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Welcome to Tuesday and this week’s hop. The challenge today comes from the wonderful A.S. Fenichel:

It’s HOT! What’s your favorite way to keep cool during the Dog Days of Summer? It can be anything…

Of course I go to the movies if it’s the weekend. I love movies. And the theatres are cool and the seats comfortable and I get a mini vacation for two hours while the story takes me away. Seriously, what could be better?

But if there isn’t a movie I want to see playing in the theatre (horrors!), there is always my living room, a Hallmark movie and ice cream. All of the same criteria as above applies.

However, since it has been really hot…if I feel like a sloth after all that popcorn and ice cream, I can trot over to the mall and window shop. It’s cool there and the walking is great exercise. That, however, is a dangerous pastime since I nearly always see something I cannot live without. Yes, usually shoes. I know, I know…

If it’s during the week, however, guilt steps in, so I turn down the temperature in my office, sit my butt in the chair and work. Which I do really enjoy. It’s just more fun to play hooky sometimes, especially when it’s summertime.

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Let’s pop over to see what the fabulous A.S. Fenichel does to keep cool…

http://asfenichel.com/blog

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Romance Writers Weekly

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It’s Tuesday and time again for our weekly hop. So glad you’re here! This week’s challenge comes from the wonderful Brenda Margriet:

What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given? Could be in writing, in life, for your career. What’s the one thing that has stuck with you through the years?

The best advice I ever got was the most simple: Don’t quit. Writing is a solitary endeavor and, many times, there’s very little encouragement or even positive feedback. When I first started writing novels, I had a critique partner whose comments made me want to go to bed, crawl into a fetal position and never write another word. But my husband said “Don’t quit”.

Because the truth is, if you give up, nothing will happen. Nothing. But if you keep at it, and this is true for pretty much everything in life, something will come of it. My husband was right. So I kept going. And I got my first contract.  And then my second and on from there.

Believe me, I know how hard it is to pull up your big girl (or big boy) pants and keep moving. And it is okay to have the occasional pity party. Nothing wrong with a little respite. As long as that doesn’t become the habit.

If you’re a writer, you have stories to tell. And although we all want that audience, want to reach people and give them a happily ever after, you have to do it for yourself first. If you don’t, all those stories in your head just might make your brain explode.

So, from the woman who spent a day in bed, curled up and crying, here is published book number eleven….

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Now, let’s hop over to the incredible A.S. Fenichel and hear what’s kept her going…

http://asfenichel.com/blog

Romance Writers Weekly

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Happy Tuesday and welcome. So glad you’re here! This week’s challenge comes from the wonderful Jenna Da Sie:

Have you seen any good movies this summer? Write a review of one you saw. If you haven’t seen one, tell which one you want to see.

Okay, confession time. I love movies. Love them. I just relish every part, from buying the popcorn and taking bites on the way into the theatre, to the previews, to immersing myself in the story played out in front of me.

Now, this is not to say I am not discriminating. I have definitely seen some movies and wanted to ask for my money back. But this summer I’ve seen three I really enjoyed.

First, there was “Oceans 8“. It was a fun story of how to rob a fortune from the Met Gala. Improbable? Of course, but a great time all the same. And, not to be a spoiler, but there is a very satisfying twist at the end. And who doesn’t love Sandra Bullock?

Then I saw “Jurassic World-Fallen Kingdom“. Lots of action and excitement. Again, anything like real life? Nope. Which is the best part. I would hate to wake up with a dinosaur in my front yard.

And last, but not least—”Skyscraper“. Starring The Rock. Which is enough in itself. Can you say eye-candy? Pure escapism and lots of thrills. Everything I go to the movies for.

On the big screen, give me hunky men, daring action and a good story, even if it does stretch the bounds of reality.

I guess that means the new Mission-Impossible is in my future…

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Now, let’s hop over and see what the amazing Dani Jace saw…

http://www.danijace.com/blog

 

 

Romance Writers Weekly

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Hello and welcome to our weekly hop. So happy you stopped by! This week’s challenge comes from me:

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?

There are so many places I would love to visit (or revisit) that it would be difficult to pick just one. I dream about going to places like Australia and New Zealand, to Tahiti and to Africa. How wonderful to visit Rome again and trek along the green hillsides of Ireland in the summer. And Scotland! But, since the challenge is to choose, I think I would have to pick a castle in England or the British Isles. So many of my books are set in various eras there, I would love to actually be able to write sitting in front of a roaring fire in the main hall of one of those ancient structures. I could only imagine history seeping from the walls and characters calling to me from the corridors. My thoughts would run wild.

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I would choose a castle with a garden that overlooks the sea. And I would dress in a long lace gown and wear a bonnet. Perhaps I would even ride a horse across a meadow. Slipping into history…but with all the modern conveniences. It would be perfect!

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Now let’s pop over to the fabulous Brenda Margriet and see what destination she would choose:

http://www.brendamargriet.com/blog

Romance Writers Weekly

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Happy middle of July. Thanks for joining us. This week’s challenge comes from the amazing A.S. Fenichel:

Flash Fiction time. Write a story 500 words or less using the words: juicy, precious and fan. Extra points for an outdoor setting.

Even the grass was simmering. What Carol wouldn’t give for a fan right now. There was precious little breeze and the perspiration soaked through her clothes. But her dog, Monkey, didn’t seem to mind. Carol watched as the pup ran back and forth, jumping at butterflies and chasing imaginary playmates.

Carol leaned back on her elbows and pushed air in and out. She would have left ten minutes ago, but the dog was having so much fun. Poor little thing had to spend most of her days inside while Carol labored at a job she hated. Writing for the magazine had been her dream, until they stuck her in the new Recipes section. She longed to sink her teeth into a really juicy crime story. Or something a little bit more exciting than another way to make macaroni salad.

“Is that your dog?”

The deep voice shook her out of her reverie and Carol sat up straight.

“Yes. Her name is Monkey. Is she bothering you?”

She didn’t want to sound defensive, but this was a dog park and Monkey never bothered anyone. Carol’s eyes travelled up and up and up, past well-formed calves, khaki shorts and a blue polo shirt. Up more to a square jaw, and piercing gray eyes. Smiling eyes.

“She’s adorable.”

Carol relaxed and smiled back. “Thanks.”

“Mind if I join you?”

Seriously? “Please.”

“I’m Mike and I’m thinking about getting a dog. I just have no idea what kind. What’s Monkey?”

“Mostly terrier. Very smart, very opinionated, but very loyal.”

“I was thinking about—a bigger one—but she sure is cute.”

And so are you. “She’s the best. I’m Carol, by the way.”

“I think we met. Aren’t you a writer?”

“I am. And you are?”

“I’m the executive chef at Hampton’s. You came by for a recipe for basil tomato soup.”

“Of course. I remember you.” She had thought at the time how handsome he was. And such a fabulous cook. But she had just broken up with her boyfriend and was not in the market. Now, though, she was long over the ex and Mike was still very good-looking.

“So, Mike, if you like, I could maybe go to the shelter with you and help you pick out a new friend.” The blush warmed her cheeks. “Oh, that was pretty forward, I guess.”

He grinned. That would be great. But only if you let me take you to dinner afterward.”

Now the heat wasn’t coming from the sun…

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Let’s hop over and see what the fabulous A.S. Fenichel wrote… http://asfenichel.com/blog

Romance Writers Weekly

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Happy Tuesday and welcome to our hop. Thanks for coming. This week’s challenge comes from the incredible Brenda Margriet:

My oldest daughter is getting married this summer, and my second daughter next year, which has me thinking about how people meet and fall in love. Share your favourite story. It could be you and your spouse, your parents, friends or family.

I guess I don’t really have a particular favorite story. But I do have thoughts about falling in love. I like to believe in destiny, kismet, fate. Because people come together in the strangest ways and I don’t think it’s random. Then again, maybe it’s just some chemical attraction that brings two people together. Or, perhaps, being in the right place at the right time? I don’t know the answer.

It could be our friends know who the right person is for us sometimes—hence the successful blind date. (We won’t talk about the epic fails).

All I know is when I met my husband, it felt—right. Fireworks didn’t light up the skies, planets didn’t collide. But for the first time in a very long time, I was home.

There is a lot to be said for the passionate explosion when you first meet someone (we write about that all the time), but I think more often than not, it’s a progression. A quiet easing into the heart that warms and feels safe. True love grows.

Oh, let’s not completely ignore the attraction part. When I first saw my husband, (on a set-up dinner date) he was staring at my legs. Hard not to guess his thoughts. But, he maintained as a gentleman and spent the remainder of the night looking into my eyes.

Marriage, as they say, is work and that’s true. It’s the small things that are important; the thoughtful gestures like bringing home flowers for no particular occasion, like keeping himself occupied when I’m working, like taking over all the chores when I’m tired.

Love is not a flighty bird that hovers and entices. It’s a rock that stands firm no matter what comes. It’s so much more than the act of falling. It’s the building of supports together to keep each other strong.

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Now let’s hop over and hear from the incredible Jenna Da Sie…

http://jennadasie.com

Romance Writers Weekly

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Happy Tuesday and welcome to our hop! This week’s challenge comes from the amazing Dani Jace:

This is 4th of July week for those in the US, but most countries have an Independence Day of similar celebration. What was your tradition growing up? Fireworks? Trip to the beach? Cookout? As an adult, what’s your favorite Independence Day activity or what would you love to do?

When I was a kid, there were always fireworks and barbeques. I remember one year we were even allowed to sit on the flat part of our roof to get a better view of the light show.

Years later, as an adult, in California, I had a horse and a group of us would ride to the highest point in Griffith Park and watch the fireworks. I was always amazed that the horses seemed to enjoy the lights, too. I would have thought they might be frightened, but they just watched with eyes wide. Just like the humans.

These days, I still look forward to the fireworks most of all. The night of the 4th, the sky around here lights up with an exploding, glorious, multicolored display. And it fills me with pleasure.

I love the 4th of July. It is such a wonderful celebration and even if it’s raining, it’s still summer and that makes it perfect.

And, it makes me take time and appreciate we have our freedom and that is so worth a party.

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Now let’s hop over and see what the fabulous A.S Fenichel likes about the Fourth of July…

http://asfenichel.com