Showing posts from 2018

It's a Wonderful Life-More Behind the Scenes

I've posted about how Philip Van Doren Stern's Greatest Gift became It's a Wonderful Life.  But there are so many interesting behind the scenes connections to this film, I can't resist sharing some of them.

Wartime Connections
While our hero, George Bailey, was ineligible for service during WWII due to his damaged ear, his brother Harry became a Navy pilot and a war hero. Jimmy Stewart was a pilot in the US Army Air Force and flew 20 combat missions during the war. He became one of the few Americans to rise from private to colonel in only four years during WWII.

A Civil War historian, novelist and editor in his own right, Philip Van Doren Stern served as general manager for Armed Services Editions during WWII. Also known as ASE's, these inexpensive paperbacks were published from 1943-1947 and provided to servicemen on the front lines. Featured authors included William Faulkner, Zane Grey, John Steinbeck, Mark Twain and H.G. Wells.  ASE's were immensely popular…

Lovestruck Two Step-Release Party

Since Lovestruck Two Step is all about a making dive bar a local favorite, I asked my production team to describe their favorite hangout.
Harris Channing-Cover design Not only has Harris designed all of the covers for The Rhythm & Romance series and Hot Flash, she is also an author. And she did a cool job with Ever After, one of Susan Winters’ titles.
What's my favorite hangout?  I am a homebody.  My favorite part of the day is when everyone is home safe and sound and we're just hanging out.  I love watching movies with my daughters. Sitting next to hubby and catching up with how his day went.  Home is my favorite hangout. May seem boring but since I spend most of my time here, wouldn't it suck if I didn't just love it?
Marian Kelly-Editing Marian could truly be called a “Writer’s Editor” and she's worked with me on all four Rhythm & Romance titles. She also writes Regency romance as Colleen Ladd.

My favorite hangout is a tiny restaurant called The Wandering Moos…

Read 'Em & Eat-Mesquite Turkey Quesadillas

Like most physical activities, dancing presents a challenge when it comes to dinner.You don’t want to feel weighted down by a heavy meal, but you don’t want to hit the dance floor hungry either. Also any lengthy prep time in the kitchen takes away from primp time in front of the mirror.😉
 Fortunately Mesquite Turkey Quesadillas are short on prep time and long on satisfying hunger. They are perfect to enjoy before a night on the town or for a quiet evening reading a good book like Lovestruck Two Step.
Mesquite Turkey Quesadillas
1/4 to 1/2 pound-sliced Mesquite Turkey from your grocery deli counter. Shredded cheddar cheese 1/2 white onion-chopped fine. Several tablespoons Balsamic vinegar (I like to use Golden Balsamic vinegar for milder taste). 
Marinade chopped onion in Balsamic vinegar for a few minutes. Assemble chopped turkey, shredded cheese and marinaded onion into flour tortilla and heat in skillet on stove until cooked through. 
Lovestruck Two Step
With her marriage and danc…

The Story behind Lovestruck Two Step

One of the more unusual assignments in my college literature classes was to write a cocktail party scene involving the various characters from the stories we had read during the semester.  I heard the murmur of collective dismay from my classmates.  I could hardly wait to start writing.  All semester I endured the harsh glare of reality as reflected by American literary icons, Theodore Dreiser and Sinclair Lewis. Now it was time to have some fun. I don’t remember the final grade on that paper only that my ruddy-faced professor with a Hemingway complex noted positive comments in the margin instead of his usual acerbic barbs . I intended to end the Rhythm & Romance series with Wedding Tango. After all, how do you top a whirlwind adventure in Buenos Aires?One of my girlfriends who’s strictly Ballroom mentioned that her group’s dance socials featured a live band.Hmmmm…a live band could be interesting.I started Lovestruck Two Step with notions of a two-man band in a dive bar, but once…

Author Interview-Lynne M. Spreen

Dakota Blues:
In this award-winning debut novel, workaholic Karen Grace is fired after attending her mother's funeral in her Midwestern hometown. Now Karen is fifteen hundred miles from home, just one more middle-aged worker out of a job in a tough economy. To make matters worse, her husband recently left her for his pregnant girlfriend. At a crossroads, Karen must find the courage to change. Needing time to think, she agrees to take an elderly neighbor on one last road trip, but on a deserted highway in Wyoming, Karen is forced to make a lethal and life-changing decision.
What inspired you to become a writer?
I’m one of those kids who wanted to write from the time they were old enough to hold a pencil. I kid you not: I invented a genealogy chart for my plastic horses!
But even though I craved writing, I wasn’t able to publish my first book until I was 58 years old. With work and parenting and life in general, I just couldn’t do it, although I took classes and wrote bits and pieces al…

Lovestruck Two-Step-Available as a Pre-Order

"Why walk when you can dance." Ellen van Dam

I'm thrilled to announce that Lovestruck Two Step, the final title in the Rhythm & Romance series is available as a pre-order.

Lovestruck Two Step

With her marriage and dance studio wiped out by divorce, Becca Collins reluctantly agrees to teach Two Step lessons at a country bar. Carson Quill isn’t thrilled about spending his Saturday nights playing guitar in a local dive, but a certain dance instructor with long legs and dark curls caught his eye. Does love have a shot in a bar called Last Chance?

Review for Wedding Tango

"If you get tangled up, just tango on." Al Pacino

Though I'm not tangled at the moment, I do feel like dancing and not just because it's Friday.

Kam's Place  gave Wedding Tango 💓💓💓💓

"There was plenty of drama unfolding in Wedding Tango, but readers also experienced love (old and new) between several characters.  ....Do I recommend this short story?  Yes."

Author Signing Event-Las Vegas

Big news! I’m going to be at an author signing event in Las Vegas on November 8th. Over 100 authors in the same place, signing books and meeting readers. You’re welcome to either bring your own books or purchase some in person.  Those that sign up and pay the $2.50 entry fee will be entered into a drawing to win  a Kindle Paperwhite! I’ll be at Sam's Town in Las Vegas from 3-5pm on November 8th, The address is: 5111 Boulder Hwy, Las Vegas, NV. I also write Women's fiction as Susan Winters and my table will be under that name. I hope to see you there!

Review for Ladies Man

"Who really wants to be themselves when they're teenagers?" Stephen Colbert

Kam's Place  gave Ladies Man  💖💖💖 1/2

"Ladies Man is more than a love story. It touched upon real life scenarios parents face daily: teenagers blooming interest in boys and/or girls, underage drinking, and the aftereffects of divorce. We, parents/caregivers, know raising kids is a hard job. At times, our kids will get mad at us. They will yell, shed tears, and keep secrets. However, they also bring us much joy and laughter. "

Review for Package Deal

"Forget your troubles and dance" Bob Marley

For writers besides dancing, there's nothing like a positive review to chase away the blues.

"Mariposa wrote a charming story about a closed off woman who opened her heart again..." 
Kameron Brook 

 Kam's Place gave Package Deal 💖💖💖

Author Interview-Thea Dawson

Need a hot guy? Gentlemen, Inc. is here to serve.

Tired of being the "cute one" in a family of glamorous people, Annabelle Winter decides to hire a gorgeous man from the Gentlemen, Inc. Agency to be her date at a big family event. Just once, she wants to be the envy of every woman in the room.

And with Archer Carleson at her side, she is.

Archer, a struggling actor in Los Angeles, doesn't mind making a wallflower like Annabelle look good for an evening-he's getting paid, after all, and it's a chance to further hone his acting skills. But when he realizes that Annabelle's family could hold the key to his career, he decides to take their professional relationship to a personal level.

But his attempts to boost his career by charming Annabelle backfire when he begins to fall for her. Archer will have to decide which means more to him: Annabelle-or a shot at stardom.

Man of the Moment is the first book in a new contemporary romance series that revolves around Gentlemen…

Mariposa Interview-Coffee Time & Romance

"Above all, be the heroine of your own life, not the victim." Nora Ephron

Asking an author to reveal a favorite character is like asking a parent to name a favorite child. At the risk of making my other literary children jealous, I'm over at Coffee Time Romance & More chatting about my favorite heroine from Wedding Tango. Find out about the real heroines who inspired Moira Williams.

Author Interview-C.A. Phipps

Gillian Shaw
Nearly thirty, over-endowed with curves, and under-endowed with boyfriends, you could say that my life is not going to plan. Still hopelessly in love with my childhood friend and neighbor who only sees me as his best pal, it’s finally sinking in that if I want a happily ever after I’m going to have to look further afield. Which means putting my feelings for Jack behind me, no matter how much it hurts. 
Jack Larson  
I love Gill. Who wouldn’t? She’s cute, kind, funny and my side-kick since school. She’s suffered with me through my failed marriage and has become a second mom to my six-year-old daughter, so I like to make sure she’s okay. Only, life’s just started to get crazy. 
I’m pretty darn good at getting my point across in business, but how am I supposed to deal with Gill throwing herself away on the nerdy bank manager? I’m worried that I’ll lose her friendship if I tell her what I know, and worried that she’ll get hurt if I don’t. Then there’s this other worry. What if I’…

September 6th Read a Book Day

“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies…The man who never reads lives only one.” George R.R. Martin
September 6th is Read a Book Day. Besides being a time machine and an affordable vacation from reality, a book can also improve memory, concentration and reduce stress.  According to a 2009 study by Sussex University researchers discovered reading may reduce stress by as much as 68%. So what are you waiting for?

The Last Days of Summer-Kindle Unlimited Book Fair

“Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability.” Sam Keen Even with the evenings growing cooler, there’s still time to grab some summer magic & check out these amazing Romance Books! Looking for a sweet romance, a steamy love affair, or an out of this world encounter? Look no further.  With 28 books to choose from, all available with a #kindleunlimited subscription, you’re sure to find your next favorite read, or two. Stop by and find a bunch of new stories to enjoy!

Author Interview-Tracey Mayhew

What inspired you to become a writer? To be honest, I’ve always been a writer.One of my earliest stories (when I was about 11) was for a project for school – it was about a mouse called Gizmo who rescued a cat from a house fire!Throughout that year, I revisited those characters again and again writing many stories.Since then, I’ve been inspired by many authors and have enjoyed exploring new worlds and new characters every time I begin a new story. Who are your favorite romance characters (besides your own?) I enjoy reading about any romantic couple that actually challenge each other.I found that dynamic first in Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice with Darcy and Elizabeth.Since then I’ve discovered many authors that create a similar dynamic between their couples, the most recent being Kirsty Greenwood, and this is something I try to create with my own characters. Tell me what inspired this story. The idea behind ‘What Happened In Vegas…’ is the basic premise that people make mistakes – th…

Unlimited Summer

"My ideal summer day was reading on the porch." Harold E. Varmus Searching for a sweet romance, a steamy love affair, or an out of this world encounter? Look no further. With 28 books to choose from, all available with a #kindleunlimited subscription, you’re sure to find your next favorite read, or two. Stop by and find a bunch of new stories to enjoy!

Summer Thrills

“Summer’s lease hath all too short a date.” William Shakespeare Can you believe it? In my neighborhood the kids are starting back to school next week. Even though August marks the close of carefree summer days, there’s still plenty of time for a last fling with summer. ❦➹☆ Check out these amazing books at the Romance Book Fair! ☆➹❦ Celebrate Love! With 25 romance books in various sub-genres to choose from, all for the bargain price of 99c each, you’re sure to find your next favorite read or two. Stop by and find a bunch of new stories to enjoy!

13 Ghosts (1960)

I never suffered from Triskaidekaphobiaas some people do. In fact my oldest was born on Friday 13th.Besides what’s not to like about Fridays? Though I might feel differently if I lived in a house with 13 Ghosts.
The film opens with the Zorba family having to leave yet another house due to financial difficulties. When young Buck Zorba wishes for a house with furniture when he blows out his birthday cake candles, he has no idea what his family will be in for. Shortly after Buck’s wish, Uncle Plato Zorba dies leaving his ramshackle fully-furnished mansion to Buck’s family.The house includes a mysterious housekeeper, a hidden fortune and an assortment of ghosts.
By the way if the housekeeper looks familiar to you, she is none other than Margaret Hamilton, the actress best-known for her portrayal of the Wicked Witch of the West in Wizard of Oz.
Though apprehensive of residing in spook central, the Zorba family remains in the house. According to the terms of the will, if they don’t stay i…

Read Like a Local

An attorney couple I once knew decided to treat themselves to a vacation in Turkey after passing the bar. Worn out by their intense legal studies, neither bothered reading up on the country. So they wandered the streets of Istanbul and stared at the buildings wondering what they were seeing.

One of my favorite travel preparations is studying the local guidebooks.While I might not know the whole history of a place, I like to at least know a story or two.Even better than studying the facts of a place is to know its fiction. Though much of Cannery Row had changed since Steinbeck’s time, his stories accompanied me as a wandered the streets.
Thanks to Hometown Reads travelers can get to know the local writing talent.  During its two years of existence, Hometown Reads has garnered 100 locations from Anchorage, Alaska to Tampa Bay, Florida and over 4,000 books. The site is designed so you can browse by genre or by city and provides resources for authors, readers and libraries.
The Reno, NV …

Author Interview-Amber Thielman

Engaged, abducted, and falling for a man accused of murder. From the outside, Kass has it all. She’s on the fast track to medical school and newly engaged to the perfect guy, at least when he's sober. Beaten down by his abuse, Kass turns to cutting, her success hanging on a razor's edge. She impulsively offers a handsome hitchhiker a ride to the next town. Logan seems kind, charming and sexy as hell until he pulls a weapon, forcing her to drive him across the country. Logan has no intention of hurting anyone. Falsely accused of his sister's murder, he's on the run and in a race to find the true culprit. As law enforcement closes in, Kass and Logan forge a deep connection, and Kass must choose between a past she's not even sure she wants anymore or a future that may not outlast the hour.
What inspired you to become a writer? -I’ve been writing stories since the age of thirteen, and even before that I’d sit with my school friends outside during recess telling wild tales …

Author Interview-Janice Godin

Winner of the 2017 Contemporary Romance Award from Books & Benches! "This story is so beautifully written that you can't help but become obsessed with it, especially the parts of the old journal. A story within a story, two fabulous endings, and characters that you will fall in love with." ~ The Artful Reader

"This book is about love and growth, tears and happiness and healing. I was so deeply affected and moved by this story, I had my own laughter and tears." ~ Amazon reviewer  Everyone in Kathleen's life thinks she's crazy when she decides to spend her well-earned summer working in a tiny, dusty attic sorting through old church papers, but the peace and quiet of working alone is exactly what she wants. 

She's back home again and happy, or as happy as anyone who's left behind a troubled past can be. She has amazing coworkers, a wonderful best friend, a supportive family, and not one single person in her life who knows what she's been thr…

Kindle Unlimited Romance Book Fair

"One benefit of summer was that each day we had more light to read by."
Jeanette Wallis-'The Glass Castle"

Summer is right around the corner and love is in the air. Embrace the spirit of the season with over 40  books to choose from, you’re sure to find your next favorite read.

Stop by the Kindle Unlimited Romance Book Fair and find a bunch of new stories to enjoy!

Author Interview-Mary Frame

You’ve heard this story a thousand times. Boy meets girl. Boy and girl have a fake relationship. Then they actually fall in love.
This is not one of those stories. It should be. I mean, he’s Brent Crawford. He’s the new tight end for the New York Sharks. He’s one of the sexiest men alive. But his sponsors are threatening to drop him, and his job is in jeopardy due to allegations of assault. He needs someone to help recover his image.
She’s Gwen McDougall, former fashion model turned photographer and newly minted local hero. She wants more from her photography jobs than premeditated shots of B-list celebutantes, and now is her chance. She just has to agree to help Brent shine up his tarnished reputation.
They’re both young, beautiful, and talented. They would be perfect together. 
Except she can’t stop making out with his brother.
This isn’t a perfect romance. Like most things in life, it’s rather imperfect.
How did the inspiration for this work come to you? The female lead in Picture Imperfect