Romance Writers Weekly



Hello and welcome to our weekly hop. I hope you are all staying safe and well! This week’s challenge comes from the fabulous Brenda Margriet:

What’s your favourite book that “no one” has heard of? That’s a tongue in cheek way of asking you to name your favourite book that isn’t a classic or by an author that consistently sits on the best seller lists. It can be fiction or non-fiction.

I think there are lots of people who have heard of “Bluebird, Bluebird” by Attica Locke, but I don’t know if it’s as famous and well-known as it should be.  It did win the 2018 Edgar Award for Best Novel and that award is very well-deserved.

Let me give you a sample from the blurb:

East Texas plays by its own rules—a fact that Darren Mathews, a black Texas Ranger, knows all too well.

In the middle of a personal crisis that has put both his job and his marriage in jeopardy, Darren takes to Highway 59 on the trail of two seemingly related murders—a Black lawyer from Chicago and a local white woman—that have stirred up a hornet’s nest of resentment in the small town of Lark.

This story has unexpected twists intertwined with the collision of race and justice in America.

The characters are complex and beautifully drawn and I couldn’t put this book down. Then, I immediately read the sequel: Heaven, My Home.

Sometimes I discover an author I haven’t read before and it’s like getting the best present of all. And nothing inspires my writing like reading a wonderfully written book.

I can’t wait to see what the incredible A.S. Fenichel recommends. Oh, and check out her sale:

Ascension-2-2A.S,AS 2

And there are more- seven in all! on sale for $.99…click below!

A.S. Fenichel


Romance Writers Weekly



Hello and happy Tuesday. I am praying you are all staying healthy! And thanks for joining us. This week’s challenge comes from the wonderful Jenna Da Sie:

What fictional characters (from tv, books, movies) would you be friends with if you could?

Lots of choices here, but I’ll try to narrow it down: Jamie and Clare from “Outlander”: Faced with time travel and historical calamity and all the other complications in their lives, they are courageous and strong and they survive, still managing to keep their love intact.

Bill, Bishop and actually all of the main characters from “Deputy”: What a special show. This isn’t just your run-of-the-mill shoot-‘em-up. These people face real-life difficult dilemmas and they are so brave.

There’s Darren Mathews in “Bluebird, Bluebird” who faces crises and tensions every day and yet, allows nothing deter him from finding the truth.

Gwen Proctor in “Stillhouse Lake”: Presented with an untenable challenge, this woman rises up, ever protecting her children and herself. Amazing!

All of these characters are brave, honorable, strong, and true to themselves. They are interesting, multi-dimensional and I would love to be friends with any of them.

That’s the thing about great characters. You want to meet them and spend time with them. You want to know more about them. When I create characters, I try to make them people you would want to hang out with. Even the villains, although you might want to keep a distance. But even bad guys have to have more than just one trait; no one is all bad or all good all the time. And good guys have flaws; otherwise, they’d be boring.

The fun would be to sit down with some of the above characters and learn even more about them. So, lacking that, I can use my imagination and that’s okay, too.

Now let’s hop over to the fabulous Brenda Margriet, who also has some news:

Brenda Margriet has joined the Night Owl Romance Spring Fling online romance reader scavenger hunt event Between March 17th and the 31st, find the missing word in participating author’s book blurbs and you could win a Waterproof Kindle Paperwhite, Reader Inspired Prize Bag & Amazon gift cards. Make sure to check out Brenda’s Romance, ALLEGRO COURT, along the way. Enter the giveaway at:…/Art…/Spring-Fling-2020

Brenda promo

Romance Writers Weekly



Hello and happy Tuesday! Welcome to our hop. We are always so happy when you join us! I came up with this week’s challenge:

Flash Fiction Time! 500 words using rosebush, knees and mascara.

It was definitely getting to be spring. I nearly ran outside and into my small garden. I sank to my knees, ready to plant some new rosebushes and marveled again at the rich soil here, as black as mascara. I was just about to dig in when my neighbor stuck her head over the fence.

“Did you see the new guy who just moved in?” she asked. It was her way of saying ‘good morning’ I suppose.

“No thanks,” I answered, even though a tiny part of me was dying for details. I didn’t really want to encourage her. He was about my age and very good looking. Did I mention good looking?

“He’s single,” she announced, singsong, dragging the last word over ten syllables.

“Not interested, but again, thanks,” I responded, smiling to ease the sound of rejection. I had to admit, my heart did kick up a little at her declaration of his status.

“How do you know he’s single?” I asked, trying to sound merely curious.

“I asked him, of course.” Of course she did. Lydia had no filter and no hesitation. “I told him about you.” She looked victorious.

“Why would you do that?” Again, I worked to keep my voice neutral.

She shrugged. “He’s single, you’re single. Why not?”

Why not, indeed?

“Here you go,” she said, practically shoving a tray of cookies toward me. I stood, baffled, but didn’t reach to take it.

She sighed her frustration. “I made them so you could welcome him to the neighborhood.” She thrust the tray closer.

“Lydia? What are you doing?” I didn’t hate the idea, really.

“Go on. Put on some lipstick and comb your hair. Then take these over to him. What can it hurt?”

She had a point, but I couldn’t give in so easily. It would certainly encourage her nosy nature.

“What are you, my mother?” I asked, but I made the words sound gentle.

She put her free hand on her hip and lifted her chin. “Go on. I’ll wait here with the cookies while you fix yourself up. I baked all morning just for you.”

I laughed at that. There’s was something so inherently sweet about the woman, it was impossible to reject her. Or ignore her.

A few minutes later, freshly coiffed and painted, I found myself walking two doors down and ringing the bell. When he answered, my breath caught in my throat. He was even better looking close up. I held out the tray.

“Welcome to the neighborhood,” I said, my voice quavering a little.

He grinned and—wow. He flourished a bow, inviting me in. “What a pleasant surprise.” And I believe he meant it.


Now let’s pop over to the amazing Brenda Margriet and see what she came up with…

Romance Writers Weekly



Hello and welcome to the hop. So glad you’re here! This week’s challenge comes for the incredible Clair Brett:

How are we all doing on our New Year’s resolutions/goals? What are your tips for sticking to it. When do you decide to scream “Plot Twist” and go in a different direction.

I am very proud to say I am keeping up with my resolution, which was to write more. I am nearly finished with the first draft of Novel #14 (Memories Never Die) and I am having a great time. The characters pulled the plot in a different direction, but I’m okay with that. The villain is far more interesting this new way.

When it comes to being more disciplined and writing more, I hope I never scream “Plot Twist.” Being a writer is a very important part of who I am and I never want to stop. It isn’t always easy and many times it’s a challenge to prioritize, but there is such a feeling of accomplishment when I can write “The End” or “To Be Continued” when it’s a series. And I do love the process. Immersing myself in other places, other times, hanging out with other people is fabulous!

I’m considering several ideas for the next book. I think I have to find a time in history I want to visit and maybe have a ghost or two show up. You never know.

In the meantime, I need to finish this one. Look for it in late March or early April.


Now let’s pop on over to the amazing A.S. Fenichel and hear how she’s doing on her resolutions. And, she has a fabulous new book on pre-order! Check it out!

Andi pre-order


Romance Writers Weekly



Hello and welcome to this week’s hop. Thanks so much for joining us!

This week’s challenge comes from the fabulous A.S. Fenichel:

Leap Year! This is it folks; you get an entire extra day to do with as you wish. We’re always wanting more time and this year we actually get it. I got married on Leap Day in 2008, so this year I get a “real” anniversary. What will you do with your extra day?

First – Happy Anniversary, Andie!

An extra day? Well, now I have no excuse not to sit down and write several thousand words. And do some sewing – and there’s the laundry and dinner to make. Wait. That sounds like every other day.

I think that unless there’s a reason for celebration – like a birthday or an anniversary on the 29th— it might just slip by as just another day. It even falls on a Saturday this year. But the idea of Leap Year has always fascinated me.  It’s like a savings account. You take a few hours out of every year for three years and presto—you get another whole day! And, while savings accounts are valuable, it’s more important to savor every day.

So, to those who only get to really celebrate once every four years, I raise my glass. And to those of us who don’t have a special event on the 29th—celebrate anyway. It’s one more day of life and it will be what you make it.

Oh, I did I mention coming soon…


Now, let’s pop over to the fantastic Brenda Margriet and see what she had planned.

Romance Writers Weekly



Hello and welcome to this week’s hop. Thanks so much for joining us!!  This week’s challenge comes from the amazing Brenda Margriet:

Do you get the winter doldrums? How do you deal with cabin fever?

When I lived in Memphis, rainy days seemed to go on and on forever. And yes, it affected me. I lost enthusiasm and I had to force myself to sit down at the keyboard.

When I was writing, I became absorbed and the dark days became of little consequence. But I couldn’t write all day. At some point, I had to get up and look outside or walk the dog and the grey drizzle was a blanket of despair.

I did count myself luckier than some. I have been snowed in and sat watching movies for hours at a time. At least with clouds and rain I could get out.

What did I do to lessen the doldrums? Well, sometimes I went for a manicure. Or I ordered takeout for lunch from one of my favorite restaurants. We lived near a mall, so occasionally I would just wander through the stores and smile at people. That always lifted my mood. I rarely bought anything, because it was all about the shopping, not the buying.

Once in a while, I would go to the local theater and buy popcorn, then bring it home to watch movies on TV. Popcorn is the perfect food, after all.

And sometimes, I would just curl up on the couch with a good book and cuddle with my dog. Very therapeutic!

Last year, we moved to Florida and guess what? No more winter doldrums. Sunshine most of the time and storms just flash and are gone. Okay, except for the hurricanes. But we’ve been blessed so far.

My recommendation – when you feel sad, do something, anything, that makes you feel better. You don’t have to spend a lot of money. Cook something, play with your pet(s), read a good book and get lost in another world. And before you know it, your spirits will rise. And then you can remember spring isn’t that far away after all.

And speaking of spring…Guess what will be coming out…


Now let’s hop over to the fantastic A.S. Fenichel and see how she combats the winter blues….

Romance Writers Weekly



Happy Tuesday and welcome to our weekly hop. Thanks so much for joining us!

I came up with this week’s challenge:

It’s almost Valentine’s Day. Tell us your favorite Valentine story.

I happen to love finding the origins of things. The truth of how this holiday started is still a mystery and there are many versions, all of which are plausible. But this is my favorite…

According to one legend, Valentine (to be sainted later) was himself imprisoned. The reasons for his confinement range from refusing to convert to paganism to attempting to help others escape to marrying couples (it was said that men serving in the army could not marry because it would provide a distraction).  The story goes Valentine fell in love with a young girl–possibly his jailer’s daughter–who visited him during his confinement. Some say he healed her, but no one seems to know from what. Before his death, it is alleged that he wrote her a letter signed “From your Valentine”.

The stories about St. Valentine all emphasize his appeal as a sympathetic, heroic and–most importantly–romantic figure. During the middle ages, he was one of the most popular saints and the day, February 14th, was chosen as it was widely believed to be the beginning of birds’ mating season- a perfect day to choose for romance.

Of all the holidays, Valentine’s Day is my favorite because it’s all about love. All kinds of love. It’s a day to encourage us to express an emotion we sometimes forget and that caring for each other, being kind to each other, and loving should be everything.

So to you all, I wish you love, because it is the one thing that nourishes and sustains us and makes us better human beings.

Valentine #3   Valentine #1 Valentine #2

Now let’s pop over to the fabulous Jenna Da Die and read about her favorite…