Happy Saturday, campers! I'm so glad you could join us today. With so much going on in the world it's nice to be able to step back for a few minutes and enjoy the simple things in life. Things like friends, old and new. Things like a fire in the pit and conversation. Sharing refreshments and laughs. We'll be hunkering down this weekend at home. Maybe play a game of dominoes with friends Saturday. My thoughts and prayers are with those who have been affected by the storms and fires. I know next week's guest has been evacuated to higher ground. My husband and I will be out in 2Hoots next weekend and also looking forward to his retirement trip in the Northeast. I hope to keep the ability to post pictures and share my trips with you, internet can be sketchy when camping. However if you sign up form my http://bit.ly/2YtI1XO_newsletter you'll get a monthly update and chances to win prizes.
Now, without any further ado...
Today I’m welcoming Linda O'Connor to the Campfire. What’s your preference, coffee, tea, cocoa, wine? The camp fridge is like the Starship Enterprise, you speak it, you get it.
I’d love a hot chocolate – with a dollop of decadent whipped cream.
Excellent choice. Here you go. Now we all want to know if you"ve ever camped, or as I call what I do, Glamp.
I love camping in a tent – especially wrapped in a warm sleeping bag on a cool night, listening to the sounds of the crickets and the wind through the trees, out in the fresh air. When the kids were really little – like 6 - 8 months old, we would bring one of those low-sided Rubbermaid containers for them to sleep in (without the lid, of course :D). Otherwise, they would wiggle around too much and end up on the other side of the tent, with all the blankets, by morning.
You nailed the filling of sight, sound, and feeling. LOL! I'm imagining the containers with little ones in it. Tell us about your latest project. What book are you talking about today and what’s on the horizon.
This month, I’m celebrating the release of the third book of the Dr. Brogan Corkie Matchmaking Doctor series, Don’t Unravel the Past. Dr.Corkie is semi-retired and has upgraded her M.D. from medical doctor to matchmaking doctor. The doctor-turned-chef is cooking up romance and love.
Congratulations! That's a wonderful accomplishment. Do you have a tagline? Life Motto?
Laugh every day. Love every minute.
I love it. One of the first things someone asks me about writing is "How long did it take you from conception to publication?" What about you?
9 months (but it wasn’t as arduous as birthing a child)
Ha! Literally a book baby👶 Linda, so many opinions differ on my next question, what does literary success look like to you?
Lots of sales. :D The thing that really keeps me writing is feedback from readers. Readers who leave a review or write to tell me how much the story meant to them – how they related to it, how it made them laugh, how it helped them escape reality for a bit – and that they’re looking forward to the next book – that’s what defines literary success to me.
What a great answer. Success is measured by more than on thing. Do you have any Life Hacks for Authors. Tips, tricks, or anything you specialize in that you would share with others?
I write medical romance. A tip for others who want to write about doctors: they cannot/wouldn’t ever date their patients – unless they want to lose their licence to practice medicine. I know that readers are sometimes asked to suspend reality when reading fiction, but a doctor hooking up with their patient makes me cringe. It’s so unprofessional. Something else I’m often asked about – outside of a clinic or medical facility, doctors can pretty much only do First Aid and CPR like any other bystander. Not many doctors carry around a stethoscope, medical equipment, or urgently needed drugs on a date!
Here that medical writers. Big no-no patient dating the doc. I’m also interested in how you have been managing your life and writing with COVID-19.
How did I cope with COVID-19? I embraced change. Deep down, I don’t think this will be a permanent change (after all, life went back to some semblance of normal after the Spanish flu), but for now, it really helped to accept that I needed to do things differently or be left in the dust (or end up in a casket). I was already wearing a mask at work when I saw patients because inevitably they would cough just as I was taking a throat swab, and wearing a mask saved me from getting infected, but now I wear a mask whenever I go out. I was also a frequent hand washer, but now I actually do sing “Mary Had a Little Lamb” twice while lathering. Also new was all the protective gear I had to wear at work, interacting with patients virtually instead of in-person, limiting who I saw and where I went, and grocery shopping every 7 - 10 days (no popping out for one ingredient). I focused on what I could do – go for walks, spend quiet time writing and reading, interact with others on Zoom or on the phone, make larger meals so there would be leftovers, so I didn’t have to cook every day. I’m very grateful that I have a lovely, peaceful home that I enjoy spending time in, and I’m at a stage in life with my job and children that makes it easier to cope.
Great insight. I remember working medical during the HIV/AIDS situation in the early mid 80's. We learned more about universal precautions. Now I guess it will be universal precaution add respiratory protection. Do you have a special object like a piece of jewelry or keepsake of some sort? Can you tell us what makes it special to you?
I love miniature knick-knacks. When I was about nine years old, on one of my family’s annual road trips – hitting KOA campgrounds all around Ontario – we stopped at a museum. I can tell you, my parents never bought souvenirs, in fact, we rarely went into gift shops. With four kids, it just wasn’t in the budget. But that day we did, and I fell in love with a little key chain. Attached to the ring was a tiny clear rectangular box with a little “fish” swimming inside. I didn’t ask for it, but from the amount of time I spent making the little fish swim, it was obvious that I was enamoured with it. My mom shepherded us back into the car, and my dad lingered and came out with a small paper bag. He slipped it to me through the window before getting in the driver’s seat. When I opened it, it was the keychain delicately wrapped in tissue paper. My dad passed away of cancer when I was sixteen. That keychain has gone everywhere with me, and I still have it in a place of honour on a little picture shelf in my study.
Oh my! That is such a wonderful story. Thank you for sharing it. What is your favorite mug or teacup if neither T-shirt with graphic or Meme?
I have a mug that my husband had made with a picture of me and our two oldest sons, when they were three and four years old, out on a walk at a local conservation area. It’s the cutest thing ever.
Teach me something I don’t know in two sentences.
When you send away your spit in a direct-to-consumer genetic testing kit, the information can be sold to a third party including pharmaceutical companies and government agencies. The labs aren’t necessarily accredited, the results aren’t standardized, and because of a host of factors, even if the test is positive for a disease, it doesn’t mean that you have it (or that we can treat it) – are you really sure you want to know about it?
WHAT! Geez, nothing is private anymore. Duly noted. Do you have a favorite cartoon and why?
Zits. I swear the creators have a secret camera in our house – it’s so realistically funny about raising a teenager.
My hubby and I love Zits even though our son is long gone and onto a family of his own. What's your favorite candy, cookie, pasta?
Skittles (although a Crunchie bar is a close second), warm chocolate chip cookie, penne with a lemon infused oil and light balsamic vinegar dressing tossed with red peppers, fried zucchini, mushrooms, and capers.
Linda, thank you again for coming and spending time around the campfire. Your interview has been very enlightening. But before you go, can you leave a bit more about your book (s) and where interested readers can learn more?
Don’t Unravel the Past
Dr. Brogan Corkie is happily semi-retired from medicine and now has time for other hobbies. Her passion for food is second only to her skill at matchmaking!
Years ago, Dr. Jay Landon kissed a sexy stranger with violet eyes. He was instantly enamoured – until he saw the engagement ring on her finger and the angry-looking dude by her side. She walked away with a piece of his heart.
Dr. Brenna Locket is in Mapleton for a conference and plans to stay for a six-month sabbatical to write a book. Her colourful past has prepared her well for a job she loves as an obstetrician-gynecologist with a special focus on sexual health. If her vivacious personality, natural empathy, and expert knowledge didn’t set her apart, her violet eyes and curly black hair certainly would.
Brogan doesn’t know their history, but the spark between Jay and Brenna is undeniable. She’s intrigued…and a matchmaking scheme is hatched. Now, if only Brenna could leave her past behind. Because unravelling the past might just derail the future.
Buy link: https://www.amazon.com/Unravel-Brogan-Corkie-Matchmaking-Doctor-ebook/dp/B08C8MHGYL
The doorbell rang and Brenna tugged on her T-shirt and ran a hand through her hair to subdue some of the wayward curls before opening the door. She stilled and her smile froze in place. Her recollection was swift – steel blue eyes glinting behind a goalie mask, a stolen moment, a fleeting kiss. He hadn’t changed much in seven years, although his eyes seemed bluer and his shoulders broader. He certainly hadn’t lost that cocky smile.
Jay stiffened and then his smile slowly widened. “Well, if it isn’t Doctor Sniper/Cheater.”
“It was a good goal, Doctor Sore Loser. I couldn’t help it if I was more talented than you.” Brenna leaned against the door frame. “It’s been a while.”
“Indeed it has.” But he’d recognize those violet eyes and curly hair anywhere. If truth be told, he was a complete sucker for them. They’d haunted his dreams since the moment he’d met her, even if she had just scored the winning goal. She’d robbed his hockey team of a spot in the final and stolen his heart in one fell swoop.
Award-winning author Linda O’Connor started writing romantic comedies when she needed a creative outlet other than subtly rearranging the displays at a local home décor store. Her books have enjoyed bestseller status. When not writing, she’s a physician at an Urgent Care Clinic. She shares her medical knowledge in fast-paced, well-written, sexy romances – with an unexpected twist. Her favourite prescription to write? Laugh every day. Love every minute.
Amazon Author Page https://www.amazon.com/Linda-OConnor/e/B00S7CNLEA
Since joining RWA one of the people who has been a solid cheerleader, mentor, friend to Anna Taylor is a person who has been a solid cheerleader, mentor, friend to many of us in the writing community and is today's guest. Personally she has reached out with great information to help me with my writing career. I'm so happy she'd joined us at camp today. Always supportive and kind, I know you'll her interview.
Anna, welcome to the campfire. What can I get you? At camp the pantry and fridge are like Aladdin's lamp. Your wish is our command.
Tea for me. Red Raspberry Zinger is always in stock. Lately I’ve been experimenting with my own version of iced peach green tea lemonade.
Red Raspberry Zinger it is. Let me know how the experiment goes. Green tea is healthy but in my opinion yuck without other flavors. I've found that Constant Comment green as well as Earl Green are pretty good. Tell us have you ever camped, or as I call what I do, Glamp.
Camped, not glamped. With a guy I was dating in seminary I hiked a trail in the Adirondacks and camped in old WPA lean-tos. Next with my husband I camped again in the Adirondack State Park, this time in a campground using a tent, cooking on a Coleman stove and reading by LED lamps.
Oh, the Adirondacks are beautiful. Can you tell us about your latest project?
Right now I’m working on several, especially a WIP I entered into a fall back category of the Great Expectations contest on the last day since the one I wanted to enter was closed. Who knew I’d win the category and the final round judge would request the full?! It’s called Kwanzaa to the Rescue and is about a woman recently separated from her husband, trying to recapture what’s important in her life. She helped in her journey throughout the story as she relearns the meaning and power of the seven principles of Kwanzaa. I'm also working on the second novella in my Haunted Harlem series entitled A Little In Love With Death. It already has a cover designed by my fabulous cover designer Dawne Dominique. I'm still revising it but I'm going to post excerpts of it on Goodreads as part of my pre-order strategy.
That sounds quite interesting. I love reading about different celebrations especially ones that help us find our way in this crazy world. I have to admit I don't know much about Kwanzaa so I look forward to reading it. Can you share a bit about what you're working on and what's on the horizon?
Today I’m talking about my first self-published novella, Haunted Serenade. I wrote it back in 2011 as part of a series with several other authors from my RWA gothic romance chapter. Nine years later I’ve improved it, had a beautiful new cover designed and released it on June 17th. It’s now the first of my Haunted Harlem series which are psychological and parapsychological ghost stories.
Wonderful! I will tell our guests today that I have read Haunted Serenade and its not only a spine-tingling ghost story but a fabulous character study about the things the character's experienced in lift that brought them to the crisis of the haunting. I highly recommend it. Do you have a tagline? Life Motto?
Life motto: Do justice. Love mercy. Walk humbly before God. Micah 6:8
Amen. That is one of my favorite verses. Can you imagine how much better our earthly journey would be if more people followed that? Are there any mentors, authors, or books, other than yours, you would like to give a shout-out to?
Shout out to Mary Buckham, mentor extraordinaire. Years ago she asked me to be on a panel she was proposing for an RWA national meeting. When I said “but I’m not published” she shot back, “you’re an author whether you’re published or not.” Thank you Mary for making me take myself seriously as a writer.
She sounds amazing. And along those lines, what does literary success look like to you?
Selling books whose stories enlighten, encourage, educate and entertain. And hopefully make me a little spending money. : D
I'd like to give a second amen to that. Speaking of mentoring do you have any Life Hacks for Authors. Tips, tricks, or anything you specialize in that you would share with others.
Make appointments to organize your time. Get a dollar store weekly pocket planner. Block out days that are for you and family and your day job (if applicable) and leave those blocks inviolate. Then make appointments with yourself in the unclaimed spaces to write, to revise, do marketing, network. No more than two appointments per day. That’s how I’ve been using all the time sheltering-in-place has put at my disposal.
Time is something I struggle to conquer this sounds like a good way to wrangle it. Now the fun questions...
Years ago, there was a commercial that talked about a “Kodak Moment.” It’s a moment in time you catch in a picture. One you never want to forget. What is yours?
The hug I shared with my then groom after the minister declared us husband and wife.
Teach me something I don’t know in two sentences.
Here’s how to count to ten in Swahili: Moja, wili, tatu, nne, tano, sita, saba, nane, tisa, kumi
What is your favorite mug or teacup if neither T-shirt?
My favorite mug and T-shirt carry a copy of the “Thank You Mitch” advertisement a number of us Mitch Pileggi X-Files fans ran in Variety to thank him for playing our favorite X-Files character , Assistant Director Walter Skinner. It’s his name plate and the wire rim glasses the character. We donated what was left over after paying for the ad to his favorite charity.
What’s your favorite fairy tale? The Bremen Town Musicians
Favorite childhood book? The Borrowers.
Last thing you googled? Why?
The last thing I googled was Beverly Jenkins guest podcasts. It was an assignment from a book marketing webinar to find where our ideal readers hang out.
Anna, thank you so much for being such and interesting and fun guest at the campfire. I know others would like to know more about you and your books. Can you leave us some information?
All the women in Anora Madison's family have lived haunted by the curse of becoming Poor Butterflies: women still longing for but deserted by the men they loved. Determined to be the first to escape a life of abandonment, Anora fled Harlem for Brooklyn, not only severing her ties with her mother Angela, but also ending her relationship with Winston Emerson, her lover and the father of her child.
Six years later, Anora comes home to make peace, but an unseen evil manifests itself during the homecoming and targets not only Anora, but her little girl Cammie.
With nowhere to run, Anora must confront the evil now trying to destroy her life. She vows to protect her daughter at all costs, but if that protection can only be found with Winston back in her life, how will Anora protect her heart?
Get a copy here
“I never understood how you and Elizabeth could stay here after Diana...” I couldn’t bring myself to say the word. My mother didn’t finish my sentence for me. Apparently she couldn’t say the word either.
We waited in the shared silence, unable more than unwilling to offer terms of peace.
“A person can will themselves to die,” my mother said. Her gaze drifted to the album cover in my hands. “It’s not so hard where unforgiving spirits reign.”
My gut clenched. “Do you really believe you’re dying, Ma?”
“According to my doctor I’m sound as a dollar. But when you’ve got more days behind you than in front of you, that’s not saying much.” She directed her gaze to me. “That’s why Cammie is so important. She’s the future. I feel better just having been in her presence a little while.”
“I should have known.” I gripped the album cover with fingers trembling with anger and disappointment. “All that display of affection...you’re only using her to make you feel better.”
“No, Anora.” My mother came over and grabbed my arm with an earnestness that surprised me. “It’s not like that. I—I want the ghosts keeping us apart to die. Don’t you?”
I wanted it so much it hurt. I grimaced, but nodded.
“Cammie took one look at this house and asked if it was haunted.”
My mother snorted. “Out of the mouths of babes.”
“Exactly what I thought.” I returned the album cover to its resting place.
The term troubled my mind. Can the spirit of anyone who dies the way my aunt died ever rest?
The question went unanswered, interrupted by my daughter’s screams.
Anna M. Taylor website: https://annamtaylor.webs.com
Anna M. Taylor FB Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/annamtaylorAuthor
Anna M. Taylor Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Anna-M.-Taylor/e/B0894LFCTV?author-follow=B0894LFCTV&
Hi, Jessica! Thanks for stopping by the campfire today. I love your hat😍 What’s your preference, coffee, tea, cocoa, wine? The camp fridge is like the Starship Enterprise, you speak it, you get it.
Cocoa. Not today though – it’s way too hot!
Have you ever had a frozen hot chocolate? I've posted a recipe below. But here's some ice water. Have to stay hydrated in this weather. Tell us, have you ever camped, or as I call what I do, Glamp.
I’ve never camped but my husband and I are talking about doing it later this summer, perhaps even before this post goes live. We love the outdoors—hiking, swimming, cookouts, and seeing as how this is a rather unusual summer, we were thinking it might be the perfect time to try it. We think we’ve scouted out the perfect place for it, too, in the Poconos.
The Pocono's are one of our go-to places for weekend trips. We usually stay in the KOAs. You should also check out Camp Taylor right on the border but the Jersey side in Columbia. It's a little more rustic but again one of our favorites. Tell us about your latest project. What book are you talking about today and what’s on the horizon?
I’ve just released the 4th story in the Rabourn Theater Series, An Intoxicating Interlude. In this series two rival families battles for control of the world they love and 5 unlikely couples come together and discover a different sort of passion. An Intoxicating Interlude is a second-chance romance with a twist—Dani and Ryder were never a couple and in fact, Ryder wants revenge on Dani for sending him to prison. He’s hatched the perfect plan only, being married to the woman he’s wanted since the day he first set foot in Rabourn Theater isn’t as simple as he wanted to believe. Dani is a temptress, warm and sensual and capable of turning his world on its head. As a series of dangerous accidents befall the people of Rabourn Theater, Ryder prays the end won’t come sooner than he’s prepared for.
I’m currently writing the final story in the series, An Enchanting Song. Ryder’s diabolical brother Sebastian is back in Briarcliff Manor and he wants what he has since the beginning, Rabourn Theater. But a beautiful, mysterious woman may put a serious kink in his plans…
Wow! It sounds like a great story. I've read your Passionate Play from this series and was enthralled by it. I'll have to add the rest to my TBR (to be read) list. Do you have a tagline? Life Motto?
Be who you are. Do what you love. Find the person who completes you and never let them go.
Yep, you nailed it. Let's talk about writing. How long did it take you from conception to publication?
I generally write 1 book a year but I often outline them years in advance, since I like to write series. I need to have a strong sense of where the series is going before I begin writing the first book, so that I don’t lock myself out of any potential great ideas later on. That said, I created the initial outline for An Intoxicating Interlude a couple of years ago and polished it up earlier this year.
I never knew how difficult series are until I started writing one. Good for you planning ahead. Are there any mentors, authors, or books, other than yours, you would like to give a shout-out to?
I’m proud to be a member of New Jersey Romance Writers for over a decade, and I’ve met some of the most amazing authors in this group, (some who are still members, some who are not) who write the greatest stories! Roni Denholtz, Emma Kaye, Jennifer Wilck, Deborah Garland, Nancy Herkness, Tina Gabrielle, Maria K. Alexander, Jenna Victoria and most recently, you (D.V. Stone), just to name a few!
Thank you, Jessica. I'm humbled to be added to such an illustrious group. Different people have different ideas about my next question. What does literary success look like to you?
Success, in any profession, is doing what you love and sticking with it even when the chips are down. Every profession has its difficult days, yes, even the ones we love. A writer who chooses to write, and does it regularly, is infinitely further ahead of the game than one who says they want to write and never does. I consider just being in this game, and staying in it, to be a degree of literary success.
Do you have any tips, tricks, or anything you specialize in that you would share with others. I’m also interested in how you have been managing your life and writing with COVID-19.
Before the pandemic, I gave a talk on Editing and Pacing at the Easton Book Festival, sharing interesting and useful tips I’ve picked up on these topics over the years. You can see the video with all of the slides I used on Youtube - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LPOmR5rfkPw&t=255s
As for my life and writing afterward, for me, being home more has actually been a good thing. I’m a writer who can write in the midst of minor distraction and when you cut out the commuting time each day, I’m good at taking that extra hour and turning it into writing time. I don’t watch the news, so I’m only distracted by negativity when someone tells me what is going on, which is not exactly the same and those closest to me know I’d rather talk about something else. Do I want to get back to the old normal, you betcha, like, yesterday. But I play the cards I’m dealt and do what I can to turn lemons into lemonade. A little more time to myself is never a bad problem to have, IMO.
Thank you for sharing the link. I know I'll be able to glean great information from it. And yep, I agree. Life isn't fair or easy. You do the best you can and roll with it. Now the fun questions...
What's your favorite candy, cookie, pasta?
Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Double Chocolate Chip, Any kind as long as it’s covered in delicious sauce!
What’s your favorite ‘90s jam?
Too many to pick from – Wilson Phillips Hold On For One More Day, The Cranberries Dreams, Go West King of Wishful Thinking, Selena Dreaming of You…
If they made a movie about your life, what would the title be and who would play you?
I’d call the movie Somerset (where I grew up.) Anne Hathway would play me. Several people have told me I look like her. I’m eagerly awaiting the day that someone walks up to her and tells her she looks like Romance Novelist Jessica Lauryn!
Do you have a special object like a piece of jewelry or keepsake of some sort? Can you tell us what makes it special to you?
On my wedding day I was given a beautiful bell, which belonged to my grandmother who passed away a few years before, and which she’d intended to give to her first grandchild who got married. Right before she died, she told me she would always give me something. She’s given me so many things that I will treasure forever. This one was extra-special.
What’s your favorite fairy tale?
Beauty & the Beast. Perhaps that has something to do with why I’m obsessed with tortured heroes and reforming former villains?
Jessica, you're a riot! Thank you for being such a fun and interesting guest. Please leave us some more information about where to find you as well as more about your books.
An Intoxicating Interlude Blurb:
Will the monster who almost ruined Dani’s life make all her dreams come true?
Former exotic dancer Dani Talbert is determined to leave Briarcliff Manor and raise her son in a place where he won’t be branded by her mistakes. She’s dreamed of being a star on Rabourn Theater’s stage all her life and it’s time she put the dreams that have cost her everything behind her. But when Ryder Nathanson, the conniving man who once blackmailed her, comes back to town and arranges for Dani to have the lead role in her favorite play, her plans of starting a new life are brought to a halt. Ryder may be a monster, but he intrigues her a lot more than she realized.
An Intoxicating Interlude Excerpt:
Ryder shut the door. He sat beside her, on her bed. Drawing a breath, as though he was the one who was anxious, he asked, “What do you want to talk about?”
“Oh”—Dani thought quickly—“well I told you a lot about myself earlier, about my life growing up. But you didn’t tell me anything about yours.”
Ryder’s eyes darkened. He walked to the window and stood there a long moment before saying, “There isn’t exactly a lot to tell. My past is legendary at Rabourn Theater.”
“Well, yes and no. All of us who participated in the secret society believed Augustus Nathanson was a good man. I know he was your father, but I don’t really know anything else.”
“What more could there be to say?”
Dani studied his expression. Ryder was there with her, but it was like he wasn’t there, as though he was someplace else. It was as though his mind was in another time—when exactly had she become so curious? Yes, Ryder had gotten her to open up to him, something she still couldn’t believe she’d done, but the fact that he was unwilling to talk about himself made her wonder. Was it possible their pasts had been similar? Had Ryder been betrayed by the people he’d loved the most, like she had?
She rambled, “Something, I’d imagine. Everyone has a story, I mean, it isn’t as though you were born on another planet.”
Ryder glared at her. Dani met his stare.
He lifted an eyebrow. “You seem awfully curious about me all of a sudden.”
“You are my husband.” She shrugged. “Why wouldn’t I want to know more about you?”
“I don’t doubt you do.” Ryder crossed his arms. “Though I can’t imagine how I spent my adolescence is very high on the list.”
Unsure of how to respond to that, Dani stammered, “When I said let’s talk, I did mean talk. I wasn’t trying to…that isn’t why I…”
“You know, it’s amazing to me how a woman who used to take her clothes off in a room full of drunken men could be so guarded. Unless it’s an act. I have always believed your acting skills were uncanny.”
“How dare you! I told you that—”
“You were forced into exotic dancing because you had an unfair shake in life? Maybe that’s how it started, but you were at home on the stage. There were other ways you could have supported yourself, even under the worst of circumstances. You chose dancing because it’s in your blood, because it’s running through your veins, pumping through your heart with every beat.”
“So, I enjoy dancing,” Dani said, unable to believe how flawlessly he’d been able to turn the focus back onto her, or what a wild shift in topic had come of it. “It isn’t as though that was ever a secret. I have a skill and I used it to support myself. I did what I had to, to survive.”
Ryder sat beside her. Looking into her eyes, asked, “Were you doing what you had to do earlier tonight, when you were kissing me?”
Dani’s heart came into her mouth. She backed up, attempting to hide her burning face. “I see what you’re trying to do. It’s the same thing you were doing earlier. You want me to let my guard down.”
“What if I do?” Her husband inched closer. “You asked me not to leave, which I can only assume you did because you want me to stay.”
Dani wanted to move away. She needed to move away, but her body refused to do anything besides remain in place, tingles rushing through her, her body shuddering as though she’d been caught against an electric socket.
“You don’t really want to talk.” Ryder grazed her cheek. “Do you Dani?”
Dani’s throat was so dry she couldn’t speak. She inclined her head, intending to move it up and down. It seemed to be locked in place.
“You have so much passion inside of you. I saw it when you were on the stage. You’re dying to let it out, but you bottle it up inside because you’re afraid.”
“I’m not afraid,” she insisted.
Ryder smiled. “Prove it.”
Ryder Nathanson wants revenge on everyone who has wronged him, and the woman responsible for sending him to prison is at the top of his list. He’s hatched the perfect plan only, being married to Dani Talbert, the woman he’s wanted since the day he first set foot in Rabourn Theater, isn’t as simple as he wanted to believe. Dani is a temptress, warm and sensual and capable of turning his world on its head. As a series of dangerous accidents befall the people of Rabourn Theater, Ryder prays the end won’t come sooner than he’s prepared for.
An Intoxicating Interlude Buy Links:
Amazon - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08CJH42ZW
I was born and raised in New Jersey, where I live to this day. There are a lot of people living in the area where I reside and I love being part of a very active community – coming back from a vacation, NJ always feels like home. I’m a big antique collector and I love hitting up the local (and sometimes not so local!) antique stores in search of pretty, Victorian treasures. I’ve worked in a variety of jobs, where I’ve met a number of interesting people, several of whom have found their way into my stories. I am obsessed with 80’s music but I try to stick with classical while I’m reading and writing. I find it less distracting, and also, greatly inspiring!
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Frozen Hot Chocolate
I love to go camping. Every day in camp you meet knew people and dogs. This morning my husband head nearly blew off when two basset hounds walked past. Bassetts are his favorite. The thing that is not so much fun is sketchy wifi and cell signal. That said I'm appologizing to my guest for the technical difficulties we are experiencing. So before I lose my signal please welcome todays's guest and make sure you get to the end. Wendy has a campfire recipe for us.
Welcome to the Campfire with Today's Guest Wendy Kendall.8/8/2020
Hey, Wendy. What’s your preference, coffee, tea, cocoa, or wine? My go-to drink is chai tea, the more caffeine the better. A steaming mug, that spicy scent, oh yes that suits me to a T.
One of my favorites is Dragon Spiced Chai. I usually have some around so here you go. Tell us have you ever camped, or as I call what I do, Glamp.
It's been awhile since my last camping, which is why I'm so happy to be invited to your campfire today. I've enjoyed tent camping in the past, especially at the beach but also in the mountains. After moving to the Seattle area where rain even in the summer is common, we finally got tired of coming home soaked to the skin and bought a used camper. That was fun too. Nowadays my idea of roughing it is a cabin with no wifi.
Tell us about your latest project. What’s the title and genre?
I write cozy mysteries and the first of my In Purse-Suit Mysteries series is Kat Out of the Bag. That's Kat with a K for Katherine Watson, international purse designer and amateur sleuth.
And I’m so excited to break the news here - the prequel is available beginning September 2nd. Purse-Stachio Makes A Splash is the title and it’s part of The Wild Rose Press’ One Scoop Or Two series. In this prequel Katherine Watson makes a chilling discovery about a cold case involving a missing girl.
Congratulations! I'm a recent fan of the Cozy Mystery and the One Scoop or Two series is amazing. Do you have a tagline?
From designer bags to body bags
How long did it take you from conception to publication?
Kat Out of the Bag took me a very exciting 5 years. I have a passion for mysteries, books, and purses so the writing and the research was all a lot of fun. I immersed myself in the writing community in the Pacific Northwest and have made so many wonderful friends. I’ve learned so much that has improved my writing.
As part of my research I interviewed local police, especially those with K-9 partners because Jason Holmes is a character who is a local cop in my series, with his four-pawed partner Hobbs. I also did a ride along with a K-9 patrol in the Seattle area and got to see them in action. What an exciting research assignment I gave myself there. I’ve used this experience in the book, and plan on continuing to include more throughout the series. I’m writing the sequel now.
Another highlight of my research was a visit to the Esse Purse Museum in Little Rock, Arkansas. What a fabulous visit for someone like me who has a passion for purses, and for history. This wonderful place tells women’s history and uses women’s purses as accessories to tell the stories of the decades. So inspiring! The tales of extraordinary efforts and accomplishments by everyday women are so beautiful. And seeing all the purses is a delight. It’s created and run by Anita Davis, who is an incredible woman herself, and her fabulous staff.
I was thrilled when The Wild Rose Press decided in August 2019 they would publish Kat Out of the Bag. They’ve been fantastic to work with. My book has been available since April of this year.
I have to admit my purse is a phone case and my "bag" is a backpack. Are there any mentors, authors, or books, you would like to give a shout-out to?
If you’re a cozy mystery fan, my absolute favorite author, queen of the genre in my eyes, is Laura Childs. She has several series, but my favorite is her Tea Shop mysteries.
For other book recommendations, I have a Recommended Reads column you can visit whenever your to-be-read pile gets low - https://myedmondsnews.com/category/columns/recommended-reads/
Tell us, what does literary success look like to you?
So many readers have contacted me and said how very much they’ve enjoyed reading Kat Out of the Bag. That warms my heart. I want to continue to increase the visibility of my books in order to entertain more readers as a best seller, to provide delightful characters and puzzling mysteries to all amateur sleuths.
As I looked at the prequel Purse-Stachio Makes A Splash, a thrill ran through me as I saw the page - Other books by Wendy Kendall. That’s literary success for me, telling more and more stories for readers to savor.
Store your handbags on a shelf & stuff them when not in use in order to maintain their shape. When you carry, let your purse-onality shine bright.
Now the fun questions pick 5 or if you like more but no more than 7.
When I got older, the whole Anne of Green Gables series, and of course all the Nancy Drew books.
Wendy, thanks for being part of the Campfire. Please tell us a bit about your books and where we can find more information.
Kat Out of the Bag (excerpt)
by Wendy Kendall
“There's an officer nearby. We'll alert him. Hold the line.”
Katherine was worried by the operator's monotone. Did she understand the urgency? Katherine watched in disbelief as the shadow figure moved toward the shed attached to the waterwheel. Too late, she thought to get a picture after the person disappeared inside the shed.
“Oh no,” Katherine muttered. She spoke into the phone, “Hurry, I think it's the killer, maybe looking for something left behind? Hello?” Had the operator hung up?
“Yes, the officer is on the way. Please stay on the line.” The operator's voice now sounded bored.
A sharp ray of light from inside the shed cut through the darkness. The light jumped around. Sweat collected on Katherine's upper lip as she imagined the killer looking through her things for something, maybe critical evidence. Fear gave way to irritation at the invations. Irritation gave way to anger. Someone had to stop that killer from removing whatever incriminating thing was so critical it had driven a return to the scene of the crime. Katherine wanted to scream. Where were the police? Maybe MJ was right about them. She pressed against the French doors. The light in the shed went out. Her breath caught in her throat. The silhouette walked out of the shed toward the alley leading to the maze that burrowed throughout Bayside and beyond.
Katherine spoke gruffly and fast, “Hello. Where's your officer? The suspect is getting away.”
“Ma'am, please stay calm and hang on the line. They're on the way.”
Katherine unlocked the door to the yard and whispered to the 911 operator, “I'm in pursuit.”
Website - https://sites.google.com/site/wendywriteshere/
Kat Out of the Bag
A Passion For Purses Blogspot - https://apassionforpurses.blogspot.com/
Email - firstname.lastname@example.org
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/pg/WendyKendallMysteries/about/?ref=page_internal
Twitter - https://twitter.com/WendyWrites1
Instagram - wendyekendallMy links:
Website - https://sites.google.com/site/wendywriteshere/
Kat's Out of the Bag Stake Out Sandwich
3 cold brisket steak slices
2 ciabatta bread slices
aioli sauce horseradish, to taste
2-3 tsp roasted red peppers
3 tomato slices
3 red onion slices
Directions: Put steak slices on one slice of bread. Spread aioli sauce and horseradish on the other slice of bread. Put on top of the steak all other ingredients. Put the bread slice with aioli sauce on top of the rest Kat's Out of the Bag Stake Out Sandwich