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May 18, 2017

Cake Fail - if at first you don't succeed, go buy #happybirthday #newbook #boxedset #MFRWorg


I have baked for most of my life and especially so throughout my kiddoes younger lives. I even took cake decorating classes and always made sweet confections for family and friends.

And then there was yesterday. A cake fail.

I really wanted to bake a layer cake for #2’s birthday. So after I removed the finished layers from the oven and let them cool, I did what I always have done--run my spatula around the inside edge, set a plate on top of the pan and flipped it over. Half stuck. I was like OMG. I set a lot of the broken pieces on top, wondering if I could do something with the mess besides cake balls (not my fav). I eyeballed the second layer and repeat and flip and half stuck.

I was feeling jinxed.

I decided Whole Foods was getting a nice visit from VB because I wasn’t going to waste my time with another possible failure.

I dumped the second layer on top of the first. Put the clear glass cake dome on top and pushed the stand in the corner. I also ate the nice chunky pan remnants and they were totally yummy.
So what does cake fail have to do with my new short story, “Raving Beauty?”

Let’s take a peek at heroine Kelly Stinson who was coerced into representing Yahoo! Ranch Steakhouse in the Sommerville Chamber of Commerce’s pageant. As Kelly struts across the stage, let’s take a read:

Gently, my pal nudged me forward. Hearing the audience’s whoops and claps, I plastered a smile on my face and took a step. The heel of my four-inch stiletto caught in a sizeable indentation in the hardwood floor. With a fast prayer, I managed to correct myself before executing a major swan dive off-stage and strode with the confidence one could summon when thrust into a group of girls ten years younger and twenty pounds lighter.

         "Kelly is the owner of Creative Boutique which specializes in goods crafted by Sommerville locals. She loves to read, run, and misses her favorite companion, her kitty, Romper." The announcer bent toward the microphone. "How about a big Texas howdy for Kelly?"

         Using the skills I'd honed as an erstwhile fashion model in the golden days of college, I crossed the stage toward the podium, paused with hands on my hips. When the applause had died, I pivoted to move center stage. As my heel caught another divot, grace abandoned me. With a pop-pop-pop, my ankle bowed cockeye, and this time, my worst nightmare came true. I tumbled over the edge of the stage.

Landing flat on my flipside, I blinked vacantly at the acoustical tile ceiling. Somewhere in my stupor, I heard a chorus of gasps, a pounding of feet, and someone hurdling over the rows of chairs, launching to my side. A hand swept along my face and down my arm, pausing intermittently to compress. I fluttered my eyes once. Twice. When able to focus a third time, I stared into the grass-green irises of Ben Stewart.

LOL. I love this excerpt, especially because it brings back my good ol’ days of when I represented my friend’s moped shop in a recreational vehicle pageant. There is good news about that venture—no swan dive offstage.

Preorder Just You and Me boxed set featuring my romantic comedy short story, “Raving Beauty,” at:


 
True confession time: have you had a baking failure?
 



 

May 9, 2017

Guest Princess Tina Susedik!

Please give a warm welcome to our guest princess, Tina Susedik!

Speed Round (one word only answer):
Favorite movie:
Favorite book: A Knight in Shining Armor
Last book read: Missing : The Lady Said No by Jacquie Biggar
Favorite color: Yellow
Stilettos or flipflops: flipflops
Coffee or tea: tea
Ebook or paperback: Both
Pencil or pen:Both
Favorite song: Thank You by Led Zepplin
Streak or not: Not
Favorite dessert: Chocolate
Champagne or gin: Champagne
Paranormal or Historical: Historical
Ginger or Mary Ann: Mary Ann
Favorite TV show: None
Hot or cold: Hot
POV: Third
I'd die if I don't have: Wear a bra

One Line Blurb:

May 2, 2017

Michelle Miles: What's your inspiration?

I don't really have a lot to blog about lately. I'm kind of in a funk. My day job is a stressful mess at the moment and when I have that sort of disruption, it really messes with my writing chi.

So I look for inspiration elsewhere. I'm fond of gardens. I have a Pinterest board devoted to them. I constantly find fun and new pictures to pin. I found this one this morning:


It fuels my imagination. And then of course, there's the art by Anne Stokes. She's amazing!


I just love her dragons.

My awesome husband is in the process of building a deck for the gazebo I had to have. I have big ideas for it. It includes a curved flagstone pathway leading up to with purple ground cover planted between the stones. I bought lights for around the top. In my wild imagination it looks like this:


I'm not sure if it will turn out like this, but I hope it does. :) Pinterest and I are good friends. Can you tell?

So what fuels your inspiration? What makes you happy and sooths the soul?

April 27, 2017

A Texas girl dishes on life in the Rockies - High Altitude Gardening by Karilyn Bentley


What I want my garden to look like
You know those perfect gardens and manicured lawns you see around big cities? They're pretty, aren't they? Unfortunately, those aren't available where I live. I guess if you wanted to hire a bunch of people to dig up rocks and plant flowers you might be able to make a go of a garden. Until the next herd of deer or elk come walking through it the next day, eating everything you planted.

When we first moved here, I wanted to continue having a garden like the one I had in Texas. Nothing much, just some veggies and a few flowering plants. I love growing my own vegetables, although the insects would always manage to eat them, sometimes before The Hubster and I could. I was super-excited to try out  my hand at gardening in the mountains where there aren't the same doggone leaf eating insects. So we went to the local gardening store and bought a flowering plant claiming to be able to live to -20 degrees Fahrenheit and a plant of chrysanthemums. I was determined to have them live and bloom. My front flowerbeds were going to look awesome! Then a lady walked up, chuckling, asked if we were new to town. When I said we were, she responded with a thought so, those plants should be advertised as deer food, only the new arrivals try to plant plants. I laughed, but was determined to get them to grow, to spread, to smell and look pretty. To prove that lady wrong.

April 25, 2017

Guest Princess: Suzanne Pearson #InspirationalRomanticSuspense #NewRelease #PlottingPrincess

We are thrilled to have Suzanne Pearson as a guest Princess today on the blog!  

Suzanne Pearson was born in the Congo to missionary parents.  After graduating from high school, she and her family moved to Eugene Oregon, where she eventually met her husband.  She didn't start writing until she was an empty-nester, and had the idea to write about a missionary in the Congo who gets into all sorts of trouble.

Suzanne, get ready for your Plotting Princess speed round interview!  Ready? Set? GO!

April 20, 2017

Failed Beauty Contestant #tiara #romanticcomedy #shortstory

I can hear you laughing way over here. Yes, I’ve been a failed beauty contestant, not once, but twice.

The first time was in high school in a program hosted by my hometown’s fire department. The real reason I entered was the $500 scholarship. I wanted to go to college and $500 would pay for a few semesters of community college. So I entered, wrote the essay, borrowed a black swimsuit, wore a sweet long dress of eyelet.

And didn’t win. In all fairness, I was selected from the 24 original entrants to be in the final top twelve. That part was cool. Picture in the paper! The girl who did get the tiara looked 24 not 17 or 18. She really looked like a beauty contestant.

Sigh.

April 4, 2017

A Literary Mulligan

In the game of golf, a quick do-over is called a “Mulligan”—a chance to make a fresh start, or repair a bad beginning. During the past few months I have taken a Mulligan for my first three romances—the Dartmouth Brides trilogy of THE PURSUIT OF PLEASURE, A SENSE OF SIN, and THE DANGER OF DESIRE. 


I’ve done them over from start to finish—from the covers (by the brilliant photographer Jenn LeBlanc at Studio Smexy, and talented designer Patricia Pickyme Schmitt) to new epilogues. I took the opportunity to make the writing fresh by revising and re-focusing the narrative in a way that I simply wasn’t capable of when I first wrote those stories six years ago.

But the best part of going over these stories were the characters—impudent, rebellious Lizzie, shy, studious Celia, and larcenous, brilliant Meggs. Oh, what fun it was to revisit the young women who had first prompted me to write romance. It was like visiting with old friends I hadn’t seen in years—the conversation started right up where we left off.