Tag Archives: The WIld Rose Press #WRPbks

#trailer for VANILLA WITH A TWIST #preorder now at just #99cents

My good friend Nancy Fraser is not only a great writer, but a graphics gal, too! Here’s the book trailer she just made me for my upcoming 5.20.2020 release of Vanilla with a Twist, available for preorder right now at the sale price of just #99cents  here: VWAT

 

What to know a little about the book? Check out this great trailer!

 

Until next time ~ Peg

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Filed under Uncategorized, Vanilla with a twist

A #Preorder #Sale for Vanilla with a Twist ( One Scoop or Two) #99cents

 

I am super excited because I just found out that my May 20,2020 release of  VANILLA WITH A TWIST is ON SALE NOW – for #99cents –  as PreOrder on Amazon.

Click here to preorder your Kindle Copy now because the price goes up on release day!!!

Tandy Blakemore spends her days running her New England ice cream parlor, single-parenting her teenage son, and trying to keep her head above financial water. No easy feat when the shop’s machinery is aging and her son is thinking about college. Tandy hasn’t had a day off in a decade and wonders if she’ll ever be able to live a worry-free life.

Engineer Deacon Withers is on an enforced vacation in the tiny seaside town of Beacher’s Cove. Overworked, stressed, and lonely, he walks into Tandy’s shop for a midday ice cream cone and gets embroiled in helping her fix a broken piece of equipment.

Can the budding friendship that follows lead to something everlasting?

Intrigued? Find out the answer to that question on MAY 20, 2020!

*****The ebook will be across all digital venues, but only available for preorder at 99cents on Amazon.

Amazon // Nook // more to come soon.

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Filed under One Scoop or Two, Vanilla with a twist

#coping during #covid19 The #NewNormal , part 2

So the other day I had so many responses to my question about how my writer friends are coping with the new normal in the pandemic world, that I had to write 2 blogs to post them all! hee hee. I have really great friends.
Writer Lucy Kubash sent me this: 
 My husband and I retired two years ago and we’ve gotten use to being home a lot more in that time, but knowing we can’t just jump in the car and go somewhere is a bit unnerving. Since we live where it’s still quite cold (Michigan), we also have learned to deal with staying home more in the winter weather. But, here are a few things I do to try to keep from going too stir crazy when stuck at home, and so I’m not just at the computer all day.
Get outside at least once a day. Fill the bird feeders and feed the squirrels. Take the dogs out in the back yard (My husband tries to walk one dog every day. I say try because Ace doesn’t always want to go, lol!)
Choose one household project per day to finish, something I’ve been putting off for a while. Then I feel like I’ve accomplished something. I have a long list!
Have a treat in the afternoon; hot chocolate, coffee cake, something that makes me feel good.
Post soothing/fun photos on Facebook/Instagram and try to avoid the scary stuff.

WRP sistah and friend Julie Howard has these recommendations for sanity:

I thought I’d chime in on my own sanity tip for your blog.
Spending too much time indoors is a guarantee for craziness, no matter if there’s a pandemic or not. I have to get outside and walk. Fortunately, it’s spring and there are blossoms and buds to admire on nearly every tree. Daffodils are in full bloom which means tulips aren’t far behind. This is a wonderful time to clear the cobwebs in my brain, process all that’s happening, and even conjure a plot or two in one of my books. I always return home refreshed. Who knows what tomorrow brings, and so I focus on the moment. Small pleasures, like a simple walk.
Another wonderful WRP sistah, N. Christine Samuelson sent me this:
I, too, pretty much prefer the isolation of the writing life; but it’s curious, now that I’m told I have to stay home, I want to go out visiting & shopping, esp. the bookstores, lol! Human nature, I guess. So, like yo, my routine isn’t changed drastically except no more last minute running to store or restaurant for take out dinners; and no more escape to a movie theater once a week. Instead, I’ve changed my routine like this:
Cooking meals instead of eating out-  I’m finding it soothing and something to look forward to — finding a new recipe and making a great meal for family. Never thought I’d have fun finding new dishes & actually taking the time to cook them!
Sharing information:  I know many elderly people/family who either don’t use a computer or are limited in its use. So I’m researching local stores & restaurants to find hours, & places that have pickup service and/or deliver groceries & meals, & even medications. I also offered to bring food & place at their front door if they run out or can’t cook.  Helping others takes me out of my own head & problems.
Getting out for fresh air & sunlight to walk even just for 20 min where others are not congregated, ie: around a pretty-much deserted neighborhood or beach. Or if I start getting really claustrophobic, we just drive around in the car and look at nature or a sunset. Find something each day to do for yourself that takes you away from all the bad news and your own fears. (Thank goodness for Netflix, Prime & wonderful BOOKS!)
Faith & prayer. When fear of the future grabs me, praying and reaching out to family & friends via internet/phone/skype always helps. We’re all in this together.

         Click to learn   :  How to wash your hands correctly

My dear friend and fellow New York sistah Charlotte O’Shay has been self isolating for the past few weeks and gives these tips for coping:

“Covid-19 is war. With a large immediate and extended family in the New York metro area and with some including me with underlying respiratory vulnerabilities, we have to win it.

Living as we do, cheek by jowl in NYC, is a challenge even in the best of times and these days are not the best of times. Here are some of my coping methods.

#1-Stay connected

FaceTime conference calls with family and friends, photo-sharing, recipe sharing, story sharing, joke sharing. We’re sitting around a big virtual dinner table cheering each other up and on. This is not easy as many of us have been furloughed, let go or business has plain stopped during the pandemic.

#2- Structure

My husband and I have been self-isolated for 10 days. We structure our days as work days, take a break to walk at day’s end while keeping social distance. Saturday spent cleaning.

#3- Daily

Constant hand washing, reading, writing, meditation, prayer, listening to music. Last night we had a mini James Taylor concert via Spotify. After actual though virtual work, husband reads Hemingway and binge watches the Last Kingdom. I’ve written 75% of a new indie romance.

#4-Food

My mom raised us to respect a dollar and water down eggs and tomato sauce to stretch the meal and I’ve been doing the same. It’s a challenge to see what I can come up with out of my pantry and it’s distressing and depressing to see some hoard. My sister and I scoured NYC to grocery shop for my disabled brother and elderly mom. We continue to give to charities like Food Bank. Their work providing food to those with food insecurity is more important than ever and my kids have given as well. When I couldn’t buy corned beef anywhere, we picked up corned beef takeout for St. Patrick’s Day and I’ve ordered takeout from two local restaurants which we are allowed to do with precautions of surface cleaning and hand washing.

I’m not really baking aside from sodabread for St. Patrick’s Day. With all of the enforced inactivity and pasta, I don’t need the calories though I confess I’ve eaten much more than my fair share of cheese lately.

#5-Only listen to/read trusted news sources. This is very important. Gov. Cuomo’s news conferences, WHO, Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Info, NHI, CDC are the sources of my information.

#6-Social media distancing-while I try to find the humor in anything I post or read in this unnerving time, I confess I’ve never been a big fan of social media. I’m having trouble watching people via FB or Instagram or Twitter who aren’t seeing this pandemic for what it is when so many of their fellow American health care professionals, first responders and other essential workers are going all out and risking their health to serve and protect.

#7-I’m reading A LOT and I’m guessing others are too. I’ve put my books on sale.”

When this is over I want to give everyone in my life a big hug.!

Peggy here: me, too!!!

 

One of my newer WRP sistahs, Marilyn Barr sent me this heartfelt email about getting through these trying times:

Six years ago, my son was diagnosed with multiple autoimmune diseases and declared too sick for school by our local private school.  I quit my job as a public school teacher to manage his medical care and homeschool him.  He has grown stronger over the years and can now handle moderate groups of kids for short periods.  He will be exhausted but with his immunotherapy, he will not contract illnesses from the limited exposure.  We must carefully examine every acceptable risk which leads to some hard choices for my husband and me.  When we made these life changes, it was a difficult transition but it has been worth it.  These are my top 5 tips and tricks to being in isolation.

·         Replace the rhythm supplied by school and work.  Having work or school meant a schedule of activities leading to a natural rhythm.  Being devoid of this can be jarring to our systems and can cause anxiety.  You can recreate the rhythm by setting alarms on your phone at the same time each day for a special activity or having a theme each day of the week.  In my house, Laundry Day is Friday, In-house Date Night with my spouse is Thursday, Baking Day is Wednesday, Deep Cleaning is Tuesday, Trash Day is Monday, Sunday is Yardwork Day (year-round) and Saturday is Game Tournament day.  Some daily themes are more fun than others.  Every day my phone has alarms for 5:00 am writing time, 11:11 am meditation, 2:30 pm yoga, 4:00 pm silent reading, and 9:30 pm star-gazing and moon-spotting.

·         Balance screen time with screen-free activities.  Screens provide enjoyment but can eat up a large portion of our day.  Parents are grateful for the temporary peace screen-time provides until their children become dysregulated from too much exposure to artificial lights and stimulation.  By utilizing the alarms on my phone, I can break up blocks of screen time with low-tech activities to give my son’s eyes a rest.  My favorite screen reset activities are yoga and meditation because they calm his nervous system further.  However, a nature walk, time spent playing with the cats and practicing his piano are all healthy activities.  Silent reading, playing cards, and craft projects also help process some of the stimulus provided by screen time.

·         Maintain pride in your appearance and surroundings.  While pajama day once in a while is fun, ignoring hygiene makes for unpleasant-smelling roommates.  I always feel better when I look better and hypothesize it is the real reason why Donna Reed vacuumed in her pearls while her family was at work/school.  Maintaining shower schedules, housecleaning schedules, and hygiene routines all contribute to the daily rhythm which regulates our emotions.  I highly recommend taking this one step further and dressing up once a week for a candlelight dinner in your dining room complete with your favorite outfit, make-up (if you wear it), heels, special jewelry, and cologne.  You will be amazed at how special you feel being dressed up when you have nowhere to go.

·         Utilize technology to create worldwide social opportunities.  While my son has never been to school, he takes live classes on Outschool.com.  In his French book club, he met his best friend who lives in Belgium.  He sings in a choir whose director is in Calgary Canada.  He learned electronic dance music equipment and toured his teacher’s club booth in England in virtual music remixing class.  He met some of his French social club friends on our last vacation to Montreal.  Zoom, Facetime and some MMOs provide ways to connect with friends virtually.

·         Brainstorm curiosities you didn’t previously have time to pursue.  Instead of lamenting the extra time you have, you can turn it into a positive one.  What have you always wanted to study but never had the time?  I have always wanted to visit the megaliths of England and was excited to find free virtual tours of the world’s landmarks offered to bust quarantine boredom.  Also, if you are like me, your TBR tower reaches for the ceiling.  Reading new books and having the time to leave reviews has been a bonus for both myself and my son.  Nothing gives him more satisfaction than reading his opinions on his school materials to us.  (My last planned science lesson got “zero stars – does not recommend” with “change science to poetry” as the suggested recommendation for service improvement.)

I hope this can provide some inspiration for those thrust into a different lifestyle.  The hardest part of isolation is providing the natural rhythm and structure for yourself and maintaining your standards of living with no outside motivation.  By balancing the fun of reduced responsibilities with the needs of our sensory systems, we can recreate the inner harmony to stay happy and well-adjusted.

And my friend Maria Imbalzano has this wonderful take on how to cope:

We all have predictable schedules during our normal lives and we usually can’t get it all done. Now that we are working from home and have more time for ourselves, you may want to consider some of the things I do every day when I take a break from working on my novel.

  • Read the New York Times and a Local Paper
  • Do a Crossword Puzzle, cryptoquip, scramble, and/or sudoku
  • Read a book
  • Pick up the phone and have a conversation with a friend or relative
  • Start a jigsaw puzzle (can you tell I like puzzles of all kinds)
  • Take a walk outside or some other exercise

The following I should add to my list, but the jury is out.

  • Clean out a closet or drawer
  • Cook something good

Great ideas I saw on the internet

  • Take a virtual tour of one of 12 museums around the world
  • Take a dance lesson
  • Borrow one of 500,000 books free from the New York Public Library
  • Take a virtual trip to an aquarium or zoo

Take a virtual tour of Buckingham Palace, the Galapagos Islands, the Great Barrier Reef

Is it any wonder I love my writing sistahs sososos much??
Until next time, peeps: WASH YOUR HANDS!!!

 

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#SundaySnippet 3.22.2020

SO I got the release date for my Wild Rose Press ONE SCOOP OR TWO addition, VANILLA WITH A TWIST. Publication day is May 20, 2020, so I figured I’d give you a little something for that soon to be released book today.

She pulled a paper towel from the dispenser, and before she thought better of it, cupped his chin intending to swipe at the grime on his face.

The moment she touched him Tandy knew she’d made a mistake. A big one.

His skin was as warm as sunshine, and the scratch of his evening stubble prickled her fingertips, the sensation vaulting though her and making her…yearn. It had been a long, long time since she’d experienced such an overwhelming sensation for a man—any man. Handsome guys on vacation came into her store every day. Sometimes with families in tow, sometimes not. A quick smile, a second glance, and a tiny show of interest on their part was something she was familiar with. But she’d never succumbed, never allowed herself to actually feel something akin to desire. The road to a quick and hot night of passion came with consequences that could last a lifetime. And she was the poster child for those potential consequences.

But now, standing in her shop after closing time, with the sun long gone and only the two of them for company, Tandy wondered what would happen if she gave in to the sensations swimming within her and centered on the man before her.

“You’ve got, um, motor oil. Here. Um, on your…face. Cheekbone.”

Goodness, it was bad enough she was babbling, but her hands held a fine tremor of visible nerves, too. He had to notice it.

“Go ahead and wipe it, since I can’t see it and you can.” His voice was smooth and modulated, the opposite of her jagged and blathering one. He dipped his head a bit so she didn’t have to stretch so far, his gaze zeroed in on hers. His face was so close it would take nothing, really, to bring her mouth to his. She couldn’t decide if the fact she could or that she wanted to was more terrifying.
She swiped the towel over the area, his chin still cradled in her hand. Standing so close to him, she detected a hint of citrus spice from his aftershave. The desire to run her nose along the column of his neck and inhale all that manly scent bounded through her and competed with the need she felt to kiss him.

Why did this man provoke such strong reactions in her? It was a question she couldn’t answer with any clarity.

“It’s not coming off?”
Tandy blinked him back into focus.
“No.” She dropped her hand and took a few steps back, needing the distance. “I think you’d better do it yourself.” She handed him the paper towel.

With a nod, he headed for the bathroom.

Tandy pressed her hand across her abdomen, let out a full, tortured breath in a long whoosh, and bent at the waist, hands now on top of her thighs.

Jiminy Crickets, Tandy. Breathe. Just breathe.

VANILLA WITH A TWIST ( One Scoop or Two) by Peggy Jaeger

Tandy Blakemore spends her days running her New England ice cream parlor, single-parenting her teenage son, and trying to keep her head above financial water. No easy feat when the shop’s machinery is aging and her son is thinking about college. Tandy hasn’t had a day off in a decade and wonders if she’ll ever be able to live a worry-free life.

Engineer Deacon Withers is on an enforced vacation in the tiny seaside town of Beacher’s Cove. Overworked, stressed, and lonely, he walks into Tandy’s shop for a midday ice cream cone and gets embroiled in helping her fix a broken piece of equipment.

Can the budding friendship that follows lead to something everlasting?

More info coming soon, peeps.

Until next time ~ Peg

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Filed under Romance, Romance Books

A #5starreview & an ego boost!

I just adore InD’tale magazine! They not only gave me a 5 star review for  A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK, they also made the lovely graphic above for me AND put the book in  you tube video:

This entire week just got waaaaaaaaay better, peeps!

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Filed under A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK, Uncategorized, WIld Rose Press AUthor

#CoverReveal for new #WildRosePress Series, One Scoop of Two: Vanilla with a Twist

I’ve been lucky enough to have been included in 3 previous WILD ROSE PRESS series: The Candy Hearts, The Deerbourne Inn, and the Australia Burns Anthologies.

Today, I’m giving you a sneak peek at the fourth: ONE SCOOP OR TWO, and my addition to the series ,VANILLA WITH  A TWIST.

That’s my heroine, ice cream parlor owner TANDY BLAKEMORE, on the cover, and in her shop!

I loved writing the story sososo much! It’s a small town, sweet romance and 35000+ words, but the emotion that’s packed into it is powerful. At its heart this is a story about two lonely people who find one another when neither was looking!

Here’s the blurb:

Tandy Blakemore spends her days running her New England ice cream parlor, single-parenting her teenage son, and trying to keep her head above financial water. No easy feat when the shop’s machinery is aging and her son is thinking about college. Tandy hasn’t had a day off in a decade and wonders if she’ll ever be able to live a worry-free life.

Engineer Deacon Withers is on an enforced vacation in the tiny seaside town of Beacher’s Cove. Overworked, stressed, and lonely, he walks into Tandy’s shop for a midday ice cream cone and gets embroiled in helping her fix a broken piece of equipment.

Can the budding friendship that follows lead to something everlasting?

I don’t have a release date yet or buy links, but it promises to be available in Summer 2020 ( which I’m hoping means June!) so  you know when it gets closer I’ll be putting up lots of promo.

Here’s a very quick passage to hopefully whet your reading appetite: 

For a few moments, she regarded him with a look his mother would have called insightful. The corners of her eyes narrowed, she dipped her chin a hair, and pulled her mouth into another appealing pout he was tempted to kiss.

“I bet,” she said after a long, drawn-out sigh, “you were the kind of kid who took apart clocks and fans and vacuum cleaners to see how they worked.”

“It was more washing machines and lawn mowers and anything with a motor, but yeah. I was.”

She shook her head, her own lips forming a lopsided grin. “Your poor mother.”

“She survived.”

Tandy rolled her eyes and shot her hands to her hips. “So it’s working again?” She thrust her chin at the ice cream machine.

“For now.”

“Okay, well, I can live with for now. And you think you know the real reason it’s been acting up?”

“I definitely do. But like I said, the water to the machine needs to be shut off to fix it.”

“Okay. Well, we close at nine.”

“I’ll come back a little before then. Get things ready. Is that okay with you?”

“I guess it’ll have to be.” She bit down on the inside of her cheek as her brows pulled together. “And you’re sure you want to do this?”

“If I weren’t, I wouldn’t offer, Tandy.”

Why her reluctance to have him help was such a turn-on was something he considered while he waited for his ice cream.

More to come, peeps, when I can….

Until next time ~ Peg

And when I’m not eating ice cream or writing, I’m usually here:Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me// Triber// Book Me

 

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Filed under One Scoop or Two, Romance

#WeeklyWrapup 1.19.2020 I’ve been busy!!!

I’ve been all over the place this week, on my tour, but also visiting other writers on their home blogs. Here’s a recap on any stops ou may have missed- don’t forget to visit and enter the rafflecopter!!

I visited fellow WRP sistah Rebecca Grace on 1.17.2020 

Love Romance Reads had a great interview with Rick Bannerman on 1.14.20

Kari Lemor gave my book a shout out on her blog on 1.13.20

I have an interview over on Silver Dagger tours where I start my tour for A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK on 1.13.20

I’m featured on NNLights New Year Book fete on 1.13.20

I’ve got another full week ahead of me on the Silver Dagger tour, so stay tuned. Here are the upcoming tour stops for the week, staring today:

Jan 19

Sylv.net

Craving Lovely Books

Jan 20

Mythical Books

Word Processor, Romance, Cats, Kids and Creed

Jan 21

Anna del C. Dye official page

Maiden of the Pages

Jan 22

Breaking Genre

Luv Saving Money

Jan 23

The Pulp and Mystery Shelf  

Book Corner News and Reviews

Jan 24

Tammy L. Bailey Author Blog

3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, &, Sissy, Too!

Jan 25

Stormy Nights Reviewing & Bloggin’

Insane Books

Jan 26

Book-Lover

Midnight Book Reader

Like I said, BUSY!!!

Until next time, peers ~ Peg

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Filed under A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK, Romance, Romance Books, romantic suspense

#SundaySnippet First one of 2020~ 1.5.20 ; A PRIDE OF BROTHERS:RICK

It’s a little hard for me to believe 2020 is here already. It seems like just yesterday it was 1.1.19.

Oh well….

I have a brand new ROMANTIC SUSPENSE series starting this year titled A PRIDE OF BROTHERS and the very first book, RICK is dropping on 1.13.20 so it seems apropos I post my very first Sunday Snippet of 2020 with a little scene from the book.

Blurb:

Elite bodyguard and P.I. Rick Bannerman’s job is to protect. He doesn’t get emotional with his clients, but when a woman from his past is threatened, his next job becomes personal.

Family lawyer Abigail Laine is the target of a client’s vengeful husband, but refuses Rick’s offer of protection. He walked away from her four years ago, and she swore to forget him.

Now her reluctance to accept his help could cost Abby her life.

As she reached out to clutch the table for support, a pair of firm hands seized her upper arms from behind.

“Easy there, Abigail.”

Abby’s entire body stilled. In a heartbeat, she went from tipsy to stone-cold sober as the smooth, deep timbre of that voice washed over her.

“Reception hasn’t started yet. Wouldn’t do for one of Kandy’s minions to go down before the band even warms up.”

When her arms were freed a moment later, Abby whirled around to find a pair of chocolate-drop-colored eyes trained on her from a face hand carved by the gods of gorgeous. Hair as dark as unprocessed coal was cut military short. Dark, thick lashes framed his almond- shaped eyes, and his mouth was pulled into a totally charming smirk that she wanted to kiss off his chiseled face.

Why did simply looking at him make her stomach act like a roller coaster spiraling downward and back to the station?

“Minions? Really, Bannerman?”

He had the nerve to grin. “Well, you are required to blindly follow and do everything Kandy tells you to without argument, aren’t you? Sounds pretty accurate to me.”

“You’re wearing a tuxedo. Does that make you one of Josh’s minions?” She raked a finger up and down his ridiculously well-cut black lapel.

A free and easy laugh kicked her square in her already shaking stomach. “Not in this lifetime.” His eyes crinkled at the corners. “He’s got two brothers who can more than fill the bill. I’m merely a humble wedding guest.”

Humble was hardly the word she’d use to describe him. At six two and a solid, muscular two hundred pounds, Rick Bannerman was cocky, sinfully sexy, and a total player. Exactly the kind of man she knew she shouldn’t be drawn to, but God help her, was.

Intrigued? You can preorder your copy here and have it as soon as it’s released on 1.13.20:

Amazon // B&N // i-books // Books-a-million

 

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Filed under Romance Books, romantic suspense, Uncategorized

25 Days of Holiday Romance day # 21 – CHRISTMAS CAROLE

The WIld Rose press dominates in this Holiday Blog Event! Today, I’ve got fellow sistah Stephanie Sullivan and her addition to our holiday romance reading, CHRISTMAS CAROLE

After the death of her fiancé, workaholic Carole Sinclair vowed never to fall in love again. She can’t face another loss of someone she loves.
Firefighter Derek Langston was interested in Carole years ago, but his best friend asked her out first. Derek has stayed friends and supported her while she grieves. Two years have passed, and impatient for his life to move forward, he proclaims his feelings.
Their friendship becomes much more complicated than either bargained for. After a glimpse into her past, present and future, Carole must choose between remaining stuck in old memories or claiming the future she longs for. Can a treasured friendship grow into a lasting love?

Amazon Purchase Link

About the Author : Stephanie Sullivan

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#Authorinterview with Karen Hulene Bartell

It’s always a great day when I can introduce you to another WIld Rose Press sistah! Today, it’s my pleasure for you to meet KAREN HULENE BARTELL.

Karen has a new book out from WRP and she’s here to tell us a little about it, and to tell us a lot about herself!!! I love an author interview, don’t you?

Karen…take it away!

Karen,  The Writer 

Thank you so much for hosting me! ( Peggy here: Totally my pleasure!!)

  1. What drives you to write?

This is a very thought-provoking question, and I considered it long and hard. I loved reading—especially as a child—so writing may be a natural progression, but my guess is *if* it’s in you—*if* you’re born with a penchant for writing—it’s gotta’ come out.

  1. What genre(s) of Romance do your write, and why?

I write mainstream fantasy romance because I admit to a captivation with ghosts, and I write historical western romance because both history and the American frontier appealed to me early on.

  1. What genre(s) of Romance do you read, and why?

I’ve read most genres of romance, depending at what point I’m at in life. For instance, in junior high, I read Gone with the Wind and fell in love with antebellum era romances. In high school, I read Angelique, which started a fascination with 17th Century France and the court of “Le Roi Soleil,” Louis XIV.

  1. What’s your writing schedule? Do you write everyday?

I write early in the morning, while my mind is still creative, usually starting about 4:30 or 5:00. I write every day, not only because it’s a good habit, but because it keeps the storyline fresh. Many mornings I wake up with a plot idea, which leads me to believe “the genies of my mind” really do work while I sleep.

  1. Give us a glimpse of the surroundings where you write. Separate room? In the kitchen? At the dining room table?

I write in my home office, at a French Provincial desk I finished myself. The keyboard slides into a drawer, and the computer screen overhangs it. Two orange-striped cats are usually stretched out, covering half the desktop. An open travel brochure is within sight, calling to me, and the dog’s napping at my feet.

  1. Are you the kind of writer who needs total quiet to compose, or are you able to filter out the typical sounds of the day and use your tunnel-vision?

Though I can compose in the middle of mayhem, especially if I’m on a roll, I prefer a quiet place without interruption.

  1. Do you listen to music while you write, and if so, what kind? If not, why not?

Definitely, I don’t listen to music while I write. Most of the time, a melody is playing at the back of my mind, and if I hear external music, it’s jarring—like listening to two radio stations simultaneously.

  1. How did you come up with the plotline/idea for your current WIP?

My husband and I took a trip to the Keys several years ago…and voila…an idea was born along Highway 1.

  1. Which comes first for you – character or plot? And why?

Plot always comes first. Though I may think of characters before I have any plot in mind, I “save” those characters for the right plot.

  1. What 3 words describe you, the writer?

Eccentric loner, who’s extroverted 😉

Karen , The Person 

  1. Tell us one unusual thing about yourself—not related to writing!

I’m an animal advocate, and I rescue mustangs.

2, Who was your first love and what age were you?

I was twelve and madly in love with the first flautist in the school orchestra.

3, If you could relive one day, which one would it be? Think GROUNDHOG DAY, the movie for this one – you’ll have to live it over and over and….

Probably the day I met my husband. Through an extenuating series of events, I met him hours after he broke off his engagement.

4. Do you like a guy in boxers, briefs, or commando?

None of the above—I prefer a guy in jeans.

5.If you had to give up one necessary-can’t-live-without-it beauty item, what would it be?

Shampoo??? I’m a down-to-early, au natural type 😉

6. What three words describe you, the person?

Adventurous traveler and student (of life)

7. If you could sing a song with Jimmy Fallon, what would it be?

I Gotta’ Be Me

8.If you could hang out with any literary character from any book penned at any time line, who would it by, why, and what would you do together?

Scarlett O’Hara

Bonus round

I love the Actor’s Studio show on Bravo, so this is my version of it:

  1. Favorite sound – twilight in the country
  2. Least favorite sound – screeching children
  3. Best song every written – O Holy Night
  4. Worst song ever written – any rap song
  5. Favorite actor and actress – Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock
  6. Who would you want to be for 1 day and why? ( It can be anyone living or dead) Genghis Khan
  7. What turns you on? Down-to-earth guy, romantic dinner, dancing, moonlit night, and cava
  8. What turns you off? Arrogant alpha males—swaggering muscles without brains
  9. Give me the worst 5 words ever heard on a first date ( here’s mine: “Is that your real hair?”) What took you so long?
  10. What’s your version of a perfect day? Signing a book contract

The Keys: Voice of the Turtle by Karen Hulene Bartell

 

Blurb:

Hours after arriving in the Florida Keys to help her cousin Keya create a turtle preserve, Ruth discovers a washed-up body and not one, but two apparitions—Maita, the angry victim’s spirit, and Bart, a swashbuckling ghost. Ruth’s curious ability to connect with the ghosts may help them move on, but how?

Keya is in a probate battle over her turtle-nesting beach. Land-hungry relatives want it bulldozed and developed. Like Ruth, she has a special gift—she can talk to animals. Between Ruth’s help and Keya’s unique ability, they work to save the property, but is it too late?

Can Keya save her beloved turtles? Can Ruth find Maita’s murderer or help Bart solve his 400-year-old mystery? There’s more than meets the eye to Keya’s land. Add in a dashing sailor who believes in her, and Keya may have more than she bargained for…

Excerpt:

Conveying this land to the turtles would be my way of leaving the world a better place.” She turned toward Ruth. “Does that make sense?”

Ruth nodded and gazed at Keya as if for the first time. Her cousin’s intentions were clear. “But legally, how can you will the property to the turtles?”

“Easy. I leave it to the Turtle Refuge.” Keya laughed inwardly as they meandered along the beach. “And this is where you come in. When you’re writing the brochure, add a few paragraphs about planned giving and charitable bequests…” Her words broke off as Keya stared as if in a trance.

Ruth looked at her. “What’s wrong?”

Her hand shaking, Keya pointed to a shady patch of beach half hidden by sand dunes. A lifeless hand lay tangled in seaweed, its fingernails broken and bloodied.

Racing behind the sandbanks to help, Ruth skidded to a halt, her heels digging into the sand. A woman’s bloated body lay staring at the sun, her eyes opaque and unseeing. “Do you recognize her?”

“No.” Keya shook her head as the cat gingerly approached, sniffing and meowing. But Earnestine said she smells familiar.”

“Knock, knock,” called a man’s voice.

Ruth flinched at the sound. “Who’s there?”

Buy Links:

Kindle // Amazon // B&N //

About the Author:

 

Author of the Sacred Emblem, Sacred Journey, and Sacred Messenger series, Karen is a best-selling author, motivational keynote speaker, wife, and all-around pilgrim of life. She writes multicultural, offbeat love stories steeped in the supernatural that lift the spirit. Born to rolling-stone parents who moved annually, Bartell found her earliest playmates as fictional friends in books. Paperbacks became her portable pals. Ghost stories kept her up at night—reading feverishly. The paranormal was her passion. Wanderlust inherent, Karen enjoyed traveling, although loathed changing schools. Novels offered an imaginative escape. An only child, she began writing her first novel at the age of nine, learning the joy of creating her own happy endings. Professor emeritus of the University of Texas at Austin, Karen resides in the Hill Country with her husband Peter and her “mews”—three rescued cats and a rescued *Cat*ahoula Leopard dog.

 

Connect with Karen:

Facebook // Twitter // Instagram // Goodreads // Website // amazon // Book bub // Linked In

(Peggy here: Karen – it’s been a delight getting to know you. Thank you so much for agreeing to be interviewed and much luck with THE KEYS: VOICE OF THE TURTLE)

 

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