Happy New Year!

happy new yearI can’t believe another year has come and gone. What a year it was! 2014 was filled with some pretty amazing experiences for me. My first novel was published one year ago yesterday. The Weather Girl was beginning of this wild ride I hope I never have to get off. I spent the rest of the year writing, writing, writing. I managed to submit three more books to Harlequin this year – that was no easy feat. Having never worked on a deadline before, I wasn’t sure I was going to do it. Thanks to a couple extensions, I got all three manuscripts in before the year was done. The Chicago Sisters series has been a labor of love. The Better Man was published in September. The Best Laid Plans is coming in March and The Hardest Fight will be out sometime in the fall.

I’ve learned so much this year, met so many incredible people, and appreciate all the support I’ve been given from readers, friends, family, and other authors. I’ve learned that it’s important to manage your time effectively. I spent more late nights/early mornings trying to finish and polish my manuscripts than I care to admit. Setting daily/weekly writing goals and meeting them will be one of my goals for 2015. I also learned that there’s always something more to learn. Whether it’s research for a story or about how to write a better story – I certainly don’t know everything. Not even close. I love that there are so many resources out there. I’ve discovered some wonderful author and writing blogs. Attending the RWA National conference was one of the highlights of my year. I got to sit in several workshops and hear from some amazing authors with way more experience than me. They gave some great advice on how to show not tell. Hopefully, what I’ve learned will translate into even better novels. Only time will tell.

So, what’s next? I have a few ideas floating through my head. I’ve begun jotting down some storylines and hope to submit some proposals soon. My love of music and gorgeous rockstars has me wanting to write about a guy with a guitar. We’ll see what happens!IMG_1780

For now, my focus will be on getting ready for the release of The Best Laid Plans. I’ve seen the cover but can’t share it just yet. I did see that Amazon has the back of the book blurb, so that I will share!

She planned on falling in love. Just not with him!

Emma Everhart’s life is going according to plan. Finish nursing school with flying colors… Check. Get a great job in the ER… Check. Marry a handsome doctor and have two babies, three years apart… Not quite yet. But with a dreamy new doctor joining the hospital staff, she’s so close she can almost taste the wedding cake. Now is not the time to let the tall, dark and flirtatious paramedic Charlie Fletcher distract her! He may be the best date and best kiss she’s ever had, but he’s definitely not part of her plan. No matter how he makes her feel…

Oh, I love Charlie so much and I can’t wait for everyone to get to know him better. If you read The Better Man, you’ve met Charlie and Emma, but there is so much more fun to be had. You also get to see what’s happening with Kendall and Max since their story finished. Writing a series makes it easy for me to keep some of my favorite characters alive. I do have a Pinterest board with a few photos used for inspiration if you are interested!

You can pre-order the ebook on Amazon or wait until March 1st for the paperback on Harlequin.com!

Happy New Year everybody. I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait for what’s next!


P.S. I’ll be in big trouble if I don’t wish my dad a happy birthday. He’s celebrating #66 this year!!  Happy birthday, Dad!

Cover Reveal – THE BETTER MAN

I am so excited for my next novel to come out. The Better Man is the first in a three-book series that introduces us to the Everhart sisters, Kendall, Emma, and Lucy. Kendall is the heart of The Better Man. But it’s Max, the hero, who takes center stage here.  Without further ado, here’s my September Heartwarming cover!

The Better Man Final Cover


Back of the book blurb:

Kendall Montgomery’s six-year-old son has barely spoken in the past year, locked in his world of silent grief. Then one day, he spots his dead father across a crowded street.

Max Jordan moved to Chicago to be closer to his own son and prove he can be a better father than his deadbeat dad. His striking resemblance to Kendall’s husband and his track record with fatherhood make her determined to keep her distance…until Max helps her little boy come out of his shell. But can she trust him with their future? How can she be sure he won’t take off just when they need him most?

I’m in love with this cover. Max looks great and the little boy is precious. If your interested, I have a Pinterest board full of inspiration for this story. You can see what I think Max and Simon look like by clicking HERE.

Best of all, The Better Man is available for preorder on Amazon – HERE!

Lastly, the Heartwarming team is gearing up to attend the RWA National Conference in San Antonio at the end of the month.

As part of our celebration, we’re giving away bracelets to readers, reviewers, and other authors who tell us they love Sweet and Heartwarming Romance!


You have two ways to win:

1. Tell us via social media how much you love Sweet and Heartwarming Romance! Post a comment here. Post a comment on our Facebook page under our Sweet and Heartwarming Posts (and like us!). Share our post on Facebook with the #GoHeartwarming hashtag. Tweet about our giveaway: I love Sweet and Heartwarming Romance! #GoHeartwarming. Spread the word on Goodreads. Every comment/post/share/like/tweet/hashtag is an entry. We’ll track entries each week! We’re giving away 50 bracelets to our social media supporters during the month of July!

2. To our sweet romance fans and our writing sisters who’ll be attending either the RWA Literacy Booksigning July 23rd in San Antonio at the San Antonio Marriott Rivercenter OR attending the RWA conference July 23-26, if you come across a Harlequin Heartwarming Author wearing a pin like the one shown below (green beads and the distinctive “H”), all you have to do is say: I love Sweet and Heartwarming Romance! And you’re an instant winner!

I will be wearing these lovely pins made by fellow author Anna J Stewart. I love the sun for The Weather Girl, and yes, those are tiny little books with actual pages! So, come say hello if you are at the conference. I would love to hand out bracelets to everyone!photo (12)



Line edits and Amazon

It’s been awhile since I posted but life has been getting hectic.  With three kids and activities galore, there is very little down time in my life at the moment.  School is in full swing and I’m back at work.  I love my job, but sometimes I can’t help but think how awesome it would be if this writing gig got serious.

Surprisingly, I still feel this way even after I got my line edits back.

After perusing the document and all the slashes and comment boxes, I emailed my editor – Please tell me that everyone has this much red when they get their line edits back.  She assured me I have just as much red as the next guy and not to be worried.

I do have to say it is amazing to have a real editor go over your work. Not that I don’t appreciate all the eyes that have looked over my work (Mom, I swear, you are so great) but the people who do this for a living, know what they’re doing.  

That sentence that took me twenty words to get my point across?  Knocked down to five.  

That perfect word I just couldn’t think of?  She nailed it.  

Do you have any idea how many times I used the phrase “that much was clear” or had my characters nod?  Too many. Their necks should thank Claire for cutting out lots and lots of nodding.  

I also rhyme unintentionally. Literally a poet who didn’t know it.

Basically, Claire is awesome.

I was so curious about the editing process, having never gone through it before.  And I’ll admit it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be.  The process for this book has gone something like this – review and revisions with the senior editor, line edits with the editor assistant, copy edit, author review, then off to the proofreaders. I am in the author review stage.

The line edits were fun.  There were comments and questions and lots of commas added and deleted.  (I hate commas, by the way!)  My editor lives in Canada and I learned through this process that not everyone knows what a high school booster club is or that a flip flop is the same thing as a handspring.  I did a little research on the pop vs. soda vs. Coke labels based on geographic location and had to make sure my characters called it the right thing. (Texans lean towards Coke, if you were wondering.)

I also learned how clean Heartwarming really is.  Let’s just say that if you are looking for something that’s like that book I won’t name but rhymes with Nifty Braids of Hay, THE WEATHER GIRL is not going to be for you.  This is definitely a book I will not be ashamed to let my children or my students or my student’s parents read.  It’s good, wholesome fun.  Although, I did fight for some more kissing – because, come on, there needs to be some kissing.

What I hope is that this story and these characters have enough heart that nobody misses the smut that seems so popular today.  I know that I like them more and more with every reread I do.  And I’m on read 105,394 (approximately, of course!)

Lastly, if you didn’t see my Facebook post, I’m now on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.  Which is completely insane.  The book publishing date also got moved up from February to January.  Looks like I will become a published author 17 days before I turn 40!  This will, no doubt, be the best birthday ever.

Even more exciting, I got an official back of the book blurb!

Summer Raines knows when it’s going to rain. She can just feel it. That’s why the local weather girl’s so good at her job. Too bad she couldn’t have foreseen the tumultuous arrival of Travis Lockwood, everybody’s favorite star NFL quarterback. Make that former star NFL quarterback. Sidelined back to Texas after an injury forced him out of his career, now the golden boy—shouldn’t he be humbled by his adversity, even a little?—is trying to steal her precious on-air time. Summer is reduced to reporting on the weather from…football games. It’s enough to make her quit and follow her dream of becoming a storm-chaser like her parents. Except she’s got to stay put; her grandparents need her. She’s stuck with a career that’s going nowhere and a man who delights in her refusal to be charmed. Falling in love isn’t nearly as easy as predicting the weather.

All that’s left is a cover and the book in my hand.  I CANNOT wait.  I hope to reveal the cover soon.  They tell me maybe in October.

That’s all for now.  I have to go back to my final edits!