Archives

Inspiration: Match Made in Plaid

Kilbryde Castle

Years ago, I was fortunate enough to travel to Scotland and to stay in a castle. During our stay, we learned that a former guard tower could be rented as a studio apartment, and that there were other outbuildings that could be rented for holiday as well. The place is run by the lady of the house. There’s been a residence since the 1400s at this site. It’s been in this particular branch of the family since the 1600s. That’s some serious history.

During my stay, my imagination ran amok. I kept wondering how I could use this for a book. At the time, I didn’t have a good idea, so I tucked it away for later.

Over time, my mind kept wandering to my stay in Scotland and all the holiday lettings at this castle. I started a first chapter and sent it to my local RWA chapter’s critique group. One of my author friends mentioned that I had to have a better reason for the two people to be at the castle together.

I grumbled for a while, as we writers do when someone shoots down an idea (though she did do it in a very constructive way). Yet, I overcame the grumbling in my head to consider her words. What would keep two different people of different backgrounds in the same place?

I had two answers.

Money

Family

And that’s all I’ll say now. Match Made in Plaid will be published by The Wild Rose Press.

Je T’aime, A Candy Hearts Romance, by Ursula Whistler

Ursula Whistler is happy to announce the release of Je T’aime, A Candy Hearts Romance. The title of this short story is taken from one of the new sayings added for the 2015 Valentine’s season. Je t’aime means “I love you” in French, and she used a trip she took years ago to the south of France as inspiration for the setting. From the sun setting over the Rhone River to the medieval hilltop town of Le Castellet, go on a journey with the heroine as she navigates the language of the country as well as the hero.

The Wild Rose Press | Amazon | All Romance E-books | B&N | Bookstrand | iBooks | Google Play

Part of the Candy Hearts series

Part of the Candy Hearts series

Blurb:

Looking for inspiration, designer Genevieve Hoffman agrees to an apartment swap and heads to the south of France. But when the apartment owner’s brother returns from deployment, she finds herself  with a man who inspires fantasies rather than fashion.

Etienne Gagnon barely made it out of Syria alive during his last special forces assignment. All he wants is a little R&R in the apartment he shares with his sister. But the woman making breakfast in his kitchen isn’t his sister. He might not understand a word coming out of her mouth but he has no problem reading body language and likes what she’s saying just fine.

Excerpt:

With no more delays, he strode out the door and smiled at her dancing as she cooked in the small kitchen. Her back was to him. Her long black ponytail swung back and forth, opposite her hips. She’d lost some weight, too. Her bare legs had more tone than he remembered from last summer when she’d joined him at the gym. She was singing with such volume she didn’t hear him.

He took advantage of her distraction and grabbed her around the waist as he announced in French, “Surprise! I’m home!”

She snapped her head back, whacking the back of her head into his nose. Sharp pain made him grab his face, letting go of her. Her well-placed elbow cracked against his rib cage. An oof escaped his lips as he absorbed the blow. He backed away just in time to avoid a round kick to his knee. He let go of his side and put both hands in front of his chest in self-defense mode. She’d not land any more hits. “Brigitte! Why? It’s me! Stop this!”

This wasn’t his stepsister. This woman resembled her greatly, except she had larger breasts, better legs, and excellent self-defense tactics. She yelled in English. What she said was a mystery, but her face and body language told him everything he needed to know. She was fully prepared to kick his ass.

Check out the other stories released today in the same series:

2016-01-21

Ever After by Candace Sams and One Kiss by Misty Simon

Check out You’re Tops, Be Mine, You & Me: Candy Hearts Romances

It’s wonderful being part of a fun, sexy, playful series like the Candy Hearts Romances from The Wild Rose Press. Today, You’re Tops by Sydney St. Claire, Be Mine by April Hollingworth, and You & Me by Stephanie Kepke. (I’ve linked to You’re Tops separately since it is from the Wilder Roses ;-))

Available on Jan 25, 2016, you can get my wilder rose addition to this series:

The Candy Hearts are Here!

Between now and Valentine’s Day, there will be releases of the Candy Hearts Romances by various authors at the Wild Rose Press.

All the titles and stories are based on the sayings on candy hearts. These short stories are sure to bring some romance into your days. Remember to give the authors some love by leaving a review somewhere.

We’re also having a Rafflecopter for a Kindle Fire!

On January 25th, look for my latest release Je T’aime, another Candy Hearts Romance.

I’m a lonely writer

This is a slight whine.

I knew when I left New Orleans to take care of my mother that I would be leaving behind the close connections with the women and men who helped fuel my writing fire. Whether it was the monthly local RWA meeting or meeting in a coffee shop for writing sprints, I’d found amazing friends who supported each other in this crazy creative endeavor that is writing. We keep in touch when we visit, through social media, phone calls, and emails. Yet, it nearly wasn’t enough.

WrightPlaceWrongBed_w8746_750Writing Wright Place Wrong Bed became a type of torture. It reminded me daily of the writing retreats my friends and I would attend. One of the places we stayed became the inspiration for the plantation in the story. Each time I would open the document, I’d remember the laughs we had over wine on the porch or the deep discussion of plots held late into the night. We had such a bond. I am grateful for that.

Here, in the panhandle of Florida, I’ve not found the same support. I’m even nervous about letting others know that I write. It’s like my dirty little secret kept in the dark in the Sunshine state.

In August, I came the closest I’ve ever come to stopping. I wrote two of my buddies, quite intent on quitting. I wanted to give my writing a good, swift kick in the arse or set it aflame on a paper boat for it to sail off the Valhalla.

I’m still not sure what turned me around. I’m lonely. I’ve no one with which to discuss writing on a regular basis. But, here is the truly odd part of this journey that I’m on. The night I wrote my “Fuck this. I’m quitting.” email, a flood of ideas rushed into my head, keeping me awake that night. I dutifully typed the whacked-out plots and character ideas in files before making my brain shut off for the few hours of sleep left to me.

I’ve not opened those files. I’m not sure I’ll get to them, ever. They were essentially waking dreams, and we all know how weird dreams are.

I do have two stories to release in 2016. The first is part of the Candy Hearts Series for The Wild Rose Press. My title is Je t’aime, French for “I love you.” Love is its own language. The hero and heroine don’t speak each other’s language. But, as that rather catchy song says, some things “don’t need explaining.” slide1_a (1)

The second story is Catching the Cajun. It’s been in the works for ages. I took a while to find just the right tone for it. It’s a departure for me. I’m heading into paranormal territory with it. I plan to follow it up with another story in a similar vein. Well, I will when I finally get this story revolving around a man in a kilt completed.

600044_10151112831017027_24373396_nThat gets me back to being a lonely writer. For four weeks in November, I wasn’t lonely. I had support from other writers trying to get in a certain word count. I’ve returned to a normal routine, typing in obscurity in my corner of paradise.

Perhaps I’m becoming more comfortable with being lonely.

Big Bad Easy is available from #TWRP

Paperback or e-book of a hot romance set in New Orleans, my former home. I enjoy where I live now, but there really isn’t a city quite like the Big Easy, NOLA, N’awlins. Don’t expect the sterotypical Cajun or Creole in this story. Get a copy of Big Bad Easy now.

ImageA grueling unsolved murder case is the tipping point for detective Jameson Kelly. He’s ready to hang up his holster for early retirement when Zara Robinson walks in to his precinct, the victim of a car break-in. She’s everything Jameson likes in a woman—tall, blonde, beautiful and athletic. More than enough woman to take him down and make him beg for more. One more case can’t hurt to help pass the time, especially one he knows he can solve.

Zara is a woman who knows what she needs, and top of her list is closure on this spree of car break-ins. And there’s Jameson—he’s big with an air of bad despite being a cop and all man. Man enough to easily make her feel soft and womanly. But when clues to the theft lead to something bigger, she’s glad to have his brains as well as his skills on her side.

Big Bad Easy by Ursula Whistler is a #FreeRead on #Kindle Starting Today

Get it while you can for free only on Kindle. Image

 

A grueling unsolved murder case is the tipping point for  detective Jameson Kelly. He’s ready to hang up his holster for early retirement when Zara Robinson walks in to his precinct, the victim of a car break-in. She’s everything Jameson likes in a woman–tall, blonde, beautiful and athletic. More than enough woman to take him down and make him beg for more. One more case can’t hurt to help pass the time, especially one he knows he can solve.

Zara is a woman who knows what she needs, and top of her list is closure on this spree of car break-ins. And there’s Jameson–he’s big with an air of bad despite being a cop and all man. Man enough to easily make her feel soft and womanly. But when clues to the theft lead to something bigger, she’s glad to have his brains as well as his skills on her side.