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October 29, 2015

#SherlockHolmes' #French Connection @lsfabre #MFRWORG #Vernet

In The Greek Interpreter, Sherlock Holmes gives two clues of his past. In addition to noting his ancestors were country squires, he also shares that art was in his blood, given his grandmother was the sister of Vernet, the French artist.

Some speculation exists as to which Vernet. Three generations of Vernets garnered patronage from both the French monarchy and Napoleon: Claude-Joseph Vernet (1714 – 1789); Antoine Charles Horace Vernet, known as Carle Vernet (1758 – 1836); and Émile Jean-Horace Vernet, known as Horace Vernet (1789 – 1863) (1). Simple mathematics suggests the most logical choice would be the youngest Vernet. For Sherlock and Mycroft’s mother to be between twenty and twenty-five at marriage, she would have to have been born between 1821-1826. Taking another twenty to twenty-five years or so for Sherlock’s grandmother to be born, means a birth date of about 1795 - 1800 or earlier, clearly putting her as a contemporary of Horace.

October 27, 2015

Who is ready for great holiday reads? Try the Season of Surprises #MFRWorg #RssosSisters #holidaybooks #historicalromance

There’s nothing like the

*Season of Surprises*
Princess Vicki here: I'm thrilled to be part of the Season of Surprises holiday anthology. Last year's Season of Magic was fabulous and now, we're back for more. I asked my fellow authors to share a holiday memory with me. Let's take a peek into their lives?

October 22, 2015

Tales from the Crate: #CrazyDog kills dog agility by Karilyn Bentley

The cutest puppy in the world
Have you been wondering what happened to our adorable puppy, aka The Kraken? It dawned on me the other day I hadn't written about her in a year. (Want to read about my puppy adventures? Try Here, Here and Here)  She's grown now, all 45 pounds of her. Still likes to eat the garden (currently asparagus, okra and tomatoes are her faves, but the poor kale plant is moving up on her list), snuggle with The Hubster, and catch bugs, toads, geckos, and the occasional baby bird. <shivers to think of that one> But her new skill is dog agility.

October 20, 2015

@SloaneBCollins What's in my Writer Toolbox for NaNo? #NaNoWriMo #amwriting @onestop4writers #MFRWorg

Authors everywhere are gearing up for NaNoWriMo – National Novel Writing Month – which takes place annually in November.  We are battening down the hatches, preparing meals ahead of time (unless you’re lucky enough to have a hubby like mine who does 99% of the cooking!), letting friends and family know we won’t be answering phones, and scheduling the DVR…all of this to get 50,000 words written in one month.  That’s right, a whole complete novel in one month!

For an author like me who is time-challenged with a crazy-busy day job, an editing job, and four cats, this is the month where I really push to spend every minute writing.  I’m a pantser by nature when it comes to writing – meaning I literally sit down in front of the computer and write by the seat of my pants.  It keeps the story fresh for me, instead of getting bogged down in research.

BUT…when it comes to NaNo, I need to have a pretty good idea of my characters, the plot, scenes I want to write, and that all important Goal, Motivation, and Conflict for my characters.  Now is when I use all the tools available to authors to get me prepped in time for November 1, so I can hit the ground running.

October 15, 2015

#Spooky #Halloween #Drinks and #Eats


4 cups apple juice

1- 15 ounce can pumpkin puree (not pie filling!)

2 teaspoons ginger paste (or fresh grated ginger)

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

1/2 nutmeg, freshly grated (about 1 tablespoon of ground spice)

1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper

1- 12 ounce can lemon-line soda (like Sprite)

Whisk together apple juice, pumpkin, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and pepper in a large pan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer and hold for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Slowly stir lemon-lime soda into cooled mixture. Strain and serve. (Recipe from Word Up, Nerd Up Blog, Photo from

October 13, 2015

@sloanebcollins Nature to Soothe My Soul #backtonature #PlottingPrincesses #amwriting #MFRWorg

About twice a year, I start getting itchy, twitchy, and b…er, witchy, and I know it’s time to get away from the city of concrete and back into nature.  I’m a country girl at heart, and I need the trees, mountains, lakes, oceans, and wildlife to keep me going.  There is such beauty on God’s earth, and so much that we still haven’t explored.  I once wrote a book for the Scrapbooking industry, and it’s all about reflecting on God’s wonders.  Alas, the publisher folded before it was published, but I pull it out every so often to reread it and remember how important it is to me to be in nature.

Last week my husband and I packed up the car, left notes for the kitty-sitters, and headed to Colorado for a week.  We drove straight through and reached Colorado Springs about six a.m.  We started our vacation with a lovely breakfast with my author friend Jennie Marts <waving at Jennie> and her husband.  We had a great time, and I’m so glad we had the time with them.

After stuffing ourselves with toffee pancakes (!!), we headed toward Mount Evans.  We followed the winding curves, stopping along the way to snap pictures of bighorn sheep, small lakes, and anything
that caught our eye.  If you’ve never been there, but plan to go, be warned of scary-narrow, winding roads that drop off into nothing except grass and rocks.  I think my heart was in my throat most of the way up…and back down.  We reached the top, but it was socked in with clouds and fog, snowing, very crowded, and I was dizzy from the altitude, so we stayed long enough to snap a picture to prove we had reached the top at 14,130 feet.

October 6, 2015

.@Michelle Miles: I'm Back!

Hello, readers!

After a long hiatus, I’m finally back as a Princess. It’s nice to be back amongst the crown-wearing gals!

I took a long sabbatical from writing. I did a lot of soul-searching to figure out what I was doing and who I was as a writer. I now know what the root of my problem was—I was really depressed about the state of my books that are currently held hostage by a publisher. Getting a check for less than $10—or a check not at all—was a huge blow to my writer ego. Because I poured my heart and soul into those books and I felt like they were slighted. I also felt like they were being served a great injustice by not making any money when I was SURE they were better books than that. I’ve requested the rights back to almost all of them—and have received rights back to one of them. Now it’s just a waiting game to see what’s going to happen.

And it hurts. A lot.

So putting all that aside was difficult at best for me. It’s never an easy thing to see your books sit and not earn money. Any books—not just the ones with a publisher but the indie ones too. I had to come to terms with that because I can’t be everywhere I want to be—I’m not MasterCard, after all. I’m a mom with a husband and a full time job. I had to stop and decide where my time was best spent and that was writing, not spinning my wheels marketing. I’m sure there is some value in that—blogging, ads, tweeting, etc.—but it stressed me out to the point I mentally shut down.

So I let it go.