Killing off the Adverbs – But, I really, really, really like them 3

Dear @StephenKing, You’re killing me.               -A Darling Killing off the Adverbs – But, I really, really, really like them. “Adverbs are not your friends,” wrote the man responsible for my wedging a chair under the door knobs of my closet keeping kid-eating clowns contained along with Hammer-pants, scrunchies, and other fashion faux pas of the nineties. Now, taking a class on revisions taught by Suzanne Purvis at Lawson Writing Academy, my love-hate relationship with all-things Stephen King is deepening. I mean this respectfully, because… duh, he’s Stephen King. He scared the bejesus out of me in high school. He made me cry, ugly, fat tears at the sacrifices people make for love. The man hits me in the feels. I haven’t read everything he’s ever written, because he’s not writing everything for me. I’m sure he’s not offended. What I do read draws […]

ManCandy Monday – Edgar Ramirez – A mi me gusta mucho. 1

Venezuelan actor Edgar Ramirez starred in the remake of Point Blank, Zero Dark Thirty, The Girl on the Train, and many others. He’s swoon worthy, right? Big, bold featured, and he’s got that something that inspires a gal to write. What do you think? What actor do you want to be your book boyfriend?

#WTFWednesday NYT disses Margaret Lee Shetterly, author of Hidden Figures 1

I’ve lived in “fly-over” states for more than twenty years so it doesn’t surprise me that the NYT chooses to ignore what most Americans like, care about, or vote. WTF? They changed their best sellers lists to EXCLUDE mass market books sales from their “best sellers” list, and completely dropped comics and Manga which, by the way, is growing in popularity. What does that really mean, you ask? Well, no longer will the total number of books sold, regardless of media format be used to determine if it’s a best seller. Why? Is the math really that hard? Paperback are SEGREGATED and now on it’s own list, found here.  What’s the big deal? Well, my friends, for those of us who read for entertainment, and choose to read across media formats, your vote no longer matters. That’s right… Why? How freaking hard is it to compare the numbers of ALL fiction books […]

#TravelTuesday Menopausal in Madrid Travel Tip #2 1

Travel tip #2 for the ladies of a certain age, and apparently dudes who discover. LAYERS! I traveled in winter, January 1-15, and the weather was great. By great, I mean cold. By cold, I mean anywhere from low-forties to mid-sixties. My traveling companions and I were able to remain comfortable, stripping off coats, scarves, sweaters, and hanging out in a tank top and jeans. My friends who experience hot-flashes I strongly recommend traveling in winter – it’s so much easier to get and stay comfortable than in summer, where the locals admit, can be stifling hot. Speaking of layers, my sister-in-law found THE BEST COAT! I’m in love with this thing. It marries form and function perfectly. It looked fabulous for all two weeks, and had a ton of pockets. Check it out here:  It’s the ScotteVest travel trench coat, and while it’s crazy expensive (at least I think […]

ManCandy Monday and Flash Fiction just because… “The Brooder” 1

  He was there, standing at the end of the bar, his dirty blond hair ruffled like he’d been combing his fingers through it in frustration. His gaze was dull, flicking around the busy room, looking bored and maybe tired. My neighbor, the guy who continually parked in my spot. The guy who I was pretty sure kept stealing my newspaper. The guy who never said hello, never smiled, and dammit, I still found him attractive. “Tara,” my best friend, Kat, whispered. “He’s coming over.” “You’re my neighbor.” His voice was low, but easy to hear over the din of the room. I nodded, wondering why he deigned to speak to me. And maybe I was trying to not squeak, or blush, or stutter. “Thanks for not towing my car.” “I will, if you park there again,” I said in a clear voice. It sounded normal, I thought. Serious. It was […]

#TravelTuesday – Menopausal in Madrid Travel Tips 1

I spent two amazing weeks in Europe traveling with my sisters-in-laws. It was so much fun, great scenery, and so-so wine. Sorry Spain, you’ve got nothing on Napa. The trip inspired me to write something more literary… It’s a work that’s still percolating in my mind. However, you know my snarky self, so I’ve also decided to write travel tips for those of us that are of a certain age and traveling. Check back weekly for more ideas:) TIP NUMBER ONE: DETROL Probably the most important for those of us that have given birth to children. DETROL – I’m totally serious. Screw “products” and just break down and ask your doctor for a prescription. It’s life changing. You’ll see more museums and less bathrooms. The best part, you only have to ask once for a prescription and it’s pretty much assumed you’ll get refills forever. The negatives, I have the generic, […]

Read This for Successful New Year’s Resolution’s about Dieting 1

I was just watching a commercial for new fitness equipment, and then one for a dieting program. As Americans, we spend money to eat less… It made me think, mostly because I’m overweight and find myself paying attention to the commercials, and then chiding myself that I could just eat less especially when there are starving people. So – how about this? Instead of paying for Nutrisystem, Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, etc. why not use that money and donate it to a a charity that helps your community or another part of the world. Check out Food For The Poor, or some other organization. You can check or to find a reputable charity. Just a thought… Happy New Year

My New Year Resolutions! 1

I believe Meghan Trainor has said it best on James Corden’s show. Happy New Year! I hope yours is filled with wonderful family and friends, and happiness. In all honesty, 2017 is going to be the year that I go through the entire house and RID it of all those things I’ve been hanging on to for no real reason, other than I have space. This is the year I’m going to officially be an empty-nester, and I’m embracing it head on.

SkyMall mags replacement 1

I miss SkyMall magazine. It’s why I enjoyed flying. I’ve found a reasonable replacement with the Grommet. This is a great idea, but the realist in me cringes at the idea of shopping for doll clothes that fit, because while I have options, these poor dolls are living in a Barbie world. Still, such a great idea and cute dolls.  

Heavenly hotness – This ManCandy Monday brought to you by Rebels n Readers 2016 1

I had a fabulous weekend in Huntington, WV. Beautiful fall weather, and so many readers at the Rebels n Readers Event! Wow!!! Thank you so much to Amy McGlone and Tonya Nagle for organizing this. Normally, I like to squirrel away in my house writing, snuggling the hubs, basically – I’m a homebody. BUT – I convinced myself to get out there and go to the mixer on Friday. I’m SO GLAD I DID! I met Dylan Horsch – that’s me pointing to his art. I tweeted the picture to my editors at Harlequin Desire. He’d make a great Alexei. Can you picture him in a suit and holding beautiful babies? I swoon at the thought. Even better, in this world of sharing my make-believe character, Dylan was so sweet as he listened. He’s getting a second sleeve, and I’m seriously hoping it will work out! You can follow him on […]

Bunny’s in Hell, but with her PR experience, she’ll turn things around! 1

A kinder, gentler, Satan… When a dyslexic child writes his Christmas letter to Satan by accident, Bunny, Satan’s new press secretary, decides it’s time for Satan’s PR makeover. A sweet and steamy paranormal with a good-natured Satan and the woman who makes him want to be a better Devil. Bunny’s sold her soul to save her sister, and discovers that Satan’s Hell includes her – in his bed. There’s sex, silliness, some light domination and submission… because… he’s SATAN, duh! Satan’s Press Secretary, FREE ON KINDLE UNLIMITED, only 99 cents without.   Admittedly, I thought up this title when I wanted to write a novel about a character similar to Jay Carney, because really, that’s a hell of a job… However, my mind always turns to romance, and happy-ever-afters, so… when my son suggested a dyslexic kid writes a letter to Santa, but it goes to Satan and he still […]

#WTF Wednesday – GQ’s rules for casual sex – but mine are better. 1

*This WTF article should be read with a grain of salt (preferably sitting on top of a French fry) and tongue in cheek. Ben Kassoy’s article in GQ offers six rules for casual sex, and as a romance author I was curious what the “rules” for a hook-up should be. I was expecting something like, don’t floss in bed, no farting – even in jest, or something more substantial like, have your friend track your phone. However, he was more pragmatic and it was rather… disconcerting. Honestly, the article isn’t written for middle-aged housewives and romance authors. First of all, I’m happily married and my idea of casual sex is leaving my socks on. Yeah, I’m rocking it. Secondly, casual hookups seem too awkward. I’m sure there’s many amazing people out there that are totally comfortable in their own skin. Even in my twenties and skinny, I was not that person. I […]

Goal, the new book by Elle Kennedy is wonderful! 1

I’ve fallen in love with this series and honestly I wasn’t sure I was going to buy Tucks story because Sabrina seemed so unlikable. But she isn’t. She’s strong, bright, tough, and Tucker is patient enough to wait out her stubbornness. Great story, I’m so glad I bought it. But, um… I’d really like Fitzy and Summers story. Pretty please? You can get it on amazon here:

#WTF Duane Euan Henderson is probably God’s gift to women… just sayin’ 1

He’s a cutie-patootie in my book, and it’s not just the blue eyes and charming Scottish accent. He’s extremely positive, clearly loves people, and I highly recommend hanging out on his Facebook page for some hilarious videos. Click on the title to see the video, “For the Girls that are ‘Unladylike”” – one of my favorites. Although, the one on short women had me giggling and thinking about my nieces… For your viewing pleasure: Duane Euan Henderson – Click on the orange title above to see the video. For girls that are “unladylike” Check out his Facebook page, or this video on it… You’ll seriously fall in love for this sweet guy. For anyone that didn’t get this text tonight …

#PitMad advice from an author with experience. 1

So, you got no love during #PitMad and you’re feeling horrible! The world has just verified that you are, in fact, NOT a writer – OR – take a breath, it more likely that maybe you need to work on your marketing. Have a glass of wine and let your Auntie Tobi give you some advice. My writing group friends have recently named me the “Dream Crusher” and while I don’t think I am; I do believe that having a professional understanding of the industry will help you when you try to persuade others to take an interest in your work. First, turn your ego OFF. For the rest of this article distance yourself as the author of your work, and think of yourself as an agent or editor, looking at your work through “commercial” eyes. What do you really have to offer? Agents and editors want books that sell. […]

#ManCandy is back with Sullivan Stapleton 1

After a break, ManCandy Mondays are back… This Fall is brought to you by the Australians, inspired by our first #ManCandy Monday fellow – Sullivan Stapleton. Not only is his name swoon-worthy in my very Irish opinion, but I love watching him and Jaimie Alexander on Blindspot. The premise of the show hooked me in, but it’s the cast of characters that keep me coming back. Season 2 premieres on Wednesday, September 14 at 10/9c on NBC. If you want a sneak peak, I’ve embedded the video below.  

Packing tip, because I’m tired of wrinkles! 1

I hate ironing, and when I’m traveling it really is the last thing I’d like to do. I’ve been searching the web for ideas on how to pack suits better. This is where I admit I pack for my husband, because I don’t wear suits. This video is quick and I really think the tailor has got a great idea with his ziplock bags leaving air inside so the suit and shirts don’t get crushed. Watch the video here. I recently packed a few dresses for my trip to RWA and hung them the moment I arrived. I’ll admit I brought dresses I wanted to wear, so two were cotton, and two were a rayon blend. Rayon doesn’t wrinkle, and the cotton managed to do fairly well. I laid the first cotton dress flat on my bed on top of a beach towel. I folded the excess skirt fabric so that the entire […]

I loved Helenkay Dimon’s Chain of Command. 1

Holy hotness!!! Great writing and great characters. I loved the banter between Sawyer and Hailey. She is a woman who can hold her own and stand up to a great, but occasionally, bossy guy. Sawyer is an alpha male with common sense, not your typical caveman. The cast of characters in Chain of Command drew me in and kept me turning the pages. I highly recommend this! It’s available at amazon for .99 cents and worth every penny:)