Thursday, April 30, 2015

Thursday's Heroine - Jenessa from The Aries - Libra Connection by Janet Lane Walters #MFRWauthor #BooksWeLove

With a flourish, Jenessa signed her name to the nurses’ notes on a fourth chart. She picked up a stack of papers and the brown bag containing the lunch she hadn’t had time to eat. All day, the pace in the Intensive Care unit had been hectic. Two Codes. Three admissions in five minutes, all of them critical. Instead of twenty-seven, she felt more like seventy.
She waved at the night nurse. “See you tomorrow.”
“That’s two extras in a row,” one of the women called. “Are you some kind of glutton?”
Am I?   One more thing  and I’m out of here. She straight-armed the door and headed for the stairs. After stopping on two other units to collect protest forms, she entered the stairwell.
Voices, eerie and distorted, drifted from below. The echo-effect made her wonder if the speakers were male or female. “Don’t worry, if we just push them a little harder, they’ll walk.”
“You’re right. Who could resist…”
Who were they talking about?   She leaned over the railing, but shadows hid the speakers. The voices faded. A door slammed. She frowned and headed to the fifth floor where she entered the Nursing Office.
Lorraine Rodgers, one of the evening supervisors, looked up. “Again?  Don’t you get tired of making waves?”
“Is that what I do?  I thought I was fulfilling my role as a good union member and a conscientious nurse. The contract gives us the right to protest unsafe working conditions. I just make sure they’re collected.”
The middle-aged woman shook her head. “We all know this is your personal crusade. Can’t you put the past to rest?”
Jenessa’s hands clenched and she felt the muscles in her shoulders tighten. “Could you?”  She fought a barrage of memories. “See that Ms. Wallace gets these. Not that she cares.”
“You could give them to her. She’s in the house. The Board’s meeting to select the new Director and we all know who that will be.”
“Maybe they’ll choose someone else.”
Mrs. Rodgers laughed. “Do you really believe that?  She’s been angling for the job since she arrived. We’ll have to learn to live with her.”
“Another petition asking for Sandra’s removal?”
Jenessa shrugged. “See you tomorrow.”
“You’re on again?  Do you work all these extra shifts just to log complaints?”
“If I don’t, who’d be here for the patients?”  Jenessa strode away.
Fifteen minutes later, in her apartment across the street, she stood in the shower. Hot water uncoiled her tight muscles, but not her thoughts. Would the hospital Board really name Sandra Wallace, a woman disliked by most of the nurses, as the new director?  With Jim Bishop as Board president, the choice seemed likely.
After pulling on an over-sized blue tee shirt, she headed to the kitchen and zapped the spicy chicken dish she should have eaten for lunch. Though  she considered working on her Master’s thesis, she felt too tired to read the stack of articles on the desk.
The apartment door slammed. She looked up and saw her roommate. Megan kicked off her shoes. “Are you ready for a bomb?  Guess what the Board has done.”
“Is out.” Megan grinned. “Josh and I were at the Cove for dinner. Sam introduced Eric Bradshaw. Would you believe he’s the new Director of Nursing?  And what a hunk he is.”
Jenessa pushed back long strands of dark brown hair that had come loose from her braid. “You’re kidding.”
“Not one bit.”
“It’s a ploy. Can’t  you hear Mr. Bishop’s laughter?  We’ll give the girls a man to drool over. That’ll shut them up.”
“Come on, Jen. At least they didn’t name Her.” Megan headed across the living room, discarding pieces of clothes as she walked. “He’s every woman’s dream. Tall, blond, broad shoulders. I positively drooled. He’s got the greatest dimples. That’s because he’s a Libra.”
Trust Megan to ask his sun sign, Jenessa thought. Her roommate’s description confirmed her suspicions of the Board’s motives. “Sounds like you’re adding him to your string.”
“Wrong. A Libra and a Pisces. Odd couple material.” Megan’s blonde curls bounced with the force of her denial. “He’s for you, my Aries friend. Remember what I always say. An opposition can be exciting.”
Not again, Jenessa thought. For the past year, Megan’s attempts at matchmaking seemed designed to drive her crazy. “Megan, no.”
“You can’t be alone forever.”
“You’re surviving.”
“Alone I’m not. My problem is too many and being unable to hurt anyone.” She shrugged. “Give it a shot.”
Jenessa frowned. Megan and she had been friends since they were five, but there were things she couldn’t tell her…Things about Chuck and the marriage.
“I’m union. He’s management. Can you see me falling for someone from the opposition?”
“And what will you be when you finish your Master’s?”
“Not here. I’ll work for a doctor. Head to the city. Become a consultant.” She followed the trail of clothes and gathered them as she walked. “With my reputation here, they won’t promote me.”
“Your reputation is undeserved. Just because you organized the union, sent a petition to recall Sandra, started the protest forms, negotiated the contract --”  The click of the bathroom door cut off Megan’s words.
Jenessa dropped the clothes beside the door. She entered the bedroom and stared at the red brick building across the street where she worked in ICU. She liked Eastlake Community. For nearly three years, the hospital had been her refuge. She didn’t want to leave.
She returned to the hall just as Megan emerged. wrapped in a blue bath sheet that nearly reached her toes.
“...use someone who plunges to the center of a problem and won’t give up until the next one appears. You are kind of blunt though. He’ll weigh his decisions. Libras do. What’s on the agenda now?”  She stumbled over the heap of clothes. “I know. In the hamper.”
“The contract. Monday, I’ll demand a meeting.”
“Why not give Eric Bradshaw a chance to settle in?”
“Why?  They said they’d talk once they hired a new director and they have.” Jenessa headed to the kitchen.
“Let him size things first.”
“Do you really think a new D.O.N. will help us?”  Jenessa paused at the end of the hall. “Do you know how many extras I’ve worked this summer?”
“That’s your punishment for demanding thirteen hour shifts. They can’t ask me to work seven days a week.”
“How many doubles have you pulled since Sandra took over staffing?  Sometimes I think she wants to drive nurses away.”
“Why would she do that?”  Megan followed Jenessa into the kitchen. Her knee length yellow tee shirt was the same bright color as the walls.
“Who knows?”
“Jen, give the guy a chance. How would you like to be in his shoes?”
She laughed. “I’d love it. You know, if I could transfer my credits, I’d be out of here.”
“It’s the same everywhere. Don’t you pay attention to the letters from the gang?”
“There are hospitals where the problems are addressed.” Jenessa picked up a fork. “Around here no one admits there are any.”
“I’m not sure there are answers. The health care system is in flux.”
“If the Board would sit down with us, we could try.”
Megan grinned. “Do I see you, sword in hand, leading the charge?”
“Don’t make fun. This is serious.”
“I’m sorry. I know how important adequate staffing is to you.”
“I’ll do whatever it takes to get a decent contract.” Jenessa bit her lower lip and fought a storm of memories and guilt.
Megan opened the refrigerator and poured a glass of juice. “Letters from the gang are in. Did you do yours?”
“What do you think?”  The idea for a monthly exchange of letters between the members of their clinical group from the nursing program at Grantley was Megan’s project.
“When are you going to write it?”
“How about after the softball game Saturday?”
“I’m mailing copies tomorrow.” Megan raised her hand in a gesture of surrender. “I’ll write yours...About the game. Will we win?”
“We’d better. Softball is the one place where Nursing stands a chance against the other departments who, with one whimper, get everything they want.”
“He’ll be there.”
“Eric Bradshaw.” Megan left the kitchen. “Night.”
As Jenessa loaded the dishwasher, a slow grin built from deep inside. He’d be there. So would Jim Bishop and Sandra Wallace. The annual hospital picnic might be an interesting event.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Wednesday's Writer's Tip - Defining the Basic Conflict #MFRWauthor

 Since the environment and the hero, heroine or multiple characters interact with this forming a basic conflict let's look at the ways this can happen. Of course there can be more than one kind of environmental episode in a novel.

There can be a change in the character's environment that causes a reaction. Think of a child when a younger sibling in born. Or perhaps someone has been killed. A new marriage. All kind of changes can occur to make the main character or characters react.

The character can be moved to a new environment. Moving can be difficult. What if a child has moved many times. How does he form friendships. A job may take a character from a familiar setting to one that's different from what they have known. This change could be beneficial or the worst thing that's happened to the character. Lots of meat for thought here.

What about an environment in conflict with another environment. Can the character bring these settings together or will the attempt destroy him or her. Families can experience this kind of problem. Think of the man who loses all his money or the family that suddenly has riches. The environment they know is in conflict with the one they must enter.

What if the character decides he wants to change the environment where he lives or works. The woman fighting to progress in her career. The man who wants to see a fair shake for his co-worker.  The nurse thinks a union will be the answer for her colleagues. The administrator who things the status quo is the right one. Brings the characters into conflict.

A character who wants to conquer the environment where he or she dwells. This can also be a physical boundary. The person who needs to conquer the jungle to live. The student who wants to be the best and the first. Conquering becomes the force behind the story.Five more possibilities will be explored the next time.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Tuesday's Inspiration based on a quote by William Saroyan #MFRWauthor

When I read this quote, I laughed. Yet it is so very true. "The best way to begin being a writer is to come right out and admit that one is a crackpot. After that the going is sure to be a lot easier." William Saroyan.

There are times when I think I'm crazy to stick to writing but then I realize it really is a lot of fun. What about you? Wondering if what you're doing by putting words on paper and hoping they make sense is kind of a crackpot idea. Of course when someone reads what you've written and gets the meaning, you can smile. Maybe I'm not really crazy.

Wanting and needing to express yourself no matter what form of fiction you choose is a big step. The moral is not taking yourself too seriously. After all you've admitted you are a crackpot. Just like me and the hundreds of others out there. Not everyone is going to get rich. Not everyone is going to write a great book. That's where the fun comes in. Putting two or more people in trouble and finding ways to get them out should be fun.

So I'll admit I'm a crackpot. What about you? Are you one too?

Monday, April 27, 2015

Meandering On Monday with Janet Lane Walters #MFRWauthor

Meander 1 - Too many hats- These days I feel like I'm trying to do too much at one time. I'm trying to finish several books and start new ones. One is a right's back one that while it connects to the other two, there are problems that may not be able to be corrected. I'll need to talk to Jude about this. Not really talk but email talk. There are books on sale I need to promote. That's the second hat. Then there's the house and it does need some help. Plus closing down my husband's office and visiting him nearly every day. Makes life interesting and sometimes I feel stressed out. I will survive.

Meander 2 - Have been reading a few books and the new Kindle allows me to rate them without going onto the author's page and taking a lot of time. That's good, except they wanted me to make comments. I am not good at this. I am at rating. The other problem I'm having is how to get the books off the Kindle after I've read them to make room for more.

Meander 3 - Writing - Am moving forward with Divided Dreams featuring my Cancer heroine and my Gemini hero. This will make four books in the series and I only have to do eight more. This one is longer than the others but I'm happy with the way it's going. Several more chapters to rewrite and expand and then the last two bits of editing and then it will be on to the next book. That will be Mages of Fyre and the ideas are coming slowly but they're coming. I still need a name for the hero, the villain and the mentor. They will come. I also need to build in the stuff for the final book in the series. The Children of Fyre. But there are other books to write between times.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Sunday's Book - Toth's Priest by Janet Lane Walters #MFRWauthor #BooksWeLove

Amara faces trouble and she uses a phone number given to her by a friend who has vanished. When she is offered the chance to be sent to an ancient Egypt, she accepts even though she must perform a task and risk losing her life. But here, she faces the same fate. She arrives and there is much she must learn before she can rescue a young man held by the priests of Aken Re.

Namose was taken prisoner by Hebu, beloved of Aken Re, and forced to translate ancient scrolls giving Hebu some of the powers given to the priests of Toth by the Three of the Two Lands, Toth, Bast and Horu. After his rescue, further troubles arise. He and Amara must join their powers to save their land and friends from the evil Hebu.

Format:Kindle Edition
In her contemporary life, Amaa is an orphan, raised grudgingly by her uncle and threatened with rape by two men. When given a chance by two women skilled in magic to travel back in time to ancient Egypt, she accepts.
Namose wants to become a priest of the god Toth but is captured and forced to follow the dictates of an alien god and to translate scrolls of that god.
"Toth's Priest" tells of Amara's and Namose's adventures and growing love for each other. This book was obviously well-researched and is full of action. For those reasons, I gave it a 5 star rating. However, the sentences didn't show much variation and often read monotonously. I would have liked to see a bit more narrative interspersed with the dialogue.
Neverlheless, this is a great adventure and worthwhile read.
4.0 out of 5 stars End of the Series February 13, 2015
Format:Kindle Edition
A teen age girl in desperate circumstances flees into an alternate past, hoping to find a better life. Here she steps into another, just as dangerous, world, one of magicians, rival gods and spell-casting. This is the final book in a YA series set in an alternate past—Ancient Egypt. There is plenty of action, brave young characters, twists and turns, all set in well-researched ancient setting. Egypt, all by itself, is sufficiently interesting for many readers, but here the “alternate” adds a bit more spice

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Saturday's Blurbs - Books by Alanna Lucas

A masquerade, a chance meeting, and a kidnapping: Little did Miss Penelope Ashurst realize that breaking the rules would result in the adventure—and love—of a lifetime.


Miss Eva Kenward left England with a dream, but when she finds herself stranded on the rugged frontier of Montana with a babe in arms, only one man—a handsome cowboy—can make that holiday wish come true.


Miss Eva Kenward does not want to spend another Christmas alone. Leaving Queen Victoria’s England, she journeys to America in search of an uncle but finds herself on the rugged frontier of Montana. And with no money and no acquaintances, the rudest man she has ever met is the one she must engage. Especially considering the precious bundle in her arms.

“Hunt” Strauss has been fooled before by beauty. So when the ravishing young woman arrives on his doorstep, he suspects her of ulterior motives. But perhaps the baby she holds truly is his kin...and when Miss Kenward finds herself stranded after a hotel fire, he reluctantly agrees to help. Bringing her to his sprawling ranch, Hunt tries to keep his distance. But the enticing woman and her enthusiasm for the season soon prove that fairy tale love stories—and holiday wishes—really can come true.     

Trust, patience, and mistletoe must overcome a forced marriage, dark secrets, and a looming shadow that threatens all chance of Faith finding love with the Marquess of Hawthorne.

Holiday Wish

Marcus, the Marquess of Hawthorne, vowed never to fall in love. He should have vowed never to marry. Caught in a compromising situation, he’s been forced to wed the young woman he was trying to rescue. Beautiful? Yes. But his new bride’s apprehensions seem worse than his own, and as family and friends arrive at Deer Park to celebrate Christmastide, all he wants is for Faith to play the part of a happy wife and hostess.

She will not, however—or cannot. And when she commits yet another desperate act, this time with disastrous results, Marcus must save Faith once again. Now he must discover what drives her, what dark secrets keep her unable to trust or love, and what she truly desires. Only then will they, with the magic of mistletoe, overcome the pasts and taste the delights of the season.

One night. That’s all Miss Penelope Ashurst wants away from the strict decorum of Regency society. Donning a mask and attending a forbidden masquerade, she meets the man of her dreams. Then, before she discovers his identity, she is kidnapped.

From their first encounter, his goddess in a golden mask stirs a deep and different longing within Ranulph, the Earl of Monfort. When she disappears, he vows he will find her no matter the cost.

Soon it’s a race against time, and the kidnappers are just the start. Penelope and Ranulph’s very lives are in jeopardy. Before the end, everything will be stripped away, and Penelope and Ranulph will be more than just face-to-face. But this is true love, and nothing will stop it.

Nigel Rochefort succeeds at everything he attempts, but burying his family in scandal and breaking up a wedding while seducing the bride is not quite what he had in mind. Nor was finding true love.

Miss Artemisia Germayne is used to gossip. She is far from the ton’s version of an ideal beauty. Worse still, she cannot dance. But when she finds herself in the uncomfortable predicament of abandonment on her wedding day, embarrassed and humiliated she retreats to the country.

Nigel Rochefort, second son of the Earl of Monfort, has always taken his good fortune for granted, so when the woman for whom he has a secret tendre is about to marry his friend, the only logical thing to do is break up the wedding. But that scandal is only the start. The bride’s sister has also disappeared, and Nigel must first clear his name to assure Artemisia’s affections. As he gives chase, many truths are yet to be learned. This is no simple country dance or game of seduction but an unstoppable waltz of desire—and true love.

Author Page on Amazon:

Individual Listings on Amazon:

Author page on Boroughs Publishing Group:

Barnes and Noble author page:

Friday, April 24, 2015

Friday - Alanna Lucas Talking About Heroes, Heroines and Villains

. Do you write a single genre or do your fingers flow over the keys creating tales in many forms? Does your reading choices reflect your writing choices? Are there genres you wouldn’t attempt?

I write what I love to read- Regency and Western historical romance. I would never attempt to write romantic suspense or paranormal. I would probably scare myself ;-)
2. Heroes, Heroines, Villains. Which are your favorite to write? Does one of these come easy and why?

It depends on the story. For the most part, I seem to connect more with my heroines. Now having said that, I am in the midst of planning a series that really seems to be all about the hero.
3. Heroes. How do you find them? Do pictures, real life or plain imagination create the man you want every reader to love? Do they come before the plot or after you have the idea for the story?

I don't find my heroes, they come to me, usually while listening to music. A song sparks an idea and then, every time I hear that song, the story unfolds a little more. One of my heroes has declared Monster by Imagine Dragons his theme song.
4. Heroines. How do you find them? Do pictures, real life or imagination create the woman you want the reader to root for? Do they appear before the plot or after you have the idea for the story?

Elements of real life influence the heroines I create, but my imagination is the main culprit. I tend to not write a lot in the beginning stages, instead I get to know them in my mind. 
5. Villains or villainesses or an antagonist, since they don’t always have to be the bad guy or girl. They can be a person opposed to the hero’s or heroine’s obtaining their goal. How do you choose one? How do you make them human?

They tend reveal themselves as the story unfolds. My current antagonist was very sweet and amiable, and then one day she lost her temper and revealed her true colors. It was quite fun ;-)
6. What is your latest release? Who is the hero, heroine and or the villain?

Mistletoe Waltz was released last November. Lord and Lady Hawthorne- the hero and heroine- were forced into marriage by her father- the villain- in order to avoid scandal.
7. What are you working on now?
I am working on Wish Upon a Waltz, the fifth book in the In His Arms series.

8. How can people find you?




Thursday, April 23, 2015

Thursday's Heroine is Carrie from A Marriage Takes Two #MFRWauthor #BooksWeLove

Two hours of pep talks, a dozen whispered mantras, and five sets of calming breaths, failed to settle Carrie Graham’s acute case of nerves. Get a grip, she told herself. She was going to see Tony, childhood defender, teenage ego booster, and the one person who’d always listened. Besides, she’d already eliminated every other candidate for the position.

Who are you kidding?


From the moment she’d been presented with her current dilemma, he was the only possibility. All she had to do was convince him… But could she?  Sure Tony listened, but he didn’t talk about his problems, or his feelings.

The fading light of dusk made her slow the car in order to read the street signs. She’d planned to leave the apartment at noon, but the short nap after her night shift stretched until late afternoon.
She made the final turn into Fourth Street in a small West Virginia town established in the days when coal mining dominated the area. She shook her head. Rundown houses and boarded storefronts were the norm along the town’s main street. Why was Tony practicing medicine in this end-of-the-road place?

She hadn’t seen him for years, not since several months after his marriage, an event that had shaken her life. His wife hadn’t understood the friendship, or Tony and Carrie’s mutual interest in medical mysteries. With a flash of anger, Carrie recalled the night that woman stormed into the hospital cafeteria and spewed jealous accusations.

Carrie’s hands tightened on the steering wheel. She’d been embarrassed, hurt, and angry enough that she’d walked away from her best friend.

She’d heard rumors Tony’s wife had taken off for greener pastures. At least that’s what the hometown gossips said. Not that Carrie believed in gossip, especially after the news of her inheritance brought the tongue-waggers out in force.

She slowed the car to a crawl. Waves of panic lashed against her momentary calm. The place in her head where she’d filed his address was empty. She braked. The paper with the directions fluttered from the dashboard. She bent and grabbed them.

One glance was enough to retrieve the forgotten data. She eased off the brake and cruised the street. Half the houses were missing numbers. What now? Then at the foot of the dead end street, she saw the ones she’d memorized displayed in shiny brass on a massive gray house that looked like the setting for a Gothic novel.

A broad lawn fronted the house. The tailored grass stood in contrast to the tangles on either side.
“This is the place.” She gulped a breath.

After parking at the curb, she slowly released a held breath. She strode up the walk and onto the wide porch. Muffled shouts and noises came from inside. She rang the bell. What sounded like a slammed door nearly sent her back to the car. Who was staging a major temper tantrum?  She thought Tony lived alone.

She rang the bell again, this time holding it for several peals. The door opened and she forgot why she’d come. She forgot to breathe. Her eyes widened and her heart pounded in a staccato rhythm until she thought her ribs would crack.

He was more than she remembered.

Are you sure you want to be here?

“Tony.” His name escaped on a sigh. She felt like a teenager come face to face with the latest movie hero. This was the man she planned to ask…She changed her mind. Time to retreat. The plan wouldn’t work, not with the things he made her feel, and what he made her want.

“Carrie...Oh lord, it’s been ages. What are you doing here?  You look terrific.”

She did?  He must be blind. Even her coworkers had made comments about the deep smudges beneath her eyes. Most days, she felt as though she was suffering from terminal exhaustion.

“Come in.” He took her hand.

Exhaustion vanished. He’d always made her feet great, but this instant tonic-effect startled her. Coming to see him had grown corners she couldn’t see around.

“I can’t believe you’re here.” He drew her inside. “What brings you to town?”

She wanted to tell him, but the words caught in her throat. “Would you believe I was in the neighborhood?

Tony laughed. “No.”

She inhaled and the spicy scent of him invaded her space. “I came...” She couldn’t finish the sentence. He’d been her hero, her prince, her fantasy lover. In the flesh, he relegated those images to black and white.

“I bet you came to apply for the nursing position at the clinic.” He steered her down a hall that needed paint into a large living room. “Did you get lost on the way there?  Unfortunately, I’m not the one you need to see.”

She shook her head. “Another job is the last thing I need. I already have two.”


She shrugged. “Necessity.”

“I don’t understand.”

“It’s a long story.” She sighed. “I shouldn’t have come.”

“What’s wrong? Sounds like you need a shoulder.”

The entire body, she thought. “You could say...It’s like this...I have a problem that needs a solution...It’s sort of...” Her throat closed. Maybe she should leave. Go home. Forget the plan. Find a new one. Except, he was her first, last, and only choice.

“Be glad to listen.” He patted her hand. “Are you saying in all these years, you haven’t found anyone else to listen?

I haven’t looked, she thought. There couldn’t be a replacement for Tony. She couldn’t tell him that. “I thought...Maybe you can help.”

“Be glad to try. Go ahead.”

A crash resounded. Carrie jumped. “I think you’re the one with the problem.”

“You could say that.” Tony rolled his eyes upward. “My son’s protesting his punishment for his latest series of pranks. He’s grounded with no TV and no phone.”

“What did he do?” She sat on one end of a shabby brown couch.

“Do you really want to know?”

She nodded. Hearing about Tony’s problems could give her time to gather her courage.

He slumped beside her. “He glued the sitter’s clothes together. She left in a huff.”

“Don’t blame her.” Carrie frowned. “I thought your son lived with his mother.”

“He did until July. She’s remarried…to one of the Brinkers. She and her new husband are on a world cruise honeymoon. They didn’t take Chad.”

His blue eyes were bleak. Was his pain for his son or himself? How badly had his failed marriage hurt him?  “Are you all right with the idea?”

He shrugged. “I’ve mixed feelings.”

His expression showed hurt and anger, not ones she’d consider mixed. “I’m sorry.”

“Don’t be. It’s great having Chad here, but he’s angry about the divorce, about living here, about his mother’s new husband. Wasn’t a great summer. Even with him in school, there are problems.”

“Maybe I can help.”

“Don’t know how.” He winked. “I’m not without experience in dealing with angry kids.


“Yes, and don’t even mention the first time we met.”

“Or my black eye? Lord, it’s great to see you again. Why don’t you tell me why you came all this way?”

She ran her tongue over dry lips. She searched for an answer and couldn’t find one he would believe. If she asked him, he would think she was crazy.

Good grief, my thoughts are scrambled. He is too…too… male.

And your feelings for him haven’t changed.


The demand in his voice made her feel like a child facing an adult. “It’s...” What sounded like glass shattering brought her to her feet.


Saved, she thought. “Don’t you think you’d better see what he’s doing before he trashes the house?”

He raked his ebony curls with his fingers. “You’re right.” He headed to the door. “Promise you’ll stay ‘til I settle him. Then we’ll talk.”

“I’ll be here.”

She sank against the cushions. Maybe he would need the entire evening to deal with his son. This visit was an act of desperation. After all, it had been years. Maybe he’d changed.

She looked around the sparsely furnished living room. Most of the pieces looked like refugees from second-hand stores. What had gone wrong for him? He’d been on the fast track. He’d entered practice with one of the largest medical groups in Pittsburgh. From some of her classmates, she’d heard how wonderful he was, what a caring doctor he’d become, and how loyal he’d been to his wife and child. Had the end of his marriage caused him to turn his back on success? She hadn’t heard, and she hadn’t asked until two months ago. Her jobs had been in hospitals where he hadn’t been on staff.
The sound of a throat being cleared made her jump. A woman with streaks of gray in her brown hair stood in the doorway. Who? Carrie wondered. Hadn’t Tony said the sitter had quit?

“Dr. Flynn wondered if you would like something to drink?”

Carrie covered a yawn with her hand. “Coffee if you have some made. I’m Carrie Graham, an old friend of Tony’s.”

“Hazel Smithton, housekeeper, and reluctant sitter for a spell. Be right back.”

A short time later, Carrie sipped the strongest coffee she’d ever tasted. Two iced cinnamon rolls helped her swallow the bitter brew.

The hollow feeling in her stomach vanished, but the matching sensation in her chest expanded. She closed her eyes and planned explanations for the question she’d come to ask. No matter how she phrased her reasons, the words sounded like a desperate plea. Over the years, she’d learned begging never worked. Would this time be any different?

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Wednesday's Writer's Tip - The Basic Conflict #MFRWauthor

I'll be depending on one of the books I first bought when I was starrting to write novels. The pub date is old but the advice is good. I read a lot of writing books at the start and this is one of the three I kept.

The basic conflict is where the story begins and several things are needed to build the conflict.
The first is the protagonise. Now this can be a single person or there can be more than one. The protagonist is the main character or characters. In mysteries, this is usually the hero or heroine. In a romance both of the characters can be the protagonist. And there are other combinations showing who the main or focus character might be.

The environment is the second need to build the basic conflict. Environment is's just a setting with a house, a room or other places described. The environment  encompasses many subtle things. The environment is developed by looking at the social, moral and  cultural aspects of the place where you choose to set the book. There is a feeling to each environment in the book something that lies beneath the physical structures. I often write about hospitals and the atmosphere here is one of life and death and the way the characters relate to this atmosphere. My fantasy stories are the development of a world, one specific to the story. How the protagonists react to the environment begins the building of the basic conflict.

To set up this basic conflict the protagonist must be in conflict with his own environment or the one of others. I've finished revising a story where the heroine is a union nurse in a hospital that really needs a strong support for the patients and the nurses but this is becoming a hostile environment for her. The hero has come in. He is anti-union and thus he is in conflict with the heroine's environment. They must learn to work together.

So the next time we'll look at what some of the conflicts with environment can be.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Tuesday's Inspiration - Emotions and Attitudes #MFRWauthor

I found this quote from Richard Summers who wrote novels and short stories. "Probably the writer's emotions (synthetic or genuine ) and his attitude toward the writing craft in total are the most important single element in the creative process."

I had to ponder what this meant to me. I've always loved to read and at some point read many of the stories and novels that interested me. As a child, I read through the children's section of the library and grew a bit bored so I began making up my own stories. I told them to myself as I was falling asleep. Then came the day much later in my life when I decided to write and become a published author.

Now comes attitude and emotion. Of course I wanted to write literary works and I tried but I really don't like literary works, What I really liked are books like mysteries, fantasy, romance. My emotions were directly in this corner of the world. Giving up writing books aimed for the world was hard but as I started to write the kinds of books I really enjoy to read. Books with adventure, love and puzzles, I found myself returning to the time when I told myself stories to help me fall asleep at night.

These kind of stories suited me emotionally and I realized it didn't matter as my romances were published when someone asked "When are you going to write a real book?" My books were real to me.

What about you are you writing the books you love to read? Has your attitude changed from the first days when you began to write? Do you find writing not only satisfying but as an adventure and fun? For me they are.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Meandering On Monday with Janet Lane Walters #MFRWauthor

Meander 1 - The air conditioner in the car has died. While I don't need it yet, summer is coming. I've finally persuaded the other half of the equation to agree to spend the money to have a new system installed. Though the car is 2003, a Pruis and looks as great as it did when first bought. This is the last car we'll own so we certainly need to have the air conditioning. Another battle won.

Meander 2 - Am finally digging out from under all the stuff in closing my husband's office. Spent a day sorting out a stack of mail. There is at least one more stack to go through. That will be for next year. Now I have to go through his old charts and pull out ones needed to send off. Will finish that soon.

Meander 3 - Writing is going slowly but well. Got covers for two of the nest series and they look good, Must print them out. Had a little snag since I can't find the cover for one of a trilogy. Typing as usual is behind but that will come. Just one plus to finish revising the second of the Opposites In Love Series, leaving three to write and I have then well in mind. Divided Dreams is moving along and should be finished in May.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Sunday's Book - Sanctuary's Ending by Janet Lane Walters #MFRWauthor #BooksWeLove

Janet Lane-Walters' exciting new Fantasy. Sanctuary's Ending. Available now for only $2.99.

In the beginning the goddesses Sola and Luna shone on their sister bringing forth all life. Erda grew rich and fat and the people loved the Three. Some began to lust for the treasures buried beneath Erda’s skin. She offered them freely but men began to dig and plunder her riches. Sola and Luna hated what they saw. With floods, winds, fires and earthquakes they punished the children Erda had raised.

For five hundred years has passed since a group of the goddesses followers retreated behind the Gap. Almost twenty years ago, five children were born. They were tested for gifts of the goddess and to enter training. One became a Healer, one a Singer, one a Sensitive and one an Elder. David’s test was conducted by a Teacher who hated him and he was assigned to the lowest class and became a shepherd. Though he accepts this, he is angry especially when some of the talents begin to emerge. He has healed animals and can sense the emotions of others. The five had always talked about leaving the sanctuary.

On the evening of the spring equinox, the four are to be inducted into their specialties. The Elder trainee among them has plans to leave. He invites David to join them. David’s enemy offers to accompany them and is given permission. What will they find when they enter the world? A Seer gives a forewarning. Of the six only four will return. Who will be left behind and why? Can David prove he has at least a touch of all of the talents?

Deborah , the heroine of this book is David's twin sister. She and Paul have fallen in love but because she is a Healer she is forbidden to love. The pair decide to declare their bond before the goddesses believing they will be the ones who will remain in the world.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Saturday's Blurbs featuring books By Barbara White Daille #MFRWauthor

Books by Barbara White Daille, all available in both print and e-book.

The Cowboy’s Little Surprise – The Hitching Post Hotel, book one
The Long Way Home 
A guy like Cole Slater is hard to forget. Tina Sanchez should know—for years since high school she's tried to bury the pain of Cole's cruel betrayal. But it's impossible to ignore the man she sees reflected in her young son's eyes now that Cole is back in her life—and about to meet the child he never knew he had. 
Returning home to New Mexico, Cole is determined to put his playboy reputation to rest. Especially now that he knows there's a little boy looking up to him. And seeing Tina again reignites all the feelings Cole ran from as a teen. Despite his fear that he can't be the man Tina deserves, he's determined to try. For his son's sake—and his own.

A Rancher of Her Own – The Hitching Post Hotel, book two
A Reason to Stay
Ranch manager Pete Brannigan has no interest in playing tour guide to a city slicker like Jane Garland. But spending a few days with the headstrong photographer is a small price to pay for everything her grandfather has given the single dad. Though Pete's drawn to Jane's sharp wit and striking beauty, he won't hurt his young children by falling for another woman who puts her career before family. 
Jane's seen the world through her camera…and used it to shield her emotions. With Pete, she can finally let her guard down. If only he could do the same. Despite their powerful bond, Pete still can't trust Jane with his kids or his heart. But if he keeps pushing her away, he may ruin any chance their relationship has to develop.

A Rancher’s Pride – the first Flagman’s Folly book

His Whole World is in Her Hands
Sam Robertson’s life just changed. In one short day, he found out that he’s a daddy; that his beautiful little girl, Becky, is deaf; and that her aunt, sign language teacher Kayla Ward, intends to fight him for custody.
There are plenty of reasons Sam shouldn’t fall for Kayla. A city girl like her has no place on his ranch, particularly when she’s his ex-wife’s gorgeous sister. But thanks to the judge’s orders, Sam’s spending a lot of time with Kayla, trying to give Becky the stable home she’s never known.
Despite their ongoing custody battle, Sam and Kayla’s love for Becky brings them closer than they ever expected, and Sam knows that no matter who wins in court, he could still lose—Kayla or his daughter.

Rancher at Risk – a Flagman’s Folly book

A Fresh Start
After the loss of his family in a tragic accident, Ryan Malloy has been given one last chance to change his life. His boss sends him to Flagman's Folly, New Mexico, to run his ranch, but unfortunately, Ryan's troubled attitude lands him in hot water with the locals, especially the ranch's manager, Lianne Ward.
Deaf since birth, Lianne has never let her disability define who she is. But, she's yet to meet a man who treats her as an equal. Ryan seems different…that is, when they're not butting heads over the ranch's new school for disadvantaged boys.
Forced to work together, Lianne and Ryan discover an unexpected attraction beneath their quarreling. But will Ryan's painful past drive them apart…permanently?

Court Me, Cowboy (Cowboy at Heart Release) – a Dillon, Texas story

The End…or Just the Beginning?
Gabe Miller's marriage ended so fast it had hardly begun. Which is why he couldn't quite believe his luck—or his "ex"—when she returned a few months later with the news that legally they were still husband and wife. And that the child she was carrying was his son.
Gabe feared Marissa would bolt again, making a custody battle his only option—unless he could turn back the clock and woo her the way he should have during their whirlwind romance. But even with his boy's future at stake, mending fences with a woman—especially the one he loved—wasn't something the strong, silent type found easy to do….


Friday, April 17, 2015

Friday - Barbara White Daille is talking about Heroes, Heroines and Villains #MFRWauthor

1. Do you write a single genre or do your fingers flow over the keys creating tales in many forms? Does your reading choices reflect your writing choices? Are there genres you wouldn’t attempt?

Currently, I’m writing only short contemporary romance – and am loving it!  In a drawer (or on the computer), I’ve got unpublished full or partial manuscripts in the romantic suspense, mystery, and YA genres.  I also have a drawer filled with scribbled notes and notebooks for all those genres and more.  You never know where the muse is going to take you or when you’ll come up with an idea for one genre but put a spin on it to fit another.

My reading choices do reflect the writing choices, although I pick up books outside my writing genres, too.

2. Heroes, Heroines, Villains. Which are your favorite to write? Does one of these come easy and why?

I don’t do too many villains, except for antagonists, who aren’t true villains but can cause tons of trouble for the heroes and heroines. 

I love writing heroines because most of my readers (and I) identify with them. 

But I’d have to say my favorite character to write is the hero.  I love almost all types, from the best friend/boy next door to the bad boy.  No matter who my hero is, though, he’s got characteristics from the full spectrum.  He can be tough when he has to be, gentle with kids and animals, and tender with the heroine at all the right times.

3. Heroes. How do you find them? Do pictures, real life or plain imagination create the man you want every reader to love? Do they come before the plot or after you have the idea for the story?

I find them everywhere you mentioned.  I never set out to create whole characters from the world around me, and I never take a person from real life and just plop him or her into the story.  Most often, my story people come from my imagination.

Usually the hero or heroine shows up first, then the idea follows.  But sometimes it’s the other way around.  In the first Flagman’s Folly story, A Rancher’s Pride, I wanted to write about a hero who discovers he’s the daddy of a child he’s never known he had.  It’s a storyline I love.  It’s also a very popular one, so I’d hoped to make this book a little different.  And I started with the what-ifs.  I thought, what if the hero had a child he couldn’t communicate with…because she was deaf.  And then I put poor Sam into the story and let him sink or swim.  ;)

In one of my earlier books, Court Me, Cowboy, I envisioned a man sitting on the edge of a bed, tossing a wedding ring in the air and catching it.  In two tosses of that ring, I had his backstory and the main conflict with the heroine.  The plot wasn’t completely fleshed out, of course, but I knew the basics.  And they didn’t change when I wrote the book.  The opening of the story reads just as it had first come to me:  One day soon, he’d get rid of this wedding ring.

4. Heroines. How do you find them? Do pictures, real life or imagination create the woman you want the reader to root for? Do they appear before the plot or after you have the idea for the story?

Same as above for the hero.  In the case of the new series, The Hitching Post Hotel, the heroines all arrived after the initial plotting, since a secondary character—Jed, their matchmaking grandfather—had come to me first.  The plot of book two, A Rancher of Her Own, began because I wanted to write a country boy/city girl book.  It turned into a real opposites-attract story when I discovered Jane is a photojournalist who works all over the world and ranch manager Pete is a loner who has no desire ever to leave Cowboy Creek.

In another Flagman’s Folly story, Rancher at Risk, the heroine is the aunt of Sam’s little girl, and she also happens to be deaf.  After playing only walk-on roles in the previous books in the series, she insisted I let her take center stage.

5. Villains or villainesses or an antagonist, since they don’t always have to be the bad guy or girl. They can be a person opposed to the hero’s or heroine’s obtaining their goal. How do you choose one? How do you make them human?

When I’m plotting out the hero and heroine’s story, I think about what they need.  Someone to oppose them?  To lend them an ear?  To show them by example or experience why a choice they’re about to make is right or wrong? 

Once I know what the main characters and story need, my intention is to make the villains or protagonists human by fleshing them out with their own characteristics, backstories, and goals.  I try to be careful about weaving that info in so that these characters don’t steal the show.

6. What is your latest release? Who is the hero, heroine and or the villain?

My latest release is The Cowboy’s Little Surprise and is book one in the new series, The Hitching Post Hotel. 

Cole left Cowboy Creek after raising his younger sister almost singlehandedly.  He’s a roving cowboy, a real player, and the boy who once did the heroine wrong.  Because of his childhood, he plans never to have a family…and then he finds out he’s already a daddy.

Tina is a granddaughter of the rancher who owns the Hitching Post.  She gave her heart to Cole in grade school, and in senior high he cruelly tossed her love away.  Quiet and reserved, she works as bookkeeper for the hotel, but when Cole’s return to town threatens to turn her son’s life upside-down, she turns jumps into protective mode to fight Cole every step of the way.

And the “villain,” Tina’s matchmaking grandpa, is more of a protagonist - though he does create lots of trouble!

7. What are you working on now?

A Rancher of Her Own just went through final edits, and I’ve started working on the third book in the series, which will be out in December.  All three books revolved around the Hitching Post, which Jed’s granddaughters have agreed to help their grandfather turn into a destination wedding locale.

Book three is the story of Jed’s middle granddaughter, who visits Cowboy Creek for Christmas and is given charge of the hotel’s first wedding.  Andi is now a widow with two small children whose CIA-agent husband was killed on the job.  She’ll do anything to save her children from more hurt.

Mitch is an injured L.A. cop who comes back to Cowboy Creek to recuperate.  On a visit to Jed, his former boss, at the Hitching Post, he encounters his former teenaged sweetheart, who broke his heart and walked away.  She’s got something troubling her, and he’s determined to find out what it is—and her grandpa’s hearing wedding bells again!

8. How can people find you?

I love to have readers drop in to chat. 

They can find me at any of the following places:


Barbara White Daille lives with her husband in the sunny U.S. Southwest.  Though they love the warm winters and the lizards in their front yard, they haven’t gotten used to the scorpions in the bathroom.
Barbara’s thrilled to share news about the debut of a brand-new series, The Hitching Post Hotel, about a matchmaking grandpa determined to see his three granddaughters wed.  The series has just kicked off this week with The Cowboy’s Little Surprise, followed by A Rancher of Her Own in July and a third as-yet-untitled book in December.