It’s a time to be Thankful

Chrissa ThankfulFor those of us in the United States, the Thanksgiving season is upon us. It’s a time to be grateful for the blessings that we have, even in the midst of hardships. Plus, who can resist all the delicious food? Or what we hope is delicious. It’s at this time of year we find out who can cook, who should be a chef, what not to do in the future, and dishes we’ll make a part of the meal as a new tradition. Last year, it took three grown adults over an hour to put together homemade stuffing even before it got baked. I wasn’t a huge fan of it, but they like it. However, we all agreed that it wasn’t quite worth the time and effort we put into it. We’ll stick to Stove Top from now on.

Raven Thankful

This year I’ll be at my sister’s house again. We still haven’t talked much about a menu, but I doubt it’ll change too much from past years. Gotta have the turkey, potatoes/gravy, stuffing, green bean casserole, and jellos. Oh, and rolls. Let’s not forget that. Then there’s the pies. I’m not a huge fan of pies, but there are a few that I like.

What’s your favorite Thanksgiving dish? If you don’t celebrate Thanksgiving, what’s your favorite food at family functions?

Larissa Thankful

But Thanksgiving isn’t just about food. It’s being thankful. I have so much to be thankful for in my life. Not everything goes as planned, but it all has a way of working out in the end. Many times, I need to learn a lesson of some kind through the trouble, and I’m evermore thankful for that. Challenges force us to grow, even when we’d rather stay as we are. I know I’ve grown this year. I also know that the more grateful that I am in life, the happier I am. Sometimes it’s hard to be grateful, but if we put in extra effort, even just to be thankful for a sunny day or that the dog puked on the hardwood instead of the carpet, we’ll find a sliver of happiness through the storms of life.

Jolly Thankful

The time of Thanksgiving also allows me the opportunity to not only think about what I’m grateful for, but also what my characters are grateful for. Being an author, the characters are alive to me. Each one has a life outside of those pages and they each have a variety of things they’re thankful for in their lives. The pictures in this post are just a few examples.

 

What are you thankful for this year?

Holly Thankful

I’m thankful to be in a new apartment in a safer area, that I still have a job, that I can write all the fun stories, and that my car gets me from point A to point B. (One of my sisters calls it my little wind-up car because it’s so small). I’m also thankful for the little things: my dog’s companionship, that I didn’t burn the last batch of brownies, and that I actually have another brownie mix in the cupboard. #browniesarelife

Aeron Thankful

As we go through life, let’s remember to be thankful all year, and not just at this time of the year. Gratitude truly does wonders for the happiness in our lives. It’s the small things that can make it possible to be happy through the storms of life.

~Heather

Snippet Saturday: August 10

And it’s release day for Zero Tolerance, so of course today’s snippet must come from that book! This book excites me more than most. It’s my favorite book baby thus far. It is a standalone, even though it’s listed as Book 4. It can be read 1st, 2nd, 3rd, or 4th in the First Blood series. It can even be read as its own book and you wouldn’t even have to bother reading the other books because it’s a standalone. Anyway, it’s live today and here’s the snippet!!

heather9

The gym wasn’t large, much like Pike had told us, but it was big enough for the two of us. Avery scooted into the room before me and headed straight for a mat where he stood on one side and glared at me, his version of bossing me around and ordering me to spar with him. I didn’t have a weapon, so this could be interesting.

My eyes stung as the room’s lights brightened when they sensed our movement, and I wished I’d remembered to grab my sunglasses. Avery noticed the moisture in my eyes and grinned. I was doomed.

We both readied ourselves, him ready to pounce while I raised my hands in a defensive stance. I’d never faced off with a shifter before yesterday, so I had no idea if this was right or if I needed to handle him another way. I was about to find out.

Avery made the first move, diving at my legs instead of my face like I’d expected. I didn’t have a chance to jump out of the way, and he threw me backward, my body flying away from the mat so I landed hard on the room’s tile floor. Whoever decided to put tile in a gym instead of carpet needed their head examined.

A slow clapping announced we had company as Avery gave my face a quick lick with his rough, long tongue. I pushed him away as he chuffed a laugh, not wanting to know who’d seen me take flight, but also too curious not to know. My eyes landed on a woman who was far slender than most I’d met already who were more burly than slender, well, except for Jezzelle. This woman was much shorter, but also had a gleam in her eyes that warned she wasn’t someone I’d want to mess with.

(Available on Amazon and Kindle Unlimited)

mybook.to/ZeroTolerance1

#Indiebooklist Monday: Week 16

Week 16

Week 16: Melanie Gilbert

Book: Alpha King

Well now, if there’s anything you want to know about Melanie (I mean anything), I’m your person. I know way more about her than most people, considering she’s my sister. So if there’s anything embarrassing or fun you want to know, hit me up! I’d do a “This is how we met” explanation, but that would be awkward, so I’ll leave it that I’m a few minutes older than she is, and yes, I hang it over her head. I also can tell you that she’s an amazing author! Her stories are unique and fun, with twists and turns you don’t see coming. Alpha King is awesome! If you love shifter books and you haven’t read it yet…you need to remedy that quickly. Like, now. Right now. And I’m not just saying that because Melanie probably has something on me. Nope, it’s the truth! Read it!

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MelanieGilbertAuthor

By the age of nineteen, Ryske thought he’d be long gone from his pack in North Carolina. As an arctic wolf shifter in a pack of red wolves, he’s an outcast. When he finds himself thrown into a portal to another world, he’s in way over his head.

In a world where wolves once roamed with other shifters and mages, he competes to claim the princess’s hand, making him instant enemies with Dirk, a lion shifter. But what choice does Ryske have other than to fight for the princess when a wolf, not a lion, is destined to be crowned Alpha King?

Alpha King: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07DV4PZ6Q/

Travel Thursday: Hale, Michigan, USA

I’ve been wanting to add more topics to my blog, and this begins one of those topics! I love to travel, but I don’t get to do a lot of it…yet. While thinking about this topic, I realized there’s so many fun and interesting places that I’ve been that most of my readers have either never heard of or haven’t had a chance to go, so this is me traveling again via the internet! There are also so many other places I want to visit, and if you happen to live in the area I discuss, feel free to comment on the posts! I’m excited to do these, and I hope you get a better flavor of what I’m like.

Today’s Journey: Hale, MI

Map of MI

That little red dot is Hale.

On today’s trip around the world, we’re starting off a little closer to home. My home, to be exact, or rather, the home of my childhood and young adult years. I grew up in a little town in the northeastern lower peninsula named Hale. (For those who may not know, Michigan has two peninsulas, the Lower and Upper.) Both peninsulas are beautiful! What I love most about Hale is that it’s surrounded by forests, lakes, and farms.

Hale

Google maps screenshot of downtown Hale!

Before moving to Madison, WI, I’d lived in a few bigger cities, but nothing prepared me for Madison’s size and living here. It’s honestly a breath of fresh air to go home where life moves a bit slower and you can avoid and weekend traffic by taking the back dirt roads. Seriously, traffic in Michigan moves in two directions on summer and holiday weekends: North on Friday night and South on Sunday. If you want to avoid the rush, go the opposite direction. Once Hale started getting busy, we always took the back roads where we needed to go.

One of my favorite things to do was to walk in my grandpa’s woods. I’d also play with my sisters and cousins in them. We’d get lost, get our feet wet, and give a pint of blood each to Michigan’s state bird: the mosquito. Because of this, I’ve grown to love nature so much. My goal is to eventually own a house out in the middle of the woods. Living in the city is killing me slowly. It’s also why you’ll find that so many of my stories’ settings are rural and in forests. If I could spend my time anywhere, it would be the forest, first and foremost.

If you’re ever in the area and feel like stopping by Hale to check it out, here’s a few things to note:

*You’ll need to purchase a Kocher’s doughnut

*Grab an ice cream cone at The Victorian Cafe

*Attempt to run up all the stares at Iargo Springs (not far out of town and totally worth it)

*While you’re at Iargo, check out Lumberman’s monument just up the road

*Buy some bacon from Alward’s Market

*There are about 60 lakes in the vicinity, so take a swim or go kayaking!

*Visit my dad and sister at Bernard Building Center (Bonus points if you let Tasha design your kitchen/bath)

*Finally, check out the small town restaurants. You won’t want to miss them!

http://www.halemi.com/

http://www.haleyes.org

Hale Downtown

 

Snippet Saturday: March 2

Today’s Snippet is from Phoenix Awakened, my upcoming release! Available for pre-order. Releasing April 13th.

The closer the car came, the more the headlights blinded me. When the car pulled up beside me, I was able to make out the outline of a large jeep, which likely had four-wheel drive and could navigate in this slush better than my bald-tired car. Instead of rolling the driver’s window down like I thought would happen, the driver opened the door and hopped out. Since my eyesight was still clear, I was able to make out his ginger colored hair that I assumed had once been styled so the longer hair on top was slicked back, but at the moment, a long day of mussing with it had the strands falling out of place to cover the shorter trimmed sides. A thick, short beard helped shield his face from the wind, and a thick coat that hugged his body shielded a manly torso.
Phoenix Teaser 6However, it was his height that stalled my footsteps as he approached, and I tried to keep my anxiety in check. This man was well over six feet tall, rivalling a male dragon. Maybe I was wrong. Maybe they would come from the other direction, and maybe they wouldn’t want to end me quickly, but take their time beating me to a pulp.
It took the man until he was on top of me to notice my tense stance and wary glare. When he did, he stepped closer and reached out to me, like I was a deer ready to flee. I retreated as he stepped closer, but he was well within range of my senses.
Taking a deep breath, I scented the air for the scent of dragon. None reached me. Human, then. Still, that didn’t mean he wasn’t a threat. At this point, everyone was considered a threat to my existence.
“I didn’t mean to startle you,” he murmured in a rough baritone voice, stepping closer.
Sure he didn’t. I moved into a defensive position, keeping my hands in front of my face just like my father taught me. If he came any closer, I’d kick him in the family jewels, which I learned from my mother. My parents had both made sure I knew how to protect myself. Since he was human, I’d have to be gentler so I wouldn’t permanently damage him since dragons were far stronger than his kind. That didn’t mean I’d have to take it easy on him, though. I’d bring him to the ground without hesitation and remorse. Then I would run.

 

Phoenix Awakened:

US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07NMNCF34

UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07NMNCF34

#Indiebooklist Monday: Week 8

Week 8

Week 8: Julie Trettel

Book: One True Mate

When I published my first book, I was a fish out of water and so tiny in this world that I knew nobody and nobody knew me. Then this woman (Julie Trettel) messaged me that she’d read my book and liked it, and we started chatting. Every day chatting. It’s gotten to the point where it’s almost freaky if one of us doesn’t message the other at least once a day to check  in, and Julie has become as close to a sister to me as my own. She’s amazing and supportive, and overall such a wonderful person! If I ever need anything, I know I can go to her, and she can come to me. When she first told me about the idea for this book, I admit, I pushed hard for her to self publish it. I knew without a doubt she could do it and be successful! And this book is amazing! Not just the book, the whole series, and the spin off series! Honestly, if you love werewolves, check out this book. You won’t be disappointed in the least (and I’m not just saying that because she’s my bestie!).

P.S. You should check out Julie’s book In Plain Sight tomorrow when it releases!!!

Website: https://www.julietrettel.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorjulietrettel/

Kelsey Adams is alone, and has been since childhood. Running away is all she knows and necessary to preserve her deepest, darkest secret. She can not afford for anyone to get close, or know about the monster within. But when she lands a lucrative job as an administrative assistant to Kyle Westin, CEO of the Westin Foundation, her life changes and everything’s at stake. Can she conceal her growing feelings and her true self from this enigmatic, strong willed man, or will her world fall apart?

Kyle Westin, an alpha male who always gets what he wants, has watched and waited for the little she-wolf he knows is his perfect mate to show any signs of recognition. For two years he endures her unnecessary formality and daily rejections with a patience he did not know he possessed. But even Kyle has his limits…. Can he make Kelsey notice him as someone other than her boss and break down the walls she built around her heart? Or will Kelsey do what she has always done — run?

One True Mate: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B071HXL3R2/

Valentine’s Day present to myself: A cover reveal!

Last November, I participated in NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, along with many other authors. The goal: write a 50k word novel in the month of November. Well, mine reached 50k by halfway through the month, so I decided to see if I could pull off 100k since my novel wasn’t even close to being finished. If you were keeping up with me, you know that I reached my goal and finished the novel, writing over 104k words in one month. It was crazy!

Well, I’m happy to report that this book is now available for  pre-order, for a special pre-order price of $.99! It releases April 13th, and I can’t wait! But for now: the cover reveal!

Phoenix Ebook Final

Fire Dragons, the most powerful dragon race on Earth.

Until the war left them as shadows of the race they once were.

Little more than slaves to the water dragons, they’re kept in line through destitute conditions and tracking devices. Sparks has known both lives, the prosperous and the starving, so when the opportunity arises for a little indulgence, she jumps at the chance, setting into motion a chain of events from which there is no turning back. With her fire power and dragon acting out, Sparks has no choice but to attempt escape, or face the consequences of her actions.

On the run, Sparks’s countdown begins. If she can’t remove the tracker, she’s dead. So when a gorgeous stranger shows up offering his help in exchange for hers, she has little choice but to accept. It isn’t long before Sparks discovers that Phoenix may be more than he seems, and that their lives are tied together in ways neither expected. Time is of the essence, but will they have enough to save both Sparks and her people from the water dragons?

US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07NMNCF34

UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07NMNCF34