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Wednesday, December 8, 2021

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year...And the Sexiest

 It's that time of year again. My favorite time of the year. And to me, the most romantic time of the year. And this year it is even more so, since I just closed on my brand new home. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to move in before Christmas this year, because I have too much work I need to do beforehand. But I am so thrilled, and I can only imagine all the Christmas’s too come in this new place. I’m already planning next year right now.


And just like I’m planning next Christmas in my head in my new beautiful home, I am also starting to plan my next Christmas story.

With already six Christmas stories out right now, you would think I couldn't come up with another story, but for me that is not the case. The ideas are flowing, some that involve characters you may have already met (and that is the only hint I’m giving you). A few years ago, I might have tried to discourage myself from writing another Christmas story. I might have said, I already have done that enough, and I shouldn’t try again. Who would want another Christmas story from me? Do I really have anything more to say about Christmas?

But one of the great things that have happened as part of the pandemic is to silence that voice a bit.  After such a miserable year, I no longer want to listen to the shoulds and supposed tos. I have learned over the last year that all that really matters, especially when it comes to my writing, is pleasure. And I am going to lean into that feeling from now on.

For 2022 I am going to write the books that I like, the stories and the characters that give me pleasure, and I hope they will do the same for other people. Whatever that may be. If that means another sweet Christmas menage, or a dark sexy kidnapped mafia story. And I hope you all come to enjoy them as well. If nothing else, it will make 2022 an interesting year.

And in the meantime, if you are looking or a fun Christmas menage full of sexy heart, give my Frostbite Falls series, or the first book in my Owned by the Farrell’s series, which includes not just a sexy cowboy menage, but some creative use of rope too.

If you’re interested in learning more about my future projects, that no doubt will include some more fun Christmas’s with very little clothing, make sure to sign up for my newsletter. That’s where I will not only be letting you know first what is coming up next, but giving lots of early snippets and extra tidbits every month.

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Giveaway Contest for Romance Readers! #PNR #SciFi #TimeTravelRomance #Romance #GiveawayContest #BookBub

 


Happy holiday season!

I’m sharing info for an exciting giveaway contest below. Good luck and have fun discovering some fabulous authors!

Enter NOW for your chance to win $500 at your choice AMAZON or Barnes & Nobel Gift Card.
The Rules are simple…Follow as many Authors as you would like…the more points you get, the better your chances are of winning! Good Luck!


Enter Here: https://bit.ly/BookBubGiveaway-Rafflecopter before 11:59pm 12/15/21
#Bookbub #Giveaway #Authors #Readers #SciFi #PNR #TimeTravelRomance #Fantasy #Romance #ParanormalRomance #Bookstagram #ILoveBooks #Bookish #BookBlog #ReadMore

Monday, December 6, 2021

Picture Books with Lessons...

 


Picture Books With Lessons

If you are like me, all the negatives in the world hit home. I try to find positives and seek ways to be grateful for all I have but this is a challenge for children who don't have the world experiences we have. 

As a teacher, I loved sharing picture books with students of all ages. They have such a positive message and teach children (and us) how to smile during challenging times and how to accept differences. Just imagine what's possible when you teach children that love is most important?!

Now that summer is here and families aren't able to spend time together with the virus, what better treat than to share a story with your children and grandchildren. Send them and yourself a copy, then read it over the phone or through Zoom. Better yet, have them read it to you!

Here's a few (and I have many more) of my favorites...
The Day the Crayons Quit: Amazon
Poor Duncan just wants to color. But when he opens his box of crayons, he finds only letters, all saying the same thing: His crayons have had enough! They quit!

What can Duncan possibly do to appease all the crayons and get them back to doing what they do best?

**This book shows that we need ALL the colors in a box to create a beautiful picture. Embrace your differences to get along with others. A cute read with all the feels.**


Giraffe's Can't Dance: Amazon
Gerald the giraffe, wants nothing more than to dance. With crooked knees and thin legs, its harder for a giraffe than you would think. Encouraging words from an unlikely friend is just what Gerald needs.

**Great story for anyone who has been told that they couldn't do something or who doubts themselves. Beautiful illustrations sure to capture everyone's attention.**


And because I love sharing books with kids and believe we can teach them with heartwarming stories, I wrote my own children's book (or two) under my maiden name, Missy Watling.


Maple's Colors by [Missy  Watling, Jennifer Silverwood]Maple's Colors: Amazon
"I am the most colorful tree." Maple must learn the truth about himself as he sets out to see who really is the most colorful tree on Mr. Jones' farm. 

Come along on this heartwarming tale about what really matters...not the colors of our leaves but the joy we bring to others.

**This story came to me one winter night while I watched the snow fall around the maple tree in my front yard. My husband listened patiently as I discussed my vision and helped me realize my dream of writing a book for children.**



Huzzah: A Pool Mouse: Amazon

Huzzah loves puddles and loves to watch the children swimming. He's too scared to get in the pool until he must save the day. 

Come along as a mouse learns to take chances and finds that being yourself is the most important thing. This sweet tale will be a family favorite for years to come.

**This story shows that you can do anything you put your mind to, even when no one else believes in you. I came up with this story while on a vacation in Virginia.**

Picture books make great holiday gifts. Available in ebook and print, they are perfect for the youngsters (or young at heart) in your lives.

Until next month...

Keep reading,

Melissa Keir (Missy Watling)

Sunday, December 5, 2021

A Different Kind of Holiday Romance

 

I’m pleased to share my most recent holiday Stocking Stuffer romance from Extasy Books, “One Lonely Christmas Eve.” This is a bittersweet love story about two friends who try to come up with a cure for the holiday blues. 


“Christmas can be a lonesome time of year, especially when you have no one special to share it with. Alex March stops at his favorite diner on Christmas Eve to avoid going home to an empty apartment, but that isn’t the only reason. He really wants to see Denise Del Florio, the attractive widow of one of his best friends, who is dreading her first solo holiday. In the year since her husband was killed, Alex has been there for her and they’ve developed a close friendship. He feels a nostalgic longing for holidays gone by and thinks that together, he and Denise can provide a remedy for their mutual loneliness. Will they still be besties when the holiday is over, or will they have moved on to something more serious?” 

 

This story was inspired by some real experiences. I’ve always looked forward to the holidays but when I came up with this idea, I found myself in a dark place. I was between relationships, quarantine overshadowed a family Christmas gathering, I was still making the adjustment to early retirement, and I dreaded the idea of spending the holiday alone. Thanks to a good friend I didn’t have to, but that was the jumping off point. I also used this to relive some past holidays, because I was feeling nostalgic. This opening scene is based on an actual occurrence that happened to me a few years ago:  

 

Alex sipped his coffee, then glanced at the clock mounted on the wall behind the cash register in the nearly empty restaurant. He stared at his reflection in the front window and absently raked his fingers through his thick brown hair. 6:45, and it’s pitch-black outside. Not that much traffic, either, especially in here. Guess most people have had their pre-holiday dinner and gone to church, or decided to pack it in for the evening to wait for Santa by the fireplace. I should do the same, but I don’t really want to go home to an empty apartment.

 

Denise Del Florio approached inside the counter, with a glass coffee pot in hand. “Refill, Alex?”

 

 Alex’s gaze traveled from her head to her feet then back up again, taking in her trim form encased in snug black slacks and a white shirt with a name tag. Her light brown hair with blonde highlights was pulled into a ponytail and a few wisps carelessly hung over her face. Her hazel eyes seemed to take on an extra bit of sparkle when she looked at him. “Thanks, but I’ve had enough for one night.”

 

She exhaled a deep breath. “Good decision. We’re getting ready to close and this stuff would take the paint off your car.” She stretched. “I’m definitely ready to get off my feet after today.”

 

 “I’m surprised you aren’t busier.”

 

Denise poured herself some coffee then took a sip. “You should’ve been here earlier. It was non-stop from lunchtime on. People stopped in for their holiday pie orders and decided to eat while they were here.”

 

“Sounds hectic.”

 

She shrugged. “I didn’t really mind. It kept me busy and I made a fortune in tips.”

 

Alex laughed. “I figured that’s why you volunteered to work the holiday shift.” 

 

Denise gave a shy smile and cast her gaze downward briefly. “I keep forgetting what a good detective you are.”

 

He finished his coffee. “It wasn’t hard to figure out, Denise. I suspected you didn’t mind working tonight for the same reason I’m not going home yet.”

 

She looked into his eyes for a moment. “I’m not ready to face an empty house, especially this holiday.”

 

“The first one alone is always the hardest.”

 

She was silent for a few moments. “How long did it take for you to...”

 

“Still working on it,” he finished. “I’ve been divorced for eight years and there are some holidays I don’t look forward to. But I know it’s different in your case.”

 

She drank some coffee. “Yeah, you could say that. Divorce is one thing to adjust to, but losing your life partner in the line of duty is something else.” She paused. “Is that why you’re here tonight?”

 

“Where else would I be?”

 

“I heard you’ve been seeing someone. Thought you’d be with them.”

 

“So happens the young lady is spending the holidays in Louisville with her family. Why do you think I only came here to check up on you?”

 

“Because I know you, Alex. You and Tony were close friends before you had to leave the police department. Even after you went private, you kept in touch and you were there for me when he got killed earlier this year.”

 

He cast his gaze down. “Guilty as charged. Maybe I was worried about you.”

 

Denise placed her hand on his and squeezed. “I appreciate that, more than you know. You gave me a shoulder to lean on when I needed it and you’ve been there ever since. That means a lot.”

 

 Alex felt embarrassed. “Come on, Denise. I was just doing the right thing. Tony and I were patrol partners before I became a detective and we were fishing and drinking buddies. I always thought of him as one of my best friends.”

 

“He was.” She flashed a playful smile. “Hey, I’ve got an idea. I’m alone, you’re alone and neither of us is in a hurry to get home tonight. Think we can find someplace where two good friends can have a drink?”

 

Alex brought her hand to his lips, then kissed it. “I think there must be someplace out there that caters to people with nowhere to go on a lonely night like this.”

 

You can find “One Lonely Christmas Eve” at Amazon, or anywhere excellent e-books are sold. Happy holiday reading!

 

Amazon Kindle

Tim Smith is an award-winning, bestselling author of romantic mystery/thrillers and contemporary romance. He is also a freelance writer, editor, blogger and photographer.

 

#ChristmasRomance #Holiday Romance #EroticRomance# #ChristmasEve #NorthernOhio #Snow #LakeErie #SanduskyOhio  

 


Friday, December 3, 2021

The Month for Good Tidings!

 

Good Morning to you! 

I hope December 2021 is treating you well. It came so quickly this year I was certain I must have been asleep at the switch for some of it, but turns out, I did get a lot of writing done!

I think this year I realized something important I want to accomplish in my lifetime: Try my hand at as many genres at possible. To date I have managed a few: sweet romance, paranormal romance, cozy mystery, science fiction, short stories, thrillers. I have yet to do a western. That genre has called me from time to time as do urban fantasies and fairy tales. The bounty the writing world offers an author is a marvel to behold!

Could we live in better times? Access to an endless library of books and knowledge that one would need ten lifetimes to get a grasp on. Sure, the modern world has its problems, but doesn't that fade away when you're nose is buried in a good book?

Since I wouldn't see most of you again until 2022, I want to send my best wishes for a wonderful holiday season and a Happy New Year!

Hugs, January Bain


And on a professional note, one of my stories has been made into a game! One of my cozy mysteries. Here's the first photo the company has sent me. I think it's rather pretty!



And if you'd like to read the book the game is based one, here's the link: Amazon Link


Charm McCall, armed with a library full of Agatha Christie stories and her unique witchy gifts, knows how to solve a small-town murder…

Charm McCall, the oldest of the McCall triplets by a whole day—or one minute before midnight if one’s being picky—is the designated driver for her whole town. Why, if it wasn’t for her, Snowy Lake would incinerate or fall into Hudson’s Bay. With her unique abilities, she’s all set to keep her family and town safe and on its proper course.

That is, until a hot Mountie moves into town, a busload of strippers breaks down on Main Street and Mrs. Hurst goes and gets herself murdered with poisoned jam. Jam crafted by Charm’s family at the Tea & Tarot cafĂ©. Now it’s up to her to solve the murders—yes, plural, when another local business owner ends up dead.

Charm knows just what to do. What’s breaking a few laws if she can sleuth out the culprit? She knows the people of Snowy Lake better than any new lawman possibly could. So why can’t he just leave her be to get on with things?

And why does he have to be so darn hot?



Thursday, December 2, 2021

2021 Year in Review - #writing #reflection #publishing

 

Hello everyone!

Writing this year's review is tough. This wasn't a good one in writing or in my personal life. 

Of course, there's many things I'm thankful for: A roof over my head, a day job that pays well, and 2 healthy children but 2021 wasn't what I'd hoped it to be. 

I started the year with a few gals in mind. To finally top my personal best in income, start 2 new series, as well as debut a new penname. However, when my Mom's illness reared it's ugly head again, all that went away. 

There were many days, I didn't write because I was too tired. Taking care of her and my other family duties as well as dealing with anxiety exhausted me. 

Then in July, I lost my Mom to cancer and it spiraled from there. Other than fanfiction, I haven't written a lot this year. The book in the upper left was the only book I published in 2021. 

And while I know a lot of authors only do a book or two a year, I'm sure you might feel, well, no bigs, you got this. But for me, a person whose used to be a lot more productive, this stings. 

Looking back on prior years where I released anywhere from ten to thirteen books feels like a distant memory. I hate this feeling of not accomplishing much, but with December here, I don't see publishing again until 2022. And I'm still not sure when, since I'm dealing with grief and anxiety. I want to write regularly again, but not sure I want to deal with the pressure of publishing. 

I truly hope to get over this soon, because I have many stories to tell. The inspiration is there, but my last book, which was my vampire m/m, still sits around 40K. 

It's sad, but I believe my desire to publish will return. I'm making writing plans, so here's hoping I can pull through. The vampire story will probably be first, then redoing my Nola and PROTEKT books, as well as finishing my Love Kills series. The covers are begging to be re-released, so wish me luck!

So, in conclusion, this year sucked, but I'm looking forward to healing and publishing in 2022. I'm grateful for the readers in the group who've stuck with me and left words when I've dropped in, albeit sparingly. I hope to reward them with new Michael and BL works soon and put the worst behind me. 

This year's word I suppose is appreciation. Although it was a rough 2021, I'm grateful for the things I do have, as well as my talent to write. 

Now, I only need the confidence to share my works with the world again. 

Thanks for listening to me ramble and here's to a great 2022!

Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Writing with a friend by Janet Lane Walters - Moon Pool #MFRWAuthor #BWLAuthor #Romance #Paranormal


Years ago, my friend Jane Toombs and I collaborated on two books. We are nearing her birthday and I miss her very much. Jane and I connected when we first met at Hudson Valley Romance Writers. Actually, she's responsible for myreturn to writing. I'd been published in 1878 and then became involved in raising four children. I had started a book after my long step away. Jane read the synopsis and gave it to her editor. Suddenly I had a contract and an advance. Together we plunged into electronic publishing. Though she moved from the area where I live we kept in contact through email, phone calls and visits. We wote Moon Pool with each of us starting oneof the stories and then trading back and forth until all four storys were done. I'm sorry I was unable to pull the cover up.

In the center of the maze at an Adirondack resort lies a spring-fed pool. Legend says that if you look into the serene depths under a full moon, you’ll see the face of your true love. In this collection of four novellas, the magic of the Moon Pool touches the lives of eight people for whom love seems to be a dream that can never be reality:
Thea — who lost her one true love because she couldn’t bear the scorn of others.
Faith — who has given up on love in the face of responsibility.
Lynn— who settled for practicality when she yearned for poetry.
and
Cynthia — whose reputation for selfishness was no match for love.

 

Excerpt:

 July 1994

            The full moon dappled the shadows beneath the massive oak with patches of light.  Thea caught Luke’s hand.  He spun her to face him.  Their gazes locked.  His dark eyes mirrored her eagerness to be together, to make love.  Thea wanted to laugh at the joy flooding her spirits.

            His lips found hers.  He pulled her into a tight embrace.  She felt the hardness of his erection and opened her mouth to his questing tongue.  His touch, his taste, the aroma of his skin made her desire blossom.  There wasn’t time for what they craved.  With a sigh she broke the kiss.

            Luke slid his hands to her waist.  She sighed.  “I want to be like this with you forever.”

            He kissed the corner of her mouth.  “I’d rather be skin to skin.”

            “That, too.”

            He groaned.  “I’d better head back.  My turn to set the tables for tomorrow.”

            “And I’ve beds to turn down.”

            “Meet me at the reflecting pool in an hour.”

            “I’ll be there.”

            He tugged her closer.  Their mouths met in a searing kiss.  “You’re driving me crazy.”

            She nodded.  “An hour will seem like forever.”

            He released her and dashed toward the kitchen entrance of the sprawling inn.

            Thea leaned against the tree.  What a wonderful summer.  Until now she’d never thought she would find love.  Luke was wonderful and he was hers.  For longer than the summer, she prayed.

            She glanced at her watch.  The luminous dial showed she had a few minutes before she needed to be at her duties.  The moon gleamed like a golden coin.  She had time to test the legend of the reflecting pool.  The words the hostess had said to each group of arriving guests flowed into Thea’s thoughts. 

            Should a man or a woman come to the pool on a night when the moon is full, the face of their true love will be revealed.  Should they reject the vision, a life of lonely sadness will follow.  There is a second chance to find this love.  If the seeker returns to the pool when the moon is full and blue, true love will be recovered.

            Thea ran to the garden.  She paused beneath the trellis entrance and listened for voices.  When she heard none, a wave of relief made her smile.  She stepped into the boxwood maze and quickly made her way along the gravel path to the pool.  She knelt and stared at the water.  Dancing beams of moonlight coalesced.  Thea stared at the unfolding pattern.  When Luke’s face appeared, her laughter pierced the silent night.

            Holding the promise close, she hurried to the Lodge.  Wait until she saw Luke and told him.  Happiness threatened to erupt.  Thea, grind, nerd and all those other names her peers called her, had found her true love.  Thea who had never had a date until this summer had found her perfect mate.

            Luke was the best-looking of the Lodge’s summer employees.  Tall, dark-haired Luke was hers.  They had so many common interests.  When they weren’t making love, they talked and seldom disagreed.

            She thought of the way the other female employees and some of the younger guests had flirted with him.              Thea laughed.  From the moment their eyes met, they had been a couple.

            Thea hurried back to the inn.  She arrived on the second floor and began her evening routine.  She opened the first of her assigned rooms, folded down the covers and placed a chocolate on each pillow.  She entered the bathroom to make sure there was a good supply of fluffy towels.

            “Thea.”

            She walked to the door.  Her friend leaned against the wall.  “You finished already?”

            “Just.  You’re running late and I know why.”  Sue giggled.  “Saw you and Luke sneak off.”

            “For ten minutes.  No big deal.”

            Sue cocked her head.  “I wanted to catch you before you two disappeared to make-out.”

            The knowing look in Sue’s eyes caused Thea to stiffen.  They had been friends since grade school.  Thea had often wondered why the friendship had continued through high school and into college.  Sue was pretty and popular.  Her attention was flattering and brought Thea into the center of events.  Thea still helped Sue with her studies.  She’d even written papers for her friend.  Sometimes Thea wondered if being on the fringes of the in-crowd was worth the effort.  If she dropped Sue, where would another friend be found? Thea smiled.  There was Luke.

            Thea closed the door and walked to her next room.  “Luke and I do more than make-out.  We talk about serious matters.”

            “Sure you do.”  Sue grinned.  “Just wanted to let you know there’s a party in the guest lounge to celebrate Luke’s birthday.”       

            “He never mentioned one to me.”

            Sue’s smile turned sly.  “For good reason.  Guess he didn’t want you to know today he turns seventeen.  Surprised me when I learned.  He looks and acts our age.”

            Thea swallowed.  Luke was only seventeen.  She’d be twenty-two in November.  “But he’s a junior in college.  He’s pre-med.”

            “Heard he’s a genius.  Double major, too.”  Sue stepped back.  “You two are quite the topic in the staff lounge.  Some of the girls call you a cradle-snatcher.  I told them if you’d known his age you would have cut him cold.”

            Thea felt her face flame.  How could she have made such a fool of herself?  Luke was seventeen.  She could be in real trouble.  Everyone knew and laughed at her.  “Look, we’re just friends.  We talk about medicine and surgery.”

            Sue arched a brow.  “With a few anatomy lessons thrown in.  Don’t blame you one bit.  I wouldn’t mind a night or two exploring his body.  He is one gorgeous hunk.  See you.”

            Thea waited until Sue vanished down the rear stairs.  She quickly finished her rooms and fled to the staff sleeping quarters.  Tears stung her eyes.  Why hadn’t he told her before she’d become the staff’s joke of the summer?

            She splashed water on her face.  Luke would be at the reflecting pool.  She intended to let him know how she felt about his deception.

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