut.  “You’re free to go for now,” he said, “but I will probably need to talk to you some more later on.”

“That’s fine,” I said.  “We’ll be here.”

The corners of Will’s lips twitched slightly. “Good to know.”

Once we were back out on the street, Kat hauled off and punched  me in the arm – hard.

“Yow!” I cried. “What was that for?”

“For thinking that you could come here and face Littleton without me, for one,” Kat said.  “I knew you had your fingers crossed last night.”

I rubbed at my arm. “Can’t put anything over on you, can I?”

She gave me a shrewd look.  “So, how did it feel, seeing Will Worthington again after all these years!  I heard he was back in town, but I had no idea he’d become a detective – homicide, no less.”  She cut me a sidelong glance. “Funny, isn’t it, how you two came back to Deer Park almost at the same time.  Like Karma, or something.”

“Well, I’d rather deal with Will than his partner, Colombo Junior,” I said. “Come on, let’s get my car and get to the shelter. I hope Maggie isn’t too worried.”

We walked through the alleyway and when we were almost at  the spot where I’d parked, I suddenly stopped short.  “Hey,” Kat cried as she ran full tilt into my back. “What’s wrong?”

I pointed to the empty space beside my car. “There was a white Lincoln there when I came, parked pretty badly.  The license plate read TLITTLE.  I thought for sure it was Littleton’s car, but if it’s gone…”

“A white Lincoln?  That’s his wife Petra’s car,” Kat said.  She glanced around, then pointed to the gym. “She must have parked it here instead of the gym parking lot, like she usually does. I wonder why.”

Another disturbing thought occurred to me as I slid behind the wheel.  It would have been impossible for Littleton’s wife not to have seen the ambulance and police cars parked in front of her husband’s shop.  Why hadn’t she come to see what was wrong?

Unless, of course…she didn’t have to. Because she already knew.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

While Toni Lotempio does not commit – or solve – murders in real life, she has no trouble doing it on paper. Her lifelong love of mysteries began early on when she was introduced to her first Nancy Drew mystery at age 10 – The Secret in the Old Attic.  She (and ROCCO, albeit he’s uncredited) pen the Nick and Nora mystery series from Berkley Prime Crime – the first volume, MEOW IF ITS MURDER, debuted Dec. 2, 2014. Followed by #2, CLAWS FOR ALARM.   #3, CRIME AND CATNIP, is out this December. She, Rocco and Maxx make their home in Clifton, New Jersey, just twenty minutes from the Big Apple – New York. Catch up with them at http://www.tclotempio.com and http://www.catsbooksmorecats.blogspot.com

Where to find them:

ROCCO’s blog:

http://www.catsbooksmorecats.blogspot.com

Website:

WWW.tclotempio.com

Amazon- Purr M for Murder

Amazon: All Books Page

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=dp_byline_sr_book_1?ie=UTF8&field-author=T.C.+LoTempio&search-alias=books&text=T.C.+LoTempio&sort=relevancerank

facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/Toni-LoTempio-125764404163823Twitter:

@RoccoBlogger

Purchase Link: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/purr-m-for-murder-t-c-lotempio/1124519401

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The author is awarding one signed hard-covered copy to one lucky person. (Sorry, US only). Just click on the link.

Enter to win an autographed hardcover copy of the book – a Rafflecopter giveaway

Want to see more about the author? Click on the tour here.

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#MFRW Greatest Strength

Week 12 of the Marketing for Romance Writers 52-Week Blog Challenge. Today everyone needs to talk about our greatest strength.

So what is my greatest strength?

mfrw2017-52-week-challenge-image-300x300

I think it’s my ability to get up after I’ve fallen down.

Like most people, I’ve failed at many things. I’ve fallen many times in my life, yet I’ve always managed to get up again. Sometimes it’s harder than other times, I will admit. And sometimes I stay down longer than other times. Yet evidently I manage to get back on my feet.

No matter how many times you fall, you need to find a way  back to your feet. Every failure is a learning experience. They make you stronger and wiser. So the next time you try, things may go easier for you, better.

But what if you fail again?

Get back up.

The real failure is the person who gives up, who never tries new twinner-neverstoptryinghings again. The real failure is the person who believes all the lies the world tells us–too fat, too thin, too old,  too young, too pretty, too ugly, too poor, too rich. You are the wrong sex, or race, or religion. You come from the wrong country, state, city. Red state, blue state, fly-over state.

None of that matters, so don’t believe the lies. In God’s eyes, you are beautiful and perfect.

Never give up. And, when you fall, which you will, just take a breath, place your hands flat on the ground, bend your legs, and get back up.

And be a winner.

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