Tuesday, May 31, 2011

If you're in Kansas ...

I'll be chatting with Kelly Long on radio station KREJ at 8:30 am your time this morning (That's 6:30 for me, so don't expect much. Lol) As for the rest of the day, I'll be visiting Anne Payne over at Stuff & Nonsense, and I hope you'll stop by.

Hope you all had a warm and wonderful Memorial Day weekend. Ours was GREAT (except for the wind!). Lots of family stuff and beach walks and cleaning-up-the-yard time. Topped it off with a Monday evening bbq, and now it's back to work. So good to be free in this land of ours, isn't it?

What went on in your time zone?

Friday, May 27, 2011

I'm back!

I've been trying to sign into Blogger all. week. long. Tried updating my browser, clearing cache, wiping away cookies, yada, yada, yada. Still won't work the regular way, but then a poster on the Blogger Blog gave this funky address to try, and suddenly, I'm in! Not sure if it'll work again, so I'll talk fast, ha.

Regarding American Idol, Scotty grew on me. I love Lauren too. Too bad they couldn't tie! There's a bunch of speculation out there that the two southern teens are dating. He denies it; she's being coy. Whatever. I just think they became very close during the season and Lauren got caught up in the moment when she gave him all those smackaroos on stage. Gotta say, though, that hearing Scotty whisper in Lauren's ear, "Love you, babe," was pretty telling. But who knows? They're young and pretty, so let's not rush them ...

College boy moved home yesterday, but he's already leaving town again tomorrow to visit new friends in their hometown. He'll be back in a week, though, because chop-chop, his new summer job at a local camp is starting then. All these college expenses are making mom and dad cash poor these days ~ and we've got another high schooler shopping for colleges. Egads! Please buy my books, won't you? Lol ... kidding. Not. Okay, I am.

Hope you all have an amazing weekend. It's a 3-dayer and it's warm and sunny on the central coast. Many prayers have been said for midwest friends who are facing serious weather challenges. Let's all pray that the storms don't come back, okay?

Have a beachy weekend, friends ~ wherever you are!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Goofy days & another giveaway

Exhausted after a couple of days at Disneyland. Whose idea was it to go to the happiest place on earth on a weekend in May? Haha ... actually, pre-teen girl's school choir entered a competition called Music in the Parks, so that's why we went. The kids took 1st place in their division, so ~ woot-woot ~ all that jostling and waiting in lines felt extra worth it after that :)

Happy Monday, beach-loving friends. Author Trish Perry asked me some questions and is giving away a copy of Fade2Blue. Please go on over there to enter.

Other than that, I'm going back to work on my next book ... and trying desperately to get the song "It's a Small World" out of my head. Lol ... now you have it in your head too!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Idol: What's your prediction?

I used to write about American Idol obsessively, and I'm not sure why I don't any more. One reader wrote to me recently and mentioned this. Probably because I'm so busy tweeting about it or giving status updates on Facebook while watching. (It's been a family tradition since Carrie Underwood won. We saw her in concert a year later!)

Anyway, this year I predicted that James and Haley would be in the finale ~ oh, was I wrong! By now American knows that Lauren and Scotty (or "Sonny" as my friend, ShaRon calls him :) are in the top 2. Lauren, I could have predicted. Her voice rocks it. But Scotty, not so much. He didn't impress me much at all most weeks, and when the judges would fawn over him, I'd wonder if we'd been watching the same show. Not to mention all those funny Alfred E. Neuman faces he makes when singing ...

But here's the thing: he's growing on me. Maybe I'm starting to see what so many teen girls and, ahem, middle aged moms on Facebook (!), are seeing. He's got charm and a funny little spark in his eye, and he's finally showed us some range. (Side note: preteen girl does a wicked imitation of him singing, "Baby lock them doors and turn the lights down low ...") Gotta hand it to him, really.

Now we've got two talented teenagers from humble backgrounds in the south competing for the top prize. It's anybody's guess who'll make it. As Randy has said before, they're both "in it to win it!!!"

So, who do you think will?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Too much sitting makes this writer-girl a cranky-girl, so I'm heading off to do some pilates in a few minutes. I can pretty much guarantee I won't be doing that pose over in the photo. First, my balance is sketchy, and second, that just looks weird. But I will be stretching and cracking things, hoping to shake loose some creativity. If you have an office job, I'm sure you can relate!

Before I go, there are a couple of giveaways of Fade to Blue happening on the web. Increase your odds and enter them both :) You can find interviews and giveaways at Lindsay Franklin's Blog and over at Sherry Kyle's place.

Okay, here I go. Pray I don't try a level three pose and come crashing down ... Lol

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


Congrats to out to Melinda, who won Through the Fire, and to Angela, who won Facelift. Thanks for playing, All! I now have more dinner ideas :)

Monday, May 16, 2011

Saturday whirlwind

Update 7:15am: Finding Hope through Fiction is giving away a copy of Fade to Blue. Read my interview w/funky photos, then leave a comment and you may win. Back to our regularly scheduled post ... :)

Made some new friends at Saturday's book signing in Brea. This is Morgan who picked up a copy of each of our titles and chatted with Cathy and me. Her mom was with her and they were both very sweet. That's author Cathy Marie Hake on the left, Morgan, then me.

Whirlwind weekend as it's about a two hour drive to Brea, but my mother came along and we visited college boy, so all-in-all, a good time. My husband's cousin, Lori, stopped in too. We'd only met once before but she brought with her my four other titles and asked me to sign them all. How cool was that? So honored! Also want to give a shout out to writer and blogger Rebecca Luella Miller who took time out of her Saturday morning to pop in.

I'm working on another book and hope to be able to announce the deets to you soon! In the meantime, I'm practicing BIC (Butt-in-chair) all week, but I'll pop in here and there to answer comments ... so feel free to make them.

Oh, and I'll post the winners of the freebies on Tuesday morning.

Have a beachy day, my friends ~ wherever you are ...

Friday, May 13, 2011

Book savings at the book signings

Oh, how I love coupons! Thanks to ACFW Conference Director, Robin Miller, for pointing out this link for coupons to be used during the LifeWay Spring Fiction Day. Click to find a list of authors appearing nationwide tomorrow at various LifeWay stores. I'll be in Brea, CA from 11 to 1.

My son attends college nearby, so after that, I think I'll take my kiddo to lunch :-)

Have a beachy weekend, friends ~ wherever you are ...

Thursday, May 12, 2011


Last night, I began tearing apart my office, looking for a book to help my youngest with a report. All I have to show for it now are books stacked around my chair ~ but not the one I was looking for!

What I did find, however, were some books by authors I love. They're gently used. Actually, they appear quite new, even though I read them. So I'd like to pass them along to some of my readers.

The first two I'll give away are Facelift by the amazing and quirky Leanna Ellis and Through the Fire by Shawn Grady, a firefighting friend who also writes terrific stories. Click on the titles to read more about them.

To enter, leave me a comment with the title you'd like to win and the answer to this question: What did you have for dinner last night? (This will serve a two-fold purpose as I'm often out of meal ideas ... ;)

PCH ... take me away ...

Just because.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The tours have begun!

Notice the calm and collected look on my face? That's pilates, yoga, and a couple of jogs on the beach, baby! Booksignings are great ways to meet fellow readers, but oh how I stress beforehand. Will anyone show? Will everyone show? Lol ... that's why I've taken up "extreme exercise" to de-stress beforehand.

See that man on the right? He's holding a copy of my first Otter Bay Novel, Sweet Waters. Never met him before but he came up to the table with his sweet little daughter and we had a fun discussion about our experiences on the central coast. After a while, he bought all three titles: Sweet Waters, A Shore Thing, and Fade to Blue, with plans to give each one to his wife. I believe he said the first would be Mother's Day, the next her birthday, and finally, Christmas. How fun is that? (Hope she's not reading this, though, or I've blown the surprise!)

The lady to his left is my friend, Helen, who stopped by after her company's corporate games down the street. Another successful signing at my neighborhood B&N store. Had a good time ... and then we had Chipotle for lunch :-)

I'll be signing again this coming Saturday, May 14, 11 to 1, at the LifeWay store in Brea, CA. If you're in Orange County, please stop by and say hello! You can find deets on the events page of my website.

As for my virtual tour, I'll be at Carlybird's Home through tomorrow. Carly's a reviewer with a fiction-packed blog. I hope you'll stop by to learn more about Fade2Blue, and to also meet Carly!

Have a beach day, my friends ~ wherever you are ...

Friday, May 06, 2011

Friday Giveaway; Saturday Signing

Busy Friday for me ... almost feels like Monday! That's a photo one of my daughters took of me walking along the sand one sunny afternoon in nearby Carpinteria. Ahhh... Anyway, tons to do but I wanted to pop in and let you know a couple of things. The wonderful author Lena Nelson Dooley interviewed me for her blog and she's giving away a copy of Fade to Blue. Please stop in at Lena's blog and enter, won't you?

If you're local, I'll be signing copies of Fade2Blue tomorrow, May 7, at the Ventura Barnes & Noble store, from 11 am to 1 pm. Would love to see some friendly faces :)

Off to write and edit and market and various other activities that are on my Friday plate. Have a beachy day (and weekend!) my friends ... wherever you are!

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Work it till you burn it ...

Teen girl and I joined a gym recently, but I've only been in twice. Like everything else that's worthwhile, it takes some planning and energy to actually get there. I keep saying I'm going to write early, then go workout in late morning. Only I get caught up with other things and never make it. Then I have to go with her in the evening when it's busy.

She thrives on the crowds that are at the gym at night. I get tense just looking for a parking space. She wants to move to The City when she's out of high school, I just want to sit on the beach. See our issues?

Today I'm going to make it. I'm typing this just to make sure. I lead a small group of teens in my home tonight, and the dog hair needs to be swept up around the house, I need to plan the actual study, and I have a chapter to write, but dadgumit, I'm going to make it to the gym this morning! (Maybe someone can check back and see if I actually did :).

What do you drag your feet about?
p.s. I posted this photo of SpongeBob because it's funny. See how easily distracted I am???

Monday, May 02, 2011

To the beach (I wish)

Keisha, the battery-operated doll that my daughter brought home from her child development class, has gone back to school and I couldn't be happier. Like a real baby, the doll cries when it wants to be fed, changed, burped ... or for no apparent reason at all. If my daughter (the student) didn't attend to the "baby's" needs pronto, a printout will tell the tale--and she'll be docked points. Did I mention the doll cries all through the night?

If this doesn't dissuade teens from having children before it's time, nothing will.

Needless to say, I felt a bit like a grandma this weekend (horrors!!!), which is why I'm relating to that sign above. Kind of feel like going to the beach. Want to join me? LOL