Saturday, January 23, 2016

Dinosaurs and Bucket Lists

Yowzers, I do hope everyone experiencing the weather hitting the East Coast stays warm and safe! 

Any of you who follow me on Facebook may have seen this picture. Last weekend, after the grandchildren left, I put away the toys, but the following morning Papa and I discovered the ‘left over’s’ on the coffee table. We left the dinosaurs as they were, and last evening when Connor arrived, he ran into the living room and in his little—somewhat unclear—two-year-old voice, he shouted to his sister, “Belle! Dinosaur eat!” Oh, yes, he was overly excited to see his dinosaurs. 

His other sister also had good news to share. She arrived saying, “Grandma, did you hear the good news? You got picked to go on my field trip!” Come February, I’ll be heading to the Children’s Theatre as a chaperon for her 1st grade classroom. 

There truly is never a dull moment around here. Recently a friend of mine had some ‘bad’ health news
and decided there were a few things on her bucket list she wanted to complete. Our adventure this week to check off another item, was to the Mall of America where she took a ride on a zip line. (I took pictures—facing my fear of heights isn’t on my bucket list.) As we walked into the mall, I insisted she stand in front of this sign. It’s the perfect message!

It’s also been a wonderful writing week. Scott Eagan of the Greyhaus Literary Agency became my agent, I snapped a picture of Saving Marina sitting on a bookshelf in the Barnes and Noble at Mall of America, and I have been completely engrossed in my latest WIP! I love when stories flow like this one is! 

Along with Saving Marina, I’ll have three other releases in 2016. Western Spring Weddings, an anthology that includes my story, When a Cowboy Says I Do, will be released in April. Her Cheyenne Warrior in June, and a Christmas story, title yet to be determined, in November.

That’s all for now, except that I hope you all find dinosaurs that make you smile, or shout, this week! Make it a bucket list item!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Countdown to Release Day

Saving Marina will be released in print next Tuesday, January 19th, and in ebook on February 1st

People often ask me which is of my books is my personal favorite. I usually answer with the one I’m writing now. That is the truth, mainly because that is the story I’m most focused on, however, each book has something special about it. Whether it’s how the story came to be, the research behind it, a character that reminds me of someone, etc. etc. Saving Marina is no different. This book is special because of my family history. 

I’d heard for years that there were ‘witches’ in our ancestry, but didn’t think much about it. All families have ‘skeletons in the closet’ and tidbits that may have grown into ‘wives’ tales’ over the years. It wasn’t until my son was exploring and told me that my eight times great grandmother was arrested as a witch during the Salem Witch Trials that I took a deeper interest. 

During that tremulous time, which lasted less than a year, fear engulfed many communities, and along with that came self-preservation. People accused others of witchcraft in order to simply protect themselves. There are many theories behind the witch trials. Some I read amazed me, others were staggering, and then there are those that, although incredulous, seem understandable considering the time period and the beliefs and ways of life back then. 

My ancestor’s name was Elizabeth Dicer, and though I dug up as much material on her as I could, there isn’t much. It seems she was arrested after accusing several others of being a witch—which wasn’t uncommon. From my understanding, it was late in the year, and cold when she was imprisoned. Her son-in-law, whose name was Richard Tarr, (my paternal grandmother’s maiden name was Tarr, and Richard would have been her several times great grandfather) petitioned the courts to release not only Elizabeth, but several others because they would never survive the cold winter in the jail which had no heat. Just the previous month, The Court of Oyer and Terminer, which had been specifically created to try accused witches, had been overturned, or dissolved, by the Superior Court of Judicature which specifically outlawed the use of spectral evidence in any of the hearings. Richard obtained Elizabeth’s release by paying her bail and promising to return her to the courts for a set upon hearing date the following spring. Between the date of her release and trail date, additional changes and orders came about which led to the end of the accusations and trails, therefore Elizabeth, as well as several others, never needed to return. A few years later, monetary reparations and public apologies were granted to some families for false proof and wrongful deaths.

Although I used my family history and Richard Tarr’s name in my story, I did not use Elizabeth’s premise. Marina, my heroine, has her own reason for believing she is a witch. 

And now I’m off to work on my next book about two orphans brought west on a train, separated, and reunited years later during the rough and wild days of the cattle drives inundating Dodge City.   

Stay happy!   

Friday, January 1, 2016

It's Here! 2016!

We had a lovely time last night with a couple dozen friends. Lots of laughter and toasts to the old and new year. Our Christmas was truly wonderful and created a host of sweet memories. The chocolate fountain was indeed a hit, and has been proclaimed a must at all family gatherings in 2016.(Minus the huge gummy bear!!)

2016 is already gathering steam for book releases in 2016. Saving Marina will be released in print on January 19th, and ebook on February 1st.  Western Spring Weddings, an anthology with my story, When a Cowboy Says I Do, will be released on March 22nd in paperback and April 1st in ebook. Her Cheyenne Warrior will be released May 24th in paperback and June 1st in ebook.

Seduced in Salem 

Sea captain Richard Tarr must claim his child after the death of his estranged wife. Arriving in Salem, he's shocked to discover his daughter is in the care of Marina Lindqvist—a rumored witch!

This beautiful, gentle woman awakens unfamiliar feelings in Richard. And as the threat from the Salem witch hunters grows, he knows he must protect misunderstood Marina at all costs. Little does he know that with Marina helping him bond with his little girl, she might just be saving him right back…



Penniless, Clarissa Seaforth leaps at gruff rancher Graydon Harris's offer to become his cook. She's never cared for a man before, but surely it can't be hard to learn…

HIS SPRINGTIME BRIDE by Kathryn Albright 

Spring is in the air… Can rancher Gabe Coulter and Riley Rawlins, the boss's daughter, find forgiveness and renew the lovers' vows they made so long ago?

WHEN A COWBOY SAYS I DO by Lauri Robinson 

Dal Roberts must make his sister's wedding a success, which means accompanying seamstress Ellie to Wichita. Could there be a double wedding on the horizon…?

The Cheyenne's captive! 

Runaway heiress Lorna Bradford must reach California to claim her fortune, but when she's rescued from robbers by fierce Native warrior Black Horse, she's forced to remain under his protection. 

Immersed in a world so different from her own, wildcat Lorna learns how to be the kind of strong woman Black Horse needs. But, to stay by his side, she must first let go of everything she knows and decide to seize this chance for happiness with her Cheyenne warrior! 

The fourth release in 2016 will be my Colorado lumber baron story (title still to be determined) in December.  

2016 is already proving to be a wonderful year, and I hope you each make it one of your best years ever!