Sunday, December 4, 2022

Why the Nokota Horse for Paisley Noon and Julie Christen?

 Why the Nokota Horse?


    In anticipation of Paisley Noon's arrival, check out this video about the Nokota horse
the inspiration behind the story.

    I was once told that you can always research the details - write what's in your heart. And that's what I did with Paisley Noon. I did the research (so much to the point I now own three of this rare breed), but mostly I used how they move me, deep down, in places I never knew existed in my soul.

    Their story is heart-breaking and uplifting all at once. Learning about how this special breed chooses its person, not the other way around, felt like a magical mystery I had to explore. Once I delved into the Nokota world, I found more than just facts about a type of horse. 

    I found the people behind them. 

    That is where the true heart of the story lies - in the people and the love they have and the passion they act upon daily to preserve the future of this breed. They are selfless. They are genuine. They are humble. They are reflections of the Nokota horse itself.

To learn more, go to https://www.nokotahorse.org

Friday, December 2, 2022

Down the Research Rabbit Hole by Diane Bator

 

To buy:  Click Here

Spoiler Present Alert!!

This time of year, many writers are reeling from the challenge of National Novel Month (Nanowrimo) in November. The big goal is to write 50,000 words in 30 days. Or whatever challenge writers would like to do. Some choose to write less and some push themselves to write more. Either way, the month ends with all or part of a great new novel or novella.

One of the challenges of Nanowrimo is not to spend time doing research, but actually writing – with a little research on the side!

So here I am. With a great new novel (Book 3 in my Glitter Bay Mysteries!) and had time to do some research. Not for the book I was working on, but for the one I want to write next.

I have an idea to write a Hallmark-style book about a woman who runs a small business making and selling candles and bath items. My research has run the gamut from learning online to playing with essential oils, bath salts, and candles. I figure if I’m going to go that far down the rabbit hole, I might as well have fun with it and create a few Christmas gifts while I’m at it!



Have I tested my creations? Oh, yes! There’s an old adage that nearly every writer has heard:
  Write what you know. How could I possible explain the scents or the textures of the items my character creates when I have no idea how they actually smell or feel? I've even figured out a name for my brand - and might even use it in the new book.

That and I have a good excuse to make a mess and some gifts.

My favourite items so far is a lovely Pink Lemonade Sugar Scrub and a simple bath salt that you can scent with any oils you like. The recipes are below!

Pink Lemonade Sugar Scrub

1 cup of sugar

½ cup oil (almond, olive oil, or coconut work best)

½ teaspoon vitamin E oil (optional - helps preserve your scrub and provides extra softening)

15 drops lemon essential oil

1-2 drops red food coloring (optional if you want the pink color)

 

Place all ingredients in a bowl and mix, adding more or less oil to your liking.

Store in an airtight container.

Since this recipe doesn’t contain preservatives, use it within a month or two

To Use:

Scoop a small amount of scrub in your hands with a spoon.

Scrub all over your hands or feet – or wherever you’d like a little extra softness. Allow your scrub to sit on your skin for 3-4 minutes. Enjoy this time to rest and relax.

Rinse well, and then pat dry with a soft towel.


https://www.suburbansimplicity.com/pink-lemonade-sugar-scrub/


Simple Bath Salts

1 cup Epsom Salts

½ cup Baking Soda

15 drops of your favourite essential oil

Combine all in a mason jar or bowl and pour into the tub under running water.

Sit back and enjoy!

 


I found my bliss – in the bathtub by donalee Moulton


 I found my bliss – in the bathtub

donalee Moulton's BWL Author Page - Coming in 2023 - Hung Out to Die 

This article of mine appeared in The Globe and Mail. I wanted to share it with you at this time of year when life is bustling and busy. May you find joy.

 I understand the appeal of showers. There is a functionality and practicality to stepping in, under and out. How efficient. How equally unimaginative and boring. In the shower, there is nothing to savour except getting the hell out from beneath 50 pounds per square inch of pulsating water. The fact that showers are measured in psi (as opposed to bubbles) speaks volumes.

But I am a splish-splash person. I relish the warm web of water that embraces you in the bathtub. I enjoy being able to put my head back, relax and wash away the day. I like taking my time, meandering in my mind and humidifying at my own pace.

 Baths were a way of life in our house. Growing up, showers were simply something other people took, mostly people we did not know. I kept this tradition up even after I moved out of my parents’ house, into a marriage and through the divorce that followed. But it wasn’t until years later that I discovered my understanding of the bath and its possibilities had been severely limited.

 It started with a gift of life-altering implications. Inside the present I discovered bubble bath, a bath bomb, exfoliating lotion and glove, and moisturizer. Two of these I’d heard of. The scent was lavender, which I associated with wrinkled aunts and my grandmother’s underwear drawer.

Turns out, I couldn’t have been more wrong.

I filled the tub with steaming water, poured in the bubble bath and the most wonderful scent filled the room. I smiled, bent down and breathed deeply. Not my smartest move. Inhaling bubbles is not recommended. But it didn’t matter. I was happy. And about to get happier.

I stepped into the tub and unwrapped the bath bomb. This is never as easy as it sounds. They often come in a plastic sheath that has no identifiable opening and the tensile strength of tungsten. I persisted. The result was a round, heavenly little orb that exploded when it hit the water. Gently, of course, and with a colour infusion that filled the tub with a lovely glow. The exfoliating lotion and glove were next. I felt the resistance of the glove on my skin. Perhaps even a snag or two. Then, softness.

This time I spend with bubbles, bombs and bath salts is as much about ritual and reverence as it is about self-care and luxuriating. I realized this one blissful Saturday night as I was about to lower myself into a meringue of eucalyptus suds and my husband strolled into the bathroom, lifted the toilet lid, and got ready to whizz.

He won’t do that again.

There is a rhythm to my bathing ritual. There is a pattern and a process. Nothing is rushed, there is room to inhale and time to exhale. The rhythm has become more sophisticated over time. I once received a candle but admitted to my husband that I was unlikely to use it. He suggested I light it in my bathing shrine (and all was forgiven).

Today, my bathing shrine includes 10 burning candles: five small, three medium, two large. There is also a tealight candle that burns inside a Himalayan salt holder, another gift from a good friend. (I am blessed with friends who indulge my bathroom bliss.) In addition, I discovered aromatherapy. And there is music, most recently with the chirps and tweets of birds in the background.

I doubled down on my commitment to ritual and reverence when my husband and I decided to do some redecorating. My bathroom tub is now no ordinary tub. Who knew paradise came in porcelain? This tub has jets that shoot heated streams of water at select body parts, LED lights infuse a delicate glow in the water and there is a heated backrest. An aromatherapy unit sends little fragrant clouds aloft every 20 seconds. Poof!

The bathroom, and the tub in particular, is an expense I no longer attempt to justify. But I have spent some time trying to understand it. Logically I know that self-care is important. Taking time for oneself is time well spent. I’ve read the books (okay, an article or two) about the benefits of finding space from the pressures of daily life. But that sounds clinical and what happens in my shrine is anything but. It’s about connection – and distance. It’s about finding oneself – and forgetting about the self for a few hours. It’s about feeling pampered – and humbled.

One night, I turned on the tap, poured the juniper bubble bath and Epsom salts into the tub and waited to be enveloped in a fragrant mist.

And waited.

I did not have hot water.

Ultramar’s message centre assured me help was on the way. I felt a nudge of joy.

That did not last. The repair guy wasn’t ruining his Saturday night because some woman’s bath water wasn’t hot. He eventually showed up but he needed a new part. Bottom line: I had to wait several days.

I did not hide my disappointment. The repairman did not hide his indifference. I was not happy about the emergency call service fee that still left me without hot water. I think he flipped me the bird on his way out.

But Monday came, the water heater was fixed and the bath was full of hot, inviting H²0. But this time I breathed in more than the latest release from Bath and Body Works. I realized at that moment that my shrine, wrapped in relaxation and reverence, is really about gratitude. It’s about being thankful to be here and thankful to be. Gratitude isn’t just about being personally thankful and appreciative, though, it is about extending that thanks to the world around you. It’s about grace.

I have taken that insight to heart. I remind myself now to smell the rose water before I speak out; to soak up the moment before rushing to the next task.

And I have apologized to the man from Ultramar.


donalee's novel, Hung out to Die, is coming from BWL Publishing Inc. in 2023


Meet Riel Brava. Attractive. Razor-sharp. Ambitious. And something much more.

 Riel, raised in Santa Barbara, California, has been transplanted to Nova Scotia where he is CEO of the Canadian Cannabis Corporation. It’s business as usual until Riel finds his world hanging by a thread. Actually, several threads. It doesn’t take the police long to determine all is not as it appears – and that includes Riel himself.

 






 

Thursday, December 1, 2022

BWL Publishing Inc. New Releases for December 2022

It’s that time of year again when readers turn their thoughts to finding those special books that fit so nicely into all the real and virtual stockings.  We at BWL Publishing wish all of you a very Happy Holiday Season and we are delighted to share with you our seasonal offerings.



 
December new Releases

Another of Tricia McGill's wonderful historical romances from the land down under.  


Visit Best Selling Author Tricia McGill's BWL Author page


At almost seventeen Faith Boswell knows little about the world beyond the lodging house in Ballarat owned by her widowed mother. The mining town of Ballarat in 1860 is populated by those seeking to get rich by finding gold, so their residents are mostly miners on their way to the diggings with high hopes of finding this highly treasured substance. Sadly, Faith’s Ma is not the easiest person to get along with and Faith often wonders just why her mother is so bitter.

 Things start to change unexpectedly one day when a stranger appears at the door of their home—a gentleman who mysteriously seems to know a lot about Faith’s Ma, her past life, plus Faith herself. Faith fears that her mother has been lying to her all her life. From that day Faith’s life takes a turn, perhaps for the better. One long-term lodger is a widow who unexpectedly presents Faith with an unusual birthday gift. This gift causes uproar which plays a large part in Faith’s life from them onwards.

Because Faith knows little about life outside of her sheltered existence, she is unable to fathom if handsome Walter Finch, son of the nearby store owners, has real feelings for her or is simply being kind. Faith is soon to find out just how willing he is to help her as she sets out on a new and scary phase in her life.

Genre(s) Historical Romance/Historical Fiction/Australian Historical.

Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Snowflakes by Eden Monroe

 


For book description and purchase information visit 

Eden Monroe Author Page 

Every snowflake is a unique creation, and Wilson Bentley (1865-1931) was the first known photographer to ever capture them on film. Bentley was a farmer, and so given his special connection with nature and his respectful appreciation of it, he helped science understand these magnificent ice crystals. He said of his work:

“Under the microscope, I found that snowflakes were miracles of beauty, and it seemed a shame that this beauty should not be seen and appreciated by others. Every crystal was a masterpiece of design and no one design was ever repeated. When a snowflake melted, that design was forever lost. Just that much beauty was gone, without leaving any record behind.”

Certainly lovely to look at, but how are individual snowflakes created in the first place? According to scijnks.gov/snowflakes/:  “A snowflake begins to form when an extremely cold water droplet freezes onto a pollen or dust particle in the sky. This creates an ice crystal. As the ice crystal falls to the ground, water vapor freezes onto the primary crystal, building new crystals - the six arms of the snowflake.”

As many as 200 ice crystals comprise each snowflake, and there are several basic shapes that begin their formation in the clouds. What they will eventually look like depends on temperature and humidity levels, constantly changing atmospheric conditions as they descend on different paths from the sky. So the chance that two natural snowflakes could have the same arrangement of water molecules is pretty remote. Similar, perhaps, but differing in details.

“Although the six-sided shape is always maintained, the ice crystal (and its six arms) may branch off in new directions….”

Snowflakes can also vary widely in size. The tiniest snowflakes are called diamond dust, suspended glittering in the air, and there are documented incidents of snowflakes reaching a remarkable diameter of two to six inches.

 


Snowflakes have always captured our imagination, and in the romantic suspense novel, Looking for Snowflakes, it’s all about a tiny poodle called Snowflakes. She got her name because she liked to chase down and catch these beautiful ice crystals on her tongue. High spirited and adorable, Snowflakes embodies the infectious spirit of Christmas with her never-ending supply of canine warmth and charm. Everyone loves her and it’s precisely because she is so irresistible that she finds herself in a terrible predicament, stolen from Cole’s vehicle on the day before Christmas:

“The security officer folded his arms. ‘I don’t know what your chances are of getting the dog back because there’s so little to go on, but I wish you all the luck in the world. What kind of dog was it?’

Cole sighed, dreading the news he would have to break very soon. ‘A small white poodle.’

The store manager had gotten to his feet behind his desk. ‘At least she’s not out running around loose. The temperature is supposed to drop fast tonight. It’s going to be a cold one.’

Minutes later Cole was back sitting in his truck. Poor little Snowflakes, he only hoped she was safe and that whoever took her would be kind. He shoved unpleasant images from his mind with an effort. He had to call Elsa right away and tell her what happened, but then just as quickly decided he couldn’t do it over the phone. She at least deserved to be told in person. She was not going to be happy and he couldn’t blame her. He wouldn’t be too happy either if that had happened to his dog.

He made his way to what was now Elsa’s place, alone, in Stoney Creek. He kept a sharp eye out for a tiny white dog on foot, hoping against hope, but of course there was nothing. No such luck to have the dog back safely in his care. He might as well face the music and be done with it. He could see that her car was in the drive when he pulled in and got out. He was glad she wasn’t in the window watching for them because she’d know immediately that something was wrong if he was walking to the door without the dog.

She answered on the second knock and looked at him strangely when she didn’t see Snowflakes. ‘Where’s the dog?’ she asked, checking the ground to see if she had walked to the door instead of being carried.

‘Can I come in?’

‘Certainly you can come in, but where’s Snowflakes?’

He stepped in and pulled the door shut behind him. ‘Elsa, I’m afraid I have some really bad news and I wanted to tell you in person rather than over the phone.’

She looked stricken. ‘What do you mean you have really bad news? I assume it’s about Snowflakes since she isn’t with you.’

‘It’s about Snowflakes. She was….’

‘Run over?’ she demanded, tears springing to her eyes. ‘Snowflakes is dead?’

He reached to put his arms around her but she deftly stepped out of his embrace, stiff as a poker so he dropped his arms. ‘No, she didn’t get hit by a car and as far as I know she’s not dead.’

“ ‘What do you mean as far as you know? What’s going on, Cole? Where’s my dog?’ ”

There is of course a close connection between snowflakes, the ones that fall from the sky and accumulate in cold climates, and the Christmas season. We have Charles Dickens to thank for our preference of a white Christmas. A Christmas Carol was written during the Victorian era when London and much of England was still experiencing what is referred to as the little ice age. That meant there was an abundance of snow on the ground, even a winter fair held on the Thames, frozen solid at that time in a country where the average winter temperature now is between 36-45 degrees Fahrenheit. And the small amount of snow that does fall in that area happens in January or February. However there is usually plenty of opportunity to see snowflakes in England, lots of them. In the North Pennines located in the northernmost section of the Pennnine range of hills running north to south through northern England, it usually snows about fifty-three days in the run of a year.

Snow or no snow, Dickens took only six weeks to write A Christmas Carol, seeing it through to publication in December of 1843. Struggling financially he felt the book would sell well, and indeed all 6,000 copies sold out in a week. But production costs were high considering its red fabric binding, gilt edges and coloured illustrations, so Dickens didn’t fare as well as he’d hoped when all of the pennies were finally counted.  But the book did achieve immortality, still popular 179 years later, as is the ideal he created for snow at Christmas.

Whether a backdrop to a story, or the actual story itself, snowflakes have also become a big part of our Christmas vernacular through song, immortalized in such timeless classics as: I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas (Irving Berlin); Let it Snow (Styne & Cahn); Frosty the Snowman (Autry, Rollins & Steve Nelson) and more. Who hasn’t sung along, given our fascination with snowflakes and their ability to transform our world at Christmas?

Snow may be synonymous with the festive season in many parts of the world, but of course nature’s frozen crystals can be enjoyed at any time during the winter months. That includes embracing them en masse in a postcard perfect setting; through a myriad of popular outdoor sports, or simply studying their dazzling beauty individually. For the latter all you need is black construction paper and a magnifying glass. Nature will provide the show, and what better way to enjoy some incredible natural artwork? Looking at Snowflakes could be a whole new winter pastime.


Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Mound Builders--New Discoveries, New Speculations

 

I am originally from south west Ohio, close to the big river which gave the State it's name. One of my happiest childhood memories is going on picnics to the many mounds built by that lost -- and until fairly recently -- mysterious, ancient people. I consider those early visits to the little museums that  sprung up in their vicinity, a major inspiration for my love of history.




When I was small, we often visited Fort Ancient and the justly famous Serpent Mound, going there for family picnics. I remember one visit to Fort Ancient when I was disappointed not to see the skeletons that had been there before. My father - or perhaps my grandfather - read all the careful labelling to me, as the bones fascinated me. Together, we studied the worn teeth, the signs of arthrithis and injuries on the bones, caused, my elders explained, by hard work and chewing cornmeal full of stone ground grit. 
Serpent Mound

I'd spent a lot of time with these skeletons, lost in imagining what their lives had been like, so hard and so short. Most had died in the thirties, and I pictured them hauling the materials from which the mound had been so carefully constructed, or growing corn and hunting deer in the valley below. With the help of museum imagery, I imagined mothers in their bark houses, grinding corn, or tending to babies, and children learning from their elders and sometimes playing too. 

A docent explained that it would have taken 19 generations of workers to create that great "fort." Even in the fifties, it was shown in the dioramas that this massive construction was not a simple heap of earth, but had been constructed carefully, to some unknown plan, and begun with a strong, stable foundation of stone and timber. My father, an engineer, remarked on the skill involved and on how much earth had been moved by a people without draft animals, all of it carried in baskets on their backs, and steadied by a tump line wrapped around the forehead. 

The bones were gone, though, and I was disappointed. My family reminded me that the skeletons belonged to someone's family, and that it had been decided, after Indigenous complaints, to hide them away. "You wouldn't want your family dug up and displayed in a museum, would you?" (I don't know if these bones were re-buried as they often are today, but, back then, probably not.) Although I accepted this, the museum somehow seemed empty to me, as if people I had come to know were absent.

At that time, Mound Builders were considered a "mystery." Even the local Tribes - Miami and Seneca -had had no stories to tell curious settlers about who had built these mounds or what their fate had been. Over time, I learned that these ancient people built their mounds, not just in Ohio and Indiana, but all over the Mississippi drainage basin, from Louisiana to Georgia. Some are as far north as Canada! We are now learning that these mounds were great ceremonial centers, many used only seasonally, as centers for trading and religious festivals in honor of the Sun, Moon, and the Circle of the Year. In some places, actual cities formed in places like Cahokia, near St. Louis, Mo. and Poverty Point in Mississippi. These contained thousands of inhabitants, their numbers rivaling and often exceeding the size of the greatest European cities in existence at the same time. 

About twenty years ago, scientists began to see the mounds in new ways. As time had progressed, and ever more ancient sites were explored, it became apparent just how many people had been in the Americas before the Spanish arrived. The extent of the deaths caused by European "Guns, Germs & Steel,"* was at first estimated at a quarter of the native population, then at fifty percent, and now, the latest studies show that almost 95% of the original population of the Americas may have died!

Hernando DeSoto's two year travels searching for gold, spanned 1540-1542. He traveled from Florida's west coast through today's Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, and back over the Appalachians again into North Georgia, then on to Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas. He left a record of all the numerous cities he saw, and of all the battles he fought along the way, as the Indians had swiftly learned to fear and resist him. The worst consequence of his visit was to spread smallpox and all the other European diseases, to which the Indians had no resistence, all along the way. 

By the 1600's, when English and French settlers began to enter these same areas, they found these once bustling cities standing empty.  The tribes who remained claimed to know nothing about the mounds, nor about those built them. Perhaps this was a kind of social amnesia after what had been, after all, a cultural apocalypse. Perhaps it was simply a refusal to share anything sacred with these invaders, who stole, murdered and enslaved whereever they went.



Since the early 2000's, more research has been conducted at various mound sites, including my childhood happy places, Fort Ancient and The Serpent Mound. Some of this research has been accepted by mainstream archeology, though much is still under review.  (As history teaches, new theories and discoveries often find difficulty in being accepted by the establishment.) Another new thread has been scientists discovering that the "old tales" that are still told by the few remaining Shamen to be found among modern American tribes are surprisingly synchronous with the stories and "myths" connected to European standing stones and mounds. It has begun to appear that ancient people alike, all over the world, carefully watched the skies for the same stars and the same seasonal changes.  

Now, Fort Ancient has many gaps in what have been for all these years assumed to be walls, but the new field of archeoastronomy has begun to demonstrate that these openings were set where they are in order to observe the rising and setting of certain stars and star groups, ones associated with death rituals and the safe passage of the soul into the Other World. At the Serpent Mound, these same sightlines are set at the apex of each curve the great snake, himself a symbol of the underworld. 

Astonishingly similar to many ancient Egyptian beliefs, these same stars guide the soul into the land of the ancestors, using the Milky Way and the same stars which were so important to the Egyptians, such as Sirius and Deneb. A glowing circle where the cloudy shine of another galaxy is visible to the naked eye, was, to those ancestral people, the goal of each and every traveling soul.  




Juliet Waldron
All my books @

Indian Mounds of the Middle Ohio Valley, A guide to the Mounds and Earthworks of the Adena, Hopewell, Cole, & Fort Ancient People, Published 2002, by Susan Woodward and Jerry N. McDonald

Guns, Germs & Steel, Pulitzer Prize Winner 2002, by Jared Diamond
https://www.amazon.com/Guns-Germs-Steel-Fates-Societies-ebook/dp/B06X1CT33R/ref=sr_1_1?crid=2I4CR3L33JWN9&keywords=jared+diamond+books&qid=1669681681&sprefix=Jared+Diamond%2Caps%2C76&sr=8-1

And for some convincing speculation:

The Path of Souls, Gregory Little 
https://www.amazon.com/Path-Souls-American-Skeletons-Smithsonian/dp/0965539253/ref=asc_df_0965539253/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=312174369544&hvpos=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=6480905854475676947&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9006604&hvtargid=pla-567617217296&psc=1

Monday, November 28, 2022

Keeping Track of All the Books You Read By Connie Vines #WritingTips, #BWLAuthorBlog, #Tips for Readers

 If you are like me, you read so many books/ebooks during the year.


Fiction, nonfiction, cookbooks, craft books, and in my case, manuals and instructional materials.

I struggle to recall what print books are shelved in bookcases and what paperback novels I have scattered around the house. 

How difficult can it be, you scoff.

The closet in my office is a bookcase. Floor-to-ceiling, which takes up one entire wall of the room. Plus, the 4 additional standing bookcases in numerous other rooms.

And then there are the eBooks. I own a Kindle, a Nook, and an Apple tablet, which house the works of my favorite fiction authors, and sample reads.

You can see where this is leading....how many times have I re-purchased a book?

I'll give you an example. There is a western novelist (who shall remain nameless); books have always been must-reads for me.

There was one novel (I can't recall the title, which was part of the problem 😉). I purchased the original hardbound via a book club, then a paperback version. A few years later, the book was republished with an updated cover (paperback and hardbound). 

Yep. I bought them all. (remember, this is only one case in point.) since the books were new, my father received a hardbound copy on his birthday, and several paperbacks were given prizes at the local library fund-raiser event.

Lists, log books, etc., were a real pain and never foolproof. 

📚

It was quite by accident that I located a free app. Book Buddy.

The reviews were glowing, so I decided to give it a try.

I paid a small fee for additional storage because I was uploading so books.  

Why do I love this app?

I can track who I've loaned a book to, my reading status on each book, my next read,

Favorites, Series Titles, books I've donated (my personal tracking addition),

You simply scan the ISBN, and all the info uploads. 

If it's without the current 13-digit ISBN, you snap a picture of the cover and add some information.

It's also available on my phone. This will be a great help when I'm Christmas shopping this year!

Remember to check out all of BWL's November and December new releases! Get those stocking stuffers early--there are only 26 shopping days...📅 🎅🎄


BWL has a BIG sale on Smashwords: Connie Vines.

.

Connie's BWL Author Page: https://bookswelove.net/vines-connie/




Happy Reading!

Connie


Connie Vines's Blog and links





Sunday, November 27, 2022

Books as Holiday gifts – by Vijaya Schartz

 

Vijaya's latest release.
 Find it HERE

Whether it’s a stocking stuffer novel, a kindle gift sent to a friend faraway, or the wrapped gift of a complete paperback series, if you know the favorite genre of the avid readers among your family and friends, books make wonderful gifts.

Maybe it’s the story they talked about but never got to buy for themselves. Maybe it’s the new release in a series they started and loved. Or you can surprise them with a book you enjoyed and want to share with them. In any case, it’s becoming simpler and easier than ever to gift books.

You can do it from your laptop or phone, order online from your favorite retailer, and have it shipped or emailed. It takes little time and effort. It will be appreciated on cold, snowy, or rainy days.

Going with a reliable publisher, like BWL Publishing, will ensure it’s a quality book. Other ways to select a good book is considering the author’s track record. Award-winning authors usually deliver consistent quality reads. You can also read the ratings and reviews shared by other readers on the retail sites.

The most difficult part of this process is selecting the right genre and the right titles. Find out if you friend likes cozy mysteries, romance, action/adventure, Historical novels, fantasy, science fiction, or a mix of genres.

I write in many genres and also like to mix them. From contemporary romance to realistic Celtic legends, to space opera and science fiction, including even felines in some of my stories. But each author brings his or her personal touch to the writing, and if you like an author in one genre, chances are you will like that author’s other writings as well.

Here are some suggestions from my popular writings:

Curse of the Lost Isle series (Celtic legends – Edgy medieval)
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo



Chronicles of Kassouk series (Sci-fi romance)
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo



Azura Chronicles series (Set on another planet – includes cats - androids - romantic elements)
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo



Byzantium series (Set on a space station - cats – action - sweet romance for all ages)
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo



Archangel twin books (Aliens and angels in a contemporary setting)
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo



Romance (rated R)
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo

 



Happy Holidays with books!


Vijaya Schartz, award-winning author
Strong Heroines, Brave Heroes, cats
http://www.vijayaschartz.com
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo FB 


Saturday, November 26, 2022

A short trip away--Tricia McGill



Find all my books on my BWL author page

My next book is due out in December, and I await its publication date with trepidation—as always. Because I lost my little dog not long ago, I decided it was time to go on a short road trip before I considered whether to get a new companion or not. The original idea was to take the ferry to Tasmania for the umpteenth time as my next work in progress will be set there and I figured it would be worth another visit to Port Arthur, site of the penitentiary where my book will begin. Unfortunately, as the ferry terminal has changed locations the trip to Tassie had to be abandoned, for the available dates did not fit into my travelling companions’ time-table or mine.

So off we went instead along Victoria’s Great Ocean Road. The last time I made this trip was quite some years ago, in fact 22 years, and I was amazed at how our southern coastline has changed through the years. The coastline is slowly but surely eroding and falling into the sea. Where once we could leave the car in the carpark and walk a few paces to take in the view, now the road has been relocated so far back from the coast that it involves a long trek. This is the same wherever you go along Australia’s southern coastline.

Some visitors to our country may have taken this road trap, perhaps to view what was once the Twelve Apostles and is now drastically reduced in numbers—or perhaps lovers of surfing would hone in on Torquay. It still remains one of Victoria’s most scenic drives in parts. 


On the way back inland, we had a surprise when we spotted a koala sitting in the road. The poor chappie looked slightly dazed, and we wondered if perhaps he had escaped the floods that are currently sweeping through our country. Of course, we stopped with the hope of encouraging him/her back into the trees, and soon two other carloads of travellers had stopped with the same idea. To our complete surprise the creature decided to climb up one man’s trouser leg and cling to his shirt. Eventually the man was able to place the koala on the trunk of a nearby tree. We can only hope that it returns to its favoured habitat safely. The numbers of these little creatures are in such decline every one saved is a blessing.

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