Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Where JQ ROSE gets story ideas

Hello, J.Q.,

It's so great to have you on my blog today.

You have a new book to tell us about, and I'm very excited to read this one.

But first, settle back on the tiltback chair, have a cup of tea with me, and tell us where you get your story ideas.  

Hello Lorrie. Thanks so much for hosting me today on my second stop on the virtual book tour for my mystery/sweet romance, Coda to Murder, just released by MuseItUp Publishing last Friday.

 Readers, thank you for visiting today. Please leave a comment to win a $10.00 MIU Publishing gift card and free e-books in the random drawing at the end of the tour.

 In the News by J.Q. Rose

 Authors are famous for borrowing from their life experiences to use in the lives of their characters. So many of us include people we know as characters in our stories. Hopefully they don’t recognize themselves. I like to mix up several people’s characteristics into one person in my story. Perhaps I will use a gesture like my brother’s humming softly and a physical characteristic like my mother’s gorgeous blue eyes and an idiom I learned while traveling. Combining all these traits into one character makes for an easily identifiable person for the reader.

 I know people-watching really sparks ideas for characters.
While waiting in the emergency room last week with my husband, I was amazed at the diverse people who sat or mulled around the room. I could see their exchanges with each other…laughing, arguing, or even just remaining quiet. That sent me off into making up a story about each one…perhaps a homeless man, a lady of the evening, a rich guy, a kind-looking old woman who was cheating on her husband of forty years?

Many times an article in the news will find a place in my stories.           

In Sunshine Boulevard, the very real problem of the animal’s natural habitat disappearing to become malls and housing projects was very important to the story. In Coda to Murder Pastor Christine finds herself in the middle of a murder investigation, not something typically included in a pastor’s studies in seminary. But that is not the only unusual circumstance she faces as the spiritual leader at Dayspring Church. The one in the following excerpt from the book was drawn from a news story in the Tampa Tribune. This incident is a turning point in Christine’s life, but I can’t tell you why or how because it will ruin the ending for you!!


EXCERPT from Coda to Murder:


She welcomed the knock on her office door to get her mind off of Cole. “Come in.”

The door opened only halfway revealing a stocky man dressed in jeans and red plaid flannel shirt. He peeked around the edge of the door. “Hi, Pastor. I hate to interrupt you. Do you have a minute?”

“Oh, come on in, Jackson.” He ambled into the office. She stood up and offered her hand to greet him. After a firm handshake, he remained standing in front of the desk nervously twirling his baseball cap in his fingers. Christine tried to recall how she met Jackson. Oh yes, he was the kind man who helped her unload donations to the community yard sale last spring.

“Thank you for lettin’ me stop in. I have some folks I’d like you to meet. They’re havin’ some hard times. Can you talk to them? They’re out in my van waitin’.”

Christine glanced out her window at Jackson’s dusty navy blue van. Rust spidered its way around the bottom of the vehicle and outlined the doors. She imagined the van had seen a lot of miles and a lot of hunting trips.

“Well, what’s happened to these folks that you need to help them out?” She motioned to him to take a seat as she returned to her chair.

Jackson eased his round body into the chair across from her desk. “Well, ya’ see, I met these folks in the campground out there on White Lake, a few miles west of here. There’s a great fishin’ hole and this and that. Anyways, we were camped there, never knew them from Adam till we met a week ago. He’s a fisherman, too.”

She nodded, listening intently, wishing he could get to the point of the story.

“Well, this mornin’, ya’see, something popped in their motor home, and before we knew it, their motor home went up in flames. It couldn’t have took more than a minute, and now it’s a burned out wreck.”

“Oh, no. Did anyone get hurt?” Christine leaned forward in her chair.

“No, thank the good Lord, we was all outside at my place havin’ coffee. The problem is they lost everything. Their wallets, credit cards, clothes….you name it. All gone. They couldn’t save nothin’. They only have the clothes on their backs. I told ‘em we’d come and see you ‘cause you’d know how to help them get back home to Tennessee.”

Resigned that Jackson would not leave unless she agreed to meet with the distressed couple, Christine stood up from her desk and smiled. “I’d be happy to meet them.”

When the pastor and Jackson emerged from the church, an older man, short and paunchy, slowly climbed out from the passenger side of the van. He limped to the sliding door and opened it up. He helped a woman who looked as if she would have been as squishy as a marshmallow, soft and round, clamber out of the van. The bulky woman wore a brightly colored print shirt, neon green cardigan sweater, and pink polyester slacks with matching pink clogs.

She turned and reached inside the van. Christine blinked to make sure she was clearly seeing the lady gently lift what looked like a pig on a leash onto the asphalt parking lot. The man went around to the back of the van, opened the door, and a small kangaroo on a harness hopped out of the vehicle.

Christine stopped in her tracks. “Am I seeing what I think I’m seeing?” She looked at Jackson then back to the van. She closed her eyes and then re-opened them to look once more to convince her brain the scene was real.

“Pastor, this here is Harley and his friend, Iola.” Christine shook their hands getting a whiff of stale cigar smoke mixed with bacon grease.

“And who are these delightful creatures?” She wanted to pinch herself to be sure this was not a dream. What an odd assortment of pets. All in a camper?

“Oh, this here is Katy, our kangaroo, well, I guess she’s what ya’ call a wallaby, and Abraham, our pot-bellied pig.”

Christine stooped to pat the pig’s head and then scratched around his ears. The gentle swine as big as a medium sized dog grunted with pleasure. Assured by the sounds and smell of the pig this was not a dream, she couldn’t help but smile at the outrageous family.

“I’m sorry you’re having such a tough time. I hated to hear about your RV fire. I told Jackson about an agency that can help you.”

“Thank you, thank you so much, Pastor.” When Christine stood up, Harley pumped her hand again. “Iola is so upset. She’s practically hysterical. She’s so worried about how we’re gonna get back home. We can’t even rent a car without a proper driver’s license. Everything burned up in the fire.” Tears puddled in his gray eyes.

Suddenly the pig began grunting and straining at the leash, dancing around as if on a bed of hot coals.

“Oooooh, Harley, my nitro.” Iola clutched her chest and then fell to the ground like a limp rag doll.

“Darlin’, Darlin’!” Harley moved as quickly as a teen-ager to cradle his unconscious girlfriend in his arms. He began digging in his shirt pocket to find the medicine. “Iola, honey!” The pig moved into the scene grunting and prodding the supine woman.

Christine ran to the church door and yelled at Ella, “Ella, Ella, call 9-1-1. A woman collapsed in the parking lot.” She raced back to the scene where Jackson had already started CPR on the lifeless woman. Christine pulled off her suit coat and placed it under Iola’s head then shot a quick prayer to heaven.

Ella rushed out of the office with the handheld phone to her ear. She yelled to the group, “They’re on the way now!”

Harley returned the vial of nitro glycerin tablets, always kept close to his heart, to his shirt pocket. Unbelievably, the kangaroo stood next to his owner and did not try to escape.




 Now available at MuseItUp Publishing-  http://tinyurl.com/anax9x7

Amazon.com, bn.com, and major online booksellers.



After writing feature articles in magazines, newspapers, and online magazines for over fifteen years, J.Q. Rose entered the world of fiction writing with her first published novella, Sunshine Boulevard, released by MuseItUp Publishing in 2011.  Blogging, photography, Pegs and Jokers board games, and travel are the things that keep her out of trouble. Spending winters in Florida with her husband allows Janet the opportunity to enjoy the life of a snowbird. Summer finds her camping and hunting toads, frogs, and salamanders with her four grandsons and granddaughter.

 Connect with J.Q. Rose online at

J.Q. Rose blog http://www.jqrose.com/

Author website http://jqrose.webs.com/

J. Q.  Rose Amazon Author Page http://tinyurl.com/aeuv4m4
We love comments. Please leave yours.




Saturday, February 23, 2013


 Welcome to my blog today, Danica. It's wonderful having you here.

Nice to be here. Thank you for inviting me.

Let me ask you a few questions, okay?


Have you always been interested in Greek mythology?

 I love everything that is out of the norm and Greek mythology certainly is a catalyst for launching into the wonderful world of my imagination. I’m a trained archeologist so I have a love for the things in life that are unexpected and often unexplainable!

With the popularity of vampire and animal shape-shifter romances, what made you decide to go with a nymph shape-shifter?

In doing my research (which I spend more hours doing than writing), I was researching nymphs and found throughout history that they are talked about as shape-shifters. I loved the premise of the woman being the shape-shifter. In addition to their shifting, they are also fated with a curse that forbids them to love. In my mind, nothing makes a stronger, more powerful romance, than a story based on forbidden love (Hello, Romeo and Juliet).

If you weren’t writing, what would you be doing?

If I wasn’t writing I would probably be attempting to sew more curtains—strange, I know. I’m a workaholic who lives in rural (I mean train tracks and a post office) Montana and we are in the midst of winter. Aside from skiing, sledding and general outdoor-centered frivolities there’s not much to do! J I’m better off writing; it keeps my mind fresh, my body warm, and I would lose my mind without the constant onslaught of stories.

What do you want readers to know and/or get from your books?

There are two things that will always be the center of my works 1.) Women can (and often do) save themselves. I love independent, strong-willed women.
And 2.) Hate has no place in our lives. It is a useless emotion that only hurts the person who is focusing on the feeling. Once you let go of hate, wonderful things can happen.

What other projects do you have in the works?

I am contracted with Crimson Romance for the next two books in The Nymph Series. I’m going to be done with Montana Mustangs (Love the book!) soon and it should be coming out Spring/early Summer 2013. And I’m looking forward to starting the third book (I have it planned out, but I have a history of the book changing as it is being written). I also have another book that is in need of editing—it is the start of the next paranormal romance series about Irish Travellers.


Danica Winters is a bestselling author who is known for writing award-winning books that grip readers with their ability to drive emotion through suspense and often a touch of magic. When she’s not working, she can be found in the wilds of Montana testing her patience while she tries to understand the allure of various crafts (quilting, pottery and painting are not her thing). She always believes the cup is neither half full nor half empty, but it better be filled with wine.

Available Books and Links:
Released December 31, 2012:
The Nymph’s Labyrinth 

Publication Date: December 31, 2012 Publisher: Crimson Romance Purchase Link: Amazon | Barnes and Noble
Pages: 300
Tag Line: Forbidden passions threaten to expose deadly secrets...
Blurb: A world shrouded in mystery and intrigue, the Sisterhood of Epione must not be exposed.
A Shape-shifting nymph, Ariadne, is tasked with keeping the truth of her group’s existence and their ancient mysteries far out of reach of an American archeologist and his troublemaking son. When forgotten and forbidden passions are awakened, Ariadne is forced to make a choice—fall in line and continue to be overrun and pushed down by the sisterhood, or follow her heart and put everyone’s lives in danger.
Can she have the man she loves or will the pressure and secrets of the past keep her from her heart’s desire? 

More from Danica.

An Angel’s Justice (Short story):
Publication Date: December 2012
Publisher: Books To Go Now
Pages: 20

Blurb: Even though Sarah Dawes is only dressed like an angel, acting like a saint isn't easy. Especially not at her sex toy company's Halloween party, where hedonistic desire is the name of the game and the Devil is her partner. Playing with dangerous pleasures, she follows him to Hell, where he shows her he is more than the monster society has deemed him, and he offers her a chance to become his queen. Should she stay at his side, where her days will be filled with pain, but her nights with pleasure? Or, should she return to earth and the dream of a man who may or may not even know her last name?

Other Books by Danica Winters: Love Under the Christmas Tree A Christmas Miracle The Vampire’s Hope Curse of the Wolf 

Coming Soon from Danica Winters (2013):
Montana Mustangs (Crimson Romance) 

Social Media Links: Website: www.DanicaWinters.net Facebook: www.Facebook.com/DanicaWinters Blog: www.DanicaWinters.net/blog Paranormal Romance Fans for Life Blog: http://paranormalromancefanforlife.blogspot.com/ Twitter: www.Twitter.com/DanicaWinters Pinterest: www.Pinterest.com/MsDanicaWinters Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5764273.Danica_Winters LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/danica-winters/45/528/53a Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Danica-Winters/e/B006GDN8GI/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1 Barnes and Noble Page: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/danica-winters?keyword=danica+winters&store=allproducts 

Thank you for having me on your blog!

Always a pleasure, Danica.

We love comments.  Leave yours below.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Cheryl Carpinello--Believable Characters

Welcome, Cheryl, to Flowers and Thorns.

So nice to have you here today.
What a great post for Y/A authors.
Please take it away!
Creating Believable Characters for Your Middle Grade/YA Readers
by Cheryl Carpinello
As writers, we struggle each time we write to come up with characters that our readers will connect with. Characters that will keep our readers coming back for more. We can have the most exciting plot loaded with lots of action in the most exotic place, but if our readers do not form a connection with the characters, then they won’t finish the book. The exercises outlined here may help you make your characters believable.
First, determine the age group that will be reading the story. The most common breakdowns for middle grade and young adult readers are upper elementary or Middle Grade (9-13), Tweens (12-15), and Young Adult (15 +). Every time I do a writing workshop with elementary students, I ask them to decide who they want to read their story. Inevitably they say, “Everyone.” I use this vivid example to help them understand why they can’t write for everyone. If they want high school students to read their story, then they need to put in kissing. The groans are sufficient to get my point across. Writers cannot write for all ages if they want to create believable characters that readers can relate to. Each age group has its own distinct qualities which must be embedded in the characters.
Second, list qualities associated with the chosen group of readers. Consider their maturity as far as what they are able to do on their own and how developed their thinking skills are. Make use of an educator tool called Bloom’s Taxonomy. It gives a breakout of what children are capable of doing at different stages of their development.
Here is a brief breakdown of the 6 levels that make up Bloom’s Taxonomy. The first three levels must be attained before moving on to the higher levels. Level One is Knowledge. This is the most basic and concrete level of thinking. Young children need to actually see or touch an object. They have no concept of the abstract. Level Two is Comprehension. At this stage, children are able to compare different ideas/objects. Level Three is Application. This stage of thinking involves simple problem solving and making plans. Level Four is Analysis and the beginning of the higher thinking skills in a person’s development. Children begin simple analysis on their own around 5th/6th grade. They are able to identify motives and start to draw conclusions. Level Five is Synthesis. This involves rearranging one’s thinking to come up with a new or alternative solution. Level Six is Evaluation. At this highest level of thinking, one is able to form opinions based on a set criteria. These last two steps take considerable development, and some high school seniors struggle with this.
Third, take into account the immediate world(s) of the readers as these can vary greatly based on economic, social, and even political situations. See how the different age groups handle relationships with the same sex and the opposite sex. Don’t forget think about their dependency on parents and their sophistication of language usage.
       Award-Winning Author
"Guinevere: On the Eve of Legend" 2011 Global E-book Finalist

"The King's Ransom (Young Knights of the Round Table)" 2012 CLC Silver Award for YA Fiction; 2012 USA Best Book Awards Finalist for E-Book Children's Fiction
 Colorado author Cheryl Carpinello taught high school English for many years and has retired twice. She enjoys working with the kids so much that she tends to forget all the extra hours her job requires to plan and grade papers. Her book Guinevere: On the Eve of Legend was a Finalist in the 2011 Global eBook Awards for Pre-Teen Fiction. The King’s Ransom (Young Knights of the Round Table) was the 2012 Silver Award Recipient for YA Fiction from Children’s Literary Classics and also earned the CLC’s Seal of Approval for Recommended Reading. The King’s Ransom was also named a Finalist in E-Book Children’s Fiction from USA 2012 Best Book Awards.
World of Ink 2013 Tour: Some Stories become Legend, and Some Legends become Stories. http://storiesforchildren.tripod.com/worldofinknetwork/cheryl-carpinello-jan-13.html
MuseItUp Publishing Author Page: https://museituppublishing.com/bookstore2/index.php
 Cheryl Carpinello
I'm impressed Cheryl, by your list of credits and your awards.
I'm also impressed by your books and your post.
We'd love to hear your comments. In fact, we love comments.




Sunday, February 17, 2013

Why does SHARON KLEVE write?

Why does Saron Kleve write?
Howdy Sharon, it's wonderful to have you back on my blog.
You have a new story out "Valentine Special Delivery" and we want to hear all about it, but first tell us why do you write?


Why do I write? Well, because the little voices in my head tell me toseriously, I’ve always talked to myselfnow I put the voices on paper.

I was a late bloomer and didn’t start my love of reading until I was in my twenties and then I couldn’t get enough of the wonderfully smutty Harlequin books.


I’ve worked in the government sector for fifteen years and always dreamed of having a job that I could work from home. This crazy idea came to me one night, after reading a particularly sizzling romance; why not try my hand at it? So, out of the blue I told my husband I was going to write a romance novel. He said, “Okay.”

I figured I’d read enough of them, I could write oneno problem. Eight thousand words later; I realized it was harder than I thought. I needed help and support of other authors. The support came in the form of Romance Writers of America and all the people involved in the local Peninsula chapter.

Several of the members of my local chapter read my book and made numerous suggestions, one of them came from an independent publisherBooks to Go Now. She told me to try my hand at a short story. I like writing shorts stories. Books To Go Now http://bookstogonow.com/ has published five of my books and I'm in two anthologies. With every story I write I learn something new and become a better writer.

I’ve been a jack-of-all-trades and master-of-none, my whole life. I’ve worked in restaurants, weight loss centers, worked in a fish cannery and even worked in a top salon in Seattle, but none of that was as satisfying as seeing my own words in print. That why I write….
I certainly agree with you. We grow as writers with every new story we put out. Give us a little tease.

Valentine Special Delivery
Vickie's husband took her dog, emptied their bank account and ran off with his secretary. The only thing he left her with is his car payment and a bad taste in her mouth.
 Vickie has a new life that revolves around her derelict car, a struggling new business and a sexy FedEx delivery guy.
After a well-placed kiss, Jake gets a taste of Vickie—and now he can't get enough. After delivering packages all day, he's more than willing to let her unwrap his package.
Will a puppy named, Skittle's bring a Valentine's Day special delivery to both of them?
That was great. lol. I loved it. Please show us the cover.
Lovely cover. A hunk and a dog. The colors are well chosen. The picture captures the essence of the story.
Come on, you can tell us a  little more about it, pretty please.

"You think you're pretty clever don't you? Just because I look and feel better than I have in months doesn’t mean I'll start dating again. So, don't get your hopes up."
She got her perfected stubborn look on her face and said, "There's a new restaurant that just opened up down the road. They serve a dozen different soups and sandwiches every day. Let's go there, okay?"
"Kimmy, I know that look. Let's have a nice lunch without you trying to set me up with the waiter."
"The waiter? No. I was thinking the manager."
"Funny, Kimmy."

Sharon Kleve was born and raised in Washington and currently lives on the Olympic Peninsula with her husband.
She loves romance. She loves reading romance, living romance, and especially loves writing about romance. She gets no greater feeling than watching her characters come alive in each other's arms. Most of all, she loves giving her characters the happily ever after they deservewith a few bumps and bruises along the way.
One of her favorite things to do is picking up a new book and sinking into the story, immersing herself in the emotions between the characters. She hopes to inspire her readers the same way her favorite authors have inspired her.
When not writing, she can usually be found either curled up in her recliner with her cat and a good book, or in the kitchen baking sourdough bread or bagels.
Contact me here:
Links to Purchase:
Author of "The Corny Myers Series"
Flamingo Blues, Published December 2011
Be Mine, Published February 2012
Klutzy Love, Published August 2012
Love Under The Christmas Tree, (Christmas Anthology), Published November 2012
Josey's Christmas Cookie, Published November 2012
Valentine Special Delivery, Published January 2013
Valentine's Say I Love You, (Valentine Anthology), Published February 2013
Sharon, you are really pounding out the stories. Congratulations.
Leave a comment for Sharon, folks. She's on a roll.
And we do love to hear from you.


Thursday, February 14, 2013

Let's welcome TOI THOMAS TODAY with an interesting thought.

Toi has a different view of love. She wants to share it with us.

Welcome, Toi. I found your article very interesting.
Thanks so much for being here with us today.

Let's get you settled with a cup of coffee, lean back and tell us how you see love.

 “Writing About Love”
Everyone has a different idea of what Love is, especially romantic love. Relationships are as complex as the individuals involved in them. As a writer I find portraying love and romance to be one of my greatest challenges. This is a subject matter that practically anyone can relate to, but again, everyone expresses, perceives, and receives love differently.
In my self-published spiritual fantasy entitled Eternal Curse: Giovanni’s Angel, romance plays a secondary role to the major conflict of the book, but it’s still very important for the overall story and the development of the characters. In this story, my character Giovanni is so detached from people and social norms that the idea of love and romance seem foreign to him. In essence, it is the willing burden of my character Mira, to teach Giovanni about love, and boy does she.
I’d like to tell all my readers and viewers of this article that love triumphs in the end, but it’s not always that simple. Most people expect for there to be a happy ending when love prevails, but not in my series. In my soon to be released sequel, Eternal Curse: Battleground, I show example upon example of how love can truly triumph over all, but it doesn’t necessarily come with happy endings.
I guess you could say that in my Eternal Curse Series I write about tragic love. This this the kind of stuff the Greeks and Romans adored, but let’s face it, in today’s world, everyone’s hoping for a happy ending. I’m not morbid and can actually be quite romantic myself, despite being a tomboy most my life, so when I do write a tragic love story, I always make a point to end with a glimmer of hope or silver lining.
Fantasy is my genre, it’s what I know best, but I’m ambitious and enamored by those who write romance so passionately and realistically. My current work in progress, a story outside of my Eternal Curse Series entitled It’s Like the Full Moon, is my first attempt at writing a full-length contemporary fiction story with an emphasis on romance. So many times I’ve watched and read stories that weren’t necessarily romances, but had romance in them and have thought that things would have or should have gone differently.
In It’s Like a Full Moon, I explore the complexities of romance from multiple generations. While my main characters are all relatively young and attractive, it’s the supportive characters and their wisdom that really bring home the meaning and message of love. I read quite a bit, but I don’t read much romance, but being the movie buff that I am, I’ve seen lots of romances. For my first attempt at a romantic novel I received inspiration from such films as, Moonstruck, A Room with a View, and Only You.
I admire the work of Jane Austen, Nora Roberts, and Nicholas Sparks, but I don’t dare strive for their acclaim. I’m a fantasy writer, I know that, but for just a little while I’m venturing into the world of romance. As a writer, I’m very young and have so much room to grow. I look forward to all the challenges ahead and all the love stories that have yet to be told.
I would like to invite the readers of this article to read my ebook Eternal Curse: Giovanni’s Angel for FREE from now through Sunday February 17, 2013 using this promotional code (GR98M) at Smashwords.com. Also while you’re there, check out my free companion guide entitled: Forty days and nights of Eternal Curse.


My name is Toi Thomas and I’m a big kid. I love movies, comic books, reading, music, cooking, and painting though I’m no good at it. To learn more about me and my writing, visit me at the following:

The Eternal Curse Series Blog-social blog


The ToiBox-author blog


Facebook-series page


Twitter-author profile

Please leave a comment for Toi. We love them.