Saturday, December 31, 2016

Affairs of the Heart -- January 2017

Check out the newest issue of Affairs of the Heart. I've given it a new look and a new feature where I'll announce up to 10 new releases each month from authors of various genres. I've revamped the recipe section to have an author share his/her favorite with you. My featured author section is a staple and you'll still be able to meet someone new.  To read click on the newsletter tab above.

H A P P Y   N E W   Y E A R S

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Judge Parker and Dried Apple Pie

Since I mention Judge Isaac Parker aka The Hanging Judge in my next book of the Brides Along the Chisholm Trail series, I thought it might be interesting to share a bit of information about Judge Parker. 

In The Marshal's Bride, US Deputy Marshal Gabe Hawkins has been reassigned to Indian Territory just days before his mail-order bride, Abigail Johnson, arrives in Dodge City and he didn't tell her before they were wed. Naughty boy!

To read about Judge Parker go to Legends of America.

I have ever had the single aim of justice in view... 'Do equal and exact justice,' is my motto, and I have often said to the grand jury, 'Permit no innocent man to be punished, but let no guilty man escape.'"

-Judge Isaac C. Parker, 1896

I may have a few other historical surprises along the way as I write the love story for Abby and Gabe.

Here's a recipe that Abby used along the trail on their way from Dodge City to Fred, Indian Territory.  It's from one of my favorite research books: Time Life Books, The Old West, The Pioneers, page 106, "The expedient art of pioneer cookery."

Dried Apple Pie

Soak 2 cups of dried apples in water overnight.
Drain off the water and mix apples with 1/2 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon each of allspice and cinnamon.
Line an 8-inch pie pan with a crust, add the apple mixture, dot with 3 tablespoons of butter and cover with a second crust.
Make a few slashes in the top for ventilation and bake (in 350 oven) for about 1 hour, until the crust is golden brown.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

myRWA : Blogs : Industry Spotlight: Jane Porter, Founder of Tule Publishing

myRWA : Blogs : Industry Spotlight: Jane Porter, Founder of Tule Publishing

Most people who work in the publishing industry—be they authors, agents, editors, cover artists, or one of many other types of professionals it takes to bring books to the reading public—automatically and necessarily view that industry from their unique perspective determined by their position in it. However, author Jane Porter’s view of the publishing landscape now comes from two perspectives, ..... Continue Reading

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Elizabeth Alsobrooks Book Bling:  Amazon's New  No Author Review Policy

Last year, Amazon began deleting reviews from books and authors couldn't figure out why. After some research, the new policies helped explain. Amazon had successfully implemented new book review policies. Here are the reviews the amazon watchdogs are already chewing up and swallowing whole:

1) A review by a book blogger whose blog is...
Continue Reading

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

myRWA : Blogs : Exploring Romance Tropes: Uncovering Character

myRWA : Blogs : Exploring Romance Tropes: Uncovering Character
In hidden or mistaken identity stories, at least one of the main characters either perpetuates an error that keeps their identity hidden or misleads others about who they are. The conflicts of these stories often center around deception and trust, but they also are an opportunity to reveal a character’s potential to his or herself, often ending with the character growing by taking on facets of this second personality.
In Mia Sosa’s Unbuttoning the CEO, for example,...

Thursday, September 15, 2016

5 Star Western Historical Romance Boxset


Prisoners of Love: Cinnamon, by USA Today best-selling author, Callie Hutton
In 1877 saloon girl, Cinnamon O’Brien, sits in Dodge City jail with three other women charged with various crimes. Her charges, of course, are totally unfair since she only hit the mayor over the head with the pitcher of beer because he grabbed her lady parts. Now the marshal gives the four women a choice: join up with the wagon train in Fort Dodge and head to Santa Fe as a mail order bride, or when the judge sobers up, he’ll be so ornery he’ll probably sent them to the state prison.
Before they even leave, childhood friend, Jedediah Nelson, newly ordained preacher headed to Santa Fe, and in need of a wife, proposes to Cinnamon. A preacher and a saloon girl? She’s about to give him a wild ride. 

The Reluctant Bride, by award winning author, Maxine Douglas
Roseanne “Rose” Duncan, witnesses her employer push his sickly wife down the staircase. Fearing she’ll have to testify against a prominent man in town, she’s given an ad for a mail order bride in Dodge City. Believing this is a way for her to escape the possible danger of her employer, she travels to Dodge City and marries under the name of Abigail Johnson.
Logan Granger, is a Pinkerton Detective assigned to Dodge City area as an undercover bartender. When his mail order bride, “Abby,” steps off the train she doesn’t fit the description of a matronly woman who has agreed to his marriage contract of no emotional attachments. There’s no time to reconsider the preacher is waiting to marry them.
Rose hadn’t expected the handsome man waiting for her to be an undercover bartender with a six shooter on his hip and a badge on his lapel. Logan hadn’t expected his soon to be wife to be young, beautiful, and a runaway murder witness.  

Miss Fortune and the Major, by Peggy McKenzie
Calamity Fortune was born under a bad luck star. And now, It’s time to find a new place to call home after she burns down the church during her best friend’s wedding. A place she can be herself without fear of judgment. An advertisement catches her eye. “Widower seeks a wife. Salary included. Platonic relationship guaranteed. Pagosa Springs, Colorado.” Calamity hopes a change in scenery can bring a change in luck and a place she can live by her own rules.
Major Lucas Quinn, widower, decorated officer, used to giving orders and getting respect, can’t control his own children. His sister, Sarah, insists it’s his unyielding, arrogant, absolute control over everyone and everything preventing anyone who knows him from agreeing to be his wife. Lucas places an advertisement for a mail order bride and he makes it clear--his new wife must be organized, run a disciplined household and well-suited with children. There is no room for insubordination.  

The Bride’s Deception, by Heidi Vanlandingham
Escaping the outlaw who controlled her old life, Alayna Kimbal is determined to forge a new one. She answers a mail-order advertisement and shoulders the job of wife and mother, each day hoping her lies and the identity of the man hunting her aren’t discovered.
Marshal Jerome Riddick's life-long goal is to never get married. Then the only woman he ever trusted is killed. Struggling to care for her children, he realizes he can no longer dodge his duty so he takes a bride--only to find out she’s keeping a huge secret from him. A secret that could get them all killed.

Friday, August 19, 2016

The Roses of Prose: Playing the Literary Piano by Alicia Dean

The Roses of Prose: Playing the Literary Piano by Alicia Dean: I have absolutely no musical skills. None at all. Or so I thought. Until I discovered I’d been playing the literary piano for more than f...

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Maxine's Musings ~~ August 1, 2016

August here in our town marks the end of summer vacation and the beginning of a new school year. It is also when our county fair happens each year! The FFA students get their livestock ready for showing, the future bakers of our community showcase their pies, and we all get to ride the rides. I hope you have had a great summer vacation this year!

Quote of the Month: Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.” ~~ John F. Kennedy, President United States of America (1917-1963)

Check This Out:  In 33 days I have written over 20,000 words on my first western historical set in Dodge City, Kansas, The Reluctant Bride, which is a major accomplishment for me in so many ways. I’ve never written this fast before, but thanks to Callie Hutton, my writing conscience J, I’ve gotten into a grove. While we are waiting for cover, here’s a glance at The Reluctant Bride, available late September 2016, in the boxset Wanted: One Bride:

Southcentral Wisconsin
Late April, 1877

“Have you lost your senses?” Miss Roseanne Duncan looked over the advertisement for a mail order bride, the paper rattling in her hand. “I can’t become a mail order bride. Besides, he’s expecting you.”
“Doesn’t matter.” Abigail Johnson replied, continuing to sort through the tub of fresh vegetables. “This is your best chance to survive and you know it.”
A sick feeling went through her at Abby’s blunt words, memories of the mistress falling to her death, the master at the top of the stairs. She shuddered. The memorial was set for today. It was only a matter of time until… No, she couldn’t think it. A chance to get away…could she really take it? Rose read over the advertisement flier again. “Abby, this looks more like a wanted poster than a man in search of a wife.”

Featured Author:  S.S. Hampton, Sr.

First of all, my thanks to Maxine for this opportunity of appearing in her newsletter.
Regarding the inspiration for Better Than A Rabbit’s Foot, and the characters—all of this originates in my deployment to Iraq, July 2006-July 2007 (my battalion was actually a mile south of .... (click here to continue reading

Friday, July 1, 2016

Maxine's Musings -- July 2016

July 1, 2016

Happy Independence Day America! Summer arrived here in Oklahoma with a full head of steam. I’ve given up going to my local park to write as it is just too hot, so I’ve been going to the local McD’s in the morning and then either the library or the local Arby’s after lunch to write. Sometimes a change of scenery works wonders.

Quote of the Month:  We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” ~~ Thomas Jefferson, President United States of America (1743-1826)

Check This Out:  I have finished my first suspense novel—Simply to Die For! And I’m so excited to announce that I’ve starting writing my first western historical! I still haven’t a name for it just yet, but it’s part of the box set Wanted: One Bride with our featured author this month, Callie Hutton, as well as with Peggy McKenzie and Heidi Vanlandingham. If you have Kindle KU, be sure to check out my Amazon author page downloads.

Featured Author:  Callie Hutton

I asked my street team if they would prefer a new series about either a wagon train or a mail order bride.  So many of them said 'both' that I came up with the idea of four women in jail who .... continue reading here

Monday, June 6, 2016

Wild Women Authors: A Pampered Lady and a Hired Gun

Wild Women Authors: A Pampered Lady and a Hired Gun: . . . Pampered Margarita McIntosh is not used to being forced to do things she doesn’t want to do—but when her father, Jock, sends her away ...

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Maxine's Musings ~~ June 2016

Quote of the Month:  Good books, like good friends, are few and chosen; the more select, the more enjoyable.” ~~ Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888)

Check This Out:  I am close to finishing my first suspense novel—Simply to Die For! And I’m so excited to announce that I’ll be writing my first historical western romance starting in July! I haven’t a name for it just yet, but it’s a mail order bride story that I hope you’ll enjoy. If you have Kindle KU, be sure to check out my Amazon author page downloads.

Featured Author:  Bren MacLeod

Bren MacLeod is the brain child of two unlikely best friends, Brenda Wagner and author Lynn Crain. Unlikely in the fact that they are polar opposites in many ways but on the important items, they are unnervingly the same. So when Lynn asked Brenda to write in a somewhat new genre, it was no surprise to anyone that she said yes.

The original idea had been Lynn’s long ago when she decided she wanted to write a cowboy story but set it in the old west. She loved the idea of a cowboy as inspiration but ... continue reading here

Sunday, May 1, 2016

RT 2016

Spent the week in Vegas for Romantic Times Convention (RT) mid-April. Four women, seven days, and 3,100 other authors and readers all looking for their next new author.
I arrived late Sunday night after a several hour flight delay out of OKC due to weather in Vegas. Lynn Crain and Julie Castle met me at the airport. Although Julie and I tend to Skype quite often, it was great to see Lynn who’d recently returned to the US from a five-year stay in Vienna, Austria.

My roommates at the Rio were Julie, Lynn, and Brenda Wagner, and while we spent each night together we all spent the day at several workshops and/or events. We had a great view of the mountains each day, as well as the roof of the parking garage. LOL

As a special treat, I placed five of my books (one a day) in random spots throughout the convention area. If you got one of these books, please remember to Pass The Read on to the next person by leaving it in a random spot, then posting it on the Pass The Read FB page.

Monday evening, we had dinner with Callie Hutton and Peggy McKenzie at Guy Fieri’s El Burro Buorracho restaurant in the Rio. I had the Mango Jicama Crunch Salad with Shrimp and a frozen strawberry margarita. I highly recommend this salad it is that refreshing.

While Julie spent two days with her new publisher Entangled, Lynn, Brenda and I cruised the facilities and decided to shop at a local grocery store. Being local to Vegas, they knew exactly where we should go. We also at a very nice restaurant away from the Rio.

The first day of the conference for me started on Wednesday. The welcome party was fantastic and a great way to start things off. I decided to sit in on the craft workshop “Villain, Villain, Who Is the Villain.” It was an interesting hour and I believe I learned a bit in helping me with my villain in my WIP “Simply To Die For.” I also sat in the Entangled Publisher Spotlight for a refresher on what is new with EP, and what they are looking for. The hour only convinced me what I thought in 2015, EP is high on my list of must submit to publishers.
I also sat in a Steampunk workshop, which sparked some interest in this genre. I may have an idea or two up my sleeve.
One thing you must keep in mind when you attend an RT Convention, you need to be prepared for the crowds of readers waiting to get into events where they meet authors. And you need to get to the promo tables early before the best stuff is gone. Luckily I was able to get a Power Pack on Thursday from the Desert Breeze Publishing table, as well as varies pens (suffice to say, our household is never at a shortage of pens), trinkets I can take home to my 8-year-old granddaughter, and various other promo material.

Also, at this particular venue, it was approximately 1.5 miles from our room to the convention site within the hotel. Keep in mind, that does not include the miles and steps one puts on walking from workshop/event to workshop/event. I decided to choose my workshops carefully for the morning and then find a place to relax in the afternoons. I did manage to finish a particular scene in “Simply To Die For” that had several holes in it, and I got to spend a few relaxing moments poolside with Julie.

I have to say the most fun I had was Friday night at the Cirque du Punk where I caught up with EP author Nina Croft, and new Desert Breeze Publishing cover model, Cody Canon. This was the first time I’ve met Nina and I absolutely LOVE her. She’s sweet, funny, and flew all the way from Spain to attend RT and meet her fans. Besides, she’s a horsewoman like me. Cody is a sweet young man and very entertaining, watch for him on your next romance book cover.
It was so much fun seeing people I don’t see very often Saturday was my rest and relaxation day, as I had a 7:30 am flight out of Vegas and back home to OKC. Check out my FB page or the RTConvention FB page for more pictures and information.
RT2017 will be held in Atlanta, GA next year. If you love romance, love meeting the men and women behind great stories, then you need to attend RT at least once. I hope to see you there!

Monday, March 14, 2016

Now FREE on Kindle Unlimited

Affairs of the HeartExcerpts of published novels/novellas.

By the Blue Moon (Book 1, Blue Moon Magic Series):  Inspired by the “beast” believed to be living in the Kettle Moraine Forest in south-central Wisconsin, the BLUE MOON MAGIC Series takes you into an erotic world where werewolves live amongst humans, and as they have for hundreds of years...we just didn’t know it!
In BY THE BLUE MOON, Chastity, the eldest of the Langford sisters, is coming into her wolfen heat and is trying to come to grips with her sudden infatuation with sex. Justin Matthews has finally been summoned by Charles Langford to claim his life-mate during the mating ritual of the Blue Moon. But there is a war brewing in the wolfen societies. Rowan Angus, leader of the lesser Beta clan, wants the Langford sisters for his breeding program and Charles dead. Who will survive the night of Blue Moon?
There are two more sisters and a long-lost brother dying to tell you their stories in Books 2 through 4. This collection contains adult language/situations, as well as highly erotic situations. This is the last book published as Debi Wilder.

Nashville Rising Star (Book 1 of the Nashville Duet):  There were only three of them left now—Casey Montgomery from Oklahoma, the darling Emerald Braun, and Utah Sheridan. By this time next week, Utah was banking on only two left standing before the show even started. Emerald Braun wouldn’t be one of them. He reached into his pocket and pulled out an envelope. Everything he’d wanted the past few years depends on this...and what’s inside it. Unlike older brother James, Utah Sheridan intends to win Nashville Rising Star at all costs; will his bribe be the end of Emerald Braun?

Nashville By Morning (Book 2 of the Nashville Duet):  Heather Jones is a frustrated writer who falls in love with the southern ways and decides to stay, intending to break into the country music business.

James Sheridan is the son of a legendary performer, and the total opposite of younger brother Utah, strives to make it on his own. After a breakout song is recorded a Montana storm causes an accident and James leaves the tour bus, and his band, in search of help. Instead he encounters the harsh storm and becomes lost.