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November 13, 2018

Michelle Miles: NaNo



I’m participating in NaNoWriMo this year. I mean like really participating. Not just signing up and then ignoring my book for the next 30 days.

(For those who may not know, NaNoWriMo is National Novel Writing Month during November where you write 50,000 in 30 days AND survive the Thanksgiving holiday!)

Anyway…I decided to get off my duff and start working on book two in my Dragon Protectors series. I really hadn’t intended to start writing that book yet but when I put the first one up for preorder and it started getting a good response, I figured I better get on it. I even went so far as to go ahead and upload a preorder over at Draft2Digital and gave myself six months to complete it and get it ready for sale.

I can do this.

I sat down and read through the first few pages I’d already had and realized that the story wasn’t half bad. I was kind of impressed.

And then my friend and fellow princess, Elizabeth Essex, mentioned there was a NaNo support group over on FB and invited me to join.

So, I did.

I can totally do this.

I found the ladies over there were posting their daily check-ins with word count and rewards. And so I started writing my butt off.

I sat at the keyboard one Sunday night and hammered out 2100 words. And then I got the 5-day streak badge from NaNo.

Yes, yes. I can do this.

When I logged into NaNo, I also noticed I’d hit the 1,677, 5,000, 10,000 and 25,000 badges. At the time of this writing, I’m hovering at around 28,000 words. I really want to hit that 40,000 mark so I can earn that next badge.

I can tell you with complete confidence, the book is crap. But, hey, I can fix crap. I’m just gonna keep on keeping on.

I'm doing this.

October 18, 2018

Blog: Quilting Magic with Ties #holidayanthology #crafting #readromance


A lot of you know I call my husband Handsome. When we first married, he gave me a card signed with Handsome Husband. I shortened it. (And Handsome is a pretty nice looking guy. )
I grew up when working men wore suits to their job and to church, to shows, etc. I like the look. Handsome’s career began at a large accounting firm and he wore the “uniform” too. He especially liked ties and for a long time, never threw any away.
An employee at his company makes quilts. After a chat, he decided to have one made into a quilt. Take a look:

He had her put on the back his philosophy about ties: 












The good news is he culled through his ties again and had a second quilt made, and a third one: 



Here’s the sash detail and labels:

Some people are soooo creative.
Creativity abounds in this holiday anthology, the Whispers of Winter, featuring my romantic comedy short story, The Great Fruitcake Bake-off: 






October 2, 2018

Michelle Miles: Crafty Crafts

I’ve been in a bad funk with the writing lately (mostly ignoring it) so I decided to turn my attention elsewhere.

Most of you know I do other crafts. I opened my first Etsy shop to sell my handmade cross-stitch ornaments. I stitch A LOT of Santa faces. They are so cute. But I’m expanding and doing other little ornaments.

Stuff like this:
And this:


All these will be post in the shop soon! Shameless plug: https://www.etsy.com/shop/Houseof1000Stitches

In addition to that, I’ve discovered mason jars and how fun they are to paint. I started out simply, too. With these little handmade soap dispensers.


Now I’m painting wine bottles. I’ve got my first attempt going on right now but it’s not finished. Right now, it’s just painted with primer and kinda boring.

I also made this cute candy cane striped mason jar as a vase.


I don’t think I’ll sell the jars since they take so long for me to make BUT I do love making them. I have a whole case of mason jars to experiment with.

Most writers I know have other creative passions. I think it’s that creative brain we have.

Do you do arts and crafts? What do you like to do?

September 20, 2018

CUT! Costumes in Movies, part 4 #historicalromance #moviecostumes #readromance


From the CUT! Costumes in Movies exhibit, I'm focusing on evening gowns. And are there some doozies:


Who loved to play dress up? Me! Once, I went to a tag sale when I was about ten and for a very small fee, I bought a dark blue evening gown. I just loved it. Today is our last look at CUT!! and I'm featuring evening gowns. 

From Phantom of the Opera, we have this lovely pink creation worn by Emily Rossum as Christine:

Isn't it gorgeous? Love the shade of pink, how the train is gathered and embellished with flowers and ribbons.

Have I said how much I LOVE red? This stunning red dress was worn by Laura Flynn Boyle:
A little art deco flavor, slimmer silhouette:
And lastly, a slinky dress and suit:

August 16, 2018

Plotting Princesses: Vicki Batman - You know what’s really annoying? #MFRWorg #readromance #householdchores



I try not to be a gripey person. I take on tasks I dislike and finish them. There is one household chore I really dislike, and I think you’ll be surprised when I say... 

Changing out the toilet paper tube for a fresh roll.


Yep, the springy thing bouncing all over the room, getting on hands and knees and finding it, and pushing all just so to get it back in the holder drives me crazy. I wish I had installed the kind where the roll slips over the rod.

Silly, isn’t it?

July 12, 2018

Vicki Batman : A Writer’s Good Life #MFRWorg #readromance #RWA2018

The best part of being a writer is meeting writers. Sharing, collaborating, buying books. And that’s what I’m doing. I’m at the Romance Writer’s of American convention attending workshops, classes, dinners and lunches, and signing books at the Indie Signing. 

Last year was a huge one for me. I signed at the Indie Signing and my mystery at the Signing for Literacy. I had so much fun. Many writer friends I’ve made over fourteen years stopped by and picked up books. There were strangers who came looking for me! A friend who made the call to notify me I’d finalled in her chapter’s contest.
I think I broke my smile that day.
I’m not a fast writer lately. Life has pushed me around and I do what I do. Though, when I have looked back, I have been amazed at what I’ve done:
35 short stories and essays
2 romantic comedy mysteries
So I’m absorbing new information, hanging with old and new friends, and soon shall be flexing my fingers and hitting the keyboard. 

June 21, 2018

Author Vicki Batman on Handbag and Book - My Observations about Dogs #gettingapet #catsanddogs #romanticcomedy

Some of you may be laughing hysterically just from the title of my blog because you know I grew up with cats, not dogs. My mom didn’t want to fence the yard for a dog. Our first cat was a huge gray guy named appropriately Smokey. He was born between our wooden and the neighbor’s chain link fences. 
Over the years, there were others, like Mischief, Fuzzy, Snuffer. Our last two were farm cats from Kansas named Romper, aka Roo, Roo-roo, Romp, and her sister, Scooter, aka Scoo. 
Handsome, however, grew up with dogs. He loves to tell the story of their sheepdog who ate the Thanksgiving turkey (Christmas Story, anyone?). So when #1son was about three, he adopted Baxter, a sheep dog who grew VERY LARGE. Baxter was too big for little kids and no one could walk him well.
After Baxter and Snuffer passed, we adopted the farm girls. They were little and squirmy and perfect for boys’ love. Both had a long shy streak and would hide behind furniture when people came over.
Many years passed and Handsome began to yearn for another dog.