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Tuesday, May 22, 2018

New Release -- Forgotten Son (Men of Maine Series Book 5) by Diana Tobin

When Zoe Jarrett moves to Webster, Maine, she is interested in only one thing—re-inventing herself. A career change from the boring CPA she’d been for so many years to the outgoing, flirtatious massage therapist isn’t her only ‘makeover’—she’s also running from her own heart. A fifteen-year-long betrayal has her believing there is no ‘happy-ever-after’ for her in life, but a good time is always available somewhere!

Tom Lansing has returned to Webster determined to learn the truth about his childhood—and his father. Tom’s mother was once married to Wil Owens, but is Wil truly Tom’s father? In the midst of his search for the truth, he’s blindsided by a sassy blonde pixie with an exotic flair that matches her name—Zoe. Her outrageous flirting embarrasses the serious construction company owner, but Tom is attracted to her beautiful looks and kind heart.

As they each struggle to put the past behind them, can Tom convince Zoe they have a future together? With new beginnings ahead, can Tom forgive the man he believes deserted him—and can Wil make things right with his FORGOTTEN SON?

EXCERPT

     Zoe Jarrett squealed in delight. “Oh, Michaela! You wonderful girl. You got me a welcoming gift.” She clapped a hand over her chest and fluttered her dark eyelashes. Her voice lowered and deepened to a purr. “Looks like a big one, too.”
     Michaela Reigh, owner of the beauty salon, The Hair Mousse, gaped, then giggled as she realized to what, or rather whom, her new employee referred. “He doesn’t come cheap, but he’s worth every penny.”
     Tom Lansing, owner of Lansing Construction, looked over his shoulder from where he crouched on the floor. “Hey, Micki.” He stood up to greet the two women. “Had a few minutes so thought I’d check around. I’m not completely sure I know what you want.” His smile was polite even as his gaze traveled over the mostly blonde pixie standing next to his client.
     “Don’t worry, handsome. I can clear up any mysteries.” She slid a glance at Michaela. “Don’tcha love a man in a tool belt?” She licked her lips and grinned as his face flushed red.
     “Don’t scare him away before you see what he can do,” admonished Michaela with a smile.

     

Sunday, May 20, 2018

FLEETING, by Mollie Hunt, Cat Writer

Artist, M. Boulanger unsigned


Spring has sprung. Here in Portland Oregon, the gardens are abundant with blossoms. Lilac, calendula, wisteria, snap dragons; even the roses have decided it’s close enough to June to show their pretty heads. The grass is green and growing like the weed it is. The foliage is fresh and new.

But as I ponder my back yard garden, I see brown creeping into the color. The lilacs are already fading; the hot-pink rhododendron poms are beginning to bleach. Azalea petals dangle from their filaments to fall and litter the ground. The hyacinths and daffodils that started this flower frenzy are relegated to memory.

Fleeting. So anticipated; so beautiful; so quickly gone.

Yes, I know there will be buds to come: lilies, zinnia, and of course more roses. There will be daisies in the fields and marigolds in the borders. Gladiolas will reach up bright, colorful stalks. Fuchsias will hang from baskets on porches where we can sit quietly, evading the summer heat.

Before we know it, chrysanthemums and dahlias will push their way through the drying soil. Reds and browns and golds, mimicking their season.

Which brings us to winter. All in the blink of an eye.

For me, writing is like the flowers of the seasons: the anticipation of the new story, so perfect and unique in my mind; the first draft giving way to a second and a third (and a fourth). The editing, the publishing… 

Where did that virgin story go? Is it still abloom somewhere in the finished product? (yes, I said “product”.) That seed from my imagination— will it be what people take away when they read the book?



Check out more blogs by Mollie Hunt, Cat Writer at:

Happy reading!

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Self-aggrandizement by Michael E. Gonzales


Ah, May. The month of my birth, but enough painful reminders.

A friend of mine, a former Special Forces NCO, (all my friends are veterans…hmm)
is today an outstanding professional photographer. He has offered to take a headshot of me for use on the back cover of my books.

As intriguing as that thought was, at first, I began to struggle with two thoughts. What if younger readers turn the book over and see a gray haired old guy.
Might that not cause them to turn away from my literary offering?


The second hits me a bit harder.
The thought of self-aggrandizement.
Some would say that is the very essence of advertising.


I don’t agree, my advertisements promote the novels, not the author.

The same with using quotes from your reviews. Is it really cool for an author to do that? Might not the reader conclude that the author has only selected the positive comments?

Example: a recent comment reads, “If you like to sleep then DON’T buy this book. It will keep you up at nights until you're finished.”

And platitudes like, “One of the best science fiction stories I have ever read! Non-stop heart pounding action from beginning to end!

I mean…that stuff makes me blush.


And come on, a review like, “Fantastic story! Well written. Reminds me of the greats of the golden age of science fiction.

Really? The greats…WOW. I am so humbled! (And I mean that, now!)


It’s one thing to read these things in the privacy of one’s own study, but to know they are out there for anyone to read, well―

And then a fan goes as far as to suggest: “His descriptions, at every turn, places you on the moon and in the room as the main characters struggle for survival. Intrigue permeates this novel as we are introduced to AI and aliens in a way that brings this story to life. I am excited about the next book and can't wait to see this sci-fi series in IMAX Technicolor.

IMAX? I truly feel that is going way overboard. Regular old 3-D will be just fine. No, really. (And not to put too fine a point on it, but…what’s not shot in technicolor anymore?)

At the same time, an astute observer will find hints to tell him what he’s doing right, and what he needs to improve on, “I feared a non-techie, such as myself, might get lost in scientific techno speak, but not so; there was just enough to explain what was going on, I didn’t feel overwhelmed by it.”

And of course, there are areas that need improvement… “I have never been a science fiction person, however, half way through this book I am already excited to read the rest of the series!” 

Half way? I certainly should have grabbed her far earlier than that!

Then, as we all know, come the personal attacks. One critic started with, “The world of science fiction authors and readers will welcome new author Michael Gonzales.” And with that the writer went on to accuse me of being a “world builder!”

I want to make it quite clear, right now, I have absolutely no political aspirations…none!

So, in conclusion, I feel I shall have to achieve considerably more fame before I post pictures of myself or stoop to quoting from reviews of my work in public forums.

I thank you,

Mike

(All quotes in this bit of protracted rambling can be found on my Amazon site. https://www.amazon.com/product-reviews/1540645681/ ).

And while your there, do feel free to purchase any or all of my novels.


My Web Site:  http://www.mikegonzalesauthor.com/home.html

Labels: Across a Sea of Star, Action, Action Adventure, Alien worlds, Aliens, battle, Dark Moon Rising, Michael E. Gonzales, mikegonzalesauthor.com, Romance, science fiction, syfy, FireStarPress, NewRelease, Across a Sea of Star, Action, Action Adventure, Adventure, Alien woman, Alien worlds, Aliens, Magic, Prairie Rose Pub, robots, Romance, science fiction, Space Opera, witches and wizards



Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Life in the Slow Lane



I believe we all have that one special place that soothes our soul and fills us with peace. For me, it's the mountains. I've been to the mountains, in various locations, on countless occasions. On each trip, I eagerly await the appearance of the first peaks in the distance. As soon as they come into view, I sigh and peace flows through me, any worry and stress falling away.

My husband is a beach guy. His family spent a week at the same beach every summer. He's natural for the beach - he loves the water and tans easily. We've made several trips to the beach of his childhood many times since our marriage but it was always a bit of a struggle for me. I'm both a non-swimmer and a fair-skinned redhead. I practically burst into flames in direct sunlight, even when coated in SPF 50+ sunscreen. I also suffer from an irrational fear of sharks. Three days at the beach was about all I could handle. At that point, I was ready to go home even if it meant leaving the rest of the family behind, LOL.

 There is SO much truth in this image courtesy of How to be a Redhead

However, over the years, things have changed. My husband has learned to enjoy the peace and quiet of the mountains as much as I do. As for me, I have learned to enjoy the beach. I still can't swim and have to take extreme measures to avoid blistering sunburn. What changed? I discovered the joy of fossil hunting. The first shark's tooth I found ignited something in me. I guesstimate that I've found a few hundred shark's teeth over the years. I've found other items that I knew must be some sort of fossil but never knew what they were. On our last trip to the beach, one of our fellow campers was also a fossil enthusiast; he was able to identify a couple of my mystery fossils: puffer fish plates and pieces of a sting ray barb. I also found some sort of vertebrae that had him stumped. My biggest find (literally), was the large tooth in the picture below.

Fossilized Great White tooth

So, while you are reading this post, I will be scouring the waterline in search of more fossilized finds. I can't wait!

What is your favorite vacation location?


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Thursday, April 26, 2018

Two New Releases -- TRUCK STOP PARADISE and RODEO MAN by Celia Yeary @prairierosepublications #firestarpress



TRUCK STOP PARADISE

Leigh Anne McClintock has spent her adult life shielding her addictive sister Crissy. But when Crissy abandons a horse, Leigh Anne borrows a pick-up and trailer and takes the horse from North Texas to the Panhandle ranch owned by a childhood friend, Chad Rogers. 

Chad has wondered for years why his best friend Leigh Anne betrayed him and her sister Crissy on the night of their ten-year high school reunion. When Leigh Anne arrives, he willingly takes in the animal, and he cautiously tries to make peace with Leigh Anne. They feel the old attraction, but neither can let go of the past.


When Crissy makes a disturbing appearance, will Chad and Leigh Anne finally learn to put themselves first ... and find the love that had been there all along?






RODEO MAN

Marla Ellington inherits an abandoned town on ranchland near Arrowhead, Texas. When she arrives to claim her property, and finds Cody Matheson sitting on the porch of the dilapidated honky-tonk, her temper flares hotter than her pistol. Anger blazing, she settles in for a showdown.

Cody's only goal for the week is to win the bull-riding event at the Saturday night rodeo. But when Marla receives an anonymous threat that forces her to leave town, Cody finds himself smack-dab in the middle of a mystery. 'Course, catching a criminal and lasting eight seconds on a bull are easy compared to winning the love of the feisty, strawberry-blonde beauty who wants nothing to do with him. Now it's his turn for a showdown.



     

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

New Release -- The Case of the Lost Trophy Wife (A P.I. Berger Mystery Book 3) by Harol Marshall @prairierosepubs #mystery

 When prosperity gospel preacher Harvey Kow’s beautiful wife, Holly, goes missing in Tinseltown, P.I. Polly Berger’s investigative firm is hired to find her—and prove the Right Reverend Kow is innocent of any wrongdoing. 

But the wealthy preacher’s wife has some secrets of her own that come to light when one of Polly’s former clients, Cinda Mae Bradbury, divulges the past occupation of the missing woman. Did Holly Kow run away? Has she been kidnapped? Or, has something worse happened in Hollywood Hills?

With a killer on the loose, Polly is nearly murdered in a drive-by shooting, and the tarot card reader in Polly’s building mysteriously disappears after making a dire prediction for Polly’s ex-husband, Johnny’s future.

Can Polly, her assistant Bunny, and Johnny find Holly Kow before it’s too late? Their time is up, and their very survival depends on solving THE CASE OF THE LOST TROPHY WIFE…  

EXCERPT

     A minute or two after I’d informed Bunny of my decision to take the Kow case, I remembered the invoice I forgot to give him. I headed out to his desk with a copy of a statement from the L.A. Department of Power and Water.
     “One more bill to pay,” I said. “The best reason of all to work with a shyster like Bugsy.”
No sooner had the words left my mouth when all hell broke loose.
     “Holy sh—! Get down, Polly,” Bunny yelled, tackling me and dragging me behind his desk as a flurry of gunshots rang out.
     “What the—” I’d barely hit the floor when our building exploded in a fusillade of flying bullets and shattering glass and metal. The cannonade rivaled the Fourth of July at Dodger Stadium. I hoped our building’s earthquake fortifications were up to code, because there was a whole lot of shakin’ going on and not of the Jerry Lee Lewis variety. I listened for screams, wondering if anyone downstairs had been hit, but the only sounds reaching my ears were of the non-human variety.

     

Monday, April 23, 2018

Shakespeare, Led Zeppelin, and Misquotes by Kaye Spencer #shakespeare #firestarpress #prairierosepubs


(1) William Shakespeare



William Shakespeare—poet, playwright, and actor with the Lord Chamberlain's Men—a man whose legacy of words has survived four centuries.
Today, April 23rd, marks the day of both his birth and his death1564 to 1616.

However, there is more to this coincidence. The dates recorded at Holy Trinity Church in Stratford-upon-Avon regarding Shakespeare's birth and death are:



Internment – April 25, 1616
Baptism – April 26, 1564

Shakespeare scholars generally agree since it was common to have an infant baptized on the first Sunday after his/her birth (infant mortality influenced this immediacy), Shakespeare was likely born on April 23rd. This was a Thursday, and it is reasonable that his mother would have been able to attend church for his baptism two days later. Shakespeare scholars also, mostly, agree that he died on the anniversary of his birth, since burials generally happened two days after a death and the 25th is his burial recorded date.

Coincidentally, or not, since April 23rd is also St. George's Day (Feast of St. George), it was (is) a  convenient English celebration to associate with William Shakespeare.

And, why not?

Regardless of the actual dates, Shakespeare's birth and death dates are, for the sake of tradition, the same.

So, to commemorate the Bard on this day, here are eight commonly misquoted lines from his works compared to the actual text. Please note for ease of reading, in some instances, I have deliberately disregarded the exact format in which Shakespeare wrote the words.

1- Hamlet – V, i, 69-171
Misquote: “Alas, poor Yorick. I knew him well.”
Actual Quote:
Alas, poor Yorick. I knew him, Horatio; a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy.


(4) Hamlet & Horatio

2-  Hamlet – I, iv, 16-18
Misquote: “To the manor born”
Actual Quote:
But to my mind, though I am native here and to the manner born, it is a custom more honour’d in the breach than the observance.

Manor and manner are homophones, which means they sound alike, but they have different meanings. According to dictionary definitions,

Manor is a 'large country house with lands; the principal house of a landed estate'.
Manner is a way in which things are done or happen; a person's outward bearing or way of behaving toward others

Hamlet speaks this line and his meaning of manner is to be so good at what you're doing that you appear to have been born with the skill, talent, or attribute. In this case, wild drunken carousing. :-)

3- Hamlet – III, ii, 239
Misquote: "Methinks the lady doth protest too much."
Actual quote:
The lady doth protest too much, methinks.
(2) The Play within a Play

4- The First Part of King Henry the Fourth – V, iv, 123-124
Misquote: "Discretion is the better part of valour."
Actual Quote:
The better part of valor is discretion, in the which better part I have saved my life.


5- The Life and Death of King John – IV, ii, 10-16
Misquote: "Don't gild the lily."
(Meaning: You're already wearing designer clothing, there's no need to gild the lily and add the emerald-studded accessories.)
Actual Quote:
To gild refined gold, to paint the lily...is wasteful and ridiculous excess.


6- Macbeth – V, vii, 74-76
Misquote: "Lead on, Macduff."
(The line is misquoted as meaning “Full steam ahead!" "Here we go!" when it is really about the start of a fight.
Actual Quote:
Before my body I throw my warlike shield. Lay on, Macduff, and damn'd be him that first cries, 'Hold enough!'



(3) Macbeth & the Witches

7- Macbeth – IV, i, 10-11
Misquote: "Bubble, bubble, you're in trouble. Leave this island on the double." (Thank Disney for this cringe-worthy misquote in 'Much Ado about Scrooge' in "Duck Tales")
Actual Quote:
Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and cauldron bubble.


8- The Merchant of Venice – II, vii, 66-74
Misquote: "All that glitters is not gold" and "All that glitters is gold"
(these words predate Shakespeare to the 12th century.)
Actual Quote:
The lines from The Merchant of Venice: Morochus, a prince, and a suitor to Portia, reads these lines from a scroll—


All that glisters is not gold;
Often have you heard that told:
Many a man his life hath sold
But my outside to behold:
Gilded tombs do worms infold.
Had you been as wise as bold,
Young in limbs, in judgement old,
Your answer had not been inscroll'd:
Fare you well; your suit is cold
.


SO... what does Led Zeppelin have to do with misquoting William Shakespeare?

Stairway to Heaven

Interestingly enough, the message in the song and Death's warning in The Merchant of Venice are  quite similar. Both warn of the dangers in pursuing the superficial and elusive material possessions in life at the expense of seeking enduring and meaningful soul-feeding life pursuits. In other words, leading a self-centered and self-serving life is not fulfilling at the end of the day.

Now, have a listen to Led Zeppelin's tale of a lady who's sure...



Coming Fall 2018 from Prairie Rose Publications and Fire Star Press
Vampire/Cowboy Contemporary Romance



Until next time,

Kaye Spencer

Writing through history one romance upon a time

Website/Blog- https://www.kayespencer.com
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YouTube Channel - https://www.youtube.com/c/kayespencer0203

References:
*Shakespeare, William, et al. The Yale Shakespeare. Barnes & Noble Books, 1993.
*Garrett, Anna. “5 Top Misquoted Shakespeare References.” OKWU Eagle, 30 Apr. 2015, eagle.okwu.edu/2015/04/30/top-misquoted-shakespeare-quotes/.
*“The 5 Most Misquoted Lines from Shakespeare.” Candis, www.candis.co.uk/all-Extra-Features/shakespeare/.
*“William Shakespeare.” Biography.com, A&E Networks Television, 5 Aug. 2017, www.biography.com/people/william-shakespeare-9480323.
*“Birth and Death of William Shakespeare Celebrated.” History.com, A&E Television Networks, www.history.com/this-day-in-history/birth-and-death-of-william-shakespeare-celebrated.


Images:
(1) Taylor, John. William Shakespeare. Print. Wikipedia. Wikipedia.org. Distributed under a CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication. 1719. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:William_Shakespeare_MET_DP858189.jpg. 21 Apr 2018
(2) Delacroix, Eugène Ferdinand Victor. The Play-Within-A-Play. Print. Wikipedia. Wikipedia.org. Distributed under a {{PD-1923}} license. 1839. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:The_Play-Within-A-Play_MET_DP852127.jpg. 21 Apr 2018.
(3) Zuccarelli, Francesco. Macbeth and the Witches (Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act 1, Scene 1).Wikipedia. Wikipedia.org. CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication. 1770. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Macbeth_and_the_Witches_(Shakespeare,_Macbeth,_Act_1,_Scene_1)_MET_DP859553.jpg. 21 April 2018.
(4) Delacroix, Eugène Ferdinand Victor. Hamlet und Horatio auf dem Friedhof. Painting. Wikipedia. Wikipedia.org. Distributed under a {{PD-1923}} license.1839. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Eugène_Ferdinand_Victor_Delacroix_018.jpg. 21 Apr 2018.