PictureLake Tahoe
I’ve been busy the last month.  I had my high school reunion, bought a new car, and have been volunteering more than usual.  As far as my reunion goes, it was much more fun than I thought it would be.  I served on the organizational committee and was worried since not many classmates were planning to attend.  While I wish more of my old friends could have made the trip, it was a great weekend of visiting.

When I retired, I wanted to incorporate some volunteer work into my now flexible schedule.  I chose our local senior center.  I’m basically a waitress and serve lunch, usually consisting of four courses, to the seniors in the dining room.  I also fill in as a recording secretary for their meetings.  It seems summer is a time when volunteers are not as available.  If you have any free time in your schedule, I encourage you to check into volunteer opportunities in your town.  I know for a fact our senior center needs more volunteers, so if you are local, please consider them.

On the writing front, I’m having fun with the third book in the Hometown Harbor Series.  I’ve been working on a detective novel for the past couple of months, but mulling around the plot for the third book.  The inspiration suddenly hit me and I was able to outline the book last week and now just have to write all those pesky scenes and words to make it all a reality.  If you’ve read the second book, Home Blooms, you’ve met Regi.  She’s the focus of my third book and I’d enjoy hearing your ideas about her character.  I’ve hammered out the storyline, but always like to hear from readers, especially those with a definite opinion about a character.

I posted this gorgeous shot of Lake Tahoe because I'm hoping to squeeze in a trip before summer is over.  Stay cool and enjoy the freedom of summer~I’m going to get back to my old friends in Friday Harbor.

Happy 4th of July!  The weather is heating up where I live, with the next two weeks close to 100 degrees.  A favorite summer activity of mine is going to a movie.  A dark cool movie theater offers a brief respite from the intense heat and a chance to see a good flick.

I’ve been looking at the upcoming releases for summer and there are a few that look promising.  Here’s my list of possibilities:

  • Blended~saw this one not long ago and it was cute and entertaining.  The two stars are enjoyable together.
  • The Fault in our Stars~for a day I want to be sad, which may not be anytime soon.
  • The Edge of Tomorrow~heard it described by a friend as Groundhog Day on steroids.
  • 22 Jump Street~the preview was hilarious, but it could be one all the funny parts were in the clip.
  • Jersey Boys~have heard great things and it’s from Clint Eastwood.
  • Earth to Echo~the preview reminds me of E.T.  Plus it looks like a nice family film with a good message.
  • Tammy~I’m not happy about my name being the title of a movie and depicting an unladylike loser, but I’ll probably have to see it.
  • When the Game Stands Tall~I love Jim Caviezel and it’s based on a true story.
  • The Hundred-Foot Journey~Helen Mirren, need I say more?

I’m also thrilled about a couple of the summer series on television.   Mondays are now one of my favorite TV nights, thanks to TNT.  Rizzoli and Isles and Major Crimes are two of my choice programs.  I also think I’m hooked on The Last Ship, a new drama, with a far-out, but compelling storyline. 

Enough about me…write back and tell me some of your top summer movie picks or if I’ve missed any must-see films. 

Today I spent a few hours at my local library and participated in a conversation about books and writing.  I was joined by Anne Pershing, who is a current columnist at the Reno Gazette-Journal and a former editor of the Lahontan Valley News and Fallon Star Press.  We had a great audience who were treated to Anne’s fabulous sense of humor.  I discussed my two books, FINDING HOME and HOME BLOOMS, and how I came up with the ideas.  We discussed the options available for publishing and I explained why I chose self-publishing through Amazon.

One important point I forgot to mention during the conversation was how vital positive reviews are for authors, especially independent authors.  Reviews on Amazon or Goodreads help authors promote their work elsewhere and expand their readership.  Many promotion services require or strongly suggest that authors have a certain number of reviews on Amazon before they will consider promoting their book.

So, if you enjoy my books, please take a few minutes and leave a review on Amazon.  I know it isn’t something we always think about, but it is a powerful and free way to help authors like me.  If you find it hard to come up with the words, just think about something you enjoyed about the book and leave a sentence or two.  Maybe you like the setting or the characters.  Was the book entertaining or an escape for you?  If so, tell others.

Many thanks to those who attended the event today~it was great to visit with you.  A special thanks to Anne Pershing for joining me.  And for all you readers out there~I'm grateful for the reviews you have submitted.  If you haven't yet posted a review, please consider it.

May has flown by and summer is peaking around the corner.  I enjoyed doing my blog tour and the opportunity to meet new readers online.  During the last week of the tour I received several great reviews; one even compared FINDING HOME to Debbie Macomber books. 

I also did a book signing at the Red Zinnia, which turned out to be busy and fun.  I had the chance to visit with many old friends and meet some new readers. 

Coming up on June 5th is another event at the Churchill County Library.  I’ll be joined by award-winning journalist, Anne Pershing.  She’ll be conducting a casual interview with me and discussing books and writing.  She’s always entertaining and I’m looking forward to her visit.

As a reminder, I have a Facebook page, so please LIKE it and share it with your friends.  I hope to see you at library next week.

I'll be at the Red Zinnia in Fallon this Wednesday, May 21, for a book signing event.  I'm joining two local authors, Judy Carlson and Dan Quinley, for a fun evening of books and music.  I hope you'll be able to stop by and visit for a few minutes.  It starts at 5:00 p.m. and we'll be there until 8:00 p.m.  Thanks to Susan for hosting us!

I have four more book tour stops in the coming week.  I've enjoyed the opportunity to connect with new readers and authors.  I'm looking forward to some more reviews and posts from dedicated book bloggers.  My largest stop this week is at Jersey Girl Book Reviews on Friday and the last stop is at Melina's Book Blog on Memorial Day.

If you've read either FINDING HOME or HOME BLOOMS and enjoyed the story, please take a minute and leave a review on Amazon.  Positive reviews help authors promote their books on other sites.

Have a nice Memorial Day and hope to see you at the Red Zinnia on Wednesday!

PictureBeautiful Golden Mom Celebrating her Puppies
In honor of my mom, Theresa, and mothers everywhere, the E-book version of Finding Home will be on sale for only 99 cents this weekend on Amazon.  If you know someone who hasn’t read it yet, let them know about this steal of a deal.  Or, give it to your mom for a special gift!  It's a great way to start the Hometown Harbor Series.

Don't miss out on the weekend deal (Friday, May 9th-Sunday, May 11th)~it's a Kindle Countdown Deal. 

Happy Mother's Day!

My blog tour kicks off on Monday, May 5th.  I’m excited to meet new readers.  Here’s the list of stops for the week.

May 5:            Chick Lit Plus

May 6:            Sweet Books

May 7:            A Blue Million Books

May 8:            Carol Clarke Blogs

May 9:            Fiction Dreams

My thanks to the bloggers who are hosting Finding Home and me this week.  If you have a few minutes in the coming week, check them out, I think you’ll enjoy them.  CLP Blog Tours has a chance for you to win a $20 Amazon gift card.  Here's the link:  CLP Blog Tours

My second book in the Hometown Harbor Series, Home Blooms, released today on Amazon.  It is available in both a paperback and E-Book format. I enjoy creating the characters in these books and love my new cover, featuring Linda and her dog, Lucy.

If you haven't yet read Finding Home, read it first and then pick up a copy of Home Blooms.  They are the perfect escape!

If you enjoy the books, please consider leaving a positive review on Amazon.  Reviews help me increase the exposure to my books. 

I'm working on a book signing event in May and will post more as soon as the details are firm.  Remember to subscribe to my mailing list by May 31 and I'll send you a yummy recipe for one of Sam's favorite pies from the first book.

I'd love to hear from you when you finish the book~let me know what you think.

I’m getting ready for a book blog tour in May.  For those of you who don’t know what a book blog tour is, I’ll do my best to explain what I’ll be doing.

I have thirteen bloggers who will be participating in my tour, starting on May 5th.  The bloggers are a mixture of people across the United States and even one based in the United Kingdom.  They blog about books and authors and will be featuring Finding Home during my tour.

The tour consists of a mixture of reviews, interviews, excerpts, guest blog posts, and questions and answers.  This is a new and interesting process and I’m looking forward to increasing awareness and exposure while on tour.

I’ll be posting on my blog each week in May to let you know the upcoming stops.  The best part—I don’t have to leave home.  For all you know, I responded to the interview questions while still in my pajamas!

I hope you’ll get a chance to participate by visiting at least one tour stop.  The tour wraps up on May 26th, so you’ll have plenty of time.  I’ll leave you with this link that outlines my tour stops and offers you a chance to win an Amazon gift card if you leave a comment.


PictureZoe's 6th Birthday
Today is Zoe's 6th birthday.  She was a bit camera shy, but finally consented to the photo.  She's the inspiration behind the dog in my book, Finding Home:  A Hometown Harbor Novel.  Coincidentally, she shares her name with the fictional dog. 

She was a Mother's Day gift from my son six years ago and is a wonderful friend.  We are convinced she is a furry human!  Our son accuses us of being more lenient with her than we were with him.  But, he buys her a Christmas present each year.

It's hard to resist her sweet face and good-natured disposition. 
She's now resting on her new bed we gave her for her birthday--it's memory foam and looks like a mini-sofa with a fluffy bolster.  Yeah, she's a little spoiled.

What about you--do you acknowledge your pet's birthday?