Tag Archives: #MerryChristmasHenry

Celebrate Romance Spring Blog Hop

 

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Welcome to the Celebrate Romance Giveaway Blog Hop!

Sponsored by Fanged Fantasy

Mother Nature washes away the remnants of winter and brings us new beginnings. Buds open to reveal their beauty and romance blooms. Join us in celebrating April and her romance.

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 Movies:     My Favorite Romantic Scenes

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The King And I

Yul Brenner and Debra Kerr

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QgVPnWmUqd4

I love the hot and sexy Yul Brenner in this movie. But my favorite scene is when Debra Kerr sings about the thrill of dancing. The song itself, Shall We Dance, is lovely. Yul Brenner is intrigued with her description of dancing with a partner (unique to his culture) and demands she teaches him the steps. There is a part halfway through the scene when Yul realizes something is not right. They are not close enough. The excitement and tension as he eases his hand around her waist and demands to hold her other as he pulls her close… Her chest is heaving in anticipation of the touch and my heart pounds every time I watch it.

 

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Affair To Remember

Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NN3EIbIYB5M

Deborah Kerr had the best leading men. Cary Grant is the quintessential playboy and an artist. But Deborah makes him work for her love when they meet on a cruise to America. When she meets his grandmother on an shore excursion, she gives in to her heart. He wants to marry her and she doesn’t trust he’s given up his irresponsible ways. So she strikes a deal. In one year, if he still loves her they will meet at the top of the Empire State Building.

SPOILER: Well, of course they are still in love. But on her way to meet him, with the rendezvous in sight, she is hit by a car and paralyzed from the waste down. Heartbroken, Cary continues to paint. One day, someone buys the portrait he did of Deborah. The gallery owner said a woman in wheelchair bought it. When he runs into her at the theater (she is sitting down with a male friend who is about to retrieve her wheelchair. ) She is aloof and he walks away thinking she loves another man. He looks her up to give her his grandmother’s shawl after her death. Granny saw they were a match and willed it to her. He realizes (when she doesn’t get up from the couch) something is amiss. He strolls into her bedroom and finds the painting. The expression on his face when he realizes why she did not meet him is heart-wrenching. The following scene when they are reunited makes me cry happy tears every time I watch it.

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The Lake House

Sandra Bullock  and  Keanu Reeves

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8dAdUO8m4zo

Spoiler: Can I just say that Keanu Reeves gets sexier as he ages? This movie involved an odd type of time travel. Keanu designed a lake house and two years later Sandra rents it. The mailbox has magical powers allows them to exchange letters. They find a way to meet but Sandra finds out that he is hit by a car (yes, again) and dies crossing the street to meet her. She sends an urgent letter canceling the meeting and asking him to wait another two years. They will meet at the lake house. The final scene, when they meet, is delicious. They walk towards each other slowly, looking one another over. She says, “You waited for me.” And all patience flies out the window. He grabs her and kisses her like a starving man. I have the last ten minutes of this DVR’d and watch it every so often to remind myself why I write romance.

Giveaways

midnight Midnight Surrender by Valerie Twombly

He makes her body sing, but Angelina wants more than just sex from her dark and delicious vampire. She wants love.

Dmitri has spent the last year strumming the beautiful Angelina’s body into submission. One night she gives him an ultimatum, love or she walks. What will he choose?

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Merry Christmas, Henry by Aubrey Wynne

Henry, a shy and talented artist, moonlights as a security guard at a museum and loses his heart to a beautiful, melancholy woman in a painting. As his obsession grows, he finds a kindred soul who helps him in his search for happiness. On Christmas Eve, Henry dares to take a chance on love and fulfill his dream.

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I will be giving away an ebook copy of Midnight Surrender by Valerie Twombly, my short romance Merry Christmas, Henry  and a $5 Amazon gift card. Please click the link of Cary and Deborah below to go to the rafflecopter. 

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Please click on the button below to follow more authors and win more great prizes. 

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A Bit O' Irish Mini Blog Hop

And the winners are:

Gift cards: Deb F, Stephanie G, Tina M, Laurel L.

Ebooks: Paul M, Susan S, Stephanie G, Raeline P, Cathy C, Amy B, Jay I, Tammy O’, Janice C.

Join us for some Blarney and bits and pieces of the Emerald Isle.

Sign up now through March 17, 2014

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Welcome to the Bit O’ Irish mini blog hop.

Rules: bloggers must post something Irish, even if it is vacation pics taken while on the Isle. Participants may join in any day before St. Patrick’s Day. Please make sure to visit fellow hoppers. If you would like to add something to the  main giveaway, please notify me with a comment. All participants are welcome to add their own giveaways on their site. Erin Go Bragh!

 So we all love St. Patrick’s Day and the rolling green hills of Ireland. We love the enduring human spirit that characterizes the Irish people. The holiday should be about this:

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But instead becomes more about this:

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But no matter how you celebrate this Celtic holiday, make sure you have some fun this week. Post a favorite Irish ditty, limerick, symbol, saying, picture or recipe. As with the Irish, anything goes.

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We will be spotlighting Jill Bisker’s inspirational story Within Reach and giving away a variety of ebooks and two $5 Amazon gift card.

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Within Reach is the story of Emma, a woman coming to terms with her mother’s increasing dementia and the everyday challenges associated with it.  Inexplicably, she finds herself ‘re-living’ specific events from her past.  She soon wonders if her own sanity is slipping, and only her mother can help find the key.

About The Author

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 Jill Bisker lives in Stillwater, MN with her husband and a calico cat named Senora, and a grown son who is in college. She believes in empowering women to be strong enough to protect themselves, while still soft enough to be loving and compassionate. Her work includes paranormal mystery, traditional high fantasy, as well as contemporary and humorous fantasy and an everyday living blog. Once a dedicated stay at home Mom, Jill now writes full-time.

Connect with Jill:

Facebook Page:     https://www.facebook.com/authorjillbisker

Pinterest Page:  http://www.pinterest.com/jillbisker/

Website/Blog: www.jillbisker.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JillBisker

Google +:  https://plus.google.com/u/0/102225571446174386202

Email: jkatbisker@gmail.com

 

Join in the Blarney. Click on the Pot of Gold below for a chance to win cash prizes great reads.

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Choose from the following ebooks:

      Within Reach

      By Jill Bisker

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Merry Christmas, Henry

By Aubrey Wynne

Contemporary Romance

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Morna

By Mary Kate Brogan 
(Romance set in 1950’s Ireland)

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Symphony of Light and Winter      Imposter’s Kiss

By Renea Mason

Paranormal Romance

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Click below to add your link. Remember to stop by these blogs for more luck o’ the Irish:

    http://new.inlinkz.com//luwpview.php?id=381178

 
Note: When you add your link, you can copy and paste the thumbnails to your page and the links will be all done for you. Less work and more time for green beer and corned beef with cabbage.

The Writing Process: What Is The Secret?

My Writing Process

This particular blog hop is all about authors offering others a glimpse into their work, their work schedules, and perhaps their innermost thoughts. Some of us are quite opposite our real life personas.

So who subjected you to this arduous journey through the innermost working of my mind?  The very talented paranormal author, Renea Mason, who single-handedly lured me into reading this genre. You don’t have to love paranormal, erotica or mystery to read her Symphony Series, you just need to love a damn good story.

Author of:

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Click here to find out how she does it!

http://reneamason.com/2014/02/17/my-writing-process-blog-hop/

Q. What am I working on?

I am currently finishing up the first in my historical romance series on the four musketeers. Yes, the FOUR musketeers. Each book concentrates on the love life of one musketeer. I have tried to maintain the flavor of Dumas and the Hollywood movies but follow the historical events of their real lives. The series begins with Athos and his love interest, Rosalind. I will be pitching the series to an agent and publisher at the Chicago Spring Fling Romance Conference in April.

Q. How does my work differ from others of its genre?

Character development is my specialty so I concentrate on that more than other writing aspect. I like to throw a twist into every story. While my main characters stay true to themselves, the plot often gets in their way. So with each storyline, the hero or heroine must overcome some wrench I’ve thrown into their plans.

In Merry Christmas, Henry the MC is a museum guard by night and artist by day. An introvert, relationships do not come easy to him. He becomes infatuated with a woman in a painting and seems content with this one-sided affair. Until an element of magic changes his life. How does he deal with it? You’d have to read the book.

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Q. Why do I write what I do?

Writing is a way to express creativity and give release to your imagination. I have always been known for my imaginative stories. When I come across an item or old tale, turning it into a story is like putting together a puzzle. I take the original idea or object and combine the right touch of fantasy to create a piece of entertaining fiction. I have always been a history geek and my goal in historical romance is to make the past fun and exciting.

Ideas come from anywhere and I often stumble onto stories during my travels. Henry derived from a photo of a man staring at a painting, a bottle of wine and a brainstorming session between my sister and I. Some novellas on the back burner began with a visit to a bicycle museum, an old copy of the Hans Christian Anderson’s The Sandman, Barry Manilow’s song Could It Be Magic? and recurring dreams of family members.

The musketeers developed from an ending scene of Man In The Iron Mask when the musketeers charge the King’s men. As the smoke clears and the four are still left standing.  My sister and I began the “What if?” game and Magnificent Valor slowly took shape.

Q. How does your writing process work?

All plots begin the essential bottle of wine and brainstorming session with my sister and muse. She is often the mastermind behind  my ‘twists’ for each story. I need an outline to keep myself focused although it often changes as the characters take over or plot turns in a different direction.  Once I’ve begun, I post it for critique on a writing community website and the Coffee Talk gals add their expertise to help shape and refine the story. Then I pass it over to my mother, a retired editor and award winning journalist. If it passes her scrutiny, I consider it a finished piece.

Q. Who will we meet next week?

I love historical romance and short stories so I have chosen authors that will give insight to both the long and the short of their writing process.  Sorry, I couldn’t resist. The first three are friends and gifted writers I met on Scribophile.

Katie Stephens is a multi-published author whose short stories appear in magazines and anthologies including Spark and Mused. Her latest work, Home, will appear in the Spring issue of Mused.

Faceless by Katie Stephens                                   Final Letters by Katie Stephens

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K. E. Shade is multi-published author Kastil Eavenshade who loves fantasy and historicals. Her latest steamy romance includes pirates, stolen gold and a sailor who will risk everything for the woman he loves. 

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Samyann writes historical romances with a theme of reincarnation. Her first novel involves the Civil War and the Great Chicago Fire. 

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Valeri Clarizio is a fellow Romantic suspense author from Melange-Publishing.  The series A Nick Spinelli Mystery finds the sexy detective solving murders, dodging danger and keeping his girlfriend/caseworker Shannon out of trouble.

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February Kindle Fire Giveaway

Sponsored by I Am A Reader Not A Writer

February Kindle Fire Giveaway

February Kindle Fire
Win a Kindle Fire HDX, Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash ($229 value)

This is a joint AUTHOR & BLOGGER GIVEAWAY EVENT!

Bloggers & Authors have joined together and each chipped in a little money towards a Kindle Fire HDX 7″.

 All New Kindle Fire HDX 7″ Giveaway

 The winner will have the option of receiving a 7″ Kindle Fire HDX (US Only – $229 Value)

Or $229 Amazon.com Gift Card (International)

Or $229 in Paypal Cash (International)

Click below and enter to win one of the above prizes:

RAFFLECOPTER

 Be sure to visit our host:  

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In addition to the Kindle Giveaway, I will be giving away 3 novelette ebooks. Winners may choose one from the following:

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Winner of the P&E Reader’s Poll:

Best Short Romance of 2013

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Henry, a shy and talented artist, moonlights as a security guard at a museum and loses his heart to a beautiful, melancholy woman in a painting. As his obsession grows, he finds a kindred soul who helps him in his search for happiness. On Christmas Eve, Henry dares to take a chance on love and fulfill his dream.

Or choose one of Susan Stuckey’s  Kalieri Tales:

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Kaserie, a slave girl possessing potential magical powers, is held by the ruthless and brutal Halurdow, who intend to corrupt her talent for their own use. She escapes and flees to the Temple of the Twin Gods where she must not only confront her formidable enemies, but also her own father. A Kalieri Tales Novelette

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Ranger Thaenad, aided by a group of Black Wolves, rescues a group of women and children from certain death at the hands of the butchering worshippers of the Dark God. As he guides them toward safety, a traitor within their group exposes his every move to pursuing enemy forces. Are Thaenad’s skills and magic capable of neutralizing the traitor and overcoming the enemy?

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Elderly and frail, Jezrei is tasked with the safety of more than twenty children when the City of Azraelis is attacked by an enemy bent on slaughter and subjugation. How can one old man hope to stand against an entire army?

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The Halurdow conquer everything in their path, destroying and crushing the Kalieri wherever they find them. After conquering the Isle of Ipsen Watch, they are stopped by a magic shield protecting the Ipsen mainland. The key to this shield is the only survivor of the Halurdow attack on Island of Ipsen Watch: an old woman. A young shaman sits with the woman night and day, working to get the secret of the magic shield from her. Today, she will succeed.

Click below for to enter the book giveaway:

Rafflecopter:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/01288e5/

February Sponsors

  1. I Am A Reader, Not A Writer
  2. Feed Your Reader
  3. Romance Through the Ages
  4. Buried Under Romance
  5. Author Inger Iversen
  6. Jenna Does Books
  7. Author Jennifer Laurens
  8. Author Bonnie Blythe
  9. Author Bella Street
  10. The Reporter and the Girl
  11. Author Brinda Berry
  12. The Storybook Kingdom
  13. More Than a Review
  14. Bea’s Book Nook
  15. Bookroom Reviews
  16. The One With The Fairy Tales
  17. MyLadyWeb: Women’s History and Women Authors
  18. The (Mis)Adventures of a Twenty-Something Year Old Girl
  19. I Heart YA Fiction
  20. My Devotional Thoughts
  21. Kindle and Me
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  23. Every Free Chance Book Reviews
  24. Author Karey White
  25. Author Aubrey Wynne
  26. Author Kimber Leigh Wheaton
  27. A Leisure Moment
  28. Author Louise Caiola
  29. Author Christie Anderson
  30. Author Carol Malone
  31. Immortal Ink Publishing
  32. Author A. Wrighton
  33. Author Heather McCoubrey
  34. Attack of the Books!
  35. Rumor Has It
  36. Barb’s Wire – eBooks & More
  37. Author Linda S. Prather
  38. Tressa’s Wishful Endings
  39. Laurie Here
  40. Author Heather Gray
  41. Author Kelly Martin
  42. Author Brenda Maxfield
  43. A Southern Lady’s Book Blog
  44. Author Paige Ryan
  45. Confessions of a Librarian in Training
  46. My Nook, Books and More
  47. Lori’s Reading Corner
  48. Author Elizabeth Woodrum
  49. Author Kristin Wallace
  50. Author Jo Grafford
  51. Writer Wonderland
  52. Author Jaret Martens
  53. Author Christi Corbett
  54. Author Derek Rempfer

Ends 2/28/14

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the participating authors & bloggers. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

 

 

 

Cast Your Vote For Coffee Talk Writers Aubrey Wynne and Renea Mason

Best Books of 2013:
Editors and Predators Readers Poll

Paranormal Romance Guild Reviewers Choice

Many of us are looking back on the Best of 2013. Bloggers, book sites and publishers are running contests to support the authors whose work stood out from the crowd. Two of our Coffee Talk Writers, Aubrey Wynne (Merry Christmas, Henry) and  Renea Mason (Symphony of Light and Winter) have been added to these lists. Aubrey has been nominated in the  Predators and Editors Reader’s Poll for Best Romance Short Story. Renea has been nominated for by The Paranormal Reveiwer’s Choice Awards for Best Paranormal Romance.  Please show them some love and support by clicking the links below.

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Henry, a shy and talented artist, moonlights as a security guard at a museum and loses his heart to a beautiful, melancholy woman in a painting. As his obsession grows, he finds a kindred soul who helps him in his search for happiness. On Christmas Eve, Henry dares to take a chance on love and fulfill his dream.

Click below to vote for Aubrey Wynne

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Symphony of Light Book One

One woman. Seven men. All bound by one man’s undying devotion.
Fundraiser Linden Hill has a knack for reading people. She always knows which conversations will put a prospect at ease, which drink will loosen a patron’s lips—or his wallet, and how cleavage will make a donor sweeten the deal. She’s even foreseen her dateless weekends four hundred and sixty-four times in a row.

But ten years after watching life drain from her former mentor’s and first love’s eyes, her skills for divining the predictable are lost. When Cyril returns, he’s still gorgeous, but this time he’s beyond human, far less dead, and pissed. His lack of memory drives him to desperate acts, and his turbulent re-acquaintance with Linden pulls her into his war with a creature hell-bent on his destruction. His group of six supernatural men share a tantalizing secret, but despite the hunger, it’s love that leads her to sacrifice everything to save him…

 Click on the box below to vote for Renea Mason

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My Christmas Wishes Come True.

Christmas is a time to delight in the unexpected and hope for generosity in mankind. It is a day of reflection, counting blessings, and being with those we love. A time to share memories of those special people still in our hearts but no longer with us. With the chaos of everyday life, we need this day to remind those close to us how much we care.

I would like to send a special holiday message to my Coffee Talk girls: thank you. Santa got it right. This group has been one of my most unexpected and cherished surprises of 2013. Your unconditional support and mentoring have sustained me through the best and worst of times. I don’t know what I would have done without you.

This has been a whirlwind year for me both personally and professionally. I am thankful for a loving and supportive family and loyal friends. My job is secure with good health benefits. In past years, I took these things for granted. With age, I have learned to appreciate all of the little blessings that are sent my way.

So may I extend a heartfelt Merry Christmas to all of my virtual friends I have met over the past year. The online support from so many of you have been a constant reminder of the good in all of us. In particular, I am  grateful for the friendships of Susan Stuckey, Jena Baxter, Chris Drew, Louise Redman and Belinda Mellor.

And Happy Holidays to Melange Books, LLC for publishing my first story. If you need to a little nudge to believe in the magic of Christmas again, let me introduce you to Henry. Cheers to all of us!

Aubrey

 Merry Christmas, Henry

Henry, a shy and talented artist, moonlights as a security guard at a museum and loses his heart to a beautiful, melancholy woman in a painting. As his obsession grows, he finds a kindred soul who helps him in his search for happiness. On Christmas Eve, Henry dares to take a chance on love and fulfill his dream.

Excerpt:

“The museum will be closing in five minutes. Please make your way to the nearest exit.”

Henry tore his gaze from the painting, and looked around at the weekend crowd hurrying by. No one noticed him. He always blended into the background. Henry the Trifling—that would have been the title of his self-portrait. A soft sigh escaped as he pulled his gray coat over the frayed cuffs of a cotton shirt. There were extraordinary people and there were ordinary people. Henry considered himself less than ordinary. He was insignificant.

“You’ll never amount to nothin’. Just like your worthless father.”

He shrugged off the memory of his mother’s nagging image and looked toward the last group of art enthusiasts headed in his direction.

This was his favorite part of the day. In a crush of people, everyone was equal. No one stood out in the sea of indistinguishable faces. There was no pressure to make witty or charming conversation. Henry liked people but had never been good at interaction. The anonymity of a crowd gave the illusion of belonging. For a man as painfully shy as Henry, it was the only way to mingle in a city like Chicago.

Casting a last wistful look at the lady in the painting, Henry took a deep breath and eased into the middle of the exiting crowd. A large woman trying to grab her boisterous child knocked into his left shoulder. She distractedly patted a chubby hand at the obstruction and mumbled a quick apology without glancing his way. Henry smiled and nodded.

The group approached the turnstile and bunched up, shoulder to shoulder, waiting for their turn to leave. Someone jostled him from the

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side and he felt the heat of another body against his back. He tried to absorb the vivid energy surrounding him. Last week a pretty woman had smiled at him. He had felt warm all the way home. He’d started painting her but had not yet decided on the setting. It had to be somewhere as beautiful and inviting as her smile—Venice, perhaps.

Stepping onto the sidewalk, he buttoned his overcoat against the early November chill. Christmas lights intermingled with the traffic lights, blinking and glowing on the wet streets. The wind had picked up and people rushed by with their heads down. Henry pulled his collar up against the icy sting of a light rain and quickly walked the few blocks to his small apartment.

Stopping in front of the dilapidated building, Henry looked up at his fourth floor window. He always left the light on so it seemed as if someone was home to greet him. He smiled as his thoughts returned to the woman in the painting. He would never forget that snowy December day she arrived at the museum. He had been working his usual graveyard shift and the day manager had needed help with a shipment arriving that morning.

*** *

“Hey, Henry, you want a little overtime?” the supervisor had asked. “Charlie called in sick and I could use an extra hand. Another rich collector remembered us in his will. We’ve got a pricey piece arriving in about an hour and I’d feel better with some extra security.”

Henry tried to wipe the smile off his face. Five years in the city and he still felt like a country bumpkin. “Sure.”

“The paper says a Rubens. Flemish, wasn’t he? But it’s a small one.”

Henry gave a whistle. “Impressive.”

“There’s a companion painting with it, artist unknown. We’ll have to find a spot for it in appreciation for the collector’s piece.”

An hour later, Henry held a priceless painting in his hands. God, he loved this job.

“The family probably figured they wouldn’t get any money out of the other one. But this one sure is a beauty,” the supervisor said as he reached for the Rubens.

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Merry Christmas, Henry

“Yes, indeed,” Henry replied, as his eyes landed on the second painting. “Striking.”

Henry’s boss laughed. “I’m talking about this one, Bud. The little one is worth the big bucks!” His boss headed toward the office to start the paperwork on the new museum pieces.

“Yes, of course,” he murmured, but his attention remained focused on the woman in the larger painting.

She sat on the edge of a rocky cliff, her face slightly turned as if looking over the edge. Her legs were out to the side, knees bent, a long, olive-colored skirt spread around her haphazardly as if blown by the wind. The stormy ocean breakers rushed between jagged rocks then turned into frothy waves that lapped at the sand. The details in the picture were crisp and stark, the color was minimal—just the woman on a cliff with the turbulent water below. But the overall effect created a hauntingly beautiful scene.

He felt her distress, her sorrow. His fingers itched to reach out and pull her from the painting and hold her, soothe her, give her comfort. Henry knew that if she could turn and face him, he would be looking at the most exquisite creature he’d ever seen. His hand shook as he reached out to touch the canvas.

“Are you okay, Henry?”

Henry drew his hand back quickly as if he’d been caught in the act of—of what? Touching a frame? Good lord, he must be tired.

“What? Oh, yeah, I just need some sleep. ” As Henry turned to leave, he took one last look at the woman who had just stolen his heart. Fate had given him a precious gift. He whistled “Angels We Have Heard on High” all the way home.

 

A virtual trip to a ski lodge in Vail, Colorado. Oh what fun it is to ride a bunny hill today.

Wine and Chat with Cait and Aubrey Wynne

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Aubrey Wynne

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Buy now: Melange Books

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December is a magical time of the year to spend time with family and friends. Some of us have a special someone, others dream of a spark that could generate chemistry so strong that you believe the person you see is that special someone, the person that makes you smile. In the world today, there’s so many different ways to meet someone: in person, online, but to see a portrait in a gallery and know the person is special that is magic.

Sitting by the fire on the leather couch in a ski lodge in Vail, Colorado, I can’t wait for one of my favorite peeps to arrive. Aubrey Wynne released her first book, Merry Christmas, Henry, a few weeks ago. It’s the perfect cozy Christmas read. Oh heck, I can’t tell you anymore, here she comes.

Cait: “Aubrey! It’s wonderful to see you.” I jump to my feet and hug her.

Aubrey: “I have been talking about this all week. My husband almost pushed me out the door. Thank you for inviting me.”

Cait: “You are welcome. Thank you for joining me.

We sit on the couches a table dividing us. A tall golden-haired, green-eyed man sits at a nearby table.

Cait: “Aubrey, he looks like the hero in my latest manuscript, Second Chances.”

Aubrey: Long sigh. “Absolutely mouth-watering. He is just how I pictured Ryan if you swap out the skis for a skateboard. If he’s an instructor, I’m up for a lesson.”

Cait: I laugh.“Speaking of delicious, Merry Christmas, Henry, is a wonderful story. Would you give a little detail about the book?”

Aubrey: She smiles and tears her eyes away from the gorgeous blonde. “Henry is a handsome and talented artist but painfully shy. His life revolves around his painting and best friend Melinda, the owner of an art gallery. While working as a security guard in a museum, he becomes infatuated with the portrait of a woman. When Melinda accepts a marriage proposal, Henry realizes he must find his own happiness. So he comes up with a plan that depends on his artistic skill and the magic of Christmas.

Cait: “The story is so unique. I don’t believe I’ve ever read anything like it. What inspired you?” Arches eyebrow. “Have you ever admired a pic of a guy?” I laugh.

Aubrey: Giggles. “Good grief, as a teenager my wall was filled with posters. I spent hours drooling over and talking to Robert Redford, Paul Newman and John Travolta. And of course, Starsky and Hutch. Oops, I think I just gave away my age.”

Cait: “Too funny.”

The Ryan-like character from Second Chances winks at Aubrey. She winks back.

Aubrey: “I need a drink. I think the ski instructor is flirting with me. Maybe he likes cougars?”

Cait: “It appears so.” I’m smiling so hard my cheeks hurt. Aubrey’s a hoot.

The waiter arrives, bringing glasses of wine I ordered when I first arrived.

Cait: I hold up my glass. “A toast to your first release and to all the ones that follow.” Our glasses clink.

Aubrey: “Yes, indeed.” She holds up her glass. “Here’s to more great romances in the New Year.”

Cait: I set my glass on the table and reach behind the couch. “I have a surprise for you.” I pull out the picture of the woman Henry admires. “The owner of the ski lodge loved your book so much they had a painting made of it. They want it hung in here. We get to do the honors of deciding where it goes.”

Aubrey: “I’m honored, and such a wonderful way to celebrate my first publication. The design and setting of this lodge would have pleased Henry.”

We crossed to the wall Aubrey decides. She lifts it up and places it against the wall. Strong arms reach over her head and grab the sides of the frame. The Ryan-like character smiles down at her. “I’ll do this for you.”

Cait: I smirk and step back, giving them a moment, and sip more wine.

Aubrey: “It just keeps getting better, Cait.”

Ryan marks the wall and retrieves the hammer and a nail from a side table. “Great story, you must be the author, Aubrey Wynne. I heard you’d be by today.”

Aubrey: “Yes, I am. Thank for your help. So do you like romance or are you more the action and adventure type?”

“I’m the action, adventure type. You interested?”

I choke on my wine, the liquid rushes up my nose. Ugh. I hate that.

Aubrey: “If I were a little younger… Seriously, though, you remind me of someone. But he’s already taken.”

He hammers the nail in the wall, hangs the picture, and steps back admiring his handy work. “Very pretty.” He turns to us. “See you in Second Chances, my destiny awaits.”

Ryan leaves and our mouths gape.

Cait: “Wow, you have a fan and I have a nose full of wine.”

Aubrey: “My heart just skipped a beat.”

Cait: I let out a breath and stare at the picture. “He’s right, she’s quite beautiful. Would you tell us about her?”

Aubrey: “Her name, according to Henry, is Rebecca. She is a beautiful, melancholy soul and I think that is what attracted Henry. It became his mission to make her happy.”

Cait: “What is your favorite part of the book?”

Aubrey: “The ending.”

Cait: “My next question was to ask you to read your favorite part, but we don’t want to give anything away. So, would you give an excerpt from another part of the book?”

Aubrey:

“Hey, Henry, you want a little overtime?” the supervisor had asked. “Charlie called in sick and I could use an extra hand. Another rich collector remembered us in his will. We’ve got a pricey piece arriving in about an hour and I’d feel better with some extra security.”

Henry tried to wipe the smile off his face. Five years in the city and he still felt like a country bumpkin. “Sure.”

“The paper says a Rubens. Flemish, wasn’t he? But it’s a small one.”

Henry gave a whistle. “Impressive.”

“There’s a companion painting with it, artist unknown. We’ll have to find a spot for it in appreciation for the collector’s piece.”

An hour later, Henry held a priceless painting in his hands. God, he loved this job.

“The family probably figured they wouldn’t get any money out of the other one. But this one sure is a beauty,” the supervisor said as he reached for the Rubens.

 “Yes, indeed,” Henry replied, as his eyes landed on the second painting. “Striking.”

Henry’s boss laughed. “I’m talking about this one, Bud. The little one is worth the big bucks!” His boss headed toward the office to start the paperwork on the new museum pieces.

“Yes, of course,” he murmured, but his attention remained focused on the woman in the larger painting.

She sat on the edge of a rocky cliff, her face slightly turned as if looking over the edge. Her legs were out to the side, knees bent, a long, olive-colored skirt spread around her haphazardly as if blown by the wind. The stormy ocean breakers rushed between jagged rocks then turned into frothy waves that lapped at the sand. The details in the picture were crisp and stark, the color was minimal—just the woman on a cliff with the turbulent water below. But the overall effect created a hauntingly beautiful scene.

He felt her distress, her sorrow. His fingers itched to reach out and pull her from the painting and hold her, soothe her, give her comfort. Henry knew that if she could turn and face him, he would be looking at the most exquisite creature he’d ever seen. His hand shook as he reached out to touch the canvas.

“Are you okay, Henry?”

Henry drew his hand back quickly as if he’d been caught in the act of—of what? Touching a frame? Good lord, he must be tired.

“What? Oh, yeah, I just need some sleep. ” As Henry turned to leave, he took one last look at the woman who had just stolen his heart. Fate had given him a precious gift. He whistled “Angels We Have Heard on High” all the way home.

Cait: “This has been great, but the slopes are calling our name. Maybe, you can fall into Ryan?” I snicker.

Aubrey: “I’m not known for my grace or balance. It would be a perfect ending to a perfect day.”

Cait: “Would you leave your contact information for the readers?”

Alternate Website: http://www.coffeetalkwriters.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/aubrey.wynne.7?fref=ts

About the Author

Aubrey Wynne resides in the Midwest with her husband, dogs, horses, mule and barn cats. She is an elementary teacher by trade, champion of children and animals by conscience, and author by night. Obsessions include history, travel, trail riding and all things Christmas. She is a proud member of the Coffee Talk Writers.

Last day to get in on 12 Days of Christmas Blog Hop.

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12 Days of Christmas
December 1st – 12th 2013
Hosted by: As You Wish Reviews & Confessions of the Paranormal
Sponsors: As You Wish Tours & Book Dragon Designs

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Welcome to the 12 Days of Christmas Blog Hop!!!

Everyone has a YUMMY cookie recipe to share and there are some extra little treats scattered around the Hop too, so be sure to visit each of the Authors and Bloggers blogs to make sure you don’t miss out on something SWEET!

Also for an extra special something in your stocking check out the Rafflecopter GRAND PRIZE Giveaway below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Rafflecopter Share Link
http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/share-code/ZmU3ODJlOTQzODNlMTU4NTgzYzZlNmJiYWJjY2MxOjc4/

Grand Prize: $150 Amazon Gift Card or PayPal Cash
First Prize: One (1) eBook from Every Participating Author

I hope you are on Santa’s Nice List!

Buckeyes

Buckeyes
 Makes 30 cookies| Hands-On Time: 30m| Total Time: 1hr 15m

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 pound bittersweet chocolate, chopped

Directions

  1. With an electric mixer, beat the peanut butter and butter at medium speed until creamy. Reduce the mixer speed to low and mix in the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla, and salt (the mixture will be crumbly).
  2. Roll tablespoonfuls of the dough into balls and place on a wax paper-lined baking sheet. Freeze until firm, about 15 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, in a double boiler or a medium heatproof bowl set over (not in) a saucepan of barely simmering water, melt the chocolate, stirring often, until smooth. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
  4. Resting each ball on the tines of a fork, lower it into the chocolate until it’s two-thirds covered. Refrigerate on the baking sheet until the chocolate is firm, about 30 minutes.
  5. Storage suggestion: Keep the buckeyes refrigerated, between sheets of wax paper in an airtight container, for up to 3 weeks.
  6. Enjoy!

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Available on Day 12 and a chance at a $5.00 Amazon gift card.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Merry Christmas, Henry (ebook)

by Aubrey Wynne

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Henry, a shy and talented artist, moonlights as a security guard at a museum and loses his heart to a beautiful, melancholy woman in a painting. As his obsession grows, he finds a kindred soul who helps him in his search for happiness. On Christmas Eve, Henry dares to take a chance on love and fulfill his dream.

Aubrey's profile pic copy

About the Author

Aubrey Wynne resides in the Midwest with her husband, dogs, horses, mule and barn cats. She is an elementary teacher by trade, champion of children and animals by conscience, and author by night. Obsessions include history, travel, trail riding and all things Christmas. She is a proud member of the Coffee Talk Writers.

Linky – Author’s List

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It's the Best of 2013 Blog Hop. Giveaways Galore!

It’s hosted  by Bookhounds and I Am A Reader Not A Writer. Get ready for some fun and great books. The clincher here is each stop gives away one of their favorite books from 2013. So you know the story has been approved by one of the stop hosts. Be on the look out for occasional gift cards throughout your travels. Some books are digital, others print. A few authors even agreed to send books international, so don’t be afraid to join in if your aren’t from the States.

Best-of-2013-Hop

I will be giving away your choice of the Kalieri Tales by Susan Stuckey to three winners. 

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Kaserie, a slave girl possessing potential magical powers, is held by the ruthless and brutal Halurdow, who intend to corrupt her talent for their own use. She escapes and flees to the Temple of the Twin Gods where she must not only confront her formidable enemies, but also her own father. A Kalieri Tales Novelette

51ZfsCPf7lL._SL160_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-dp,TopRight,12,-18_SH30_OU01_AA160_

 Elderly and frail, Jezrei is tasked with the safety of more than twenty children when the City of Azraelis is attacked by an enemy bent on slaughter and subjugation. How can one old man hope to stand against an entire army?

51x-AS6VybL._SL160_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-dp,TopRight,12,-18_SH30_OU01_AA160_

Ranger Thaenad, aided by a group of Black Wolves, rescues a group of women and children from certain death at the hands of the butchering worshippers of the Dark God. As he guides them toward safety, a traitor within their group exposes his every move to pursuing enemy forces. Are Thaenad’s skills and magic capable of neutralizing the traitor and overcoming the enemy?

51EPnt59tRL._SL160_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-dp,TopRight,12,-18_SH30_OU01_AA160_

The Halurdow conquer everything in their path, destroying and crushing the Kalieri wherever they find them. After conquering the Isle of Ipsen Watch, they’re stopped by a magic shield protecting the Ipsen mainland. The key to this shield is the only survivor of the Halurdow attack on Ipsen Watch: an old woman. A young shaman sits with the woman night and day, working to get the secret of the magic shield from her. Today, she will succeed.

For a chance at any of these exciting adventure stories, click on the rafflecopter link below. 

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/01288e2/

Check out the rest of the stops for more holiday surprises. 

Merry Christmas! Get in on the holiday recipes and prizes.

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12 Days of Christmas
December 1st – 12th 2013
Hosted by: As You Wish Reviews & Confessions of the Paranormal
Sponsors: As You Wish Tours & Book Dragon Designs

Day 7-1 copy

Welcome to the 12 Days of Christmas Blog Hop!!!

Everyone has a YUMMY cookie recipe to share and there are some extra little treats scattered around the Hop too, so be sure to visit each of the Authors and Bloggers blogs to make sure you don’t miss out on something SWEET!

Also for an extra special something in your stocking check out the Rafflecopter GRAND PRIZE Giveaway below.

Grand Prize: $150 Amazon Gift Card or PayPal Cash
First Prize: One (1) eBook from Every Participating Author

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Rafflecopter Share Link
http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/share-code/ZmU3ODJlOTQzODNlMTU4NTgzYzZlNmJiYWJjY2MxOjc4/

I hope you are on Santa’s Nice List!

1372

Butter Cookies
Original recipe makes 3 dozenChange Servings
1 cup butter
1 cup white sugar
1 egg
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions:
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and white sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, then stir in the vanilla. Combine the flour and salt; stir into the sugar mixture. Cover dough, and chill for at least one hour. Chill cookie sheets.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Press dough out onto ungreased, chilled cookie sheets.
Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until lightly golden at the edges. Remove from cookie sheets to cool on wire racks.

PREP: 15 mins COOK: 10 mins READY IN: 1 hr 40 mins

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Available on Day 6!

The ebook Christmas anthology you have been waiting for: stories of love and hope

www.rafflecopter.com 

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including

Merry Christmas, Henry  

by Aubrey Wynne

Henry small cover

Henry, a shy and talented artist, moonlights as a security guard at a museum and loses his heart to a beautiful, melancholy woman in a painting. As his obsession grows, he finds a kindred soul who helps him in his search for happiness. On Christmas Eve, Henry dares to take a chance on love and fulfill his dream.

Aubrey's profile pic copy

About the Author

Aubrey Wynne resides in the Midwest with her husband, dogs, horses, mule and barn cats. She is an elementary teacher by trade, champion of children and animals by conscience, and author by night. Obsessions include history, travel, trail riding and all things Christmas. She is a proud member of the Coffee Talk Writers.

Linky – Author’s List

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