Authors/Writers, Great Reads, Streetlights Down Memory Lane

Hugo’s and the Street Guy

 

One morning a couple of years ago, I was at Hugo’s Restaurant in West Hollywood having breakfast. I sat outside at a small table for two. A couple seated at the small bistro table next to me had recently left and the waitress hadn’t yet picked up their plates. To my IMG_2531astonishment, a very handsome young man, dressed in loose clothing, with wavy longish hair and a short beard walked by at a nice clip. He briefly stopped at their table and grabbed a napkin. Then without missing a beat, lifted a spoon, scrapped the last bit of food onto the napkin, then shoveled it into his mouth as he continued walking. He acted without the least hesitation. Without thought. As if he’d done this many times before. I sat stunned. Horrified at what had transpired, I watched him walk the length of the restaurant, then turn right before he disappeared.

When the homeless young man strode off, my heart cried out to stop him, to offer him a meal. But what 60-year-old woman runs after a thirty-year-old homeless guy? So, I did the normal, sane thing, simply sat there and watched him leave. I glanced around at those seated near me and not one of them seemed to have noticed him.

I’ve thought about that young man many times since then, replaying the scene over and over in my head. In my daydream, I call out to him. He stops and turns. I offer to buy him breakfast, and although surprised, he accepts. We sit at the bistro table on a beautiful California morning and I discover more about him over a hearty breakfast.

But, that’s not how it happened.

I thought about those who loved this young man, who worried about him. And mostly, I thought about his mother. As I pondered this man’s condition I played several scenarios in my head. Maybe he was a spy, undercover, and fleeing his most recent captors. Nearly starved. Why else would he eat off the plate of a stranger?

I knew someday I’d use him in a story and give him a reason to do what he did. Thus my undercover journalist hero was born. Then I gave my heroine the heart I’d wished I’d had that day. The heart that was in me, but afraid to act. I gave her the courage to actually go after the homeless man and the will to at least try and change his life.

The places she frequented would give most men pause. But, not her.

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Authors/Writers

Welcome Author Constance Bretes!

Please welcome Connie Bretes, author of Blue As Sapphires – Rated R

National Statistics. On average, nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States. … 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have been victims of [some form of] physical violence by an intimate partner within their lifetime.

Statistics – National Coalition Against Domestic Violence

Blue As Sapphires was born from my love of sapphire digging, and gold panning in the beautiful Gem Mountains and Rock Creek River that runs through Philipsburg, Montana. Another issue that I’m passionate about is doing away with domestic abuse. I took the two subjects and combined them into a story that made Marissa determined to survive and overcome her ex-husband’s physical and emotional abuse, and the sheriff, Riley McCade, who is determined to love and protect her.

Blue As Sapphires Book Blurb:

51jrylvwwslEscaping from her abusive ex-husband, Marissa Simpson came back to her hometown to start over. She had no intention of getting involved with another man, or with the community she left behind all those years ago. That is, until Riley McCade showed up.

Riley was the Sheriff of Granite County and he commanded a work force of fifteen deputies. He loved his community and went out of his way to protect and serve. When he met up with Marissa, he was bound and determined to get to know her even though she said she wasn’t interested.

The more he got to know her, the more he learned of her past. Could he protect her and earn her love?

 

Buy Links: 

· https://www.amazon.com/Blue-as-Sapphires-Constance-Bretes-ebook/dp/B06WRTGRCB/
· http://beachwalkpress.com/blue-as-sapphires/
· http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/blue-as-sapphires-constance-bretes/1125799265?ean=2940157442330

A Word About The Author

Connie began her career as a secretary in 1977 for the State of Michigan as a civil servant. She retired from the Michigan Department of Transportation after 38 years as the department’s forms analyst. She has an MBA in Business Administration – Leadership Studies, and a BA in Business Management.

She has six books published, with five more on the way.

Connie spends most of her time behind her computer, writing, editing and researching for her next story. When she’s not there, she can be found checking out ghost towns, sapphire mining, and gold panning with her best friend and husband, Jim. Her other hobbies consists of basket weaving, and jewelry making.

She is a member of RWA’s From The Heart Romance Writers, and Kiss of Death Romance Writers, and lives in Basin, Montana.

Snippet:

Marissa laid back and wrapped her arms around Riley’s neck. She brought her lips to within an inch of his. She stared into his eyes and noticed how tender they looked. She moved in a little more, and her lips met his. He moved his mouth over hers, devouring it. While the fireworks were going off in the sky, Marissa felt her own fireworks. His kiss sent a shock wave through her entire body. Riley guided Marissa so she was on her back and he was partially on her. His Stetson concealed their faces. They continued to kiss and touch, looking lovingly at each other, and then kiss again.

The fireworks lasted for fifteen minutes, and suddenly a flashlight shone on them and voices interrupted them. Three firefighters stood in front of them singing a line from Burning Love.

Riley and Marissa quickly broke apart.

“What the hell?” Riley said. A hint of irritation laced his voice. He abruptly stood up, grabbed Marissa’s hand, and pulled her up.

“We were told that there was sparks on the ground, and we were asked to put it out,” Mitch said, laughing.

“Just who the hell told you that?” Riley asked.

“Heidi,” John, second firefighter, said with an amused smile on his face.

Riley and Marissa shot Heidi a glance.

“We can see that the sparks have been put out so we’ll head back to the truck.” Mitch smiled even wider.

Dave and Cindy stood off to the side chuckling. Someone from the crowd that had gathered around them asked, “Hey, Sheriff, got a new girlfriend?” Ripples of laughter rang through the crowd.

Marissa continued to glare at Heidi. She couldn’t believe her friend would do something like that. As the party broke up, Marissa said to Heidi, “We will talk later.”

Stop by here, http://www.constancebretes.com/news–things.html for a chance to win a free copy of Blue As Sapphires.

You Can Find Connie Bretes on:
Website: http://www.constancebretes.com
Blog: http://www.constancebretes.com/connies-blog
Twitter: ConnieBretes https://twitter.com/ConnieBretes
Facebook: Connie Bretes
https://www.facebook.com/Connie-Bretes-385409614906182/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7737457.Constance_Bretes

Authors/Writers

4 Stars for Hawke’s Nest!

darcy flynn romances, sweet romances, joy dent,InD’Tale Magazine just came out with their Valentine’s Issue. My sweet contemporary romance, Hawke’s Nest – Like No Other Book 1received a terrific review! Check it out!

Blurb:

Running away is nothing new for Annie Dell, aka high-fashion model Anna Delany. With the paparazzi hot on her trail, an out of town wedding couldn’t have come at a more opportune time. What better place to hide out than the quaint Florida beach town Liddy’s told her so much about. But a delayed flight, mix up with the car rental, then a speeding ticket from the local Sheriff of Nottingham, her getaway is looking anything but relaxing.

Franklin County Sheriff, Levi Hawke, is tired of the spoiled, out-of-control students on fall break, who think they can speed through his county without consequence. After giving a ticket to a beautiful young woman he assumes is just another daddy’s girl looking for some fun in the sun, he discovers she’s his weekend date at his best friend’s wedding.

Through gritted teeth, masked by a half-hearted truce, they survive the weekend, only to find themselves stranded alone in the middle of a hurricane. You can discover a lot about a person while spending thirty-six hours without the comforts of electricity and modern conveniences. When circumstances further extend her stay in town, Levi pries deeper to find out what Annie’s running from. He knows when someone is haunted by their past. As the saying goes … it takes one to know one.

Authors/Writers, contest, Tea Time Talks

Welcome Authors, Patricia Kiyono and Stephanie Michels!

I’m so happy to have Patricia and Stephanie as my guests today! Co-authors of The Friendship Star Quilt, the second book in their series, A Stitching Post Romance. I absolutely love the cover!

darcy flynn, joy dent, patricia kiyono, stephanie michels, the friendship star quilt

 

                                                                   FAMILY

It might have been Cinderella’s fault that “stepmother” became paired with the word “wicked” and stepparents in general got a bad rap. Learning to live with a new spouse is a major adjustment, but getting a new parent or child often presents a long, rocky road to family harmony. Still, many couples and their children make it work, and in some cases they find themselves richer for the experience.

Anne Brown longs for a family of her own, but believes she’ll never have one. She’s running from her abusive ex-husband and is afraid of putting Brad and his daughter Angie in danger. She doesn’t want to tie herself to the community she’s grown to love, and where she’s started to feel valued. What she doesn’t realize is that this gentle man offers her greater protection and security than she could ever provide for herself. Family, especially one with close ties like Brad’s, give one strength in rough times.

The Stitching Post Quilt Shop is the setting for the weekly gathering of a group of women who come to sew, but leave with lasting friendships. The first book in the series, The Calico Heart, was nominated for a RONE award for Best Contemporary Book of 2013. Patricia Kiyono and Stephanie Michels are pleased to announce the release of the second book in the series, The Friendship Star Quilt.

 

Blurb:

Anne Brown loves her job at The Stitching Post Quilt Shop in Grandville, Michigan, but she keeps a suitcase packed so she can leave at a moment’s notice. Living under the radar, she longs for a normal life, but settles for listening to family stories told by the friendly ladies of the quilting club who meet at the shop on Tuesday evenings. When she meets Brad, the handsome band director of an area high school and his adorable daughter, Anne begins to hope for a happily ever after of her own. But someone has far different plans.

Brad Carmichael is juggling the demands of his job as band director at Rivertown High School with trying to be a better father to his daughter. When Brad is late picking Jennie up from a birthday party, the pretty young clerk from the local quilt shop comes to his rescue. Kind-hearted and talented, Anne becomes a vital part of Brad and Jennie’s lives. But her past threatens to destroy their relationship.

 

About the Authors

Patricia Kiyono retired from public school teaching, and is now an adjunct faculty Patricia Kiyono.jpg - Version 2member at Grand Valley State University, where she instructs future teachers. Born in Japan, she lives in southwest Michigan with her husband, not far from their five children and nine grandchildren. In addition to writing, she enjoys sewing, scrapbooking, playing in local bands and orchestras, and taking care of grandchildren.

 

 

darcy flynn, joy dent, stephanie michelsStephanie Michels considers herself a “Jill of All Trades.” During her corporate career, she worked as a computer trainer, advertising copywriter, personnel agent, radio DJ, magazine columnist, and a financial planner among other things. She recently left those behind in order to focus on writing full time.

Raised in Michigan, she lived in South Carolina, Missouri, and Germany, before returning to the Mitten State to raise her family. When she isn’t writing, you can usually find her reading or spending time with family, friends, and Beta Sigma Phi sisters.

The Friendship Star Quilt is her second novel with writing partner, Patricia Kiyono.

 

BUY LINKS:

The Friendship Star Quilt is available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords, as well as other ebook outlets.

 

GIVEAWAY!

Stephanie Michels is giving away a $5 Amazon gift card at each stop of our blog tour to a random commenter. To win, please leave a comment about how important family ties are to you! And to increase your chances, visit author Diane Burton’s blog tomorrow!